Fibromyalgia and bipolar disorder have similar common symptoms that can make misdiagnosis seem possible. Both disorders trigger sleep disturbances as well as mood swings. Restlessness and irritability associated with fibromyalgia can be mistaken as hypomania. Moreover, bipolar patients can also suffer from frequent muscle pain, which is usually psychosomatic and a result of stress. This symptom can be mistaken for the pain associated with fibromyalgia. Fibro patients can also suffer from chronic depression that is similar to those experienced by bipolar disorder patients.
Lack of Definitive Diagnosis
Unfortunately, there has been no definitive test to diagnose bipolar disorder. Moreover, the diagnostic test for fibromyalgia is still in the early stages. It is now believed that fibromyalgia happens due to improper flow of blood in the brain. A special imaging can test for this but only in certain cases. Moreover, up till date, some doctors or psychiatrist still rely on diagnosis of exclusion to rule out any potential causes of the patient’s symptoms, in both fibromyalgia and bipolar cases. Therefore, there is a likelihood that cases where both conditions co-exist are overlooked.