We all know who Lady Gaga is, She is not only a World Famous Pop Star but also suffering from fibromyalgia. In the October edition of Vogue, 33 years old Pop star discusses her struggle with fibromyalgia, A Chronic Illness which affects millions of people around the globe.
Lady Gaga said that she gets really annoyed by people who don’t think that fibromyalgia is a REAL illness. She also added that fibromyalgia is merely not a composition of Pain and fatigue, Its also include anxiety, Depression, PTSD and panic disorder. With all these symptoms, Our body gets really disturbed which eventually cause severe Nerve Pain.
“People need to be more Understanding towards Fibromyalgia. Chronic pain is not a joke. And it’s every day waking up not knowing how you’re going to feel.” She added
Lady Gaga revealed last September that she is suffering from this miserable disease, Right before the release of her documentary Gaga: Five Foot Two.
On her Offical Twitter Account, She tweeted that she would love to raise awareness for chronic illness and would love to connect with people who have it.
Lady Gaga sometimes had to go through very rough Pain that she was unable to perform in her concerts. She was hospitalized in September 2017 due to severe pain and had to cancel her all upcoming concerts.
Dr. Mary-Ann Fitzcharles, Associate Professor of Medicine in Rheumatology at Mcgill University added that In previous years fibromyalgia was not considered as a real disease because the patient was looking fine and there was no physical evidence of this disease.
It is a very common perception among friends and family of the patient that fibromyalgia is not a real disease but its all in Patients Head because the patient is looking healthy from the outside.
Fitzcharles also said that Previously we thought that patient has mental issues which caused him/her to have extreme pain but now Fibromyalgia is a completely recognized disease.
What is fibromyalgia?
Fitzcharles told Global News that Fibromyalgia is a mysterious chronic disease in which person seems fine from outside but he/she is having miserable Chronic Pain in their muscles and tendons. Other Common symptoms of fibromyalgia are Sensory Disability, Fatigue, Anxiety, and depression.
In a Recent Research by Arthritis society of Canada, About 3% of Whole Canada population is affected with fibromyalgia, from this 3% affected Population, 90% are women and rest are men. People between the age of 20 and 50 are more likely to develop fibromyalgia.
Right Now there is NO CURE for Fibromyalgia which is very disappointing. You can only reduce your symptoms or control Pain by using different medications.
What does fibromyalgia feel like?
As Discussed Previously, Fibromyalgia is a Composition of many symptoms like Fatigue, Disrupted Sleep, IBS and Mood disorder but there is one common symptom in all fibro patients and that symptom is Severe Pain. Sometimes I have so severe pain that I can barely Breath.
Fitzcharles Added that Patients have issues with sensory disabilities. Even a gentle touch or stroking the skin will feel like you have been hit by a Hammer.
She further explained that this severe pain may be caused by the disconnection between the patient body and its nervous system. The list of symptoms for fibromyalgia seems countless.
She further added that People also complained about the high pitched noises and Strong lights. This kind of sensory disability is called hypervigilance.
What causes fibromyalgia?
When Asked by Patients, Doctors are usually unable to answer these questions because they don’t know the exact reason for fibromyalgia. Often it is tracked back to a Traumatic Event.
Fitcharles told that most of her patients said that fibromyalgia is triggered by a traumatic Event. They were in perfect physical health before. Traumatic Event can vary from a motor vehicle accident to broken bone or Some extremely stressful psychological event may have triggered it.“
She also said that there is a chance that fibromyalgia might be a genetic disease because about 67% of patients have said that fibromyalgia hit them out of the blue so the only explanation is a family history.
Why fibromyalgia is hard to diagnose?
Fibromyalgia is a mystery for the medical community. Diagnosis of fibromyalgia is a very hard process because there is no standard test for Fibromyalgia and also there is no test to confirm the diagnosis. Symptoms of fibromyalgia can vary from patient to patient which makes it even harder for diagnosis, Plus patient seems healthy from its Physique.
Fitzcharles said that the patient looks totally normal in the start stages of fibromyalgia. There is mild pain in the body, No fever, and no swelling So usually doctors just gave the Pain medicine, Only Patient knows that something is eating him/her from the inside.
She added that usually, it takes up to 5 years for a patient to get a diagnosis for fibromyalgia.
She suggested that in order to get an early diagnosis, Doctors need to take medical history into consideration. Check whether there is any symptom which can relate to fibromyalgia. Also, look for a family medical history of fibromyalgia.
She also suggested that doctors should do medical tests to rule out other illnesses. She also recommended not to overdo MRIs and X-RAY tests.
How to treat fibromyalgia?
One of the most common methods for minimizing your fibromyalgia symptoms is to use medication. Medication has many side effects so just try to use where deemed necessary. Fitzcharles also added that many patients can reduce their symptoms by updating their lifestyle like eating healthy and getting proper sleep.
One of the ways to reduce your fibromyalgia is to limit your physical activity. Don’t push yourself to a limit where your body might break down.
In the case of medication, Try to use those medicine which actually reduces your pain with minimal side effects. Do not overuse any medicine.
There are many therapies available which can help reduce your fibromyalgia. Some people might find Yoga or taichi helpful. Weighted Blankets are very common these days and fibro patients tend to like them. Eating healthy like Bananas and beans also aid fibromyalgia.