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first pain management experience

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,578
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:23 AM in Pain Management
And not a good one.

I had my first pm appt today - full of hopes of advice and a kindly ear and some input on proactive ways forward.

Instead I have come back and cried for about half an hour. He didn't really want to hear what my pain situation was and interrupted every time I was answering his questions on my history and current symptoms. Then he just said I have nerve pain from scar tissue and either have to accept it and find ways to live a life less - well I don't like using the word he used so I won't - or have injections and maybe an SCS in 3 years time.

I know this may be the reality and I don't want someone to lie to me but my consultant hadn't seemed to concerned by the scan results on friday and felt I was in the right hands with my physio and working on a proactive regime so to hear such "hopeless" news in such a blunt unpleasant way has really upset me.:-(

Sorry for the rant - I am just so disappointed and sad that I put my hope it getting help from this guy and having another person on "team get better" when it really just felt like a waste of time. Are all pms the same?!



  • Not all PM's are the same. Just like not all docs are the same. It's just the nature of the beast.

    One thing that I had to learn early on was to not have expectations when going to see any doc, no matter what the problem or what the specialty. Otherwise I was almost guaranteed to be disappointed.

    The other thing I had to learn is that we all have good days and bad days and so do docs. There have been a few docs I have seen that my first visit was a huge disappointment and if I were to judge that doc on that visit alone, of course it wouldn't be pretty. Fortunately I went back to the same docs and found that they are actually very excellent docs.

    I'm really sorry that you had a bad experience. I hope that things work out for you better than you see them at the moment.

    Hang in there,

  • I'm sorry again for the way you were treated. I PM'd you earlier with suggestions on how to deal with this rat if you're stuck with him. If you can see someone else, jump off this shipwreck of a doctor. I know how lousy it feels to be let down. You go in with expectations and wanting positivity, and instead you get the live with the pain talk. Try to do a lot of research on the neurostimulator trial, and look up experiences; there's lots of them. You can PM Milliekeylargo, she is a great success story.
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  • I understand your PAIN. It is very hard to find compassionate Doc's that really care! It is even harder to find a good Doctor that will prescribe you the medication that you need to manage your pain. I recently started recieving treatment at***EDITED***. Their staff is very nice and the Doctor is very understanding of chronic pain. The website is ***EDITED***

    Good Luck with your treatment!!!! and please remember that tomorrow is a new day and you can always make it to tomorrow

    Doctors name and contact details removed by forum Moderator (paulgla). We do not permit publishing specific doctor's or institution names and contact details.
  • Hey, I am sorry to hear about your PM appt. My first PM appt went the same way... do we have the same doctor???? LOL I saw him once again for an ESI, and once more for NOTHING. I wont go back!! I am currently searching for a PM who has experience treating pregnant women... starting to think they don't exist.

    If you can, seek out another PM... I know that when I went to my appointment, I went with all these hopes of finally seeing a doctor who understands what I am going through. I ended up with another "deal with it"

    Good Luck, and keep trying =)
  • Hey guys thanks for the input.

    Well interestingly a friend of my family had seen this guy also (I didn't find this out til yesterday) and had the same bad experience and never went back.

    I do wonder sometimes if some of these doctors dismiss us because we are women. I am pretty certain they wouldn't pay such little heed to men complaining of chronic pain.

    Manalerie - I read some of your entries - boy did they strike a chord. Sometimes its like we are just bounced from person to person - the pm doctor wouldn't advise me on my meds as he said that was being prescribed by the neuro - well the main reason the neuro bounced me was so I could discuss my pain meds with a pain management specialist!! Aaaaaaaaargh! Have you had any luck finding anyone more specialised?

    Hagland - I shall keep my fingers crossed I find someone who helps as much as your one has.


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  • I have seen many Drs and specialists that treat women differently. When I first started this chronic pain journey, I was very optomistic, thinking maybe there is someone out there that will help me with this. Here it is four years later, and besides having the greatest general dr in the world, I have yet to find a specialist that would give me the time of day. I dont mean to sound sexist here, but every single person I have seen has been male. When I go to visit these specialists or Drs, they dont even do an examination on me, simply told me Im too young to think about any treatments (Im 27) and to increase my anti-depressant medication. ~X( It is very trying to find someone that will take the time of day to listen to you, but it is VERY IMPORTANT that you find someone who does. The problem I have here where I live is there are no pain management clinics, only our general drs. I actually saw other drs and specialists before I even turned to my general dr, and am kicking myself in the butt now for not turning to her sooner. She has been the biggest blessing to me. She is taking control of my medications and going up to bat for me with this new surgeon, as well as trying to get me in to have a discogram in the next 2 weeks before I go to see this surgeon who is in a different town a couple hours away. She basically told this surgeon that unless he thinks he can do something for me, don't waste her time! :D She is absolutely wonderful! I wish it werent true that some drs out there werent bias and took both men and women seriously, but that is just not the case as many can probably attest to. But you need to find someone who will listen to you, and quick. I stuck with a Dr that told me to "deal with the pain" for awhile, and he never did one thing for me, not even physical therapy! He even suggested that I am just depressed and possibly going through some post-partum depression! =)) (My baby girl is 10 months old) Not that it might not even matter, but seriously, this chronic pain doesnt just happen with men. Good luck to you and I hope you find someone that will give you the answers you deserve. If you need anyone to talk to, PM me! Would love to chat! :H
  • I actually think PM docs are not as well trained in their specialty as other specialists. I may be wrong but I don't even think there is a board certification in this field. I don't know if they have developed their bad attitudes because they are constantly encountering people who are just using them to get drugs or because their patients so seldom get better but I am of the opinion that this group of docs really does have a generally poor bedside manner. On the other hand, I have found some who are really nice and caring and I do agree that you can't lump them all together (even though i just did.) I agree with the others who recommend you find a new doc. The last thing you need with all your pain problems is a PM dude with an attitude.
  • Actually, there have been multiple studies that have shown it IS gender-based and that doctors are more likely to attribute women's pain to psychological causes; are more likely to treat women's pain with psychotropic medications; and prescribe less potent pain medications at lower doses for women regardless of effectiveness compared to men. As a result, women are often forced to endure higher levels or pain for a longer period of time before receiving adequate treatment compared to men.

    I don't have links, but here are some excerpts from a printed copy of an article titled "The Girl Who Cried Pain: A Bias Against Women in the Treatment of Pain" published in the Journal of Law, Medicine, and Ethics:

    "Faherty and Grier studied the administration of pain medication after abdominal surgery and found that, controlling for patient weight, physicians prescribed less pain medication for women aged 55 or older than for men in the same age group, and that nurses gave less pain medication to women aged 25 to 54.55 Calderone found that male patients undergoing a coronary artery bypass graft received narcotics more often than female patients, although the female patients received sedative agents more often, suggesting that female patients were more often perceived as anxious rather than in pain. Another study, examining post-operative pain in children, found that significantly more codeine was given to boys than girls and that girls were more likely to be given acetaminophen."

    "The authors attributed the differences in treatment to the 'Yentl Syndrome,' i.e., women are more likely to be treated less aggressively in their initial encounters with the health-care system until they 'prove that they are as sick as male patients.' Once they are perceived to be as ill as similarly situated males, they are likely to be treated similarly.

    The 'Yentl Syndrome' hypothesis fits well with the results of a study by Weir and colleagues, which found that of chronic pain patients who were referred to a specialty pain clinic, men were more likely to have been referred by a general practitioner, and women, by a specialist. The results suggest that women experience disbelief or other obstacles at their initial encounters with health-care providers. An older study (1982) also found that of 188 patients treated at a pain clinic, the women were older and had experienced pain for a longer duration prior to being referred to the clinic than the men. In addition, the researchers found that women were given 'more minor tranquilizers, antidepressants, and non-opioid analgesics than men. Men received more opioids than did women.' These findings are consistent with those reported by Elderkin Thompson and Waitzkin, who reviewed evidence from the American Medical Association’s Task Force on Gender Disparities in Clinical Decision-Making. Physicians were found to consistently view women’s (but not men’s) symptom reports as caused by emotional factors, even in the presence of positive clinical tests."

    The irony of the whole thing is that because of gender and hormonal differences, women suffer from a wider range of illnesses that have the potential to result in chronic pain. :??

    From the International Association for the Study of Pain:

    "Age and sex specific prevalence patterns differ for different pain conditions. However, prevalence rates of most common chronic pain conditions are higher among women than among men. For example, in population based studies of adults, the female:male ratios for headache, neck, shoulder, knee and back pain average around 1.5:1; for orofacial pain conditions the ratios are about 2:1; for migraine headache the ratio is 2.5:1; and for fibromyalgia (a less prevalent but often disabling condition) the gender ratio is over 4:1."

    Just some fun facts from a past research project. :B

    And, stockbroker, in the United States there is board certification for pain management specialists. Personally, I wouldn't dream of seeing a pain management doctor that wasn't board certified.
  • I would not want to be a Pain Management Dr for all the tea in China. Can you imagine listening to all of us all day long?? :))( Just kidding. My first PM dr was a woman who was so uncaring. Just the way she treated me in the office, like I was wasting her time. I did some resesrch and fortunately we have many PM Dr in my area ( Phila suburbs) and I went out and interviewd Dr's all day long. I found the right one, or actually 2. I have one for all of my meds and one for proceedures. They are both FANTASTIC. They actually hug me on my way out. The one Dr actually holds my hand during visits and not in a creepy way, he is very sincere. I wish all of you could have the best Dr's and make the pain a little less.
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