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Aust Fam Physician. 2000 Jan;29(1):80-5.

General practitioners' beliefs, attitudes and reported actions towards chronic fatigue syndrome.

Author information

1
Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, South Australia.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To undertake a survey of Australian general practitioners (GPs) to explore their beliefs, attitudes and reported actions with respect to chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS).

METHOD:

A random sample of 2090 Australian GPs, stratified by state, was surveyed in May-August 1995.

RESULTS:

A 77% response rate was obtained. For the majority of practitioners who pursue a diagnosis of CFS, six symptoms were considered to be of significance: chronic unremitting fatigue for over 6 months; failure to recover energy after rest; reduced exercise tolerance; prostration for several days after exercise; generalised myalgia and poor concentration. Individual counselling was the most frequently used treatment. Thirty-one percent of practitioners reported that they did not believe that CFS is a distinct syndrome. Of these, 70% reported that the most likely cause of chronic fatigue was depression.

CONCLUSION:

There is considerable diversity of opinion between practitioners about CFS. The diversity extends from questioning whether the syndrome even exists to different strategies for diagnosis and management.

PMID:
10721550
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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