Several of the nurses from the 1934 outbreak of epidemic myalgic encephalomyelitis at the Los Angeles Country Hospital with persistent symptoms receive hysterectomies in an attempt to relieve symptoms. Physicians believed that the virus had spread to their uteruses, causing emotional and "hysterical" symptoms.In 1974, after Nancy Kaiser developed ME, her doctors also recommended a hysterectomy:
She was weak, profoundly tired and plagued by constant bladder infections. Her muscles ached. Her mood shifted unpredictably. Her memory seemed to be failing. "If this is menopause," she remembers thinking, "this is horrible, worse than I ever imagined." Her doctors could offer no better guess, so after seven awful years she agreed to a hysterectomy. When her health didn't improve, physicians referred her to psychiatrists, who announced she was mourning her lost uterus. One suggested she have an affair.
References[edit | edit source]
- Marinacci, AA (October 1965). "The value of the electromyogram in the diagnosis of Iceland disease". Electromyography. 5: 241–51.
- "Chronic Fatigue Syndrome". Newsweek. Nov 11, 1990.
myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) - 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.