Dr Nicole Phillips, MBchB, dipRACOG,DPM,FRANZCP
872 High Street,
The position of Australian psychiatry in the CFS debate
The involvement of the psychiatric profession in the CFS area has been a highly contentious issue and has, on the whole, annoyed many researchers looking at biological markers and upset and angered CFS patients.
In the past few years, there have been a number of publications by psychiatrists, in psychiatric, medical and general practice literature, which have dropped the "fatigue" from chronic fatigue syndrome, and used these terms interchangeably with neurasthenia and somatisation.
The implications of this are enormous for CFS patients trying to find adequate medical and psychological care.
This paper will discuss the concepts of "neurasthenia" and somatisation and review some recent psychiatric publications. The author will conclude with her analysis of psychiatry's position and present a different paradigm for psychiatry and CFS in the future.
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