Things to ask if you are newly diagnosed....
Also RECORD your conversations! This is one of the single most important pieces of advice I can give you.
There is no single test that can fully diagnose fibromyalgia and there is debate over what should be considered essential diagnostic criteria and whether an objective diagnosis is possible. In most cases, patients with fibromyalgia symptoms may also have laboratory test results that appear normal and many of their symptoms may mimic those of other rheumatic conditions such as arthritis or osteoporosis. In general, most doctors diagnose patients with a process called differential diagnosis, which means that doctors consider all of the possible things that might be wrong with the patient based on the patients symptoms, gender, age, geographic location, medical history and other factors. They then narrow down the diagnosis to the most likely one. The most widely accepted set of classification criteria for research purposes was elaborated in 1990 by the Multicenter Criteria Committee of the American College of Rheumatology]. These criteria, which are known informally as "the ACR 1990", define fibromyalgia according to the presence of the following criteria:
- A history of widespread pain lasting more than three months—affecting all four quadrants of the body, i.e., both sides, and above and below the waist.
- Tender points—there are 18 designated possible tender points (although a person with the disorder may feel pain in other areas as well). The patient must feel pain at 11 or more of these points for fibromyalgia to be considered.
2.What caused my fibromyalgia? What is my prognosis?
3.What are my best treatment options?
4.What lifestyle changes can I make that will help my overall health and comfort?
5.What can I do to avoid flare ups? How can I manage my depression, anxiety, and/or stress?
6.What can I do about my fibro fog? ( for myself personally, this is the hardest part to deal with. The jumbling of my speech, losing my train of thought, forgetting things, I can't stand it. )
7.What other medical conditions do I have or could develop that should be treated or monitored? (I personally have since been diagnosed with hypothyroidism, PTSD, PCOS, CFS....it seems like the list continues to grow.)
8.What advice do you have for me about my ability to continue working? OR for applying for disability?
9. What advice do you have for me when entering menopause?
10.What symptoms are serious enough that I should call you? How often should I see you on a regular basis?
11.What is the most hopeful thing you can tell me about my diagnosis?
12.Should I be a specialist? If so who do you recommend?
13.What medications are prescribed for the treatment of fibromyalgia?
14.Do NSAIDs help in the treatment of fibromyalgia?
15.What are SSRIs?
16.Is there anything else that you personally think that I should know about this illness and how to treat it?
I hope this gives you a starting point, I wish I had found a list like this when I was first diagnosed, instead I'm still scouring books and the internet trying to find out everything that I can about this dreadful disease.