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Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). Committee for Science & Education, Medical Association of South Africa

  [ 35 votes ]   [ Discuss This Article ] • August 6, 1996

OBJECTIVE: To acknowledge the clinical syndrome chronic fatigue
syndrome (CFS) and outline the diagnostic criteria and
reasonable management.

OUTCOMES: Attempt at containment of
treatment cost and improvement of the quality of care of
patients with CFS.

EVIDENCE: Delphi-type commentary from 20
expert clinicians and appropriate organisations. Limited
literature survey.

VALUES: To clarify the reasonable
management of CFS amid conflicting clinical opinion on a
condition of concern to patients, funders and doctors. An
adaptation of an existing guideline was sent to organisations
and individuals for comment. Comments received were included
in this guideline where possible.

To acknowledge a clinical syndrome with a reasonable approach
to management considering the cost implications. No cost
analysis was done.

RECOMMENDATIONS: To recommend the
following: (i) diagnostic criteria for CFS; (ii) potential
differential diagnoses and possible investigations; and (iii)
management protocol.

VALIDATION: The draft guidelines were
subjected to external review by individual doctors who are
acknowledged CFS treaters, doctor groups and the patient
support group. There were major disputes about the content,
with the responses falling into two groups: those who do not
believe CFS is a distinguishable illness, and those who do.

DEVELOPER AND FUNDING: The Committee for Science and
Education, Medical Association of South Africa.

Medical Association of South Africa and national health care
organisations (see list at the end of the document).


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