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Friday, December 2, 2011

The World of Controlled Substances

Have you ever been exposed to a "Pain Clinic"? Yesterday was a first for me, "oh my word" it was a bit much for this sheltered life girl. I am not being judgmental, honest I am not, but the waiting room was full of some scary looking people. After I got home and talked with J, he helped me realize that probably a great many of the people who need chronic pain help are construction workers, people who work using their bodies, that have been hurt on the job. So most of these guys were probably hard working, down on their luck ( due to injuries) who didn't care if the shaved or how they dressed.

But then I got the office's disclosure form, you know that pack of forms you have to fill out at any new doctors office. Only this package had a five page contract you had to sign saying things like, you wouldn't sell you drugs to anyone, or give your drugs to anyone, that you would agree to release your records to police if requested, "say what"??? You had to agree to drug screening by urine test any time requested, I swear I was ready to bolt. I did not want to be a part of this world.

I calmed down and said to myself, you are here, you might as well see the Dr. So I waited. I had looked up this clinic on the internet, as well as the Dr.'s, they had good credentials, had been to good schools. The Dr. I had been scheduled to see had been at Northwestern and Chicago Rehab Hospitals.

So in came the Dr., he looked to be in his late 30's ( not to judgmental for an old lady huh?), dressed in black I wasn't sure if I was in a pain clinic or a beauty salon, the whole staff was dressed in black, but I digress. We went back and forth, it is always difficult with me when I go to a new Dr. because there is a lot going on with me. I will cut to the bottom line, he wants me to take a different drug, one he says is less addicting, yet stronger. I am for that, as long as the side effects are not worse. The drug is opana ER, has anyone ever heard of it? He also feels that there is a specific problem with my left shoulder unrelated to everything else that is causing the pain in the left arm that needs to be investigated. I am to have an xray and mir of that shoulder this week. I have an appointment with him again in 10 days. So I am going to give it a chance.

I will tell you though, I made up my mind last night. I am getting out of this world. I don't like it, I don't want to be a part of it and I am going to do everything in my power to lower and eventually end my need to take these type of drugs. I am going to study everything I can about inflammation and how to control it, I am going to find methods of biofeedback, anything to get me out of this world. If you have any suggestions, please share them, I am open to anything.

This is how the appointment ended, they asked me for a urine test before I left, guess I had to prove I wasn't lying to them just to get the drugs. When I was getting my stuff together to leave I heard raised voices in the waiting room. The place was closed, I had been the last patient. There was a person yelling at the receptionist wanting an early refill to go out of town ("he said", my suspicious mind again, he did have lots of tat's and a baseball hat pulled low over his eyes). The receptionist was trying to calm him down reminding him that they never give early refills, he was demanding to see the Dr.. I had to walk out past them to an empty parking lot to my car, I will never have a late appointment again.

And I say again, I want out of this world and I will do anything and everything to get out of it.


  1. Oh Joyce..what a day for you! If you have good insurance(or not) I really encourage you to start at Mayo...you are so worth it! I will come down and go with you to see what they can do at beginning...let me know if I can help you I am down in Phoenix a couple of days a week now spending time with my mom...molliedog1@msn.com

  2. You do lead a sheltered life! My pain doctor has the same kind of rules and forms. I've never heard of the new drug he suggested. Let me know what you find out about it. I was at the pain clinic today. He gave me five Percocets a day for one month; then back to four a day. He just shakes his head when I start telling him all that is going on! =b
    I am still having pain and swelling in the left ankle. I have an appointment with a new orthopedic doctor who specializes in feet and ankles on December 15. I had an x-ray taken on Tuesday, so far no news. Doesn't it make you feel old to hurt so bad? That's what it does to me. Take care of yourself. It was good "seeing and talking" with you yesterday - definitely have to do it on a regular basis. Love to you -

  3. I've been around the block a couple of times but this place sounds quite strange to me. I've always had the impression that pain clinics were to help you find ways to cope rather than to give you drugs. I've never heard of Opana.

    I still think Mayo would be worth checking out if you can afford the time. For inflammation, I've just recently learned that Turmeric and Ginger are good. Hopefully, your new meds will help.