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Old 01-31-2012, 09:36 PM   #1
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Withdrawal from Fentanyl Patch to Dilaudid Pain Pump?

I'll be getting a pain pump implanted soon and they'll be using Dilaudid. I'm now using the Fentanyl patch 75mcg. When I did the trial they said don't worry, there won't be any withdrawal. I kept telling them how sensitive I am. I did have withdrawal, but it was only because it took a while for the new patch to take effect after they removed the trial pump with morphine (24 hour trial).

So I'm really nervous about this. I've tried cutting a very small bit of the patch off (it's adhesive, not gel, I would never cut a gel patch) and get some withdrawal just from that. They think it's like a 1:1 thing and shouldn't be a problem, or if they start slow they'll give me enough of the patch to make up for it, but I still think I'll be in withdrawal because they're different meds in different places.

Any experiences or advice?

 
Old 02-01-2012, 07:20 AM   #2
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Re: Withdrawal from Fentanyl Patch to Dilaudid Pain Pump?

I didn't have a patch but have cut down pain meds and w/d from lexapro (VERY hard symptoms....very diff though from the pain meds). I'd recommend getting a sleep aid....it helped a LOT to use if for a few nights since I got nasty creepy-crawlies on all four limbs and couldn't sleep on my own. Hot showers helped too. As did talking to the nurse for advice on how to cut back (I'd tried dropping from 20 oxycotin AM and PM by cutting the PM....too much change, MUCH better when she had me use 10s and do 10d at 20AM/10PM, 10 at 10/10 and 10 at 10AM/0PM). Maybe you can step to a smaller dose patch as you transition.

 
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Old 02-01-2012, 03:35 PM   #3
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Re: Withdrawal from Fentanyl Patch to Dilaudid Pain Pump?

I've gone down from many psych meds and some pain meds. The withdrawal is always the same, just varies in severity according to the med and amount. Pain meds are as bad for me as anything. Problem with the patch is even going down 12.5 mcg is a big jump, especially at a lower dose. I can try Ambien but as you said just for a few days otherwise I'll have to come off of that. I'm already taking a pretty large dose of Klonopin for anxiety so I can't take too much more of that.

You'd think there would be something that would just work, but then I suppose that would just fuel addicts and abusers.

 
Old 02-01-2012, 05:51 PM   #4
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Re: Withdrawal from Fentanyl Patch to Dilaudid Pain Pump?

I found a lot of mental peace in deciding I was "dependent" instead of "addicted"...the former is just a reality of the body but the latter felt charged with judgment that those of us who use meds for their true reasons do not deserve.

Yes, the Ambien is better for just a couple nights. I will say that when I did it too long, the only symptom of w/d was not being able to sleep for a few nights (some OTC helped me step down)...not the horrid shakes i got going off the pain meds or the nausea/oil-filled-head i got going off lexapro. Annoying to not sleep but a much easier go. And ideally you only NEED it for the first nights and then you've adjusted to the change.

 
Old 02-01-2012, 09:38 PM   #5
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Re: Withdrawal from Fentanyl Patch to Dilaudid Pain Pump?

Thanks for the reply. I HATE it when people misuse the term 'addicted'. I know I am not and never thought I was because I had the terms straight. Funny how people think that those on certain medications are automatically addicted while they're drinking 3-4 cups of coffee a day, not realizing they're dependent. I was truly meaning addicts and abusers, the latter being like those who binge or misuse.

 
Old 02-02-2012, 10:29 AM   #6
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Re: Withdrawal from Fentanyl Patch to Dilaudid Pain Pump?

I always said "addicted" but rushed to add that it was medically prescribed for REAL pain. In a way, I think it is HARDER when it is a real issue....not only do you have w/d BUT the pain can come up too!

 
Old 02-02-2012, 01:16 PM   #7
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Re: Withdrawal from Fentanyl Patch to Dilaudid Pain Pump?

Good point. Never thought about that. Although it puts us at the disadvantage. Can't wait until this is all over with.

 
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