Saturday, September 22, 2012

A prediction for ME/CFS

Here's my prediction for what Lipkin will find in ME/CFS patients (take it with some grains of salt):
  • He will find two dominant distinct diseases in roughly 60% of patients: One disease will have an share of about 40% of patients, while the other will be about 20%.

    The two dominant diseases he will find will be either: in the form of an "new" autoimmune disease (as of now undocumented autoimmune-antibody/antigen and target tissue), or an undocumented presentation of a known virus (e.g. one of the HHVs or Enteroviruses), or an combination thereof.

    An unknown virus is possible, but seems to me unlikely.
  • About 25% of patients will be comprised of patients with on of about 10 diseases. Diseases will be e.g. atypical presentations of known common diseases, and possibly some novel diseases.
  • The remaining 15% of patients will have a multitude of diseases, some common and some rare, some known and some currently unknown.
The great unknown seems to be the role of HHVs. Interesting will be whether the majority of patients have an "simple" disease (e.g. with one autoimmune-antibody targeting one tissue type as prime cause) that "simply" causes the complex "multi-organ" disease presentation, or whether there is actually multi-organ involvement as prime cause.

Let's see – I'm not taking bets.

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