Video Q & A:

Fibromyalgia 101

Question:

Who Gets Fibromyalgia?

Expert:   Betty Keller, MD, FACR, Board Certified Internal Medicine & Rheumatology »

We do not know what causes fibromyalgia or how to prevent it, but we do know that those who are living with it share certain traits or risk factors.

Transcript: Although we do not know what causes fibromyalgia or how to prevent it, we do know that those who are living with it share certain traits or risk factors. Fibromyalgia is characterized by extensive and persistent pain of the muscles, tendons, and ligaments, Although anyone can develop fibromyalgia, of the 2 to 4 percent of the population with this chronic syndrome, most are women. In fact, women are SEVEN times more likely to have fibromyalgia than men. The onset typically strikes between the ages of 20 to 50 -and the risk for developing fibromyalgia increases with age. Those with osteoarthritis, or autoimmune diseases like, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, or anklyosing spondylitis have a higher risk of developing fibromyalgia. Sleep problems are also a risk factor. If you have chronic insomnia you are far more likely to develop fibromyalgia than someone who consistently gets a good night’s sleep. In addition, people with fibromyalgia have fluctuating levels of an important neurotransmitter, serotonin. Serotonin helps regulate sleep and mood and low levels of this brain chemical can make you more sensitive to pain. To learn more about symptoms, treatments, potential genetic links, and more on fibromyalgia, watch other videos in this series. More »

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