The fibro Project

Progressing the treatment of fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia Reconceptualised

Let’s start by asking a question. Why do no treatments work for Fibromyalgia, when they work so well for other people in Chronic Pain?

It’s a great question and one I’m sure you have asked many times. We asked this very same question and then followed it up with: What’s the difference between FMS and Chronic Pain? Answer. . . FMS, despite the name, is not a condition of the muscular system, and it certainly is not ‘all in the mind’. Here’s why.

Fibro sufferers have pain, but it presents very differently to regular Chronic Pain. For one, Chronic Pain patients rarely complain of Brain Fog – a primary complaint in Fibromyalgia. Chronic Pain patients get exhausted and worn out by their pain, like anyone would, but those with Fibromyalgia are wiped out by it almost all the time and often have no actual pain when they are wiped out. So pain isn’t always the driver of the condition. Secondly, Chronic Pain patients usually know how they came to be in pain. Almost all FMS patients began having pain either after an event (often without tissue damage occurring) or what seemed to be out of the blue. The reason for their pain is rarely because of tissue damage – if it was then musculoskeletal treatments would help.

Almost all FMS sufferers develop a wide variety of symptoms to varying degrees. Chronic Pain sufferers rarely do so. Just check the comparison below for the likely list of symptoms for each. 

Fibromyalgia

CAN COME FROM A TRAUMA EVENT

CHRONIC WIDESPREAD PAIN – NO APPARENT CAUSE

Restricted Movement

DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY

OCCASIONAL DAYS without EXHAUSTION

FATIGUE

BRAIN FOG

SLEEP DISTURBANCE

COGNITIVE DYSFUNCTION

MORNING STIFFNESS

CRAMPING AND MUSCLE SPASMS

RESTLESS LEG SYNDROME

DIGESTIVE PROBLEMS – IBS

HEADACHES AND MIGRAINES

SKIN SENSitivity

BALANCE PROBLEMS

LIGHT SENSITIVITIES

NOISE SENSITIVITIES

Smell Sensitivities

FOOD INTOLERANCE

THyroid issues

and more . . . 

Chronic Pain

CAN COME FROM A TRAUMA EVENT

PAIN CONSISTENTLY IN ONE AREA

pain can sometimes move around 

RESTRICTED MOVEMENT

DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY

OCCASIONAL DAYS OF EXHAUSTION

As you can see, ‘Pain’ is just one of the many factors that make up Fibromyalgia, not the defining factor. Yet a search for the definition of Fibromyalgia will return this result: “A rheumatic condition characterised by muscular or musculoskeletal pain with stiffness and localised tenderness at specific points on the body”.  This is way too narrow a view on what Fibro actually is to live with. So we have a new definition for you:

“A disorganised nervous system trying but failing to respond, after one or more physical or psychological traumas in an individual. Compensation in one area leads the nervous system to compensate in another area, creating ever more complex layers of dysfunction.” 

Why is this our definition? Because the nervous system controls all the symptoms in the list above, not just pain. If Musculoskeletal dysfunction was the reason for FMS then problems would remain within the Musculoskeletal system. This is why, we believe, Fibromyalgia is a disorganised reaction of the nervous system, not the muscles. And this is why we don’t treat you as a Chronic Pain patient. We aim to rebuild your energy and significantly reduce Fibro Flare-ups by bringing order back to your nervous system. So our question to you is this . . . 

Would you treat your Fibromyalgia the way others would treat chronic Pain?

Read some of our patients' stories

Patient Stories

Karen’s Story

Karen’s Story By Chris Newton I’d originally met Karen a few years before she developed Fibromyalgia. She has had a heavy tree branch fall on

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Patient Stories

Charlotte’s Story

Charlotte’s Story By Chris Newton Charlotte was one of those Fibromyalgia cases that really makes you understand why sufferers find it so hard to convince

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Patient Stories

Graeme’s Story

Graeme’s Story By Chris Newton Whilst women make up the majority of those that suffer from Fibromyalgia, Graeme is evidence that this dis-ease can affect

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Patient Stories

Nicole’s Story

Nicole’s Story By Chris Newton Nicole probably gave us the longest list of traumatic life events that I’ve seen so far with a Fibro patient.

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