Fibromyalgia Specialist Vienna VA

What does it feel like to live with fibromyalgia? “Imagine last night you drank more wine than you should have but had no water or food. You went to bed late and got up early, feeling stiff, achy, and tired,” says Chanchal Cabrera, a British herbalist, fibromyalgia patient, and author of Fibromyalgia: A Journey Toward Healing (McGraw-Hill, 2002). People with fibromyalgia feel that way all the time, she says.

Ellen Marie Jenkins, MD
(703) 573-9800
9209 Talisman Dr
Vienna, VA
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Female
Education
Medical School: Va Commonwealth Univ, Med Coll Of Va Sch Of Med, Richmond Va 23298
Graduation Year: 1985

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Elizabeth Franki Antal, MD
Alexandria, VA
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Female
Education
Medical School: Albert Szent-Gyorgyi Orvostudomanyi Egyetem, Szeged, Hungary
Graduation Year: 1954

Data Provided by:
Phong Quang Nguyen, MD
(703) 709-9174
8316 Arlington Blvd Ste 222
Fairfax, VA
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Univ Of Fl Coll Of Med, Gainesville Fl 32610
Graduation Year: 1983

Data Provided by:
Paul G Rochmis
(703) 573-2220
3027 Javier Rd
Fairfax, VA
Specialty
Rheumatology

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Bita Arabshahi
(703) 970-2600
8505 Arlington Blvd
Fairfax, VA
Specialty
Rheumatology

Data Provided by:
Nita Sumida, MD
(336) 787-4403
9320 Old Courthouse Rd
Vienna, VA
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Female
Education
Medical School: Univ Of Ky Coll Of Med, Lexington Ky 40536
Graduation Year: 1996

Data Provided by:
Ellen M Jenkins
(703) 573-9800
3022 Williams Drive
Fairfax, VA
Specialty
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology

Data Provided by:
Paul Gregor Rochmis, MD
(703) 573-2220
3027 Javier Rd Ste 2
Fairfax, VA
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: A Einstein Coll Of Med Of Yeshiva Univ, Bronx Ny 10461
Graduation Year: 1964

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Gregory Thomas Rehe, MD
Alexandria, VA
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Uniformed Services Univ Of The Hlth Sci, Bethesda Md 20814
Graduation Year: 1981

Data Provided by:
Sailaja C Nandipati, MD
(301) 843-2222
1435 Mayhurst Blvd
Mc Lean, VA
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Female
Education
Medical School: Va Commonwealth Univ, Med Coll Of Va Sch Of Med, Richmond Va 23298
Graduation Year: 1983

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Confronting Fibromyalgia

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By Karta Purkh Singh Khalsa

What does it feel like to live with fibromyalgia? “Imagine last night you drank more wine than you should have but had no water or food. You went to bed late and got up early, feeling stiff, achy, and tired,” says Chanchal Cabrera, a British herbalist, fibromyalgia patient, and author of Fibromyalgia: A Journey Toward Healing (McGraw-Hill, 2002). People with fibromyalgia feel that way all the time, she says.

A truly mysterious ailment, fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) involves chronic widespread muscle pain and fatigue. It affects about 2 percent of all Americans and accounts for 10 to 30 percent of all rheumatology consultations. FMS mainly afflicts people between the ages of 35 and 55 and occurs seven to 10 times more frequently in women.

And as if the pain and fatigue weren’t enough, a constellation of other symptoms often accompanies the disorder—foggy thinking, sleep disturbances, painful menstrual cramps (dysmenorrhea), and irritable bowel symptoms—making a clear diagnosis difficult. Although the cause of FMS continues to elude researchers, certain stresses on the body, such as intense exercise, illness, or a traumatic event, appear to intensify symptoms or even bring on the condition itself.

“My fibromyalgia was triggered by a car accident in 1991, when I was a healthy and fit 28-year-old,” says Cabrera, now 43 and living in Vancouver, British Columbia. “Within minutes of the impact, my neck and shoulders were in pain, and I had a dull headache. My slow descent into fibromyalgia had begun.”

The body blows a fuse

Jacob Teitelbaum, MD, medical director of Maryland’s Annapolis Center for Effective Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/Fibromyalgia Therapies, likens FMS to the body’s “blowing a fuse” when its energy account becomes overdrawn. This short circuit results in hypothalamus suppression, Teitelbaum maintains. “The hypothalamus controls sleep, hormonal function, temperature, and autonomic functions such as blood pressure and blood flow,” he says. “The hypothalamus uses more energy for its size than any other organ, so when there is an energy shortfall, it goes offline first.”

“FMS has no single cause,” Teitelbaum says. He surmises that the hypothalamus decreases its protective function in the face of what it perceives as overwhelming stress, which can stem from infection, injury, or a stressful, emotional incident. “FMS patients seem to have genetic differences in the way their hypothalamus, pituitary, and adrenal regulation handle stress,” he says. “As a result, the muscles end up short of energy and in pain.”

Is there hope?
Mary Shomon, now an author and patient advocate in Washington, DC, began to have symptoms of FMS at age 34, after two car accidents and numerous other health challenges. Through a holistic approach and alternative therapies, she finally found relief from her symptoms. However, 11 years later she still expresses dismay about the stigma and disbelief she encounters about fibromyalgia—pa...

Author: Karta Purkh Singh Khalsa

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