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Seeking Benefits if You Suffer From Fibromyalgia

By: Jack Claridge - Updated: 8 Jul 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Fibromyalgia Syndrome

There are many individuals in the United Kingdom today who are suffering from the condition known as Fibromyalgia; however it is a condition that is difficult to diagnose and also difficult to monitor in terms of severity so therefore it is a condition that is difficult to legislate for when it comes to awarding benefits.

I Have Fibromyalgia what am I entitled to?

As a sufferer of Fibromyalgia you may be entitled to some additional benefits such as Disability Living Allowance (DLA) and in extreme circumstances Mobility but you must prove beyond any reasonable doubt that (a) you suffer from the condition and (b) it makes your life difficult if not intolerable.

Unfortunately Fibromyalgia - just like M.E (Myalgic Encephalomyelitis) - is a condition that many people do not know a great deal about. Indeed as well as this both conditions are often misdiagnosed and mistaken for each other. In addition to this both conditions are such that many would not know if you suffered from them unless they were family or you chose to tell them.

This leads us into the territory of an illness that does not need to have a bandage or plaster put on it; indeed it is an illness that is often unseen and unspoken about.

How Should I Claim Benefits if I Have Fibromyalgia?

Again the biggest down side to claiming benefits for a condition such as Fibromyalgia or M.E (Myalgic Encephalomyelitis) is that it cannot be seen and is often difficult to diagnose because of the wide variety of symptoms that can occur. You can only make a positive claim for benefits if your doctor has diagnosed you as having either Fibromyalgia or M.E (Myalgic Encephalomyelitis) and this is something that can take quite some time.

Both conditions are such that they have - as we have already pointed out - a wide range of symptoms and therefore have to be thoroughly tested before a diagnosis can be decided upon. Indeed some sufferers can find they have to wait upwards of two years before a final diagnosis is agreed upon and only then this happens after you have seen specialists, consultants and had numerous consultations with your doctor.

You should be aware that claiming benefits for such a condition will mean that you will have to be means tested - this means that the benefits agency responsible for issuing benefits for you may ask you to see an independent doctor or consultant who may - if they think it is necessary - visit you in your own home to assess your level of physical activity.

If My Claim is Disallowed Can I Appeal?

Yes everyone who applies for Disability Living Allowance (DLA) or Mobility may appeal their decision if they feel they have been unfairly refused. You should be aware however that this process may also take some months and may also involve assessments and meetings with independent consultants and specialists.

You should also be aware that there is no guarantee that your claim may be upheld. You should, before applying for any benefits, make sure that as far as your doctor is concerned, the diagnosis he or she has made is as accurate as it can be.

It is also worth consulting with an independent specialist yourself - if you can afford to do so - in order to establish that your doctor's diagnosis is correct.

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PIP UPDATE - A month or so ago I posted on here what my PIP assessor told me in relation to my FM diagnosis and how it is perceived with suspicion by the DWP. I have long term Parkinson's Disease (PD) and the first thing my PIP Health Professional/Assessor did when she saw me and my PD symptoms was apologise for me having to attend a face-to-face consultation in the first place. I have just received my PIP assessment report and scores and was awarded enhanced rate for both components as I was under the old DLA system.However, what I noticed from my assessment score, and I as expected, was I received zero points for my FM symptoms. I recently read the DWP recognises FM as a legitimate health condition however, "recognising"it is one thing but accepting it as a being sufficiently disabling to award PIP is clearly something that will sadly not be the case for most.
Jonesey - 8-Jul-18 @ 10:42 PM
I attended my PIP assessment earlier this week.I have long term Parkinson's Disease (diagnosed 15 years ago).Last year I noticed my pain had become more than I experienced in the past.I see my Consultant every 6 months and I hadn't been to my GP practice for 5 years but on this occasion I saw a young locum GP who diagnosed FM which was something I'd never heard of.In truth, the additional pain I experience with FM is NOTHING compared to life with Parkinson's so I called the DWP asking them if I should even mention FM on my claim form as if the pain from this FM was all I suffered with I would be back in the real world, still doing my old job and getting on with life and wouldn't even consider trying to claim a "disability" benefit (I continued working full time for 8 years after I was diagnosed with Parkinson's).I was told PIP assessment providers, like the majority of the medical profession, do not recognise FM as a genuine illness and they advised me NOT to.I discussed FM with my Health Professional at my PIP assessment and she told me it simply was either not taken seriously or not believed and awarding disability benefits for FM, a condition that can be easily faked as there are no clinical tests and diagnosis is based on opinion only, would open the floodgates for the workshy scroungers and fakers the DWP are currently attempting to weed out with their shift from DLA to PIP targeted at the millions of others who currently claim trillions of pounds who are more than capable of pulling their weight and paying their way in life, but pretend otherwise.Not my words.
Jonesy - 8-Jun-18 @ 8:33 PM
I am a carer for old and disabled people and was able to do 6 days a week work. My health has dramatically deteriorated in the past year and since been diagnosed with fibromyalgia. I can manage 2 days at best and left bed ridden for the next 3 days, my income has significantly dropped because of my symptoms and I have 2 young children that i have to care for and I feel guilty for not being able to do what I use to do. I applied for pip, only to be called a liar. My depression is at an all time low and feel I have no one to talk to regarding these issues.
Chrissy - 7-Jun-18 @ 10:43 AM
I was diagnosed by a specialist in 2015 , i was a manager of a shop an couldnt cope with it an home life as my fibro was getting worse . Nov 11th 2017 i went down hill dramaticly i was 11.1 stone an now im 8stone 4 , esa said i was fit for work and took me off their books , i have suffered badly with my throat and breathing through all of this and only just recently been able to claim universal credit , they are also sending me to see if im fit for work , i lost all fat on my body an muscle mass with not being able to eat proper foods till this day . I have a ten year old who has watched me suffer an struggle to try an get better along with going without because of the DWP . I dont want to not work but i cannot do it anymore as my body will not allow me im fed up of being in pain and not being able to do much because of fibro but it is soo unfair how we are treated just because we look normal but arnt .
Twiggy - 29-Mar-18 @ 10:15 PM
I have frymilogiea and depressing I’m I intiteld to pip benefits
Mary - 28-Feb-18 @ 1:49 PM
I want to put in a claim for p.i.p. i suffer from fibromyalgia for 20 years. It was diagnosed by a reumatologist. Past attempts to get p.i.p have failed. I am in so much pain and bed ridden with little ability to get on with day to day tasks
Nina - 7-Feb-18 @ 1:55 PM
I was diagnosed with Fibromagia in 2016 and I have been working through the pain flare ups,Iwas lucky I hadan understanding manger, but after she leftlast year,I was dismissed by the new on that came in I was told that I was unfit to work, right now am on ESA can someone tell me how I can get DLA please
mati - 8-Jan-18 @ 8:16 PM
Utterly terrified to start this process, I am now at the point where my manager has agreed that there has been such a drastic change in my health over the last year that I cannot fulfil my job. I fear for the life of any assessor who ridicules and belittles me as I've suffered past the point of sanity.
starwalker - 3-Jan-18 @ 10:55 AM
This is a message for all mainly to lizz.my wife had all of the symptoms you have,because her mum died early of Myaloma she decided to have a blood test making sure she didn’t have the same,it was lucky she did she was found to have excess iron in her blood,because she had picked up a gene from her parents which causes Haemochromatosis,the excess blood collects to the liver,heart,brain etc....... the only cure is having blood taken at least once a week to remove iron from the body,it is called the silent killer,so it seems Fybromyalgia and arthritis go hand in hand with Haemochromatosis get a serum ferritin blood test,not just Lizz but you should all think about it look it up and read the groups comments from all over the world. Mendipman
Mendipman - 19-Dec-17 @ 1:03 PM
Hi I have fibromyalgia,under active thyroid and B12 deficiency also I have arthritic hands and have regular cortisone injections. I was assessed for PIP and only gained 4 points I have been on DLA for the last ten years I’m 67 years old. The Asos assessor said she had given me a muskeletor examination which was untrue and also the assessment took 2 hours when it was only 20minuites. I have applied for a mandatory consideration if this is unsuccessful can you help me in any way.
Lizz - 22-Oct-17 @ 8:56 PM
Hi. I got diagnosed with fibromyalgia not long ago. I did ask to get moved to the support group onESA due to the severe effects it has on my day to day living. I got denied and put in the wrag group. I also had to "redo" my PiP claim. I had low rate of living. I have now found out that that has been denied as well and I'm not entitled to any benefits. Even tho my health is WORSE now Then it was then. Please help! What should i do next? Where can I get help with appeals for not ESA and PiP? I have become very depressed due to all of this as well. And now I'm seeing a specialist regarding that. High blood pressure is also due to all of this stress. Not to mention all the fibro flare ups! I have never been depressed my entire life before. And I'm on sue dial watch currently (need to contact my doctor every other day, and report to my specialist every day). This is until I can get proper help for my mental health. So please. If any one knows any direction on where I should turn? Where I can get help for being what I feel discriminated because I have fibromyalgia and NOT a illness they can see. /many thanks in advance Therese
Therese - 19-Sep-17 @ 1:38 PM
Hi I am 71 years old and suffer from fibromyalgia, anginaI have an Illeostomy for Crohn's disease and have had a mini stroke. I currently get higher rate of mobility allowance and was wondering if there is any other benefit I should claim. Thanks
Nantoisla - 28-Aug-17 @ 10:17 AM
Hi I was just wondering I get DLA for Eplisey but have had a letter about a change over to PIP so I was wondering can they refuse you even thou I'm on 40 tablets a day and still suffer with fits and don't know when one is coming on and have no control when having one. ALso I have been disognised with fibromyalgia in the last year will this effect my claim in any way as I am still trying to work but have lots of pain daily and and very tired some days the flare ups are that bad I can't work as I can't move out of bed. CAn anyone give me any advise many thanks Diane
Dd - 14-Aug-17 @ 11:36 PM
Yes it is possible to get a blue badge for having fibromyalgia. Bucks.19/7/17
Cha - 19-Jul-17 @ 8:43 PM
Does anyone know whether it is possible for a fibromyalgia sufferer to be issued with a Disabled Blue Parking Badge?I don't think I would qualify for benefits after being means tested, but a Blue Badge would help me greatly as I struggle to walk any distance and struggle with shopping bags etc.
Bucks - 11-Jul-17 @ 9:36 AM
I am a full time carer to my disabled wife and was diagnosed with fibro and cfs a few months ago. I have bouts of extreme fatigue but thankfully cope reasonably well. I would like to know if i get worse can i claim esa and how would this affect my carers allowance and income support claim. Thanks for any info
Nikki - 16-May-17 @ 4:50 PM
hi I do believe I have this. The wors thing for me is the pain I have when holding my one year old let alone the pain I feel Day to day. I have just been signed off for a month from work I have tried work for 5 months the more I work the more my kids suffer not sure what to do!!!! P.s was told it was vit D for 3 months before hand.
Wee - 12-May-17 @ 9:41 PM
Lissa coukd I ask what job uou manage to do.I have been off work 5 months now.I gave isteoarthritus asthma and fibromyalgia.Thank uou
Hev - 30-Mar-17 @ 12:41 AM
Jamil - Your Question:
Hi I am suffering from osteoarthitis and fibromyagea am I elijable for any benefits many thanks.

Our Response:
You can check via the Entitled To link here.
FibromyalgiaSyndrome - 17-Nov-16 @ 1:47 PM
Hi I am suffering from osteoarthitis and fibromyagea am I elijable for any benefits many thanks.
Jamil - 12-Nov-16 @ 9:05 AM
Sorry, but your info on benefits needs to be amended. People with Fibromyalgia can claim Personal Independance Payment. It is NOT means tested, and you can still work whilst getting it. Yes, you do need to attend a medical, and you should always ask for a copy of the report. If you fail to get an award, you first request a mandatory reconsideration. If DWP still refuses you, then you should appeal. The appeal is held before an independent panel of two or three people, usually a lawyer, a doctor, and a social or care worker, and takes about 30 mins. I would advise anyone to get a professional to represent them. Many CABs or law centres will do this free of charge. You can also claim Employment Support Allowance which allows you to work 16 hrs or less per week. It has 2 levels - contributions based or means tested. Again you need to attend a medical.
Gnome - 26-Jul-16 @ 12:26 AM
lissa - Your Question:
Benefits I have fibromyalgia and chronic pain I work 10hours a week Monday-Friday 4pm-6pm

Our Response:
If you are requesting whether you are entitled to any benefits then please see the Turn2Us link here. I hope this helps.
FibromyalgiaSyndrome - 18-Apr-16 @ 2:24 PM
benefits I have fibromyalgia and chronic pain I work 10hours a week Monday-Friday 4pm-6pm
lissa - 17-Apr-16 @ 11:31 PM
Hi I've been diagnosed with fibromyalgia as well as vit d deficiency, I also have copd and asthma, a large hernia in my stomach, a stomach ulcer from taking Meds and a bad back and hips, also scoliosis and because of all the steroids I take for my copd flare ups I now have problems with bone density. I work full time in a heavy demanding job as a carer in a brain injury unit, I'm really struggling as nobody at work seems to take any notice of my illness just giving me warnings for sickness, I am in debt and can't afford to give up work"....
Joey66 - 6-Aug-15 @ 9:06 AM
@Weso - Given that muscle weakness is a common symptom and after-effect of meningitis, then there could be some crossover, a lot of people seem to think so, so you are definitely not on your own there.
Georgia - 8-Jun-15 @ 10:26 AM
Just read Wrathy's comment.I have been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and life is a struggle.What struck me is the fact that I also had bacterial meningitis a few years ago and always wondered whether that had anything to do with the fact that I now suffered with fibromyalgia syndrome.
Weso - 5-Jun-15 @ 1:18 PM
@Wrathy - I am sorry to hear this. You may be able to get some support or direction from a group such as Fibromyalgia Support Net, link here . I hope this helps.
FibromyalgiaSyndrome - 9-Apr-15 @ 1:53 PM
I had bacterial meningitis 3 years ago & after I had this I was not feeling to good , I kept going to the doctors as I felt that I was going to die !! The symptoms it has left me with sometimes are unbearable !! I was always very active such as competing in kickboxing torniments & now I hate the way I am Because Istruggle most days with fatigue & pain !
Wrathy - 7-Apr-15 @ 4:48 PM
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