I was wondering...has anyone experienced being told or treated as if pain was all in their head (i.e. imagined and not real) and that their pain is not really a result of any physical problem and also later find out this is not actually the case? I have have this many times and wondered how common this is? I later find out I actually have a hip problem (congenital from birth) that is causing all my pain.
I have not personally, but I know a few folks who were made to feel like this; like they were being a hypochondriac,etc., and by family members too! This can be so cruel, to have someone whom you care about and trust their opinion, to make you feel like you are over-exaggerating or being a whiner.
The person in question was not exaggerating and had a serious problem it turned out.
You know your own body and when somethings not quite right; seek out the proper medical professional for a complete examination. Try not to be influenced by anyone. I would just keep my business from that negative party and to myself in the future.
The question should probably be "Who HASN'T experience this?" When you are searching for help, this is the worst way to be made to feel. This happened to me during what I found out later was an acute gall bladder attack. I was told in the ER there was nothing wrong with me, that I was obviously drug seeking and they sent me home throwing up and crying in pain. Two days later I saw a surgeon who told me I had one of the most diseased gall bladders he had ever seen. A day after that I had it removed.
But yeah, whether it's chronic or acute I think most of us have been treated badly whether it is family, friends or the medical community we count on to help us.
I have had this treatment from both healthcare professionals and also my dad. It feels so awful when it is your own dad actually not believing you as you automatically feel they are there to protect you and look after you as you are their child but it seems this is not always the case. This is why I do not get on with him as a real dad would not act in such a horrible way to their child. I do not speak to him much at all, only when required or he comes up to me, for fear of such rejection.
I have also been sent from accident and emergency still in pain and the triage nurse even wrote in my notes nasty stuff when all I needed was some pain relief and support. She was even going to not let me see a doctor until my mom stepped in and told her the story and about my pain and that no one else was helping me at the time. Thanks to my mom I actually at least got to speak to a doctor who wrote to my family doctor to prescribe another different painkiller (only an anti-inflammatory though!). Severe pain does not seem to be treated too well at all and I believe the news stories I have seen that state pain is undertreated. What I have noticed is that it is extremely difficult to actually be given stronger painkillers rather than just basic ones used for headaches, etc.
I, like you, have been found to have a hip condition that is actually causing this chronic pain. As soon as I heard this, it made me feel better in my head as I knew for my own piece of mind that I was not imagining it. It has taken 7 and a half years to find this out.
It seems people have been made to feel they are not in pain or are imagining it or drug seeking when really they are not and are in a lot of pain from a physical problem which is overlooked.
My thoughts for a solution to this is that such people should be made aware of this issue and there perhaps needs to be promotions on it and professionals trained to be aware of such issues so they do not carry it on and it will hopefully eventually not happen to others and be a thing of the past.
I feel like if a person says they are hurting that efforts should be made to find the source & to relief it.No one can feel another persons pain, we are talking about denying help for human suffering based on an assumption. I hope that your dad figures out that he is wrong, not because the source of the pain is found but because we all make mistakes & realizes that just because you havent experienced it doesnt mean it doesnt exist. Ive never been to Bora bora but its a very real place.
Last edited by gmak; 07-14-2013 at 02:37 PM.
The Following User Says Thank You to gmak For This Useful Post: Whynowthis (07-13-2013)
Do you know that if you were to take your pet to the Vet doctor, even your animal, if in pain, there isn't even a question, your pet will be given a pain(narcotic too)killer so the poor thing isn't suffering!
Now what does that say? it is a very sad state of affairs when an animal's pain is treated without a question and a human being's pain is questioned about validity and given some NSAID(lmao) that won't 9 times out of 10 help at all for a very cute and very painful situation, that the patient is C/O; in tears; very obviously in pain. The person is made to suffer most of the time because they are not believed and treated like a druggie!
Well my feelings are that if 99 "drug seekers" fool the ER doctor and get their narcotic treatment(shot or rx for tablets) and one who is really suffering get treated properly for their pain either via narcotic injection or tablets, than I would rather see the 99 drug addicts hornswaggle the ER doctor, than have even one real patient in dire need of pain control be denied the necessary pain control!!!!
I have a 30 year history of very complicated medical issues. I have had multiple mediports. I had a different doctor put in the last couple of ports & I really liked him-thought he was a great guy. He wasn't around for most of my medical problems-just really was called in when I had a port problem.
One day my mediport stopped working. I had been in & out of the hospital 5 times that year for infections that triggered my blood disorder. It was determined that my port had slipped out of place so they had to go in and reposition it.
After the surgery, my PCP kept talking to me about switching to this other surgeon who I had been using for some other procedures. I was resisting the switch because I really liked the surgeon who had been putting in my mediports.
Finally, my PCP told me, kind of laughing, that this surgeon had cornered him and suggested to him that he thought maybe I "liked" being in the hospital!!
My PCP told him this was definitely not the case & that he was not aware of everything I was going through. This is why my doctor was trying to get me to drop him.
Now, when I am in the hospital I vomit blood, need multiple transfusions, need daily plasmapheresis, have petechia all over my skin, have blood in my urine (even when I'm not in the hos), am in severe pain and am being considered for a bone marrow transplant. And this doctor was suggesting that I wasn't really sick!
It just irritates the heck out of me that doctors, nurses-anyone really, who doesn't know the full story passes judgement on patients and tries to make a decision that this person isn't "suffering enough" or isn't really that sick.
My PCP kind of laughed it off as ridiculous, but it really burned me up!! We go through enough, we shouldn't have to deal with others who think of themselves as judge & jury!
Last edited by SK59; 07-30-2013 at 02:19 PM.
The following user gives a hug of support to SK59: touchmenot (07-30-2013)
Oh yes for about 20 years. My disease is a somewhat rare autoimmune disease so many different areas were affected. So one day I had this complaint, the next time it was something different. For 10 of those years I was with an HMO doc, who patted me on the head, shooed me out the door and refused to make a referral. After being diagnosed, I sent for all my records and found out that when I was 19(42 now) I had a biopsy done and my disease was there right in front of them. They completely missed it. So I suffered for years needlessly and lost any chance of it going into remission.
The only time my pain was taken seriously was when I had kidney stones. I have had literally hundreds. It's a secondary issue to my disease.
What it comes down to is the doc. When my ex and I moved to another state, this time my doc was an internist and not in an HMO. So many of my systems were off that he sent me to 7 specialists and I finally got diagnosed and then shortly there after the right treatment.
I am very sensitive if my pain is questioned negatively. I found many of the doctors like to blame your symptoms on the pain meds. Ah, I had these symptoms, worse even, before I EVER started on pain management. For example, I got a new fellow with my Rheumy(it's a new fellow every 2 years) and my complaint at the time was unrelenting fatigue. I get this in flares to the point that brushing my teeth is my big venture for the entire day and that tires me out. He immediately began to blame the meds. Well then how come when I am not flaring, I don't have the fatigue to this degree? How come before I got diagnosed I could barely move???????? They never have a legit answer and usually end up dropping it.
You want to make sure you have a good medical team supporting you. I went through 3 rheumy's before I found my current one who I won't trade for the world. Same goes for my PM doc, Pulmonologist and Urologist. The rest are good and leave the PM stuff to my PM doc.
As far as family or friends. They will never understand what we go through until the time comes that they or a very close loved one goes through it. It's unfortunate but most often the case. I have gone so far as to print out some info on it and give it to them. Some read it some don't, it's no skin off my nose. But it's very important that you know your doc is in your corner.
You are so right that your doctor makes a huge difference! I have a fantastic a PCP but I always worry when some of my other doctors get involved. I see my PCP every week and he manages all my other doctors but I worry every time I have a flare & go in the hospital that he might be out of town and won't be around to know what is going on.
I also have a very rare blood disorder that is autoimmune, along with several others autoimmune issues. A lot of my doctors don't understand it but my PCP has taken the time to really do his research & takes it all very seriously. Makes everything much easier!
Having a chronic illness and being in pain is scary & frustrating. Having a healthcare partner who believes in you makes all the difference in the world!
Yes Sarah, you make a good point. No one understand being chronically ill unless they are. It IS scary and frustrating and having docs or medical staff help on your behalf makes it bareable. I can remember so many times at the beginning coming home in tears whether it was from the doc or pharmacy or whoever in the medical field who had no idea what it was like to be sick and had no compassion what so ever. Compassion isn't even a deal breaker but respect is. And God forbid anyone treat me like a druggie!!
My PCP is terrible. I need to change, but I see her so rarely and her office is like 3 miles away so it makes it easy to go in with a bladder infection or flu. Plus in a way it's good because it reminds me that I don't want to deal with docs with attitude.
Thanks very much for all of your messages and I apologise for my really late reply.
I agree having a great team of doctors and other healthcare professionals is vital and I have to say I have had more not believe me or dismiss me than I have help me. I have had them write very arrogant, assumptive, uncompassionate and even quite offensive comments in my medical notes despite behaving as if they understand to my face. Their comments in my notes have stopped me getting treated compassionately and instead being dismissed still in great pain with no hope. Even my new pain doctor or his staff have forgotten me - he forgot to ring me at his set telephone date after doing me a nerve block which has not worked and am still waiting, after a month and a few days of waiting since the date of the supposed scheduled phone call to check if it has helped. I also feel genuine people really need helping a lot more than they are, even if it does mean other non-genuine people do get given stuff. There is no excuse for human suffering especially when the medicine and painkillers are available. It took me a long long time to get painkillers that were strong. However, they do not take my pain away and I continue to struggle on a daily basis. I really do hope they find a real solution.
I have found my dad never realises he is wrong. He never apologises to anyone. He thinks he can just tell me it's in my head or that I do not deserve help when in great pain or just stand there looking at me when I have fallen down the stairs and am hurting. He never helps me but I overheard him say to someone who he and our family do not know 'I look after my family as I am a modern gentleman'. I sat there thinking 'if that was so why does he not help me and show some compassion'. He knows I am struggling or suffering and clearly saw me fall down stairs and just stared at me but ignored me, never asking if I am ok or rushing in to help me in case I had injured myself badly and I needed help to get up. He does not have any of that natural compassion most 'normal' people would have. My dad's negative attitude resulted in me spending a lot of my time wondering if I was imagining it and I cried a lot as a result of his lack of help and compassion and no hope anywhere to be found as it was 'all in your head' according to him. When he gets ill or injured he expects me and others to be sympathetic to him and says nobody cares when clearly he is more cared for (bandaids applied by his wife if he cuts himself when clearly he can do them himself, etc) then he does to the family. He even makes his injury more obvious when I or a member of the family go near him or he walks past them - he says 'ow' or stumbles. I cannot take him seriously or respect him as a real father as he has failed to be that role model I needed or the father that cares for everyone or financially supports them, etc. We are now broke because of him giving up work voluntarily for years (about a decade +) and instead I am financially having to prop this family up mostly and all I ask is for him and family members in general (none of them are, except mom is quite a bit better) is to be more compassionate, yet that is apparently too much to ask
of them and he even feels I owe him all my money, yet he never tries to get a job, making excuses for why - i.e. saying they do not want him, he's too old, he does not want to speak to contractors as he is tired, or that they should be chasing him after he has emailed them. He only wants them to email and does not answer them on the phone. He even got very angry with me and my sister for doing the right thing and answering it and fetching him to answer it as it was a contractor wanting to speak to him about his skills and experience.
I agree, healthcare professionals do not know us and therefore should not judge us and make every effort instead to treat our pain efficiently. I have heard some people being treated like they liked being in hospital when they were actually really ill. This is what hospital is really for - when people are ill and yet when people are really ill it seems they are not taken seriously. What would hospitals be for if people who were ill did not come and be treated and made to feel better? I have to say I have the opinion that if some of these so called healthcare professionals do not like dealing with situations which require compassion then why don't they find another job? This would leave plenty of space and opportunities for those caring healthcare professionals to take the job and make a great difference to people's lives. I feel there should be an empathy and compassion test to weed out those that are emotionally suitable or unsuitable. Hopefully such issues would be rectified. We certainly do have enough to cope with, without being treated unsympathetically by the very people meant to help us.
I have also had doctors, particularly GPs, refuse to refer me. The worst GP I ever had yet even stated that it was me who 'thought' I had a hip problem on the referral when she did finally, after dragging her feet for ages and having to be reminded constantly, refer me to a hip specialist and the consultant did actually find a hip disorder causing my pain! A conjenital one that I had from birth too and a labral tear and severe pain that he had never seen before, due to it being left so long. I too have had and still do get doctors blaming other new symptoms on my meds and I think what happens if it is not and it turns out to be something worse? Doctors seem to look for the easy way out...
It is definitely scary as I have ended up in a and e because doctors did not take me seriously and rushed me out of the door before even examining me - one never even got up off his chair, just swerling around on it. I respect a and e and should not have to go but have no choice when not cared for properly by those that are meant to. Yet, even a and e triage nurse was going to throw me out saying there was nothing she could do for pain but thankfully my mother reasoned with her (as the nurse was huffing and puffing saying she was tired and fed up from the day's work - my answer is they should take a different job then) and she very reluctantly let me see a young lady doctor who agreed I had Ehlers Danlos syndrome and gave me some useful information about it and a note to my GP to prescribe diclofenac. However, they did not give me any morphine or strong enough painkillers.
I hope you all have better times and get better treatment for your pain as it is the least we can be given. Vets certainly do treat dogs better. I have a dog and he does get immediate pain relief, yet I get dismissed? How's this fair? It makes me wonder 'are humans less important than animals'? Animals are as important as humans but humans are not less important as we too have feelings and feel pain and need pain relief that is adequate.