Fibromyalgia has to be one of the most misunderstood diseases or syndromes in the medical field today. Treatment of the disorder is even far more misunderstood and complicated.
Each fibromyalgia patient is very different and will almost require individualized treatment. An active exercise program, low-dose antidepressants, acupuncture, psychotherapy, behavior modification therapy, chiropractic care, massage and physical therapy, used alone or in conjunction with one another, may provide some relief of symptoms
The key factor, is first, find a doctor that believes in, and treats fibro. Number two on your list, is find a doctor that aggressively treats you for pain control. A PWF, must have the pain controlled, and have proper medication for sleep, before there will ever be any relief.
It would be impossible to lay out a treatment plan here, as there is no “One Size fits all” in the treatment of fibro. Most doctors start with Elavil, an antidepressant, and some type of pain control.
Then we get into the exercise part, many doctors will try all sorts of exercise programs, but you have to find one that you can do. This is critical. You have to have exercise, but you can cause far more damage over exercising as a fibro patient
Acupuncture may be an extremely useful addition to fibromyalgia treatment efforts. The frequency of acupuncture sessions ranges widely from patient to patient, but appears to improve quality of life. Also, many PWF respond to Chiropractic treatment, personally, I have found Osteopathic manipulation to work better for me. In dealing with fibro, you are basically on your own, and you have to find what works for you.
For patients who have more severe pain and for whom other therapies are ineffective or cannot be utilized, chronic opioid analgesic therapy, involving oral painkillers, may be an option. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents, such as aspirin and ibuprofen, have not been proven effective, however.
Be ready for some doctor to talk to you about some behavior modification training, including coping skills, relaxation exercises and self-hypnosis may provide relief for some patients. In these areas, try it first. Many PWF respond well, and can use these techniques to help with the pain, and the stress of being in constant pain.
In this section, treatment is just touched upon, as treatment varies from one to the other. Do your research, and keep updated on the current and new therapies coming out for the treatment of fibro, discuss them with your doctor, and do not be afraid to try something new.