Seeking adults with and without fatigue symptoms
USC's Thompson Institute is seeking volunteer research participants who will help us understand the underlying illness process of myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS). Participants will also help us develop imaging criteria that will aid the diagnosis of ME/CFS.
The study is the first to investigate brain function in ME/CFS in terms of energy supplies and chemical messengers. It is also the first significantly sized study to attempt to develop a diagnostic tool by combined advanced MRI and machine learning.
The study might be a good fit for you if you are:
- aged 25-65 years old, and a healthy adult with a sedentary lifestyle (doing strenuous physical exercise – such as tennis or gym workouts – for less than 30 minutes per week)
- aged 25-65 years old, and have:
- an unexplained fatigue condition, or
- ME/CFS, or
What the study involves
As a research participant, you would take part in:
- A screening telephone interview;
- At your own pace, seven questionnaires for assessing different aspects of mental and physical health status;
- Blood pressure, pulse rate, height, weight, and oxygen saturation measurements and a joint hypermobility task;
- Wearing an activity monitor wristwatch and chest strap to capture your physical activity, sleep/wake information and heart-rate for fourteen days. The wristwatch and chest strap need to be returned at the Thompson Institute reception after fourteen days of usage;
- One magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan (60 minutes’ scanning time plus preparation). If you are willing, a second scan may take place.
Participants with fatigue conditions will also take part in:
- Two interviews with two specialists. Each interview will be scheduled for 30 – 45 minutes.
Research is conducted on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland.
Why this study is important
ME/CFS is a poorly understood, debilitating, complicated illness affecting 17 million people worldwide. There is no known underlying disease process for ME/CFS and no biological basis for diagnosis. Diagnoses are typically lengthy and occur by a process of elimination. Treatments are typically inadequate due to the unknown cause. Understanding the brain disease process of ME/CFS will allow the design of biologically-based therapeutic interventions and faster, more effective diagnosis methods.
For more information please:
- email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
- phone us on + 61 7 5456 5445
Ethics Approval Number: A191288