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Old 02-23-2011, 02:00 PM   #1
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Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

I am new to this site so thanks in advance to everyone!
About 2 years ago I was rearended in a car accident and have been experiending extreme pain ever since. My doctor tried every anti inflammatory, tramadol, all kinds of meds until I was finally put on hydrocodone and sent to a pain specialist who took me off all pain meds until I had an MRI. This guy actually told me to just take an aspirin and deal with it! I said if that was an option I wouldn't be here! After the MRI I was givin a cortasone shot in my spine which gave me to releif, now the pain specialist says my only options are more injections, which didn't help in the first place, or surgery. I figured my only option was to see a surgeon, so I am in the process of being referred to one and still all my pain specialist will give me is more steriods which I have already tried and have givin no releif!

I am soo frustrated with the situation, I am in constant pain and my doctors refuse to give me any kind of medication that helps!

Please give me some feed back on what to do, I feel like no one listens or cares

 
Old 02-23-2011, 03:02 PM   #2
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

Hi, and welcome to the board. I'm sorry you that are not only having to deal with the pain but also with doctors who have no compassion.

My first suggestion is that you change any doctors who have not been helpful. The pm doctor is obviously one of those who like the big bucks that steroid injections pull in since he insists that this the only way to treat you.

Since you've had the MRI have you been given the results? It is hard to make any suggesting without knowing what your diagnosis is, so if you could post that for us, it would help a lot. If you do have a surgical problem, I would suggest you see an Orthopedic Spine specialist...not the general ortho, but one with a fellowship in spine training. The other option is a neurologist who limits his practice to matters of the spine. These doctors are the best at reading MRI's and other imaging, often finding things that have been missed previously.

It would be to your benefit to get more than one opinion on the treatment necessary. If you get conflicting information, then get yet another opinion. That might seem like overkill, but spinal surgery is some very heavy duty serious surgery and you want to be absolutely sure it is the only choice that makes sense for you. Once you have a diagnosis in hand, if you can, use the internet to look up as much information as you can find. This will help you understand and be able to communicate with the doctor of your choice.

As I said, this is general information but I can't offer more without getting an idea of your MRI report, so I hope you can post that.

Carol
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Old 02-23-2011, 03:11 PM   #3
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

My MRI report says that I have moderate sized central disk herniation at L4-5 which lateralizes minimally to they left, the specialist also said I have inflammation/irritation at my facet joints on the right side, as well as early stages of DDD in the L4-5.

I was thinking of switching doctors but I don't want to have to start all over and have to get another referral from my primary dr to see a different pain specialist

 
Old 02-23-2011, 09:59 PM   #4
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

Welcome to the boards.

When deciding whether or not to switch doctors, something to keep in mind is that not every doctor will be a good fit with every patient. It doesn't mean they're not a good doctor, it just means they may not be a good doctor for a particular patient. You need a doctor who is a good fit for you, listens to you, and treats you in a manner you're comfortable with. Some pain mgmt docs rarely use narcotics, and these docs are a great fit for patients who have drug abuse histories or who want to avoid narcotics. However, for patients who value pain relief and the ability to sleep, and are at low risk of narcotics abuse, they won't be a good fit.

You've already discovered this is a problem that's not going away in a month or two, and you'll likely be dealing with this for some time to come unfortunately. You need doctors that fit you well to give you the best chance of pain relief and restoration of function. This is a time to think of the long-term vs. the short-term.

As Maltluver mentioned, I second that you need to talk to a couple of spine surgeons soon to get their opinions. I'll warn you that some have a waiting period of 1-3 months to get in, so make appointments now and get the referrals in process.

Some doctors just don't believe in narcotics use because they've experienced some of their patients becoming addicted to them. It's really unfortunate, because narcotics are the only drugs that give enough pain relief to some of us to get us back into a meaningful life. Also, there are a lot of doctors who won't prescribe narcotics until after you've had spine surgery. It may not seem fair, but that's often how it works.

How bad is your pain right now? Are you able to sleep? Are you able to work or have you lost your job? Do you have major limitations with your daily life or activities?

Please know that we do care about your situation. It can get lonely dealing with back troubles as it seems no one else understands. You'll find a lot of great people on here who can help you figure out your options, and listen to all the frustrations you experience along the way.

Take care, and please let us know how things progress for you.

 
Old 02-24-2011, 06:20 AM   #5
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

I actually called to try and get in to see a second pain specialist/surgeon last night, so I will hopefully hear back today, and I am supposed to hear back from the first surgeon in the next few days, so hopefully it wont take too long! I do still have a job, im a waitress, but I can't lift more than 10lbs and I get sent home early alot because I am in too much pain to continue. I do have trouble sleeping, especially when I have a bad pain day which causes me to miss classes at school. I think that because im only 24 my doctors all think im lying about the pain I am in, they might think im a drug seeker..im like hell yeah im a drug seeker, im in pain so im seeking something that will help! Of couse I would never say that to my doctor!

 
Old 02-24-2011, 08:40 AM   #6
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

Glad to hear that you went and called a new dr! it seems like you need to and starting over well that can be a pin but if you get someone who is cares and w ull help you get out of pain.....i was a server for 24 years so know what your going thru its hard but ya know what helped me was those back patches that put heat in them i used those i waited on tables up till 2 days before my 1 st surgery keep your head up gf and dont let them do this to ya find someone to help
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Old 02-24-2011, 09:04 AM   #7
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

Thanks! Im just glad that im lucky to have a boss and co workers who understand and help me out when I need it! Im not sure if I need to get a new referal from my dr since I already had a referal to one pain specialist, I guess I will find out! I just hope I can find a pain specialist who isn't a jerk like the guy I am seeing now! He treats me like I don't know what I am talking about and doesn't give me any options for treatment, its his way or the highway! I couldn't believe it when he took me off of my pain meds and told me just to take an aspirin and deal with it! I wanted to punch him right then and there! He pretty much just doesn't want to deal with me which I think is why he has passed me off onto a surgeon. I would never recommend this ******* to anyone, every site where u can rate ur doctor I have written nasty comments about how uncaring he is!

 
Old 02-28-2011, 12:13 PM   #8
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

So I have made an appointment with a surgeon but I can't get in for 3 weeks! My attorney says I should maybe call my primary doctor now that I have an appointment and maybe they will put me on something just to get me through until I see the surgeon. Im not sure if this is even worth trying or not

 
Old 02-28-2011, 03:20 PM   #9
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

I'm so glad to hear you'll be seeing a surgeon soon. Believe it or not, 3 weeks to see a surgeon isn't bad - some take up to 3 months to see.

I would definitely suggest you ask your primary doc to give you a pain reliever to get you through until you see the surgeon.

Don't be surprised if the surgeon isn't willing to give you anything when you see him/her. They often only want to prescribe pain relievers after surgery, and then for 3-6 months maximum. Also, before surgery it's common that you only get weak narcotics, whereas after surgery you can often get much stronger meds that work better.

Be sure to make a list of questions to ask your surgeon when you see him/her. Review some of the past postings to come up with questions to ask. One question you should ask is how conservative they are with pain meds, as you've already discovered some doctors out there are ultra conservative.

You may also want to schedule an appointment with another surgeon right now so that you have a 2nd opinion before considering surgery. Different surgeons can give very different opinions when looking at the same condition.

Also, it can certainly feel lonely at times as no one who hasn't traveled this path is able to understand or sympathize with us. Be sure to stay in touch with fellow spineys like us so you don't feel so lost.

I sincerely hope you have a smoother and more pain-free path ahead of you.

 
Old 02-28-2011, 03:42 PM   #10
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

Thanks! Low dose pain meds would be fine for now, im not set on that as a solution for my pain, I just need some relief until they have decided on a path to take! Im going to try my dr in the morning I guess! I have hear many good things about this surgeon but am going to start researching others just in case! I just don't want to seem like I am dr shopping

 
Old 03-02-2011, 06:22 AM   #11
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

[FONT="Comic Sans MS"][COLOR="Blue"]Sorry that you are in our situation. From what I have reading, I definately wouldnt be satisfied with the standard of care that you are receiving. I know it sucks, we all do. It's unfourtunate that the drug seekers have made it so difficult for those of us who are actually seeking relief to be functional.

As for the approach to your family doc, your last post is most likely your best approach. I have found much better results once the docs realize that you are not out to get high but just to get by on the lowest dose possible to function and have a life. A lot of docs will have you sign a narcotic contract especially the surgeons and pain management docs. I think once you fully explain the results that you have gotten from the pain management doc, he/she may agree to help you out until the surgeon takes over care.

Best of luck to you,

"joe"[/COLOR][/FONT]

 
Old 03-02-2011, 07:01 AM   #12
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

I know exactly how you feel. I was at the point I could not tolerate it anymore, I went to a health clinic and got lortab, and all that did was cause severe stomach pain too, and vomitting blood. I cannot say how bad that was on here, not the pain, but how I was dealing with it, but it was extreme, I went to the ER, and they send me back home with another script for Lortab. I was so mad. Followed up with my PCP and give him that prescription and he leaves me with nothing, knowing good and well I am not dealing with this okay. They do nothing, ER didn't run any scans, just blood work and a stupid urine test. I end up at my drs office about a week later crying up front begging for medication, I get sent home with percocet. The percocet made my back spasm worse, and was making me throw up too. So I go back to the dr, leave a message this stuff is making me sick. I end up back in the ER again. A different ER. They did an xray and ct on my neck. Gave me a toradol shot which helped for about a week, and a script for Flexeril. Followed back up with my PCP, he again did not try to treat my pain or do anything. They was going to call me in prednisone, but my phones were messed up and they couldn't get ahold of me, and I don't know why, but he would not sit there and write that prescription for me. I gave him the lortab and percocet prescriptions I had, and let him know I was not a druggy wanting pain meds. Just to clear that up. He did agree if the pain didn't get any better, that he would do the MRI like the hospital ER doc said I needed. Well another follow up appt, he did not do any such thing, my pain isn't as frequent, but it's still gets severe, and where he sent me to a chriopracter for a spinal adjustment really flared the pain up in my neck something awful. I did get him to prescribe neurontin and that is helping, and he give me a toradol shot in the office. Have you tried toradol injections? I have heard the worst cases of back problems, that helps it. Tramadol is useless, OTC anti-inflammatory medications, muscle relaxants, really don't do a thing. I cannot tolerate the narcotics, except maybe fentanyl. Probably not that either with my tummy hurting like it has. But duragesic patches might do you wonders with that pain. It is very capable of stopping every bit of pain you feel. I'd ask my PCP about it if the pain specialist didn't want to prescribe narcotics, or about the Toradol shots. They can give that to you during flares, you don't have to go to a pain specialist to get Toradol.

Last edited by neveragain444; 03-02-2011 at 07:03 AM.

 
Old 03-03-2011, 08:23 AM   #13
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

Well my primary dr refuses to give me anything at all, so I called my pain specialist and all they are willing to give me is 800mg of ibprofin...yeah thanks like that will help! And this jerk tells his nurse that since he thinks its injured nerves or nerve damage that pain meds wont even help! I said they are the only thing that has helped! And I was told that if this doesn't help, which im sure it wont they will not do anything else for me and to just tough it out until I see the surgeon...yeah thanks I might as well take some aspirin! What a joke! No one wants to deal with me let alone help me so they just keep passing me off to the next doctor! I might as well just become a junkie buying meds off the street! It would probably be easier!

 
Old 03-03-2011, 09:09 AM   #14
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

I'm sorry you are having all these problems with doctors in addition to the problems caused by your pain.

May I ask where you are located in Wisconsin -- general area, of course? It may be that you will need to go to a larger metropolitan area to find someone who can help you. Doctors are very afraid of prescribing drugs these days.

 
Old 03-03-2011, 09:17 AM   #15
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Re: Dr. refuses to give me pain meds for chronic back pain! help!

[QUOTE=tetonteri66;4697976]I'm sorry you are having all these problems with doctors in addition to the problems caused by your pain.

May I ask where you are located in Wisconsin -- general area, of course? It may be that you will need to go to a larger metropolitan area to find someone who can help you. Doctors are very afraid of prescribing drugs these days.[/QUOTE]

 
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