Does anyone think that it's Illinois docs that predominately shy away from pain meds?

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
[ << Previous Thread | Next Thread >> ]

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2011
Total Posts : 78
   Posted 4/26/2011 8:02 AM (GMT -6)   
I just had a hunch that Illinois (the state I live in) is why docs are so scared to lose their license if prescribing too many pain meds?  I think, from what I've read, that Illinois is the most strict, AND that the doctor's insurance that they all have to get for themselves skyrocketed for them about 10 years ago, and many of them moved out of the state of Illinois.  So, just wondering if anyone else has that experience with different state doctors prescribing more or less liberally?

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 1235
   Posted 4/26/2011 9:01 AM (GMT -6)   
No states doctors prescribe , "liberally" anymore. The DEA has come up with so many restrictions and policies for doctors who prescribe narcotic pain medications that many doctors are afraid of being sued, of patients who take more than they are prescribed, of the liabilities associated with treating chronic pain patients, that they either don't, won't or can't anymore.
Those who do treat chronic pain prescribe just enough medications for 28-30 days, and no more.....and the patient must abide by a contract that says that if they fail a urine screen, or they are called for a pill count, they must come in with the correct number of pills, no more , no less, otherwise they get dismissed.
The DEA has made it difficult for patients and doctors alike.
Motorcycle accident 1992, Back problems from 92 to 2005. August 2005- early 2006- Chiropractor care
March 2006- consult with surgeon -PLIF/TLIF L4-5, spondylolysthesis, canal and foraminal stenosis, multiple herniations
Post Op Cauda Equina Syndrome
Revision August 2007- salvage op
March 2011- 2nd onset of Cauda Equina Syndrome
Needs surgery to prevent paralysis

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2011
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 4/26/2011 9:01 PM (GMT -6)   
It has been my experience that all doctors are "shying away" from pain meds in general right now because of the recent press on celeberty overperscvibing and pill shopping. The other reason is due to Malpractice insurance. The insurers saw this press as a way to put fear into the doctors about what would happen to them and the premiums for their malpractice coverage if they make one error.

Having said that, I've been a guinea pig many a time to doctors that didn't know how to perscribe pain meds or other meds in general. I guess like all things there are pro's and con's to it.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 2042
   Posted 4/26/2011 9:45 PM (GMT -6)   
IMHO Florida is the most strict, or soon will be, when it comes to prescribing narcotics, and no I don't live in Florida, I live in Illinois as well.

I have not had a huge problem getting pain meds, but I have had to jump through all the hoops first and work my way up to something that works. I had to do this twice as I had to switch doctors a couple of years ago.

Doctors all across the country though are skittish when it comes to prescribing narcotics to anyone except terminal patients. Part of this is due to the idiots like those doctors in Florida who ran "legalized" dope operations and part of it is due to public misconceptions about the use of narcotics and their confusion between tolerance and addiction thanks to too many one sided stories ran in the press. This has led to politicians, FDA and DEA personnel who know nothing about the prescribing and use of narcotics to be influenced by lies and partial facts to make some bad policy which in turn has many doctors running scared.
2 confirmed herniated lumbar discs. Spinal Arthritis. Spinal Stenosis, diabetic peripheral nueropathy.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 2265
   Posted 4/26/2011 11:16 PM (GMT -6)   
I have to put my two cents worth in on this subject too. I agree with Jim. The FDA and DEA and other people that don't know anything about prescribing the meds we chronic pain patients take stick their nose in and it's crazy. They don't know what they're doing. This is a big pet peeve of mine. I get so angry when they do it. The doctors that are treating us, minus the pill mills, know what they're doing, and they should leave them alone. Sorry for the vent. I just couldn't pass this by.

love and hugs
Dx: osteoarthritis, bursitis in left hip, Osteoarthrits in right hip, compression fracture in thoracic spine due to falling on frozen ground March 2001 , ddd, spinal stenosis, bone spurs, osteoarthritis in spine, osteoarthritis in both knees
Meds: Fentanyl patch, oxycodone, otc: BenGay, Tylenol Arthritis on occasion

New Member

Date Joined Apr 2011
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 4/28/2011 10:39 PM (GMT -6)   
I agree with the general consensus. Beyond pain, I've noticed that doctors aren't terribly interested in symptoms of any sort. They don't even nod their heads and pretend to listen, they just tune you out and go on staring at their laptops or strike up a completely new and off the subject topic. (Jim1969-- only two doc.s?? Lucky you! I've been through more than I can count.)

I think doctors in general have a little switch in their heads that goes off the minute the word "pain" is mentioned. They each have their pet drugs (antidepressants, souped-up-aspirin like Ultram, or if they're generous, Darvocette or Tylenol w/ Codeine) and I've actually had more than one reply to me, after I've I've told them it didn't make a difference with the pain, 'It works for the rest of my patients.' I'm not sure if I'm supposed to be jealous, cheer these other patients on for their success and hope it somehow rubs off on me, or punish myself for not responding the way he wanted me to. When you think about it, it's really a sort of mean thing thing to say. Not one of them ever followed such a statement with any sort of address as to what that means for me, the one it didn't work for. Not surprisingly, other aspects of their practice with this patient were equally lacking in imagination and good sense, and I ultimately fired them.

I have actually in the past got angry enough to ask them why pain meds were even created in the first place. I was told "to treat acute, short-term pain." I reminded the doc. that that is exactly what I was suffering- an acute flare in a chronic situation. No one said the prescription had to go one for months or even weeks, just something to get through the peak of the excrutiating pain of a fibro flare up. I said I was amazed; without a pill ever crossing my tongue, he's got me already addicted, in advance, just through sheer verbal explanation of how someone, anyone, might become addicted. Truly amazing. I countered that it wasn't possible to become addicted in such a way, that I would have to actually first TAKE the drug, and do so over a period of time , not just over a few days. The doctor looked kind of cowed and sheepish, but stuck to guns by golly and refused to treat me.

So, no, it's not just Illinois. A rare few of us are actually able to break down the wall and eventually get something that works, but most of us are left to our massive doses of Ibuprofen or to explore alternative avenues. Hope you find a good doc. soon, and please don't let this one off the hook if you can mange it!
   (ReadDeeply, this is a family oriented forum. Please be careful of the language you use when posting.
I have edited your reply.) Thanks! SE

Post Edited By Moderator (Screaming Eagle) : 4/29/2011 9:09:06 AM (GMT-6)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 2265
   Posted 4/28/2011 11:36 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm not a moderator but you broke the forum rules. No swearing. Please correct it.

Dx: osteoarthritis, bursitis in left hip, Osteoarthrits in right hip, compression fracture in thoracic spine due to falling on frozen ground March 2001 , ddd, spinal stenosis, bone spurs, osteoarthritis in spine, osteoarthritis in both knees
Meds: Fentanyl patch, oxycodone, otc: BenGay, Tylenol Arthritis on occasion

Grateful Chicago
New Member

Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 5/2/2011 7:06 PM (GMT -6)   
I am on prescription pain meds and I get them as part of my treatment at a Chronic Pain Center at one of the major teaching hospitals in Chicago. I take the meds only as prescribed and my Doctor monitors the meds carefully. Without them I would be a recluse and could not get out and about.

Rx pain meds to work. They are effective. They must be respected. And working with a Doctor who is trained in chronic pain treatment is key.

White Beard
Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3702
   Posted 5/3/2011 12:53 AM (GMT -6)   
Grateful Chicago very well said! I commend you!! I also live in Illinois and I don't know,..... maybe I am just lucky but the spinal pain clinic I go to, has no problem with prescribing pain meds when needed! But my pain management Doctor does monitor his patients closely, very closely and every month for your refill visit, you have to give a urine sample and answer some questions about the meds your taking and when you last took them. I personally do not have any problem with doing that. When I was in the military we had unannounced surprise drug testing all the time, and if your name was called you had go and give a urine sample, and it was given under the observation of a monitor, that had to see the urine leave the body and go into the sample container. So this testing by my pain management doctor is a piece of cake in comparison to that! I will admit though unfortunately not all doctors understand chronic pain let alone know how to adequately treat it! And worse yet, there are just way to many doctors that fall in that category! It can be especially bad if your already being treated for chronic pain and you have to go into the hospital for surgery or something that causes you to have even more pain. I know from experience that this can be a really rough time, at least it was for me, in trying to get my pain under control! I wish that my pain management doctor would have been there to manage my pain during that time! But that is another story. Anyway seeing the post from others that are being treated for chronic pain and that have had surgery, my case was not unusual at all, nor limited to just Illinios! It seems it is a fairly common problem everywhere! So even with having surgery, I do not think that Illinois is any different than any other state when it comes to pain management!

White Beard
Moderator Chronic Pain
After spending nearly 22 1/2 years in the USAF, I retired in Sept, 1991. I then went back to school and became a licensed RN in 1994, and I worked on Oncology and then a Med Surg Unit, I became disabled in late 1999 and was approved SSD in early 2002!-- DDD, With herniated Disk at T-12 and L4-5. C5-C6 ACDF in Sep 2009, C6-C7 ACDF in Mar 1985, Osteoarthritis, Ulcerative colitis, Chronic Pain, Fibromyalgia, Complex Sleep Apnea, and host of other things to spice up my life!(NOT!) Medications:Oxycontin, Percocet, Baclofen, Sulfasalazine, Metoprolol, Folic Acid, Supplemental O2 at 3lpm with VPAP Adapt SV I am White Beard with a White Beard!

New Member

Date Joined Nov 2011
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 11/11/2011 12:56 PM (GMT -6)   
I was wondering if anyone can give me informattion on a doctor in the chicago area that will give me my pain meds I am on my husbands company offered him a transfer to work out there but I need these meds to get through the day have had to failed back surgeries and fybromyalgia and osteoarthritis severe...Thanks

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 16796
   Posted 11/11/2011 1:30 PM (GMT -6)   
The skyrocketing malpractice insurance premiums are not the result of drs prescribing pain medications. This actually originated when managed care took over which is your insurance companies. Then after managed care hit, we had various states in the middle of tort reform and the insurance companies claimed it was lawyers and fraud cases driving up the drs preimums. That fizzled out and was proven by their own studies to not be true. Its called the people with the money making the decisions, your big business industries and insurance companies that have control and are the ones calling the shots.

An example of this is in 1990 there was a tort reform in the state of Texas that became effective Jan,.1991. The insurance companies convinced drs that personal injury lawyers and fraudulent claims was the sole result of the staggering rise in premiums. They promised with tort reform that within 3 years the premiums would go down, they continued to rise. Big companies and the insurance companies were the only ones that benefited from this reform. In the state of Texas like many other states there is a shortage of primary care physicians and specialists.They closed their practices down because they say they are tired of insurance companies telling them how to treat their patients which puts them at risk of being sued if something goes wrong and they cannot afford the high premiums.

My own PM dr is a retired neurosurgeon who stopped doing surgery because her malpractice insurance was sky high. She said she decided to go into PM because there are not that many here and she could continue to help people. She had a very lucrative practice when she was doing surgery and had never been sued.

Many of members right here at the forum will tell you there are not many PCP's or specialists in many parts of the country.

Its all about the dollar.
Moderator Chronic Pain Forum

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2011
Total Posts : 58
   Posted 11/12/2011 9:30 AM (GMT -6)   
I live in central il and have a wonderful PM doc who is willing to prescribe any med that is working for me, and also willing to try something different if price is a factor or the meds are not working as well. He does mention the DEA often, they must be a major pain in his you know what! I guess I'm lucky to have found a very caring doctor that is willing to prescribe what is needed!
intercostal neuralgia, degenerative disc disease,ulcerative colitis, atherosclerosis, depression, & anxiety
meds: gabapentin, oxycodone 30 mg, lipitor, xanax, effient, celexa, bentyl, simvastatin

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 5029
   Posted 11/12/2011 12:15 PM (GMT -6)   
My pain doc wants me off all useful pain meds, including NSAIDS, and rheumatologist doesn't prescribe pain meds any more. I had some Perc post op from surgeon, quit taking them because they stopped working. I still have tramadol, am taking 4 Advil at a time to get any more relief. (Yes, it's not great for kidneys.) My PCP will prescribe Valium 1 mg, which works well, but pain doc says not to take it because I'll get addicted even at this dose.

So what do we do? There's a lot of talk about CP being under-treated, but nobody's starting to treat adequately. Even with documented causes for pain we're being more under-treated than ever.
PS: The videos for this page are useless.  Honestly, should I spend 24 hours a day laughing to release endorphins?  And "just move" is ridiculous when it makes bones rub together and causes pinched nerves to pinch worse.  I can't imagine my surgeon prescribing the catheter pain pump for my shoulder.  He thought a Vicodin was enough post-op.

Post Edited (Alcie) : 11/12/2011 10:28:25 AM (GMT-7)

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2010
Total Posts : 213
   Posted 11/12/2011 12:30 PM (GMT -6)   
I am not from Illinois but I am from Ohio. I have a great pain management doctor and team - they are attached to a cancer hospital and that I how I found them. I had Leukemia back in 2004.

I have been on narcotics for pain since 2003 through this same hospital and have actually been in their pain management program since 2007. Before that, my doctor prescribed for me. When it was clear that my cancer was not coming back, he referred me to their pain management clinic. I have had the same pain management doctor all of this time and have only had one my entire time - I am very happy with him.

I would definitely recommend that you find a pain management clinic that is attached to a teaching hospital. They do get examined by the DEA rather frequently, but I have never had a problem. I used to get seen once a month, then once every 2 months and then it went to once every 3 months. Just recently, for the past year, I only have to go see my PM doc once every 6 months. But it took several years to develop that type of trust and for my doctor to get my pain under control enough that I do not need frequent med changes.

Hope this helps!
DX pyoderma gangrenosum, Acute Myelogenous Leukemia, Bone Marrow Transplant, Chronic Pain syndrome, Chronic Kidney Disease Stage 3, Major Depressive Disorder, Radiculopathy, Bilateral Hip Pain, Insomnia,Left Groin Hernia, Bulging Disk in Lumbar Spine, Tear in Lumbar Spine, Tendonitis and Bursitis in both hips, hypoxia due to sleep apnea and new problems with my lungs. Have had 2 abnormal CT scans.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 2042
   Posted 11/12/2011 5:42 PM (GMT -6)   
cruznbabe said...
I was wondering if anyone can give me informattion on a doctor in the chicago area that will give me my pain meds I am on my husbands company offered him a transfer to work out there but I need these meds to get through the day have had to failed back surgeries and fybromyalgia and osteoarthritis severe...Thanks

While I live in IL I am from downstate so I don't know anything about doctors in that area.

Perhaps your best bet is to "simply" start making phone calls to various pain specialists listed in either the "phone book" or through various hospital's websites and then call them and explain that you will be moving to the area soon and are looking for a doctor to continue your pain management and then explain what your current treatment is. When you find a potential candidate have your current PM contact that doctor to discuss your medical history and treatment and make sure your that the Chicago doctor will continue your treatment plan.

Perhaps an even better way is to talk to your current PM first. It is possible s/he may know of a doctor in the Chicago area already. Even if s/he does not it would probably be a good idea to give your current PM a heads up.
New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
Forum Information
Currently it is Monday, September 24, 2018 8:01 PM (GMT -6)
There are a total of 3,006,264 posts in 329,320 threads.
View Active Threads

Who's Online
This forum has 161825 registered members. Please welcome our newest member, TheRayf.
300 Guest(s), 5 Registered Member(s) are currently online.  Details
Sarge 83, cashlessclay, Admin, songlady, ddyss