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Thread: Surgeon Woes

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Little Rock, AR
    Posts
    10

    Surgeon Woes

    After six-months for test, MRI's, CAT scans and needles stuck in my spine and injected with lots of stuff, today was the day I waited on, I finally get to talk to Dr. Richard E. McCarthy at Arkansas Spine Center. I woke up this morning hoping to finally get the answers to whether or not I can have the surgery. I took my pain pill at 8 a.m. knowing I would need another at 12:45 but I'd be okay cause my appointment was at 11. I got there at 11 and was put into a room to wait for Dr. McCarthy. At 12 I started to feel the need to take another pain pill but knew I had to wait till 12:45 but I thought this shouldn't take long cause it's just a consultation for the surgery. Really shouldn't take that long, right? Well 1 p.m. hit and I was still waiting and by that time I was late on taking my pill. Now the pain gets worse and the anxiety was setting in and still no Dr. I went to the front desk to ask for my records and films so I could take them to another surgeon for an opinion. Now that I have all test needed. Why is it when you goto a doctors office you feel like cattle? Don't they care about the patient and each individual needs? People with Chronic pain should not have to wait for 2 hours or more to talk to a doctor.

    Lets just say from day one Arkansas Spine Center and the staff there have been less than pleasant. I won't be back and I know I'll have to start over but I guess it's for the best. It's better than being treated rudely and feeling like cattle in a slaughter barn. The lack of Professionalism at ASC has cost them a patient, Like they even care!
    Last edited by Whiffr; 12-20-2007 at 09:16 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    360
    I understand your frustration. I waited for over an hour to see my surgeon today. My appointment was at 9 am and he didn't arrive at the office until after 10. I've waited for him for over 2 hours before.

    Do you have another doctor you can go to?
    Chemist, 30

    1998- 18 degrees
    2003- 33 degrees
    2005- 37 degrees
    2006- 44 degrees
    May 2007- 47 degrees
    December 2007 - 50 degrees X-ray

    Surgery May 27, 2008
    Fused T1 to L2
    Curve corrected to 15 degrees X-ray

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Little Rock, AR
    Posts
    10

    Looking

    Looking right now. No matter who it is, I will check he/she out completely. Don't want a repeat!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    1,978
    Sorry to hear about your long wait and disillusionment! Hopefully you'll find a doctor (and staff) that isn't that way. I've never had to wait more than 5 or 10 minutes, so I know it can be done. Good luck!
    67 and plugging along...
    2007 52 w/ severe lumbar stenosis & L2L3 lateral listhesis (side shift)
    5/4/07 posterior spinal fusion T2-L4 w/ laminectomies and osteotomies @L2L3, L3L4
    Dr. Kim Hammerberg, Rush Univ. Medical Center in Chicago

    Corrected to 15
    CMT (type 2) DX in 2014, progressing
    NEW 10/2018 x-rays show spondylolisthesis at L4/L5 - Dr. DeWald is monitoring

    Click to view my pics: pics of scoli x-rays digital x-rays, and pics of me

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Chicago north suburb
    Posts
    772
    Great surgeons are in great demand. Im not familiar with this Dr. McCarthy, but if hes anything close to the caliber of a Dr. Bridwell or Dr. Lenke, I think a long wait is to be expected. I had a three-hour wait when I went to St. Louis to see Dr. Bridwell, and that was only after I told the receptionist that I had a plane to catch, so they moved me up. Otherwise, I think I would have had to wait the entire morning. Personally, if I know I'm being treated by an exceptional surgeon, I'd bring a book along and happily wait my turn.

    Chris

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Boston, MA
    Posts
    183
    Unfortunately, the best doctors are often overbooked. I understand sometimes offices are behind, but you can tell a lot from how the staff handles the situation. If they weren't sufficiently apologetic, or were dismissive of the situation, or even if you simply don't have a good vibe, then those aren't the people you want supervising your surgery.

    I had my post-op yesterday and, because radiology was backed up and I had to wait for an xray, I ended up being at the hospital for 3 hours (2 weeks after surgery, when I can't sit comfortably without a ton of pillows). I wasn't happy about it, but things happen. The staff handled the situation as well as could be expected, and I'm glad I had my pain meds with me...

    Good luck finding another office.
    2000 34*L/39*T
    2007 44*L/53*T

    12.3.07 Posterior Spinal Fusion T4-T12
    (initially planned T4-L1)
    12.18.07 11*L/10*T

    23 years old

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    near Philadelphia
    Posts
    1,260
    A long wait is the norm, I'm afraid -- especially if you're getting x-rays done. That's why I bring meds, a book, food, IPod, .......everything but the kitchen sink to my appointments.
    Chris
    A/P fusion on June 19, 2007 at age 52; T10-L5
    Pre-op thoracolumbar curve: 70 degrees
    Post-op curve: 12 degrees
    Dr. Boachie-adjei, HSS, New York

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Little Rock, AR
    Posts
    10

    The wait

    I wish I had brought an extra pill but these days with zero tolerance it's not worth the hassle and if you take the prescription bottle with you and loose or they get stolen you can't get them replaced. Plus I didn't think it would be that long cause all the test were done. X-Rays, MRI's and CAT and CT scans. Noting more to do except find out what the surgeon's opinion was. It could have all been settled if just one nurse would have said how are you, the doctor is running behind and he should be here in......but to be left in a closed room for over an hour and no one says anything. It's like they put me in the room and went to lunch and when they got back they forgot I was in the room. Those of you with this kind of pain know it can manifest itself as anger and that's the part I hate! It's easy for someone who doesn't live with pain 24/7 to say calm down..If they only knew or at least walk 50 feet in my shoes only cause I couldn't make it a mile......
    Last edited by Whiffr; 12-19-2007 at 08:21 PM.

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