I have herniated discs and spinal stenosis. Even with these meds pain was unbearable so doc prescribed 50 mg Tramadol 3x daily along with the other meds and I am finally able to function almost pain-free. I know Tramadol is not a scheduled drug but why does it work so well with Percocet and Valium? I was an opiate addict (heroin user) and Xanax user for 37 yrs and cleaned myself up 3 years ago on my own. I went thru some serious withdrawals back then but at this point the pain became so bad I didn't care about withdrawals. If and when I quit again, will Tramadol make it even more difficult. Does Suboxone work for Tramadol and well as Percocet?
10 Oct 2010
Although tramadol is not technically a controlled substance, is it highly addictive and it is an opioid. And yes, when you try to quit trams, you will feel awful! Several states have already taken action to have it re-classified as a controlled substance. I copied the information below for your convenience. There have been many personal stories here about how addicting and difficult it is to quit trams. It's also dangerous to quit them cold turkey as they may induce seizures. Since your condition is chronic, most doctors prescribe an extended release pain medication such as MSContin, and a breakthrough med like the perc's. Please talk with your doctor about this medication. If he is not a Pain Specialist, please have him refer you to one. They are the best at controlling pain and know what meds work best with each other. The problem is your doc is treating chronic pain with short acting meds. Eventually you will build a tolerance to percocets and valium.
And long term use of acetaminophen is not good for you. Please be safe and double check on tramadol. I am a fellow chronic pain sufferer. I also have herniations, stenosis along with burst spinal fractures. Several bone fragments went in to the spinal canal and compressed the cord by 80%, permanent nerve damage, additional surgery to come. Please click on "Find a Member" to the right of this page. Type in jk13. He is the most well informed member regarding tramadol. Add him as a friend and he will see this question and respond. Please be safe and I wish you the very best.
Ultracet is used to treat moderate to severe pain for a period of five days or less. It contains two pain-relieving agents. Tramadol, known technically as an opioid analgesic, is a narcotic pain reliever. Acetaminophen is the active ingredient in the over-the-counter pain remedy Tylenol.
Read more: http://www.drugs.com/cdi/ultracet.html
11 Oct 2010
First of all, Tramadol and Methadone are both what I would consider to be of the strangest opioid drugs currently on the market. While Methadone is a schedule two, Tramadol isn't currently scheduled in most states due to the initial testing and trials regarding potential for addiction and withdrawal. These initial studies are almost always flawed, and finally the makers of Ultram have had to come out and admit that their product does have potential for both addiction as well as withdrawal, at times being extremely severe, especially when you look at it in comparison to the level of pain that is actually being relieved.
Tramadol is what I would consider "strange" due to the fact that it is technically an SNRI drug, working in the same way as many of the antidepressants that are currently on the market such as Pristiq, Effexor, Savella, and Cymbalta. Tramadol/Ultram however works very differently than the typical antidepressants in that it also hits on the opioid receptors, maintaining a relief in pain roughly equal or slightly greater to that of codeine, although without many of the typical opioid effects. The SNRI activity is also very different from antidepressants in that it releases serotonin, and inhibits the reuptake of norepinephrine in almost an instantaneous manner, thus initially giving the user a "happy feeling". I took Tramadol for a couple years, and found that this effect went away with time.
Interestingly, generally the SNRI drugs also act as pain killers for the nerves, as Cymbalta was the second or third (not sure) to be ok'd by the fda for use in fibromyalgia type pain, working on the nerves vs. just muscular pain, as does the typical opioid. Obviously Tramadol works for fibromyalgia as well as does Methadone (a very unusual attribute to Methadone, and is the reason way I currently take it for my primary pain relief).
Tramadol's serotonin and norepinephrine actions work very very fast. Any drug usually follows a rule of thumb, and that is, the quicker that it works, the harder it is to stop, thus making Xanax harder to stop vs. Valium, Cymbalta harder to stop vs. Savella. Tramadol taken over a long period of time, especially at high doses 6 to 12 months, and 200 to 400mg per day (typically from what I understand), will cause dependency that at times can be very very severe. Due to the drug companies reluctance at releasing detailed data regarding this problem, it is hard to find truly detailed info on the mechanics of this. I have however found numerous times Heroin addicts who actually had a harder time stopping Tramadol vs. Heroin. This is according to blogs and such, and not on hard facts and controlled studies, nonetheless, it for many people can cause severe withdrawal symptoms.
The reason why Tramadol is so hard to stop, is largely due to the fact that not only are you be stopping an SNRI medication, also keeping in mind that it is one of the fastest acting SNRI's that I personally know of, you'd also be stopping an Opioid at the same time, making it more of a challenge vs. something with a singular action such as codeine. It can also be even more difficult for previous addicts to stop Tramadol due to its action of reinitiating of previous withdrawals experienced by previous addictions to Opioids. My sister for example took only 100mg one day, and the next day had a typical Heroin hangover, where as for me, someone who never was Opioid dependent in the past (although I am now with the Methadone) didn't feel a thing or have any problems.
As I mentioned above, Tramadol is also known to inhibit the GABA-A receptors, opposite of the effects of benzos that increase the GABA-A (I find this strange due to the fact that Tramadol is something that I don't find as stress inducing) and is the reason for high doses of this medication to often cause seizures, especially when taken over 300mg. Unfortunately, the same is true with stopping this medication, as sudden withdrawal can also cause seizures.
Tramadol was once marketed as safe and non-addictive (in a 6 week trial), but couldn't be further from the truth, it just happens to be very addictive when taken for a while, or if you have had previous opioid addictions. The withdrawals are not bad at all for some, and for some they are, as is true of the benzo's. When I stopped the tramadol at 50mg every 5 days, I had no real severe problems other than once when I forgot to take my afternoon dosage, and it felt like my brain was literally going to explode, and had troubles walking due to the level of pain. Also, had a few episodes of unusual and severe depression, unlike the depression that I'm used to - even my wife was able to recognize that this was not me.
Taking other opioids with Tramadol will lower the seizure threshold, and will only address half of the medications actions, so I honestly could not say with any certainty that Suboxone would help or Percocet would either, although, I have heard of people stopping Tramadol with the help of Percocet, and it did seem to help.
Sorry about the novel length response, but as I originally stated, Tramadol is one of the strangest Opioids, and as a result, there's no simple way to describe all of it's characteristics (same with Methadone).
Good luck to you, and hope that you feel better soon! If you need long term pain relief, this is not going to be a good one for you, although that is just my opinion as I'm not a doctor, however, please keep in mind that many doctors are not even aware themselves of this information as it was pushed as being a safe, non-addictive pain reliever for a long time, and on top of that, it's not even scheduled!
hope that I've been of some help!!
10 Oct 2010
I am getting really confused hopefully someone can help me.
When I became a patient with my pain doc there was a list of medications we were told we were not allowed to take due to the fact they are used to help with withdrawls, suboxin and talwin were a few of them However as I read these questions many are asking I cannot seem to understand why so many people are taking suboxin with there pain meds. can anyone enlighten me on this?
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