Tips from one person with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFIDS) to another

The best piece of advice any doctor has ever given my years, was that she was the captain of her body and it was her responsibility to manage her disease. Unfortunately, this means that one must take all medical advice with some skepticism, as it might be incorrect or even counterproductive.


One morning, Suzanne awoke with abscesses over every tooth in her mouth. The dentist was about to put her on a course of antibiotics. When she asked if he confirmed that there was an infection, he checked and found there was none. The antibiotics would not have worked. In fact, the abscesses cleared up by themselves in two days, as they have several times since then. Medications also have not helped with what seems like a bladder infection, vision problems, gastric problems or hearing problems.

Doctors today are very focused on their specialties and are not as expert on CFIDS as is the patient. Their advice must be questioned in order to prevent unnecessary medication and treatment. This scenario is particularly unsettling as a disease other than CFIDS may indeed cause the symptoms, so one must insist that doctors check carefully.

Hal Katz

New York, N.Y.

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