A growing body of research suggests that the gut microbiome could play a major role in a debilitating chronic disease that has been on the rise. The illness, known as myalgic encephalomyelitis and commonly called chronic fatigue syndrome, is characterised by intense fatigue, gastrointestinal issues, muscle pain, and cognitive challenges such as headaches and difficulty concentrating, among other symptoms. It often follows a viral infection, but scientists don’t have a clear understanding of how the disease works, and there are no known treatments.
Following the pandemic, the number of people reportedly suffering from myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) has dramatically increased. This is because long-term symptoms following COVID-19 infections often meet the criteria for ME/CFS.