Intended for healthcare professionals

Letters Chronic fatigue syndrome and long covid

Long covid: reshaping conversations about medically unexplained symptoms

BMJ 2021; 374 doi: (Published 28 July 2021) Cite this as: BMJ 2021;374:n1859
  1. Sean L Davidson, psychiatry registrar1,
  2. David B Menkes, academic psychiatrist2
  1. 1University of Auckland, Waikato Hospital, Hamilton, New Zealand
  2. 2Waikato Clinical Campus, University of Auckland, Hamilton, New Zealand
  1. sean.davidso{at}

Newman’s article, a linked patient commentary, and the tranche of rapid responses show how “long covid” has reignited debate about the causes and management of chronic fatigue syndrome.1 Rather than moving beyond the controversy, most of the ensuing arguments have fallen back into familiar grooves deepened by confirmation bias and dualistic thinking.123 On a more positive note, the intense media attention on and public interest in long covid present a golden opportunity to reshape and extend discussions about …

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