Four diseases that attack women in their twenties and thirties are often very hard to diagnose. Each of these diseases has no clear cause and a host of symptoms that may also be seen with other health issues.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome affects more than one million Americans; nearly eighty percent of them female. CFS comes with fatigue that won’t go away and other symptoms like sore throat, muscle pain, joint pain, forgetfulness, insomnia, weakness, dry eyes, dry mouth, dizziness, skin problems, and weight loss. There are no diagnostic tests for chronic fatigue syndrome, and doctors aren’t sure what causes it. As symptoms appear, your doctor will treat them.
Fibromyalgia affects approximately seven percent of Americans and most of them are women. Chronic pain is the main symptom of this disease, whether it is all-over muscular pain or tenderness and pain at 18 different points in the body like knee and elbow joints. Secondary symptoms include fatigue, coordination problems, insomnia, skin sensitivity, headaches, anxiety, and bowel and bladder problems. There is no known cause, and symptoms are treated as they arise.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome affects approximately forty million women in the United States. Symptoms include abdominal pain, bloating, gas, diarrhea, and constipation. There isn’t a test to diagnose IBS; doctors must first rule out other gastrointestinal problems before diagnosing irritable bowel syndrome. Treatment combines stress management, fiber supplements, and medication.
Scleroderma is an autoimmune disease. It causes hardening and scarring on the skin and connective tissues. When multiple organs are affected, scleroderma can lead to kidney failure, high blood pressure, and heart failure. This disease affects both men and women, but female patients outnumber males four to one. Approximately one hundred thousand people in the United States suffer from scleroderma. Doctors aren’t sure what causes the disease, and treatment is focused on the various complications as they occur.