Can You Get Fibromyalgia At Any Age?

by Martin Rutherford, D.C.

Dr. Randall Gates: So there we have the question, can you get fibromyalgia at any age? And the answer is kind of. So to be more specific, typically the fibromyalgia patients that we see in this clinic are between the ages of about 16, 15, to 45 to 50. Now, if you develop fibromyalgia at a later age, let say you’re around the age of 70 because we had a patient like this just recently and she developed fibromyalgia-like symptoms.

Commonly, when patients who are more in that type of age demographic, if they’re having those sorts of systemic widespread pain, brain fog, those sorts of symptoms, they may have something called polymyalgia rheumatica, which is a different condition unto itself. So it’s important to have a good history and a diagnosis if you’re questioning if you have fibromyalgia or not. But what we see with a lot of fibromyalgia patients is that their symptoms can evolve over many years. So they may just start with one symptom and then develop into another symptom, and I think Doctor Rutherford can give the best explanation of that, given his personal experience.

Dr. Martin Rutherford: Yes, I have fibromyalgia. I developed it about 15 years ago, but that’s when I started to realize that I had fibromyalgia and for those of you who know, 15 years ago, people weren’t really all that hot about giving you a diagnosis of fibromyalgia. What Doctor Gates is referring to is I probably had the first seeds of this planted when I was 21 years old and I was really overdoing it, I was going to school, I was playing sports, I was doing a whole lot of things and I ended up getting mono and strep throat, and these are some of the triggers for fibromyalgia and my physiology changed dramatically at that point in time. My fatigue lasted for an abnormal amount of time. Now, I talked to a lot of people who have mononucleosis and they’re fatigued for a month or two or three.

I was fatigued for well over a year. I couldn’t play sports. I tried to go back to sports, I couldn’t do it. I started to develop weight problems. I’d never had a weight problem until that point in time. All the sudden, I was putting on weight and I was trying to control it and then over the years, I had intestinal problems and things of that nature. And then later on, I had another stress that came about around 2000 and I developed pneumonia at the same time, and then that was it. That’s when all of the rest of the symptoms started to come.

So, in reality, Doug Gates [SP] just said 16 to 45 or so and technically, I could argue I didn’t get it until like 48, 49, 50, but I probably had the mechanics of it. The thyroid probably went when I was 21, the gut was bad, I probably had already developed an autoimmunity in retrospect with things that had come and gone. And then later on, ultimately I got the pneumonia and I got the other stress and then boom, full-blown sensitivity everywhere, chronic fatigue, put on 35 pounds, hair started thinning out, the peripheral neuropathy that goes with it about half of the time and so on and so forth.

Dr. Randall Gates: Exactly.

Dr. Martin Rutherford: So, it’s not as clearly defined as you’d like and we’ve even seen kids now who are having the elements of what we see in fibromyalgia patients develop literally like at three and four years old. So I think that probably gives them a little bit better overall…

Dr. Randall Gates: Concept of it, absolutely. So if you have more questions on fibromyalgia, we have several different videos on this. You can access them at Powerheathtalk.com. Go to the search tab, just search fibromyalgia and lots of information will come up. We have references for all of our videos for people who like to do research. So this is Doctor Martin Rutherford, Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner, also a chiropractor, and I’m Doctor Randall Gates, board-certified chiropractic neurologist, also a chiropractor. And thanks for watching.

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