The causes of chronic fatigue syndrome
more and more people are suffering from a debilitating disease, sadly known as chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) every year. Patients with this diagnosis are constantly tired, they are exhausted, worn out or too tense.
However, myalgic encephalomyelitis (now this syndrome is called so often) - a serious disease that can have a devastating effect on the lives of the sick. Symptoms include:
- causeless profound fatigue for more than six months;
- problems with memory and concentration;
- muscle pain (myalgia) and weakness;
- joint pain;
- sleep disorders;
- flu-like symptoms;
- dizziness, heart palpitations, shortness of breath;
- increased sensitivity to light and sound;
- swollen lymph nodes, sore throat;
- a modified reaction to food, medicines or household chemicals.
Initially, people perplexing chronic fatigue syndrome, and they try to live their daily lives. But these efforts lead to serious consequences. Even a small exercise can cause failures that cause the progression of symptoms, sometimes for many days to come.
The most simple activities, such as taking a shower, going for groceries or a meeting with friends, become difficult doable, if not impossible. Unfortunately, about 25% of cases the symptoms are so severe that they do not go out of the house, and sometimes do not get up from the bed, the risk of committing suicide. Most patients are faced with a huge problem diagnosis. British scientists in their study found that less than half of the doctors do not doubt the diagnosis or carrying out the treatment of CFS, and more than 85% of patients go to doctors for two years without a diagnosis.
What do we know
The main causes of CFS is difficult to determine. Many patients are absolutely normal blood counts and tests for various diseases also do not reveal anything.
This gave some reason to suppose that the CFS - a psychological problem. In 2011, the results of clinical trials have shown that patients may benefit from psychotherapy (or rather cognitive-behavioral therapy or CBT) therapy and exercise. These discoveries have fueled a debate about whether CCS can be a mental illness.
However, a large US study in which it was studied about ten thousand publications on the subject, suggested the opposite, concluding that CFS is a serious, chronic, complex and systemic disease.
Criticism of psychotherapy and therapy with loads for the treatment of CFS is widespread. More than 50 letters have been published in leading scientific journals, expressing serious concern the correctness of such treatment.
Clinicians continue to recommend exercise and CBT therapy, despite the fact that the disease control and prevention centers have excluded such methods of treatment recommendations to the CFS.
Physical activity can benefit patients with a wide variety of diseases, but in patients with CFS, it can cause rapid deterioration of the symptoms.
What we do not know
There are no laboratory tests that can accurately establish a human CFS. However, Australian research plays a leading role in the discovery of potential diagnostic markers. For example, when UAU increased number of inflammatory proteins in the blood, such as activin-B and interferon. Other studies have shown that patients with CFS accumulated metabolic waste some intestinal bacteria, which may also provide diagnostic information in the future.
In women, CFS is diagnosed four times more often than men, but the reason for this is not clear. Also, the presence of relatives of the first leg, suffering from CFS, increases the risk of developing the disease more than doubled, but the role of genetics is also still unknown.
Some symptoms develop slowly. In other CFS begins with infection causing glandular fever (infectious mononucleosis), respiratory or gastrointestinal diseases.
Although patients with CFS observed immune disorders and abnormal inflammatory responses, the main reasons for this are difficult to define. Tissue damage typical of autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis or systemic lupus erythematosus, with CFS not arise.
One theory is that patients with CFS have a hole in the immune armor that can lead to permanent "smoldering" infection and chronic inflammation.
However, extremely difficult to find direct evidence of prolonged infections in patients with CFS and antivirals or antibiotics have a very modest effect in CFS, despite their activity in many other infectious diseases. Patients with CFS also observed a defect in the metabolism of a method for generating energy by the body, indicating that one of the reasons for the rapid emergence of fatigue in the muscles during exercise. But whether such a defect develops due to immune attack, chronic infection, or for some other reason, still remains unknown.
For the approval of any method of treatment of CFS are urgently needed more research. So far, clinical trials have examined the effects of immunosuppressants, antibody therapy, antiviral drugs, antidepressants and therapy for attention deficit disorder with hyperactivity, did not lead to any obvious improvements.
Diet and nutritional supplements and, apparently, little help. While some dietary supplements involved in the generation of metabolic energy, as if struggling with some of the symptoms of CFS, but to confirm the need for more extensive and in-depth research.
Now there is a restart of CFS research. Suffering from the disease are hoping that the creation of the Advisory Committee on CCS under the Health and Medical Research National Council will resume the biomedical research on CCS in Australia to discover new treatments.