Case Story - Getting through final year with post viral fatigue syndrome
Final year was always going to be difficult, but when I was diagnosed with Post-Viral Fatigue, these difficulties took on a whole new form. Rather than studying in the few hours I had between lectures, fitness classes and hockey sessions, I found I had hit a brick wall and found myself too drained, exhausted and dizzy to contemplate getting out of bed.
By second term, I was lucky to have been put in touch with [a Vitality360 Physiotherapist] who helped me regain structure to my daily routine and sleep regime. Together we found a baseline of daily exercise I could do on both good and bad days, and I was able to gradually increase it. I soon found I felt more human during the day, and able to do some work. I stuck to my routines so that I wouldn’t burn out in the day and could get the best sleep possible at night. I was well and truly on the road to recovery!
I was so glad I had support through my final exams. A letter was written to my Uni explaining that PVFS comes under the ‘M.E’ umbrella, which my Uni of course recognised as a disability. This enabled me to take my exams in a separate room, to have rest breaks, and for my early morning exam to be moved later. My Uni was fantastic and gave me all this as well as extra time.
Once this was agreed it was up to me to be strict with myself regarding studying, resting, exercising and sleeping. I kept the routine up rigorously, and found I was feeling progressively less dizzy, able to concentrate better and for longer, and could cope even if I didn’t sleep well. I continued my routines and my physiotherapy sessions and managed my exams really well. I felt so healthy, not to mention relieved, by the time I finished my last exam that I skipped to the pub with my housemates for a well-deserved (small) congratulatory glass of wine.
This programme helped me regain my sanity, made me feel healthier, stronger and more like myself.
It was what got me out of bed in the morning. I’ve now worked myself up to being capable of doing a ‘normal’ amount in the gym (45 minutes). I’m now back on track and feeling 85% better - 90% on a good day!