Not all primary care doctors are well equipped to deal with people who have fibromyalgia, and you may be dissatisfied with the care you receive. Your doctor may not understand fibromyalgia well, may not have had fibromyalgia patients before, and may not be familiar with all the different ways to treat fibromyalgia. It's important to find a doctor that can support you in the management of this condition. If you think you're not getting your needs meet with your medical professional, then you might want to consider finding another doctor, or more than one doctor, for the management of your fibromyalgia symptoms.
Here are some healthcare practitioners to consider:
BOARD CERTIFIED RHEUMATOLOGIST.
Board-certified rheumatologists practice western medicine and are perhaps the best specialist to visit if you think you have fibromyalgia but don't yet have a diagnosis of fibromyalgia. They are doctors who deal with all sorts of rheumatic diseases, from rheumatoid arthritis to other autoimmune disorders. They are often the best doctor to diagnose fibromyalgia, as they will run a series of tests to rule out rheumatic diseases. Following diagnosis, they may also recommend medications that can help bring relief to various fibromyalgia symptoms. Some rheumatologists will also give you stress relief prescriptions and exercise prescriptions that can lower your symptoms' intensity. Rheumatologists are generally in high demand, and appointments are limited in availability. They may also not spend time with you to listen to all your concerns and educate you on the disease. However, if you are a strong believer in Western medicine, this is the type of doctor you will want to try to get in to see.
A holistic doctor is another type of doctor who often treats those who suffer from fibromyalgia pain. They can be trained in Western medicine and can come from several different kinds of specialties. They may be osteopaths or MDs or have a degree in naturopathic medicine. Many people are drawn to holistic doctors because they consider physical symptoms and emotional symptoms, lifestyle factors, and other factors in your life to treat your condition. They endeavor to spend a lot of time with you, asking you questions about your symptoms, lifestyle, spiritual beliefs, emotional symptoms, and relationships. Holistic doctors see that many things play into a medical condition's total experience and consider all these things when deciding on your treatment. Holistic doctors use a variety of treatments besides Western medications. They may recommend certain exercises, lifestyle changes, homeopathy, acupuncture, herbalism, chiropractic care, and spiritual interventions to help bring relief and healing to some of your symptoms. Holistic doctors are a great option for fibromyalgia patients because they practice both conventional medicines and are also educated and have experience with alternative therapies.
If you have irritable bowel symptoms as one of your fibromyalgia symptoms, you may decide to see a gastroenterologist who specializes in gastrointestinal diseases such as irritable bowel syndrome. They may give you dietary recommendations and prescribe medications that can ease the stomach pain, cramps, and diarrhea so common to fibromyalgia patients who have irritable bowel syndrome. They aren't the specialist to help with all your fibromyalgia symptoms, but they may be an adjunctive doctor you see to help manage your irritable bowel symptoms.
It is not unusual to access a variety of specialists in the process of diagnosis and finding the right treatment plan for your specific Fibromyalgia symptoms. You may also like to consider incorporating allied health professionals, such as a therapist, massage therapist, physiotherapist, and nutritionist, to manage your Fibromyalgia symptoms.
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