A receptionist wearing NHS uniform is greeting a patient at the Clinic front desk

What to expect at your appointment

What to expect at your appointment

Welcome to the Anne Rowling Clinic. We provide specialist and patient-centred care for people awaiting diagnosis and living with neurodegenerative conditions.

About our appointments

What happens at the Anne Rowling Clinic?

The Anne Rowling Clinic is a research-care facility that aims to combine excellent NHS patient clinical care alongside research, offering patients the earliest opportunity to participate in our studies and trials.

What conditions do you study?

Our research focuses on multiple sclerosis (MS), motor neuron disease (MND), early-onset dementias and Parkinson's disease (PD). We also have a research interest in related neurological conditions such as neuroinflammatory disorders.

How can I get referred to the Anne Rowling Clinic?

We host some of NHS Lothian's neurology out-patient clinics, with the majority of patients residing within the NHS Lothian catchment area. Referrals are made via a person's NHS GP or consultant neurologist. We do not offer private appointments.


Before your appointment

If you are a first time visitor to the Clinic, we understand that this can be a worrying time, and we are here to offer support. The Clinic staff are committed to supporting you and answering any questions you have. Please do not be afraid to ask.

What should I do when I arrive?

Please make the receptionist aware of your arrival. They will check any necessary details and direct you to the waiting area. You may have a short wait before you are seen but please speak to the receptionist if you have waited for more than 20 minutes. 

Is it helpful to bring someone with me?

Yes. We encourage you to bring a relative/carer or friend with you. For some clinics this is essential. They can either attend the consultation with you if you wish, or remain in the waiting room.

What should I bring to my appointment?

It can be helpful to bring a note-pad and to write down some questions before your visit. If you wear reading glasses then you should bring these with you as well as bringing along a list of any medications and supplements that you are currently taking.

Can I bring my children?

Yes. The waiting area is child friendly. Please note that our staff are not able to look after your children during your consultation.

Will I see a consultant?

Most people will see a consultant and/or another specialist such as a nurse specialist. You may also be seen by a neurology registrar who works under the supervision of a consultant neurologist.

What should I do if I can't make my appointment?

If you are unable to attend your appointment for any reason, or would like to change your appointment, please call 0131 465 9500 during normal working hours.

During your appointment

Can I have a chaperone during my consultation?

Yes. If you feel you would like a chaperone present at any point during your consultation, please inform your consultant, nurse or researcher, who will be more than happy to arrange this for you.

Will a medical student be present during my consultation?

The Anne Rowling Clinic works closely with the Medical School at the University of Edinburgh and medical students, as part of their learning, are encouraged to observe clinic appointments. We will ask if you are happy for students to sit in on your appointment. If you do not wish a student to be present, please do not hesitate to let your consultant, nurse or researcher know.

This will not affect your care in any way. Any decisions about your care will be made by trained staff and not by the student. 

What happens in a consultation?

Your first consultation will typically take from 30 - 60 minutes, although this can be longer for some clinics. We will discuss your condition in detail. It is important that we go through the "what and when" of all your symptoms. It is a good idea to bring a written history with you to your first appointment along with a list of any medications you are taking.

If you wear reading glasses, it would be helpful for you to have these with you. 

Your doctor may perform a full neurological examination or tests of your memory, order other tests, and use questionnaires to build a more complete picture of your condition. A nurse may take blood samples and other measurements.

Your GP will be kept fully informed by letter, a copy of which can also be sent to you.


After your appointment

Anne Rowling Clinic research opportunities

After your appointment you'll be asked to stay for an additional 20 minutes. The Clinic research staff will use this time to share with you information about our current research and your opportunities to participate.

Will I need another appointment?

Your consultant or nurse will arrange follow-up appointments for you as appropriate. Further investigations such as blood tests and scans may be organised on an outpatient basis. In follow-up appointments, we will review any uncertainty about your diagnosis, discuss treatment and/or symptom management, tell you about our ongoing research projects, and answer your questions.  Some follow-up care may be implemented in your local area.

How can I contact my consultant?

The best way to contact your consultant is by leaving a telephone message with either the main reception (0131 465 9500) or named secretary for the consultant. We are unable to forward any emails to consultants that contain confidential and personal information. Please let your consultant or nurse specialist know if you would like a copy of any clinical letters following your appointment.