A large study by researchers in the U.K. has shown that CFS is not an uncommon illness among children. The study was summarized in a recent report by Rick Nauert, PhD at the website PsychCentral.
Sadly, chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia in children is not a new phenomenon. What is new, is that perhaps it is finally starting to be recognized by their physicians. In the interim, these children are being abused, with the implication given to their parents that they are simply lazy malingerers with psychological disorders. No different than implying to a paraplegic child's parents that their child is only faking their symptoms. This is simply unacceptable. Hopefully it is changing.
Having treated thousands of people with CFS and fibromyalgia, including numerous teens, over the last 30 years, I can tell you that this is a heartbreaking experience for both the child and their parents. Until effective treatment is given. And effective treatment is available.
Having had this illness when I was 23 years old, and with it forcing me to drop out of medical school and leaving me homeless, I have some understanding of what these children are going through. Fortunately, it is very treatable. It is also often a very different process than what is seen in adults. In children, it is especially important to address the associated autonomic problems such as POTS (Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome).
I still remember when I was lecturing in England about 20 years ago at the National Fibromyalgia Association conference. A desperate mother came up to me and begged me to treat her eight-year-old daughter, who was nearly bedbound. I told her that not being a pediatrician, I couldn't. She responded half joking that she wasn't allowing me to leave the country until I helped her daughter. She so obviously and sweetly loved her daughter that I told her that if her pediatrician would work with me I would treat her daughter. Thankfully he agreed.
The daughter responded well to my treatment and recovered. About 15 years later, when lecturing in England again, a beautiful young woman came up to me and asked "do you remember me?" It was the eight-year-old girl I had treated. She was doing brilliantly. She had graduated University with honors and when she heard that I was speaking, she decided to come by to say hello and thank me.
Because the illness can now be effectively treated using our research proven S.H.I.N.E.® protocol, it is tragic to miss it. It is both tragic and abusive to attribute it to being a psychological disorder. To put things in perspective, Multiple Sclerosis used to be called "Hysterical Paralysis" and was attributed to having an Oedipal complex.
New hope is available for children and their families in dealing with these devastating illnesses. It begins, however, with educating physicians to finally acknowledge and understand them.
Love and blessings,
Jacob Teitelbaum, M.D. is one of the world's leading integrative medical authorities on fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. He is the lead author of four research studies on their treatments, and has published numerous health & wellness books, including the bestseller on fibromyalgia From Fatigued to Fantastic! and The Fatigue and Fibromyalgia Solution. Dr. Teitelbaum is one of the most frequently quoted fibromyalgia experts in the world and appears often as a guest on news and talk shows nationwide including Good Morning America, The Dr. Oz Show, Oprah & Friends, CNN, and Fox News Health.