Beth Gottlieb MD Pediatric Rheumatology talks about Fibromyalgia.
Read the full transcript »
Male Speaker: Fibromyalgia, what is that? Beth Gottlieb: Fibromyalgia is not, at this moment, known to be an autoimmune disease but it is within the field of rheumatology because often it involves fatigue and very diffused body aches and people are concerned that they might have other kinds of more widespread autoimmune disease. So the rheumatologist is usually the one to make that diagnosis. It's not an inflammatory condition, but probably more of a condition thought to be related to a sleep disorder. And the more that we learn about Fibromyalgia, and the more studies that are done, we learned that people who have it have disturb sleep patterns and also have different pain thresholds in the brain. So, some sort of small stimulus would trigger pain and a patient with Fibromyalgia before it within a patient who does not have Fibromyalgia. And the sleep issue comes into play with children specially; it's more of a disease of teenagers related to being very busy, sometimes stress, having a lot on their minds and a lot of responsibilities and lots of activities and maybe very good things but sometimes these teenagers are overwhelmed and they don't sleep well. And after a few days of having a very poor quality of sleep, they start to be very achy. They are prone to stomach aches, they get headaches very easily and this all makes them feel even worse. And then because they don't feel well, they don't sleep well. And it is not necessarily related to number of hours. I have many patients who tell me they sleep, they could sleep for 12 hours, but they still feel tired, they still feel achy and that's because it's not necessarily how long you sleep, but how well you sleep. And so they can do some very simple things to try to diagnose it, based on physical exam, and then we can do some very simple things to try to make it better and most of them don't even involve medication. It really involves trying to help with sleep habits to get better sleep, trying to help relieve some stress and sometimes it's as simple as trying to workout which activities are really most important for kids, not to overwhelmed them everyday of the week. Male Speaker: So, you need to work that the way you treat. Beth Gottlieb: There are some medications they always prefer to hold those until the end and to try to work on changing habits first that you do not have to rely on taking a pill. Now, this is a mixed blessing in some sense because truthfully for teenagers,--[Audio break]