Fibromyalgia in Children

Just like adults, children can also develop fibromyalgia. Obtaining a diagnosis of fibromyalgia for an adult is difficult, but for a child it can be much more difficult and frustrating.

fibromyalgia in children - symptoms, diagnosis, and treatments #fibromyalgia

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To date, approximately 7% of children have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia with many of them being between the ages of 13 and 15.  And just as women are more likely to have fibromyalgia, so are girls rather than boys.

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Here is some information regarding fibromyalgia in children including symptoms, diagnosis criteria, and treatment.

What are the symptoms of fibromyalgia in children?

The symptoms for children are similar to those in adults:

  • tender points
  • fatigue
  • widespread muscle or chronic pains
  • irritable bowel syndrome
  • irritability
  • headache
  • stomachache
  • sensory sensitivities
  • trouble sleeping
  • difficulty remembering
  • frequent ‘growing pains’ in legs at night
  • regularly waking up tired even though he/she went to bed at an early time the night before
  • dizziness
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • missing numerous days of school due to recurring symptoms

Seeking a diagnosis

There is no one test to have a clear yes or no to having fibromyalgia, but there are other exams that can be performed to rule out other conditions and narrow the diagnosis down to fibromyalgia. Read about the diagnostic criteria for fibromyalgia.

These steps to diagnosis include:

  • physical exam(tender points)
  • review of medical history
  • length of the symptoms

What are the treatments?

As with fibromyalgia in adults, treatment can be found using a physician (pediatric rheumatologist), physical therapist, and psychologist.

Treatments include:

Most importantly, listen to your child. No one knows them better than you. If you suspect something more is happening, please seek the care of a pediatrician.

Disclaimer:  Please consult with your physician or healthcare provider for health care and treatment. The information in this website is not a substitute for professional medical nor healthcare advice.

Brandi, Fibro mom

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Brandi

Hi, I’m Brandi, the writer and creator of Being Fibro Mom and My Fibro Journal. Aside from my work on Being Fibro Mom, I run a group called Fibro Parenting on Facebook. I've been writing for the Fibromyalgia Magazine since 2016 and recently became the Secretary and Fibro & Families program director for International Support Fibromyalgia Network. Facebook-+-Twitter-+-Instagram

4 thoughts on “Fibromyalgia in Children

  • February 5, 2015 at 2:06 pm
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    Hi, Brandi –

    I found your blog through the Throwback Thursday link-up. We have a lot in common. My son and I both have ME/CFS (both of my sons got ill when they were just 6 and 10 but the younger one recovered).

    You might be interested in a Facebook group I started for parents whose kids have ME/CFS, fibro, and other related conditions:

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/164665786958252/

    The group is very warm and supportive, with plenty of emotional support but also lots of practical experience with treatments that can help our kids (and school help, too).

    Great post, by the way! Nice to “meet” you –

    Sue

    Live with CFS

    Reply
    • February 5, 2015 at 3:14 pm
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      Thanks for the invitation to the group! I look forward to joining others in the group!

      Nice to meet you, too, and gentle hugs, friend!

      Reply
  • March 17, 2015 at 3:45 pm
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    I am so happy we found each other! Enjoying your blog! My 15 yr old daughter was diagnosed when she was 12, immediately after her thyroid function stopped working. She was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s which caused Fibro and Neuropathy. She too has widespread pain, not as many trigger points, but tgat is normal and oddly her feet and ankles swell up. Fatigue still gets her but she remains active. Thank you again for sharing! Hugs!
    Jenn
    http://www.jenndsblog.blogspot.com

    Reply
    • March 18, 2015 at 10:22 am
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      I’m glad she’s able to remain active despite her daily challenges. Kids tend to be more resilient, but it’s still difficult on their bodies. I am also happy you found my blog! I’m happy to help with others especially kids. Well, in your daughter’s case, young adult. 🙂

      Gentle hugs to you both!

      Reply

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