Doc Talk #108 – Fibromyalgia



Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain syndrome. We don’t have a good explanation for the cause and there are no specific tests for this disease.

It has three major components:

  • Generalised, widespread musculoskeletal pain
  • Fatigue
  • Non-restorative sleep

Technically it is a syndrome – which means a collection of symptoms that occur together.

The lack of a definitive diagnostic test means that patients (and their doctors) can run into difficulty.

J: So you can’t show me fibromyalgia under the microscope?

D: The only way I can show you fibromyalgia is to put someone with fibromyalgia in front of you and get them to describe their symptoms

People’s symptoms sometimes are not believed, and sometimes a diagnosis of fibromyalgia can stop us looking for other potential causes.

It can be associated with headaches, anxiety and depression as well as difficulties with thinking and concentration.

Learn more about this syndrome, prognosis and treatments, by clicking above to listen again.


We referenced a few of our previous shows in this episode:

Sleep apnoea

Insomnia and sleep hygiene





Featured image by MadEmoiselle Sugar (Flickr: chocolate and Pink boudoir) [CC BY 2.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons