Chronic Pain Support Group

Physicians and professionalsdefine pain as chronic if it lasts longer than three to six months and is persistent. It's distinct from acute pain that is a direct result of injury or trauma. This support group is dedicated to those suffering from chronic pain. Discuss treatments that have worked for you, find advice for your specific experience, and find support. You're not alone in your pain.

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Dr. Drew's take on narcotic use after 2 weeks.....

I hope to get a lot of input on this issue as I have been struggling greatly with going back on opiods.  Because of the opioid dependency/addiction rampage, the scare tactics on this issue are quite irritating and disconcerting.  I weaned myself off of oxycodone after my gallbladder surgery this year.  One, because I was so sick I couldn't get to the pain doc and Two, because one of the ER docs was so snipey to me about taking them for "non descript" pain.  My pain is not non descript.  I have a giant cyst laying on the nerve branch to my upper body, low back sacroilitis / spondyliosis and in my neck and mid back.  I'm basically a mess.

I am saying all this, because I am frustrated and in pain 24/7.  I had a life while on 3-4 oxycodone a day at 10mg.  It was the only thing that worked for me.  I recently heard Dr. Drew state that narcotic pain pain medicine should not be used past 2 weeks.  Gee, doc, have you been in 4 major accidents in your life?  I don't understand that statement.

Please, somebody, anybody, help me understand that I am not alone in thinking that long term maintenance on opioids does not always lead to addiction?



This is my first post on here so take it with a grain of salt... I am probably not the right person to ask when it concerns Opiates as I myself have been on them for over 5 years now, since March 12,2012. I understand that they are addictive and would prefer to never having to take another one for the rest of my life but what is the alternative? Nothing else seems to help and believe me I've tried everything that I have access to! I've had surgery, PT, Epidural Injections, Nerve Blocks, Acupuncture and even Marijuana topical creme, unfortunately none of these things has produced significant results. I am also on Fentanyl Patches, Gabapentin, and Flexarail, not to mention depression medication to boot! If they come up with something new besides an Opiate or any pill for that matter, sign me up- I'll be your Guinea Pig- sometimes I already feel like I am one now, but until then keep your snide remarks and wealth of knowledge about how addictive it is to yourself and give me my script. I hope that this helps:-)

LOL, yes, I hear you on keeping the snide remarks. That ER doc was all of 20 something years old and quite the prick, imho.

Actually, I am glad to hear your feedback since you have been on it that long. I was put on it about a year and half ago when my pain hit a new unmanageable level. I was on it for a year and worked more than ever and was able to get out and walk a mile. I can't take nsaid's like advil because I get g.i. bleed bad. I am tired of the steroid epidural extreme ups and downs because I have fibro and I crash and burn so bad afterwards with my energy.

I also have tried multiple epidurals, nerve blocks and been through PT a half dozen time over the last 15 years, 3 in the last 6 years. It does help me, I'll admit. But I have to be on pain medicine to get through it!! I would love people on this site to chime in on their personal opinions on this topic.

My experience is, the people who say these things about it, have never been in considerable pain and desperate for relief.

p.s. I am also on cymbalta, gabapentin and tizandine muscle relaxant and that is not enough to manage my pain

This demonization of people taking pain medications really has to stop, the previous administration stepped up the demoniation, instead of localizing it to the abusive drug addicts, the ones that really need the medication have been lumped in, to the point of people looking down on you when you go to the pharmacy, to uncaring doctors, these are the ones you wish to temporaly transfer your chronic pain to, see how long it would take them to run to the prescription tablet and Rx themeslve a high dose. I am on Tramadol, they are trying to demonize that one also, along with Lyrica, Give me a break...

Narcotic pain meds for "Acute Pain" should not be used past 2 weeks, in order for addiction to not be a problem.

Chronic Pain is a whole different animal and there is not a Pain Management Doc in the Country that will tell you Narcotic meds should only be used for 2 weeks. You should use any and every other Modality of pain control you can to help control your pain, Narcotics should never be the only thing you rely on. If you and your Dr. decide that you suffer from a Disease or illness that causes Chronic Pain and that Diagnosis is in your file, then you and your Dr. decide what pain meds in addition to other pain managing methods, i.e. acupuncture, chiropractor, physical therapy, injections, pool therapy, prolotherapy, biofeedback, plasma rich platelet therapy, etc., should be used.

Note, Pain Management is not about making your pain go away completely, that generally is not possible and there are limits to how much Narcotic a person can take in a day. So you have to find that magic number that works for you. What amount of pain can you deal with and still have a quality of life. Mine is a 5, that lets me still walk, work and work in my garden. The LA Narcotics and SA Narcotics I take keep my pain at a 5 and handle flares when it goes over.

Patients do have a responsibility to do whatever they can to not just rely on drugs.

Tramadol is a demon drug.

..and now Heroine is being cut with Fentanyl and police officers who are handling it on busts or arrests are getting sick from the exposure to Fentanyl, so pretty soon that particular med, which should never have been put on an Out Patient availability will probably not be available much longer.

Jonsparky: exactly. Gosh, even Lyrica? That's nuts. You must be in a state where it is prolific (illegal use of). Yea, I laugh when the commercial say, "lyrica can be addictive".

OlderCPer: Yes, I totally agree with taking meds to, as I say for me, "take the edge off" See below for how bad my pain gets.
Do you do acupuncture, platelet rich plasma therapy, prolotherapy, chiropractic? Prolotherapy here, costs $1k and platelet along with stem cell therapy at $1-3K a pop. It's considered experimental and not covered by insurance.
I don't know about you, but I can't afford all but one of those treatments above. Physical therapy, thankfully is covered. Acupuncture is not covered by my insurance, but chirpractors most often hurt me because I have a very complex, multi disciplined pain complex. One that includes advanced arthritis to the point of fusion, kyphosis, inoperable cysts, both muscle and bone.

All I'm saying, is, yes, I agree with you in certain aspects of doing all you can first and I have for the last 15 years; however, some of those things are not economically feasible. If only insurance companies were set up to be proactive in treatment instead of reactive. I believe that is a fundamental problem. Acupuncture, for example, widely used in eastern medicine along with herbal, supplemental treatment. I'm all for that...just can't afford it.

I actually have a pain tolerance level of 7. In all honesty, I am in recovery in AA (not for drugs, alcohol). I had to make a deal with my first sponsor that she kept the medicine after my first accident. I get to a pain level of 7 before I can take anything. That means I do all things I am able to do first (epsom salt, jacuzzi, hot/cold, whatever else is affordable in treatments). However, now I have no problem with sticking to a doctor arranged pain management plan.

*****We did a pharmacological report which reviewed the drugs that were red flag (caused bad side effects for "me") and what drugs didn't or did work. I was exactly correct in telling him that vicodin didn't work and thinking to myself oxycodone did. I recommend it to anyone on long term pain management treatment. It is a simple swab test; a genetic test.

Are you a healthcare professional? Because it sounds like you have some insight. And thank you for saying chronic pain can be treated on a long term basis in this regard because I have no quality of life whatsoever right now..... To the point I am bedridden. So, I do totally agree with the premise that "something" has to work.

Why is tramadol a demon drug? Tramadol is a non narcotic medicine and usually pain docs first choice because it does not have as addictive qualities as others. Although, it is an opioid. I have read that the whole opioid epidemic is being caused, in part, by the Afghanistan economy's need to produce poppies (no infrastructure to support other means with as much profit). Therefore, the u.s. has been flooded with heroin and opioid derivatives because of it. Just a side note.

Finally, WOW, really on heroine and fentanyl with police officers? Not heard that. That is sad indeed. Fentanyl helped me get through surgery recently with full hysterectomy and bladder surgery. I couldn't imagine it going it away. That would suck.

Anyway, just thoughts in my head. Take it or leave it. I think it makes for good discussion and insights on both sides of views, so thanks for your input.

Hey JPTexas, makes me think of home, Houston. I've been in NC for 18 yrs now so I'm re-acclimated. I do have experience in healthcare, I have a Ph.D in Clinical Psychology, I've also been in Pain Management since I was 17, so 31 years, I've had 30 surgeries in the last 18 years, and am just very well researched in all things Medication/Chronic Pain/Disease related. I have 7 major Diseases/Genetic Illnesses.

I do use multiple types of Pain Control besides my daily Narcotics. I do Pool Therapy, Platelet Rich Plasma therapy, Biofeedback and have always done PT since my joints started deteriorating at 17. I've never believed in just taking pills and hoping they'll be magic and make things all better. I firmly believe that the less you move the parts that hurt, the more those parts are going to hurt.

Why is Tramadol a demon drug? Well, I used Tramadol back when it first came out, before Dr.'s understood how dangerous it is. The max daily limit was 100 mg higher then, than it is now. Tramadol is not just a pain med, it also has a built in Anti-Depressant. Many Dr.'s didn't understand that, so they would prescribe it to people like me who have a Mental Illness (BiPolar) without warning that it would alter our Serotonin levels creating a dangerous Illness called Serotonin Storm or Serotonin Syndrome. When your body overloads with Serotonin it try's to die pretty damn quick, and it's not easy to stop it. So I spent a month in a hospital recovering from Serotonin Storm. The other problem with Tramadol is that it is highly addictive, to the rate of comparison to heroin or meth. And once your on it and hooked, detoxing off of it is like being in hell, it takes a very long time to get over Tramadol, the physical addiction and the psychological addiction. So I call it the Demon Drug.

Welcome to the Board by the way, I've not see you around before.


Unfortunately, most doctors nowadays don't want to be responsible should you become hooked and it doesn't take very long. I was on narcotic pain killers for low back pain. I was diagnosed with spinal stenosis L-3, L-4 and needed vicodin just to make it through a day of work. Low and behold, they cured other problems as well including restless leg syndrome and depression! I wasn't about to let any doctor take me off them so I began buying them illegally. Back when the internet was in it's infancy, they were easy to buy online but then the DEA caught up with all the pharmacy's I was doing business with and closed them down. Then I started drinking when I could no longer find pills and eventually went through out patient treatment.

My point in all of this is that when you begin taking that stuff, there is never a good outcome. They mask other kinds of pain which tell us there are problems elsewhere in our bodies. So no, doctors do not like to prescribe those unless you are dying and many doctors have directly told me that.

My life of addiction ended over 9 years ago. I deal with pain in other ways. Heat, Massage, Tens unit, Ibeprofen and naproxen, and Lidoderm Lidocaine patches and Tiger Balm, all of which help some. The trick is to get it down to a tolerable level so I can function. Today, I feel pretty good but I just got up a few hours ago and have little noticible pain but I plan on going to work after I write this so I will take 800 miligrams of ibeprofen which is the prescription dose. That works quite well for me.

This is just a suggestion but try to find other ways to deal with pain but if you can't and you are bed ridden then I don't see why doctors won't prescribe those for you.

God Bless

I have the same problem. It's very easy for people who aren't in chronic pain to pass judgment and I find it hugely frustrating. I've tried every treatment going and also come off the opioids but my headache condition is real, not imagined and just slightly got better when I took Opiod free medications but they were still there most days. If I don't have pain I don't take them. I've had 3 lots of withdrawal treatments and never had any strange symptoms which proved I wasn't 'hooked' on them

Hello all...I am new to this site and am looking to share and learn what has worked for each of on Vicodin and only take 1 and 1/2 per day...I have complex nerve impingement and am getting another MRI to compare to the one done 1 yr ago...then an appt with neurosurgeon...don't think I am candidate for surgical intervention as I also have very large adrenal gland tumors bilaterally but I am interested to see if this neurosurgeon can see if he thinks I fit the criteria for a vertebroplasty....was a nurse 40 yrs and wrecked my back two laminectomies and n ow further isolated and doing QiGong and acupuncture..tens unit and walking 5 min every two hrs I keep pain at a 5 but the pain and circ problems to my knees down friends have drifted and I feel a burden to my familyu.....However I am grateful to have good conversations with myself but think I need connection to others dealing with pain(24/7)......I feel like I am becoming invisible....

Ita hard for people to understand who arent in chronic acute pain and have crummy docs who are more interested in making money than getting a proper diagnosis.
Update, some of my recent tests are pointing to Crohns disease. I've been complaining of lower right quadrant abdominal pain for as long as i can rememver. I have a complex genetic condition causing several different conditions under hla b27. Sometimes, I think, you just have to listen to your own body, period. What works for you may not work for someone else.
Until and unless another human like a doctor or a legislature can jump into our bodies, including the all might dr. Drew (being a doctor doesn't make him God)....then, it is those of us, right here, on this forum who know best. That's my final opinion on the matter.
Thx all, no, peace out

Hi Neshema,

Welcome, welcome. sorry you have to be here, but we try to help when we can. Its difficult for people to understand chronic pain, most people who are now in chronic pain didn't have a clue how torturous it could be living in pain 24/7. I always love when someone on a Support Site asks that magic question; When's the last time you remember not being in pain?? lol I have no such memory, I've been doing this since I was 17 and that was 31 years ago...I don't try to reach any kind of painfree fantasy, my crapass body is not capable of that, so I take my pain meds to keep me at a level that allows me to work part time, and putz around in my flower beds on the weekends, that's about all it takes to make me happy.

I'm not someone who believes that people on pain meds and are taking their pain meds as directed as well as using any other therapeutic aids are addicts. Yes we are medication dependent, does that matter, no. When you take any med for a long period of time you become dependent on it...hell I take 22 meds a day, there are only a couple narcotics in there. I do believe and do take medication holidays to let your brain re-set and let the narcotics do a better job of controlling the pain.

So, we do what we can do, we deal with the side effects and we live our lives. As far as I'm concerned that's nobody else's business. Some uneducated idiot wants to compare me to a crack addict because I use morphine every day, whatever, I've got a PCP, PM Doc and 7 Specialists who will gladly disagree with him on my behalf.

Oh and yeah I'm not a major fan of any TV Dr. that spins his ideals around what socio-economic thing is popular at the time....and they all do, because ratings sale and personal ideals do not.
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