How do you know difference ?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by karkel, Oct 18, 2010.

  1. karkel

    karkel New Member

    Fibro and CFS ?
  2. AllWXRider

    AllWXRider New Member

    Some patients have just CFS, others just FM. Yet others can swing between the two. The new word for the above is ME. Latin of course: Myagic Encephalitis Sp? It implies a brain swelling or brain infection.

    I just finished Conan Doyles, Sherlock Holmes 1891. Dr. Watson referred to any slightly crazy person as having a brain fever. I think the docs were on to something there back in 1891, but there is too much money to be made on sick ppl.
  3. Janalynn

    Janalynn New Member

    CFIDS - which is also known as M.E. (definition below of the word) is actually different from Fibromyalgia. You CAN have both but they are not one in the same. I wouldn't actually say you can swing between the two only cause to me that implies you go back and forth between them. You can also just have Chronic Fatigue (Not CFIDS) with Fibro which is a symptom actually, meaning extreme fatigue.

    Some of the symptoms of the two are the same, some are quite different. The main one that most of us think of off hand is the one that was mentioned - Pain is the main symptom of Fibro. Chronic Fatigue that you don't recover from usually comes before pain with CFIDS

    What does ME stand for?

    Myalgic Encephalomyelitis:
    Myalgic - means muscle - indicating that pain within the muscles and joints is involved.
    Encephalo - means brain - indicating that the brain's way of functioning is involved.
    myelitis - means inflammation of the spinal cord.

    Myelitis does not occur with M.E., and the medical phrase 'Pathy' is now being used instead, which means 'sickness' or 'illness'. Therefore, in most modern diagnosis, Myalgic Encephalomyelitis is now known as Myalgic Encephalopathy, but both terms are still abbreviated and referred to as M.E.

    If you google Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, it seems they have a lot more good info than looking up Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Of course, it all depends on the source, as with everything!

    Do you have one, both?
    [This Message was Edited on 10/21/2010]
  4. greatgran

    greatgran Member

    For me the difference is fibro is more pain and cfs is exhaustion, plus both have a lot more symptoms and some so much alike. I have been dx with both and the CFIDS is much more disabling as for me there seems to be no treatment. Fibro you can take pain meds some help some don't.

    Both are miserable if you have bad cases.. I am mainly housebound because of the fatigue and the weird head feelings which affects my balance, vision and seems to cause a lot of anxiety/depression.

    Have been this way 10 yrs and the past three have been the worse.

    God Bless,
  5. AuntTammie

    AuntTammie New Member

    Janalynn wrote, "Myelitis does not occur with M.E., and the medical phrase 'Pathy' is now being used instead, which means 'sickness' or 'illness'. Therefore, in most modern diagnosis, Myalgic Encephalomyelitis is now known as Myalgic Encephalopathy, but both terms are still abbreviated and referred to as M.E."

    Actually this is not true....myelitis DOES occur with ME......that is the reason that Sophia Mirza's death certificate actually said she died from ME - they looked at her brain and spinal cord and found inflammation
  6. karynwolfe

    karynwolfe New Member

    (*) FM is a pain syndrome with many other accompanying symptoms such as fatigue, irritable bowel syndrome, and sleep disturbance; biological markers exist such as excess Substance P in the brain, and tender points that aid in diagnosis.
    (*) CFS today is a syndrome based on fatigue with any combination of other accompanying symptoms; named "CFS" by the CDC in 1988 after what was actually an M.E. outbreak; they're incorrectly used interchangably today.
    (*) M.E. is a neurological disease with autoimmune components, accompanied by cardiac insufficiency, and mitochondrial dysfunction.

    (*) FM is helped greatly by gentle exercise/stretching, and specific types of pain medication such as Lyrica or trycylic antidepressants (not usually Vicodin, ibuprofen, etc.).
    (*) CFS treatment is based upon what condition you actually have that's causing your extreme fatigue (often people suffering chronic infection such as Lyme disease are incorrectly thrown into this category), so sometimes exercise helps and other times it does not.
    (*) M.E. is irrevocably made worse by exercise, and there is an extreme sensitivity to the same medications people with FM use.

    (*) FM is triggered by a stressful event, such as a car crash, a surgery, a severe infection, or another illness worsening/starting.
    (*) CFS has no specified onset because it depends on what's causing your state of extreme fatigue.
    (*) M.E. is [almost] always triggered by a viral infection (possibly XMRV/HGRV? a lot of relatively new studies point to a polio-like virus) and is acute onset.

    You can also look at these old posts, this has been answered many times

    ME vs FM:

    Are they the same?:
    [This Message was Edited on 10/23/2010]
  7. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Active Member

    CFS includes post exertional malaise, whereas deconditioning does not.
  8. mbofov

    mbofov Active Member

    TigerLilea is right. Deconditioning has nothing to do with post-exertional malaise.

    Dr. Christopher Snell of the Pacific Fatigue Lab at the University of the Pacific in Stockton testified at the CFSAC hearing recently and was asked pretty much the same question you did. At the PFL, they've done studies on CFS patients with exercise stress tests. On the first test, about 50% of CFS patients did worse than "normals", but nothing earth shattering. However, on the next day, POST- exertion, they were tested again, and the results were stunning - CFS patients were extremely debilitated on the second day. The level of disability was just unprecedented. Someone at the CFSAC hearing asked Dr. Snell if maybe they were just "deconditioned" and he replied that non-CFS patients who were out of shape still did reasonably well on the test on the second day, nothing like the CFS patients. He was also asked about obesity and if that was a factor and he just replied that obese patients have no trouble working a 40-hour week, unlike CFS patients. Check out this article: - it's really very interesting.


  9. Bunchy

    Bunchy New Member

    For me, I first had ME - that was mainly extreme fatigue, excessive sleeping and sleepiness, flu like aching and swollen lymph nodes, temperature sensitivities etc.

    The onset of FM many years later brought severe and ongoing muscle pain, stiffness and spasms along with myofascial pain and severe back pain and stiffness. All the muscles in my body are very tender to the touch.

    There are diagnostic tenderpoints for FM - you can find them online.

    I believe the Canadian definition of ME/CFS is the most accurate (for me anyway!)

    Love Bunchy x
  10. hermitlady

    hermitlady Member

    This is a great thread, great input from everyone. I've been around here for a few yrs and still learn new things. From what I gathered, I probably actually have all 3 of them! I didn't realize ME is a separate condition...? Nevermind...very foggy lately.

    Keep that info coming:D,,,...,,,...
  11. karynwolfe

    karynwolfe New Member

    Putting this here, too:

    Page contains:
    (*) Comparison of M.E. and Depression

    (*) COMPARISON OF M.E. & FM symptoms, etc.

    (*) Effects of M.E. & FM (level of disability, respective to time of illness)

    (*) Recovery trends of M.E. & FM

    (*) Comparison of chronic fatigue, M.E., & FM
  12. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Active Member

    Hi BroadCasting - That people with CFS are severely deconditioned leading to our inability to exercise is a false belief put forward by the British medical association. I was anything but deconditioned when I came down with CFS. I was always a very active person before this illness. Even now I push myself physically and am anything but deconditioned. I'm probably in better shape than a lot of people without CFS.
  13. karynwolfe

    karynwolfe New Member

    Exercise intolerance can be seen in other diseases, such as infectious babesiosis and mitochondrial disorders (and M.E. does have mitochondrial dysfunction). It causes extreme fatigue when you try to do something.

    I think the "Post exertional malaise" refers to.. EXERTION! Not just exercise, but any mental or physical exertion (even too much sensory input) can cause an exacerbation of symptoms, that lasts for days, and the key thing that--to my knowledge--no other illness exhibits, is the "crash" often comes 24-72 hours AFTER the exertion!
  14. karynwolfe

    karynwolfe New Member

    Exactly. A "crash" is not diagnosistic of any disease because it happens with any chronic illness. But I cannot think of another single illness where the relapse comes 24-72 hours after the activity, and hits you suddenly to where you are incapacitated by central nervous system dysfunction and muscle failure.

    This is why the Pacific Labs did two stress tests, the second one being the next day. For example, a 20-something-year-old man had the cardiac function of an 80-year-old with heart failure, 24 hours after the first test. This doesn't happen in other illnesses, including Fibromyalgia. Having experiened both FM and M.E., it is very different than the overwhelming pain and fatigue that happens after "doing too much" with Fibromyalgia.

    Hope this helps
  15. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Active Member

    Hi BroadCasting - Post Exertional Malaise is the exhaustion that is felt long after having been physically active. For someone with CFS it can last for days to weeks and sometimes isn't actually felt on the day of exertion, but the next day. For a normal person who gets exhausted, they will usually feel refreshed after a short rest or a good night's sleep.

    Exercise intolerance is not being able to exercise at a level or duration that would be expected of a person due to illness, excessive weight, being out of shape, etc.

    Some people find that their symptoms of CFS wax and wane. People like me don't. It is constant and has always been this way for the past 20 years since I first came down with CFS.
  16. Nanie46

    Nanie46 Moderator

    The even bigger question is what caused it?

    FM and CFS are symptoms of a larger infectious picture.

    Find the chronic infection(s) that caused your symptoms, treat them, and you have a chance of getting better.