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Old 06-28-2008, 10:59 AM   #1
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jschooly HB User
Question Tramadol

Hi Anyone Out There,

I have been off of alcohol for more than 10 years. Last year I relapsed on Vicodin - only got up to 6 or so a day but could not stop. I switched to Tramadol to try and ween myself off the Vic. Well, that worked but now I can't get off the Tram - take about 6 a day. Finally went to drug counselor who says he will put me on Suboxone program which sounds fantastic like an answer to a prayer. I am a mom, wife, employed, go to AA all the time - basically very responsible - I am simply an addict. I have been reading the threads about Suboxone and getting a little concerned. Sounds like it is REALLY tough to get off of Sub. I surely don't want to jump from frying pan into fire but I have tried getting off Tram and it's really hard. I get super depressed, angry, irritable.

Anyone have good news about Sub? Anyone else ever get addicted to Tramadol? Any information or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.

 
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Old 06-28-2008, 01:06 PM   #2
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Tele52 HB User
Re: Tramadol

Hi Jschooly,

I have been on Tramadol (Ultam) myself many years ago. That was one really tough drug to get off of. I was also taking very high doses for a long time. I went through withdrawal many times from them. You would think I would have learned the first time, being how hard it was. It took a good month to feel totally right. About 3 weeks of feeling pretty bad. It was basically like detoxing from opiates but you also have the head zaps too, like when you come off an anti-depressant. At one point I was on Tram and vics, percs, together. My family wanted me to go to rehab and I knew I couldn't because of my job. I quit cold turkey and went to work with severe wd's. I have no idea how I did it but I guess when you have to and put your mind to it it can be done. I first started out with a Tramadol addiction before I ever got into the heavy stuff. I did the opposite of you. I went on to the heavy stuff to help get me get off of ultram (which I don't suggest) you'll be running in circles since I later wound up taking both together and the Tram didn't work anymore. It was just a quick fix to help stop the ultram wd but in the end I did a cold turkey like I mentioned.

I was clean for 2 months! This was in the middle of my 10 year addiction to opiates. When I relapsed I went on to even heavier stuff like oxy's, H and Fentanyl patches. I wound up finding a sub doc and I'm now going through what I feel is an addiction but much safer. I think the problem is that I've been on sub for two years and I'm not used to wd's anymore. I used to wd from opiates about once a week and go to work sick as hell. It was like my body got used to wd'ing and now I'm afraid of even the slighest bit of uncomfort. Plus, knowing I get prescribed a bottle of 75 8mg tabs a month doesn't help. A VERY short term and LOW dose detox with sub would probably be best. You don't want to get hooked on it like me! Don't get me wrong, it probably saved my life, it got me away from all the low lives I was hanging with at the time and let me live a "normal" life for the last two years but now I'm struggling to get off sub like you are with the Tramadol.

You can read more about what I'm going through under the thread "Suboxone Side Effects".

Tele52

 
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Old 06-28-2008, 01:35 PM   #3
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Re: Tramadol

suboxone is 50x stronger than morphine--taking it for a tramadol habit of 6 pills a day is utterly insane. i can not encourage you enough to forget the sub!!! i was addicted to ultram too---i had 6 grand-mal seizures but i was taking 40--50 a day. taking sub for 6 ultrams is like swatting a fly with a bowling ball. it's swapping a very small habit to a huge habit that is very close to methadone and it is a 100x times harder to get off of!!! taper off the tramadol by 1 pill a week and you'll be much better off. you'll feel like crap for a week or 2 and it will be done and over with. get some clonidine from your dr. (this is an old b/p med that is great for opiate withdrawl) and get some immodium, and a few sleeping pills. sub is for people with huge heroin, methadone, oxy, habits. any dr. who would give this powerful opiate to a person taking 6 ultram a day should lose his license--period!

 
Old 06-28-2008, 05:19 PM   #4
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Re: Tramadol

I think the point jschooly is trying to make is that she cannot get off the tramadol. Tapering one pill a week sounds peachy, however she has tried and can't do it.

I agree with Tele - A very short term and low dose of Sub sounds like a good solution for you, jschooly. I too, have tried many times to taper and/or detox, with no success. I am entering Rehab on the 14th (July) and will finally get ahold of this addiction. I am a mom, wife, employed as well and understand how you feel about this... "I am simply an addict."

I live in Toronto and since Sub is not available in Canada yet, I can't even consider it, however I would if it were available. For you, I wouldn't take it for the long term, as you aren't at a high enough dose to justify. I would, however seriously consider it for a short term detox. I've heard it is the "wonder drug" for addicts. I have also heard (many many times) that it is very hard to get off. Some people will take it for the rest of their lives, but they are ok with that - while others do not want to take Sub forever, and find it hard to taper or stop.

Now, please don't think I am assuming your addiction is trivial - addiction is addiction, an addict is an addict - but you don't take as much as I did (or others have, who are on Sub) so just think about it, perhaps get a second opinion if you have the opportunity to see another Sub Dr. but it seems like it would help you

Whatever you decide, we're all here to help, and listen From one mother to another, we always keep our families in mind when we make a choice of this magnitude, so perhaps you can look at the side effects and see if it sounds like the right choice for you.

Take it easy, and I hope you're doing well today

Love,
emsmom

Last edited by emsmom; 06-28-2008 at 05:34 PM.

 
Old 06-28-2008, 05:27 PM   #5
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Re: Tramadol

Dear Kellibear,

This is what I was afraid of. I have been reading about really tough w/ds from Suboxone and I fear they may be worse than 6 Tram a day. I think you are probably right. I will have to get the discipline and help hopefully of a Higher Power to let go of the Tram little by little. I have be trying to do that but my addict has been winning. However, I am really beginning to see that my choices are limited and I do believe that Sub may be "swatting a fly with a bowling ball." I am going to give this some very serious thought.

Thanks.


Quote:
Originally Posted by kellibear View Post
suboxone is 50x stronger than morphine--taking it for a tramadol habit of 6 pills a day is utterly insane. i can not encourage you enough to forget the sub!!! i was addicted to ultram too---i had 6 grand-mal seizures but i was taking 40--50 a day. taking sub for 6 ultrams is like swatting a fly with a bowling ball. it's swapping a very small habit to a huge habit that is very close to methadone and it is a 100x times harder to get off of!!! taper off the tramadol by 1 pill a week and you'll be much better off. you'll feel like crap for a week or 2 and it will be done and over with. get some clonidine from your dr. (this is an old b/p med that is great for opiate withdrawl) and get some immodium, and a few sleeping pills. sub is for people with huge heroin, methadone, oxy, habits. any dr. who would give this powerful opiate to a person taking 6 ultram a day should lose his license--period!

 
Old 06-28-2008, 05:37 PM   #6
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Re: Tramadol

To All Who Have Responded To My Message - Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. I have been in 12 Step programs for many years and find that the people struggling with addiction, whether alcohol/drugs or both, are some of the smartest, funniest, most colorful people I have EVER known.

I am looking at my motives here about the Sub. I am wondering if I think it would be another way to "zone out" for several months and get addicted to yet another drug. If it's mood altering I get addicted - period. I am going to try to talk to some "program people" about this too and see if I can get clear on what path to take. I will very clearly express my concerns about the Sub to the drug counselor and the MD involved and see what they have to say for sure!!

 
Old 06-28-2008, 09:55 PM   #7
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Re: Tramadol

detoxing off 50 ultram a day was horrible, but for me, the worst part was the anxiety. if you could ask your dr. for a few benzo's and some clonidine, you will be ok. you're really not taking enough to where the physical part will be that awful. but that anxiety is awful! have you considered going to na/aa? i strongly urge you to try--it is a huge help to talk to people (face-to-face) that are going thru the same thing as you. you'll get alot of support and advice. it just makes me ill to think someone would go on a powerful opiate to get off ultram!! a good, knowledgeable dr. will tell you the same. you would just start a much much worse addiction!! and also, have you considered going in-patient? you would probably only need a week to detox, and it would really be worth the money. please keep in mind, sub is basically the same as methadone--a powerful opiate with a very long half-life--it can take weeks or months to get off it and feel half way human again. tramadol also raises serotonin levels, so maybe a ssri anti-depressant would help--i'd ask the dr.

 
Old 06-29-2008, 09:16 AM   #8
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Re: Tramadol

Hi kellibear,

I really think you are right and I really have myself in a ringer. I have this 6 x a day habit which sounds like it's less addicting than Sub yet I have had a hell of a time tapering on my own and yes I go to AA all the time - been a member for years. Guess it's time to swim or drown here - I either taper on my own or go on Sub. I think I want to do it on my own because it actually sounds like taking Sub is going on a stronger opiate and that would really be a mess. What a ridiculous dilemma!! I am so mad at myself for getting here especially when I had 10 years clean and sober. Ok, for today I am just staying where I am. I am supposed to be talking to the doctors this week and I will take whatever they say under advisement. However, it has been my experience over the years that, in general, addicts know more about the drug use and side effects than most doctors.

Have a great day and thanks again for sharing your information with me.

J

 
Old 06-29-2008, 10:39 AM   #9
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Re: Tramadol

unfortunately, addicts do know alot more about addiction than most doctors! some are just clueless, especially when it comes to sub. they take the 8 hour on-line course to be "certified" to prescribe sub, and they only know what the drug co. (reckitt) has told them. the big pharm co."s will lie thru their teeth to sell their dope--even if it's dangerous--they just don't care. oxycontin was supposed to be "less addictive"--now purdue pharm is paying out 600 million in law suits. back in the 60's valium was marketed as non-addictive. and then ultram, "a non-addictive, non-opiate" pain med. yea, right! treatment centers are full of ultram addicts. now they want to market sub as this new "wonder drug/miracle" when all it is-is a very powerful opiate that will make the people who use it--become addicted to it. my guess is--that's what they want--because the money keeps rolling in! and most of these sub doctors want cash--no insurance accepted. hhmmmm-kind of sounds like a drug dealer to me. if it quacks like a duck....

 
Old 06-29-2008, 11:32 AM   #10
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Question Re: Also trying to get off Suboxone! Need Help and Encouragement!

Hello Everyone,

I have a Tramadol habit of 6 + a day at 50 mg for about the last 5 months. Before that I was addicted to Vicodin at about 6 a day and thought I would wean myself off of Vic with the Tramadol - HA!! I have tried tapering the Tram and start to get that black depression and of course, I bring my dose back up! I now have a Kaiser drug professional who is willing to put me on a short Suboxone Detox but I have read SO MANY scary things about the Sub that it makes me just as afraid as the Tramadol. I am thinking I should just try tapering on my own again while attending NA. I go to AA 4-5 times a week and have not had a drink or other drugs (beside Vic & Tram) in over 10 years.

Any thoughts or suggestions about the Suboxone would be appreciated. I am in a mell of a hess. PS. I work, am married - my husband knows and is supportive but my school age daughter has no idea and I don't want to worry her with this - she has "never seen me drunk" so I am trying to maintain my daily life while detoxing.

Thanks for anyone reading this and for letting me ramble on so long

 
Old 06-29-2008, 02:49 PM   #11
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Tele52 HB User
Re: Tramadol

I wonder if you would have to be in Tramadol withdrawl to even take the sub?
I think Tramadol may have a long half life also since when I first started taking it and would stop, I'd feel ok until a few days later. As my addiction to it progressed the time period before I needed more not to feel bad was in hours rather then days. Also, this doctor is willing to prescribe you a very short detox with sub? Every doc that I know that prescribes sub wants big $$$ for the first visit and then wants to see you weekly for a certain amount of time. I'm not doubting you, just curious.
Two things concern me here.
1. Will you go into wd if you aren't in Tramadol withdraw first? When I first got sub, it was off the street and I took it to early from my last shot of H (I wasn't dope sick yet) and went into the worst wd I had ever felt!
2. If it does work and you feel a buzz from the sub, the addict in you might convince you that you need to be on it. That buzz will only last a short time if you do even feel it. I tried chasing that buzz for a year! LOL! ..thinking I'll feel that way if I take another. I would take two at a time trying to get high from it after I had already taken my morning dose of 1.5-2 8mg tabs.

I went through Tram wd so many times and a few things that helped me get through it were Melatonin tea and Chamameal tea (spelled wrong?) for help sleeping and anxiety, plus lots of exercise, hot baths, etc. It wasn't easy and I went through it so many times, plus I had to work in these wd's. Also, I don't know if the sub would help with the head zaps. You might just have to ride that out unless an anti-depressant would help but then do you become dependant on those? I had a hell of a time coming off Paxil but Lexapro wasn't to bad. I weaned slower with the Lex, so..

BTW- your post here is really helping me! It's making me remember what I did and went through and how I detoxed from this med and other opiates with nothing sometimes. I'm really gonna put my mind to it to get off this sub!! I've been thinking it's impossible when it really is posssible. I was NEVER good at weaning with any drug. It was as much as I could take until there was no more. If I did try to wean, it would be for a very short time until I caved and took a handful of whatever. It's even been hard for me with the sub and the sub isn't getting me high! If you do the VERY short and LOW dose detox make sure your Tramadol connection is cut off! They say the hardest part is not getting clean but staying clean and I'm proof of that! I would get clean only to relapse a few weeks later! How ever you decide to get clean just make sure you cut your connections. I'm sure you know this from AA/NA.

Take care, good luck and stay positive!

Tele

 
Old 06-29-2008, 04:50 PM   #12
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Re: Tramadol

Hi Tele,
Thanks for all your suggestions. My doctor is at Kaiser so I have a very low co-pay and they actually have a "Suboxone Program". I guess the times they are a changin'. So it's definitely not money that is worrying me although I have seen the stories about Sub costing hundreds and I can not afford that! I will straight up ask them about being in WD first and from what I have read so far it seems to me that a very low-dose on a 2 - 4 or 6 week program at most might work-out ok. I think they require that you meet in a Sub group at least once a week and, of course, they highly encourage 12 step meetings of which I am already a regular attendee.

I am sorry to hear that you WD from Tram so many times. That must have been very painful and scary. I appreciate your suggestions about the tea and exercise. I am a fairly regular jogger. Also, I have been on 10mg of Prozac for many years which the doctor knows about and there is no plan to change that. There is nothing I can do about a "connection" because Tram is extremely easy to buy over the net. It is just as easy to get as alcohol or cigarettes so - just like with any drug- I will have to make a choice One Day At A Time not to pick up.

Being the addict that I am, I should have known better than to ever put ANY type of mood altering drug in my body. I did one or two Vicodin and BOOM - trapped like a Rat!!! Can you imagine my addict brain telling me to use Tram to detox from Vicodin? You gotta love an addict!!!

Anyway, I am supposed to be talking to someone from the program tomorrow and I will report back here as to what I am told.

Thanks and take care.

 
Old 06-30-2008, 06:28 AM   #13
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Tele52 HB User
Re: Tramadol

Quote:
Originally Posted by jschooly View Post
Being the addict that I am, I should have known better than to ever put ANY type of mood altering drug in my body. I did one or two Vicodin and BOOM - trapped like a Rat!!! Can you imagine my addict brain telling me to use Tram to detox from Vicodin? You gotta love an addict!!!
When I used sub to get off pills (not dope) a few times, it was very mood altering. I felt great and even a little high. I was very relaxed and happy. My brother takes them once in a while to come off vics and percs and he told me one time, "I like the sub better then the percs, it made me feel high all day". He also would only take one 8mg sub tab and break it into 4pieces to get off the vics or percs. That's how strong it is. You don't need much.

I was thinking the doc would prescribe you the amount they give you in a local rehab here. They only put you on it for like 3 days and reduce your dose each day. They don't start out with a high dose either.

It's your choice but I thought I'd let you know that you probably will feel something from it and it does alter your mood, so keep that in mind.

Tele

 
Old 06-30-2008, 07:37 AM   #14
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Re: Tramadol

Thanks for the info Tele. I have definitely gotten the message from you and others that Sub is mood altering. I am hopefully talking to a counselor and/or a physician from the Drug program today and maybe they will shed further light on this situation.

Have a great day!!

j

 
Old 06-30-2008, 10:05 AM   #15
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Re: Tramadol

sub is beyond mood altering--it is about a 100x more addictive than ultram--i hope you really think hard about this before you take that first sub--because it can be a life changing decision--and not for the better!

 
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