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chronic fatigue syndrome

In addition to profound exhaustion that isn't relieved with sleep, the illness now called ME/CFS includes flu-like symptoms, muscle pain, "brain fog" and various other physical symptoms, all of which typically worsen with even minor exertion. Malte Mueller/Getty Images hide caption

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Malte Mueller/Getty Images

Brian Vastag suffers from myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome, or ME/CFS for short. He is part of an NIH study of the disease, which is commonly called chronic fatigue syndrome. Miriam Tucker for NPR hide caption

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Miriam Tucker for NPR

Ronald Davis cares for his 31-year-old son, Whitney Dafoe. Dafoe is seriously ill with ME/CFS. His father, a Stanford University professor, is organizing a study of the disorder. Courtesy of Ashley Davis hide caption

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Courtesy of Ashley Davis

The Institute of Medicine is reviewing how chronic fatigue syndrome is diagnosed and whether that label puts too much emphasis on fatigue over other significant symptoms. Daniel Horowitz for NPR hide caption

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Daniel Horowitz for NPR

A virus called XMRV was linked to chronic fatigue syndrome in a study published in Science in 2009. Now that paper has been withdrawn. David Schumick and Joseph Pangrace/Cleveland Clinic Center for Medical Art & Photography hide caption

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David Schumick and Joseph Pangrace/Cleveland Clinic Center for Medical Art & Photography

Some patients describe chronic fatigue syndrome as feeling like an "unrelenting flu." hide caption

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XMRV, a mouse virus, may be an artifact of laboratory experiments rather than the cause of chronic fatigue syndrome. Whittemore Peterson Institute hide caption

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Whittemore Peterson Institute

Psychotherapy And Exercise Look Best To Treat Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

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