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Am J Med. 1994 Jun;96(6):544-50.

The treatment of chronic fatigue syndrome: science and speculation.

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Department of Psychiatry, Prince Henry Hospital, Little Bay NSW, Australia.


The chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is a heterogeneous disorder characterized by fatigue, neuropsychiatric symptoms, and various other somatic complaints. Treatment studies to date reflect both the diversity of medical disciplines involved in the management of patients with CFS and the multiple pathophysiologic mechanisms proposed. There have been few attempts to study integrated treatment programs, and although several controlled studies have been reported, no treatment has been shown clearly to result in long-term benefit in the majority of patients. Good clinical care integrating medical and psychologic concepts, together with symptomatic management, may prevent significant secondary impairment in the majority of patients. Future treatment studies should examine differential response rates for possible subtypes of the disorder (eg, documented viral onset, concurrent clinical depression), evaluate the extent of any synergistic effects between therapies (ie, medical and psychologic), and employ a wide range of biologic and psychologic parameters as markers of treatment response.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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