Hi everyone, hope you are doing ok. I saw the Occupational Therapist at the Hospital yesterday, what a lovely lady. I spent two hours with her talking about things I struggle with at home and work, how I am coping with this disease and the medications, and how I am feeling at present. She gave me lots of information, ideas and advice. She checked my hands, fingers and elbows and said I had visible signs of damage in my hands, and inflamation in my hands and wrists. She did some tests of my hands with me pushing and pulling against her. She said I have a lot of weakness and my grip is about 2.5 out of 5. She has given me wrist splints to wear during the day and compression gloves for overnight. I also have to have a home visit as she has recommended a bath board, grab rail, toilet frame to help me get up when my knees are bad, and a handle to pull myself up with when in bed. I am grateful for her recommendations but when I got home I felt quite emotional. I think it was just the realisation that although I may not need all of these things at the moment, it is most likely I will have a need for them in the near future. I said I didn't feel I need these yet but she advised I accept them in order to help limit further damage, especially with the cut backs and the NHS having to save money, she believes it will be harder to get aids in the future. She said that after this visit I will be referred back to my GP so if I need anything else he will have to refer me back to the Hospital and I will go back on the waiting list. It has taken 6 months for me to get to see her. She also told me to phone Occupational Health at work to arrange a meeting so I can update them. I told her that I am not allowed to contact them myself, I have to inform my Line Manager and she contacts them. She said that she is hearing this a lot and according to what the Consultants have told her, we have the right to contact Occ Health directly and don't have to inform our Line Managers if we choose not to. Has anyone else been told they can't contact OH directly. The Doctor has told me my latest blood test is showing my LFT is still increasing. I see the Consultant next Thursday so will see what he decides to do. I am feeling very tired and cold at the moment, don't know if it's connected to the LFT. I have been given lots of booklets to read and also have the NRAS booklet about claiming PIP. She thinks it is the right time now for me to apply and also to try for a Blue Badge, obviosuly she can't say I will qualify for anything but feels it is worth trying now. I just have to wait for the Podiatry appointment now and pluck up the courage to start the PIP process. I have a good Team looking after me but feel like the Hospital is my second home at the moment, as some of you may also do. Enjoy the weekend. X
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