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Old 03-24-2009, 10:56 PM   #1
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Vicodin and Driving

My husband wants to drive 17 hours to Florida for a vacation with a herniated disc. His doctor prescribed vicodin for the pain and he believes after taking the vicodin, he will be able to make the drive with me, our son, and the son of a good friend as passengers in the car. Is he crazy or am I just being paranoid?

 
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Old 03-25-2009, 03:28 PM   #2
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ozzybug HB Userozzybug HB Userozzybug HB Userozzybug HB User
Re: Vicodin and Driving

No- you are not crazy. If your husband has not been taking Vicodin for an extended period of time, thus allowing his body to adjust and be used to this medication, then it's not safe for him to drive a vehicle.

Now, I take Norco which has Vicodin in it, and have been taking it for several years now, so when I take it, it doesn't alter my judgement or reaction time. It's like taking a Motrin. I take the Norco, don't get any euphoria or energy boost, but my pain levels decrease, you know what I mean?

Is it possible for you to drive with him making sure the map/directions are clear for you to drive?

I just wouldn't want to take any chances with my own kids and especially not someone else's chidlren, because if something were to happen, it would be a bad situation.

Now, if we are making a long road trip, I let my husband do the driving because I do take these medications. I still can't relax because my hubby has no sense of direction and I still end up basically getting us there, just not behind the wheel...haha

This is just my opinion, but if I were you, I'd be the one driving and let hubby be the co-pilot. Hope you guys have a great trip!

 
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Old 03-25-2009, 04:20 PM   #3
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Re: Vicodin and Driving





Driving under the influence. I agree with Ozzybug on NOOOOOOOOoooooo!

It tells you on the lable. Don't get near or operate heavy machinery...

Wouldn't want that nightmare on my mind; if I lived...Let alone replay that in my mind for the rest of my life . all the people involved...the families that are gonna pay for this in the name of Vicoden !!! Oh,my word!!!
No one intends on having an accident or killing anyone.
What's he want 15min. of fame via the News cast. At everbodies expence ???
What is there some kind of Gold Pendant or Wreath to wear over his head in accomplishing this...

Here's that LOVE thing again...


Last edited by Drain Bamaged; 03-25-2009 at 04:28 PM.

 
Old 03-25-2009, 05:18 PM   #4
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Re: Vicodin and Driving

Well,
It depends on how much it effects him with making him drowsy, sedated, dizzy, etc. He could try taking them a day or two before the trip and see how they effect him. It might come down to you having to do more of the driving. I can tell you that I am on a lot of strong medications and I drive everyday. However, if I was involved in an accident I could be charged with OMVI in the state of Ohio. It is pretty much the case in every state now too.

brian

 
Old 03-25-2009, 11:00 PM   #5
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Re: Vicodin and Driving

Quote:
Originally Posted by ledge3316 View Post

Is he crazy or am I just being paranoid?
He's crazy. He shouldn't even be driving 17 hours without meds, much less with them.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ozzybug View Post

I just wouldn't want to take any chances with my own kids and especially not someone else's chidlren, because if something were to happen, it would be a bad situation.
Exactly! I dare say that if they knew he was taking this type of medication and driving, they wouldn't get in the car with him.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ozzybug View Post

This is just my opinion, but if I were you, I'd be the one driving and let hubby be the co-pilot. Hope you guys have a great trip!
A great idea.


Regards,

Ex

 
Old 03-26-2009, 12:31 PM   #6
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Re: Vicodin and Driving

I take vicodin daily and it has never made me tired, drowsy or interfered with my driving. On my label it says to use caution before driving/machinery as it MAY cause drowsiness.

I asked my doctors about this and they told me it effects each person differently and to use caution at first. One person may feel very groggy and dizzy while someone like me... it does not.

My advice to you....see how the medication affects him. Will he be honest with you? My husband was on percocet once and he was so out of it. There is no way I would let my children in a car with him while he was on that medication.

Good luck and I hope the medication does help some of your husbands pain.

I also wanted to add: I am not sure of your situation, but airline tickets are really low right now. One airline is having a $49 each way sale. There is no way I could ever be in a car for 17 hours. Even though me might think the meds are helping, he might regret sitting for that much time. I would hate for him to get stuck somewhere or be in so much pain that he doesn't enjoy his trip.

10sox

Last edited by 10sox; 03-26-2009 at 12:34 PM.

 
Old 03-27-2009, 05:38 AM   #7
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Re: Vicodin and Driving

To be honest, it's the 17 hours of driving with a herniated disc that worries me...depending on how long he's been taking the vicodin. If he's been on it for a number of months steadily, it's unlikely that it would affect him that much - but if it does at all, life is too important to take the risk.
His doctor is really the best person for you both to talk to - for a number of reasons. Is he ok to drive? Are you ok with him driving and if you're not, it's probably better that he doesn't anyway...who wants to go on a holiday where you are stressed the whole time for the safety of your family?
If he is not affected by the Viocodin, I'd be very worried about his herniated disc and sitting for that long - what if it gets worse and compresses nerves and he ends up wose? Or is the driving going to put him in so much pain that he's not going to enjoy the holiday either?
It's difficult being in your situation especially when you have a family to look after too.
I hope that you work it all out and have a wonderful trip - sounds like you could do with a holiday

 
Old 03-27-2009, 10:38 AM   #8
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Re: Vicodin and Driving

I don't mean to preach here, but we have to all remember that "how" it makes us feel is really irrelevant. God forbid, but if there is some accident and controlled meds are in one's system, one can only expect it to become a potential criminal AND liable situation. And, the more one takes, the worse the legal outcome will be.

Just because meds come from a physician doesn't mean anyone is less liable for their actions. Legally, there is NO difference between driving drunk and driving under the influence of meds.

Regards,

Ex

 
Old 03-27-2009, 11:23 AM   #9
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Re: Vicodin and Driving

Quote:
Originally Posted by Executor View Post
I don't mean to preach here, but we have to all remember that "how" it makes us feel is really irrelevant. God forbid, but if there is some accident and controlled meds are in one's system, one can only expect it to become a potential criminal AND liable situation. And, the more one takes, the worse the legal outcome will be.

Just because meds come from a physician doesn't mean anyone is less liable for their actions. Legally, there is NO difference between driving drunk and driving under the influence of meds.

Regards,

Ex
Oh, Thank-You !!! ~ ~ Thank-You !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Oh, it doesn't effect me...It effects you enough to take the pain away. Then, hence your effected. I take this much..... I felt as if I'd gone into brag-zzzzzz-ville on how much of what...who takes.... That was defeating the responsiblity of Meds. and Driving...
I've really learned from this......

Best Regards to You all......
~

Last edited by Drain Bamaged; 03-27-2009 at 11:56 AM.

 
Old 03-27-2009, 07:45 PM   #10
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Re: Vicodin and Driving

I remember reading a heated thread about this very same topic a while back (not sure if it was this board or not). People tend to be very passionate about their point-of-view. Unfortunately any drug can affect your driving performance....including over-the-counter cold medicine. However, driving with cold medicine in your system is not likely to get you a DUI (but I have heard in some rare cases, that it can)

With that said, you husband would have to be VERY confident that his driving is not being impaired from the vicodin (and not sure if that is possible with just starting the medication). If he were to cause an accident that resulted in bodily harm, he would probably be required to get a blood test. And even if his driving was not impaired by the vicodin (maybe he was changing the station on the radio and that was the true cause) he would be charged with a DUI. (one could argue the vicodin caused him not to think cleary and look at the dial too long, but most likely he was just doing something that many have done without being on pain meds...just changing the station)

There are many, many people who take narcotic pain medication who are able to drive and function in society. Unfortunately, there are also many who abuse it. To me, it's not really black and white. There is a HUGE gray area. Is it safer to drive in debilitating pain where all you can focus and think about is your pain and then not be able to fully apply your brake petal due to the pain? Some may say yes. Is it really possible to give up all driving when you have a family to provide for? Some may say yes, some no. Is it any more dangerous than talking on your cell phone while driving? Is it really possible that one can drive with pain medication and not be effected enough to become a hazard on the road? This is the million dollar question.

Back to your question. I would have a hard time feeling comfortable driving such a long distance with your husband. I know from experience that being in a car that long with a bad back is not a good combination. Add the uncertainty of this drug in the mix, and that would be enough for me to have a serious conversation with him. Driving down the road to the grocery store and driving cross country seem to be on a different level.

Again, good luck and hopefully you will find a safe way for all of you to travel on your vacation.

 
Old 03-27-2009, 10:30 PM   #11
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Re: Vicodin and Driving

Quote:
Originally Posted by 10sox View Post

Driving down the road to the grocery store and driving cross country seem to be on a different level.
Very good point.

Many of us may think that the meds don't affect us, but in reality, they do....More than we care to admit, or realize. Driving long distances is already tough enough....The effects of meds can be the differentiator...Not quite quick enough reaction, nod off for a second, or a number of other circumstances.

I find it very interesting that most pain contracts today contain significant language re: driving. Although they often say something about being able to drive, they also contain language saying the patient is ultimately responsible and that one should be cognizant of the risks associated with driving under the influence of medication. It's very clear that the PM Physicians are putting this in writing, and in a contract form, to mitigate any potential liability for themselves. Therefore, it falls squarely on the patient.

Regards,

Ex

 
Old 03-28-2009, 12:30 AM   #12
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Re: Vicodin and Driving

Maybe I'm not the poster child for sober driving, but I've never had a problem, caused an accident, received any type of traffic violation, or anything relating to driving while on pain medication. I drive everyday, sometimes for up to 6 hours straight, on Oxy 15's (or equivalent). Does this go against what is on the side of the bottle? Yes. Do I sometimes feel that I'm doing something wrong? Yes. Do I make a conscious effort to focus more on driving safely because I am on meds? Yes. Does any of this validate me taking risks with my life and others around me? No.

Honesty: hey, it's a message board, why not?

JB

 
Old 03-28-2009, 06:54 AM   #13
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Re: Vicodin and Driving

This is certainly a difficult topic. Perhaps in Australia things are different but I'd like to put a couple of questions forward:
How much driving is too much?
Should anyone on narcotics drive at all?
Our labels read 'This medication may cause drowsiness and may increase the effects of alcohol. If affected, do not drive a motor vehicle or operate machinery'.
Many people cannot afford not to drive here (because of distance and lack of public transport) but I know that it's not illegal to be found with narcotics in your blood stream provided they are prescibed for you. Anti-depressants have been found to affect spatial and depth perception to a higher degree than narcotics (once a person has reached a stable dose). I don't know the answers to these questions, I wonder about what is right and wrong and I do what 'I know' to be right. There are a lot of questions that I don't know the answers to in regards to this topic. It is important though.

 
Old 03-28-2009, 07:43 AM   #14
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Re: Vicodin and Driving

Any number of medications can make you sleepy and are marked to indicate you should not take while driving until you know how it affects you. It can be anything from an antihistimine to blood pressure or heart medications. I would avoid driving for two or three days until you are used to the medication. I wouldn't try to make a 17 hour trip with me as the sole or primary driver, but I drive back and forth to work every day and don't hesitate to drive to do errands etc. It's a fine line for anybody taking medication of any sort that can make you sleepy, not just pain medication.

Tigg.

 
Old 03-28-2009, 09:04 AM   #15
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Re: Vicodin and Driving

Quote:
Originally Posted by tiggertoo2174 View Post

It's a fine line for anybody taking medication of any sort that can make you sleepy, not just pain medication.
Absolutely.

I think the bottom line with all of this is that we're all ultimately responsible for our actions, and have to make the best decisions we can given our circumstances. And God forbid, if something were to happen, those with meds in the their system are going to face a much bigger legal wrath than otherwise....Regardless of "how" you feel, or how long you've been taking them, what the Doc says, and etc. The law is the law.

Regards,

Ex

 
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