NZ Herald: Chronic fatigue cause unlocked

Alice Neville of the New Zealand Herald reports that the previously-unknown cause of chronic fatigue syndrome has been found.

Chronic fatigue syndrome, which affects 20,000 New Zealanders (and around 17 million people globally), has faced much skepticism over the years due to its invisible cause.  However, recent research suggests that a retrovirus may be to blame, allowing researchers to begin looking into treatments for the disease.

An excerpt: (read in full here)

“That such a serious problem could be the cause of ME may seem an odd thing for sufferers to celebrate, but it means a real understanding of the disease is finally in sight.

“When Vallings began working with ME sufferers more than 30 years ago, there was little understanding of the condition.

“”Until the last five years or so, people have been sceptical because there is no definite cause and no definite tests,”she said.

“”A lot of sufferers look well, so had been mislabelled as having psychiatric conditions, and the term fatigue is very vague.” Attitudes to ME in New Zealand are more advanced than in other countries such as America, where sufferers struggle to have their condition accepted as a legitimate illness, she says.”