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Biol Psychiatry. 1998 Feb 1;43(3):236-7.

Basal activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis in patients with the chronic fatigue syndrome (neurasthenia).

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  • 1University Department of Psychiatry, Warneford Hospital, Oxford, United Kingdom.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Impairments in both basal activity and activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPA) have been reported in chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS; neurasthenia). We sought to replicate these findings and examined basal activity of the HPA in a carefully selected sample of patients with CFS.

METHODS:

Basal activity of the HPA was assessed using salivary and urinary cortisol collection over a 24-hour period in 22 (12 male; 10 female) patients meeting criteria for CFS and appropriate controls.

RESULTS:

Salivary and urinary cortisol measures did not differ between CFS patients and controls.

CONCLUSIONS:

Basal activity of the HPA was not reduced in CFS patients. Reasons for the failure to replicate previous findings are discussed.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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