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Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: How to Tell If You May Have It, Common Symptoms

Updated on October 22, 2015
Chronic fatigue syndrome can cause excessive drowsiness throughout the day
Chronic fatigue syndrome can cause excessive drowsiness throughout the day | Source

Do you often feel tired, have low energy, or have difficulty completing simple everyday tasks? These are common symptoms for people who are overworked and overcommitted, but for some this lack of energy is a sign of a much more serious health condition. How can you know when your low energy is actually a symptom of chronic fatigue syndrome?

Fatigue is certainly one symptom of chronic fatigue syndrome, but other symptoms may include, headache, muscle pain, throat pain, and exhaustion. Some people may experience tiredness even after a full night’s sleep. Those suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome could also suffer swollen lymph nodes or occasional joint pain. Chronic fatigue syndrome causes frequent, often daily exhaustion, especially after completing strenuous activities.

Additional symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome may include inexplicable chest pain, pain in the abdomen, and possibly pain in the jaw. Some sufferers may experience persistent coughing, irregular heartbeat, blurred vision, and difficulty breathing. These symptoms are possible, but may not be present in every case of chronic fatigue syndrome.

Chronic fatigue syndrome is often accompanied by some sort of psychological disorder. The most common psychological disorder that is associated with chronic fatigue syndrome is depression, but other disorders like panic attacks, anxiety, and irritability are also common in sufferers. The close association between chronic fatigue syndrome and these psychological conditions can make diagnosis difficult.

Another challenge to diagnosis is that chronic fatigue syndrome has many similarities to conditions like clinical depression and fibromyalgia. This can lead to the condition being misdiagnosed or perhaps not diagnosed at all. There is no test to diagnose chronic fatigue syndrome and thus no certainty in diagnosis. You may be given tests to eliminate other health conditions, but since the cause of chronic fatigue syndrome is unknown, you may never know if you definitely have this health problem.

Unfortunately, the only way to treat chronic fatigue syndrome is by treating the individual symptoms. There is no treatment available for the condition itself. In most cases, a complete change of lifestyle is necessary to make a difference in the symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome. You may be able to reduce or alleviate certain symptoms by addressing them individually. Treatment for depression, blood pressure, or pain management may help to lessen the symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome.


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    • DaisyChain profile image

      DaisyChain 7 years ago from France

      I'm worn out just reading it! Obviously need to win national lottery thus being in a position to change lifestyle - better try to get up enough energy to buy a ticket. Many thanks for an informative article.