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Posts (17)

2 days ago · Arachnoiditis: Trying to find a specialist in Spine Health

Do you know if mat is compatible with SCS?

Oct 22, 2019 · Arachnoiditis in Spine Health

What pump shocks the nerve? Do you mean a spinal cord stimulator? I am not a success story, but many people get great relief from them. The pump is an alternative to oral meds and delivers an opiate (usually morphine or dilaudid) directly to the spinal cord. I am waiting to hear from Mayo – they got my records a week ago today. If they won't see me, I have an appointment with a neurosurgeon at Emory in January as a backup (I live about 150 miles from Atlanta). The local neurosurgeon who did my SCS implant wants me to try another one but I am very hesitant to do that. Are you in N Carolina or S? I am in Greenville SC

Oct 21, 2019 · Arachnoiditis in Spine Health

No more scripts for my pain meds.

Oct 18, 2019 · Arachnoiditis in Spine Health

I was recently diagnosed with AA and am trying to get an appointment with Mayo. Pain pump, from what I understand, is the gold standard treatment. Have they adjusted the dosage or changed the medication for you? I have an SCS (Abbott Proclaim) which is useless and is going to come out soon but my surgeon wants me to try another SCS trial before he does that. He showed me the AA on my MRI from two years ago. I had to have a CT for Mayo as my SCS prohibits me from MRI's. What type of doctor do you see now? Who ordered the recent imaging? It was very easy to see it on my MRI so ask them to show it to you if they "think" you have it. Either its visible and you have it or it isn't and you don't. We all spend much too much time chasing after iffy diagnoses, and I've been told by a friend who is a trauma surgeon that AA is sometimes a garbage diagnosis that doctors throw out because its untreatable and it gets them off the hook to do anything for you. I can manage life for the most part (although my ability to walk/stand is often severely limited) on my current meds, but every month I live in the fear that I will be cut off and I know that will take me out of normal living for sure. Good luck.

Oct 1, 2019 · Chronic Pain members - Welcome, please introduce yourself in Chronic Pain

Unfortunately I don't think there is any way to avoid the fluctuation in Part D Medicare co-pays – call your congressmen and senators, join AARP (they provide forms, online petitions, etc. to make it easy to let your legislators know your feelings). What you can avoid with a Medicare Advantage plan is only a separate Part D premium, not how Part D works. If you've ever heard reference made to the "donut hole" – that's what they are talking about!

Oct 1, 2019 · Chronic Pain members - Welcome, please introduce yourself in Chronic Pain

PS – if you have a supplement, you can go to any doctor that accepts Medicare. That was my point on supplement vs. advantage. Advantage includes other stuff like dental, vision, drug, and Silver Sneakers (yeah, we will use that) but you are limited to their network.

Oct 1, 2019 · Chronic Pain members - Welcome, please introduce yourself in Chronic Pain

If your concern is network, get a Medicare Supplement, NOT an Advantage Plan. For Advantage, the feds give your Medicare premium to a private company like United Healthcare, and it operates like an HMO with a network and a huge interest in keeping the cost of your care below the "capitated" amount they are paid by CMS.
As far as the prescription costs, when you are looking at a Part D provider, check their formulary to see if it is covered and what your costs will be. Its a bizarre system, you can't count on a steady monthly cost because you go through different phases. You might pay a $250 copay in January because it includes your deductible and $50 in February then suddenly in June it goes back up and then goes way down again in Sept depending on what phase you are in and your overall (not individual drug) out of pocket costs are. Honestly, I haven't cracked that nut, and I use GoodRX for my pain meds because they arbitrarily cut them on me earlier in the year.

Oct 1, 2019 · Chronic Pain members - Welcome, please introduce yourself in Chronic Pain

Going on 3rd year of Medicare with a Plan G supplement. Its around $100 a month and after an annual deductible of $149 it covers everything (that medicare covers). I never pay a cent over the initial deductible. EnvisionRX is my Part D – its around $15 a month. I think all Part D's are pretty much the same. If you know you are going to have a lot of medical you need either F or G, F covers everything but premium difference is much more than the $149 deductible with G. Of course premiums vary based on gender and the state you live in. Good luck.