This guideline covers diagnosing and managing chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) which is also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) (or encephalopathy). It aims to improve the quality of life for people with CFS/ME by setting out the care and treatment options that should be available for them.
This guideline includes recommendations on:
- general management after diagnosis
- referral to specialist care
- managing setbacks/relapses
- review and ongoing management
- principles of care for people with severe CFS/ME
Who is it for?
- Healthcare professionals
- People with CFS/ME, their families and carers
Is this guideline up to date?
We reviewed the evidence in February 2014. We identified no major studies that will affect the recommendations in the next 3–5 years.
Next review: 2017
Guideline development process
The recommendations in this guideline represent the view of NICE, arrived at after careful consideration of the evidence available. When exercising their judgement, professionals are expected to take this guideline fully into account, alongside the individual needs, preferences and values of their patients or service users. The application of the recommendations in this guideline is not mandatory and the guideline does not override the responsibility of healthcare professionals to make decisions appropriate to the circumstances of the individual patient, in consultation with the patient and/or their carer or guardian.
Local commissioners and/or providers have a responsibility to enable the guideline to be applied when individual health professionals and their patients or service users wish to use it. They should do so in the context of local and national priorities for funding and developing services, and in light of their duties to have due regard to the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, to advance equality of opportunity and to reduce health inequalities. Nothing in this guideline should be interpreted in a way that would be inconsistent with compliance with those duties.