The interaction between autoimmune diseases and fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is a disease that produces chronic pain and hypersensitivity in the muscles of the sufferer. This also tends to cause pain in the tendons and ligaments. The probability of women getting this disease is about 2-4 percent and up to 25% in women suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and Crohn’s disease, or Sjogren’s syndrome meet the criteria for the diagnosis of fibromyalgia.

The root cause of the disease is still unknown; however several cases have shown that women are more sensitive toward this syndrome. This widely accepted theory about its cause is a certain imbalance of brain chemicals. Fibromyalgia is found to be intensified by life experiences like physical injuries, autoimmune disease, emotional stress, or hormonal changes.

Fibromyalgia has also been found to be a somehow genetic disorder. It arises after infections, commonly mononucleosis, and Lyme disease.

This situation is certainly more widespread in women. And it is much more common in women who have some autoimmune disease.  Most symptoms of fibromyalgia and other autoimmune diseases overlap each other. For instance, chronic fatigue syndrome and irritable bowel syndrome are common symptoms of fibromyalgia and other autoimmune diseases.

The state of depression and anxiety is more common in people suffering from fibromyalgia.  Women are two times more likely to develop depression than men, and 40-70 percent of women are seen to develop depression in fibromyalgia.

The other symptoms of the syndrome are sleep disruption, pain sensitivity, chronic fatigue syndrome, anxiety, memory issues, trouble concentrating, and headaches.

According to the American College of Rheumatology, a person having a history of extensive pain in 4 quadrants of the body, backbone, ribs, and chest, as well as 11 of 18 specific tender points on the neck, shoulders, back, hips, and knees panic due to pressure is found to develop fibromyalgia…

The other autoimmune diseases with similar symptoms that can prompt FMS include Crohn’s disease, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis.

Cohn’s disease is an inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).  This disease causes inflammation in the digestive tract which leads to abdominal pain, severe diarrhea, and other health issues including malnutrition. Its effects vary from person to person as different areas of the digestive tract are affected in different ways.

If the disease spreads into deep layers of bowel tissue can be extremely painful and maybe sometimes life-threatening.  The ileum of the small intestine and the colon are the most affected parts.

There is a range of signs of Crohn’s disease that vary from mild to severe conditions and can trigger without any warnings.  Diarrhea is one of the most common diseases in people who have Crohn’s disease. Due to this disorder, the body is unable to absorb excess fluid produced, which leads to diarrhea. Intestinal cramping, abdominal pain, and cramping are other problems associated with the disorder.

The swelling and scarring of bowel walls will cause serious harm to the digestive tract.  The bleeding during stool can cause inflamed tissue to bleed.  Blood may appear as bright red in the toilet or dark blood streaks in the stool.  An ulcer may also form in the intestinal walls.

The common symptoms of Crohn’s disease and FMS are; fever, fatigue, and arthritis.

Lupus is a disorder in which the immune system starts to attack its own tissues and organs. This inflammation can be harmful to various body parts including joints, skin, brain, heart, and others. Lupus is difficult to diagnose as its symptoms overlap with symptoms of other diseases.

The common condition found is a rash on the face that resembles a butterfly’s wings spread over both cheeks. The cause of lupus may vary, and it gets intensified by the usage of certain drugs, sunlight, or infections.

The other symptoms of lupus are fatigue and fever, joint pain, stiffness and swelling, facial rash, headaches or confusion, and the condition may flare up at times.

Chronic pain, fatigue, and stiffness are also common in fibromyalgia disorder. Almost 25% of women diagnosed with an autoimmune disease are likely to develop fibromyalgia.

An adequate treatment that can include various medications, drugs, and other treatments like massage and exercise is necessary to manage fibromyalgia pain. Regular massage can help to ease the pain of fibromyalgia.

Exercise is an enormous way to strengthen and stretch muscles, and regular exercise routines are highly recommended for those suffering from chronic pain. Low-impact exercises that do not put stress into a body like a walk, jogging, or yoga are best.

Fibromyalgia and chronic pain are often associated with autoimmune disease, as people who have certain autoimmune diseases are up to 25% more likely to develop fibromyalgia.

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