Skip to content
Can a pain management Dr. release you with no further help?
avatar
An_223408 posted:
What is protocol for a pain management doctor when he releases patients. I have been taking 15mg oxycodone for a year that he prescribed me. I was informed by his medical assistant they he will not be giving me my script this month. She will not let me speak with the doctor. I have called, I have faxed, he wont return my call. Can he just release me knowing that I will go through very serious withdrawal and become very sick? Doesnt he have some responsibility to offer alternate treatment, or to "ween" me off or down from the medication to avoid this? I can't believe a Dr. would do this to a patient. I don't know what to do.... Thank you.
Reply
FirstPrevious12NextLast
 
avatar
annette030 responded:
Did the medical asst. give you any reason at all? Did she call you on the phone? Tell you in person?

Other than trying to make an appt. to see the doctor face to face and ask him what the issues are, I don't know what to say. I don't believe in dealing with any pain issues on the phone, I always make an appt. and see my doc face to face.

I don't think you will go through serious withdrawals if you are only taking 15 mg. of oxycodone daily. Opiate withdrawals are managable and only last a week or so. Your usual pain will probably come back and may seem even worse. You might make an appt. with your pcp and see if he/she is aware of what is going on, and is willing to take care of your pain issues. The PM doc may have sent your pcp a letter informing them of your release.

In most states a doctor has to give a patient 30 days notice and RXs for 30 days if he dismisses the patient. However, if you broke any rules of the practice, he can let you go without any notice or RXs.

Take care, Annette
 
avatar
Trudy292 replied to annette030's response:
I recently weaned myself off of 30mg oxycodone - 7 tabs per day. I managed to do it without any withdrawals, just a lot of pain came back. Annette is right, at first the pain will feel even worse than it used to. Within a few days, the pain level will settle back down. If you can, alternate between ibuprofen and acetaminophen every few hours and that does help.

It is hard to believe that doctors will do this to you, but I know that some do. You need to find out why you have been released and I think they should have to tell you that.

I have never been released, so I am not sure of rules and such. I know I did sign a pain contract years ago and you probably did also if you were in a pain management practice. Did they do any drug tests recently? Have you gone to the ER lately? Get any extra drug scripts from a different doctor -- even if they were justifiied?

I do believe that they have to have a reason unless the doctor is leaving the practice or the practice is closing. You should also be able to get a copy of your medical record to be able to see what is in it and if there are any notes as to why you are being dismissed. My pm practice gives the first copy of your records for free.

Hope this helps!
Good luck!
Trudy
 
avatar
Summersect replied to annette030's response:
I was on 15mg oxycodone 6 times a day, not 15 mg daily.
I did speak to the assistant, not the doctor. I had to make a trip out of state to see my sick parent, i didnt take all of my medicine and ended up going to the hospital. BEFORE they gave me anything, i had them call my pain mgmt dr. I even told them i could come in for a pill count when i returned so they could see i had the medicine at home. After I returned they didnt call me for a count, and i didnt refill my script until I ran out which was several days after my original script was due to run out. My count was right on. But the assistant doesnt agree and dismissed me. I just didnt think a doctor who is suppose to be helping you would be so quick to kick ya to the curb and not care what you will be going through. It just doesnt seem ethical to me.
 
avatar
Summersect replied to Trudy292's response:
Trudy, yes, I had to go out of town to see my sick parent, i didnt take all of my medicine w/me. I ran out and had to go to the ER, but I had the ER call my pain management dr before they gave me anything. I had the ER doc explain to my drs office that I had the medicine at home..they could call me in for a pill count when i returned to see that I was legit. They didnt. Just released me. I guess it turns out to be my fault, even though i thought I did the right thing by calling first. If they would have told my ER doctor that i was going to be dismissed I would have had my husband mail the medicine to me. I just thought that was the quicker route. I guess i'm just screwed
 
avatar
annette030 replied to Summersect's response:
If you signed an agreement that you would not get any pain meds from any other doctor, that is probably why you were dismissed.

You will have to make an appt. and go see the doctor if he will see you. Try and discuss it with him, be prepared to show him your pills and how the count works out correctly.

Otherwise, see your pcp and ask for a referral to another PM doc if he won't take care of this for you.

Take care, Annette
 
avatar
bren_bren replied to Summersect's response:
If you have been with this particular pain management doc for a year then you should be aware of his policies. Do you recall the contract? You are revealing more and more with each post, so it's hard to advise you without all the details.

Did the ER doc send you "home" with a prescription? What was the result of that visit and do you have those medical records? If you have been a compliant patient all this time, and you see your doctor face-to-face, I suspect that the details of the ER records (so long as there isn't mention of a script given to you) will suffice with a pill count too. You did say that you refilled your PM doc's script a few days late, but if you were taking the pills the ER doc prescribed (if it is so), then you wouldn't have needed your script on time.

I guess I'm a bit fuzzy on all the details. What's done is done and you can't change it and it doesn't sound like your doc is receptive to your "proof".

If you do have some medication that you just filled to get you through the rest of the month, seek out a new doc while weaning yourself off the meds just in case?

It's very important however, that you get a clear answer from your doc because any new physician that will treat you with a narcotic will want your medical records, and you don't want the "release" on your record; no matter what the misunderstanding.

I know coming off of that stronger short-acting med is very difficult and nobody knows what YOUR body is/will be going through. Are you on a long-acting med too? In that case, the withdrawls may not be so bad.

Let me know if I can help you out...more importantly, titrate safely, under a doctor's supervision...perhaps your GP? -Bren
 
avatar
PascoFL responded:
Did they give you a referral to another Doctor? Did they write you a letter?

If they discharged you without a referral and without cause, after finding another doctor I would seek the advice of a lawyer. There have been may suits filed and damages won in these matters. To leave patients to fend for themselves without cause is illegal in most states and the state medical board should also want to hear about it. If a doctor suddenly closes their practice without dying they should also have a way for you or another doctor to get past medical history. I am not playing lawyer here..I am stating what I would do.
 
avatar
PascoFL replied to bren_bren's response:
If a person is being treated with pain meds and it is medically necessary why wouldn't they desire to continue treatment with a different doctor?
I was released by a GP once because I used a storage space he had ( a very large building) with his permission...after I removed the stuff I had in storage at his request one of the workmen I had hired from a day labor place went to the doctor asking where "his" desk was that he put in the storage building...(sic) anyways the doctor got mad at me for this nut job bothering him ( this is someone I didn't even know) so he asked me to find another doctor and gave me a referral...we parted friendly even though I wrote him a letter explaining the situation and letting hin know he was being harsh..I stated in the letter he has every right to have who he wants as a patient just as much as we have every right who treats us. But to leave you high and dry..there might be a hidden reason you are not aware of..
 
avatar
annette030 replied to PascoFL's response:
If she got pain pills from another doctor after signing an agreement with her PM doc that she would not do that, that IS cause to terminate her treatment. At least it is with my doctor and the other doctors around here. It says that clearly in the agreement I signed.

Take care, Annette
 
avatar
crkshnks79 replied to Summersect's response:
I am so sorry this happened to you , I have also had this done to me because my pain management stopped taking my ins abruptly. They gave me a month of scripts and told me to see another pain management . Well the problem w that is it can typically take 3 to 9 months to get in some where then you have to start all over again ! I was on Fentanyl patch 2.5 and 30 mg oxycodone 4 to 6 x's a day , as I cut down my doses to make them last longer I started to get sick , after my meds ran out my pain felt a thousand times worse and I was so sick that I honestly wanted to die . I would not recommend what I did but I had an old script for methadone that was originally given to me for chronic pain management but as I did not like the way they made me feel I never took them . After searching the internet for how to deal w severe withdrawal and trying to get EVERY doc I know to help me ( and they didnt , they told me to refer back to pain management ) I was at my wits end , I started to think of killing myself but I have 3 kids , so when I say this was my ONLY and LAST resort please believe me that Im not saying you should do this , I just didnt know what else to do .... I took TWO methdone a day for a week , then went down to one , then half of one a day in about 2 weeks , then off them completely . It did take my withdrawal away but my pain is now horrific . Maybe you can make an appt w your Primary and discuss options ? It is ABSOLUTELY UNCONSCIONABLE that doctors can or will do this to a person !!!!!! Also if you start to withdrawal stock up on Bendryl , it helps w the nausea and runny nose/eyes that are typical w withdrawal . I wrote none of this to scare you , I wanted to let you know that it does happen and that they are others who understand exactly how betrayed you feel and hopefully some experienced advice to help . Again , I am so sorry your going through this !
 
avatar
An_223409 responded:
Dear Anon,

Your post says that you would not be prescribed your meds "this month, " not that your MD is releasing you from his care.

How are things going for you?

Please write and let us know how you are.
 
avatar
Trudy292 replied to Summersect's response:
In this case, my doctor would want the ER that I went to to fax the records from that visit to their office. That would be enough for them to not dismiss me. If it was medically necessary and it sounds like you can prove your point.

I would contact the ER you went to and have them fax the records over to your pm doc. Then call the pm docs office back and explain again and tell them you had the records faxed over to back up your story.

If they do not listen then, your only recourse is to find a new doc. You could go to your primary doc and ask them to give you a new referral to a pain clinic and when their office calls the new pain clinic they can often get you in much sooner than if you are the one that calls.

Good luck and let us know how you are doing and what is happening!!

Trudy
 
avatar
mrmbvdzj replied to Trudy292's response:
How did you exactly wean off of the oxycodone. Did you take one less tab each day or what? Im on 40mg 2 times a day and I am out completely tomorrow. I see a pain management dr tomorrow but they will not give you refills on the first visit and my regular dr wants me to deal with the pain management dr only. it doesn't seem fair and I am terrified to have nothing. I have tried cold turkey but the withdrawls are aweful and I have a 3 and 5 yr old at home that makes it impossible.
 
avatar
annette030 replied to mrmbvdzj's response:
This thread is about 9 months old, you will get more responses if you post this as a new post.

That said, I assume you are taking Oxycontin, (because of the dose and schedule you mentioned), the long acting form of oxycodone, is that true? Let the new doctor know what you have been taking and if he won't prescribe drugs on the first visit, ask him what you should do to mitigate withdrawal symptoms.

Who has been prescribing this med for you? Are you on any break through meds? Discuss with this doctor the possibility that he could write you for enough meds to last until your new PM doctor will prescribe them for you if necessary.

Your post is confusing because we can't tell who is prescribing the current meds, is it the "regular doctor"?

Waiting until you are completely out (tomorrow) before dealing with this makes it more difficult for you.

Take care, Annette


Featuring Experts

David N. Maine, MD is the director of the Center for Interventional Pain Medicine at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore. Maine graduated with a degree ...More

Helpful Tips

Fibromyalgia Pain
I had a lot of pain in my lower back. The doctor diagnosed it as Fibromyalgia. He prescribed lyrica which works really well. I still have ... More
Was this Helpful?
1 of 8 found this helpful

Related News

There was an error with this newsfeed

Report Problems With Your Medications to the FDA

FDAYou are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.