CFSWG BackgroundChronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is a debilitating and complex syndrome that may involve multiple bodily symptoms and is characterized by profound fatigue, which is not alleviated by bed rest and can be exacerbated by physical or mental activity. People with CFS often function at substantially lower levels of activity from their pre-onset capacities. Neither a specific cause, diagnostic test, nor treatment has been identified for this illness. It is possible that multiple subcategories of conditions are subsumed under this rubric.
Approximately one percent of the U.S. population is affected. While it appears that Caucasian women suffer with CFS more frequently than do men or women from other ethnic groups, epidemiologic studies indicate that this gap may be narrowing. Also important is that 80% of people identifies in such studies have not been diagnosed or treated. There is also a substantial pediatric population with this condition.