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Avatar universal

What are the symptoms for Fibromyalgia?

I would like to know what the symptoms for Fibromyalia are as I am having chest tightening and problems breathing which have been getting progressively worse.  Before the chest tightening and breathing problems only happened if I walked beyond a certain pace or did something that required exhertion.  Now I cannot even go for a walk without my chest tightening and have problems breathing.  As well, just sitting like here at my computer is causing chest tightening.  Any little exhertion now causes chest tightening.  Cardioligist is doing tests.  So far does not appear to be heart related.  Had triple by-pass about 7 months ago and cardioligist said may be fibromyalgia.  Any thoughts would be appreciated.
5 Responses
Avatar universal
The chest tightness could be a result of a condition called costochondritis which is an inflammation of the cartilage in between the ribs.  Costochondritis worsens with any kind of physical exertion and can mimic heart problems. The condition does make it very difficult to breathe.  I get this along with my fibromyalgia, but people without fibromyalgia can experience this also.  It can go away on its own or your doctor may want to treat it with an anti-inflammatory medication. It could also just be your muscles in your chest tightening up - I also experience this and it goes along with fibro. Fibromyalgia is diagnosed based on having multiple tender points and performing a series of tests to rule out other conditions. Individuals usually see a Rheumatologist to receive a fibro diagnosis.

Warmest Regards,

Avatar universal
Thank you for the information.  I had a stress test back in May and had slight chest tightening then, however, yesterday, I had a perfusion study together with a stress test (they shoot you up with radioactive dye and take pictures of your heart and then they have you walk on a tread mill(stress test) and then again shoot you up with more dye and then take further pictures.)  During this test this time, I had extreme chest tightening and breathing difficulties and they had to stop the test within a matter of about 4 minutes.  My cardioligist is baffled so far and said something about fibromyalgia.  Waiting to get results of this test back tomorrow or early next week and having Echo done tomorrow.  Angiogram done last month showed bypasses okay and no blockages in arteries.  Vascular specialist will be putting me through tests to check for blockages in rest of body.  Have had other tests but nothing found except for a nodule on thyroid and will be seeing specialist for this as well.  Hope they find whats causes this soon expecially given the chest tightening is getting so much worse even at rest.  After the triple bypass surgery, my chest really hurt when touched, however,  my chest has really healed on the outside and when touched only hurts very little and is more like it is nerves healing from being cut. The pain I feel appears to be deep within the chest wall or radiates below the ribs.  I do not have pain on any other part of my body.  Perplexing isn't it?   You said  Fibromyalgia is diagnosed based on having multiple tender points and performing a series of tests to rule out other conditions  What kind of tests would these be?  Thank you again for taking the time to give me some answers.
Avatar universal

Hi Lindy,

I'm not sure if your problem could be due to fibromyalgia, but here is a link to our Health Pages. We have a section there for diagnostic tests that can assist physicians to help rule out fibromyalgia, including a link to tender point testing (what it is, etc.)


Do you have any widespread pain, dizziness, burning sensations, numbness, shooting pains, muscle aches, flu like symptoms and/or other symtpoms ? These are common fibro symptoms.



Avatar universal
The tests I had included an MRI of brain and spine, Blood tests for the following: Vitamin D, Celiac Disease Panel, CBC, Urinalysis, Comprehensive Metabolic Panel, CPK, Sjogren's SSA/SSB, Sed. Rate, Thyroid Panel, and Lyme Disease.  Some people also get sleep studies, although I have not ventured into this yet. All of these tests were normal for me except my vitamin D was very deficient.

As far as the tender points, a rheumatologist applies slight pressure to several areas on your body.  If you jump out of your chair in pain when these areas are touched (not literally, but almost), you are diagnosed with fibro.

Since my fibro diagnosis, I have sought treatment from a naturopathic practitioner. She tested my hormones, adrenals and checked for metal toxicities and mineral deficiencies.  She also recently ordered blood tests for viruses which include Epstein Barr Virus (EBV), Cytomegalo Virus (CMV), and HHV6 (Herpes Virus), and cylamydia pneumonia.  Also a comprehensive stool test for bacteria, parasites, and malabsorption problems ( I have a lot of digestive issues with my fibro).  I am still awaiting all these results. We are are looking into testing for mycoplasma infections too. Interestingly, none of these tests have been normal so far - my adrenals are insufficient, I have a progesterone deficiency and also deficient in all minerals.

I also had an EKG and chest x-ray for tachycardia and a CT Scan on my abdomen and pelvic area because of my abdominal pain.  Probably going to have an endoscopy next because my digestive issues are making my fibro worse.

This is probably more info. than what you need to know-I am sure you can sense that I am a bit relentless and want to address everything which may be contributing to this fibro! Honestly, one could go on and on with tests because fibro causes such a diverse set of symptoms.

In regards to your situation, it is not unusal for fibro to flare up or begin after a surgery.

Warmest Regards,

Avatar universal
It was so very kind of your to go into such detail.  It does not appear that I have many of the symptoms for fibromyalgia.  I am going to look up some information on costochondritis when I can.  I am having a quite a lot of chest tightening at times when I just sit by the computer so when its better, I will look up some info on this.  You really went through alot to finally get diagnosed.  Must go for now.  Again, thank you so much for all the information and take care.  I'm in Canada so we are having Thanksgiving this weekend. Don't know where you are from but if you are Canadian have a really Happy Thanksgiving.  Take care now.  God Bless.
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