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What are the symptoms of fibromyalgia?

Usually there are no outward signs of fibromyalgia.

Most common symptoms of fibromyalgia

The main symptoms of fibromyalgia are:

  • widespread pain
  • extreme tiredness (fatigue)
  • sleep disturbance.

The effects of these symptoms vary from person to person and from day to day. Many people have flare-ups from time to time when their symptoms become suddenly worse.

People with fibromyalgia often say that fatigue is the worst part of the condition and that they can't seem to think clearly or remember things properly (this is sometimes called 'fibrofog' or 'brainfog').

The pain may feel as though it affects your whole body, or it may be particularly bad in just a few areas. Some people find that their pain feels worse in very hot, cold or damp weather.

Less common symptoms of fibromyalgia

Less frequent symptoms of fibromyalgia include:

  • poor circulation – tingling, numbness or swelling in the hands and feet
  • headaches
  • irritability or feeling miserable
  • feeling an urgent need to urinate, especially at night
  • irritable or uncomfortable bowels (diarrhoea or constipation and abdominal pain) sometimes separately diagnosed as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

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