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Fibromyalgia



Fibromyalgia
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 5 to 7
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   8.52

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    acupuncture, algia, Benzodiazepines, body-wide, chiropractic, deep-aching, fibro, fibromyalgia, lupus, middle-aged, anti-inflammatory, sensitivity, tolerance, acknowledge, transmission, deformity


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Fibromyalgia
By Jennifer Kenny
  

1     Valerie did not feel right. She was tired all the time and wasn't sleeping well. Her body was achy. She was especially tender in the back of her neck, lower back, and knees. The first doctor she saw examined her and shrugged off her symptoms. The second doctor ruled out some problems and told her to take it easy; however, he never offered her a diagnosis. Finally, a third doctor really took time with her, analyzed her situation and symptoms, and officially diagnosed Valerie with fibromyalgia.
 
2     What is fibromyalgia? It is a condition that causes pain and tiredness. Its name comes from the Latin term fibro, meaning fibrous tissue, as well as the Greek term myo meaning muscle, and algia meaning pain. It causes long-term body-wide pain as well as tender points throughout the body. Its cause is not known.
 
3     What are the symptoms of fibromyalgia? Pain is the main symptom. It has been described as deep and aching. It can radiate, gnaw, shoot, or burn. For some, the pain is mild; for some it is severe. There's also pain or tenderness at certain tender points. These eighteen identified points are on the back of the neck, shoulders, sternum, lower back, hips, shins, elbows, and knees. Patients also describe sleep disturbances, fatigue, body aches, and reduced exercise tolerance.

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