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CommonHealth: NIH Promises To Bolster 'Chronic Fatigue Syndrome' Research06:45
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Dr. Ellen Wright Clayton, chair of the Committee on Diagnostic Criteria for Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome speaks during an open meeting at the Institute of Medicine in Washington in February. (Susan Walsh/AP)
Dr. Ellen Wright Clayton, chair of the Committee on Diagnostic Criteria for Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome speaks during an open meeting at the Institute of Medicine in Washington in February. (Susan Walsh/AP)
This article is more than 4 years old.

There's been a major change in the way the medical establishment views a devastating disease, commonly known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. It affects more than 1 million Americans and it's been a somewhat controversial area of medicine, down to the name.

The World Health Organization now uses Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, which refers to pain and inflammation in the brain and central nervous system. Some patients argue, the trouble with a name that has "fatigue" in it is that it makes people think this is just some syndrome that involves being tired, and that doesn't nearly capture the overwhelming nature of the disease.

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Carey Goldberg, co-host of WBUR's CommonHealth blog. She tweets at @commonhealth.

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CommonHealth: Often Bedridden For 25 Years, Advocate Welcomes NIH Move On Fatigue Syndrome

  • "Last week, the National Institutes of Health announced a welcome change: They promised to help the more than 1 million Americans who have the devastating disease commonly known as chronic fatigue syndrome."

The Washington Post: I’m Disabled. Can NIH Spare A Few Dimes?

  • "Three years ago, a sudden fever struck me on a blue-sky Wisconsin morning. I've been sick ever since. On my third “illiversary,” I presented an opportunity to Francis Collins, the head of the NIH."

This segment aired on November 2, 2015.

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