Pain management is the only medical field where the patient is looked upon as an addict first. Everything is set up to make the patient prove they are not an addict. Think about that for just a moment. We live in America, we have a justice system that has as it's first position innocent until proven guilty and yet every single pain management patient is an addict until proven otherwise. This isn't a one time thing. You get to prove your innocent every single time you walk in for an appointment. The whole staff is waiting for you to fuck up and let it slip you are an addict. They are trained not in pain management practices but they sure are trained to try and spot addicts. How freaking sick is that.
We can walk into an ER anywhere in the country and be treated for whatever is wrong. We don't have to prove we are not addicts. We can go to our family physician and be treated and they will not assume you are an addict. If it does come out they will not deny you treatment, nope they will try and help you. You will be referred to an addiction treatment center. Not so with pain management. Nope, screw up and give them the impression you are an addict and you are out on your ass. No referral, no help, nada, zip , NOTHING. Here is the thing. You may really have started out needing pain management. You had a very real injury and you went to pain management. Too bad for you they got you hooked. Out you go. Too bad , so sad now leave. You are on your own.No referral to an addiction treatment center. No referral to anyone to help. Better start looking in the phone book.
When you look closely at pain management you will see the problems within and the problems are huge. They are setup to make money from people who are at their lowest. They are recovering from surgeries or injuries. Their lives have been turned upside down. Then their doctor refers them to pain management. Now their Hell really begins. Instead of compassion they are greeted with suspicion. Instead of help they get humiliation. They are pushed to accept unneeded treatments to line the pockets of the doctors. They are prescribed medications that are highly addictive and have a long list of side effects. If they are lucky they will have a short stay here in Hell. For some of us the Hell is ongoing. We will not get better. Our bones will not heal. Our bodies will continue to generate pain daily for us.
I started this to explain how much pain affects those of us who have to deal with chronic pain. I wound up jumping over to how bad pain management is in this country. These two are very much connected. We live with pain each and every day of our lives. We have a ton of stress from that. We feel pretty bad about how little we can do thanks to pain. We worry about getting worse and in the midst of all of that we have to deal with pain management clinics. Talk about adding to our stress. More than 80% of those who are in pain management are there for legitimate reasons. The rest are there to try and fool the doctors into feeding their addiction. All of the steps taken do not guarantee an addict will not get in. They do and the result is more rules and regulations and hoops for us to jump through.
There is a real need to change the practice of pain management in our country. There is the need for more research and more training in combating pain. There is a desperate need for new and better medications that are less addictive and have less side effects. There is a huge need for more compassion in this field. There is a huge need for more consideration for the addictive nature of these drugs we are using. There needs to be better access to addiction treatment centers throughout America. Pain management doctors need to work hand in hand with psychiatrists and addiction centers to fight the addiction that can result from these drugs.
It is past time for us to fight. We know about fighting. We fight our pain daily and we are tenacious. We can make a difference if we work together to demand change in a meaningful way. We do not need more rules and regulations. We need more compassion and less suspicion. It is time to fight for our rights as pain patients. It is time to stand up and hold up a mirror to the pain management profession and let them see how bad the field has become. It is time to demand compassion from those who are supposed to be helping us. We would not stand still for this amazing lack of compassion in any other medical field. It is time to stop it now.
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