Diagnosis + how to go about getting it?

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sammiexbooya
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08 Sep 2011, 3:14 pm

Hey everyone, I'm hoping that I'm posting in the appropriate place with regards to what I'm wanting to talk about - I'm new here and hope that I'm going about this the right way!

I've been following this community for a while now + have decided to join to ask some questions of my own, the main one being about getting diasnosed with aspergers. As aspergers is in my family (my dad has it and so does my younger brother) my dad pointed out that he thinks I should go see about getting a diagnosis as he's noticed a few things.

Thing is, I've heard a lot of negative talk about people trying to speak to their GP about getting a diagnosis (their GP doesn't understand where they're coming from, doesn't agree, etc) and I worry that going to them to get referred to someone who could diagnose me wouldn't work out.

The other thing about going to my GP that I don't like is how you have to put your case forward. Describe in detail why I think I might have it and it just seems like a lot of work just to get referred to someone who would diagnose me. And complicated. It seems complicated.

But I do need an OFFICIAL diagnosis. I feel that one of my aspie traits is that I need specifics + a self diagnosis isn't good enough for me. I need to be told and given support that I need.

I wonder if there's anywhere else that I could go to get my diagnosis? I live in Scotland and am unsure of where else I could go.

I'd appreciate a bit of help please, thank you.



AardvarkGoodSwimmer
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08 Sep 2011, 4:03 pm

sammiexbooya wrote:
. . . Thing is, I've heard a lot of negative talk about people trying to speak to their GP about getting a diagnosis (their GP doesn't understand where they're coming from, doesn't agree, etc) and I worry that going to them to get referred to someone who could diagnose me wouldn't work out. . .

Welcome to Wrong Planet! :D In the venacular of radio call-in shows, sounds like you're a long-time listener, first-time caller. Good to have you here as an active participant.

Your issue seems to be the hurdle your GP is representing. I have found doctors of all stripes to be only so-so listeners. I have had some success writing on a piece of paper and simply handing the paper to the doctor. Three bullet points and I leave it at that. Now, since this is more involved and very important to you, maybe one paragraph. But I'd still keep it short, like one half of one side of a piece of paper.

PS I'm not a great fan of officialdom, straight up. I tend to think we can get more done through networking groups and self-advocacy. But, one pays one's money and takes one's chance, different strokes for different folks, all that good stuff.



VIDEODROME
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08 Sep 2011, 4:45 pm

I've been wondering about this to. I self diagnose myself as most likely having it but it might be helpful to talk to someone about it.

I'm not sure if you just look up psychologists or therapists in the Yellow Pages or if there is a referral process. Also what kind of cost would I be looking at?

Finally is all this discussion sealed behind confidentiality? I don't want to have a diagnosis affecting my ability to be employed. Even if I do this and a job questionnaire mentions anything close to this I want to be able to write No.



Marcia
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08 Sep 2011, 5:56 pm

In Glasgow and surrounding area, the Autism Resource Centre in Bridgeton is where you would be referred for assessment. You would normally require your GP to refer you, but they do accept self-referals, but I'm pretty sure you'd need to try your GP first.

Where do you live?

If your younger brother is diagnosed, can you not get an assessment from whoever assessed him, or have you moved since then?

How old are you? If you are still in education then you may be able to organise an assessment through your school, college or university.



sammiexbooya
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23 Sep 2011, 6:40 pm

Thank You so much guys for the replies and warm welcomes!

@Aardvark ~ I've been known by a select few to be better with my words through writing, email, etc! I've heard it is something many Aspies share in common and I will be sure to put forward my argument through paper, something which I wouldn't have thought of, so thank you for showing me an easier way to explain things.

About your thought on officialdom, I'm 100% behind you on learning more from one another about ourselves and such, I've learnt so much through forums such as this which has shown me more about me than I could have learnt from any doctor and such. I feel though that getting an official diagnosis would help in terms of giving me peace of mind.

@Videodrome ~ I'm sure your diagnosis is something which you can keep to yourself, should you feel its best for you. I think it could be a personal choice more than anything. There may be certain circumstances where you may find that trusting you employer with your autism might be helpful, might help them to help you with things, but I think that it's a personal choice. My dad has worked several jobs after his diagnosis several years ago and not once has be felt the need to mention his Aspergers to his employers.

@Marcia ~ Thanks for that tip on the centre in Bridgeton - is handy! I live in Uddingston. I wouldnt like to ask my parents about who tested my brother for it, as I would like to keep this as more of a personal journey, though saying that, seeing as my dad got diagnosed several years ago, quite later on in life, and he was the one to mention to me a year or so ago about my getting diagnosed, I might consider asking him to come along with. I've heard that they sometimes rely on close members of family/friends in the diagnosis process to get a good idea of what's what. I've just turned 20, found the last few years to be an eye opener about myself, feel that I'm heading in the right direction with going to get this diagnosis, whenever i go for it. Hopefully soon.

Many thanks guys, x



y-pod
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23 Sep 2011, 6:51 pm

It might be a good idea to be open to your parents about this. Since you're still so young it is likely the doctors will want them to give some information about your childhood or fill some forms. You'd want to make sure your parents are willing to do that. Our doctors usually ask for parents or siblings or someone else who has known you for a long time.


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lokilost
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25 Sep 2011, 7:02 am

VIDEODROME wrote:
I've been wondering about this to. I self diagnose myself as most likely having it but it might be helpful to talk to someone about it.

I'm not sure if you just look up psychologists or therapists in the Yellow Pages or if there is a referral process. Also what kind of cost would I be looking at?

Finally is all this discussion sealed behind confidentiality? I don't want to have a diagnosis affecting my ability to be employed. Even if I do this and a job questionnaire mentions anything close to this I want to be able to write No.


Not sure about elsewhere, but this is true for america:
You can just look one up if you are willing to pay, although the older you are, the better it is to get at least a recommendation of who's good from another adult with aspergers. If your insurance covers it, you might need a referral. It can cost a lot, it takes multiple sessions to diagnose, and each one can run several hundred dollars.

All matters of health are confidential unless you sign a release, plan on hurting someone, someone is hurting you, or you plan on hurting yourself, or where required for payment/billing or if a judge/court demands the records for a case. You have complete freedom to disclose or not at will.



LittleBlackCat
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25 Sep 2011, 3:31 pm

Re: The situation on telling employers about a diagnosis

I'm not sure what the law is in Scotland, I know it sometimes varies in England, but my understanding in England with this kind of thing is that you don't have to tell your employers about that kind of diagnosis, but if you choose not to you lose any rights you would otherwise have to protection from discrimination and reasonable adjustments in the workplace. Furthermore, if your employer asks you specifically whether you have a medical or psychiatric condition, and you say you don't, and they then find out somehow you can be subject to disciplinary proceedings, including dismissal. However, in order to protect against descrimination when hiring people, I think the law was changed recently so that they are not allowed to ask you for your medical history prior to making you a job offer (and if they subsequently withdrew the offer you would have a very strong case against them under disability discrimination legislation).



Cathleigh
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26 Sep 2011, 10:45 am

I live in England, I can tell you my recent experience with trying to get an assessment for diagnosis (I'm 20 years old).

I made an appointment with a GP in March or so, and told him that I thought I had Asperger's and would like to get an assessment. He didn't seem convinced, but agreed to put in a referral for me at a nearby clinic. I got the referral letter a few weeks later, saying that I'd be on a six-month waiting list. At the same time I was sent the AQ questionnaire: I filled that in and sent it off. Five months later, I got another letter from the clinic saying that because of the specialist nature of my request, I'd have to wait at least another six months for an appointment. This was around mid-August: I didn't want to have to wait until February to be seen. Some family friends had previously recommended the name of somebody who could do private assessments: I got in touch with her, she said that she'd charge £900. I looked on the NAS directory for nearby services, and saw one private clinic that offered assessments. This time I was told that an assessment there would cost £600: I sent more emails and got more replies, and decided to get assessed there. I was offered an appointment for assessment in early October: much as I don't want to have to pay for this (my parents said that they'd pay, but that doesn't make me feel any better), private assessments can reduce the waiting time if you want an assessment soon.


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