Journal of IiME Volume 2 Issue 2 www.investinme.org Family Illnesses Among People with ME/CFS: Blood Versus Non-Blood Relatives (continued) Table 1 Family History of Medical Illness among Blood vs. Non-blood relatives of Persons with ME/CFS History Blood Relative N (%) Diabetes Lupus MS Fibromyalgia CFS 48 (42.1%) 8 (7.0%) 5 (4.4%) 17 (14.9%) 6 (5.3%) ** indicates significant at .00 level * indicates significant at .05 level diabetes did not have familial history of diabetes. Examining the occurrence of Lupus, 7.0% (N = 8) of the participants indicated having bloodrelated family members who have Lupus as compared to .9% (N =1) for non-blood family members (p < .05, an effect size index of .06). Regarding Fibromyalgia, 14.9% (N = 17) of the participants indicated that they have blood relatives with this illness whereas 2.6% (N = 3) reported having a non-blood relative with Fibromyalgia. (p < .01, with an effect size index of .12). Approximately, 5.3% (N = 6) of the participants reported having blood relatives with ME/CFS whereas none were indicated for non-blood relatives (p < .05 with an effect size index of .05). For Multiple Sclerosis, no significant differences occurred between those with blood relatives (4.4%, N = 5) and those with non-blood relative (.9%, N = 1). Invest in ME (Charity Nr. 1114035) Discussion A higher percentage of diabetes, Lupus, Fibromyalgia and ME/CFS were reported among blood relatives than non-blood relatives of people with ME/CFS. The largest difference was found for diabetes, suggesting that a familial predisposition to endocrine system impairment may contribute to the development of ME/CFS. Similar findings emerged elsewhere (Torres-Harding et al., 2005), and these studies might represent the influence of both genetic and environmental factors. We did not find a high percentage of the participants with ME/CFS to have diabetes, as only one participant had diabetes and two reported borderline diabetes. Certainly, it is important to follow-up these individuals to determine whether more people with ME/CFS develop diabetes over time. (continued on page 9) Page 8/74 Non-blood Relative N (%) 5 (4.4%) 1 (0.9%) 1 (0.9%) 3 (2.6%) 0 (0.0%) Significance ** * ** *

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