Prevalence And Incidence Of This Syndrome In Europe

incidence in europe

There have been studies on the epidemiology of CFS that have been carried out in Europe, but the thing to note here is that these studies have involved only single countries.  That being said, the prevalence and incidence of this syndrome in Europe as a whole, is unknown.

That is the very reason why one of the purposes of the European Network on ME/CFS, is to address this very gap in knowledge. What needs to be done, then, will be to systematically review the literature, reporting the figures from the European countries, in order to provide a rather robust summary and see what new challenges might exist.

Methods And Analysis

What needs to be done, then, is to conduct a systematic search of the literature databases that are PubMed, Scopus and Web of Science, where it comes to finding studies that have been published in the last ten years, that is, after the year 2007. It is important to note here that no language restriction will be applied.

Furthermore, there will be two independent researchers who will search, screen and select studies in addition to extracting data about their main characteristics, as well as evaluate their methodological and reporting quality. In the case of the emergence of any disagreements, the reviewers in question will discuss amongst each other, in order to reach a consensus. A narrative summary of the findings will be produced as it is anticipated that the studies are scarce and heterogeneous. It will be in a EUROMENE meeting that the possibility of performing meta-analyses will be discussed.

Ethics And Dissemination

It must be noted that ethical approval is not required as it is only the publicly available data that will be included. The resultant findings will be displayed in the EUROMENE reports in addition to being published in peer-reviewed journals and being presented at conferences. Also, the findings will be communicated to the makers of policy, the healthcare providers in addition to the people with CFS as well as the other sections of society, through the regular channels out there that include the mass media.

Let us take a deeper look at the studies that will be conducted where it comes to assessing the prevalence and incidence of chronic fatigue syndrome in Europe.

The Complementary Search

A twofold complementary search will be conducted, in the following manner: first, a backward search will be performed by checking reference lists, followed by a forward search of the works that are included in the present review. The latter will be done by checking citations.

In the second part of the search, the grey literature will be addressed, by contacting through the medium of email, all the members of EUROMENE, with a view to them providing prevalence and incidence rates if available, or perhaps even both, of CFS in their countries according to the information that is present in national registers, publications in their very own language or perhaps another easily accessible source.

Assessment Of Methodological Quality And Reporting Of Data

There will be an evaluation of the methodological quality of the eligible studies, with the Janna-Briggs Institute-Checklist for Prevalent Studies. Before it comes to applying it, there will be six members of the research team that will go on to develop an agreed appraisal of the tool. The resultant appraisal will be published with the review as supplementary information.

Data Extraction And Management

In order to manage the records that are retrieved by the electronic search, the Mendeley Desktop will be used. The independent researchers that we have talked about earlier on, will extract the following data that is of high relevance, from the studies that are included: reference (authors and years of publication), country (city or region where relevant), and design (general population survey).

The Strengths And Limitations Of This Study

This study has its strengths as well as limitations. Let’s take a look at them.

  • The strengths of this study do appear to lie in its carefully designed search strategy, inclusion and exclusion criteria, and time-span coverage.
  • Where it comes to the limitations of this review, it might stem down to the small number of studies that are available and their potential high heterogeneity.

You might also wish to check out our article on accessing the quality of life of chronic fatigue syndrome patients.

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