Research abstract: pilot study of cognitive behaviour stress management in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

From the Journal of Psychosomatic Research, published online on 18 January 2011.

A pilot study of cognitive behavioral stress management effects on stress, quality of life, and symptoms in persons with chronic fatigue syndrome☆

Corina Lopez, Michael Antoni, Frank Penedo, Donna Weiss, Stacy Cruess, Mary-Catherine Segotas, Lynn Helder, Scott Siegel, Nancy Klimas, Mary Ann Fletcher
Received 21 September 2010; received in revised form 26 November 2010; accepted 29 November 2010. published online 18 January 2011.
Corrected Proof


The present pilot study was designed to test the effects of a 12-week group-based cognitive behavioral stress management (CBSM) intervention on stress, quality of life, and symptoms in chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). We hypothesized that participants randomized to CBSM would report improvements in perceived stress, mood, quality of life, and CFS symptomatology from pre- to postintervention compared to those receiving a psychoeducational (PE) seminar control.


We recruited 69 persons with a bona fide diagnosis of CFS and randomized 44 to CBSM and 25 to PE. Participants completed the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS), Profile of Mood States (POMS), Quality of Life Inventory (QOLI), and a Centers for Disease Control (CDC)-based CFS symptom checklist pre- and postintervention.


Repeated measures analysis of variance revealed a significant Group×Time interaction for PSS, POMS–total mood disturbance (TMD), and QOLI scores, such that participants in CBSM evidenced greater improvements than those in PE. Participants in CBSM also reported decreases in severity of CFS symptoms vs. those in PE.


Results suggest that CBSM is beneficial for managing distress, improving quality of life, and alleviating CFS symptom severity.

Keywords: CDC symptoms, Chronic fatigue syndrome, Quality of life, Stress, Stress management
University of Miami, Miami, FL, USA
Corresponding author. Department of Psychology, 5665 Ponce DeLeon Blvd., Coral Gables, FL 33124, USA.

☆ This study was funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) (1 U01 AI45940 and 1R01 NS055672-01).

PII: S0022-3999(10)00447-2


© 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


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