As the world continues to watch the number of COVID-19 cases increase (and daily records being broken), patients with myalgic encephalomyelitis, aka chronic fatigue syndrome, want to tell those recovering from coronavirus to listen up.
COVID-19 patients may be at risk of developing the neuroimmune condition ME/CFS that depletes one’s energy. ME/CFS, which leaves 75% of those affected unable to work and 25% homebound or bedridden, impacts 15 million to 30 million people worldwide, and symptoms may be triggered by an infection, according to the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, says some diagnosed with coronavirus are showing symptoms that resemble those seen in ME/CFS patients.
“The ME/CFS community is saying 80% of us had some sort of virus and that went away, and we’re still stuck with all of these symptoms,” said Sanna Stella, an Oak Park resident who was diagnosed with ME/CFS. “If you’re a patient, you really have to listen to your body and not all those ‘shoulds’ we tell ourselves. … Because if you keep pushing, for some of these patients, it really will make things a lot worse.”
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