Rainbow at shoreline

The Massachusetts CFIDS/ME & FM Association, a 501(c)3 founded in 1985, exists to meet the needs of patients with CFIDS (Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndrome, also known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome), ME (Myalgic Encephalomyelitis) or FM (Fibromyalgia), their families and loved ones. The Massachusetts CFIDS/ME & FM Association works to educate health-care providers and the general public regarding these severely-disabling physical illnesses. We also support patients and their families and advocate for more effective treatment and research.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia and Other Illnesses—The Comprehensive Guide, by Katrina Berne, Ph.D., 2001, ISBN: 0897932803

This is one of the best regarded, all-inclusive books which covers diagnosis, theories, research, and overall management of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) and Fibromyalgia (FM). Good attention and detail is given to the various detectable abnormalities and diagnostic techniques/ tests used, symptoms and groups of symptoms, things in common but also differences between these illnesses. It also provides a reasonably good overview of treatments (conventional and alternative methods), at least up to those available at the time of publication.

What makes this book unique and particularly helpful is the advice given about practical lifestyle modifications and coping strategies, as the author is a licensed clinical psychologist who treats patients with these illnesses. Furthermore, Dr. Berne also happens to be someone who has ME/CFS and the reader can definitely sense how well she understands and can relate to the effects of these illnesses. This is one of the most frequently recommended books for newly diagnosed patients with ME/CFS or FM and their family members. Due to its popularity, it is likely to be found on the public library system but it is definitely worth purchasing and having on hand.

Notice about names

The Massachusetts CFIDS/ME & FM Association would like to clarify the use of the various acronyms for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), Chronic Fatigue & Immune Dysfunction Syndrome (CFIDS) and  Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) on this site. When we generate our own articles on the illness, we will refer to it as ME/CFS, the term now generally used in the United States. When we are reporting on someone else’s report, we will use the term they use. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) are currently using ME/CFS. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are calling the illness CFS.

Until there is consensus on a name for the illness, the Massachusetts CFIDS/ME & FM Association name will not change.