Chronic fatigue

jonge vrouw
Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and and fibromyalgia( FM) is a condition, the cause of which has not been unequivocally determined so far. It is also likely that there is no single cause and that we must divide CFS patients into subtypes. The main complaints can be briefly summarized:
  • fatigue,
  • pain,
  • fog in the head and
  • sleep disorders.
The same pattern of symptoms is likely to arise from a variety of causes. It can occur acutely after an infection, virus, trauma or pregnancy, but can also occur gradually.
Bith this syndrome, 5 factors play a crucial role. These can be summarized by the term

H hormonal
I infections, immune dysfunction and intolerances
N nutritional factors
T toxic factors
S sleep disorders

A dysfunction of the hypothalamus explains many of the symptoms of CFS/FM. The hypothalamus is a small regulatory organ in the brain that has the following functions:
  1. Control of the hormonal system
  2. Regulation of sleep
  3. Temperature control
  4. Regulation of the autonomic=involuntary nervous system (important in regulating heart rhythm, bowel contractions and fight or flight responses)
This small, but very important organ, consumes a lot of energy and therefore has a large concentration of mitochondria, the energy factories, where the universal fuel ATP is produced. Mitochondrial dysfunction probably underlies the dysfunction of the hypothalamus and, in a more general sense, the entire pathology.

You can think of the hypothalamus as a fuse, which can blow due to several causes.

Infections, sleep disorders, chronic psychological or physical stress, heavy metal load, etc. can damage the hypothalamus and lead to complex syndromes, such as CFS and fibromyalgia.
Just as is the case when a fuse blows, the “failure” of the hypothalamus has a protective function. It is a clear alarm signal that puts the body into a lower gear.
Thus, the pathology is not the enemy, but rather protects the body from further damage. Persistently ignoring fatigue when workloads are too high and ignoring feelings of dissatisfaction in a sickening relationship or sickening work atmosphere can be an impetus to burn out this fuse in the brain.


Many patients with CFS have symptoms, which fit the dysfunction of the hormonal system. Deficiencies of the adrenal cortisol, DHEA and aldosterone, thyroid hormones, sex hormones and growth hormone, among others, may occur.

How do you recognize these deficits?

The adrenal cortisol hormone has an important function in regulating the immune system, blood pressure, blood sugars and stress responses. Relative or absolute deficiencies of it lead to the following symptoms:

  1. Hypoglycemia: shakiness, feeling of weakness, fatigue, dizziness, anxiety and craving for sweets. This occurs when glucose in the blood o.i.v. cortisol deficiency drops too far. The symptoms disappear by eating. So eat something before you get too low in your blood sugar. Some people suffer a few hours after eating because their pancreas produces too much insulin, at which point your blood sugar gets too low. All alarm bells then go off and you may even have total panic reactions.
  2. Lack of aldosterone, which plays an important role in hydration, can cause dizziness when standing up and low blood pressure.
  3. An increased sensitivity to stress, for example, a startle reaction, which persists for a long time or unexplained fears.
  4. Increased susceptibility to infections, susceptibility to flu, quick sore throat.

The thyroid hormones T4 and T3 play an important role in regulating heat and stimulating metabolism. Relative or absolute deficiencies of these lead to the following symptoms, among others:

  • Coldness, tolerating cold poorly, feeling better in warmth
  • Easily gain weight
  • Constipation
  • Muscle pains and muscle cramps
  • Tendency to be gloomy
  • Dry skin, thin hair, hair loss, easily broken nails
  • Menstrual complaints
An increase in symptoms of fatigue and pain prior to menstruation may indicate deficiencies of the female hormones, estrogens and progesterone.
Testosterone deficiency, in both men and women, can cause anxiety, decreased stress tolerance, subassertiveness, decreased libido, muscle weakness and muscle pain.
A deficiency in the pituitary growth hormone can also lead to muscle pain and fatigue. Growth hormone is produced in deep sleep. Thus, disturbed sleep can lead to growth hormone deficiency.

Infections with viruses, bacteria, fungi, yeasts and parasites may play a causal role in the development of CFS. However, these infections can also be a result of immune dysfunction, which is caused by factors such as disturbed sleep, impaired adrenal function and nutrient deficiencies.
Patients, in whom the clinical picture arose acutely with flu-like symptoms, sore throat, swollen glands, malaise, fever, stomach flu, meningitis, etc., often appear to be suffering from a chronic viral infection or sometimes a chronic bacterial infection.
Fungal and yeast infections can also play a role in CFS. These generally do not lead to acute symptoms, but much more often to symptoms, which gradually increase in severity. For example, symptoms may begin after one or more courses of antibiotics. Complaints that point to fungal infections are vaginal discharge and itching, bloody stools, diarrhea, gas, increase in symptoms after antibiotics, sugar, yeast-rich foods, sores in the mouth, fungal infections of the skin, and the like.
Parasitic infections are found in the stool in a third to a quarter of patients with intestinal complaints and even more frequently in patients with complaints of diarrhea.

Immune function disorders are frequent in CFS. Disorders, which are found include reduction in Natural Killer cell activity (important for antiviral resistance) and disruption in the balance of T-helper-1 and T-helper-2 cells, which can lead to a reduction in defenses against viruses, fungi, yeasts and intracellular bacteria.
Patients with disturbed immune systems are more susceptible to infections. On the other hand, patients with CFS may never suffer from flu, etc., since the onset of their illness, whereas they did suffer from it before the onset of illness. They may also notice, for example, that they never have a fever again. This may indicate a dysfunctional immune system. A good defense against infections is often accompanied by a fever reaction, a side effect of the immune response. If the immune system is lacking, infections may become dormant, and may give a constant feeling of fatigue and/or malaise, but no fever.
Intolerances and allergies to foods in particular can play an important role in CFS. Complaints that may indicate food allergy include: migraines and other headaches, irritable bowel syndrome, eczema, hives, chronic sinus and nasal complaints, hypoglycemia

There are many pillars to look at with this image. It is not wise to look at this with tunnel vision. Consider the following

  • Immune dysfunction
  • Hormonal disorders
  • Infections with yeasts, parasites, viruses and bacteria
  • Disorders of liver detoxification
  • Sleep disorders
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Mitochondrial dysfunction
  • Allergies.


To complement this:

  • Nutrient deficiencies,
  • Load of heavy metals, such as mercury (amalgam), lead and cadmium
  • Dental problems
  • Psychological factors, such as depression, anxiety and unresolved life conflicts
  • Chemical hypersensitivity.

Testing at CFS:

  • Blood tests for certain deficiencies, such as carnitine, vitamin B12 and iron
  • Extensive hormonal testing, including a bijnie
  • Comprehensive food intolerance screening: the imupr
  • immune screening
  • Research on certain viruses and bacteria (such as Lyme)
  • Liver detoxification research
  • Heavy metal research

Not all of these studies are requested. Based on the patient’s history and clinical complaints and the abnormalities found in the various examinations, a treatment plan is drawn up.

Contact Complimed to schedule an appointment.