Understanding the differences between Multiple Sclerosis and Fibromyalgia

Some people have the perception that fibromyalgia is somewhat related to Multiple Sclerosis. There are many similarities in the symptoms of both multiple sclerosis and fibromyalgia.

That is what makes people think that both conditions are similar. The treatments are based on the experiences shared by people who already have this condition.

However, there are also some simple methods by which the symptoms of fibromyalgia can be identified.

By doing a medical diagnosis you will be able to understand the differences as the diagnosis procedure is difference for both fibromyalgia and MS.

But from some of the particular symptoms you will be able to easily distinguish the symptoms easily that helps in understanding these signs.

About Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is categorised as musculoskeletal pain that can affect through the body by providing an unknown chronic pain to specific body parts.

The cause of fibromyalgia is still unknown but there are some common symptoms reported with which, many theories prevailing about the cause of fibromyalgia.

It is expected to amplify or stimulate the natural pain sensation in the body. Fibromyalgia is a condition seen commonly on people of any age group.

People in age group 30 to 40 have reported more about this problem. Fibromyalgia can lead to mood swings, memory issues, fatigue and drowsiness.

About Multiple Sclerosis

The nerves in the human body is surrounded by a coating called Myelin which is a protective coating for the nerves.

When multiple sclerosis occurs this protective coating in the nerves is destroyed exposing the nerves to further damage.

When this neurological condition occurs, the healthy myelin coating in the nerves is mistaken as foreign particle and the destruction happens.

Due to this the capacity of the nerves is affected and gradually myelin is completely destroyed. After this procedure when unattended, the nerves are also attacked and affected.

Symptoms of MS and fibromyalgia

Based on the continuous symptoms a person get, it will easier to identify whether the individual is experiencing signs of fibromyalgia or signs of multiple sclerosis.

In many aspects there is a difference in pain in both fibromyalgia and MS. Understanding the right symptom is very important to proceed with proper medication.

Notable symptoms of Fibromyalgia

People experience pain that is chronic and last with them for more than three months. The pain is not just confined to one region but it is widespread.

The pain can be categorized as aching pain. The pain is experienced in both the part of the body which is lower and upper part.

Sometimes the pain starts in one particular region and spreads to other regions. Symptoms are as follows:

 Symptoms of MS and fibromyalgia

Fibro fog

This is considered to be an issue with the memory where people are exposed to confusion. The concentration becomes difficult for them when they are doing a particular task.

The memory changes are also something that is commonly seen with individuals having fibro fog.

Mood Swing

This is another condition where the fibromyalgia patients are exposed to more depression. This is the reason why they often look for antidepressants that help them keep the depression level low. Experiencing mood swing is also very common among fibromyalgia patients.

Sleep disorders

Individuals having fibromyalgia have problems with sleeping. They find it difficult to sleep for long periods to get good rest.

During sleep they also experience restless leg syndrome. Sleep can be regulated properly to get a good relief from these symptoms.

There are many natural methods to regulate sleep by bringing a practice easily.

Notable symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis

Though chronic pain is a common symptom in both fibromyalgia and MS patients, the other symptoms vary.

Once the nerves get damaged they will not be able to feel any sensation and even the healthy nerves will not respond properly.

The symptoms vary from one person to another based on the nerve damage that they have.

The affected areas will express weakness and numbness preventing you from getting good sleep. Other notable symptoms of multiple sclerosis are as follows:

Problems with Vision

Eye pain is common in MS patients along with vision loss. The nerves that are responsible for vision are affected thus creating double vision in the affected people.

Trouble in walking

Walking is not easy in patients having MS condition. The balance is disturbed due to the nerve damage and they develop an unsteady gait.

In earlier stages their walking tendency will be disturbed but later they can feel a severe challenge in walking.

Speech affected

The communication from brain to other parts of the body occurs with the help of the nerves.

Due to MS if the nerves get affected, the communication from brain is also affected leading to difficulty in speaking clearly.

Treatment for fibromyalgia and multiple sclerosis

There are several treatments available for both fibromyalgia and multiple sclerosis.

There is no clinical evidence for the cause of fibromyalgia so the treatment is provided based on the experiences shared by existing fibromyalgia patients.

The diagnosis of MS is not based on just a single procedure. It involves various lab tests to find out whether the condition is exactly MS or something else.

If you go to doctor, they will not have any specific test to identify the condition of fibromyalgia.

Based on the symptoms that a person experience they will be able to suspect whether the condition is due to fibromyalgia or not.

In order to reduce the pain experienced by people in both the cases, it is good to go for natural remedies.

If you approach a doctor they will be able to provide you the exact treatment that is required for both the conditions.

But apart from that there are also many natural therapies and medications available that can improve the condition and quality of your life.

Some of the common alternative medications or treatments for fibromyalgia can be:

  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Tai Chi
  • Acupuncture
  • Massage therapy

The above natural treatments is common for patients with condition of MS as well.

In these alternative methods, the other treatments like stress management will also be very helpful.

Proper food consumption is also very important in healing both the conditions.

8 Comments

  • Thank you so much for posting this article! It’s so great to see the information actually laid out, piece by piece, instead of trying to put it together on my own. My sister was recently diagnosed with fibromyalgia, and it’s been such a struggle getting clear indentation about what to expect and how to support her. The medical world needs more straightforward summaries like this. Thank you! I’ll definitely be coming back for more information.

  • Thanks for explaining the difference between MS and fibromyalgia. I have family friends that suffer from MS, but no one I knows suffers from fibromyalgia. I wonder, do doctors or medical professionals ever confuse the two medical conditions?

  • Thank you for this article! I have often heard there were similarities, but never knew exactly how they were, as I though MS to be a way worse diease. I have also wonder if fibro could lead for MS.

  • Thank you so much posting this. Iv just been diagnosed with fibromyalgia. It’s made it a lot clear for me..

  • Thanks so much for sharing his post. I’m getting into the caregiver field and my father-in-law has MS that’s progressively gotten worse over the years….and because we’ve never lived near them, I honestly couldn’t tell the difference. And I already have the info on a client (1st one) that has fibromyalgia, so info like this is great!

  • I’ve known a couple of people with fibromyalgia and worked with one who had MS. Listening to them talk about their conditions was interesting in that they sounded so much alike. One day it was like they could run a marathon, the next they could barely get out of bed. Thank you for the post. It gets the awareness out there about fibromyalgia, a condition that was denied to many through misdiagnoses for far too long.

  • Thank you for this post giving clarity on the two very different conditions with some similarity in the symptoms. I have both MS & Fibromyalgia, although I know the difference between the two, I found this an interesting read.

  • I have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia but I also think something also say me as I was talking to my mum and could get my words out

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