List of abbreviations

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This is a list of abbreviations commonly used on MEpedia or in relation to ME/CFS. Abbreviations can be shortened versions of words, acronyms or mnemonics of short phrases. They can appear with or without punctuation.

#

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
2-day CPET Two-day cardiopulmonary exercise test

A

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
A-msh Alpha-Melanocyte-stimulating hormone
AA Arachidonic acid
ACTH Adrenocorticotropic hormone
AfME Action for ME
AHCC Active Hexose Correlated Compound
AHRQ Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
AIDS Acquired immune deficiency syndrome
Am Fam Physician. American Family Physician Academic journal
Am J Med. The American Journal of Medicine Academic journal
Am J Psychiatry The American Journal of Psychiatry Academic journal
Am J Psychology The American Journal of Psychology Academic journal
AMPK AMP-activated protein kinase
Am Psychol. American Psychologist Academic journal
Ann Epidemiol. Annals of Epidemiology Academic journal
Ann Intern Med. Annals of Internal Medicine Academic journal
ANZMES Associated New Zealand ME Society
APPG on ME All Party Parliamentary Group on ME
APT Adaptive Pacing Therapy
ATP Adenosine triphosphate
Aust N Z J Psychiatry Australian & New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry Academic journal
Autoimmun Rev. Autoimmunity Reviews Academic journal
AYME Association of Young People with ME

B

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
BA Bachelor of Arts degree
Biopsychosoc Med. BioPsychoSocial Medicine Academic journal
BMC Health Serv Res. BMC Health Services Research Academic journal
BMJ British Medical Journal Academic journal
BMREC / BRMEC Biomedical Research into ME Colloquium
BPD Borderline Personality Disorder A mental disorder
BPS model Biopsychosocial model The primary model for mental illnesses
BPSM BioPsychoSocial Medicine Academic journal
Br J Nurs. British Journal of Nursing Academic journal
Br J Soc Psychol. British Journal of Social Psychology Academic journal
Br Med Bull. British Medical Bulletin Academic journal
BS or BSc Bachelor of Science degree

C

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
CAA CFIDS Association of America Now known as the Solve ME/CFS Initiative
CBT Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
CCC Canadian Consensus Criteria
CDC Centers for Disease Control & Prevention
CDR Cell danger response
C. diff Clostridium difficile
CEBV Chronic Epstein-Barr virus
CFIDS Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome
CFS / C.F.S. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
CFS/ME Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/Myalgic Encephalomyelitis
CFSAC Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Advisory Committee
CI Confidence interval Research term
CMRC UK CFS/ME Research Collaborative
CMS Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services
CMV Cytomegalovirus
CNS Central nervous system
COPD Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
CoQ10 Coenzyme Q10
COST Cooperation In Science And Technology
CPET Cardiopulmonary exercise test

D

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
DGLA Dihomo-gamma-linolenic acid
DHA Docosahexaenoic acid
DHEA Dehydroepiandrosterone
DNA Deoxyribonucleic acid
DOI Digital object identifier Identifier
DsRNA Double-stranded RNA viruses
DWP Department for Work and Pensions UK social security department
Dyn Med. Dynamic Medicine Academic journal

E

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
EBNA Epstein-Barr virus nuclear antigen
EBV Epstein-Barr virus
E. coli Escherichia coli
EDS Ehlers Danlos Syndrome
EEG Electroencephalogram, Electroencephalograph, or Electroencephalography
EPA Eicosapentaenoic acid
EUROMENE European ME Network / European Network on Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Exerc Immunol Rev. Exercise immunology review Academic journal

F

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
FDA U.S. Food and Drug Administration
FINE FINE trial Sister trial to the PACE trial for severe ME/CFS
FIQ Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire
FIS Fatigue Impact Scale
Flu / 'Flu Influenza
FM Fibromyalgia
FMS Fibromyalgia or Fibromyalgia Syndrome
FMT Fecal matter transplant [US]; Faecal matter transplant [UK]
FOI / FOIA Freedom of information / Freedom of Information Act UK data access law
FSS Fatigue Severity Scale
FUT2 Fucosyltransferase 2 enzyme

G

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
GAPS / GAP Syndrome Gut and Psychology Syndrome
GAT / GAM Graded Activity Therapy/Graded Activity Management Alternative name for GET
GET Graded Exercise Therapy
GP / G.P. General Practitioner Primary Doctor (PDOC)
GSRME Group on Scientific Research into Myalgic Encephalomyelitis / Gibson Enquiry
GWI Gulf War Illness
GWS Gulf War Syndrome

H

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
H1N1 Influenza A virus subtype H1N1
HCI Hydrochloric acid
HHS U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
HHV Herpesviruses
HHV-6 Human herpesvirus 6
HHV-7 Human herpesvirus 7
HIV Human immunodeficiency virus
HPA Hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis
HSV Herpes simplex virus

I

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
IACFS/ME / IACFSME International Association for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/Myalgic Encephalomyelitis
IBS Irritable Bowel Syndrome
ICC International Consensus Criteria for M.E.
ICD International Classification of Diseases World Health Organization classification of diseases and disorders
ICO Information Commissioner's Office UK department overseeing the Freedom of Information Act
IFN / IFN-γ Interferon / Interferon gamma
Ig Immunoglobulin
IgA Immunoglobulin A
IgM Immunoglobulin M
IiME/IiMER Invest in ME Research UK patient charity
IL Interleukin
IOM Institute of Medicine
ISBN International Standard Book Number Identifier
ISSN International Standard Serial Number Identifier
IVIG Intravenous immunoglobulin

J

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
JAMA Journal of the American Medical Association Academic journal
J. Pediatr. Journal of Pediatrics Academic journal
J Transl Med. Journal of Translational Medicine Academic journal

K

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
KPS Karnofsky Performance Scale

L

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
LDN Low dose naltrexone

M

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
MA Master of Arts degree
MAVS Mitochondrial antiviral signaling protein
MCAS Mast cell activation syndrome
MCS Multiple chemical sensitivity / Multiple chemical sensitivities
MCT Medium chain fatty acid
MD Medical Doctor
ME / M.E. Myalgic Encephalomyelitis or less commonly Myalgic Encephalopathy
MEA ME Association
MECFSSA The ME CFS Foundation South Africa
ME/CFS Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Med Sci Sports Exerc Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise Academic journal
MEGC The ME Global Chronicle Online newsletter
MESA The ME Society of America
MFI Multidimensional Fatigue Inventory
Mono Mononucleosis [US], Glandular fever [UK]
MPS Myofascial pain syndrome
MRC Medical Research Council
MS Multiple Sclerosis
MSc Master of Science degree
MSIDS Multiple Systemic Infectious Diseases Syndrome
MSM Mainstream media
MSSE Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise Academic journal
MTHFR methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase A gene variant
MUPS / MUS Medically unexplained physical symptoms / Medically unexplained symptoms

N

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
NAD / NAD+ / NADH Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide
NAM National Academy of Medicine Formerly known as the Institute of Medicine
NCF National CFIDS Foundation Patient group
NCNED National Centre for Neuroimmunology and Emerging Diseases
Neuropsychol Rev. Neuropsychology Review Academic journal
NHS National Health Service UK's universal health care system
NICE National Institute for Health and Care Excellence UK body for diagnosis and treatment guidelines
NIH National Institutes of Health US government departments
NINDS National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
NIOF Neuro-Inflammatory and Oxidative Fatigue
NK cell / NKC Natural killer cell
NMH Neurally mediated hypotension
Nrf2 Nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like 2
N Z Med J. New Zealand Medical Journal Academic journal

O

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
OI Orthostatic intolerance
OMF Open Medicine Foundation Research charity founded by Dr Ron Davis

P

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
P2P Pathways to prevention report
PACE trial Pacing, graded Activity, and Cognitive behaviour therapy Trial
PNAS Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Academic journal
PEM Post-exertional malaise Also called Post-exertional Neuro Exhaustion (PENE)
PhD Doctor of Philosophy Research degree. Not a medical doctor.
PIFS Post-infectious Fatigue Syndrome Similar to Post-Viral Fatigue Syndrome but includes non-viral infections e.g. bacterial
PLoS One / PLOS ONE Public Library of Science Academic journal
PMC PubMed Central Identifier
PMCID PubMed Central Identifier Identifier
PMD Premenstrual disorder Also known as PMS
PMDD Premenstrual dysphoric disorder Psychological disorder
PMID PubMed Identifier Identifier
PMS / PMT Premenstrual syndrome / Premenstrual tension
PNAS Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Academic journal
Polio Poliomyelitis
POTS Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome
PRS Pervasive Refusal Syndrome
PSGL-1 P-selectin glycoprotein ligand-1
Psychiatr Clin North Am. Psychiatric Clinics of North America Academic journal
Psychiatr Genet. Psychiatric Genetics Academic journal
Psychol Med. Psychological Medicine Academic journal
Psychosom Med. Psychosomatic Medicine Academic journal
PTSD Post-traumatic stress disorder Mental health condition
PVFS Postviral fatigue syndrome Alternative term for ME/CFS
PwCFS or PwCFS Person with/suffering from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome community term
PwF Person with fatigue community term
PwME Person with/suffering from Myalgic Encephalomyelitis community term

Q

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
QJM QJM: An International Journal of Medicine, originally Quarterly Journal of Medicine Academic journal
QMUL Queen Mary University of London
Qual Life Res. Quality of Life Research Academic journal

R

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
RA Rheumatoid arthritis
RLS Restless legs syndrome
WED Restless legs syndrome/Willis-Ekbom disease
RNase-L Ribonuclease L

S

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
SEID Systemic Exertion Intolerance Disease Name not in use, but defines the ME/CFS diagnostic criteria used by the CDC since 2017
Semin Neurol. Seminars in Neurology Academic journal
SF-36 Short Form 36-Item Health Survey
SIBO Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth Sometimes called "leaky gut"
SLE Systemic lupus erythematosus
SM Social media
SMEG Shropshire ME Group
SMC Science Media Centre UK group largely funded by industry and Big Pharma groups
SMC Standard medical care
SMCI Solve ME/CFS Initiative
Soc Sci Med. Social Science & Medicine Academic journal
SOD Superoxide dismutase
SPECT / SPET Single-photon emission computed tomography
SNRI Serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor / Serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor Class of anti-depressants
SSRI Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor Class of anti-depressants

T

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
TATT Tired All The Time
TCA cycle tricarboxylic acid cycle or Citric acid cycle
Th / Th1 / Th2 T helper cell
TLR Toll-like receptor
TMD Temporomandibular joint disorder
TMJ Temporomandibular joint disorder
TNFα TNF-alpha
Treg / Tregs Regulatory T cell

U

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
UK United Kingdom
US / USA United States of America
USAWG US Action Working Group

V

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
VAS Visual analog scale
VDR Vitamin D receptor
VEGF Vascular endothelial growth factor
VNIH Vagus nerve infection hypothesis
VZV Varicella zoster virus

W

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
WAMES Welsh Association of ME & CFS Support UK patient group (for Wales)
WG Working group
WHO World Health Organization
WPI Whittemore Peterson Institute

X

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
XMRV Xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus

Y

Abbreviation Meaning Notes
YPWC Young person with chronic fatigue syndrome

Z

two-day cardiopulmonary exercise test (CPET) - A diagnostic test which involves testing an ME/CFS patient exercising on an exercise machine, while monitoring their respiration, especially oxygen consumption. This test is repeated the following day in order to confirm the patient's inability to replicate the first-day performance. This test is thought to be the most objective way to detect post-exertional malaise.

Action for ME (AfME) - Action for ME is a British non-profit organization that was set up in 1987 as The M.E. Action Campaign. Its founders were Martin Lev, Sue Findlay and Clare Francis. In September 1993 it changed its name and logo to Action for ME and Chronic Fatigue. It then changed its name in 1993 to Action for ME.

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) - Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality is a United States government agency under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Their mission is "to produce evidence to make health care safer, higher quality, more accessible, equitable, and affordable. A representative of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality sat on the (now disbanded) CFSAC committee as an Ex Officio Member.

Associated New Zealand ME Society (ANZMES) - A New Zealand group for myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) patients and their caregivers.

All-Party Parliamentary Group on Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (APPG) - A British group of backbench members of parliament, from all political parties and from Houses of Commons and Lords, who meet to discuss ME.

Association of Young People with ME (AYME) - AYME was a UK national charity supporting children and young people affected by ME/CFS with members under 25. It's lead medical advisor was Doctor Esther Crawley. In April 2017 the charity merged with Action for ME, forming its Children's Services department run by Mary-Jane Willows.

BMJ The BMJ (previously the British Medical Journal) is a weekly peer-reviewed medical journal.

biopsychosocial model (BPS) - A school of thought, usually based in psychology, which claims illness and disease to be the result of the intermingling of biological, psychological and social causes. (Learn more: me-pedia.org)

cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) - A type of psychotherapy geared toward modifying alleged unhealthy thinking, behaviors or illness beliefs. One of the treatment arms used in the controversial PACE trial.

Canadian Consensus Criteria (CCC) - A set of diagnostic criteria used to diagnose ME/CFS, developed by a group of practicing ME/CFS clinicians in 2003. The CCC is often considered to be the most complex criteria, but possibly the most accurate, with the lowest number of patients meeting the criteria. Led to the development of the International Consensus Criteria (ICC) in 2011.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) - The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is a U.S. government agency dedicated to epidemiology and public health. It operates under the auspices of the Department of Health and Human Services.

Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndrome (CFIDS) - Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndrome is another term for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, but one which emphasizes the immunological aspects of the disease. Popular in the 1990s, this term has apparently fallen into disuse.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Advisory Committee (CFSAC) - (sometimes pronounced SIF-SACK) A US government advisory council that met twice per year, covering current topics related to Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Meetings usually lasted for two days and the results were presented to the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS). After 15 years, on September 5, 2018, CFSAC's charter was not renewed by the Department of HHS, effectively dissolving the committee without notice or warning.

UK CFS/ME Research Collaborative (CMRC) - A UK group of researchers and ME/CFS patient groups led by Professor Stephen Holgate. Its launch in 2013 was covered by the Science Media Centre. Since 2014, the collaborative sponsors the CFS/ME Research Collaborative Conference.

cytomegalovirus (CMV) - A common herpesvirus found in humans. Like other herpesviruses, it is a life-long infection that remains in a latent state inside the human body, until it is 'reactivated' by appropriate conditions. CMV infects between 60% to 70% of adults in industrialized countries and close to 100% in emerging countries. Much is unknown about this virus, although it has been found in salivary glands and myeloid blood cells such as monocytes. It has also been linked to the development of certain cancers. Congenital CMV is a leading infectious cause of deafness, learning disabilities, and intellectual disability. A common treatment for CMV is valganciclovir, commonly known as Valcyte.

central nervous system (CNS) - One of the two parts of the human nervous system, the other part being the peripheral nervous system. The central nervous system consists of the brain and spinal cord, while the peripheral nervous system consists of nerves that travel from the central nervous system into the various organs and tissues of the body.

coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) - Coenzyme Q10 (also known as ubiquinone) is found in the mitochondria and, as a component of the electron transport chain, plays an important role in aerobic respiration. The chemically-reduced form of CoQ10 is called ubiquinol.

graded exercise therapy (GET) - A gradual increase in exercise or activity, according to a pre-defined plan. Focuses on overcoming the patient's alleged unhelpful illness beliefs that exertion can exacerbate symptoms, rather than on reversing physical deconditioning. Considered controversial, and possibly harmful, in the treatment or management of ME. One of the treatment arms of the controversial PACE trial.

International Consensus Criteria (ICC) - A set of diagnostic criteria, based on the Canadian Consensus Criteria, that argued for the abandonment of the term "chronic fatigue syndrome" and encouraged the sole use of the term "myalgic encephalomyelitis".

myalgic encephalomyelitis (M.E.) - A disease often marked by neurological symptoms, but fatigue is sometimes a symptom as well. Some diagnostic criteria distinguish it from chronic fatigue syndrome, while other diagnostic criteria consider it to be a synonym for chronic fatigue syndrome. A defining characteristic of ME is post-exertional malaise (PEM), or post-exertional neuroimmune exhaustion (PENE), which is a notable exacerbation of symptoms brought on by small exertions. PEM can last for days or weeks. Symptoms can include cognitive impairments, muscle pain (myalgia), trouble remaining upright (orthostatic intolerance), sleep abnormalities, and gastro-intestinal impairments, among others. An estimated 25% of those suffering from ME are housebound or bedbound. The World Health Organization (WHO) classifies ME as a neurological disease.

myalgic encephalomyelitis (M.E.) - A disease often marked by neurological symptoms, but fatigue is sometimes a symptom as well. Some diagnostic criteria distinguish it from chronic fatigue syndrome, while other diagnostic criteria consider it to be a synonym for chronic fatigue syndrome. A defining characteristic of ME is post-exertional malaise (PEM), or post-exertional neuroimmune exhaustion (PENE), which is a notable exacerbation of symptoms brought on by small exertions. PEM can last for days or weeks. Symptoms can include cognitive impairments, muscle pain (myalgia), trouble remaining upright (orthostatic intolerance), sleep abnormalities, and gastro-intestinal impairments, among others. An estimated 25% of those suffering from ME are housebound or bedbound. The World Health Organization (WHO) classifies ME as a neurological disease.

International Classification of Diseases (ICD) - A system of medical diagnostic codes, created by the World Health Organization (WHO), to classify diseases and other health related conditions for the purpose of international diagnostic consistency. By having common diagnostic codes around the world, health researchers are better able to quantify and track disease burdens. The most current version is called ICD-11. (Learn more: www.who.int)

medically unexplained physical symptoms (MUPS) - Technically, this term means that no cause or explanation for the patient's symptoms has yet been found. However, patients diagnosed with "MUPS" are generally lumped into a psychosomatic, or psychologically-caused category by those in the medical profession, without any scientific basis for doing so.

medically unexplained physical symptoms (MUPS) - Technically, this term means that no cause or explanation for the patient's symptoms has yet been found. However, patients diagnosed with "MUPS" are generally lumped into a psychosomatic, or psychologically-caused category by those in the medical profession, without any scientific basis for doing so.

medically unexplained physical symptoms (MUPS) - Technically, this term means that no cause or explanation for the patient's symptoms has yet been found. However, patients diagnosed with "MUPS" are generally lumped into a psychosomatic, or psychologically-caused category by those in the medical profession, without any scientific basis for doing so.

National Academy of Medicine (NAM) - An American non-profit, non-governmental organization which provides expert advice to governmental agencies on issues relating to biomedical science, medicine and health. Formerly known as the Institute of Medicine (IOM).

National Academy of Medicine (NAM) - An American non-profit, non-governmental organization which provides expert advice to governmental agencies on issues relating to biomedical science, medicine and health. Formerly known as the Institute of Medicine (IOM).

National Institutes of Health (NIH) - A set of biomedical research institutes operated by the U.S. government, under the auspices of the Department of Health and Human Services.

orthostatic intolerance (OI) - The development of symptoms when standing upright, where symptoms are relieved upon reclining. Patients with orthostatic intolerance have trouble remaining upright for more than a few seconds or a few minutes, depending upon severity. In severe orthostatic intolerance, patients may not be able to sit upright in bed. Orthostatic intolerance is often a sign of dysautonomia. There are different types of orthostatic intolerance, including postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS).

post-exertional malaise (PEM) - A notable exacerbation of symptoms brought on by small physical or cognitive exertions. PEM may be referred to as a "crash" or "collapse" and can last for days or weeks. Symptoms can include cognitive impairments, muscle pain, trouble remaining upright (orthostatic intolerance), sleep abnormalities, and gastro-intestinal impairments, and others.

post-exertional neuroimmune exhaustion (PENE) - An alternative term for post-exertional malaise (PEM), used by people who find that the word 'malaise' fails to capture the serious nature of the condition. Used in the Institute of Medicine (IOM) report.

postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS) - A form of orthostatic intolerance where the cardinal symptom is excessive tachycardia due to changing position (e.g. from lying down to sitting up).

somatic symptom disorder A psychiatric term to describe an alleged condition whereby a person's thoughts somehow cause physical symptoms. The actual existence of such a condition is highly controversial, due to a lack of scientific evidence. It is related to other psychiatric terms, such as "psychosomatic", "neurasthenia", and "hysteria". Older terms include "somatization", "somatoform disorder", and "conversion disorder". Such terms refer to a scientifically-unsupported theory that claims that a wide range of physical symptoms can be created by the human mind, a theory which has been criticized as "mind over matter" parapsychology, a pseudoscience.

PwME Acronym for a "Person with ME" (myalgic encephalomyelitis).

myalgic encephalomyelitis (M.E.) - A disease often marked by neurological symptoms, but fatigue is sometimes a symptom as well. Some diagnostic criteria distinguish it from chronic fatigue syndrome, while other diagnostic criteria consider it to be a synonym for chronic fatigue syndrome. A defining characteristic of ME is post-exertional malaise (PEM), or post-exertional neuroimmune exhaustion (PENE), which is a notable exacerbation of symptoms brought on by small exertions. PEM can last for days or weeks. Symptoms can include cognitive impairments, muscle pain (myalgia), trouble remaining upright (orthostatic intolerance), sleep abnormalities, and gastro-intestinal impairments, among others. An estimated 25% of those suffering from ME are housebound or bedbound. The World Health Organization (WHO) classifies ME as a neurological disease.

systemic exertion intolerance disease (SEID) - A term for ME/CFS that aims to avoid the stigma associated with the term "chronic fatigue syndrome", while emphasizing the defining characteristic of post-exertional malaise (PEM). SEID was defined as part of the diagnostic criteria put together by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) report of 10 February 2015.

Short Form 36-Item Health Survey (SF-36) - A 36-item patient-reported questionnaire, used to determine patient health status and quality of life.

World Health Organization (WHO) - "A specialized agency of the United Nations that is concerned with public health. It was established on 7 April 1948, and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. The WHO is a member of the United Nations Development Group. Its predecessor, the Health Organization, was an agency of the League of Nations." The International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD) is maintained by WHO.

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.