Fibro and ill health retirmeent - Fibromyalgia Acti...

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Fibro and ill health retirmeent

gillduf profile image


I've fibro and am currently a serving police officer going through ill health retirement process. Has anyone been successful? I'm 42 with twenty years done. Was sick for a year went back and reduced to three days a week but couldn't manage due to the chronic fatigue side of things... the police doctor seemed hopeful but I'm a real worry wort and looking any advice.

Thanks in advance


17 Replies

Hello Gillian

Difficult situation by the sound of it/

Have u discussed this with your Union at all ?

I am unsure of the policy/rules of the Police force with regards to early retirement due to ill health.

However if the Occupational Heath Physician is supporting you then I would suggest that you get something in writing off him/her asap.

Honestly I do not know the answers.

If you do take early retirement U was wondering what the Police would base your pension on. Would it be based on your 20years employment or the three days a week you are presently working. I expect that you have been given a desk job.

Sorry about asking questions.

Take care.


Hi gillduf

I sincerely hope that you are feeling as well as you possibly can be today? Welcome to the forum and it is wonderful to make your acquaintance. I have pasted for you below a link to our mother site, FMA UK which hosts loads of useful Fibro information:

I am so truly sorry to read that you are going through early retirement and although I have not been through anything of this nature myself; I have heard of some members applying successfully through their chosen careers of teaching, lecturing and nursing.

I want to sincerely wish you all the best of luck and please take care of yourself my friend.

All my hopes and dreams for you


Hi Gillian, I worked for the nhs 13yrs I finished work on ill health retirement. After a long battle of trying to force myself to keep my job but like yourself the fatigue pain meomery ext became to much, I redeployed in to another position in the msg but couldn't manage that ether, it was very stressful because you worry about how you will manage . So btw management myself and occy health mitral desicion to finish on ill health. I had to fight for my pension because at first they said I didn't have enough evidence to say I could not do any kind of work. But I fought for it and eventually got my tier 2 . If that's what your going for your pension ? Not she what police force do. I got a lump sum and a all pension every mth. Sorry not good at exploring as had no sl÷ep so brain dead at the moment. X

Hi, are you saying you got attendance allowance? I've been retired, health grounds, for over 20 years, now am an OAP, nearly 68. Only diagnosed fibro couple of years ago ,(at last a diagnosis), but have oa, both knees replaced so far. Was wondering about AA.

Hi,fightingwithdad, I've just got AA for my mum aged 85 as she has polymyalgia rheumatica (excuse spelling, too tired) it seems that if you can show its not ' just old age' its possible. Easier than pip ! Good luck

Hi Gill,

I've been through what you're going through and can offer some help and advice. If you message me I can share my experiences.


Martin 😊

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Hello gillduf- I retired from the NHS last year because of fibro and fatigue, I wondered if like me, you could perhaps do a desk job whilst you go thru the possibility of retirement. Yes its horrible to give up what you trained for but you have to think of your own health, and we all know what a policemans life is like at present!! In the NHS we can retire at 55 (I was 61 when I retired)do you know if there is a cut off for the Police? If they don't agree and I bet you have to try more than once to get your pension, you may have to take a big reduction like I did. BUT I am topped up with ESA & PIP, the ESA tops up my national ins contributions for age related retirement and the PIP (very hard to get) is to help with needs in the home and keeping independence (I had my kitchen re jigged to help me reach and make it practicle. If you want to PM me with help on the right "wording" to persuade the federation you must stop working then let me know I,ll be glad to help.

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Hello Gillian,

I went out on ill health but it was more to do with osteoarthritis in my back and hips.

Saying that it is not about the medical condition, rather that it prevents you from fulfilling the core duties of a Police Officer.

Hopefully, your fed rep will be able to give you guidance and support.

I had over 27 years service and was sick for 18 months. I ended up going with 29 years.

Please let me know if I can help you further in any way.

Best wishes,


Thanks everyone. I was given a temporary desk job and reduced to three days a week last April but I couldn't manage to stay on top of that due mainly to the fatigue. The meds manage the pain but there is nothing for the fatigue. The memory thing and fibro fog are also difficult to juggle. I've gone from being more than able to seeming like a real dumbo!

Fingers crossed it goes well. Thanks again :)

TheAuthor profile image
TheAuthor in reply to gillduf

Hi again gillduf there are medications that are used to help with fatigue that you could talk to your doctor about to ascertain if they are suitable for you to use? One in particular is called Amantadine and is actually a Parkinson's drug. It is now used to help fight fatigue as well. I want to sincerely wish you all the best of luck and please take care of yourself my friend.

All my hopes and dreams for you


Hi Gillian, have you asked for help from your Fed rep?

You should do this straightaway, they should know who to go to for the best possible advice about ill-health retirement pensions and should assist in getting the best deal for you - within regs.

The occy health doctor should be advising you about when to go to the next level in the ill-heath retirement process - basically, you need to exhaust every possible treatment available to ease your pain and improve your health. They usually want you to have gone through all available medications, CBT, the services of your local NHS pain clinic etc, etc. There are lots of hoops to jump through (ha, ha, ha, I know, try jumping when you have fibromyalgia) before you get sent to see an external, independent doctor who will examine you and try to conjure up another possible treatment for you to try.

I would advise you to be as proactive as you can be in getting the various treatments on offer - the sooner you try them (and unfortunately find that there is no treatment available to 'cure' fibro) the sooner you can more to the next stage.

If you are from a small force and have only a small fed set-up, I suggest that you encourage your fed rep and/or pensions rep to seek advice from other fed reps in bigger forces as not many people realise how debilitating fibro is.

PM me if you need anything more and I'll do my best to point you in the right direction xx

gillduf profile image
gillduf in reply to maggi999

I was told CBT is of no use for me with fibro... that was from the FMO. The FMO has put me forward for the IHR. The federation haven't been very helpful at all...

maggi999 profile image
maggi999 in reply to gillduf

Yes, this is the problem, I was told by one FMO that CBT was no good and made my next appt for 6 months later to get his report collated and written. My DCI said the process was taking too long so referred me for an earlier appt, the next (different) FMO insisted that CBT would cure me and so it went on, and on, and on........ I was basically too ill to work and on sick leave (paid then unpaid) for 20 months.

As before, the final stage will depend on the examination by the external, independent doctor (I think he/she is referred to as the SMO) and they will want to cover their backsides by making sure you have tried every possible treatment and therapy before recommending IHR.

I don't know what force you are in but there should be some way of getting advise from a regional rep if your force reps do not have the knowledge to help.

This might be a useful link following on from Kens reply above

The info packs from fmauk might also be useful for your fed rep/ union rep etc?

Best of luck


Just an update. I was successful with my ill health retirement and finished two weeks ago. Money is going to be very tight but at least I've not to worry about work. Thanks for all the support.


Hi Gillian, I am just starting out on my journey through the ill health retirement process. Any advice would be much appreciated. It doesn’t sound hopeful from what I have heard from others so far. I have been off work for 18 months now. Thanks in advance

I have been through the medical retirement process with BT and was eventually successful but you have to research the process well. It's important to understand what the criteria are that the scheme has to apply to its medical retirement cases. These should be published. If the scheme is a public sector scheme, a Freedom of information request will get you the details if you cannot find them anywhere. In the private sector, it can be harder to find out but most trustees will let you have the information, if you ask.

Then you have to make sure that the evidence you supply fulfils the criteria. If they need medical reports that are up-to-date, you need to supply them. This may mean paying for them. GP reports on their own are rarely successful. Specialist reports receive more attention. The pension scheme may still send you to an Occupational Health specialist. That is what happened to me. They then wrote a report and fortunately for me, it recommended medical retirement. Their role is to get people back to work though, so the medical evidence you gather before this, has to be strong and convincing.

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