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Old 05-11-2008, 11:51 AM   #1
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driving

just wondering, i can't drive right now because of my range of motion just is not there, but sence my body is so used to the vicodon is it ok to drive while taking it? esp. sence its for pain not a buzz effect or is it a big nono? i wound never ever want to endanger any one...or i'm just going to need to exept other transportation?
ladybuggy

 
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Old 05-11-2008, 12:35 PM   #2
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Re: driving

I personally don't drive and feel I should not behind the wheel period. However, with that said there are many people that do get behind the wheel and do it everyday without any problem on more medication then what I take.

One has to keep in mind that if you DO drive and were to be in an accident or you are pulled over that your blood can be taken and they can charge you with driving under the influence of drugs. Its a risk and you have to decide if it is worth the risk or not.

 
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Old 05-11-2008, 12:43 PM   #3
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Re: driving

that just answered my question thanks pepper, i was hoping some one would say oh no it effects us completly diff. i'm not willing to take thoses risks with anyones life so i guess untell i get "well" i'll just figure things out
thanks again pepper

Last edited by ladybuggy02; 05-11-2008 at 12:45 PM.

 
Old 05-11-2008, 05:16 PM   #4
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Re: driving

I'm on a combo of 9 diff meds including anti-psych's and pain meds, and I have been cleared by my pain docs, neurologists, and pdocs for driving. I think it just depends on how you react to your meds and what your docs say. A person by person basis.

 
Old 05-11-2008, 05:19 PM   #5
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Re: driving

i guess i could check with my dr. and get some sort of note? if he feels that i'm able?? its worth asking him if he feel i'm able other wize i'm parked also untell my motion is better..
ladybuggy

Last edited by ladybuggy02; 05-11-2008 at 05:26 PM.

 
Old 05-11-2008, 09:04 PM   #6
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Re: driving

I agree that it is more of a case by case basis. I understand how the laws read, and I know that the police can charge you with a DUI, but I've always felt that I am more inclined to drive less, when my pain is high, as opposed to covered. If my pain was off the charts, I would have no range of motion and my reflexes would be way off.

For me, if I felt like the meds impaired my judgement, then I would not get behind the wheel. I don't drive very often anyway, because I no longer work and I am home more often than not. On the weekends or in the evening, my hubby always drives. I only drive with him in the car, if we've been out and he's had more than 2 beers. I hate it too, because he turns into Hyacinth Bucket (British sitcom character) and starts telling me to slow down about 200 yards before the traffic light.

I always felt that I could straighten it out with assistance from my doc. Maybe I'm being a little over confident, but I tend to drive very safely anyway. At my age, there really isn't anywhere that I need to be that fast. I guess it does vary from person to person. If your meds tend to make you a little woozy or sleepy, then it's probably best not to drive at that time.

 
Old 05-12-2008, 12:02 AM   #7
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Re: driving

Hey Kmit, Regardless of how well we ecome acomadated to our meds or what your doctor may tell, It won't prevent you from being ccharged should the police have cause to pull you over. There are other scenarios too that can come up, If your in an accident and taken to the hospital by ambulance, one iof the first things they do is a tox screen and any substance that could e considered impairing, whether acomadated or not, would leave you in a position of volnerabilty. You can be charged for driving while under the influence of your medication. You could always spend thousands fighting it, drag tyour doc into court and ask him to testify, but should you actually win because your doc says you have taken these medss so long you ntot impaired, it would be presedent settng. The law doesn't ask how you feel while on your meds or while under the influence, the shere fact you are under the influence would be enough to charge you and convict.

It's a very touchy subject for some, but the law is pretty black and white.

I'm not judging anyone that has to live with pain and medication, but they should know the risk and your doctors OK means absolutely nothing in the legal sense. If they did start dismissing cases based on a docs opinion about whether you are impaired or not would mean the police and courts would have to apply some kind of flexable standard for the patients who's docs said it was OK. That's not going to happen. Has the doc ever been in the car with you on a 3 hour ride? How does he know how well you an drive? Everyone under the inmfluence of any prescription drug, impaired or not would make the same claim.

How many people that drink feel perfectly fine up untill they have an accident or get arested for DUI. I'm sure a longterm alcoholics may apear much more sober at the lowest levels permited, but being a 20 year alcoholic doesn't mean they adjust the law to allow for accomadtion. It's great your doc seems to understand the concept of accomadation, but you need to know your state laws more than you need your docs opinion. If your state includes any substance that may impair under the law, your docs opinion isn't going to change the law.

Don't shoot the messanger but there is no wayy for a doc to say that you weren't impaired by the meeds your taking unless he's in the car when you get pulled over. Seing you bright eyed and bushy tailed 3 weeks ago has nothing to do with your condition at the time of a police encounter or accident. If your pupils look smalll, If you drift across a solid line changing the chanel on the rradio and you apear impaired to a police officer by subtle indicators like constricted pupils, glassy eyes, etc etc, he has cause to do a field sobriety test and based on your performance you will be treated like anyone else.

I don't know what the answer is for ythose that feel they must travel or drive as part of their job, but the job will probably come to an end when you get a DUI. I've signed PM contracts that include MVA's if charged with DUI is cause for termination from a PM practice not to mention the legal problems your going to have. I do think it's wrong for a doc to give partients such a false sense of safety and well beng if the patient decides to drive while on these meds because there isn't aprovisionin any law I have ever seen or heard about that says it's OK as long as the doc does. On the flip side I have read some terible stories of spouses being killed as passengers in the car someone under the influence was driving and not only charged with DUI but with the death involved.

Just because the meds alow us to function better doesn't mean we are functioning at a legal standard or at the same level as somene that takes no medication at all. The fact I can be charged is also in my contract.

The laws answer the legal question, it's up to the individual how great a risk they are willing to take, not only legal wise but safety wise.

Good luck, Dave

 
Old 05-12-2008, 08:11 AM   #8
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Re: driving

Having to drive or not being able to is one of my biggest worries.
I realize that noone should be driving on these meds. I am sure it can be different for everyone, but a good question would be is there or what is a safe time frame for being able to drive after taking your meds?
My surgeon pretty much insisted that I see this new doctor who is a distance from where I live, & the first thing my husband brought up was his concern for my driving, first there are days I just can't not alot of ROM & the pain is to much, then of course the pain meds. We explained that everyone works & it is extremely difficult ot find a ride. He pretty much said I had to try it. I have also brought it up the the new doctor & plan on bringing it up again, only because I have to be there on a weekly basis & they are strict with cancellations. All I can do it really try to rest the day before & day of, & try to take my meds in a decent time frame. Very hard to do. It is hard to get them to understand I just don't have anyone to take me on a regular basis.
I don't go near as much as I use to & never when I feel the meds are not working or effecting my judgment.
cmp, I go through the same with my husband, he stops in a pub for a couple with his friends & needs a ride if he has more then that. I have now warned him if I am having a bad day or whatever he better have a ride home. The pub is right next door to the police department & heck he thinks I drive bad no matter what. This drivng issue has always been one of the toughest things for me to deal with. Sammy

 
Old 05-12-2008, 09:39 AM   #9
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Re: driving

I'm a Paralegal, so I'm pretty much up on the legalities of the issues. I also have a seizure disorder and have been cleared by the NCDOT to drive while on my current meds. My case is reviewed with my Neurologist every 2 years depending on the results of my EEG/EKG. And I've actually been in an accident (hit by a drunk driver last year) while on all my current meds, 9 of them, including Fentanyl, Ultram, Topomax, Seroquel, Zoloft,and Lamictal and didn't have a problem with the ER or the state. So once again I believe it's more of a case by case scenario and depends alot on total disclosure before hand, but that of course is my opinion.

 
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