Shasta Orthopaedics Press 8.17.2004

Letters to the Editor: Doctors Need Pain Relief Tools
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"The persecution of physicians seeking to comfort their patients' suffering is just absurd.

I was recently diagnosed with reflex sympathetic dystrophy in my ankle as the result of a fall on the job. In that respect I've been fortunate. Workers' compensation has been nothing less than lavish in its efforts to treat this debilitating disorder.

The physician treating me, Dr. Daniel of Shasta Orthopedic and Sports Medicine, has proved himself not only a credit to his profession, but a compassionate healer with enough insight into these painful maladies to prescribe the appropriate analgesics.

I can speak from personal experience as to the conundrum opiates pose. While it is true that the initial euphoria poses the potential for abuse, this"high" gradually gives way to just treating the pain so long as the user observes the prescribed dosage.

RSD is a very painful disorder. Other than a freshly broken bone, I have nothing to compare it to that I've ever experienced.

You can't blame a doctor for using the best means available to him to alleviate this level of suffering. He can't possibly know who is going to abuse a drug or in some cases euthanize himself with it."

Terry Baker