Living with Fibro

Is there a Cancer Worry when Suffering with Fibromyalgia?

For those who are diagnosed with fibromyalgia, they tend to find that their lives greatly change once the diagnosis has come through and they are living their lives. Why is this? They have constant pain and fatigue that make it seem impossible to keep a normal life.

They may worry about the way that their personal relationships are going, as most every fibromyalgia sufferer knows, it is the personal relationships near you that suffer while you try to find treatments that are going to work for your body.

Along with the physical pain of this illness, there is also the mental worries that go along with this. Several people become very depressed as they feel isolated from the rest of the world, while others develop anxiety that makes it impossible to even reach out to friends or to go out of their house.

The Worry

The constant worrying is something that many fibromyalgia patients have in common. They worry about several different aspects of their life, usually what is affected by the disease that they are dealing with.

They worry about their relationships, they worry about keeping a job, and most of all they worry about their health. One of the top worries that many fibromyalgia patients have is whether this is going to lead to cancer later down the line.

The Cancer Worry

Why do fibromyalgia sufferers worry about cancer?  Those who deal with fibromyalgia day in and day out are often restricted on what they do. They feel pain, so they are not as physical as they once were. And in many cases, they have isolated themselves.

In many cases, a person has no other option other than to focus on the negative and worry about the future.  However, the worry about cancer may not be as farfetched as many people think.

A study in the UK has linked higher cancer rates with those who have high rates of pain in their body. Which fibromyalgia sufferers are dealing with on a day to day basis.

Along with higher cancer rates, these people who were dealing with chronic body pain also had reduced survival rates compared to those who had no body pain.

However, be cautious, this study is no conclusive. Even the researchers on this team are stating that this evidence is in its early years.

There are still many studies that need to be done in order to determine if this is true in the majority of cases.

The Study Performed

The study that was performed at England’s University of Manchester was looking at whether chronic body pain influenced the life span of a person.

The cancer findings were a complete surprise as this was not what they were intentionally looking for.

Some of the studies parameters included:

  • This started with the first study that shown an increase in death rates among those with widespread pain. Almost all the deaths in this previous study were related to cancers. Hence, the follow up study to look at this more.
  • The follow-up study consisted of around 6,000 patients from the earlier study performed.
  • Of those who were in the study:
    • 15% has a reported widespread pain throughout the body
    • 48% reported regional pain
    • 37% reported no pain
  • The original study in 1991 saw 395 develop cancer over the next 9 years
  • The lowest cancer incidence was seen in those who reported no pain
  • The higher cancer incidence was in those who have the wide spared body pain
  • Most frequently, breast, prostate and colorectal cancers were diagnosed

The Counter Argument

From the study mentioned above, those who suffer with fibromyalgia would be at an increased rate for developing cancer. However, many experts are warning against believing this study just yet. Why?

  1. The study has not been successful replicated with the same results in other participants
  2. There is no other previous literature that supports this hypothesis
  3. Many fibromyalgia sufferers have other issues along with the fibromyalgia. Many experts argue it could be the other combination of issues that they have that is causing this reaction to cancer.

Can you get cancer from fibromyalgia

How to Remain Healthy with Fibromyalgia

Whether or not you buy into the idea that fibromyalgia patients are going to be more likely to get cancer, is something to simply wait and see on. We have yet seen the research that suggests this is an idea that happens each and every time.

In order for fibromyalgia to be the root cause of cancer, it will have to be studied and duplicated several times before medical professionals take this as fact.

However, in the meantime, you should be focused on staying healthy when you suffer with fibromyalgia. It will take dedication to making this work.

But, for those who do make an effort and basically work through the pain, they are going to find that their fibromyalgia symptoms can actually get better.

A few ideas for staying healthy:

  1. Be sure to exercise. Not only is this going to keep you healthy, but it can help with the muscle pain and issues that you are dealing with.
  2. Consider going to therapies to help deal with the feelings of isolation that you have, along with helping with your physical strength.
  3. Make sure to take a daily vitamin and eat healthy to avoid your immune system dropping. This is one of the biggest fears since pain can cause the immune system to get weaker.
  4. Be sure to not overdo your daily life, as you are going to find that this can cause you to be more tired. Take your time and pace yourself throughout the day.

Always be sure that you are speaking with your doctor about any new issues you are dealing with or to find a new method that is going to work with your fibromyalgia.

This is an illness that is chronic, meaning there is no cure. But, with the right help, you can still have a great life.

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Living with Fibro

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