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In terrible pain, not due to see doc for a month

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:37 AM in Pain Management
Hello All,
I am new here, and I have only been in pain management for about 5 months. My question is that I am having problems with the opana not working for me. I was initially started out at 5 or 10mg, not sure, but I complained that it wasn't working, so I got bumped up to 15mg and then a third time to 20mg every 12 hours. I also take percocet 10/325 for the breakthrough pain. My dilemma is since I am not due to see the PM doc for a month and I can't stand the pain should I call the office and ask to be seen earlier. I know he was going on vacation, but other doc's are in the group, and he may be back for all I know. I feel like this is a dumb question, but PM seems to have very specific requirements and I don't know if that is something they allow. The office I go to seems very nice, DEA signs posted everywhere and notices all over saying they do random urine screens. I have all my meds and can bring them with me, I don't abuse them, this opana is just not working. It costs a fortune too, so to pay what is equivalent to a car payment every month and be in this much pain I am very frustrated. To any of you out there that have been in PM for a while, what is the procedure you follow if your meds aren't working? I figured I would suffer it out until I go back at the end of November, but my husband says that's crazy. I want off this medication all together, I don't think bumping up the mg's anymore is gonna work. This med does nothing at all, never mind 12 hours, I don't think I get one hour of relief at this point.
Please help :(


  • Do call and get an earlier appointment. If that is not possible and the pain gets severe do not hesitate to go to the ER. There should be no problem at all with your doc to come in early if the meds are not working. Good luck and I hope that you get relief soon.
  • Thank you for your response.
  • Hi, please phone your docs office and explain how you are feeling. Recently had a similar situation and thought I could be "tough" ended up phoning docs and he was great and increased my meds while on the phone and moved up my appointment. Something he said to me has stuck in my mind, we want you to be comfortable was his comment. Personally it helped me to feel as if it was OK to phone and ask for help if I needed it. Perhaps I am am very lucky with my doctors but just my advice to give it a try. Good Luck, Hugs n' Loves - Paula
  • I would call and leave a message for the nurse practitioner and ask if it is ok to increase the break through meds, and if you are told yes, then ask if you could get a sooner appointment because that would mean you will be running out of those early.

    Also, another thought would be: if your doctor is trying you on something new, ask for a prescription for 2 weeks and a 2 week follow up to see how it's working.

    You are so right about the cost of some of these meds. Outrageous! And to keep giving you a month's supply at a time for something that may not work? Ludacris!

    So, my opinion would be the 2 week set up....

  • Do go back to your Primary Dr. who gave you the meds and explain they're not covering your pain. I had to return to my Dr several times to get the dose increased 4 fold. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • When i was taking meds, prior to my SCS, I and my PM had no problem getting me back in for ineffective meds. Mine seemed to work for about 3 or 4 weeks then stop. I was on like 7 different meds before she realized they were not working long term. You should not grunt it out for a month. That may mean more powerful meds over a longer period of time to get things right. My best med has been my SCS. It has been @70% effective since implant. I am still in some discomfort but can say "I AM NOW MED FREE".....Boy does the world look different without the med fog. I know this does not work for everyone .
  • Thank you all for your support and helpful responses. Yesterday I had to go get a cervical MRI and during the procedure my neck and right arm were having spasms and I was in severe pain. It took maybe thirty minutes, and when I left I was in tears the pain was so bad I was actually thinking of driving myself straight to the ER. But I know better and have been down that road too many times before and drove home. I immediately called my PM doc office and asked if I could be seen due to the severity of my pain and that I felt my medication (opana ER) was not working and could not wait until my next appt which was November 20th. After much to do about nothing I finally got an appointment at 8:30am today, and I live an hour from this doctor's office, but I gladly accepted as I was desperate and not about to be picky. So I went and we talked and I told him the opana is not working at all in my opinion, as far as the breakthrough meds (percocet) that is fine and I rarely even take the amount I am allowed. He was very difficult to deal with and has been since day one. He told me several months ago that he gets compensated for writing the opana vs writing oxycontin. Anyway, I have been telling him month after month that the opana is not working and all he does is bump up the mgs. everytime, meanwhile I am paying $350 per month to take this drug that does nothing!! Finally today he was about to end the visit, said he agree's with my ortho doc that I do have radiculopathy in cervical, probably C6, and that NOTHING helps nerve pain, period. He was about to leave me with the opana, which I had to bring in by the way, which I did, full bottle. I finally said ya know what I have hung in there with this opana for several months and its just not helping at all, so he reluctantly wrote me a rx for oxycontin 20mg SR. I am frustrated and feel in my gut I need a new doc....I have taken one a couple of hours ago and feel nothing as far as relief goes...Not sure if there are any other PM docs in my area will have to look.
  • Maybe you should give the Oxycontin some more time to kick in since you've only taken it 2 hours ago. I'm guessing that it needs time to build up in your blood until it reaches a therapeutic level. For now keep taking the Percocets as directed by the doctor. I used to take Oxycontin 40mg twice a day with Percocets for BT. I would also be nervous knowing that my doctor was being paid to prescribe Opana over Oxycontin. It should be what works for you above all and the meds that cause the least amount of side effects. I don't blame you for wanting to look around for another clinic in your area. Take care and I hope things work out for you.
  • I cannot tell you how many PM docs I saw before i got it just right. Well, she'd have to be 30 or so miles closer to be "just right" but, you get my point. I think this is true with any doctor but particularly so with PM docs who do, in fact, deal with an enormous number of pill seekers. And sometimes its not even the doc, its his or her staff tbat can be obnoxious. But it is a close knit community. So do your research--best to find some satisfied customers and then --go. Susan
  • The very fact that he told you he gets compensated for writing the opana vs writing oxycontin is a red flag ( for me it would be ), that MY best interests were not being considered.

    I did the same route as you with the opana and I should have drank water - the water would have been more helpful lol ;)

    However my Dr quickly agreed to switch me and I too did the Oxycontin and they do take a few doses to work. At least they did with me. At first I was like - oh are you kidding me! here we go again ! ~X(

    But about 2 days in to taking them as were priscribed for me they started to work.

    I am no longer on them as I need a much better around the clock med. I now have the Fentanyl patch and am about 80% pain free :)
    L1 - S2 "gone" useless in 1 way or another. DDD. RA. Bone Spurs. Tons of nerve damage/issues. Stenosis. Both knees replaced. 50 yrs old. I had a great fall (hence my user name) at age 41 and it has been a domino effect every since.
  • Thanks to all. Susan I am glad you responded because I wanted to tell you that I did follow your advice about how to have the talk with my doc about making the change off the opana. I have to admit it was a bit uncomfortable for me. He was pretty resistant to the change, insisting at one point that no drug will help nerve pain and that I need to go on a steroid pac, and stick with the opana. As I said in my post above I just tried to remember what you wrote and said I really feel like I have given the opana a far shot here with increasing the dosage and it just doesn't seem to work. That's when he finally gave in and said ok fine we can change it. You are so right about the staff too. Most of the people at this office have been great to me, and one woman in particular who is always there when I go was not today. A different lady was there who I haven't met before, and it was funny as she brought me into the exam room she whispered to me "did you bring in your meds?", and I thought that was a bit strange. No one else was around, so why the whispering, and she made it seem weird like I had done something wrong. The doc actually never asked to see my meds. I pulled them out of my pocket book and he didn't bother to count them. They were just refilled the other day, and there was a flag at the pharmacy because someone duplicated his rx pad or something so all his rx had to be verified by phone. I agree I'm sure that one dose of the new med is not really an accurate measurement of whether it will work or not. I think that was my exhaustion talking. I hardly slept at all last night. I am hoping between the steroids, the oxycontin and the new muscle relaxer I will be better off. Sorry if I rambled here. This is a great forum and I am so happy to have found it.
    Thanks to everyone for your help
  • I too took/take my meds with me when I am making a change. My Dr has never asked to see them, but I still show him any ways lol It's like I like to KNOW 100% that he KNOWS I am on the up & up - ya know lol ;)

    Hope your meds help you soon :)
    L1 - S2 "gone" useless in 1 way or another. DDD. RA. Bone Spurs. Tons of nerve damage/issues. Stenosis. Both knees replaced. 50 yrs old. I had a great fall (hence my user name) at age 41 and it has been a domino effect every since.
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