[Note: to read the full report on this study of cognitive impairment in ME/CFS, click here and scroll down below abstract.]
This study addresses, among other things, the debate as to whether cognitive deficits do occur with a diagnosis of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). Previous studies have indicated a potential mismatch between subjective patient ratings of impairment and clinical assessment.
In an attempt to tackle some of the methodological problems faced by previous research in this field, this study recruited a large sample of CFS patients where adequate diagnosis had been made and administered an extensive battery of measures.
In doing so this study:
• Was able to replicate previous published evidence of clear cognitive impairment in this group
• And demonstrate also that these deficits occurred independent of psychopathology.
The conclusion drawn is that cognitive impairments can be identified if appropriate measures are used.
Furthermore, the authors have shown that performance changes in these measures have been used to assess both efficacy of a treatment regime and rates of recovery.
Source: Open Neurology Journal, online Feb 27, 2009;3:13-33. PMID: 19452031, by Thomas M, Smith A. Centre for Occupational and Health Psychology, School of Psychology, Cardiff University, UK; Centre for Health Information Research Evaluation, School of Medicine, Swansea University, UK. [E-mail: Marie.A.Thomas@swansea.ac.uk]