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Natural course of chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis in adolescents

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By Tom Norris et al.
 
Abstract
 
Objective Little is known about persistence of or recovery from chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) in adolescents. Previous studies have small sample sizes, short follow-up or have focused on fatigue rather than CFS/ME or, equivalently, chronic fatigue, which is disabling. This work aimed to describe the epidemiology and natural course of CFS/ME in adolescents aged 13–18 years.
 
Design Longitudinal follow-up of adolescents enrolled in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children.
 
Setting Avon, UK.
 
Participants We identified adolescents who had disabling fatigue of >6 months duration without a known cause at ages 13, 16 and 18 years. We use the term ‘chronic disabling fatigue’ (CDF) because CFS/ME was not verified by clinical diagnosis. We used multiple imputation to obtain unbiased estimates of prevalence and persistence.
 
Results The estimated prevalence of CDF was 1.47% (95% CI 1.05% to 1.89%) at age 13, 2.22% (1.67% to 2.78%) at age 16 and 2.99% (2.24% to 3.75%) at age 18. Among adolescents with CDF of 6 months duration at 13 years 75.3% (64.0% to 86.6%) were not classified as such at age 16. Similar change was observed between 16 and 18 years (75.0% (62.8% to 87.2%)). Of those with CDF at age 13, 8.02% (0.61% to 15.4%) presented with CDF throughout the duration of adolescence.
 
Conclusions The prevalence of CDF lasting 6 months or longer (a proxy for clinically diagnosed CFS/ME) increases from 13 to 18 years. However, persistent CDF is rare in adolescents, with approximately 75% recovering after 2–3 years.
 
Source: Tom Norris, Simon M Collin, Kate Tilling, Roberto Nuevo, Stephen A Stansfeld, Jonathan AC Sterne, Jon Heron, Esther Crawley. Natural course of chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis in adolescents. Arch Dis Child doi:10.1136/archdischild-2016-311198 (Full article)

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2 thoughts on “Natural course of chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis in adolescents”

  1. Tenbaum says:

    Can hardly believe I’m reading this.

    “Natural course of chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis in adolescents”

    Then below the author writes:

    “We use the term ‘chronic disabling fatigue’ (CDF) because CFS/ME was not verified by clinical diagnosis.”

    The author appears not to care he contradicts himself. The author appears not to care about the heterogeneity of his patient population.

    The patient population is anybody’s guess. This is yet another garbage “fatigue” study pretending to be about the most disabling widespread neuroimmune disease on earth.

    Shameful. Disgraceful. Nonscience nonsense.

    Will the real scientists please step up to the plate? 17 million ME/CFS sufferers worldwide need quality research and a treatment, not another muddled study of tired patients.

  2. dfwmom says:

    Your title claims, “Natural course of chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis in adolescents” and yet it states, “CFS/ME was not verified by clinical diagnosis”.

    In other words, this article LIES.

    Tell me, are you somehow related to the corrupt researchers of the PACE trial, or perhaps being paid by the same people who paid them?

    I’ve heard this myth before, from my daughter’s doctor, who promised her that if she just jogged every day, she’d be magically cured. When you publish medical falsehoods like this, when you lie to doctors and lie to children by conducting shoddy research and misrepresenting your results, YOU HARM REAL CHILDREN.

    YOU. HARM. REAL. CHILDREN.

    You should be ashamed of yourself — utterly, completely, ashamed of yourself.

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