Information, Symptoms, Treatments and Resources

Diagnostic & Blood Tests to Help Diagnose CFIDS



T3 REVERSE -- "The mix of treatments needed varies from patient to patient. There are some abnormalities that are common. For instance, close to 100% of individuals with these syndromes have low thyroid. This is, however, usually not picked up on the standard blood tests because the TSH is not elevated in these individuals due to pituitary dysfunction. Many of these individuals will also have high levels of the anti-thyroid reverse T3, which is usually not measured on standard blood tests. In addition, the majority of individuals can also have a thyroid receptor resistance that is not detected on the blood tests. Consequently, thyroid treatment, especially with timed release T3, is effective for many patients. T4 preparations (inactive thyroid) such as Synthroid and Levoxyl do not work well for these conditions."

Kent Holtorf, M.D.  --- link to article:


ANA -- "Up to 25% of ME/CFS patients have an abnormal ANA" --- Dr. David Bell   link:




Uric Acid --- "Uric acid levels in CFIDS patients are among the lowest I've ever measured, in all of medicine". --- Dr. Paul Cheney

source: --- but also see:



A.M. Cortisol Level --- source: and Evaluating Salivary Cortisol Levels in CFS Patients


Sed Rate (ESR) --- The most consistent laboratory abnormality in patients with CFS is an extremely low erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), which approaches zero. Typically, patients with CFS have an ESR of 0-3 mm/h. An normal ESR or one that is in the upper reference range suggests another diagnosis.





CD4 Count --- "We have 155 cases with random CD4 counts below 500, 62 cases below 400, 21 below 300 and 3 below 200." --- Dr. Paul Cheney

Cheney also says, "some of my sickest patients have elevated CD4 counts"  Source:




MRI Scan --- "Half have abnormal MRI scans" --- Dr. Paul Cheney

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"Cranial MRI will show small T2 weighted high intensity lesions in 80% of cases" ---- Dr. Charles Lapp




SPECT Scan --- 80% have abnormal SPECT scans" --- Dr. Paul Cheney





EEG --- "95% have abnormal cognitive evoked EEG brain maps" --- Dr. Paul Cheney




Sleep Study




Tilt Testing to Rule out POTS (postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome) ---




DEXA Scan --- source:




Holter Test (heart) "All 60 patients with CFS showed repetitively flat to inverted T waves alternating with normal T waves"


Cardiac involvement in CFS patients (highly recommended):


 Most patients with CFS usually have 2 or 3 of the following abnormalities:

  • Elevated IgM/IgG coxsackievirus B titer
  • Elevated IgM/IgG HHV-6 titer
  • Elevated IgM/IgG C pneumoniae titer
  • Decreased NK cells, either the percentage or their activity


Viral Testing --- EBV titer, CMV titer, HHV-6 titer (best methology & lab:

Another link of tests that physicians are ordering to rule out CFS:


You can also visit the CFIDS Association of America's page on viruses that play a role in CFS patients.

Test to diagnose possibly fibromyalgia and CFS, using spinal fluid. The test is still in the research phase, but it is a national lab and Medicare is now covering this test. For more information, visit Red Labs USA



A checklist (CDC) for your physician to help rule out CFS:






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