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ME/CFS Australia Ltd
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'The Most Common Disease You've Never Seen': How One Woman Turned Her Illness Into A Life-Changing Film

Saturday 9 September 2017


From UK newspaper The Telegraph:


Jennifer Brea
Filmmaker Jennifer Brea, who has CFS

'The most common disease you've never seen': how one woman turned her illness into a life-changing film

By Alice Vincent, entertainment writer
11 August 2017
© Telegraph Media Group Limited 2017

Jennifer Brea was 28 when she was bedridden with a high fever. As she explains, "I got better, but something wasn't right." She, like millions of people worldwide, had contracted Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, or myalgic encephalomyelitis, otherwise known as ME.

Suddenly, her life as she knew it, as a newlywed PhD student at Harvard University, was put on hold, as she became progessively more ill, losing even the ability to sit in a wheelchair. Doctors told her that her condition was “all in her head”. There was, and remains, no cure.

Then, four years ago, from her bed, Brea began to make a film about her experiences after keeping a video diary with her iPhone. In doing so, she gave a voice to those who suffer from "the most common disease you've never seen", and encouraged scientists and medical professionals to plough their energies into unravelling a condition that has mystified physicians for years.

Unrest won a prize at Sundance film festival earlier this year, and became one of the first titles to be released with the support of Sundance Institute’s Creative Distribution Fellowship, which aims to empowering entrepreneurial Sundance filmmakers.


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