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Old 06-25-2008, 10:51 PM   #1
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Did your insurance company require you to have a psych eval?

My husband is scheduled to have the spinal cord stimulator but before the trial period the Spinal clinic he goes to is requiring their patients to have a psychiatric evaluation for depression. Did any of you have that as a requirement of having the trial then the implant of the stimulator? No one seems to know why this is a requirement and when we made the appt to see the psychiatrist even they didn't exactly know except to say they all do it. Have any of you heard or had to do this?

 
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Old 06-26-2008, 07:25 AM   #2
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Re: Did your insurance company require you to have a psych eval?

if you actually go to the medtronics website,it does explain just why this is actually needed. that requirement for the eval actually comes recommended by the actual manufacturer and not the ins co. if you recieved something from your ins co on this it was most likely because it IS a requirement set forth by medtronics prior to placing one in any patient. they would probably be aware of this or contacted by whoever would be placing it and simply followed thru on that recommendation.

the exam kind of gauges just what the overall expectations of the patient actually are(are they thinking this will be the cure all or more realistic about the expectations and limitations of this device) and if they would be able to really handle the changes that come along with just having this placed. it IS kind of a bigger deal for some people than others. this also gives the patient time to really ask and hear all about what is in store once this gets placed too. its just once that gets placed even if you remove that stim itself,the trodes will always be there since they cannot remove them. they are kind of cemented in so to speak? this will also take away the ability to ever have an MRI done in the future too. that was one of the bigger drawbacks for me. i just need that level of monitoring done on a more regular basis. becasue the metal will be there there can also be some limitations on any types of thermal(heated) types of possible therepies he may want to try too. i know because of my titanium plate and screws in my c spine any thermal or deep infrared therepies are a no no now for me(the metal just conducts and radiates heat). its all a very highly individual decision to have this type of pain management done and used,ya know? personally,i do think the eval is a good thing? Marcia
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Last edited by feelbad; 06-26-2008 at 07:31 AM.

 
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Old 06-26-2008, 09:27 AM   #3
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Re: Did your insurance company require you to have a psych eval?

Thank you both for your replies it has been very helpful to us. I am also very glad to hear this is a normal thing to do as this clinic seems to be so disorganized as far as what each doctor is telling us to do. Some of the docs do the mini psych eval and not send you to an outside consult and some just want the outside consult. We thought we had done a pretty good research on the subject but always something throws us a curve ball. At any rate whatever they want to do is fine with us since the ultimate goal is the stimulator with hopefully at least some relief from medicines so thank you again for taking the time to give us the information.

 
Old 06-28-2008, 07:13 AM   #4
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Re: Did your insurance company require you to have a psych eval?

Yep, It's medtronics guideline,not the insurance company. I took the MMPI and saw a psychologist for an eval prior to my pump trial. They also recomend using a plecebo during pump trials and I have met people that have been denied pumps because they reported a positive response from a plecebo dose .

Screening is a good thing, not a bad thing. It's expensive invasive surgery and screening helps prevent implanting pumps and stims into people that have a greater psych component to their pain.

Good luck, Dave

 
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