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What are the first steps in diagnosing fibromyalgia?

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Your family doctor may be able to tell that you have fibromyalgia if he’s familiar with the condition, but you’ll probably want to see a rheumatologist, a doctor who’s an expert in problems with joints, muscles, and bones.

Your rheumatologist will ask you about your health and family history. This is because you’re more likely to have fibromyalgia if other people in your family have it.

She’ll give you a physical exam and may check for tender points. People who have fibromyalgia often feel tenderness when pressure is put on certain spots, generally around the back of your head, your neck, shoulders, elbows, knees, and hips.

She’ll also ask about your symptoms, so it’s a good idea to keep a detailed record of where and when you hurt. Is the pain dull or sharp? Does it come and go, or is it constant? Are you tired a lot or not thinking clearly? Write down any other problems you have, even if you don’t think they’re related.

From: How Is Fibromyalgia Diagnosed? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases: “Fibromyalgia.”

National Fibromyalgia Association: “Diagnosis.”

American Academy of Family Physicians: “Fibromyalgia.”

American College of Rheumatology: “2010 Fibromyalgia Diagnostic Criteria -- Excerpt,” “Polymyalgia Rheumatica.”

Mayo Clinic: “Fibromyalgia.”

UpToDate: “Patient education: Fibromyalgia (Beyond the Basics).”

American Chronic Pain Association: “Fibromyalgia: The Information and Care You Deserve.”

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on August 23, 2017

SOURCES:

National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases: “Fibromyalgia.”

National Fibromyalgia Association: “Diagnosis.”

American Academy of Family Physicians: “Fibromyalgia.”

American College of Rheumatology: “2010 Fibromyalgia Diagnostic Criteria -- Excerpt,” “Polymyalgia Rheumatica.”

Mayo Clinic: “Fibromyalgia.”

UpToDate: “Patient education: Fibromyalgia (Beyond the Basics).”

American Chronic Pain Association: “Fibromyalgia: The Information and Care You Deserve.”

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on August 23, 2017

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What can cause symptoms similar to fibromyalgia?

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