Help for Chronic Pain Patients seeking a physician........Kay!!

From: Helen Dynda (
Sat Apr 15 22:48:19 2000

Helen C. received the following letter; but she said that she had received a more prompt reply from the Americans for Action on Pain website which I will post next).


At Sat, 8 Apr 2000, Helen Dynda wrote:

I am sharing this letter with all of you to help you be aware that there is a way to locate physicians who recognize that people in pain need the help of adequate pain medication.

Helen C. had posted messages at the adhesions forum saying that she needed help in finding a physician in the Baltimore, MD area...because her current physician said that he would soon be cutting off her access to the pain medication she had been taking. In desperation she was hoping that someone would be able to recommend a physician to her - a physician who acknowledges that chronic pain needs adequate medication.


>----- Original Message -----
From: Michael McNeil To: Helen C. Cc: APPA Manager- of North American Society for Action on Pain < > Sent: Saturday, April 08, 2000 6:14 PM Subject: Re: EMERGENCY: Help for Chronic Pain Patients seeking a physician


Welcome to the North American Society for Action on Pain. Being an association of pain patients ourselves, we understand the feeling of despair that accompanies chronic nonmalignant pain.

As a practice, we don't distribute names of physicians nor refer patients to doctors with a predetermined specific purpose such as prescribing, but assist patients seeking pain management specialists locate a physician for effective pain management, initially through our resources, and when secondly, through associate advocates. This approach is not to say that any modality of treatment, from physical therapy to the prescribing of the full range of analgesic medications is ruled out. We only refer patients to physicians who have a good understanding of chronic intractable nonmalignant (non cancer) pain and whose treatment paradigms include the use of opiates when indicated and we simply would not refer anyone to physicians or clinics that have restrictive policies regarding aggressive analgesic therapies, including the use of opiates.

In order to better help you, we need, to the extent you have not already provided such, some basic history including your base diagnoses, approximate age, doctors seen (not names, but specialities), medication regimens, etc., to better enable us to help you locate an appropriate pain management specialist. What is the nature of his pain and what form of close family or other support do you have now? Basic identity and contact information to the extent not already provided (full name, address, *telephone number*) will be required as well. Physicians employ different modalities, and we would not be helping you by referring you to a physician not employing treatments that your partner had found in the past to be beneficial. All information provided by you will be treated in the strictest confidence, and released to medical personnel only pursuant to your express consent.

During the process of finding you a pain physician, we would suggest too, that you join our listserver discussion, NASAP-L, as the forum represents a "safe haven" and very informative forum for education, current medical news, exchanges of ideas, and support by others who themselves suffer from chronic pain and understand. It is not a "newsgroup", but rather an e-mail based listserv; posts submitted are distributed to the list members, and a moderator is present. Subscription is available at If you encounter any difficulty in subscribing, we can initiate a subscription directly.

Our website (about to undergo major renovation) has a wealth of information and links pertaining to various pain syndromes and several of our list members are very knowledgeable in the area of treatment of FMS, TN, MFS, CFS, RSD, rheumatoid arthritis, failed back syndrome, peripheral neuropathy, migraines, and a myriad of other pain syndromes. We also have some good webpages with links on our website regarding all forms of chronic pain syndromes. We also have some good information packages such as guidelines published by the Canadian Pain Society, American Pain Society, and jointly, the American Association of Pain Management and American Board of Pain Medicine, regarding opiate therapy.

Helen, you will find NASAP-L to be very informative and supportive, but missing excessive chit chat and "me too-ism". After lurking for a few days, you might ask some of the others about their experiences and various matters regarding chronic intractable pain. Give the process of locating a physician a little time. We do have a heavy patient load sometimes, but hang in there, and work with us in getting you help. The list forum is full of ideas for coping and the group is very warm, empathetic, and indeed, comforting. On the forum, you might be surprised at how many aspects of the detriments brought by unrelenting chronic pain that you share with others.

We do have doctors that we make referrals to, in your area. Our ability to help you will depend largely on your history, diagnoses made, and preparedness in seeing a physician. Is your primary care physician prepared to back you up with any necessary referral?

Helen, we will help you locate an appropriate pain management physician to deal with your chronic pain, and during the process, the group on the list can help you cope. I strongly recommend joining. The list is not too heavy, at twenty to fifty posts per day, and has some very knowledgeable people subscribed, including some medical professionals. In short, it can be a wealth of information.

Upon receipt of your information, Karen Davis, Manager, Area Pain Patient Advocacy, will contact you to further discuss with you locating an appropriate pain management specialist. If there are any physicians that we should not contact for any reason (all such contacts are made without identifying the patient), please inform us accordingly.



On behalf of Karen Davis,

Michael McNeil ("Mic")

NASAP Patient Advocacy <> "PainHelp (Michael McNeil - direct)" <>

NASAP Admin <> "Karen Davis, APPA Manager" <>

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