New Research Confirms Powerful Cause for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
November 21, 2006
Two new studies suggest that traumatic events in childhood, as well as stress at any period in life, has been associated with the development of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS).
In one study, researchers compared the physical and mental health of 43 CFS patients with 60 healthy individuals.
Among the many assessments, both groups were questioned about five kinds of trauma they experienced in childhood. CFS patients had higher trauma scores than those without it.
Exposure to traumatic events multiplied a patient's risk of succumbing to CFS as much as eightfold. CFS patients were also more likely to have psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder.
A second study evaluated the incidence of CFS among some 19,000 Swedish twins (some 1,600 patients suffered from it). In two of the analyses performed, emotional instability and stress were connected to CFS. And, in one comparing a CFS patient to his or her twin without it, a stressful life increased a person's risk of the disease by 500 percent.CFS affects between 400,000 and 900,000 U.S. adults, and is characterized by unexplained fatigue that lasts for at least six months, fails to get better with rest, and interferes with daily activities. It is also accompanied by at least some of the following additional symptoms: extreme fatigue after exertion, difficulties with memory and concentration, unrefreshing sleep, headaches, muscle pain, joint pain, sore throat, or tender lymph nodes.