Polymyalgia and Fibromyalgia both end in ‘myalgia’ which is pain in a muscle or group of muscles.
According to Healthline the two conditions are similar in some ways as Polymyalgia Rheumatica and Fibromyalgia are both musculoskeletal conditions with some symptoms that are hard to tell apart.
Pain from Polymyaliga Rheumatica is pain and stiffness in the muscles specifically in your shoulders/upper arms (shoulder-girdle), and hips (pelvic-girdle). The pain often comes after you have spent time resting and especially when you first wake up from a sleep. Pain from Fibromyalgia can also be pain in the muscles in the same parts of your body as Polymyalgia but it’s more wide-spread and the pain can me more severe in Fibromyalgia. Symptoms also include tiredness, trouble sleeping, memory problems, bowel and bladder problems.
How to tell the difference between these two painful disorders can be quite hard? Your doctor may want to conduct a number of tests to make a diagnosis of polymyalgia rheumatica, including blood tests that look for an inflammation marker, imaging tests such as X-rays or ultrasound and checking for a condition called giant cell arteritis (biopsy). Diagnosis of fibromyalgia can be more difficult to achieve. No lab/diagnostic test exists that can accurately confirm a diagnosis. Your doctor may try to first rule out conditions with similar symptoms through blood tests, but a doctor more knowledgeable about Fibromyalgia is always helpful.
Both conditions give a lot of pain and using what you know about your condition to seek support from family, friends, co-workers, and your doctor. Taking steps to manage your specific symptoms can bring a feeling of control as well as relief.