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hopeless-in-mnhhopeless-in-mn Posts: 206
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:30 AM in Matters of the Heart
Many pain blogs speak of age discrimination; or even sexual discrimination. That is of perhaps not being believed because of their age "too young" or gender "just woman's issues". or even better yet, "bored housewife syndrome".

But I have now been turned away from an orthopeadic surgean, and 2 pain clinics for my refusal to do a gastric bypass surgery to lose the 100 pounds that I have gained in the past almost 2 years now of unrelenting, pain. Add to this, a slow numbing effect speading up from my feet and now reaching almost to my hips (but as long as i have reflexes, and am not peeing pants, dr's are ok with this)

I am not grossly overweight. There is a member on the boards that just had fusion and is about my size...
I am healthy...NO other health issues to suggest needing this kind of life altering surgery...and no guarantee that this would make any signifigant change either.

Also to note, this refusal to comply with dr orders, has resulted in a denial of my SSDI claim!

---Why should i be forced to have a life altering surgery that i do not want, that may leave me with more illnesses than i have now, for a possibility that it will ease my pain?
---Why can't we find someway to help me ease my pain, to help me move more, to help me lose some of the weight, to see if that doesn't ease some of the pain?


  • I'm sorry you've been dealt in that manner. No one should be forced into something they don't want, it's our right to do so. Many of us have put on weight due to back problems, and I disagree that they would deny SSI benefits or medical treatment. It makes no sense those pain clinics refused to take you. And you're so right about gender and age discrimination going on. If you're a woman and they can't diagnose you right away, or you don't recover like you should, they blame it on the time of the month, anxiety, depression, or say you have too much time on your hands. I went in to see my gyn doctor years ago for pelvic pain, and the stupid B$%^$ asked me how my marriage was going?! WTF??? I snapped back "How's yours?!" and got the hell outta there and left her standing there. By the time I got home I doubled over in pain and my husband took me to the ER where they found an 8mm ovarian cyst. It ruptured a week later and I had emergency surgery. I guess I subconciously sprouted it up and then my imagination made it rupture. I wish I could go back in time and sue this idiot. Okay....I'm calm again...Hopeless I understand how you feel. Have you found another clinic to take care of you? I really think you should get together with an attorney and see if there's a way to solve that issue with the doctor's report. SSI has to look at the whole picture and not base their decision solely on one doctor's opinion. Hang in there sweetie; take care
  • I can't believe that a pain clinic would deny you treatment for such a crazy reason. I would think that the only thing a surgeon might require is that a patient might need to lose some weight on their own to ensure a better recovery. I just don't get the idea of anyone trying to "force" you to do anything with your body. That is soooo wrong on so many levels. I am so sorry that you have been treated this way !!

    I also don't understand the idea that you are denied disability, because you refused to have elective surgery. I would get information that shows the risks associated with this kind of elective surgery. I also would get some more doctor's opinions to back up your concerns. You are only refusing some "radical" dr's orders. They are not suggesting that you have an organ removed that is diseased and could cause you further harm.

    If you wanted to have this surgery, then I would support your decision to do so. If you do all the research and you choose to have it, then you have every right. The point is that it is your body and your right.

    I hope that you pursue this. You have not been treated fairly. I believe that you need more supportive documentation for your argument.

    I wish you all the best. I hope that you are feeling better very soon!!!

    P.S. The topomax is already helping!!

    Lots of hugs,

    glo :)
  • I'm sorry to hear about the denial for SSDI. I think you need a Primary Dr. who is on your side.... I can't believe you could be denied for that reason. Why would a Dr put that on your chart? That has nothing to do with spine issues. Is there any excercise equipment you could get to help? I use the recumbent bicycle and that is very easy to do after awhile or a stepper or treadmill? I gained 50 pounds or so since the injury last year. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • for all the response to this!...my family practice doctor(also overweight, but admited to me that is diabetic with high blood pressure, and high cholesterol)is the one who "outed" the other clinics.....as i was questioning what treatment i had not followed/was not open to.

    on thurs. the 23rd, i went to a painclinic/rehab/pt place that specialized in "very agressive weightlifting"...knowing my numbness issues, i had some doubts as to whether or not this would work, but i was willing to give it a try.....

    that ploace didn't work out either, but now I'm going to try a place that works with pretty much everyone, and does charity work as well!--maybe there i will be able to start feeling like a human being again?
  • OY!
    I had a rheumatologist tell me I needed to lose about 40 pounds and all my troubles would go away. I did; they didn't...

    You need to appeal the denial. FAST. You only have a limited time in which to do it.

    As I stated earlier - SSA cannot MAKE you have the surgery and cannot presume your condition will improve with it. Likewise, if they pressure you into the surgery and things go wrong, the federal government can be held responsible for that.

    The ONLY way they can deny your claim for failure to follow prescribed treatment is if you refuse PT, or medication (such as for high blood pressure or diabetes) or not following the doctor's orders, etc. This elective surgery is not for SSA to decide.

    Have you appealed? If not, when you do be sure to use the fact they cannot MAKE you have this surgery and cannot make presumptions for if you do. ALSO what if you do have the surgery and things do not get better, what then? They have seriously delayed your right to receive benefits.

    I do know doctors feel that being significantly overweight will cause additional problems such as back problems, knee problems, diabetes and high blood pressure. BUT, is your weight issue the cause or the effect of your pain?

    Take care and good luck. Do NOT take this lying down!!

    Keep us posted!

  • First, I have to say that no one should have to have a surgery that they do not believe will help them. But 100 pounds in 2 years is a lot to gain. Some surgeons will refuse to do surgery if a patient smokes(and do urine tests), is overweight, or non-compliant in some other way. I know of someone in my area that her surgeon has performed multiple surgeries on her, told her she would eventually need a fusion, and now that it is time, would not perform the surgery until she lost the additional weight she had gained.

    A negative outcome for whatever reason reflects on that doc's reputation and could be malpractice, too.

    On the other hand:

    I don't think many docs understand the cycle we are locked into-hurt and unable to exercise, but gain weight and hurt more.

    Do the docs want you to have gastric bypass or lap band? I agree it is your choice on surgery, I just wondered if you were a candidate for the less invasive lap band where you go home the same day or if they are insisting on full out gastric bypass? No doc worth anything performing lap band or gastric bypass would do the surgery without the patient first failing diet programs. My personal health insurance requires it and also requires the patient to see a dietician and lose some weight to prove lifestyle change before approving bariatric surgery.

    Health plans have a cut off point where they will approve that type of surgery, usually based on BMI. Don't post it, but do you even meet that criteria? That could be a good argument for you if your BMI is below recommendations.

    Yeah, keep us healthy thru drugs and surgery, but why don't they PAY for proven weight loss programs/support groups so we can help ourselves? Becuz there's no money in it for them.

    I think a doc has a right to pick and choose patients based on risks, just like patients can pick and choose docs. But, I think a doc is morally bound(just my opinion) to steer a patient towards someone who can help if he does not want to(for whatever reasons.) As far as SS, who knows what goes thru their heads. But check out the BMI info cuz it may be your best argument against the surgery. We all know that losing weight would help the strain on our spines, but how to do that without surgery and have the money for the program is something different.

    Good luck to you.
  • to update, i am now starting Pt (with biofeedback this time!) with a place called the EDITED as this is a non-profit as well as a clinic, i hope the mods will allow the name post? i feel very confident with this group as they work primarily with the most dificult of cases.

    they also have a pain management clinic onsite that i am in process of getting a referral for.

    i have an appointment with a neurologist in june to primarly look at my new neck issues, but hopefully he can look into some of the older spine issues as well.....

    oh, and i have lost 30 pounds to date!

    i am making progress, and most of this is just with adjusting my meds...which is how most of it started...now if i could just bring some of this pain under control, and maybe fell me feet/legs a bit better, i could move around some more, and really move some weight!...and get house clean, cook meals, maybe even go back to work????
    ----oh what a dream that would be!

    Doctors name and contact details removed by forum Moderator (paulgla). We do not permit publishing specific doctor's or institution names and contact details.
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