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    aprilrose9 posted:
    Am I the only person with back pain, who is frustrated with the pain control clinics. I am not talking about the continuous drug testing and some of the other loops we seem to have to jump through as patients, but some of the other infuriating things I have had to go through the last year. Actually, I have decades of poor care to complain about, but I will try to stick with my most recent complaint.

    I loved my last physician, he treated me with respect and kindness. His office staff was wonderful. It was the first office for pain control I had been to, where you could call with a problem and you knew someone would follow through with a solution by the end of the day.

    I was so happy to have found this doctor and his wonderful staff. My only regret had been, not finding him earlier, since it could have saved me so many years of pain and suffering.

    I hoped to stay with him for many years. Thinking I was finally set, feeling grateful for my discovery, I received the news the doctor was retiring earlier than he wanted to, due to his own health problems.

    His patients were shattered. All of us wondering where we would go and knowing we would never find a physician and staff where we would receive the same quality care.

    Now to why I am so angry? Do we have to, as patients, be subjected to such indifferent office staff? The physicians realize there are many patients out there, thus they do not have to monitor their own staff or moderate their own behavior when dealing with patients. I have seen posts about my current physician which read: condesending, arrogant, poor listener and the list goes on.

    Last week, I became increasingly disturbed as I watched the numerous office workers treat each patient like a number. This is longstanding attitude towards the patients. I learned from past experience, physicians do not want feedback concerning their practice. It is hard enough, sitting in pain in a physicians office, without being treated like a dirty piece of gum, stuck to the bottom of the office workers shoe. I and all the rest of us, deserve to be treated with respect.

    I wish I could change physicians. The problem is driving distance to different practices. I have to be able to drive myself and I need a practice close by when I am in alot of pain. So, last week, my doctor brings up my weight. I was not offended, because I have a mirror in my house and know-- I am fat. I became overweight due to uncontrolled pain, which lead to YEARS in bed. He wondered who my physician was at the time, so I throw out the dreaded name. I should have known better than to go to a physician, who went to one of the lowest ranking medical schools in the country.

    He knows how much I suffered, and he starts defending this doctor to me. Telling me she is, "A GOOD DOCTOR". I can't think of anything else to say, other than I completely disagreed. They all have each other in their back pockets.

    I think the quality of care for us pain sufferers, is rapidly deteriorating. The number of pain control clinics will diminish, as the big clinics take over, giving us fewer and fewer options. I am already unhappy, being a part of a cold, pain clinic machine. Shame on these people!

    I know the day will come, when more is learned about pain. Medicine at that time will marvel at the "dark age " mentality of our current medical practices. By the time this happens, we will all be long gone. The victims of the current, erroneous attitudes and standard of care. For now we are stuck, medicine is a business and the quality of care follows the money. This is why ICU's, Cardiac Units and Labor and Delivery get the dollars. While the psych units go by the wayside and the dialysis units are tucked away in the oldest, most cockroach infested part of the hospitals, because they are not money makers.

    O.K. I am done. Is anyone else angry?
    trs1960 responded:
    My doc is a great guy and he's a 10 min drive from my house or office. I know I'm lucky though.
    jselleck replied to trs1960's response:
    Totally know how you feel AprilRose. I have bipolar as well as degenerative disc disease. I was diagnosed with BP 8 years ago, and during that time I've gone through 9 therapists. Either they change their hours making it impossible to get in to see them, they close their practice due to a family emergency, or the most recent one, cut their hours to one day a week, and that one day is one my husband works and I don't drive. I've gone from driving as far away as 30 miles to 5 miles down the street. The last one I saw was the best one by far, and now I have to once again find a a new counselor. And of course my insurance was no help. There was only 6 counselors within a 50 mile radius of DFW who not only had experience treating people with bipolar but treated only adults. 6 people!!!! I was flabbergasted. Insurance companies so do not understand clients these days. Unless you're healthy as a horse and never use your benefits. They're a bunch of idiots in my opinion. Hope you find someone you like and don't have to drive too far. Take care.

    aprilrose9 replied to jselleck's response:
    Hi jselleck, Tried to write to you a couple of times before, but had problems with the site. So appreciate your spending the time to add to the discussion.

    I hope a new grad Ph.D or another good therapist moves to your area. Obviously, I can relate to your problem; trying to find decent health care should not be this difficult in 2013

    Take Care,
    trs1960 responded:
    What gets me is for ten years I've been told by my doctors how lucky I am; first to be alive and not paralyzed and second to be in a time in which pain relief is about to make quantum changes with DNA changes leaving us pain free to lead a normal life.

    For ten years I've been hearing such changes are just at out fingertips, but no grasp has yet to be acquired.

    So it's back to the opiads and muscle relaxers. For 3,000 years opiads have been used for pain and that's the best we've got... I just don't know how long I can keep going on. My body seems to be worn out and smiles are harder to come by. I can no longer do the things I want for those I love. I still love them dearly, but I tear up, when I think what I should be doing and what I'm capable of doing.

    It reminds me of the three legged one eyed dog named lucky.

    Anon_1421 responded:
    No aprilrose9 (like your screen name!) you aren't the only one that is angry! I started having problems with my back in my late 20's-went to doctor after doctor, not just for some kind of relief, but for answers to what was wrong. Was xrayed so much I should be glowing by now, and still no answers.....some gave me pills which helped but I wanted to know why I was hurting so bad-and if it could be fixed! Finally I just gave up. Fast forward 20 or so years-my hip started bothering me on top of the back pain; I'm thinking oh great, now I need a hip replacement or something! My family doc ordered an mri of my hip which revealed nothing wrong, and my doc referred me to an orthopedist-he ordered an mri-and finally, finally all was revealed-I'd been born with scoliosis (which NONE of the doctors that kept doing xrays told me about!), DDD, 3 messed up discs, spinal stenosis, arthritis in my spine and facet joints....and though it was scary finding out all that was wrong with me, at least I finally had answers! I was only offered fusion by the orthopedist and decided that no, I was not having that done-so he referred me to pain managment-and I thought ok, I know now what is wrong, and am going to get medical treatment for it-and then the fun pain doc is a great believer in steroid shots, whether they help the patient or not-as are all the pain docs in my area-I know, I've checked. Unfortunately, I have severe reactions to steroids, they make me extremely ill, shoot up my blood pressure (I already have high blood pressure which is controlled just fine with medication I take for it-except when I get the steroid injections) it messes with my blood sugar, and everyone in my family has diabetes except me-after my first injection, I told the doctor how bad they made me feel and he proceeded to inform me that if I couldn't take the injections, he couldn't help me! They do basically nothing for me but make me sick-but they sure make him a bunch of money! Then he went to some seminar and learned how to put trial scs gizmos in-and kept pushing me to have one put in-I've been on the same medication for 5 years, and when I tried to tell him I thought it was losing effectiviness-(and I don't abuse my meds, NEVER take more than I am allowed, NEVER run out early) he would either push more injections or push for me to have that scs put in-that he makes $15,000 putting in! I am so sick of the government acting like no one in this country has a reason to take "oh my GOD NARCOTICS!", they must be drug addicts, blah blah blah-and I had to change pharmacies because the one I went to treated me like crap, would never fill my prescription when they were supposed to, they would lie and say they hadn't gotten approval from my doctor, twice they lied and said that and when I said "well let's get my doctor's office on a three way conference call and straighten this out" then they admitted they had "misplaced" the doctor's approval! They finally just stopped sending requests to my doctor-and every month I would have to call my doctor's office and they would then contact the pharmacy who would fill it-two or three days after that! I had done business with this pharmacy for over 10 years! I can't help that I look like there is nothing wrong with me-I try to look decent when I leave my house, and if I'm not having a bad day, I don't limp-but I'm not going to walk around screaming to prove I'm in pain! It is so hard, not just dealing with pain every minute of every day, but to have to realize that I can't do all the things I used to be able to, things other people take for granted, then my own government acts like I'm a drug addict for taking a medicine for a health condition, I get used like an atm machine by my pm doc, get judgement and attitude from a pharmacy, and get crap from some family members because I can't do as much for them as I used to! AGH! OK, rant done-isn't going to change anything, but I feel a little better!
    trs1960 replied to Anon_1421's response:
    Your rant (elequent as it may be )
    Right now it's not as much the government, but it sounds like you have a bad my opinion. Narrow minded and not willing to look at the plethera of options...well maybe a handfull.

    Bottom line is there are more ways to skin a cat than steroid injections which are short term and create thinned tissue and as you know other reactions such as blood suger.

    Don't get me wrong, the government is involved, but they've barely to show their face, Give them a year or two and the treatment your getting now will be the treatment you dreamed of.

    As for the pharmacy I know what you mean. My spine damage is mainly thoracic so on a good day with a sweatshirt on you'd never know there was anything wrong with me. Of course if I go completely med free I'm a bit of a ticking time bom. Take my shirt off and I'm scared from neck to butt crack. Multiple incisions from mutliple surferys, On a good time I can wean down and sometimes go for a month or so without meds and then I can't take the pain any more. Sometimes I can play soccer with my daughter...I don't run or anything, but I pass the ball to her or throw it so she can head it. I'm hurting afterwords, but the act of helping her is pure heaven.

    The stigma of opiads is killing people like us. People turn to over the counter NSAIDs or worse which kill far more people than prescribed anelgesics.

    OK, I'm done ranting to yout rant and mostly I verymush agree. I would look for a better pain or ortho doc though, at least a second opinoin.

    Good luck and God bless.

    aprilrose9 replied to trs1960's response:
    Dear TRS 1960, Sometimes I am not very good at getting my point across and I think I failed when I posted this rant.

    My M.D. is o.k. and I would not leave based on his current tx, but I object to the staff in his office and their indifferent attitude towards the patients.

    Funny, I was taught to treat patients with kindness and respect. My feeling is if they do not like working around patients; go work in a big box store.

    Having a week with nasty, increased pain. Wanted to explain why I haven't checked in much with you, but you have been in my prayers,(you and your family), for all the financial strain and others to get better for the family.

    Take Care,
    trs1960 replied to aprilrose9's response:
    That seems true of all MD offices. They build a wall around the doctors so you can't get to them. Like I you, I love my doctor, but getting through to them is imposiible.
    I left my pain doc a copy of the book I had you read. I know he likes to read and we swap a few books back and forth.
    He wasn't in so they said just leave it on the counter and he'd get it. For a week I've called to so if he did receive it, but I can't even get the front desk to answer the phone.

    My old Pain doc was cool (so is my new one), I ran in to he and his wife in a restuearant and not sure how to behave I politely said helloo as I had to walk past his table. He smiled and stopped to talk for about 5 minutes, asked how I was doing and if I was ready (we had my first RF Ablation scheduled). I could tell his wife was a bit put out by being close to the common folk, but Doc Pitman is a great man. I only quit seeing him becuase he's about 50 miles further away than my current doc who is equally good..

    Both offices are like an unscalable wall though. I can understand pain offices not wanting to get too personal as you can't take all that in without being affected. Scripts are always an ordeal. I start a week ahead to make sure I get through all the hurdles so I don''t run out. I think that's mainly the insurance companies and the DEA.

    We all type up what we feel is a good story, but many things are often lost in the text only format. It beats living in a cave though.

    TNT4145 responded:
    aprilrose9 replied to TNT4145's response:
    Dear TNT 4145, Nice to hear from you. Tried to respond last week, but have been having tech problems. I commend your efforts to seek out appropriate treatment.

    It is difficult to do under the best of situations, and doubles in effort, to manage with chronic pain.

    Keep up the good fight. I hope in the future a recent grad will set up practice in your area, bringing enthusiasm, new ideas and a fresh approach to care in your town.

    Take Care,

    P.S. Thank you for the compliment! Took it from a one day old kitten I received from the local animal shelter. I worked as a volunteer in my home, bottle feeding orphan kittens and puppies. The kitten came with the name April, named by another volunteer who named numerous kittens born in April, the same name over and over. The kitten had an 18% chance of survival, according to my veterinarian. I thought she was special, so I added the Rose. Thus April-Rose!

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