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Atlantic Health Partners With American Pain Foundation to Launch Awareness Project During May's National Fibromyalgia Month

Fibromyalgia is One of the Most Common and Misdiagnosed Musculoskeletal Pain Conditions in the U.S.

SUMMIT, NJ APRIL 2011 – In an effort to raise awareness about fibromyalgia, an often misdiagnosed, musculoskeletal pain condition that affects up to six million Americans, Overlook Hospital and Atlantic Health Integrative Medicine is proud to work with the American Pain Foundation (APF) on the launch of their new Is Fibro the Cause? project in New Jersey.

Overlook Hospital, Atlantic Health Integrative Medicine, and the Pain Management Centers of Overlook and Morristown Memorial Hospitals, and APF are offering Is Fibro the Cause? toolkits and self-assessment tools at no cost to residents and providers, in addition to providing educational presentations in the community on fibromyalgia. The toolkit provides helpful tips and resources on how to recognize fibromyalgia’s signs and symptoms, where to find treatment and how to effectively communicate with your health care provider.

“With more than 400,000 New Jersey residents diagnosed with fibromyalgia and perhaps thousands more undiagnosed, we believe it is important to provide the resources necessary to educate the community about a painful condition that often mimics other conditions resulting in misdiagnosis or delay in diagnosis,” says Karen Kiefer, RN, a nurse in Interventional Radiology at Overlook Hospital and American Pain Foundation Action Network Leader for New Jersey. “We are honored to be working with the American Pain Foundation, the nation’s leading consumer, non-profit organization serving people with pain, on this project.”

The Is Fibro the Cause? toolkit provides:

  • Fibro Basics
  • Tips for Finding Experts and Talking with Your Health Care Provider
  • Beating the Blues: Easing Depression and Anxiety
  • Living Well with Fibro: First Steps for Coping
  • Unraveling Fibromyalgia: New Directions in Research and Advocacy
  • Common Questions & Answers
  • Resources
  • Is Fibro the Cause? Self-Assessment Worksheet

The Is Fibro the Cause? toolkit can be obtained free of charge from Overlook Hospital’s Community Health Department, the Pain Management Center at both hospitals, Atlantic Health Integrative Medicine, or at one of the following fibromyalgia symposia:

  • Saturday, May 7, 8:00am to 4:00pm
    Overlook Hospital, Wallace Auditorium, 99 Beauvoir Avenue, Summit.
  • Saturday, May 25, 8:00am to 4:00pm
    Atlantic Health Headquarters, 475 South Street, Morristown.

Both events are free of charge. Registration is required by email to Karen Kiefer.

The fibromyalgia symposia is open to the public and covers topics and interactive discussion about the signs, symptoms, and diagnosis of fibromyalgia, treatment options, including acupuncture and other complementary approaches, nutrition, yoga and tai chi, and how to talk to your health care provider about your diagnosis.

To learn more about fibromyalgia or to download a PDF version of the Is Fibro the Cause? toolkit, visit APF’s website >

A listing of fibromyalgia community presentations can also be found on this website. This project was made possible by support from Forest Laboratories Inc.

About Fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia (FM) is one of the most common musculoskeletal pain conditions in the United States – the third most common after osteoarthritis and back pain. It affects up to six million Americans or between 2 to 5 percent of the adult population. Both men and women get fibromyalgia; however, approximately 90 percent of diagnosed cases are women. There is no laboratory or other diagnostic test for fibromyalgia. Fibromyalgia is determined based on an individual’s symptoms and a physical exam. Diagnosis includes a history of widespread pain in all four quadrants of the body for a minimum duration of three months and pain in at least 11 of 18 designated tender points when a specified amount of pressure is applied.

Chronic widespread musculoskeletal pain that has lasted for at least three months is the primary symptom. Other symptoms may include general tenderness and soreness, stiffness (especially in the morning), flu-like aching, poor sleep, fatigue, memory loss or difficulty concentrating, trouble sleeping, and tension headaches. There is no known cause for fibromyalgia and no cure. Treatment focuses on relieving symptoms and improving quality of life. A variety of prescription medications are used to reduce pain and improve sleep.

(Source: National Fibromyalgia Association)

About the American Pain Foundation
Founded in 1997, the American Pain Foundation (APF) is an independent nonprofit 501(c)3 organization that serves people affected by pain. APF stands up with people living with pain, caregivers, health care providers and allied organizations, working together to dismantle the barriers that impede access to quality pain care for all. The mission of APF is to educate, support and advocate for people affected by pain. Learn more >

Media Contacts:

  • Overlook Medical Center
  • 99 Beauvoir Avenue
  • Summit, NJ 07902
  • Janina Scheytt Hecht
  • Public Relations Manager
  • 908-522-2142
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Morristown, NJ 07960

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Summit, NJ 07901

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