Jim Shannon, Democratic Unionist Party spokesman for Health, Transport and Equality, tabled a couple of written questions about Chronic Fatigue Syndrome for the Health Secretary. The first asked how many people were diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome in the last year? The second asked what medication is available on the NHS for CFS?
In the House of Commons yesterday (December 8), parliamentary under-secretary for health Jane Ellison provided the following written answer.
No assessment has been made of the number of people who have been diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) in the last year.
In 2007 the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) produced the clinical guidance Chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (or encephalopathy): Diagnosis and management of CFS/ME in adults and children, which estimates that the annual prevalence is approximately 4,000 cases per million of the population.
There is no medication available to specifically treat CFS, however the NICE guidance recommends that pharmacological pain relief may be appropriate for the relief of chronic pain that the condition can cause. Other methods of treatment that may be of benefit are cognitive behavioural therapy, graded exercise therapy or activity management. The guidance can be found at the following link: