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PM doctor dropping patient for questionable reasons?


I am fairly new to this forum. I had spinal surgery about four months ago with a top neurosurgeon in Alabama. The surgery did not fix the problem and I have worse pain than prior to surgery. I followed the standard process of being treated with pain medications from my surgeon for a few months and then I signed a contract with a PM doctor. He placed me on an ER narcotic medication which is what I assumed he would do. Because I had been on narcotic pain medication for nine years prior to seeing this PM doctor and high doses for four months prior from my surgeon, what I wasn't prepared for is that he abruptly dropped my pain relief by about 60% and put me on the lowest of low doses of an ER medication and explained that he, in particular, does not treat chronic pain patients with the use of break-through meds. I basically had no pain relief. This concerned me a bit as I am still dealing with recovering form this surgery and I didn't feel physically or mentally prepared to go through a horribly difficult transition at the moment. I thought this would be done in a way that didn't just cause me to suddenly be unable to function. The day after the treatment began I was in extreme pain and lost my balance on the stairs leading to our basement and fell down the steps. My wife called their office and let them know I was in severe pain as their discharge sheet says to do. It says in bold letters, 'IF YOU ARE EXPERIENCING PAIN THAT YOUR MEDICINE IS NOT COVERING CALL OUR OFFICE IMMEDIATELY.' For two days we heard nothing and then a nurse called and said the dr just said 'take as directed'. My wife and I met with him two weeks later and explained that I could do nothing, no activity, was hurting all day, all night. He says, that's about what I expected, I knew you would be 'in a world of hurt' but that's just how we do things here. He slightly increased my ER med, barely. We went to fill it and it was written with an error and the pharmacy said we should take it back and we did. This took until the following afternoon and I had been with no medication for two days. I was in severe pain, collapsed in the shower and fell out of the tub onto the floor. I was taken to the hospital where they referred me to another PM doctor. This other PM doctor requested my records from my current one and yesterday the PM dr I have been seeing has a nurse call me and they leave a voicemail that says because this other dr requested my files that they would no longer be treating me as a patient. I have done nothing against my contract, no rules broken, just was honest about the pain I was in and made sure they knew all along that I was in pain that my meds were not helping. Which I considered open and honest communication. This new dr can se me in two weeks but I am about to be out of my medication and I will obviously need help during the two weeks before I se this person. Does this sound odd to anyone? I personally do not want to return to this dr so that bridge has been burned, but to me that is almost grounds for a lawsuit. It sounds like extreme arrogance to me and he is disgruntled that I am seeking a second opinion. But I am not aware of any rules I have broken and he did not 'fire' me, just said this dr requested your records so your treatment is over, you aren't our patient. So, I am contacting my surgeon to seek help until I see this other PM dr, does that sound like the most logical first step? Any opinions appreciated, thank you.


  • Anytime you switch PM's red flags go up. It doesn't matter for the reason unfortunately. If your old PM won't send your records, you may want to contact your state medical licensing board to file a complaint. Be totally honest with your new doc about everything. If a question of honesty comes up, see if your GP will speak with the new PM for a reference of your character. This is always a sticky wicket.

    Several Epidurals, L4-S1 360 ALIF, Numerous Facet Joint Injections, RFA x2
  • You aren't going to like my answer again, but this current PM is well within his rights to refuse to see you any further, and to advise you that you are no longer being cared for by this office.
    You haven't exactly been the most cooperative nor compliant patient, and that doesn't bode well for any patient, with most doctors, but especially in the world of pain management.
    You will have to wait and see what the new PM office is willing to do for you, if they will in fact take you on. Once you establish yourself a reputation of not following the rules, or of being a difficult patient, most doctors don't want to deal with it and won't.
    I keep trying to explain to you that there are standards that are followed in any pain management practice, and what you were on before, doesn't matter to a new doctor. They are treating you based on what they feel is best for your current condition, not what you want them to do. Being difficult or demanding is not going to get you what you want.
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