Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Scientific biomarkers that distinguish ME/CFS from simple fatigue

By Margaret Williams:

The wealth of scientific biomarkers that distinguish ME/CFS from “chronic fatigue” (which may indeed be a somatisation disorder) include the following:

· abnormal brain scans (SPECT & PET scans) and MRI scans that are consistent with organic brain syndrome, showing focal demyelination and/or oedema in the sub-cortical area

· a dysregulated HPA axis

· a dysregulated antiviral pathway (RNase-L)

· cardiac abnormalities

· abnormal capillary flow

· low circulating blood volume

· abnormal ergometry test (indicating immediate anaerobic threshold)

· haemodynamic instability

· abnormal immune profile

· gene profiling

All the above investigations are specifically not recommended by NICE in its Clinical Guideline 53 on CFS that was published on 22nd August 2007.

This means that they are effectively proscribed in the UK, as no Primary Care Trust (PCT) will fund them if NICE does not recommend them (and NICE Guidelines are to become legally enforceable in 2009). Read more>>

See also: Top ten biomedical research findings in ME/CFS by Professor Komaroff

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