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J Health Psychol. 2015 Feb;20(2):198-209. doi: 10.1177/1359105313501534. Epub 2013 Sep 20.

Understanding medical students' views of chronic fatigue syndrome: a qualitative study.

Author information

1
University of Manchester, UK stenhoff.alexandra@gmail.com.
2
University of Manchester, UK.

Abstract

Chronic fatigue syndrome receives little attention in the medical curriculum. This study explores UK medical students' knowledge of and attitudes towards chronic fatigue syndrome. Semi-structured interviews (average length 22 minutes) were conducted with 21 participants (7 females and 14 males) in years 3 (n = 4), 4 (n = 11) and 5 (n = 6) of their studies. Inductive thematic analysis taking a realist perspective produced three themes: limited knowledge, influences on attitudes and training needs. Students acquired their knowledge and attitudes largely from informal sources and expressed difficulty understanding chronic fatigue syndrome within a traditional biomedical framework. Incorporating teaching about chronic fatigue syndrome into the medical curriculum within the context of a biopsychosocial understanding of illness could encourage more positive attitudes towards chronic fatigue syndrome.

KEYWORDS:

beliefs; chronic fatigue syndrome; health education; models; qualitative methods

PMID:
24058124
DOI:
10.1177/1359105313501534
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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