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Table 5 Illness characteristics among CFS subjects at initial classification and among fatigued subjects at follow-up

From: A population-based study of the clinical course of chronic fatigue syndrome

Characteristic Initial classification (N = 65) 1-year follow-up (N = 49) 2-years follow-up (N = 29) 3-years follow-up (N = 18)
Fatigue duration in years (%)     
   #2 18.5 2.0 0.0 0.0
   2.1–5 23.1 20.4 27.6 11.1
   5.1–10 30.8 34.7 31.0 44.4
   >10 27.7 42.9 41.4 44.4
   Median (interquartile range) 6 (3.6–10.8) 7.5 (5.3–13.2) 8.0 (4.8–12.9) 9.4 (7.2–13.9)
Rest did not relieve fatigue a lot (%) 100 95.2 96.6 94.4
Since fatiguing illness began, it interfered a lot with (%)     
   Social activities 76.9 51.0* 62.1 44.4
   Personal activities 76.9 69.4 58.6 55.6
   Work activities 66.2 42.9* 55.2 33.3
   Educational activities 40 28.6* 27.6 27.8
   Median number of activities affected by fatigue 3 2† 3 1.5
Currently employed (%) 63.1 61.2 55.2 55.6
Unemployed because of fatiguing illness (%) 16.9 18.4 13.8 16.7
Fatigue Assessment Instrument subscales, mean (standard deviation)     
   Severity 5.9 (0.9) 5.6 (0.8) † 5.8 (0.8) 5.4 (1.0)
   Situation Specific 4.3 (1.3) ‡ 4.3 (1.5) 4.5 (1.4) 3.8 (1.4)
   Psychological consequences 6.0 (1.0) 6.0 (1.1) 6.2 (0.7) 5.8 (0.9)
   Responds to rest/sleep 3.8 (1.8) ‡ 3.3 (1.7) 3.8 (2.0) 3.4 (1.9)
  1. * p < 0.05 in McNemar's test † p < 0.01 in paired t-test ‡ p < 0.05 in t-test, compared with published data