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M.E: facts and figures

M.E is a nuerological condition.  M.E stands for Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, which means- muscle ("my"), pain ("algic"), brain ("encephalo"), spinal cord ("mye"), inflamation ("itis").

M.E is also known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

The illness can last for years, symptoms vary from person to person and often fluctuate, even daily.

The most common are: 

  • Extreme physical & mental fatigue

  • Muscle and joint pains

  • Flu-like symptoms

  • Headaches

  • Sensitivity to light and sound

  • Poor memory and concentration

  • Visual disturbances

  • Digestive disorders

  • Loss of balance and co-ordination

  • Sleep difficulties

  • Poor temperature control

  • Sore throat/swollen glands

  • Depression



M.E affects men, women and children of all ages, social classes and ethnic origins. 

Its is estimated that over 250,000 people suffer in this country, of which 25,000 are children and of which 25% are either house or bed-bound and unable to look after themselves. 

Most cases are mild or moderate, but 1 in 4 are severely effected.

MILD - able to care for yourself, but may need plenty of rest or days off work.

MODERATE - may have reduced mobility, symptoms vary, may have to nap frequently.

SEVERE - able to perform minimal tasks like cleaning teeth, but will have significant mobility issues and lots of symptoms. 

DIAGNOSIS - specific guidelines issued by NICE, say that if you meet the criteria regarding fatigue and it can't be explained by any other condition and your symptoms have lasted for several months then you will be diagnosed with CFS.

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