ProHealth health Vitamin and Natural Supplement Store and Health
Log In  |  My Account  |  View Cart  View Your ProHealth Vitamin and Supplement Shopping Cart
800-366-6056  |  Contact Us  |  Help

|
|
|
|
 
Print Page
Email Article

US survey of women with fibromyalgia highlights its profound impact & their struggle for acknowledgment

  [ 29 votes ]   [ 12 Comments ]
www.ProHealth.com • December 5, 2010

previous article next article

Fibromyalgia Patients Struggle"It is estimated that there could be as many American women living with fibromyalgia as there are living with diabetes,” and for 79% of them a top issue is finding a doctor who takes their condition seriously.

Results released November 22 from a national survey of U.S. women with fibromyalgia illustrate the private and prolonged physical and emotional struggles patients with this condition face, underscored by delays in diagnosis, which a majority of respondents report as being one year or longer. (Stuggles no patient or advocate would believe less cruel for males with FM.)

As a result of fibromyalgia:

• Two thirds (67%) of respondents say they are unable to keep up with household chores,

• Nearly half (47%) report that their work life or career has been negatively affected,

• And two in five (42%) spend less quality time with their friends.

• Nearly one third (31%) say fibromyalgia has negatively affected their ability to experience intimacy.

Fibromyalgia is a condition marked by chronic, widespread pain and tenderness, and decreased physical function. It affects six to 12 million Americans, mostly women, three-quarters of whom are estimated to be undiagnosed.

Results of the 48-state, 508-person survey were released by HealthyWomen (www.healthywomen.org), the nation's leading independent source of health information for women. The survey was sponsored by Forest Laboratories, Inc. 

"Fibromyalgia is a common medical condition affecting women," says Elizabeth Battaglino Cahill, Executive Director of HealthyWomen.org and a registered nurse. "It is estimated that there could be as many American women living with fibromyalgia as there are living with diabetes. And while increased awareness has dramatically improved care for patients with this condition, we still have a lot of work to do to ensure patients have the support they need to live their lives fully."

Remarkably:

• One in four (23%) respondents report having suffered for at least five years before receiving a diagnosis for their condition.

• Most respondents (71%) say they waited until they could no longer tolerate their symptoms before seeking a diagnosis.

Examples of perceived barriers to a proper diagnosis include patients' own lack of knowledge about the condition and physicians not recognizing symptoms.

Although fibromyalgia is a chronic disorder:

• A majority of respondents say they fear skepticism about their condition,

• With 64% expressing concern about being taken seriously,

• And 79% indicating the top quality they seek in a healthcare professional is assurance that their condition is being taken seriously.

"This survey quantifies what patients and their supporters have known and experienced – that stigma, skepticism, lack of knowledge about fibromyalgia, and delays in diagnosis contribute negatively to patient outcomes," adds Battaglino Cahill.

"However, with more knowledge, patients are overcoming these barriers to improving their lives, and that is an important lesson we can take away from this survey."

Early diagnosis is Important  

Respondents whose diagnosis was delayed were more likely to report severe symptoms (68%) at the time of diagnosis, compared to those who were diagnosed within a year (42%).

Patients diagnosed within a year are also significantly less likely to experience daily challenges in management of their households, relationships and careers.

"An earlier diagnosis is important," says David Edelberg, MD, founder of WholeHealth Chicago and a physician specializing in fibromyalgia treatment. "The sooner patients are diagnosed, the sooner they can begin an effective management plan and get back to their daily activities. This is why it's critical for both doctors and patients to communicate effectively and for patients to not wait until they can no longer bear their symptoms before seeking help."

Effective treatment and support from loved ones are critical.


Since being treated, 51% of patients believe that their overall day-to-day life has improved.

In addition, a greater number of patients who received more support from their spouse report that their day-to-day life has improved due to treatment (56%), compared to those who received the same amount of or less support (47%) since being treated. 

Respondents say the following types of treatment have improved their symptoms:

• Prescription drug therapy (58%)

• Exercise (46%)

• Alternative therapies (43%), such as massage, meditation, acupuncture and chiropractic care

Unfortunately, many patients do not receive the support from friends and loved ones that they need:

• Of the 43% of respondents who say they rely most often on their spouse or significant other for support, only about a quarter (27%) say this person fully understands how fibromyalgia affects them

• After learning about their diagnosis, less than half of respondents say their friends (28%), children (33%) and spouses (43%) offered more support.

"Arriving at an earlier and accurate diagnosis is only the first step for patients with fibromyalgia," says Battaglino Cahill. "Women need to work closely with their physicians to find an effective treatment plan, and friends and loved ones must do their part to provide the ongoing encouragement that is critical to a patient's improvement."
______
About the Survey
The survey, known as WE FEEL (Women Expressing Fibromyalgia's Effects on their Everyday Lives), was designed to gather data and better understand perspectives on diagnosis and treatment, the relationship between fibromyalgia patients and their physicians, the impact of the condition on patients' daily activities, and the types of support patients need and receive.

Research for WE FEEL was conducted by Edelman StrategyOne, using the field services of Harris Interactive Service Bureau. The 20-minute survey was fielded between May 5 and May 11, 2010. The findings are nationally representative of diagnosed, female fibromyalgia sufferers in the US. The total sample of 508 yields a margin of error of ±4.4% at the 95% confidence level, which means that 95 out of 100 times that a sample of this size is drawn, the results will not vary by more than 4.4 percentage points in either direction. The statistical significance is reported at the 95% level.

Source: HealthyWomen.org news release, Nov 22, 2010
 


previous article
  Rating 3.8 (29 votes) next article




DISCUSS THIS ARTICLE   (12 existing comments) Post a Comment 


I hate seeing this stuff being so injust to men with FM/CFS
Posted by: slopok8225
Dec 8, 2010
I understand this whole thing came from a women's magazine but why could they not include data about just how many men are suffering from this affliction, disease or whatever you wish to call it. I am a 41 yr old man that has suffered with FM/CFS for almost 20 years now since I fell ill during the Gulf War. As with most women it took me 12 years to get a proper diagnoses, 3 more to get disability and now I can't function well enough to stay out of bed for more than 8 hours a day if I am all drugged up to do so. I suffer just as much as women do, I have the same issues yet they completely ignored the fact that men have this disease. Every time I read stuff like this it makes me sick. Are men going to get to be seen in the world of FM/CFS? When is the first or last time you have seen a commercial on TV or radio that depicts men suffering from FM/CFS? I sure as hell haven't! EVER!!!!!! I believe in the equal rights of all, so don't think to yourself "well now you know how women felt during the equal rights fights for women." I was not part of anything that ever opposed women's rights, so it should not be part of this. I want to see people learn about FM/CFS as a disease of both women and men not just of women! But it won't happen any time soon I'm sure. Other than the fact the study was made only about women, at least there is a good set of numbers now to show how wide pread this is, but think just how much more aware the world would be had they read combined numbers instead of only on women. Good night!
Reply Reply

 
US survey with fibromyalgia
Posted by: BeiYin
Dec 9, 2010
I am a man and I had fibromaylgia for eight years before it was diagnised. I was told that this is cronic and that there is no cure. I rejected this and medication and then searches myself and then treated myself. After about half a year I was completely healed. That is now seven years ago and no symptoms have been coming back. I tried to share this in various groups, but gave up, because in this 'support groups' they cling totally on their belief that FM can't be healed. So I gave up. At my Web site I have written my treatment about every thing I have done and what supplements I have taken. There are about 3.000 visitors at my Web site and hardly any response, probably people all look for a quick cure and when they read, that to heal oneself one needs selfresponsibility and one must get out of dependencies, then people are disappointed and prefer to continue suffering. The same happened, when after I was healed from the fibromyalgia and feeling strong again, I worked and then, because my system had gotten weak, not doing any physical work for a long time, when I lifted something very heavy, I got an inguinal hernia. I was told that only surgery could repair this. I refused this and again searched and then treated myself. After half a year I was healed. That is now fife years ago. Also about this healing process I have made a Web page. http://falconblanco.com/health/ May these information help who is ready for it. Namaste BeiYin

 

 
US survey with fibromyalgia
Posted by: BeiYin
Dec 9, 2010
I am a man and I had fibromaylgia for eight years before it was diagnised. I was told that this is cronic and that there is no cure. I rejected this and medication and then searches myself and then treated myself. After about half a year I was completely healed. That is now seven years ago and no symptoms have been coming back. I tried to share this in various groups, but gave up, because in this 'support groups' they cling totally on their belief that FM can't be healed. So I gave up. At my Web site I have written my treatment about every thing I have done and what supplements I have taken. There are about 3.000 visitors at my Web site and hardly any response, probably people all look for a quick cure and when they read, that to heal oneself one needs selfresponsibility and one must get out of dependencies, then people are disappointed and prefer to continue suffering. The same happened, when after I was healed from the fibromyalgia and feeling strong again, I worked and then, because my system had gotten weak, not doing any physical work for a long time, when I lifted something very heavy, I got an inguinal hernia. I was told that only surgery could repair this. I refused this and again searched and then treated myself. After half a year I was healed. That is now fife years ago. Also about this healing process I have made a Web page. http://falconblanco.com/health/ May these information help who is ready for it. Namaste BeiYin

 

 
US survey with fibromyalgia
Posted by: BeiYin
Dec 9, 2010
I am a man and I had fibromaylgia for eight years before it was diagnised. I was told that this is cronic and that there is no cure. I rejected this and medication and then searches myself and then treated myself. After about half a year I was completely healed. That is now seven years ago and no symptoms have been coming back. I tried to share this in various groups, but gave up, because in this 'support groups' they cling totally on their belief that FM can't be healed. So I gave up. At my Web site I have written my treatment about every thing I have done and what supplements I have taken. There are about 3.000 visitors at my Web site and hardly any response, probably people all look for a quick cure and when they read, that to heal oneself one needs selfresponsibility and one must get out of dependencies, then people are disappointed and prefer to continue suffering. The same happened, when after I was healed from the fibromyalgia and feeling strong again, I worked and then, because my system had gotten weak, not doing any physical work for a long time, when I lifted something very heavy, I got an inguinal hernia. I was told that only surgery could repair this. I refused this and again searched and then treated myself. After half a year I was healed. That is now fife years ago. Also about this healing process I have made a Web page. http://falconblanco.com/health/ May these information help who is ready for it. Namaste BeiYin

 


Men and Fibro
Posted by: Ly45nn
Dec 8, 2010
As I read the article all I kept thinking about was how they keep forgetting about men and fibro. I am happy that you spoke up about being left out. I am sorry that they never mentioned men in the article and I hope that in the future there are more balanced article respecting both sexes. I feel for you and know your pain.
Reply Reply

Gender bias? or simply a study of one gender's experience?
Posted by: sulis
Dec 8, 2010
I understand the frustration men who have fibromyalgia suffer in addition to suffering from the pain, fatigue, and all the other symptoms we have as a result of fibromyalgia. However, this study was done expressly to evaluate the impact of fibro on women, just as many other conditions are studied for their impact on men. That doesn't mean the other gender doesn't have the disease, just that its effects may differ because of both biology and social roles and expectations. What is needed is a push to have more gender-specific studies done of men who have fibromyalgia. If men would contact the leading fibromyalgia organizations and ask for their help in getting researchers to do this, it could benefit not only men with fibromyalgia but all of us as well. One of the problems with the "legitimacy" of fibromyalgia in the past seems to have been gender bias toward women - their suffering was seen to be all in their heads. (In the 19th century, women's suffering was believed to come from the womb, thus it was called hysteria and hysterectomy became the "solution.") Getting doctors and the general public to understand how this affects all of us will only make things better.
Reply Reply

 
I healed myself from Firomyalgia
Posted by: BeiYin
Dec 9, 2010
I am a man and I had fibromaylgia for eight years before it was diagnised. I was told that this is cronic and that there is no cure. I rejected this and medication and then searches myself and then treated myself. After about half a year I was completely healed. That is now seven years ago and no symptoms have been coming back. I tried to share this in various groups, but gave up, because in this 'support groups' they cling totally on their belief that FM can't be healed. So I gave up. At my Web site I have written my treatment about every thing I have done and what supplements I have taken. There are about 3.000 visitors at my Web site and hardly any response, probably people all look for a quick cure and when they read, that to heal oneself one needs selfresponsibility and one must get out of dependencies, then people are disappointed and prefer to continue suffering. The same happened, when after I was healed from the fibromyalgia and feeling strong again, I worked and then, because my system had gotten weak, not doing any physical work for a long time, when I lifted something very heavy, I got an inguinal hernia. I was told that only surgery could repair this. I refused this and again searched and then treated myself. After half a year I was healed. That is now fife years ago. Also about this healing process I have made a Web page. http://falconblanco.com/health/ May these information help who is ready for it. Namaste BeiYin

 

 
I healed myself from Firomyalgia
Posted by: BeiYin
Dec 9, 2010
I am a man and I had fibromaylgia for eight years before it was diagnised. I was told that this is cronic and that there is no cure. I rejected this and medication and then searches myself and then treated myself. After about half a year I was completely healed. That is now seven years ago and no symptoms have been coming back. I tried to share this in various groups, but gave up, because in this 'support groups' they cling totally on their belief that FM can't be healed. So I gave up. At my Web site I have written my treatment about every thing I have done and what supplements I have taken. There are about 3.000 visitors at my Web site and hardly any response, probably people all look for a quick cure and when they read, that to heal oneself one needs selfresponsibility and one must get out of dependencies, then people are disappointed and prefer to continue suffering. The same happened, when after I was healed from the fibromyalgia and feeling strong again, I worked and then, because my system had gotten weak, not doing any physical work for a long time, when I lifted something very heavy, I got an inguinal hernia. I was told that only surgery could repair this. I refused this and again searched and then treated myself. After half a year I was healed. That is now fife years ago. Also about this healing process I have made a Web page. http://falconblanco.com/health/ May these information help who is ready for it. Namaste BeiYin

 


Men with Fibro
Posted by: BRYANM
Dec 8, 2010
I am a 52 years old man diagnosed with fibromyalgia 4 years ago after seeing 6 doctors in 18 months. I'm not so concerned about articles or websites that only refer to women but it is beneficial when men are referenced. Friends and family who investigate the affliction see that it primarily affects women and then are skeptical of the diagnosis. I don't mind reading the articles that refer only to women, more than likely the information applies to those with and without a womb. Sensitivity is not proactive.
Reply Reply

Agree With The Need For Better Awareness
Posted by: ladykeno1
Dec 8, 2010
I totally agree with need for even better awareness among medical physicians. I was admitted in July to a hospital in South Carolina for a blood infection I contracted due to being given two steroid packs back to back. It weakened my system and then I came in to contact with a bacteria that entered my blood stream. The pain was agonizing. Also having Fibromyalgia the pain was highly intensified. The doctor who had my case would not even give me enough pain medication to make me comfortable. I do not know if it was disbelief in Fibromyalgia or simply in giving pain medications. I can honestly say it was one of the worst physical experiences I had ever endured. I believe it should be a requirement for physicians that are not educated on the subject of Fibromyalgia to do so.
Reply Reply

Provigil For Fibro
Posted by: rstarre
Dec 8, 2010
Why don't your site post more information on Provigil. This drug has been out since the mid 90's. I rarely see anything written about it's benefits for Fibro patients. I had a doctor suggest I try it and it works absolute wonders for Fibro fog and fatigue. I actually have energy to get off the couch and do something around the house. My fibro fog was so bad, I'd always be late in filing my taxes and getting a good amount of penalties. But I just could not concentrate enough to sit down and do them. This goes for my bills also. Provigil clears my head of the fog and the ability to concentrate is greatly enhanced. Please write more articles on this and the new drug Nuvigil.
Reply Reply

hystamine type drugs in cfs/fibro 'pharma hoaxes'....
Posted by: aidanwalsh
Dec 27, 2010
www.watercure.com www.watercure2.org happy new year everyone...
Reply Reply
 
Free Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia Newsletters
Subscribe to
Our FREE
Newsletter
Subscribe Now!
Receive up-to-date ME/CFS & Fibromyalgia treatment and research news
 Privacy Guaranteed  |  View Archives

Save on Your Next Order

Featured Products
Vitamin D3 Extreme™ Vitamin D3 Extreme™
50,000 IU Vitamin D3 - Prescription Strength
Omega 3-6-9 Omega 3-6-9
All three EFAs in one convenient form
Ultra EPA  - Fish Oil Ultra EPA - Fish Oil
Ultra concentrated source of essential fish oils
Natural Resveratrol Natural Resveratrol
Powerful Antioxidant Support + Positive Anti-aging Effects
OsteoTec™ UC-II® OsteoTec™ UC-II®
A True Breakthrough in Joint health

Most Viewed Articles
What's the Hidden Cause Behind YOUR Fibromyalgia Flares? [more]

Pridgen Reports Fibromyalgia Antiviral Trial Results “Very Positive”: Predicts New Approach Will Be ... [more]

Massage Therapy Studies for Fibromyalgia Reviewed [more]

How to Limit or Minimize Your Fibromyalgia Flare [more]

Breaking News: FDA’s Sneak Attempt to Ban Another B Vitamin [more]

Mitochondrial Dysfunction, Post-Exertional Malaise and CFS/ME [more]

The Devil Is In The Details – A Herpes Simplex Virus Inquiry For Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Sy... [more]

FDA Says Sponsors of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Drugs can Rely on Patient-Reported Outcomes [more]

Sensory Overload: Sources and Strategies [more]

Sympathetic Nervous System Dysfunction in FIbromyalgia and Overlapping Conditions [more]


FIBROMYALGIA RESOURCES
What is Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia 101
Fibromyalgia Symptoms
Fibromyalgia Treatments
| CFS RESOURCES
What is CFS?
ME/CFS 101
ME/CFS Symptoms
ME/CFS Treatments
| FORUMS
Fibromyalgia
ME/CFS
ADVANCED MEDICAL LABS
WHOLESALE  |  AFFILIATES
GUARANTEE
CONTACT US
PRIVACY
RSS
SITE MAP
ProHealth on Facebook  ProHealth on Twitter  ProHealth on Pinterest  ProHealth on Google Plus
Credit Card Processing