A Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) Patient Returns: An Interview with Martha Kilcoyne by Cort Johnson


A Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) Patient Returns: An Interview with Martha Kilcoyne by Cort Johnson

Martha Kilcoyne
After a bout with the flu when she was pregnant in 1993 Martha Kilcoyne was stuck with flu-like symptoms that never went away. On disability after two years of fruitless battle with the disease, she and her husband started over from ground zero. Working by themselves they pioneered several techniques that forward thinking physicians use as a matter of course today.

An activity/ medication/sleep/symptom log allowed her to identify activities that helped and hurt her. Finding good sleep and pain medications and a strict sleep hygiene program helped her to finally get some deep sleep. A focus on nutrition and a recovery pace that allowed her to be a patient helped further. The final piece of her puzzle was filled in with blood volume enhancement. A year on her protocol left her feeling well for the first time in three years and a year after that she was fully returned to health. She celebrated her wellness by climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in 2000.

Ten years later, still fully healthy, she returned to tell her story in the book ‘Defeat Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: You Don’t Have to Live with It. An Eight Step Protocol.’

“Defeat Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: You Don’t Have to Live with It. An Eight Step Protocol” A Book Review by Cort Johnson

Fifteen years ago Martha Kilcoyne had a classic acute onset of chronic fatigue syndrome but she didn’t end up having a classic outcome. After enduring one last horrific push/crash cycle as she tried to bull her way through this disease she and her husband knew what they were doing wasn’t working. Martha was on disability and her husband was trying to raise their two young children mostly by himself. They decided to go back to square one.

Over time, by themselves, this Massachusetts couple ended up producing many of processes that are now used as a matter of course by many chronic fatigue syndrome professionals; staying within and slowly building up ones ‘energy envelope’, maintaining an activity log, focusing on sleep, finding the right physician, etc. As they did so Martha’s health slowly improved and eventually she recovered entirely. Ten years later she returned to explained how she successfully charted her road through chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS).

‘Defeat Chronic Fatigue Syndrome’ is aimed at the ME/CFS patient, it’s short, it’s readable and it focuses on the essentials of managing this disease. This book is not the one to tell you to take X supplement for Y problem – indeed the short chapter on supplements is weakest in the book – or which treatments to try. In some ways that’s the easy stuff; managing ones disease successfully while being encased in brain fog and being torn by guilt and remorse and frustration – that’s the really hard part of ME/CFS and that’s precisely what this book is about.