Preparing For Your Doctor’s Appointment

6 months ago35 Views2 Min Read

Because many of the signs and symptoms of fibromyalgia are similar to various other disorders, you may see several doctors before receiving a diagnosis. Your family physician may refer you to a doctor who specializes in the treatment of arthritis and other inflammatory conditions (rheumatologist).

What you can do

Before your appointment, you may want to write a list that includes:

  • Detailed descriptions of your symptoms
  • Information about medical problems you’ve had in the past
  • Information about the medical problems of your parents or siblings
  • All the medications and dietary supplements you take
  • Questions you want to ask the doctor

What to expect from your doctor

In addition to a physical exam, your doctor will probably ask you if you have problems sleeping and if you’ve been feeling depressed or anxious.

Tests and diagnosis

In the past, doctors would check 18 specific points on a person’s body to see how many of them were painful when pressed firmly. Newer guidelines don’t require a tender point exam. Instead, a fibromyalgia diagnosis can be made if a person has had widespread pain for more than three months — with no underlying medical condition that could cause the pain.

Blood tests

While there is no lab test to confirm a diagnosis of fibromyalgia, your doctor may want to rule out other conditions that may have similar symptoms. Blood tests may include:

  • Complete blood count
  • Erythrocyte sedimentation rate
  • Thyroid function tests

Reference: Mayo Clinic

Deb Lundquist
 

After 18 years of living with this as a roommate, I feel I know Fibromyalgia well. Now, it is my passion to help people with Fibromyalgia and chronic pain take back control of their lives.