Thursday, September 25, 2014

Treatment Resistant Depression or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?

"I have now treated dozens of adults and adolescents who came to me with the diagnosis of "treatment-resistant depression" and instead they had Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. With proper treatment, this viral illness can be successfully controlled."
... The doctor provided them with the option of going on Valacyclovir, noting that the published evidence that it would work was small and confined to adults, not adolescents.  They began on an oral dose 500 mg BID and worked their way up to 1000 mg BID over a couple of weeks.


"The medical understanding of CFS has been impeded to a degree by the resistance to the concept  of chronic viral infections of the central nervous system."

Almost all of the adolescents responded quickly to the antivirals. Within three months 12 out of 15 reported greater than an 80% improvement in symptoms. After 8 months 14 out of 15 adolescents reported increased energy, improved sleep, increased motivation, and "return to normal functioning". Ten of the 14 reported a "complete resolution of fatigue" and their depressive symptoms disappeared.

* * *
Yes, CFS and depression share a few symptoms, but there are symptoms of CFS that are never ever seen in depression.
Unfortunately, most doctors hear "fatigue" and their brain shuts down; they're already married to the diagnosis of depression and when the patient waves red flags like "rash" or "fever" in the next sentence, the doctor ignores them.
Anti-depressants mostly make me violently ill.  They don't help because I don't have depression.  And, sure enough, when I finally got a C-Reactive Protein test, it was 10x normal, proving the problem was infection/inflammation, and not an emotional problem.
Valcyte is an anti-viral.  If you have a virus, it helps.  If you have depression, it doesn't. Hmmmmm.

This is one of those articles you should print out if you need to go to a new doctor; demand the C-RP test and use it to prove you don't need anti-depressants.
If your doctor won't prescribe an anti-viral, you can get Lysine at the health food store; obviously it's not as effective as a prescription, but it has some anti-viral properties and may do something.  Tagamet has also been reported as being helpful -- generic version is relatively inexpensive and available without a prescription.  Anything is worth a try while waiting to find a doctor who takes you seriously!

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