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Experience with Tramadol?

Hello all,

I have Scheurman's kyphosis, with a 100% curvature in my thoracic column. The pain is horrible but I have been prolonging surgery due to the risks. My doc recommended Tramadol for pain management, I understand it is a synthetic opioid and is allegedly less dependance forming than other opioids? How effective is it in treating pain? What side effects did you have? I'm just curious. Thanks


  • it is not technically a narcotic even though it binds to the same areas as a narcotic. it is a twiner, between non and narcotic. i don't use it but i bet dimes to dollars drs who give it do so because they don't want to prescribe a genuine narcotic. take two in the morning and call me. just another bogus way of getting around narcotic prescription
    I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.
  • Once you have worked up to near or maximum daily dose, I found it about as effective as 3 Aleve per day. Taking 1 or 2 irregularly as needed is worthless. Side effects of gastro nature disappear over a month. Very dry mouth and dry eye never decreased over the year I used it. It has many potentially serious negative drug interactions with some muscle relaxants, SSRIs any anti seizure type med. Most studies now show that regular use develops strong physical dependence, much harder to withdraw from than hydrocodone. Hydro is easy compared to tramadol withdrawal. My state now treats it like an Schedule 3 substance because of drug interactions and dependence and withdrawal risks, not recreational abuse. My current PM and PCP will not Rx it. My pharmacist is also very negative.
    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.
  • I hate the stuff. I told my doctor I didn't want a narcotic, for the very reason I was afraid of addiction if used long-term (I am a former ten-year bulimic and was concerned because of all the pills I abused back then). She gave me tramadol instead and said it's "like a narcotic, but it's not a narcotic. Don't worry."

    It did not take away my pain, but I had junkie withdrawal coming down three levels before cutting it off. I was not psychologically addicted, but my body became dependent on it even though it wasn't very effective for pain. I had the whole shebang - sweats/chills, nausea, vomiting, tremors and shaking, light sensitivity, irritability, etc. Thank goodness I was on disability at the time, because no way I could have worked through that, and I had to experience it three times before I was off the tramadol.

    Just my experience, your mileage may vary.
    (see profile for medical details)

    I *heart* my TENS unit.
  • The neurosurgeon's nurse prescribed me tramadol after a fall. I still have the whole bottle sitting in the medicine cabinet. Extra strength tylenol works better.
    Discectomies 05/08 and 04/11, fusions L4-5 Feb 9,2012 and L3-L4 June 28,2012, Staph infection washout 3/2/2012, Bulged L5-S1. SCS trial on January 17th, 2014, which was a success! Permanent SCS on February 20th.
  • very well for some and not so well for others. Just as you can become addicted to any medication if not taken exactly as prescribed , you can also become addicted and develop a physical dependance on it.
    If you are in so much pain, and surgery can correct the physical problem, why would you not want to go ahead with surgery?
    Spending your life on medications unnecessarily should not be an option when undergoing surgery, while not the easy choice is one that offers you a chance to resume your life.
  • I can honestly say that I thought Tramadol wasn't working for me until I stopped taking it. By the way, the withdrawal from it is really bad. I was on it for 7 years and decided to get off it. After I was done with the withdrawal, I was constantly in pain and found myself taking my break through pain med, a narcotic, every day. So, I went back on the Tramadol and life is good again. I do believe the vast majority of what I have read from people is that it doesn't work for them. I am in the minority.
    Emergency surgery in March of 2006 for spinal infection of L 2 and L 3. During surgery, discovered I had Cauda Equina Syndrome. Spine became unstable after surgery and had 360 fusion with 10 pedicle screws, plates and rods in April of 2007.
  • Took one dose, & not only did it not help my pain, it made it worse as well as very nauseous. Ended up in the ER where they did nothing for the pain, but at least treated the nausea. Never again
    We can't always control the cards we are dealt in life, but we can control how we play the hand
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