BMJ Editorial: Chronic fatigue syndrome or myalgic encephalomyelitis NICE guidelines

This BMJ Editorial, published today, has been co-authored by Peter Denton White (Barts CFS Clinic), Maurice Murphy (Barts), Jill Moss, AYME, George Armstrong, co-chair, AfME and Sir Peter Spencer, CEO, AfME. Also published in the BMJ, today, is an associated article by R Baker, chair of the NICE guideline group and E J Shaw, deputy chief executive, National Collaborating Centre for Primary Care.

AYME and AfME have already issued press releases following the publication of NICE guidance, on 22 August.

We know which way AYME and AfME have jumped.

It will be very interesting, indeed, to see how the ME Association and Jane Colby are going to respond to the final guideline by way of initial statements or press releases and in any detailed appraisals they plan to issue.

BMJ 2007;335:411-412 (1 September), doi:10.1136/bmj.39316.472361.80
Editorials

Chronic fatigue syndrome or myalgic encephalomyelitis, NICE guidelines pave the way forward for patients and doctors

The first 150 words of the full text of this article appear below.

The uncertainty inherent in making a diagnosis of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is reflected by the variety of names (such as myalgic encephalomyelitis; ME) it has been given. The names reflect the hope that such labels can impose some certainty where little exists. Many doctors are reluctant to make a diagnosis of CFS, with half not even believing it exists.1 The consequences of this uncertainty and reluctance have been that patients hear mixed messages and often receive poor, if any, care.2 It is therefore a welcome relief that the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has just published clinical guidelines on the diagnosis and management of this disease.3 In this week’s BMJ, Baker and Shaw summarise the guidelines.4

How has the development of these guidelines come about? Eleven years ago, three UK royal colleges agreed that CFS/ME existed as an independent diagnosis and that treatments were possible.5 . . .

[Full text of this article requires subscription]

Peter White, professor of psychological medicine1, Maurice Murphy, consultant physician1, Jill Moss, founding chair2, George Armstrong, co-chair3, Sir Peter Spencer, chief executive officer3

1 Barts and the London NHS Trust and Queen Mary School of Medicine and Dentistry, St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London EC1A 7BE, 2 Association of Young People with ME, PO Box 5766, Milton Keynes, MK10 1AQ, 3 Action for ME, Bristol BS1 6BY

p.d.white@qmul.ac.uk

Related Article
Diagnosis and management of chronic fatigue syndrome or myalgic encephalomyelitis (or encephalopathy): summary of NICE guidance R Baker and E J Shaw

BMJ 2007 335: 446-448. [Extract] [Full Text]
 

 

BMJ 2007;335:446-448 (1 September), doi:10.1136/bmj.39302.509005.AE

Practice

Diagnosis and management of chronic fatigue syndrome or myalgic encephalomyelitis (or encephalopathy): summary of NICE guidance

R Baker, chair of the guideline group1, E J Shaw, deputy chief executive2

1 Department of Health Sciences, University of Leicester, Leicester LE1 6TP , 2 National Collaborating Centre for Primary Care, Royal College of General Practitioners, London E1 8EW

Correspondence to: E J Shaw cfs_me@rcgp.org.uk

The first 150 words of the full text of this article appear below.

Why read this summary?

Data from other countries indicate that chronic fatigue syndrome (also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis or myalgic encephalopathy) (CFS/ME) is relatively common (affecting at least 0.2-0.4% of the population), although good epidemiological data for the United Kingdom are lacking. Many different potential aetiologies for CFS/ME have been investigated, including neurological, endocrine, immunological, genetic, psychiatric, and infectious, but the aetiology cannot yet be fully explained. CFS/ME can cause prolonged illness and disability and substantially affect patients and their families. Although most patients have mild or moderate symptoms, some have severe CFS/ME and are housebound or even unable to move from their bed. Uncertainties about diagnosis and management may exacerbate the impact of symptoms, and patients often encounter delays in diagnosis and difficulty accessing information, support, and potentially helpful therapies.1 This article summarises the most recent guidance from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) on diagnosing and managing this condition.2

Recommendations

. . . [Full text of this article]

General principles
Presentation
Diagnosis
General management and referral
Specialist care
Overcoming barriers
Further information on the guidance
Methods

Related Article

Chronic fatigue syndrome or myalgic encephalomyelitis

Peter White, Maurice Murphy, Jill Moss, George Armstrong, and Sir Peter Spencer

BMJ 2007 335: 411-412. [Extract] [Full Text]

This article has been cited by other articles: (Search Google Scholar for Other Citing Articles)

White, P., Murphy, M., Moss, J., Armstrong, G., Spencer, S. P. (2007). Chronic fatigue syndrome or myalgic encephalomyelitis. BMJ 335: 411-412

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