A little-known but cruelly persistently painful medical condition suddenly came to the fore in the Lanark area this week.
Firstly, it was announced that the Royal Burgh and surrounding area was to get its first support group for sufferers of the condition fibromyalgia.
It is being formed by Margo Yates, well-known for her voluntary work in the town but less so for her personal battle against the constant pain she has to live with as a sufferer of the condition.
At a recent meeting of the Lanark Friends of Volunteering, she was pledged support for the formation of a Fibromyalgia Group and it will meet for the first time on Friday, March 22 between midday and 2pm at the Alvo Offices in Hope Street.
She told the Gazette: “I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia 12 years ago by a doctor at the rheumatology clinic at Wishaw General Hospital. The support I have received from the Lanark doctors and their administration team has been life saving for me.
“I attended the fibromyalgia support group in Glasgow and eventually became the president of the group. I attended seminars in Perth and Birmingham as a guest speaker. Unfortunately, due to distance and my fibromyalgia, I was unable to continue to travel to Glasgow.
I have contacted the manager at Lanark health centre and have asked to work alongside them.”
In the meantime, Lanark and Hamilton East MP Angela Crawley spoke in a Westminster Hall debate on UK Government support for people with fibromyalgia.
She called on the government to recognise the condition as a disability. She said: “When people are unable to work because of fibromyalgia, it is right that the social security system supports them. The assessment system is simply not working for those with this condition.”