Fibromyalgia Action UK
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Rheumatolgy Assessment - what happened

Firstly thank you to everyone who responded with advice yesterday.

In all it took approx 3 hours. Initially I was taken to be weighed and measured and my blood pressure checked, then back to the waiting room.

Next I was asked to lie on a bed and loosen my skirt, then examined by a lady registrar. She was lovely, and very kind. She told me Fibro is hard to diagnose so she would be pressing on various parts of my body. She said it would hurt, and that I would curse her later, but it only hurt briefly, so I thought I'd be OK. The she talked to me, to see what I understood of the condition, and told me what therapy, support and medication is available, and happily signed me up for everything. She then told ne it would take about 2 years for me to learn to understand and manage my condition, but after that time i would be back in work, living a full life and doing exactly what I want to do - yeah, I wish!!

I was sent back to the waiting room, then called for again, as being a new patient, A doctor wanted to examine me.. Back on the bed. He wasn't quite as gentle but seemed to ignore my yelps, and at one point when checking my arm, which has been giving me hell for four years he said "no pain there then" - I had tears rolling down my cheeks it had hurt so much, so just snapped "Yes it does hurt". He also poked and prodded various other points, squeezing and tapping - It wasn't my fault that as he tapped down my shin I kicked him in the groin - didn't mean to ;) but if he would stand at my feet and lean over as he hammered along my shin bone, what did he expect? It even took me by surprise as I didn't realise I had any tender points there.

Although the registrar had arranged a lot of support, the darned doctor vetoed many of them (Typical) So I might have a bit of a fight to get the help I need. So much happened, and was said that my mind is confused, but I think I must wait 6 weeks before an appointment with a physiotherapist, as apparently they are very busy. Then I am to have guidance and support for three months, after which I will be reviewed and discharged.

Finally I had a lot of blood taken - 6 phials. Enough to keep a vampire happy for a day or two :) I was told it's a process of elimination. If all blood tests are clear, then the Fibro Diagnosis is 100% . Though if anything medical found in blood tests I will be referred for treatment to an appropriate clinic.

Came home 1pm, had a sandwich, cup of tea, checked mail - then felt so tired. I was told to rest on returning home, and it was my plan to just sit on the bed reading my Kindle but I felt exhausted and fell asleep - for THREE hours (most unlike me, as I never sleep for more than an hour at a time). My son had to persuade me to get up so we could eat. OUCH I feel as though I have been steam rollered. I can't believe just how much of me hurts, every joint, muscle, ligament, tendon etc, places I never knew I had now hurt. So I am planning to have an early night tonight, and just hope that I sleep, and will be feeling better tomorrow.

Hope this information helps someone, and thanks again for the support

Em x

10 Replies

thanks for posting that, i have been warned, i got my referral today to see the rheumatologist on the 28th of this month, i will be prepared. :)


That sounds a bit like my experience Em, at least you've had it now and now you just need to rest, get enough sleep and recover from it. It's quite gruelling on your body isn't it. Thank you for posting all about it in so much detail, I have no doubt it will help other members who have an assessment with their Rheumatologist coming up. Bless you. :)


when i was diagnosed with fibro i was attending my usual appoitment at rhematolgy(which i had been attending every 3months for the past 11 years) my usual cosultant had left had left was put under someone else so after waiting a good 45mins had usual blood pressure and weight done then sat another good 45mins to see consultant finally went in saw some registrar then he mentioned fibro then he went for consultant who then did the pressure test and other checks then said you hae fibromyalgia hae you heard of that before i said i had heard bits about it gae me 2 leaflets and said see you in 6months i came out confused as i was on my own i got on the bus and had tears in my eyes i fought back the tears till i got home i was devastated i read and re-read the leaflets, i then made an appointment with my gp and asked to be refered to another rhematologist and explained what had happened, i got appointment 8weeks later i now see new consultant who agreed i was ery nicely treat did all appropriate test and said he thought i fibro saw him for another 3years he ischarged me years ago as he said my rheumatoid was not actie enough , told me i had osteo i told him i was in a lot of pain especially with my hips he then arranged xrays then i got a fone call the next day to say my xray showed changes and the i had be refered to orthapeadic consultant which lead to me having hip replacement february 2010 , i hav emore pain then ever after the op and they are now sayin the other hip needs doing nobody to this day has explained fibro to me my i went to my gp 6months ago with shoulder paun he said i think you hae fibro i said i was diagnosed 3years ago with it he said ahhh there ya go then something we agree on , i hae never been so tired frustrated because of pain and my nightmare still goin on i have finally in my head excepted to myself i hae fibro weight of my shoulders is unbeleiable but i am still not being treat properly xx just though i would let you know my experience too x


Aw dear that is awful when i was referred to the rheumatologist i was in and out ithin 15 mins he had a quick 5 min chat i was then tokd to get on the bed then he examined me for at lwase 2 mins pushed and prodded and yes it does hurt tapped and poked then sat down wrote a few notes and printed them out handed me the paper to give to the reception and a leaflet on fibromyalgia and said i do not wish to see you again and that was it i came out there a bit bemused i had waited quite a few weeks for the appointment and thought i was going to be in there a good 30/40 mins but there you go

oh well bless you i know you will be aching now for a few wdays or maybe weeks you take care love to you diddle xxxx


Well I didn't sleep much last night - not just the aching but having dozed the afternoon away I wasn't sleepy enough. Glad to say that apart from some shooting pains up my thighs and the usual aches and pains that never go away, I am feeling slightly more human and able to cope today. LibbeyDe is quite right when she says it can be quite gruelling on your body. I wasn't prepared for how much pain I'd be in later, or how weary. I did take my son along with me for which I was grateful, as I really would have had difficuty to drive home afterwards. I had planned on taking curtains down today to launder them, but think I will just have a lazy day instead, or I'll only pay later. I am still learning how to deal with this Fibro-Nuisance.

Again thanks to everyone for the support, I'm so glad I found this site, everyone here understands and no-one judges, what a relief


:) xx you will never feel alone with fibro action , lots of love and take it easy the curtains can wait till you have agood day xxx take care xx


Thanks for posting that, I go to rheumatology next month, but been referred because of arthritis flare up in my fingers which led to me having surgery for carpal tunnel 5 week ago, slow recovery because of the fibro, and the arthritis still really bad. But I will bring up about fibro when I go to the hospital.


Your experience at Rheumatology may well be different to mine. I had already been referred 4 times (and discharged again) over the years due to Tennis & Golfers elbow which would not heal. Eventually ended up with surgery - which didn't work. Due to other pains my docotor diagnosed Fibro, and as she said she couldn't treat it, I asked for the referral to someone specialising in Fibromyalgia. 6 weeks after your Carpal Tunnel surgery, you should be given physiotherapy, but again it may be different where you live.

Hope your appointment goes well

Em x


Dear maladjusted

I know your blog is serious, but I can't stop laughing over the fact you got your own back on the unsympathetic doctor by kicking his "tender points!!!!" Lol!

I've been going to a rheumy for over 8 years with osteoporosis & osteoarthritis amongst other things. Used to go every 3mths, then 6ths. She said they had been told to discharge long term chronic cases they can do nothing for like me. but as a favour will now see me yearly!! Whoopee do, I'm so grateful! (slight touch of sarcasm there. lol )

I try & manage my condition by myself with only rare co-codamol as I seem to have reaction to all other drugs i've tried. I sometimes think the depression is worse than the pain!

Hope you have better luck than me

Gentle hugs xx


Hi Shadow.

Well I didn't plan to kick his 'tender points' (like that terminology) but he did rather ask for it. From what I have been reading on this forum it seems very much a 'luck of the draw' situation regarding how this condition gets treated. Right now I am waiting to see 'what happens next'.

I previously attended Rheumatology with Osteoarthritis in both knees, and both Tennis & Golfers elbow (both arms), but apart from Cortisone shots they had nothing more to offer, so decided to discharge me (in the hope I'd go away) They must be frustrated that I have now been sent back and diagnosed with Fibro.

There does seem a good deal of support available, but looks like I might have a fight on my hands to get it.

As I have IBS, Gastritis & Dudoenitis (never one to do things by halves) I cannot tolerate most pain killing medication, so like yourself just take Co-Codamol when I really need something to take the edge off. I was prescribed Amitriptyline at clinic last week, but it is still sitting here on my desk, as I haven't decided if I am going to try it yet.

I imagine you are overjoyed (Not!) to be seen once a year? - how condescending. Do they actually do anything for you there?

I agree the depression is really hard to handle, especially when it is raining! So far I always manage to fight my way back out of it but, at the back of my mind is the worry that one day I won't be able to.

For now I am just about coping, and refuse to think of a time when I may not be able to - except when I get depressed.

Try to keep your sense of humour, as I find it is the only thing that helps.

Good luck with everything

Em xx


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