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Old 08-26-2004, 08:04 PM   #1
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What are us back problem people taking for meds?

My husband has been so supportive, and even bought me a hot tub to try to help, but the pain just gets to me so. Just this hot knife in my low back, grinding and grinding and burning. I'm getting med tolerrant, and I my new "wonderful" doctor doesn't think she should up it any further. I went off the Avinza because it was just making me sick, and went back to the Oxycontin. I take 160mg a day, in two doses. Is that extreme? What do other people take? I'd really like to know. I've been in a bad way now for three years. Do I just get tollerant fast? Maybe if I knew what you all were taking, I'd have a better idea why my "new" doctor all of a sudden got upset.

Thanks,

Stormygale

 
Old 08-26-2004, 09:57 PM   #2
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

This information may not help you much cause compared to most of you out there, I must have very little pain: I take Advil 3 of them 4 times a day, Neurontin 100mg two times a day, and hydrocodocone 10mg at night when it's really hurting. I have tried lots of other things, but this is what helps me most, without making me too loopy. If I am super stressed, which really agravates my back, I'll take a Valium 5mg.
Sure hope you feel better soon. Get another doc if he/she isn't treating your pain properly!
Best of luck-
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Old 08-26-2004, 10:16 PM   #3
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

Although you should get a lot of responses here, I bet that you would get more on the pm boards. They are pretty interesting.

The only thing that I took for my pain, even though I at one point put it at over a ten, was Neurontin and Ultraset. My liver metabolizes meds too fast for them to work. I gave up. I had my doctor up to the Fentynal patch, but then turned it down as even straight morphine didn't touch the pain.

It is my understanding that you have to learn to tolerate the pain and to adapt to it and to go for quality of living and whatever that means to you. I have yet to meet an old drug addict. This is a telling generation. Never have so many people lived so long and with so many medications.

That must say something about meds. I haven't met any older people who were obese or taking pain meds, long term.

 
Old 08-26-2004, 10:27 PM   #4
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

hmmmm, what have I tried? Wellllll, I started on Ibuprofen and was taking appx 2400mg a day. But, tapered that a little. My doc gave me a script for Vicodin 500mg for when I traveled, cause my pain was more intense then. But, when my neck and back started getting worse, I started taking that. One night, I took one of my Vicodiin 500's, that didn't help, tried a Bextra 10mg, that didn't help, then tried one of my hubby's Vicodin 650mg, and THAT didn't help. I was up til five am that day.
Saw my doc, she said obviously I needed something stronger. So, she gave me Percocet, 325mg. It was fine for a while, but then I started getting sick, since I thought at the time that it was the percocet, she switched me to Lortabs, but I threw up off those too. SO THEN we tried Ultracet, which does NOTHING. I figured out it wasn't the meds making me sick, I was constipated. So my vicodin is gone, I am now using the lortabs. I have so many scripts, I am trying to use one up at a time. DOn't think that is good for you, but no different than switching pain meds a hundred times. So, the Lortab, Percocet and Vicodin take the edge off, but I have learned, they never take away nerve pain. That is just another whole world, as I am now learning. Anyhoo, that is my medication log for the day
I hope you find something that works. I hurt right now, and don't know what to do about it, but will figure something out.

 
Old 08-26-2004, 10:28 PM   #5
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

betty, work in a hospital, you will see plenty of "old addicts". Especially the chronic pain patients. But, have been around that for five years, you're bound to see it all....

 
Old 08-26-2004, 10:34 PM   #6
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

No, I'm interested in how long some have had to/and or are living with it and what they took/take. Especially with this very specific group of people. I know that there are those that tolerate medication very well, and others that can't take it and live in excruciating pain. I just wondered, where, in the general scheme of things, I fit in. I knew a guy who took 1800mg twice a day of Oxy with Percs for breakthrough, when he had his neck broken, twice. He had to have four surgeries to reconstruct it. He's lucky he didn't die. He is now pain free and off all medication. I'm just curious and interested.

I know there are those that believe in a holistic approach, but I don't believe in it, and I've tried it. It did nothing for me. Not Chiro, acupuncture, Emu oil, Ozone treatments, Sportscreme, aromatherapy, etc. My last choice was meds. So I ask those suffering from long term serious back pain, what do you take and how much? I'd really like to know.

 
Old 08-26-2004, 10:36 PM   #7
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

Have you tried Neurontin for nerve pain?
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Old 08-26-2004, 10:55 PM   #8
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

I am sorry, I have a strange perspective of old. 100 is old to me. Most of the people that I know that are in rest homes or rehab homes are in their seventies or eighties.

Stormy gale: It isn't that I believe or don't believe in the holistic approach, it is all that worked for me. I tried pain meds and nada. I was at my wit's end. I wanted to die. I searched and searched for an answer besides surgery and came up with Prolotherapy. It sounds like a nutty way to do things, but it worked for me. To re-injure yourself to try to heal yourself, on purpose sounded so holistic, as well as sadistic to me.

Everyone that I ever knew that took pain meds long term is gone/deceased either from the meds, the life that they led with the meds, or through giving up. This is the main reason that I am glad that they didn't work for me.

I read that 80% of the human population will experience back problems in their livetimes. Not all of them ended up long term med users. That gives us hope.

If you find yourself at the end of the pain med spectrum, where is there left to go? When I got to Fentynal, because nothing worked, I started backpedaling as fast as I could and went sideways to the Prolo.

Every addict and alcoholic that I have ever known that is down and out, and not all of them are, started with pain in the back and progressed to not finding relief. There comes a time when you either fight it, incorporate the pain and find an even ground, or give up.

What you are taking is not much. I saw on Oprah and shows like 60 min where people were taking up to 100 Oxy a day and tellling their stories. Looks to me like a person can build quite a tolerance to these before it ends. Maybe this is the positive side to prescribing them.

 
Old 08-27-2004, 12:00 AM   #9
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

heya posted here a year ago in agony pain on morphine240 mg at that time since then i have had nucleoplasty no relief them l 3-4 microdiscectomy jan 04 was doing fine but with ddd at l1 throughl5 and spinal stenosis reinjure in may 04 right leg pain is back all overagain but htey have me on 300 micrograms of duragesic fentanyl patches every 72 hours pharmacists are amazed at my size and the dose of meds half of them respojnd with they have never seen that dose before in someone my size i weigh123 or age some say they have never seen that dose before ever so i am kinda scared which do not help with nerve pain i have all four ruptured disc with annular tears and now i am being told i cant be fixed.. i am only 27 with five year old twins any suggestions on how to help!!!!! but that is what i am on

 
Old 08-27-2004, 12:07 AM   #10
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

Betty, I think you misjudge me. I am not trying to put down the nuts and twigs approach, sorry about the term, but it's what we call it around here. Anyway, what I wanted to say was that I did try it and like you with meds, it just ddn't work. I have nothing against it if it works for you. I'm glad you've found something that gives you relief.

My biggest worry, is that when I go and have surgery, since I've been invited into this ADR trial November 1st... If I'm a candidate, and there isn't any reason why I shouldn't be as an IDET is not a preclusion for being accepted, even a failed IDET, I worry about what the pain will be when I come out of surgery all nice and tolerant to the pain meds I'd really probably like to work.

Hence this fight with my new doctor who put me on Avinza, which is a timed release real morphine drug. I don't want to become adapted to Morphine. I told her I didn't but she wanted me to try it. Ok, to satisfy her I took it for three days and it didn't help. It made me sick, I was vomiting, I felt like I was going to get the flu. And those were all side effects of the Avinza. I've had morphine injections when my leg gets bad and it already take 4 to calm it down, and this is just a sciatic nerve that goes nuts on me on occasion. I don't want to spend six weeks in misery after surgery although I know it's inevitable now, and thats if i'm lucky enough to get the ADR. If I get the fusion I'm in big trouble. My failed IDET is now collapsing the disc. Surgery is inevitable now. But I don't want a cascading fusion, which is what is going to end up happening. God I'm scared. There is no way I'm going to be able to live with my pain I have now for much longer. If I have to live with it and it's worse and nothing works for me, I'll just jump off the nearest bridge.

Oh, and yes, I take Neurontin for my nerve pain. It helps, but it makes me loopy. I can't always take it if I have to drive the next day.

Sorry I vented. I'm tired, it's late and I can't sleep because I hurt. My apologies all.

 
Old 08-27-2004, 05:32 AM   #11
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

Studies have proven that people with true chronic pain rarely become addicted to pain medication in the sense that someone who doesn't have pain does, in fact it has been shown that less than 3% ever become addicted.

You can have tolerance levels in which medications have to be adjusted but this is normal for anyone on medications daily, not just those with CP. You can also be dependant on medications, dependance is not the same as addiction. Dependant is when your body is used to a certain level of medications and will go through withdrawals without the medication or a severe onset of pain will occur.

Many individuals who are CP patients who think they are addicted are not, addiction is the need to take more than required or to get high from the medication not to stop the pain and live a normal life. Addicts often doctor shop getting various medications from many doctors. Addicts will buy illegal narcotics off the street someone who is dependant will not.

There's a huge confusion between the two and most individuals just assume that dependance means addiction, it doesn't. What it boils down to is what are you using the medication for and are you abusing it. Abuse is addiction flat out.

Pain meds are not for everyone, some folks pain isn't at a high enough level to need them or some folks just totally object and that is OK too, it is up to the individual to decide what is best for them overall.

As far as the Avinza, the nausea and vomiting most likely would have subsided over time but because it wasn't working at all anyhow I can clearly see why you'd not want to take it. I know I wouldn't if it wasn't working.
Anyhow. I take morphine and vicodin for BT as well as flexeril. I've had CP since I was 10, I am now 38. It has only been recent that I've seen a true PM for my back and various other problems I seem to face. Prior to that I was taking Darvocet for years, and I mean years, nearly 15 because I wasn't aware of a PM and that's all I was offered by the rhuemy outside of times when I have had surgery.

Stormy I sure hope your hope your surgery does work out for you, I know it's so frustrating to be in chronic pain

 
Old 08-27-2004, 08:23 AM   #12
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

Thanks for the support Kissa. I'm no addict. I just want to have less pain. It affects my life to the point that I have no life and that is intollerable to me.

Being unable to do anything I once used to do, like ride horses, beta test online gaming for Sony and Electronic Arts, having an honest JOB, all these things are out of my reach and have been for 12 years. I can live with that.

It's only the last three that its become so debilitating that I decided surgery was the only answer, and I started the long and painful journey with my insurance company for them to come to that conclusion, too. I tried the IDET since everyone was touting it as the miracle cure for a disc like mine and also because it didn't slam the door in my face if I needed a different kind of surgery. Unfortunately it only shocked the nerves and has now weakened the wall so that the disk is collapsing, as I said. It's gotten worse so very fast. And it's still getting worse. Hence my pain is escalating, and I guess that is why I need more medication to at least be able to bend over. My doctor doesn't get it. I need to talk to my PM. They have got to talk to each other. I've been trying to get them to consult for 3 weeks, with no sucess.

I only want the least amount of medication that will allow me to have some sort of life. Be able to drive my car in an emergency. Take care of my animals. (1 cat, 2 dogs,) and there are days I can't even do that because I can't bend over to get the food dishes.

I sound really pathetic don't I? People are out there dying of all sorts of things and I'm whining about pain. I make myself sick sometimes.

Anyway, I was just curious what other people took. There is such an array of medications out there. I was curious. Thats all. Sorry if I've offended anyone in the asking. It was never my intention.

 
Old 08-27-2004, 12:29 PM   #13
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

Hey, sweetie.

I feel for you. I was wondering when someone here would mention ending it all by jumping off a bridge. I'm almost there myself. I'm not as bad off as some of you painwise, but the fact that it goes on and on (for 3 years, really 8) and have lost so many of the things I love to do and need to do, I feel like a disabled burden on my husband and wonder if he would be better off with me gone and buried.

I was taking vicoden for pain before surgery, but I hate narcotics because I was murdered by drug dealers when I was 11, so I have this thing against drugs. Taking a narcotic pain killer sets off post traumatic stress and I go into the hate, fear, stress thing.

Anyways, after the microdiskectomy (and i had a lot of nerve problems and yes, nothing touches the nerve pain) I took percocet and was alarmed that at 6 weeks post op I was still taking it. I've cut them in half and take one only when I'm crazy in pain. I told the doctor at 3 weeks I was taking one and a half percocet and he said that was nothing compared to what others take. I didn't tell him the pain was horrible becaue I was takingn too little. He said I'd be on percocet but tapering almost off or totally by 6 weeks.

Percocets a major narcotic. I was horrified. No other surgery has ever brought on the lasting pain that this back surgery has. He said it's all those nerves in the spine.

At six weeks I still took one percocet a day, usually at night to help me sleep. I don't sleep well anyways due to nightmares and flashbacks. So he gave me 50 mg of tramadol to take - says its not addictive. It makes me puke unless I eat a huge amount of food with it. It does help the pain. Then gave me Vioxx. that did nothing. Celebrex did help but gave bad stomach pain.

Problem is, these pain pills muddle the mind and my memory is nil. I've watched my brother's wife deal with back problems for years and she has taken so many drugs that she doesn't even remember my name or remember what she did the day before. She's loco. I'm afraid of long term side affects from these drugs. I would rather be dead than be like her.

I should take the pills more often, so as not to get all crazy in pain. That just causes stress making the pain worse. But taking the pill causes stress in me too, so I'm in a real pickle. Sometimes I think God gave me this back problem to better understand why people take narcotics - to develop patience and compassion and to stop hating them for it. I know I know. These aren't street drugs. But isn't the affect the same? The guy who killed me was high as a kite and tortured me getting off on it. at least I go into "love" mode when on these and not into "hate" mode.

It also doesn't help that my back problem is probably due to him kicking me. the pain would sometimes be the exact pain I felt when he kicked me with a gun to my head. I pray through each day to get through each day and am thankful to be alive. But living in this pain makes one wonder if it's time to go.

Incredible burdens we are given. I guess we should be thankful for pain pills. Blessings.

 
Old 08-27-2004, 02:41 PM   #14
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

Jesu Ladybird. That's horrible. I don't hardly even know what to say after that except I'm a fool and never should have started this thread. I'm so very sorry I brought all this to the fore. I'm so very sorry for what happened. And I wouldn't worry about Percs. You're post op. You need them to keep the pain down. Don't short-change yourself and let it lead to such horrible depression. We all get depressed when in Chronic pain. The miracle is that we somehow manage to live with it. One day at a time. One day I'm depressed, one day I'm not. But you have issues you need to work out honey, that don't have anything to do with pain. Have you seen a doctor about this? Have you ever told your regular doctor about this? He/She needs to know. There are other drugs out there that are not narcotics. But you should feel comfortable even with narcotics if you need them.

/hugs and again, I'm so very sorry.

 
Old 08-27-2004, 09:19 PM   #15
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Re: What are us back problem people taking for meds?

Stormygale, I took no offense, I thought that the approach that I took to my back problem was pretty far fetched and out there but I was ready to try anything and I did a lot of research on it. I grilled the doctors before doing it and reseached him at great length. Nuts and twigs, that is a good one. This isn't something that is alternative like accupunture or herbs or meditation, this is done by a MD, spine specialist. It is done in a clinical setting. Kooper, a surgeon general had it done. There is a lot of research on it. I am a penny pincher as well as really careful with my body so I had to make sure that I was going to have something done that had really high result rates and that it would not harm me. The success rate is phenomenol.

I hope that you are accepted for the ADR trials and that it works for you. I have researched them also. That would be the step that I would feel most comfortable with if it were me. My husband is holding out for when they approve them for the neck.

What are the odds on the ADR? Two to one I think that I read. Those are some high odds. Can you hold out until they approve them?

I can relate to wanting to jump off of a bridge. There were days that if I had had a gun in the house, I would have used it on myself. This is why I did the therapy that I did.

I know that I have stated this in other threads but you have to weigh in quality versus quanity of life. If you have to take Morphine in order to have quality, then that is what it is there for. You would not believe the numer of ordinary people who use the medication just to be able to live a half way normal life. Addiction is only bad if you are abusing the drugs. In fact, if you take pain meds and get high, I was told by my doctor, then you were not in pain.

The Neurontin will make you loopy but if you ramp up very slowly your body adjusts. You can get up to 3600 mg a day. At one point this is what I was on and was okay with it once I got used to it. It was so expensive though.

I hope that it all works out for you. I know that depression can be a major part of the problem when it comes to pain.

 
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