I'm a noob to this sort of thing, so first off, please be patient or pardon any faux pas should I deliver any
Brief background: had a pretty severe injury in a bike accident 24y ago which left me with a torn thoracic nerve and some other (very painful) damage in my back. I went down all the routes, exploring all the options and different avenues which presented the slightest solution. Unfortunately, the one surgery option that could possibly cure my pain brought only a 50% chance of success and a greater chance of paralysis.
For years I went to a pain clinic where I would receive blocks, I would get 3 weeks of no pain and 2 weeks where my neck was ridiculously sore from the needles. A mishap one day with the electrocution when the doc was finding the proper nerve to block left me mentally unable to face that again. It was horrible.
From there I started back on Meds (282 MEPS, etc) but got tired of living life in a haze. About 15y ago I just stopped all my Meds and lived med free and just took the pain. It was horribly difficult. I had to struggle to smile and talk and every facet of life was a strain, but I pressed on. My pain threshold got so high that I no longer needed anesthetic when getting fillings at the dentist. I had an accident with a circular saw and they simply sewed it up with over 60 stitches without same. It was quite bizarre.
I noticed, however, that the joy in life was almost non-existent. i found myself laying in bed at night, tears running down my face, wishing I was dead - almost on a daily basis - just to be free of the pain. Then, about 8 or 9 years ago, my doc talked me into trying some Percocet 5/325s for my pain. I've been taking them ever since (2, 3-4 times a day). My quality of life is amazing. Most days are pretty good, although I still have days where I suffer a fair bit, but nowhere like it was. My kids all love the change in having a dad who can move better and is happy and can smile. And my pain threshold has come back down to more 'normal' levels.
My question is this: does anybody know what effects acetaminophen has on a body at this level - long term? Also, my doc asked if I wanted to try switching to a fentanyl patch... Any thoughts on if that is comparable, and if so, how many mcg should it be?