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What do we do

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,002
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:24 AM in Pain Medications
For those of us that are using narcotics as the main form of pain control I have a question. As you know the longer we are on them the more the tolerance builds. Yes we can flip around to different ones, some work, some don't but in the long run the doses will be so high and the options will run out. As my PMP said to me when he first put me on narcotic pain control "this is something we have to think about. Being a young person you have many years to go and I don't want to string you out so far you'll never get back." Just wondered if anyone else thought about this and what plans anyone has.


  • I am 47 and was injured when i was 32,i have been on the same pain med for over 7 years,which is vicadin Es,i understand what you are trying to say,for me my pain has been under control,i take 3 pills a day,and i havnt had back surgery..
  • :) hi! i have been on narcotic medications for almost 30 years. tapering off, switching to another one, increasing the dosage. there are many ways to use them successfully over a long period of time. <:P i think some doctors like to use it as a scare tactic to prevent them from giving adequate pain control for a long period of time. i am not "strung out!" i take my meds as directed, have my liver and blood count checked regularly and eat well and exercise when i can. i feel there is more damage to our bodies and minds when we are kept in pain by a medical staff afraid of the FDA. ~X( good luck to you! and assert your right for adequate pain control! :T Jenny :)
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  • but I must agree with Paul, we have to take it one day at a time. I have also been lucky in that I have not had much of a dose increase in the last year. I am on 20 mgs methadone and 10 mgs percocet for bt pain. I am hopeful that if and when I build a tolerance there will be advancements made and a solution will be available. I do understand your curiosity about this especially if you are young.
  • I have no plans. I do day by day or week by week.

    There was a time yes tramadol would kick my butt. Lowest on the pain med scale. It doesn't work anymore no matter what.
    I also remember taking Lortab and feeling like I was on another planet. Then nothing. Then to percocets. OH MY kicked my butt. Then yes I did build up a bit of a tolerence.
    Iv been on percocets since 05. On and off.
    Been on them faithfully since my op on Sept 17th. Now yesterday it did not matter how much I took it was not going to touch me do to the weather effects etc.
    I do find meds to work better on a empty stomach with a full glass of water. Some people cannot handle that as we are all different.

    As long as your on a perscribed dose, take it when your supposed to, its never going to give out on ya. Like Paul said being on 50mcg patch. Still working. Its working now so who cares about the future. No one in their right mind can perdict the future.

    Have I built up a tolerence to IV meds?? You bet ya, but I'm always admitted for something or another.
    Like you can give hubby 5 mg of morphine through a IV and he will be knocked out for the day.
    You can give me 125 of IV demerol or 100 IV fentynl and well I am still talking to ya straight faced.

    So it depends on the person. Some build up like Paul said. Some don't.

    Drs well they are all going to have their different opinions on med use. As alot of them these days do not want you on short acting meds for a long time.
    Some are fine with it.
    My rheumy once told me . It was safer for me to take 4 lortabs a day forever then to pop 5 tylenol every 6 hrs.

    I really don't know where Im going with this as Im on 2 hrs sleep and other issues going on.
    But what your dr said I think was off balance there a bit. He was right to some degree, but you can be on meds for a long time with the same result is the first day you took them.

    Hope I make sense here.

    Good luck in your journey
  • I have to agree with many of the others. I have had chronic pain for 8 years and have had maybe 4 or 5 increases over the years. Yes, there have been times when I have declined an increase that was offered by my PM doc. But, it was my choice at the time and based on what I later found out to be unfounded fears about tolerance, etc.

    When I finally admitted to my PM doc, why I had been refusing some of the increases that he suggested, he explained to me that there is "technically" no limit to the amount of ER or long acting (LA) meds that he can prescribe for me. (Short acting meds are a different story, due to the added ingredients like Aceto or Ibuprofen) This is not to say that a person should just accept an increase when they don't really need one. It really has more to do with each person's tolerance levels and metabolism and any increases in pain that might occur.

    I always discuss my pain levels and how they are affecting my day to day existance when I see my doc. We then discuss whether the current doses I am taking are sufficient to cover my individual needs. I may be able to function in an acceptable way for me, but the next person could find my doses too low or too high.

    So, I guess what I'm saying is that it all depends on the person and their individual needs. I'm not sure your doctor approached this in quite the right way, but there are all schools of thought in the medical world. It can sometimes take a few different docs until you find the right fit for you. If you are satisfied with the medical treatment you are receiving, then so be it. But if you feel you are not being heard or that your doc has certain prejudices about meds, there is always the option of finding a new one, who will provide the treatment that works for you.

    Best of luck with whatever you choose. Take care, Mitzi
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  • Hello everyone im new here, glad to find this site. i have been having chronic pain for 5 years now.started with lower back pain, L 3-4 disc bulge, multi level degerative spondylosis effecting L 4-5, disc buldge L 5-S1 with some sclerosis. I been seeing the same family doctor for 5 yrs. he put me on vicodan hp, pain was really bad due to a fall on ice at that time. moved me up really quick to percocet, oxycotin, then said h would take me off after 1 year so he said the only way off was methadone, oh my i was only taking 1 or 2 pain pills a day so his dose was to high so i didnt want to take them, helped the pain of course i was in another world though and didnt realize it until friends became concerned. so i stopped one day after about a month of taking methadone. then i fainted i didnt know what the heck withdraw was and that these pills would do this, i went to the hospital and they detoxed me there. now my doctor when i came out put me back on vicodan again a week later. by the way he seems to give anyone vicodan even if they dont have proof found this out later. well this is my story when my pain gets worse some weeks especially now i have a 2 yr old and im 40 yrs old. went in with neck and shoulder arm pain same doc. he gave me percocet right before he went on problem to get them ever before maybe 5 times a yr when vicodan dont work for more severe pain. he send me for a mri for my neck and shoulder my results were C5-6 HERNIATION INDENTING THE THECAL SAC? C6-7 ABNORMAL LESION LEFT NUERAL FOREMAN possible disc rupture not a tumor,straighning of the cervical spine. highly reccommend contrast mri repeat. getting done soon. now the shoulder. mild arthropathy, subdeltoid bursitis and bicep synovitis, a possible tear of the anterosuperior labrum. rotary cuff tear and other stuff i dont understand anhy of this and i dont think my family doctor does either.i am in horrific pain went the3re crying cant move my shoulder explained i have a 2 yr old and he said im taking vicodan thats enough im climbing to high up the pain medicine mountain. mind you this is the same doctor who gave me methadone before mri's. im n ot a drug addict. well he told me when he was on vacation someone stole his prescription pad and the fda is investigating him and he can give me stronger meds.and hes worried about his liscense. well my sister went there a week later has no pain and never had a test said her legs hurt and he gave her vicodan. and 3 other friends she sent there, taking the pills to get high. i told my dr not to give them to my sister that she is abusing them and shes not in pain but he didnt listen. why do you think my doctor is making me suffer now and telling me to learn how to deal with my pain and go off all pain meds while he is giving oput vicodan like crazy. is percocet that big of a deal now a days? i need to find a new doctor whos understanding but i always seen him for the last 5 years. anyone out there have an idea what may be going on with this doctor. he told me he likes me and he got rid of half his patients for abusing meds but i never ever abused i always used less and went to his pharmacies and had them send over all my records. i dont feel comfortable with him now i feel like hes treating me like his other patients he made into addicts that dont even have pain.

    sincerely dawn
  • I've been on Fentanyl 50 every 2 days, and some days I thought maybe it could be raised so I can feel better. But I don't bring it up, unless my PM suggests it. How can you tell if you built a tolerance? I spend more time laying down again, and don't drive myself unless absolutely necessary. My back pain is constant and unrelenting, and even taking a shower is a chore. And there's a possibility of making the jump from what I take now, to the pump next year if I'm still the same. I'd like to feel better, but not be in a zombie-like state. :(
  • I'm pretty new to this. I was diagnosed with DDD, generalized cervical stenosis, bone spurs, impingement on C6 nerve root by C5/C6 disc.

    I am currently taking 15mg morphine 2x a day and 5/500 Vicodin/acetamenophin 3x a day. Pretty low doses. I am noticing after taking these a couple of months I am building a tolerance. They do help but pain is increasing. So I'm not sure what to do. I see my Spine Doctor again Nov 17. I see my Neurosurgeon this coming Tuesday. I expect him to let me know which surgery he wants to perform on Tuesday.

    In the meantime I continue with the meds.

    Ken GreyEagle
  • I started out on 1 20mg. oxy. twice a day then had to go to 40 then to 80 three times a day. This was before and after my surgery. It's been 3 1/2 years since they were done and I was on the three oxy and 50mg. patch. I asked my physician if I could cut down on the oxy and when I did I had to go to 100mg. patch every other day. but now I'm using that and taking two 40mg. oxy a day and on the first day of the new patch I sometimes don't have to take my oxy.

    Has anyone else found that on the last day your patch is on that in the afternoon it starts wearing off and your pain is back. Also I have to use the Mylan brand because the others are so big and they make me itch like crazy and have to take Benadryl with them. Also I have to put them on top of my spine and the higher on the spine the better it seems.

    Anyway I have cut down on the oxycontin and I don't get any oxy er at all. I've been thinking about asking him if he could give me a few of them to get me over that last afternoon and night.
  • Having somewhat of a medical background (not a doc, was a medic), I know that personally I don't want to have to use drugs as a long term solution to pain. Not to say that I won't if that's what I have to do. I am all for trying to find other avenues to pain management. I too have declined pain meds from my doctor, I even told him once that I didn't want Vicodin, I'd rather take Ibuprofen. Of course that didn't last long, but I still don't take anything stronger than Ibuprofen during the day at work and save the Vicodin & Valium for when I get home and my days off. I am better about taking the Valium as prescribed, it has a muscle relaxing effect which does help. I just hate the other effects: loopy & tired. 8} I) Just my .02
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