M.E and CFS
For the benefit of all of the patient groups involved, doctors must return to the age-old medical principals of correct diagnosis (a) careful history, (b) detailed physical examination and (c) appropriate investigation. As Dr Byron Hyde MD explains:
'Although the authors of these definitions have repeatedly stated that they are defining a syndrome and not a specific disease, patient, physician, and insurer alike have tended to treat this syndrome as a specific disease or illness, with at times a potentially specific treatment and a specific outcome. This has resulted in much confusion. Thirty years ago when a patient presented to a hospital clinic with unexplained fatigue, any medical school physician would have told the students to search for an occult malignancy, cardiac or other organ disease, or chronic infection. The concept that there is an entity called chronic fatigue syndromei has totally altered that essential medical guideline. Patients are now being diagnosed with CFSi as though it were a disease. It is not. It is a patchwork of symptoms that could mean anything.' It is important to be aware that Myalgic Encephalomyelitisi and 'CFS' are not synonymous terms and should not be used interchangeably, and that 'fatigue' is not a defining feature of M.E. nor even an essential symptom of M.E.
CFS was created in the 1980s in the US in response to an outbreak of what was unmistakably M.E., but this new name and definition did not describe the known signs, symptoms, history and pathology of M.E. It described a disease process that did not, and could not exist. The fact that a person qualifies for a diagnosis of 'CFS' (a) does not mean that the patient has Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (M.E.), and (b) does not mean that the patient has any other distinct and specific illness named 'CFS.' Every diagnosis of CFS -- based on any of the CFS definitions -- can only ever be a misdiagnosis.
The bogus disease category of 'CFS' has undoubtedly been used to impose a false psychiatric paradigm of M.E. by allying it with various psychiatric fatigue states and various unrelated fatigue syndromes for the benefit of insurance companies and various other organisations and corporations which have a vested financial interest in how these patients are treated, including the government.
The distinction must be made between terminology and definitions.