Fibromyalgia Awareness Project Launched In New Jersey

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BALTIMORE, Md.— The American Pain Foundation (APF) announced Wednesday the launch of “Is Fibro the Cause?” in New Jersey, a project designed to raise awareness about fibromyalgia, a painful and often misdiagnosed musculoskeletal condition.

An estimated six million Americans, including more than 400,000 people in New Jersey have fibromyalgia. A number of New Jersey-based community agencies and alliance groups are collaborating with APF on this project by distributing “Is Fibro the Cause?” toolkit and self-assessment tool at no cost to residents and health care providers. The toolkit provides helpful tips and resources on how to recognize fibromyalgia’s signs and symptoms, find treatment and effectively communicate with your health care provider.

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“Because it is often misunderstood, misbelieved and unrecognized as a chronic pain condition, it can be very difficult to find a health care provider who specializes and/or understands fibromyalgia,” said Karen Kiefer, RN, BAIS and a New Jersey volunteer leader for the American Pain Foundation Action Network. “I am optimistic that fibromyalgia will become visible and understood if we get the information out into our communities to educate people who have or may have fibromyalgia and empower them to seek medical care. No one should suffer in silence.”

As a part of the “Is Fibro the Cause?” launch, Kiefer will be working with community organizations to provide educational presentations about fibromyalgia and distribute the toolkit.

The “Is Fibro the Cause?” toolkit includes:

  • Fibro Basics
  • Tips for Finding Experts and Talking with Your Health Care Provider
  • Beating the Blues: Easing Depression and Anxiety
  • Living Well with Fibro: First Steps for Coping
  • Unraveling Fibromyalgia: New Directions in Research and Advocacy
  • Common Questions & Answers
  • Resources
  • Is Fibro the Cause? Self-Assessment Worksheet

The toolkit is available free of charge through the following:

Overlook Hospital Community Health Department
99 Beauvoir Avenue
Summit, NJ 07901
Contact: Joyce Passen
(908) 522-5355
joyce.passen@atlantichealth.org

Pain Management Center at Overlook Hospital
99 Beauvoir Avenue
Summit, NJ 07901
Contact: Rosemary Smith, RN
(908) 522-6980
rosemary.smith@atlantichealth.org

Morristown Memorial Hospital

Atlantic Health Integrative Medicine Department
Gagnon Building
100 Madison Avenue
Morristown, NJ
Contact: Alison Irving
American Chronic Pain Association
Contact: Patricia Hubert
hubertpm@hotmail.com

To learn more about fibromyalgia or to download a PDF version of the Is Fibro the Cause? toolkit, visit APF’s website at http://www.painfoundation.org/learn/publications/files/is-fibro-the-cause.pdf. A listing of fibromyalgia community presentations can also be found on this website. This project was made possible by support from Forest Laboratories Inc.


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