Fibromyalgia is one of the most common diseases affecting the muscles, tendons, and joints in women. Many health care professionals still do not recognize the condition as a disorder, most likely, because x-rays, blood tests, and biopsies often show no prevalent evidence to support the patients’ complaints. However, in recent years, the use of thermographs, a device that tests and measures the heat produced by areas of the body, has helped diagnose the condition. Studies indicate that fibromyalgia patients have decreased blood flow and decreased skin temperatures in sites of tenderness. Symptoms include long-term muscle soreness, muscle stiffness, sleeplessness, fatigue, mood changes, anxiety and depression. Often times the condition is worsened by stress and weather changes. Unlike other rheumatic conditions that cause swelling and inflammation of the tissues in the body, fibromyalgia does not cause any type of joint deformity or does not damage any internal organs.
Many times, patients that suffer with fibromyalgia have other conditions or disorders that will occur. One of the most common disorders associated with fibromyalgia is TMJ, a disorder associated with the jaw. Many sufferers of fibromyalgia may be diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, as well. Some patients complain of migraine or tension headaches, irritable bowel and bladder syndromes. Some women may develop a loss in memory and concentration. Fibrocystic Breast Disease and Endometriosis is often present in women that have fibromyalgia, although there has been no studies conducted regarding the correlation of the two.