Doctor Won't See Me Anymore

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I have been going to the same doctor since Sept of 1998..We have had some money problems this year like a lot of other people, and I haven't been able to pay my bill in full, however my husband and I have both talked to financing and agreed that we would pay a certain amount every month starting last month. We made the payment last month, so I thought everything was ok. I called to have a prescription refilled on Friday, and I found out that my doctor has chosen to not have me as a patient anymore. He has had me on several medications that will cause severe withdrawls if stopped abruptly. He has me on Temazepam 30mg one capsule a night, Alprazolam 1mg as needed for panic attacks, doxipen 150mg everyday, and EPI PEN if needed for bee stings, Albuerol for asthma and imetrx 100mg as needed for migraine, I am not worried about the alprazolam as I very seldom take it, but I have been on temazepam since 1984 with no stopping at all, and doxipen since 1979 with no stopping. I am starting to get scared because I have no insurance, and I am not on any kind of aid. Can my doctor just say too bad. you can't pay me like I want so see ya? What is going to happen when I run out of these medications? I can't find another doctor, so I guess I am asking do I have any recourse? He in fact has cut me off of medication I am dependent on and can die from withdrawls..What can I do?? I just found this out today..
Thanks

Pat

45 Replies (3 Pages)

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1
elle Says:

Would like to see answer

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2
Pat Says:

I would too, I haven't received a response yet..I called a few attorneys and I haven't gotten a call back either.. Please, if anyone has any idea if I have any options let me know

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3
Roy Says:

Wow that does not sound fair at all! I am trying to think to myself what reasons a doctor would have for avoiding a patient. All I can think of is either (1) liability issues, not wanting to get sued or (2) considers the patient an addict of some sort and legally cannot support addictions.

So I am not sure what the specific history between you and your doctor is, but I completely agree that it's messed up that you don't have access to medications which your body is dependent on.

Why are you unable to see any other doctors? Can you at least try to get your medical charts or history from your original doctor? I believe they HAVE to release that information to you, especially in this case. Any decent doctor should know the implications with abruptly stopping medications, and any withdrawal symptoms.

Worst case scenario might entail you suddenly stopping the meds and then having to go to the hospital because of what's happening to your body. Of course I don't advise this or wish it for you! Please try to be proactive before such a thing happens!

Be creative - What other details can you think of?

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4
~SlimminDown~ Says:

Ok, what you need to do with your meds is start tapering down on them immediately. Start tapering yourself off of these meds. Temazepam & Alprazolam are highly addictive and the reason you are so worried is probably because you have grown a dependency to the Temazepam (I know I am dependent on Alprazolam as I take 2 2mg bars each day at least). Temazapam is just as addictive & is in the same class as Alprazolam (Benzos) but it is used more commonly to help people sleep. I can recommend to you that you either finish the pills, or take one every other day and on opposite days start taking an OTC sleeping med, some work EXTREMELY well, I have used Unisom which is awesome, Excedrin PM's, my husband prefers Tylenol PM's (Both of these help with pain & headaches as well), Sominex is another good one. If you don't want the Excedrin or Tylenol go with Unisom or Sominex both have a different antihistamine in them. I have not tried SleepMd but it could also be another options, it was made by doctors. Also, with these, you can taper off Temazepam and after a small amount of time you will rarely need anything to help you fall asleep. I do not suggest Melatonin or any other herbal sleep aids as I have wasted money on these and they do not help whatsoever with sleep.
Keep what you have left for Alprazolam which you said you rarely take just in case you have a panic attack BUT break them in half, if you rarely take them you should have a low tolerance, and a half a pill should still calm you down immediately, and if you have a really hard time falling asleep one night take a whole one. These also help with sleep.
I am unsure what you should do about the Doxepin, I have many MANY antidepressants you could have such as Prozac, Paxil, & Celexa. I have a lot of each if you were interested.
The Epi Pen & Albuteral you should already have at home. If you are out, you can call the doctor and leave a message asking them to call those 2 in for you as neither are addictive and they are necessary for survival. I know that I always keep my Albuteral around and never let it run out.
You will not die if you taper off the medicines that I listed first. You will not have any complications if you taper off of them. No withdrawals either. You just have to be careful.
Imitrex, I'm not sure how expensive that is. I know that I have a few medications for Migraines and I have extras if you would like and I also know someone very reputable who gets me name brand Topamax for migraines for very cheap as well. (Prescriptions for topamax 30 pills without insurance is 200 + dollars). You can also always apply for medicaid. I am a medical student and parent. If you have questions or need any help you can message me: p i n k f a n a t i c 8 4 @ g m a i l d o t c o m

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5
Pat Says:

Slimming down, thank you for your kind response, I will E Mail you tonight..Roy,My doctor and I have always had a great relationship until I ran out of insurance and I can't pay for a visit all at once, I have clearly stated on these ofrums that I am an addict, my doctor has always known that, and he had no problem with it because I never abused any medications he has given me, and he knows I have been on methadone maintenance for 20+ years, so I have never asked for opiates, because I havent needed or wanted them from him. As for the temazepam, he had no problem givieng then to me as I only used as prescribed. We had a good relationship, this is all abvout dollars and cents..He just doesn't care anymore I can't see any doctors because I don't have a job or insurance anymore, I have applied for aid several times, but have been turned down.. I am in process of trying again.

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6
su Says:

I have heard that recently this year (2009) many doctors have been under fire (under investigation by DEA, etc) for freely prescribing narcotics, addictive medication of the such. The most abused meds are painkillers, benzos, stimulants. Perhaps your former doc is playing it safe by cutting you off.
Try going to several doctors to get some opinions. Apply for medicaid, if you are qualified.

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7
Pat Says:

Su..I don't believe you read my post correctly..My doctor NEVER FREELY prescribed me anything, and now that time has passed, I have found out he is not playing it safe, what he did is going to get him in a lot of trouble. I have put in a complaint with the AMA. and I am looking for a lawyer to sue him. I have also found a doctor who will prescribe what medications I do need. I appreciate your answer, but I wish people would get beyond the overprescribing BS, and think about UNDERPRESCRIBING and how that could have acually caused me great bodily harm. Just because I am an addict doesn't mean I abuse drugs anymore, in fact it has been more than 20+ years since I abused any drug, I believe I am a grown woman who is beyond that, 54 years old is a lot different than a 26 year old...
Pat.. BTW, sorry I haven't been by lately to everyone else that answered, but this was the first notice I got that anyone had been here in months,,,,,

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8
Pat Says:

Slimdown..Thanks again for your help, but I really didn't want to taper off of any of the medications, and I did find a doctor B4 my refills ran out so I am ok..I am of the old school that says if it works leave it alone....Thank you so much for you post!!!

Pat

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9
Pat Says:

Hello Roy..The reason it was hard to find another doctor was because of the whole point of my post money..Luckily I did find a doctor who is compassionate and cares about what happens to people and I am back on my medications, in fact I found her B4 I ran out of refills. I was proactive from the startl.That is why I wrote here in the first place, to get opinions B4 making a decision..

Pat

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10
Ramesh140043 Says:

When a physician prescribes medications for his patients, he should keep in mind a time when his patients would be completely free from those drugs and live a normal life. How many physicians keep this in their minds?
Ramesh Gupta. M.D.

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11
Pat Says:

To Dr. Gupta..I appreciate your concern, however I am leading a very normal life..I understand that there are doctors who don't like to prescribe medications for chronic conditions. There are a lot of people who would rather have a doctor who would rather treat them with holistic medicine, I am not one of those people. We are each free to chose which kinds of treatments work best for us (with our doctors help) Luckily I did find one who isn't money hungry and will treat me with the medications that have worked for me..If I want a holistic doctor I know that there are many where I live

Pat

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12
crypto Says:

I have too been seeing a doctor that has me on zanex .5 mg for anxiety and neurotin 400mg for my nueropathy along with lithium 300mg.Thing is here I do not feel that a doctor should deny you the medications they put you . I am no addict for the condition I developed while in the service and the nueropathy is due to cancer surgeries.Tis a shame I accept I need help for being bi-polar and anti-social but heaven forbid a little money is worth more than my life to some doctor.People do run into binds and we don't have office jobs like them.I myself am going to look for a new doctor.Seeing he is a recovering alcoholic he should know how hard it is to say you need help.No he just wants to antagonize you to see if you really have a problem.To me that's just wrong.No I am not crazy just wanting to see how many ideas I get .....cause i don't make any sense as to why one would want to make someone that is miserable enough already ..make them more miserable....

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13
Pat Says:

Crypto, sometimes the doctors who are recovering alcoholics are the worst ones to go to..I had a recovering heroin addict as a doctor and he was an a**hole. I finally had to tell him to STFU and work his own program. He had the nerve to tell me because I had been taking restoril AS PRESCRIBED for 20+ years that I wasn't in recovery..I think he is the one who was never in recovery...I am an addict, but I am a human being first, and we have insomnia, we have pain,, depression, etc. I found a doctor who knows I am an addict on opiate replacement therapy and just by talking to me she knows I am not drug seeking,, Hell, I am 55 years old, I haven't played the trick the doctor game in 25 years .I have always been truthful with my doctors and if they don't like it, I just leave..I know where you are coming from and I agree with you..If you were trying to get drugs you certainly wouldn't be taking neurontin for pain, you would be begging for opiates, See some of these doctors don't have a clue..My husband and I have considered moviing to Canada or to France (I have family there) because I have many medical problems that I can't afford to be treated for here..I need a liver biopsy How can I afford that? I need dentures, I need migraine medication that costs over $100.00 for 9 tablets..Methadone costs me $190.00 a month, then I have asthma, I need an EPI PEN. Doxipen for depression xanax as needed for panic disorder and I take restoril for insomnia, plus medication for low thyroid..There goes our check..Then try living in Ca where they rape us in auto renew fees, fines, tickets, Hell, I can barely put food on the table and now they say I am losing my drivers liecense because I didn't pay..I have proof that I paid over $1,000 to take care of everything..Now they want $1250 for 2 tickets they say I got..Problem is, I didn;t get a ticket when they say I did..Thos economy is bleeding us dry..No wonder when people come to live here from other states they don't register their cars here..I wouldn't...And it;s going up again..Sorry I got off the track..Seriously, if your doctor isn;t treating you with the respect you deserve, find another one..With the prices we pay, we deserve better than what we get... It isn't a shame you asked for help. You are taking care of yourself, I would say its a shame NOT asking for help..Doctors just don;t care anymore..Its all about the money now...HMO's people fighting to stay one extra night in the hospital because they need to. When I had surgery to remove my appendix in 1978, I was in the hospital for a week. I bet I wouldn't even be allowed to stay overnight today...I could go on and on, but unless we fight back with phone calls and letters, nothing will be done...The medical establishment doesn't want us to get well, if we did, they would be out of work..Don't even tell me they don't have a cure for AIDS and Cancer amd even heart diease..They don't want us to have the medicine to put them out of work..Just think about it
Pat

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14
Dawn Says:

I had a doctor for many years that had me on lorazepam and valium as I was in the long process of wanting to get weaned off of benzos. I am on them for anxiety (severe), but I have researched them and found out how bad they are to get off of. Anyway, I went cold turkey and went into the worst withdrawals I could have ever imagined, went to my doctor (family doctor). A shrink prescribed the others.
We came up with a weaning plan to get me off them very slowly (which is recommended and much safer) and right before my next appt. their billing office called and told me not to come. I do have a bill there and pay them a monthly amount, but apparently it isn't enough and I currently cannot afford more. I do not know what to do because I have no insurance and I am terrified of the withdrawals. Can a doctor just leave you in this position without at least filling the prescriptions? He knows how dangerous this is and I am just scared to death now. Please, anyone that can help how do you find a decent doctor that understands how to safely get a person off of benzos. And why would my own doctor do this to me when this (dropping me) could have waited a couple months. I do pay when I go as well as make a monthly payment. Help.

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15
Pat Says:

Hi Dawn,.Unfortunatly, as I found out the hard way, your doctor can. I filed a complaint with the MDA and they claim that my doctor acted in good faith, and did nothing wrong..The doctor I have today said my doctor was at the very least unethical in his cutting me off, but the Medical board are like cops, they all stick together like glue. I would still file a complaint because at least in my opinion your doctors actions can harm or even cause your death, and we all need to stand up to these big wigs and one day hopefully someone will take notice and act..If you are compleatly out of your medication, the only thing I can tell you to do is go to the ER and explain your situation..There should be a doctor on call who will give you a small prescription until you can see a new doctor..You may want to ask the ER for a list of doctors in your area taking new patients..Whatever you do, don't delay, you will go through bad WD's if you aren't taken off slowly..Let us know what happened, with this

Pat

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16
Dawn Says:

Thanks for responding Pat, I do have some left and how do I file a complaint? I have never encountered any situation like this before. I am just so mad because I was just starting the weaning off of these drugs, which I want to do and then he does this. I just could not believe it and he had been my doctor for almost 10 years. Sorry state this country is in for medical care. I can go to the ER if I have to for this? That is a relief because if I run out and do not have a doctor, that's where I'll probably end up.

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17
Brett Says:

If anyone's doctor simply cuts them off from their supply of a long term habit forming substance for no stated reason (the fact you can't pay the pills as well as you once could) then that doctor has failed in their 'duty of care' towards you as a patient and has opened themselves up to litigation. Take to your attorney the patient information leaflets from the boxes of your medications (anything narcotic or benzodiazipine) and point out to the attorney the clearly placed warnings given to patients about the abrupt discontinuance of these medications and the serious side effects that, (not 'may'), but will, most certainly cause the patient to become very, very ill from stopping them abruptly. If you as a patient are meant to be careful then how much more aware of these potential dangers should your doctor be? I would think that any judge in any court in any land when presented with the aforementioned data and within the context of Dr. Kindly cutting you off from your supply should and would most liklely win a lawsuit based on the doctor's breach of the 'duty of care'. (Which I understand to be a non-negotiable pledge universally made by all doctors during their swearing of the Hypocratic oath.)

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18
Shelly Says:

If you are addicted then you need to get help, if your not and need the medicine find a new doctor if you can't find a new doctor you need to seek help and start slowly taking your self off the medicine. It can do permanent damage to the body DNA how it was told to me.

My girl friend took her life getting addicted to pills after an auto accident caused severe pain, she was over dosing on them all the time and over time it killed off her organs. She left behind a husband a young handicap son...it's sad!

I been cut off from doctors, but it was because I wouldn't take their medicines for various reasons mostly because they are toxic and I been down that avenue I went for a diagnoses not to be fed 100 pills that I have major side affects from due to the liver being toxic from my health problems as it is!

So my advice is this: Get it in writing! They have to do a certified letter to you or a letter period OR it's not legal and you have a case that is what I was told.

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19
Aldo Says:

Hello Dawn, this is Aldo, from Italy, writing you. Unfortunately, your story is just one of the consequences of USA philosophy of life and society. In my country, the few people who watched Michal Moore enlightening movie Sicko were shocked. How can such a country permit that most of its citizens are deprived of health care, because the state doesn't offer any medical care and those who can't afford buying insurance are just free to die by desperation? How is it possible that also those who do have insurance are ripped off by the greed of insurance companies, who can do whatever they want, because they are protected by hyper-conservative politicians and/or are simply corrupted by insurance money? Your poor president Obama tried to enact an historical reform, but he was interfered in any possible way and his reform was very watered down in the end. And now, he also has to face a Republican Party dominated congress, because most American citizens voted against his party and himself.. How can you, American people, vote for the American Party? The most conservative party in Europe is a socialist party, as compared to the USA republican party. How can you vote for all those sort of reversed Robin Hood, who steal the money to the poor to make rich people even richer? Poor Dawn, your medical history with that crook of your doctor is just a small part of this whole story. Good luck: Aldo

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20
Pat Says:

Hello Shelly, I didn't read a post from, anyone saying they were addicted to the medications they have been prescribed. I truely am sorry for what happened to your friend and I also have had many friends die because of drugs. Your friend was probably prescribed opiates for her chronic pain and that is what caused her organ failure, the tylenol in the opiate. Opiates themselves don't harm the body, it is the damn fillers they put in them..I don't know what your condition is to have 100's of prescriptions written, but just because some doctors are too free with prescribing, some doctors won't prescribe anything for any reason..You can't just tell your doctor to take a hike if you are prescribed something for say a low thyroid, or for diabitis..Don't knock all doctors because your friend was overmedicating herself..Again, sorry about your friend, but you can't put down all doctors because of that....
Pat

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