• Risk Factors for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)

    A risk factor is something that increases your chance of getting a disease or condition.
    It is possible to develop CFS with or without the risk factors listed below. However, the more risk factors you have, the greater your likelihood of developing CFS. If you have a number of risk factors, ask your doctor what you can do to reduce your risk.
    Risk factors for developing CFS may include:
    High levels of physical activity were associated with a lower risk of CFS.
    Veterans who served in the gulf war have a higher risk of CFS than their counterparts who were not deployed.
    CFS is diagnosed one and half times more often in women than in men. This may be due to biological, psychological, and/or social influences.
    However, an increasingly diverse patient group seems to be emerging as more doctors recognize CFS as a real medical disorder.
    CFS is most common in people between the ages of 20 and 50. It can develop in people of all age groups, including teenagers and young children.
    Some research suggests that people who are highly active and achievement-oriented may be more at risk for developing CFS. However, perhaps this personality type increases the risk only after exposure to new mental stress or viral infections.
    Early abuse, trauma, or family problems may be associated with the development of chronic fatigue later in life.
    A mononucleosis infection (mono) may also be associated with and increased risk of CFS within a few years of illness.

    References

    Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Causes and Risk factors. American Academy of Family Physicians Familydoctor website. Available at: http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/diseases-conditions/chronic-fatigue-syndrome/causes-risk-factors.html . Updated November 2010. Accessed December 28, 2012.

    Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/cfs/causes/index.html . Updated May 16, 2012. Accessed December 28, 2012.

    Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://dynamed.ebscohost.com/about/about-us . Updated November 10, 2012. Accessed December 28, 2012.

    Devanur LD, Kerr JR. Chronic fatigue syndrome. J Clin Virol. 2006;37:139-150.

    Prins JB, van der Meer JW, Bleijenberg G. Chronic fatigue syndrome. Lancet. 2006;367:346-355.

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