Doctors urged to look out for chronic fatigue syndrome in long Covid patients

September 27, 2021

An article in covers links between Long COVID and ME and has contributions from Dr Nicola Clague-Baker.

ME patients are often called the ‘missing millions’ with an estimated 24 million (sufferers) worldwide

Dr Nicola Clague-Baker.


The ISCP (Irish Society of Chartered Physiotherapists) is concerned that large parts of the country are not covered by long Covid clinics. It says there needs to be a faster roll-out of clinics to cater for Munster, Connacht, much of Leinster and the Ulster counties.

Most long Covid clinics, which are located primarily on the east coast, have been offering varying types of care which hasn’t been consistent across the board and the HSE plan to address this is not happening fast enough, according to the ISCP

“It has affected patients’ ability to work, carry on with ordinary daily living and activities as well as earn a living, and quality of life, along with affecting mental and physical health, with many individuals having to be retrained in how to breathe properly,” said an ISCP spokesman.

There seems to be a link between long Covid and ME with potential there for long Covid patients to develop ME.

They can’t exercise their way out of this. The cardinal sign of ME is post-exertional symptom exacerbation – exercise can greatly increase symptoms.

ME patients have been harmed by exercise.

The virus can invade many of the body’s organs but this is a serious effect,” said Dr Clague-Baker. “Brain control and control of main organs can be affected.

Breathing exercises can have a positive impact on the autonomic nervous system, the area of the brain which controls the automatic functions of the body like breathing, heart, digestive systems.

Dr Nicola Clague-Baker.
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