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Body Mass Index and Fatigue Severity in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

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Journal: Journal of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, vol. 14, No. 1, 2007 [Abstract published online ahead of article, which is not yet available] Authors: Ellen A. Schur, Carolyn Noonan, Wayne R. Smith, Jack Goldberg, Dedra Buchwald. DOI: 10.1300/

Background: It is uncertain how much fatigue is related to weight in patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS).

Objective: To assess the association of body mass index (BMI) and fatigue in CFS patients.

Methods: Consecutive patients seen in a referral-based specialty clinic were eligible if they met CFS criteria and had completed required measures. Fatigue measures were the vitality subscale of the Medical Outcomes Short-Form 36 and the global fatigue index from the Multidimensional Assessment of Fatigue.

Results:
n In women, there was no relationship between BMI and vitality subscale or global fatigue index scores (P = 0.99 and P = 0.44).
n For men, vitality subscale scores significantly decreased as BMI increased (P = 0.02).

Conclusions:
n In CFS patients, the prevalence of obesity was low despite risk factors for weight gain.
n Fatigue severity and BMI were unrelated in women with CFS, but this relationship may differ for men.

Keywords: Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, fatigue, weight

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One thought on “Body Mass Index and Fatigue Severity in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome”

  1. NicoleS3 says:

    This article is very puzzling as some of the sickest female CFIDS sufferers I know are now obese after having never had a weight problem in their lives. I refuse to believe that CFIDS doesn’t cause weight gain (or in some, weight loss) as it dysregulates the endocrine system and most other body systems. I find it hard to believe that CFIDS doesn’t cause metabolic problems.

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