In 2004, my journey began with upper back surgery. After surgery, I was on medication for a few years until New York state started implementing the Center for Disease Control (CDC) laws for regulating opioids. I started pain management with shots and limited medication. My spine started breaking down. It was extreme degenerative disk disease. I was forced to retire after an MRI, a nerve test, and multiple bone scans showed my spine was dying. In 2014, we moved to Hanover, Pennsylvania. Here I began stronger doses of oxycontin and morphine.
I had lower back surgery due to nerve damage. My legs don’t work too well. When the CDC regulations came to Pennsylvania, and here’s what resulted. My chronic pain limited everything. I did more shots, and I had a simulator put in my lower back. It took four years to lower my blood pressure from 160-200 down to 130-140. I then began to cut my medication when my primary doctor no longer wrote my scripts. My primary care doctor was totally detached and just repeated CDC guidelines with no compassion and threatened to kick out anyone whom can’t maintain the 90mg dose. I followed all protocol and procedures to be told there is nothing left to do.
I have no life with my wife or family. I cry and count pills praying the pain won’t be so bad. I either lay on the floor screaming or short myself on my medication. I am not over the guidelines but there are still no other alternatives. I tried medical marijuana and no luck so far. I ended up being tossed a side as if I was a person with substance use disorder. No one checked my chart or my records to see every visit, doctor, and procedure I had. I was left to rot in a holding room with no food or water and cried for medication. My wife demanded a chair for me to sleep in and food and juice. Hanover Hospital tossed me aside until I was shipped to Haven, an addiction treatment center. I am a chronic pain human with no hope and no help. I was promised help and resources, but I left with nothing and am back to square one.
I take oxycontin only three times a day and also take Gabapentin. I cut all my medications myself over the past three years just not to be kicked out of a pain program. I am not going through this again. I have no real reason to go on when no one is listening. The pain places do what has already been done for me. I just need that fifth oxycontin for the breakthrough pain.
This is why I’m sharing my story. I meet with a pastor one time a week just to pray for help. I met with a counselor too and want someone to step in and listen. I am done inside.