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    Old 05-27-2004, 11:03 PM   #1
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    HELP - Now what do I do?

    I am new to this area of the forums and I would like to share my situation with you all to see if you have any suggestions or thoughts.

    A little info about me.. I am 28 and I live in Texas. I have been diagnosed with fibromyagia(1996), arthritus(1998), facets sydrome(2003) and joint disease(2004). I have had problems with Migraines since age 6. I also have ADHD.

    Last year I injured the cervical part of my spine in a fall - MRI showed protruding discs on c-3 and c-4. Up until this injury - for years I took Ultram 50mg, 3 times a day, off and on as needed for pain for the fibro., aurthritis and migraine. When I was injured my family doctor prescribed Lortab 7.5 to take every 4 to 6 hours as needed for pain. This worked much better than the Ultram but I was still having pain without medication. After 3 months of having recovery difficulty he referred me to a pain management doctor.

    When I went this pain management doctor he prescribed me Lortab 7.5 to take every 6 hours and cyclobenziprine . He also set me up for physical therapy and got me set up with a protable muscle stimulator. These things helped but I would do well for a week or so then I would relaps with muscle spasm, pain and nothing would releive it other than the Lortab and hot showers.

    Well I had been on the Lortab for 6 months and I decided that was a long time and I was having to take more to get the same releif. So I talked to my doctor about going back on Ultram. I told him I was afraid of getting addicted to the Lortab becuse it was not as effective. He said I could not get addicted to the Lortab in the dose I was taking. I never had any withdraw from Ultram when I switched to Lortab so I figured it would be the same going back to the Ultram. This was NOT the case! I tried taking the Ultram the next day and I was so sick I ended up feeling like I had the flu. I was in major pain, coughing, diareah, headache, runny nose, watery eyes, fatigue, chills and even fever. I tried to call my pain management doctor and no luck. So went back to my family practice doctor and he gave me Lortab to take and I was fine. I finally got a hold of the pain management nurse and she said I can not take Lortab any more. I also found out that Ultram is not compatible with my new ADHD medication Adderall - taking them both at the same time can cause seizure!!! I also explained this to the pain management nurse and she just said no sorry no more Lortab. So then I decided to get a referral for a new pain management doctor but they said it could be weeks for me to get in. So now what do I do when my prescription is gone! I was taking 4 pills a day and now I am only needing to take 1 or 2 at night and I have been able to keep it at this level for over a month now. I have found other ways to deal with my pain in the day but I can only cope for so long and then I just break! I have gone to the hospital from the pain and I had medication but did not take it because my doctor said no more but I just could not handle it.As soon as I told this to the ER doctor they gave me Lortab and I was fine! The ER doctor said you can't just stop taking Lortab and was upset about my situation. ER doc said if you have Lortab and you need it then take and find another pain management doctor.

    Everytime I have the severe pain my blood pressure goes WAY up like 159 over 96 and normally it is 117 over 74. What if I have to take Lortab once a twice a day for my pain for the rest of my life? I guess no doctor would allow that so now what can I do? What am I going to do if my medication runs out - end up in the ER! I can't afford that! OHH please help!

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    Old 05-28-2004, 10:43 PM   #2
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    Re: HELP - Now what do I do?

    I'm confused: is the pain management doctor mad at you? Why does he not want you on the Lortab? Is the nurse prescribing for you or is she giving you messages that are from the doctor?

    You said: ' I tried to call my pain management doctor and no luck.'
    Did he decide that since you went back on Ultram that you no longer needed the Lortab?

    I would think that the question to ask yourself is do you really want and need to be on the Lortab for the rest of your life? I am living on Oxycontin, but I wish someone had told me in the very beginning that it would be forever. I don't know if I could have done anything different, but maybe I could have found another way. This may be the last chance you have to take a different route. I know the pain of fibromyalgia and the pain of a slipped cervical disc. So I believe you if you say you have to have the Lortab. If that is the case, then you need one doctor who will work with you. Can your family doctor prescribe for you until you get into a new pain doctor?

    Who is treating your ADHD? Can they help? Good luck!

    Last edited by it never ends; 05-28-2004 at 10:47 PM.

    Old 05-29-2004, 05:46 PM   #3
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    Re: HELP - Now what do I do?

    I agree with the previous poster--I am a bit confused too.

    Have a frank talk with your family doctor about the situation with the Lortab. I would ask him to refer you to a different pain management doctor. My experience with pm's is that they don't like to prescribe pain meds; they much prefer to do costly injections.

    I would assume you have seen a spine specialist? If not, you need to do that.

    I want to assure you that you won't become an "addict" if you take Lortab or any other pain medicine strictly as prescribed and only when needed. You get addicted when you take them to get a buzz, or because you feel better, or because of an emotional need. Taking them properly will lead to physical dependency which is quite different. It's like people who take blood pressure medication--their bodies need it! You need it to control pain, so you take pain pills. This is not to say that if you quit suddenly you won't have withdrawals. You will! Your body becomes used to them, so you have to taper off them slowly.

    Good luck to you and I hope you find a good, compassionate doctor soon who will make things clear for you and prescribe the proper dosage of the right meds to help you.

    2 lami's, 3 fusions
    bone spur removal
    cerv. fusion, 1 level
    morphine pump

    Old 05-30-2004, 03:16 PM   #4
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    Re: HELP - Now what do I do?

    Hi CYA, Did you sign a PM agreement with the PM doc, To use one pharmacy, not to seek treatment for the same condition from other doctors and except prescrpyion for the same condition he's treating you for? They usually explain about dependnece and refill policies and what happens if you screw up, you get booted cold turkey..

    It sounds like your GP referred you to PM, The PM doc took over prescribing lortab, 4 a day. Then you decided to discontinue your Pain management docs treatment plan and go with what you wanted and tried Ultram again, when that didn't work, Instead of talking things over with your PM doc you went back to your GP for more Lortab?

    Then when your pain spiked you went to the ER and were prescribed more lortab. . Honestly i sounds like you were using 3 differebt docs to obtain lortab in the same month for the same problem. That is doctor shopping and reason for anyone to discharge you as a patient. Even before you went to the ER, If you decided not to follow the PM docs instructions , did your own thing, it didn't work so you bipassed the PM again and went back to the GP for Lortab. Even using just 2 docs is doc shopping.

    You said you had lortab at home, what was the point of going to the ER and excepting another script for lortab. I understand you are young, your experience with PM is limited but you can't start with a PM doc, decide you don't want to follow his treatment plan, make a decision without talking to him,Get mad because you weren't calledback in 24 hours so you went back to the GP to prescribe more Lortab.

    It does look very bad. It basically looks like you will only follow directions of your PM doc unless yo agree with him or feel like it. If you wanted to try to discontinue lortab, you PM doc should have been the one to work out a taper and an alternatve treatment plan. However you never gave your PM doc the courtesy to explain what was going on and then when you decided you did want more Lortab you called him back for more pain meds.

    You can't decide to adjust your own treatment and then have a doc believe that if he prescribes another med you won't do the same thing if you don't like it.

    For example, You didn't like the lortab so he prescribed percocet, percocet didn't work for you so instead of going back to the PM doc because he didn't return a phone call in 24 hours you took matters in your own hands and went back to the GP for lortab. The PM doc has to have control of all aspects of your PM, not just the parts you feel like complying with. If you need a change you go through the PM doc, not cut the PM doc out of the loop, get what you want from your GP and then expect your PM doc to step back in and take over your care untill the next time you decide you want to change things and use another doc. I would guess this is why you are no longer your PM docs patient.

    Your GP should have known better and told you to bring up any change in the PM docs treatment plan with the PM doc and should have said he can't treat your pain or prescribe any meds now that your care is in the hands of the PM doc.

    Basically you can't use the PM doc when you feel like it and then go back to your GP because he didn't return a call quick enough. I would think you PM doc has patients that literally can't get out of bed with out the help of round the clock medicaition with the most potent opiates.

    Turning your decision to stop taking lortab into an emergency that he has to respond to when you admit you still have lortab, what was the point of even calling him, to ask if you could start taking the lortab again. That's what you were supposed to be doing anyway. So what was the emergency that he had to call you back for. If you call after hours, calling this an emergency, It's easy to understand why your PM doc will no longer prescribe meds if you won't follow his directions but than ask his help to fix the problem you created by changing his treatment plan.

    Then you compounded the mistake by excepting lortab from your GP and then the ER. SO after all that, You still want to find a doc that will prescribe Lortab.

    PM docs wouldn't consider a patient that wants one or two lortab a day in such desperate need they have to prescribe opiates to restore quality of life. There are other modalities and meds that will help without having to be dependent. They take the toughest cases where nothng else worked and you agree to follow his treatment plan, not discontinue at your own whim, then call and complain, then become impatient and go to your GP for more lortab.

    Your GP likely called the PM doc after you left and ask what was going on, He /she referred you to a PM doc, whay are you bouncing around now from doc to doc, starting and stopping the treatment plans of docs. If you can't be compliant no doc will except you as a patient.

    As far as the ER doc saying you can't just stop taking 2 lortab a day, That's redicous. Yes you will experience the mildest form of withdrawal, it may last a whole 3 days. I've seen patients get booted from PM who took several hundred mgs of OxyContin or Morphne a day with nothing to help them go through withdrawal because they were not compliant.

    Once your PM doc learns you have returned to your GP asking for more lortab, I would expect you to be cut off. CP patients don't have the luxery of making mistakes, loosing even a days worth of meds, runnng out early or deciding to alter their docs treatment plan.

    You are either in so much pain you can't function without these meds or your not. If you decided on your own you didn't need them or want to be dependent on them, It kind of blows your integrety because I imagine in order to recieve your lortab from the pain management doc you went into great detail about how severe your pain is and how close you are to the breaking point and then turn around and say, nah.. I don't think I want to be dependent so the relief isn't worth being dependent. If the relief isn't worth the price you have to pay "dependence" then the level of pain doesn't justify the use of opiates.

    I wouldn't expect a PM doc to say it's OK to change your mind every other month and then ask for help with withdrawal , and then ask to reiniate opiates. That's rediculous.

    "It Never ends" hit the nail on the head. You are at a point where you could easily taper off 2 lortab a day. But if you pursue pain management and tell a PM doc you can't live with your presnt level of pain, the next step will be low dose long acting meds around the clock. If you think you were dependent on 2 lortab a day wait untill you have taken OxyContin or MScontin around the clock for 30 days. Your level of dependence will be so high, that even if you pain disapered how can you discontinue these meds if you thought what you went through discontinung 2 lortab a day was severe. That would be nothing compared to coming off 60 mgs of OxyContin or 90 mgs of morphine that you body has become acustomed to having around the clock 24/7.
    The next stop would be detox in a psych facility.

    There are at least 2 dozen non opiate methods to manage pain, I know this because I have tried more than that many over 8 years and 3 spinal surgeries that failed before opiates were even offered as a way to manage chronic pain. I was bedridden, There isn't a viable surgical option unless I'm ready for another 12+ hour surgery where they do a 360 8 level fusion and run a rod from hip to hip to build a new fusion on.

    You really are at a point where you must be compliant and if your pain doesn't justify being dependent on opiates taken around the clock, you need to look into non opiate methods to manage pain. All PT is not alike. There are a half dozen methods I can think of off the top of my head. But no doc is going to prescribe 2-4 lortab a day for the rest of your life.

    EVeryone would feel better after a hard days work if they had lortab to take when they get home., That doesn't mean everyone should go to a PM doc so they feel better after a long day at work. PM is for people that have not responded to conventional treatment, surgery or any other modality before opiates are used.

    IF your PM doc was audited, what would it say in your file. tried PT and it ddn't relieve her pain so we initiated opiates. A doc that prescribes opiates when only PT has been tried to manage pain will spend time behind bars and never be allowed to prescribe in this country again.

    Are you ready to go the long acting med route because your pain is so intolerable you have no quality of life? I would think very carefully about which road I take at this point. I was bed ridden for 8 months after my last 6 level fusion that failed untill they had enough opiates in me to actually stand without help, I'm only 10 years older but I know what the alternative is, if I'm not willing to be dependent on opiates. Spending the rest of my life in bed as every muscle atrophies and withers away.

    Taking a pill lis certanly faster andeasier thanstretching, yoga, learning self hypnosis or biofeedback and strengthening weak muscles. But you already had a timy tatse of the price we have to pay just to have some resemblence of a normal liife.

    Opiates will always be there, But the opportunity to learn to deal without opiates will be gone once you have convinced some PM doc you need long acting meds to have some quality of life. Can you Honestly say that's true? Have you tried anything other than PT , Ultram and Lortab?

    I'm not tryng to be nasty, just trying to make you examine what you really need and what price you have to pay.
    Good luck, Dave

    Old 06-02-2004, 07:48 PM   #5
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    Re: HELP - Now what do I do?

    Dave and everyone thanks for your replies. To answer your questions Dave let me give you a timeline and what happend. As I said in my earlier post I have had pain for years and it was controlled with Ultram up until I injured my spine in October.

    My GP prescribed the Lortab-and flexeryl and I was taking it around 4x's a day. He continued to prescribe this for about 4 months and I was not getting better so I was sent to PM.

    I did sign a contract with PM on my first appointment. I was given the same meds and physical therapy, chiropractic, message and decompression. I was told by PM that my injury was slow to heal because of the facets syndrome and joint disease.

    The pain was more tolerable by April(6months later). I beleive it was more tolerable because I was taking the Lortab and the combination of therapy. By the middle of April, I was out of physical therapy and doing the excercises at home. Because I was feeling better, I told my PM I thought I could go back to Ultram. I was worried about withdraw and addiction but he assured me it would be fine - so he switched me back to Ultram and said he would like to see me one last time and I that statement he made as after my last appoinment, I would be done with pain management. Well after tying the Ultram I found it to be unsuccessful and I called my PM to see what could be done. I still had Lortab at home so I took it and when the nurse called me back I told her that I what happend and I wanted to go back to the Lortab and she got upset and said that was against the doctors orders. I tried to explain that I really needed to take it. She then said that is your choice and she would let the doctor know and than call me back. I was taking the remainder of the prescription my PM prescribed NOT another doctor.

    Mid April:
    I still never recievd a call back from PM and then I eventually ran out of meds. On the first day without them, I got a severe migraine headache very sick so I went to my GP for that. He prescribed me Lortab and antibiotics because he thought I may have pnuemonia. Lab called and the X-ray showed I did have it and that may be why I was in so much more pain. My GP was treating me for an illness not for my physical injury. My GP did not prescribe me what my PM was prescribing so - I don't see the problem in the contract.

    1 week later:
    My psychiatrist put me on Adderall. Adderall and Ultram can't be taken together. I still never heard back from my PM. I had ran out of med's again. Called PM again and they said you will need to talk to the doctor when you come in and we can not call out the Lortab because you have Ultram now. I explained that I could not take the Ultram with the Adderall and the nurse asked me WHY NOT! I mean good god you can go online and do a drug interaction check and see WHY NOT - and this is a medical nurse asking me WHY NOT! I was worried. So told her because there is a risk of seizure and she asked me if I had ever had a seizure and I said no and I plan to keep it that way. She said well I will need to talk to the doctor so I will call you back.

    End of April one week later:
    No call back yet and my final PM apt was in 4 days. I had no medication again and ended up in ER with migraine, pain, anxiety, heart palpitations and I told the ER doctor what had happend. He thought that there could be any number of reasons for my condition. ER doctor prescribed the Lortab for pain and Inderal for High Blood Pressure. He was very upset to hear I was being neglected by my PM.

    My Pain Mangement visit(4 days later):
    I informed my PM that I was now taking the Adderall and could not longer take Ultram because of the risk of seizure. It made no difference because Ultram was not working. I told him I finished out the remainder of my Lortab and I wanted to stay in pain management. He said not to take the Ultram but that I can take the remainder of the Lortab given at ER. He then said he did not really want me back on Lortab but he would do injections or surgury. Well I said thanks but no thanks - I guess I will be looking for another doctor. He asked me why I was scared of injections and I told him a dear friend of mine was paralized for 4 months from injections and his pain did not subside. He said that has never happend to any of his patients. I said no thanks. After I ledt I did not plan to go back and that is when I began looking for a new doctor. My GP said it was okay to get a second opinion and that I should not have to feel pressured into any procedure if I did not want it. He gave me Lortab and referred me to a nuerologyst and a new PM facility. I have meds now and I have my neurologyst apt in the morning. I hope this doctor can help. I am highly allergic to anti-inflamitories and cortizone steriods so I get no releif from my joint disease other than narcotics and tylonal. I have so many medical problems that I feel like no doctors want to deal with me! I know I am young but I still have pain - I feel 60! I have tried discussing things with my doctors and I have tried diet changes herbs supliments and I chickened out on the needles from acupuncture. I don't understand why there are people who get precribed much stronger medication for years but all my doctors send me away to more doctors and then they want to inject me or cut me open! I would much rather take a pill than deal with needles and knives. I dont see what is wrong with me taking Lortab as needed. Not all my pain is only at night but it is mostly unbearable then because I am in bed and laying still I feel it more intensely - especially in my joints. In the mornings I can take HOT showers and strech or take some tylonal and bear it. Some days that just does not work. It is very disturbing at night to get out of bed get in the shower for hours and then try to go back to sleep. Every Morning I wake up stiff but at night it gets worse. Like this week my pain is awfull - it has been raining and that really effects me. My knees were so swollen today that it hurt to walk. I have a family and 3 young children and they ask me if I can take them to the pool or park and I just cry because of my pain. I hate it. I dealt with the pain as long as I could and after every attempt failed - I ended up taking the Lortab at 5pm today. No one can understand this pain unless they have felt it. You feel ike your joints are brused, weak and throbbing- my spine feels like needles are shooting down my arms and legs! It hurts to turn my neck and walk. Today was one of those days I wished I had a wheelchair! I called in sick to work. I got sun burned on Saturday So I have not been able to shower with hot water an beleive it or not HOT water has saved me so many times. It only works sometimes and then I am out of luck. I would take Lortab every day if it prevented me from pain and I dont even care about addiction and all that because if I am addicted to freedim of pain so be it! I have never abused the medication - if I was I would have taken it 3 times today but I try everything else first and I take it as a last resort. I dont see what is so wrong with that. I dont see why pain medication can not be taken every day FOR pain. That is why the medication was developed - to releive pain. I think takin 2 Lortab's is better than 8 Tylonal. I think my liver would agree. as far as the rest of my life well I would rather manage my pain for the rest of my life than to live in pain every day!

    Old 06-03-2004, 07:11 AM   #6
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    Re: HELP - Now what do I do?

    Hi Kiss, The foks here do understand what it's like to live with pain andbe limited by disability. I do understand better with the time line and you really haven't done anything wrong as far as doc shopping.

    But finding a PM doc that will prescribe short actingmeds PRN "as needed" is going o be tough. You say you don't understand how some people have meds to take every day, some of at high doses, But you don't know the history that led us to this point. My own history was 3 failed fusion from L1-S1, @ sets of broken gardware and the scrtews that remain just toggle around in the wholes that have crumbled around the screws.

    This started in 93 and I've been through 4 pain clinics and tried every non opiate modality you can name, so the dependence issue really isn't something that I worry about because the alternativeis to be completely disabled and bed ridden.

    You really haven't mentioned any other method of pain mnagement. Not all PM docs use opiates as you found out with the last. He helped with meds as you completed physical therapy but he obviously isn't pro long acting opiates for maint of CP.

    The excepted method of PM after other methods have been tried and failed and documented is long acting meds, not strictly PRNmeds, I don't make the rules even though I'm sure there are folks on LA meds that probably could have gortten by with SA meds like lortab.

    Once you find a PM doc I doubt He's going to give you the med you feel works best, he's going to use the meds he feels are best suited for pain that doesn't go away. So this means long acting meds. YOu are at a point that if you can try other alternatives before you are completely dependent on LA meds, If you think withdrawal was bad from a couple lortab you have no clue as to what withdrawal is like from LA meds because your body gets used to having them around the clock, ZIt stops producing natural enforphins because your supplementing with opiates. So withfdrawal from LA meds is much more intense and last much ,onger than cming off a couple perks. eing afraid to try acupuncture is rediculous, If you start making a list of things you will try and things you won't, you won't get very far with many PM docs. Acupuncture uses the smallest gage needle you will ever have inserted in your body, It
    's not painful and PM docs have to chart other efforts to manage your pain before they can safely prescribe long acting meds and justify your need to be on these meds and the benefit outweifghs the risk.

    For example, A person that needs a hip replaced would likely be able to fnd a PM doc that will work with them and prescribe opiates, BUt if a cure is available such as joint replacement, if the doc is audited they will ask why you haven't been referred to a surgeon to duiscuss joint replacement. He may be able to manage your pain for awhile, but ifyour needs will continue to grow untill your pain generator is stabalized, so you would eventually have tohave that joint replaced. personally If I know I need surgery I wouldwant to do it on my time table but we don't always have the luxery of doing so. If the doc gets spooked by an audit the next apt he may say we can no longer keep masking a problem that needs to be adressed, Surgeons can be terds and may insist you detox first because nma=managing post op painb when the patient is already taking more opiates than the surgeon has evry prescribed isn't going to be comfortable prescribbing additional opiates for post op pain, themost would prefer you to detox and reacess your pain level and then have the joint replaced. So all you have done is put off surger a few more years, which makes you more dependent on opiates , engraines the pain signal into the nerve tissue and makes post surgical pain more difficult to manage.

    If there is an obvious surgical solution, being scarred to have surgery will only hurt you in thelong run. The longer you let it go untreated the more damge is done and the less likely that your outcome will be successful, so you have surgery, can't give up the opiates and return to pain mnagement and return to long acting meds the rest of your life.

    You are at a point where you have choices, the longer you wait, the more dependnet you become, the less likely you will be able to recover from any type of surgery and the greater the chance the surgery will be for nothing because you can't get through the withdrawal to even see if you have recovered or the surgery has fixed you. That's why surgeons are very hesitant to operate on opiate dependent patients.

    You have choices now that won't be available or viable in a few years. If you think things can't ge worse, you are very mistaken. A cure is better than managing the symptoms any day of the week. But if managing the pain iseasy and the cure is too scarry, the longer you wait and the less ikely you can be cured.

    If you can't get passed the withdrawal of 2 lortab a day, How would you ever get passed the withdrawal of several hundred mfgs of morphine or OxyContin or methadone a day. I know there is not an easy answer and hind sight is twenty twenty, But if you want to know from people that have been down the same road or been in pan management to see similar cases dozens of times you can't selectively accept the advice you only want to hear.

    Your options are , have surgery and attempt to recover and live a norrmal life, find a PM doc that will give you opiates and become even more dependent then you can imagine and the ability to surgically correct your problem slips away or the process of getting it fixed includes a few weeks in detox where you get treated like any other drug addict and then you have surgery and the surgeon isn't going to keep you on opiates long enough post op for you to become dependent which means you will have a harder time recovering and getting through PT without the help of opiates.

    You have choices, But don't think anyone here on long acting meds went straight from my back hurts to PM and long acting morp[hine or methadone.

    You will find there s huge rift in the way PM is done, some PM docs wouldn't prescribe you a darvecet and others would jack your opiate level up evertime you ask. If your only method of PM that you have in your bag of tools is opiates then your only options are to steadly increase as your condition worsens and then you have to look back at the decisions you made that brought you to where you are now. If you were offered a chance of being cured and free from opiate dependence, nnot to many true CP patients would make that decidion. Although opiates will help, they are not an answer or a cure, In fact you will likely just mask the problem as it worsens to the point of having no solutuion and the cure slips away and is no longer available. You are young andf you could easily condem yourself to a life of opiate dependency having not even tried to correct the problem due to fear. Which IMO is a huge shame. THe folks you see here are the 10% that surgery and all other modalities didn't work on.

    What hasn't worked on you before you turn your life over to a doc and a script pad.
    If you opt not to even try to correc ct the problem your future is easy to see, where if you attempt to repair the problem , firt time odds on back surgery, particularly less invasive methods have decent odds. Then again you could end up in more pain then you are now. BUt for a doc to be able to justify the use of these meds you seem to think were easy for others to get, he has to be able to show an investigator every other method to manage your pain that failed and justifies the use of these meds or the doc will loose his licence and evcery patient that is now dependent must scurry to find a new doc willin to prescribe thesame meds at the same dose to prevent withdrawal that makes coming off 2 lortab a cake walk. Doctors that treat pain with opiates are targets for prosecution and targets of drug addicts looking to get their drug of choice.

    IF a PM doc doesn't show he's has insisted you try other methods before initiating opiate maint for CP he won't be in practice 5 years from now. As bad as you may think your case is, other than PT and a couple different meds, you haven't mentioned a single pain relieving modality other than acupuncture, and you are unwilling to try that because of fear of a 30gage needle. You don't even feel them being inserted.
    continued on next page..........

    Old 06-03-2004, 07:12 AM   #7
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    Re: HELP - Now what do I do?

    Unless you have left a huge list of other modalities out, any doc is going to have a hard time justifying the advantages of using opiates when other methods have not been tried and there is a possible surgical solution. Being dependent is a huge trade for some quality of life. Right now you have a choice tha many of us pray for and you won't consider it because opiates are the fast easy solution without appearent risk.

    The risk is, your chance of being cured will slip away and a doc that prescribes meds to you has to be so convinced you have no other choice he will put his licence to practice medecine on the line to help you. Have you learned Biofeedback, self hypnosis, guided imagry, yoga,breathingtechniques, Have you tried anti depressants, anti seizure meds, more than one style of PT, TENS, TINS, trigger point injections, nerve blocks, acupressure, reflexology, medication infusions, Lidoderm patches, There are more non opiate methods than popiates and I had to try every single method I mentioned plus had 3 failed surgeries before manging the pain with oopiates was even considerd. I left out the 4 pain clinics I went to and the travel out of state for other opinions.

    I'm not saying your pain shouldn't be treated, But jumping from PT didn't work to I can't live without opiates when you obviously can. IS a choice you may regret dearly down the road when you are completely dependent and the withdrawal is so severe you have to be lumped in and treated like a drug addicts to get any help with the process. If you couldn't discontinue 2 lortab, You won't be able to discontinue long acting more potewnt meds even if you had surgery that removed all yourpain, you would be stick on opiates simply to avoid withdrawal and then your use is no longer for pain management. What's next, Methadone maint for the rest of your life because 2 lortab was to hard to quit and your afraid of acupuncture needles.

    I have to go get a morphine pump implanted, I know I'll go through methadone withdrawal that last 3 weeks and after they get the dose titrated after a dozen or so visits, hopefully it will restore some quality of life because I don't have an option. I can't stand for more than 15 minutes without being drenched in sweat and my legs shaking so bad I'm looking for any place to lay down.
    Good luck with whatever you decide.
    Sorry about spelling errors, I have a sticky keyboard and somewhere to be in an hour.

    Old 06-08-2004, 03:44 PM   #8
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    Re: HELP - Now what do I do?

    I have a really hard time trusting doctors. I asked around and ended up discovering my husbands family doctor took my insurance. My husband went through shoulder replacement surgery and he said his doctor pointed him in the right direction. I felt I could trust him since my husband and all his family members have been treated by him for over 10 years. I went to my appointment last Friday. My pain level has increased over the last 2 weeks and medication is not helping it. At my appointment the doctor discovered I have no reflex in my legs. My neck, lower back, knees and hips have been huring so badly I cant walk much and it hurts to stand and it hurts to sit and even laying down for long periods. I cant find a comfortable position. I had an MRI done yesterday per doctor and this morning I was called to come back in for more MRI testing. They cant give me any information on the findings. I dont know what is going on. As I was laying under this MRI for 2 hours and 45 minutes I was hurting so badly that I felt like I needed to leave. I felt my neck an back pop an crack so many times and I was not even moving. It was as if my muscles were contracting so intensley that they were pulling on my spine. They said I was moving but I was not. I was strapped down with a head brace on! I could barely breath! I think they either screwed up the test or want to further investigate the test findings. Either way I have to go back today. I am not looking forward to this for the THIRD time! The doctor said he will review the findings on the report and decide what to do next. Does anyone know what could cause the reflex to not work or what could cause intense increasing pain levels in the lower back and neck? I am willing to try anything at this point! This doctor tried me on some new medication called norco and cyclobenziprine. These medications don't seem to be helping much as my pain is increasing. When I was taking the lortab it did not work at all on the onset of this pain increase and I think try out something new is in order. Unfortunately I can not take and ant-inflamitories. Maybe I am on the road to getting answers to heal. Thanks for your support - good news is that I have a trustworthy doctor and I am not taking lortab anymore. The bad new is I lost my job due to the inability to drive or work per doctors orders and I have missed 4 days of work all ready.

    Last edited by cya; 06-08-2004 at 03:48 PM.

    Old 06-14-2004, 09:21 PM   #9
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    Re: HELP - Now what do I do?

    I lost my job this week.

    Closed Thread

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