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Just had dinner with friends. They said a classmate just got diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome. I didn't know what to say. Why would someone get that?

2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Martin Raff
Internal Medicine - Infectious Disease
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Just commiserate

This is a mysterious condition in which seemingly normal persons develop severe fatigue.
It is often overdiagnosed, and sometimes may actually be a manifestation of depression or other illnesses. There is some suggestion that human herpesvirus 6 may cause this, but unfortunately there is no known effective therapy at present. There also very few ways to prove the diagnosis.

In brief: Just commiserate

This is a mysterious condition in which seemingly normal persons develop severe fatigue.
It is often overdiagnosed, and sometimes may actually be a manifestation of depression or other illnesses. There is some suggestion that human herpesvirus 6 may cause this, but unfortunately there is no known effective therapy at present. There also very few ways to prove the diagnosis.
Dr. Martin Raff
Dr. Martin Raff
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