Learn about the factors that can play a role in determining your condition
by Dr. Bill Rawls
Last Updated 10/31/16
The possibility of hidden microbes being a primary underlying factor in chronic fatigue-type syndromes (and also autoimmune diseases ) is hard to ignore, but absolutely determining exactly which microbes are present is nearly impossible.
The types of pathogenic microbes found in chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and fibromyalgia thrive inside cells (intracellular) and isolated locations in the body. I call them stealth microbes, and finding and eradicating them is a real challenge.
A positive diagnosis of one microbe does not exclude the presence of other hidden microbes (possibly even some yet to be identified by modern science). They all work synergistically – microbes have been successfully playing this game for a lot longer than we have!
The microbes involved in CFS and fibromyalgia have evolved intricate mechanisms of disabling or tricking key parts of the immune system. Some of these mechanisms have been defined, but much is still unknown. Each different pathogen has evolved different mechanisms of disrupting immune function.
What happens to the immune system when a host is infected with multiple low-virulence pathogens simultaneously is a huge question that still remains. Likely, this happens more often than not and it may explain variations in symptoms and also variations in Chronic Immune Dysfunction.
No two patients with chronic fatigue or fibromyalgia are exactly alike
Differences are caused by:
- Variation in exposure to system disruptors
- The person’s genetic makeup and the types of pathogens present
- Compromise of immune function is a common denominator in every case, but types of immune dysfunction can vary.
Certain patients present with muscle pain and no joint pain or no pain at all; these cases may be predominantly viral.
Different microbes and the symptoms they cause
Viruses are also more apt to directly affect the liver. Joint inflammation and migrating arthritis may indicate predominant bacterial involvement; Borrelia (Lyme disease) and mycoplasma are common culprits (but others are possible).
Intestinal mycoplasma may be a factor in patients with severe food sensitivities, weight loss, and failure to thrive. Some of the sickest chronic fatigue patients display across-the-board immune suppression. These patients have been given the designation, Chronic Immune Dysfunction (ChronicID); very likely multiple microbes are involved.
For information on healing your condition, you may want to explore the RawlsMD Health Topics page.