Psychobehavioral & immunological characteristics of adult people with chronic fatigue & patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)

The psychobehavioral responses and cellular immune function were

investigated in healthy people (control, N = 21), adult people

with chronic fatigue (fatigue-non-CFS group, N = 24), and

patients with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS, N = 10). Based on

psychobehavioral responses, the fatigue-non-CFS group had low

general activity levels (p < .05) and slightly depressive

tendencies (p < .01) compared with the control. They had many

life event stresses (p < .05) and sleep disturbances (p <

.01), and they could not cope appropriately with stresses. The

fatigue-non-CFS group also showed significantly lower natural

killer (NK) cell activity (p < .01) and decreased numbers of

CD16+ and CD56+ cells (p < .05). Compared with the

fatigue-non-CFS group, patients with CFS had higher degrees of

physical fatigue (p < .01) and more life event stresses (p <

.05). They had lower general activity levels and social

introversion. They were also in a depressive state. NK cell

activity and the numbers of CD16+ and CD56+ cells were

significantly reduced in patients with CFS (p < .01). These

findings suggest that adult people with chronic fatigue may be

in an intermediate state between the healthy control and

patients with CFS in terms of psychobehavioral responses and

low NK cell activity. We observed three cases in such an

intermediate state in whom CFS subsequently developed.

Masuda A, Nozoe SI, Matsuyama T, Tanaka H

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