Pain, fatigue, feeling like you’re just in a fog. For some of us, these symptoms come and go and are easily manageable. But for those who suffer from fibromyalgia, these symptoms persist and greatly affect quality of life. For many sufferers, symptoms can begin after a physical trauma, infection or event that causes major psychological stress, but for others there may be no single cause.
According to the Mayo Clinic, “Repeated nerve stimulation causes the brains of people with fibromyalgia to change. This change involves an abnormal increase in levels of certain chemicals in the brain that signal pain (neurotransmitters).”
There are many ways people try to treat fibromyalgia pain, including medication. However, one treatment in particular is proving to be most effective in potentially restoring fibromyalgia patients to a fruitful and pain-free life.
A recent study performed at the Oregon Health and Science University showed that Individualized acupuncture in a group setting significantly decreases fatigue and pain in fibromyalgia patients, compared with standard group therapy—a treatment that has previously been shown to be helpful for fibromyalgia patients. Thirty patients who reported moderate to severe pain were treated, half of which underwent standard educational group therapy and half of which received individualized acupuncture treatments within a group setting. The half who received acupuncture treatment did so in 40-minute sessions, twice a week for a 10-week period.
The results were clear.
“Those who underwent group acupuncture showed significant improvements, which were sustained and even improved four weeks after treatment,” the results of the study said. “Fatigue scores in this group improved by 25%, and pain decreased by 2.8 points.”
With nearly 10 million people across the US suffering from fibromyalgia, chances are you may know someone who is in need of treatment from the pain, fatigue and “fibro fog” associated with the disease. If so, acupuncture may be just what they need.