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Author Topic: Diagnosed with Fibro today.  (Read 981 times)

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Offline NeverAgain2

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Re: Diagnosed with Fibro today.
« Reply #15 on: May 04, 2014, 12:45:32 AM »
Apologies, I haven't been coming to this website much lately, but I thought I would check in and see what's up with this forum.

The Cymbalta + CBT has helped immensely with my anxiety, for which I am grateful. The fibromyalgia, not so much. It's a tiny bit better, especially the pain in my neck, but it's mostly still there.

NeverAgain, I have to respectfully disagree with you. I have been attending fibro support groups and the topic of anxiety and depression has come up many times. Beside the sadness that people feel about their symptoms, most of the people whom I have spoken to with fibro do -not- have symptoms of an anxiety or depressive disorder, have never been diagnosed with such and seemed to be polar opposites of me when I was feeling anxious. They did not feel abnormal levels of anxiety or depression, compared to healthy people.

You can certainly disagree with me, but there is a certain group think/group identity/group conclusions that go along with "support" groups.  Did you know that pain is sometimes the only symptom of depression?  That people often aren't aware of their anxiety and/or depression?  Just the fact that people are attending a support group lends a certain de facto conclusion that they are feeling anxiety over this mysterious syndrome. 

Correlation does not equal causation. Because anxiety and fibro are similar doesn't mean that anxiety causes fibro. That used to be what was thought, that it was a somatic illness, but any pain illness can be described as somatic, doesn't make it so.

Actually the latest thinking on Fibro is that is it the "central sensitization" of the  nervous system and that the pain that was acute becomes chronic because of behavioral and biological changes and plastic changes to the brain and because all pain has its origin in the brain, imaging has shown that even the anticipation of movement that has caused pain in a person shows up as pain in that body part in the imaging.  A person who has phantom limb pain will show pain in the portion of the brain that is just above where the limb was.  Somatic is not a definition I use, because it is too simple. The pain Fibro patients feel is real, the pain myofascial patients feel is real, and you just can't wish it away by deciding that it is "all in your head" Often a combination of treatments are needed, especially if the pain is long standing.  The main barrier to overcome, which is helped by CBT or Cognitive Restructuring,  is the fear of the pain and symptoms.  It is this fear which lights up the brain which sends out pain signals.  This is simplified, but basically represents the latest in thinking.

I realize this is anecdotal, but if it were simply caused by anxiety, why would I still feel intense pain when I would be seriously sedated by 3 mg of Ativan?

Yes.  Ativan is a band aid and not a cure. The underlying pain-thinking-fear is still there.  Ativan can help to lessen the symptoms in some so they can work to resume a normal life, but unless the origin of the pain and pain itself is understood, there is no "cure".

It's quite possible that anxiety caused similar symptoms in you that fibro would've, and you were misdiagnosed, but that doesn't mean it's the same for everyone.

Nobody is the same when it comes to medical maladies.

The claim that doctors know full well that fibro is caused by anxiety and depression but are unwilling to say so is preposterous; ask anyone on the Health Anxiety forums, they will tell you that doctors are very willing to describe their symptoms as being a result of anxiety. Plus, there is no conspiracy by doctors, and most doctors are not secretive when it comes to being upfront with their patients.

Not all doctors by any means are convinced that Fibro is caused by a misfiring central nervous system or anxiety/depression/ or stress.  In fact, if you ask a doctor what causes Fibro, if they are honest, they will say they do not know --that is if they don't offer some of the things i mentioned.  That you can be certain of is that there is no missed virus, bacteria, pathogen or genetic defect that causes Fibro

Anyway, I do appreciate your posts, and I wish you well!

I am well, thanks. I'm not a doctor, don't claim any miracles, but I have been where you have been, and what you are suffering is unique to you but not unique in the annals of medical history.  It is just that a divorce took place about sixty years ago between doctors attributing certain illnesses to the mind, and that is because most doctors are not trained to think holistically and now especially cannot spend much time with their patients. 

I don't know how long you have had Fibro, but let's look at the fact that you are on an anxiety site, and if you have any history of medical treatment for Fibro you know that it is not that effective.  What do you have to lose by taking it to another level and looking at a closer mind/body connection?  Also, it has been my experience and others -- and studies do back this up -- that support group can, in fact, have a negative effect on a person, because it is a reminder of what is considered by society (and some people themselves) to be a defect in their person
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