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    I'm totally fucked

    I went to my pain management appointment this morning. When I was checking in I was informed my Dr had left the practice. When I asked where he went they said he was no longer practicing at all. They will be mailing one months of med scripts to my pharmacy and then I'm on my own. I LOVED this dr. I've only been seeing him a year, and he was the first good pain dr I've seen period and the only one familiar with my condition. I waited 6 months to get in to see him in the beginning, 6 months of hell as my pcp then first referred me to a clinic that didn't do meds and then made me wait for him but only writing 2 weeks of meds at a time. My pain was already completely out of control and I was bedridden but calling and crying ever 2 weeks begging for another refill, reminding her I was waiting for the dr SHE referred me to!

    At least I'm no longer with that primary care dr. I called mine and left a message with the nurse about what's going on. I'm also going to call my geneticist and see how long the wait is for an appt, and ask for a recommendation on a new pain dr. I need to see my geneticist about something anyway, and if I can get in within a month maybe he will give me another months meds.
    Board Member of Assistance Dog Advocacy Project working in Education. Feel free to ask me any service dog questions!

    I am not paralyzed. I have a genetic connective tissue disorder with neuro complications and a movement disorder.

    #2
    In addition to the proactive steps you are planning to take, I would try to contact this pain management doctor whom you love and find out what's really going on...the clinic might not be giving you the whole story. He might just be downsizing his practice at a new location, and will continue seeing a few patients...or he might be moving to another practice altogether (despite what you've been told)...or he might be able to refer you to someone who'll work with you. You'd think he'd have sent notifications to his established patients before disappearing. Hope you can track him down and get some direction, at least!
    MS with cervical and thoracic cord lesions

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      #3
      I don't have any way to contact him, they don't have any forwarding info since he's stopping practicing and not just transferring practices. He was with the university hospital, and even to contact him there you couldn't go directly and had to go through the answering service that schedules appointments and takes messages. It was all unexpected, he just up and left with no notice. He was an older Dr, but something bizarre had to happen for him to just suddenly retire with no notice.
      Board Member of Assistance Dog Advocacy Project working in Education. Feel free to ask me any service dog questions!

      I am not paralyzed. I have a genetic connective tissue disorder with neuro complications and a movement disorder.

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        #4
        That happened here a gp just up and quit practicing. The reason everyone his patients were giving were he was retiring. But the truth was he lost his license due to giving out unnecessary pain mess. Might be something similar.

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          #5
          I thought there were regulations regarding 'abandonment of care' for providers i.e. they are required to hand you off to another provider, or refer you, etc. They can't just kick you to the curb. ?!?!?
          "I have great faith in fools; self-confidence my friends call it." - Edgar Allen Poe

          "If you only know your side of an issue, you know nothing." -John Stuart Mill, On Liberty

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            #6
            check if he has handed over his patient files another doctor and take it from there.

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              #7
              I'm pretty sure they can just kick you to the curb. Happened w/ my pcp recently. The desk kept saying "He was asked to leave".

              And they screwed around for months before reluctantly setting me up with another...that doesn't believe in pain meds.

              It's hard out here for a pain-pimp.
              Blog:
              Does This Wheelchair Make My Ass Look Fat?

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                #8
                Lin, I'm so sorry this happened to you! It's a sickening feeling, I know. It happened to me. I was told by my former Dr.'s office, they did not know where or if he had relocated. To my surprise, my pharmacist found him. I was so grateful, but he moved away a few months later.

                Maybe try your Pharmacist? I hope this works out for you... sending good vibes!
                Incomplete, SCI, T1-T8, w/ Arachnoid Cyst. Bilateral shoulder surgeries, 2 on the left, 3 on the right, right forearm surgery for a crushed radial nerve.

                "We can always choose to perceive things differently. We can focus on what's wrong in our life, or we can focus on what's right."
                — Marianne Williamson

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                  #9
                  Oh, damn! I'm so sorry. It sucks to lose a great doctor.

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                    #10
                    Contact your state licensing board. See if he just moved his practice.

                    Happened to us...our favorite PCP was in practice with two other guys. When he'd had enough of their BS, he went off on his own. They kept saying he left the state.

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                      #11
                      Happened to me 18 months ago when my doctor was unjustly arrested for pain pill mill type charges. I got a notice but that was all. She did her best to refer out her patients but I, at least, was treated like an addict and the doctors did want to take me. The doctor was recently tried and acquitted in federal court.

                      I had to get a month of prescriptions from my GP, then drive 125 miles to Miami to see a neurologist at the Miami Project, who agreed to give me my prescriptions, and then eventually found a local doctor to treat me.

                      The point is that it was a big hassle but I eventually got it worked out. I hope you are able to do the same. It helped to go to a hospital known for SCI expertise. They had a hard time turning down a SCI patient.
                      2012 SCINetUSA Clinical Trial Support Squad Member
                      Please join me and donate a dollar a day at http://justadollarplease.org and copy and paste this message to the bottom of your signature.

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                        #12
                        With all these problems with doctors I'm glad I don't have to go often and glad I'm not on any meds. I don't have time to be finding new doctors

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                          #13
                          Oh shit, I hope it's not something legal with him! But that would explain something on the sheet they gave me. It had 3 suggestions for care. Contact pcp for referral, contack insurance for referral, or contact the IU chronic pain rehabilitation clinic and then had a url for it. I noticed 'behavioral health' was part of the url so I asked what kind of clinic it was and they said it's rehab to get off pain meds if you're addicted. But maybe that's normal to put that option out there for people?

                          Thanks for the support guys, I'm starting to feel better. The feeling that came over me sitting there and being told about him leaving was awful. I nearly broke down crying. I was also pissed about the wasted gas and parking money, they won't validate parking.

                          My pcp office has called me back twice already, so at least they understand the urgent nature of this!! He was also my neurologist so I need a referral to a new neuro too. And I have an appointment with my geneticist for August 24th. I stupidly forgot to leave a note asking for a pain dr recommendation. I'm probably going t be referred to the IU pain clinic from talking to my drs office. My pain dr didn't work out of the pain clinic but worked out of the neurology clinic and none of the other neuros do pain management. I'm just terrified of some long wait, and of course ending up with a dr that won't write for the meds I'm currently on and give me the same level of care. I joked that I was going to stalk my pain dr if he ever retired, I didn't expect anything like this to happen so soon!!
                          Board Member of Assistance Dog Advocacy Project working in Education. Feel free to ask me any service dog questions!

                          I am not paralyzed. I have a genetic connective tissue disorder with neuro complications and a movement disorder.

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                            #14
                            It is such a helpless feeling when something like this happens.

                            If you don't plan to stay with the clinic your pain specialist left, then get a copy of your medical record with this physician. The information contained in the record will help to substantiate to another doctor that you have not been abusing medications and that the medications have been effective.

                            All the best,
                            GJ

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                              #15
                              Be careful getting scripts from different doctors (pcp one month, the geneticist another, etc) even tho you are only getting one script a month, it could be a red flag. I would try to stick with one doc filling the scripts until you get set up.
                              T7-8 since Feb 2005

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