Treatment of Chronic Fatigue and Orthostatic Intolerance with Propranolol

University of Oslo, Kristiania (historical), Oslo, Norway
The Journal of pediatrics (Impact Factor: 3.79). 07/2007; 150(6):654-5. DOI: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2007.03.012
Source: PubMed


We describe the effect of propranolol in an adolescent with chronic fatigue syndrome and orthostatic intolerance. Our observations suggest that the head-up tilt-test and beta-blocker treatment might be considered in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome and that enhanced sympathetic nervous activity might be part of the underlying pathophysiology.

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    • "This finding complies with previous reports of an association between orthostatic test results and clinical symptoms [36-39] and suggests that head-up tilt testing might become a valuable diagnostic tool in CFS; however, this would require validation in a larger patient population, combined with a refinement of test procedures. Also, the results indicate, in line with scattered case reports [40], that direct pharmaceutical treatment of cardiovascular autonomic alterations might improve clinical symptoms in CFS. This hypothesis should be tested in a randomized controlled trial. "
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    ABSTRACT: Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is characterized by severe impairment and multiple symptoms. Autonomic dysregulation has been demonstrated in several studies. We aimed at exploring the relationship between indices of autonomic cardiovascular control, the case definition from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC criteria), important clinical symptoms, and disability in adolescent chronic fatigue syndrome. 38 CFS patients aged 12--18 years were recruited according to a wide case definition (ie. not requiring accompanying symptoms) and subjected to head-up tilt test (HUT) and a questionnaire. The relationships between variables were explored with multiple linear regression analyses. In the final models, disability was positively associated with symptoms of cognitive impairments (p<0.001), hypersensitivity (p<0.001), fatigue (p=0.003) and age (p=0.007). Symptoms of cognitive impairments were associated with age (p=0.002), heart rate (HR) at baseline (p=0.01), and HR response during HUT (p=0.02). Hypersensitivity was associated with HR response during HUT (p=0.001), high-frequency variability of heart rate (HF-RRI) at baseline (p=0.05), and adherence to the CDC criteria (p=0.005). Fatigue was associated with gender (p=0.007) and adherence to the CDC criteria (p=0.04). In conclusion, a) The disability of CFS patients is not only related to fatigue but to other symptoms as well; b) Altered cardiovascular autonomic control is associated with certain symptoms; c) The CDC criteria are poorly associated with disability, symptoms, and indices of altered autonomic nervous activity.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2013 · BioPsychoSocial Medicine
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    • "Thus, sympatholytic drugs may constitute a possible treatment approach. Indeed, we have reported tremendous eVect of the non-selective beta-blocker propranolol in one CFS patient (Wyller et al. 2007c) "
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    ABSTRACT: The chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) has been shown to be associated with orthostatic intolerance and cardiovascular dysregulation. We investigated the cardiovascular responses to combined orthostatic stress and isometric exercise in adolescents with CFS. We included a consecutive sample of 15 adolescents 12-18 years old with CFS diagnosed according to a thorough and standardized set of investigations, and a volunteer sample of 56 healthy control subjects of equal sex and age distribution. Heart rate, systolic, mean and diastolic blood pressure, stroke index, and total peripheral resistance index were non-invasively recorded during lower body negative pressure (LBNP) combined with two consecutive periods of handgrip. In addition, we measured baseline plasma catecholamines, and recorded symptoms. At rest, CFS patients had higher heart rate, diastolic blood pressure, plasma norepinephrine (P < 0.01), mean blood pressure and plasma epinephrine (P < 0.05) than controls. During LBNP, CFS patients had a greater increase in heart rate, diastolic blood pressure, mean blood pressure (P < 0.05) and total peripheral resistance index (n.s.) than controls. During handgrip, CFS patients had a smaller increase in heart rate, diastolic blood pressure (P < 0.05), mean blood pressure and total peripheral resistance index (n.s.) than controls. Our results indicate that adolescents with CFS have increased sympathetic activity at rest with exaggerated cardiovascular response to orthostatic stress, but attenuated cardiovascular response when performing isometric exercise during orthostatic stress. This suggests that CFS might be causally related to sympathetic dysfunction.
    Full-text · Article · May 2008 · Arbeitsphysiologie
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    ABSTRACT: Patients with Marfan syndrome have a tall stature, which could be associated with low orthostatic tolerance. Fatigue, a common complaint of these patients, is also related to orthostatic intolerance. Treatment with beta-blockers, to prevent aortic complications, could be a reinforcing factor of both. This study aimed to investigate (1) the relationship between symptoms of orthostatic tolerance and in patients with Marfan syndrome, and (2) whether termination of beta-blocker therapy improves orthostatic tolerance. Symptoms of fatigue and orthostatic complaints were assessed in 49 subjects using questionnaires (MFI-20 and Autonomic Symptoms Profile). Marfan patients have a high level of fatigue and orthostatic complaints when compared to the general population. Fatigue and orthostatic tolerance are significantly correlated. Orthostatic tolerance was assessed in 9 additional subjects by an active-standing test and head-up tilt for 5 minutes, and 24 hours blood pressure monitoring, once during beta-blocker therapy and once after ceasing beta-blockers for 2 weeks. During hemodynamic testing Marfan patients frequently showed Initial Orthostatic Hypotension and an abnormally high initial heart rate response. Ceasing beta-blockers did not affect the initial blood pressure response. Patients with Marfan syndrome are fatigued and have low orthostatic tolerance, which are significantly correlated. Patients could be educated in physical counterpressure maneuvers to increase orthostatic tolerance.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2008 · Clinical Autonomic Research
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