When fibromyalgia hit in medical school, I felt hopeless and terrified. On one of my darkest days I vowed that if I could get better myself, I would dedicate the rest of my life to sharing that expertise.
Today I focus on fulfilling that vow by sharing my knowledge in books and videos to help as many others with fibromyalgia as possible. I also work to educate health care providers, and created a magnesium and herbal product line that targets common fibromyalgia symptoms.
Frida Kahlo has been my inspiration since medical school, when I learned she suffered from fibromyalgia. On bad days thinking of her still gives me a mood boost. She fought through terrible pain to create bold and revolutionary art, and always reminds me to stay fierce. Fibro fierce.
I am so glad you are here!
Ginevra Liptan, MD
The Broken Column, Frida Kahlo 1944
At age 26, I suddenly went from being a healthy medical student to barely functional, exhausted, and in pain all the time. I attributed it to the stress and long hours of medical school, so I tried to eat better and sleep more. But I just kept getting worse. I made appointments with some of the top specialists in Boston; none of them could figure out what was wrong. I saw alternative medical practitioners, including acupuncturists and naturopaths and a well-regarded holistic MD, but still, no answers.
I was ultimately diagnosed by a chiropractor. Finally having a name for what I was going through was a relief, but then things went from bad to worse. One day during teaching rounds, my senior physician authoritatively announced, “Fibromyalgia does not exist.” I realized that many doctors, even my closest friends, dismissed sufferers as hypochondriacs. I told no one about my illness, and was left to fend for myself with Dr. Google and self-help books.
Medicine had failed me. I had to figure it out for myself, which remains an all-too-common situation for people with fibromyalgia. I was fortunate, however, to have the medical training to interpret research studies and find and access cutting-edge treatments. I discovered that gaining real improvement in symptoms requires an integrative approach that includes both western and alternative treatments. My med school and residency training was purely western medicine, but since then I have learned many integrative therapies through the Institute of Functional Medicine.
I have treated fibromyalgia as a primary care provider, a pain specialist, and an assistant professor in rheumatology at Oregon Health and Sciences University. But it is my personal experience that gives me the unique perspective of a physician studying fibromyalgia from the inside. Using myself as a guinea pig, I found treatments that worked for me, and then fine-tuned my approach by treating thousands of patients
-Excerpt from The FibroManual: A Complete Fibromyalgia Treatment Guide for You and Your Doctor by Ginevra Liptan, MD © 2016 All rights reserved.
The FibroManual has everything you need to fight fibromyalgia effectively!
Detailed scientific explanation on the cause of fibromyalgia, presented in a way that is both easy to understand and extensively supported by research evidence
An organized approach that takes you step by step through each aspect of fibromyalgia recovery
A focused and well-referenced section to share with your health care provider so you can help them to help you
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