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I Am Dissatisfied And Have No Idea What To Do Next

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aod0311

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Hi my name is Jeremiah and I have been going to the VA for about three years now since I was discharged. I have been going to the VA for problems in my back for about three years now and have gotten no where in figuring out what the cause is or controlling the pain associated with my problems. I am having a pretty good amount of pain in my upper back in between and just under my shoulder blades and I also have a mild protrusion in my L5S1 disc. I hurt my disc about a year ago and the VA just did a nerve conduction study a few weeks ago and they said the test results came back normal. I am still having pain down my left leg though. I just rehurt that disc on Wednesday by doing squats with a total of 95 pounds. The VA doctor said I was ok to do strength training and even though i didn't completely agree I thought i would try it to see if it would help resolve the problem in my upper back. I went and seen the primary care doctor the day it happened and they gave me an NSAID shot which helped a little. I went in today to talk to the Doctor at the pain management clinic in Marion IL. I had a literally four minute sit down with him and he rushed me out. I told him the amitriptiline i had been taking was doing nothing and he told me to stop taking it so i said ok. I told him my back was still hrting and that i rehurt my disc and asked for another scan to see how the disc was looking since its been over 8 months since i hurt it. he said "I don't see a reason to do another 1000 dollar scan" I said i didnt see what the price of the scan had to do with anything and he said "well it doesnt but i dont see enough evidence to run another scan at this point" I simply said ok with a look of disgust. I asked what he wanted me to do about my pain and back. He said to stay away from free weights if i was exercising and to stretch my back and to do aquatics. first of all i do stretch, second i dont have a pool to swim in nor one near. Then he dismissed me and i talked to the nurse. he didnt put me on any other type of pain medication and sent me to be treated by my primary care doctor. As i was talking to the va nurse she asked what he said and i told her that he basically said nothing and told her what i typed earlier in the above. I told her that I was going to the private sector to get another opinion and that the doctors at the va dont give a shit about their patients and that i thought the reason why is because their pay check doesnt depend on their quality of care nor the amount of patients they have. I am completely disgusted with this shitty excuse for a health care system and the patient advocates basically do nothing but try and talk to you. I have no idea what to do other than really going to the private sector which i have no medical insurance because i can't work. i cant even stand for longer than four hours without my back becoming so exhausted and painful that im hunched over like a ninety year old man, Im 26. What in the world can I do. I feel like this is neglect or malpractice or something along those lines. It is rediculous and I can't even express how dissatisfied i am. what a joke!!!!

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  • HadIt.com Elder

If I were you - -

First, I'd do whatever it takes to get an outside evaluation of your back problem, likely including an MRI or CAT scan, whatever is available and appropriate.

If nothing else, your local community hospital may be able to give you a referral to a local specialist.

A medical malpractice lawyer that has has experience with the VA may also be needed before all is said and done..

The first thing is to determine the problem and severity, then the best treatment, regardless of where you obtain it. Then, fight the legal battles.

You can ask the VA for another VA care provider, and see what they do.

It's often better to not express your displeasure in the "heat of the moment", and instead do it in writing to the director of the VAMC responsible for the

VA Clinic, along with the request for a different doctor.

Edited by Chuck75
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Jer...

I agree with Chuck. Have you applied for VA benefits? If not, the earlier you apply, the earlier your effective date. You can try another doc, and if there is no others in your facility, then try going to a nearby towns VAMC and try again.

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Well I am going to see an outside doctor for sure, as much as I hate too because I prefer staying off of programs like this i applied for medicaid and I'm fairly sure ill get it since I just have to live off the 974 the VA gives me. I've had multiple MRIs done of my spine and other than the mild protrusion and i think they said moderate scoliosis as well there is nothing they are seeing wrong with my spine. I've told them from the beginning of me going to the VA that my uupper back problem was musclulatory. I hurt it in boot camp and had problems all through my 4 years in the Marine Corps. I have already switch primary care doctors once at the Evansville clinic and have he has the same attitude towards me. They act like I'm faking things and I have literally been on 8 different medications for pain that had no effect. The last time I was working my back started hurting so bad I had to go to the emergency room. They prescribed me hydrocodine which is the only medicine that has given me any pain relief in the last three years. After they prescribed that I went to my primary care doctor, told him they prescribed it to me and told him it has been the only thing thats helped and i asked if we could try that. He said that that was drug seeking behavior and would not prescribe it. He told me that those medicines were basically out of the question and when i asked why he said that the only reason doctors in the private sector prescribe that is because its "big business", his exact words, then when i said that was bullshit he told me that if they prescribed me that now what were they going to give me when i was older and such. I told him i didnt care i was worried about right now and holding a job. The last time i was at work I literally had to take four pills to make it through an 8 hour shift. I don't get any real kind of buzz from them, i get slight pain relief, enough to be bearable, and i get hot and itchy so I'm seriously not looking for drugs. Just the ability to stand on my feet and work since I have no skills for a sit down job, I was in the infantry and on the company sniper team. So I'm pretty sure I'm like blacklisted by them or something, which is rediculous. Does anyone know of any organizations i can join that help with these issues. I also have PTSD and it really effects my ability to stay on track with all of this, to keep things organized, and my ability to understand and remember everything thats been said and such. So i kind of feel like i need my damn hand held through this disaster. I've already made the mistake of being very vocal about my thoughts of the VA to the doctors, nurses, and patient advocates and I feel like all of them blow me off. I highly doubt the director would be any different but I guess I can try that route. I'll just have to do some homework to figure out who he is and what to say I suppose. I do not know of any local lawyers that have handled the VA before so I guess I should call around. I honestly don't kknow if I even have a real case though I feel like I probably do considering how I'm treated every time I walk in the VAs doors.

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The feds would rather you climb a clock tower than cop a buzz off anything they hand out.

I worked thru the pill catalog for years hoping for relief from neuropathic pain but nothing worked.

I finally quit trying, disgusted, and had just been living with the pain.

I recently got a Medical Marijuana card and, although I don't like the high from pot, had immediate relief in my feet.

The pill pushers can kiss my butt.

I hope you get some satisfaction soon, aod. :smile:

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I went and seen the primary care doctor the day it happened and they gave me an NSAID shot which helped a little. I went in today to talk to the Doctor at the pain management clinic in Marion IL. I had a literally four minute sit down with him and he rushed me out.

I told him the amitriptiline i had been taking was doing nothing and he told me to stop taking it so i said ok. I told him my back was still hrting and that i rehurt my disc and asked for another scan to see how the disc was looking since its been over 8 months since i hurt it. he said "I don't see a reason to do another 1000 dollar scan" I said i didnt see what the price of the scan had to do with anything and he said "well it doesnt but i dont see enough evidence to run another scan at this point"

aod,

Just for clarificarion - Amitriptiline is an antidepressant - it is not RX'd as a substitute for pain.

If it's only been 4 years since you were discharged then you should fal under being an

OIF/OEF vet. Each VAMC has to have specialist for OIF/OEF in an office somewhere.

I would try to locate an OIF/OEF rep and discuss this situation with them and see if they

have some ideas or strings they can pull somewhere to help address your pain and/or anything

else.

You're going to have to try and reach out to find someone in VA healthcare that is willing

to take the time to listen and not just brush you off. Once you find a good one - it's like having

a piece of gold and they will be there for you to help you get your medical needs met.

Here's some more info that might be helpful.

Hope this all helps a vet.

*** Returning Service Members (OIF / OEF)

http://www.oefoif.va.gov/index.asp

Here's a link for IN -

*** VAMC's and CBOC's -

I would see if there is someplace else you can go for health services

that is not too far away.

http://www2.va.gov/d...ate=IN&dnum=ALL

*** For PTSD - if you aren't already going to the Vet Center you might want to check

them out. They don't RX any meds to my knowledge but they usually provide

better therapy and are away from the VA. They might even have some OIF/OEF groups there.

http://www2.va.gov/d...D=5453&dnum=All

***Evansville Vet Center

Key Staff

311 N. Weinbach Avenue

Evansville, IN 47711

Phone: 812-473-5993

Fax: 812-473-4028

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Sorry about last post. I have been prescribed amiltriptyline for pain by a neurosurgeon. It didn't help any. If you look on the internet you will see that it is prescribed as an off-label treatment for pain. Kind of like prescribing Neurotin for nerve pain even though it is a seizure medication. Hope you can find a doctor who will listen and get your pain under control.

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