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When to wean from pain meds?

My dr gave me no direction about when I should be weaning off pain meds,  I need to call and ask Monday. 
When was everyone else off meds?
I had t4 through l5 fused on the 9th. I'm taking 1 Percocet every 4 to 4.5 hours. 
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1

Comments

  •  It seems rather early to wean off post op painkillers since you had a fusion on the 9th. Were you specifically told to do so by the surgeon? Is he/she working with a pain mgt doctor in coordinating your care? My surgeon prescribed post op meds for 3 months and then I was back on my normal regiment from my pain clinic. 
    Ol' Spiney..Micro-D L4-L5, TLIF L4-S1 -post op central HNP L4-S1,stenosis, retrolisthesis, EF, facet arthropathy, lumbar& cervical DDD. FBSS- Medtronic pain pump & SCS
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  • rae1112rae1112 Michigan Posts: 147
    No I wasn't given any idea on pain meds at all. I've heard other people say they were done taking them earlier on, but I did have a lot of levels fused. I won't worry too much then, I'll still call the dr and ask but I guess I will plan to continue as I am until I see him 6 weeks post op.
    No pain management dr or anything and I wasn't on anything prior to surgery. 
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  • rae1112rae1112 Michigan Posts: 147
    Thank you. I guess since I don't see the dr until my 6 week post op and nothing was discussed I'll assume I am to continue pain meds until I see him. Also won't hurt to call the office and double check.
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  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 13,584
    Every individual is different, every situation is different every surgery is different, every doctor/surgeon is different.

    That is why it is very difficult to identify when post surgical patients should start to eliminate their opioids.  There are so many variables that come into play with this.   The range that I am aware of is from 5 days to 6 weeks.    Generally this would apply to first type surgical patients.  Chronic pain patients have a different schedule.  Since they were probably on opioids before surgery, then immediately post surgery they might have a ramp up of opioids and then eventually go back to their baseline of opioids.

    I will use myself as an example:
    • My maintenance level of opioids is between 20(4) and 30(6) mg of Oxycodone IR 5mg pills daily
    • Last year I had a decompression (laminectomy) for my spinal stenosis L2-L5  At discharge I was given 30  days of Oxycontin 10mg
    • During those 30 days, I would use Oxycodone IR 5mg for breakthrough pain
    • About 5 weeks post surgery, I was back to my maintenance level
    But that was my situation, may not hold true with the next person.

    The only person you should get a formal answer about this from is your surgeon/doctor.

    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences 
  • rae1112rae1112 Michigan Posts: 147
    Talked to the medical assistant at the surgeons office and she said that trying to get off the meds or wean off isn't necessary. She said continue taking the pain meds every 4 to 6 hours as needed.  If I feel pain take it, if I don't I can wait.  Then we will reevaluate at my 6 week post op appt.
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  • rae1112rae1112 Michigan Posts: 147
    Sadly I'm being treated badly by my surgeon and office I just posted in pain management about it. Totally awful.  

  • rae1112rae1112 Michigan Posts: 147
    I'm so upset at how they are treating me. I just went 6 hours between pills and stood up and was crying in pain. I'm trying so hard to do the right thing, and all I want is to feel better. I'm doing nothing wrong. 
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