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Fibromyalgia Action UK
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can anyone tell me if chronic pain syndrome is the same as fibro please?

as among a long list of alments i have been diagnosed with this

is it the same as fibro as i am on lots of meds ect

and have all the same symptoms as fibro

thanks x

12 Replies

Hi elsiegirl,although similar in many ways I don't think it is the same,if you check out the NHS choices website they have some info on it...xx



Fibromyalgia is more about pain where as CFS/ME is more about fatigue.

I thought I had fibro as did my doctor as I was showing all the signs but I have just been diagnosed with CFS/ME. I am just starting to learn to pace myself and already feel a little better. I used to try and exercise and walk and was feeling awful, now i know why.

However the specialist I saw said the treatment was the same and for me to continue on the same meds.

Some people suffer from both.

Piggie hugs xxx


thank you pinkpig

its very confusing as im on the same meds as nearly all fibro suffers

but my reumy doc says i have chronic pain syndrome

yes im always in pain & fatigued :( xx


Have you been referred to a Rheumatologist Elsie, this may be worth trying to hopefully clarify things a bit better for you. :) xxx


Thanks for that explanation Piggie, that's exactly it!

I have Fibromyalgia and CFS/ME too and although they are similar in some respects, I can differentiate between the conditions -

My Fibro gives me intense pain predominantly, my short-term memory is affected sometimes, and it can be hard to concentrate. However, with my CFS/ME the fatigue and exhaustion is relentless and sometimes is so bad I literally haven't the energy to move. I know it sounds crazy to say that, but it really is that severe sometimes. With Fibro you get fatigue but it's on a completely different level to when having CFS/ME. It doesn't tend to be so debilitating generally. With CFS/ME there is pain too, but it's a different sort of pain, not so penetrating and deep, CFS/ME also affects my ability to sleep.

Please click on the link below which will explain more about Fibro -


Please click on the link below which will explain more about CFS/ME -


Hope this helps as it is my personal interpretation of the conditions I have. Of course we are all different and our symptoms can vary. Also with Fibro and CFS/ME the meds prescribed tend to be very similar.

(((hug))) xxx



Mmmmm sounds more like CFS if you are always so fatigued. I hurt and ache too but it is if i do too much. The specialist I saw actually said the amount of exercise I was doing ( I am a dog walker) was far too much and has now limited me to 30 mins walking a day. It is hard to stick to but I think I am feeling a little better.

I am on exactly the same meds as they treat both fibro and CFS. Both give you neuropathic pain but as I said CFS sufferers feel really fatigued.

Love and Piggie hugs xxxx


hi libertyz

yes i am under a reumy doc at hospital

he has done lots of tests & scans

he said i have a slightly curved spine (which i never knew i had)

spondylosis of the neck, 2 collapsed discs in my back, no reflex responses!

clubbed fingers & toes, emphesema, copds, & arthritis,

cant get to sleep at night sometimes it takes me 3-4 hours! its like my brain wont shut down!

then when i wake up, im so stiff & in pain, it feels like every bone in my body is acheing

then it takes me roughly an hour to wake up! :(

i feel like im 100 years old! (im 51) dont have any energy at all! and at least once a month i spend up to a week in bed, its like a switch flicks, and im so fatigued i have to get to bed asap! otherwise i would collapse, you cant press even lightly on my bones as they feel like i have bruises on them (i havent) but thats how they feel

i am on tramodol, pregablin, amytriplyne, plus pumps

but dont feel any better for being on these tablets

am i in my rights to ask my doctor to send me to another ruemy doctor at another hospital?

thanks for listening hun xx


My pleasure Elsie, happy to listen and try to help any time. (((hug))) xxx

(You have the right to ask for a second opinion Elsie, have a word with your GP to see what they suggest)


Complex regional pain syndrome is different to fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome. I think the difference is that CRPS is neurological damage following an accident....? but I'm not completely clear about it all.

Fibro can be following accidents too, but pain is centred around very specific areas. CRPS is not.

What is complex regional pain syndrome?

Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) is a chronic pain condition that is believed to be the result of dysfunction in the central or peripheral nervous systems. Typical features include dramatic changes in the color and temperature of the skin over the affected limb or body part, accompanied by intense burning pain, skin sensitivity, sweating, and swelling. CRPS I is frequently triggered by tissue injury; the term describes all patients with the above symptoms but with no underlying nerve injury. Patients with CRPS II experience the same symptoms but their cases are clearly associated with a nerve injury.

Older terms used to describe CRPS are "reflex sympathetic dystrophy syndrome" and "causalgia," a term first used during the Civil War to describe the intense, hot pain felt by some veterans long after their wounds had healed.

CRPS can strike at any age and affects both men and women, although most experts agree that it is more common in young women.

What are the symptoms of CRPS?

The key symptom of CRPS is continuous, intense pain out of proportion to the severity of the injury (if an injury has occurred), which gets worse rather than better over time. CRPS most often affects one of the extremities (arms, legs, hands, or feet) and is also often accompanied by:

"burning" pain

increased skin sensitivity

changes in skin temperature: warmer or cooler compared to the opposite extremity

changes in skin color: often blotchy, purple, pale, or red

changes in skin texture: shiny and thin, and sometimes excessively sweaty

changes in nail and hair growth patterns

swelling and stiffness in affected joints

motor disability, with decreased ability to move the affected body part

Often the pain spreads to include the entire arm or leg, even though the initiating injury might have been only to a finger or toe. Pain can sometimes even travel to the opposite extremity. It may be heightened by emotional stress.

The symptoms of CRPS vary in severity and length. Some experts believe there are three stages associated with CRPS, marked by progressive changes in the skin, muscles, joints, ligaments, and bones of the affected area, although this progression has not yet been validated by clinical research studies.

This is from the National institute of neurological disorders and stroke....

There are similarities with fibro, but they're not the same.

thats my understanding anyway

stepper x

1 like

Chronic pain syndrome is different again.....

Its seen as very real pain wise, but found in people who have other psychological issues?

I'm not sure how its diagnosed though?

Again I think the pain is longer lasting than expected and more intense......but not necessarily centred around the 18 fibromyalgia pain points.


my dr says i have cps and i have neuropathic pain, also BHMS/eds and deconditioning as i am finding movement in limbs getting harder ie if asleep in bed too if i put my arm onto my body (i sleep like a soldier in bed arms down by side and sleep straight) if my arms in sleep go on body and i move unconsciously it awakes me with pain and stiffness, the same in the back of my knees its very uncomfortable and so intense too, my neck i have cervicals spinal cord compression on root cord so my neck feels so intense and when i move that unknowingly in sleep to try move back i have to do slowly, i have planter fascitis in both feet and its a night mare 1st thing getting out of bed, so my walking as soon as pressure on my feet is not nice , the pills kick in a bit and i am able to get about a bit and i cannot stand much at all, i was told by neurologist too about severe sleep deperavation but not diagnosed with CFS so what the difference is there baffles me if am so tired even WITH sleep. i get lots of migraines now and facial neuralgia which has come each year and is now so intense last over 24 hrs! and am so thankful when has gone! because if that moves in i dont know what i would do! its physically and mentally draining yet am avoiding depression the best i can despite tears here and there that are very unwelcome but no control over, same with laughter , if i start i cant seem to stop!! i get panic attacks 'apparently' as i had a moment in my jaw, neck, chest and arm and hurt breathing but i was under control .

i am such a strong positive person but feel its slowly slowly being taken bit by bit, my thinking, memory is getting worse too with saying things i dont even want to say or not making any sense!

all this causes a strain on the body and makes the body so fatigued ! the more i TRY to be active the MORE it HURTS i feel so battered and am extremely tender to touch all over ! there is so much more but i have written enough for now :-) so please feel free to have a chat anytime as i know chronic pain (burning, aching, stinging, sharp stabbing pains, twinges) can be hard to live with

soft fluffy huggles

caroline xx


I was led to believe I have fibro but today I was told I have Chronic pain syndrome.....They sound very similar to me....but not much is known about CPS.....does anyone know the difference, as I have lots of trigger points for my pain.....and really thought it easy fibro!?


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