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D@#ned if you do.....

MrGrouchMMrGrouch Posts: 108
edited 06/11/2012 - 9:01 AM in Pain Medications
and it you don't. Been on Hydrocodone for 3 years now and been trying EVERY day to get off of it. I push out the pain 1 then 2 then 3 hours then it's so bad I take the Hydrocodone but the pain is to high and I have to take another 4 hours later and another 4 hours after that( I am playing catchup to the pain). If I don't push it out or only push it 2 hours I get tolerant to it in a few weeks and have to go cold turkey for three days to get it to work again. Is this "normal" for chronic pain? Seems like every day is like walking a tightrope. I have amitriptyline and it works well but it turns you into a zombie so you have to minimize taking it during working hours. Any feedback on this would be helpfull, seems like the pain is moving target that pops up when ever and where ever it wants.

DDD s1-l4 herinated, severe sciatic nerve leg pain 24/7


  • Mr Grouchin I am having the worst flare up of my life.

    I'm on norco 3x per day. I have been for over 3 years. It's taking an iron will not to double up right now. I'm tolerant, which is normal, but it's not enough and my back / neck pain is cutting right through. Most months I just wean down by breaking them in half to rejuvenate the effects. Not this time, I need some help in a bad way.

    This has been my 'normal' way of living too. It really seems a rotation would be the better way of going. I dunno, I've never asked about it, though.
  • My experience is similar. I've been on ever increasing doses of percocet since 2005 and I was on Percocet 15MG every 6 hours but it didn't work anymore. PM doc switched me to nuycenta (sp?) 100MG every 6 hours and it took about 60 - 90 minutes to have any effect which was very minimal and I had rough side effects, shaking, feeling like I'm outside my body, loss of balance, and a couple of others. After about 12 days, PM doc switched me to morphine sulfate 15MG every 6 hours. But, I'd been on the extended version of the morphine for years before I was switched to my current Exalgo med. My thyroid was severly affected by my chemotherapy and my blood test showed that I typically do not absorb drugs as well as I should because of my defective thyroid (even though I take levothroxcyne (sp?) every day and a teststerone injection once a week-I give it to myself which is such a joy. So, yes, my opinion is that we get used to the narcotics. My 36MG of Exalgo first thing every morning, along with my SCS, helps me deal with the pain, but I don't have anything that works well for the break through pain issues and I end up having experiences similar to yours. Take care, Jerome
  • To me it sounds like you are not being managed effectively and they should address this better. Maybe Hydrocodone isn't the drug for you. I think the PM doctor should address this, see if they can do something different. I hope you get some relief soon!
  • to get a balance between a therapeutic does and a dependency dose of any narcotic especially if you have been on it for a year or so .many people with chronic pain will require pain killers for the rest of there lives .there are two main reasons for this .one is that the pain for backs tend to be progressive {ie as we age the pain gets worse} and and we take the pain killers we need more and more to get the same pain relief ..i understand that many people are unwilling to talk about this subject due to feeling like a junkie .but many of us ,myself included ...are physically dependent on strong opiates..i have never abused /crushed /injected /snorted.my pain killers .i don't even drink! .but i have tried to come off pain killers a few times but the pain is so awful i have to play catch up too like the first poster said .i don't like pain killers and like many i too feel embarrassed about needed them but like my consultant said needs must .there is one main difference between a genuine pain killers user and a recreational one .we the genuine ones don't get high because our brains are too busy processing the pain and pain killers .the none pain person gets high because the pain killers follows a different pattern in the brain .hence the desire to keep taking them .BUT we are the SAME as the recreational user in the way that we will get the awful withdrawals .i have had this a few times and its the worst feeling in the world .{i have run out of pain killers over a weekend and have to see the on call doctor for some pain killers }...i want the time to come when i can come off pain killers but as i am only a few months post ALIF fusion ans still having lots of pain and sleep problems .i feel it will be a long time before i can get of them ...don't try to go cold off pain killers if you feel that you no longer require them you could end up dead! .seek medical advice and a phased controlled reduction over a few months with you doctor help will be the correct way .;.but remember many of us with chronic pain will be life long members of the pain killers club ...
    tony {UK}
    advice to all ..if you feel you have a problem see your doctor ..dont hide away thinking that it will go away ..it wont
    1997 laminectomy
    2007 repeat laminectomy and discectomy L4/L5
    2011 ALIF {L4/L5/S1}
    2012 ? bowel problems .still under investigation
    2014 bladder operation may 19th 2014
  • Well friday night and I get to look forward to a hydocodone free weekend to get the tolerance down for monday. Can do it but requires Lyrica 3 times a day, drunk, can't stay awake, feel like I am not really here, dry mouth all the "fun" side effects of Lyrica ( horrible stuff). 48 hours cold turky on the hydrocodone will get it to work again Monday morning before I leave for work.
    Thanks for all the comments, I am saving up for an appointment with the only non- commercial all encompasing pain clinc in the area. Johns Hopkins Pain Clinc. Tried all the other meds and they don't work or have debilitating side effects.
  • I agree with Jess. It sounds to me like you need to have a heart-to-heart with your PM Doc. Personally (& this is just based on my own experiences over the years), I think you need a sustained release medication & to use the hydrocodone only for breakthrough pain. When our pain isn't managed appropriately then we're constantly playing "catch up", which in itself is a catch-22 because the IR meds don't work nearly as well when the pain is that high (especially if one has a tendency to become tolerant, as it seems you do).

    I would talk to your PM Doc about this & see about getting on an ER med. There are so many to choose from that I'm sure you'll be able to find something that will work for you & then you won't need to take as many of the hydrocodone OR have to put yourself through the "cold turkey days", which is NO good for your pain either.

    Good luck & I hope you'll keep us posted as to how things are going for you!

    All the best...
  • Long story but due to a near fatel failure by my previous PM that landed me in the hospital for 5 days they put me on a blacklist( to cover there butts) so my Familty doc is doing it and doing a better job then they ever did. No long term med works or I am allergic to it. In this area Oxycotin can not be prescribed and my past experience with percocet suggest I would not be able to manage it ( percocet is very unpredictable with me). Anyway Sunday night and detox worked so I am good for the week, maybe even 2. Can't say it was fun but no one said it would be.

    We are using the lyrica as the "home" med since I can't drive while using it and hydrocodone for work. It works until as you said the pain breaks through then it's catch up for a day or 2.

    JHU Pain clinic is referall only and specific for hard cases like mine. From what I gather multiple docs in various specilties look at you, develop a plan and send it to your Genral Practioner so you don't have to travel to Baltimore every month for refills. My insurance has a high deductable so lots of saving up

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