Ask the Doctor: Chronic fatigue - FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

Ask the Doctor: Chronic fatigue

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Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is something that causes you to feel so tired that you can't complete normal, daily activities. Many people have a difficult time with this condition because of its stigma that it's not a "real illness", but anyone who suffers from it will tell you just how real it is.

Many studies show there's no known cause of it, but one local functional medicine specialist is known for often finding the cause or causes.

We talked to Dr. Patrick Krupka, who practices functional medicine about chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia. "Chronic fatigue symptoms can be caused by viral issues. They can be caused by nutritional deficiencies like Vitamin D and CoQ10 and certain minerals, general inflammatory issues, eating foods that you have sensitivities to, the list is really long. Finding a doctor who is willing to find out which one of those, or which combination of those is really effecting you, is the way you take that next step forward and start to get rid of the symptoms," explains Dr. Krupka.

He goes on to tell us that he's careful to say that you can cure your symptoms, but he often sees his patients feel up to 70% better, which makes their lives much more enjoyable. "You can play with your kids, can stay up late at night for football games. The key is drilling down the foundational issues to find out if you're anemic, vitamin deficient, or Vitamin D deficient, or gluten sensitivity, all of those play a role and you're allowed to have more than one problem," says Dr. Krupka.

Thyroid conditions are another common problem we discussed with Dr. Krupka. They can mimic many other problems and go undiagnosed for a long time. It's important to know if your thyroid is causing problems like depression, fatigue, weight gain, hair loss, or skin changes.

Dr. Krupka has some suggestions, about good questions to ask your doctor when discussing your thyroid (tests). "When you ask your doctor, I feel like my thyroid isn't functioning well - your doctor may do testing and say - it looks like it's working fine, but if you can't convert that T4 into T3, you still have all the symptoms of low thyroid hormone, even though the thyroid isn't having trouble," says Dr. Krupka. He goes on to say, "First you have to find a doctor that can test the entire cascade of hormone production. It's a supply chain, just like any other supply chain. You have to go from start to finish. All the way from the pituitary where you ask for pituitary thyroid, all the way down to the liver and intestines where you make that final conversion from T4 to T3. All right, I hope she understands all that - if it is low and something's wrong there, what does she do? There are T3 medications, some that have T3 and T4 and many practitioners, like me, know of supplements that we know your thyroid needs to work properly and more importantly, we work on getting the liver and the intestines to work well, so that you can make that conversion."

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