Do you hurt all over? Are you tired but cannot sleep? Did all your medical tests come back normal? Do your friends and family have a hard time believing you are ill because you look “healthy?” Does your massage therapist or chiropractor find knots all over you body? Have you been prescribed antidepressants because your doctor did not know what else to do? Have you seen many physicians and spent hundreds or thousand of dollars? Have your doctors given up trying to help you or have they told you to “learn to live with it”? Did a rheumatologist diagnose you with fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia syndrome is a disorder that causes fatigue and muscle pain. It is difficult to diagnose because laboratory tests and X-rays are normal. People with FMS also have many other symptoms including insomnia, headaches, digestive disturbances and difficulty thinking and concentrating. However do not assume fibromyalgia is the cause of all of your symptoms.
You may have other medical illnesses in addition to the fibromyalgia. These conditions may also require specific treatment. When in doubt or confronted with new problems, it is important to consult a knowledgeable physician. It is critically important that your physician take a comprehensive look at all of your organ systems rather than focusing on only one narrow area.
The standard treatment prescribed by most physicians for FMS is focused on addressing the main symptoms of pain and fatigue. This approach unfortunately is limited to antidepressants and potentially addicting pain medications, which do nothing more than treat symptoms.
Fortunately there is a new treatment that goes after the cause of FMS. It was discovered by Dr St Amand, an MD endocrinologist from California who himself has fibromyalgia. The medication used for FMS is guaifenesin, available under the brand name of Mucinex (in the blue box). Guaifenesin is sold as an over the counter remedy for respiratory mucus problems.
Although guaifenesin is virtually side effect free most FMS patients taking guaifenesin find that their symptoms initially intensify. In order for the guaifenesin to work it is also critical that the patient avoid exposure to or ingestion of salicylates. Failure to follow the guaifenesin protocol as detailed by Dr St Amand will guarantee failure. Thanks to Dr St Amand there now is hope for patients that suffer from fibromyalgia.
For the most part routine laboratory testing reveals nothing about fibromyalgia. A diagnosis is arrived at from a careful physical exam and a comprehensive history. Treatment modalities include diet, exercise, hormones and supplements like magnesium, vitamin B12 and medications like low dose naltrexone. Guaifenesin, as discovered by Dr. Paul St Amand, is also very useful in treating fibromyalgia.
Learn more about treating fibromyalgia in Colorado Springs: