“The doctors are in. The jury is out. “
The New York Times headlines rankle Barbara Keddy. For more than 40 years, she has suffered from fibromyalgia, a of long duration disorder characterized by widespread pain and exhaust. But the condition is little understood and rigid to diagnose. As borne out by the headlines, some doctors are hesitant to be aware of it even exists.
After retiring from education at Dalhousie University four years past, Dr. Keddy decided it was time despite an in-depth investigation of fibromyalgia, which is much more common among women than men and likewise has become known as primarily “a woman’s disease.” As a nurse, medical sociologist, universal school professor and researcher who suffers from the circumstances herself, she has a unique perspective to offer.
Drawing on her allow experiences as well as those of 19 other women, Dr. Keddy discusses current theories of causes and treatments in her main division , Women and Fibromyalgia: Living with an Invisible Dis-ease (iUniverse Co.). She moreover maintains a blog (http://www.womenandfibromyalgia.com) exploring the daily difficulties faced by fibromyalgia sufferers.
“When I became pretending by this (after the birth of her primary child by Caesarian section), they didn’t understand what to call it,” says Dr. Keddy, professor emerita by Dalhousie’s School of Nursing, who was for good and all diagnosed with fibromyalgia 30 years from first experiencing the symptoms. “All I knew is that I was imposthume all over.”
“Sore entirelyy over” is a refrain in the midst of fibromyalgia sufferers, who have been stigmatized like chronic complainers, says Dr. Keddy. Other symptoms contain generalized stiffness, sleep disturbance, fatigue, gloominess, lack of concentration and digestive upsets. The musculoskeletal case is aggravated by dampness and austere weather conditions. The pain can exist managed—climates with dry flush help, as do some medications—unless it doesn’t go completely away.
“The audacity! The women who be in possession of this condition hurt in all the corresponding; of like kind places and have the same symptoms. So to what degree can they say that it’s whole in women’s heads?”
She suspects sundry more women have fibromyalgia than be in actual possession of been diagnosed. Called “the unseen disease,” fibromyalgia doesn’t bear upon the major organs, can’t have existence revealed with x-rays or high birth tests and isn’t life minatory.
Because of the soreness and distress it causes, fibromyalgia has come to have existence associated with arthritis and rheumatism. But Dr. Keddy believes the condition is a neurological hypersensitivity, caused through . an over-stimulated nervous system.
“Fibromyalgia involves woe in the muscles, whereas arthritis is in the joints—further somehow fibromyalgia has landed there (through arthritis) as a home base,” she says. “My cogitative, and I’ve interviewed hundreds of women not honest the 20 who are profiled in the main division , is that it’s appropriate to a hyper-aroused nervous order.”
Dr. Keddy believes women are to a greater degree susceptible because they are caregivers, reasoning about others before they think of themselves. “Some women bring forth highly developed intuitive skills honed to of that kind an intense stage that the vigorous system becomes highly sensitive and hyper aroused,” she says. “Then, in that place’s a trigger, a dramatic consequence—perhaps the death of a loved single in kind or an operation such as a hysterectomy—and the vigorous system is pushed to the excessive.”
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