Muscle fatigue in CFS/ME and its response to a manual therapeutic approach: a pilot study – research paper, 4 May 2011

May 13, 2011

From the International Journal of Osteopathic Medicine, 4 May 2011.

Raymond N. Perrin(a), Jim David Richards(a), V. Pentreath(b) and David F. Percy(c)

a Allied Health Research Unit, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, PR1 2HE, UK
b Department of Biological Sciences, University of Salford, Salford M6 6PU, UK
c Centre for Operational Research and Applied Statistics, University of Salford, Greater Manchester, M5 4WT, UK

Received 20 March 2008; revised 5 September 2010; accepted 14 December 2010. Available online 4 May 2011.



The objective of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of a manual treatment protocol for CFS/ME sufferers.


Isometric testing and EMG of the knee extensor muscles were conducted alongside the Profile of Fatigue Related States questionnaire.


9 patients suffering from CFS/ME, 9 age and gender-matched CFS/ME sufferers who were allowed to choose any treatment other than manual therapy and 9 age and gender-matched healthy volunteers were assessed at 0 and 12 months.


Significant increases in peak and impulse torque were found which corresponded to improvements in the Profile of Fatigue Related States questionnaire in the treatment group only, no other significant changes were found.


These findings suggest that post-exercise muscle function in CFS/ME is improved following specialised osteopathic intervention. The authors suggest the reduction of lymphatic drainage to be a possible aetiological factor in the observed muscle fatigue.

Keywords: Chronic fatigue syndrome; ME;Isometric quadriceps muscle testing; EMG median frequency

3 thoughts on “Muscle fatigue in CFS/ME and its response to a manual therapeutic approach: a pilot study – research paper, 4 May 2011”

  1. This article is protected by a paywall so, unless you want to spend $31.50 to buy the text, there is no more information available.

    But what drew my eye to this study by Raymond Perrin and his colleagues was this quote from Google Alerts:

    “Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) or Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME), as it has been known in the UK since coined by Ramsay in 1955, is a clinically accepted …”

    Of course, it wasn’t Ramsay who coined the name. It was Acheson in The Lancet a year later. And Acheson called it “Benign Myalgic Encephalomyelitis”

  2. I hope there’s more to this than meets the eye, but it looks like pretty small beer.
    Raymond Perrin has been banging on about osteopathy for donkey’s years but nothing seems to be coming of it. Couldn’t the money be spent more wisely than on investigating muscle strength in ‘fatigue related states’ – another PACE? Would anyone research ‘breathlessness related states’?
    Come on Raymond, tell us how your treatment helps us to walk further; no point being stronger if I can’t walk to the kitchen!
    Is anyone exploring treatments which will improve our lives?

  3. I would like to know more about my symtoms though, particularly what is causing the muscle ‘fatigue’.

    Surely if you can find that out then a ‘treatment’ will be more easily identifiable and stand a better chance of actually working?

    I have to agree though – as it stands the study extract and use of ‘questionnaires’ leaves me somewhat concerned.

    With what Soloman reveals, this chap seems to be another one out to prove his pet theories instead of approaching it with an open mind…

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