- CASE FILE
Fibromyalgia onset in 2006, diagnosed in 2009. ME/CFS onset in 2014, diagnosed in 2016. Post-exertional malaise in all muscle groups.
ABOUT THIS CASE FILE
What started as repetitive stress injury from an office typing job in 2006 resisted physical therapy and acupuncture. By 2008 when I moved to New York City for graduate school, I couldn't walk a block without intense pain in my quadriceps. After two nerve conduction studies, a lumbar puncture, a muscle biopsy, and extensive bloodwork, a neuromuscular specialist diagnosed fibromyalgia and prescribed Neurontin, which got me back to NYC with limited exercise capacity. An orthopedic pain then specialist added Cymbalta. This drug cocktail kept me stable until 2014, when I fainted from exhaustion and hit my head, sustaining a mild concussion. Since then, my condition has acted more like chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS). Epidemiologists then diagnosed chronic Epstein-Barr virus, but after three years on Valtrex, I'm in another flareup. Most recently, MRIs of my head and neck, a nerve conduction study, and a skin biopsy have all come back normal. Now I'm waiting on test results to rule out Sjogren's, which may account for the associated dry eye, dry mouth, and Raynaud's in my feet, as well as the general neuropathic pain. Failing this, I wait for innovations in the field of chronic fatigue, or perhaps I find a geneticist.