"ME clinic at Derby Royal Hospital"

About: Royal Derby Hospital

(as the patient),

I have suffered and 'self dealt' with ME since I was 13 years old (I am now 29).

I recently came to a point where I was fed up with feeling tired all the time and only being able to work part time so I visited my GP (I kind of knew there would be nothing he could do) who referred my to a course of 9 group 'chronic fatigue' meetings.

Firstly these meetings were from 10am til 12pm every Thursday. Sitting in a stuffy fluorescently lit room for 2 hours was enough to make anyone feel ill! Secondly, I felt the content of the meetings was patronising, uninformative and boring. To tell someone who has had the condition for more than half of their life that 'pacing' is the answer really annoyed me.

The only thing I gained from the 3 meetings I attended (I only attended this number as I was so furious at yet again being treated like the condition is all in my head and if I close my eyes for ten minutes every day and turn my tv off I will 'feel the benefits!') was meeting other ME sufferers and hearing their stories and struggles.

The staff, although nice, pleasant people had no more knowledge or insight into ME than any of the 'patients'. Seems to me that somewhere along the line the NHS has decided to create 'ME departments' within hospitals and have drawn up a few primary school style fact sheets about pacing to hand out.

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