You & Your General Practitioner

As Addison’s and adrenal insufficiency are rare conditions, your GP may never have treated a patient with this before. This means that often you will know more about your condition than your GP does and you will need to work together on your medical care.

Your GP can be a great ally in helping you to manage your Addison’s and it’s important that you work together to achieve this. Read more tips and strategies for working with your GP in our article Coping with Your GP Practice.

Expert Clinical Practice for Addison’s and adrenal insufficiency

Download and print out copies of our information leaflets aimed at GPs:

It can help if you highlight on the leaflet what you are keen for them to do on your behalf, such as writing repeat prescription lengths of 3+ months for essential replacement hormone tablets, and including injectable hydrocortisone supplies on your repeat. 

Don’t assume your GP will be familiar with what they need to do for you. You may be the first adrenal patient they have written a prescription for, and they may lack confidence. Highlighting the expert recommendations in our leaflets can help to make your relationship a more positive one.

Let your GP know about the free RCGP eModule "Adrenal insufficiency with a focus on Addison's disease” which they can undertake as part of their ongoing CPD. This module was created with ADSHG and the Addison's Clinical Advisory Panel (CAP).

You & Your Endocrinologist

When you are diagnosed with Addison’s, within the UK and Ireland it is expected that your GP will refer you to the care of an endocrinologist (a doctor who looks after people with hormone-related conditions).

You are likely to have lots of questions about your condition that your endocrinologist will do their best to answer, and it’s important that you try to learn as much as possible about how to manage your condition day to day. However, during consultations, it can sometimes be difficult to remember all the things you want to ask. Some people find it useful to write a list of questions to take with them while others like to have a friend or family member accompany them to ask questions. We have two templates to support you in this on our appointment page.

Making the most of your appointments

Many endocrine units have endocrine specialist nurses who can be an excellent source of information and support. Find out if your hospital has an endocrine specialist nurse and if you can be put in touch with them. You may wish to ask your GP to arrange for you to be referred to one of the endocrine centres in your region that can offer specialist endocrine nurse support.

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