Over the years, a number of reports in the scientific literature have pointed to the presence of abnormalities of heart (cardiac) function in ME/CFS. These include the ME Research UK-funded investigations by Prof Julia Newton, Dr Kieren Hollingsworth and colleagues at Newcastle University which have throw up some intriguing findings concerning the function of the heart in ME/CFS.
The Newcastle researchers’ latest report has just been published in the journal Open Heart, and it describes work using state-of-the art MRI to confirm previous findings in larger group of new patients and controls, and extend them to include measurements of cardiac output and blood volume.
Overall, the findings confirm the presence of cardiac abnormalities in people with ME/CFS. It remains unknown, however, whether these are caused by ME/CFS and its consequences per se or whether, for instance, a (pre-existing) reduced cardiac volume may make people more vulnerable to the development of the illness.
Our full overview of the report can be found on its “completed research” page