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Trouble with/Advice Needed - Fentanyl patch!

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Old 07-18-2011, 11:35 PM   #1
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Utah, USA
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Luckstar5 HB User
Trouble with/Advice Needed - Fentanyl patch!

Hello all!

I'm a newbie to this forum, I was browsing your helpful posts on here and realized I could go no further to find good advice for my problem than here.

For a brief background, I've been dealing with atypical trigeminal neuralgia for over 5 years, I'm 25, and for the past 9 or so months I've been taking Percocet constantly, starting at taking one daily for pain (at a dose of 7.5/325mg) to most recently between three to six daily (a couple weeks ago my doc increased me to 10/325mg). It came to the point last week where I was running out of meds too fast, because they just wouldn't handle the pain unless i took more than prescribed. I was sick of being on P and wanted a different option. Last Tuesday my doc started me on the Fentanyl pain patch (by Watson) 50mcg/patch. The first few days were amazing, aside from the general 'dopiness' and drowsiness, I was at a constant level of manageable pain. I was so happy and hopeful that maybe I'd found a solution finally!

But then I started having problems with the patches not sticking, even when I used athletic tape on the edges, and it seemed like the pain would come back much sooner than 72 hours. One fell off and I had to replace it. Another day I replaced the patch because it wasn't being effective.

So last evening (sunday evening) I put a new one on, hoping it would help. I woke up this morning with severe pain (and two days ago I went to my cabin at high altitude - does this affect how the patch works?) and what I assumed was an altitude headache (severe pain/sensitivity in forehead all the way back to the back of the head/neck). So I chugged water, but it didn't seem to do much. I took my last percocet too. That helped a bit, but all today my pain's been bad. It's starting to get worse now. And I'm out of percocet, which is scary, being without BT painkillers (and a lack of funds to see my doc or pay for a refill).

So my questions are, any idea why the patch started out great, but started to give me problems like not lasting the full three days, not sticking well, and not hardly even working even WHEN attached right?

Being at my wits end tonight, and not feeling any effects from the patch I have on right now, after more than 24 hours since I put it on, I made the decision to put a new one on my other upper arm, as I need to work tomorrow and don't want to deal with either severe pain or withdrawals if the first patch ISNT working.

Any suggestions where to go from here? I want to keep trying the patches until I find a dosage/type that works best for me, I'm not going to give up. Can I possibly go to my pharmacist and tell them these are 'duds' and maybe see if he has any options for me? Or should I ask my doc for a different kind?

Sorry for the super long post, but there's my story, and I would love any feedback (and possibly hand out cookes )

Take care, and God Bless!


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Old 07-19-2011, 02:24 PM   #2
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Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Northern California
Posts: 802
Fiona_Jo HB UserFiona_Jo HB UserFiona_Jo HB UserFiona_Jo HB UserFiona_Jo HB UserFiona_Jo HB User
Re: Trouble with/Advice Needed - Fentanyl patch!

As far the patch not sticking your best option is to use "Tegaderm" Transparent film dressing or a product like that. It protects the patch and it will help to ensure the patch stays put for the entire period that you're wearing it. As far as pain control, it could be that you're body metabolizes the patch faster than the 72 hours and you need to be on a 48 hour schedule for changing the patch. That is not at all uncommon with regards to the patch. However, this is something you will need to discuss with your Doctor.

I'm sorry you're experiencing so much pain and I hope you get this resolved.

~ Fiona Jo
080807-Cervical-Stim~071707-ACDF-C5-C7 w/instrumentation/bone graft~'07/06 Lumber instrum. removed 05/04-Fusion(DDD/Collapsed Disc L5-S1)08/99-Microdisectomy(Herniated Disc) ~Lupus/EDS,Migraine

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