My Story: Why Are Doctors Giving Up on Patients?

By Christina Ream

(Editor’s note—Christina wrote in the National Pain Report commentary section about her forced taper experience, which we felt should be shared more widely.)

I have several chronic pain conditions. Some were diagnosed a few years ago and others recently. I also have major reactions (anaphylaxis shock) to many medications. After a difficult surgery last June my life began to spiral.

Christina Ream

Without going thru the back and forth, my primary care decided to taper me off opioids and has stated several reasons I still don’t understand. He couldn’t find a pain doctor to take me and said I would be doing a slow taper, we would pause if needed, and gave me a CDC booklet.

I struggled physically and had to pause frequently but came down until I got to a point of no pain control and my body in total chaos. I sent a message about my decline and expressed concern that the treatment plan was crossing our fingers and hope there is no pain. I also brought up why he notated at every visit, that I was in agreement with the taper when that wasn’t the case.

Then my life got so much worse!!!!

My doctor just in the last two weeks decided the taper was prolonging the issue of my pain being because of the opioids. He cancelled my office visit and instead told me via Mychart, that he was doing an expedited rapid taper and done in 8 weeks. He also stated his decision was final but would be happy to keep treating my Non-chronic pain conditions.

That was not true.

Stephen and Christina Ream

He has ignored my mychart messages and had the head doctor tell me that they are no longer treating me and advised me to go to the ER. Who can help? How long do we wait for help? Can anyone help me have a voice? I’m scared and have lost the ability to even function as a human being. My husband being a cop can’t help me and my family has to sit and watch my life keep passing by as I try to hold on and not let go every second of every day!

Christina Ream lives in Middletown, Ohio with her husband Stephen and eight children. Her story of being abandoned by doctors is too frequently heard these days.

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