War Related Illness and Injury Study Center
Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS)
Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (Systemic Exertion Intolerance Disease) (ME/CFS (SEID)) is a health condition in which people experience unexplained severe fatigue, muscle aches, sore throat, poor sleep, and cognitive problems.
ME/CFS (SEID) is fairly common among the general population. ME/CFS (SEID) also has been diagnosed among service men and women.
One study * showed that ME/CFS (SEID) was more common in Gulf War Veterans than non-Gulf War Veterans. At this time, the exact cause for ME/CFS (SEID) is unknown.
Specific treatments for ME/CFS (SEID) often are based on an individual’s specific medical history Some of the treatments may include:
- Graded aerobic exercise therapy (slowly increasing physical activity)
- Psychological therapies (strategies to cope with symptoms)
The symptoms of ME/CFS (SEID), like other chronic conditions, vary with periods of good health followed by exacerbations or periods when symptoms flare up or worsen. Excessive physical or mental demands might cause symptoms to worsen temporarily. Clinical experience has shown that with appropriate treatment, many of the symptoms associated with ME/CFS (SEID) do improve.
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