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Hello and Looking for Help

Hello!!!! I am new to the forums but not new to the site...I am 42 years old and have had three lower back surgeries and possibly another one...The surgeries I've had has not helped my pain nor the problem at all and have really worsened somewhat....I am a medical professional and have worked I the profession for many years, and injured myself while on the job, lifting a immobile patient...I can go into more detail if someone is intrested....I am also a mother of three girls, two of whom are still very dependent on me....I am having an extremely hard time not only physically but mentally coping with the pain and not being able to function as I used to...I was recently put as permanently disabled and that was a major blow not only to me physically and financially but also mentally....I live in an area where it is very hard to find a doctor who treats patients in pain management and coping with the stress and everything g else that has come with it....The population is very rural and most here are addicts and there are numerous so called pill mills....The doctors who are here are terrified to give any kind of pain treatment because they fear being shut down or out right losing their license...I've been reading a lot of posts in the various forums and am wondering how I might find a good doctor who can help me....I am at my wits end with all of this and often, I think of just ending it all permanently....If it wasn't for my children I think I would have done it already...What does a person in my situation do??? I have talked with my primary doctor, but he seems to think all this will pass and I just need to accept life the way it is for me....Oh I could whine on and on but I won't...I'll stop here...I appreciate any and all responses and any advice that might be given....Thank you so much for your ear and your time....


  • There are DRs that will do Pain manangement, but will not write a RX for opiates. They will do spinal injections and advise medications. Maybe you can find one that will work with your primary care.
  • I have searched...I am going to have to go out of state...The pain management facilities here are not in business for long....I am not looking for Opiates...I am looking for help...If I wanted just the meds I could go to those places...
  • Try and find a teaching hospital near you or a medical university. Too bad there is nothing close you trust.
    My children are the reason I am still around too. I understand your pain.
  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
    I am sure that you will find your time on Spine-Health very rewarding. This site is a powerful and integrated system that is dynamic and continues to grow.
    Here are just some of the highlights:

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    - Under the Resource tab, there is a section Doctor Advice Health Center which can be invaluable.

    - As a bonus, Spine-Health provides these patient forums. Here is where you can meet thousands of other people who understand and can relate to your situation. You will soon become part of the Spiney family who provide comfort and the advantages of a Support System. You are now part of this family that is approximately 20,600 International members and growing daily.

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    Here are some you should take a look at:
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    All of this will help make your threads better and improve the times and quality of responses you will receive.

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    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • Just a hint you cannot post that you are a medical professional on this site so please be sure not to allude to this.
    It's around 4 in the morning in the US so that's why I am posting. It's in the forum rules, am not a moderator and do not want to discourage you from blogging but you do need to know.

    I think most people on this forum have had enough constant excruciating pain to get really depressed. I think it's sane to be depressed when this pain will not go away and it is wearing, both mentally and physically, so I totally get where you are at.

    I have just watched a documentary called the Secret Life of Pain - it is on You Tube though I saw it on SBS in Australia. It is fascinating and they have discovered the gene that causes pain, there is a whole family who do not feel pain at all. Wouldn't that be great. They all looked pretty happy to me. So they are advancing science in this area and have also found the part of the brain that processes pain and are working on a way to interfere the electrical pain receptors in our brains. It is in the early stages but sounds really promising. Hope they perfect it in my lifetime.

    We don't have Pill Mills in Australia but we do have some of the strictest drug laws in the world so it is incredibly difficult to be prescribed pain medication here. Something that may help you choose a pain specialist is the rate MD website. I have a friend who is a specialist and she told me to get an anesthetist. I just looked up the word and didn't realise nurses can be anesthetists in the US. They have to be Drs in Australia. I am a bit confused now as they are obviously not the same in the US. But if it was me I would find a pain Dr who is an anesthetist ,as in Australia they are the ones with the most training in pain management. Vetinarians get more pain training than Drs which is an interesting statistic.

    I must admit I haven't found much luck in Aus because my injury is extremely rare, and I can walk which is also rare for people with my particular injury. I have now worked it out with my GP, in Australia you need a Govt Authority to be prescribed opoids so I go once a month to get an authority for a month. They do not give you longer than four weeks unless you are travelling and they have to have proof you are travelling.

    Firstly please take someone with you when you see the PM specialist. They can verify your pain and I usually take my sister as she is really good at explaining how much pain I am in. I normally am in pain so can't express myself very well. The other thing I do now is take the posts I have written on SH and ask the Dr to read them. This helped heaps as the specialist and my GP did read it and I didn't have to explain everything over again.

    You probably already know these but here are the depression and suicide links if you ever need them. They are from this site. There are so many great sites for coping and depression especially in the US, I found an inspiring one the other day but cannot remember the name . Sorry!!


    I use the distraction method all the time to forget or manage the pain. Watch a movie, anything take my mind off the pain. At least your disability has come through. I am supposed to do mine from a year ago but haven't done it yet and think it could be the mental part of having to give in my disability that must be holding me back, most times I am in pain though and it's so complicated. I don't feel guilty at all applying for a disability pension - I have paid so much tax in my lifetime I reckon they can spend a bit of my taxes on me. The tax I have paid will way outlast the pension money.

    Hope this had helped a bit - I'm sure you do but sleeping with a pillow between my knees really helps - I have a magnetic underlay which also helps. I just hope during our lifetime they find a way of controlling pain without having to take medications. Also for me strong pain killers didn't work without muscle relaxants. Also get the physio to look at the ones above and below your ops and see if they are in the correct mechanical place. My physio found out the ones above were protecting the ones below and the more I read this forum it seems natural that our body tries to protect itself by compensating with the ones above and below the actual surgery although I have not had surgery it just seems to be a pattern in the posts.

    Look after yourself - it must be difficult with young children to look after. Hope you find a good PM Dr who will treat you with respect. I have also put the link on the Intractable Pain Manual. Wish I had read it years ago. It's great.

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