ME/ Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
One Illness Or More?
Are There Sub-Types Of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?
Sub-types of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome : Many researchers and specialists
now think that there are sub-types of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS).
Find out more on this page...
Many people believe that the specific name, Chronic Fatigue
Syndrome, is actually an 'umbrella' term for a number of unnamed
illnesses. Instead of being 'just one' condition, many specialists
and researchers think it could include a number of illnesses, which
all share very similar symptoms and signs:
"Subgrouping is the key to understanding how CFS begins, how it is maintained… and
in the best case, how it can be prevented, treated and cured."
-- Jason LA, et al, 'Chronic
Fatigue Syndrome: The Need for Subtypes', [ref
"Adding to the complexity, the
disease process may not be the same in all people with CFS.
Just as a painful, swollen joint can be caused by infection, injury
or arthritis, the symptoms of CFS may be the end result of different
Researchers are recognizing the importance
of subtyping patients -- perhaps by similar symptoms or
illness history, or by the predominant organ systems involved
-- to make both treatment and research more effective."
-- Dorothy Wall, From Skepticism to Science --
"CFS did not come
into existence until 1988. As a basis for sound scientific research,
it has been a disaster. CFS is not a single diagnostic entity and "fatigue " is
not a disorder, it is a symptom. The
term CFS is now applied
to a heterogeneous [mixed] group as a non-specific label which
embraces many different medical and psychiatric conditions in
which tiredness and fatigue are prominent."
-- E.P. Marshall, M. Williams, M. Hooper, 'What
Is ME? What Is CFS?', [ref
When asked about his thoughts on Dr
Kerr's research findings, Dr Neil Abbot, of Merge, said:
"CFS/ME can have very different effects on patients. We're
not looking at just one condition with a definitive patient group.
So it might be hard to get a gene signature which works for everyone
(…) This research probably won't be the answer for everyone,
but it is still very interesting."
-- Dr Neil Abbot of MERGE, talking about Dr Kerr's
Some scientists think that instead of only renaming ' CFS ', it
would be better to also identify all the subgroups within CFS and
to give each subgroup a name instead:
"We need an umbrella term with subsets. Why? Because previously,
the term " CFS " was used by scientists too loosely,
and many diverse, sometimes unrelated
diseases (everything from depression to viral cardiomyopathy)
were published on with the name "CFS" in the
title of the article. We do not want many diverse diseases to
be researched under ME. We want ME researched separately, and
other diseases such as idiopathic chronic fatigue, etc., to be
researched separately. The solution
is an umbrella term with subsets, and each subset will have separate
-- Maryann Spurgin Ph.D., Chronic
Fatigue Syndrome Name Change: The Case for Neuroendocrine Immune
Syndrome, 2002 --
Category: Sub-types: Are there sub-types of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS )
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