Other Conditions With Symptoms Similar to Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Fatigue can be a symptom of hundreds of medical conditions. All other
possible causes of fatigue will be ruled out before
chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is diagnosed. Exams and
tests are used to rule out the most likely causes of fatigue, depending on the
person's medical history and symptoms.
Chronic, persistent fatigue may be a symptom of various conditions,
It is possible that the main title of the report Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is not the name you expected. Please check the synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and disorder subdivision(s) covered by this report.
Fibromyalgia. Although fibromyalgia and
CFS can have similar symptoms, people who have fibromyalgia tend to have more
muscle pain and more specific tender points than people who have CFS. In
contrast, the main symptom of CFS is overwhelming fatigue. Also, fibromyalgia
is much more common than chronic fatigue syndrome, affecting as many as 5
million people in the United States.1
Neurasthenia, or nervous
exhaustion, a disease marked by intense nervous irritability and weakness.
Multiple chemical sensitivity disorder, a controversial diagnosis
of an allergy-like sensitivity to an unusually broad range and number of
substances. This condition has not been subjected to rigorous scientific
scrutiny, and there is considerable doubt as to whether it actually
Other possible causes of fatigue include:
Medicine side effects, or
medicines changed or added too quickly.
Alcohol or drug
Too little exercise or excessive exercise
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal
and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) (2009). Questions and Answers About Fibromyalgia. Available online:
Primary Medical Reviewer
Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer
Nancy Greenwald, MD - Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
April 22, 2011
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
April 22, 2011
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