Myalgic encephalomyelitis, also known as chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), is a serious disease that can affect anyone. It can cause substantial physical and cognitive impairment. The symptoms can be gradual and last for months or years, or they can come on suddenly. People with this condition often experience pain, dizziness, and sleeplessness. They may have difficulty concentrating and remembering things, and they might be sensitive to medications.
ME is a disorder that is triggered by a number of factors. These include infections, a hormonal shift, and physical exertion. Symptoms can also occur as a result of sensory overload or cognitive overexertion. If symptoms are severe, they can lead to a prolonged and permanent decline in functioning. Many people with ME are housebound, but some can still lead normal lives.
The exact cause of ME is unknown. But researchers suggest that inflammation of the brain is part of the explanation. However, there is no known cure for the disorder. Symptoms may improve with treatment, and many patients report better functioning after receiving therapy. In addition, some people with ME find that exercise can alleviate their symptoms.
People with severe ME are in need of around the clock care. They can’t work or attend school and their quality of life is severely affected. Some children are left unable to participate in activities like playing sports. Most adults have enough energy for normal activities after a good night’s sleep, but they may be exhausted after short bursts of activity.
While there is no definitive test that can diagnose ME, physicians may use a series of tests to rule out other conditions that cause similar symptoms. For example, they might try to rule out Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, which causes hyperextensibility, or gastroparesis, which affects the gastrointestinal tract.
The new diagnostic criteria for ME are based on a combination of symptoms, including post-exertional malaise and unrefreshing sleep. A person who has these symptoms may be diagnosed with ME, but they may also have other illnesses that cause similar symptoms, such as fibromyalgia.
ME/CFS is a chronic condition that affects more than one million people worldwide. In the United States, it is estimated that one in every ten Americans is affected. Since there is no FDA-approved treatment for the disorder, it’s important to seek help from health care professionals. There are several support groups that can offer advice and information.
The ME Association has a free downloadable booklet that explains what ME is, how it can be recognized, how it is treated, and how it affects individuals and families. The Association works with the NHS to improve the care of ME/CFS patients. It also provides resources for people of all ages. Several charities use the term “ME” to describe the disorder.
Many people with ME suffer from chronic fatigue, which can impact the entire body and make everyday tasks difficult. In addition, it can be difficult to maintain a normal social life, as well as a healthy self-image.