The Neurological Connection to Fibromyalgia

If you have fibromyalgia, some of your symptoms might be caused by a neurological disorder such as a cervical spinal cord compression (stenosis) and/or Chiari malformation.  It is important for your long term health and for relief of pain, fatigue, and mental function, to rule out neurological conditions as part of your syndrome.  If you answer yes to several of the following questions, you should take the initiative to be examined by a neurosurgeon for possible neurological implications. 

Besides pain and fatigue:
    1. Do you have numbness and tingling in your hands and feet?
    2. Are your hands and feet always cold?
    3. Have you noticed muscle weakness, such as a decrease in your grip strength?
    4. Do you feel dizzy when you stand up?
    5. Do you have blurred vision that has not been helped by glasses or other optical adjustments?
    6. Do you have irritable bowel syndrome?
    7. Do you have bladder problems?
    8. Do you have nausea and/or vomiting spells?
    9. Do you have unexplained sweating episodes, which are not menopausal?
    10. Are you clumsy, either in walking or handling objects?
    11. Do you have headaches?
    12. Do you have facial numbness?
    13. Do you have sleep apnea?
    14. Do you have hoarseness?
    15. Do you have neurally mediated hypotension (low blood pressure)?
    16. Do you faint for no apparent reason?

Please also check the Comparable Symptoms pages located on this site for other symptoms you might have.

Also answer the following questions. Prior to the onset of your fibromyalgia symptoms:

    1. Were you injured in a motor vehicle accident?
    2. Did you suffer from a sports injury?
    3. Did you hit your head, hurt your neck or injure yourself in any other way (exercise, fall, etc.)?
    4. Did you have surgery under anesthetic?
    5. Did you have dental work done under anesthetic?

Other questions:

    1. Do other family members, i.e. mother, father, siblings, aunts, uncles, children, grandparents, exhibit similar symptoms and/or been diagnosed with fibromyalgia?
    2. Did you have a traumatic birth (forceps, other)?


Since 1997, hundreds of fibromyalgia patients have been evaluated for these conditions and have had surgeries. 80% to 85% of the patients who have had surgery have seen remarkable improvement in their symptoms. If you have one or both of these conditions, you can find help in alleviating your pain, fatigue and cognitive problems as well as other neurological symptoms including but not limited to: Cold hands and feet, numbness and tingling in the extremities, irritable bowel syndrome, bladder problems and more. If you want to be evaluated for either of these conditions by a knowledgeable neurosurgeon, then contact one of the doctors listed below for instructions regarding how to get an MRI and other appointment information. (See MRI Requirements for detailed instructions to give to your physician).

Dan Heffez, MD Neurosurgeon
Milwaukee Neurological Institute
2350 W. Villard Ave
Milwaukee, WI 53209
Phone: (414) 438-6500

Michael Rosner, MD Neurosurgeon
80 Doctors Drive, Suite 4
Hendersonville, NC 23792
Phone: (828) 684-1076

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