Fibromyalgia: A Feminist Biopsychosocial Perspective

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Fibromyalgia (FM) is a syndrome predominantly experienced by women and characterized by pain, fatigue, sleep disturbance, and multiple tender points at distinct locations on the body. Because of its prevalence and the common comorbidity of FM with depression and other conditions that prompt sufferers to seek psychological care, it is incumbent upon psychologists to be familiar with the syndrome, competent to provide assistance to afflicted individuals, and aware of the impact of gender politics on fibromyalgia sufferers. We present an overview of the diagnosis and treatment of fibromyalgia, a brief summary of etiological possibilities, and a discussion of the experience of illness among affected individuals. We conclude by exploring the social construction of the syndrome from a feminist perspective.



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