a weird & unscientific way to define M.E.? (Psychiatrist Peter White is Chief Medical Officer of the insurance company Swiss Re. He is a very powerful figure in the treatment and research of M.E. in the UK) ------------------------------ Subject: Re: RES: Risk markers for both chronic fatigue and irritable bowel syndromes: a prospective case-control study in primary care "Two subgroups of fatigue syndrome cases were studied: those with a diagnostic label that included the word 'post-viral' or 'post-infectious', which we call PVFS here, and the remainder, composed of CFS or ME, which we call CFS/ME." (NB this is not the usual way ME is defined) Risk markers for both chronic fatigue and irritable bowel syndromes: a prospective case-control study in primary care. Journal: Psychol Med. 2009 Apr 15:1-9. [Epub ahead of print] Authors: Hamilton WT, Gallagher AM, Thomas JM, White PD. Affiliation: Academic Unit of Primary Health Care, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK. NLM Citation: PMID: 19366500 BACKGROUND: Fatigue syndromes and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) often occur together. Explanations include being different manifestations of the same condition and simply sharing some symptoms. Method: A matched case-control study in UK primary care, using data collected prospectively in the General Practice Research Database (GPRD). The main outcome measures were: health-care utilization, specific symptoms and diagnoses. Risk markers were divided into distant (from 3 years to 1 year before diagnosis) and recent (1 year before diagnosis). RESULTS: A total of 4388 patients with any fatigue syndrome were matched to two groups of patients: those attending for IBS and those attending for another reason. Infections were specific risk markers for both syndromes, with viral infections being a risk marker for a fatigue syndrome [odds ratios (ORs) 2.3-6.3], with a higher risk closer to onset, and gastroenteritis a risk for IBS (OR 1.47, compared to a fatigue syndrome). Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) shared more distant risk markers with IBS than other fatigue syndromes, particularly other symptom-based disorders (OR 3.8) and depressive disorders (OR 2.3), but depressive disorders were a greater risk for CFS than IBS (OR 2.4). Viral infections were more of a recent risk marker for CFS compared to IBS (OR 2.8), with gastroenteritis a greater risk for IBS (OR 2.4). CONCLUSIONS: Both fatigue and irritable bowel syndromes share predisposing risk markers, but triggering risk markers differ. Fatigue syndromes are heterogeneous, with CFS sharing predisposing risks with IBS, suggesting a common predisposing pathophysiology. ---------------------------------------- and here's the WHO definition of M.E., which they classified as a neurological illness since 1969: M.E. ME/CFS is an acquired organic, pathophysiological, multi-systemic illness that occurs in both sporadic and epidemic forms. Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ICD 10 G93.3), which includes CFS, is classified as a neurological disease in the World Health Organization's International Classification of Diseases (ICD). Chronic fatigue must not be confused with ME/CFS because the "fatigue" of ME/CFS represents pathophysiological exhaustion and is only one of many symptoms. Prof White doesn't seem to be studying the same illness.