How can this STILL be happening?

Parents tell how every day is a battle to care for teenager struck down with chronic fatigue syndrome - The Daily Record

“Chronic fatigue syndrome”, in this context, is M.E. (the symptoms described are classic M.E.).

Eilidh Berwick apparently fell ill when she was 10. The family doctor, when her parents took her in (after getting the diagnosis from someone who actually knew about M.E.), said, “right, that’s enough of all this” and made the girl run round the building three times. When she felt unable to go on, the GP would not accept it and made her run through the waiting room.

The fact is that getting people to run round the block when they have M.E. is a bad idea, because their heart rate drops rather than rising as it does normally. This practice has been known to provoke deteriorations in the health of people with M.E. for decades, and can lead quickly to someone becoming bedridden, quadriplegic or both, as happened to Lynn Gilderdale in 1992. One can accept that mistakes were made in the past, but there is simply no excuse for people, let alone children, to be suffering this now.

The other cruelties meted out to her, such as having her illness dismissed as “school phobia” and “fear of movement”, could have happened at any time in the last 25 years. School phobia goes away during the school holidays; M.E. keeps up all year round. It is really depressing to see that nothing much has changed, in some places, since Ean Proctor’s ordeal in the late 1980s.

(Oh, and … I forgot to mention this when I first wrote this entry, but this happened in Fife, the same district where the Robertson/McDougall scandal happened. Perhaps there’s a serious problem in the way “caring professionals” round there view the people they’re meant to be serving.)

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