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Medication Impact on Driving and Working



  • It goes straight to the pain and most definately not to my head. Sometimes I wish it did though!

    I think if I were not in severe pain, I would definately be more suseptible to the euphoric side effects of drugs and alcohol.

    I would be a cheaper date too! :))(
  • Entire reply removed by moderator paulgla. Material is not relevant to the topic.
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  • Taking medications for chronic pain while at work is protected under the ADA?
  • My heart goes out to you....I felt your pain through your post. I don't know how you do it, I am in pain all the time but do not have to care for small children or work. I just don't know what to say but that it's so unfair that you have to have this pain and do all that you do. My children are grown and I remember the days when they were small and how hard they were and I had no chronic pain then....God bless you.

  • This post came to mind. I avoid driving while on medication, if my son is in the car. My husband was called in to work, and was not able to come with me. I chose not to take my medication.

    As I was driving, the pain consumed me. It came to mind, that maybe I was not in a position to drive. Now, my doctors office was only about 10 blocks away. But I was in pain, and agitated. Was I really in a better condition to drive?

    I am glad that this topic has been brought up. Its given a lot of information for and against. While I try to avoid taking meds when I drive, in the future, I think I will plan a little better. Now I am "chasing pain" and regretting it. Maybe waiting a few hours after taking meds, then driving (If I have to)

    Alina (asmith) honey, I feel for you so much. You and I are two peas in a pod! I only wish you lived closer to me!!! I deal with the same dilemma everyday of my life. And I know that I am in for a ride now being pregnant. I know from experience, there isn't a doctor around that wants to take the responsibility of a pregnant woman who has these issues. All I can do is hope that I can find the right doctor to take over my care.
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  • Reply removed by moderator paulgla. Material is not relevant to the topic.
  • Very well said. I am a single mother, two boys 9&11 and I work 45+ hours per week. I have no choice but to work, my injury happened at work and WCB won't approve me being off.

    As another person said, Lyrica was the one that affected me. I couldn't and didn't drive on it, I actually went off it for that reason. I can't plan ahead for when I need to drive as I am on call 24/7.

    In my experience, you right about how someone looks at a cancer patient and their right to pain medication. I had uterine cancer 5 years ago and no one questioned the fact that I took pain medication then.
  • Saying not to drive while on pain meds or meds related to pain would be statements from people who DO not suffer from chronic pain. I mean come on get real that means to us who have chronic pain we loose our INDEPENDENCE also.

    I have to totaly disagree with this issue, I believe its up to each individual to know if they are impared from their meds or not everybody tolerates medication differently. I f you have chronic pain everyday to where you are on a monthly script and contract then you probably don't have the choice of taking pain meds 24/7 or not, but you do have the choice of overmedicating or not.

    If your at a point where you are loopy from your meds then it is to much, or maybe not the right med. I am more than proud to say that I know when a dose is to high and will lower it to avoid the high from pain meds.

    But to if my pain is bad to where I have to up a dose of pain meds then it only makes since not to drive.
  • dilauroddilauro ConnecticutPosts: 12,099
    I knew this topic would receive a lot of attention. And from the beginning, I requested the forum rules to be adhered to and no one person is chastised for their opinions.
    I want to thank all of you for helping out with this.
    Some people can look at this topic and say its all Black and White, while others can see Gray material. I wish there was a clear cut answer. But what I have summarized from everyone's post:

    1 - Impairment, no matter how that is reached should be considered critical and all limitations (ie driving a car) should be applied.

    2 - Each of us are individuals, so what might make one person loopy, has little effect on another one.

    3 - In any situation, while on some pain (narcotic) medication and you are pulled over by law officers, you may be subject to tests and be considered as Driving while under the Influence.

    4 - Mixing alcohol with certain drugs is considered serious and have long lasting impacts

    5 - Pain needs to be controlled. If you ignore you pain, this will always come back to haunt you. Many people feel that taking pain medications should be done only after you are suffering. Ask any doctor and they will tell you that you should never wait until the pain is too high. I know that if I am going to do something that could hurt me (ie long drives, raking leaves ,etc) I should take my pain medications BEFORE I have the upcoming pain.
    I had a follow up appointment with my Pain Management doctor yesterday. We discussed a recent situation that I wen through. I am always trying to find ways to eliminate the narcotic pain medications. Recently I held off taking my breakthrough medications until much later in the day.
    That backfired on me, because my pain discomfort was tough to handle, so instead of just getting by the following day, I needed additional breakthrough meds to help.

    6 - How pain medications are looked at. Since pain really cant be seen, people just have to imagine what it is.
    And for what appears to be healthy people (many spine patients) when they take pain medications it is frowned upon. But for Cancer patients, COPD patients, etc, the medications seem to be ok. Pain is pain and it does not distinguish as to what is the root cause.

    I am happy that this thread has maintained a positive attitude. I am not naive enough to realize that some people may still be offended by some of the comments or opinions stated here. Keeping those differences at bay and not attacking one another is in tune as to what the Spine-Health patient forums are all about.
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