Consumer Health: Treating chronic fatigue syndrome


Chronic fatigue syndrome is a complicated disorder characterized by extreme fatigue that lasts for at least six months and can’t be fully explained by an underlying medical condition. The fatigue worsens with physical or mental activity, but doesn’t improve with rest.

Factors that can increase your risk of chronic fatigue syndrome include your age and sex. While it can occur at any age, chronic fatigue syndrome most commonly affects young to middle-aged adults, and women are diagnosed with it more often than men.

Treatment for chronic fatigue syndrome focuses on symptom relief, and can include medications, counseling, exercise and addressing sleep problems. The most disruptive or disabling symptoms should be addressed first.

Research into a variety of natural products for effectiveness against chronic fatigue syndrome has been mixed. Preliminary studies showed encouraging results that weren’t confirmed by follow-up studies, or the original studies were too small to be conclusive.

Learn more about treating and living with chronic fatigue syndrome.

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