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Avatar universal

Need advice on what to tell my new doctors.

I will try to make this story/question as short and fast as I can. I apologize if I spell anything wrong, etc. but I am so upset right now. I was seeing a pain doctor in the past for disk disease and fibromyalgia who prescribed me methadone for pain. I was on 40mgs plus norco for breakthrough pain. On another note I didn't like my primary doctor so I got a new one and she suggested I use her for any prescription I needed. She was very close by and the pain doctor was 50 miles away so I thought that would be great. In the long run I ended up on a really high dose of Methadone (in the 100's) and a high dose of Norco. I loved the doctor but hated the way the office ran things so I asked her to get me an authorization for a new pain doctor who would be closer than the last one. When I saw him he prescribed me what she prescribed and I scheduled an epidural. He called her (I told him he could) and I don't know what they talked about but I got letters from both of them saying I was being dropped be each of them for breaking my pain contracts. I was going to change over to him for meds and tell the primary doctor I was going to do this but somehow everything got mixed up and nobody would let me explain. I was upset and terrified. I called my insurance company and got a new primary doctor. When I went to see her I brought all of my prescription bottles and asked if she could help me. She told me no way but she would get me a pain doctor. In the mean time I was running out of all of my meds and it was taking a long time for the authorization to go through for the pain doctor. I knew I was going to be in a world of pain so I went to a methadone clinic and explained everything. They said they didn't treat pain patients, only addicts but they said they could detox me. They only gave me a very low dose of methadone and started going down in mgs from there. I pleaded with the main office and they had mercy on me. Now I'm going to another clinic with the same company and I am on a pretty good dose of methadone. Not in the 100's but high enough to help my pain. I take Lyrica too prescribed by the primary doctor and the combination is working pretty well. The problem is, I don't think I am an addict. If the pain was to go away I don't think I would need this medication. I can't go anywhere like to visit my family because I have to be at the clinic every day to get my dose and I'm starting to get a complex. So I finally went to the new pain doctor and told him everything and he wouldn't treat me. He referred me to a Rheumatologist (sp?) and an Orthopedic surgeon who I found out doesn't even treat my conditions. I asked for another authorization for a new pain doc. and I'm waiting to see if that will go through. I made an appointment with the Rheumatologist but I can't see him until April 1st. So I am stuck at the clinic for a while. Everyone at the clinic is so very kind to me but I just would rather see a doctor for my condition. And the clinic is pretty expensive too. It's hard to afford it. I told the last pain doctor the truth and it got me nowhere. Doctors these days are terrified of the DEA. My question is what in the world do I say to these new doctors? If I don't tell them the truth they won't put me at the dose of methadone that I need. But like I said, last time the truth got me nowhere. I hate lying. Can anybody help on this? I'm caught between a rock and a hard place. Should I risk telling the truth again or just lie to them? I am a chronic pain patient stuck at a methadone clinic. I'm miserable. Somebody please help :-(
14 Responses
356518 tn?1322263642
It is very very frustrating to be in the postion your in. I understand but do not lie to the doctor ever. This will only get you back where you started.
You say you ask your doctor for a referral to the pain doctor and then you went and seen him right? I am assuming you failed to tell her you went to the new docotr and failed to tell the new doctor everything that was going on with your primary doctor.
If your seeing her for meds and then go to a new doctor and fail to tell the new doctor waht meds you got and when and then the presciptions overlap then you will be fired as a pt.
I would sit down and write down everthing that happened and why and explain your intentions to each doctor and send it registered mail. If you can atleast get them to understand what you were doing provivded it was legal you can avoid having a mark on your records as a abuser.
This is very important as other doctors will see this mark and I suspect this is why your having a hard time now.
I can't advise you to do anything other than what your doing, try and find another doctor that will treat you but always be upfront and honest.
Please know I am not accusing you of any wrong doing, I believe you just went about cahanging doctors the wrong way and it came back to haunt you.
When changing doctors its very important to disclose ALL information and what your taking and when and how much and even bring your medications with you so they can see your not abhem and have the right amount.
I am very sorry your going through this but do not give up keep looking:)
356518 tn?1322263642
Please excuse my mis spelling, I have 15 cjildren playing at my home today and I keep getting interupted.
Avatar universal
Thanks Sandee. My previous primary doctor knew I was going to see the new pain doctor because she refered me. I told the pain doctor everything I was getting from my primary doctor. I guess what I didn't do right was I didn't tell the primary doctor that the pain doctor gave me meds in time before they spoke. I was going to on the next visit but they must have talked the very next day or something. I wasn't thinking I was doing anything wrong. But I think the reason this new doctor turned me down is BECAUSE I brought him all the pill bottles from my previous primary doctor and I told him I ended up at a methadone clinic. He didn't even look at my files before he pawned me off. In fact I know he didn't because he said he never prescribes patients opiates on the 1st visit that he knew nothing about. He said he refers orders for his 1st time patients back to the primary doctor anyway. When I told him that I knew for a fact my primary doctor didn't prescribe opiates either he was surprised. I know everything he told me was BS though. I could tell when he and I went to the front desk. The receptionist asked him if he needed to give me "the forms" and he said no and looked at her funny. The forms were the medication contracts. That's why I'm so worried about telling the next doctor the truth.
Avatar universal
Oh wow, I can totally feel your pain (no pun intended). I am on methadone for pain management, too. Fortunately, I have not been 'fired as a patient' as Sandee put it. However, I have had to switch doctors several times because of changes in insurance plans or loss of insurance and moving from one state to another. I have had several 'scares' about either running out of medicine or not being able to remember to make appointments to get my meds refilled, and it is TERRIFYING.

When I moved from one state to another, I couldn't get in to see the pain specialist I was referred to for over a month and I ran out of my pain medications. I called my doctor from out of state, who advised me to take my records (which I'd collected before moving) and go to the local ER, which I did.

The doctor at the ER refused to look at my records - he said I could have made them up. I even tried telling him the name of the pain center (associated with a hospital) from the state I'd moved from and asking him to look the number up (so he'd know it wasn't just a friend or something pretending to be a doctor when he called) and he refused. They were putting together the paperwork to admit me to the psych ward of the hospital (I am not even kidding here). I snuck my cellphone from my belongings (which they'd taken from me and put in a locker in the room) and called my father, begging him to come to the ER and help me. He arrived just as they were preparing to take me, sobbing, up to the psych unit, and managed to get things straightened out.

The thing is - it was all so frustrating and upsetting, on top of starting to go through withdrawals - I couldn't stop sobbing and the more I cried the crazier they were convinced I was.

I look back at that situation and want to scream. I am an intelligent and good person, and I did not deserve to be treated that way. The doctor just decided that I was a drug addict and refused to see reason. Everything I did or said was suspect and just further convinced him that I was crazy and addicted. I couldn't have fixed that situation on my own, and thank god I had someone to call who could help.  I often wonder how many other people things like that have happened to.

Something has got to change with the system the way it is. I understand doctors not wanting to over-prescribe or feed addictions or whatever, but it is like they refuse to help people who really need it.

My latest scare happened during a time when I was overwhelmed because of an added leg injury (I have a back injury which has put me on methadone) and the fact that we were moving (in-city but stressful none-the-less). I forgot to make an appointment (my other doctors all let me schedule a month in advance but my current one doesn't). I realized I'd run out when I took my last dose, called my doctor and was told basically, tough stuff. They said I should go to the ER if I was "really out".

Only persistence paid off in this situation - I got through to a nurse who, after listening to me for about 10 minutes crying, took pity on me and got the doctor to write my prescriptions.

I'd rather die than go back to the ER needing methadone. And the scary thing is, I'm afraid that is what would happen if I run out and can't get more - I've heard going off of it cold turkey can be really really bad.

I wish I didn't need this medication but it is the only medication that has brought me any relief - and I've tried tons. It stinks, though.

Anyway, you have my sympathy for your situation - I can just imagine  what you are going through.

Avatar universal
Thanks sweetie. I sent you a message to your inbox. Thank you for understanding. Man! It's too hard for us! Anyway, I refuse to be angry about this for too long. That would mean that they win and they will NEVER win as long as I am on this planet. I will never stop fighting for pain patients.
760862 tn?1243097304
I am sorry to hear what you are going through.  I am kinda in the same situation now.  I have been sent to a pain management doc and started having problems, pain problems, at night that are new and i called the doc's office and he was suppose to call me back and never did so for the past 2 nights i have had to take xtra meds and now i am afraid that i will get into trouble.  I also will now run out early of that med due to my taking it at night.  I know how frustrating it is to deal with docs with pain meds.  I have multiple trauma's like broken back, pelvis, ribs, collarbone, jaw, shoulder blade, nose and got my scalp ripped off down to the skull and when i was in between regular doc and pain doc i had no pills and called my surgeon's office in washington state (i am in montana) and his office told me to go to the e.r.  so my husband loaded me into the car in -20 weather not including windchill and bucked through snow drifts from our house to the highway and chanced the drive on the highway into town to the hospital and i told them what pain i was going through, i am still in a wheel chair and have my body cast still on and they told me that they do not give narcs in the e.r. and to see my regular provider, i told them that i could not get into see her plus it was a 2+ hour drive and the road was closed between here and there and they said, Oh we are so sorry but, there is nothing we can do for you.  so i came home crying and cried my eyes out until i could not see for about 2 weeks and than got to see the doc and i was so sick when we went to see the new pain doc that i was shaking and had stabbing pains in my back and i was constantly jerking and the doc gave me scripts and in the time it took for my husband to get them filled while i sat in the car outside, i threw up all over in the parking lot of walgreens, i bet i was quite the site, but i could not help it.  i really understand your frustration and what makes me so mad is that there are people like us that actually, truly need the meds and we are denied but, there are people out there that sell their meds and use them illegally and they seem like they get pills left and right and never have any questions asked of them or anything, that makes me so mad.  we live in a small community and i have younger cousins and relatives that i hear stuff from, like who the local druggies are that are selling their pills and most of them go to our local reservation hospital cause of the economy, no one will fork out money to go to a doc when they got free health care right here, so anyway i will call the clinic locally and the only pain managment clinic here and the pain management clinic 2 hours away and turn these people in, i have gotten several people cut off of their meds cause i really believe it is wrong what they are doing and it causes the rest of us to suffer, if you want to chat let me know or send me a pm.  i wish you good luck and i really hope you find someone to help you, i really do i know what it is like to live in pain and it is awful like living in your own personal hell!!  let me know what updates you have.   look forward to chating with you.......freezing in montana
Avatar universal
I just sent you a message to your inbox. I am so very sorry about your situation!
405614 tn?1329144114
Oh, wow.  I'm a little-leaguer compared to the pain you and the people that responded to you, it seems like.  I'm so sorry for all that you are going through.

I'm also very glad that my pain contract is so firmly entrenched in my brain that when I had a pre-op appointment and my orthopedic surgeon gave me a Rx for oxycodone to fill for use after the surgery, I called my primary care doc's office from the parking lot and asked if it was OK to get it filled.  I think she was kind of amused, and approved it.

I have multiple issues and take Lyrica (total 200mg/day)  for Restless Leg Syndrome and nerve pain, and 4 of the 5/500 vicodins daily, as well as 5 mg. of valium at bedtime for muscle spasms.  I'VE had doctor's look at me like I have a substance abuse problem, but I just look them straight in the eye and say if they have a problem with what my PCP prescribes, they are welcome to call her, though I did almost punch one pharmacist that insisted if I was allergic to codeine I'd be allergic to Vicodin, while glaring at me accusingly.  I told her to call my PCP, then transferred to a great little pharmacy where the people are understanding and deal daily with people of all walks of life that take all kinds of meds, and treat them with respect.  It's quite a bit out of my way, and not open on weekends, but I agree that we deserve to be treated with respect and understanding.

A thought; if they make you so angry that you're not able to effectively get what you need, then they win.  I took a Pain Management class where they taught meditation, and I'm trying to start practicing it again, as I'm getting really upset about lack of answers and increase of pain.  I loaded a meditation CD on my iPod that I got from Christmas; I just need to realize that it's one of my medications and listen to it or practice meditating daily.

Have you tried meditation?  I know its hard to do when you're in excessive pain; I used to go to these sitting meditation groups, but it became too painful, and it's harder to do it on my own.  Just throwing out an idea.  

I'm new to the forum, and don't know what all's already been discussed.  I'm going to take a look around.

Hello from Portland, OR,

Avatar universal
I have heartedly tried meditaion but I should try harder. My brain is always going and it's hard to get it to slow down sometimes. My husband has some tapes and I will certainly try it again. Thank you!
228936 tn?1249094248
I feel bad for you for getting mal treated by 2 systems, the pain mgt. and methadone system. This is why is can be dangerous to be on strong pain meds because at any time a doc can kick you off and you in trouble. Once you get into the meth clinic system, that's a whole different stroy. They too can kick you off but it's easier to get on another clinic as I been on many. These people wheather in pain mgt. or a meth clinic weild the power to make you life horrible and sometimes enjoy having this power. It's too bad for the people that really need it that so many abusers ruined it. I'm very glad I am now free from both of these punitive health care systems. all the best
Avatar universal
How did you go off methadone? What do you do for your pain? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
Avatar universal
Man! It seems that health systems in Oz are going down a similar path to your experiences in the USA. Believe me, I feel for you! What is this crazy fear people have of narcotics? To such an extent that they wilfully deprive chronic pain patients of the means to ease their suffering? I've heard horror stories of how the DEA operates so I can appreciate to some extent why doctors may be concerned, but even so, no doctor should be able to get away with dropping their patient into cold turkey.

On a more constructive note I agree with the advice that you should write some notes that a) factually state the sequence of events, b) insist that they become part of the case notes (I assume there is a way of doing that). At the least it gives you a more logical frame for discussing with future doctors.

Good luck,

228936 tn?1249094248
Hi, I have a few videos on you tube and can give you even more info. by e mail or PM
228936 tn?1249094248
I don't know why that linc didn't change to blue? if that doesn't work go to you tube and type in the search window "getting off methadone" that will take you to it. all the best
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