What Causes Fibromyalgia and What Are My Treatment Options

Fibromyalgia can hamper the quality of day to day life. Get relief.

Do you experience muscle pain, excessive fatigue, and trouble concentrating? Have you had tests for various types of arthritis, lupus, and an underactive thyroid but all came back negative? Perhaps you're one of the roughly 10 million Americans who has fibromyalgia.

With no blood test to indicate a definitive diagnosis, fibromyalgia is diagnosed by process of elimination. Once other possible ailments are ruled out and no other explanation has been found for the pain that is widespread for three months or more, a determination of fibromyalgia is made.

Wayne Bonlie, MD, and his staff use a combination of conventional and integrative medicine to help with the diagnosis and treatment of fibromyalgia and other health issues. As a board-certified family practitioner, Dr. Bonlie performs comprehensive consultations, taking the time to get to know his patients, their lifestyles, and overall well-being in addition to the symptoms of their current ailment.

Causes of fibromyalgia

Experts are still working to uncover what exactly causes fibromyalgia, but they suspect it comes from errant pain signals being sent to the brain due to a dysfunction in the neurological system. Certain factors can increase your risk including:

Fibromyalgia can also be triggered by infections and physical or emotional trauma.

Fibromyalgia treatment options

Successful fibromyalgia treatment is generally defined as reducing bothersome symptoms and improving overall health and quality of life. Different issues typically require different treatments, and often there is some trial and error involved. Not every regimen works for every person.

Taking an integrative approach, Dr. Bonlie develops customized treatment plans using the S.H.I.N.E.® protocol (sleep, hormones, immunity/infections, nutrition, and exercise) with each segment personalized to your needs. Here’s more about the S.H.I.N.E.:


Getting enough sleep — ideally eight to nine hours a night — is key to battling the fatigue and brain fog that can come with fibromyalgia. In addition, sleep heals the muscles and restores the body's energy.

Good sleep habits are important, including keeping a consistent schedule for going to sleep and for waking up and limiting napping during the day. In some cases, medication may be helpful as well.


Hormone deficiencies of various types can also play a role in fibromyalgia. Possible culprits may include thyroid and/or adrenal hormones as well as testosterone for men and estrogen and progesterone for women. Even low blood pressure could be contributing to fibromyalgia symptoms.


Viral or bacterial infections of the bowel or sinuses, as well as yeast infections, could be a contributing cause of fibromyalgia. It is also possible the infections could be the result of fibromyalgia.


Fibromyalgia can cause nutritional deficiencies, so eat a healthy diet, limit caffeine, and take vitamin supplements when indicated. Vitamins A, B, B-12, C, and D are often found to be low, as are magnesium, glutathione, and acetyl L-carnitine.


Exercise begun slowly and carefully can also help reduce fibromyalgia symptoms. Do not aim for the standard recommended amount, which can result in post-exertional malaise, a condition resulting in even more pain and fatigue for days. Instead, start gradually, and your stamina will build over time.

If you're tired of suffering from pain and fatigue and are ready to optimize each body system and help them work together for better health, call or book online for an appointment with Dr. Bonlie.

You Might Also Enjoy...

Living with Fibromyalgia

The most common type of chronic pain affects nearly 10 million Americans, and yet many doctors can’t properly diagnose or treat it. We not only listen to you, we provide you with a customized treatment plan that works.

Is It Normal to Be Tired All the Time?

Everyone experiences feelings of exhaustion from time to time. When your tiredness lasts much longer than a few days, or even a week, you need to get to the root of the problem. Find out why you’re tired all the time and what you can do about it.