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The varying symptoms and
pain that comes and goes
just add to the burden of
this puzzling disorder, says
naturopath Lyn Craven.
ibromya lgia is
autoimmune disorder. The pain,
fatigue and numerous other symptoms
associated with it can be frustrating to
those suffering and also to doctors.
The symptoms are physically draining,
with often widespreadpain that can sometimes
be quite disabling. Muscles and ligaments
are sore and aching. Most frequently, people
experience discomfort in the shoulder s, back
and neck . However, inflammation is not
apparent, nor is there any visible damage to
the affected tissues. Varying symptoms and
pain come and go at random. Patients have
frequently been told there i s nothing wrong
and that it is “all in their head” or that their
symptoms are due to a virus, depression or
stress. Depression is often present but is not
the cause of the condition.
People suffering from fibromyalgia
often experience sleep problems and
stiffness when they wake up or when
sitting for a lengthy period. They also lack
the flexibility they had before becoming
af f ected by the disorder.
The intensity and site of the pain a nd the
degree of fatigue may vary from day to day,
with excessive exercise and stress making
Is It Really Fibromyalgia?
it worse. Genetic a nd environmental
components are always con sidered and can
occasionally act as a trigger in people who are
predispos ed to the condition. Some families
have a high incidenc e of fibromya lgia , while
other people experienc e onset after a physic al
trauma , severe illness, or it may e ven a rise
without a discernable event.
Common symptoms include:
• Body stiffness, especially in the morning
a nd with prolonged sitting
• Temporomandibular joint dysf unction
(TMJ), pain in jaw joints and
sur rounding muscles
• Depression and anxiety (may coexist)
• Gas and cramping, abdominal pain,
• Difficulty sleeping
• Difficulty concentrating, memory lapses
• Painful menstruation
• Numbness and tingling in hands and feet
• Chest pain, irreg ula r heartbeat, shortness
• Constipation/diarrhoea (IBS)
• Difficulty swallowing
• Dizziness, balance problems
• Dry eyes, difficulty focusing
• Dry mouth
• Itchy, dry, or blotchy skin
• Localised oedema (such as swollen
• Neura lly mediated hypotension (blood
pressure that lowers when standing)
• Painful se xual intercourse
• Pelvic pain
• Restless leg syndrome and periodic limb
movement during sleep
• Rhinitis consisting of nasal congestion /
discharge and sinus pain (but no allergic
immune respon se)
• Sen sitivity to light, sound, touch,
temperature, a nd odours
• Sen sitivity to medication s (more likely to
have side effects)
• Urinary frequency, urge, a nd irritation
Obviously ma ny of the above
s ymptoms are present in other
health disorders and not
everyone diagnosed with
fibromyalgia will exper-
ience all of them.
Do you really have Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia can and does co -ex ist with
many other chronic illnesses such a s chronic
fatigue syndrome (CFS), rheum atoid
a rthritis, Sjögren’s syndrome, multiple
sclerosis, thyroid disorders, and systemic
lupus. T he symptoms of these conditions
may be mingled with those associated with
fibromyalgia, m aking diagnosis more of
On some oc ca sion s pe ople may present
with a number of the ab ove symptoms in
conjunction with overa ll aches and pains
prima rily in muscles and sometimes tendons ,
but in actual fact this could be due to other
c aus es a nd thus is not “true” fibromyalgia.
A Case Study
A 28 year old woman came to see me
suffering muscular aches and pains and
fatigue throughout her entire body, which
came in peaks and lows, at different times
of the day. She was struggling to continue
with her work.
She had suffered four heart seizure s over
a span of approximately five ye ars and had
recently been diagnosed with fibromya lgia .
Before the heart seizure s her c ardio te sting
had always been norma l.
She had told her story many times, so she
promptly talked non-stop for almost an hour
telling me how her health beg an to deteriorate.
On listening to her I felt quite strongly
that para sitic infestation wa s involved and
some of these organisms are known to attack
other organs, including the heart. While
travelling in Europe, she had b ecome unwell
immediately after a meal, followed shortly
after by her first heart seizure. Three more
s eizures occ urred over time but the only
treatment she rec eived wa s morphine for the
Treatment for impaired gut/bowel and
liver function wa s required, a long with anti
para sitic remedies and specific minerals ,
in particul ar, magnesium in higher doses
since magnesium has been proven to be very
helpful in a lle viating muscular discomfort
a nd pain. Interestingly, magnesium is a n
important mineral for the cardiovascular
system. I also treated her weekly with Bowen
therapy to free up QI energy throughout the
body a nd the meridians, which alleviated the
muscular discomfort and pain and helped to
improve digestive and liver function.
This young woman wa s diligent with
the regime and in just over a week she was
finding she could cope without her powerful
painkillers, including morphine. If she
over worked on oc c a sions, she may have
taken a painkiller such as Neurofin to assist.
Still, progress wa s obvious week by week,
even if slow, and after 21⁄2 months she was
looking like a different person e xperiencing
much les s discomfort.
Unfortunately, at this st age of healing
with natural remedies through medical
pressure she was obliged to visit a pain
management clinic and was promptly told to
cease taking all remedies and visit the clinic
daily. She was shown various exercises to
perform daily, along with posture analysis to
assist with sitting for lengthy periods during
her work. She was told she would have this
pain for the rest of her life and that she simply
had to cope with it and that the exercises and
appropriate posture would be all she would
need. She was also told that the remedies she
had been taking were a waste of time and
would not help her for the future. Within a
couple of week s she ret urned to her native
cou ntr y so I have no idea of her present state.
What a pity she obliged their requests !
This did not appear to be a “true”
fibromya lgia case. In my opinion, ingesting
infected fluids had led to para sitic infestation,
and as this had never been treated it was
pois oning her blood a nd continually
attacking the heart muscle. The fact that
specific remedies were given to counteract
this a nd not primarily to treat fibromyalgia
shows that other factors can create a similar
symptom profile. It is always far better to
find the cause and treat this in conjunction
with treating the person a s a whole for any
discomfort they are experiencing.
Relief from Toxicity
Another woman presented with diagnosed
fibromyalgia and had a past history of drug
and alcohol abuse for many years. The
debilitating muscular pain exp erienced
became present in her thirties, when she
was still drinking heavily. When she came
to me, she had stopped drinking several
years earlier, but she had no relief with any
treatments at that stage. After receiving
one Bowen treatment, she advised me she
had 55 -60% relief, a remarkable result
with such chronic toxicity! Progress was
steady over following months with regular
treatments and relevant remedies to
support the body, in particular the liver,
kidneys and bowels.
The abuse of the body with toxic
substance s on a daily basis would have
c ontributed greatly to this autoimmune
disorder and its varying symptom profile.
Chronic cases such as this need continual
support and a healthy fresh food diet to
reduce discomfort and a ny painful attacks.
Many autoimmune disorders c an manifest
through gut impairment/integrity and poor
digestive/bowel function and ingestion
of toxic substa nc es over many years.
Fibromyalgia is one of these disorders.
Autoimmune disorders c an a lso be triggered
by viral attack .
Next month, we will look at how natural
therapies can help with this disorder.
Sydney-based Lyn Craven is a practitioner
of naturopathy, nutrition, medical herbalism,
Bowen therapy, Reiki energy healing, meditation,
and is a corporate health presenter/consultant
with 18 years experience in natural therapies.
w ww.facebook .com / naturopathandBowenTherapy
Disclaimer: Information presented in this column is not
intended as medical advicebut to advance the understanding
of holistic nutrition and lifestyle and its place in a balanced
approach to health. Readers are encouraged to be guided by
their own healthcare professionals.
'Varying symptoms and pain
come and go at random.’
‘Interestingly, magnesium is
an important mineral for the
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