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Need a new PM doc- Should I bother?

I have low back pain caused by arthritis and bulging discs, which are also detrioriating. I'm 26/F.

When I first started going to the pain clinic, the doctor started me on Percocet 7.5/325 every 6 hours as needed. I am also prescribed 0.5mg Xanax as needed by my psychiatrist. My PM doctor was okay with that as long as I didn't take them at the same time and because I don't take the Xanax very often. I signed a pain medication contract with him. I also have endometriosis, and had surgery twice while working with my PM doctor. Anytime I needed any additional pain medication, he told me just let him know at the next visit and he always okayed it. The extra pain medication was always prescribed by my gyno or ER/Urgent Care. Everything was fine with that doctor until he left the clinic without telling me and I got switched to a different doctor in that office.

The new doctor told me I was way too young to be on narcotics and switched me from 120 Percocet 7.5/325 a month to 30 hydrocodone 5/325 a month. We did that for a couple of months, and then she cut it down to 15 hydrocodone 5/325 a month and 10mg Baclofen. Then to just the Baclofen. She wants me to do physical therapy, which is okay, but she also wants me to get injections in my spine and I don't know if I'm comfortable with the more invasive treatment.

According to her, I violated the pain contract because I continued to fill the Xanax and she told me not to take it anymore. So that is my fault, however it was never an issue with the previous doctor. I did get some additional hydrocodone 5/325 for my endometriosis. She called me and asked me why, and I told her why she said okay. So another time I got another script for my endometriosis, and I told her at my next visit. She then scolded me and said we've told you not to do this before. When they did not tell me not to do that before, she had said okay in the past. And it was never an issue with the doctor before her.

So I guess I'm wondering if I should even try to find a new pain management doctor since I did violate one of the rules on the contract by filling my Xanax. I know you are not supposed to take Xanax and pain medication together, and I never took them at the same time. She did significantly reduce my pain medication, and then discontinue it, so I didn't think taking the Xanax when needed was going to be a problem. The additional hydrocodone that was prescribed by my gyno or  ER/Urgent Care also makes it look like I was doctor shopping because I had multiple prescriptions with multiple prescribers.

I'm wondering if these will just be red flags for a new clinic and I won't be able to be helped? I'm wondering if this is just too big of a mess and I shouldn't bother? Or if I should try another pain management clinic and just be honest with him about everything and see what they say? But I also don't want to be treated like a drug seeker either. Help and advice please?!



  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 13,419

    These will be red flags.  Once in your records, they become permanent and follow you wherever you go.  So, you can almost bet that any other pain management doctor/clinic can do a little research and find out what you did.  

    And remember because one doctor does things in one manner does not mean another doctor will do the same.   Most of this is all guidelines and it is up to the individual doctor on how they want to enforce it.

    But, my first course of business for you is to plead your case as much as you can to get that taken off your records

    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences 
  • MomOfTwoMMomOfTwo Posts: 1
    edited 02/01/2018 - 4:32 PM

    @dilauro- Who would I plead my case to? A new PM doc?

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  • peanut006peanut006 MichiganPosts: 147

    No.... your current PMD. She would be the only one able to change her personal notes and records. I would calmly explain to her, as you did here, that it was your mistake, that because you and the other doctor from this same office had these understandings about your use of benzos as well as your use of meds prescribed by your gyno/er/urgent care, that you believed those understandings would still apply. I would fall on my sword and take full responsibility for my mistake/misunderstanding and ask if it's possible to start over and rebuild that trust together. That you're willing to do what it takes and follow her rules to the letter. Short of that, and her agreeing, you're likely to have an extremely difficult time because the objective evidence (without your explanation) to any other PMD is going to see from your records unauthorized use of benzos along with pain meds, multiple pain prescriptions from multiple different doctors, etc etc etc, which in the current climate is likely to keep any other pain management doctor from wanting to take a risk on you. If you have a good relationship with your family physician or even your gyno who might be willing to talk to your PMD and go to bat for you that couldn't hurt either. 

  • That's a great idea to see if you can convince the PM doctor to change your record since like Ron says, it follows you wherever you go.  Then when you find a new PM, do everything possible to gain their trust.  If I ever go to the ER (which I do once in awhile), I go to the Doctors office within a few days and drop off the report the ER gives to me so they can read what my condition was going in and what all I was given and then it goes into my file.  Also if you ever have a script from another Doctor for a schedule 2, take it in and let the Doctor or nurse Ok it before you take it to the pharmacy.  I never wanted them to think that I was trying to do anything behind their backs.  Besides, if you are using one pharmacy to fill all your meds like most PM offices require, they would probably call the PM office and ok the script before they would fill it for you anyway.  Taking it over there first just makes them trust that you will always keep them in the loop about anything and everything.

    If the PM Doctor won't change your file, I wouldn't worry about it too much.  Just make sure that when you go to a new doctor to be totally honest about what happened at the previous one.  They will probably know all about it anyway.  And believe me that I have seen lots of folks do far worse things than you are speaking of and had no trouble finding a new PM as long as they were honest about what happened.  I think you will get another chance, just remember to build the trust once you do.  Let us know how things go for you.


  • Hey guys! Thanks for the feedback. I did make an appointment at a new clinic, and they want me to bring a print out of all of my prescriptions from all the pharmacies for the last 6 months. I will do that and make sure to be honest about everything. We'll see how it goes!

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  • So glad you made an appointment.  I always write down any questions I want to ask and keep adding to the list as I think of things just so I seem prepared when I meet the Doctor for the first time.  Then just be completely honest and believe me that goes along way with Doctors because they are lied to so much of the time.  I really think you will be just fine.  And remember to always keep the Doctor in the know about everything you are doing even if it seems like a very small detail.  Sometimes those small things end up being the most important down the road.  Let us know how things go!


  • I'm sorry but I am so furious that we the6 real people with real pain have to go through all this on top of being incruating pain, stress, depression, frustration and lack of sleep, loss of income etc! We have have to be the ones treated like drug addicts! And to see people be cut off from meds because maybe some pot helped or a Xanax to help them sleep, and help calm people! Then you're cut off?! 

    Then what happens? The patient who is in agonizing pain gets a pain pill from the streey6 or just someone they know. And buy them for almost 20 bucks for one pill! But we almost will do ANYTHING to get a moment of relief! Then some people get laced pills, and die, go broke, or get busted and end up going to jail! All because a Dr won't HELP!

    IM SORRY BUT SOMETHING HAS TO BE DONE ABOUT THIS. Plus there's an INCREASE in opiate deaths in the past few years! So OBVIOUSLY this plan is not workingWE NEED TO SPEAK UP! 

    Being in constant pain 24/7 is enough to drive people out of their MINDS! So they now send us6 to a shrink! More meds that don't help with the pain, just more side effects from more meds! Thanks doc!


  • Alissa, 

    Human Rights Watch is looking for testimonials from chronic pain patients who have been forced or encouraged to stop their opioid medication by physicians or pharmacists. They’d also like to hear from patients who have been forced or encouraged to seek alternative forms of treatment, but who then found those treatments financially or geographically inaccessible.

    they're collecting stories from chronic pain patients to Laura Mills at  millsl at hrw dot org  Also, they want to know what state you live in.

    “They would say the pain was just unbearable, that they would do anything to make it stop, and many of them would tell us that they asked their doctors to give them something to put them out of their misery,” he told PNN.

    Recently those same stories have been coming from pain patients in the United States.  

    “As we started looking at this issue more closely, we started hearing more and more stories of chronic pain patients in the U.S. who had been on opioids, who were being told by their physicians that 'We have to take you off.'  And we started hearing stories of patients who were having a lot of trouble finding a doctor who’s willing to accept them as a patient,” said Lohman.

    Maybe our voices will be heard.


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