Out and About
5 December 2018
I had been ill since my twenties. As I got older GPs kept referring to my age as a reason why I was feeling pain, losing my hair and having no energy. This was instead of test and referral. In the end I saw younger GPs. Long story short turns out it was discord lupus, thyroid disorder, degenerative disc disorder, widespread skeletal pain due to untreated benign joint hypomobility with resulting fibromylgia. Despite all of these results being sent to my GPs all they put in my opening box was depression... that was all! Once you are treated or perceived as malingering you are neglected. If GPs can do this in their practice it's not hard for GPs to do this in other environments. I have not been lucky to finally be diagnosed as I have been denied reaching my potential due to deeply held prejudice amongst certain so called professionals.
I moved to another practice but made sure all relevant information to my condition was resent by consultants. I refer to these documents when new GPs brush over my intervention programs.
At first I blamed myself saying you are lazy, got a mental illness being a burden. Now I have to be more assertive and get told I have a tone which in itself is demoralizing.
The change is I do a lot of reading and work to make sure i am up to date with my conditions and treatments. I make sure my records are correct and other departments know what the other is doing. Most people do this now as GPs and staff don't automatically read consultant letters they need a nudge.
Being a female at a certain age it's hard to get people to explore for anything but age related illnesses. So wrong.
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I totally sympathize with 'Anons' 12.12.18 comments about GP practices. It is very hard to trust your GP when they are not being up front with you. It appears that here in GB we have completely lost the plot regarding disability and work. There is a nasty collaboration going on behind the scenes between Health care Professionals and DWP, that is hell bent in pushing sick and disabled people into work that they so obviously cannot cope with. The smoke and mirrors between patient and GP/Professional are only making things worse, causing really ill people to not get the health care they need and causing serious consequences to many.
I totally empathise, your story is similar to mine. I have come to view my GP practice as a near-insurmountable brick wall, with 'fobbing people off' as the rule of thumb. I suffered for years with decreasing mobility, increasing pain etc, getting nowhere and having decreasing quality of life. When I needed medical evidence, to corroborate an application I was making for financial support, I went to request this off the GP, only to have them ask me what the diagnosis was. I replied that I can't diagnose myself! I was told I wasn't pushy enough! It took a written complaint, with external support, to get the relevant forms signed. (The necessary treatment and all hope of a cure are a different matter...I'm still suffering). I know the NHS is stretched, but prevention is better than cure and early treatment is better than late treatment. I think its a shame that Doctors no longer take the Hippocratic oath. Organisations like PALS and the health ombudsman, are, in my experience, allegedly not good enough. I sometimes wonder how many people are in the same boat.
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