I think I might have posted a link to this at some point, but it deserves its own thread. http://www.psmag.com/health-and-behavior/is-medicines-gender-bias-killing-young-women This article focuses mostly on Heart disease, but I think it has a great deal of relevance for ME. And it does touch on "CFS" briefly. Here is a quote: "This pervasive bias may simply be easier to see in the especially high-stakes context of a heart attack, in which the true cause usually becomes crystal clear—too often tragically—in a matter of hours or days. When it comes to less acute problems, the effect of such medical gaslighting is harder to quantify, as many women either accept misdiagnoses or persist until they find a health care provider who believes their symptoms aren’t just in their head. But it can be observed indirectly: In the ever-increasing numbers of women prescribed anti-anxiety meds and anti-depressants. In the fact that women make up the majority of the 100 million Americans suffering from (often under-treated) chronic pain. In the fact that it takes nearly five years and five doctors, on average, for patients with autoimmune diseases, more than 75 percent of whom are women, to receive a proper diagnosis, and that half report being labeled “chronic complainers” in the early stages of their illness. Then there are the diseases, like chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia, that exist so squarely at the overlap of the Venn diagrams of “affects mostly women” and “unknown etiology” that they’ve only recently begun to be recognized as “real” diseases at all." ... for the record I realize there are many men with ME, and that you are generally treated in an equally unfair manner, but the frequent positioning of ME as a "women's illness" and the connection with outdated and misogynistic ideas about "hysteria" affects us all detrimentally.