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    Old 01-05-2006, 01:14 PM   #1
    elizabeth1234
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    First time here/Fioricet withdrawl

    This is a big step for me to be here and I am so very happy and ready to do this. Thanks in advance for listening. I have had severe migraines for about 25 years and have seen a variety of specialists with a variety of results. I left one specialist 4 years ago after he had taken me off Fioricet only to put me on 240 mg of Oxy/day. I left him finally and got off Oxy on my own but it was very difficult, painful and took a very long time. I have been seeing my current specialist since then and have been taking Neurontin twice/day as a preventative and Fioricet, Fioricet with Codeine and Frova for headaches. Of course, I have fallen back to my old ways of taking the fioricet or fioricet with codeine even when I don't have a headache. On average, I'd say I take 4 - 6 /day, sometimes more. The past 25 years have been filled with a cycle of me doing this. That said, this is the only thing that works on my migraines (Oxy didn't even work!) but I take it even when I don't have one or when I'm afraid of getting one, when I'm stressed out, having a bad day... I'm very worried about my liver. I'm tired of abusing this medication and am so determined that I will take it only when I need it. I have not had a headache for three days and took nothing the first two days and was crawling out of my skin last night. I took ativan to sleep last night and today the withdrawl was even worse. I started looking around at groups on-line today and read about a danger of seizures so I took 1/2 a fioricet and an ativan. This made my heart stop pounding and defintiely took the edge off but now I don't know what to do. I would be happier to do this cold turkey but now I'm afraid of the seizures. Can anyone give me some advice on doing this cold turkey, tapering, etc? I would love to hear from anybody! Many thanks.

     
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    Old 01-05-2006, 02:45 PM   #2
    barbaric_yawp
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    Re: First time here/Fioricet withdrawl

    Hi,
    Just wanted to offer congrats to you for ownership of your problem. I have never joined chats frivolously, but when I saw how much 'virtual' support there was out there, I knew it was the right thing to do.

    Take each day one day at a time.

    Good luck, keep posting.

     
    Old 01-06-2006, 07:31 AM   #3
    elizabeth1234
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    Re: First time here/Fioricet withdrawl

    Thanks for the encouragement and kind words. Thought I was feeling a little better today when I got up (what a horrible night's sleep -- I hate this) but then the feeling started again like I'm going to crawl right out of my skin. I'm going to take 1/4 of a pill and see if that helps at all. I really just want to take nothing and get this over with as soon as possible but I'm afraid of what I've read in these different message groups about seizures. Anyway, thanks again -- I appreciate it! I wish I had some idea of how long all this takes...

     
    Old 01-06-2006, 02:24 PM   #4
    Twang51
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    Re: First time here/Fioricet withdrawl

    Hi Elizabeth,

    I'm sorry about your problem. I am a longtime Fioricet addict and I am trying desperately to quit.

    I was at a much higher dosage than you, for a long time and for the same reason. It started as treatment for migraines and it worked when nothing else would. The problem was I really liked this drug and found other reasons for taking it besides my headaches. The tolerance level increased, thus the dosage increased ,before I knew it I had a big problem.

    I have tried to quit many times, this time has been my most sucessful and I really think I can do it. I have read the same things you have on the Internet and it is scary. The bottom line is this drug is bad news and the withdrawal from it is not only difficult but potentially dangerous.

    I have reduced my dosage by tapering off. I have yet to find a formula for doing it but I guess the rule of thumb is - go very slow. It will take a while to be where you want to be. In my case that means absolutely no usage of this drug, regardless of how severe the headaches are.

    It is true you will experience physical and mental withdrawal. Your dosage isn't really that high but I would still suggest trying to taper off very slow. For me, I try to cut back a pill every 2 weeks, I admit there have been days when I have relapsed a little but I start again the next day on the dosage I set out for that week.

    I am a professional male in a highly visbile profession. I really do not want to have to enter a rehab center. That is part of my motivation to beat this thing on my own. I still believe it is bigger than I am and I rely other resources to help me. The 12 step program has been very useful.

    I'm certainly not an authority on this and I'm by far not "out of the woods". But I will do anything to get my life back under control.

    Good luck and please write back and just vent. It really does help.

    Last edited by Twang51; 01-06-2006 at 02:26 PM.

     
    Old 01-07-2006, 06:31 AM   #5
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    Re: First time here/Fioricet withdrawl

    Hi Elizabeth - I've never posted in this section of the healthboards but I read it daily. Your post caught my attention because it sounded like what happened to me many years ago. I was given Fiorecet for an orthopedic injury (whiplash) in the early 80's. It took care of the pain and had the added effect of making me feel like super-woman!! I felt like I had so much energy and I continued to take the drug long after my whiplash subsided. After months of taking this drug at higher and higher dosages I had severe personality changes. I became very paranoid, found myself not able to sleep in my own bed but rather having to sleep in strange places like the bathroom or the staircase!! I became very, very edgy and angry and even suicidal. That drug was seriously bad news for me. When I finally decided to quit I did it cold turkey, not knowing about the possible consequences of stopping suddenly. It only took about 8 hours before I began having siezures. My body stiffened up, I couldn't speak, I started shaking and drooling.....it was a nightmare!! I ended up in the E.R. where a very understanding doc knew exactly what to do. After an overnight stay which included anti-siezure medications, valium and I believe Dilantin (sp?), I was discharged home with a prescription for a weeks worth of the siezure meds. When I finally got that stuff out of my system I swore I'd never touch Fiorecet again, and I never have. My point is: please be very careful when stopping this med cold turkey. The possible siezures that can accompany withdrawal are nothing to play with. I hope you get some medical attention first. And, I'm glad that this medication didn't turn you into the zombie that it turned me into!! All the best - KathyMac

     
    Old 01-08-2006, 09:23 AM   #6
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    Re: First time here/Fioricet withdrawl

    Thank you so much for that. I have not been able to get on-line until today. It's Day 6 and I am very discouraged -- thought this would be faster. Am still feeling HORRIBLE and I'm sure it's because I'm trying to do this too fast. Day #1 and 2 I took nothing. Day #3 I was dying and took a total of 3/4 over the course of the day. Day # 4 and 5 I took 1/4. Today I woke up feeling horrible and have not taken anything yet but your message reminds me that I can't do this so fast no matter how much I would like to. Thank you so much for writing. I guess I can't expect this to be so fast when I've been on it for so many years. My teeth are even throbbing today -- that's a new one. I hope that you can hang in there too and thanks again for the information and encouragement. Elizabeth

     
    Old 01-08-2006, 09:27 AM   #7
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    Re: First time here/Fioricet withdrawl

    Hang in there! I feel bad for you, I had no idea this med is so tough on the body. You are doing a great deal of good for yourself!!!

     
    Old 01-08-2006, 09:32 AM   #8
    elizabeth1234
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    Re: First time here/Fioricet withdrawl

    Thank you so much for the information. I'm so sorry to hear all you went through but it is so, so good for me to hear it today. I am an extremely inpatient person and want things done quickly no matter how unreasonable that is. I'm going to take 1/4 of a pill and see it that helps. I am wondering if my taking the preventative Neurontin (also and anti-seizure drug) is helping me with this. It is truly so helpful to be here and hear stories like yours and the accompanying encouragement. Thanks so much -- Elizabeth

     
    Old 01-08-2006, 09:37 AM   #9
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    Re: First time here/Fioricet withdrawl

    Time, time, time, and I Still relapse. I am only 1 month from last 'take' (struggling on and off for 3 yrs) and still am afraid of relapse.

    Maybe after you wean yourself, get to a doc and get an alt. med. I am on Lamictal (anti-seizure) but it is for my bi polar. Not sure if this is the right route for you, but I could be wrong. It works for me.

     
    Old 01-09-2006, 10:25 AM   #10
    elizabeth1234
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    Re: First time here/Fioricet withdrawl

    Hi Twang51 -- just re-read your reply and wanted to say how helpful it is to do just that. I really, really can't believe how difficult this is -- I just had no idea (stupid me for NOT knowing that.) Funny thing is that for years I have taken prednisone (prescribed) when I've come off of a long bout with headaches so I could stop taking the fiorinal and not get a re-bound headache. All these years, I thought I couldn't tolerate prednisone when it was actaully withdrawl that I was going through. It's prescribed to take for 6 days but I always gave up at 4 days and started taking the fiorinal again and then felt better so I figured it was the prednisone. Can't get over that it had nothing to do with the prednisone. I've never gone this long without taking my usual 1 or 2 - 6/day. I had to take 3/4 yesterday because it was so bad. Today I tried taking 1/2 at once to see how that worked for the day. I'm not too happy with the results. My chest is so heavy and my heart is pounding but I really don't want to take anymore. So, I guess I'm taking you up on the invitation to vent! Hope you're hanging in there. -- Elizabeth

     
    Old 01-09-2006, 12:43 PM   #11
    elizabeth1234
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    Re: First time here/Fioricet withdrawl

    Hi Again Twang 51--Forgot to ask you a question. As you taper off, are you taking it all at once or over the course of the day? I am trying to do 3/4 of one a day at this point (don't know if this will work or not -- my body is not tolerating this very well) but I've been taking it in 1/4's -- I'm wondering if it would be better to take all 3/4 at once in the morning? Breaking it up over the day doesn't seem to be working very well. Any thoughts from your experience?

     
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