Husband is 6 months post-op after a TLIF/disectomy (l4/l5). He has been on opiates for a year now, and we want to try and see what his real pain level post op is. He is on oxycontin 50 mg/day and percocet 20-30/day. He has come down to these levels from around 120 mg/day. Each time we try to go down his pain is very bad. He says it is as bad as it was pre surgery. Is this normal? I have read that the pain can increase because of fewer opiates. How do you differentiate what the pain is from? We aren't even sure the surgery worked. All the dr. tells us is that the hardware "looks good" and that he may be a "slow healer".
I know he is really trying to "soldier" thru this with less meds. The withdrawals seem as bad as the pain, so he really wants to get off them. Is he resigned to a life of these heavy opiates? Can it really take a long time for healing and then he will be pain free?
He is so discouraged. We are just looking for a little hope.
Thanks in advance
Marcy (and Joe)