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Definition of a flare?
emkay912 posted:
Hi, FM friends.
I'm reading posts here a lot, but have never had a formal Dx of Fibro. I've read some of Dr. Pellegrino's book on FM, and a few others, but I still don't understand what a flare is - maybe because it means different things to different people?

I just read on here that one person had severe back pain and that it was part of a flare. I'm wondering about that since about 10 days ago, I stood up from a chair, and could barely straighten up - for several days. I was walking like a very old lady...

Some of the other lovely things are sweating profusely for no apparent reason, headaches, IBS symptoms, etc.

Thanks. This place is a gem for me. Thought I was just going crazy LOL!

KatmanduLou responded:
For me, a flare makes me feel like my entire body is on fire. The IBS makes me feel pretty.... crummy. (Sorry, the word of the day is POOP but I just couldn't do it!) I may have achiness, but it always leads to the burning feeling.
emkay912 replied to KatmanduLou's response:
I hear you on the IBS!

Burning and on fire - sounds terrible.

Thank you for the feedback!

Pain free wishes to you. Mary
1wareaglefan responded:
A flare for me is my pain is cranked up to a higher level and feeling even more exhausted. It usually comes because of more stress and overdoing physically, or not sleeping.
angelswife responded:
A flare for me means pain all over that is an 8 or higher, along with extreme exhaustion, fogginess and irritability. Kind of like PMS with a few extras, lol. Sometimes I get a migraine for good measure.

No, you aren't going crazy---you are just inhabiting "Fibro World" like the rest of us. Welcome to the group!
KaterinMP replied to angelswife's response:
I Too Find my Flares are just when everything is worse! I go from maintaining a low level pain (anything less than 3/10) to anything over a 5 (usually 6- and i can barely move due to muscles being so tight they dont want to stretch, I'm SOoooo exhausted i just want to sleepsleepsleep!!!
bcbailey1977 replied to KaterinMP's response:
I am in a flare that is only centered in my back, but now heading down my right leg. Been trying to stretch.

I normally have a low pain level of 3 or 4 on a daily basis but when this started to settle in I am now at an 11 out of 10. But yet I got a tattoo and was able to move around frequently during the session and got to lay on the massage table just for a tat on my shoulder blade.

This is moving thru my body but mainly in my lower back. I think I am going to try to work tomorrow even for a bit. My neck is starting to hurt but then can't move it much because of back pain...
To thine own self be true--Reba McEntire
Dollbug responded:
Hello Mary.....MiMi in NC....I just wanted to comment to your post....and say....NO, you are not crazy.....dealing with the wrath of the dragon sometimes makes me think I am though...

And then I wanted to say....almost anything and everything means something different to other people....or so I have found out....I think the entire world has a communication joke...recently I followed a murder trial....(on line which was taped live) and I could hardly believe the people who did not understand what "evidence" is....and did not understand what "beyond a reasonable doubt" means.

So with this being said....I think perhaps it just depends upon who is describing things...and what a person has been taught or lead to believe....or thinks....but I am amazed to know just how many "definitions" people can assume about "words"...

I have heard that "beauty is in the eye of the beholder" and I guess this is true with a lot of it just depends on the person at the time...

I am glad that you are here and I hope that you will find something that will make you feel better....

Take care and good luck..

IN GOD WE TRUST....MAY GOD BLESS AND GUIDE AMERICA.... My personal exchanges are Vitamin D and Pain and Wrath of the Dragon....if you care to visit..
loualicepcollins replied to Dollbug's response:
I have often said that human conversation leaves a lot to be desired. I'm convinced that it will only be when we get to heaven that there won't be misunderstandings because of things, looks, expressions, tones of voice, body language, etc. etc. etc. to get in the way! -- not to mention different languages, dialects, well, you get my point.
Booch007 responded:
A Flare to me, is my usual pain raised to a poin that it consumes me, slows me to a halt and need to adjust my meds. It takes the day from me as I have to tend to it, can't distract myself from it.

It causes me to crawl under a rock and hide from everyone and just wallow in the mess for the time. I give it two days to be a problem, use all the tools in the toolbox (located to the left under resources) and then I break out and push through it.

It is hard, it is challenging...but I will never let the dragon win over on me. GLOVES on, boxing with him eachday.

For me it is all over not just one spot that is acting up, then it is a spot that needs therapy and tending to. Flares are show stopping. All over excellerated pain and dysfunction in movement of my extremeities. That is my take. Ughhhhhh I hate him s much ...Nancy B
me_n_my_4 responded:
A flare to me is when I am at my worst. I have RA and Fibro and although I was only diagnosed at the beginning of the year I have been in pain all the time for about the last three years. I always made excuses and tried to diagnose myself because I got tired of going from doctor to doctor and they couldn't figure out what was wrong. lol, in the short version I have a high tolerance for pain because I have been dealing with and ignoring it for you long it's become a part of me. But the Fibro pain and flares is something that I have not been able to push through. For me everything hurts from my even my eyelids down to my feet. I don't can't even open my eyes all the way even if I want to because everything feels so heavy it leaves me with a looking like I havn't slept in 48hrs. It's gotten to the point when I go to work my boss can take one look at me by my eyes and tell how I am feeling for the day, but I guess the good thing about it is that even though my eyes and everything else on my body hurts I am not always extremely fatigue when I flare up. On top of that to add the RA in the mix everything hurts bad and I am walking like I am 95 years old and in my case it never last a couple hours it always a 2 or 3 day marathon until I finally break through it. I know once I found out everything that was going on I was so happy to know that I wasn't crazy either because a couple of times after going to the Drs and specialist and no one could find anything wrong I really start to think that It was in my head; but know I know better.
doxielady3 responded:
Thanks for mentioning sweating profsely for no apparent reason?
I thought I was going crazy!
Pollyannasgone replied to 1wareaglefan's response:
This is what I consider a flare as well. I tell my family and friends that my "body is done" and I can't do what they want me to do. That's the hardest part for me because as a mom I start feeling guilty about not being able to do so much anymore. Lack of good sleep, stress or overdoing everyday things usually brings it on for me also.
Pollyannasgone replied to me_n_my_4's response:
I too have RA with Fibro and the days that both rear thier ugly heads are unbearable - for me and those around me. Like you, I was just diagnosed last year but had been to doctors here and there. They would just tell me I must have "sprained something" or was getting older and arthritis was setting in. They would prescribe ibuprophin and ice/heat or when my back or head hurt too badly a narcotic. Then I was put on the anitdepressants since it was all obviously in my head. I was tired of the bandaids and pathetic head shakes of the doctors. Finally, when I changed insurance, I had to go to a new PCP. She referred me to a rheumatologist. He diagnosed me immediately and got me on the right medicines. It took a while to get the right dosing down, but thankfully my daily pain is manageble now. I still don't sleep well and get headaches often, but otherwise Cymbalta has improved my day to day life.
Like you, I am happy to know that I am not crazy. I am glad that I found this website.
MaiaMarie responded:
I wish I had known about this discussion a month ago when it seemed to be ongoing. I haven't actually been diagnosed with fibro but it's looking more and more like that will be the final outcome.

To me a flare is excrutiating pain in all my extremities. I am ALWAYS in pain but my meds keep it to a tolerable level most of the time. But I still have my "bad" days. I can actually feel my nerves "misfireing" and it goes to a pins-and-needles which then become shear pain. The odd thing is that when the pain is at its worst, there is a sort of numbness that comes over me. The pain is shooting and burning but I can't move. I can only lay there and cry. Attempting to get up to even go to the bathroom is just not an option.

Thankfully my partner is really great about taking care of me during a flare-up. But I feel bad that I have to be "cared for."

My doctors and I have finally hit on a fairly good combination of medications which keep me mostly functional. However, I must be very careful to not overdo it on any given day or I will have a flare-up the next day. I cannot be on my feet for extended periods of time and must not over exert myself.


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