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Young Patients Treated Like Criminals



  • Tommy,
    When I left my husband back in 1996 I started my first physical therapy regimen for my neck. To my surprise, my doctor and psychiatrists both said, "you're young and pretty, you should have no problems in the future." I went home in shock and cried. I was told that up until two years ago. Looks and age shouldn't be a factor in pain management!!! I did live with my chronic pain and migraines for 20 years. I thought I was big snibbler if I complained. I learned not to cry. I did carry on in silent pain and it affected all my relationships and judgement at times. I've even quit jobs for easier ones and was fired from two for my back pain issues. Now i just accept everything, I have choosen not to be angry but want to help others, Others like you who might think no one is listening. Prior to my surgery I had to provide a copy of my MRI before they would give me my narcotics and xanax. I laughed, went home and gave them the MRI and my surgeons info.
    Vent away and please don't take to the streets, that would be a whole new ball game, not to mention possible jail time. Don't give up!! Keep looking for the right doctor. Keep track of your blood pressure, lack of sleep and pain can elevate it.
    46 F Avg Hgt/Weight non-smkr/drkr, ex-runner
    Chronic back/neck pain/urticaria (pic)
    ADCF C6-7, 11/13
    C3-4-5 , L3-4-5-S1 DDD bulge annular tear

  • Its not unreasonable or unlikely that you would have to show proof to be managed with narcotic pain medicine. I understand that it is frustrating being young and dealing with chronic pain, but doctors also have to do their job and make sure they are prescribing to patients that really need it. I am 35, so I can understand how it is to be young and dealing with pain. Although, I really don't think its an age discrimination and certainly not "looks" discrimination. Doctors have to do their part as well. Plus, they have to make sure patients are not on pain medication to help with their emotional issues, which sometimes can be a hard line. Obviously if someone doesn't look like they are in pain, it makes their job harder. Clearly they look at their patients that need this medication to even get through their ADL's compared to someone that is still able to work out and live life normally different. They do the best they can. Its the people who have abused the drugs and the system that have screwed it up for the rest of us unfortunately.

    Retrolisthesis C4 of C5 and C5 of C6
    Spondylolthesis C5/C6
    Disc protrusions with Annular Tears C3/C4, C4/C5, and C5/C6
    Disc Material Compressing Spinal Cord C3/C4
    Severe Forminal Stenosis C5/C6
    Ankylosing Spondylitis 
    Annular Tears L3/L4 and L5/S1
    Enlarged Facet Joints/Facet Anthrosis L3/L4/L5
    PLIF with Rods, Cage, and Pedicle Screws-L4/L5
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  • I feel your pain, literally. I first had my spine issues in 2007 when I was 26. Now I'm 35 but I can't say it's been an easy 9 years and I still get looks from pharmacists when I fill my meds. Finding the right doctor is what has saved me from my massive depression and misery. Now, one year after my fusion, I'm searching for a pain management doc and it is like starting all over. I'm concerned but I've determined that when I find him/her I will put my faith in what he/she prescribes and be open to trying something new if that is what is determined to be the plan. Pain is insidious and discriminates against no one, as Ron said. Find the right doctor, put your faith in that doctor and hopefully you will find relief.
    2015: Thoracic protrusions C7-T1, T3-4, T6-8
    Dec'13: 360FusionL4-S1 w/bone graft
    2013: 3x2-level disc injections: 12mo surgery postponement
    Dec'12: DiscogramL4-S1
    Sep/Oct'12: Bi-lateral Rhizo AblationsL4- S1
  • I am at age of 32 and my GP did not believe I had a terrible pain because she at age of 57 and has some problems with back (due to obesity) and does not feel lots of pain. But when I got to the specialist there was no doubt that my condition(s) produced such a severity of the pain and I got prescription for Tramadol with no problem.

    Also, prior getting the proper medical treatment, I felt chronic pain and was not able to sleep. I was not able either to fall asleep or to sustain sleep for more than an hour. Instead of being examined by Physiatrist I was directed to the Psychiatrist :) who did not take into account my problems with the spine and tried to treat me with many psychiatric drugs for sleep disorders. In the period of 2 years I tried every possible drug for sleep disorder with no effect; even if I could sleep for 10 hours with no disturbance, I did not feel that I had some rest at all. At the end, when I got relieved from the pain, I started to sleep well.
    Scoliosis vertebrae THL
    Sy CC et CB
    Sy THS
    Sy LS chr
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