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No insurance, question about sliding scale clinic

MwylieMMwylie Posts: 15
edited 05/30/2015 - 9:00 PM in Health Insurance Issues
Hello I'm looking for some information or someone's experience with these clinics that base your copay on your income. I've been suffering for about 2-3 yrs with severe lower back pain and sciatic pain in both legs that seems to be getting worse and I just cannot handle it anymore. I've been paying full price every month for Dr. Visits and tons of medication and I'm tired of just treating the pain, I want to get to the problem and get it fixed. I've made an appointment with one of these clinics, and I'm in Texas, close to Galveston where I've heard most uninsured people have to go for surgeries. I'm just wondering if this clinic will get me there? I've asked my Dr what my options are and she basically just shrugs her shoulders and says I could try checking in through the ER and see if they would send me to xxxx, but I'm thinking going through this clinic may be a better way to go, and possibly get more tests run, I had an MRI when this first started up and it was an "open" MRI and I sat in a chair....didn't really show anything....mild scoliosis and DDD, ,but for this to have stayed as bad as it is for this long and now seems to be moving further down my legs and into my feet....all my Dr does is keep upping my gabapentin script. I'm frustrated! Thanks I sure hope someone can give me an answer as to what I xsn expect from this place.


  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,427
    ...your primary doctor who you is treating you? Who shrugs her shoulders?

    My primary tried to work with me about 2years before reffering me to pain management/neurologist specialist

    In my experience, doctors don't refer patients to ER except for severe symptoms and pain...either acute or out of control chronic pain situation.
    Is an ER referral only way to get to the clinic? Your current doctor can't refer you?

    If I understand correctly, you already have appointment with clinic.
    I am unaware of exactly what to expect from your clinic. If it your only way to see a specialist, it may be good idea.
    I can't imagine they would do unnecessary surgery, but specialist will test and work to find source or cause of your pain..and maybe more effective treatments.

    Please keep us posted with your experiences.
    Wishing you the best.
    Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • MwylieMMwylie Posts: 15
    edited 05/30/2015 - 8:58 PM
    I am just so worn down mentally from 3 yrsof non stop pain and not having insurance I had asked my Dr what options I might have to get help with my condition. I live in Southeast Texas, near Galveston, and here they will often times refer uninsured patients to the xxxx ER . There are supposed to be some great doctors there because it is a teaching hospital. I decided to make an appointment with a local clinic that decides your payment on a sliding scale to see if I may be able to get another MRI or other tests done cheaper and possibly a referral to xxxx if surgery is needed.
    I just want help this has truly taken my life away from me and I want to be my old self again. The last MRI didn't really show too much but for the pain to be as bad as it is and to have lasted 3 yes there is a reason and I just want to find out what it is and get on the ball with getting it fixed....I'm really scared I will get turned away or told again they can't find anything, mentally I can't hang on much longer like this. Im terrified I'll be stuck like this forever because I can't get help. Thanks for listening :)
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,427
    What a shame..the hoops you need to jump through to get a specialist to look at you

    You said you made appointment with clinic already.
    If not accepted unless through ER, then that's what I would do.
    Don't minimize any of your symptoms. Tell them everything....and how meds are not benefiting you as you still are in daily pain.
    With my list of meds, I also have a list of my medical history. As time goes on...different tests...it's difficult for me to remember all. And with the chronic pain being such a distraction, to say the least, I'm not a good historian re medical history.

    There are other tests that a specialist will order to get closer to finding source or cause of your pain.
    There are more effective meds for specialist to order also.

    It does take time though. Before anxious for your old self....for me it was a day by day just working to get pain stabilized..as that definitely was priority.

    Please keep us posted. I certainly hope you get the care you need soon!
    Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

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