Symptoms Of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
The main feature of ME/CFS is a type of exhaustion known as post-exertional malaise, crash or payback. This means having flu-like symptoms after exercise and not having enough energy for daily activities.
Research shows that people with ME/CFS have a different physiological response to activity or exercise from other people. This includes abnormal exhaustion after any form of exertion, and a worsening of other symptoms. The response may be delayed, perhaps after 24 hours. Depending on the amount and type of exercise, it may result in post-exertional malaise for a few days, or serious relapses lasting weeks, months or even years.
- problems with thinking, concentrating, memory loss, vision, clumsiness, muscle twitching or tingling
- disrupted sleep
- sore throat, tender lymph nodes and a flu-like feeling
- inability to cope with temperature changes.
Blood Test Might Diagnose Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
TUESDAY, April 30, 2019 — Chronic fatigue syndrome is such a mysterious illness that it took years to be recognized as a legitimate ailment, and doctors still struggle to accurately diagnose it.
Now, an experimental blood test has successfully spotted the syndrome, also known as CFS, in a finding that hopefully provides new insights into the inscrutable illness.
The test tracks changes in the electrical pattern of a person’s cells, and it accurately flagged all CFS patients in a small group of 40 people, researchers report.
“When we stress the cells, we can easily differentiate them based on the signal they are showing,” said lead author Rahim Esfandyarpour. “It’s a huge difference.”
Esfandyarpour worked on the test with a team while at Stanford University in California. He’s now an assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the University of California, Irvine.
Currently, doctors must diagnose CFS based on the symptoms a patient has developed. There’s no lab test that can provide a definitive diagnosis.
“There is no biomarker or diagnostic tool,” Esfandyarpour said. “It’s all based on the symptoms.”
Sometimes people are even told it’s all in their imagination. As many as 2.5 million Americans suffer from CFS, and 9 of 10 have not been diagnosed, according to estimates from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
So they created a way to track the metabolism of cells by observing their electrical activity.
Intravenous Magnesium For The Treatment Of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Furthermore, an UpToDate review on Treatment of myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome states that Other modalities that have been tried but have not been successful include amantadine, cimetidine, interferon, magnesium, ranitidine, vitamin B12, bovine or porcine liver extract, dialyzable leukocyte extract, essential fatty acids, evening primrose oil, Biobran MGN-3 , exclusion diets, and removal of dental fillings.
Read Also: Extreme Fatigue After Hospital Stay
Adrenocorticotrophic Hormone Stimulation Test
Bearn et al noted that chronic fatigue syndrome is a disorder characterized by severe physical and mental fatigue and fatigability of central rather than peripheral origin. These researchers hypothesized that CFS is mediated by changes in hypothalamo-pituitary function and so measured the adrenocorticotrophic hormone , cortisol, growth hormone , and prolactin responses to insulin-induced hypoglycemia, and the ACTH, cortisol, and prolactin responses to serotoninergic stimulation with dexfenfluramine in non-depressed CFS patients and normal controls. These investigators have shown attenuated prolactin responses to hypoglycemia in CFS. There was also a greater ACTH response and higher peak ACTH concentrations , whereas cortisol responses did not differ, findings that were compatible with impaired adrenal cortical function. The authors concluded that the findings of this study provided evidence for both pituitary and adrenal cortical impairment in CFS they stated that further studies are needed to both confirm and determine more precisely their neurobiological basis so that rational treatments can be evolved.
Furthermore, an UpToDate review on Clinical features and diagnosis of systemic exertion intolerance disease does not mention ACTH/adrenocorticotrophic hormone stimulation as a diagnostic test.
Biomarker For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Identified
Stanford scientists devised a blood-based test that accurately identified people with chronic fatigue syndrome, a new study reports.
Ron Davis is the senior author of a paper that describes a blood test that may be able to identify chronic fatigue syndrome.Steve Fisch
People suffering from a debilitating and often discounted disease known as chronic fatigue syndrome may soon have something theyve been seeking for decades: scientific proof of their ailment.
Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine have created a blood test that can flag the disease, which currently lacks a standard, reliable diagnostic test.
Too often, this disease is categorized as imaginary, said Ron Davis, PhD, professor of biochemistry and of genetics. When individuals with chronic fatigue syndrome seek help from a doctor, they may undergo a series of tests that check liver, kidney and heart function, as well as blood and immune cell counts, Davis said. All these different tests would normally guide the doctor toward one illness or another, but for chronic fatigue syndrome patients, the results all come back normal, he said.
A paper describing the research findings was published online April 29 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Davis is the senior author. Esfandyarpour, who is now on the faculty of the University of California-Irvine, is the lead author.
Also Check: Why Does Multiple Sclerosis Cause Fatigue
Treatment For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Unfortunately, there is no cure for ME/CFS. People with the disorder shouldnt give up hope, however. A variety of treatments may be used to lessen or eliminate symptoms.
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy . CBT teaches patients how to recognize fears of potential fatigue. With the aid of CBT, patients can also learn how to redirect thoughts that may provide a more positive outlook about recovery.
- Exercise. Through graded exercise therapy, patients with ME/CFS exercise to increase overall physical and mental function.
- Sleep Management. Poor sleep is a common symptom of ME/CFS. Treatment of sleep disorders that accompany ME/CFS can lessen its overall effects. Patients can begin by improving their sleep hygiene. However, additional steps, such as prescription medications or therapies for specific sleep disorders may be necessary.
- Pharmacologic Therapy. Currently, there are no drugs that specifically target ME/CFS. Instead, patients may take drugs to treat symptoms of ME/CFS, such as pain, depression, and sleep deprivation.
- Stress Reduction and Relaxation. Certain practices can help with managing chronic pain and fatigue. These include meditation, massage, and acupuncture.
Me/cfs Classification Model Based On Raman Spectral Fingerprints
To further investigate the power of Raman spectroscopy to differentiate patients from healthy subjects, we used again PLS-DA as a classifier solely based on the whole Raman spectra. We also compared PLS-DA with a modified version of the LDA, RF, and SVMs to evaluate if there were more suitable techniques to classify individuals using only the Raman spectra as an input.
To evaluate the biomarker value of the observed differential Raman peaks we applied PLS-DA analysis to Raman data. Complete spectra of individuals within each group are represented in Supplementary Figure 4 . As it can be appreciated, signals were already preprocessed and can be directly used for their further analysis with multivariate statistics techniques. Due to a slight mismatch in the wavelengths of different records, abscises axes in Supplementary Figure 4 are representing wavelength bins that contain the signal recorded for wavelengths within each interval.
Figure 4. Summary of the b PLS coefficients , the VIP coefficients , the scores , the observed vs. predicted values . and ROC curve of the depurated PLS-DA model with the Raman spectroscopy data. The red cross locates the optimal performance point using the classification threshold at 0.3935. Data set legends can be consulted on Supplementary Table 1. Black triangles represent healthy controls, whereas orange triangles represent ME/CFS cases.
Comparison of PLS-DA Model to Other Classification Models
Don’t Miss: How Do You Know You Have Adrenal Fatigue
Conditions That Do Not Exclude A Diagnosis Of Cfs
Any condition defined primarily by symptoms that cannot be confirmed by diagnostic laboratory tests, including fibromyalgia, anxiety disorders, somatoform disorders, non-psychotic or melancholic depression, neurasthenia, and multiple chemical sensitivity disorder.
Any condition under specific treatment sufficient to alleviate all symptoms related to that condition and for which the adequacy of treatment has been documented. Such conditions include hypothyroidism for which the adequacy of replacement hormone has been verified by normal thyroid-stimulating hormone levels, or asthma in which the adequacy of treatment as been determined by pulmonary function and other testing.
Any condition, such as Lyme disease or syphilis that was treated with definitive therapy before development of chronic symptoms.
Any isolated and unexplained physical examination finding, or laboratory or imaging test abnormality that is insufficient to strongly suggest the existence of an exclusionary condition. Such conditions include an elevated anti-nuclear antibody titer that is inadequate, without additional laboratory or clinical evidence, to strongly support a diagnosis of a discrete connective tissue disorder.
Note on the use of laboratory tests in the diagnosis of CFS:
The use of test to diagnose CFS should be done only in the setting of protocol-based research. The fact that such tests are investigational and do not aid in diagnosis or management should be explained to the individual.
What Home Remedies Treat Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Physical activity performed at a comfortable pace is important for everyone to maintain good health, including people with chronic fatigue syndrome. People with CFS need to learn how much activity is helpful and when to stop, so they do not increase their level of fatigue.
In general, people with CFS should pace themselves carefully and avoid excessive physical or emotional stress. Remember, the goal is to avoid increasing fatigue or pain. Maintain a regular and manageable daily routine to avoid a relapse or increase of symptoms. Exercise should be supervised by a knowledgeable health-care provider or physical therapist.Total rest should also be avoided as it may make your fatigue worse. You should maintain physical activity at a comfortable pace. If you increase your level of physical activity, do so gradually.Decreased consumption of alcohol and caffeine at night may help you sleep.Try to minimize social isolation.
Always ask your doctor about any new treatment, including herbal supplements.
Read Also: What Causes Fatigue And Sweating
What Are The Symptoms Of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Diagnosing CFS requires ruling out other causes of chronic persistent fatigue, including a stressful lifestyle, cancer, or other illness such as adrenal or thyroid disorders, HIV, or AIDS. Since there are no laboratory tests that specifically make the diagnosis of CFS, the diagnosis is based on symptoms. People with CFS experience the following symptoms:
- Fatigue: People with CFS have long-term fatigue that cannot be explained by other diseases. People with CFS may have had a previous infection. They are tired and “run down” during the infection, and the fatigue continues after the person has recovered from the illness.
- Cognitive difficulties: A typical complaint of people with CFS is that they have problems with short-term memory but not long-term memory. People with CFS may have problems finding or saying a particular word during normal speech .
- Postexertional fatigue: Postexertional fatigue may also be a problem for people with CFS. They are excessively tired after doing normal activities that were not difficult in the past.
- Fatigue after sleep: People with CFS also complain of fatigue even after long periods of rest or sleep. They do not feel refreshed after sleeping.
- Depression: People with CFS may become depressed because of difficulties performing at work or home, but depression does not cause CFS.
- Other symptoms that may be seen include headaches, muscle aches, sore throat, and even mild fever.
Samples And Associated Clinical Data
Ethical approval of the study was granted by the Public Health Research Ethics Committee DGSP-CSISP, Valencia , study number UCV_201701 and by the UCL Biobank Ethical Review Committee-Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust , study number EC2017.01 before the samples were released by the UKMEB.
Data for the initial PLS-DA analysis corresponded to Nanostring datasets generated during a previous study of our group , available from the NCBI Gene Expression Omnibus database and the of the cited article. The samples for the Raman analysis consisted of EV aliquots from the cited study isolated from 0.5 ml of platelet poor plasma from 15 severely ill ME/CFS females and 15 age-population matched healthy females, obtained from dipotassium EDTA blood-collection tubes by UKMEB professionals.
As previously described, patient recruitment and clinical assessment for the UKMEB was mainly performed through the UK National Health Service primary and secondary health care services . Compliance with the Canadian Consensus , CDC-1994 and Institute of Medicine criteria were ensured for patient recruitment . Clinical diagnosis was complemented with score differences in the SF-36 questionnaire and the GHQ , the last also assessed by a Likert scale .
All methods were performed in accordance with relevant guidelines and regulations. All subjects signed an informed consent before samples could be included in the corresponding sample collection.
Don’t Miss: How To Combat Menstrual Fatigue
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Diagnosis
As more research is done on ME/CFS, the criteria for diagnosis continue to be updated. There are a few possible sets of criteria physicians may choose to use in their diagnosis. However, most of these criteria sets require the following:
- Post-exertional malaise , or worsened fatigue after performing usual activities
- Unrefreshing sleep or other sleep problems
- Widespread pain or discomfort, such as muscle or joint pain or headache
- Two or more types of neurological or cognitive dysfunction, such as impaired memory and concentration
- Symptoms lasting longer than six months
There is no chronic fatigue syndrome test to verify whether or not a person has the syndrome. Instead, physicians take a history of patient symptoms, including family history. They often conduct tests to rule out the possibility of other diseases, including urine and blood tests. Physicians may also refer patients to specialists to ensure other diagnoses are ruled out.
Experts note that patients may be diagnosed with both ME/CFS and an additional source of chronic fatigue. Some comorbidities of ME/CFS include:
Isolation Of Evs From Plasma
EVs studied corresponded to aliquots isolated from 0.5 ml aliquots of human plasma supernatants from blood collected in dipotassium EDTA tubes , upon being centrifuged at 10,000 × g for 10 min, with Total Exosome Isolation Reagent , following manufacturer’s recommendations, as previously described . The isolated EVs were characterized following MISEV recommendations , as described in Almenar-Pérez et al. .
Recommended Reading: Things To Help With Fatigue
Measurements Of Plasma Brain Natriuretic Peptide Levels For Guidance Of Targeted Therapy Of Cfs
In a case-control study, Tomas and colleagues examined levels of the brain natriuretic peptide and their association with the cardiac abnormalities recently identified in CFS. Cardiac magnetic resonance examinations were performed using 3T Philips Intera Achieva scanner in CFS patients and sedentary controls matched for age and sex BNP was also measured by using an enzyme immunoassay in plasma from 42 patients with CFS and 10 controls. BNP levels were significantly higher in the CFS cohort compared with the matched controls . When these researchers compared cardiac volumes between those with high BNP levels and low BNP , there were significantly lower cardiac volumes in those with the higher BNP levels in both end-systolic and end-diastolic volumes . There were no relationships between fatigue severity, length of disease and BNP levels suggesting that these findings were unlikely to be related to deconditioning. The authors concluded that the findings of this study confirmed an association between reduced cardiac volumes and BNP in CFS lack of relationship between length of disease suggested that findings were not secondary to deconditioning. They stated that further studies are needed to examine the utility of blood BNP to act as a stratification paradigm in CFS that directs targeted treatments.
How Do You Test For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Chronic fatigue syndrome, or CFS, is a debilitating illness that can significantly impact your work and home life. Its also challenging to diagnose this condition because it looks very similar to other conditions, such as hypothyroidism, stress, or depression. Thats why we offer chronic fatigue testing and treatment at Medical Transformation Center in Louisville, KY, to help recover your energy levels back and lead a healthy lifestyle.
Don’t Miss: What Is Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome
The Me/cfs Profile From Bioreference
The ME/CFS Profile is a simple blood test that identifies certain diseases that may be the underlying cause symptoms. Antibodies, or markers, associated with conditions such as autoimmune diseases, thyroid disease, Lyme disease, viral infections and anemia are measured. In some cases, one of these tests will be positive, suggesting a known condition may have triggered your persistent fatigue. However, in some cases no underlying disease can be identified.
I Dont Have Insurance How Can The Affordable Care Act Help Me
If youre uninsured or have been denied coverage in the past for ME/CFS, the Health Insurance Marketplace may be able to provide you with access to affordable coverage. With health insurance plans in the Marketplace, you can no longer be refused coverage just because you have a pre-existing health condition. Medicaid and the Childrens Health Insurance Program also cant refuse to cover you or charge you more because of a health condition. They also cant charge women more than men. Learn more about the Affordable Care Act and the Health Insurance Marketplace at Healthcare.gov.
Recommended Reading: Genetic Testing For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
How Is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Diagnosed
CFS can be difficult to diagnose. There is no specific test for CFS, and other illnesses can cause similar symptoms. Your health care provider has to rule out other diseases before making a diagnosis of CFS. He or she will do a thorough medical exam, including:
- Asking about your medical history and your familys medical history
- Asking about your current illness, including your symptoms. Your doctor will want to know how often you have symptoms, how bad they are, how long they have lasted, and how they affect your life.
- A thorough physical and mental status exam
- Blood, urine, or other tests
You May Like: Anti Fatigue Mats 3 4 Inch