Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, ME, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Post-Viral Fatigue Syndrome, PVFS, Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome, CFIDS, no matter which name or abbreviation you use, the illness affects people of different ages, backgrounds, race, and most other characteristics you may choose to consider. The illness often follows a period of viral infection, but some sufferers experience a gradual decline into the illness.
Many sufferers experience all or at least some of the following symptoms to differing levels of severity:
- blurred vision
- decreased concentration level
- disturbed sleep patterns
- incapacitating pain
- increased sensitivity to light, smell, sound and touch
- decline in clarity and coherence of speech
- memory impairment
- muscle weakness and spasms
- painful joints & muscles
- severe fatigue
- stomach and digestive problems
For a lucky few the illness has limited effect, but others experience major disruption to their lifestyle and may become house or bed-bound and totally reliant on their carers for months or years.
Some sufferers make a slow recovery to near optimum health, others make a partial recovery and may suffer relapses, others remain seriously affected by the chronic illness for many years.