A Vicksburg man claims he's being treated like a criminal and denied medication because doctors are refusing to help chronic pain sufferers.
But experts say many physicians are more cautious because of rising doctor shopping and prescription drug abuse cases.
Robert Beyers said a 2010 accident left him in constant pain, with a plate in his neck, a torn rotator cuff and nerve damage.
"The pain that I have, it never goes away," said Beyers.
His doctor is on leave and the Vicksburg man said he's not had his prescribed daily dosages of Loritab since March.
"I've had the same doctor for all these years. My doctor's unavailable. What are we supposed to do? There's eight more doctors in the clinic with him. Not one of them will see me. Why?," asked the Warren County resident.
The disabled trucker said he has spoken with three doctors without any help and doesn't want to be labeled as doctor shopping while searching for relief.
"If you call another doctor, tell them what your problem is, first thing they ask you 'Are you wanting pain medication?'. You say yes. 'We don't do it'," said Beyers.
The 2012 Drug Summit was underway in Jackson when we spoke with Beyers Wednesday.
"A lot of primary care providers simply refuse to write those kinds of medications because of the legal implications," said Dr. Timothy Beacham.
Beacham, a pain management specialist and assistant professor at U.M.C., said a constant pain sufferer unable to see their primary physician should get a pain specialist.
He admits there could be a long waiting list.
"That specialist can get his pain better controlled and then provide a detailed analysis as to how to take care of that patient," said Dr. Beacham.
"Prescribers are monitoring this a lot closer...We have calls from doctor's offices. We have calls from clinics about people who are coming in there telling them what they want, what they want to be prescribed to them," said Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics Executive Director Marshall Fisher.
Meanwhile, the 54-year-old takes physical therapy three times a week to help manage the pain.
According to MBN officials, 173 people died in the state last year from prescription drug overdoses.
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