Narcotics, Disability Determination, and Pain Management

Controlled Substances

Rheumatologist, Nurse Practitioners, and Physician Assistants at AARA do not prescribe Schedule 1, 2, 3, or 4 controlled narcotic substances, including hydrocodone, oxycodone, fentanyl, or other medications in these classes. Additional controlled substances they do not prescribe include sleep aids and stimulants such as Ambien or Provigil. Patients who may benefit from these pain medications are directed to their primary care service or a professional medical pain manager.

Disability Determination

Rheumatologists at AARA provide their expertise in clarifying diagnoses and developing treatment for patients with inflammatory arthritis and other autoimmune and metabolic disorders. We are not qualified by training or experience in the process of disability determination. Therefore, we do not perform these evaluations nor complete forms related to them. State and private entities that provide Independent Medical Evaluations and Physical Capacities Evaluations in the course of disability determination, however, may request our records to supplement the process of evaluation. Our records will be provided to these agencies only with the patient’s consent.

Best Treated by a Primary Caregiver or Pain Specialist

Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Central Sensitivity Syndrome, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, Marfan’s syndrome, Osteoarthritis of neck and back, Restless Legs Syndrome, Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (Complex Regional Pain Syndrome), Chronic Pain Syndrome (unspecified), and Lyme Disease.

These are common conditions that share some body symptoms that should be distinguished from inflammatory and autoimmune disorders. Usually persons with these disorders do not benefit from continued care by a rheumatologist and are best served by their primary care physician with the assistance of a professional medical pain manager. Our rheumatologists have expertise in making these distinctions and recommending appropriate follow-up with these caregivers, but we do not follow patients determined to have these conditions alone, long-term.