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Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 2261
   Posted 2/17/2011 1:25 AM (GMT -6)   
I have a question for you all. I was just looking through pain management doctors on spine health. I saw all different kinds. I ran into the psysiatrist. I was wondering if any of you have went to see one and if you have did you like him/her and what did they do to manage your pain. I read about them. I took down some names, just in case I need them. I don't want to have to go thru what I just went thru again. I love my pcp but she took wayyyy too long to send my scripts to me, and I don't feel like that she should have took that long. I'm just thinking at this point. I'm considering calling the pain management dr. at NY Rehab that I saw and see if I can see her again and see if she what she says. I don't know. I just don't want to suffer like that again. I have some pain, but nothing like it was. I was almost at the end of my rope. I was ready to scream and that's not good. I just wanted to know what you all think. Your opinions are what I'm lookin' for I guess.

Love you all

Soft hugs

Screaming Eagle
Forum Moderator

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 2/17/2011 7:55 AM (GMT -6)   
     Hello 9yrsCP!
            I'm so sorry you had to go through that, and I dont blame you one bit for looking around for a more reliable PCP. However, if you really like your PCP, I would visit with her first, and have a good heart to heart vist, and explain what you went through.
   Ask her how she can avoid that problem again in the future, and let her know that your suffering was serious. If she blows it off, then by all means pursue other options. I think many of the members here would advise you to see a good Pain Management Dr in the first place.
      Good luck to you! ....and take care!
  SE wink

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 5004
   Posted 2/17/2011 8:05 AM (GMT -6)   
My pain doc calls himself a physiatrist. He has a pain and rehab office specializing in non-surgical diagnosis and treatment of pain from injury, etc. He does electro-diagnosis (nerve conduction and such), spinal injections, and refers for PT. Rehabilitation and physical medicine is a board certified specialty.

I especially like that this doctor treats the whole person, not just a little piece of me. He's had me try all sorts of meds for fibromyalgia, which unfortunately haven't helped. He was the only doc who believed I really had pain in my shoulder, ordered an MRI which showed bursitis and tendonitis, and gave me a cortisone injection which helped a lot. I still have a little arthritis, maybe something else going on there, but the upper extremity orthopedic specialist kicked me to the curb saying it was just my fibromyalgia.

Funny, not really, how once you get a diagnosis of fibromyalgia every pain gets categorized as "just your fibromyalgia," and dismissed.

It's not the same as going to a rheumatologist, a good one that is. Rheumys should be able to diagnose fibromyalgia, eliminate other possible diagnoses by ordering specific blood tests, more expertly. It takes a bit of time to push all those pain points, and most PCPs, orthopedists, other docs only give a cursory poke which is not enough.

The other option for spinal problems is a spinal surgeon. They aren't interested unless there is something surgical, but they may order an MRI to check that out.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 9664
   Posted 2/17/2011 12:06 PM (GMT -6)   
The pain psychiatrist can prescribe medicines such as for depression, a pain psychologists cannot.
I find my pain management psychologist the better fit for me, what is it your looking for?? maybe do
some google searches...personally I find psychiatrist are quick to prescribe meds....
I hope you find what you need.
well wishes and healing hugz
* So many dx's I could write a book* "It would be nice if we could use the edit button in real life"...

spinal soldier
Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2009
Total Posts : 687
   Posted 2/17/2011 12:31 PM (GMT -6)   
i saw a pain management Dr. who was a physiatrist and i had appt. #1 and then after the second i, ( never before or since ), called and said i would not need the next appt. i think a physiatrist is good for getting a EMG or a epidural/medial branch block but for management of pain over the long term kind of contradicts their skills because they attempt to rehabilitate you as part of your treatment plan,a big part! and the fact that you have a chronic pain syndrome of which ever type means your probably as good as your going to get. the four best doctors i have known out of hundreds: neurosurgeon, orthopedic surgeon, and a rheumatologist/internist/pain and arthritis mang., and a neurologist. it is hard to nail down a pain MD because there is not a drastically needed pain specialty.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 5004
   Posted 2/17/2011 1:22 PM (GMT -6)   
For newbies to the language -

Not putting anyone down, just trying to clarify the above conversations.

A PHYSIATRIST is not a PSYCHIATRIST. Note difference in spelling. The first one treats your pain with meds and PT. The second treats your head, although he can prescribe meds. Both are medical doctors.
A PSYCHOLOGIST is not an MD. In some states, LA, NM, they may be able to prescribe certain meds if they have a Masters Degree in psychopharmacology.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 2261
   Posted 2/17/2011 5:29 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you all for the replies. I don't think I want to see a physiatrist because I have a long term chronic pain condition that's not going to get better. I have the fracture where I fell on the frozen ground and it didn't heal right, so I have to live with that. I also have ddd, spinal stenosis, bones spurs and maybe more. My last MRI was over a year ago, maybe 2. I can't remember. Should I ask for another MRI to check and see how things are going? I have fallen and hurt my lower back too. The compression fracture is in my t spine. Any suggestions?

I'm just trying to see what I need to do to get the best care I can get. I guess I need to talk to my pcp in March at my next appointment about how much pain I was in when I didn't have the patches for all that time and see what she says.

I hope you all are having a low pain day.


Mrs. Dani
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2009
Total Posts : 2787
   Posted 2/19/2011 10:25 AM (GMT -6)   


   Dear Loretta,

     Good morning  *hugg*  How are you doing this morning? Are your pain levels doing better now that you have had the patches back on? I sure hope so. You have had one heck of a hard time these last few weeks. It was frustrating to hear of everything you had to do just to get your script filled. I really feel you were left in pain for far too long. Worse, no one even apologized to you.

     With regards to new images... I personally get new x-rays every 6-8 months. New MRI every 1 0months - 1 year. You have not had one in 2 years. If I were in your shoes, I would press for a new one. So much can happen over that time. You have had new pain and just become accustomed to it and learned to deal with it. That extra pain could be something more serious happening. If you can not get your doctor to agree to a new MRI then press him for x-rays. You have to just "deal" with it and the extra pain for a long time now. I am willing to bet quite a bit more has happened to your spine in the last year. So, press for those images! You need them.

     With a little luck you are resting as much as you can right now. Please know you are in our hearts and prayers  :-)

*warm hugg*

TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood

Chronic Pain Moderator

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 5004
   Posted 2/19/2011 10:51 AM (GMT -6)   
Loretta - a physiatrist is exactly the right doctor for chronic pain. That's what they deal with in pain clinics, where most of these docs work. Remember, these guys trained for several years in rehabilitation and pain management! The only other doc who deals with chronic pain like this is a rheumatologist, and they don't do the spinal nerve injections to block pain, although they can prescribe pain meds and will inject bursae.

My rheumy sent me to a physiatrist to deal with the spinal stenosis and the bone spurs - after the orthopedic surgeons found nothing they wanted to operate on. Orthopods don't deal with chronic pain, just do surgery.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 2261
   Posted 2/19/2011 9:55 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks Dani. I will call Tuesday and see if I can get a script for a MRI. I appreciate your support. You're such a sweet lady. I hope your pain isn't too bad tonight. My pain is a lot better since I got the patches back on. Thank goodness. I agree that I suffered way too long and you're right, nobody even apologized. What really gets me is my doctor wasn't the one that sent my scripts to me. It was a registered nurse that is in the same office as my doctor. Anyway I got them and I'm much better now.

How are you doing? I hope your pain is better. Bless your heart. You have to go thru so much day in and day out.

Thank you Alcie for your support. I appreciate the information about the psysiatrist. Boy that's hard to spell. I have only had one injection before and that's when I was seeing another PM doctor. He injected it in my hip because I have arthritis and bursitis and I was having a rather hard time dealing with the bad pain I was going thru. I haven't had one since. That was about 4-6 years ago, I think. I may try to get an appointment with a psysiatrist and see what takes place. I've been thinking about it since I found the list of doctors on Spine Health. I'm scared to go to a chiropractor though with everything that's wrong with my spine. I'm afraid I would be paralyzed after that visit.

Dani, you know what, you're right. I could have more wrong now that I think about it. I am going to make that call Tuesday. I wish Monday wasn't a holiday (presidents day).

Well, i'll go for now. You two take care and I hope you have a low pain night.

hugs and love
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