The Hummingbirds' Foundation for M.E.

The Hummingbirds' Foundation for M.E. (HFME) is fighting for the recognition of M.E.,
and for patients to be accorded the same basic human rights as those with similar
disabling and potentially fatal neurological diseases such as M.S.

Articles sorted by author: Marshall and Williams

An important note:

Before reading this research/advocacy information given in the links below, please be aware of the following facts:

1. Myalgic Encephalomyelitis and ‘Chronic Fatigue Syndrome’ are not synonymous terms. The overwhelming majority of research on ‘CFS’ or ‘CFIDS’ or ‘ME/CFS’ or ‘CFS/ME’ or ‘ICD-CFS’ does not involve M.E. patients and is not relevant in any way to M.E. patients. If the M.E. community were to reject all ‘CFS’ labelled research as ‘only relating to ‘CFS’ patients’ (including research which describes those abnormalities/characteristics unique to M.E. patients), however, this would seem to support the myth that ‘CFS’ is just a ‘watered down’ definition of M.E. and that M.E. and ‘CFS’ are virtually the same thing and share many characteristics.

A very small number of ‘CFS’ studies refer in part to people with M.E. but it may not always be clear which parts refer to M.E. The
A warning on ‘CFS’ and ‘ME/CFS’ research and advocacy paper is recommended reading and includes a checklist to help readers assess the relevance of individual ‘CFS’ studies to M.E. (if any) and explains some of the problems with this heterogeneous and skewed research.

In future, it is essential that M.E. research again be conducted using only M.E. defined patients and using only the term M.E. The bogus, financially-motivated disease category of ‘CFS’ must be abandoned.

2. The research referred to on this website varies considerably in quality. Some is of a high scientific standard and relates wholly to M.E. and uses the correct terminology. Other studies are included which may only have partial or minor possible relevance to M.E., use unscientific terms/concepts such as ‘CFS,’ ‘ME/CFS,’ ‘CFS/ME,’ ‘CFIDS’ or Myalgic ‘Encephalopathy’ and also include a significant amount of misinformation. Before reading this research it is also essential that the reader be aware of the most commonly used ‘CFS’ propaganda, as explained in A warning on ‘CFS’ and ‘ME/CFS’ research and advocacy and in more detail in Putting research and articles on Myalgic Encephalomyelitis into context.

Articles by Marshall and Williams

Corporate Collusion by Professor Malcolm Hooper, Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams 2007

[Note that this site strongly opposes the concept of 'ME/CFS' which is unfortunately promoted in this otherwise useful and factual article, and other recent articles by these authors. This term creates confusion between the distinct entities of M.E. and "CFS' which only serves to further the abuse of M.E. patinets and other patinet groups. See: Who benefits from 'CFS' and 'ME/CFS'? and Problems with the so-called "Fair name" campaign: Why it is in the best interests of all patient groups involved to reject and strongly oppose this misleading and counter-productive proposal to rename ‘CFS’ as ‘ME/CFS’  and Problems with the use of 'ME/CFS' by M.E. advocates It is to be hoped that these once powerful M.E. advocates again return to uncompromising M.E. advocacy.]

ME Exists: True or False? by Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams,18th August 2006

It seems that the powerful vested interests groups who now control the Establishment will tolerate no opposition, with the result that NHS doctors' freedom to practice medicine is increasingly proscribed.

With no hope of funding to establish a diagnostic test and with no will by the Royal Colleges or Government to formulate or accept an accurate case definition, the situation relating to ME/CFS in the UK cannot improve. So many abnormalities have now been shown to occur regularly in cases of authentic ME/CFS that it is not only bad science to attempt to dismiss, ignore or deny a reality that can be scientifically measured, but to continue to do so must, as others have noted, border on the criminal.

CBT in ME/CFS - More Information by Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 23rd August 2006

In our document "ME Exists: True or False?" we drew attention to recognised abnormalities in ME/CFS, one of which being the significant loss of grey matter in the brain with irreversible loss of grey cells, especially in Brodmann's area 9, and mentioned that this may indicate major trauma to the brain.

If such trauma to the brain exists in ME/CFS, then the chance of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) being effective in ME/CFS is probably zero and the MRC PACE trials may be a disaster for the psychiatric lobby.

A Farewell Message for Professor Wessely? Margaret Williams, 19th July 2006

At the fifth oral evidence session of the Gibson Parliamentary Inquiry held on 18th July 2006, the Chairman, Dr Ian Gibson, revealed that Professor Simon Wessely had submitted about 20 pages of "evidence" but would not attend because 'he'd had enough of ME'. Perhaps this time, Professor Wessely intends to keep his word and withdraw from the world of ME/CFS and move to pastures new.

Also at the fifth oral evidence session was a freelance journalist who seemed to be particularly well informed about the shambles in which the ME community finds itself. His name is Richard Webster. Webster would seem to have a farewell message for Wessely.

Informal notes on the issue of funding biomedical research into ME/CFS Margaret Williams, 17th July 2006


Concern about misinformation to the Gibson Inquiry Margaret Williams, 6th July 2006

Notes re the evidence of Raymond Perrin PhD to the Gibson Parliamentary Inquiry into ME Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 1st July 2006

Cognitive Impairment? Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 12th May 2006

Abbot and Spence correctly observe that Prins et al entirely failed to address the central point, namely, that from the patients' perspective, the biopsychosocial model offers little, yet it dominates the field in terms of funding and exposure in the professional journals (ref: Chronic fatigue syndrome. Lancet: 2006: 367: May 13: 1573-1575).

Inquest Implications by Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 16 June 2006

The General Medical Council’s “duties of a doctor” (2001) state that doctors must make the care of the patient their first concern and they must not ‘give or recommend to patients any investigation or treatment which (they) know is not in their best interests, nor withhold appropriate treatments’.  This was acknowledged on 15th June 2006 by Dr Susan Benbow of The Royal College of Psychiatrists in the Daily Telegraph.
The GMC stipulations are clear enough, so why then are sufferers from ME/CFS excluded from such protection?
There can be few people in the UK ME community who have not by now heard the results of the inquest into the tragic death from ME/CFS of 32 year-old Sophia Mirza, the beloved daughter of Criona Wilson from Brighton.  Although severely sick with medically diagnosed ME/CFS, Sophia was abused by the doctors charged with her care by being wrongly sectioned under the Mental Health Act.

Some of the abnormalities that have been demonstrated in ME/CFS by Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 31st March 2006

In view of the fact that the peer-reviewed research data supports the following organic abnormalities in ME/CFS, how can so many members of the UK medical profession still persist in the belief that ME/CFS is a behavioural disorder?  It is shameful that UK Government bodies have consistently refused to fund any biomedical research into this devastating disorder.

Brief comments on the DWP proposed entry on “CFS/ME” (version 8 of March 2006) by Margaret Williams, 26th March 2006

Para 1:  In the “Definition”, many key symptoms and features of true ME/CFS are again omitted: since the Guidance is not limited to mild forms of the disorder (but covers the entire spectrum of severity), why have such symptoms as cardiac insufficiency, neuromuscular incoordination, respiratory dysfunction, vertigo /balance problems, inability to stand unsupported for more than a few moments, frequency of micturition / nocturia, pancreatic insufficiency, chest pain, parasympathetic enteropathy etc been omitted?  This would seem to amount to deliberate disinformation.

Para 2:  again, there is obfuscation about which disorder is being discussed.  It is untrue that “most authorities consider the condition as CFS/ME”; the people who use that term are Wessely School adherents and UK Government bodies whom they have influenced. The term was coined by Wessely himself, who wrote in the BMJ:  “It may seem that adopting the lay label (of ME) reinforces the perceived disability.  A compromise strategy is ‘ constructive labelling’: it would mean treating CFS as a legitimate illness while gradually expanding understanding of the condition to incorporate the psychological and social dimensions.  The recent adoption by the UK Medical Research Council and the chief medical officer’s report of the term CFS/ME reflects such a compromise”  (BMJ 2003:326:595-597).  It must not be forgotten that Wessely’s version of “CFS/ME” equates with neurasthenia.

More on the Myth? by Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 21st March 2006

What can explain the delusion that prevents certain psychiatrists from engaging with reality?  Despite the significant evidence that destroys their misconceptions and shows their beliefs about ME/CFS to be wrong, Wessely School psychiatrists persist in their belief that it is a behavioural disorder that they believe is synonymous with “neurasthenia” and they continue tenaciously in their efforts to get ME/CFS re-classified as a mental disorder.  Evidence-based reality seems entirely lost on this group of psychiatrists.

Wessely has been ploughing the narrow furrow of equating ME/CFS with neurasthenia since at least 1990 (ref:  Old wine in new bottles: neurasthenia and ‘ME’. Psychol Med 1990:20:35-53); some 16 years later he is still entrenched in the same furrow and has seemingly failed to look beyond its confines. (...)

(Note:  If the “biopsychosocial” approach worked and did not result in serious relapse, and if the biological factors were “largely reversible”, there would be no long-term sufferers from ME/CFS because patients are desperate to regain their health and independence.  The GMC recently criticised and struck off a doctor for practising outside his area of expertise.  If psychiatrists attempt to claim dominion over “ a wide range of disorders”, they might be at similar risk because it is not possible for them to be experts in such complex fields as vascular biology or gene expression that are known to be disrupted in ME/CFS.  Wessely himself stated at his Gresham College lecture on 25th January 2006 that he did not understand immunology).

The Model of the Myth? Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 17th March 2006

Perhaps Professor Peter White (editor of "Biopsychosocial Medicine: An integrated approach to understanding illness" [OUP 2005] who is currently principal investigator in the Medical Research Council PACE trials of this model) -- as well as other Wessely School members -- are unaware that the model they so fervently espouse is based not on a legitimate model by Engel after all, but simply on a myth?  (For information on White's book, see "Proof Positive?" on Co-Cure ACT: 2nd September 2005).

The ME community may like to know that McLaren presented a paper entitled "The biopsychosocial model and scientific fraud" at the annual congress of RANZCP in May 2004, which is available from the author at Northern Psychiatric Services, Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia.

The papers by Susanna Agardy referred to in this text are available at the links below:


Susanna Agardy's letter to Chris Clark

The UK National Service Framework and ME/CFS Margaret Williams, 13th March 2006

Who told Clark that ME/CFS was not to be included or accepted as a neurological disorder? Was it the psychiatric lobby, with whom he closely co-operates? Was it because the psychiatric lobby would not tolerate any departure from their own well-publicised agenda to re-classify ME/CFS as a behavioural disorder?

Whatever the answer, it is immaterial, since the evidence that ME/CFS is included in the NSF as a chronic neurological disorder is now irrefutable.

Pinching's Perception? by Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 20th January 2006

The recently-released Minutes of the UK All Party Parliamentary Group on ME of the meeting held on 16th November 2005 contain a record of the presentation made at that meeting by Professor Tony Pinching, Associate Dean for Cornwall at the Peninsula Medical School and Chair of the NHS CFS/ME Service Investment Steering Group. It is this Steering Group that defined the criteria for the new “CFS” Centres in the UK; it also oversaw the bidding for and the allocation of the £8.5 million of Government funding. Thus, as Chair of the CFS/ME Service Investment Steering Group, a heavy weight of accountability rests on Pinching’s shoulders.

One can but ask yet again why someone in a position of such responsibility as Professor Pinching appears to be intent on wilfully ignoring the large body of international researchers calling for sub-grouping of “CFS” as a matter of urgency.

Letter to the BMJ by Professor Malcolm Hooper, Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams  re: NICE 24th January 2006



The information in this document is relevant to the Gibson Inquiry, specifically the continued ignoring by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) and its commercial advisers of the compelling scientific evidence that myalgic encephalomyelitis / chronic fatigue syndrome is not a primary psychiatric disorder. If eligibility for certain benefits becomes contingent upon the intended implementation of compulsory psychiatric “rehabilitation” regimes, in cases of authentic ME/CFS it is likely to result in serious relapse that may be life-long (and may in some cases even result in death)

Professor Malcolm Hooper, Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, December 2005

Illustrations of Clinical Observations and International Research Findings from 1955 to 2005 that demonstrate the organic aetiology of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome by Malcolm Hooper Eileen Marshall Margaret Williams, 12th December 2005

174 pages.

Prepared for The Group on Scientific Research into Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (the Gibson Parliamentary Inquiry) that has been established “to assess the progress of scientific research on ME since the publication of the Chief Medical Officer’s Working Group Report into CFS/ME in 2002, (and) to increase public understanding of scientific research into ME/CFS (and) to identify research and funding requirements in establishing the cause of ME/CFS”.

This document is a compilation of illustrations taken from the published evidence-base of the organic aetiology of ME/CFS over the fifty years from 1955 to 2005.

Evidence-based Policy or Policy-based Evidence? by Professor Malcolm Hooper Eileen Marshall Margaret Williams, 20th November 2005

In relation to the forthcoming Parliamentary Inquiry into ME/CFS to be chaired by Dr Ian Gibson MP (former Dean of Biology at the University of East Anglia and former Chairman of the House of Commons Science and Technology Select Committee, to whom the UK ME community owes considerable gratitude for his willingness to assist where others who could have done so have declined), a number of important points have presented themselves; for the avoidance of doubt, some of these points are placed on public record.

FOR UK PARLIAMENTARY INQUIRY INTO ME/CFS Chronological list of documents relevant to the Inquiry, authored by Professor Malcolm Hooper, Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 7th November 2005

Unanswered Questions: do inconsistencies matter in medicine? By Margaret Williams, 10th September 2005

PROOF POSITIVE? Evidence of the deliberate creation via social constructionism of "psychosocial" illness by cult indoctrination of State agencies, and the impact of this on social and welfare policy By Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 30th August 2005

ME: WHY NO ACCOUNTABILITY? A synopsis for the UK Parliamentary Inquiry By Professor Malcolm Hooper and Margaret Williams, 18th August 2005

A FINAL FAREWELL TO THE PSYCHIATRIC FALLACY? By Margaret Williams,13th August 2005  

  ME: Organic or Psychiatric --- Decision Time? By Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 2nd August 2005  

  To set the record straight about Ean Proctor from the Isle of Man By Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 20th July, 2005

Another Meadow? Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 16th July 2005

Vade MEcum Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 28th June 2005

Politically-modified Research Eileen Marshall and Margaret WIlliams, 26th June 2005

Questions for the MRC Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 18th June 2005

Evidence Based Psychiatry Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 12th June 2005

WARNING: UK Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit on Mental Health Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 26th May 2005

Conflicting Concepts? Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 28th May 2005

Ellen Goudsmit PhD and the “London” criteria : THE FACTS by Margaret Williams, 9th May 2005

Megalomania in Modern Medicine? Margaret Williams, 7th May 2005

For the attention of All Members of Parliament - Old and New Margaret Williams 4th May 2005

Vilified but Vindicated?  Malcolm Hooper Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams 29th April 2005

CDC Provides Clarification At Last by Margaret Williams, 26th April 2005


High Standards at the MRC By Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 21st April 2005

Profits Before Patients? Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 15th April 2005

Science or Psychology? Margaret Williams, 29th March 2005

ME: who is attacking whom? By Eileen Marshall   Margaret Williams, 5th March 2005

More Medical Malfeasance in ME? Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 2nd March 2005

Problems and Solutions ? by Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 23rd February 2005

Notes for UK Members of Parliament about ME/ICD-CFS  by Margaret Williams, 13th February 2005

Wessely’s Wisdom? Some more open questions for Professor Wessely by Margaret Williams, 16th January 2005

Myalgic Encephalomyelitis / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia:additional considerations for the MRC in relation to the PACE trials by Margaret Williams, 5th January 2005

SCIENCE or SEMANTICS? by Margaret Williams, 8th December 2004

Deliberate Dichotomy? by Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 10th November 2004

Reflections on the US ME/CFS Research Symposium Report by Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 5th November 2004 

CRITICAL CONSIDERATIONS by Margaret Williams, 1st November 2004

Clarification about CRITICAL CONSIDERATIONS by Margaret Williams, 2nd November 2004

An Inquiry by the UK House of Commons Health Select Committee into the Influence of the Pharmaceutical Industry by Margaret Williams, 28th October 2004 

Paradoxical Proliferation of Professorial Psychiatry?  by Margaret Williams, 24th October 2004

Transparency in Government? by Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 17th October 2004

Given the much-publicised emphasis on the need for “transparency” within all Government departments, one again has to ask how it can be acceptable for a “policy-maker” at the head of a Government Department clearly to have had such close involvement with an insurance company like UNUM whilst he was advising Government and formulating policy, given that (1) UNUM has been so publicly discredited for malpractice over legitimate claims made by those with ME/CFS (as well as other incapacitating disorders), and (2) the Court-documented aims of UNUM diametrically conflict with the needs of the sick and disabled whom the same Government department is charged with supporting.

Note on the term “Myalgic Encephalomyelitis” by Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 16th October 2004

An open letter to the "Wessely School" psychiatrists by Margaret Williams, 14th October 2004

THE CEREBELLUM HYPOTHESIS By Margaret Williams, 9th October 2004 

ME Research (UK) by Eileen Marshall & Margaret Williams, 30th September 2004 

Observations on Professor Simon Wessely’s evidence to Lord Lloyd’s Public Inquiry into Gulf War Illnesses by Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 28th August 2004

Malcolm Hooper and Margaret Williams ask Peter White some questions, 31st July 2004

A Warning to the ME/CFS Community by Margaret Williams, 28th June 2004


Issues re the use of the Oxford criteria for the MRC “CFS” Trials by Margaret Williams, 20th June 2004

Sinister Science By Margaret Williams, 6th June 2004

Time for a Reality Check at the UK Department of Health? By Margaret Williams, 3rd April 2004

Dysfunctional beliefs in ME/CFS? by Margaret Williams, 27 March 2004

Perceptions of Progress? By Margaret Williams, 26th March 2004

Professor Wessely's own lecture notes on ME (12 May 1994) {To end speculation about authenticity, Margaret Williams has released her copy of Simon Wessely's own lecture notes from which she took the quotations in her recent article (Consideration of Simon Wessely's response to The Scotsman). In his notes, a * indicates where he showed illustrative slides during his lecture. The lecture was indeed audio-taped but the tape has never been publicly released.] 17th October 2003 View

UNUM Provident, Dr Michael Sharpe and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy: Information which the Medical Research Council might wish to consider. By Eileen Marshall and Margaret Williams, 12th April 2003

Matters for the MRC RAG on "CFS/ME" to consider by Margaret Williams, 6th March 2003

Ignoring the Evidence by Eileen Marshall, Margaret Williams & Professor Malcolm Hooper, 2003

Some salient points arising from the AACFS 6th International Conference which the MRC Research Advisory Group on “CFS/ME” might wish to consider by Margaret Williams, 4th March 2003 View

Considerations of some issues relating to the published views of Psychiatrists of the Wessely School in relation to their beliefs about the nature, cause and treatment of myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) by Margaret Williams et al. 16th January 2003

Margaret Williams reviews quotations from "SOMATIC MEDICINE ABUSES PSYCHIATRY - AND NEGLECTS CAUSAL RESEARCH" by Per Dalen, January 2003

Letter to the British Journal of General Practitioners from Malcolm Hooper, Margaret Williams and EP Marshall. 21st June 2002 View

What is ME? What is CFS? Information for Clinicians & Lawyers by Eileen Marshall, Margaret Williams & Professor Malcolm Hooper, 2001


DENIGRATION BY DESIGN? Vol II (1996-1999) (pp 271) A further review, with References, of the Role of Dr (now Professor) Simon Wessely in the Perception of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis Eileen Marshall, Margaret Williams, December 1999 View

DENIGRATION BY DESIGN? Vol I (1987-1996) (pp 217) Eileen Marshall, Margaret Williams, August 1996 View