IF YOU HAVE BEEN INVOLVED IN AN AUTOMOBILE ACCIDENT THAT WAS NOT YOUR FAULT, THE DOCTOR MAY LIE ABOUT THE EXTENT OF YOUR INJURIES SO THAT THE INSURANCE COMPANY WON’T HAVE TO PAY ON A CLAIM.
MY HAVING SAID THIS MAY CAUSE ME MY LIFE!!!!!
I not only said it, but I had signs printed and placed them around the city. Now I am having trouble finding a doctor to treat me for my shoulder injury and not only that I have had an urinary tract infection since February 2010 that is being inadequately treated.
I am a single, black, female, with a history of mental illness, living in the United States of America. What that means is that I have no voice. Nobody listens to me and people can treat me any way they want, do anything they want to me, and there’s nothing I can do about it.
This blog is about the “trials and tribulations” (trite, I know) I’ve gone through trying to get healthcare. I will try to chronologically present this information to the best of my memory.
My problems started in 1993, when I was involved in an automobile accident that was not my fault. It happened around the time of the big snow storm in Alabama. I was on my way to what was to be my first day working on the floor of a new job. At the time of the accident I was working full-time and attending college part-time. I had an Associate Degree in Nursing and was working on obtaining my Bachelor’s Degree, with plans to attend law school.
I had the green light, at an intersection where the light had previously been inoperable because of the snow storm, and I was turning left when a pickup truck careened through the light and rammed into my car. The impact cause the steering wheel to been in my hand and from that point on I have been suffering from pain in my right shoulder, arm and neck.
I was taken by ambulance to University of Alabama at Birmingham Hospital. I continued to complain of pain in my shoulder. The doctor did not have X-rays performed of my shoulder. I was given a prescription for Motrin and sent home. When I arrived home my family and I noted that my right shoulder blade was jutted out of place and sticking out in back. The Motrin was not working for my pain.
I went to the primary care doctor that I had selected through the healthcare plan I had, which I had continued from my employment at UAB Hospital through COBRA. I told the doctor about the pain in my arm shoulder and neck, he performed X-rays and told me he didn’t see anything wrong. I didn’t know what to say. All I knew was that I was hurting. He referred me to an orthopedist and the first orthopedist he referred me to had someone working in his office to tell me that he didn’t see thirty something year old black women complaining of neck and shoulder pain. I went back to my primary doctor and relayed this information to him; he snickered and then referred me to another doctor.
I went to see the other doctor located on the east side of Birmingham, AL. He had X-rays done and a bone scan performed, which he told me was normal. I continued to have pain, severe pain at times.
Both the primary doctor I was seeing and the orthopedist I saw both asked me how’d I come to have the insurance that I had, as if something was wrong with my insurance plan. The insurance I had was a through a HMO that I had continued through COBRA from my previous job at UAB Hospital.
I eventually lost my new job and moved to Atlanta, GA to work.
The reason I believe they wouldn’t properly diagnosis and treat my injuries was because at that time there was talk of a national healthcare plan and doctor and insurance companies are members of a cabal to prevent that from happening. The doctors primary concern at that time was to protect the insurance company from having to pay on a claim.
Eventually, I started doing temporary work because I found continuous full-time work too difficult to maintain. I was without insurance and sought care at the Veterans Hospital in Atlanta. I received physical therapy there but it didn’t relieve the pain.
Working as a temporary contract nurse I found myself working in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
One day while working there I was pushing a woman in her bed to the ICU, favoring my injured right arm, I hurt my back. I was taking pain medications while trying to work out my contract in Virginia. My plan was to come home to Alabama and get definitive care for my back. I was an orthopedic nurse and a nurse with a bad back, especially in orthopedics, is of no use in nursing. I wasn‘t allowed to finish my contract. I filed for Workman’s Compensation, but since the doctors found nothing wrong with my back, I had no claim.
I found myself back in Alabama, with no insurance, complaining now of back pain as well as neck and shoulder pain. I was put in the hospital at the Veterans Administration in Montgomery, AL. Dr. Lipton said he couldn’t find anything wrong with my back and they began to treat me as though I just wanted pain medication. I didn’t know what to do. I knew I was hurting and that I wasn’t just making up the complaint of pain.
One day after I had been discharged from the hospital I returned through the ER with my continued complaint of back, shoulder and neck pain. I was taken to see a psychiatrist at the VA Hospital, Dr. Ward. I told him my back was hurting. He said there was nothing wrong with my back and he wasn‘t going to give me anymore pain medications. I was thinking he would be more empathetic if he could feel the pain that I was experiencing so I hit him and was arrested for assaulting a doctor because he wouldn’t give me narcotics. I had continued to say throughout that I just wanted whatever was hurting me to be fixed and that I didn’t just want drugs.
If I just wanted drugs I could get them, they were readily available in my neighborhood. I wouldn’t have had to worry about taking drug tests at work because I wouldn’t have had to work. I had been considered disabled for a mental condition since 1985 and the idea of applying for Social Security had long been presented as an option for me by my counselor. Also, counselors at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Birmingham had wanted to admit me to the inpatient mental hospital. And I was told that if you stayed in the hospital for 23 days you would get disability payments. I wanted to work. I had plans and dreams. I just wanted my injuries repaired so that I could continue to pursue “The American Dream”.
Anyhow, I continued to complain of back pain and the only place I could go was to the Veterans Hospital. I started going to the clinic at the Tuskegee Veterans Hospital. A doctor there requested a CAT Scan. The technician performing the test said he could see why I had back pain. However, when I went to see the doctor, she told me that nothing was wrong with my back. I did at one point seek treatment at the Lister Hill Clinic in Montgomery, AL. The doctor there wanted to refer me to an orthopedic, but I didn’t have insurance and no orthopedist would see me without insurance. I couldn’t even get an appointment.
At one point I sought care from a group of doctors in Augusta, GA. I had worked there before as a contract nurse. I was seen by Dr. Abrahamson who ordered a mylegram of my back. The procedure was performed by Dr. Meeks. In the recovery room there was another young man who had also had a myelogram performed by Dr. Meeks that day. After a while Dr. Meeks came in to discharge the young man. He spoke with the young man and kept asking him if he had enough pain medicine, the young man assured him that he did. Dr. Meeks left the recovery room without saying anything to me.
I’m wondering if doctors have a network by which the confer with other doctors about certain patients.
I wonder if the network extends to other countries. I do make all my plans for visiting other countries on the internet. Would my fellow Americans go to that extent to deny me proper healthcare?
Eventually, I saw a doctor at the Tuskegee Veterans Administration who prescribed Elavil for my back pain and it worked. I went back to work. However, I continued to have the neck and right shoulder pain, severe at times. Also, there was a feeling as though my ribs were scrubbing against my sternum on the right side and this too was painful. But the doctors would never relate any of my pains to the automobile accident in which I had been involved.
I was consulting with an attorney, William Davis in Birmingham, AL. I did tell Mr. Davis about the problems I was having with doctors and asked if he could recommend a doctor for me to see. He very loudly informed me that he didn’t know any doctor that I could see. Mr. Davis and the mediator convinced me that my best option was to accept a settlement rather that go to court. Mr. Davis convinced me to accept a settlement in the amount of $9000 of which I received approximately $4400 when he was supposed to receive a third. I found out later that Mr. Davis had asked a judge to be taken off the case and had been denied.
In 1995, after suffering continued pain, severe at times, and a decline in my mental health, I stopped working and filed for Social Security and an increase in my Veterans Administration Disability rating which at that time was rated at 10%. After six months my Social Security Claim was approved and after six years my request for an increased Veterans Administration Disability Rating was approved at 100%.
I haven’t worked since 1995.
Eventually I started going back to the Montgomery Veterans Administration Hospital for healthcare. I didn’t receive psychiatric care there, because of my history with the psychiatrists, but I thought it was okay for basic healthcare. I considered myself to be in good physical health other than for the back, neck, and shoulder pains. Also, I was receiving my psychiatric medications from the Veterans Hospital because they were too expensive for me to purchase. A therapist I was seeing at the Montgomery Mental Health Clinic me as to whether I trusted them (the VA) to provide me with medicine and not try to mess with them. I said sure, they wouldn’t mess with my medications.
In 2006 I found out that I was diabetic. I also found out that I had been diabetic for six years prior to the diagnosis. My primary healthcare provider at the Montgomery Veterans Administration Hospital was Nurse Practitioner Karen Bell. I was complaining of my feet feeling as though they had been dipped in iced water to the psychiatrist I was seeing at the VA in order to get my medications, when she looked up laboratory results on the computer and told me that I had diabetes. I had complained of my cold feet to Karen Bell and her response was for me to wear socks at night. I applied for life insurance and the laboratory report on the test they’d performed showed that I had a large amount of protein in my urine. I looked up the significance of protein in the urine of the computer and found out that it’s an indication of kidney disease. I was and am so afraid of kidney failure and of having to go on dialysis.
I also found out that I have neuropathy of my feet and glaucoma. I was complaining to a Dr. in the diabetic clinic at the VA that I had just been diagnosed with diabetes and I was already suffering all these complications. She looked up my laboratory results on the computer and informed me that I had been diabetic since 2001. I was shocked, and angry!
I went to the Veterans Administration office and asked what action I could take because of the obvious malpractice. I was told by the counselor I saw that because my disability rating was already a 100% there was nothing I could do. I tried but was unsuccessful in getting a lawyer to handle my case. I was told by some of the lawyers I contacted that Medical Malpractice cases were expensive and difficult to prove and that a problem was that I couldn’t prove that I wouldn’t have suffered the complications even if I had received treatment. I filed the case on my own. The case was dismissed because I hadn’t followed procedure and filed an administrative claim with the Veterans Administration before filing a law suit.
The United States substituted itself as a defendant for Karen Bell. It was the United States against me.
At one point before I’d found out I’d been undiagnosed and untreated for diabetes for six years, I went to the VA emergency room with the complaint of a high blood glucose reading. During the visit my blood sugar went down and the doctor came out and told us something about the computer being down and indicated that I didn’t need any treatment because my blood sugar was already coming down. I had informed Karen Bell that I was diabetic and she had started me on a low dose of Glipizide, 2.5mg I think it was. Anyhow, on a visit I was telling her about my visit to the ER, and twice while I was telling her about my visit to the ER she interrupted me to ask me why he didn’t treat me. This was before I found out she had known about my diabetes for six years and not informed or treated me. I now wonder how long was she going to let me go untreated? Was she going to let me die?
My feet had become painful and felt as though they’d been scrubbed over concrete. I went to the ER at the VA with this complaint. The doctor or Nurse Practitioner I saw in the ER wouldn’t prescribe me pain medication that I could take. They ended up prescribing me something that would come to me through the mail. I was so angry! And at that time the nurse practitioner came out and walked in front of me, and Karen Bell came out from wherever she was and said Hi! They were taunting me! I ended up going upstairs to see a psychiatrist I liked, called Dr. Chili, and he said that what they’d prescribed was cheap, that I had insurance and he called in the prescription to Walmart for me to pickup that day. They had also prescribed so “Egesic?” in the ER, it had caffeine in it, I tried it but it had me bouncing off the walls. I later reviewed records from that visit and it was written that Ultram had been prescribed and that was not true.
I was seen by Dr. Gardner in the diabetic clinic at the VA. I had been given gabapentin by another doctor and wanted to get the medication from the VA. I was told by Dr. Gardner that she couldn’t prescribe it because the it hadn’t been approved for the purpose for which I was requesting it. At one point I also asked to be able to get Lyrica filled at the VA for my foot pain, she said it wasn’t on the formulary so I couldn’t get it. She wanted to prescribe Elavil for my foot pain, but I had taken that before for my back pain and had been told to stop taking it because my tongue started itching. I told her that I was allergic to Elavil and she didn’t believe me. I spoke to a Patient Advocate at the hospital named Ladonna Golden? and she wanted me to prove that I was allergic to Elavil. I told her that I would, I was going to try to get my records from the Tuskegee VA, but then I said forget it. She had no reason to disbelieve me.
At one point I was seeing a chiropractor in Montgomery, AL. named Dr. Kirby for my neck pain. He was treating me by use a massage mechanism and then he would have me lie facedown on a table and he would thump me on the neck four or more time with some metal object. One day when I went for my appointment I was told that Dr. Kirby had been injured and someone else was to provide my treatment. This man moved my neck this way, that way, he pulled and it was like he was really doing some manipulations. After that session, I never went back to Dr. Kirby’s office.
After I found out that Karen Bell had been negligent in providing me healthcare, I asked to be seen by another Dr. at the VA. I was seen by Dr. Bailey. She was Muslim, my daughter was Muslim, I thought everything would be okay. There was a sign in the room where I was waiting to see the Doctor, it said that if you were diabetic to take off your shoes so the doctor could examine your feet. So I took off my shoes and waited to see Dr. Bailey. I went in to see Dr. Bailey, she showed no interest in my feet. She was asking me about my back pain and ordered an X-ray. The X-ray was performed and on the next visit she told me it was normal.
I was dissatisfied with Dr. Bailey and asked to see another Dr. I was seen by Dr. Islam. He was awful and so rude. He wouldn’t even answer me when I talked to him or asked him questions. He too had an X-ray performed of my back and hinted that I was seeking pain medication. I hadn’t complained about my back hurting on that visit.
I asked to see another Dr. I was seen by Hazel Bell, Nurse Practitioner. She noticed during her exam that I was shielding my shoulder. She had an X-ray performed and on the next visit told me that there was some arthritis. I asked for an MRI and she told me that I would have to see the orthopedic doctor, Dr. Lipton. I’d seen him before initially when I was having back, neck and shoulder pain. He’d had an MRI performed at Advanced Imaging and told me that everything was normal. I’d had an argument with him and didn’t want to see him again, it would have been of no use. At that time I had insurance through Medicare that allowed to me see a doctor within a network.
I went to see Dr. Hartzog. He performed X-rays and told me that I had a broken bone in my shoulder. He performed an MRI and told me that I also had a small rotator cuff tear and some arthritis in that shoulder.
He gave me some options for treatment, one of which was surgery. I chose surgery and it was performed the next week. NO MORE SHOULDER PAIN! For one year.
During this time I was also seeing a gynecologist at the Veterans Administration. After finding out about their in ability to diagnose a broken bone, I decided that I needed to see an gynecologist outside of the Veterans Administration system. I had a CT Scan performed by the VA and the next week a transvaginal scan was performed at the office of the doctor outside the VA system. The VA reported a small cyst on my right ovary and the other doctor’s scan showed a mass the size of a small egg. The doctor decided to perform laparoscopic surgery and that surgery revealed a mass the size of a small melon on my uterus; possibly a contributing factor to my complaint of back pain.
In September 2009, my shoulder started hurting me again. I went back to Dr. Hartzog, he performed X-ray’s, CAT Scans, MRI, and said he didn’t know what to tell me. He referred me to Dr. Davis. Dr. Davis said my neck looked fine, that there seemed to be some changes in my shoulder by the X-rays, he then referred me to Dr. Miller, a neurologist. EMG tests were performed and the doctor informed me that he had been “asked to perform the tests and the tests were normal.” I was referred back to Dr. Davis.
I needed to be seen by a primary care doctor so I went back to the UAB Clinic where I had been receiving care before. I had been very pleased with the doctor I had been seeing at the clinic, but she was a resident and had left. I was seen by a Dr. Thomas. I had been given medication for nausea and pain as well as an antibiotic from the Emergency Room at Baptist Hospital. He took a history, told me that I was a complicated patient and continued most of the medications that had been prescribed in the Emergency Room. I told him that the Reglan they had prescribed didn’t work for my nausaea and the antibiotics also made me nauseated. Still he continued with the same medications. I didn’t really know him and wasn’t really satisfied with him so I asked to see another doctor. Evidently this is something that you’re not supposed to do, because an appointment was made for me to see a Dr. Hill and she seemed angry to have to see me.
At the time of my appointment with Dr. Hill I was experiencing pain in my shoulder. I asked her for something for pain. She said she would prescribe Ultracet? which was Tylenol with Tramadol. I asked if she could just prescribe the Tramadol because I had been taking Tylenol for many years before the broken bone was diagnosed in my shoulder. She said no. I asked what was I supposed to do for pain, go to the Emergency Room? And she replied, “They’ll probably give you something stronger than anything I’m going to give you.” I also asked for a referral to see a nephrologist. She told me that I didn’t have kidney disease. I told her that I had had proteinuria since 2006 and that I had been seeing a nephrologist before and that Dr. had left town. She told me that she would give me the referral to a nephrologist but that the insurance company probably wouldn’t pay because I didn’t have kidney disease. I left her office to with instructions to get pain medication from the orthopedic doctor I’d been seeing and to fill out a form requesting my records from the orthopedic Dr. I was disgusted by her behavior and treatment so I told her that I wouldn’t be coming back. I wrote a letter to her supervisor at the clinic detailing her behavior and why I was dissatisfied with her as my doctor. The letter I received in reply did not address any of the problems I‘d had with Dr. Hill, however I did get a referral to a nephrologist.
I have been very worried about the state of my health and my ability or inability to obtain healthcare here in the states. I’d heard that France had a very good healthcare plan and that it was important to them to make available good healthcare to the poor as well as the wealthy. I went to France. I did expect the doctor I saw there to be like you poor American and take care of all my ailments. That didn’t happen. Nobody wants to take care of Americas’ citizens.
The first doctor I saw was a student doctor and the best doctor I saw while in Paris. She examined me and determined that my shoulder injury was not the result of nerve damage but was probably caused by a damaged tendon. She said that she would recommend that X-rays be performed of my shoulder and that then I would probably be referred to a specialist.
Then the doctor supervising her came in and I told her I spoke a little French and she said she spoke a little English. She decided against X-rays after asking me when I’d last had X-rays performed and I’d told her it had been in December. She said it was too soon for X-rays. She gave me a prescription for pain medication, which turned out to be acetaminophen and Tramadol, some cream to put on my shoulder and told me to return in 10 days if the pain didn’t improve.
A couple of days later I saw another Dr. in Paris who didn’t know what I expected him to do. I really didn’t know what he did either, it didn’t seem as though he had access to a laboratory, X-rays, or anything. Also, there was a bit of a language barrier. He gave me a prescription for Lamanol? The medication consisted of caffeine, acetaminophen and opium. I didn’t get it filled because I didn’t want the caffeine.
We took the train to see a doctor on the other side of the town at the Hospital Bichat. It was a very different atmosphere. The clerk was nice and polite and I was seen by a nurse who checked my blood pressure and blood glucose levels. The nurse gave me some pills to take despite me telling her that I was nauseated. I then saw a doctor who spoke English. I was pointing to my shoulder and telling her of the pulling sensation of the shoulder and trying to explain the pain. She acknowledged that she could see that it was contracted. But, she said, that I couldn’t come and expect them to take care of an injury I had had for twenty years. Regarding my blood pressure and blood glucose levels the doctor told me that I needed to see a doctor. I told her that my doctor in the states had said that he didn’t know what to tell me and she said that she would give me an referral to see a rheumatologist and if he couldn’t solve the problem I would be seen by a pain specialist. She assured me that something would be done. I was given a prescription for acetaminophen with codeine and something for the nausea. I was depressed when I went back to the hotel because I hadn’t received the treatment I’d expected. The pain medicine she’d prescribed didn’t work. I took two of the Lortabs I brought with me and they relived the pain.
I decided to go back to the first clinic I’d gone to in Paris just to get a refill of the Lortab before I left town. I was seen by that same doctor I’d seen before. She told me she couldn’t prescribe anything with morphine in it because a lot of people abused it in France and that no doctor in France would prescribe morphine for me. I told her that it didn’t make sense that nobody would prescribe morphine when I’d been given a prescription for opium. By the way, while arguing with her I found out that she fluently speaks English.
After returning to the States, I believe that I further injured my shoulder by carrying luggage in the airport. I returned to the States of the 7th of Feb 2010 and went to the Emergency Room on the morning of the 9th. Early that morning I was awakened with severe pain in the front part of my head. Whenever I suffer the severe pains related to my shoulder I would also get nauseated and be unable to keep down any pain medication. This necessitated a visit to the Emergency Room.
I am continuing to have suffer pain in my shoulder, most times severe. I have an appointment to return to Dr. Davis but I am having problems regarding insurance coverage. I don’t even considered a visit to the Veterans Hospital as an option. I am being very careful not to further agitated my shoulder to the point that I would have to go to the Emergency Room because I don’t have any insurance. That means doing practically nothing. I can’t use my right arm and I have to be very careful of how I lie at night. I love to exercise and I was working on a number of home improvement projects which I can no longer pursue.
February 21st 2010
I was experiencing very bad pain in my shoulder. I decided to go to the VA. I was treated horribly. I had to wait hours before I was seen by a triage nurse and I told her that my pain level was 20 on a scale of 1 – 10. Finally I was taken to the back and put on a stretcher. I waited for the doctor to come see me and he didn’t. At 6am another doctor came on and the doctor that was there left without seeing me. The doctor that came left the ER and was gone for quite some time. When he came back and as he was passing me I asked him for something for pain. He ignored me and kept on walking. Finally he came over to see me. I described my pain to him and told him what was usually done when I went to the ER with that kind of pain, which is usually treated by morphine IV. I told him that Dr. Hartzog had discovered a broken bone in my shoulder and had treated it surgically and that last year it had started hurting again. He ordered a shot for me that I found out was Demerol and Phenergan. I laid back and waited for the medicine to take effect. The pain did subside a little but I was still quite nauseated. I asked for something else for nausea and was told by the nurse that the doctor was not going to give me anything else. She also told me that he couldn’t write me a prescription for any narcotic pain medication. I kept telling her that I was still nauseated and still hurting. She said all she could do was to have the doctor to come talk to me, and she did.
The doctor told me that because of administration rules he couldn’t give me anything. That he didn’t make the rules that he was just following them and that if I wanted to talk to an administrative official I could. He said that he couldn’t give me any more Phenergan for 6 hours. I asked for Zorfan which is what I‘m usually given at the Baptist ER and he said the only way he could give me Zorfan was through an infusion that would take all day. I said okay, give to me and he said he couldn’t. During this time I had my daughter checking on my insurance coverage that I had been told would be resumed in 24 to 48 hours. She finally called me and told me that I did have insurance. My aunt and I left and went to the Baptist ER.
It had been awhile since I had been to the VA for pain medicine so I was struck by how poorly I was treated. I am so happy that I do have some kind of insurance and that I no longer have to rely totally on the VA for medical treatment. That brought back to mind the years before that I had gone there seeking health care and treatment for my shoulder and neck pain.
At Baptist ER I was examined by a nurse practitioner, an IV was started and I was given Morphine IV and something for the nausea. My pain finally went away. I was so happy that I was in tears. An X-ray was performed of my shoulder and chest, and I was given a sling for my shoulder. A referral was given for me to see a Dr. Lindsay, and I called was given an appointment for the next morning.
I continued to have pain later during the day of the 22nd. I went back to the Baptist ER and was given an injection of morphine. The injection along with the Lortab Tabs I had been prescribed and had taken were easing the pain.
February 23rd 2010 – I went to see Dr. Lindsay and was given a cortiosteroid injection in my shoulder. He also ordered some physical therapy. Right now my shoulder is feeling tight, but not exactly painful. I haven’t had to take anything for pain, yet.
What do I hope to accomplish by posting this blog? I WANT HELP!!!! Yes, I need a doctor that will properly diagnose and treat my ailments! Yes, I need a medical malpractice attorney!
If you have any of the problems that I have encountered, have written about above, or similar to those I’ve written about, please contact me. Together we might have a voice!
November 20, 2010. It’s been quite a while since I’ve written anything on this blog and quite a bit has happened since I’ve last written. Please allow me to update.
The shoulder pain has continued. In May 2010, after seeing several doctors in the U.S. and being told by several that there was nothing wrong with my shoulder despite my cries of pain, I went to Venezuela.
The doctor I saw there performed an MRI, CT, and X-rays. I was then informed that I had two torn ligaments and a separated bone that needed to be surgically repaired. I was ready to have the surgery performed but my insurance wouldn’t pay for treatment outside the U.S. unless it was an emergency.
I was not able to have the surgery. I also found out while in Venezuela that I had a moderate amount of Fatty Liver Disease and a right kidney stone.
I’d suspected that I had some liver damage from having to take acetaminophen for some many years before the shoulder surgery was performed in 2008. Then, as now, I was treated as a drug addict when I complained of and requested medication for pain. I was also requesting that whatever was causing me my pain be fixed. I did not just want pain medication. I AM NOT A DRUG ADDICT AND DON’T WANT TO BE ONE
Somebody must have money invested in treating chronic pain as I believe that somebody must have money invested in Tylenol as the reason so many people are being diagnosed as chronic pain patients and people are using Tylenol to the extent that they are dying from liver damage. Tylenol does not get you high and the only reason people would be taking it to that extent is for pain relief.
Something I just want to bring to your attention; when traveling between Canada and the U.S. my daughter noticed that on the can of Red Bull from Canada, there’s a warning not to consume more than two drinks per day or it would cause…….(I don’t remember all of the warning), but on the can from the U.S. there was no such warning.
I returned to the U.S. and when pain necessitated a visit to the Emergency Room, I told Dr. Kim that I had been to Venezuela and the results of the visit. He made a copy of the report from the Dr. in Venezuela and wrote down the names of all the doctors that I’d seen in the U.S. He referred me to Dr. Smith. On my visit to Dr. Smith I was told that I needed to go back to see Dr. Hartzog, because only he knew what he did in my shoulder, or that I should go back to Venezuela because the doctor down there seemed to be on top of things. I had already told him that my insurance wouldn’t pay for surgery outside of the U.S.
My daughter made an appointment for me to see a Dr. Carr in Birmingham Alabama. I showed Dr. Carr the report and he said he disagreed with the doctor in Venezuela and that those doctors in third world countries just wanted to do surgeries for the money. He said that I had tendonitis and performed what he called a trigger injection and gave me an injection along the scapula in my back. I was told by the nurse that the pain would seem to be worse for a while but would get better. The pain got worse and did not get any better. I ended up going to the Emergency Room for pain medication.
I have been told several times that I need to see a chronic pain doctor for treatment though I believe I simply have an injury that need to be treated and that I shouldn’t have to be a chronic pain patient. I did see a pain specialist. In May, before I went to Venezuela, I did go to Southeastern Pain Specialist in Atlanta, GA. Dr. Orr said that he could see what was causing my pain. He said that the muscles in my neck were being pulled tight and that there was a bundle of nerves running between those muscles and that was what was causing my pain. However, on that visit he didn’t prescribe me anything for the pain.
He told me that he was going to try something called “muscle trigger point injections”. I looked up muscle trigger point injections and was prepared to have that done, but when I went back, Dr. Sheehad gave me a cortiosteriod injection in my shoulder and a prescription for Lortab. Neither the injection or the Lortab worked for my pain. I called Dr. Orr to inform him of the continued pain and this time he was considering a “Shoulder Block”. I did not want a shoulder block because I thought that my lead to me further injuring my shoulder and being unable to ever use my arm. I want my shoulder injury repaired and not to have to become a CHRONIC PAIN PATIENT.
After being told in the Emergency Room that I would be given anything more for pain I went back to France. When I was there earlier this year a doctor had told me that I would be referred to an rheumatologist and that if the rheumatologist couldn’t help me that I would be referred to a pain doctor, but not to worry that something would be done. My reception there was totally different on my second visit. I had a kidney infection, an infection that I’d been battling since February 2010. I saw a Dr. at the Hospital Bichat and was given a prescription for Tramadol for pain and Ofloflaxin for the infection. An ultrasound was performed of my kidneys and backed up the results of the ultrasound that had been performed in the U.S. indicating that everything was normal with my kidneys. I had been having problems with my blood pressure being elevated and had seen several doctors in the U.S. concerning this problem. One doctor told me that my blood pressure was so high that I was in danger of suffering a heart attack or a stroke. During the ultrasound being performed in France, the doctor pressed really hard on my bladder and I felt a lot of pain in the area of my right kidney. That night I was in a great deal of pain, however, my blood pressure stabilized. I only had to take one blood pressure pill after that incident.
I was really sick during my entire visit to France. I saw six doctor and couldn’t get treated for a kidney infection. I spent almost the whole time in bed sweating, crying, and in pain. When I left France I went to Egypt and was given the antibiotic Augmentin and began to feel better. I was also drugged when I was in Egypt while on a tour by accepting a Coke offered to me by a guide. I am so afraid, I don’t know what happened to me while I was out. I’m going to take an AIDS test.
I did go to the Emergency Room the night after the tour because I was hurting. I don’t lie on my back, because of the shoulder injury, but I was hurting as if I had. The doctor I saw was so mean. He said he didn’t know how to treat me because I had liver and kidney disease, that there was nothing that he could give me for pain and refused to give me my money back because he said that he had examined me. I left there and went to the Anglo-American Hospital. The doctor I saw there was nice but said that he couldn’t give me anything for pain because he’d have to fill out a special form and he didn’t have the form. I asked if I could be admitted for pain control and also that my insurance would pay for the surgery that I needed if it were deemed to be an emergency. He said that I would have to make a deposit of approximately $700 before hospitalization, then I would be examined to see if I were fit for surgery because I had liver and kidney disease, and if fit I could have the surgery. I told him I was going to get some of my things from the hotel and would be right back. He asked about he pain medicine, I told him that if it meant I’d be out of pain for good, it could wait.
I took a taxi back to the hotel, picked up some things, called my daughter to tell her I needed her to come to Egypt, and took a taxi back to the hospital. I was taken to see a doctor that I was told that was in charge of surgery. He looked at the report from the doctor in Venezuela and said that he could do it. I was sent to sit in a waiting room. While waiting I asked for some water and was taken to a sink with a bottle sitting on the side. I cupped my hands and had some water. A little while later I was taken to see another doctor, who said he was in charge of things. He told me that the surgery would cost me $10,000 and that I would have to pay in advance and recoup the money from my insurance company. I told him that I didn’t have $10,000; that meant I couldn’t have the surgery. I was still having problems with my blood pressure, was concerned about my liver and kidney function, and I needed something for pain, so I wanted the doctor to examine me. I asked him if he was a medical doctor, he said yes, that he didn’t need to examine me and that if I wanted something for pain it would be 300 L.E. I gave him 50 Euros and he gave me 20 Tramadol pills.
NOVEMBER 15th I went back to see Dr. Hartzog. He told me that there was nothing wrong with my shoulder. He doesn’t know what was causing me my pain. Maybe it was fibromylagia, he doesn’t know. He refused to give me anything for pain because he said that I was a chronic pain patient.
I’ve done a lot of talking about the pain I’m suffering. Let me tell you about the pain I’m having. It feels as though my shoulder blade is digging into my back muscle. There is a strong, tight pulling sensation across my chest, my neck, and it pulls on my scalp and it feels like somebody is pulling on my hair from the back of my head. It feels like I’m being scalped. Now my right side has become very painful and I’m not sure if that is from the kidney stone or from the shoulder injury. The right side of my ribs is very painful and I sometimes try to hold my arm out to the side because it’s painful to the touch. It feels as though my ribs are digging into my abdomen and I try to sit very straight.
I can’t lie on my back, I can’t sit on a sofa or in a hard back chair, I can’t ride in or drive a car without considerable pain. I want to write a book based in Atlanta and several times I have attempted a trip up there to spend the whole time in the Emergency Room and then knocked out from the medication. I can not lift a pot to cook and have had to move in with my family. I am essentially on bedrest because of the pain.
I am now treated as a drug addict and the Emergency Room is refusing to give me anything more for pain.
I have made an appointment to return to Southeastern Pain Specialist next week to discuss having the shoulder block performed. I am also going to see another orthopedic surgeon.
IF YOU CAN IN ANYWAY HELP ME PLEASE CONTACT ME AT: