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The Big File All issues not easily categorized in the above forums are here. Comments on general health, diet, "getting comfortable," and more are here.

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Old 11-08-2005, 04:26 PM
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I previously posted as HARLEYS DAD I lost all of my records & re registered. After eight months of batteling my Insurance Co. ( a divission of BCBS ) I finaly got my approval letter in August & they are paying 100% of the cost. That's the good news. I got the approval the second week of August & had my surgery scheduled for ADR at the L/5 S/1 on August 26th. The morning of the surgery at the Hospital I was informed that the surgery was cancled. Needless to say it was a major dissapointment. It was re scheduled for 11/11/2005. I called today to see what time I had to be there & was told by the same Nurse that it was cancled again. I asked her how, with seven weeks notice did it get cancelled. She said that the Vascular surgeon had something come up. I later called his office to find out if he had in fact been notified seven weeks in advance as I was & found out that his office was not aware of it untill today. It turns out that this one Nurse that does all of the scheduling for the clinic never coordinates with the other surgeons involved untill a couple of days prior to the surgery. I was very up set & she said she didn't have time to deal with a rude paitent & hung up on me. I called back to South Eastern Spine Institute in Mt Pleasant, SC to leave a message for my surgeon to call me. I specificaly asked the reseptionist to not give the message to Nurse Karen Blakley because I knew she would intercept it & I wouldn't get to speak with my DR. About two hours went by & she called & said "You just made a big mistake" I asked what she meant & she said that she was given the message & told that I didn't want her to intercept it. It was then that she told me that I would have to find another surgeon. She said she told DR Johnson that I was extreemly rude & demanding & that he told her to tell me to find someone else to do my surgery. I've been going there for two years & they have me on 200 mg of Morphine per day for pain. I don't know what to do now! Any advise, help would be greatly appreaciated. I feel as though they may have even broken the law by just dropping me like this given the severity of my condition. I can't work, & can only stand for short periods. I haven't slept in a bed in almost two years. I have to sleep sitting in my recliner, where i spend about twenty two hours each day. My pain managment Dr told me about two months ago that if I didn't get a surgery soon that I was risking serious nerve damage. Any suggestions anyone?
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Old 11-08-2005, 04:45 PM
annapurna annapurna is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 1,600

Maybe this is a blessing in disguise. If your surgeon is so quick to believe whatever this nurse so-and-so says with no other info, then maybe he's not the one you want working on your spine. Unless you only have local-area insurance coverage, you've got lot's of options. You could try TBI, Cedars, Dr. Bitan, and the other top-notch US ADR surgeons. You could go to Dr. Bertagnoli or Zeegers in Europe. You could look for other competent ADR surgeons near where you live. This guy isn't the only good surgeon in the world. Don't let yourself be bullied by vengeful office staff.

Laura - L5S1 Charitee
C5/6 and 6/7 Prodisc C
Facet problems L4-S1
Knee, Shoulder, Toe, Finger, Elbow Problems

Jim - no spine problem but lots of other fun medical challenges

"There are many Annapurnas in the lives of men" Maurice Herzog
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Old 11-08-2005, 07:00 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 128

Treatment like that would send up a caution flag in my head. If that practice is so lazy to wait till the last minute to schedule support surgeons, I would be afraid of what they forgot to do the day of surgery. You would think the nurse would have more compassion for someone who had their surgery cancelled 2x due to their incompetence. I am sure there are other surgeons in SC that will treat you better than an assembly line product. Go to the charite site and look in their trained physicans section for SC. This was probably a blessing in disguise.

Imagine if the surgery caused complications, sounds like they would call you a complainer and hang up on you or tell you to find another Dr. to go fix it....

There are plenty of fish in the pond, personally I would report this guy to the State medical board....

Best of Luck!!!
Greensboro, NC
Lost all ADR Appeals w/ UHC PLIF Fusion L5-S1 on 5/17/05.
Pars Defect L3-L4
DDD L3-L4 L4-L5
3 LVL Fusion Scheduled 4/08
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Old 11-08-2005, 07:31 PM
letteski letteski is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 814

How about taking an add out in your local paper letting your community know how this doctor and his office has treated you and left you to suffer in pain even when you have coverage. I don�t get it. Other patients should be warned as to what they are getting themselves into.

Thank goodness you will not have to continue being treated badly there are a lot of compassionate doctors that would put there patients over there office staff. I wonder if he really knows what is going on and if he does I would not let him near me with a ten-foot pole let alone a scalpel.
ProDisc L5-S1 W/Dr Delamarter Aug 23, 2005
L5-S1 DDD Diagnosis 12/04
T-12 Compression Fracture 10/04
C-7 Spines Process Fracture 5/99
You are my Rock God in you I can do anything
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Old 11-08-2005, 08:00 PM
luvmysibe luvmysibe is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 556

Hi Dad,
What an absolute nightmare! Each member here can sympathize with your frustration. I would certainly consider calling your state medical board and any other professional organization. Also there are sure to be more highly qualified orthopaedic surgeons in the area. I had 4 opinions before selecting my ADR specialist. Don't give up, persevere, this may end up being a blessing in disguise.
L5/SI Charite
7/18/05 Dr. Howard
"A smile is contagious, be a carrier ."
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Old 11-08-2005, 08:27 PM
spotty14 spotty14 is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 365

This is an awful thing to happen and twice at that. I would report these incidents like Luvmysibe suggested and also report the rude and disrespecful treatment you experienced over the phone from the nurse and the office person to a local medical entity or your insurance company. If it was me I'd also be asking for a written apology. I hope you can find a good surgeon soon.
7/05 EMG/Nerve Conduction Tests
8/04 Disqualified from ADR clinical trial due to severe osteoporosis -- getting treatment
3/04 updated MRI
11/2000 IDET L 3/4, L4/5
1/2000 Discogram
numerous epidural injections
physical therapy
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Old 11-08-2005, 09:02 PM
mmglobal mmglobal is offline
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 882

Stay away from inflammatory language... just cool, calm recitation of the events.
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Old 11-08-2005, 09:02 PM
mmglobal mmglobal is offline
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 882

I recommend taking a very short version of your story and putting it into a FAX to your doctor. That enters it into your medical record and gives the doctor something that he really needs to respond to. Make it clear to the doctor that you are interested in having him perform the surgery... you have no beef with him... it's just that your life is turned upside-down and all you are trying to do is find the appropriate relief... doing what HE recommends.

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Old 11-09-2005, 04:09 AM
Alastair Alastair is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 2,391

It sounds to me as if this is not isolated to you, I know we all have pressures on ourselves in this modern day, especially the nurses but it sounds as if there are a number of nurses who are very high-handed about things.

I don't know if members have the facilities, but it might help members in the future to record all phone calls if there's any suspicion of this sort of problem.

Many doctors rely on their nurses to keep troublesome people away from them -- -- -- the above is just a thought.

When I was working, many conversations with insurance companies who offered big bonuses for certain contracts, and then when you did the contracts retracted on their original offer. I used to record all the relevant conversations, and if this happened to me I would just send them a copy of the conversation, with a note that said do you wish me to take this further? I look forward to your cheque.

There's loads of surgeons want your money out there, be careful what you say if you put an advert in your local paper as suggested by someone
ADR Munich 26th July 2002 L5/S1. Aged 82 now
Your best asset is your health
My story is here
Thank goodness for Dr Zeegers I am painfree
I am here to help,I live in the UK

I now run the UK spine site and can be contacted at
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Old 11-09-2005, 08:33 AM
Mariaa Mariaa is offline
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 1,121

Proud Dad,
I worked 25 years as a nurse and have seen many a doctor/surgeon back his nurse in terms of report of problematic patient/dismissal from services.

Sometimes it's very unfair as the patient truly isn't problematic, just frustrated as in your case. Patient's often don't understand they are supposed to be polite and feel wonderful about some very impolite, unfair or rude behavior that they receive.. (and of course then there are your true problematic patients tho they can be more difficult to dismiss).

I believe for the most part, most physicians reserve the right to treat whom they desire. Sometimes there are cases that involve continuity and the physician or surgeon cannot dismiss the patient so easily but for the most part, when it's done it's done and the patient must find a new treating doctor.

I'm very sorry this happened to you, however, what Laura said rings very true re a possible blessing in disguise. Would you really want someone to do surgery on your whose services were run as such and whose nurse treats you in this manner? I think not.

Hopefully there has been no documentation to the effect of Problematic patient on your chart (rude, demanding and such) so that it will not be difficult to find a new treating doctor. However, you must do that now, and you must make sure you explain in a calm and rational manner what happened to you to the next treating doctor and by all means don't "trash" the x doctor too badly verbally as other physicians/surgeons pick up on this and feel that the patient may be problematic and therefore turn him or her away without giving them much of a chance.

Good luck, if you've an attorney involved, try to have the attitude thing rectified or removed from documentation with an addendum such as * Mr X was scheduled for surgery twice and without any advance notice from anyone involved in his treating care was canceled from surgery and not notified until he showed up at the hospital doorstep....

This will allow for a new treating doctor to understand where your frustration w/treatment was and that you were in no way a problematic patient, only desired an explanation from your treating physician.

take care, good luck, and hang in there~ Maria
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