A new report commissioned by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is calling for a sustained and coordinated national campaign to combat the opioid crisis, including more aggressive regulation of opioids by the FDA and a “cultural change” in the prescribing of opioid medication,
“The broad reach of the epidemic has blurred the formerly distinct social boundary between prescribed opioids and illegally manufactured ones, such as heroin,” said committee chair Richard Bonnie, a Professor of Medicine and Law at the University of Virginia.
“This report provides an action plan directed particularly at the health professions and government agencies responsible for regulating them. This plan aims to help the millions of people who suffer from chronic pain while reducing unnecessary opioid prescribing. We also wanted to convey a clear message about the magnitude of the challenge. This epidemic took nearly two decades to develop, and it will take years to unravel.”
The report estimates that at least 2 million people in the U.S. have an “opioid use disorder” involving prescription opioids — meaning they are addicted to prescription painkillers — and almost 600,000 have an opioid use disorder involving heroin.
Although opioid prescribing has been declining for several years and the number of overdose deaths from prescription opioids has remained relatively stable in recent years, deaths from illicit opioids such as heroin have tripled in the past decade.
Personal Commentary: “This plan aims to help the millions of people who suffer from chronic pain while reducing unnecessary opioid prescribing.”
How can it help the millions of people who suffer from chronic pain if opioid prescribing is reduced or denied for said chronic pain sufferers? Who chooses which patients receive or are rejected? The physician or the government?
“The report claimed that many people who normally would use prescription opioids have transitioned to heroin because of the declining price of heroin and the introduction of abuse-deterrent formulations that make opioid medication harder to snort or inject.”
Yet the report declines to mention the many people who have never transitioned to heroin or any other type of illicit drugs.
These reports never mention the vast majority of patients who remain compliant, who’ve never failed a scheduled or random drug screen, who’s quality of life however slight was a quality enough to stay alive for.
Perhaps it’s the people who aren’t in the chronic pain they claim to be that are abusing the system and heading for heroin and perhaps it’s easier to lump us all together for political gain and ulterior motives that have little to do with helping us and everything to do with you. Just you.
It’s important to understand that MLT isn’t a magic pill we get to swallow and become miraculously cured by. It’s the beginning of curing ourselves. Cure in medicine is defined as:
cure (kyur) n.
Restoration of health; recovery from disease.
A method or course of treatment used to restore health.
An agent that restores health; a remedy.
cured , cur·ing , cures
To restore a person to health.
To effect a recovery from a disease or disorder.
Remission in Medicine is defined as:
remission re·mis·sion (rĭ-mĭsh’ən) n.
Abatement or subsiding of the symptoms of a disease.
The period during which the symptoms of a disease abate or subside.
It’s not really difficult to understand that a cure is just as possible as remission can be. How? The answer is simply by restoring a person to health.
“Manual Ligament Therapy (MLT) is a new and original technique created by Arik Gohl. … We have learned that ligaments are a significant source of pain, especially in cases of chronic pain. Until injured ligaments can heal from their underlying dysfunction, muscles will remain in a tense and guarded state.”
I know what you’re thinking. If you have Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy/Complex Regional Pain Syndrome that you’ll forever live a life of pain with potential spreading from the original site of injury to the rest of your body.
It can be true, but it doesn’t have to be. All of those symptoms, burning, allodynia (pain resulting from a stimulus (as a light touch of the skin) which would not normally provoke pain; also: a condition marked by allodynia) hyperalgesia (increased sensitivity to pain or enhanced intensity of pain sensation), hyperesthesia (unusual or pathological sensitivity of the skin or of a particular sense)
I really don’t have either of the above anymore. My body is still learning not to feel sensations of pain while also recognizing those areas that aren’t hurting. If anything its just hyperesthesia I’m working through. Example, sock me and I’ll feel that sensation long after the actual event. Like a repetitive action.
Keep in mind after years of pain, signals misfiring, injuries taking on abnormal healing paths, other areas of my body becoming effected beyond the site of the original injury that I have a main role to play in reversing these abnormalities. I have to reset my perception to pain by reversing all that my body knows, felt, and has learned as a result.
5 days of Manual Ligament Therapy has gotten me to this point. The custom orthotics is correcting every abnormal step I’ve taken since January of 2001.
You might be thinking manual? Yes, you’ll have to be touched, and you’ll have to move areas you’ve stopped using due to RSD/CRPS, chronic pain. This isn’t traditional physical therapy, you’ll actually feel restricted tissue, muscles, and a myofascial release of those symptoms and connective fibrous tissue eased.
What about burning which is the hallmark symptom of RSD? It’s eased the same way.
Currently MLT isn’t a covered therapy under insurance. Like many other integrative, complimentary, or holistic practices, including acupuncture, acupressure and similar therapies which may be beneficial we’re still legislatively working on these options for you.
Another healing retreat will be held at the Sheraton Los Angeles International Airport beginning Monday, November 28, 2016. http://www.sheratonlax.com/
The cost for the treatment is $2,500 and doesn’t include travel or hotel. I know it sounds like a lot, but it’s not compared to a single injection or invasive procedure billed to insurance or accumulative and yearly co-pays. For more information please contact Monica Depriest: Monica@gohlprogram.com
I’ll be present also to follow-up on my own therapy.
So with that I look forward to meeting you and hope that you’ll give yourself the opportunity to feel better. Sometimes it takes pain to get rid of it. It’s a process of not only healing but believing in yourselves enough to understand that’s it’s possible rather than impossible and pain being the rest of your lives.
Monica Depriest and Arik Gohl picked me up from my son’s home on October 23rd, 2016. My husband and I had spent the weekend there to take care of our grandson De’Mantai so his mom could enjoy some time away. I had just had a cervical steroid injection. This was my second in 8 weeks. I had only ever had Lumbar Sympathetic Nerve blocks prior and over a dozen of them. I had began with a series of 3 scheduled one week apart in 2006. It had taken 6 years for any treatment other than medication management due to Worker’s Compensation. So that I’m precise rather than confusing, these weren’t denied. Had they been denied I could appeal, instead just stalled and delayed. Since the first 2 series of 3, I’ve had one injection a year since, generally during winter and often times delayed beyond my physician’s control.
We arrived in Loomis California an area outside of Sacramento that evening.
Photos above taken 3 hours apart and the same day as the video below. November 4, 2016.
Admittedly, my body was weak and pain was high, but I hadn’t shared that yet. I tend to go off on my own, and attempt to distract myself when among others. As we arrived, Susie and her son Tommy who has RSD/CRPS, along with her son David had also arrived. Jamie and Spencer arrived later. Jamie Pearson is active in the RSD/CRPS communities, too. Arik’s wife Veronica was amazing and helped us all feel at home. Vero’s hospitality and playful spirit afforded us the ease of being less anxious and at ease among those we didn’t know. Sam Ballentyne licensed therapist and energy healer was also present during the week. Dr. Edward Glaser arrived the next morning. Dr. Glaser is the owner of Sole Supports and an engineer and DPM specializing in Podiatry and Orthotics. Another Podiatrist joined us to observe and all our therapies would begin the morning of October 24th.
16 years. 10 with a permanent Spinal Cord Stimulator (SCS) that hasn’t been turned back on since the morning of the 24th. My only blessing that has been on day in and day out since 2006. The only time it’s ever been off is to either charge a drained battery or to push past 2-3 days to allow my brain to scramble and disguise the pain signals it provided. Our brains realize it’s being tricked. Turning it off let it work better again when turning it back on.
It’s been over a week since returning. I wasn’t suppose to ever be able to do this, at least without added pain or causing a flare-up. Lets see if I can get to the point of running one day. 2 days ago, I was still told I never will.
Approximately 3 weeks ago I was contacted by Barby Ingle, President of the International Pain Foundation with a program to consider. Barby sent me Dr. Edward Glaser’s phone number and a link to what the program entailed.
Those of you who know me would also know that I had to do more research on the Manual Ligament Therapy (MLT) being offered. I had to learn more! I had to try to understand the concept, and how it might work if it could. It wasn’t just the Gohl Program itself that I researched. I also pulled up each name involved. 3 of which were Dr. Glaser, Arik Gohl, and Dr. Forbes. Then I read up on Monica DePriest and her daughter Haley DePriest who had CRPS and who is well today because of the program and the techniques that Mr. Gohl’s therapy provider her. Testimonials.
See how my curiosity piqued even more? We’ve all been told that CRPS/RSD is incurable. We’ve learned that it’s also in our blood not just our bodies. I wasn’t as skeptical as some may have been because I had already, several times, researched techniques involving manual trigger point therapies, acupressure, Chinese medicine techniques and similar holistic treatments dating back to the 1800’s. I had already been treated earlier this year with the Bowen Technique.
I had become so let down by western medicine not being able to relieve my own CRPS, or specifically CRPS Type 2/Causalgia in any way other than by Lumbar Sympathetic Nerve Blocks, medications, and traditional physical therapies that only provided minimal relief, if any, that depressions worsened and hope was nowhere to be found. Since December of 2006 the only steady I had was my Medtronic Spinal Cord Stimulator which reduced or disguised enough symptoms that walking wasn’t as painful as it was prior, and pain medications could be reduced by my choice in the permanent placement.
Complex Regional Pain Syndrome: Systemic Complications
CRPS is becoming the great imitator in pain medicine. This article discusses the symptomatology of the disease, including atypical presentations.
By Robert J. Schwartzman, MD
All those things I had accomplished over the years, I found little happiness in. I put on the fake it to make it mask and I wore it quite well. Who would have ever thought that I struggled so badly with suicidal ideations that even my spiritual beliefs couldn’t stop me from wanting to bail on this world.
A mid-metatarsal separation of my right foot (also known as a Lis Franc fracture) January of 2001 in an industrial injury began the last 16 years of uncertainty, loss, rejection, abandonment, failure, and secondary diagnosis’. I still had my upper body though. My hands, fingers, and arms would make up the difference. I could still write type and use social media. In 2009, 9 years after, I got a left foot accelerator pedal installed on our van to be able to drive again. Oh I tried! By that time my left leg was too weak also to drive safely.
I had already had degenerative changes in my spine, but pretended that I didn’t. My legs hurt so bad that it diverted any back pain. 3 years ago my arms started doing things I didn’t understand. Beginning with my left and worsening on the right. By the time I had an EMG my left was reduced and my right just continued to worsen. I’ve never had an EMG or nerve conduction studies on the right side. As 2016 approached the pain in my neck, shoulder, chest, upper and mid back, head, face, the sensations of pulling, tugging, ripping, intense pins and needles, paraesthesia, became so unrelenting that I really couldn’t take it anymore. Bending at the waist started a flare each and every time. I still have to work on that. I had lost feeling in my thumb, forefinger and wrist. My right hand had lost strength.
But wait! I still had my left hand and arm. If I ever needed the gift in being ambidextrous, I would really need it now more than ever to be a part of anything, offline or online.
I had unknowingly believed in hope while other’s told me I was in denial and that I had to accept all those things I wouldn’t be and couldn’t do and would never do. At a higher level of consciousness I saw the light ahead, but was conflicted by the darkness of despair.
I’m already so much better than I’ve ever been in 16 years because of MLT.
I celebrated my 48th birthday while at the program. My son drove my husband to Loomis CA to spend an hour or so with me. First time I’ve been away, on my own, anywhere in 15 years.
Me and my husband Erik
Me and our son Ozra
While I’m still wrapping my own head around it, it’s not as unbelievable as it seems. I promise.
On August 1st and 2nd, I was honored to have been invited to attend the California Advocacy Day, debriefing and meetings with Senators and/or their staff at the California State Capital via the National Patient Advocate Foundation (NPAF) and the California Chronic Care Coalition. Attending as the Advocacy Director of the International Pain Foundation and NPAF patient advocate, I had the privilege of meeting many new people including Liz Helm, and be in the presence of others I’ve crossed paths with at the Capital over the years.
For the last 2 years the International Pain Foundation has been working on a multifaceted project. Music Moves Awareness premiered on September 1, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. Releasing their Debut song Hope is True, iPain moved to inspire everyone with an an upbeat, inspirational dance tune that can get patients moving simply by it’s enthusiastic beats.
The 12 Steps to Patient Empowerment was developed with each contributing writer not knowing what they were writing about. The most amazing challenge to create without secondary knowledge and the best outcome that might be hoped for. https://powerofpain.org/ipain-living-magazine/
This year was an accumulation of heartache and hope.
The morning after Music Moves Awareness debut in Los Angeles California. Gayle M. Taylor-Ford, iPain Board of Directors and author of Step 10 – Pain Management, Twinkle VanFleet, Advocacy Director, Melanie McDowell Hero of Hope recipient, iPain, and Barby Ingle, President International Pain Foundation and author of Step 1 – Empower! and co author of Step 3 Discussion – with Sara Hobbs. internationalpain.org
I’m thrilled to be the author of Step 2- Responsibility. 12 Steps to Patient Empowerment and feature- Stronger Than Pain in the current addition of iPain Living Magazine.
THE INTERNATIONAL PAIN FOUNDATION IS PROUD TO ANNOUNCE TWINKIE – THE GUINNESS WORLD RECORD HOLDER FOR BALLOON POPPING DOG IS AN IPAIN HERO OF HOPE; THE NERVE TO BE HEARD 2016 AWARD RECIPIENT July 25, 2016 – Phoenix, AZ – The International Pain Foundation presents the Hero of Hope Awards annually. Celebrating our 10 year anniversary we have split the award into 4 categories for the first time; The Nerve to Be Heard, Corporate; Caregiver; and Pain Patient, to recognize more outstanding recipients who have demonstrated outstanding commitment to assisting and advocating for people with chronic pain diseases.
Nominations were solicited from the pain community of those who are making a significant contribution within the field of research, education, awareness, or patient assistance for each category.
Twinkie – The current Guinness World Record Holder for Balloon Popping Dog is a 2016 recipient of The International Pain Foundation’s I Have the Nerve to Be Heard Hero of Hope award. This past year we turned to Twinkie and her human Doree Sitterly, to help the pain community get our #painPOP heard around the world. With Twinkie’s help we are sharing stories of chronic pain patients who have ‘The Nerve to Be Heard”. In preparing for the Guinness World Record attempt Twinkie took the opportunity to help the pain community raise awareness about the challenges in receiving proper and timely care as a pain patient and the public health crisis it has created. Since launching #painPOP we have had individuals and groups participate from all over the world; including Africa, Australia, Israel and the UK in an effort to make a difference.
Barby ingle, iPain President, said, “Twinkie is making a difference in people’s lives through her unique talents. The inspiration and energy Twinkie provides in her iPainPOP helps to keep patients positive as we deal with our chronic pain challenges and learn how to become our own best advocate. Thank you to Twinkie and Doree for all you do to put a spotlight on chronic pain diseases and other chronic pain conditions.”
The other 4 award recipients will be announced live at the Music Moves Awareness World Premiere Party on September 1st in Los Angeles, CA.
The finalists in caregiver category: Gayle Taylor-Ford LSCSW, LCAC, Ken Taylor, Melissa Geraghty Psy.D..
The finalists in the pain patient category; Amanda Greene, Twinkle VanFleet, Melissa Geraghty, Psy.D., and Tenah Watts-Callison.
The finalists in the corporate category include Alignmed, Intellectric, and Neuro Drink. The Nerve To Be Heard finalists include Avril Lavigne, Billy Blanks, Jr, and Jennifer Aniston.
Twinkie will also be performing a live painPOP during the finale of our event.
National Pain Strategy PAINS Collaborators Meeting Recap
By Barby Ingle, Power of Pain Foundation President
On June 29 and 30, 2015, the Pain Action Alliance to Implement a National Strategy (PAINS), a group of over 100 pain collaborators and stakeholders, came together in Washington DC to discuss the National Pain Strategy (NPS). The purpose was to provide attendees an opportunity to discuss the NPS and find areas of agreement on next steps, collaborations, priorities, and to hold accountable those responsible for implementation.As the president of the Power of Pain Foundation, I was invited to participate. I went into the meeting with some preconceived notions based on little happening since the Institute of Medicine’s report in 2011 and didn’t expect much to be accomplished. To my great surprise, the meeting exceeded my expectations. I left the meeting feeling that a path toward implementation of stronger access to care issues was clarified as a result of the meeting. I am excited to be one of the attendees present that will be helping move a chronic pain agenda forward, making a difference in the lives of those living with pain.The goals of the meeting were to encourage collaboration among key pain community leaders, to promote the NPS report and build enthusiasm for it, and to facilitate conversations about how to move forward to implementation of the strategy outlined in the report.For me, the meeting clarified the path ahead for the NPS in terms of priorities,implementation, next steps, funding,leadership and accountability. One of the unintended outcomes from the meeting was the consensus to support the messaging of the Chronic Pain Advocacy Task Force (CPATF). The CPATF is a group of 17 consumer advocacy groups convened by the State Pain Policy Action Network (SPPAN), which is a program of the American Academy of Pain Management (AAPM). As a founding member of the CPATF and the representative of one of the 17 groups involved, I was very proud to see that our work was recognized by this larger group of collaborators and stakeholders. As agreed upon, the core messages are: Chronic pain is a real and complex disease that may exist by itself or be linked with other medical conditions.Chronic pain is both an under-recognized and under-resourced public health crisis with devastating personal and economic impact. Effective chronic pain care requires access to a wide range of treatment options, including biomedical, behavioral health and complementary treatment. Denying appropriate care to people with chronic pain is unethical and can lead to unnecessary suffering, depression, disability, and even suicide.
In the early evening of Valentines Day, February 14, 16, I was placed in handcuffs in front of my residence and transferred to #MethodistHospital psychiatric hold where I got to come home the evening of February 16th Initially, I was being transferred to another facility for a 72 hour hold and evaluation after the Dr. said I wasn’t a threat to others, but I was to myself. Upon re evaluation the afternoon of the 16th, the doctor via tele medicine (Robot) allowed me to go home. The bruises on my body (severe) are not self inflicted, but are the consequences of my actions. After being denied 2 types of medications I’ve been on over 10 years (non opioid, anti-depressent/nerve pain and an anticonvulsent, 2 others removed entirely and abruptly January 2015 and reduced from 90 to 30 on Cymbalta at the same time, being continuously delayed, denied, retaking these 2, being denied again, going through the withdrawals over and over and knowing how many of you go through the same or similar, I began to crack. Days prior I filed the appeal, the next day I sought psych help from one of my providers, but was never contacted back. Valentines day started beautifully. My husband set up our patio, and have a vase of flowers for me, coffee and it was peaceful. When I woke that morning, he said “don’t go back” referring to the bedroom. He said” close your eyes” I did. He led me to the patio, the best gift I could have been given. As the early afternoon and sunshine made it’s way in, I was updating hand notes previously taken on a legislative conference to send as minutes. I was listening to music. My emotions began to rise. I was upset that I couldn’t be there for Barby in the loss of her dad, or my mom who’s doing all she can to keep her heart beating, or my dad, or my children, even my sister. I saw that denial letter again as I was highlighting the inaccuracies it contained. I tossed back a 200 ml bottle of vodka. To be specific the $1.99 bottle of Tamiroff (the cheap crap) 40% alcohol by volume. It wasn’t the cause of my actions, but it was the liquid courage to tell it how it was and how it shouldn’t be, however misplaced. I remembered what WC took from me, what I was manipulated into 14 years ago. Something that even possibility, chance or a cure can never bring back and I realized how absolutely stupid I was to listen to my health team at the time. See? I’ve learned and I’ve grown since then and while now I have to tread carefully, I refuse to shut up for me, or for you. And I remember that when my case was initially force closed in 2003, I asked for 1 thing. Just one, and whether my 3 know that or not, I submitted it in writing. I asked for them to apologize to my children.
They’re still waiting
I stood in the street and screamed everything we go through. #Chronic, #IntractabIe#Pain, #CRPS, #DWC#California#MTUS, denials and delays, I screamed that if you take an opioid, tomorrow you’re defined an addict If you have a drink, guess what? Now you’re an alcoholic. I screamed that records should be maintained accurately and that I was DONE! With irresponsible people fucking up responsible lives. Was my act responsible? Perhaps not, but the cause and reason was.
My tongue was foul.
When I attempted to advocate for myself, speak of compassion and understanding, humanizing people for all, and reveal what I do and that I wasn’t blind to it all, I was considered hallucinating, fabricating, making it up, laughed at, demeaned and ridiculed. Being kind, caring, loving, understanding, respectful, honest, and trustworthy has got me no where. Incline my head to the higher ups as if they’re right, when really I just don’t have the guts to advocate on my own behalf and tell them they’re wrong.
A person (and patient) who’s done everything right has labeled me, defined me, and stigmatized me as someone who’s wrong and who’s done everyone wrong.
They wouldn’t even give me my SCS controller to turn off my stim. Flat increases stimulation. The nurse tried to give me some line about, not right now, she didn’t know what I was talking about, so I tried to tell her. Being dismissed from that made me see even more red, I called her stupid and told her to f off. Then I apologized because even in my upset state, I had the mind to know it really wasn’t her fault, she was just ignorant and uneducated.
I won’t be tolerating inaccuracies in records, healthcare or otherwise. I won’t be tolerating patients not being able to add note to correct the record. I won’t be hiding away under the blankets anymore, while people create their reports to satisfy their own job criteria, yet leave out pertinent information. I’ll be up to make sure you know you better get it right. And that people deserve truth about all else.
I’ll be sharing this story in it’s entirety, there’s so much more than this. My records, PRIUM, tox screen, etc are being sent to the International Pain Foundation. Via iPain someone gets the exclusive. I’ll decide free or fee. Oh and I got on the inside in all of it, now I know what goes on behind those scenes and those doors. I supposedly blew a high alcohol level. But here’s the deal. The bottle is still the same bottle it can’t magically become something else. The amount my body took in wasn’t more than that, I’m 200 pounds, so go figure. I’ve saved that little bottle as a souvenir. Excuses? Not at all. I’m not proud, but nor am I ashamed. My transparency will bring me back up, enough to prove, I haven’t lied, fabricated and I wasn’t on any illicit or illegal drugs which no one believed either.
On the contrary, the truth I’ve told and will tell
Will become me
(This is my #FightSong
… Take back my life song)
If I gave anything that night, I gave 2 things.
1. On command I removed my hands from my mama’s jacket pockets and complied without incident to place my hands behind my back. #SacramentoSheriffsDepartment. Everyone should do the same in all situations.
2. I’ve given all of you the rest of my life; the one I can’t go back on.
My name is now associated with defiance and lock down.
Nothing else was considered
Sleep disorders, narcoleptic episodes
CSA (my brain doesn’t send the signals to my body to breathe)
Withdrawal (probably over that by now, but the effects I’m still dealing with)
CRPS (Flare) + and an altered brain from the last 13 months of continuous WC hell.
CRPS (secondary depression, anxiety disorders, PTSD x 2 (diagnosed)
(excluded are internal diagnosis’)
My medication list has been updated each and every time I’m seen by my physicians. Yet, my discharge shows I’m on 11 meds, including Butrans, 5 and 10, a benzo and others. I’m on Lisinopril 1 x a.m, Atorvastatin 1 x p.m, Hydralazine as needed only, BP 180/+, Nuvigil daily, and BuTrans Patch/wk. #DignityHealth is linked to all my doctors. The hospital is part of Dignity Health. What’s the point of the EMR, PMP, PDMP or even a computer if it’s not properly used?
Understand why I kept saying “I’m fucking done” I’m done doesn’t equal I’m going to kill myself. I’m over it, doesn’t mean it either. I don’t want to be here doesn’t either. What they all are is some else’s perception and reality I could fart and my son would throw up his hands and say “I’m done!”
Check it out.. My voice will carry, I have the guts to say it, open eyes and touch hearts, contribute to change, maybe not for me, but hopefully for someone else
If I killed myself, I wouldn’t get to say it, now would I?
I’m sure they gave me Cymbalta, Zonegran and Hydralazine in the lockdown. I wasn’t suppose to be given any of those. Only Lisinopril and the Statin. No wonder my head hurts.
On the 29th of January, I put in for my Cymbalta (30, 1x) and Zonegran (100, 2 x). I went to my grandson’s 10th birthday party yesterday (sick) but I played it like it was something else, I played it off so good and to the point of… shrugs. Yah, slam dunk withdrawal again. Pharmacy kept telling me my doc hadn’t refilled. (A lie) If you didn’t know the truth, say you don’t know. Today I get a letter in the mail from PRIUM. Cymbalta and Zonegran denied. Last January, 13 months ago, I was removed from 2 other medications entirely (one of which was Lidoderm) and reduced from 90 to 30 Cymbalta. I tried. I faked it to make it and I prayed it and played it. but was slipping harder than anyone could ever see, . There’s 1 med left and I know it’s next. Nearly every month I’m delayed, the months I’m not delayed by days, I am by weeks. I’m sure my brain is fried by now. I’m sick all the time from abrupt discontinuation, to trying to re stabilize after getting back on, to slam dunked again. Over and over and over. Those medications aren’t suppose to be slam dunked off of. They aren’t suppose to be abruptly discontinued. They are suppose to be weaned off to prevent seizures and adverse affects that can in some cases include death. Their letter is a lie, it contradicted 12 months ago where it did indicate Cymbalta and Zonegran and now says the CA MTUS doesn’t indicate for the treatment of neuropathic pain. (wrong). It also said because I’ve been treating with a dentist and was ON Norco 5/325 that the Cymbalta and Zonegran didn’t keep me OFF OPIOIDS. A fucking lie. As of the date of that letter. I had 3 dentist appointments. And I suffered and declined med, even tho I took some. I also got permission from my PMD prior to ever getting an RX , filling it or taking it. I have not asked for 1 single extra pill and I didn’t even fill the Rx I had for days later. But know what? It’s a done deal now. TOWER ENERGY GROUP – SCOTT CORNWELL ADJUSTER ARROWPOINT CAPITAL. You might want to get your facts right. You expect us to have ours accurate, yes? Let me see here in 1 year approximately $15,000 a year in medication management times 81 years of age. I’m still only 47. I got your game, you better get mine, too.
This letter said that I failed Lyrica and Neurontin (the reason it now says NO to Zonegran, but that I didn’t fail Carbamazepine or Lamotrigine. You got me stuck on stupid. For real? drugscom says make sure to tell your doctor if you have heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol or triglycerides;
liver or kidney disease; ALL OF THE ABOVE. I get it, compromise one side for the other right? Which really means lower your spending. Sorry idiots, I settled for lifetime medical and didn’t take your money. Go on keep punishing me. Neither of these are NOT indicated for me. I didn’t appeal your last denials (January 2015) and I’m not appealing these either. Oh and by the way, next time you put bull shit in my letters, CA fail first/step therapy REFER TO AB 374 and know that if you’re going to quote taking and failing, you better also note all else that goes with it.
Because I think you failed something else…
The Travesty of Delays- California Workers’ Compensation SB 863 and AB 1124
I would like to offer that in conversation this last week with Dr. Kolodny and others who advocate against the use of opioid pain care that I attempted to stress the importance of responsibility and education in stating that ”
“So much time proving how bad opioids are when we could have been educating, teaching personal responsibility.” (Twitter only allows so many characters)
A direct reply and quote from Dr. Kolodny
“Education & “teaching personal responsibility” will not make opioids less addictive or more effective.”
Already in today’s call responsibility has been spoken of as well as education several times. He came on and mentioned Guiding physicians. Isn’t guiding educating?
Other therapies can potentially be more harmful, anti depressants, anti seizure medications for the treatment of chronic pain, such as Cymbalta,
Neurontin, Nortriptyline, Amtriptolyne and similar medications also have misuse and abuse potential. When there is misuse, abuse and Overdose is already likely. Surgical intervention is contraindicated in patients with nerve damage, neuropathies, CRPS/RSD. Some of these opioid overdoses were in part due to other medications, mixtures and alcohol, not solely opioid. Integrated and functional restoration programs are important, but few insurances at all, cover them.
Can we try not to stress the decline in white people falling to addiction, when we didn’t seem to be as concerned about blacks, or minorities. many were like, oh well, let them kill themselves, calling them stupid. We’re your kids stupid? I think not. I find it disheartening.
People were people all along. Also personal responsibility is directly related to opioid overdoses. If these children or adults didn’t understand the risk, or what the medication may cause, then education was absolutely necessary by parents, family and spouses first and foremost before the medical community. It becomes a mutual responsibility. Not only the doctor who prescribed it.
If they can’t stop, it’s our responsibility to intervene on their behalf. and attempt to save their lives before it’s too late.
Pain is physical, and pain is emotional. Physical pain seeks quality of life, the emotional pain, those against opioid’s seek comfort for
their loss. Pain doesn’t discriminate.
Physiology also plays a major role in this topic. Lets not sacrifice people for people. Otherwise unintended consequences become intended
consequences. Responsibility in prescribing isn’t a one way street. We seek out the doctor, they don’t seek us out.
~Twinkle V. / Advocacy Director, International Pain Foundation #iPain
The Body, Mind, and Spirit; Humanizing the Soul
By Twinkle VanFleet
I often refer to Quality of Life (QOL) when supporting or opposing legislation and/or certain topics aimed at the chronically ill or intractable pain patient . Quality of life is important! What is it though? I knew what I meant, but did others? Did those people I spent time with exchanging bits and pieces of personal belief and philosophies understand what it really was that I was referring to, or was it simply 3 words that had been tossed around in the vast world of healthcare and patients alike that had just become a more familiar reference term over time?
Somebody understood, someone had already knew precisely what I meant and what I had attempted to relay to others for decades. I didn’t know until after I returned home from being honored with The Bakken Invitation Award which recognizes outstanding contributions of service, volunteerism, and leadership. Each year, selected Honorees earn a $20,000 grant from Medtronic Philanthropy to direct to a charity of their choice. I didn’t realize until I opened one of the books that had been gifted to me as a 2015 Bakken Invitation Honoree by the man who most likely didn’t choose me solely, but who presented it to me at one of my weakest and most vulnerable public moments ever. As I began to read through “One Man’s Full Life” by Earl E. Bakken, co founder of Medtronic, I knew.
I knew that the man who had invented the world’s first wearable battery operated external pacemaker in a garage in northeast Minneapolis while everyone else was recovering from WW2, knew also. There was 46 years between his birth and mine, but someone else understood long before I ever could.
Health Related Quality of Life is the meaningful intent and purpose of giving a part of the self to another. A warm smile, soft caress, compassion. Anyone can want, need or desire quality of life. This quality is based on what we do with our lives, where we want to take it, and if we can sustain that quality we want or crave by what we’ve utilized from all that we have and that which we don’t. It’s really dependent not on the self, but the ego. Upbringing, teachings, education, competition, and lacking commitment to anything or anyone else.
Health Related Quality of Life is what we need to survive. There is no quality of life without a health related quality of life. Health related quality of life had become technology, pills, and sending a person on their way. The real intent of health related quality of life is the human experience. Humanizing patients will help their mind and spirit overcome challenges in the body.
Shrug someone off, remove their dignity, you also remove the very reason for fighting against disease and pain that our own minds already know how to achieve. Our mind is part of our brain it isn’t the brain itself. It’s our conscious, and sometimes unconscious being, yet never the less our higher being, our spirit. Break the spirit, you will break the body. Liven the mind and the spirit, you induce a will to “be“.
All these years, all the doctors and medical professionals, some my own physicians, others colleagues, above me in degrees, educational establishments, influence, and knowledge. I knew I knew, but now it was validated by a man who’s invented, done and given more in his lifetime than anyone else I could ever come to know.
It doesn’t take a degree to “get it“. All it’s ever taken is an understanding and belief in the human spirit and what it’s truly capable of, if not thrown away. I think I’m finally proud enough to say with my head held high, instead of my eyes lowered, that I don’t have a degree, I didn’t attend any fancy universities, I’m certainly not the sharpest tool in the shed, but I am brighter than the average bear. This is all I was ever suppose to be. All I was meant to do is validate those who came before me for those who come after me.
We’ve become a world that belittles at the first opportunity and blames others for what’s in our own power to change or make better. Instead, a people who hold back because they think they lack worth. You’re worth it, I promise! Some are still trying to teach it, still trying to proffer care in kindness and mercy above and beyond themselves, opening eyes and fluttering hearts, enlightening those who haven’t quite seen the light yet.
It doesn’t take a degree to be enlightened above the self and know a little better than the one‘s who tell you, you don‘t..
As I get ready to fly to Kona, Hawaii for the Medtronic Bakken Awards, I’m trying to help myself overcome challenges related to traveling, weight bearing, pulmonary and sleep disorder issues. My breathing has been unstable this week, my head, neck, arms, and even female troubles have poked me in the side.
I had my appointment with my PMD yesterday to ask for considerations that might help me through as it’s becoming harder and harder to stay up on my own and maintain pain levels. I already put in for ADA assistance during the travel and at the hotel. Yet, I won’t allow myself to be confined to a wheelchair while there, so I’m carefully pacing myself so that my legs carry me. My Medtronic Spinal Cord Stimulator has been my pill for 10 years. I’ll be able to adjust for optimum relief, but to do so also means that I have to either not be on my legs/feet at that time or not raising my settings for added comfort. I learned a long time ago how to get the best out of it for me. I’ve also learned that there are times I have to trade relief for walking and I can’t always have both at the same time. I can set my stim to numb me, but because I am one of the lucky ones whose stimulation does reach the toes, increasing this setting can knock me off my legs. I reserve this for non weight bearing pain relief. This is not an adverse effect, but a plus and benefit that has to be noted and chosen to best fit my time and place.
My Auto Servo Ventilator is too big and quite heavy to carry, so I may have to go without it. Still working on that. Otherwise I’d be traveling with 2 medical devices and have little room for anything else.
At this time next week, we’ll have already landed and be apart of the meet and greet with each honoree, Medtronic and so many others. I’m looking forward to representing Power of Pain Foundation as the new International Pain Foundation, myself as honoree, each honoree for what they have also accomplished and given, advocacy, volunteering, my family, my closest friends, and Dr. Earl Bakken and Medtronic Philanthropy.
There are a few wonderful people and establishments I want to say thank you to for being apart of this with me.
The International Pain Foundation (IPF) #iPain – Previously known as the Power of Pain Foundation. http://powerofpain.org/
Sacramento Pain Clinic – Dr. Michael Levin – Since 2004. Not just a Pain Management Doctor, but a patient advocate going above and beyond his own job for his patients.)
(Jacob has been part of my surgical team. He’s also adjusted me as needed. When I had my 9 year battery replaced I donated back to Medtronic my carrying bag, handheld stim (my stim) case, charger, hip straps, antenna, and manuals so that someone who needed these items in whole or in part could have them. Jacob came to my home to pick it up. Amazing man.)
(The center that taught me all there is about pain, physically, emotionally and psychologically. How to live with it using the mind, spirit and body to overcome flareups and maintain a modicum of sanity. Because of them I’ve been able to teach others what they taught me and find some joy and laughter in pain.)
Western Dental – Elk Grove Florin Road, Elk Grove, California
Dr. Tooloei, Staff.
You did great. Thank you for trying before I left for Hawaii. Trying meant enough to me.
Trudy Thomas, Featured BlogTalkRadio Host of the Living with HOPE Radio show on the Body, Mind and Spirit Network.
So proud of you and all you’ve given, selflessly. Happy that we have each other and our friendship survives the things we can’t do anymore.
Honored to have been both your co-host and guest speaker and warmed that you will always be family. Thank you for being all that I can count on as honorific leader/admin of my group. I love you!
Roy, MD Junction – http://www.MDJunction.com (Honored to have lead your Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Support Group for years.
Glad to have lead the ADHD support group on behalf of the children and parents who needed someone to oversee it. Pleased to still be a Senior Member and
MDJ Advocate. Love you all!)
Barby Ingle, www.BarbyIngle.com
(Together we can! Together we will! And together we are! Through MDJ and Trudy we found each other. I’ll forever remember the ones who cherished me for cherishing them. All 3 of you! Onward I go with #iPain. I love you!)
My Mom and Dad(s) (I know my dad is watching over. Gone since I was 22. My mom and dad was married 25 years when I closed his eyes. My mom and dad have been married 20 years and dated prior to that. So Mr. Don Tresca has been my father just as long as my birth dad was. I pray I’ve honored them all evenly and fairly as their daughter. I love you!)
Erik, Kharisma, Rikki, Kurtis and De’Mantai (my 5 lights). (Awards and recognition is great but not if they are seemingly meaningless to those that it should have mattered most, too.
There’s so much I’ve advocated for on your behalf’s that you’ve never even seen. I know that it all gets stale at some point but if you only knew it was never more for someone else than it was for you. Seek and you shall find. love you! Ohana.)
I’m so glad Daddy saw, felt, and knows now. Sometimes it takes a miracle and that miracle came. It’s all good. Ask him ~winks
Annie-Marie Garcia (30 years! Time in between where we had gaps because life does that with work and loss. We don’t want to add burden to those we love or stomp on someone else’s, okay. That’s what we tell ourselves at least. I’m glad I got you now in the illness you should have never ended up with. I wish I was there when you were first going through it and if only I had known. Lets never let anything separate us again. For you and I, we have something special, we can see each other every day, or have weeks, months or years go by, but we always know that when it comes down to it, we are the ride or die. I love you!)
Maryann Kupidlowski Stafford (My sister since our babies were babies. Young teen daughters. If we weren’t there together we would have never met. Your curiosity, my extended learning, teaching. We both did, and we both gave, mine was just for extending natural order A decade? 12, 13. Time flies. Here we are moving forward in light, love and tomorrow. I love you!)
Eileen McCready (A long time now too, background, foreground, compassion and understanding beyond pain. Sister of mine, always. I love you!)
Saskia Hubelmeijer (My international sister who does all she can in the Netherlands despite pain and hardship, and for America, too. Who’s assisted in leading my group since 2011, as formal admin and informal I love you!)
Billy Rose (Thank you brother for leading light and love above pain and hurt for all people. You demonstrate what the world needs more of and you are providing the change needed to overcome it all again) I love you!
The Council (We are who we are and one day when the earth is over, or death takes us, we’ll still be us, together, teaching, giving, inspiring, awakening those asleep all in their own time) I love you all. http://www.councilofenlightened.org/
(In memory of IRJR http://www.irjr.com/, a great man, friend, Clamper, who many years ago when founded Widders Web honored me with his chat program instead of the one I was using for us, I used his to then honor what he started years previous to that. http://www.irjr.com/widderschat/ While the pages are currently not found and the chat needs updating, I wanted to thank him again. Mr. IRJR is no longer with us.
SPPAN (State Pain Policy Advocacy Network) (I hope we continue on)