Potsdam Fibromyalgia Support Group

Potsdam Facilitator: Leslie Russek, PT, DPT, PhD, OCS
Associate Professor, Clarkson University Physical Therapy Department and
Physical Therapist, Canton-Potsdam Hospital


The Potsdam Fibromyalgia Support Group is on WINTER HOURS. The next meeting will be Tuesday, October 3rd, noon-1pm. We will discuss “How to avoid automatic negative thoughts when life is difficult.”  We will continue working through the CBT workbook we started several months ago. Anyone is welcome to attend our support group meetings – friends, family, people with other chronic diseases. We meet on the 2nd floor of Clarkson Hall at 59 Main St., Potsdam. Note that we have switched to WINTER HOURS: noon-1 pm on the first Tuesday of each month. See new, updated 2016 fibromyalgia diagnostic criteria link, below.


Join the Potsdam Fibromyalgia Support Group on Facebook!

·      We now have a private Facebook group just for our support group members. The Facebook page will include old newsletters and documents currently posted here. This will provide a forum for people who were unable to attend a meeting to discuss the topic, and for discussions to continue past the meeting. Contact Kris at kris.a.lisdesigns37@gmail.com to join. We hope this will become a place for our group members to share success stories, ask one another questions, and to make friends among other people in the North Country dealing with FM. Because the group is by invitation only, what you share will be kept within the group – no-one outside the group can see. Check it out!


Useful links and resources:

2016 American College of Rheumatology Diagnostic Criteria for Fibromyalgia. The 18 tender points are no longer used for diagnosis of FM. This document describes the 2016 diagnostic criteria for fibromyalgia. Discuss your findings with your physician.


Employees with Fibromyalgia   This resource is from The Job Accommodation Network (JAN), supported by the US Dept of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy. This document has useful suggestions for making accommodations in the workplace.


Talking With Your Doctor:  This brochure from the National Institute on Aging is intended for older adults because they tend to have more medical concerns and tend to take more medications – making it an excellent resource for people with FM.


Disclaimer about Newsletter contents: The purpose of this site is not to diagnose or cure any disease or malady. Information is offered to improve understanding of fibromyalgia. This information cannot take the place of professional medical advice. Any attempt to diagnose and treat an illness should come under the direction of a physician. No guarantees are made regarding any of the information presented in this website.

Newsletters and links to resources
 (links to on-line resources are given in orange)

·       February, 2014 (Repeat: Being a supporter of someone with FM)

·      Tips for supporting someone with fibromyalgia 

·      CFIDS & Fibromyalgia Self-Help site resources related to fatigue in fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue

·      Dysautonomia International information on Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS)

·      Pain self-management resources:

1.     UC Davis Pain Self-Management Program

2.     Chronic Pain Toolkit

·      National Headache Foundation flier on Fibromyalgia and Migraine, by Dawn Marcus, MD.

·      October, 2016: Sources of foot pain.

·      September, 2016: Current research findings on effective treatments for fibromyalgia

·      June, 2016: Yoga and Fibromyalgia (Guest contributor Terry de la Vega, NP, CYN)

·      April, 2016: Fibromyalgia medications

·      March, 2016: Types of pain and different methods for managing pain

·      February, 2016: Managing anxiety.

·      January, 2016: The benefits of Gratitude.

·      December, 2015: The Spoon Theory of fatigue.

·      November, 2015: The shame associated with chronic pain and what to do about it.

·      October, 2015: Tapping for relaxation.

·      September, 2015: Aromatherapy

·      August, 2015: Sleep and FM

·      July, 2015: Irritable bowel and FM, the FODMAP diet

·      April, 2015: What Leslie learned and did while on sabbatical in Australia, and the “Protectometer

·       July, 2014 (History of the Potsdam Fibromyalgia Support Group, farewell from Leslie)

·       April, 2014 (Guest contributor: Paula Youmell discussing diet and holistic approach to managing pain)

·       March, 2014 (TrP that mimic medical conditions)

·       February, 2014 (Being a supporter of someone with FM)

·       January, 2014 (Setting and meeting your personal goals)

·       Nov/Dec, 2013 (Hobbies for pain management; surviving the holidays)

·       October, 2013 (Acupuncture, melatonin for migraine, Trigger Pointers: subscapularis)

·       September, 2013 (Pain Awareness Month, low dose cyclobenzaprine for FM)

·       August, 2013 (Reiki, Research about chronic pain and the brain)

·       June, 2013 (Acupressure, Trigger Pointers: sternocleidomastoid)

·       April, 2013 (Gluten sensitivity, lactose sensitivity)

·       March, 2013 (Tinnitus – ringing in your ears; Trigger pointers: masseter)

·       February, 2013 (Reasons for dizziness)

·       November/December (The neuropsychology of pain)

·       October, 2012 (Positional Cervical Cord Compression – PC3)

·       No September newsletter, but here is a link to information about supplements for fibromyalgia

·       August, 2012 (Piriformis syndrome)

·       June, 2012 (Time-based pacing)

·       May, 2012 (Biofeedback, Trigger Pointers: upper trapezius)

·       April, 2012 (Headaches and FM, Trigger Pointers: splenius capitis & cervicis in the neck)

·       March, 2012 (Mindfulness Meditation for Pain; Dangers of Multiple Medications)

·       February, 2012 (Emotions and Pain – CBT approaches to managing negative emotions)

·       January, 2012 (2010 American College of Rheumatology diagnostic criteria for fibromyalgia)

·       December, 2011 (Health benefits of gratitude. Melatonin for sleep)

·       November, 2011 (Managing trigger points. Trigger Pointers: infraspinatus)

·       October, 2011 (Fibro vs. myofascial pain syndrome, Trigger Pointers: gluteus medius)

·       September, 2011 (Overview of trigger points, Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders)

·       August, 2011 (Abdominal migraines, Drug interactions, Vibration for pain)

·       June, 2011 (What are the most common fibro symptoms, Trigger pointers: wrist and finger flexors)

·       May, 2011 (Chronic pain, Awareness Day)

·       April, 2011 (Adaptive gardening, Trigger pointers: scalenes)

·       March, 2011 (FM subtypes, Trigger Pointers: pectoralis muscles, women’s heart attack symptoms)

·       February, 2011 (Chronic pelvic pain, Trigger Pointers: pelvic floor muscles)

·       January, 2011 (Placebo and Nocebo effects, the 2011 Coping Calendar, Trigger pointers: hip flexor muscles)

·       November, 2010 (Gastrointestinal problems and FMS, Trigger Pointers: abdominal muscles)

·       October, 2010 (Talking With Your Doctor) Additional resource: FM Healthcare Worksheet for planning your appointment

·       September, 2010 (Supporting the supporter – caregiver stress)

·       August, 2010 (Sleep disorders, tai chi and FM)

·       July, 2010 (Hypnosis for managing pain)

·       June, 2010 (Work accommodations for FM, Gardening accommodations – reprieve of previous newsletters)

·       May, 2010 (Awareness Day, Avoiding negative thoughts.)

·       March, 2010 (Exercise and FM, Walking groups, working with PT students)

·       January, 2010 (The Masks We Wear, Contribute to our North Country FM book)

·       November/December, 2009 (Sources of medical info, fibromyalgia magazines, quadratus lumborum trigger points)

·       October, 2009 (Acupressure for insomnia)

·       September, 2009 (Balance disorders, New support group to deal with psychosocial aspects of FM)

·       August, 2009 (Type A Behavior, Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder)

·       July, 2009 (Accommodations for FM, FM Poetry: The Winds of Fibromyalgia)

·       June, 2009 (Fibrofog, vitamin D, Trigger Pointers: posterior neck muscles – splenius capitis and cervicis)

·       April, 2009 (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and FMS, Awareness Day events, Pain/Stress Management program)

·       March, 2009 (Self-esteem and illness self-image, Dr. Khan – Potsdam’s new pain specialist)

·       February, 2009 (Fibro-fatigue, dealing with chemical sensitivity, trigger points vs. tender points)

·       January, 2009 (Chemical sensitivity)

·       November-December, 2008 (Fibro news, book suggestions, Trigger Pointers: facial muscles)

·       October, 2008 (Common myths about pain; stress of chronic illness)

·       September, 2008 (Mind-body activities such as yoga, tai chi and qi gung for chronic pain; new sleep medications)

·       August, 2008 (Relaxation in managing chronic pain; Trigger Pointers: pronator teres)

·       July, 2008 (FMS and the family, continued; Trigger Pointers: foot pain)

·       June, 2008 (FMS and the family)

·       May, 2008 (Living with Fibromyalgia documentary, FMS facts, Trigger Pointers: upper trapezius)

·       April, 2008 (Fibromyalgia facts, Trigger Pointers: tibialis posterior)

·       March, 2008 (Supplements and diet)

·       February, 2008 (Fibrofog, Trigger Pointers: pectoralis major)

·       January, 2008 (Biofeedback, Trigger Pointers: the rhomboids)

·       November/December, 2007 (Gizmos and gadgets to make life easier; TheraCane for trigger points)

·       October, 2007 (FMS and headaches, Trigger Pointers: the sternocleidomastoid)

·       September, 2007 (Acupuncture, Trigger Pointers: the piriformis)

·       August, 2007 (Osteoporosis risks, Music to manage chronic pain, Trigger Pointers – gastroc/soleus and humor)

·       July, 2007 (Ideas for the FMS in the North Country book; benefits of crafting)

·       May-June, 2007 (Gardening with less pain)

·       April, 2007 (Documentary “Living with Fibromyalgia,” research on cervical myelopathy, and humor)

·       March, 2007 (Sleep apnea, laughter, poem “Nighttime Muse” submitted by Jane Ault)

·       January, 2007 (Happiness, FMS research) – Note – there will be no February newsletter.

·       November-December, 2006 (Coping with cold weather, pain medication)

·       October, 2006 (Coping with depression or guilt)

·       September, 2006 (The doctor-patient relationship)

·       August, 2006 (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Diet and FMS, FMS Research, Smoking Cessation)

·       July, 2006 (Benefits of social support)

·       June, 2006 (Self-care strategies)

·       May, 2006 (History of Fibromyalgia, Fibromyalgia Awareness Day)

·       April, 2006 (Myofascial Trigger Points)

·       March, 2006 (Emotions and FMS; Poem: My Muscles)

·       February, 2006 (Urinary disorders and pelvic pain)

·       January, 2006  (Highlights of Dr. Welch's lecture)

·       November-December, 2005 (Headaches)

·       October, 2005 (Hormones and FMS, Alexander technique, balance research)

·       September, 2005 (Impact of FMS on the family, tips for improving energy)

·       August, 2005 (FMS Myths, myofascial pain syndrome)

·       July, 2005 (FMS summer reading)

·       June, 2005 (Hypermobility Syndrome and FMS)

·       May, 2005 (Pain, Sleep)

·       April, 2005 (Anxiety, Panic and FMS, FMS Million Letter Campaign)

·       March, 2005 (Making the most of your MD visit, Fibrofog, Dopamine and FMS)

·       February, 2005 (Prescription IQ, Asking for help)

·       January, 2005 (FMS medications, Restless Legs Syndrome)

·       December, 2004 (Prioritizing, Friendship)

·       November, 2004 (Handling the Holidays, Exercise part 2)

·       October, 2004 (Healthy People 2010, Exercise part 1)

·       September, 2004 (Communication)

·       August, 2004 (Animal therapy)

·       July, 2004 (Supplements)

·       June, 2004 (Osteoporosis, Guaifenesin)  (Complete book review on Guaifenisin)

·       May, 2004  (Talking to your doctor)

Support Group meeting times:
Potsdam Summer Hours: 6:30-7:30 pm on the 4th Thursday of every month (except for holiday weeks)
    Location - Clarkson Hall at
59 Main St., Potsdam, NY. Follow the signs to the meeting room.
    For information about the Potsdam Fibromyalgia Support Group, contact the Canton-Potsdam Hospital Physical Therapy Dept. at 261-5460.
Massena:  For information about the Massena Fibromyalgia Support Group, contact
Massena Memorial Hospital at 764-1711.


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Dr. Russek's Home page

Contact the Potsdam Group Leader at Lnrussek@clarkson.edu

Clarkson University
Canton-Potsdam Hospital
Clarkson Physical Therapy Department



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If you have comments or suggestions, email me at lnrussek@clarkson.edu