WEDNESDAY, May 1 (HealthDay News) -- Extreme fatigue is common
in U.S. teens and often goes untreated, a new study finds.
Researchers surveyed more than 10,000 teens, aged 13 to 18, and
found that 3 percent reported having extreme fatigue that had
lasted at least three months and was not relieved by rest. Half of
the teens with extreme fatigue also had depression or an anxiety
More than half of those with long-term fatigue said they
experienced severe or very severe problems in school, family or
social situations, according to the study, which was published in
the May issue of the
American Journal of Psychiatry.
Only 14 percent of teens with long-term fatigue alone received
any type of treatment for emotional or behavioral symptoms in the
previous year, the survey found. Those with depression or an
anxiety disorder in addition to long-term fatigue were more likely
to have received care than those with fatigue only or with
depression or an anxiety disorder only.
There are two key points to be taken from this study, said
researcher Kathleen Merikangas, of the U.S. National Institute of
"Extreme fatigue that continues even after rest and interferes
with adolescents' ability to participate academically, socially or
at home is a pathological condition, yet it's not being recognized
and treated," Merikangas said in a journal news release. "Also,
teens with a depressive or anxiety disorder plus persistent fatigue
appear to be sicker than those without fatigue."
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