Research: Long-term sickness absence among patients with chronic fatigue syndrome, 8 September 2011

Br J Psychiatry. 2011 Sep 8. [Epub ahead of print]

Long-term sickness absence among patients with chronic fatigue syndrome.

Knudsen AK, Henderson M, Harvey SB, Chalder T.
Department of Health Promotion and Development, Faculty of Psychology, University of Bergen, Norway.


Chronic fatigue syndrome is associated with high levels of occupational disability. Consecutive out-patients at a chronic fatigue syndrome treatment service were studied for associations between occupational status, symptom severity and cognitive and behavioural responses to symptoms. All patients had high symptom levels; however, those on long-term sickness absence had significantly more physical fatigue (β = 0.098, P<0.05) and worse sleep (β = 0.075, P<0.05). Patients with long-term sickness absence also demonstrated more embarrassment avoidance cognitions (β = 0.086, P<0.05) and avoidance resting behavioural responses (β = 0.078, P<0.05). Identifying and addressing avoidance behaviours and cognitions regarding embarrassment in interventions may enhance the chances of individuals returning to work. PMID: 21903665 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]


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