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Nort sure where to post this so since its my neck

jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:40 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
I saw my neuro surgeon on Dec. 16th for the results of my EMG. EMG suggests something is going on with c6 and c7 following my surgery. He ordered a CAT scan to help diagnosis.
Here is where the problem lies. I have yet to have been scheduled for this test. I have called the office three times now and am always given the same answer. The doctor has not signed off on the test yet and to give it another week. First of all when I left his office on the 16th he told his MA to schedule the test. So who is dropping the ball here? The surgeon or the MA? I am due back into his office next week for results of a test I have yet to been given. To say I am getting alittle upset would be a big understatement . I am P.O.!. I love my surgeon and wouldnt want anyone else to operate on me but if I cannot even get a simple test scheduled what is the rest of my care going to be like? Should I keep my appointment next week and explain that the test were never ordered or cancel my appointment? Any suggestions on how to proceed with this would be helpful because I am at a loss at what to do.


  • Wow! I would be all over them. If they told me there was an issue after my EMG and that I needed a Cat Scan I would call them every day...maybe even several times a day.

    Yelling has never done well for me but sharing how scared I am or how concerned I am and asking for their help has always done well for me.

    I even dropped by my surgeons office once when my x ray looked weird and asked to see him then and there. I was very nice but each time I was told no I asked, "could you please just show him this xray and then if he says go home I will". He saw the xray, talked to me right then and I was scheduled for a Cat Scan that day.

    The squeaking wheel gets the oil is how I was raised. I've had to deal with so many doctors and have many friends who are doctors. They are people too and they have lots of patients so keeping them aware of you is so important if you want to get stuff done. Generally they don't mean to skip a patient they just get caught up in the toughest case at the time.

    Good luck Susan. Please keep me posted as to how you do!
  • RangerRRanger on da rangePosts: 805
    hey Susan,
    Being the surgeon told his MA to order the CT scan it appears as the MA has dropped the ball here. I understand your situation and the possibility of this staff member forgetting to schedule your test should not reflect on your surgeons reputation. I would make a call to the office and say you need the CT scan test scheduled and the results received before your next appointment so they can be reviewed by you and your surgeon.
    Take care and I wish you the best,
  • Hi Ranger,
    Could you tell me what wrong with your neck, Because I have really bad neck, back and a whole lot more.

    I'm sorry this was for jlrflye
  • That's just not right. Sounds like its the MA who has not done her job. I would call and ask for the office manager. Explain your situation and that you have a follow up appointment coming soon. Keep calling, even 2 to 3 times a day until you get results. When you do see your surgeon, make sure he is aware of what happened. Would be a shame to have to find another surgeon since you like this one.

    Best wishes,

  • WOW! If you do try calling the office manager and get the same response, ask him/her to speak with the surgeon. Sometimes you have to pull out the big guns, and if they feel you're going to "rat them out" for not scheduling the test, they'll get their act together. Besides that, I'm sure your surgeon would like to know this is happening, as he'd already told the MA to schedule the test. Doctors have to rely on their staff to take care of the "little stuff", and it sounds like one of his staffers isn't holding up their end.

    As far as the appointment goes, I'd keep it, especially if they still haven't gotten you scheduled. That's a surefire way to talk to the surgeon yourself, and you can let him know what's going on then.

    Good luck!
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
    I still do not have my cat scan scheduled. I called the office and got the same response as before. The doctor still has not signed off on it. Here is the thing that really has me going. I have a friend who also sees this doctor. She saw him Monday, MRI done on wed. and results of test with doctor today. What the he##,. No she is not anything serious by that I mean a post-op visit from her surgery 6 months ago. She has no physical complaints and just part of post-op procedure. She is going to say something to him today concerning my cat scan because I cant get through to him. I feel like someone dropped the ball here and I am the one suffering because of it. It has now been a month since the test was to be ordered. This is soooo unacceptable. I love my surgeon and do not want to change to another so now what do I do. I guess I will go to my appointment for results of my cat and tell him I never got it done and why.
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
    After 7 phone calls to the office I demanded to speak to the person in charge of scheduling. Which was the MA. He proceeded to tell me that he called my insurance company and they told him I have no out of network benefits so he did not schedule the cat scan. I explained to him the location was not out of network and he stated my insurance company Medical mutual told him it was. I asked him if he directly spoke to my ins company to which he replied yes and they told him I have no out of network benefits. LIAR! I have not had medical mutual insurance for 7 years so I really doubt he spoke with anyone or they would of told him my insurance was termed. So I asked him why he was lying to me and told him it was unacceptable. After a pretty nasty conversation all he could say was Im sorry. He got the cat scan scheduled for that day at the hospital. Now heres the issue.... do I tell my surgeon what happened? I know we are all human and make mistakes but to directly lie to me to cover his own a## infuriates me. If he has done this to me how many others has he pulled this on and how many people are suffering waiting on a test that was never scheduled. What would you do?
  • I would tell the doctor and the office manager if there is one. But I would do it gently. Something like "I wish xxxx would have told me from the start that he had a problem getting this approved with my insurance. Apparently he called the wrong company and then didn't call me to get it straightened out. Then I got a run-around from your staff until I confronted them. I know everyone is busy but it would have been so much faster and saved me days of pain if he would have contacted me right away."

    This way the doctor knows but it gives the MA a little wiggle room. IF the doc gets a few complaints like this he might finally understand what is going on.
  • I would tell the doc exactly what happened. I would let him know that you had to make several phone calls, and finally ended up with the MA, and also that the MA wasn't completely truthful when you finally did get to talk with him. This way, the doc knows not only that the MA isn't doing the scheduling he should, but that he also isn't being truthful when confronted with these things to cover himself. This may be an exception to the norm, but it's never acceptable to lie to a patient to keep your own pooper covered.

    Glad to hear they've finally gotten you on the schedule, though! Hope things continue looking up for you.

  • He can't afford to have his help treating patients like this. If the MA did this to you, then he probably drops the ball on other patients as well. At least, your surgeon needs to be aware of what happened. It's not as if this was a slip-up. Those happen to everybody. From my perspective, this was negligence (which left you in pain for a needlessly long time) compounded by deceit. As has already been suggested, you can do it nicely, but if I were in your position I would definitely do it!

    2009 Foraminotomy C6-72010 PLIF L4-S1Multi RFA's, cervical inj, lumbar injLaminectomy L3-4 and fusion w/internal fixation T10-L4 July 17Fusion C2-C5 yet to be scheduled
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
    Thanks everyone for your opinion on what to do. Kris I cant really tell the office manager, I doubt that it would do any good. The MA is married to her.lol.I will tell my surgeon this is not the first time the MA has done this to me. I also got the run around on a MRI last year that took him about a month to schedule. His excuse then was he didnt think I had insurance. Blah, blah blah....its always one excuse after another with this guy. I will tell my surgeon and I will be nice about it, When my surgery was scheduled last June the surgeon asked me to get the report from my previous surgery(another surgeon) so they had the appropriate tools in OR to remove old hardware. I had him the report in 2 days which was in May. I was on a cancellation list due to the seriousness of my injuries. I was never called in early because the MA did not give the doctor the report. He just stuck it in my file. Imagine my surprise when the surgeon called me 3 days before my surgery and told me they were going to have to cancel my surgery due to me failing to get the report. He seemed very surprised when I told him he had the report now for almost a month and 1/2. He pulled my file and there it was still in the envelope with his name on it marked important. I heard him yelling at the MA as he was hanging up the phone. Ever since then this MA has been rude to me. I have never really been one to complain but this time I am going to. I have had it with this guy.

  • OMG. I can't believe this guy still has a job after that! I didn't know you'd had this same trouble with him before, Inchworm is right, it is just plain negligence. This guy is dealing with people's lives, it's not like the patients have a slight cold or a stubbed toe! People like that in the medical field just add to the whole circus. What a turdwink.
  • I think at this point you should file a formal complaint. Write a letter to the Head doctor in the clinic with every detail including the previos error's on the MA's behalf.

    With the ecomomy the way it is I am sure the doctor can find a better MA.

  • That says it all!! If the doc gets rid of the MA he will make his life hell with the office manager and prob lose her as well. I wouldn't be surprised to find out they are both related to him!!
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
    The cat scan is done and I was to see the surgeon Tuesday but when I came home from work Friday there was a message for me that he wants to see me first thing Monday morning. Talk about stress. I am so afraid he is going to tell me my surgery failed. Then what? After 4 surgeries what else could they do. Am I going to be like this for the rest of my life? I havent slept all night, my nerves are shot. I bet the ma hasnt slept all night either. You know he has to be worried about my visit today. He should be because Im not going to hold anything back as far as the treatment I have recieved from him. Everyone say a prayer for me today, I dont think I can take much more.
  • Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned!!!

    How dare they leave you with a message like that on a Friday afternoon? That is cruel. I would have called his service that night to ask what was going on.

    As far as that MA -- I would ask the doc to call him in and then let them both have it. The MA failed to do his job, lied to a patient and where was the doc all this time? I would scare the crap out of both of them and let them know that you will not take this ever again. I think that will get you good results.

    Let's hope they just had a cancellation today and it is nothing serious. Do you have someone to go with you today? I am sure you are very stressed for both reasons and it would be nice if you had some support.

    Post later and let us know how it went.
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
    Well it didnt go well today at all.The fusion looks good but it is not complete. The problem is the plate is backing out from c7. I could do one of two things have posterior surgery on my neck or wait 30 days and see if the plate continues to back out.I chose the 30 days. I dont know if I can go through another surgery. physically or mentally. I realize I may not have a choice but the thought of another surgery right now devastates me.I need a break after 6 surgeries you would think I would be somewhat stable. It seems like everything they do on me fails. I am heartbroken.
  • Aww well maybe you can be happy that most of the fusion is going well. If they can go from the back and it's a small fix it shouldnt be bad. I just did that and I'm in really good shape three weeks out. But I think you are right to give it a month.

    Now what I really want to know is what happened with the MA??????????
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
    The doctor asked why I put off my cat scan so long so I gave him a earful. He looked absolutley horrified. When I was checking out he told the MA to give me a copy of my cat scan and meet him in his office. What happened after that I do not know but I can tell you this from his reaction of our conversation I can guarantee it wasnt pretty. The doctor did tell me that he promised that would not happen again. I would of loved to be a fly on the wall during that conversation. I think I will have to make up a reason to call the MA today just to see if he is still employed. lol. I will tell you this the MA when he took me to my room would not look at me or even speak to me so he knew it was coming. I wish you could of seen the surgeons face when I told him about his MA lying to me. HE SAID WHAT TO YOU? INTERESTING. UNACCEPTABLE. Then proceeded to tell me he would look into it. I imagine the MA had a pretty rotton day after I left
  • Score one for our side!!!

    You know I had a thought for you this morning while I was watching the news.....maybe your loose plate is part of the Toyota recall??? lol They said if you go to the dealer its a half hour fix!! :)
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
    Too funny. But the sad part is I drive one of the Toyotas that is recalled. Wouldnt that be nice 30 minute fix...sign me up
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