I was referred to a PM by my Rheumatolegest for injections into my lower back and SIs.They injected both SI joints and 2 facet joints. On the next follow up appt. I saw the PA, instead of the Dr. He said that the Norco(10/323) I had been taking 5-6 times a day for my Ankylosing Spondylitis was giving me too much Tylenol. He recommended that I take MSContin with Norco for back up pain. Up until now, all my pain meds were taken care of by my GP for the last 25 years. The last time I had asked about increasing my pain meds because I was having problems with pain whenever the AS flared up, he gave me a script for Prednisone. He said I could just take a short course of Pred whenever the AS flared.I got the feeling then that he really didn't want to deal with stronger pain meds. So what the PA was suggesting sounded pretty good.
I walked out with a script for 15mg MSContin twice a day and 2 Norcos for breakthrough pain. They also asked for a urine test, for the first time. It somehow didn't seem right to ask a 72year old grandma to do a drug test. I had a little bit of trouble with sleepiness for the first week, but the meds worked well. I could sleep through the night without waking up in pain. Two weeks into the new program my AS flared up and I was in pain. I used ice packs, I started upping the Pred. Two Norcos were not enough! I called the pain clinic and talked to the PA. It seemed reasonable to ask to have the Norco increased a bit until I saw him in two weeks, You would have thought I was some druggie asking for some strong drugs. He said I would have to stick to the meds he prescribed until I came in for my next appointment. I had told them at the start that my pain varies according to how much inflammation the AS was causing. Some days I am almost pain free, other days, the pain is really bad, I expected some flexibility.
Right now, I don't know what I am going to do. I am debating on calling my GP and having a talk about what to do or if I should wait and see what they say at the Pain clinic. I do have enough Norcos on hand to keep me from being too uncomfortable, I prefer not to use an more then necessary because I want enough in case of an emergency, I do not want to ever have to go through withdral.
I would appreciate any suggestions in dealing with pain clinics. I just can't get over the fact that they would leave a patient to suffer in pain.
I have Ankolysing Spondylits, Ulcerative Colitis, DDD and a bit of OA to make things fun. Most of my problems are due to inflation of many joints, tendons and ligaments. I see a GP, a Rheumatologest, an orthopedic Dr and a wonderful PM.