Are Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Allergy Related? What is Fibromyalgia?
Despite the progress made in the field of allergy-immunology in recent years, there are a group of diseases that the allergistimmunologist may be called on to manage in which their precise etiologies have not been identified but that appear to be initiated or exacerbated by allergic mechanisms. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), and fibromyalgia (FM) fall into this category of disorders. Although the precise etiology of ADHD still remains unknown, the most prevalent theory is that it represents a neurobiologically based developmental disability leading to inadequate production of the neurotransmitter dopamine. In patients with CFS, there appears to be a fundamental dysfunction of the neuroendocrine-immunological system with deficiencies of immunological and neurological function, which, together with chronic viral infection, may lead to a sequence of events responsible for the symptoms of this disorder. FM appears to be a variant of CFS with a predominance of hypothalamic pituitary axis dysfunction. The disorder is characterized by chronic widespread pain and the finding of 11/18 tender points on examination. Now, there is emerging evidence to suggest that adverse reactions to foods or food components also may be associated with behavioral disturbances that may play a role in each of these disorders. An understanding of the interactive responses involved in the neuroendocrine-immunological network is essential for a comprehension of the pathophysiology of ADHD, CFS, and FM and the role of allergies appears to be an important triggering event in each of the disorders.
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Document Type: Review Article
Publication date: January 1, 2005
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