Fatigue and Fibromyalgia

The Problem

Fatigue is one of the most common medical complaints in outpatient care. Conventional medicine practices have little tools to effectively screen for and manage fatigue disorders. Common sources looked at include a screening for anemia or thyroid dysfunction. When unable to surmise a definitive diagnosis, these people are often told that their symptoms are psychosomatic and are referred to a psychiatrist.

Fibromyalgia is a common “diagnosis of exclusion” which is given to people who have chronic fatigue, neurologic symptoms, digestive complaints and chronic pain without known cause.

The IMNY Solution

Fatigue syndromes usually involve dysfunction in multiple areas of physiology. Fatigue disorders are generally considered to be a chronic, complex illness. Detecting the underlying cause of fatigue requires an all-inclusive, sequential search for causes that may include anemia, nutritional deficiency, hormone imbalance, biotoxin illness, mitochondrial dysfunction, sleep disorders, neurological and psychological problems, heart disease, or metabolic disorders. The underlying causes usually include dysbiosis, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, intestinal permeability, mitochondrial dysfunction, and immune dysfunction. By this approach, we can treat the underlying causes, reverse the imbalances, and spare patients the “medical detention” of long-term analgesic use.

These disorders are among the most challenging cases we see in functional medicine. Although “cure” is elusive, nearly everyone improves to some degree. This program requires discipline, perseverance, and careful self-observation.