Could I have Fibromyalgia?

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Klawn
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2009
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 8/3/2009 10:17 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi everybody,
 
Pleased to have found this forum. I wish you all the perserverence and faith that you require.
 
As both my symptoms and fibromyalgia seem to be very complex, mysterious, and often hard-to-describe, I thought I would take a few moments to ask for your personal assessments as to whether or not I may have the illness. I'm in a peculiar situation right now where I can't seek medical advice (owing to time restrictions - I am working full-time in a foreign town and then flying back to my home city in under 30 days), and yet am experiencing a worsening of what I once considered very mild physical problems.
 
I'm a 25 year old male. I would say that I am generally healthy, but have always lived with a number of quirky physical characteristics that have grown much worse over the last year, and especially the last month.
 
They are, from most to least distressing:
 
- Joint pain/fatigue/stiffness. I play guitar, for example, and after a good 3 minutes of playing my fret-hand becomes so tired it either gives out or locks up. This saddens me, because music is my life! Over the last few months, random joint pains have begun to appear in my knees, hands, elbows, and shoulders - the pain ranges from a pang to a burn (i.e. holding a cellphone to my ear).
 
- Random muscle lock-ups. This used to be only in my foot. Sometimes when I would bend over to reach something the arch of my foot would suddenly SEIZE up. The pain is excrutiating, and all I could do is wait. The other day, after a rigorous game of soccier, I realized that my WHOLE BODY was beginning to exhibit this behaviour. If I did anythin gother than lie down or sit up straight, my hips, back, shoulder, legs, calves, etc. would suddenly lock up in the exact same way. I rested it off, but was terrified and what this could mean.
 
- Rapid sleep of extremities. A strange one. If I lay down on my side and prop my head on my hands, my arm will fall asleep within 2 minutes. If I sit on the floor with my legs crossed, my legs will fall asleep in about a minute. Any strong arch or curve in my body will invariably lead to a singling and final sleep of an apendage in a VERY short period of time.
 
- Very rapid heart rate. My resting pulse at 25 is roughly 75-80. As soon as I begin any type of strenuous activity (whatsoever), my heart rate skyrockets to 115-160. The jump is immediate and disconcerting. I have always had this.
 
- Morning fatigue. Only rarely do I wake up refreshed, and I am NEVER functional until at least 11:30 in the morning. When I arrive at the office for 8am, I am astonished daily that my co-workers all seem so normal, happy and functional. Even if I down a coffee or two it takes a number of hours for my body to wake up. Sadly, I often take naps when I arrive home in the late afternoon anyhow - I seem to suffer from chronic fatigue at times (probably the Crohn's).
 
It's the increasing bone and joint pain that is causing the alarm bells to go ringing. I can't really convey the inner despair that I feel everytime I pick up the guitar and have to put it down in the middle of a song. I'm a performer and was actually looking forward to recording my first album - if this gets any worse that may prove impossible.
 
At this point I'm hoping that I simply have a mild form of arthritis or even rheumatoid arthritis, with Crohn's and a bizarre heart pattern thrown in for good measure. But does any of this sound like it could add up to fibromyalgia?
 
Please be as scrupulous and conscientious as possible. I'm easy to derail! eyes

Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17101
   Posted 8/3/2009 10:41 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi, Klawn, and welcome!  Well you could have fibromyalgia.  We do have a lot of what you are describing but so do other illnesses.  Be sure to check out the Fibro 101 thread...the first thread on the forum.  You will find links to good information about fibro, including a list of symptoms.  You might see yourself there!
 
I have Crohn's too and you can have some Crohn's arthritis going on in some of the joints.  But, fibro feels like it's in the joints but it's actually the tendons and ligaments causing the pain.  You would need bood work to find out.  If it is arthritis it would should inflammation.  Supposedly, fibromyalgia isn't an inflammatory illness.
 
You spoke of the muscles seizing on you.  Do you mean cramping?  If so, you might be lacking potassium.  I had that quite badly...especially because of the Crohn's disease.  My doctor gave me a medication for it.  (Quinine)   There is a lot of potassium in tea, avocadoes, and bananas.  Also, once I started calcium supplements, the cramping went away!  I googled it and sure enough....lack of calcium can cause muscle cramping, too!
 
Lots of times our backs are out of alignment.  I used to go to a chiropractor for it but stopped because it was causing me more pain.  If something is putting an extremedy to sleep, I just stop doing that!  That's easy!   wink
 
Anxiety can come along with fibromyalgia and perhaps that's what is causing the rapid heartbeat.  I'm not a doctor so I'm just guessing like you are.  I would have this checked out with a doctor, though.  You don't want to fool around with your heart.
 
Nearly all fibromites have morning fatigue....and pain.  We don't get in the deep REM sleep that is a restful, healing sleep.  It's good to get on a sleep schedule and keep that up if you can.  I am usually in bed by 10 PM and get up by 7 AM.  I am able to manage quite well doing this.  I don't nap if I can avoid it because I won't be able to sleep at all that night. 
 
As I said before, be sure to check out the Fibro 101 thread.  There is a link to What Else Could It Be, too.  You see, many of the symptoms of fibro are also symptoms of other illnesses.  Your doctor should rule out the other illnesses before giving a diagnosis of fibromyalgia.  So, I do hope you can see your doctor soon.  I hope this helps you.
 
Sherrine 
 
 
 
Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7


Klawn
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2009
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 8/3/2009 10:58 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Sherrine,

I am grateful for your reply.

As the muscle "cramping" is among the most disconcerting of the symptoms I've been experiencing, allow me to explain it a bit more clearly.

I've never been flexible. In fact, from childhood to now I have not been able to touch my toes. This inflexibility seems to permeate my entire body. Now, I'm not sure if the two are related, but the "cramping" I was trying to describe for you might be better termed an actual SEIZURE or FREEZE of the muscle at certain times. It used to happen only with my inner heels: for example, I would bend over to reach for something, and all of a sudden the inside of my heel would LOCK UP and grip like a tightened fist. The muscles felt like they were contracting to the maximum, and the only thing that heals it is absolute calm, and about 30 seconds of painful waiting.

The terrifying realization I had the other day was that that cramping/locking/seizing seems no longer to be limited to my feet. When I got home from playing soccer my body was sore (as any athlete's body would be), but I found that if I slumped on a chair, my back muscles began to tighten up. If I leaned a certain way, my calf and leg muscles began to seize. And I knew each time that if I continued in that position/posture, etc. that exactly what happened to my heel would start to happen to my back/legs/shoulders, etc. It was scary. I could only stand or lay down straight!

I'll look into potassium/calcium. Right now I'm taking 2000mg of fish oil per day and the occasional Condroidin supplement.
 
I've heard that Crohn's can produce some "Arthritis-like" symptoms, but never investigated the matter. Will do.

Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17101
   Posted 8/3/2009 11:09 AM (GMT -7)   
I had that same feeling...especially in my feet.  I could be sound asleep and have my arch cramp so badly that I would jolt awake and it would cause my toes to move in totally unnatural positions.  I felt I was going to faint.  I would have to jump up and try to stretch the muscle as best I could and get it to relax.  The quinine worked great but, since I started the calcium supplements, I don't get the cramping now.  I take 600 mg. of Citracal (calcium citrate) in the morning and 600 mg. in the evening.
 
It does sound like the same thing to me.  Since you are young, I would suggest that you start a stretching routine to stretch out those muscles.  I'm 62 and can touch my toes.  Keeping the muscles stretched does help with the pain.  You might not ever be able to touch your toes but I bet, if you keep stretching muscles, you will be a lot closer to doing it.  If you don't work the muscles they kind of atrophy and  you definitely don't want that.  Keep moving.  It's sooo important.
 
Sherrine
Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7


Klawn
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2009
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 8/3/2009 4:13 PM (GMT -7)   
Sherrine,

Do you happen to have fibromyalgia? If so, do you believe the muscle cramping/gripping in the heel is associated with fibromyalgia, or else caused by something different?

I have some high quality calcium supplements laying around. I'll start taking them. I also happen to have the P90X hour and a half stretch routine available to me. I've been meaning to get on that for a while. For people like me, stretching can be even MORE painful and uncomfortable than lifting heavy weights!

Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17101
   Posted 8/3/2009 5:26 PM (GMT -7)   
Yes, I do have fibromyalgia.  I'm a moderator for this forum.  If you look at my signature at the bottom of my posts you will see the health issues I have.
 
The heel problem could be what is called plantar fasciitis.  I had that too!  It was like someone was driving a stake through my heel and I barely could put weight on my feet.  It was extremely painful.  I ended up buying Birkenstock shoes and these stretched that muscle and the pain eventually went away.  Now my heels rarely give me any problem.  Here is a link about plantar fasciitis.  See if this is what is happening to you.
 
 
We have had discussions about this many times on the forum so, yes, many with fibro do have this problem it seems.  At the top of the page, on the left hand side, you will see a google custom search.  If you type in plantar fasciitis in that and click "search" the posts talking about this problem should come up for you and you can read at your leisure.
 
In the Fibro 101 thread there are some good stretching exercises.  Maybe start out with these to warm up and then do a little more intense stretching for a few minutes and then stop.  In a few hours you should know if this caused more pain.  If it did, maybe back down a bit the next day and work into the stretching slowly.  You can add more as your muscles become accustomed to what you are doing.  This is called pacing yourself.  You need to do that for most things if you have fibromyalgia.  Your body will tell you how much you can do.
 
When I started walking as a form of exercise, I couldn't go very far at all.  I just kept it up and gradually went further and further and my body became accustomed to it and now I can walk quite a distance.  I paced myself so I didn't have pain.  That's what you have to do with the stretching.  Let me know how it goes for you.
 
Sherrine
Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7


Ginny
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 5514
   Posted 8/3/2009 5:30 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Klawn,
 
I sure hope you don't have Fibromyalgia.  You mentioned Chron's.  Do you have a positive diagnosis of that?  It could definitely cause very similar symptoms.  So can Lupus (which I have as well).
 
I also have terrible foot, heel and ankle pain.  The diagnosis for me was Plantar Fasciitis in my left foot/ankle/heel, and Metatarsalgia in the right foot.  HORRIBLE pain.  I've had it for 18 months now with no relief.  I want to chop both feet off at the ankle and have done with it!  Both problems are very common in Fibromyalgia. 
 
I'm doing P90X too!  I'm on week 2 of phase 3.  It's been incredible.  Has helped my muscle pain a lot, and I'm so much more flexible and strong.  I love it!  The stretch routine is definitely good to do.  I find the cardio routines the hardest on me.  Doing the weight routines are my favourite for sure.  "Keep pressing play!"
 
Hope you get answers to your pain very soon,
 
Ginny
I can do anything through Jesus Christ who strengthens me. I have learned in whatever state I am in to be content.Phillipians4:11-13
35 years old. Diagnosed with Lupus in 2000. Fibromyalgia, Anti-phospholipid syndrome(APS)(stroke, 2002), Sjogren's, Raynaud's, Libman Sach's Endocarditis, vasculitis, sacroiliitis, arthritis (neck), anxiety, Chinook migraines. Prednisone, Imuran, Coumadin, Clobazam, Amitriptyline, Didrocal, Cozaar, Zoloft, Neurontin, calcium, multi-vitamin, vitamin D, Magnesium, vitamin B6, Acidophilus
 Co-Moderator for the Lupus and Fibromyalgia forums

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