November 1989

Liver Extract–Folic Acid–Cyanocobalamin vs Placebo for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Author Affiliations

From the Divisions of Basic and Clinical Immunology (Dr Kaslow) and General Internal Medicine and Primary Care (Dr Rucker), University of California Irvine Medical Center, Orange; and Division of General Internal Medicine, Long Beach (Calif) Veterans Administration Hospital (Dr Onishi).

Arch Intern Med. 1989;149(11):2501-2503. doi:10.1001/archinte.1989.00390110081017

• Chronic fatigue syndrome is a recently defined entity for which clinical criteria were proposed by the Centers for Disease Control, Atlanta, Ga. A frequently advocated treatment in Southern California is an injectable solution of bovine liver extract containing follic acid and cyanocobalamin (LEFAC). We conducted a double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial of intramuscular LEFAC in 15 patients who met the Centers for Disease Control criteria for chronic fatigue syndrome. Although patients responded to placebo and LEFAC by several criteria of functional status, no significant difference was apparent between response to placebo and that to LEFAC. The placebo response appeared to be strong.

(Arch Intern Med. 1989;149:2501-2503)