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How to prove you have fibromyalgia

On Behalf of | May 17, 2024 | Physical Disabilities

Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition that affects daily life. When it becomes too much to bear, working is impossible.

Proving you have fibromyalgia is necessary to receive Social Security Disability or Supplemental Security Income benefits. However, doing so can be challenging. Knowing how to tackle the task will make it easier.

Learn the symptoms

Begin by recognizing the symptoms of fibromyalgia. Common frustrations include widespread pain, fatigue, sleep disturbances and cognitive difficulties, known as “fibro fog.” Other symptoms are headaches, irritable bowel syndrome and sensitivity to noise, light or temperature.

Record your symptoms

Describe your symptoms in a dedicated notebook. Detail the severity, frequency and duration of each. Include information about how these symptoms affect daily activities, such as work, school or household chores.

Receive a medical evaluation

Consult a healthcare provider who has experience with fibromyalgia. The doctor will review your medical history and conduct a physical examination. Blood tests and other diagnostic exams may rule out conditions with similar symptoms.

To diagnose fibromyalgia, doctors often use criteria established by the American College of Rheumatology, including a history of pain lasting at least three months and the presence of other symptoms such as fatigue, waking unrefreshed and cognitive troubles. The doctor may also use the Widespread Pain Index and Symptom Severity Scale to assess the seriousness and distribution of symptoms.

Collect medical records

Gather medical documentation that supports your diagnosis, such as paperwork from doctor visits and test results. These documents provide evidence of your struggle and ongoing efforts to manage the condition.

If you are suffering from the ravages of fibromyalgia, help is available. By following the proper protocol, you can access the support and treatment you deserve.

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