The diagnosis of fibromyalgia is typically made by a healthcare professional, such as a rheumatologist or primary care physician, based on a combination of symptoms, medical history, and physical exam. There is no specific test or scan that can definitively confirm the presence of fibromyalgia.
However, certain criteria have been established by the American College of Rheumatology to aid in the diagnosis of fibromyalgia. These criteria include:
- Widespread pain: Pain must be present in all four quadrants of the body (both sides of the body, above and below the waist) for at least three months.
- Tender points: The presence of at least 11 of 18 specific tender points on the body, which are sensitive to pressure.
- Other symptoms: Additional symptoms commonly associated with fibromyalgia, such as fatigue, sleep disturbances, headaches, cognitive difficulties, and mood disorders.
If a healthcare professional suspects fibromyalgia, they may also perform blood tests and imaging studies to rule out other conditions that can cause similar symptoms, such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, or multiple sclerosis.