Last year I became aware of a syndrome that explains so much for many patients that I have that can’t seem to get better despite the best efforts of traditional medicine. Since that time I have met and worked with Dr. John Abell, a physician in south Georgia that is certified in CIRS. His insight into this new entity is outstanding, this will be part one of a three part series. Enjoy.
Do you suffer from chronic unexplained illnesses? Take multiple medications for widespread symptoms that are treated symptomatically without a succinct diagnosis? Fibromyalgia? Chronic fatigue, brain fog, autoimmune disorders, shortness of breath with no reason, unusual skin sensations, diarrhea, just multiple, multiple symptoms across many body systems that just do not add up?
Did these symptoms all kind of just start happening in a certain time period? Have you been diagnosed with adrenal fatigue, leaky gut, food sensitivities, POTS syndrome, pulmonary hypertension, interstitial lung disease, new onset asthma for really no reason? Neurological symptoms that you really have but have been written off as a psychological etiology as the evaluating physician cannot believe the symptoms? Is there a single entity that may tie all these symptoms together? Maybe so.
Many people who have been diagnosed with:
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Somatization (you are faking it)
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Attention Deficit Disorder
What you may actually be suffering from may be an underlying condition called Chonic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS)
This is a relatively new concept, a syndrome that is not usually recognized and relatively new in the world of medicine (which by the way, takes years to incorporate new thoughts and data).
It is characterized as a multiple symptom involving multiple body systems (brain, lung, gastrointestinal, musculoskeletal, fatigue and on and on).
Patients swim in this ‘sea of diagnosis of all this “stuff” for years from multiple specialists as well as primary care with no diagnosis to connect all “the dots”.
Because all of the usual tests that physicians know to run are usually normal, this is not usually recognized by the majority of physicians. I was one of them for years.
I have been practicing Integrative and Functional Medicine since 2007. Internal Medicine since 1991. I will tell you that I have seen all of the above and have missed the unifying diagnosis more than I would like to admit. Because, none of this was known when I went through medical school or residency at one of the most prestigious programs in the country. Emory University ranked #7 when I did my residency in Internal Medicine.
Over 2018-2019, especially an intensive course November-December 2019 I have become much more aware of that potential “missing link” that may tie many of these symptoms into that “entity”.