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    Old 12-20-2009, 02:45 PM   #1
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    Can't find good doctors

    My primary doc who has been caring for me in regards to pain management for many years has told me that the organization that he works under has told him that they do not want him to care any longer for pain patents. I'm assuming because of the scares of the FDA going after doctors, even when a doctor treats appropriately according to the condition. So I am now left, scared to death of not being treated appropriately and effectively for my multiple, very severe, pain conditions. I am too ill and in too much pain to go through anything more, let alone having to endure the process of trying to find a good, competent, compassionate, pain management doctor and one who understands the severity of my multiple conditions and most concerned of whether or not a treatment effectively controls my pain and with side effects that are acceptable, rather than whether it has addictive properties or not. I've heard horror stories and know that I just can't go through any of that and need to be able to continue to live with my progressive and horribly painful conditions. My heart can't take anymore and cannot take going through times of uncontrolled pain again, especially with the aggressive progressive nature of my conditions. (Besides having multiple severe spinal conditions, I have an aggressive form of progressive small fiber neuropathy that has progressed to my entire body- It's constant and unbearable!)

    Please, where can I get names of good pm doctors? Any forums always put a stop to members giving of good doctor's names, and the websites that are supposed to give ratings, only give limited info, especially if you don't have monies to pay to subscribe to...and even then, most of the doctors you need to know about aren't listed or not sufficient info about. Please help.

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    Old 12-20-2009, 03:19 PM   #2
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    Re: Can't share good doctors here, then where? Please help!

    I am sorry that you have to once again struggle to find a decent doctor to care for your pain. Your state has a strange system for taking care of patients in your situation. I can only suggest you google PM clinics in PA. it brings up all your cities and a doc/clinic for each city. Unfortunately all the states seem to be going to this crazy PM system and I was going to suggest you go to a pain clinic at one of your public health hospitals but it seems your state doesn't have public health hospitals. Generally a public health care hospital see more complicated cases such as yourself and is inclined to medicate accordingly. I am so sorry you have to go through this just to get good manage pain relief. The government has made it so impossible for doctors to treat their pain patients with adequate coverage. good luck in your search.

    Old 12-20-2009, 03:55 PM   #3
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    Re: Can't share good doctors here, then where? Please help!

    Dear Rach,
    I'm so sorry about your suffering. If I were in your shoes, I'd look for the nearest teaching university hospital, look up the phone number for their pain clinic and get in to see someone.
    I know that the University of Pennsylvania in Philly has excellent doctors, as does the Hershey Hospital. I don't know where in PA you are,so I don't know specifically who to tell you to call, but I'd start with a teaching hospital. You'll have to do some leg work, but I think it will be worth it in the end. The doctors at teaching hospitals are tops in their fields. They're generally trained in the latest techniques, and see all kinds of cases. Quite often, other doctors will send their "problem" cases to these doctors.
    I'd go straight to the top with one of these doctors.
    Let me know what I can do to help.

    Old 12-21-2009, 01:49 AM   #4
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    Re: Can't share good doctors here, then where? Please help!

    Thank you all so much for your quick replies. I live in a small town that has no pain management doctors, and just to see my primary doc I have to travel almost an hour. I live in south central PA. To the West of me- I am about 2 hours from Pittsburgh. To the East of me- about 2 hours from Hershey. To the south of me- about 3 hrs from Baltimore. To the north of me- I'm about 1+ hrs from State College. In order to see a good doctor and who will care about treating my pain effectively, I am willing to make the necessary travel arrangements to get me there. But from what I've heard about PM doctors/clinics, for their patients that they write pain medication prescriptions for, they require their patients to be seen at their office/clinic every month to every 2 months. I'm not sure if this is true or not but the further away that I'd need to travel, the more difficult it would be to have to be seen at closer intervals, especially in the winter months.
    Does anyone know of a competent and compassionate doctor, whom is not afraid to treat as needed with strong medications that work, and one within a doable distance of me?

    Due to the aggressive progressing nature of my conditions and the high dosage of medication that I have been increased to over the years, am I right to be scared that a new doctor may have a problem writing this amount of pain medication for a new patient? I'm so scared that I will be allowed to suffer in my pain, especially hearing about the widespread ignorance of chronic severe pain and the high % of insufficient pain control treatment, due in large part, to fear of addiction. It's so very bad that I'm sick of worry, as I know that I can't tolerate the amount of pain from my conditions. I'm so exhausted from the many years of dealing with my pain, and even after getting finally, a medication that helps me to tolerate it, there is still an amount of pain that I must endure, along with the times that, for whatever reasons, are more difficult getting under control even with the break-through medication, and these all add up to exhaustion dealing with it all. I'm sure you all understand what I'm talking about. This has caused me to be unable to tolerate any amount of added pain, and to be allowed to suffer again with treatments that don't adequately control the majority of the constant severe pain, I just couldn't handle it. This has me so terribly scared and why I so much need to know that I can see a doctor that will understand and who will not let me be in that kind of pain again, not even for a minute. My heart just can't take anymore, as it's been so stressed from all the years of what I've already gone through. When my pain gets out of control, even for just a short amount of time, I can't handle it anymore, physically or mentally.


    Thank you for your understanding and help.

    Last edited by mod-anon; 12-21-2009 at 05:28 AM. Reason: Please keep these Boards anonymous

    Old 12-21-2009, 07:15 AM   #5
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    Re: Can't share good doctors here, then where? Please help!

    I'm so sorry you're in this position. However, I just have to comment on what I'm perceiving you to be saying. It sounds like you have been through some procedures before, they didn't work, and you don't want to do them again. You simply want to find a doctor who will continue you on the meds you're on and not expect you to participate in any other part of pain management. I'm afraid that's going to be hard - if not impossible - to find. Almost all PM doctors are going to expect you to try things to fix or permanently reduce your pain, while giving you medications, which are doing nothing to fix the underlying problem - just masking the pain. So I'm afraid my suggestion is going to be to try to change your attitude and go in with an open mind - even if they suggest trying something that you've already tried and it didn't work - every doc wants to do their own procedures to make sure it's done right. If they want you to go to PT AGAIN, you have to go. Now, this is assuming you have insurance. If you don't, that puts you in a very tough spot. I just wanted to comment that if you go into an appointment expecting the doc to write you narcotic prescriptions, but you are unwilling to do anything else he suggets, I'm afraid that relationship will not last long. I know it's hard. I know! I've had 3 discograms (very painful) b/c each doc wanted to do their own. I've done 2 years of PT. Over 15 injections. Anyway, I just wanted to throw that out there.

    And I agree about the teaching hospitals - best places to go. I'm so sorry you're in this position. I wish you the best in the future.


    Old 12-21-2009, 11:20 AM   #6
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    Re: Can't share good doctors here, then where? Please help!

    Dear ThreeBadDiscs (Soapies777, please see bottom of this post)
    Thank you for your reply/comments. Though I'm sure with sincerity and heart, you say them without understanding my particular situation. However, please know that I still appreciate the time you have taken to make them. I wish it was as simple as needing to change my attitude toward other treatments beyond medications. I would love for there to be another treatment besides medications, as I've always been one to be against any medications if at all possible or anything else that would work first. To be so dependent on anything, yet alone a drug, I absolutely hate! Although I still hold out hope that one day there will be advancements made and another option beyond medication will be made available to me and others like me, sadly the current situation is that I've been told by every doctor/specialist that my only option, at least at this point, is medications to treat the symptoms/pain, and for good reasons, which I won't go into here.
    But in the time that my conditions have so aggressively progressed, I've been fortunate to have had my primary doc care for me in regards to my treatment, with the specialists from the larger teaching hospitals agreeing with this treatment. (Unfortunately, these teaching hospitals are not close and a great hardship to travel, and therefore not able to be seen by for ongoing treatment, but rather just for testing, diagnosing, and the like). But after all I've heard about PM clinics, and some of these doctors attitudes, I'm very frightened. As you've suggested may be the problem, I am not concerned that they will want to try different types of treatments beyond medications, as they will not try them on me, this much I know. However, I am concerned that they will want to try their own medication concoctions, which after many years, especially since the fast progressiveness of my conditions, they've been tried, and either failed, allergic to, or the side effects not acceptable, nor reasonable to accept, especially when one's body and overall health has already been greatly compromised.

    If a doctor doesn't care about what has finally been found to work, for what the specialists call, an extremely complicated case due to the details of my particular case, and doesn't care about what causes me additional illness, or risky to my already very ill body and overall well being, then this is not a doctor that can care for me. If I went into the details of my situation you may very well understand, but to do so would give too much information. It's because of these things that I come to this board, in hopes to get a name of a good doctor whom has the experience of dealing with complex cases, whom is competent, and whom has compassion. Both a good doctor and a good human being. Has confidence, but not on some ego trip, and one who will take into account what the most up to date research/studies have found to be most effective for my conditions and not be trapped in old ways of thinking, and of course, one whom can appreciate what has already been found to be effective and in good and acceptable balance in regards to any side effects from...and the goal of pain management.
    I know these good doctors are out there, as I've heard of them. My need for help is trying to locate one that is within a doable distance of me. I am at the point of not being able to be without effective treatment for even one day, one hour, or one minute. My conditions and resultant pain is now progressed to a degree that, without effective pain control of, I could not tolerate, could not breath, as it literally takes my breath.

    . It's not just the torturous pain in itself, although it alone is enough, but together with my broken body after the years of what it has been put through and forced to endure, that would not allow me to continue on without effective pain relief from. I have lived through many years of severe pain, and in my latter years, intolerable pain. There is a difference. Not to make light of any pain, as any pain that is ongoing and/or constant, is too much pain to be acceptable. But I have learned that pain can always be worse than what one thinks at the time is the ultimate pain. I wish I haven't been through what I have to understand this. I need a doctor who has a good understanding of, not just severe pain and the need to effectively control, but pain that absolutely cannot be tolerated.

    Last edited by Administrator; 12-22-2009 at 01:43 AM. Reason: read and follow the posting rules in the FAQ

    Old 12-22-2009, 09:12 PM   #7
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    Re: Can't find good doctors

    Another suggestion would be to ask your primary doctor. Since he knows of the complicated situation you are in, maybe he can refer you to another good doctor and/or pm facility. Maybe he can get his staff to get you in somewhere quick and until then he can continue to treat you until you are seen by a new doctor. Unfortunately for many, pm clinics have long waiting lists', 6-8 months!! At your last visit, did he say he would no longer treat you, meaning you can not come back? If so, thats very unethical in my opinion. To just leave you out in the cold with nothing!!!! Doctors' do have an oath "to cause no harm" and if he has already "released" you without any kind of plan, I would personally express my feelings about that to him. Maybe I am jumping the gun but I just do not understand how doctors can sleep at night knowing they did this to their patients. I understand if they are changing their policies but at the very least your dr should get you in somewhere else before they stop your treatment. If you will run out of meds before you are seen by a new dr, you would go into withdrawls and he would be causing you harm by not continuing to prescribe you meds.

    I do understand some doctors like to do their own tests and methods before they settle you on a med, but if your case is as complicated as you say it is (not that I am doubting you) and you are on lots of meds, I find it hard to believe that a new doctor will not prescribe it to you, knowing you would suffer from withdrawals. Like if you are on the patch, they are not going to put you on tramadol or something soooo much weaker. Maybe I am wrong, but I just dont see a doctor doing this to someone, especially if you have been taking the same meds for years. I guess it happens...

    I really hope you find a good dr to treat you. Good luck
    Take Care

    Old 12-23-2009, 04:39 PM   #8
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    Re: Can't find good doctors

    Perhaps find a reputable hospital in Pittsburgh that is known for excellent treatment and see if they have any Pain Medicine physicians on staff. Do you actively treat with any other kind of physician who can perhaps get you a referral?
    Rt thumb fusion '13. R&L thumb arthroplasty '12 ; RT TKR & Bilat CTS' 11. Fusions: L5-S1('87), L4-S1('93), C5-C7('06), L3-S1('10), C4-C5('13). C5-C7 foraminotomy '08

    Old 12-18-2011, 03:04 PM   #9
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    Re: Can't find good doctors

    Im looking for pain doctor in pittsburgh area if you can find any doctor names please let me no and if i find any i will let you no ok thanks

    Old 12-19-2011, 01:14 AM   #10
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    Re: Can't find good doctors

    EDIT - Just noticed this thread is 2 years old. sorry....
    080807-Cervical-Stim~071707-ACDF-C5-C7 w/instrumentation/bone graft~'07/06 Lumber instrum. removed 05/04-Fusion(DDD/Collapsed Disc L5-S1)08/99-Microdisectomy(Herniated Disc) ~Lupus/EDS,Migraine

    Last edited by Fiona_Jo; 12-19-2011 at 01:15 AM.

    Old 12-31-2011, 05:33 AM   #11
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    Re: Can't find good doctors

    I am in a town if 10,000 people with a couple close neighboring towns and there isn't on dr in this whole area that will treat any one...ANYONE...with chronic pain. Portland, Or is the closest big city and even finding help there is difficult. Especially if you have state insurance!! I can call gp Dr's but it's 2 hours each way to Portland and back to go basically interview these different Dr's until I find one that isn't afraid to treat someone that is suffering in pain...the pain of the drive and the cost of gas...and the time is ridiculous!! Any ideas? Any advise?
    Thank you

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