Most medical experts believe that fibromyalgia is an illness that is due to changes in the functioning of the central nervous system – which comprises the brain and spinal cord. The changes may be due to trauma, infection, or some type of genetic trait.
This condition leads to heightened sensations of pain and discomfort, even in the absence of tissue injury or disease. The pain of fibromyalgia usually occurs at specific points of the body, and it can be severe enough to interfere with daily activities. Fibromyalgia can also have other complications, so it’s important to understand these if you know someone with this illness.
What Happens with Fibromyalgia?
Let’s take a look at a few of the major issues that are associated with this condition:
The same mechanism that increases pain sensitivity can also affect other functions of the brain. Fibromyalgia can compromise higher-order functions, such as memory, attention, or communication. This complication is known as fibro fog, as it metaphorically seems like a fog that dulls the mind and makes it harder to think.
Symptoms of fibro fog include short-term memory loss and difficulties in concentrating. People who experience fibro fog may suffer from confusion, lose track of their surroundings, and have trouble with understanding and comprehension.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Another frequent complication of fibromyalgia is irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). The dysregulation that causes pain is believed to also be responsible for improper control over the digestive tract and particularly the intestines.
Hallmark symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome include diarrhea, constipation, and passing of large amounts of gas. You might also be more susceptible to indigestion and abdominal cramps.
One study found that nearly 90% of people with fibromyalgia have experienced clinical depression. It’s possible that the illness causes abnormal levels of neurotransmitters (serotonin) that regulate mood, thereby causing depression.
Other mental health complications of fibromyalgia include anxiety attacks, mood swings, and general irritability.
Fibromyalgia Treatment in Austin, Texas
The widespread pain of fibromyalgia can prevent participation in many everyday activities, including work and social gatherings. The constant struggle against the illness and the uncertainty surrounding the disease can make it seem like there is no hope.
But there is indeed hope!
There is a pain management medical center that specializes in fibromyalgia and other pain disorders right here in the Greater Austin area. Balcones Pain Consultants provides successful pain management services to our patients so they can get past the pain and get on with their lives. Our philosophy emphasizes compassion and empathy, and we support patients through every step.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment, call us now at (512) 834-4141 or complete our appointment request form online now. We look forward to helping you tamp down the pain once and for all.