Brian M. Hughes, Ph.D., is a specialist in stress psychophysiology and a Professor of Psychology at the University of Galway, Ireland. He has written methodological critiques of the PACE Trial and other ME research, as well as conducting empirical research on treatment harm in National Health Service specialist ME centres in England. He is a member of the Science Advisory Board of DecodeME, a UK-based study to investigate DNA profiles of people with myalgic encephalomyelitis and chronic fatigue syndrome. He was a member of the Republic of Ireland's original National Working Group on ME, administered by Ireland's Health Service Executive (HSE), and currently a member of the HSE's Clinical Practice Guideline Group for ME/CFS. He is also an Advisor to the Northern Irish charity, Hope 4 ME & Fibro NI. In 2021, he was made an Honorary Fellow of the advocacy group, Doctors With ME.
Hughes's work specialises in stress psychophysiology, health psychology, the public understanding of psychology and science, and the application of psychology to social issues. A prominent advocate for scientific psychology, evidence-based policy, and the role of psychology in society, he writes widely on the psychology of empiricism and of empirically disputable claims, especially as they pertain to science, health, medicine, and politics.
He is currently chairing a global research team on behalf of the International Prader-Willi Syndrome Organisation (IPWSO). He is Associate Editor of the International Journal of Psychophysiology and a member of the inaugural Editorial Board of J-STAR: Journal of Stress, Trauma, Anxiety and Resilience. From 2014 to 2016 he served as President of the International Stress and Anxiety Research Society. A past President of the Psychological Society of Ireland, he currently sits on the PSI's Science and Public Policy Committee.
Education[edit | edit source]
- 1993, B.A. degree in Psychology, National University of Ireland, Galway
- 1998, Ph.D. degree in Psychology, National University of Ireland, Galway
- 2009, Ed.M. degree in Science Education, University at Buffalo, State University of New York, US
Relevant Books[edit | edit source]
- 2016, Rethinking Psychology: Good Science, Bad Science, Pseudoscience
- 2018, Psychology in Crisis
- 2023, A Conceptual History of Psychology: The Mind Through Time
Talks and interviews on ME/CFS[edit | edit source]
- October 2018, Invited lecture, Hope 4 ME & Fibro NI, Newry, Northern Ireland; Speech title: The PACE Trial and Psychology’s Crisis
- September 2019, Interview on 'Psychology in Crisis', 'Medical Error Interviews' podcast
- September 2019, Keynote Lecture, Hope 4 ME & Fibro NI Annual Conference, Belfast, Northern Ireland; Speech title: Off the PACE and not NICE: Challenges facing evidence-based practice in ME/CFS
- September 2019, Interview for the film 'Understanding Graded Exercise Therapy for ME/CFS: The PACE Trial', part of the series Dialogues for a Neglected Illness by Natalie Boulton and Josh Biggs
- October 2019, Keynote Lecture, Sheffield ME and Fibromyalgia Group Autumn Conference, Sheffield, UK; Speech title: Controversies and cock-ups in ME research: The role of human failings
- February 2020, Interview for the film 'Introduction to ME/CFS', part of the series Dialogues for a Neglected Illness by Natalie Boulton and Josh Biggs
- August 2021, Panel discussion, 'The Psychologisation of Illness | Why Long Covid (and ME/CFS) Are Not 'Just Anxiety'', produced by Gez Medinger
- August 2021, Panel discussion, 'The Psychologisation of Illness | Part 2 - How to Deal With It', produced by Gez Medinger
- September 2021, Webinar, 'The New NICE Guideline on ME/CFS (2021): How the Paradigm has Shifted', HSC Clinical Education Centre Northern Ireland/Hope 4 ME & Fibro NI
- March 2022, Webinar, 'The New NICE Guideline for ME/CFS (2021): Following the Science', Norwegian ME Association
- October 2022, Keynote Lecture, 'The new NICE guideline for ME/CFS (2021): Following the science', Annual Conference of the National ME Association of Sweden (Riksförbundet för ME)
- December 2022, Interview on 'Stigmas Surrounding ME', 'Leve Med ME' podcast
- March 2023, Presentation, 'The new NICE guideline for ME/CFS (2021): Following the science', Cross-party Seminar on ME, National Parliament of Sweden
Articles on ME/CFS[edit | edit source]
- 2019, If you spend 20 years gaslighting your patients, perhaps you should think twice before accusing *them* of trolling *you*
- 2019, The HRA report does not exonerate the PACE trial, it merely confirms that its Research Ethics approval was in order
- 2019, The BMJ’s ambiguous editorial commitment to scientific rigour
- 2019, Het HRA-rapport spreekt de PACE-studie niet vrij: Het bevestigt enkel dat de REC-goedkeuring in orde was (Dutch)
- 2020, Post-Covid syndrome, Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, and the recurring pseudoscience of mass hysteria
- 2020, Postcovidsyndroom, Myalgische Encefalomyelitis en de steeds terugkerende pseudowetenschap van de massahysterie (Dutch)
- 2020, Two takes on the expensive, unproven, and childishly-named quackery known as the Lightning Process
- 2020, Could this actually be happening?
- 2020, No More Mr NICE Guy…
- 2020, No More Mr NICE Guy... (Dutch)
- 2020, Expert reaction to the BMJ editorial calling for the abandonment of standards
- 2020, Letter to the BMJ
- 2021, Beware the COVID-sceptic doctors
- 2021, Apart from the sampling ambiguity, weak measurement, survivor bias, missing data, and lack of control group, the study wasn’t that bad
- 2021, Off the PACE and not NICE
- 2021, All Aboard the Long COVID gravy train
- 2021, Some psychiatrists still not getting it
- 2021, Our response to that controversial study on CBT outcomes in chronic fatigue has now been formally published
- 2021, Time to flatten the curve of shoddy COVID scholarship
- 2021, Monitoring treatment harm in myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome: A freedom-of-information study of National Health Service specialist centres in England (with Graham McPhee et al.), Journal of Health Psychology, 26(7), 975-984.
- 2021, Paradigm Lost: Lessons For Long COVID-19 From A Changing Approach To Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (with Steven Lubet and David Tuller), Health Affairs Forefront, May 18
- 2021, Paradigm Lost: Lessons for Long COVID
- 2021, Is it just me, or is the BMJ’s take on those NICE guideline committee resignations maybe a little biased?
- 2021, How illnesses become psychologised: Long COVID, ME, and the ‘All-In-Your-Head’ cartel
- 2021, Journalists covering ME/CFS: Don’t ask about the new NICE guideline, ask about the old one
- 2021, The new NICE Guideline for ME/CFS: Ten Questions Answered
- 2021, De nieuwe NICE-richtlijn voor ME/cvs: tien vragen beantwoord (Dutch)
- 2021, NICEXIT: Royal Colleges look to “take back control” of treatment standards
- 2021, New Treatment Guideline, Same Old Denialism
- 2021, Self-styled medical leaders defend “neurolinguistic processing” as legit treatment for ME/CFS
- 2021, “The problem may well be that some of our treatments are too evidence based”
- 2021, Psychogenic ME/CFS: Turning the Nostalgia Up to Eleven
- 2021, Will innumeracy cause this study to be retracted? Don’t count on it…
- 2021, The New NICE Guideline for ME/CFS (2021): Following the Science
- 2022, Authors defend statistical errors, editor sees no evil
- 2022, Re: 'Chronic fatigue syndrome and occupational status: A retrospective longitudinal study' (with David Tuller), Occupational Medicine, 72(4), e1-e2
- 2022, ‘Cancel culture’ paranoia and other right-wing hysterics reveal medical conservatism’s true colours
- 2022, Response to Adamson et al. (2020): ‘Cognitive behavioural therapy for chronic fatigue and chronic fatigue syndrome: Outcomes from a specialist clinic in the UK’ (with David Tuller), Journal of Health Psychology, 27(7), 1783-1789.
- 2022, Medical haste, COVID-19, and the mythology of “Medically Unexplained Symptoms”
- 2022, Another look at the new NICE guideline for ME/CFS
- 2022, ‘Psychogenic’ POTS: The NYU team misinterprets association as causation (with David Tuller et al.), Brain, 145(11), e111-e112.
- 2022, ME, Long Covid, and the History of Medical Stigma (Podcast)
- 2023, ME, Long Covid, and the History of Medical Stigma (Transcript)
- 2023, Eight (or more) logical fallacies in that paper bemoaning the new NICE guideline for ME/CFS
- 2023, Where I speak to colleagues in the Swedish parliament...
- 2023, The role of psychotherapy in the care of patients with myalgic ecephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (with Tilman Grande et al.), Medicina, 59(4), 719.
Online presence[edit | edit source]
See also[edit | edit source]
- PACE Trial
- Hope 4 ME & Fibro Northern Ireland
- ME activists and advocates
- Ethical issues
- Medical gaslighting
Learn more[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
PACE trial A controversial study which claimed that CBT and GET were effective in treating "CFS/ME", despite the fact that its own data did not support this conclusion. Its results and methodology were widely disputed by patients, scientists, and the peer-reviewed scientific literature.
stress Stress can by either physical or psychological, or both. Stress is either 1) a state of emotional or psychological strain or 2) the physical stress (pressure or tension) that a physical object such the human body is placed under, e.g., a stress test is a medical test that monitors the cardiovascular system during strenuous exercise.
The information provided at this site is not intended to diagnose or treat any illness.
From MEpedia, a crowd-sourced encyclopedia of ME and CFS science and history.