Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/ME

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/ME

What is chronic fatigue syndrome?

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), also known as Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME), is a long-term neurological condition with a range of different symptoms. It gets its name from the most common symptom: chronic tiredness. 

There are thought to be 250,000 people living with chronic fatigue syndrome in the UK. It can affect people of any age, but most often presents itself between the mid-20s and mid-40s.


What are the symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome?

Naturally, the main symptom of chronic fatigue syndrome is chronic fatigue. On top of that, however, people may also experience:

  • Sleep problems
  • Muscle or joint pain
  • Headaches
  • Sore throat or sore glands that are not swollen
  • Cognitive difficulties, such as having issues thinking, remembering, or concentrating
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Feeling dizzy or sick
  • Heart palpitations

The severity and regularity of the symptoms can vary day to day, or even within the same day. Many people find that exercising can make the symptoms worse, exacerbating the feeling of tiredness and fatigue.

Diagnosing chronic fatigue syndrome is tricky, as many of the symptoms are shared with other conditions. Doctors rely on the patient’s own account of the symptoms, as well as their medical history, urine tests, and blood samples.


What causes chronic fatigue syndrome?

There are a number of different theories for what might cause chronic fatigue syndrome, although no one knows for sure. For example, some people develop the neurological condition after an infection. Other suggested causes or triggers for CFS/ME include:

  • Viral infections, such as glandular fever
  • Bacterial infections, such as pneumonia
  • Problems with the immune system
  • Hormone imbalances
  • mental health problems, such as stress and emotional trauma
  • Genetic predilection

As none of these theories are confirmed, people may develop chronic fatigue syndrome despite experiencing none of the above.


What treatment options are available for chronic fatigue syndrome?

There is no cure for chronic fatigue syndrome, so treatment is focused on managing the symptoms and improving the quality of life for the patient. Most people will improve over time, but for some, it will not disappear completely. It’s more likely that people who start to show signs of CFS earlier in life, when they are children or teenagers, will recover fully.

Nonetheless, there are some treatment methods that can be pursued. These include:

  • Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)
  • S structured exercise programme called graded exercise therapy (GET)
  • Medicine to control pain, nausea, and sleeping problems

With the right treatment, many people experience periods of time when their symptoms are less severe and the impact on their life is far less.


How can medical cannabis help with chronic fatigue syndrome?

For those looking for alternative forms of treatment, medical cannabis has been known to help patients of The Medical Cannabis Clinics who suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome. Where traditional treatments don’t provide relief, medical cannabis can help.

Although no research has looked into how medical cannabis directly affects chronic fatigue syndrome, a study from 2017, ‘Cannabis and Cannabinoids for Chronic Pain’ shows just how effective it can be at treating pain and inflammation, two key symptoms of the condition. The researchers, E Alfonso Romero-Sandoval, Ashley L Kolano, and P Abigail Alvarado-Vázquez, state that “cannabis is consistently effective in reducing chronic non-cancer pain”.

The Medical Cannabis Clinics’ team is dedicated to raising awareness about how medical cannabis can help with a range of conditions. Your prescription can be tailored to suit your individual circumstances and needs, with ongoing support and adjustments made as necessary.

At The Medical Cannabis Clinics, we offer personalised treatment plans and private care for patients through online video link consultations with our expert specialist doctors, who will guide you through the treatment options available from the clinic.

Appointments start from just £70. Book a private consultation today and one of our expert specialist doctors will be able to offer you targeted advice and treatment plans, unique to your needs and symptoms.

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