Brynmor John was a British politician and member of parliament (MP). He suffered from myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), and died as he left the House of Commons gym in 1988 at the age of 54, after having been advised to exercise his way through the illness.
Professor Malcolm Hooper wrote about his death:
"On 13th December 1988 Brynmor John MP died from ME/CFS. His experience of the illness was all too familiar:
Though there is only a slight gradient from our house to the main road, it could have been the North face of the Eiger. I just could not get up it.— Magical Medicine: How to make a disease disappear (2010)
He found himself unable to dress; the slightest exertion exhausted him and it took days to regain his strength. He was irritated by the profusion of psychiatric comment and was trying to ensure better understanding of ME/CFS (Perspectives, Summer 1991:28‐30). Brynmor John suddenly collapsed and died as he was leaving the UK Parliament's House of Commons gym after having been advised to exercise back to fitness."
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References[edit | edit source]
- Hooper, Malcolm; Williams, Margaret (Spring 2010), Magical Medicine: How to make a disease disappear (PDF)
- "Parliamentary business". May 12, 1999.
My hon. Friend the Member for Normanton (Mr. O'Brien) will remember that Brynmor John--formerly the Member of Parliament for Pontypridd--suffered from ME. He helped me to prepare one of the two private Member's Bills on ME, which I presented during the early part of my parliamentary career. That is where my feeling of deja vu comes in, because that took place 11 years ago. My ten-minute Bill asked for research into diagnostic tests, because the disease could not be diagnosed and still cannot be diagnosed. It proposed that there should be an epidemiological study--epidemiological is another difficult word which I learned to pronounce.
- Twisk, F.N.M.; Maes, M. (2009). "A review on cognitive behavorial therapy (CBT) and graded exercise therapy (GET) in myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) / chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS): CBT/GET is not only ineffective and not evidence-based, but also potentially harmful for many patients with ME/CFS". Neuro Endocrinol Letters. 30 (3): 284–299. PMID 19855350.
- Price, Adam (September 2012). "We are the ones we have been waiting for". In Osmond, John; Finch, Peter (eds.). 25/25 Vision: Welsh Horizons Across 50 Years (PDF). Institute of Welsh Affairs. pp. 108–109.
The Pontypridd by-election, following the death from exhaustion of Brynmor John was held on 23 February that year.
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.