An Etiological Model for Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Leonard A. Jason, Matthew Sorenson, Nicole Porter, Natalie Belkairous
DOI: 10.4236/nm.2011.21003   PDF   HTML   XML   9,269 Downloads   18,936 Views   Citations


Kindling might represent a heuristic model for understanding the etiology of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS). Kindling occurs when an organism is exposed repeatedly to an initially sub-threshold stimulus re-sulting in hypersensitivity and spontaneous seizure-like activity. Among patients with ME/CFS, chronically repeated low-intensity stimulation due to an infectious illness might cause kindling of the limbic-hypothalamic-pituitary axis. Kindling might also occur by high-intensity stimulation (e.g., brain trauma) of the limbic-hypothalamic-pituitary axis. Once this system is charged or kindled, it can sustain a high level of arousal with little or no external stimulus and eventually this could lead to hypocortisolism. Seizure activity may spread to adjacent structures of the limbic-hypothalamic-pituitary axis in the brain, which might be responsible for the varied symptoms that occur among patients with ME/CFS. In addition, kindling may also be responsible for high levels of oxidative stress, which has been found in patients with ME/CFS.

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L. Jason, M. Sorenson, N. Porter and N. Belkairous, "An Etiological Model for Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome," Neuroscience and Medicine, Vol. 2 No. 1, 2011, pp. 14-27. doi: 10.4236/nm.2011.21003.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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