How do you explain your fibromyalgia symptoms, fatigue, pain to a doctor who prescribes narcotics
Trying to find a doctor is no easy feat, especially when you suffer from an invisible pain disease that requires narcotics like fibromyalgia. There are a lot of doctors who don’t believe that narcotics should be used for any kind of pain. And so they do not prescribe them to anybody for anything. They are afraid of narcotics.
The doctors who don’t believe in prescribing narcotics for fibromyalgia generally prescribe physical therapy, massage therapy, chiropractic and over the counter medications such as Tylenol, ibuprofen or Bengay. Although these are all helpful for those of us who have fibromyalgia, generally they only help short term.
There are (on the other side) those doctors who are OK prescribing narcotics for pain. These are the doctors who actually care about their patients and don’t want to see them in pain. They have seen their patients benefit from narcotic pain medications and do not have an issue with prescribing them for pain.
“Doctor shopping” can make you feel like a drug seeker, but you need not feel this way. If narcotic pain medications really help decrease your fibromyalgia pain, then there is no reason not to doctor shop to find a doctor in your area who will prescribe narcotic pain medications.
Start off by opening your phone book to the physician section. Find pain specialists and start there. Call them one by one and ask the main question “does the doctor there prescribe narcotics for his/her fibromyalgia patients”? If the answer is “no” then move on to the next pain specialist. Don’t be ashamed or embarrassed. Remember that you have a legitimate disease that is extremely painful and you need narcotic pain medications to function.
If, by chance, you go through all of the pain specialists and none of them prescribe narcotic pain medications, start at the beginning of doctors who specialize in the treatment of arthritis. Fibromyalgia has arthritic qualities that can be treated by an arthritis specialist. You may have better luck with an arthritis specialist and prescribed narcotics. But if you get through this whole list, then go on to regular family doctors.
The key is to keep looking and making sure whoever you choose will prescribe narcotic pain medication for fibromyalgia pain. There is no need to be embarrassed…you have a very painful disease that sometimes warrant narcotic pain medication. This is how I found my doctor and she is only an MD, but she treats a lot of fibromyalgia patients and she is good at listening when something new or more painful is happening.
When you do find a doctor who prescribes narcotic pain medications, the first thing you want to do before your first appointment is make a list of your symptoms…all of them. Write down what kind of pain you feel…is it stabbing, sharp, dull, spasmic? On a scale of 1-10 is it less painful (1-4) or is it more painful (5-10)?
Where is the pain located at? What other symptoms are you experiencing? Visual problems, hearing loss, IBS, pain when cold? Headaches? Shoulder pain? Back spasms? Numbness and tingling in the legs? Memory loss?
Do you have any other injuries? Such as: Sciatica, DDD, Menards disease, Bursitis and/or herniated discs? Make sure you write down everything you have so you don’t forget to tell the doctor. Telling the doctor everything you have been diagnosed with and everything you feel, will help him prescribe the right treatments and medications for you to feel your best.
Who do you go to for your fibromyalgia medications (a specialist or an MD)? Do they prescribe narcotics for the pain? How long did it take you to find a doctor who will listen to you and prescribe what works for you?
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Wishing you joy and healing.