What should I expect from a rheumatologist?

hippy Member Posts: 55
edited 11. Apr 2017, 15:05 in Living with Arthritis archive
I have appointment in a month with rheumatologist. My GP wants them to confirm/deny his diagnosis of Polymyalgia Rheumatica. If confirm, he wants them to prescribe treatment that are not steroids (I have bipolar and steroids very quickly made me too high) I honestly think it is possible that my GP is wrong......but I am not being a Google doctor, I don't know what it is :-D

Anyway, what can I expect from a rheumatologist? What are they likely to do?
My legs are in so much pain.....I am feeling rather desperate in my hope that they will be able to DO something!


  • Annie324
    Annie324 Member Posts: 6
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi hippy,
    I had an appointment with a rhuematoligist for the first time just over a month ago. First she asked me what my symptoms were and she asked me some questions in between. Try and remember to tell him/her everything, it's so easy to forget some symptoms. Secondly she physically examined me and tested me for fibromyalgia which I did not have. Assuming you have had xrays, he/she will have them on their screen, she talked me through mine. From the xrays she could see I had early osteoarthritis of the neck and spine. She organised physiotherapy for me and prescribed some analgesic cream to rub in. Depending on what your diagnosis is you may have follow up appointments with him/her or arrangements may be made for further tests. I do not have to see my rhuematologist again. She gave me a booklet on osteoarthritis and its management. I was very nervous but she put me at ease. Just let them know all your symptoms. Best wishes, hope everything goes well. I'd be interested to know how it goes. Take care x
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I expect you will be asked questions about what has been (and is) going on, he may also request more blood tests or maybe Xrays. I doubt very much that you will leave with medication but one never knows.

    It may be worth starting a brief diary noting symptoms, pain and tiredness levels, what helps and what aggravates matters - this will give him a better all-round picture of you and how you are being affected. Please let us know how you get on. DD
  • barbara12
    barbara12 Member Posts: 21,279
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello hippy..
    At my first rheumy appointment I was asked all sorts of questions.. going back to my childhood..quite a long time ago :shock: ..took nail clipping because they are so pitted and took lots of bloods..they still cant quite decide what is going on because the inflammation markers are slightly up one min and nothing the next time..I hope they can give you some answers..
  • MissKat
    MissKat Member Posts: 124
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Hippy,

    Yes, as per previous posts - there will be lots of questions. Good idea to write things down so you don't forget anything, and a diary of symptoms, and what if anything seems to help / hinder pain, movement, fatigue...

    I hope they can help you figure things out and can help with your pain soon x

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  • hippy
    hippy Member Posts: 55
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you everyone,

    this is most helpful. I will try to write down notes but I have a tendency to waffle so it may take me the month to condense them :-D
  • hippy
    hippy Member Posts: 55
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    That is really helpful....thank you :-)