I stumbled across this article on a new-to-me blog that I’m now following. It has some great tips that I never considered when thinking about going to the emergency room as someone who has chronic pain and related issues. This blog entry is talking about CRPS, which is Complex Regional Pain Syndrome. It’s a chronic pain disorder that is separate from Fibromyalgia but can be a co-diagnosis with Fibromyalgia. Each disorder can also be misdiagnosed for the other. She goes into more detail with each bullet point, and you should click the link to see the reasoning why. I’ve begun using these suggestions at work and although it’s been a couple of years since I’ve broken down and gone to the ER, I’m going to be taking this advice.
- Make sure that you have a regular physician who treats your chronic pain.
- Show that you have tried to contact your regular doctor before you go to the ER … only using the emergency room as your treatment of last resort, as opposed to the primary place you go for pain medication.
- Bring a letter from your doctor.
- Bring a list of medications.
- Work cooperatively with emergency room staff. It might not be fair, but if a patient comes in screaming and shouting that they need pain medication right away, the staff isn’t going to like it.
- If you have a CRPS card, hand it to them and ask for it to be put in your file.
- Ask for a nurse advocate or make sure someone is with you.
- If at all possible, use the same Emergency Department as the last one you went to, your pain will be that much more believable if you always use the same place.
- …keep a folder handy with all those details written down, as well as a copy of most everything I need to bring with me