Re: Advice when talking to pain management doc for first time?
I'll give it a shot. To be honest I cant imagine anyone who would not be nervous for the first PM appointment. After all this doctor is different then any other you will see & can hold the quality of you life in their hands. On the other hand you are interviewing him as much as he or she is interviewing you. Keep that in mind.
I would write everything down, any questions you may have, how & what effects you pain levels, what makes it worse, what makes it better etc... often doctors encourage you to do so. A good PM knows other doctors dont always understand people who live in daily chonic pain & form their own opinions. Try not to think to worry to much about your other doctor, as this is why your seeking a PM to hopefully avoid misunderstanding & poor judgement.
Take any films you may have with you or reports.
Im not sure about discussing your concerns about addictive tendancies in your family. Some doctors may understand others may be a little nervous by this. You may want to wait till you get a feel for this doctor. Im not saying you should not express your concerns, as I'd feel the same but you may want to get a feel for this doctor first. Im sure most people are concerned about becoming addicted, I know my husband & I discussed this after the first few visits.
IMO expressing how much your pain effects your daily life & limits you is important on the first visit. If you can take someone close to you who can lend support & knows how you battle pain every day. I cant say this about all doctors but my PM actually likes the fact my husband comes with me. He will ask him questions at times & I truely believe he likes the second set of ears. He will also ask him to keep an eye on how I respond to any new meds or changes. I realize not everyone has a partner.
I can see how you'd feel the way you do after reading the letter from your friend. It was kind of her to be honest as this shows one way your pain effects your life & it is important. You may want to note to the doctor you are appreciative of her honesty as you were so focused on working through the pain you never really understood this was occuring (something like that). That is a prime example on how CP can impact your life on a daily basis.
Try to be organized & honest, get a feel for the staff, other patients & of course the doctor. At times you can tell alot just by observing.
My PMs office for the most part has happy understanding staff who treats the patients with respect & it says they work for pretty nice doctors. The patients interact with the staff on a very positive, friendly level.
Sorry this is kind of last minute but hope this helps. I wish you the best of luck & if possable let us know how it goes. Good luck, Sammy