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  • AMEN!!!!!
  • HI
    I see. I agree too, i'd wonder the same things. have you asked your doctor about limited mobility? I'm afraid thats what eventally i'll need too (fusion)...
    All the best of luck


    And, thx for the cat-scan advise, I'm going to ask about it
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  • Oh, I know all about horror stories in diagnosis and treatment. I am SO sorry to hear you're dealing with it.

    Allow me to commiserate:

    It took me an agonizing five YEARS to get my problem diagnosed. Had surgery. Didn't work. Took me another FOUR years to get a competent doctor and health coverage to take care of me.

    My problem was spondylolisthesis at L5/S1 which got progressively worse after the initial physical trauma that started it suddenly at 17 years old.

    I saw a multitude of specialists nation-wide, had xrays, MRIs, the works. Nobody had an answer. I had given up, and then after a year one unlikely doctor decided to take xrays with me bending forward and backward, instead of standing/laying straight. Lo and behold, my injury was obvious. After all that time, all it took was me bending a different direction.

    After my first fusion which ultimately failed, I moved to Oregon from Maryland. I got some free xrays done at a local hospital and sent them to my old surgeon to get looked at. He was amazing enough to keep tabs on me after I moved since I didn't have health insurance anymore. He said there was evidence of pseudarthrosis and loosening of my hardware and told me to go see a local doctor asap.

    The first neurosurgeon I saw left me in tears. He took one look at my recent xrays, said they looked "fine" and dismissed me. His receptionist even had the moxie to tell me I was just DRUG SEEKING (probably because I'm young, tattooed/pierced, etc). I couldn't believe it. There I was, now 24 years old with a failing spinal fusion, in chronic pain and not being taken seriously for even 10 minutes.

    I called my old surgeon in Washington DC, in tears. He told me to go see a doctor at a TEACHING HOSPITAL. Best advice I've yet to receive.

    So I took my xrays to a doctor at OHSU, who had the sense to do a CT (whoa, no way!) and it was then glaringly obvious that I had a screw coming lose from my spine.

    This was followed by a series of fiascoes and disappointments regarding health coverage to get the surgery I needed to fix the problem. It was medically coded as "clinically insignificant spondylolisthesis" which was considered an ELECTIVE procedure. None of the low-income/free healthcare options I had would even consider covering it.
    24 years old, screw twisting out of my spine... elective surgery, yeah right.

    I got married last year to a friend so I would have amazing health insurance. That's the point of desperation I reached. And now I've got a great doctor, and I'm having my second fusion in 8 days.

    It's been 10 years of hell, but I think it's going to work out this time.

    So don't give up. If you don't like the treatment you're getting from one doctor, go see another. You know your body, you know your pain, you know the severity of your injury (whatever it may be), so don't let anybody write you off.

    If I'd have been taken seriously from the get-go there's no way I'd have just spent more than a third of my young life in chronic pain. But that's modern health care for you.

    Stick with it! Do NOT give up!
  • Hi,
    Thanks a lot for taking all the time to write that. Thats a hell of a story for sure. "Drug Seeking?".....I know about that nonsense too..In fact thats what the neuro said to me just recently.."I'm not perscribing you narcotics". I told him I have them from My PCP and wasnt asking for them.He is an arrogant F**k in my opinion but right now I need him. But ur right, I'm trying to get a referral to another Dr for 2nd opinion, I wont give up, I fell and have a herniation that I shouldn't have. Now I might require surgery again.....someone's gunna b held accountable for this injury as it was a case of property neglect that caused my fall.This surgeon i just saw gave me a script for the medrol steroid pack, didnt help at all,so he said if it didnt't we'd do ESI in the Op.rm..I know thats game too cuz I had them in my cervical spine....temp relief, if at all !

    I wish you all the best of luck w/surgery.. I hope for you it's your last one and permanently corrects the problem.It's no fun at all, I know.

    Good luck

  • Def get a second opinion, but with my experience, I have been 18 yrs in pain and the last 10 years being the worst, but my MRI's didnt really show anything significant enough to operate until just recently, also my age stopped my PCP from referring me to a Neuro for surgery...Might take some time for it to show a more progressive stage...I know what you are going thru!

    Wish you luck!
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  • These doctors and office staff throw around the term "Drug seeking" behavior too loosely in my opinion ESP with ppl like us who are in much need of some sort of relief from our pain! I go thru doctors EVERY 2 years cuz they are afraid of the DEA I guess! But they cant deny me pain meds because of what my MRI's show...I hope to hell they dont have to experience what I have had to!

    I had a Neuro wayy back when I broke my back and they use to make me stand, and lay down for my monthly MRI's...
  • Hi
    Thanks for the comments. I agree that they use that term too loosely.It's ridiculous to put it mildly. I've been on Narcotic pain meds for nearly 2 years and i still have apprehension each month when i see the Dr, that he's gunna "cut me off". I realize they dont want u on these drugs and they can b abused however, when legitamately needed, there should be no issue. I get long acting meds, and the short acting for B/T pain...NOw, they r beginning to wein me off the B/T...each month they are reducing the count...it was 90..then 75,then 60, now 45...
    Guess I;ll need to go black mkt....if i have to.
    I assume u r fairly young as u mention they didnt wanna send u to Neuro cuz of ur age. I am gunna get that 2nd opinion...I wish you all the best and again, thanks for replying.

  • Your post is absolutely insane. Drs. don't care about the individual patients any more depending on what kind of insurance they have. Unfortunately, it's only going to get worse. I guess we will be considered the lucky ones because we were able to get medical intervention. I don't think it will be that easy in the future before our new Health Care goes into effect since the IRS and 16,000 new employees who are not medically qualified will be responsible for our health care.

    Good luck to all of us!!!! Marsha
  • I can certainly understand your frustration; if it's not one thing, it's the other. The only thing I can think of is getting a second and possibly third opinion. You'll be surprised when you'll hear a totally different interpretation and this happens all the time. I can't believe what that the doctor won't refill your pain meds, esp in light of the MRI and your symptoms. Even if there is some doubt on the MRI they can still give you meds while your case is being investigated. Ask if they will do a ct/myelogram because it will help clear up inconclusive MRI's. I think this is your best bet and I hope you can convince this doctor to order this test. If he's a brick wall, climb over and go looking for another doctor. What medication are you taking for now and do you have enough to get by? I hope this situation gets straightened out b/c there's no reason for you to be in so much pain.
  • HI MeyDey..
    Presently I take 30mg's oxycontin 3x's a day..& 10/325 Oxycodone for B/t...but like I said, they have reduced those to only 45 per month.

    I dont think it's sufficient and sometimes I run out cuz I have to take more and then I have nothing.

    I;m growing very discouraged too. The neuro's office never even called me back yesterday. I'm trying to determine with them the next course of action. He said it would be ESI's........I'll do them, but I know most time's they arent helpful or if they are, its temporary.

    Thanks...hope u r well..

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