NIH compares Fibromyalgia to Arthritis

This article has some good info regarding the differences and similarities between Fibromyalgia and Arthritis. Much to my surprise, they consider Fibro to be a rheumatic disease! This is not the normal train of thought, but the National Institute of Health is always worth our serious consideration!

I know Renie, the American College of Rheumatology does NOT consider Fibro to be rheumatic, nor does the Mayo clinic, but NIH does! This is astounding! Whose who, and who's right?

This a very useful and informative article, SK, but one paragraph drives me completely buggy:

Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition, meaning it lasts a long time—possibly a lifetime. However, it may be comforting to know that fibromyalgia is not a progressive disease. It is never fatal, and it will not cause damage to the joints, muscles, or internal organs. In many people, the condition does improve over time.

First, yeah, it is progressive. And WHO are the many people whose fibro improves in over time? WHO? I don't know one. I feel like pulling my hair out over this paragraph because fibro sufferers could feel so badly after reading this info, thinking, "why is mine progressive and why isn't mine improving over time?" NHS really needs to revisit this paragraph.

I'm not really sure what rheumatic means so not sure what the difference is between a rheumatic illness and a non-rheumatic one. I didn't really understand the explanation given.

Over all, a very good article, SK. Thank you very much for posting it.

Consider it from this point of view. That fibro is a chronic condition caused by chronic pain from another source, disease, trauma...So my rheumatologist looks at it as a condition that cannot exist without a CAUSE. It cannot stand alone! My cause is trauma and genetic autoimmune disease.

It may NOT be the fibro that progresses, but instead the cause of the fibro!

Psoriatic arthritis, Rayanud's, Sjogren's ARE Rheumatic diseases!

Now Renie worked for a Rheumatologist for 11 years, she was taught that fibro was NOT an autoimmune disease, but NIH is saying that it IS, to my knowledge they are the only ones!

It was not what I was looking for when I stumbled across it. I was just looking for info that related fibro and arthritis, the difference and similarities!

Again I am not a Doctor, I am just posting how controversial this condition is that such highly respected research hospitals do not agree with the definition and classification of Fibro after all of these years!

SK, I've read elsewhere that Great Britain is miles ahead of us in terms of how they view and categorize CFS. Perhaps it's true for fibro as well. I honestly don't know.

So, according to the NHS, an autoimmune response is responsible for fibro and for making it get worse? Am I correct in my interpretation of what you're saying? Whereas everyone else says, nonono, we don't yet know what the cause is and it's not to do with an autoimmune response? I thought that autoimmune illnesses had to have some sort of joint or organ damage, no? Forgive me but I'm struggling to understand what you and NHS is saying here. I do understand your rheumie's POV and it makes sense to me.

BTW, how the heck are you doing? I know you were in the throes of a terrible flare when last we spoke, along with a big storm system. Are you doing any better? I hate to ask because it almost sounds stupid to ask when I know how serious and long-term your problems are. It's not like they're going to get up and walk off somewhere. But still. I hope the flare has eased up some for you. Along with the storm system.

SK, thankyou for posting this info. at first ,I thought well this covers a lot about fibro, however they did not mention anything about the leaky gut theory, and I’d like to see the research that says exercise is the best treatment… Seriously I don’t buy it, and how can they be so certain it’s not progressive, if it’s not progressive then why have my symptoms " gradually “. “progressively”. Got worse, just saying, …my symptoms started 4 years ago, 2 years ago I could swim 2 laps in a pool, cantor a horse, work full time, … Now " progressively” I cant walk around the block, I can’t work, and I have pain just emptying the dishwasher. Maybe it won’t continue to get worse, but it sure has up to this point. I know a lot of people do still work, but their suffering is insane and silent. I think we should write NIH a letter and tell them if they want to learn about fibro they should read our discussions. Now my Dr. Will read that article and tell me i need to exercise and keep working and I may get better!!! really ?
Sorry, I just don’t feel real encouraged by this info, i know i shouldnt be negative, at least Fibro is getting some recognition

I've never seen so many doctors scratching their head trying to figure out the cause of something. They're baffled. They can't seem to pin it down. The only conclusion that they can come down to about fibro is that it is debilitating to anyone who gets it.

But, yes, at least now it is recognized. How they can say that it is not progressive, beats me too. "improve over time", yeah right, what mellinium are they talking about??

Sometimes when there is no answer, they just say things that sound good.

How are we supposed to define it and think about it if the greatest hospitals in the country can't agree.

Exercise does not make me better either! Though being still doesn't either! Something is getting worse with me, and personally I feel that the worse the arthritis and other autoimmune diseases get, the worse the fibro is, but when the arthritis is quiet, usually the fibro is too!

Not sure that I agree with a great deal of it, but it had to be posted, if for no other reason to see the differences in classification! Hard to believe how they classify it. Can only help with disability claims!

LOL exercise is the best treatment. SURE, if we could move those miserable joints and muscles without searing pain.

I wish ONE doctor would have the guts to say it IS progressive. I can't name one person here whose fibro has stayed the same. Or improved.

Thought I was the only one with that theory about fibro and arthritis worsening together and quietening together. I think you are onto something very important SK. Maybe you were correct, above, when you stated that the cause of fibro is the arthritis/ailment, as is the progression of the fibro.

You're right, being still is painful too, in a different way. Can't win. Only things I can do comfortably is walk and go up and down some stairs, depending on the day.

They can classify it as "Bob" for all i care as long as they recognize it and get some meaningful treatments or cure going.

Yes, and lets not forget 3 car accidents and lifting and lugging all of my life, like most or us! Genetic predisposition, was surely there!

I still think there was a tipping point to bring all of this to a head, and injury, accident, serious illness, surgery, something, it could have even been utter exhaustion that pushed us over the edge and into this. It's a cliff dive, what ever it is!

Our Lupus Moderator, Terri aka Tez, is from the UK and she has told me that the UK considers Fibromyalgia to be an autoimmune disease, this was just recently reclassified!