Patients with CIRS are often misdiagnosed as having depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder and somatization; as well as Alzheimer’s, Parkinsonism, allergy, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue syndrome, among others. Treating patients for these seemingly diverse conditions does not improve their symptoms of CIRS, although effective therapies for CIRS exist.
CIRS is an activation of the innate immune system, making a proper diagnosis difficult since common parameters of inflammation are generally negative upon laboratory evaluation. There is a genetic component that can be tested. CIRS is a brain on fire. A dominant clinical feature of CIRS is the common cognitive complaints by patients, including memory loss, mood disorders, brain fog, loss of executive function and fatigue. This is not a surprise considering that this is a key component of the innate immune response. There are multiple markers to measure the innate response and measure the presence of inflammation in the brain.