Dear Nurse Dave,
So my Aunt claims she has fibromyalgia and says that it just makes her hurt all the time. She doesn't work or do anything. Is she just crazy or is this a real problem?
Annie, Brooklyn, NY
Annie it is real but your Aunt could still be crazy. Fibromyalgia is a real problem that people have that means that person has chronic pain and really can't do much. The thing is just like every 14 year old boy that claims he has a girlfriend out of state may not actually have a girlfriend out of state, every person that claims they have fibromyalgia may not actually have fibromyalgia.
So your next question probably is, "Then how can I tell if she has it or not?" My answer is I don't know. If someone tells me they are in pain I just believe them. I don't really have another option and it really isn't going to hurt someone to give them pain medication even if they don't really need it (which I have no way of knowing). So Annie my advice would be read up on Fibromyalgia and see how you can help your aunt out. Ask her questions about the disease and be open to her answers. (You can do the same thing with a 14 year old claiming to have an out of state girlfriend. The truth will come out pretty quickly).