We are a specialist NHS service that seeks to meet the needs of people who have a diagnosis of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) in Norfolk and Suffolk.
We offer an outpatient service via face to face appointments, email, telephone and, in a small number of cases, home visits. The team is made up of GP’s with specialist interest and knowledge of ME/CFS (GPwSI) and specialist therapists including Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists. In treating patients, we focus on working with you to find strategies that will help you achieve improvement in your condition and establish and maintain a quality of life.
What is ME/CFS?
The symptoms of ME/CFS can be varied including significant pain or a feeling of unusual and excessive tiredness that is characteristically made much worse after any activity. The fatigue is usually both physical and mental. It impacts on the person’s life to the extent that they have to cut down significantly on what they do day to day. Other symptoms can include un-refreshing sleep, swollen lymph glands, new headaches, muscle and joint pain.
There is no test to tell whether someone has ME/CFS. Therefore, the diagnosis is largely dependent on the history of the symptoms and exclusion of other conditions that can cause significant fatigue.
A diagnosis of ME/CFS is only made by the service after a person has had the symptoms for at least four months as an adult or three months in children.
You can to be referred to the service by your GP. Patients aged under 16 must also be under the care of a paediatrician.
In order to make sure that other illnesses have been excluded by the GP or other health professional involved in the patient’s care, some routine investigations, usually blood tests, are carried out before a patient first comes to the service.
When we receive the referral we will contact you. We send out a pre-clinic questionnaire for completion, and you will be offered an initial appointment with either a GPwSI or specialist therapist.
We currently run outpatient clinics at Great Yarmouth, Lowestoft, Halesworth, Stowmarket, Kings Lynn and Norwich. Your follow-up appointments will be at one of these locations and can also be done via telephone. The method of your follow up appointments will be something you can discuss with your specialist therapist at your initial assessment.
Bowthorpe Health Centre
Nelson Medical Practice
Stow Lodge Health Centre
St James Medical Practice
County Court Road
Kirkley Mill Health Centre
Sole Bay Health Centre