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A complicated disorder, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is where the person has severe fatigue all the time, and it isn’t related to any other medical problem. No matter how much rest the person gets, the fatigue is still present, unlike those without the syndrome. There is no definitive cause for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, but theories have included stress and viral infections.
As well as the chronic fatigue, there are 8 other main symptoms that are recognized as part of the syndrome. These include:
- Lack of concentration or loss of memory
- Sore throats
- Muscle pain that can’t be explained
- Lymph node enlargement in the armpit or neck
- Pain in joints
- Sleep that doesn’t result in feeling refreshed
- Exhaustion that lasts longer than 24 hours following mental or physical exercise
There are 3 levels of severity that are identified in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Most cases are mild to moderate, but some people do fall into the severe category. With mild forms of the syndrome, you can generally attend to daily tasks and take care of yourself, but it may be a little more difficult. Often sufferers can attend a job, but they are likely to need time off regularly.
With moderate cases, mobility can be restricted and daily tasks are much more difficult to manage. Those who fall into the moderate category generally are unable to work, and will need regular rest during the day, yet will often sleep poorly at night.
For a case to be considered severe, the person is unable to do the majority of daily tasks. Mobility could be so restricted that a wheelchair may be necessary, and many people on this level become housebound, unable to leave their homes. Sensitivity to light and noise may occur, and many people will spend the majority of their time in their beds.