Glimmer of hope
I was seen at a new pain clinic yesterday. I was exhausted from testing that included the MMPI and was told that it was not indicated that I see the Pain Medicine Psychologist as was previously thought. I guess I answered the questions in a positive light as to the effect of my illness on my mental health.
I was seen by the Director of the Program, a pain medicine physician who went over my case in detail and agreed that I am not a candidate for PT or massage or any other new conventional treatments. He also was concerned that I have had adverse reactions to 3 of the 5 pain medicine classifications. He did offer to try me on Morphine but as I expressed that I am reluctant to try as I am afraid that exposure at this point may make me less a candidate should I ever have to have a pain medicine for a surgical intervention or terminal illness, I would not want to take a chance that I may not be adequately medicated in that event (I know that at some point I will be facing a valve replacement surgery in the future.) He agreed that my hesitation was a sound judgement based on my history.
He also mentioned looking into an implantable neurostimulator and if I decided to go that route, he would help with getting that set up with a qualified physician. I understand from my reading they can be either a medication dosing pump or a nerve blocking type, both of which carry many risks and are only rated for a 50% pain reduction in those that are successful.
I had a list of dozens of medication trials that have failed and we also discussed the nature of that problem as it relates directly to my care plan. I was prepared for the "not much we can do for you spiel" and I got it as I expected. He seemed genuinely concerned and stated that he could not believe that I had not already been approved for disability some years ago. He offered to write a letter on my behalf to the judge assigned to my ALJ hearing set for next month. I left with no return slated unless I decide on one of the two alternatives I have mentioned.
I was glad to have the opportunity to voice my preference to suffer in silence rather than to be medicated to the point that I could not appreciate the world around me.
Even though it was a stressful ordeal and as expected, no medical alternative for my pain problem was achieved; I at least feel that my condition was once again validated and that as I have been fighting for recognition of my disability; it was given. I at least have that to be thankful for. Even though I had gone to another facility reluctantly, I am glad that I heard it once more. Now I will look no further, but accept what has happened to me with calm reserve and try to just make the best of it. I will continue to read and try to stay up on any new developments but I will not seek out another to only hear the same.
The searching for an answer is almost as stressful as the pain and limitations one has had to endure. I will accept a good day with open arms and try to just keep a positive outlook during the bad ones. At least now I can rest easy knowing I have given it my best shot.
Thanks for listening and sharing all your info and suggestions.