Brian Walitt’s belief that ME/CFS and FM are psychosomatic disorder rests on one idea – that cognitive problems found in them don’t mean beans in the real world. Walitt’s recent paper testing that idea left one wondering, however, who’s living in the real world and who is not.
Brian Walitt and the Psychosomaticism of Fibromyalgia: Another Look
While I’ve been researching Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, I’ve found that there is a common finding of “coathanger ache” known to specialists. This is an ache across the neck and shoulders as if you had forgotten to remove the coathanger when you put on a shirt or blouse. I’ve already been amazed at the ability of MDs to miss an obvious diagnosis of EDS in severe cases, and I’ve discovered that some of the identified genes may be in 5% of the population. This raises the question in my mind: how many studies of fibromyalgia have done anything to eliminate such misdiagnoses? How much faith should anyone put in studies which fail to eliminate a known genetic disease?
The above comment could apply to a range of conditions with orthostatic intolerance, such as POTS. If you don’t make even minimal attempts to eliminate known causes of complaints of mysterious pains, how can you tell a psychosomatic problem from a treatable problem you ignored?
I imagine the EDS diagnosis is missed quite a lot!
When you base a cohort on criteria like “unexplained poorly-localized pain” or “unexplained chronic fatigue” you necessarily concentrate many conditions that are rare in the general population. This means you can no longer simply say, “Oh, but that is so unlikely.”
When documented response rates to particular therapies are low it is possible all responses which change the group mean are due to misdiagnoses. I’m still waiting for anyone dealing with psychosomatic problems to address the problem of misdiagnosis in research. Reputable research on more conventional medical problems reports substantial rates in the range of 10% to 20% for these conditions. (See the work of Mark Graber.) You can find higher rates in some studies of stroke or epilepsy. Amazingly, these rates seem to drop to zero in research on psychosomatic disorders, possibly because the authors are defining the disorder, making diagnosis tautological.
Aciendaze I could not agree with you more . I think it was the University of Berkeley that was doing a research study on fibromyalgia and they had 14 patients whom had been diagnosed with fibromyalgia. During pre-screeNing they found some had hepatitis C , some had auto immune markers and two had small nerve disease. That left two .that is so sad
My father’s sister and my mother both were diagnosed with fibromyalgia. They both insisted it was not fibromyalgia, so they both were sent to shrinks because the doctors thought they were crazy but in the end my aunt and my proved both were right . My had lupus and mom RA but it took several years before they got to the right doctors to get diagnosed
I think just from the research findings in have seen thus far . It is possible that with FM . We are looking at something that involves the circulatory system and thenotify possible the nervous system secondary, but that is just me .
As far Brain Watill :
” Convictions are more dangerous enemies of truth than lies ”
Anyone with FM or other illnesses like say lupus knowso that brain fog waxes and wanes like rising and lowering of the tides .
As far as the ” coming to Jesus ” of Brain Watill. I does not matter because he would be simple replaced with another with the same conviction with just a different name.
To conclude my view of this man and others like him . I will live you with this
Frist : A scientific tRuth does not triumph by convincingredients it’s opponentstill and making them see the light,but rather because it’s opponents finally die,and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it
: The danger of that nasty ” p ” word . The evidence through out history makes it clear of its dangers.
The diagnosis of “hysteria” is all too often a way of avoiding a confrontation with our own ignorance. This is especially dangerous when there is an underlying organic pathology, not yet recognised. In this penumbra we find patients who know themselves to be ill but, coming up against the blank faces of doctors who refuse to believe in the reality of their illness, proceed by way of emotional lability, overstatement and demands for attention … Here is an area where catastrophic errors can be made. In fact it is often possible to recognise the presence though not the nature of the unrecognisable, to know that a man must be ill or in pain when all the tests are negative. But it is only possible to those who come to their task in a spirit of humility.
Eliot Slater, M.
And finally Brain Watill basically quoted ” 19th century swiss physician GeorgW.Groddeck word for word . In his interview when he describes the middle age FM patient. Which was quit disheartening to read . My concern comes from the fact that one of my children could very well inherent this affliction and I do not wish for them to carry the same stigma associated with this illness that we often find ourselves facing
Maybe Brain Watill needs to take a long look in the mirror and see what the real problem is . I think he is partly right and partly wrong on why his patients full the need to convince him . Actions speak volumes. They are lounder than words ☺ just saying as dad point out this falling often