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Understanding the syndrome of chronic fatigue and its connection to healthcare professionals


Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is a complex disorder that has baffled healthcare professionals for more than a decade. However, as researchers in California have established a characteristic chemical signature linked to the condition, it now appears that we are one step closer to better understanding and diagnosing this mystery disease.

To test targeted metabolites in blood plasma, a team of researchers at the San Diego School of Medicine used several techniques. A distinctive chemical signature for the disorder, unexpected underlying biology that bears strong similarities to the dauer state (a German term for persistence or long-lived) and other hypometabolic syndromes were discovered by the team. This may mean that the product of the body going into a hibernation-like state might be CFS.

The team tested more than 600 metabolites from different biochemical pathways in blood plasma from 84 participants, led by Robert Naviaux, professor of medicine, paediatrics, pathology, and director of the mitochondrial and metabolic disease centre University of California San Diego School of Medicine. Individuals with CFS were found to suggest defects in 20 metabolic pathways.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: far more than weakness

And what is CFS exactly? CFS is a debilitating disorder, also known medically as myalgic encephalomyelitis, that causes persistent and severe fatigue. It is also exacerbated by physical or mental activity and, with bed rest, does not change.

Extreme CFS can seriously interfere with patients’ lives. Owing to significantly decreased mobility and stalled concentration, individuals diagnosed with CFS often report having trouble keeping up with the environment around them.

It is estimated in Singapore Chronic Fatigue Syndrome forms about 2 to 5 percent of the working population. Anyone may acquire this disorder, but studies show it may be more common in women than in men. Middle-aged adults are more vulnerable to contracting the disease in their 40s and 50s.

How CFS may influence healthcare professionals

There’s never really a leisurely day in the healthcare business, no matter the profession. As healthcare professionals, a significant amount of exhaustion will result from hectic schedules and long hours. Mounting job stresses can also lead to growing anxiety, stress and burnout, not to mention.

For the body and mind, such stress is not healthy, particularly in constant and chronic stress. It may potentially put healthcare professionals at higher risk of developing CFS. High achievers who experience anxiety and depression are especially vulnerable to the disorder.


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