Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: What Causes It?


Consider this scenario: you have experienced persistent fatigue for the last couple of months. You try to have enough bed rest every day, but the fatigue does not go away. Worse still, you become unable to accomplish your daily tasks. In the long run, you develop other symptoms including muscle and joint pain, frequent headaches, and lymph node tenderness. You try to figure out the cause of all these symptoms, but you cannot find it. It is highly possible that you are suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome or CFS. One thing you need to know is that CFS is a real condition. But, what causes it?

If you’re wondering about what causes CFS, then you are not alone. Even high-profile doctors do not know its cause. Although the literature on CFS is several centuries old, many scientists have tried to understand the cause of this condition to no avail. In fact, it was only until recently that scholars began to understand this condition better.

As of 2018, no single doctor knows what causes CFS. However, it is clear that the condition follows a viral illness in most cases. For other patients, CFS tends to occur after a major traumatic experience (emotional or physical). Exposure to toxic substances and weakened immune system are other known precursors of CFS. It is important to understand that the connection between these precursors and CFS is yet to be established. Another section of experts theorise that family history and hormonal imbalances are potential causes of CFS. But again, a solid scientific evidence to back these claims is still lacking.

The fact that CFS lacks a known cause makes it difficult for doctors to discover its cure. Hence, the treatment of this disorder is aimed at symptom alleviation. Diagnosing CFS is not easy either due to the fact that its symptoms are reminiscent of those caused by other conditions: end-stage kidney disease, rheumatoid arthritis, end-stage AIDS, just to mention a few.