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How do I approach a pharmacist about a specific type of Percocet?

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:27 AM in Chronic Pain
I've posted before and found this forum to be especially helpful and honest. It's difficult to find message boards about chronic pain these days that isn't largely rampant with narcotic abusers in denial.

I get prescribed 120 10mg oxycodones per month to help me deal with my fairly severe scoliosis pain. I generally just go to whatever pharmacy is the most convenient for me to get to; Rite Aid, Walgreens, CVS, etc. These chains are all under contract from various pharmaceutical companies to use them exclusively.

What I've found is this; despite the fact that amount of oxycodone and APAP is regulated by our government and it doesn't change, different manufacturers' percocets have different effects on me. Watson gives me headaches, Mallinckrodt feels exceptionally ineffective, and Intrapharm seems to have a speedy feeling coupled with mild nausea. I do know that different pharmaceutical companies use different inactive ingredients which may be the reason they feel differently to me, and even if it is placebo, it's still real to me, so it's valid.

The only versions of Percocets I've taken that did not have the unwanted side effects or ineffective pain relief were Roxicodone and Endocet. Roxicodone only comes in 5mg and 20mg forms, though, so they're not an option for me any longer and I'm now prescribed 10mg.

I just received two more prescriptions for the next two months, and I want to fill them using Endocet, but how? I know that none of the larger chains provide them, so I'm exclusively looking at independent pharmacies and apothecaries. What do I do? I can't imagine walking up to a pharmacist and asking them which company supplies them with Percocets. I'd come off like a seeker, and I really, really don't want to come off like a seeker. Is it possible that I could go to one of the larger chains and have them special order them just for me?

I'd sincerely appreciate any insight.


  • I am very lucky that my small, independent pharmacy I use carries the Endocet brand. It makes a HUGE difference and I would be very unhappy if they changed. I'll be interested to see the advice - for me, I would be blunt and honest and say that the Endocet brand seems to work the best, do they or can they carry it? Since you already have a prescription for the Percocet, this is different than asking a doctor to prescribe it. You are just trying to find a certain brand. We used to always use a local chain that are on every single corner, and after too many "we don't have it" issues, we switched to this small, locally owned pharmacy. It has been amazing - they are never out of anything, super fast, and super friendly.

  • Could you ask your doctor that is prescribing the meds to specify exactly what you need? That way if your doctor is telling what you need there should not be any questions.
  • I had a problem with my oxycodone when my little country pharmacy, where I usually get them, didn't have them and I went to Rite Aid to fill the prescription and they gave me Mallinckrodt and they definitely did not work as well as the ones I had before which were Ethex, so today when I went to my PM Doctor I asked him if there could be a significant difference and he said definitely and so he gave me Brand Only after asking me if I had good insurance. I got the Roxicodone 15mg and noticed the difference right away. You mentioned that the Roxicodone only comes in 5 and 20 forms, but I did get it today in 15mg form.
    I would either tell your Doctor to put Brand Only or call the pharmacy first before you go and ask if they have the ones that work for you and go to the pharmacy that does.
    There is no shame in asking. Some people are actually alergic to some of the inactive ingredients and have to ask.
    Good Luck

  • kimmyg said:
    You mentioned that the Roxicodone only comes in 5 and 20 forms, but I did get it today in 15mg form.
    Hm. Not to imply that you don't know what the bottle says, are you certain it isn't printed as Roxicet (also OxyIR - instant-release oxycodone without the APAP), which I know does come in 15mg?

    Either way, thanks to everyone for the responses so far! I'm all ears and interested in more.
  • with my methadone. The HCL works much better but the small locally owned pharmacy that I usually go to only carries plain methadone. I can tell a big difference. So, for my methadone I go to a larger chain pharmacy because they have the methadone HCL. Could you possibly call around ahead of time to inquire? This would make it anonymous and you would find the pharmacy that carries it without looking like a seeker. Or call the larger chain that is most convenient and ask if they could order, still anonymous.
  • I have the bottle in my hand now and it says Roxicodone 15 MG T (Brand name) XANOD

    hope this helps......
  • :) i use a small independent pharmacy as well and the service is top notch and highly effective. <:P they know me by name, call my refills in promptly and give me the best price around. if it is possible, i think that is the best way to go.. good luck! Jenny :)
  • I'm picky about my fentanyl patches, I just walk up to the counter with my prescription in hand and tell them I'd like to know what generic brand they carry, before they do anything other than examine my prescription.

    I've never had a pharmacist or technician deny my request. If one did, I'd be forced to remind them that as a patient, I have the right to any and all information related to the drugs I put into my body and that as a pharmacist they have an obligation to provide that information.

  • I agree with a couple of the other posters- I live in a small community and, after getting the Wal-Mart run-around for far too long I switched both my mother and myself to my small town pharmacy. They are amazing and I can tell you that if they don't have it they'll get it to me in a day or two. They've special ordered my fentanyl patches as well.

    My suggestion is to find a pharmacy that either has or is willing to order what you like and stick to them! I think it's always better for them to know you, know what you're taking and your history for any future problems or interactions.

    There isn't any "drug seeking" behavior in wanting the pill that works best for you, please don't be concerned about that. Any pharmacist would probably agree that not every generic or brand name works best for every person.

    Good luck on your search!
  • Your suggestions and understanding so far are so very much appreciated. To know that I'm not the only one who detects significant differences among the generic manufacturers' products is a relief in and of itself. For a while, I thought it was possible it was a placebo effect, but the differences were so noticeable that I never could fully convince myself that it was all in my head.

    I found a local pharmacy near my apartment that provides Endocets. They've agreed to fill my script, but just as a one-time-only because my prescription is written in New Jersey while I live in Pennsylvania. For some reason, they are nervous about honoring the prescription because of this, particularly because the medication is a narcotic. Any clues as to why this is an issue?

    Either way, this affords me a full month to find another local pharmacy that will agree to service my medical needs on a regular and reliable basis. I suppose I should start visiting them all now and having candid conversations with the pharmacists in each.

    Wish me luck!
  • In the beginning (I know it sounds like it will be a long story but I promise I'll keep it to the point), I used our local small family-owned and operated pharmacy. They always had what I needed. Plus, the owner's son (also a pharmacist) is married to one of my husband's first cousins.

    At any rate, I began to feel a little uncomfortable about "family" knowing all my business - especially when my husband jokingly referred to his cousin's husband as my "connection".... So, I changed to a Big Name Pharmacy which just opened. Yes, they had what I needed. Cool. I explained to the pharmacist (who is sweet as iced tea) why I took these, asked if I needed to bring in any MRI reports or anything like that to verify my reasons for needing them. She assured me she did not need that - just the script.

    All goes well for a couple months. But, I have to wait for over 30 minutes to get the dang scripts filled. THEN it happened - one month they did not have the oxy's. They did not know when it would be shipped - I was told they never do. I asked what suggestions they had for me since A)I would be out of meds in 2 days and B)my pain contract states I can only get meds from one pharmacy.

    It was suggested I call around. ? I asked if this would seem suspicious to the other pharmacies. I was told to ask for the pharmacist. Can I tell you - I called around, drove around and finally found another Big Name Pharmace 45 minutes from home to fill it (by that time, I was desparate, because I was down to one pill left). I had also asked a couple pharmacies if I transferred my business to them, could they guarantee me I'd have my meds on time. None of them were able to give me this guarantee.

    So, I went back to my small time, family owned and operated pharmacy. I've never been told "we don't have this" and have never had to wait longer than 10 - 15 minutes. And that's not just because of the related-by-marriage thing either. No one ever waits more than 10 - 15 minutes.

    So... If you have questions, speak directly to the pharmacist. I'd say that if at all possible, stick with the little family owned and operated pharmacies, but I'm sure there have been people here who have had problems with the Ma and Pop places...

    Take care and good luck in your quest!


  • I'm not on percocets, but I get my fentanyl patches from a small chain pharmacy and most times they get me my preferred brand. They have never been out of the patches, the pharmacist knows I come in every month and so they make sure it's ordered. That's one advantage of using the same pharmacy. I like it that I get out in 10 minutes and never have to wait around for a long time, esp. with my back issues. Just let the pharmacist know which brand you prefer, there should be no backlash for that. Maybe the next time around they will have the right brand ordered for you.
  • Dumbjaw said:
    I found a local pharmacy near my apartment that provides Endocets. They've agreed to fill my script, but just as a one-time-only because my prescription is written in New Jersey while I live in Pennsylvania.
    Update: He is very nervous about filling it because my last prescription was for 7.5mg and the new prescription is for 10mg. This is absolutely true; my dosage has just increased after over a year due to basic, normal tolerance build-up.

    I'm very tired of being treated like I'm being ingenuine or, even worse, unlawful just because I am prescribed narcotic pain killers. It's seriously frustrating.

    The hunt continues to find a pharmacist who would like to do their job.
  • Just curious - why is your prescription written in NJ when you live in PA?
  • BionicWoman said:
    Just curious - why is your prescription written in NJ when you live in PA?
    From September of 2005 to January of 2008, I owned a home in New Jersey. In January of 2008, I moved to Philadelphia but retained my primary care physician in NJ, mostly because the office is all but a 20 minute drive from my work and it's convenient being that they're mostly only open during normal business hours. I wish it weren't an issue.
  • Hi everyone. :H This is long, but bare with me. This is my first post and I desparately need help.

    I am 44 years old and having a problem getting enough medication to help my pain. I have the following conditions:

    Large anterior disc herniation at L5-S1 resulting in Microdiscectomy in October, 2008; DDD; Cervical Stenosis; Chronic tension headaches, chronic low back and neck spasms; CIDP (Chronic Inflamatory Demyelinating Polyradicularneuropathy --a rare auto-immune neropathy); Fibrmyalgia; Anxiety with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.

    I see a Neurologist for the CIDP, a Neurosurgeon for the herniated disc and Cervical Spondilosis, a Physiatrist (physical medicine) for cortisone injections and PT prescriptions (and he listens to me!!), and a Reumatologist for Fibromyalgia. I only get 30 Lortabs per month (10/500). I need them more than that, but the Neurologist will only prescribe that many! He has been prescribing them since 2001.

    I am in excruciating pain on a daily basis that prevents me from standing or walking or sitting for any length of time. I dont sleep well and I urinate all night long (despite quittiing fluids after 6 pm!) even wetting the bed about twice a month. I have not worked in 2 years (owned my own graphic design business), I cannot do the shopping, housework, laundry, or cooking. I am constantly in pain and thats all I can think about. I have lost my ability to concentrate on anything for any length of time--forget watching television or reading a book!

    Anyhow, any time one of my other doctors sees me and sees I'm already on Lortabs, they tell me to take those for whichever pain they are treating. Well, I only get 30 a month and they are for neuropathy pain (which is not quite enough, forcing me to break them in half). If I take them when I get a headache or have muscle spasms or for a sinus infection or minor in-office surgery, I do not have enough to last me!!

    Once I lost my purse in a restaurant and someone stole it. It had my bottle of Lortabs in it! I had just come from the hospital after having a spinal tap and needed them for the pain. I got sick in the middle of my meal from not lying down long enough after the procedure. (I was instructed to go straight home to bed after the procedure!) I left suddenly for the car to lie down, leaving behind my purse. My husband did not think to get it; of course he wouldn't! Anyway, I asked the doctor to replace the stolen pills. He said it was a one-time thing and to never ask again!

    I feel like I am being treated like a drug addict! If another doctor does prescribe Lortabs for something else, my insurance notifies the pharmacy and my other doctor, alerting them that I might be abusing the drug! Then the doctor tells me they can no longer prescribe any narcotics for me!

    I know the FDA has to be hard to control the real abusers, but give me a break! My life has diminished to that of hermit, constantly in pain. I have no social life at all. I cannot ralax at home with my husband. I am depressed and anxious with accute OCD due to this, which in turn is making my conditions worse! This has been going on since 1988 when I originally injured my low back.

    And I come here and see you guys are getting Percacets and Fentenyl and such, and wonder why I am being given such a hard time and cannot get the very drug which offers me relief! Where do I go from here?? I should also mention I live in Virginia, a traditionally conservative state. Maybe the doctors here are extremely conservative also.

    Any input would greatly be appreciated. I am at my wits end. ~X(
  • I don't often suggest this but it seems appropriate in your case- is it possible for you to ask to be referred to a pain management clinic? You'll need top find one that prescribes narcotics as well as utilizes other means of pain control. The downsides to this is that you have yet another doctor and you can NOT get your meds anywhere else.

    It's time for you to stand up for yourself and find someone who will take care of the whole you- not just the bits and pieces that are the specialties of the numerous doctors that you're seeing. Those bits and pieces add up to a whole lot of pain as you well know.

    Good luck to you. I really hope that you find relief soon.

    Welcome to Spine Health by the way!


  • PM might be a good idea,I really,really like my PM,but he ONLY treats my pain.My PCP refers me to any specailists,orders tests,does bloodwork,prescribes other medication,and pretty much keeps track of everything OTHER than my pain.

    In any case,you certainly need a DR who will listen to you,take you seriously,and treat you with respect while treating your needs.We all want and deserve this,and we all say it as if it's easy,but a lot of us have kissed a few frogs ourselves.What we are looking for is a REALLY GOOD Dr & let's be honest,they are not all REALLY good.

    Welcome to S~H ReigningPrincess :H and please keep us posted.
  • MetalneckMetalneck Island of Misfit toysPosts: 1,364
    I hope this is allowed ... if not the mods will do their job accordingly - but I am active on another forum that maybe of interest and/or help to some of us:



    Spine-health Moderator
    Welcome to Spine-Health  Please read the linked guidelines!!

  • I'm sorry you're in such a bad situation. Please insist on getting a pain mgt referral. If the neurologist won't, then find another one who will refer you. There is no need for you to go on like that. I had gotten a referral to my pain doctor because I didn't get relief from my microdiscectomy. They reviewed my records and MRI's before accepting me as a patient. I have been treated very well and the clinic is friendly and professional.
    I understand the pain you deal with because I suffer from chronic back pain and nerve damage that started from a herniation on L4-5 and L5-S1 around 2 years ago. I was totally floored by this pain, and my typical day is laying around with an ice pack because I can't sit.
    Your pain is undertreated and I agree with everyone that you need a pain specialist in an integrative clinic.
  • ellie52eellie52 Posts: 6
    edited 10/23/2014 - 2:37 AM
    yes i have heard good and bad about mallinkrodft hydrocodone compared to watson or qualifest?

    Post edited...........4.04 The moderators reserve the right to delete any messages deemed inappropriate without notifying the author.
  • sandisandi Posts: 6,343
    edited 10/23/2014 - 2:38 AM
    and no legitimate doctor would allow ANY patient to alter the medication prescribed in any FORM.
    We don't do those things or allow those discussions to occur here.
    All manufacturer's must meet federal standards when making generic medications, so the manufacturer's don't matter to most of us.
  • scruggsjbsscruggsjb Mooresboro, NCPosts: 1
    Most pharmacies (from my experience of 15 years) won't give you that information by phone and if you ask in person, their response is always the same..." ALL generics are the same"! I'm in total agreement with you. I've had two surgeries on my lower back since 2001. One thing I've noticed, all yellow oxycodone, whether round, oblong, or oval, seem to work better for me. ( The round yellow ones work as good or maybe more than the Endocet)  It seems the white ones have more acetaminophen than the yellow ones possibly causing your upset stomach. THIS IS NOT A PROFESSIONAL OPINION! After putting up with everyday pain for 15 years, I feel like experience is the brightest star. My Dr also has me on 1 40mg oxymorphone every 12 hours so I've basically been through the ringer dealing with chronic pain. Good luck finding a pharmacist that will help you and don't let it discourage you if it takes a little extra effort. It also helps to bow your head and be thankful your situation is no worse than it is.
                              A mutual Chronic pain sufferer
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