ME/CFS and Alternative Medicines

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by tansy, Sep 10, 2008.

  1. tansy

    tansy New Member


    ME Sufferers Rely On Alternative Medicines

    More than a third of patients with long-term fatigue conditions like Myalgic
    Encephalomyelitis (ME) believe complementary and alternative medicines
    (CAMs) are more effective than traditional medicine in treating their
    illness, research launched at the British Pharmaceutical Conference (BPC) in
    Manchester reveals.

    98% of patients believed alternative therapy should be available through the

    Researchers from Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen found that sufferers
    of chronic conditions had relief from their symptoms when they used CAMs.

    The findings showed:

    - About 34% of participants believed that CAMs were more effective in
    alleviating their symptoms (including pain and malaise, or a general feeling
    of low energy and of being unwell) than traditional medicines;

    - 60% believed that taking CAMs kept them well;

    - 73% of participants who reported using CAMs believed that it had improved
    their health;

    - Of those who reported using chiropractics, 83% said they very satisfied
    with the treatment

    - 46% believed that a combination of CAM and orthodox medicine was better
    than using traditional medicine alone.

    Lead researcher, Dr Yash Kumarasamy said: "Many patients who have a
    long-term fatigue condition turn to alternative therapies because they feel
    that orthodox treatments failed to work for them, or because they
    experienced a lack of support from their healthcare team."

    "Patients need to know how important it is to consult a healthcare
    professional before they take complementary or alternative medicines, or
    stop taking prescription medication. Pharmacists don't just dispense
    medicines - they are healthcare professionals with a broad range of
    knowledge and can help people with expert advice and support in managing
    their health."

    About Myalgic Encephalomyelitis

    Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) is a chronic, inflammatory, primarily
    neurological disease that affects the central nervous system, the immune
    system, the cardiovascular system, the endocrinological system and
    muscoskeletal system. It can cause a wide variety of symptoms, including
    changes in sensory tolerance, visual problems, exertional muscle weakness,
    difficulties with co-ordination and speech, severe fatigue, cognitive
    impairment, problems with balance, subnormal or poor body temperature
    control and pain.

    The British Pharmaceutical Conference 2008 (BPC)

    BPC 2008: Pharmacy in the 21st Century: Adding years to life and life to
    years. In 2008, as the NHS marks its 60th anniversary year, BPC will examine
    how pharmacy and the pharmaceutical services are helping to add years to
    life and life to the year of the UK population. The profession of pharmacy
    plays an important role in meeting the healthcare challenges associated with
    the UK's ageing population.

    How can pharmacists contribute to caring for the population as well as
    ensuring quality of life? Increasingly, scientists and practitioners have to
    consider the cost implications of this conundrum, and the evidence base for
    all interventions is becoming of paramount importance: BPC 2008 will debate
    these issues and open up discussion on them. Visit:

    The main sponsors of BPC 2008 are: Boots The Chemists (Lead Sponsor),
    AstraZeneca (Associate Sponsor and BPC-PJ Careers Forum Platinum Sponsor),
    Pharmacists' Defence Association (PDA) (Associate Sponsor) and GSK (BPC-PJ
    Careers Forum Platinum Sponsor).

    Research released at BPC is published in the International Journal of
    Pharmacy Practice (IJPP).

    British Pharmaceutical Conference