Chronic fatigue syndrome symptoms, or commonly called CFS, is a complex and incapacitating disease.
Chronic fatigue syndrome is manifested by severe fatigue that is not relieved by rest or sleep. This condition can get worse by mental and physical activity. Patients with chronic fatigue syndrome most frequently function at a significantly lower level of physical activity than they were competent at before the commencement of the disease which is the defining characteristic of the disease. Moreover, patients can report numerous vague symptoms including: muscle pain, weakness, impaired memory, dysfunctional mental concentration, and insomnia. In severe instances, this disease can persist for years.
What is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?
Chronic fatigue syndrome has an unknown origin, though this disease can be linked to a preceding infection. Chronic fatigue syndrome is a state of long-term fatigue that is present without other significant justifications for several months or more. This syndrome comes along with cognitive impairments (problems with concentration or short-term memory). The patient is suspected to have chronic fatigue syndrome if he fits the following criteria:
• If the patient has severe, long-term tiredness for six months or more and all other identified diseases that could possibly cause the fatigue are ruled out by the physician attending the patient.
• If the patient concurrently has the identified symptoms of the disease.
Chronic fatigue syndrome involves more people than in the past decades. The disease usually occurs in women more often than in men. This condition is usually seen in adolescents to middle-aged adults. Patients with this disorder are frequently not capable of executing normal activities at home and at work due to their troubles with their short-term memory and chronic fatigue.
What are the Causes of CFS?
The disease is said to be related to the effects of an infection in the body’s immune system. Numerous viruses have undergone several research studies to determine the causes of this disease. The cause-and-effect relationship has been identified. Some evidence has indicated that pneumonia and some other illnesses can cause the occurrence of the condition. These patients will most likely improve with medications such as antibiotics. Nevertheless, its association is still not that well established. There are various discrete conditions that appear to cause chronic fatigue in some patients.
One of the related diseases is EBV or Epstein-Barr virus infection. This virus can cause mononucleosis also termed as the “kissing disease.” There are other unconnected, contagious diseases that cause severe fatigue like bronchitis, pneumonia, and diarrhea. There are also conditions that must be ruled out first because they possess similar manifestations of CSF like: malignancies, adrenal insufficiency, AIDS, kidney disease, liver disease, psychosomatic illnesses, fibromyalgia (See: Symptoms of Fibromyalgia), Lyme disease, thyroid disease (See: Thyroid symptoms), and hepatitis C.
What are the Symptoms of CFS?
Detecting the occurrence of this disease necessitates the ruling out of other conditions with persistent chronic fatigue including cancer and HIV/AIDS. Since there is no specific diagnostic test to determine the incidence of the disease, the diagnosis will only be based from the various tests and the existence of chronic fatigue syndrome symptoms. Patients with CSF can exhibit the following:
• Severe fatigue. Patients with this condition can have chronic fatigue lasting for six months to a year, or even longer. These patients might have had preceding infections. Fatigue can continue subsequent the recovery of the patient from infections.
• Chronic problems. A usual report of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome symptoms may demonstrate difficulties with memory loss. They also may have difficulties saying specific words during speech, termed as verbal dyslexia or dysnomia.
• Post-exertion tiredness. This is also a common problem for these patients. They are extremely worn-out subsequent to performing regular activities.
• Extreme tiredness after sleeping. This manifestation is a distinct symptom. Normal people usually need sleep to replenish the lost energy of the body throughout the day. For these patients, even after long episodes of sleep or rest, they still complain of extreme tiredness.
• Feelings of despair. Patients with chronic fatigue syndrome symptoms can become depressed. This may be due to the problems that they have encountered during the course of the disease.
• Other manifestations may be observed including muscle aches, mild fever, headaches, and sore throat (See: Sore Throat Remedies).
How to Diagnose Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Symptom
As mentioned earlier, there is no specific test to detect this disease. This disease may be confirmed by the following:
• Specific signs and symptoms, such as mentioned above, should be present.
Laboratory examinations are utilized to discount other fatigue-causing conditions. These tests will as well support the diagnosis of this disease. The physician may suggest the following tests:
• Adrenal, liver, and liver function tests are very useful to discount diseases that may cause tiredness. The results of these tests must be normal.
• Blood tests. The most reliable laboratory irregularity in people with CSF is a tremendously low level of ESR or erythrocyte sedimentation rate.
• Antibody tests. The physician may recommend this test to verify whether the patient had previous infections such as pneumonia and Lyme disease.
• MRI and CT scans of the patient’s brain are useful to exclude other diseases of the CNS or central nervous system. The results of these tests are normal for patients with CSF.
What are the Treatments for CSF?
Chronic fatigue syndrome symptoms are treated through different therapies to address each of the problems in this disorder. Since the origin of this disease is still not known, management programs are directed to alleviate the manifestations rather than curing the disease. The objective of these treatments is to restore some levels of preexisting well-being and function. Medical therapy is intended to relieve particular manifestations.
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