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New Dr. refuses to fill meds... any recourse?
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New Dr. refuses to fill meds... any recourse?

I have a new doctor and she has referred me to pain management (happy about that) in the meantime she has said she is "not comfortable" filling my current medications. The PM office has a long waiting period and the medications I am on clearly state not to stop them abruptly... which is exactly what will happen. I don't know what to do... I don't want to tick off the new doc or mess up my chances for the pain management referral... I wish I wasn't on any of this crap... does anyone know what I can do?  Is it legal for a doctor to just leave you off cold turkey?
I take 60mg morphine sulfate 2x a day and 4- 10/325 lortab for break thru pain a day. Because of fibromyalgia I also take a muscle relaxer so I can walk more than 15" without cramping up.
It is so hard to deal with chronic pain ... but to have the rug pulled out from under you and your life is callous and inhumane. Does anyone have any suggestions?
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Avatar_f_tn
Did she give you any reason why she wouldn't prescribe any longer?  Did you do anything to make her think you were not taking the meds as directed?  Was this doctor your primary and will you be seeing her in any capacity in the future?

I think if it were me, I would get the date for the appointment with the pain clinic.  Then I would call the doctor and explain that you have an appointment for the pain clinic (and ask to be put on the cancelation list and let her know that to) and tell her that you will run out of your medication on such-and-such a date and could she prescribe what you needed until that appointment.  I don't think most doctors would want to see their patients go into withdrawal.

I know someone who was seeing their primary for pain but as it became clear she was not getting better, she was referred to a pain clinic.  Similar situation as yours, I think.  But the doctor said she would, just this once, prescribe the amount needed to get her to her appointment.

It's very difficult to find a good doctor and good pain management team.  Good luck.  And let us know what happens.
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1323549_tn?1276181747
My surgeon said the same thing but he kept refilling my Rx until i got into the pain clinic. He said he was uncomfortable because he wasnt sure about the long term effects. Maybe a similiar situation. He was also a family friend i dont know if that helped me or not but he was considerate in that sense. Hope all works out for you! keep us posted ;)
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Avatar_f_tn
My PCP did the same thing.  I had to get her to fill one last time before my appointment and she did.  Later on, though, when I was moving I needed them to fill a script of Klonopin for me for sleep and they refused because they wanted me to see the psychiatrist that *I* asked for the referral for.  I was in the middle of a move at Christmas time and had to scramble to find a psychiatrist.  
Point being:  Doctors are usually accomodating, but not always and there's no law that says they have to refill your scripts, even if you're not supposed to stop it.  You may need to ration your meds until you can get in with the PM, it's better than running out.
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Avatar_f_tn
This is a brand new doctor. I went to my previous physician with 12 year old son on the 12th of May. We had  appointments right after each other. Everything was fine at the doctor... did my drug screen, of course it was the same as usual... meds were refilled.  Then a week and a half later I get dismissal letters from his practice?  They were issued on the 19th ... I have no clue why... maybe insurance issues?  
So I found a new doctor... this new doctor is the one refusing to bridge the gap of time between I am seen and treated at the pain management clinic and now.
What the new doc says is she is "not comfortable" prescribing my pain meds... I called the state today and was assigned a case manager and called the parent hospital for this new doctor (she works out of the residency clinic for the larger hospital)... The parent hospital has patient advocates and I intend to get one :)
This makes me angry ... I understand her reluctance to jump on board with ALL my meds but to leave a patient with no care while waiting for an appointment for pain management stands against the hyppocratic oath which says FIRST, do no harm.
Thanks for being here and listening :)
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1301089_tn?1290670171
You need to find out why you were dropped from the first practice.  This could be relevant as to why the new doctor is taking this stance. It could also compromise your care at the pain management clinic.  

You shouldn't be dropped with no explanation.  Particularly if there have never been irregularities in your pain treatment.  You definitely need to find out why.
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Avatar_f_tn
I began the tapering off last week. I just had a feeling things were going to go this way. It has been hard. Though, I think I am thru the worst of it and am starting to feel better ... but still in a lot of pain ... I did manage a shower yesterday...I've lost a few pounds (that's a nice bonus!) since going upstairs to eat hasn't been an option. I did eat some mellow food today along with a phenergan (was nauseaus but knew I had to eat).

I guess it is just a new journey with every new doctor. I just wish they could understand that their decisions mean complete life changes for their chronic pain patients.
With hope ... because that's all I have,
TJ
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1301089_tn?1290670171
I am glad to hear you're starting to feel better.  But to have to endure an interruption of your pain medications is awful.  It never should have happened.

I realize you aren't up to it right now but I really think when you feel better, maybe wait until you see your new pain management doctor, you should contact the doctor who dropped you.  Make sure your record is correct and doesn't contain anything defamatory and untrue.  And find out why you were dropped.

Keep us updated on how you're feeling.  I really hope you take Mellie's advice and ask to put on a cancellation list.  You might get in quicker.

Sara
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Hi TJ,

First I want to welcome you to the Pain Management Forum. We're  glad the you found us!!

I'm so sorry that you are having to go thru all of this. I'm wondering the very same thing that Sara is and that is that you really need to find why you were dropped from your Dr. in May. You definitely need to know the reason for it. I'm wondering if after the initial drug screen if they send it out for a more in depth test. a lot of the PM Dr. do this and therefor don't have the final result until later that week. You may have gotten a false posotive or a false negative and were dropped for that. You need to know as that would get your file Red Flagged and would cause all of the other Dr.'s to back off treating you.

Your new Dr. isn't obligated in any way to give you the medications that your old Dr. was giving you. He/she didn't prescribe them to you. Not only that but you old Dr. gave you a 30 day supply of your meds when you were dismissed and that's all that he is required to do. If he's even required to do that. Unless that was in your Pain Contract then he wasn't required to do that.

I'm really afraid that you are in a really bad position right now and I'm truly sorry for you. That's why it's so VERY important to find out from your Dr. the details of why you were dropped because you need to try to be able to protect yourself.

Unfortunately, Sara's also correct about the fact that this could very definitely effect your PM Clinic. They very well might refuse to do anything except preform procedures and not give you any narcotics, only Non-Narcotic meds.

Is there any other details that maybe you forgot about or have now found out that you could furnish so that we might be able to help you out further with some suggestions.

I hope that you will keep us updated as we are very concerned for you and the position that you have been put in.

Good luck and please keep us updated....Sherry
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1187071_tn?1279373298
I have went thru the same thing and still going thru it. I did get into a pain dr but he says he won't treat me cause I am to young.
Anyway my family dr said she woudlnt give me meds long term, she has stopped now but she did for 3 months.
Have you asked if she can give you meds til your pain dr appt? I know it takes forever to get in to see one and I went thru that too and still in the same spot.
I wish you the best
Jamie
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1152183_tn?1273015295
When a doctor says they are not comfortable refilling your meds, or flat out refuses, take a look at the policies set forth by your state government:

Directory of State Medical Boards: http://www.fsmb.org/directory_smb.html

State Statutes Database: http://www.painpolicy.wisc.edu/matrix.htm

Be sure you have copies of your medical record and make corrections where the doctor's "discomfort" may affect comments made in your permanent record. After you get things corrected, start looking for another PCP.
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Avatar_f_tn
Just here to agree with everyone else.  You without a doubt need to find out why you were dropped.  Something happened that caused that and you need to know what it is and if it is incorrect, it needs to be corrected.

Best of luck.
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Avatar_f_tn
I have been going to this pain management clinic for almost a year a have a bulged l4 l5 and a partial tethered cord I signed the pain contract and I let them do all the injections they want even th it hurts more and does not help. I work in retail and my scheduled are put out a month ahead a time my next day off is not till the weekend and my manager is on vacation I get a call Monday saying i have up to 72 hours to come in for a drug test and pill count.... ok fine but im working all those days and the store manager will not allow me the time off. So it is tues now and i have till tomorrow then next Monday I am supposed to get my refills and see my neurosurgeon...... if i dont go to the drug test wed they will drop me and im scared i wont be able to find another doc and im terrified because i heard going cold turkey on my xanax could make me have seizures.... what are my rights how can i get into another pain clinic will this black my record?
My meds are
xanax 1mg twice daily
oxy 20mg extended 2 times a day
roxy 15 mg 5x a day

I have never had a bad UA and in the past my randoms have always been on a appointment I mean who can drop their life and their kids everything to go pee in a cup and let people count their pills..... my doc is a 45 min drive away so going on my lunch is impossible too what do i do? My sister who is a nurse says xanax can kill if you stop abruptly
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1855076_tn?1337118903
I just want to suggest that you post this as a new question so you'll get good responses.  This post is rather old.(I used to be mellie4 but had to change my screen name.)  NamNam is awesome and if she was on here regularly, I'm sure would have some good suggestions, but she doesn't come on the board as often as she used to.

I'll just say it's very hard to be a chronic pain patient and adhere to the contract at times but it's something we have to do if we want to get relief from our pain with narcotics.  I understand it's hard with work and kids and being 45 minutes away makes it even more difficult, but if you don't go, then you will likely be dropped.  It's possible, though not too likely, another doctor may be understanding, but the truth is, most doctors, whether in a primary care setting or pain clinic setting (or actually, any doctor really, whether you're being treated by a surgeon, orthopedic, etc.) are going to have strict rules regarding narcotics.

Xanax should not be stopped abruptly; it needs to be tapered.  Stopping abruptly can cause seizures.  Stopping your other medications will put you into withdrawal and it is very uncomfortable.  It's likely you would find it very hard to work during the acute withdrawal.

With that in mind, maybe you should just call in sick.  I'm sure your doctor would give you a note for missing work.

Personally, I would not skip the pill count/testing.  It could be very difficult to find a new doctor who will treat your pain, and even if you do, it could take some time.

If you do get dropped and cannot find a new doctor before you run out of your script, check the Substance Abuse forum (not suggesting your an addict but you are dependent.)  They have a lot of suggestions that will ease withdrawal symptoms.

Best of luck with everything.
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