Monday, January 21, 2013

Planning for my doctor appointment

Today I have to put in some deep thoughts on a plan for my doctor appointment on Friday with Dr. G the pain management specialist. After last week with Dr P, the rheumatologist who is leaving (without permission from me!), I need to get my questions ready for managing my fibro as well as the stupid back pain which causes no end of crankiness.

I have goals here:
  1. Get pain under control.
  2. See #1 above.
When I go to the doctor, they always ask my pain level (and if I am safe at home - which I am unless the cat tries to trip me on the stairs). I have to think what hurts, how much, and is this doctor going to care much about it. Specialists only care about the body part that they treat if it is giving you pain. Well I think they do but if I go to the orthopedist who treated my tennis elbow and tell him my back is a 6, he really wants to know that my elbow is a 5. 

The problem is Dr G doesn't want to change my pain meds around much these days  because we are trying to get the RA under control. Dr P just increased my methotrexate (which I really need to learn to spell for I am in violation of my rule that you cannot have an ailment or a treatment you cannot spell and pronounce.) If two sets of meds get changed around, then you never really know what is working and what isn't (or which is causing which nasty side effect).

I was on Butrans 5mcg/hr pain patches but they weren't enough so Dr G increased my dosage to 10mcg/hr and then I had to go through pharmacy hell to find out my co-pay for those is $95/4 weeks which I am not sure I can afford. I am back on 5mcg/hr because I ran out of the 10s and those are a paltry $65/4 weeks. I hope there is something else which will cost less but not require needles and will relieve pain.

So that is  one question. Then we can talk about fibro and back pain and neuropathy and all sorts of fun things. I have to write this all down so my chemo brain isn't required to remember anything important.

1 comment:

Andrea said...

I'm a nurse, Caroline... and since this is bothering you (as it would me too!), why don't you just ask Dr. P to talk to Dr. G before he leaves. Tell Dr. P to give Dr. G the scoop on your case & how to handle it. Tell Dr. P you want continuity of care & you don't want to have to bullshit around. Dr. P will call Dr. G after-hours one evening this week (or talk to him at the racket club!!!!) and it will all be taken care of without you having to say much of anything.

Do you think that might be an option?

Doctors leaving... pain in ass!!


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