I am an avid reader and believer of the nonfiction books written by Devon Starlanyl and Ginevra Lipton. Starlanyl, M.D. is a doctor who has Fibromyalgia and wrote one of the most impressive survival manuals for fibromyalgia that I have ever come across. One of her students, Ginevra Lipton, M.D., began her residency only to discovered she too would be diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. Between these two women, the books they wrote are definitely must-reads for anyone who has been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia Syndrome.
Dr. Starlanyl’s book is my Fibro Bible! She talks about everything from the origins of fibromyalgia to the mind-body connection. Therapies, medications, supplements, exercise, journaling, even what to do when you are no longer able to work at your current job. I ended up purchasing the second edition because my first edition was so dog-eared it finally fell apart, literally. This book reads like more of a textbook. Go to the chapters that interest you first. You will work your way through this book as you face different challenges.
I have been asked if there was a better book because this book was originally published in 2001? No. There is not a better book. I am still learning as much from this book in 2017 as I did in when I bought it in 2002. There is too much information in this book to memorize. It will be your constant companion.
I purchased Dr. Liptan’s Book because she was a student of Dr. Starlanyl. Her book focuses more on treating fibromyalgia, specifically. The Four R’s. Rest, Repair, Rebalance, and Reduce. This is a book you will read front to back. Each step builds on the previous steps. This is also very helpful to learn how to talk to your doctor about what you are experiencing and what types of record keeping you should do at home to help you through your doctor appointments.
I must include a book that I have co-authored as a survival journal. This book will help you live your best life with fibromyalgia! This book offers you options and ideas that are up to you to ultimately decide what your ‘plan’ will be. There are general definitions, positive changes that you may want to make and six healthy habits you can decide to implement or not. This is also a journal with blank pages that allow you to write, draw, color, post pictures, do whatever makes this journal yours, it is up to you!
Another resource I strongly suggest is keeping a medication journal. Make sure you include what you are currently on and at what doses. What are these medications for? You should absolutely know that and the side effects of each medication. Also, keep a running record in your journal of the medications you have tried and no longer use. Did the medications work? What was the dose you were on? Was there a side-effect? Maybe it just quit working? Carry this medication journal with you to every doctor appointment.
Finally, I am starting to record a procedure/therapy journal. I want to list all the testing and procedures I have undergone, all the forms of physical therapy, water therapy, massage and chiropractic treatments I have completed. The names, places, and dates of where and who I saw. Medical Records will be kept for 7 years, after that they will be destroyed. I recently found this out when I tried to retrieve some of my earlier medical records. This is a huge task for me as my journey started over 20 years ago. I highly recommend if you are new to your Fibro journey you start keeping track of these various appointments, dates, and who the caregiver was – right now! You’ll save yourself a lot of grief in the future.
I sincerely hope these resource suggestions will assist you in your journey to leading your best life with fibromyalgia!