Chronic Fatigue Syndrome - Treatment

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What is the treatment for chronic fatigue syndrome?

There is no known cure for chronic fatigue syndrome; treatment is based on those therapies that reduce the symptoms. In general, patients who are diagnosed within the first two years of symptoms respond better to symptomatic treatment than those patients diagnosed after two or more years of having the disease. Treatments to reduce symptoms are individualized for each patient as no single therapy helps all CFS patients. Drug therapies (bupropion [Wellbutrin], sertraline [Zoloft], and other drugs) are used to treat symptoms of sleep, pain, and psychological problems. Other therapy used is stress reduction and lifestyle changes (which may include diet and exercise reduction). Some investigators suggest diet and nutrition play a role and recommend vitamin D, B6, B12, lysine, and glutathione supplements while others do not. Some clinicians may prescribe antibiotics such as metronidazole (Flagyl) or amoxicillin and clavulanic acid (Augmentin) if the patient has high levels of antibodies that react with C. pneumoniae or other organisms. Other treatments that claim some positive effects on CFS symptoms include holistic treatments such as bananas, maca (a plant root from Peru), pau d'arco (herb from the bark of the taheebo tree in Central America), and spirulina (plankton). Acupuncture and fluorescent-light treatments also are claimed to help CFS patients. Most of these other therapies have not been well studied by experts who treat CFS.

Most clinicians agree that patients with CFS need to be careful to get rest and avoid any strenuous exercise as such exercise will likely make the CFS symptoms become more severe. Consequently, most doctors recommend physical therapy and only mild to moderate exercise and other physical activity. Cognitive-behavioral therapy seems to work well with pediatric-aged patients.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: Camille, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: April 17

My doctor had been trying to find different methods of curing chronic fatigue syndrome. I am in constant relapse. I have had this problem for more than 20 years.

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Comment from: Tiredtodeath, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: November 18

L-Theanine is the only thing that helps with memory issues, concentrating and feeling better but must be taken in high doses (12 pills/day).

Was this comment helpful?Yes

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