Even though it’s called chronic fatigue syndrome, its name doesn’t begin to describe the depth of the fatigue, debilitating lack of energy, and generalized pain experienced by patients with this disease. Dr. Beijing Men at Integrated Oriental Medicine has years of experience using acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine to help patients with chronic fatigue syndrome restore their energy and improve their overall health. If you have questions about alternative therapies that improve symptoms of fatigue, call one of the offices in Seattle or Bellevue, Washington, or book an appointment online.

Fatigue Q & A

What is chronic fatigue syndrome?

The fatigue you experience when you have chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) isn’t the same as feeling tired but knowing that a good night’s rest is all you need. The fatigue in CFS is an unrelenting exhaustion that persists. It doesn’t get better when you rest.

CFS fatigue significantly affects your physical and emotional health and worsens when you engage in any type of activity that demands mental or physical energy. Fatigue this extreme makes it impossible to complete simple daily activities like getting dressed.

The medical cause of CFS hasn’t been determined, but theories suggest it may arise from an infection, an immune problem, or, more likely, multiple factors working together.

What symptoms might I develop with chronic fatigue syndrome?

CFS is diagnosed when your fatigue lasts at least six months and it can’t be explained by an underlying health condition.

In addition to extreme exhaustion that lasts more than 24 hours after physical or mental exercise, you’ll experience symptoms such as:

  • Weakness
  • Muscle pain
  • Joint pain
  • Impaired short-term memory
  • Trouble concentrating
  • A sore throat
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Tender lymph nodes
  • Headaches of a new type or strength

Your symptoms may appear suddenly or develop gradually. Although CFS is chronic, your symptoms may cycle between flare-ups that are worse and a more tolerable level of fatigue and pain.

How is chronic fatigue syndrome treated?

The first thing to know about treatment for CFS is that there’s currently no cure, and no medical interventions have been approved to treat the disease. However, with Dr. Men’s expertise in Chinese medicine, you can have hope for managing your symptoms and restoring energy.

Dr. Men determines whether you have adrenal insufficiency and if you have respiratory or reproductive deficiencies along with your CFS.

Your treatment includes acupuncture, which may target acupuncture points that improve mental clarity, restore circulation to the heart, brain, and body, and re-establish proper digestion so that your body receives nutrients needed for energy.

Dr. Men also recommends a Chinese chronic fatigue herbal formula to restore circulation. He may perform moxibustion, which targets acupressure points, or cold laser therapy. Many patients also benefit from a type of therapeutic massage, tuina, to release muscle tension.

To learn more about alternative treatments for chronic fatigue syndrome, call Integrated Oriental Medicine or book an appointment online.