Multiple Diagnoses – January 27

A few days ago, Lacey posted a question on one of the fibro support groups on Facebook:

I’m just wondering besides fibromyalgia what is everyone’s other diagnoses?

Good question.  Here are a few statistics I took from the responses:

  • 126 responses
  • 213 different diagnoses other than fibromyalgia
  • 749 total mentions of each diagnosis

This gives each person who responded to Lacey’s question an average of about 6 diagnoses each.  I took the diagnoses and grouped them into 37 categories so they would be more manageable.  As always, I’m not a doctor, so there could be inaccuracies and nuances I just wouldn’t know about.  One of the categories is “miscellaneous” – these are diagnoses that are mentioned 2 or fewer times.  The top 10 results are:

psychological 157 (c)
back/spine 60 (t)
gastrointestinal disease 58 (t or c)
arthritis 54 (p)
miscellaneous 52
headache/migraine 39 (t or c)
sleep disorders 30 (t)
joint disorders 29 (p)
specific female disorders 28 (p)
thyroid disorders 23 (t)

The different diagnoses can be looked at in a different way too, besides frequency:

  • possible trigger for fibromyalgia symptoms (t)
  • possible consequence of fibromyalgia (c)
  • possible primary diagnosis, making fibro a secondary diagnosis (p)

Reading through the responses was overwhelming.  I often wondered how it’s even possible to give a fibro diagnosis with so many other painful diagnoses people have to deal with.  In addition, it struck me how many of these additional diagnoses are also not “curable,” but rather they are also chronic pain disorders that can at best be managed.  As always the thought goes through my head, if there was just one of these diagnoses that could be “cured” to make all the other symptoms just go away.  A momentary flight of fancy…

I’m still working on this incredible list, looking for patterns.  I always think fibro is like a complex code that just needs to be broken or a puzzle scattered all over the floor.  These additional diagnoses could be parts of the puzzle, and I think it would be interesting to take a closer look.


psychological 157
back/spine 60
GI 58
arthritis 54
misc 52
headache 39
sleep 30
joint 29
female 28
thyroid 23
asthma 18
gen pain 16
skin 16
allergies 15
fatigue 15
inflammatory 14
nerve 13
autoimmune 12
heart 11
hypertension 10
iron 10
surgery 10
bladder 9
diabetes 8
connective tissue 7
bone 6
cancer 6
kidney 5
sinus 4
vitamin 4
carpal tunnel 3
Raynaud’s 3
high cholesterol 3
liver 3
obesity 3
pancreas 3