How to Tell if a Person has Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia (FM) is a medical condition in which the sufferer experiences widespread chronic pain and an unusually heightened and painful response to pressure. It is a disease that can present challenges when it comes to diagnosis because most FM symptoms including tenderness of muscles, fatigue and pain are quite difficult to diagnose.

In addition to that, FM symptoms are also common to other medical conditions; this means that finding the correct diagnosis and treatment may take time. While FM isn’t fatal, it can have prolonged detrimental effects that may last a lifetime.

Here are a few warning signs that point to the possibility that you or any other person may have fibromyalgia.

Tender Points

A major distinguishing characteristic of FM on the body is the so-called tender points. When firm pressure is applied on these tender points, the sufferer feels sore. These tender points are located on various body parts including elbows, knees, shoulders, hips and the back of the head.

All in all, there are 18 tender points. Sufferers of FM may experience discomfort in some or all of these locations. Physicians use tender points as part of FM diagnostics.


  1. I have been diagnosed as having Parkinson’s two years ago, as well as, fibromyalgia many year’s ago.

    The two share a lot of the same symptoms, and it becomes confusing as to what I really have?

  2. I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia almost 30 years ago. It would flare up periodically I am 58 now and the past 2 years my condition has become nearly crippling. The excruciating pain in unbearable. I wake up through the night unable to get a full night sleep unless I TAKE SOMETHING TO knock me out. I’m under the care of pain management. My Medicaid won’t cover medications to treat this disease. Its like my life is over…past

    • I’ve had fribromyalgia for years. And I also have MS and give myself an injection of Copaxone 3 x a week. Lot of similar symptoms. I was taking Neurontin for a long time. My neurologist prescribed and switched me to Lyrica which is for fibromyalgia. It tworks better for neuropathy. I have Medicaid too and it covers it.

  3. I suffered from pain all over. Even when using a walker I could only take 4 or 5 steps before I was in pain so bad I wanted to crawl. Dr did routine blood work on me but added a vitimin check. She called a week later and told me to start 1000 IU of vit D twice a day. Five days later pain gone. Walking all over without a walker. I finally got to walk our 3.75 acre hilly lake lot. It feels so good. Free at last!

  4. I suffer from chronic shoulder pain neck pain with pins and needles for over 10 years now and I always get told I have degenitive spin problems and chronic spondylitis and spondolosis.
    Could I have this disability
    I can’t lift can’t walk far without pain

    • Sometimes it takes a while for fibromyalgia to get diagnosed but you should ask your primary care doctor or ask your primary to refer you to a rheumatologist. You should get better answers there. Also print out information from National Fibromyalgia Association to take with you to that appt.