2016 was an incredible year for FedUpwithFatigue.com! I am so proud of my little blog and everything it’s accomplished since launching in early 2014. This year, I was thrilled to make HealthLine’s top 10 list of best fibromyalgia blogs and to be nominated for HealthLine’s best health blogs contest. (A special “thank you” to whoever nominated me!)
I also was proud to reach this year’s goal of 10,000+ email subscribers, making FedUpwithFatigue.com one of the largest fibromyalgia blogs.
As the year comes to a close, I thought it would be nice to look back at some of FedUpwithFatigue.com’s most popular posts from 2016. I compiled the following top 10 list based on page views from the calendar year. For newer readers, this post is a great summary of the type of content you can expect from FedUpwithFatigue.com. I hope you will consider joining my mailing list if you aren’t already a subscriber.
Before I start with the top 10 list, I’d like to say a quick “thank you” to my editor Ed Coghlan over at NationalPainReport.com. My partnership with NPR helps to support my blog financially and has allowed me to continue to build my readership.
I’d also like to thank Chronic Illness Bloggers, a network of … you guessed it … chronic illness bloggers. Thanks to CIB, I’ve been able to share some of the best fibro-related products with my readership this year.
And finally, thank you to all of my readers. Every week, I receive messages from some of you, thanking me for the information that I share on FedUpwithFatigue.com. If I’m honest, some days it’s hard to keep working and putting out content, but your emails, blog post comments and social media comments help me to stay motivated, and your personal stories and concerns keep me inspired. We are all in this together!
As the New Year approaches, I have so many great plans for FedUpwithFatigue.com and am looking forward to what 2017 will bring. Gentle hugs to each and every one of you!
Now on with the top 10 list…
It doesn’t surprise me that this post took the No. 1 spot on my top posts of 2016 list. After all, it was really inspired by you, my readers! At least once or twice a week, I receive emails from readers who are desperate for relief. I found myself repeatedly typing out the same list of tools that I use to help relieve my own pain and fatigue. Then, one day I had an epiphany: I should put all of that information into a blog post, so it would be available to everyone!
This “6 favorite things” post is now about six months old, but I still use everything on it except hemp CBD oil. In September, I received my medical marijuana license and have transitioned to using cannabis-based CBD products, but I still think hemp CBD oil is a great option for those who live in states where medical marijuana isn’t available.
At No. 2 on the list is my post on new fibromyalgia drugs in the works. Again, it’s no surprise that this post landed near the top of the list since I know so many fibro sufferers are desperately trying to find new treatments to relieve their symptoms. Unfortunately, there has been one change since this post was published: Trials on TNX-102 SL have been discontinued after it failed to adequately relieve pain in fibromyalgia patients.
But on a brighter note, the most exciting new drug mentioned in this post is IMC-1, an antiviral/anti-inflammatory combo that’s heading to phase III trials early next year. I suspect it’s going to be a game changer for fibro sufferers who have underlying viral infections.
Regardless of what the research says, I think many of us feel our symptoms are worsening over time. I know mine have. So, I thought it would be interesting to ask some of the top fibromyalgia doctors (three of which have fibromyalgia themselves) and researchers in the country to weigh in on the issue: Is fibromyalgia progressive? I think you’ll find their answers interesting.
In May, I was diagnosed with chronic Lyme disease, and all of a sudden a lot of the health issues and symptoms I’ve been dealing with for years finally made sense. Since my diagnosis, I’ve found out that Lyme is frequently misdiagnosed as fibromyalgia. In fact, I’ve lost count of the number of people I’ve talked with who were first diagnosed with fibro and later went on to be diagnosed with Lyme. It’s really no surprise why this happens. Lyme testing is grossly inaccurate, and Lyme and fibromyalgia share many of the same symptoms.
If you think you may have been exposed to Lyme – (you don’t have to recall having a tick bite; in fact, about 30% of Lyme patients don’t remember ever being bitten by a tick) – then I urge you to read this post and take steps to be properly tested (i.e. please don’t rely on testing by Labcorp!) and evaluated for Lyme. I suspect millions of fibro sufferers actually have Lyme disease and don’t know it. That’s a real tragedy because Lyme is treatable, and it’s possible to recover from it. The same can rarely be said for fibromyalgia.
This post would be extremely helpful for anyone who is filing for disability for fibromyalgia. In it, Atlanta-area attorney Jonathan Ginsberg shares his best advice for winning your fibromyalgia disability case.
This is the first of two Cymbalta-related posts that made the top 10. I started covering the lawsuits associated with Cymbalta’s withdrawal symptoms in 2014. This post gives a good summary of Cymbalta’s withdrawal symptoms and the ensuing lawsuits. Since this published, the lawsuits have been settled. (No. 9 on my top posts for 2016 list covers the settlement.)
So many in the fibro community (myself included) are successfully using cannabis for pain relief. Well, it turns out there may actually be a scientific reason for why cannabis works so well for some of us. A leading cannabis researcher thinks those of us with fibromyalgia may actually be deficient in endocannabinoids. Using cannabis is simply supplementing what our bodies are lacking, much like you would take vitamin D to supplement a deficiency. This post explains how fibromyalgia, migraine and IBS may be linked and why cannabis may be so effective in treating all three conditions.
One of this year’s highlights has been getting to know some of my fellow fibro bloggers better. In this post, I reached out to 12 fibro bloggers and asked them to share their best strategies for reducing symptoms. Their responses are both diverse and enlightening.
This post covers drugmaker Eli Lilly’s settlement of the Cymbalta withdrawal lawsuits. I have readers contact me nearly every week, asking if they can be added to the lawsuit. Unfortunately, the answer is no. At this point, you would need to pursue your own case using a personal injury attorney.
This is the most controversial post on the list. I still get readers who email me or leave a comment saying there is NO test for fibromyalgia. Well, actually there is! Most doctors don’t know about it, and the leading U.S. rheumatology association doesn’t recognize it, but it does exist, and some insurance companies are now paying for it. Details are at the link!
The use of opioids for chronic pain has been under attack throughout 2016. Sadly, I keep hearing again and again how physicians are weaning their patients off opioids, leaving them in pain with few other options for relief. As a result, we’ve lost some in the chronic pain community to suicide this year. It’s common these days for physicians to say opioids are not an effective treatment for fibromyalgia. In fact, my own rheumatologist told me that. In this post, I decided to look at the research and see if what he said is actually true. Turns out, the research doesn’t support his statement.
Well, that’s it for this year’s top 10! Was there a particular post on FedUpwithFatigue.com that helped you this year or you found really interesting? Any suggestions for future posts? If so, I’d love to hear about it in the comments! Best wishes to you and yours during the coming New Year!