War Related Illness and Injury Study Center
Fibromyalgia (FM) is a health condition that is characterized by fatigue, diffuse pain and/or stiffness, and pain in multiple "trigger points". Trigger points are defined as areas that are especially tender or sensitive.
Fibromyalgia is a common condition that affects approximately 5% of the general population. It affects women more than men.
A recent study * showed that fibromyalgia may be diagnosed more frequently in Gulf War Veterans compared to non-Gulf War Veterans. At this time, the exact cause for this is unknown.
A Fibromyalgia diagnosis is based on subjective symptoms of widespread pain that persist for greater than three months and a positive trigger point examination.
The symptoms of fibromyalgia- may vary with periods of good health followed by periods when symptoms may flare up or worsen.
Treatments that may improve symptoms include:
- Improving sleep patterns
- Reducing pain
- Engaging in graded exercise therapy such as walking or biking
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