Posted by: MS | 2008/08/21

MS and workload?

Hi there,

I have been diagnosed with MS (Multiple Sclerosis) being a man, early 40’ s, December 2006. After suffering with all symptoms for quite some time a MR scan and lumber punch was the verifying factor after consultation with neurologist.

Last year I had a relapse and was admitted more than once at a well known hospital - to recover.

Since then I have been on Rebif (beta-interferon) and injecting myself thrice a week in order to reduce the progress and boosting my body. A lot of side-effects are experienced.

At first my employer and colleagues understood what I am going through but till today I don’ t think they fully understand MS or symptoms I am experiencing each and every day.

I am able to walk and my appearance seems normal for the floor (fellow colleagues) I am working with but suffering from: stress, fatigue, numbness, “ spasticity” , depression, dizziness, double vision at times, clumsiness, tend to forget, suffering with speech –  slurring at times, typing errors –  re-arranging words etc. The list in fact is endless.

Concern: At first they did reasonably accommodate me with the workload compared to other colleagues however there has been pressure from my colleagues requesting management to do job-rotation. The end result would be for me to do the * same work although experiencing a lot of these symptoms with my disability.
* Receiving between 200 –  300 inbound telephone calls (similar to ABSA Customer Contact Centre).

I just need them to understand of what the different disabilities are: Most people can see and understand the need of a person in a wheel-chair  however there are other disabilities that people live with as well that are less visible!

How do I approach management and my employees on my situation because the constant volume of inflow of calls will give me almost no time to rest and would not do my health any good?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageWorkplace health expert

Hi - There is a fair and logical process to follow which should not prejudice you. First off talk to your doctor and ask him/her for 2 letters - 1 for the employer requesting a review of your work duties relative to your illness and a second letter for an Occupational Medicine doctor who should review ALL the information and advise both you and the employer. Good luck and please remain in good health.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

Our users say:
Posted by: MS | 2008/08/25

Hi Dr Terry Berelowitz,

Could I just recap?
1. Letter –  From my neurologist requesting a revision of my current responsibilities towards my work duties? Or could my normal GP also write such a letter?
2. Letter –  From my Occupational Medicine doctor –  Not sure about this one?

I can be reached via e-mail if needed. Thank you!

Reply to MS

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