Viral Infections That May Trigger Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

upper cervical care

If you're suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), you're not alone. It's estimated that as many as 2.5 million Americans suffer from this condition. Some CFS patients seek upper cervical care to manage their symptoms. If you're one of those with chronic fatigue syndrome, you have a good grasp of the illness. You know that it's more than just feeling tired. CFS is a debilitating condition that can make it challenging to carry out even the simplest daily tasks. 

People with chronic fatigue syndrome also suffer from symptoms like brain fog, muscle pain, and headaches. While the primary cause of chronic fatigue syndrome is still unknown, there are many theories about what might be behind the condition. For example, viral infections are believed to play a role in the development of chronic fatigue syndrome.

Below are some of the viral infections that have been linked to chronic fatigue syndrome:

Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV)

Also known as human herpesvirus 4, EBV is one of the most common human viruses transmitted through bodily fluids, primarily saliva. The Epstein-Barr virus is best known for causing infectious mononucleosis or mono, but it has also been linked to chronic fatigue syndrome. 

This virus is believed to play a role in the development of chronic fatigue syndrome through reactivation. When a person acquires this virus, they will carry it in their lifetime but generally stay dormant. However, when the virus becomes active, and the immune system isn't in its optimum health or is working correctly, the virus may potentially gain a foothold at levels that can make you sick again. This whole cycle is called reactivation.

EBV symptoms may include:

  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Swollen Lymph Nodes In The Neck
  • Sore Throat
  • Enlarged Spleen
  • Swollen Liver
  • Rash
  • Weakness And Sore Muscles
  • Lack Of Appetite

People who get symptoms due to Epstein-Barr Virus, including teenagers or adults, can get better in two to four weeks. However, in some cases, people may feel intense fatigue for several weeks that can even last for months.

Human herpesvirus 6

Human herpesvirus 6, or HHV-6, is another virus linked to chronic fatigue syndrome. This virus attacks your central nervous system, which can cause severe infections and replication in T cells, leading to an immune defense against many infections. T cells or T lymphocytes develop from stem cells in the bone marrow and are part of your immune system. They help protect the body from infection and aid in fighting cancer.

Some people with active Human herpesvirus 6 infections may develop chronic fatigue syndrome. In addition, just like EBV, the virus may reactivate if a person living with HHV-6 has a compromised immune system. 

Common symptoms of HHV-6 may include fevers, fussiness, runny nose, rash, and diarrhea. Occasional symptoms may include fatigue, depression, persistent oropharyngotonsillitis, recurrent lymphadenopathy, thyroid dysfunction, and non-specific abdominal complaints.


Other Possible Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Triggers

In addition to viral infections, experts are looking at other possible causes of CFS, which include immunodeficiency disorders or conditions that weaken the immune system, hormonal imbalances, such as low thyroid hormone levels, sleep disorders, and psychological conditions. 

Since the specific source of CFS is still undetermined, patients look at their triggers to help manage their symptoms. The following are other CFS triggers that experts are looking at:

Immune system issues

People who have chronic fatigue syndrome appear to have slightly impaired immune systems. But it remains unclear if this impairment is actually enough to cause the disorder. CFS is also sometimes referred to as an immune dysfunction syndrome because of the incidents of people who have been sick showing signs of chronic fatigue syndrome.

It is believed that someone with a compromised immune system would be more susceptible to developing CFS. This is because stress, mood, and sleep disturbances influence a person's immune system.

Hormonal imbalances

People living with CFS also experience varying levels of hormones produced in the hypothalamus, pituitary glands, or adrenal glands. Research is still ongoing to understand the significance of these abnormalities in chronic fatigue syndrome patients.

Physical or emotional trauma

Some patients living with CFS report an injury, surgery, or significant emotional stress before their symptoms begin. Physical trauma, such as an accident or injury, and heightened emotional stress are known triggers of people who develop chronic fatigue syndrome.

upper cervical care

Upper Cervical Care Can Help Manage Symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

If you have chronic fatigue syndrome, upper cervical chiropractic care may help—particularly those triggered by physical trauma or injury. For example, misalignments in the upper cervical spine, or the top two bones of your spine located in your neck, can hurt the function of your brainstem. In addition, injury or trauma sustained or affecting the cervical spine can lead to symptoms associated with chronic fatigue syndrome.

Upper cervical chiropractic care focuses on aligning the bones in the upper neck and maintaining optimum health. This part is especially vulnerable to injury because of its location. It's also a significant part that supports the head, which weighs an average of 10-12 pounds. 

When the bones in this area are misaligned, they can put undue pressure on the brainstem and nerves leading from the brainstem to various parts of the body. This can interfere with proper neurotransmitter function and lead to various issues—including chronic fatigue syndrome. This misalignment needs to be corrected for the brainstem to transmit messages to and from the brain without interference properly. Correcting the misalignment also helps the body to heal naturally, reducing or improving CFS-related symptoms.


Where to get Upper Cervical Care Near You

Only certified Upper Cervical Chiropractic Doctors can provide precise corrections to bring your bones back to their proper alignment. In addition, some CFS patients report improved chronic fatigue symptoms following a few upper cervical adjustments. 

If your CFS symptoms have made it difficult to carry out your daily activities despite your efforts, you might benefit from upper cervical adjustments. You can check out our upper cervical care doctors' directory for a list of certified and reputable practices near you. It's best to find someone close to your home or place of work for your convenience.


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The content and materials provided in this web site are for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to supplement or comprise a medical diagnosis or other professional opinion, or to be used in lieu of a consultation with a physician or competent health care professional for medical diagnosis and/or treatment. All content and materials including research papers, case studies and testimonials summarizing patients' responses to care are intended for educational purposes only and do not imply a guarantee of benefit. Individual results may vary, depending upon several factors including age of the patient, severity of the condition, severity of the spinal injury, and duration of time the condition has been present.