Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

06-18-2010 | 

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is characterized by debilitating fatigue not resulting from exertion, lasting longer than six months and associated with physical and neuropsychological symptoms common to other diseases such as cognitive deficits, impaired sleep, anthralgia, myalgia, headache, gastrointestinal symptoms, and tender
lymph nodes. Although CFS has been recognized by scientific researchers for several years, the syndrome is still poorly understood and continues to be viewed with skepticism both by the general public and by health and social service professionals.

This report contains an evidence synthesis on CFS epidemiology, etiology and pathogenesis, a systematic review of the studies on the efficacy and safety of CFS treatments, and a review of the clinical practice guidelines on the diagnostic and therapeutic management or rehabilitation of patients with this illness. It addresses the intervention modalities providing optimal CFS management to help decision makers improve the care and services for people with CFS, and covers the professional and organizational aspects related to such management. An economic analysis of CFS treatment options was performed. The needs of Québec patients were specifically examined in a primary study based on CFS patient interviews.

In light of its findings, AETMIS recommends that organizers of continuing education in professional associations and corporations should include chronic fatigue syndrome in their programs. AETMIS also recommends that the Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux and network administrators designate one or two centres of expertise dedicated to chronic fatigue syndrome.

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