Managing Pain

The finger

The finger

Ever been in your doctor’s office or patient exam room and noticed a sign that asks you where your pain level is – 1 through 10 – 10 being the highest?  So, where do you rate your pain when you are sitting there with two 50 MG opium patches, drink tincture of opium 4 times a day, and take that new opiate that claims to be 100 percent stronger than morphine?  Oh, let’s not forget Lortab, Vicodan, Diazapam, and 2 or 3 other drugs for pain management…

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Richard had to go to the local clinic here today, and much to his surprise, he was “ORDERED” to provide the RX bottles of all medicines that he takes (there are now over 19 different pills a day.)  He left 1/2 hour later after refusing to join in their mandated and required “pain management program,” with a $110.00 bill paid to see a nurse practitioner.  How crazy is that?  Ironically, we are presently living in an elderly “community” with all elderly people who most are within 6 months to 1 year left to live.  (I would bet on that last statement!)

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Here’s the “good” part:  The reason Richard went to the clinic is that it appeared that he got a bite from a critter that left a bruise and it wasn’t going away.  And pain management for a  terminal disease has WHAT to do with a bite from a desert critter?  Whatever this clinic’s attitude is about pain management – it’s completely invasive and rude.  So, unless he breaks an arm or something that needs set in a cast, he’s not going back.  I have to laugh at their concept of “PAIN MANAGEMENT” and patient “care.”  It is a joke. 

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There is nothing in the world that could be considered pain management with the attitude of what Richard described to me today.  The nurse practitioner had no idea and did not ask about his current medical situation, who his family doctor was, and didn’t lay a hand on him.  Her mission apparently consisted of making certain that every patient she saw was to ensure the patient didn’t take any medicines to help alleviate pain.

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Dying with Dignity.  “Sure thing,” I snort cynically – .  How does one die with dignity in horrendous pain and agony?  Zen “humming” doesn’t do it!  I know, because I’ve tried that one too. 

– – –

What a crock.  I wish for the nurse practitioner to walk (limp) in our shoes for a couple of days.  I guarantee this one will never help relieve the wicked pain of a cancer patient, someone who fell off a rooftop while working…the list can go on and on. I feel kinda’ sorry for the nurse practitioner, because she is being trained to work with patients and appears to be way out of her depth of knowledge and understanding.

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We are not teaching reality to the students in school.  What’s happening at home – what’s happening to our caring for each other?  Do we?  If not, why?



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