Fibromyalgia (FM) is a condition characterized by overwhelming and pervasive muscular fatigue and pain as well as sensitivity to certain light and other stimuli, is now thought to affect roughly five million U.S. adults, mostly women.
Audrey, a mother and working wife, was constantly worried, irritated, and anxious. The chronic pain was insurmountable, and she could not remember the last time she had enough sleep. Audrey knew that her chronic pain was due to Fibromyalgia, but she was fed up with going to physicians. She was tired of constantly sitting in the waiting room for half an hour before getting a short visit with the doctor. Furthermore, out of the four physicians she went to, three of them all diagnosed her with different disorders. The most frustrating experience was when she went to a physician that did not believe in Fibromyalgia. They believed that Fibromyalgia was a disease that could not be measured, and therefore was not a disorder that could be treated. They went on to explain how everyone interprets pain differently. Although she agreed with the previous statement, she was disappointed that no one understood what she was going through.
One day, she got an ad in the mail that was looking for patients interested in doing a research study for Fibromyalgia. After doing some research on her own and talking to her neighbor who was also experiencing the same symptoms as her, they elected to jointly participate in the clinical trial at the Institute for Advanced Medical Research. Fortunately, Dr. Sambunaris at the Institute for Advanced Medical Research at Mercer University understood her disease, and she found a study that would best fit her needs. Her friend figured out from the clinical testing and labs that she most likely had Rheumatoid arthritis and was referred to a rheumatologist for a re-evaluation. Audrey went on to confirm her diagnosis, participated in a trial, and was happy to have helped other’s that suffered from pain in silence.
Have you experienced these problems? Do you feel or act this way day to day due to pain? What can you do? Play a more active role in your healthcare. A large amount of research is currently being conducted to find new pharmacological treatments to help relieve symptoms of FM. Only drugs that pass specific criteria (including safety) are used in these trials. Participation in studies not only has the potential to help the individual with FM, but it provides valuable data, which ultimately leads to medical advances for all who suffer from this condition. Learn more about the Fibromyalgia clinical trials being conducted by the Institute for Advanced Medical Research at Mercer University by calling 770-817-9200.