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A Must Read for Those with Fibromyalgia

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This weekend, I was reading through my latest copy of Fibromyalgia Aware magazine. After taking care of people with fibro for decades, I’m always surprised that I learn something new in each issue.

The magazine is published by the National Fibromyalgia Association in California, a not-for-profit patient support group.

Each issue covers a lot of important information. There are usually good articles on the latest advances in fibromyalgia treatments along with the familiar group of overlapping symptoms such as chronic fatigue, depression, irritable bowel, reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD), and TMJ. A typical issue may also contain a piece on a lifestyle topic: how to cope with unrefreshing sleep; a safe but helpful exercise program; nutritional suggestions; help obtaining disability benefits.

Health care practitioners read Fibromyalgia Aware regularly to learn about new medications and alternative therapies, whether FDA approved or not. I remember some time ago a very useful article that I quoted incessantly, reassuring patients that it was okay to use opioid analgesics (such as OxyContin) to control their pain.

If you’re a fibromyalgia patient, or know someone suffering from this debilitating condition, make getting a subscription your next act on earth.

You can order via their website, www.fmaware.org (click on “FM Aware Magazine” in the left-hand column), or call them at 714-921-0150. The cost is a very reasonable, and tax deductible, donation of $35 for three issues a year.

This is one magazine you’ll genuinely look forward to, and you may want to save each issue as a valuable reference.


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DIAGNOSE-IT-YOURSELF: COVID-19

Far and away, the commonest phone call/e mail I receive asks about COVID-19 diagnosis.
Just print this out, tape it on your refrigerator door, and stay calm.

ALLERGIES

• Runny nose
• Sneezing
• Red, swollen eyes
• Itchy eyes and nose
• Tickly throat
• No fever

COLD
• Runny nose
• Sneezing
• Sore throat
• Mild muscle aches
• Mild dry cough
• Rarely a low fever

STREP THROAT
• Painful sore throat
• Hurts to swallow
• Swollen glands in neck
• Fever

FLU (Standard seasonal flu)
• Fever
• Dry cough (no mucus)
• Sudden onset over few hours
• Headache
• Sore throat
• Fatigue, sometimes quite severe
• Muscle aches, sometimes quite severe
• Rarely, diarrhea

CORONAVIRUS-COVID 19
• Shortness of breath
• Fever (usually above 100 degrees)
• Dry cough (no mucus)
• Slow onset (2-14 days)
• Mild muscle aches
• Mild fatigue
• Mild sneezing

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