Tue, Jun 9, 2015 3:22 pm
Re: An alternative to suicide?
Dear Ms Stahl,
I am sorry to hear of your chronic pain condition. My recommendation for you at this time is to see a primary care provider as soon as you are able. If you are feeling suicidal, you need to go to the nearest emergency room so that you can get the most beneficial help in a timely manner.
Your primary care provider can refer you to our pain clinic for an evaluation if needed.
Joanna G Katzman
Tue, Jun 9, 2015 6:54 pm
Dear Dr. Katzman:
Thank you for your response. I know how busy you must be.
So, your advice is to find and pay a primary care provider; who will then refer me to a doctor at a pain clinic; who I will give even more money to; who will then offer all the treatments I’ve already tried, all of which have failed and caused further damage. I assume you’re not suggesting that a pain clinic will agree to prescribe pain medications, the only other treatment besides cannabis that has helped me in the past.
I was hoping that an expert such as yourself might be interested in a difficult and complex case, but I completely understand why a doctor would not be interested in working on a case that is hopeless. Why waste your precious time? Why attract the attention of the DEA? (Unless they’ve already set up a desk in your office. I mean, it’s not like the DEA would approve of your treating a case like mine.)
Your other advice is to go to the ER, I assume because the ER is so well-known for successfully treating unmanageable intractable pain. Not that ER doctors are allowed to prescribe pain medications either, but I’m sure they can find a straight jacket and rubber room to put me in, giving me even more time to contemplate the hopelessness of my case.
Do you tell your pain patients how sorry you are to hear of their chronic pain conditions, or do you try to help them? Or do you just refer them to pain clinics? And here I thought you were in charge of running a pain clinic at UNM, along with Project ECHO, but I guess I was mistaken. Maybe somebody should inform the Veteran’s Administration that Project ECHO is also unable to offer any help for veterans who suffer from chronic pain.
I want to thank you for confirming my opinion that there is no help to be found through the medical industry for intractable pain patients, and my decision not to waste time or money attempting to do so. I feel better already.
(Note: I added the paragraph about UNM’s pain clinic and veterans because I thought Dr. Katzman’s email said “a pain clinic,” not “our pain clinic.” Not that any patient could guarantee that a primary care provider would refer to a specific pain clinic, like UNM. Sometimes, my anger gets in the way of reading things clearly.)