Fibromyalgia : What It Is, What it’s Not

Fibromyalgia is not a death sentence.

You will not die from fibromyalgia.

One can live a normal life because fibromyalgia can be managed.

Reminder:  I just want to say that I am a patient, not a doctor. What I am sharing comes largely from what my doctors taught me and what I have discovered in my own searching.

I am sharing to hopefully help you be informed enough to support friends with this syndrome or possibly acquire informed questions for your doctor. Please talk with your doctor or visit the Mayo Clinic website for official information, diagnosis, and treatment.

Let’s look at some facts about fibromyalgia:

  1. Not Psychosomaticfibro sensitivities
  2. Syndrome …. Not a disease ..
  3. You don’t get worse… But there are flairs … Pain management is possible.
  4. 2-5% of the adult population has it
  5. No known cause
  6. No known cure
  7. May co-exist with other diseases (such as Rheumatoid arthritis)
  8. More common in women
  9.  Hereditary – If someone in your family has it, you are 8 times as likely to have it

Symptoms include …

  • Chronic widespread pain, stiffness, generalized flu-like achiness
  • Pain sites migrate to all quadrants of the body
  • Pain lasts at least three months
  • May include chest pain
  • Fatigue
  • Unrefreshed sleep
  • Cognitive complaints such as concentrating, memory problems

There is no known cause;

however, it seems to be triggered by a traumatic event

  • injury (whiplash),
  • serious illness or surgery,
  • viral illnesses (Lime Disease),
  • Stress ( unnatural, negative or positive events)


For me, the symptoms came on rather suddenly.

It was a normal Sunday. I had been dealing with Dis-embarquement Syndrome from a cruise earlier in the year; so, that afternoon I decided to lie down and rest before evening services.

As I went to lie down, I had a sharp pain in my back, I couldn’t finish lying down, nor could I raise myself to upright. My husband had to help me into the bed. If I moved the least bit, I had excruciating, contracting pains in my back.

Long story short, I spent the next month or two laying on my back in the bed. And a year and one half seeing doctors trying to find out what the problem was. We are still figuring what may have triggered my fibromyalgia. Possibly diesel fuel fumes exposure from sitting on an overloaded transport boat for nearly an hour on our cruise.

You can read my spiritual journey through pain at 31 Days of Waiting and Trusting written in October of 2015.

Feeling Your Pain;

Mandy Farmer









Next Topic …Living With Fibromyalgia



Fibromyalgia National Coalition  – Background information

Mayo Clinic – Misconceptions about Fibromyalgia