Patients usually see their chiropractor more frequently at the beginning of the treatment period in order to relieve pain. This is followed by regular but less frequent appointments to maintain gains made in healing. In chronic disorders such as fibromyalgia, treatment may be long term. There is no cure for fibromyalgia, but chiropractic treatment has helped many people by reducing symptoms and improving quality of life.
What is Fibromyalgia?Fibromyalgia is a syndrome, and not a specific disease. This means that people who have fibromyalgia exhibit a specific constellation of symptoms. The disorder is diagnosed by elimination when no other explanation can account for the symptoms. To have fibromyalgia, the individual must have widespread pain in all four quadrants of the body that lasts more or less continuously, for at least three months. The patient must also have pain in at least 11 of 18 tender points. A tender point is a pre-designated spot that is painful when 4 kg of pressure (about 9 lb, or enough to make the nail bed of the finger whiten) is applied.
Individuals with fibromyalgia may also experience other symptoms including:
- Morning stiffness
- Poor sleep or sleep disorders
- Chronic headaches
- Myofascial pain syndrome
- Restless leg syndrome
- Menstrual irregularities
- Muscle twitches and/or muscle weakness