CFS or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome characterized by extreme fatigue unexplained by any underlying medical condition is an complicated disorder.
The fatigue does not improve with rest but may worsen with mental and physical activity. CFS is also called systemic exertion intolerance disease (SEID) or myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME).
There are many theories for chronic fatigue from viral infections to psychological stress, and some experts believe it is a combination of factors, but the cause of CFS is unknown. To make matters worse, there is no single test that can diagnose chronic fatigue syndrome.
Symptoms of CFS
Worried that you might be suffering from CFS? Some symptoms of CFS include:
- Inability to concentrate or loss of memory
- Sore throat
- Waking up from sleep unrefreshed
- Extreme exhaustion following physical or mental exercise that lasts more than 24 hours
- Sore throat
- Enlarged lymph nodes located in armpits or neck
Fatigue can signify other illness, infections or psychological disorders so it is better to see a doctor for excessive and persistent fatigue.
The cause of CFS is still unknown. While some seem to have the disorder which triggered through a combinations of factors which may include:
- Viral Infections : As CFS is developed by some people after a viral infections, researchers suspect that viruses such as Epstein-Barr virus, mouse leukemia virus and human herpes virus 6 might trigger chronic fatigue syndrome.
- Immune System Deficiency: People suffering from CFS also appear to have slightly impaired immune system. It is unclear however if the impairment is the cause of the disorder.
- Hormonal Imbalance: Some people who experience CFS sometimes experience abnormal level of hormones produced by pituitary glands, adrenal glands or hypothalamus, however, the significance of these hormonal imbalance is still unknown.
Risk Factors for CFS
Some factors increase your risk of being diagnosed with CFS. Although CFS can occur at any age people in their 40s and 50s are more commonly affected. Women are more likely to be diagnosed with CFS than men.
Another risk factor of CFS is stress. Inability or difficulty to manage stress may lead to development of CFS. CFS might also lead to complications such as lifestyle restrictions, social isolation, increased work absence and even depression.
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