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Re: Addicted to pain releivers

Re: Addicted to pain releivers

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Posted by Charlene on May 12, 2000 at 19:15:08:

In Reply to: Addicted to pain releivers posted by Marie Elizabeth on May 12, 2000 at 02:25:23:

: I was diagnosed with TMJ when I was about nineteen years old. At that time, I had a lot of popping and clicking in the joint and my doctor recommended arthroscopic surgery.

: This gave me a lot of relief for quite a few years. In 1993, however, I began experiencing severe earaches and ringing in my ears on a daily basis. After seeing several ear nose and throat doctors, my dentist told me it had to be TMJ. Sure enough, I saw a really good doctor who made me a splint which I wore day and night for about one year. I even ate with it.

: This helped me for a few more years until last February, when I began having extreme neck pain on the right side of my neck and daily horrible headaches on the right side of my head above my jaw joint. After seeing several doctors, I saw a physical therapist who told me that she felt it was TMJ related. At first, I didn't really beleive her, because my jaw joint itself wasn't hurting. But a few months later, my right joint began to hurt excrutiatingly. I also had difficulties opening my mouth and chewing was extremely painful. I had to take about 800 mg of ibuprofen every morning upon wakening just to be able to eat a bowl of oatmeal. This was followed by more pain releivers throughout the day and night.

: I had an MRI done and was diagnosed with bilateral internal derangement with anteriorly displaced discs. The report said the left side was worse than the right because the disc was displaced when my mouth was closed and open. The right disk was displaced only when my mouth is either open closed (I can't remember which).

: I found this strange because my right side is the one that ALWAYS hurts. I saw one doctor who suggested surgery as a last resort and referred me to a "craniofacial" doctor who was totally against surgery. He made me a splint and told me that I have arthritic jaw joints and will probably always need some type of pain releif. I've been taking a new drug called Vioxx, which worked very well. One little pill every morning and I felt almost normal! I wore the splint for 24 hours a day for about six months, and then I was told to wear it only at night, which is what I currently do.

: I felt okay for a few months, but every time I tried to stop taking the Vioxx, the pain was still there. Now I have to take additional pain releivers along with the Vioxx. I feel like I'm addicted to pain releivers, and I'm really worried. I have a wonderful family and I'm worried that all the pain releivers I take will ruin my liver or kidneys. I had a liver/kidney function test last year which was normal.
: (Thank God!)

: I feel so depressed because I want to lead a normal life without pain. Has anyone out there had a successful surgery for the problems I have described? I'd really like to know because I think this may be my only option. I'm just really scared because I've read so many testimonials from people who've had the surgeries only to become addicted to narcotic drugs because of increased pain resulting from the operations.

: I'm sorry this is so long but I'm really feeling desperate! I read this book on TMJ that says if you don't take care of it the symptoms will continue to increase over the years. It talks of debilitating headaches which is what I'm sure I have now. My family loves me but I know they don't understand how I feel.

: If anyone can relate to my situation or has any suggestions, PLEASE LET ME KNOW!

: Thank you for your patience.

Hello Marie Elizabeth,
My name is Charlene, after many years of
suffering with TMJ, and trying many conservative
treatments, 4 arthroscopy surgeries, none of
these theories relieved my pain and suffering. I
heard of the Christensen Implants the Fossa-Liner
made of chromium-cobalt. In Dec of 1990 I had
the implants put in place of my dics that had
deteriorated with rheumatioid arthritis. I am now
eating everything without pain in the TM area!!
In may of 1999 I had a CT Scan on my new joints,
and they are doing great with no more sign's of
deterioration to my own condyles.
Feel free to email anytime if I can be of futher
help to you.
[email protected]

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