Fibromyalgia is a complex medical condition that affects the musculoskeletal system and can cause chronic widespread pain, tenderness, and fatigue. The diagnosis, pathogenesis and treatment of of this condition are still being studied and remain a subject of debate in the medical community. Despite this, the American College of Rheumatology has established classification criteria that consider multiple tender points and chronic widespread pain to be the hallmark symptoms of the condition.
Fibromyalgia is a common condition that affects people of all ages and ethnicities, with a symptom prevalence ranging from 2% to 4% in the general population. However, the actual number of individuals who are diagnosed with fibromyalgia is much lower.
The pathogenesis of fibromyalgia is not well understood, but it is thought to be a result of a complex interaction between biological and psychosocial factors. There is no specific test for fibromyalgia.


Fibromyalgia affects the musculoskeletal system, including the muscles, tendons, and ligaments. It is also associated with the nervous system, as it affects the way the brain processes pain signals. People with fibromyalgia may experience widespread pain and tenderness in various parts of the body, including the neck, back, shoulders, and hips. Additionally, fibromyalgia can also cause symptoms such as fatigue, sleep disturbances, headaches, and cognitive dysfunction (often referred to as “fibro fog”).


Fibromyalgia symptoms include:
• Widespread pain
• Increased sensitivity to pain
• Muscle stiffness
• Difficulty sleeping, leading to fatigue
• “Fibro-fog” affecting mental processes such as memory and concentration
• Headaches
• Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) with stomach pain and bloating
• Frustration, worry, or low mood.
Note: Fibromyalgia symptoms can be unpredictable and may worsen or improve suddenly.


The exact cause of fibromyalgia is unknown, but it is thought to be a combination of genetic, environmental, and psychological factors. For example, genetics may play a role in a person’s susceptibility to fibromyalgia, while stress, trauma, and infections may trigger the onset of symptoms. Additionally, some research suggests that fibromyalgia may be associated with imbalances in certain brain chemicals that regulate pain, sleep, and mood.


The diagnosis of fibromyalgia can be challenging because its symptoms are often similar to those of other conditions, such as arthritis, lupus, and chronic fatigue syndrome. To diagnose fibromyalgia, a doctor will perform a thorough physical examination and ask about the patient’s medical history and symptoms. There are no specific tests to diagnose fibromyalgia, but a doctor may order imaging studies, such as X-rays, MRI, or CT scans, to rule out other underlying conditions.


Treatment for this condition is aimed at managing the symptoms of the condition. There is no cure for fibromyalgia, but there are several effective treatments that can help relieve the pain and improve quality of life. Some common treatments for fibromyalgia include pain medications, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and prescription pain relievers, as well as physical therapy, exercise, and other forms of therapy, such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and mindfulness-based stress reduction. Additionally, some people with fibromyalgia find relief from complementary therapies, such as massage, acupuncture, and chiropractic care.


There is no known way to prevent this condition, but there are steps you can take to manage its symptoms and improve your quality of life. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle, including regular exercise and a balanced diet, can help reduce stress and improve sleep. Additionally, practicing stress-management techniques, such as meditation and mindfulness, can help reduce anxiety and depression, which are often associated with fibromyalgia.

In conclusion, fibromyalgia is a complex and poorly understood condition that affects the musculoskeletal system and nervous system. While there is no cure for fibromyalgia, there are several effective treatments that can help relieve the pain and improve quality of life. If you think you may have fibromyalgia, it is important to see a doctor for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.


If you are suffering from this condition, our exercise professionals can help. Contact us through our email at or call us on 0330 043 2501.