ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202209.0289.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: chronic fatigue syndrome; post-COVID syndrome; postural orthostatic tachycardia; microcirculation; immune system
Online: 20 September 2022 (03:37:00 CEST)
A Myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) is a debilitating chronic disease of unknown aetiology under growing interest now in view of the increasingly recognized post-COVID syndrome as a new entity with similar clinical presentation. We performed the first cross-sectional study of ME/CFS in community population in Russia and then described and compared some clinical and pathophysiological characteristics of ME/CFS and post-COVID syndrome as neuroimmune disorders. Of the cohort of 76 individuals who suggested themselves suffering from ME/CFS 56 subsequently were confirmed as having CFS/ME according to ≥1 of the 4 most commonly used case definition. Of the cohort of 14 individuals with post-COVID-19 syndrome 14 met diagnostic criteria for ME/CFS. The prevalence of clinically expressed and subclinical anxiety and depression in ME / CFS and post-COVID ME/CFS did not differ significantly from that in healthy individuals. Severity of anxiety / depressive symptoms did not correlate with the severity of fatigue neigther in ME / CFS nor in post-COVID ME/CFS, but the positive correlation was found between the severity of fatigue and 20 other symptoms of ME / CFS related to the domains of “post-exertional exhaustion”, “immune dysfunction”, “sleep disturbances”, "dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system", "neurological sensory / motor disorders" and "pain syndromes". Immunological abnormalities were identified in 12/12 patients with ME / CFS according to the results of laboratory testing. The prevalence of postural orthostatic tachycardia assessed by the active standing test was 37.5% in ME / CFS and 75.0% in post-COVID ME/CFS (the latter was higher than in healthy controls, p = 0.02) There was a more pronounced increase in heart rate starting from the 6th minute of the test in post-COVID ME/CFS compared with the control group. Assessment of the functional characteristics of microcirculation by laser doppler flowmetry revealed obvious and very similar changes in ME/CFS and post-COVID ME/CFS compared to the healthy controls. The identified pattern corresponded to the hyperemic form of microcirculation disorders, usually observed in acute inflammatory processes or in deficiency of systemic vasoconstriction influences.