Veterans With Chronic Pain–Tell Us Your Story

Veterans With Chronic Pain-Tell Us Your Story

By Ed Coghlan.

A couple of things have occurred in the last week that have encouraged me to write this column.

Here’s what we propose:

If you are a veteran with chronic pain-please send us an email to and tell us your story.

What has prompted this?

As we indicated-two things:

First, we received a call from an investigative unit of a major network news division that is interested in doing a story on vets and chronic pain. They have been looking into whether the government reaction to the opioid crisis has adversely impacted how veterans are being treated.

We had a good half hour conversation with one of their researchers-who spent a lot of time making sure the National Pain Report was not being funded by pharmaceutical companies (we’re not)-and also to talk about our impressions of the state of chronic pain treatment (which I shared).

I gave him the names of a couple of doctors we have interviewed and also some stories on vets we have done. He wants to talk with more vets. That might mean you if you’re willing to share.

Second, I reported on overhearing the conversation between Robert Rose and the VA law enforcement officials at the Mountain Home VA Center in Johnson City, Tennessee, on Monday before Congressman Phil Roe visited the facility. I heard the frustration of a vet who is simply trying to get some answers about his treatment, and hasn’t been able to do that. We know he’s not alone. So, I thought it would be productive to share other stories from vets who are willing to speak.

If I may be allowed an editorial comment, the treatment of our veterans generally, and those with chronic pain specifically is, in a word, shameful. If by shining some light on these stories we can help move what has been an intransigent Congress and a paralyzed VA system-we should do it.

(Here’s the Mountain Home VA Story)

Here’s what we ask.

Provide your name and answer the following questions:

  • What branch of service you were in?
  • What happened to you?
  • How long have you been treated by the VA (add which VA Hospital)?
  • Are you happy or unhappy with the treatment (provide as much detail you want)?
  • Any other issues you think we should know. (if you want to add your phone number, go ahead, but we will not guarantee that we can call all of you)

We plan to do two things with your “stories”.

  • We will publish some on the National Pain Report
  • We will allow the network investigative team to see all of them if it wishes

We’re interested in your response.

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Authored by: Ed Coghlan

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You can also email a reporter at
They are writing a story/ investigating under treated pain patients as well.
I encourage everyone to contact their own local news stations as well.

I’m presently traveling the West Coast interviewing homeless people as part of my effort to understand what drives homelessness (I’m homeless myself). I meet many homeless veterans-some surprisingly young. I’m open to collaboration.

Joy H Selak

Well done Ed! Can’t wait to read more of the story.


Its shameful and tragic that Veterans are being silenced and mistreated when it comes to their suffering. Its clear stone cold fascists run government and health care and should be replaced with more compassionate and sane individuals.
Pain care has illuminated the dark side of politics and professionals and calls out to civil society to reform the cold fascism.

Bonnie J Oldham

For those of you who are “falling through the cracks” look into clinical trials studying thc/ cannibinoids and cancer . It is amazing what they are finding. Apply to get into a study that will pay for your thc oil!

keith h thomas

Im a camp lejune Marine from 79 to 81.I sent my pain story to the email provided.I have had 6 back surgeries knee surgery and seizures.I decided to get a pain pump to deal with my pain.There is less harassment.Less pain.And I only have to see a dr to refil once every three month.The harassment from drs alone,who are also victems from govt made me totally on gaurd,like they were as much of the enemy as I was treated.seizures mood swings ect.the war on pain patients is a game.Real chronic pain patients should not be lumped in with the abusers and I know there are many.


Mr. Coghlan, I appreciate your true interest in this narrative of already “mis” treated veterans. I have am brother, injured in training, over 25 years ago that has resulted in an unfruitful life, at the local VA, with his family, and with him personally. Not only, does he “live”in continuous pain but, his emotional state has progressed into a suicidal state. A state that has reached very serious realities.He is 53 years old.

Maybe through our veterans, their need and promised assistance through the VA that has not been fulfilled in a timely, sufficient, and even professional fashion can be changed.. ALL pain patients need be treated on an individual health condition basis, not a unilateral observation and “set” fashion of “treatment”. if there are any patriots within DOT/GOV, which there are, our veterans narrative must be heard. I believe all citizens are tired of being spoke to, and apparently “BIG” Dot/Gov have lost their sense of hearing.

“Major” media reporting on the veterans story is and has been neglected to be truthfully related to viewers.I, personally, rarely. watch major news networks because if you want to know the entire truth, the “real” situation with important internal issues in America, you won’t find them on network news.Prayers, best wishes, and success to our veterans with health care or any other care needed, as well as other pain patients, nationwide.

William Dorn

The major network needs to check the motive of the doctors on the CDC.Making money off of rehab clinics.

William DuVall

I would LOVE to speak with whoever is doing this. And yes, since the “opioid crisis” things have gotten horrible. The CDC “guidelines” are now the “LAW” at VA. And guess what, they don’t have hardly any pain managment people at ANY hospital. I’m in Memphis and there isn’t even a pain managment clinic. I’ve had Stage 4 Head and neck cancer, multiple surgery’s, RA, removal of parts of esophagus and the list goes on. I would love to talk to anyone willing to help with this. If you email, please put in title as the filter sometime trash’s spam emails.