I adore Dr L. Been a longtime patient and we’ve gotten close over the years to the point where he knows the right docs to refer me to, is fully empathetic to my resistance to back surgeries (which are extremely likely to make things far worse...which would put me in a chair) and he trusts me to know my own body and how medicines do and don’t work for me.
We always have a great check-in chat and as warm as he is informed on local providers, be they individual docs or treatment facilities. And unlike *some* pain doctors, he’s never pushed harmful meds at be, in liue of the more effective and direct ones that patients and providers know work best. Not only that but he’s never put me on multiple meds that have insanely dangerous interactions, as has happened with two pains docs working under extremely highly regarded hospitals.
Unfortunately, the powers that be have shoved all legitimate pain doctors between a rock and a hardplace and no patient should be so ill-informed in this day and age, as to actually blame the doctors for no longer being able to provide some of the aforementioned, directly effective and powerful medicines. There is nothing the doctors can do, so long as said powers are allowed to rule unchecked, making up their rules as they go and making things endlessly more difficult and ultimately dangerous for people in truly severe chronic pain. If your doctor is good, and mine is great, you should never push them to do what will cause them to lose their licenses, among other things. That and even if certain doctors relent, Good Luck at your pharmacy, where *they* have been impowered to make medical decisions for you, especially after the insurance companies have ruled what is even within FDA guidelines is too strong or too many. You very well may longer be allowed to pay out of pocket, so long as the insurance covered a percentage of your overall script. And that’s just when the pharmacist doesn’t outright refuse to fill. Not even remotely talking just opioids here, THAT is how out of control things have become. Plus, all pharmacies now have access to whether or not a person has insurance.
These are all things that every pain patient in NY/C much remain cognizant of, when having what they deem a poor experience, with any given pain doctor. If it revolves around medication and they aren’t doing anything especially harmful, like pushing crap combinations of potentially crap medications, you have to ask yourself a series of other questions re: overall care (within current confines), before going off at the mouth about how awful your pain doc treated you. Yes, you count, SO much, but that doesn’t mean your doctor, who is doing the absolute best with what they’ve got, should lose their license or sit in a jail cell, just so your medicine cabinet is ideally stocked. Patients need to get involved on any level they can, in terms of the state and it’s polics. But where rating your doctor is concerned, if they’re warm and fuzzy, if they give you SOMETHING that helps in a meaningful way with your pain (and doesn’t cause you undue harm), if they don’t suddenly yank you off or greatly reduce those meds that work for you (regardless of them being non-narcotic, etc.), if they offer multiple major and minor office procedures to further manage it, if they are knowledgeable and willingly refer you to the specialists and surgeons who will further meet your needs and if their office staff is equally caring, HELPFUL, going out of their way to be just that (as Dr L’s entire staff is) and regularly on-point, then that doctor is deserving of your 4-5 stars.
The present climate remains a nightmare for so many in agony but you’ve got to remember that it is equally so for the doctors who treat us. IF change is possible, it’s not going to come from your appointments. It sucks to high heavens, particularly when you’re feel terrible and can barely manage the basics in your life, but where there’s a will, there’s a way. Wish it was as simple as effecting change in the doctor’s office, but we all know that is truly not the case.
Many Blessings to All