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From Summer 2015 Forum

In 2008, it was proven that CFIDS/ME is an autoimmune disease by Yoshitsugi Hokama, Ph.D. As always, Dr. Hokama published in the Journal of Clinical Laboratory Analysis. That medical journal insists upon being able to fully replicate work from the paper before they print any article. By that time, over 2,000 patients had been tested for Dr. Hokama’s ciguatera assays and well over 95% were, evidently, diagnosed correctly as they all were highly positive. What exactly is an autoimmune disease?

Essentially, most of us know that an autoimmune disease is one that causes the body to attack itself. A healthy person’s body recognizes cells that are their own and deems them safe as well as others that unsafe and need to be fought. An autoimmune disease causes the cells to not recognize the difference and it, mistakenly, attacks normal cells. Even the Office of Women’s Health, the part of the DHHS that the government has, erroneously but, most likely, purposely, put “CFS” under, describes the attack of autoimmune disease cells by saying, “The result is a misguided attack on your own safety” and that attack can be on any number of your bodily functions.

There are more than 80 different autoimmune diseases which makes having one fairly common. One estimate of the number of autoimmune disease in the U.S. comes from our own National Institutes of Health (NIH) that suggests 23 million citizens have one while the American Autoimmune Diseases Association (AARDA) have estimates of over 50 million. AARDA, however, does not consider “CFS” to be an autoimmune disease despite the carefully and fully replicated science proven by Dr. Hokama who was, at the time, a federal government consultant. Others that have claimed that CFS is not autoimmune are many who, erroneously, believe the government along with AARDA. Just one example was, recently, in the Huffington Post that printed online, “Chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia are not autoimmune diseases” but they do admit “they share many common symptoms.” Obviously, they believe the incorrect listing from AARDA instead of looking at the scientific evidence including the medical journal articles that can be found on web at”. As far as fibromyalgia, we can’t afford to fund the science to see if the pain of CFIDS/ME is fibromyalgia or not.

While there is some evidence that suggests autoimmune diseases are genetic, genes do not explain the entire story. This happens because genes can often trigger an autoimmune disease in one that has a genetic predisposition but genes do not tell you about environmental illnesses such as chronic radiation poisoning nor do genetic studies take into consideration the infectiousness of many diseases.

Many of the symptoms of autoimmune diseases can mimic allergies yet it has not been proven, to this day, whether allergies can trigger an autoimmune disease. An allergy is completely different than an autoimmune disease as one is often able to remove what causes an allergic reaction. An example often used to demonstrate the difference between an autoimmune disease and an allergy is Celiac disease. If a person has a wheat allergy, eliminating wheat from their diet will entirely eliminate the problem. However, if they have Celiac disease, the body is attacking itself but it will not do that with an allergic reaction so the allergic reaction does not warrant other risks seen by one with celiac such as gastrointestinal cancer.

Diagnosis of most autoimmune diseases can often take years as the symptoms are not always the same and various parts of the body can be attacked at any one time. For most autoimmune diseases, there is not one singular test to be used for diagnostic purposes. In the case of CFIDS/ ME, testing for radiation is not just prohibitively expensive but is also not covered by most insurance companies. Indeed, when one professor offered the test by Dr. Hokama that was proven to be an autoimmune disease biomarker, he was stopped by his medical school’s Dean of Medicine who had begun to take the samples sent in by patients by mail! Unfortunately, stopping the test proven to an autoimmune biomarker did not stop the body from attacking itself.

The National CFIDS Foundation * 103 Aletha Rd, Needham Ma 02492 *(781) 449-3535 Fax (781) 449-8606