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This page is for health professionals with patients who are believed to have chronic fatigue syndrome or ME. The below includes information on our services at Broadgreen hospital, frequently asked questions and our referral form.

Diagnosis is made through a set inclusion and exclusion criteria. Patients tell us that they are grateful and feel supported when they know they are believed by a GP.

Our service

The CFS therapy service provide a self-management rehabilitation programme, beginning with one group session, a triage call and two workshops over several months. Finally, a one to one review assesses the patient’s individual needs. The patient may then go on to have tailored therapy sessions. You can read more about these on the "Groups and workshops" page.

Frequently asked questions for health professionals

      • What treatments work: there is an evidence base for pacing and grading of activity and cognitive behavioural therapy. Graded exercise is also included in the NICE Guidelines but this approach must to be personalised, as it is not general exercise, and must be supervised by a suitably experienced practitioner.
      • Low mood and anxiety: CFS/ME is different from depression and anxiety disorders, although patients can have both concurrently. Medication can be appropriate to prescribe to alleviate symptoms, which can help stability more effective activity and rest management, sleep and pain.   
      • Exercise: A generic exercise programme given by someone without specific knowledge of the condition is unlikely to work, and may exacerbate symptoms. We can work with patients on an individualised programme at the right time.
      • Sleep: Sleeping for longer generally won’t improve fatigue. Advice about sleep hygiene to improve the quality of sleep can be helpful. (link to external websites and information for patients)
      • Motivation: Patients are not lacking motivation. A ‘boom and bust’ pattern of activity is usually a result of patients trying to do more than they can sustain.
      • Pain: Managing pain alongside fatigue is a significant issue for many patients with CFS/ME. Amitriptyline, Gabapentin and Pregabalin are pain relievers that are commonly used to treat the type of pain seen in CFS/ME patients. Please be aware that patients can be sensitive to new medication.
      • Chronic fatigue: Fatigue described and experienced in CFS/ME differs in cause from chronic fatigue. (link to diagnosis section)
      • New symptoms: Patients tell us that they worry that if they have the signs of another health problem that it will be put down to their CFS/ME. If you have any questions regarding usual CFS/ME symptomology, versus atypical presentations, please contact the service to discuss this further. (link to NICE guidelines)
      • Investigations: Ensuring all the required blood tests are completed before sending us the referral form will prevent delays in issuing an appointment.
      • Patients who relapse: If you patient has been diagnosed and treated by us in the past and is now experiencing a significant relapse, without stabilisation, please consider re-referring (link to referral form)

Referral form

Chronic fatigue / ME referral form

Patient details
The patient's full name
The patient's full address
The patient's home or mobile phone number

Brief history and severity of fatigue
Mild - Mobile, self caring, light domestic duties, may be working but to detriment of social, family and leisure activities. Moderate - Reduced mobility, not working, reduced activities of daily living (ADL), peaks and troughs of activity. Severe - Few ADL, severe cognitive difficulties, wheelchair dependent for mobility, rarely leaves the house. Very severe - No ADL, bed-bound most of the time, unable to tolerate any noise and light sensitive, require someone else to wash and feed them.

Please select an answer to all of the following statements

Which of the following symptoms persisted/recurred during 4 or more consecutive months and did not predate the fatigue (Please check yes or no)

Word finding problems, poor concentration ,memory issues

Indicate if the patient currently has any of the following medical conditions

Indicate if there is clinical evidence of the following conditions (please check box for all that apply and attach all relevant clinical information)
eg. emphysema, cardiac failure, chronic renal failure
eg. medications, infections or recent major surgery
**Long Term Mental Health conditions may mirror many aspects of CFS and therefore preclude CFS diagnosis
Please include clinical evidence of the checked conditions

The following blood tests need to be carried out prior to referral – please tick and attach results with form

Please attach any relevant blood test documents

The NHS has put in place measures to ensure the safety of all patients and NHS staff while also ensuring services are available to the public as normal. If you have a hospital appointment then you should attend as planned.