Outpatient Assessment

I got a letter through today saying I will see an OT for an initial outpatient assessment. I am really nervous as I don’t want to waste their time or anything. I have never reported symptoms before, I have always ended up in hospital with little or no idea what’s going on around me before anything has been done - so I am not used to outpatient stuff as I discharged myself soon after coming out of hospital last time.

Has anyone had experience with this kind of meeting? I don’t know what will happen and I am thinking about not going.

I had a really rough couple of weeks, and I am only just starting to get control back. I still have symptoms of hallucinating visually, problems with being out in public, sleeping most of the time and not taking my meds as I should. I want to be put on a new med, as my full dose makes me too tired to drive or work. When I am on the lower dose, my thinking is all over the place, and when I look at people I don’t know I think I can hear communication between entities telling them what to think. They tell me what to think and I argue with them, but sometimes I agree and follow their instructions if I think its the right thing. My brain argues with itself all the time, and all I hear at times is a constant barrage of abuse. I have had strange emotional feelings when dealing with people, like they hate my guts and sexually inappropriate emotions coming through, which makes me very uncomfortable because they’re really overpowering and are about people I should trust. I am starting to think more and more about my psychosis from last time, and my experiences are beginning to make me think that some of the beliefs were not unfounded, and that I am being oppressed by the medication. I am not sure.

That’s basically what has been going on. Do you think I am right to speak to this OT? What will happen if I tell her these things? I am very worried. I have a diagnosis of Paranoid SZ.

It’s easy to forget what you wanted to say in an out patient setting, so i’d copy your post and just read it back to the out patient doc in fact.


Out patient meetings are generally quite relaxed, you should definitely go. You should go regularly in fact. Also, if I was in your position with your symptoms, I’d take the recommended dosage of your meds if the only side effect is tiredness until you get to speak to a doctor. Psychosis can kill you, but tiredness is just tiredness. Taking a lower sub therapeutic dose is like taking no meds.

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Let them know how you feel about your meds.

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I will do this. I just wasn’t sure if I am wasting there time or not and being too sensitive about things. I am just worried as I am starting to notice symptoms more and more and I thought it would be better to try and sort them out before things get out of hand again.

That’s good to hear. I will. I couldn’t remember if I took my meds last night, which is part of the problem because I doubt myself a lot, and I have no idea if I actually took them. I am not sure this morning as I was awake at 6am, which is very unusual. I didn’t realise a lower dose is like taking nothing. I dropped my dose a few months ago because I thought I didn’t need to be on 20mg of Olanzapine being out of hospital for over a year taking it. I guess I was wrong. My GP was fine with doing that at the time, but now another GP has referred me back to the services.

she probably just wants to say hello and maybe try and have a chat about things, likes, dislikes, things like that, i wouldnt worry about it, she cant tell you what to do, nobody can

i would just wing it and see where it goes x

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Thanks daydreamer. I am just nervous because I got to know all the nurses and doctors at the hospital, and I have never met this person before. I find it very hard to talk to people I don’t know in person and especially about symptoms.

I will try not to think about it too much. Thanks

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What do you mean by OT? Do you mean Occupational Therapist? If so, I have experience helping training them as a mock patient, I know exactly the kind of interview format they follow, as I’ve probably been through about 50 of them.

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I think it means that. I have never met one before and have no idea what to expect.

Okay. A typical OT interview goes like this:

They ask you to go through your day-to-day activities and ask you if you have any problems with them. They focus on things like self-care (showering, brushing your teeth etc.), mobility (getting around on the bus or driving or walking), meals and shopping and finances, work and/or school, socializing, leisure activities, exercise and so on.

And you get to say if there’s anything you’d like to work on, and if so they will come up with a treatment plan or activities to work on these things. They aren’t going to be that much interested in your symptoms other than how they interfere with your day-to-day activities. They aren’t medical doctors or psychologists, think of them a little like coaches who help you learn tricks and techniques to deal with some of your day-to-day problems.

They might refer you to other day or work programs depending on what you want to do. In general, they will just be there to help if they can and if you want it. They are very patient centered, and usually only will work on things that you want to do. I’ve talked with a lot of OT students and they are generally good people who just want to help people learn how to live better lives. You shouldn’t fear them.

My pdoc had me take all my meds at night. It’s still hard to wake up. But when I do I’m ok driving to work and last the whole day ok.