Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) occurs primarily in people between 20 and 40 years of age. It is twice as prevalent in women as it is in men. Symptoms of the illness include, but are not limited to, decreased ability to concentrate, fatigue
, weakness, muscle and joint
aches, and low-grade fever and lymph node swelling in some cases. The symptoms usually come and go for a period of 6 months or longer.
Researchers have not found the precise cause of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. However, it is known that sometimes Chronic Fatigue Syndrome starts when recovering from a cold
, intestinal bug, infectious mononucleosis, or after a particularly stressful period. Sometimes the condition develops without a clear link to any particular event.
Because there is no specific diagnostic test for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, no one knows how many people suffer from the illness. The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) estimate that as many as 500,000 people in the United States have a Chronic Fatigue-like condition.
Some health experts cite biological explanations for the illness including anemia
, low blood sugar (hypoglycemia
), environmental allergies, or body wide yeast infections (candidiasis). A theory in the 1980s linked Chronic Fatigue Syndrome with the Epstein-Barr Virus, which causes mononucleosis. However, since then, this theory has been discounted.
There is no effective treatment for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. However, some medications
may make it easier to live with. See your doctor
if you are concerned about Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.