Coping With Chronic Fatigue Syndrome


My 11-year-old child, JP, has chronic fatigue syndrome. He has no tolerance for dairy products, and he gets frequent headaches. He also gets hot spots, especially on his hands, feet and ears.

JP has gone through numerous tests at UF/Shands Medical Center. At first, doctors thought his low white blood count indicated he had hypogammaglobulinemia. They suggested, though never diagnosed, JP formally as having mono, and said that his fatigue resulted from that. The doctors said it would take about two years for him to gain his strength back.

I receive continued wishes of encouragement from chat group members who share what they do for — and with — their children in similar positions. We also enjoy brainstorming together.

We reside in a mobile home. I have had the water tested by an accredited laboratory, since the water is from a private well. We live nine miles from a nuclear plant, the land was once a pasture and the good old boys pour their used oil and toxic substances into the ground in this area. It is a challenge to get JP to drink eight glasses of water a day. His skin gets very dehydrated and becomes brittle to the point his lips crack. He is very intelligent.
Though he is in the sixth grade, he has tested out as being on the ninth and tenth grade levels. JP cannot play sports because of his fatigue factor. He loves to play golf, but after an hour of driving balls, his wrists hurt for several days. He complains of his joints hurting and we live daily with new complaints.

However, there are good days, like now. He is on holiday with our best friends and their son, who is aware of his condition. When JP is tired, he must rest or he will swell and sleep for 24 hours straight.

Yet, the physicians do not have him on any type of medication. I am researching herbal and/or alternative treatment.

Remember that physicians are only human; they do not walk on water. Always question your physician and keep some type of log of what your child eats, his activities and his complaints — if he/she is chronically ill.

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