UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology


Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME)

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Myalgic encephalomyelitis

Medline NLM definition: syndrome of unknown cause, characterized by clinically evaluated, unexplained persistent or relapsing chronic fatigue of at least six months' duration which is not the result of ongoing exertion; is not substantially alleviated by rest; and results in substantial reduction of previous levels of occupational, educational, social, or personal activities. Common concurrent symptoms (of six months duration) include impairment of memory or concentration, diffuse pain, sore throat, tender lymph nodes, headaches of a new type, pattern, or severity, and unrefreshing sleep. The etiology is suspected to be viral or immunologic. There are suggestions that chronic fatigue syndrome (sometimes called myalgic encephalomyelitis) may be identical to neurasthenia and fibromyalgia.

Myalgic Encephalomyelitis: information from the NHS website

Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME): information from Patient UK website

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS/ME): information from the NHS website

Post-viral Fatigue syndrome (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome): information from Patient UK website

Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis: factsheet from NINDS, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (US site)


PubMed Medline search on myalgic encephalomyelitis

Support Groups

ME Association
This charity provides information, support and practical advice for people affected by the condition. It disseminates information to the general public and health professionals and campaigns for the recognition of the illness. The ME Association also has a large network of local support groups

Action for M.E.
Leading UK charity for people with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (M.E.) and their carers. Provides information, support and advice, including the impact of ME, services and support they offer, and their policy work and research they fund.

Solve ME/CFS Initiative
The webpage consists of educational materials, a CFIDS Chronicle, latest news, support and chat groups. (US site)

Brain and Spine Foundation
Information on living with a neurological condition and on diagnosis. There are publications and resources. The useful glossary of neurological conditions (under 'Information and support') includes links to some other organisations as well as to Brain and Spine Foundation information.

Neurological Alliance
Collective voice for 80 organisations, including stroke and brain injury. Organisations are listed at https://www.neural.org.uk/our-members/, a good place to start if looking for information on those conditions. Site also includes information about living with a neurological condition, a glossary, and information about onset and diagnosis as well as a small set of real life stories.

NHS Inform: brain, nerves and spinal cord 
NHS inform is Scotland's national health information service, with the aim of providing the people in Scotland with accurate and relevant information to help them make informed decisions about their own health and the health of the people they care for.

Invest in ME Research
UK charity working to establish a UK and European Centre of Excellence for ME – a centre which would exist to bring discovery, knowledge, and effective treatments to patients with ME and possibly, in future, other illnesses that are caused by acquired dysregulation of both the immune system and the nervous system. It finds, funds and facilitates a strategy of biomedical research into ME and promotes better education about ME.