Irregularities in red cell distribution width and lymphocyte concentration in individuals with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Suzanne Broadbent, PhD; Rosanne Coutts, PhD

Background: Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is a complex condition with no clear aetiology. There are inconsistent reports of abnormal red cell indices and variations in some immune cell subsets in CFS patients. Aim: Toexaminehaemato logical and immunological indices and the frequency of irregularities. Methods: Full blood counts and immune cell subsets of 24 Chronic Fatigue Syndrome individuals and 18 healthy, sedentary controls were analysed by cell sorter and flow cytometer. The frequencies of abnormal blood count and immunological indices, and health conditions in both groups were also recorded. Results: Total lymphocyte concentration was below-normal in 33.3% of CFS participants, with mean values significantly lower than the non-CFS group. CFS participants also had a lower CD3+CD4+ lymphocyte count (p < 0.05). Compared to non-CFS, the CFS group had significantly higher frequencies of above-normal red cell distribution width (RDW), above-normal erythrocyte mean cell volume (MCV), previous/current iron deficiency, cardiac symptoms, recurring sore throats and headaches, poor sleep, joint and back pain. Conclusion: Significantly higher frequencies of abnormal RDW, MCV and lymphocyte concentrations in CFS participants may be associated with iron deficiency and immune cell dysfunction.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/ijhs.v3n4a7