OPRAH - 7-29-98 Show on CFIDS

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by victoria, May 19, 2005.

  1. victoria

    victoria New Member

    I just read this on CF Alliance:

    "On . . . (the) Oprah Winfrey show, Wednesday July 29, 1998, there was a segment on CFIDS. While we as patients are usually not satisfied with what is reported on television, this segment was much better than what we usually see.

    It wasn't comprehensive and there was an uninformed reference by Oprah to depression. However, this segment will have the effect of educating the public. And by means of Oprah's status as a trusted media "person" we should see increased legitimacy. We believe that this show was informative and another important step in our battle. What follows is a partial transcript.

    The show was called "Illnesses that may go undetected for years because the symptoms are so subtle."

    Oprah - Cher came to find out that her exhaustion was Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome. Wilhelmina Jenkins can relate to Cher because she was working as a physicist when she began feeling the same things, tired and confused. When was this?

    Wilhelmina - This was 1983. I was working as a physicist at a lab outside of Washington DC, I was finishing my doctorate in physics at Howard University, I was teaching classes, I had 2 great children and everything was going very well. I was very happy teaching. All at once it all fell apart. I became completely exhausted.

    The major problem for me was with the exhaustion was the cognitive problems. I could not understand the research that I myself wrote several months earlier. I got to the point where I couldn't even read a comic strip. By the time I got to the third panel I couldn't remember the first. When I now talk to someone on the telephone I write down my own address and telephone number because I can't remember.

    I developed terrible pains that would reduce me to tears. I tried to continue to work. I would get lost on my way to work and had to pull over into a parking lot and ended up crying my eyes out.

    I went to doctors who tried very hard but couldn't figure out what was wrong. I had all kinds of tests and they couldn't find anything wrong. In 1987, I was completely disabled and unable to work when a forunate thing happened. I developed a major depression.

    It was fortunate because my psychiatrist treated the depression, noticed that when the depression was treated, everything else was left. The mental confusion, the pain, the sleep disorders, the total fatigue; then he said have you heard of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. I thought I had been losing my mind. I lost my ability to think. It broke my heart.

    Oprah - But you're speaking so well and thinking so cognitively here.

    Wilhelmina - If I had a slight interruption I might lose it all together. I can keep it running for a while.

    Oprah - Kamilah is Wilhelmina's daughter (who) was just 14 when those symptoms struck you.

    Kamilah - I was a freshman in high school, very active, I was very happy, very active. I was on the drill team and hung out with friends. Then I just crashed. I slept all the time. I was in a lot of pain. My legs hurt all the time. I could hardly make it up the stairs to my next classes. I have an awful short term memory so my teachers helped me by allowing me to take home work.

    Oprah - (To Dr. Nancy Snyderman) So what is this?

    Dr. Snyderman - This is the Chronic Fatigue Immune Deficiency Syndrome. It used to be called chronic fatigue. This has gone from the kissing disease to mono to now where we finally understand that it is it's own entity. We have recognized that pockets of this illness have popped up all over the country. We think that it may be caused by a virus. It may be more than one virus. Women get it more often. African-American women get it even more often. People almost always think they are going crazy and that they are going to lose their minds. It starts with self doubt. And you look good from the outside.

    Oprah - Do you ever get over it?

    Dr. Snyderman - It's something you live with forever, there is no cure. So you learn how to adapt to it. That really means changing your lifestyle significantly. Sometime medications but that depends who you are and how severe your symptoms are. This disease has really earned it's spot because of all the national attention it has received.

    Wilhelmina - I ceratinly hope that this show will wake people up that this illness can strike anyone of any age, any ethnic group, both genders, anyone can get this illness. What helps a lot of people is the support of family and friends. They understand that we would have not chosen this life. If there was anything we could do to get back to our life we would.

    Oprah - I'm sure people don't know, they think you got lazy or you're not trying as hard.

    Dr. Snyderman - It's usually people who are teachers, researchers and doctors. People who have no secondary gain.


    Sure wish she'd do a follow-up show!


  2. Dorothee

    Dorothee New Member

    I'm sure you'll be able to convince her to do another show on it.
    After all things change, science finds out more in 7 years.

    Sorry to have mist that show!

    (Yes we watch Oprah to here in the Netherlands!)

    Good luck!

  3. Rene

    Rene New Member

  4. 69mach1

    69mach1 New Member

    on fibro/cfs

  5. Jeanette62

    Jeanette62 New Member

    I wonder if this show is on her new 20th Anniversary DVD collection? It would be great if she could do another show on it with all the new research.

    Thanks for posting this.

  6. Rene

    Rene New Member

    That would be good if it was on the CD but I really don't think it will be on there.

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