A study in the the Archives of General Psychiatry is getting some headlines because it shows that suffering a trauma as a child may predispose some people to chronic fatigue syndrome later in life. Really? First of all, the study really doesn't show any causation. Another problem is that chronic fatigue syndrome, no matter how hard some advocacy groups scream otherwise, is still questionable as to whether it actually exists. Those same groups claim that some yet to be found virus is the culprit. So does trauma during childhood make you susceptible to still some unknown virus? The study's design basically took 113 people with CFS compared to 124 without it and asked if they had any childhood trauma (sexual, physical, and emotional abuse; emotional and physical neglect) or psychopathology (depression, anxiety, and posttraumatic stress disorder). Sixty-two percent of the first group versus twenty-four percent of the latter group said they did. There's a surprise. The authors tried to make some correlation with lower cortisol levels as well but I think that was a red herring as cortisol levels has been linked to bad things whether it is low or high. Who even knows what it means anymore? So is this study saying that CFS is really a cloaked form of PTSD and these patients don't have a physical cause for their fatigue but a psychological one instead? Hmm, maybe this study isn't so bad after all?