Fibromyalgia Tender Points
The pain experienced by people with fibromyalgia is generally widespread -- it can affect both the right and left sides of the body, as well as above and below the waist. However, in many cases, the pain occurs in specific spots known as tender points -- certain places on the neck, shoulders, back, hips, arms, and legs that hurt when pressure is put on them.
The American College of Rheumatology has designated 18 sites on the body as possible tender points. In order for a person to be diagnosed with fibromyalgia, a person must have 11 or more tender points. Pain may certainly be present at other sites, too; but the 18 standard sites on the body are the criteria used for diagnosing fibromyalgia.
(Click Fibromyalgia Symptoms to learn more about the different types of symptoms that can occur in someone with this condition.)