“It’s 6:00 am and your alarm goes off… beep beep beep… You hit the snooze. It’s 6:10 am… beep beep beep… snooze. This pattern happens over and over again until 6:50 am and you drag yourself out of bed and throw some cold water on your face before racing out the door by 7:05 am.”
This picture depicts a common sleep-deprived and over-worked person living in North America. This is NOT a typical individual living with Fibromyalgia. Multiply that initial experience by 10 and you will get a glimpse into their World. Fibromyalgia is a pain disorder diagnosed by Rheumatologists but effectively treated by few.
I have been spending the last week in San Francisco, California meeting with various clinics and practitioners who specialize in treating Fibromyalgia. I had the pleasure of meeting with Dr. Melissa Congdon, MD, a Pediatrician and Fibromyalgia specialist practicing in Corte Madera, California. She and several of her family members live with Fibromyalgia and her experiences and research is inspiring. She was able to introduce new concepts to me which has been based from the textbook:
“What Your Doctor May NOT Tell You About Fibromyalgia”, UPDATED THIRD EDITION 2012 by R. Paul St. Amand, M.D. and Claudia Craig Marek.
The 3 main treatments that Dr. Congdon recommends after ruling out serious co-morbid diseases and diagnosing Fibromyalgia below:
- Low glycaemia index diet – limiting refined sugar and simple carbohydrates
- Daily stretching and moderate exercise to slowly increase strength and endurance
- Finally, Guaifenesin a product that Dr. Congdon finds extremely beneficial
Classically, Guaifenesin is an expectorant used to thin and loosen mucous to aid with chest congestion. It works as an anti-histamine, decongestant and cough suppressor to clear the lung airways and improve your capacity to breath. Guaifenesin is also used to treat asthma, gout, infertility and fibromyalgia. Dr. Paul St. Amand is a founder of the Guaifenesin protocol and I will be interning with him at his office in Los Angeles this week. I know I will gain so much knowledge from his many years of experience successfully treating over 6000 patients living with Fibromyalgia.
Please let me know if you have any questions for Dr. St. Amand and I will be sure to address it with him during my visit to Los Angeles. You can contact me at AlisonChen.ND@gmail.com with any comments or questions.