Discussions that mention vicodin

Pain Management board


It's really a shame that a pharmacist in this day and age would even suggest bringing a script for methadone would indicate you have a heroin problem. Heroin addicts aren't given scripts for hundreds of pills to be filled at retail pharmacies. Their doses are monitored and given daily only at methadone clinics. Anyone bringing a script to a pharmacy for meth is obviously taking it for pain. Your pharmacist should know this and the remark was totally inappropriate. Personally I would have used that moment to suggest you need a more educated pharmacist to handle your meds if his only knowledge of meth is it's use for opiate maint for addiction.

Come on, How many addicts bring scripts for hundreds of methadone pills a month and are trusted not to gobble a month supply in 8 days? It absolutely never happens. Even folks that have been on meth maint for years, at best are given 2 day supplies at the clinic to get through the weekend so they don't have to choose between church or standing in line at the clinic on Sunday morning.

Docs are going to start on the safe side and slowly work their way up. The good thing about meth is that even if they start you low, it may not provide the pain relief you need, but even a small dose will prevent withdrawal. I bounced between meth and morphine for years based on insurance coverage. No taper just cold switches from one to the other. You experience some differential withdrawal, but nothing more than a patient dealing only with pain issues would experience when making any cold switch. A cold switch away from meth is no worse than a cold switch away from any opiate. The idea that meth withdrawal is so much more severe is part of that myth and perpetuated by addicts that are still on meth maint 10 years later because they can't tolerate life without some kind of opiate. The fact is , had an addict been switched to morphine, it would prevent withdrawal just as well and discontinuing any opiate would be just as unpleaseant. Meth maint is just replacing one addiction for another when your still on meth maint a decade later.

If they were to give heroin addicts morphine daily instead of heroin, the right dose of morphine would also prevent heroin withdrawal, but once discontinued the addict would have to face the stark world of sobriety and reality. You would see the same avoidance of discontinuing any opiate used to replace their opiate of choice. The only difference is that meth doesn't produce the high in controlled doses that other opiates create.

Addiction is addiction, whether it’s to meth, heroin, OxyContin or Vicodin. The difficulty in stopping any opiate is the same for any addict. A hydrocodone addict will go through months of withdrawal just like a heroin addict. Physical dependence is inevitable for CP patients using opiates to control their pain, but without the psych component that makes facing life without their drug of choice virtually impossible. Someone dependent on methadone or any other opiate will also face withdrawal when stopped cold turkey, but CP patients don’t steal from their family, rob pharmacies and do home invasions of cancer patients for pain relief.

There is a difference between simple physical dependence and true addiction your pharmacist doesn’t seem to be aware of. I’ve yet to meet an addict whose quality of life was improved by their continued use of opiates. However I have met many CP patients who’s quality of life was restored by controlled and proper use of long term opiates.

The thing about meth, is you shouldn't pick and choose what part of the propaganda you want to believe, either believe it all like your pharmacist or dismiss it all when used for pain like your doc suggests. Believe your doc, he's being honest and accurate and if you had an addiction problem, stopping any opiate would be just as difficult when you through the psychological component of addiction on top of the physical aspect of dependence. Don't let misinformation and a stigma attached to methadone prevent you from finding relief. No opiate is easy to stop after years of use, the diference is the psych component that's not present when opiates are only used for pain.

Good luck, Dave