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Pain Meds & Weight Gain - Anything In Common?

I recently gained a LOT of weight! :( Like 80 lbs! My meds that use to make life do-able are barely touching my pain now days. Does it stand to reason since there is more of me that the meds don't work as well?

Reason says "yes", but then I think about how the dosages for specific meds are pretty generalized for people of all different sizes, so then I wonder maybe the weight & meds don't have anything to do with one another?

and YES I am very very aware that any weight gain and especially this much does not help messed up backs in general ;)
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.


  • Opioids slow metabolism in most people, amount varies greatly by individual, from insignificant to very significant. Also since they slow down to pace at which foods pass trough our GI track, I guess our bodies have longer to absorb every last calorie.

    Don't know if their effectiveness varies by our size. Kinda of doubt it since I have never seen a dosage chart that varies by weight. And these meds are something that works on our brain, not on the area of the actual pain. I guess size could affect the rate/ speed of the effect.
    Severe DDD, Severe neural foraminal stenosis at 2 levels, moderate canal stenosis at 2 levels, significantly impaired left shoulder & arm function. Chronic moderate compression fracture at C6.
  • People with chronic pain tend to be less active, so the gaining of weight, combined with the drowsiness of some of the medications used to treat our conditions can contribute and even add to our weights. This is one of the reasons that physical activity is strongly encouraged, especially if you are in a pain treatment program, which should include some half hour or more of physical activity, even if it is just walking each day. It helps to maintain muscle tone, flexibility, and keeps up your endurance. Short walks, several times a day, also aid in the moving along things in the colon and helps to combat constipation that also is another side effect of these meds.
  • Daffy - yep that is how I understood it too - thanks for explaining it - makes more sense :)

    sandi - easier said then done when pain levels are so high that one is left gasping for breath ;)
    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.
  • In my case, I've been steadily losing weight. I've always been a large person, but i'm averaging a few pounds a week. Then again, I don't much feel like eating and when i do eat, it pretty much comes back out anytime from a few minutes to a few hours later. With one exception, animal protein, like beef etc, its the only thing my body doesn't seem to reject anymore. LOL.

    I know that doesn't help you much though Mrs. H. but hopefully your doctor can help you with the increasing pain, any word on that front, are they willing to give you an increase or anything?
  • since the day i had emergency surgery which failed in 8/11 i have been disabled. snap! just like that... i had formerly worked 8 hours/ day as an RN, maintained a thriving social life and spent much time outside walking about the city.

    i gained a total of 40 pounds in a short time after that. ADL's include ambulation, and those unaffected by chronic pain and impaired mobility actually walk a great deal effortlessly in the course of a normal day. between opiods slowing your entire system and maybe successfully attending a doctor appointment and a trip to the pharmacy... the activity level pales in comparison. i do believe routinely walking even a 1/2 mile daily can help maintain weight.

    fact is, i tend to veg on the sofa to avoid exacerbations in pain, which invariably happens the more i push myself.
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