Chronic fatigue syndrome is a complex debilitating medical disorder that affects approximately 4 million persons in the United States, predominantly women. There has been little scientific exploration about the experience of pregnancy, childbirth, and the postpartum period for women with this disorder.
A review of the literature and current research findings addressing the epidemiology, diagnosis, symptoms, and treatment of chronic fatigue syndrome are presented, as well as the currently available data regarding the experience of women with chronic fatigue syndrome anticipating or experiencing pregnancy and the postpartum period.
Expert opinion is presented along with current evidence to provide guidelines for the care of women with chronic fatigue syndrome during pregnancy, labor and birth, lactation, and the postpartum period.
Source: Journal of Midwifery & Children’s Health, Jul-Aug 2008;53(4):289-301. PMID: 18586181, Allen PR, University of Utah College of Nursing, Salt Lake City, Utah [E-mail:
[Note: The author, Peggy R. Allen, is a Clinical Instructor with the University of Utah graduate Nurse-Midwifery and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner programs. She is also a volunteer for O.F.F.E.R. (Organization for Fatigue and Fibromyalgia Education and Research), founded by ME/CFS/FM expert Lucinda Bateman, MD, director of The Fatigue Consultation Clinic in Salt Lake City.]