THE PAIN PATIENTS
BILL OF RIGHTS
The RIGHT to have it UNDERSTOOD that Chronic Pain is a progressive disease of the nervous system; caused by failure of the body's internal pain control systems. Also to have it understood that pain is a malignancy in the sense that when left untreated, intensity increases and spreads to areas that weren't previously affected, damaging the sufferer's health and functioning.
to a medical professionals' honest attempt to find adequate, if not aggressive treatment allowing the patient a normal life as much as possible. Also with the understanding, a patient does not have to be incapacitated and covered with bedsores to be suffering in pain.
The RIGHT therefore, to have an “honest attempt” by a doctor at lowering pain levels, reducing suffering through restoration of functioning in life activities to as close to normal as possible and hopefully arresting and reversing the damage done by chronic pain to the nervous system.
The RIGHT to be prescribed some form of relief however "short-lived" it might be during our search for a pain specialist that will regularly see us and treat our condition. Pain is the 5th Vital Sign and is by law, to be treated and relieved by those in the medical field.
The RIGHT to refuse prescriptions of Anti-inflammatory non-opioid medications such as Motrin, Naprosyn and Vioxx. These medications, called Nsaid's, kill 16,500+ patients each year through bleeding from the stomach and toxicity in the liver and kidneys. Might as well shoot us, than allow us to die unmercifully from these deadly meds.
The RIGHT to not be seen by doctors who begin office visits with frowns, scowls, shaking heads from side to side or any other preconceived negativity towards us. It's rude. It's degrading. And by all rights, should be punishable by law.
The RIGHT not to be labeled
as "doctor shopping" or a "drug seeker" when we change doctors. It's only that we continue to have pain, that we seek out others to treat us. It's “continued pain” that causes us to seek out others to treat us. Who doesn't expect answers when seeing a doctor? And who in their right mind doesn't look elsewhere when answers aren't forthcoming?
The RIGHT to not be lectured about the dangers of DEPENDENCY. For patients who truly suffer from intractable, on-going, never-ending pain – who are already dealing with a permanent problem called pain - and for whom the word "euphoria" is more associated with making it through the day without contemplating suicide, than any effects from medication - never experiencing a "euphoria". In fact, dysphoria and/or depression is observed more typically with the use of narcotics than "euphoria" in the pain patient. Dependence is a physical phenomenon, not a sign of addiction.
The RIGHT to not be regarded as an "addict" or "druggie" or any other negative derogatory when we dare to ask a medical professional for treatment of our pain. Psychological dependence (addiction) should not be confused with physical dependence.
The RIGHT not to be judged or viewed with any preconceived notions when we are lucky enough to receive proper pain treatment. After all, proper pain management means "able to function normally". That's all we want - to be normal.
The RIGHT to no assumptions made if patient takes medication and appears to be functioning somewhat normal. The assumption that a patient taking opioid medications is automatically an abuser just because with proper treatment they are able to function somewhat normally is PREPOSTEROUS! The GOAL is to get patients to the point where they can function somewhat normally. The concept that you must be all but crippled to qualify for opioid therapy needs to end!
The RIGHT to be treated and viewed by everyone, as human beings who only want to live like everybody else. Normal, without pain, sharing joys with family, attending church, grocery shopping, taking in a movie, fixing dinner...loving life.