Does anyone know at what point we need to start worrying about liver (and other organ degradation) as a result of the medication that we take?
I have been taking various NSAIDs (celebrex, vioxx, mobicoxx, naproxen, etc) and opiates (percocet, MS contin, dilaudid, hyrdomorphone) as well as desipramine, nortriptaline, tramadol, nucynta etc for the better part of 15 years (not all at once ;-).
Lately I have been concerned about the percocet in particular and the effect long-term use can have on the organs.
Many years ago, after my 3rd lumbar fusion, I decided it was time to get off percocet. I had been taking close to 12 tablets a day for a 4 year period with no breaks in between. I got myself down to 3 tabs and then entered an outpatient rehab program to help with the addiction and cut out the last few. I was still legitimately in pain, so I was started on buprenorphine along with my other meds - but was completely off opiates. I stayed off the until 2008 when my back got really severe again.
From 2008 until now, I take 10 - 12 percs a day (along with everything else). I was getting worried, especially about the amount of acetaminophen, so I've recently switched to oxy IR.
How do we manage, assess and protect against diseases like liver damage as a result of all the meds we take? At what point, should we start being concerned? Is it about dosage, frequency, med combos, or the sheer length of time we have been taking the meds?
Any thoughts would be appreciated.