Fibromyalgia: A central nervous system issue
When a person experiences pain, the first organ to be informed is the brain. The signaling process involves the nerves from the point of pain sending a signal to the brain through the spinal cord. The brain then interprets the signal as pain, which serves as its warning that something’s not okay.
Normal pains go away as a person heals, but it’s different for those with fibromyalgia. Even when a patient is not injured, he or she experiences an excruciating pain that is not easily relieved. It is for this exact observation that doctors and other experts alike now trace the condition to abnormalities in the brain and spinal cord processing.
Daniel Claw, M.D., a professor of anesthesiology at the University of Michigan, is an expert who is focused on analyzing the neurological basis for fibromyalgia. According to him, there is a strong correlation between disturbances in brain processing and the unexplainable peripheral pain experienced by patients. This claim is further supported by the fact that pain among patients is amplified and can occur at any body part at the same time.
Research findings do not imply that patients won’t experience the normal peripheral pain anymore. However, this pain is to a higher degree than what’s expected from any peripheral input. So, more and more findings point to the brain (central nervous system) as the main culprit for fibromyalgia.
The newest inquiry on the matter involves the two main nerve fibers in the skin that (1) transmits pain signals, and (2) other signals from Sympathetic Nervous System (SNS). Fibromyalgia patients have damaged nerve fibers on their skin, which aren’t clearly understood. Experts agree that this is a significant area of study as ‘pain’ remains the triggering factor for the condition. Studies are now focused on finding out whether these skin nerve issues and central nervous system problems are connected to fibromyalgia