I live in North Alabama, moved here from N.Florida. I am originally from here but I haven't lived here in over 20 years. I have five herniated disc, one degenerative disc @ T-3 that is gone, Ollier's Disease (I have cysts in my pelvic bones and spine) knee problems, rheumatory arthritis. I hurt all the time. I am currently under the care of a kind dr in Montgomery but I have to drive round trip 400 miles once a month to see him. I really need to find a dr closer to home. I would really appreciate any help that you can give me. I don't know who else to ask about a doctor in this area. I take 50 mg of methadone a day for pain. It has helped more than any of the other meds over the years. I have tried most of them. Anyway, if you know of a doctor, I would be so grateful to you for your help. I just don't know how much longer I can keep driving to Montgomery. Please help. Thanks you:)
Wishing you all pain free days...
Your best chance of finding good Pain Management would be to ask the Doctor you're currently seeing to refer you to a closer Doctor. Otherwise, you'll just have to get that trusty phone book out and start making calls.
Thanks for your advice. You'd think it would be that easy. When I moved to the beach from Montgomery, I was driving back and forth then too. Finally after a year my pharmacist asked me why I had a doctor in Montgomery and not in Destin. I told him, I couldn't find one at the beach. I had called around and no one would accept new patients. I guess after watching me for a year he decided I was okay because he then told me that his wife had a pain management doctor and he was great. So, I went to him for eight years. Now I'm back to Alabama, and in North Alabama just for a primary care doctor they want you to send in your insurance information, tell them all your medical problems over the phone and then they have an office meeting to decide if they will to make you an appointment or not. I had three doctors offices tell me that they are not willing to see me because of my Ollier's disease. Now these are not doctors that I visited, these are doctors I called to make a new patient appointment so I could go in, take my records, discuss my health. Apparently here, that's not the way it is. The protocol is, call, they take your name, medicines, conditions and then the office staff decides if you are worthy of an appointment. Back in the 90's I actually worked to get the HIPPA Bill passed into law. I know that this is not appropriate and against the privacy act that I worked so very hard to get passed. Of course, the HIPPA law was not really for privacy it was for accessible, afforable healthcare that was turned into a privacy issue. So, as ironic as it is, I am stuck driving 400 miles, once a month to my doctor in Montgomery who has known me for over 20 years. My family doctor when I grew up here, has retired and so has his partner. You would think it would be as easy as referring someone to another doctor but apparently it is not. I was hoping that maybe on this forum I could reach one person that could help me. I still hold that hope. Thank you Mollyrae for your advice. I appreciate it.
Wishing you all pain free days,
Welcome to the Pain Mangement Form. I am so sorry to hear your story. Four hundred miles is a terrible drive once a month.
Is this the way physicians normally practice in your home state? Wow, that almost seems discriminatory to me. So you give all your medical information and than they decide if they are willing to treat you? I have never heard of that before. I guess I have lived a sheltered life in Wisconsin. I feel so bad for you!
I know that we have members that reside in Alabama. Sometimes ppl come and go or they are here once a month or every few weeks. I encourage you to keep your post fresh or re-post every week or so if you do not obtain a helpful response soon.
I am sorry that I can not be of more assistance but I do wish you the best of luck. There has to be a better solution for you. Hang in there and take care.
Thanks so much for your help. Apparently this is the new norm here in the north part of Alabama. I see my physician in Montgomery but I have been a patient in that practice for over twenty years. I lived in Montgomery for a number of years, so when I moved back to N. Alabama and was having so much trouble I called my old doctor in Montgomery, bless his heart! He was happy to have me back in their practice. It's just a long drive every month. It's sad this is what our health care system has come to. I was floored when I called to make an appointment here and they wanted my information. A receptionist wanted my private health information so she could talk to her office manager and decide if I was worthy of an apptointment. I refuse to get started on that issue again. I just wanted to thank you for your kind support. Maybe someone will see my post and help me. If not, I will keep driving until I find a another good doctor closer to my home. I drove over a year from Florida until my pharmacist there finally told me about his wife's pain management doctor. Maybe the same will happen here. I normally find my physician's by word of mouth and they have all been great to me. If Florida wasn't so far, I would drive there....lol. I just wanted to thank you again for being kind enough to take time out of your day to help me. It means the world to me.
I have to tell you about a program that I watched about a year ago. It was on 20/20.
They did a segment on the ramip use of pain medications in the "hills" or the Southern States like Alabama, Virginia, Tenn. ect....Apperantly it was a huge problem and the Doctors in those states started changing the way the prescribed medication. Folks all over the area were hooked on opiates and the cost to buy them on the streets was astounding. It was an interesting show to say the least. Maybe this is why you're having such a hard time....I don't know. I do know that from what I see here on MedHelp, it is hard to find pain management in the south.
I hope that you can find someone a little closer...at least you have one and that's a good thing :)
Hello. Thanks for your comment. I missed that 20/20. I have grown up in the Southeast and while I may be extremely naive, I just had no idea there was any type of problem like you mention. Birminham is home to UAB which is one of the top medical schools in the nation. Which could also be a reason it's so hard to find a doctor to help you. A lot of doctors are just out of school and leary of helping any one that is in pain. I had two very serious car wrecks that just really have changed my life in every way. I was working when I had both wrecks in Montgomery, AL. They have the world's WORST drivers. Anyway, the point I'm trying to make is that my first wreck was in 1992. I have been seeing neurologists, orthopedic surgeons, etc ever since then. I had back surgery in 1994. The doctors that I saw only prescribed pain meds right after my wreck or when I was having tests right before surgery. They were always very strict with the meds. After many tests, sleepless nights, life that didn't resemble mine at all anymore, my dr referred me to a pain management clinic in Montgomery through one of the large hospitals there. Anyway, when I started there, my life changed in a good way. I had some of my life back and I realized it wasn't necessary to hurt to the point of tears, no sleep, missing work, alienating friends, not having any fun in my life at all. That to me describes what pain has done to me in my lifetime and that is in a minimal way. Please don't misunderstand me, because just pain medicine doesn't help me with all those things. Growing as a person, realizing nothing will ever "fix" me completely again, exercise, physical theraphy and accupuncture does too. I have two sons in college and a nine year old son. I love them more than anything. They give me the desire to make myself a better person so they are proud of me. While I have gone way off point of why I started writing this to you, it's because in all these years living in these southern states, I've never been embarrassed about living here until now. It's embarassing to me that I can't find a professional to help me without driving 400 miles round trip. I only hope that doctors would have more faith in people. I'm sure some people dissapoint them but all in all, people are good. Now, don't misunderstand me, I recently wanted to drive over to several of these offices and give these small minded people a piece of mine, but then that would have made me, like them. So I will try to find help in other ways, as I have learned to do over the years. Thanks Mollyrae for your enlightenment. It really helped me.
Wishing you a wonderful weekend,
That's what it come to as you said, "growing up as a person." I say "accepting the cards life has dealt you." It doesn't matter how you say it but in my opinion it does matter that you get to the spot in this journey through chronic pain that you understand and accept that "nothing is going to fix" us.
Keep looking dear heart. You all wish you well.
I just wanted to thank you for kind words. Also to Mollyrae, thanks for yours too. I will keep trying and driving....lol:) In time, hopefully things will change. I really do appreciate your help. In more southern terms....Thanks Y'all!!!
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