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How Doctors – and Insurance Companies – Should Manage Patients with CFS

Patients with myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) and severe fibromyalgia (FM) have a serious, chronic, multisystem illness and should be treated as such. Unfortunately, not all doctors are equipped to manage patients with ME/CFS/FM, and some health care professionals do not understand these medical conditions.

This is especially true among insurance company doctors, and sometimes even judges misunderstand ME/CFS/FM in court. Because not all doctors and legal professionals have the necessary medical information about these conditions, you need a disability attorney who is knowledgeable about claims involving ME/CFS/FM if you want to recover short-term or long-term disability benefits.

At Dabdoub Law Firm, we stay up to date on the developments of these debilitating conditions and work with leading doctors across the nation. Over the years we have adjusted our strategy with the ever-changing medical information to better serve our clients.

The experienced attorneys at Dabdoub Law Firm have successfully obtained disability insurance benefits on behalf of our clients suffering from ME/CFS/FM. We hope you find the information below helpful, and please do not hesitate to contact us if you need help.

Understanding ME/CFS

Patients with myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) feel extremely physically and mentally tired after any kind of exertion or stress. When introduced to stressors, patients may feel exhausted and dizzy and suffer cognitive impairment (brain fog), sleep disruptions (sleeping too much or too little), pain, headaches, autonomic dysregulation (unusual sweating, blood pressure, heart rate, digestion, etc.), and flu-like symptoms.

Many people with ME/CFS also suffer comorbid conditions, including:

  • Neuropathy
  • Thyroid disorders
  • Pain amplification disorders (like fibromyalgia)
  • Sjögren's syndrome (dry eyes and dry mouth)
  • Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS)
  • Sleep disorders
  • Chemical sensitivities
  • Bacterial overgrowth or infection
  • Celiac disease
  • GI problems

All medical providers should be aware of their patients’ sensitivities. To act in their policyholders’ best interests, disability insurance providers should understand their patients’ medical conditions, as well.

Treatment Tips for Doctors and Insurance Providers

When evaluating and treating patients with ME/CFS/FM, doctors must be gentle and keep things simple. Doctors can assume that their patients will be sensitive to stress, including bright lights, loud sounds, and strong smells – and be slower than usual, mentally.

Both doctors and insurance providers should also be aware of the different systems and bodily functions affected by ME/CFS/FM, which include:

  • The metabolism (how the cells in the body process nutrients)
  • Sensitivity (to sight, sound, touch, smell, and taste)
  • Immune responses (in both the brain and body)
  • Cognition (thinking, memory, and reaction time)
  • The endocrine system (hormones and how they are released)
  • The autonomic nervous system (the system that regulates involuntary physiologic processes like heart rate, blood pressure, and digestion)

Those suffering from ME/CFS/FM may have impairments, inflammation, and abnormal functioning in all these systems and more. Not all these problems will be visible, especially if providers do not know what to look for.

If you want more in-depth medical information about ME/CFS/ME, please see this medical care considerations letter from Bateman Horne Center (opens a PDF in a new window).

Help From a Lawyer with Expertise in Disability Insurance

Disability insurance law is complex, particularly in claims involving ME/CFS/ME. When you have a complicated case, you need to hire an experienced disability attorney to recover the benefits you deserve. Because all disability lawyers at this law firm focus on disability insurance claims, we have expertise in disability insurance law.

That means we have:

  1. Experience with every major disability insurance company.
  2. A proven track record of success in major disability lawsuits and ME/CFS/ME disability claims.
  3. Recovered millions of dollars in disability benefits for clients like you.

We also know how difficult this time in your life can be, financially, so we never charge fees or costs unless our clients get paid.

Dabdoub Law Firm can help at any stage of your disability insurance claim, including:

Because federal law applies to most disability insurance claims, our lawyers can handle your myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome claim nationwide. We do not have to be in your state to help.

Call us at (800) 969-0488 or contact us online to speak with an experienced disability attorney. Consultations are free.