Idiopathic chronic fatigue & Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: a comparison of 2 case-definitions

The aim of the study was to compare the signs and symptoms of individuals meeting two different definitions of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). Ninety-four patients fitting the eligibility criteria for idiopathic fatigue were enrolled into the study. Of the 94 patients, 48 met the 1988 definition of CFS, 20 the 1994 (but not the 1988) definition of CFS, and 26 met neither definition. The 1994 defined cases were more likely than 1988 defined cases, and non-syndromal individuals to be male, married, and high school educated. The 1994 cases were less likely than 1988 cases to present acute onset, self reported sore throat, mild fever lymphadenopathy, pharingitis. In conclusion, the 1994 criteria increased the number of patients classified as CFS; however, those who fit only the 1994 criteria were less likely to have an acute symptomatic onset and signs and symptoms suggestive of an infectious process.

Arpino C, Carrieri MP, Valesini G, Pizzigallo E, Rovere P, Tirelli U, Conti F

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