What is fibromyalgia and what are the symptoms?
In 1990, the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) defined fibromyalgia as a clinically diagnosable condition. The diagnostic criterion is as follows: Chronic (three months or more), widespread musculoskeletal pain (all four quadrants of the body); with the presence of 11 of the 18 tender points (spots at designated muscle/tendon junctions throughout the body that are very tender when pressed on with light pressure). 
The pain affects muscles and joints as well as the ligaments, tendons and skin. It is widespread pain, experienced in all four limbs as well as the neck, chest wall and back. It is a syndrome, meaning it is a combination of symptoms including pain and fatigue. Because FMS requires a clinical diagnosis and lacks a laboratory test to confirm the existence, FMS has historically been a controversial diagnosis. In recent years however, FMS is gaining credibility as researchers learn more about it and advocacy groups educate the medical community and the general population about this painful condition that is often misdiagnosed or goes undiagnosed for many years. 
In addition to musculoskeletal pain, many other symptoms are part fibromyalgia: sleep disorders, chronic fatigue, irritable bowel syndrome, migraine, tension headaches, TMJ, bladder problems, concentration difficulties/cognitive impairment (know as fibro fog), allergies, chemical sensitivities, myofascial pain syndrome, restless legs syndrome. andnumbness and tingling of the extremities. These symptoms connect to FMS through the central nervous system (CNS). We now know more about the biochemistry and the CNS involvement in FMS; there is a problem with the CNS and the way FMS patients are processing pain or other sensory information. Central Sensitivity Syndrome, a process where the central nervous system has an exaggerated response to noise, smell, pain and other stimuli, causing an amplification of pain, can link these multiple conditions. 
Everyone is different and has varying degrees of severity and number of symptoms. The symptoms tend to vary day to day and from person to person. AFFTER conducted a survey to compare various symptoms between FMS patient and normal controls. The symptoms with the most significant difference (twice as many incidences with FMS patients than controls) include: sensitivity to light, sun sensitivity, dizziness, irregular heat beat, balance problems, chronic sore throat, sensitivity to medication, hives and skin sensitivity, dry mouth, frequent runny nose, night sweats, disc problems, memory problems, anxiety, trouble swallowing, vision problems, heartburn and restless legs.