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Just venting a bit....

ToYoungforThisTToYoungforThis Posts: 150
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:46 AM in Chronic Pain
I REALLY just need to vent. I am so over all the pain. I do feel I am too young for all the issues I have and very worried about how my future will be. The last few months I have been been feeling better than I have in 5 years, but the last 3 weeks have been hell and with very high levels of pain. I try to be positive in my post, but a few days ago I could not get pain relief at all/ Took more meds then I would of liked to so I had no choice to go to ER to get the pain under control. Most of the staff was great got me in right away, BUT the attending Dr. was a HUGE JERK. There was no doubt I was in pain and he did get me IV meds to stop the pain, but kept telling me that the pain meds I was on were going to shorten my life and that it wasnt healthy. I was in so much pain that I could not help it but to start yelling at him that I know and its not my choice to have so many spine surgeries and issues. This really pissed me off cause I had just took 1 whole month of misery to get off fentanyl and it was horrible. I am trying the best to get by day by day and seems like its all for nothing.

Its like why would an ER Dr talk down to you when he knows you are in pain and have no control over the situation, its just not fair.......


  • Geez, why would he say that? What alternative do you have?

    Vent away!
  • We all have times to which we HAVE to vent. So please, get it out here where we understand. :) As to the ER doctor, I'm sorry you went through that. I am sure they have seen their share of "drug seekers" and regrettably we sometimes INCORRECTLY get tossed onto that spider web if you will.

    I've been lucky in that I've (like many here) have a binder with all my medical stuff in it (MRI's, X-rays, diagnosis's, meds etc.). Try and block his attitude out and try to rest and calm down. Being 'down' or upset actually makes pain worse many times. Gentle support *HUGZ* to you!!!

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • I would think that as a physician, he is obligated in a manner of speaking to warn you about the associated health risks that come along with long term narcotic use. He may have felt that he was doing you a favor by warning you about the risks.

    Kind of like handing someone a pack of cigarettes and not warning them about the health risks associated with smoking.

    Now if he came right out and called you a drug seeker or an addict, that would be wrong. He did treat your pain and got things back under control for you.

    When we hurt that bad, it is so difficult to see things as clearly as we would hope to or like to. Which that in and of itself proves how important it is to have not just adequate pain management, but good pain management.

    I hope that you are feeling better and that things stay better controlled for you.

  • That is disgusting what the ER doctor said to you..Some doctors should give it up as they have no compassion or understanding..

    He has no right as he doesnt know what pain levels you have and what we all go thru dailty.

    He should re read the old saying "Be me for a day and then tell me what you feel like".

    Hope your feeling a little better now.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,875
    but coming right out and saying the pain medications are going to shorten your life is going a bit too far.

    ER doctors get to see all types and I believe that some of them feel that people that come into the ER for pain problems are only looking for pain medications.

    Some of their concerns would be: Why is this person coming into the ER for pain control?, Where is there normal doctor?

    Most of the time pain does not just happen over night, so seeking your normal doctor for help would seem to be the right action to take.

    Yes, there are times when you do get a instant on set of major pain, your normal doctor is not available, so your only option is the ER.

    In any case, no doctor has the right to talk down to you and be as blunt as the statement they made.
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • Not to side track this post....but I'm beginning to wonder why so many people need to go to the ER for pain. As you say Ron the ER docs would assume that a patients pain is controlled by their regular doctor and only a sudden onset of outrageous pain should force someone to go to the ER.

    It just seems like there have been alot of posts recently about people going to the ER and/or that they have had to go several times in the past. Is this really so common? If so it would seem that the doctors are not doing their job.
  • I would assume they go to the ER for IV pain relief, which their doctors can't prescribe at home.

    Personally, if that was the doctor's way of giving her the risks of the medications, his bedside manner stinks. When a person is in terrible pain and has few choices, giving a hyperbolic lecture about how it's going to ruin her life is not good medicine.

    It seems to me that it is easier to defend doctors (if that is what you wish to do) by admitting that they are human and have human personality characteristics, rather than trying to make everything they say out to be something said for our good- because THAT doesn't really work. Sometimes doctors make mistakes, just like everybody else. And trying to turn condescension around into "for your own good" is really hard to do without being even more condescending.

    A doctor who approaches a hard-made decision by throwing a lot of hyperbole at the patient is negating the fact that she made that decision using her critical thinking skills and the information her own doctor gave her. The patient is left wondering whether he thinks she doesn't have a brain to make this sort of difficult decision. Plus, of course, his information wasn't entirely the FDA approved warnings, and he didn't bother to give any evidence for his theory.

  • What I find interesting, is that this physician is being lambasted without having the ability to present his recount of the visit.

    I'm not implying that the OP is distorting the events of that visit. Not at all. I am merely presenting the argument that perception can be incredibly effected by pain.

    Also a one sided discussion turned into a debate, is not a true representation of any event.

  • knows what they felt like and how they felt they were being treated. I have not gone to the ER for pain in years, but have thought about it. I know I'm under medicated, and I do run out early occasionally and i do have to take that time off work because I hurt so bad I could blow my brains out. It happens. Doctors aren't always wonderful, mine isn't.
  • That's because we're here to support the patient, not the doctor. At least I am.

    If a person comes here to vent I am going to take their vent at face value, not try to make it fair for the person they are venting about, unless the ventee is also on this board. I'm a friend, not a mediator.

    Anyway, since this is a board specifically for patients, not for doctors, it's much easier for most of us to see it from that side.
  • You bring up some very valid points in my book! I don't go to the ER since all they do is look you over in general, get an x-ray (maybe), some drug, pat you on your butt and send you on your way. Blah!! Oh, and all that great stuff, = $800.00 or so!

    When I initially re-herniated, I came > < close to going to the ER as the pain was intense! Since the logical part of me knew that aside from pain management, they really wouldn't "treat" my core issue, I stayed home, called my NS, and since no weakness or numbness...to wait a few days to see if it settled down, so over a week or so, the pain knocked back down...

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Exactly. Any doctor who tells a pain patient outright that an opioid drug is shortening that patient's life is very, very wrong. This notion has been refuted time and again in various pain management texts as one of the more common myths about opioids. A doctor should really know better.
  • I have to say I agree with you both. From what Tooyoung says in her original post the ER front desk brought her right in and the nurses treated her very well. The only one she had a problem with was the doctor. If he started her on IV meds then he must have agreed that she needed them.

    The way I read what she wrote is that he was lecturing her on all of the meds she was taking as prescribed by her regular doctors. That is surely inappropriate and I would imagine that if her prescribing doctor had been present he would have had a few choice words for that ER doc.

    I think "C" is trying to caution us to remember that we are only hearing one side of the story. I'm sure the ER doc sees lots of drug addicts who use him to get high. But again the way I read this one is that he was critizing Tooyoung's regular doctor.
  • He should know how to use his abilities to tell the difference between a drug seeker and someone with genuine need. If she was just looking to get high, hopefully they would not have given her the medications, rather than give them to her with a lecture?

    Anyway, I'm not sure why we're having this conversation. When you are talking to your friends about your experiences, of course they only hear your half of the story. And they support you based on that side of the story. That's what friends do. And unless any of us are doctors (which I thought was not allowed?), we're all likely to be on the same side of the story.
  • I worked in an Urgent Care and never heard a Dr. speak to someone like that. He can advise only and shouldn't give his personal opinion. That was just wrong of him. I hope you're feeling better and try not to take it to heart love. 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
  • If someone new were to only ever read that doctors treat chronic pain patients showing up the the emergency room as if they are drug addicts, what kind of a message are we sending.

    There are times when we as chronic pain patients will have to use the emergency room. There are many times here on Spine Health that we as a group of concerned individuals try to convince someone scared and in pain to go to the emergency room.

    If most of what is posted about emergency room visits is that the doctor treated us as drug seekers and talked down to us, how in the world are we ever going to convince another individual to seek much needed emergency help.

    We are here to support anyone and everyone who comes to this forum. Support does not necessarily mean agreeing with everything that is posted and it certainly shouldn't just be one-sided. Good friends are willing to stand up to each other and not side step, sugar coat or avoid talking about the issues. The last thing I want to be to my friends or my friends to be to me, is an enabler.

  • Do you have some evidence that her side of the story is less than truthful, C? Because if not, I think your line of questioning is inappropriate. You are now talking about enabling, as though the OP has some sort of problem to be enabled in the first place.

    As I said before. We are all patients. The doctor can go to his own forum to complain about patients who are on too many narcotics and how they are destroying themselves.

  • Wasn't there just a article put on sh not long ago about a doctor prescribing meds to these kids and them dying from over dosing on them? While this poster doesn't have that issue that point was well made about prescribing opiate meds to patients in that thread. You are relying on a Er doctor who may or may not have ever met you do figure out who is the real deal and who is not? We all know the true drug seekers are very good at what they do, without a doubt. while I don't agree one bit with a doctor questioning ones level of pain, I think he must and sometimes it maybe part of the line of questioning and the responses he gets to see if you indeed are one of the drug seekers. So the ER doctor may have made those statements to see what kind of response he would get, to figure it out.

    It is not easy being a chronic pain patient and having pain spikes and figuring out is this a Er trip or can I make it till tomorrow. But here is one thing that has helped me and may help you in the long run. I use the same hospital my primary goes to and sense they are all computerized now he has a standing order sitting on my file if i show up there for pain relief what to give me and at what dose. ER doctors should calling your regular doctors when you are there to decide what to do with you? If you were gushing blood or something, they aren't going to call but treat the emergency. But in a situation where someone is in pain and they aren't sure they call the on call number get the story from the regular doctor and then your good to go. My doctor put the order on the file so there would never be any confusion.

    To young I am sorry you got treated this way and i know it is hard. Maybe when you see your regular doctor you can work a plan as to what to do if you need the ER again and how he can assist to make it easier on you and the ER doctor so there is no confusion. OH by the way you should let your prescribing doctors know what is said and when the ER file is pulled they will have the doctors name. Also you can make a complaint to the patient affairs department and they will follow-up on it. Each hospital calls them some thing different, But you can check for the ombudsmen program as well.
  • Here is what happened the other day I had been in pain from a disc bulging and it was getting worse Went in AM and got stronger meds from PCP. But they were not doing anything for the severity of pain. I have been avoiding surgery there cause it is so invasive. They have to take out a rib and then have to collapse a lung to get to the disc and its a center one too. It was inflamed and the pain was so bad I could not take in a full breath. I had took the max of pain meds that my PCP and I felt ok with and was close to 4x the normal daily dose, including the new ones from that day. I have low blood pressure around 80/60 is normal for me, but was almost 2xs that night. I was scared of taking too much pain meds and having other issues from over medicating. I hate going to ER but it was to where all I could hear was the throbbing from pain, NEVER was there an ISSUE of me JUST seeking drugs since i had hundreds of pain pills with me to show ER. That was not the problem I was scared of taking too much and dieing or something. But because I do look normal from the out side Dr.s have to listen to me or look at the disc I brought with me that has every piece of information and images possible. But this hospital is where all my Dr.s are and 9 of the 15 surgeries I had there he could of took 5 mins to access my info and would really see the clear picture.

    So there is no PM Dr or anyone to blame its a sad fact that some of us go threw when dealing with chronic pain. Point blank there was no reason for the ER DR to treat me like he did. When you get to the point I was it is BETTER to be SAFE then anything. And just like my my PCP said that is what they are there for, and what made me so so mad is that right now I am on the lowest dose of pain meds in 5 years lol just plain rude. But really not sure how the other side of the story could be recalled atleast on the Dr.s view. Umm I have a 32 yr old patient with several lumbar and cervical fusions, and nerve surgeries,in extreme pain says she took too much pain meds at home with little to no relief, she is a patient at the chronic pain clinic, ortho, the hand, PT and spine clinic at same hospital. The Dr was just rude that is all there could of been there, and I should not of been treated like I was. It is hard enough to swallow your pride to go to ER and ask for meds in the 1st place. And I am sure most chronic pain patients feel the same.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,875
    You did what you needed to do. Unfortunately, the ER doctor did not handle the situation the way a professional should have.

    I understand your concern regarding a thoracic surgery. I am faced with one, but as you described, its just too much and really there is no guarantee in the results.

    This thread was started so that Toyoungforthis could vent a bit about the situation.

    The last thing I want to see is the topic going off course about the merits of doctors or whatever.
    This is her thread, lets keep to the topic.

    This site is opened for all views, patients, doctors, insurance providers, etc. As such we will have disagreements.

    But not in this thread......
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • That is tremendous. I cannot believe you have been through so much at such a young age. The surgery you describe sound just awful to me, I cannot even imagine. I would be scared to death about that too. I think it is appalling that as a pain patient (with valid records at that particular hospital) you were treated like that. Your post reminded me that many years ago, prior to spinal fusion I was in the ER for similar reasons. The treating physician acted much like the one you described and my recent MRIs and other medical records were also available and had been done just weeks before at that same hospital! It is disgusting and it is wrong. We worry ourselves sick over where we are headed, we need meds, which can be tough to convince your doctor they just aren’t working well enough, we cry, we hurt, we get depressed, and we get pissed off about our situation. We didn’t ask for it, but we are stuck with dealing with it – sometimes all by yourself with nobody to help. I think it is terrible that on top of that, you ask for help and get a lecture from some jerk that has probably never experienced anything more than a stubbed toe. It’s disgusting. Take care of yourself and don’t worry about some jerk doctor. Nobody else knows how you feel, and nobody else is going to take care of you – but you! Best wishes..
  • This whole problem seems to me to be poor customer service. Tooyoung went to the ER with legitimate pain and health issues. The doctor treated her but also decided to give her a lecture on pain medication side affects.

    The fact is that being on the internet we can only make the assumption that posters are telling the truth. Occasionally we can ferret out some things that just don't sound right. But in general we have to take it at face value. So we assume that Tooyoung had good reason to be there and that the doctor was out of line in what he said.

    "C" you are right that someone searching for ER might see a post that scared them away from emergency treatment. On the other side they should know that they may receive a variety of receptions in that ER room. ER doctors are just people with vast training who have to make assessments in moments. Even in the ER you are your own best advocate. Only you know what is right for you.
  • This thread has run its course. ToYoungforThis was venting and I believe no more good can come from keeping the thread open.

This discussion has been closed.
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