Driving research of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME / CFS),
Post Treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome (PTLDS), Fibromyalgia and Long Covid

Clinical guidance for ME/CFS may also help Long COVID patients

Updated clinical guidance for myalgic encephalomyelitis/ chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), produced by the US ME/CFS Clinician Coalition, may also help patients who remain ill with Long COVID after even mild cases of COVID-19. An article about the update has been published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings:

Read it here

Recent research suggests 10 percent or more of adults with acute COVID-19 may go on to develop ME/CFS. Patients with ME/CFS have long struggled to access clinical care as a result of a lack of accurate clinical guidance and provider knowledge. The significant influx of new ME/CFS cases has created an urgent need for clinicians everywhere to learn about this disease.

The updated clinical guidance from the US ME/CFS Clinician Coalition focuses on adults and includes: 

  • New diagnostic criteria requiring post-exertional malaise and other key features to improve diagnostic accuracy
  • Efficient use of interview questions, physical examination findings, and diagnostic testing
  • Alternative diagnoses and co-existing conditions to consider
  • Pharmacological and nonpharmacological treatments
  • A discussion of why previously-recommended treatments — cognitive behavioral therapy and graded exercise therapy — can be harmful and are no longer recommended

There are no FDA-approved treatments for ME/CFS. However, authors of the article state that, in their experience, improvement is possible with appropriate care, and  provide their consensus recommendations with a variety of available treatments.

Author Dr. Lucinda Bateman notes:

“There are many steps clinicians can take now to improve the health, function, and quality of life of people with ME/CFS, including those newly ill with ME/CFS following COVID-19. This guidance may also help Long COVID patients, even if they do not fully meet criteria for ME/CFS.”

Watch the accompanying video by Dr. Lucinda Bateman:

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Myalgic Encephalomyelitis / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME / CFS) Post Treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome (PTLDS), Fibromyalgia Leading Research. Delivering Hope.Open Medicine Foundation®

 

Averting a second pandemic:

Open Medicine Foundation leads groundbreaking international study of

Long COVID’s conversion to ME/CFS

AGOURA HILLS, CALIF.  — Open Medicine Foundation (OMF) is leading a large-scale international collaborative study investigating the potential conversion of Post-Acute Sequelae SARS-CoV-2 infection — more commonly known as Long COVID or Post-COVID Syndrome —  to Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS), a chronic, life-altering disease with no known cause, diagnostic test or FDA approved treatments available.

Up to 2.5 million people in the U.S. alone suffer from ME/CFS; the COVID-19 pandemic could at least double that number. An estimated 35 percent of Americans who had COVID-19 have failed to fully recover several months after infection, prompting many to call it “a potential second pandemic.”

OMF recognized a familiar health crisis emerging, one with eerie similarities to ME/CFS. This crisis presented a unique opportunity to understand how a viral infection — in this case COVID-19 — may develop into ME/CFS in some patients. The goal is to find targeted treatments for ME/CFS patients and ultimately prevent its onset in people infected with SARS-CoV-2 or other infections.

The federal government is only now investing in Post-COVID research, with no focus on its connection to ME/CFS. OMF has already engaged researchers for the largest-scale study of its kind, solely supported by private donors who have contributed over one million dollars to date. When fully funded, the five million dollar, three-year study will be conducted across the globe at OMF funded Collaborative Research Centers, led by some of the world’s top researchers and ME/CFS experts.

BACKGROUND

In a significant percentage of patients, infections preceded their development of ME/CFS.  For example, according to the CDC about one in ten infected with Epstein-Barr virus, Ross River virus, or Coxiella burnetti develop symptoms that meet the criteria for ME/CFS.

THE STUDY

The ability to follow the development of ME/CFS from a known viral infection is unprecedented to date and crucial to researchers’ understanding of the disease. The focus of this study is to find the biological differences between persons returning to good health after COVID-19 and persons who remained ill more than six months after infection and developed ME/CFS.  Understanding these alterations in key pathways can lead to groundbreaking discoveries including new biomarkers, drug targets, and prevention and treatment strategies.

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About Open Medicine Foundation

Established in 2012, Open Medicine Foundation leads the largest, concerted worldwide nonprofit effort to diagnose, treat, and prevent ME/CFS and related chronic, complex diseases such as Post Treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, and Post COVID. OMF adds urgency to the search for answers by driving transformational philanthropy into global research. We have raised over $28 Million from private donors and facilitated and funded the establishment of five prestigious ME/CFS Collaborative Research Centers around the world. To learn more, visit www.omf.ngo.

CONTACT:

Heather Ah San

Development and Communications Manager

1-650-242-8669

heather@omf.ngo