Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Symptoms Can Be Severe

If you are interested in a personal story of the severe Chronic Fatigue Syndrome symptoms which put me in a life-threatening situation then this CFS article is for you.

If you came to this page simply to find a list of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome symptoms then I highly recommend the Action For ME free PDF booklet: All about M.E.
(NB. M.E is another name for CFS.

This article is not recommended for those who are newly diagnosed as it is about severe Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. It is for those who need validation of how serious CFS can be.

CFS symptoms can be life-threatening

Has anyone died of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?
Can Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) cause death or lead to death?

Yes, although it is extremely rare. It was given as the cause of death in the case of Sophia Mirza in the UK- a case which involved Severe CFS/ME combined with severe mistreatment by the authorities.

In the magazines that support those with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/M.E, news of suicides or death by other health complications are also fairly common.

Note the case of Lynn Gilderdale in the UK. She had had Severe CFS/ME for 17 years at the time when she committed suicide. It made the news only as a case of assisted suicide, since she required the help of her mother Kay Gilderdale.

CFS Support and Care:
Surviving CFS Can Be Difficult

As many people with Severe CFS/ME will know, surviving can be difficult in terms of getting the support and care necessary to stay alive. And severe CFS/ME is indeed life-threatening.

For example, if someone’s physical ability drops beneath a level where the body can take in food, then the body does not last long.
If someone’s immune system stops being able to tolerate food or electricity or chemicals then this too can be life-threatening.

My Personal Story: Severe Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Symptoms Left Me Fighting To Survive

Which Chronic Fatigue Syndrome symptoms and life circumstances made the CFS/ME life-threatening for me?

I had reactive hypoglycaemia. I had to eat something every few hours. If not, I would get dizzy, confused, weepy. I could pass out.

Due to muscle fatigue I was unable to feed myself anything other than some snacks by the bed.

I was unable to walk to the kitchen to get food.

I was dependent on council carers. I never knew for sure if or when a carer would turn up.

When the carer was there, care time was tight. It often required me to have great organisational skills and managerial skills to see that I got enough food and that the carer left food and water by the bed. As you can imagine such skills did not come easily with brain fog and severe cognitive difficulties.

I had little speech to ask for what I needed. There was eventually a good care routine, but many carers objected to reading.

I had severe Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS). If a carer wore perfume, the effect on my brain function made it excruciatingly difficult to open and close my mouth to be fed. I suffered temporary paralysis. It was hard to find anyone who would give up perfume in order to help me.

I know that some of you will know what I am talking about when I say life was a constant fight to get enough food into my body to stay alive.

CFS and weight: I went down to 7 Stone and fought hard to raise my weight.

The situation was life-threatening because I had severe Chronic Fatigue Syndrome symptoms without the care to ensure my safety.

I have been there. Recovery from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is possible.

If you feel disheartened by this CFS article, please remember that your circumstances may be better than my own.

The advice for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome / ME is to rest. If you are managing to rest whilst keeping your body and mind as active as possible then the healing process is taking place. Many recover naturally in the course of time.

Many people with CFS/ME never go on to develop severe Chronic Fatigue Syndrome symptoms.

Who is most likely to develop severe CFS?

It is those who do not have an early CFS/ME diagnosis and do not rest in the early stages who sometimes go on to get severely ill.

And if that is true for you, and you too are in a situation where your circumstances do not allow you to rest, please remember that this is a page on a website of someone who recovered from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.
Recovery is also possible for you.

CFS/ME Recovery: Yes, but I have different Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Symptoms!

Recovery from CFS/ME may seem like a dream to you now. You may be thinking of various reasons why my advice won't help you:

This woman is not being realistic,
...perhaps she wasn’t as ill as me,
...perhaps she is different from me in some way,
...perhaps she had more help than I have.

I Validate The Pain of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome /ME

This CFS article is not typical of this site. This site very much focuses on the possibility of LIFE within CFS/ME and the possibility of recovery from CFS/ME.

This page, instead, has the aim of sharing something of the chronic fatigue syndrome symptoms I had, and how difficult my life situation was. Hopefully this will let you know that your hope of CFS recovery is not unrealistic.

In other places on this website, I will also talk about the ultimate “unreality” of illness and how you can cultivate this and various other beliefs to allow healing to take place. I don't want you to take this to mean that I am not taking the symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome /ME seriously. I, of all people, take them very seriously indeed.

So, on this page, I am validating the pain, the difficulty, and the courage of those living with Severe CFS/ME and other chronic illness.

I am saying that illness/death/the body are definitely real to us on this level of reality.

Postive Words To All Those Living With Chronic Fatigue Syndrome /ME

It took courage to face up to how ill I was. I needed to do so to motivate myself to take the steps to stay alive.

It took courage to face up to how difficult my situation was. How can we give ourselves credit for survival if we pretend it is easy?

Other people in your life may be in denial about your being ill with CFS/ME. They may not be able to support you right now in facing up to the seriousness of the illness.

I needed help to face up to illness. So I am here now to say to you:

Positive Words To Those Living With CFS

Well done for being willing to know that you have an illness. Well done for being willing to take CFS/ME seriously.

Well done for taking the steps you need to take to adjust your life in order to survive and find LIFE whilst living with chronic illness.

Well done for having survived to the point where you are here reading this.
It is so great that you are seeking information, validation and understanding of the illness.

And - if you have Severe CFS/ME and cannot sit at a computer - well done for having the willingness to receive the help of another and the determination to read this print-out or have it read to you.

Recommended Links

If you want more help in facing up to the reality and seriousness of the condition of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/ME, please follow the link to What About ME Illness?

Click here to donate to much needed biomedical research into ME (Myalgic Encephalomyelitis) in the UK

Chronic Fatigue Syndrom symptoms can overlap with the symptoms of thyroid deficiency which can be treated. Go here to take the Quiz: Do I have a thyroid problem

Other Articles on relevant to Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Symptoms:

The next page - Spirituality In Recovery - M.E Is A Physical Illness

CFS/ ME, Mental Illness and Health

Stages of Facing Illness and Grieving Loss of Health

Maybe you have read enough about the serious nature of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome symptoms. If you now need encouragement to keep programming for LIFE, please move to the page on I Choose Life.

Most articles on this site give advice on living with chronic illness and on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome recovery, so have a look around.

Click here to go to the story of my Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Recovery

Move From Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Symptoms Can Be Life-Threatening back to Living With CFS/ ME

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