Slepian Smith, PLLC

The Challenges of Fibromyalgia

As advanced as medicine is today, there are still countless medical conditions that are not well understood. Some illnesses cannot be treated or diagnosed with certainty at all. These illnesses complicate patients' lives as well as their access to critical benefits for which they might be eligible, like disability benefits.

One example of this type of illness is fibromyalgia. Statistics show that millions of Americans suffer from fibromyalgia, but there is no one treatment or diagnostic tool that gives sufferers the definitive answers they are often looking for.

Diagnostic challenges

A diagnosis of fibromyalgia typically does not come quickly or easily. Doctors do not know what causes it, and there is no blood text or X-ray that can confirm this condition. Most people will have to undergo various tests to rule out other conditions first. Doctors will also look for a history of widespread pain, which is a characteristic of fibromyalgia, as well as other symptoms like fatigue.

The time between the onset of symptoms and a diagnosis can be months, during which sufferers may be in and out of the doctor's office and struggling with painful, disruptive symptoms.

No easy solution for treatment

Once doctors do make a diagnosis, fibromyalgia sufferers still face several challenges. There is no known cure for this condition, and treatment can vary widely, as symptoms and severity can change daily.

Most sufferers will attempt various types of remedies and therapies, including lifestyle changes and medication.

Seeking benefits for fibromyalgia

Because of the many challenges with diagnosing and treating fibromyalgia, it can be difficult to successfully apply for disability benefits for this condition. That said, it is not impossible.

If you have fibromyalgia and are interested in pursuing disability benefits, you would be wise to carefully document all your medical visits and treatment efforts. Keep track of how often your symptoms arise and how they affect your lifestyle.

This information and the guidance of an attorney experienced in pursuing benefits for people with fibromyalgia can help you navigate the application process more easily and avoid oversights and missteps.

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