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Effects of an educational video film in fatigued children and adolescents: A randomized controlled trial – Source: Archives of Disease in Childhood, Sep 22, 2010

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By Rob J Bakker, et al. • www.ProHealth.com • September 24, 2010


Background: In many cases standard management for chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) in children and adolescents is ineffective.

Objective: To evaluate the efficacy of a video film intervention in preventing the development of persistent fatigue and significant school absence in fatigued children and adolescents.

Design: Randomized controlled trial.

Participants: 91 patients with fatigue [termed ‘unexplained fatigue,’ unclear from abstract if they were diagnosed with ME/CFS]; 50 were randomly assigned to receive the intervention (video film plus usual care) and 41 to usual care only.

Intervention: A video film on CFS and coping behavior.

Main outcome measures: Self-reported fatigue severity, physical activity, motivation, concentration and school absence.

Results: 79 patients had complete data at 12 months (42 in the video film and 37 in the usual care group).

• Mean [overall average] fatigue severity and school absenteeism scores did not differ significantly,

• But in the intervention group the score for reduced motivation was higher (difference 2.9 (CI 0.1 to 5.7), p=0.038).

• 18% more patients in the intervention compared to the usual care group also had persistent fatigue with significant school absence.

• The odds of developing persistent fatigue and of missing more than 50% of school classes was 3.3 times higher in the intervention than in the usual care group (OR 3.3 (CI 1.0 to 11.3), p=0.046).

Conclusion:

This particular video film intervention plus usual care in children and adolescents with unexplained fatigue did not prevent an unfavorable outcome and possibly had an adverse effect, in that it:
 
• Reduced motivation

• And increased the incidence of persistent fatigue,

• With significant school absence.

The use of this particular film is not recommended.

Source: Archives of Disease in Childhood, Sep 22, 2010. Bakker RJ, van de Putte EM, Kuis W, Sinnema G. Department of Pediatrics, Antonius Ziekenhuis, Sneek, The Netherlands. [Email: robhelbz@telfort.nl]





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