Fibromyalgia (fi-bro-my-Al-juh) is a long-term condition that causes pain all over the body. Fibromyalgia means pain in the fibrous tissues in the body.
It can have a very serious impact on a person’s quality of life. It is a chronic pain condition that you may be able to claim compensation for if it has resulted from an accident or injury that wasn’t your fault.
At Jefferies Solicitors, we are ready to assist with your potential fibromyalgia claim. Call us on 0800 342 3206 or contact us online via our website to make a free enquiry with a friendly member of our team.
What is fibromyalgia?
This condition is a very serious musculoskeletal pain disorder that renders sufferers in a state of constant pain or discomfort. The long-term impact of fibromyalgia can be significant and can leave an individual experiencing pain all over the body, particularly from the neck to lower back and the knees. When the symptoms are at their worst, it can make performing daily tasks very difficult or sometimes impossible.
Fibromyalgia is notoriously hard to diagnose, often being mistaken for conditions such as whiplash or soft tissue damage following an accident. There’s no specific test for the condition, and the symptoms can be similar to a number of other conditions
There is currently no cure for fibromyalgia. UK Fibromyalgia has some resources on treatments available to help sufferers cope.
What are the symptoms of Fibromyalgia?
There are numerous symptoms of Fibromyalgia but it is primarily characterised by chronic pain in the tendons, muscles, ligament and other soft tissue parts of the body. The pain is usually severe and leads to some very distinct areas of tenderness known as ‘pressure points’. Bowel and bladder issues can sometimes accompany a feeling of numbness that is experienced with this disorder.
It is often hard for sufferers to carry on leading a normal life due to the fact that they can’t sit or stand for prolonged periods of time.
There are also a number of symptoms that occur. These include:
- Disturbed sleep
- Chronic fatigue
- Mood swings
- Cognitive deficits (e.g. in memory and concentration)
- Increased sensitivity to pain
- Muscle stiffness
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
You can find more information and advice on the NHS pages.
Causes of Fibromyalgia
Occasionally fibromyalgia can develop suddenly and may have no obvious cause. However, it is often the result of physical trauma or sudden injury encountered following an accident.
Common scenarios that may lead to Fibromyalgia include whiplash injuries acquired in a car accident, in a fall, or a person being hit by a falling object. In these cases, the condition would be referred to as ‘post-traumatic fibromyalgia’.
Emotional or physical abuse, as well as viral infections, can also be attributable to causes of fibromyalgia.
According to the NHS “The exact cause of fibromyalgia is unknown, but it’s thought to be related to abnormal levels of certain chemicals in the brain and changes in the way the central nervous system (the brain, spinal cord and nerves) processes pain messages carried around the body.”
Fibromyalgia Action UK is a charity that offers information and support to people with fibromyalgia.
Another support group you may find useful is UK Fibromyalgia.
- While pain in fibromyalgia may feel like it’s coming from a specific area of your body, it’s actually coming from the brain, from the central nervous system
- Estimates suggest nearly 1 in 20 people may be affected by fibromyalgia to some degree.
- Most fibromyalgia cases are currently diagnosed in women
- Treatment focuses on medications, self-care strategies and lifestyle changes
Claiming for Fibromyalgia
There are many cases in which people have suffered a traumatic event that was somebody else’s fault. This has left them with devastating lifelong effects.
You could have the right to make a claim for compensation if you have suffered from fibromyalgia which has resulted from an injury or event. It may also be possible to make a claim if you were suffering from pre-existing fibromyalgia which has been made worse by an injury or accident.
If you believe that you have a case it is crucial to work with a solicitor who specialises in these types of claims.
Assessing your claim
In order for a claim to be approved, it must be possible to show that the claimant has experienced continuity of pain which has evolved from the whiplash injury. Successful claims are usually supported by evidence that your symptoms are a direct cause of your initial injury (i.e. the injury sustained in your accident).
Once your solicitor has confirmed that you have a valid claim, he/she will work tirelessly to ensure that you have sufficient evidence to build the strongest possible case. The required evidence usually involves obtaining a medical report and prognosis from a professional, the client’s GP records, as well as witness evidence.
How much compensation for fibromyalgia claims?
The value of compensation claims relating to fibromyalgia can vary but are generally quite significant due to the debilitating and life-changing character of the condition. Many clients necessitate a high level of care and assistance which gives rise to a considerable care claim. We can help you redeem compensation for your pain and any financial losses you have incurred as a result of your condition.
Some individuals may be unable to return to work or may lose their capacity to perform the same duties they carried out previously. Time off work to attend various medical appointments can also negatively affect their employment. These scenarios can contribute to a large ‘loss of earnings’ part of your claim.
As well as loss of earnings you may be able to recover financial losses for things such as:
- Travel costs
- Medical expenses
- Specialist treatments (e.g. cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) or physiotherapy)
- The cost of prescriptions
Make a fibromyalgia claim with Jefferies Solicitors
If you are suffering from fibromyalgia after an accident that wasn’t your fault you should contact our solicitors on 0800 342 3206 or get in touch online. We offer a free initial discussion in order to evaluate your claim.