Spinal Disorders & Back Pain For discussion of all spinal cord injuries, spinal issues, back-related pain or problems.

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Old 01-16-2020, 05:20 PM #1
will.bastin@yahoo.c will.bastin@yahoo.c is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2020
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will.bastin@yahoo.c will.bastin@yahoo.c is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 1
Default Spinal Cord Stimulator Psych exam denial

Hello everyone, I just joined here and am hoping to get some information. I am asking for my sister who is not very computer savvy. She has extreme pain in her back and was referred for a Spinal Cord Stimulator, she had to go to a Neuro/Psych exam 3 days ago and just got a call from her back doctor's office that she has been denied. The back doctor will call her tomorrow to tell her what she can. I was hoping to get information if anyone has been through this before, can the decision from the psych doctor be appealed or can she get a 2nd opinion. She is so upset right now she has been crying nonstop and she doesn't usually fight what they say and takes what they say as it is the last word. I told her to ask if she can appeal or do anything else but thought I would try to find any information I can for her but I'm having trouble finding out any info online. She went to the psych exam and was truthful and tried to be upbeat and positive. He seemed to focus on the fact that she is on several medications for depression, would that make a difference? In my opinion, of course, she is depressed she can barely walk and cannot sleep in a bed anymore and can barely sleep in a chair.

Thank you

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Old 07-24-2020, 12:23 PM #2
Mary0407 Mary0407 is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2020
Location: St. Petersburg Florida
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Mary0407 Mary0407 is offline
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William, I have only just found this site, so maybe your sister has gotten the help she needs by now. But if not, hereís my reply to your cry for help.
I have a stimulator. It is the third one for me. The first had a problem with kinks in the leads and so I needed a new one. The second didnít work, for reasons no one can figure out. This third one is helping.
I was required to go through the psych exam each time.
My general impression was that they are looking for mentally stable patients. Insurance companies donít like to pay for this (it is very, very expensive) if they feel the patient might jump off a high bridge in the near future.
I was basically honest, but I did not say that I had been or was depressed. I have never been on meds for depression so I kept my attitude happy, even though I felt like I had a hot poker drilling into my lower back and sending pain down my right leg.
Iím pretty sure my desperation wasnít evident. They needed to know that I wasnít expecting a 100% cure. I told them that I was hoping to be able to lead a fairly normal life. Well, at least more normal than it had been to date.
My claim of a stable home life and since I am single, the ability to be independent might have factored into his findings.
They needed to know that I wasnít going to do a high dive if the stimulator didnít meet my blown up expectations. Every one is hoping for the ultimate answer for pain relief, ergo, unrealistic expectations.
If your sister can get another psych evaluation from a different psychiatrist it may have a different outcome.
She must not give up. A change in her meds should help with that. I am still taking pain meds even with the stimulator. The initial settings didnít help me, but I have had some reprogramming and things are a little better. There is always hope. Iím guessing that your sister is younger than me. Iím 70, also female, and have been dealing with this for 20 years.
I donít know where she lives, but you may need to explore a change in doctors.
I wish you both the best and pray that she gets the help and results she needs.
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