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Seeking Advice for New PM Doc Appointment
mynabyrd68 posted:
I am taking 1200mg Neurontin, 800 Ibuprofen, and have Lidoderm patches for Degenerative Disc Disease and Degenerative joint/osteoarthritis in my lower back. My current PM says this is all he can do for me except radiofrequency, which I can't afford. I also have hydrocodone 7.5, which I have a slight allergy/sensitivity to that keeps me awake & jittery for more than 20 hours after I take it, so I only take it if I am going somewhere and have had plenty of rest beforehand. It is prescribed once a day, but I take it less than once a week. I recently tried taking 1/2 pill and got less side effects from it, less pain relief, but more than nothing. My pcp just switched me to Cymbalta, which works amazingly for my depression, but does diddly-squat for my pain. I use heat for pain, which works great, but I have blisters and burns and discoloration on my skin from the constant use.

I've found a new PM that works in a spine center, so hopefully will understand my exact condition more thoroughly than previous doctors. What is my best approach for this new appointment, and what do I need to ask/say/do in order to get the most of a new relationship with a PM? I'm tired of being in pain and having to be waited on hand and foot by my caregivers. I've been living like this for 5 years now, and it's really getting old. I'd like some autonomy for a change.
TDXSP08 responded:
He should have your records and of course he will examine you.Do NOT ask for any drug by name thats a big No No ( like we are supposed to be idiots and not read up on this stuff) and tell him with your current med's you do not have the Quality of Life you would like and that you can not complete you ADL'S (Activities of Daily Living) and tell S/he what you can not do that you would like to do, and also tell S/he about the problem with the side effect of the Hydrocodone ( have you tried different manufacturers versions of it and do they all have the same effect i wonder) I have DDD and DJD also actually i have rarely met a chronic pain patient who does not have those issues going on it might be indemic to our species but those of us with Chronic Pain go thru so much testing that they find it in most all of us
i have no small step for man, but i have 6 tires for mankind,Watch your Toes!
annette030 responded:
You should not have "blisters and burns and discoloration" on your skin from a heating pad. You should always put a towel between your skin and a heating pad or hot water bottle, and the device should always be on top of your legs or lower back, not under them. It should only be applied for 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off at the most.

I have found that honesty is the best policy with all doctors. Tell him exactly what your pain prevents you from doing, and what kind of reaction you are having to any meds. Don't use the word allergy, tell him what symptoms you have had. Let him decide whether to call it an allergy or not.

Take care, Annette

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Peter Abaci, MD , is certified in anesthesia and pain management by the American Board of Anesthesiology. Dr. Abaci received his undergraduate educat...More

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