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Old 05-27-2006, 10:57 AM   #1
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Location: Fredericksburg, Virginia
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lostmary HB User
First time on the board

Hi all,
Brief history..I've had 5 foot surgeries, 1 hand surgery, and 6 weeks on a PICC line in the last 2 years. I had surgery Dec 2, 05. Doc opened the bottom of the foot to remove hugh neuroma. Made about a 5inch cut. Developed something on side of foot. not sure what it was, but it stopped my healing. was NWB for 5 weeks. removed stitches, developed a hole on the line that wouldn't heal. very painful. on April 28, went in again...this time doc opened the top and bottom of the foot, cutting between the toes to make it a single line. bottom has healed, top because swollen and infected and won't heal. stitches may come out next week. but foot is ugly. I now have another hole getting larger in the top of the foot, plus it is still ozing and yucks. My question is this. Doc keeps me on percocet all the time due to the pain. He has now added oxicocotton(sp). I try not to take any of it, until nite when I need to sleep. I'm so frightened of becoming addicted to it. How long do you have to stay on it to become that way. I've been on and off of it for the 2 years. I'm now taking 1 percect plus phentagran at night. during the day I try to put up with the discomfort. Has anyone else been on these meds for this long? any problems

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Old 05-27-2006, 11:52 AM   #2
Join Date: May 2006
Location: easton, md
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jeanne257 HB User
Re: First time on the board

You have asked about the percocet. From my experience, I'm a chronic pain patient, for the last 5 years. I was on 4 perks per day for over 3 years. Built up a tolerance on them so now I'm currently on Methadose 3 per day. I have had no problems. I have never been a pill person, never tried a drug (only what Drs. gave me) in my 49 years. But now I have a combo of meds for disc problems in my neck. I feel its all about the person. You know what I mean?
Hope I helped some...................................

Old 05-27-2006, 01:10 PM   #3
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lostmary HB User
Re: First time on the board

it did help. My daughter is studing pre pharm. so all I ever hear are the horror stories. I also don't take pills and such unless directed by the doc. Every time I go in he gives me another script for the perc. The other day I tore up 4 of them from the past. Iknow the other day when hubby went to fill the perc. the phar. asked about the pain level and how I was doing. It made me think that she thought there might be a problem. I don't take but one for 2 percs per day. I can't get comfortable with the foot at night if Idon't take one. I just don't want any other problems than the ones I have. I guess I can't complain..after some of the other threads, I really don't have to worrry, (i guess)

Old 05-27-2006, 02:34 PM   #4
Join Date: Jan 2006
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kelsey1 HB Userkelsey1 HB User
Re: First time on the board

lost mary
welcome to the boards!!! There have been many studies that said that most chonic pain patients due not abuse the meds(i think i am rememeber this right). I think if one can't wait to take the meds because how high they make them fill they maybe have a problem but if you are using your meds right and only take them to get pain relief i wouldn't worry about it.The parm was probly(sp) just wondered how you were doing on the meds.Take care,i look foward to hearing from you again...kelsey1

Old 05-27-2006, 02:55 PM   #5
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 424
Re: First time on the board


Addiction and Dependence are two totally different things. I will tell you that many, or most people on this board are dependent on pain meds. That happens naturally after about 7-14 days of consistent use. By no means is this addiction.

Dependece happens when you take pain meds like percocet for pain and your body becomes tolerant and requires those meds to keep you out of pain. You take if for a legitimate purpose as the doc prescribed, don't run out of meds early, and are treating a truly medical condition. You can forget the mgs or how many you take because everyone is different. I have had 9 surgeries in a little over a year and have severe fibromyalgia. I can't hardly function pain wise without pain meds. Due to the amount of time I have been on these meds, I require more than others and less then some. My body has built a tolerance and so I need more to keep my pain under control. I take around 120 mg of Oxycodone daily. To some that is a lot, and to others its a small amount. But for me that is what works or otherwise without them I would not be able to live a half normal life. I have never asked for an early refill, I have never lost my meds, and I follow my docs directions to a tee.

Addiction on the other hand is when a person takes these meds for other reasons then what they are prescribed. For instance the person may try and get high or feel euphoria. These people may buy drugs off the street or use multiple doctors and pharmacies. They take more than prescribed. The constantly lose their meds to get more. They fake pain and illnesses to get meds. They engage in criminal activity for these meds. They give up on everything (family, work, kids) for these pills.

There have been many studies done on people with true chronic pain. Those studies revealed that approximately 1% of pain patients are "addicted." That is a very low number. Granted, if I were to stop my meds suddenly, I would go into withdrawls. But that is because my body is dependent on these meds. I have many diagnosed medical problems and will probably take meds for a very long time or life. This is just so I can live like a half normal person and function in life.

You doc wanted to put you on OxyContin is common when you have been taking short acting meds like Percocet. If you have to take percocet daily for weeks, months, years, then your doc is going to want to get you to cut down by giving you a med that lasts 8 hours with one tablet. This way you achieve a steady stream of medication and don't have so many ups and downs as you do with short acting meds.

OxyContin is basically time released percocet without the Tylenol. Its the same drug, oxycodone, but is built with a time released mechanism. It maintains a steady stream for about 8 hours so you only have to take this med 3 times a day. You can then use percocet only as needed for breakthrough pain.

As other people respond, you will see that most take meds daily, just to walk, get out of bed, and function like normal. Many take high doses compared to you, but that is what works for them. Tolerance will happen. This just means that your body has become used to a certain dosage and you need more of that med to achieve the same pain relief. If you start taking more than prescribed or running out of meds early or start buying them off the blackmarket, then you have an addiction problem. But taking them for a legitimate pain problem and following all instructions, you will be dependant.

Good luck. Hope this answered some of your questions. Take Care

Old 05-27-2006, 05:02 PM   #6
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Re: First time on the board

I agree with Arranger, do not worry about becoming addicted, it rarely happens. Unless you have a history of substance or alcohol abuse or an addictive personality there's nothing to fear.

Dependance comes with many medications and is not limited to just pain meds, you can become dependant on anti-pressants and many other medications. It just happens as was mentioned when the body is used to a constant stream on a regular basis.

There is no reason to suffer with chronic pain, especially if your doctor is prescribing your medications. If you are uncomfortable in taking that many medications then you need to let your doctor know that so he can prescribe less. Always be honest with your doctor, do not take a prescription if you do not intend to fill it, it looks bad on your part.

If you are seeing a PM and they happen to do a urinalysis and find that you do not have the levels of medication in your stream that you should have then it could present a huge problem as the doctor may think you are selling or giving away your medications. While we know that isn't your case it's best to know these kind of things up front instead of being surprised one day. It is very difficult for someone to find a doctor who is willing to prescribe the appropriate medications needed to control pain.

I think you will find that by taking the oxy as directed you will have some improvement in the overall quality of life. The key to pain management is staying ahead of the pain instead of waiting for it to become so bad that the medication is not effective enough to bring it back into control. By having a steady stream of medication in your system you alieviate that problem and would only have to take the percocet if the need arised that the oxy was not working. This is known as break through medications and many individuals do find them useful. However, if you find you are taking your bt meds on a regular basis, like every 4 hours in addition to the oxy at every 8 hours this would be an indication that the oxy is not strong enough and you probably need a medication adjustment.

I think at this point in time you don't need to worry about those types of things because as you stated, you are only taking your medication at night to begin with.

Good luck and welcome to the board


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