Our doctor gives an individual, personal, clinical assessment of the biological aspects of the whole person, noting that ME/CFS affects most systems in the body and is an illness resulting in much more than “chronic fatigue”. Reviewing information provided regarding the past medical history, medication, investigation and interventions tried elsewhere, she gives her medical opinion. This may involve differential diagnosis (working out what is ME/CFS and what is another or additional illness), review of the triggers of a relapse of ME/CFS, advising further tests or referrals through the GP, explanations and education as well as specific symptom management plans. Medication advice may be sent to the GP but is not prescribed within our service. A summary of the consultation records the medical issues, diagnosis and what may be done through conventional medicine. Referral to other members of The ME Trust healthcare team may be recommended, using a multi-disciplinary team approach to manage a multi-system illness, which has a tendency to be chronic or relapsing.
What to expect from your initial consultation
An initial consultation with our doctor lasts up to an hour. Prior to your appointment, you will be sent a short pre-consultation form to complete, which will ask you for details of your current symptoms and medical history. The doctor would also like to see the results of any blood tests or other tests ordered by your GP and confirmation of your current medication. This will help the doctor to understand your condition and make the best use of the time in your consultation.
Following your appointment, you will be sent a written summary of your consultation, which can also be sent to your GP.
Follow up appointments will last up to 30 mins and will also include a written summary of your consultation.
Please note: The ME Trust gives access to clinical advice from healthcare professionals with experience and expertise in ME/CFS. The doctor’s letter will be a written summary of the clinical issues discussed in your consultation. It may be used as medical opinion to support your case when making benefit or employment claims, but The ME Trust is not able to offer a service with the sole purpose of providing such letters and reports.
For further information about claims and benefit applications, Action for ME have helpful advice on their website here, as well as offering a Crisis, Support and Advocacy service which covers these areas.