Saturday, February 16, 2013

there i think that gets my point across

Dear Dr. L******,

when i showed up at your office, I was at the end of my rope. Having suffered back pain for weeks on end with no relief whatsoever. My doctor as you know had sent me for an MRI that i could not afford and i was due back to work any day so i needed to get this issue fixed so i could get my life back and get back to work. I googled chiropractors in my area and you were the first to come up. I watched your little video on your web site and even went on other web sites to read reviews, i thought i was putting myself in good hands and would fix this issue so i could get my life back. Upon calling your office, i felt good, the receptionist was very nice and told me to come in immediately and it seemed like you were going to launch into a full scale attack on the problem. I was there for about four hours, you sent me for X-rays, and it seemed as if you were trying to pin point the problem for me. Upon seeing the xrays, initally you told me there was nothing too serious and nothing that i should worry about. After asking me about my life, you attributed the cause to be stress, mostly from work, but it was nothing severe and treatment shouldn’t take too long. Then you cracked my back, directed me to start taking vitamins, set up 3 more sessions and sent me on my way. I felt no relief after that first session, no matter how audible you made that crack sound, this should have been a warning sign, yet i had never been to a chiropractor so i didn’t know what to expect.

Through all my sessions with you, i never got any relief and all along you were telling me, “It’s a process and it will take time,” and i believed you, what do i know? you know that joke you tell, i’ve heard it twice, both to myself on the first day and when you met my fiance, “Have you ever been to a chiropractor before? Neither have I.” I realize now, it’s not to put a smile on my face, but to weed out the suckers. Through every session with you, you never sent me home with any stretches i could do, or any advice as to whether i should be icing my back or applying heat. You even instructed me to stop taking my pain medication, something that was nearly impossible with the level of pain i was enduring and essentially killing me because again, i was getting no relief from your sessions. I believe it was my third session with you where you said i would be out of this whole thing in no time, it was nothing too severe, and “You weren’t one of those doctors who wants me to be in treatment for too long, i want you to be out of here.” All along you were telling me, it’s just stress causing things to not line up properly and you’ll have me out of there in no time. And then came the session with Mark where you dropped the bomb.

For someone who has been in pain for almost a month, with no relief and no idea what is wrong, i was willing to believe anything. After all, it seemed as if you and your staff were such nice people, wanting nothing but the best for me, I mean you were even nice enough to give my your home phone number and on the first night i got a phone call to see how i was doing, why would these people want to betray me? You had informed me going into this meeting that we would discuss a treatment plan, that i could from home, requiring little to no visits to your office. Suddenly, your telling me this problem is very severe, I’m totally out of alignment, I will need to be in treatment for a year or degeneration will start. That’s enough to scare anyone. But tell me, you had those X-rays since day one, why didn’t any of that ever come up before? Why did you never tell me this was a severe problem? Why did you tell me that i would be out of this in a few weeks? I guess your first mistake was inviting Mark to this little pow-wow because he can smell bullshit from a mile away. How you came up with your figures that I’ll be in the stages of degeneration is a 90% chance, i don’t know. You were using scare tactics, using big words you knew i don’t understand (i did not go to medical school), to scare me into rushing into this therapy. Three times a week and a year of my time to get me out of this, i don’t think so. Of course, I’ve always been taught to have good manners, i’ve heard bullshit before, so I sat there and listened to your little schpeal, only to know i would never contact your office again. As you knew from the beginning, i don’t have a lot of money, i passed on the MRI because i could not afford $500, now what made you think i would pay three grand?

After leaving your office, i called a physical therapy place in Enfield for a second opinion. The woman informed me that she could not get me in for PT until next week but i could meet with their chiropractor so i could at least get some relief before the weekend. I stopped her right there, “Wait a second, i thought being treated by a chiropractor was a process and takes time.” she laughed at me stating that no, i should get relief, even if it’s only for a little while, after every session. She then proceeded to ask me what i was doing at home, which is nothing. You gave me no exercises to do from home or even instruction on whether to apply heat or ice. She told me i needed to start icing my back as soon as possible.

So, I met with the chiropractor on friday. he took my medical history and asked me to explain how you treated me. he seemed kind of shocked that you never applied heat, or electrodes or did any sort of tissue work before you aligned me. When i told him that you expected me to be in your office 3 times a week and spend a year of my time in your office, he said he could tell already that was not necessary, even going to the length to say, “If i needed you in here three times a week, i would change how i was treating you because apparently it’s not working.” He applied heat and electrodes to my back to loosen things up and then did the graston technique, and after month of being in pain, i felt some relief, he didn’t even have to align me. he even gave me exercises to do outside of the appointments to help with healing, something you never did for me.

I would also like to say, that you completely screwed up my short term disability paperwork. Yes, i am stressed about my job, but that is not why I’m not there at the moment. For reasons as to why I’m not in work you put neck pain (you treated my neck one time the entire time i saw you) and stress from work as the second reason. That would make this a workers comp claim, kind of hard to explain that when i dont even have a therapist or a psychiatrist. You didn’t even mention the back pain, which is the entire reason i cant work, because im in pain, not because i’m stressed. yeah, i’m stressed, but that would not keep me home for three weeks, I’m in pain, i can’t stand for long periods of time, the pain causes me to be unable to concentrate, so therefore i cannot do my job. This makes me think that you never actually listened to a word I ever said. And the fact that after one session with this chiropractor and feeling relief, when after about three with you where i got nothing, i believe you were withholding treatment from me. Even during our meeting, you said it would be over a month before you would give me exercises to do from home.

Lucky for me, my fiance is not an idiot and not many things in my life are worth three thousand dollars where i would actually go through with it. You should be ashamed of yourself, taking advantage of someone who is truly in need of help, withholding treatment, lying to me, and then going as far as trying to scam me. But unfortunately, because of your improper filling out of my FMLA paperwork, I may not get paid while i am out of work, you’ve caused even more extra stress on my life that i do not need right now. Lucky for me, my new chiropractor was more than willing to fill out the paperwork (properly) and I’m hoping to get your ridiculous testimony thrown out. I’ve always heard about there being quacks in chiropractic medicine, and now i have witnessed it first hand. Anywhere I go, i will tell people of the bullshit you put me through, with your false diagnosis and ridiculous, over-priced and ineffective treatment plans. You have turned my life into a nightmare, caused me nothing but problems and completely shaken my confidence in both doctors and human beings. And although you will never feel the slightest bit of remorse, I at least wanted you to hear what i had to say. Lucky for me, I got out early and was able to find help, from professionals, people who can actually help me and have the desire to help me instead of draining my bank account. Thank you for being yet another stereotype of a supposed medical professional, when all you really are is a crook.


Christina Spellman

P.S. It was a really dumb move on your part to park your fancy, expensive sports car in front of your office when you decided to make your little sales pitch to me. I’m not making a years worth of car payments for you.
(whether I'll actually have the guts to ever send this I don't know, but it felt good to write it out)

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