Measuring substantial reductions in activity

Charles Schafer, Meredyth Evans, Leonard A. Jason*, Suzanna So, Abigail Brown

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The case definitions for Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), ME, and CFS each include a disability criterion requiring substantial reductions in activity in order to meet diagnostic criteria. Difficulties have been encountered in defining and operationalizing the substantial reduction disability criterion within these various illness definitions. The present study sought to relate measures of past and current activities in several domains including the SF-36, an objective measure of activity (e.g., actigraphy), a self-reported quality of life scale, and measures of symptom severity. Results of the study revealed that current work activities had the highest number of significant associations with domains such as the SF-36 subscales, actigraphy, and symptom scores. As an example, higher self-reported levels of current work activity were associated with better health. This suggests that current work related activities may provide a useful domain for helping operationalize the construct of substantial reductions in activity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-19
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Prevention and Intervention in the Community
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2 2015


  • Myalgic Encepha-lomyelitislchronic fatigue syndrome
  • Myalgic Encephalomyelitis
  • activity
  • chronic fatiguesyndrome
  • substantial reductions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


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