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G'day All,
Just joined the forum, though have been a lurker for years :-/ I've had pain as a constant companion since a workplace injury in Oct 2007, that was made worse by another workplace injury in Apr 2008. I suffer constant pain from both injuries, left ankle/knee from a fall and right side leg/thigh/buttock/knee and foot pain from a combination of L3/L4 L4/L5 and L5/S1 disc prolapse and femoral nerve irritation from hernia surgery and piriformis syndrome.

Most days I can cope, I'm self employed as a sub contract Courier, I drive for a living. Trucks, vans, my own utility, whatever the load demands. I'm on call 24/7 and can get a call to travel from one side of Australia to the other at an hours' notice, just as I did last month.

And that's the problem. The only med I have found that works on me at all is Tramadol, in 150mg SR doses twice a day when my pain gets too much to bear. I'm worried that if I was to have an accident whilst having this drug in my system what the repercussions might be. Many sites I deliver to has mandatory and random drug testing.....I have never been tested so far.

My last trip was only a short one, about 500km return, but the last half hour in the truck I was in absolute agony. I had lost 'feeling' and strength in my right leg and the control and pain didn't ease until I could stand and walk a little. I can't take Morphine based pain killers as I'm allergic to it :-(

I'm wondering what other long term pain sufferers take when they have a 'flare up' and how it effects them? Are there specific pain meds for nerve related pain? I've reached the end of my tether............the pain makes me behave like someone I'm not and I take out my frustrations on those close to me :-(

Thanks, William.
Cheers William


  • Hi William,

    Nice to find another Aussie on the forum, but not great that either of us need to be on here in the first place.

    I can understand your frustrations with the chronic pain, and particularly the nerve pain. I'm on a combination of medications to try and control my nerve pain - lyrica, cymbalta and now also palexia. Add to that some norflex and panadol osteo to try and keep on top of the muscle spasms and general pain.

    Not sure where in Australia you're located, but if you're in Melbourne feel free to message me and I can give you the details of my pain management specialist if you want another opinion - he even takes workcover cases (as mine is too).

    Good luck with finding some relieft from your pain.
    July 2009 - L1, L3, L5 disc hernation
    Jan 2011 - L5/S1 Microdiscectomy
    Dec 2012 - return of neural symptoms
    June 2014 - fusion recommended - awaiting insurance approval
  • Hi Jo,
    I'm in Sydney :-( I think it's high time I pressured the insurance co to have another MRI done to see what has happened. Since the 2008 fall I have favoured the right side, the ankle injury went misdiagnosed for 12 months before I had surgery. That left side is still weak at the ankle, and wants to 'roll' outwards with the slightest provocation, and has caused several falls since. I gained 20 odd kg in weight following the ankle I injury, and that puts more strain on the lower back. The only job I can do is driving, because of the permanent restrictions. And since March, even that causes new symptoms as well as flare ups of old ones. I can't take any meds that 'space me out' because I need to be able to drive anywhere in Oz at the drop of a hat. It's just a case of suffering in silence :-( Thanks for understanding :-)
    Cheers William
  • EnglishGirlEEnglishGirl Posts: 1,825
    edited 07/29/2014 - 4:54 AM
    Hi! A friend of mine damaged his anckle & suffered for years. He finally had it fused & says its the best thing. He no longer feels any pain & he's an account manager who drives all over Texas! Could that be an option for you?
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
  • Bamaboy100BBamaboy100 Posts: 40
    edited 07/29/2014 - 5:45 AM
    I have used Tramadol in the past and it actually worked very well for controlling my pain, but I eventually had a seizure so I had to stop. As for the drug test...Tramadol is made of HydroChloride which can be found in several over the counter medications (typically sleeping aids) and therefore is not traceable in a drug test. Take a look the next time you're in a drug store and you'll see hydrochloride listed in the ingredients.
  • and their side effects usually disappear after a week or so on them, so any drowsiness or dopiness usually disappear within a few days, once your body acclimates to the medication.
  • wsmoncrieffwwsmoncrieff Posts: 10
    edited 07/29/2014 - 9:58 AM
    Thanks for the replies everyone :-) I'm seeing my Doctor this morning for my annual fit to drive assessment and I'll pick his brains about my options. I hate what tramadol does to my mood, but constant unbearable pain does the same thing eh :-/
    Cheers William
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