Because pain in certain areas of the body is one sign of fibromyalgia, doctors may press on tender points to help them diagnose or assess this medical condition, relates WebMD. There are 18 tender points in the body linked to fibromyalgia that may be given on a chart, explains the Mayo Clinic. According to Health Magazine, the American College of Rheumatology gives guidelines that specify that if a person has pain in at least 11 of these tender points, then he may have fibromyalgia.
The chart has 18 tender point sites, which are found near joints from the neck area to the inner knees, reports the Mayo Clinic. Tender points are areas of the body that when pressed may be painful in a person with fibromyalgia. These points are found as symmetrical pairs and include points at the back of the neck, hip, chest and inner knees.
Although tender points may be a symptom of fibromyalgia, there are other symptoms associated with this medical condition such as having problems sleeping, feeling tired, depression and muscle pain, explains WebMD. Another criteria used to diagnose fibromyalgia is the length of time a person has these symptoms, which should be at least 3 months. Treatment for this condition can involve pain management, antidepressant medications, hydrotherapy and application of hot packs, specifies WebMD.