Hello, I am very new to this group/website and a bit fearful of asking questions but my hope is to gain more support in my daily fight against the chronic Sciatica pain/acute back pain I experience and to get feedback on the medication I currently take. A little history on my situation in 2007 I was injured and since then have been unable to function normally as a human being whom is 36, and a wife/mother of 2 boys. I know it has effected my family greatly which makes me feel much guilt, and I push myself to the extreme everyday as I do not wish to disappoint my Husband nor my children! But my consequences are by the time all is in bed and my daily chores are finished I am in extreme discomfort to the point of tears, Sometimes I have the sympathy of my family but mostly since they have no idea, I normally don't. I have been since 2007 to P.M.S x 2. An orthopedic surgeon. Many sessions of Physical Therapy. And am now back to my regular family doctor as I am most comfortable with her and she has known me for almost 20 years now. I feel embarrassed to be 36 and feel in my 80's, at times I need a cane just to move around as the pain radiates so severely down my left leg that it has buckled out from under me making me fall down. The surgeon I have seen has said I am not a candidate for surgery, and the Physical Therapy has stopped as most I can do at home now that I have learned. Now for the Medications I am prescribed, Just to let you all know I have been on just about everything and for the longest time was so SO afraid of taking a "long" acting drug in few of me becoming dependant but as of this May I have decided with my Dr. that I can not live like this any longer. In my past I took mostly Hydrocodone 10/325 about 4 times daily-this was not cutting it for years but as I said I am fearful of being dependant on a drug. I have tried everything from just over the counter Ibup. to Percocet. Hydrocodone seemed to help best as I contracted an ulcer from to much Ibup. and the percocet was too strong but again I never gave my body a chance to get used to it. As of May 2010 I am now taking Oxycontin 80mg-started low and this was the therapeutic dose that helped the best, and also Still the hydrocodone 10/500 for breakthrough pain. My fear is my body is going to get used to this Oxycontin and I have read so SO many horror stories on the net about this drug... wow, scary! All my meds are locked in a safe box as my oldest son is a teenager and God forbid he or one of his friends would find and abuse.
I guess my question is: Being as all of you in a sense are in the same boat with pain, what has helped you best? I would be most grateful for some feedback as again I am not real comfortable being on such an epidemic of an abused drug among teens of this era. Thank you so much in advance for you answers Please know I am most appreciative in any and all advice given. Wishing you all the best and Pain-free days... Ginevra
Please do not be embarrassed or feel guilt that you need a stronger pain medication to function better and deal with the amount of pain you are suffering from. You have gone longer than most would without being put on something stronger esp for as much as you seem to do. You won't get the sympathy you need from your family if you don't really talk to them telling them how bad your pain is as you are way over doing it trying to take care of everyone but you. You need to have the boys help and your husband but they won't even know unless you have a serious talk with them. Even then, nobody; even family won't ever understand the levels of your pain with or without medications unfortunately. Only other people who suffer chronic pain on a daily basis can truly ever understand.
I've gone 11 1/2yrs with RSD from an auto accident. Was on crutches for 2 1/2yrs not able to put any weight on my right foot for 2 plus years nor able to drive my car. I too was in PT 3 times a week for over 18mos. I was only 31 then; will be 43 this month. I was put on Oxycontin 10mgs to start about 4mos in after I was diagnosed just so I could keep doing my PT and try to put any weight on my right foot with a disease with no cure, nerve damage that spreads through my body. In less than 2yrs it spread up my right leg, into my hip/sacroiliac area and since January has gone all the way up my right side of my back. Without the meds, I would not be able to be on my cane which is so much better than the crutches were and drive short distances. I was slowly raised on these meds but once I got to the 40mg 3 a day I have refused any increases in the long acting meds for over 9yrs now. I do hurt more than I used to but know due to age, fear of what these meds can do to our internal organs, etc don't want any higher of a dose. Now they've changed Oxycontin to this new OP formula. I was happy if it kept the junkies from abusing it but it made me and so many others very sick. I stayed on it for 25 days and could take no more. I was switched to a generic version and found out that the company that makes it has closed down due to lawsuits over other generics they made so I won't be able to get another script after the one I'm getting today with one pill short. I'm extremely allergic to ALL other long acting opiates and fear that there aren't other options but have a great doctor who is already looking for me saying she has found a brand new medication that is a long acting narcotic with less stomach problems found with it. I fear it won't be on any Medicare Part D drug list so I will have to pay full price for it and I also fear going back to euphoria as since I remained on the same dosage, I haven't had any of those feelings for many years now. I understand you do not want to feel loopy/euphoria but it takes time to get used to any medication that truly can help your pain. It sounds like you are like me in the way I fear my own medications even still after all these years. That is a good thing. Just know that there is NO pain med that can take away all of your pain and there is a certain amount we all have to learn to accept. If you know this, don't fear being an addict even though you will become dependent upon these types of medications. I fear being a guinea pig for spinal cord stimulators, pain pumps as so many have had these and they do work for some yet not well for others who still remain on pain meds while having these things. The doctor who 1st diagnosed me was so happy to see I had remained on the same dose of meds all those years and told me he was also happy I never got a SCS as he said they only work in 1 of 4 patients; to him a 75% failure rate. You have support here and can talk freely. We are here to help you be it with questions about meds or someone else in pain to talk to. I always have to say that no matter what, we are all different in our pain, our meds, what works for one doesn't for another. We have chronic pain in common but other than that, we are all so different in choices, meds, and the pain itself even but we care. I'm not a doctor, nurse, or professional; just a chronic pain sufferer/survivor for over 11 1/2yrs now. I hope others on here also welcome you and can help in some way. Sincerely, Rhonda, IN
Hi LoveBug, and welcome to DC! RSDhurtzme is no stranger to chronic pain. She's been very inspirational to many people and knows what we are going through. I agree with her about having a talk with your family. If they don't know the true extent of your pain, they are bound to down play its' severeness. No one likes to see mom not being able to do it all. But they have to be realise you can't push yourself beyond your physical limits anymore. What helped my husband accept my condition was when the surgeon brought him in to view the cat scan and x rays of my injuries, telling him in laymens terms, not only is she lucky to be walking, she's lucky to be alive! That was the moment when I knew he really understood.
Since then, it has been an uphill struggle, knowing my spine needs additional repairs, accepting the fact I will never be pain free, more than likely, dependent on strong meds for the rest of my life, and the financial strains are overwhelming at times. The best thing you could do is stay as active as possible, stick with the at home physical therapy. Building your core muscles is vital to getting the strain off your spine and protecting it from additional damage. As far as medications, it's also hard to accept you may be dependent on them for God knows how long. But without them, how would we function? Surgery for me wasn't optional. And if I want to be in less pain, more surgery will be necessary. But whatever you do, try your best to stay strong physically and emotionally. A strong mind is important to leading a productive life. So many times I have wanted to just give up, throw the towel in, not do anything to help myself anymore. It's so draining on ones emotional well being. Chronic pain is one of the leading causes of depression. I know this to be a fact. So if you can accept your situation for what it is, do your best to stay strong, you will find it much easier to deal with day to day life. It's also important to have strong family support. I would suggest maybe have your hubby come to one of your appts to hear first hand what your condition is, how painful it can get, and why it's so important that everyone understand your physical limitations. On the other hand, you can not push yourself to the point of collapse. Maybe the rest of the family can pick up some of the chores and ease the burden from you. I'm not familiar with your situation at home but I know without everyone pitching in here, no way would my house get clean or laundry done. Much of this has fallen on my husband who also has his physical limitations. Be kind to yourself about the medication. When you have severe chronic pain, you take the minimum you can in order to have relatively pain free days. Try not to be so down on yourself about needing these medications. Good luck to you. I hope to see more posts from you in the near future. So many members have pulled me through on my tough days. I hope you find the same support here as I have. My best wishes, chris
Hey sweetie. Welcome. U have chose the right place for support. I have been a member just a month myself, but u will quickly learn that no one will judge u, and u don't have to be embarassed. We r all like a big online family here to give helpful advice to each other and be supportive. I can honestly say with all the mess that's gone on in my life lately finding this support group is the best thing thats happened to me. I will be 30 in a couple wks and had a car accident when I was 17 that left me with lower back pain since ( on again off again). I got addicted to pain pills like lortab and percocet but only because I took more than directed and eventually started taking it on days I was in no pain. As long as u follow doctors orders and stay honest with him/her u should do fine. Wish I had more helpful advice, but I will friend u and feel free to talk to me anytime. Again welcome to the most nonjudgemental support group there is:-)
lovebug, I've been on perks for 8.yrs got raised to roxies 4mths ago! The o.c's are very addi. And if you look this up? form of the Perks i'm a nurse so please be careful ! this is out of concern I know what you are going through and as for myself? I went had aq 2 nd dr. to look at me cause I wanted off and I wanted to make sure I was ,and needed this meds. I have a tumor in my head left lobe,copd on oxgen, 5 berry anersums my hip is coming out,E.T C just be careful please? I quistioned my doctor was she making money off me? patti helped me,we are here for you! Bless you,@ you need to talk to u'rr husband@ children my son 31 has a problem
Welcome to our group! Feel free to ask any question and know that you will never be judged or made to feel bad for asking it. We all share the same feelings about having the take the meds. None of us wants to take the medications, heck none of of wants surgery, none of want to be out of work none of want to feel as useless as we do at times and NONE of US want to HURT anymore. That being said, we all want to find a way to help each other get through all this the best way we know how. I think one of the things you need to do is get rid of the hydrocodone with the tylenol in it. The length of time you have been taking it, even for break though pain could cause liver damage. Ask your doctor for percocet without the tylenol to protect yourself. You may also want to seek out some other opinions about some other possible treatment too. If you haven't seen a neurosurgeon, that is another option where you have radicular pain (the pain that goes down your leg).
Orthopedist are bone doctors, the neurosurgeon focus more on the nerves and have a much better handle on what might help you. There are so many more options out there besides PT and meds. There are TENS units (a unit that uses electrical currents to block pain signals); Steroidal epidurals (injections into the epidural space in the spine of steroids that can reduce the inflammation on the nerves and reduce the swelling of the nerve thereby reduce the pain that goes down your leg); Spinal cord stimulators (an implantable device that delivers an electrical signal to block the pain signals that go down your leg and to your back similar to a TENS but that is implanted in your body) and many other non-surgical options that you have yet to explore. Your PCP will not know of these options which is why you should really need to see a specialist. A pain clinic is another option for you. Medications that treat the nerve pain that are non-narcotic are options need to be explored for you (they can be a combination of meds, sometimes including antidepressive and antiseizure meds that also work to reduce nerve pain-they work, I take them every day), options for some couseling to help you deal with the depression that goes along with chronic pain and helping you find ways to help you deal with the issues with your husband and your sons can also be dealt with in a counseling situation ( I know because that is what I am going through right now with my husband and my two daughters). There are so many more options for relief that you have yet to even explore. Our group is a great place to ask your questions and find guidence for your journey. Good luck and God bless. I hope you find alll of our answers helpful as they will be different as the people who are writing them. Valerie
You have done nothing wrong. I can relate on many of your comments as I have gone through two back surgeries. What has help me personally is methadone.. At first I thought the old way = only herion usuers get on that. Well low and behold. It is the best fit for me. I do not advocate running out and asking your doctor, but you asked what works for me and that is my answer. Good luck on finding yours... kimmie
Dear LoveBug323, Just read your email. Very touched as I too started with my injuries in my middle 30s. I can't get too detailed yet, as I must get to my daughter's BB game. I will set up a profile later. All I can tell you are two things - when you push yourself to the limit and you have nerve pain, the body can't handle it, and somehow it remembers over time. I have had 15 surgeries - 8 neck, 4 R shoulder, and I was looking back thru my medical records, and I saw that I was on much more oxycontin about 5 years ago than I probably needed. I think the docs just wanted to shut me up. Two things: Have you tried Lyrica? It is excellent for nerve pain. I have nerve pain down both legs due to a couple of herniated discs, but I am working hard to regain strength and nerve understanding.
#2: Did you have a C-section with either child? I have just found out that my C-section scar is causing a good deal of the problem. There are so many nerves in that area that pilfer thru your muscles and ligaments that attach to your legs. #3: Do you use a muscle relaxer of any kind? I have found Skelaxin to be helpful, but there are others out there.
We are all in the same boat when it comes to pain. In 2007 I was in a car accident. After 4 back surgeries, a dorsal column stimulator, and as you have said every kind of medicine there is. I am 43 now and I do have the body of an 80 year old. At first you cry allot, realizing you will never be the same. Work on accepting that fax, the sooner you do the better you will be. Take care of you! At this point you can be a mom, grandma, wife and lover, just not the same that you were. With every different medicine you will notice different side affects. Listening to people that have never had pain is not a good idea. I have heard it all, you are going to be an addict! As long as you have debilating pain, you will be on medication. If you take the medicine as prescribe and only as prescribed you are not a "addict" People that take medication to get high, are the ones that make it hard for people that need medicine to get it.
There is a book called "living with chronic pain" wonderful book. Cymbalta is a anti- depression drug, does wonders for your mood, plus has been prescribed for pain. I take OxyContin ER, which helps the pain, break through pain I use oxycodone along. I took Lyrica for four years, did excellent at killing all the neurotical pain, one side affect gain lots of weight. Right now I am trying to find something that works as good as lyrica, without the weight gain. If you have a place you can go to and get into water aerobics, it will help the muscle pain. I have a wonderful family that has stood by me through everything. You need to explain what you are going through, their love and support will help. My biggest problem was giving up all the things I used to love to do. I have found different things to do, that do not hurt. Hope this helps, I am so sorry you have to go through this pain, I wish this on no one, but I love to have people to talk to that understand what I am going through. Good luck in your new future.
Good luck with explaining to your family how much you hurt. Mine really don't care and the only sympathy you will get will be from here. I have been in excruciating pain for about 15 years and it only gets worse. I have had 3 back surgeries and was up for another before my wife and dr. talked me out of it. I am tired of the pain and need something other than what I am doing. I never drank alcohol and I found that it helps but it is really bad for you. I am about to give up and quit trying to deal with the pain every day. IT HURTS! No one gives a hoot whether you hurt or not and expects you to do the same as everyone else. Everybody at work asks hows the back today like it is going to be better than yesterday which it is chronic pain there are no good days. As soon as I get home I take about 3 shots of rum because I took my last pain pill 5 hours ago just to make it through the day at work. My wife will probably be leaving me shortly so life sucks.
I hate to hear you are so young with these problems and hope your husband really loves you. I am 55 and I wish there was a solution because I am sick of hurting and only sleeping 2 to 3 hours every night. I've been up since 1am and on a good night I will make it till about 3am. Dr.'s give you medication not thinking about you being awake 22 hours a day so you always run short. I took Oxycontin for about 4 years and had no side effects and now I take Opana which doesn't help that I have a high tolerence to pain meds.
Like u i was also only on narco 10-325 4 -6 times a day and it did almost nothing for my chronic pain stemming from two lifeflight rides one in 2009 1 n 2011 14mm rods in both femurs 2 15mm pins in each increase hip pelvis broken in five places requiring two large bolts on backside of pelvis ,broken tib,and fib on left lower leg metal plate with eight large screws not to mention my tbi. Meds are oxycontin 40mg 3 times a day oxycodone 30mg 4 times a day tramadol 50mg 4 a day, zanaflex 4mg 3 a day. Hands down this has been the best combo to control my pain I've been on the same dosage for a year and im goin to ask for the contins 80mg 2 a day because my pain has increased a considerable bit in the last four months. I think u will find that the oxycontin/lortab pain combo to work extremely better than narcos alone for sure, and from my experiences i withdrew worse off of hydrcodone than oxycodone but c if ur doc will swap the 10-500 tabs for perc 10mg 4 a day it is hell tryin to withdraw from two different opiates from the same time. God bless and good luck.
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