View Full Version : Pain Management

11-18-2009, 02:13 PM
Wow its been awhile since I posted last. I am still have a lot of pain and my primary said I should see a Pain Dr but wanted clearance from my surgeon who has ok'd it and gave me a 'script for a consult. Problem is both say I'm not a candidate for injections or manipulation and that is all any of the people they have suggested want to do. Are there any people out there in the greater Philadelphia area that know of any Drs that accept Aetna and are not into dealing with everything by injection?
Briarose if you found any help please let me know:o

11-18-2009, 07:15 PM
Hi Sharshe,

I'm sorry to hear you are still in pain. I had a cortisone injection today and so far I'm feeling better. I'll see if it helps at work tomorrow. I don't know of any doctors, but I will ask around at work. My job has Aetna as the insurance, but I'm on my husband's plan. Are you allowed to try acupuncture? Have you taken Ultram (I've been wanting to try it)? I hope things turn around soon.


11-19-2009, 01:36 AM

I took Ultram this entire summer, and I was fine with it unless I did way too much. I did something really stupid and stoved up my body. The Ultram didn't work so well then.

I've gone back to my stronger med for the winter weather, cold and damp get to me. At least we can predict the weather.

Take care,

11-19-2009, 07:12 AM
Hi Sharshe
i am so sorry to read that you are in pain...

i have 2 very good pain management doctors...i just came back from seeing one in manhattan yesteray...i have another in CT....my insurance is aetna

i take strong oral pain meds...also get botox injections in nyc (for thoracic pain).....the botox freezes the muscles so they cant spasm or bunch up, which causes me great pain...i have also had (for lumbar pain)epidurals, facet block, nerve ablation, & sacroiliac injections (that last one worked the best for me personally)

i have not had surgery...yet...& am not suggesting you have injections or any other procedure..unless your surgeon suggests/OK's it...but i do know that both meds & injections are staples of what pain doctors work with...

i hope you find a solution for your pain...perhaps just a consult with pain management doctor could give you an idea of what is possible...

best of luck

11-19-2009, 03:38 PM
Thanx for the replies.
I have more calls in to more pain management places. Waiting for replies from some of them and no luck with others.
I am definitely NOT looking forward to winter as I already had medical issues with the cold/damp weather.
Shell I hope the cortisone helps (was it for your shoulder?) I had that YEARS ago when I tore some ligaments in my shoulder digging up a front yard:rolleyes:

11-20-2009, 12:06 PM
I am from the area also and I have not heard of any good pain management practices. Before surgery I had the shots in the spine and they did nothing for me. I would try acupuncture and may try it if my thoracic region doesn't calm down. I am still on pain meds (9 months from surgery) and can't imagine at this stage, not taking them. I guess it's taking me longer than other people to be all recovered. Anyway, I just wanted to say good luck in finding some decent treatment. Would you think of going to NY for pain management as Jess does?
Take care,

11-20-2009, 06:58 PM
Dear Avis
it really depends on where they put the shots...cause i know what you mean about shots not working...cortisone never helped me at all...anywhere...
also, epidurals didnt do much...sacroiliac shots helped alot for a little while(i was blissfully pain free in lower back for a while...heaven!)... nerve ablation also, & facet blocks helped somewhat...for me, they use some kind of steroid, but not cortisone...i think the doctors really need to target the spot(s) they inject to the location of the worst pain of the patient...it is different for everyone.

thank goodness for the botox shots for my thoracic curve....it kills the pain cause the muscles can no longer do anything after the shots..just got botox again in nyc wednesday....instant relief...whereas the other shots for lumbar take a while to work their way in..at least a week...& when in severe pain, a week can feel like a year, as we all know! i get the botox 3-4 times a year...

i hope those who need pain management can find doctors they trust...even just to talk to & find out what may be possible...i had nothing to lose, cause i was in pain so bad i had to early retire...& i loved both my jobs, even though they were both so stressful...i had nothing to lose with the pain doctors...i have had no surgery...yet...& was pretty desperate for some kind of relief...just to get out from under for a while! and my insurance paid for the treatment!

best of luck to all who search for relief

11-21-2009, 07:48 AM
Thanx for the replies.
I have more calls in to more pain management places. Waiting for replies from some of them and no luck with others.
I am definitely NOT looking forward to winter as I already had medical issues with the cold/damp weather.
Shell I hope the cortisone helps (was it for your shoulder?) I had that YEARS ago when I tore some ligaments in my shoulder digging up a front yard:rolleyes:

Have you tried the Center for Pain Control in Wyomissing? There's Dr. Matthew T. Kline at the Pinnacle Mid Atlantic Anesthesia Associates in Wilmington, DE. There's also the Interventional Spine Pain Consultants in Wilmington and Newark. I think they all take Aetna. I'm not sure exactly where you live, so these might be too far.

The cortisone shot was for my shoulder. It's just crazy that I had that pain for 9 years, have been to countless doctors and that was all it was. At least it's better. I'm still having a lot of pain running down my arm. It apparently wasn't related to the scapular tendonitis. I'm giving Neurontin another try.

11-23-2009, 06:08 PM
Has anyone had experience with acupuncture to reduce lombar back pain? I have 70 degree lumbar scoliosis and stenosis L3-L4 with considerable back pain, particularly in the morning before taking 7 mg prednisone (tapering down). I am seeing a neuro surgion who says I may be a candidate for two X-Stop Spacers which should reduce pain but not reduce scoliosis by much.
Anyone have any experience with either treatment?

Thanks, Ed:confused:

11-23-2009, 07:26 PM
:confused:I'd love to know about pain management. I've had my problems since I was 27 and am interested in accupuncture suggested by my doctor but have had some strange experiences years ago. A doctor who was boob obsessed and insisted on putting needles under my breasts then another who left me in a room for ages and forgot about me! I'd like to hear of others good experiences and did they help. I'm now 61 and need a lift! Just changed pain regime but so far not helping.

11-23-2009, 09:38 PM

I've tried 3 or 4 different acupuncture practitioners over about 20 years. At one time, I was getting fairly good pain relief, but it was very short-lived. It rarely lasted more than 12-18 hours.


11-23-2009, 11:34 PM
Hi all...
acupuncture never helped my back pain..it did help me relax when they left the "thumbtacks" in my ears for a few days, but never helped back pain...in fact, sometimes my muscles would "jump" & then spasm when the needles went in....& then it didnt feel much better after that...no matter how long the needles were left in...

botox shots do the opposite...my muscles cant bunch or jump or do anything at all cause the botox freezes them...for months at a time, thank goodness!

for my lumbar pain, acupuncture didnt help...i wish it had..i tried it several times, with both American doctors trained in China & a Chinese doctor...it just didnt help...sacroiliac shots did, & nerve ablation & facet block did...

best of luck to you acupuncture folks...may the needles bring you relief...

11-23-2009, 11:58 PM
I didn't have any luck at all with the acupuncture for pain control. Of course that doesn't mean much since the guy doing the procedure wasn't Chinese.

I have seen open heart surgery on television, done with acupuncture, with the patient watching.Amazing stuff!

I guess you just have to pick the right person in acupuncture same as with scoli surgeons, chiros, masseuses, etc.


11-24-2009, 07:26 AM
I have had facet blocks done to determine which nerves were giving me problems. Then the doctor did ablations. Ablations last from 6 months to 18 months. The more times you have it done, the longer it lasts. I just had T8 - T12 area done for the third time. The second time, it lasted 18 months. I will probably be going back to have T4 -T8 area done for a third time in the next couple of months. I use Ultram when the pain starts getting bad until I can get another ablation. Remember ablations help with nerve pain not arthritis. I feel the weather with my arthritis.

11-24-2009, 02:35 PM
I have had ablation...it lasted about 3-4 months only....of all the shots, the sacroiliac shots helped me the most...facet block helped less...epidurals not at all...

i think it depends on the person & where the pain is originating...nothing much helps my arthritis at all..it is all over my body due to lyme disease...relafen & other anti-inflammatories dont seem to help me. i take oxycontin when the pain gets bad, hydrocodone other times...

i think where the shots go depends on where the pain is & how well the pain doctor knows the patient...each back looks different under the fluroscope..everyone is different, thus the same shot will not help everyone...my doctor & i dont give up & we keep trying...

best of luck to all who seek pain relief

11-24-2009, 07:06 PM
Being new to this would someone tell me what ablations are? Also when the pain is bad what's the best thing to do. Rest? I tend to think that pain is the body's way of saying stop. I used to be able to rest for two days then get up and go again. This time is different and little seems to make a difference. I'm loathe to go on really strong pain killers, would they do your joints more harm? I've had physio and acupuncture by the physio but have enormous 'stiffness' in my lower back accompanied by a burning sensation. Any clues? I'm 61 with a 61% compensatory curve so would love to hear from some older people with similar problems and how they 'get back to life'. Good anyway to know there are so many people out there listening.

11-25-2009, 02:19 AM
Hi Franny
nerve ablation is when the doctor burns off nerves...they grow back..but when they are burned, the pain lessens...if it works for the patient & if they get the right spot...

i have alot of pain from the discs i herniated...turned into degenerative disc disease..also from 61 degree lumbar & 40 degree thoracic scoli curves..the thoracic pain is relieved a great deal with botox shots that freeze my muscles so they cant spasm or bunch...the lumbar curve is more resistant to help..epidurals didnt help, nerve ablation helped a little, as did facet block injections...sacroiliac injections worked best for me...i guess the pain doctor just "hit the right spot" with the steroid shots...but all this lumbar treatment is very temporary for me...

i dont remember if you said..do you have herniated discs? or other stuff, like spinal stenosis? i have spinal stenosis & arthritis...the arthritis makes my body stiff all over...it is in my spine particularly badly....

best regards

11-26-2009, 12:14 AM
No, I don't have any of those other things, just the severe curve and it makes sense that there's such pressure at the base of the spine causing problems. Reading others stories I feel I should just kick myself and be extremely grateful. Good luck to you all. The courage out there is immense.:)

11-26-2009, 01:46 AM
Hi Franny
no, no, no...please dont kick yourself! :eek:

i went back & read your previous posts...since you just joined in november, i saw only 4 posts..didnt see mention of the size of your curves...??


01-15-2010, 09:55 AM
Well I finally found someone to see who didn't want to just do injections. It was at one of the 1st places I tried. They needed to have all my records then decide if they would even see me. I am staying on the Vicodin (7.5 2x daily)and adding gabapentin (400 3x), Lidoderm patches, and aqua-therapy. I go back in a month to discuss how things are working and any changes.
I'm so happy that I found someone willing to see my AND they're fairly close. It just took a lot of persistence, calling literally every PM Dr or center in a 60+ mile radius and starting all over before finding one. We'll see how it goes from here but at least she is willing to work with me. Needed to sign a contract saying I wouldn't see any other Drs about pain while I see her. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

01-16-2010, 01:12 AM
Good for you!!! I hope things go well for you this time.

Best Wishes,