Exercise has become a kind of universal treatment for fibromyalgia. It’s now considered a “first-line” treatment for the disease and dozens and dozens of studies (with more on the way) and millions of dollars of research funding have been devoted to it.
Moderate exercise is good for most FM patients but does it deserve this kind of focus? Tell us about your experience with exercise and symptom relief in
Have Doctors Gone Too Far on Exercise For Fibromyalgia?
Absolutely. I suffered an enormous flare up after two knee surgeries. The physical rehabilitation made it all much worse. Quitting was the best thing I ever did. Now using Dr. St. Amand’s guaifenesin protocol with great success. Read his books, “What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Fibromyalgia” and “What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Fibromyalgia Fatigue.” Found them online in good used condition for 99 cents apiece plus S&H. Saved my life.
Glad to hear that and thanks for passing that on…
Hello FibromyalgiaSufferer, I just had a knee replacement 4 weeks ago. The first week the PT was terrible. I had to call my Dr. and she said that they were pushing me too much and she wrote a note to them, telling them to slow down with me. And she gave me some better pain meds to help me through. So my PT was slowed down and I’m doing some better. But the sleep at night is terrible, because I fall immediately to sleep when I get home. I don’t get any restful sleep at night. But what really got me reading your post is about Dr.St.Amand’s Guaifenesin protocol. I have been on this since 1996. I don’t hear about other’s too much using it too, except on his web site. It has really helped me a great deal except for the CFS part of FMS. And exercise just makes it worse.
I was told I had fibro by a rheumatologist and an immunologist, and was instructed to keep up gentle exercise. Bad move- I relapsed and progressed my neuroimmune illness (Fibro/ME/CFS/Lyme, all of them) from mild/moderate to moderate/severe.
The line between helping and hurting is, for me, so fine and so variable, I have only made my illness irrevocably worse.
So true Julie! Such a fine line to walk. I hope the path becomes clearer in the future.
I find the only exercise my body can handle is gentle stretching. I went on the AARP site where they show 10 easier yoga poses and I incorporate some of those too. To do anymore than that just increases my pain. It helps emotionally too. I feel I am doing something rather than nothing to help my body.
I was told that yoga would help fibromyalgia. I took a class for three years until I had to quit because the stretching became too painful. A year later I noticed I could move easier since stopping yoga. Then I read that some experts said stretching is not recommended for FM! Exercise is essential for mental and physical health, but stretching and repetitive motion when you have fibromyalgia are NOT good ideas. Walking and warm water exercise seem to have the best overall value.
I don’t know if I have cfs, fm or both. i don’t even think there is any certainty they are 2 different conditions. Anyway at the least they have great similarities. I can regrettably attest to the theory that over doing exercise can prove harmful. I was on a mild exercise regime For awhile and doing ok (as ok as you can be with this illness which is definitely not ok), and went on a one week vacation and decided I was going to push my physical limits. Pretend I was healthy. The whole week I walked, jogged,swam, pushing myself completely. My walk/jog was 3 miles. Swimming actually wasn’t very rigorous. But this was my absolute limit. I exercised 5 of the 7 days. When I returned home my legs were so dead I could only do 1 flight of stairs. I thought it would pass in a week or 2. It has been 4 years now and there has been absolutely no improvement. My legs are still like lead, I have more muscular pain than ever. I am 53 so I hope for a miracle improvement but realistically probably not. I can only guess that I stressed my body to the point where the illness whatever it is was able to make further inroads.