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Internal Medicine

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), also referred to as myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME), is a medical condition characterized by long-term fatigue and other symptoms that limit a person’s ability to carry out ordinary daily activities.


Diagnosis

Diagnostic criteria

 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) criteria for diagnosis:

  1. Significantly lowered ability to participate in activities that were routine before the onset of the condition, and persisting > 6 months
  2. Physical/mental activity causes worsening symptoms that would not have been problematic before the onset of the condition, (post-exertional malaise (PEM))
  3. Sleep problems

Additionally, one of the following symptoms must be present:

  • Difficulty with thinking and memory
  • Worsening of problems with standing/sitting

Management

  • Counselling
  • Graded exercise therapy (GET)

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