This has been a question for decades: Is fibromyalgia real? For those of us that live with it each and every day, the answer is yes. Some people, usually ones that do not live with the condition, say that it is not real. There are many doctors that argue about the validity of this chronic illness. Despite research and studies, there is still a doubt that exists in the universe about the invisible illness of fibromyalgia.
Why do physicians doubt the illness?
Fibromyalgia was only properly named in the early 1990s. Of course, it was around before then, but only during that decade was it taken seriously enough to address and study. For many years, doctors were not familiar with the condition much less its symptoms, diagnosing procedure, or cause. This lack of evidence resulted in a large part of the medical community to doubt its existence.
When a patient would present a set of symptoms without a real known cause or trigger, their doctor would simply classify it as ‘fibromyalgia’. It was the ‘catch-all’ diagnosis meaning if it didn’t fit any other illness, then fibromyalgia it was. This practice became more and more popular in the medical field. This led to further doubt of its validity. Currently, it is not listed as an exclusive diagnosis.
What was the result of mislabeling?
Because of this mislabeling of symptoms caused by a mysterious reason, many sufferers were misdiagnosed. In worse cases, the patient wasn’t treated at all and was told it was all in their head. That the symptoms could easily be the remedy if the person simply ‘believed’ they were well. Even today many fibromyalgia thrivers (formerly known as fibromyalgia sufferers) are told they aren’t really sick because they’re just seeking attention or looking for reasons to be lazy. Fibromyalgia is an unbelievable diagnosis in all its respects.
So, is fibromyalgia real?
According to an article by Bruce Gillis, MD, MPH,
“an actual medical illness and those fibromyalgia patients suffer from abnormally functioning, suppressed immune systems that are unable to produce normal quantities of vital and protective proteins.”
In other words,
Yes, fibromyalgia is real!