Hello. I came across this site and read some of the horror stories that come with this method of pain control. I was diagnosed with benign tumors in the brain and spinal cord at 23 years old. I have been through hell painwise and the only method that brings relief is narcotic drugs. The doctor I originally switched to when we moved was deathly afraid to prescribe these drugs. He would give me an exact amount per month--one problem was when I got nauseous--which was often--I would lose the dose. Going back early for more was a humiliating experience as he would practically accuse me of selling them or abusing them. He finally tried to cut my dose down which resulted in my losing 80 pounds-----from 190 to 110. I was in extreme pain all the time--couldn't eat--I was dying. I put my wife and son through hell because they cared for me. I finally found a local doctor who worked with me to find a method of relief. I was sent to a pain specialist who started me on Hydromorphone contin---Dilaudid. To make a long story short I am now back to 190 pounds, I eat reglarly and have a fairly good quality of life. That is the paoint i am trying to make--if you are suffering in pain from a legitimate disease; who cares if you are addicted? If you are bedridden from pain and narcotics get you up and around, is the addiction not worth it? I do take huge amounts of Dilaudid--72mgs 3 times a day, BUT I do not get high of of them--never did. I still have 2 or 3 bad days a month but is far better that 30 days bedridden and sick. This drug is highly abusable, and I don't envy anyone who takes this drug recreationally--the withdrawls are horrible. My present dose has never risen in the last 5 years. I can do a little work around the house--play with my son and make love to my wife---once in a while anyways. I am an addict I guess but the benefits are worth it. If you are suffering from pain--find a good doctor--not a pill pusher--but someone who will monitor you and watch your progress.
I hear you man. I also live with pain everyday due to a chronic disease that is only going to get progressively worse. So, I was forced to weigh my options. Live in pain, which brings on incredible stress and depression, or continue with analgesic therapy, and have a halfway decent quality of life with an addiction problem. I chose the latter, just so I am able to function, work, spend quality time with my family and feel halfway normal. Addiction is horrible, esp. when I run out and go thru withdrawals. But it is worth it for the other 90% of the time, when I am able to function normally and feel like a human being! Again, it's one of those things in life... every action has it's consequence, and we have to make decisions everyday about what's more important to us. I, myself, will continue to do what's best for me and my family, and just deal with the consequences when I have to. God bless...
If pain is only in my mind, then I guess I lost my mind a long time ago!
Thanks for the reply Monkey. It seems a lot of chronic pain sufferers feel guilty for helping themselves. I get looks from pharmacists, doctors, even neighbors--look theres the drug addict. What they did not see was the hell I went through in pain--mine is all neck and head pain--you can't escape it. A bad leg or arm would be a little easier to deal with I think.I just wanted those who do need this drug to know they should not feel bad about using something that helps them. Hope you are doing ok--my tumors have been stable for 8 years now and i have had 5 more good years I wouldn't have had on this drug. P.S--I do know that some sufferers tend to abuse the drug by taking more and more--but I think this is due to inadequate pain control. Work with your doctor to find a level that works for you. There are patches, pills,injectables and even suppositories.
I also suffer from chronic pain, as do lots of people here.
To answer the question posed - the problem comes when you've been on the pain meds for years, and you become tolerant to them. You're either forced to raise the dose, or have ineffective pain management.
I raised the dose myself after my doc refused to do so. As a result, I ran out early, and was forced to seek additional meds elsewhere to make up for the extras I took.
If I May: I would like to tell you something that happened withing my mother's side of my family. They had always seemed to look down that I suggested that I required pain meds.
My aunt by marriage used to say it's all in you head and you must be addicted to pain meds. So did my mom and others.
What's my point? A good one!! Later they had medical conditions and were required to take pain meds. They had always said they would never.
I will tell all of you my friends and members and everybody....if your body is in enough pain, you will seel medical treatment. It may or may not mean painmeds but most likely it will if you are in such pain.
Since then, my mother, aunt, and others have a new perspective. I told her after she was improving it was all in your head...lol Though it's no laughing matter, people sometimes find that it is appropriate and necessarry to take pain meds.
Thanks for allowing me to share this and I hope it may help someone that may feel quilty. May all be well and never need any thing. That is my wish,
About the tolerance issue--i did build up to a certain point---72mg hydromorph contin 3 times daily--but have never gone over that limit for 5 years now. If you are needing more--ask for more. My doc says no adverse effects of high dosages. I really don't care if there is--i have had 5 good years so far I never would have had.
This has also been a large issue in my life to. I have an extreme lower back pain that has caused me to have to quit work in Nov. of 2002.
My neurosurgeon says that if I start doing these back exercises, don't ever bend over for the rest of my life, and find a new career, that I won't have to have surgery, ever, but what about the hellacious pain that I was living with. He would give me a script of 12 Vicodan 5mg and tell me to stay in the bed for a week or two.
I am 33 years old and have been to 19 differant doctors in 6 years and everyone of them said that my back was nowhere near bad enough for surgery and they would send me home with friggin anti-inflamotory drugs, muscle relaxers, and arthritis drugs which not one of them helped...
Many of the doctors would always caution me about the addictions to pain meds, when I asked them for something for the pain. I was in so much pain, that I fell into a deep depression and thought a lot about suicide.
I couldn't believe that I was treated like this and had to go thru so much pain, when there were meds out there that would help me. I am not ashamed to say that I bought quite a few pain pills off of the street in the past year, before that, I hardly ever took a pain pill except for ever now and then no more than 20 a year.
I finally got in a wonderful pain center and was put on 2-10mg Methadone a day and was just increased to 3 a day just a month ago.
I will take being addicted to pain meds for the rest of my life over being in pain any day of the week. If for any reason that I am ever taken off of pain meds, I don't know how I can live with it. It gives me nightmares to just think of not having pain meds one day.
I am with you brother all the way. Keep God first in your life and you will make it, I know, he kept me from taking my own life.