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Fibromyalgia Diagnosis Tips for New Patients

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Fibromyalgia diagnosis can be hard to come to terms with for an individual. Here are some tips for dealing with it and what to do.

Tip 1: – Do Not Accept Your Diagnosis Blindly 

It is highly advisable for any newly fibromyalgia diagnosed person to question their diagnosis and consider seeking a second or third opinion. This is because fibromyalgia is diagnosed through exclusion or elimination (it is a diagnosis of exclusion). What does this mean? Well, for a person to be diagnosed with fibro, first; other possible medical conditions must be ruled out by a professional.

Often, a majority of physicians are too quick to label someone with fibromyalgia simply because it is the root with few resistances. This happens when they are not sure what is wrong with you, and the lab tests do not show any apparent problem. Therefore, according to them, a person must have fibromyalgia.

However, even though fibromyalgia is a diagnosis of exclusion, most tests are not correct. As such, you should never accept diagnosis blindly. According to a Canadian study, it showed that 2/3 of all fibromyalgia patients in the country had been misdiagnosed. The implication of this is enormous. According to this study, millions of those diagnosed with this condition are living with undiagnosed conditions in which others can be treated – which can have medical and legal implications according to this expert.

Tip 2: – Find A Reputable Physician Is Important

Some of us are living in areas where medical options are limited, and this is a fact. However, let this not discourage you from seeking the best doctor. You should always avoid doctors who disrespect you, one who is not capable of performing the right tests, or one who is not willing to help you. If you look around, you will hear and read many physician horror stories from people diagnosed with fibromyalgia.

Photo by Tim Foster on Unsplash

Examples of these stories include; fibromyalgia does not exist, everything is all in the head, a patient is getting old, a patient needs to lose weight (there is a link between fibromyalgia and weight gain) and even overprescribing medication to the point of putting a patient into a drug stupor. If your doctor has done or said any of these or anything similar, then you should find another doctor. Do not allow yourself to be abused.

Fibromyalgia is real, and it is not in your head or simply getting old. This is why it is always important to seek a second opinion, especially doctors who believe in fibro and are quite knowledgeable when it comes to this condition. 

Tip 3: – There Is No-Magic Treatment or Pill For Fibro

For many years after my diagnosis, I did try many fibromyalgia pills and treatments like many people. However, none of the treatment options and pills worked for me. They either did not work or turned me into a zombie. There are three popular drugs that were approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for fibro, which I did extensive research and also tried. These drugs are Savella, Lyrica, And Cymbalta.

Well, these drugs did not work for me. I also found out that these drugs do not work well with many who suffer from fibro. In fact, only 1/3 of patients taking Cymbalta experience some pain relief, and this is the most effective drug out of the three. Well, these drugs work for some, and you should try.

Tips 4: – The Right Doctor For You Probably Is Not Your Rheumatologist or Primary- Care Doctor

According to a 2016 Physician Compensation Report by Medscape, it proved that doctors average about 15 minutes per patient with every visit. This is not enough time for any patient to explain their complaints, conduct tests, and prescribe a treatment or medication for the said condition. This only works for simple conditions such as flue, but not for those with chronic illnesses like fibro. Therefore, what is the solution? Well, the only solution is looking for a physician who provides healthcare differently.

A primary care doctor will most often look at a piece of your health issues and come up with a treatment option. To me, symptom reducing success came in the form of a doctor who practices functional medicine. That is because functional medicine physicians approach treatment based on systematic and whole-body healthcare. What does this mean? Well, for the treatment to be effective, they first work on understanding the symptoms and its origin. Symptoms such as migraines, digestive troubles, chronic pains, exhaustion, and others are all looked at. 

The aim of functional medicine is to restore a person’s overall health and not just treating the symptoms with the latest medical inventions or pharmaceuticals. A functional physician uses more tools like alternative therapies, natural supplements, modifications, and lifestyle. If you are diagnosed or simply looking to try functional medicine, go to the Institute of Functional Medicine website to locate a functional physician close to you. 

Remember, if any particular treatment is working for you, then stick to that. I know some who experience great results with osteopathic doctors, naturopaths, and chiropractors. Therefore, if any of the methods work for you, continue with that, because there is no magic pill or treatment for fibro. Nonetheless, it is essential to work with a doctor who will take a holistic and comprehensive treatment approach. 

Tip 5: – It Takes More Than Drugs To Feel Better

When you research more about this condition, you will come across some so-called success stories where some people claim to have recovered completely or successfully minimized fibromyalgia symptoms. If you read several stories, you will discover a pattern: – they all used multiple treatment options to feel better. Dietary changes are also mentioned, in which they gave up sugar and processed meals. They only eat whole foods-based diets and gluten-free meals.

In a nutshell, they changed their lifestyle. Furthermore, they did yoga, meditation, or tai chi to calm the overactive nervous system. This also included taking gentle exercises to stay active and spent a lot of time outdoors. They became experts at stress management. In some cases, they used prescription drugs, which only was a part of their overall treatment plan. Overall, treatment involved lifestyle change and a more natural treatment approach.

 
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