Fibromyalgia is a serious medical condition and is generally associated with low serotonin levels.  Fibromyalgia affects about 3 million to 6 million people in the United States each year. The disorder mostly affects women, aged 30 to 59 and typically develops in early-to-middle adulthood. Fibromyalgia pain is more common in the trunk , neck, low back, hips, and shoulders, and it is rare in the hands and feet. It usually develops gradually and can interfere with even simple daily activities.  Often the diagnoisis requires having 11 of 18 identified possibly tender points on the body such as elbows, front of chest etc.  Pain is the most prominent symptom of fibromyalgia and many patients report pain on the TPS pain scale of 8 out of 10 with 10 being highest.  The pain cycle often results in the patient having what is described as fibromyalgia syndrome ( FMS) which is categorized by stiffness and constant fatigue.  Often the fatigue is brought on by lack of sleep and that is the area where lack of serotonin is a factor.

   Serotonin is an important initiator of sleep. In numerous studies 5-HTP has been shown to decrease the time required to get to sleep and to decrease the number of awakenings.[1]

   Serotonin mediates several important physiological functions including neurotransmission, gastrointestinal motility, hemostasis, and cardiovascular integrity.  Serotonin is produced when you eat starchy or sweet carbohydrates by themselves or with very little protein or fat. Serotonin is produced as needed by the nervous system, mainly the brain, but also special cells in the bronchial tubes (lungs) and gastrointestinal tract. It helps transmit nerve impulses and constrict blood vessels, participates in the wake-sleep cycle, and affects mood. 

    It is widely known that the use of electrotherapy, specifically interferential ( IFT) and tens ( TNS) , can trigger increased production of a broad spectrum of opioid peptides, or pain killers, serotonin being one of those peptides.  Interferential has the ability to immediately isolate pain relief over specific areas and can be expanded for treating the patient's pain regionally.  Regional application is if the patient's chest area was painful then with interferential the entire area could be treated by eliminating the painful sensory input at the same time the interferential treatment triggers additional opoid production.

    An interferential unit is simply a small unit weighing less than 12 ounces that can be plugged into a wall outlet or use rechargeable/disposable batteries when not convenient to use wall outlet.  It is small, portable and can be worn by a patient while the patient is receiving treatments. It consists of a generator, wires leading to electrodes which are placed on the body. The method of distributing the electricity from the unit we know but the resultant chemical/physiological changes occurring in the body are actually best described by Giovanni De Domenico, Ph.D and world expert when he states it as "giving the patient electrical energy with particular characteristics."

    The strength of interferential treatments which have been historically only done in a clinic or hospital setting is there is a carryover effect that lasts for days or weeks.  It is believed the carryover effect is the result of the interferential treatment triggering the production of the natural pain killers which have a long clinical life cycle in the blood and inhibit the return of the pain.  The actual pain killers themselves are active until neutralized by competing neutralizing agents produced in the body. 

    Now that patient's have the availability of a take home interferential a new treatment method is emerging for fibromyalgia patients.  In preliminary observations it appears that interferential treatments done more frequently are producing longer term carryover effects.  The patient can treat pain and get immediate results and the moment the pain starts returning then the patient does another treatment which extends the pain relief.  Over time the treatments become less frequent as the carryover effect keeps extending longer and longer.

    It is anticipated many new treatment protocols for fibromyalgia patients will now emerge since the technology has caught up with the disease process.