Let's brainstorm. Why do women get FMS ( and I presume CFS/ME) so much more than men?
I think weyland is probably right. Estrogen has a major effect on the immune system. The fact that people with ME/CFS/CFS are so prone to gynecological disorders suggests something has gone wrong with the sex hormones.Because both are triggered by viral infection and female sex hormones have a differential effect on immunity, leaving women more vulnerable to serious infection.
Autoimmune disease is more common in women for similar reasons.
Yes, indeed. Let's not leave out anatomical abnormalities. While infections trigger FM in some people my guess is that most people who get FM didn't notice an infection occurring at the same time. In fact it may be that most people don't notice anything in particular (???)These are interesting articles - thanks again. A significant number of people report injury as the ( or a) precipitating event. So, perhaps our immune systems are also responding differently to a physical injury, as well as a viral injury. Can immune system anomalies explain all of our symptoms?
The sacro-occipital chiropractors and osteopaths with craniosacral training discuss the function of the pituitary gland, which sits in a little notch in the sphenoid bone, and is surrounded by the dura, which lines the entire central nervous system. They discuss the inter- bone movement between the sphenoid bone and the bottom part of the occiput (bone). They state that it is the movement of these cranial bones ( as well as stetch/contraction of the diaphragma sellae- ie a fold in the dura mater through which the stalk of the pituitary passes) that produces a stimulating effect on the production of anterior pituitary hormones - ie TSH( thyroid), ACTH (adrenal)LH ( estrogen /progesterone), and others. They also discuss the fact that the sacrum and the occiput have reciprocal motions.
Anyway, this becomes interesting since we can appreciate that structure can influence hormones, which can influence the immune system responses. Hmmm.
I think it's possible. It's unhelpful to think about our immune system as a discrete component of our bodies. In reality it's very much hardwired into the whole of our overall homeostasis. It's easy to think about things like cytokines as being "bad" but many (or most?) of them have constitutive effects at certain concentrations, so a dysregulation of immune function can for sure cause a disturbance of homeostasis. And what is this disease other than one big chronic disturbance of metabolic/hormonal/autonomic/... homeostasis.Can immune system anomalies explain all of our symptoms?