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Old 03-23-2006, 07:00 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Experiences with Rapid Detox anyone?

Hi - I have been reading many of your posts to try to learn as much as I can to help my bf beat a 13 year addiction (on again/off again) addiction to painkillers. The painkillers are treating a severe back injury (L5/S1 - crushed in 1992 motorcycle accident). There are surgerys available to "fix" that (fusion, artificial disk, diskectomy.... don't think I spelled that right, etc), and that is the ultimate goal. At that point, he would like to detox. His parents have suggested "rapid-detox", so over the last couple weeks, I have been reading everything that I could on that. Prior to researching it now, I had heard about it years ago in the news in connection with a couple patient's deaths. However, most of what I have been reading (I am sticking to reputable news sources such as USA Today, FOX news, CNN, etc.... I know, "dubiously reputable" might be a better description). Anyway, most of what I am reading seems to be in favor of it. However, as I read these forums, I am not really seeing that mentioned. Is that because it doesn't work? Or, is it more dangerous that it sounds? Is it too expensive? Can any of you that are currently in any stage of recovery from opiates tell me why you chose not to go that route? Or, is there anyone that has? What are your thoughts for or against?

Thanks for any opinions (ALL opinions are welcome, regardless of what it is. We are trying to make an informed decision, and understand that different recoveries fit different people!!)

God Bless!!
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Old 03-23-2006, 08:00 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Or, is it more dangerous that it sounds?

It can be and has been for many people.

Is it too expensive?

Yes

Can any of you that are currently in any stage of recovery from opiates tell me why you chose not to go that route?

I considered this route. I spent countless hours researching rapid detox. The bad outweighed the good, I wasn't willing to take any chances.
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Old 03-23-2006, 08:58 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I believe that rapid detox is geared to overcome the discomfort of acute withdrawal symptoms. For most folks these very unpleasant symptoms last 5-7 days, depending upon usage and individual body chemistry. If you go cold turkey, you will be in hell for a week but it will get better.

I'm no expert, but I don't see how rapid detox can address the CHRONIC symptoms of protracted withdrawal. The brain and nervous system have to adjust to having no opiates and this takes time. (Golf, pls. correct me if I'm wrong).

In other words, the rapid detox might make you get through the 1st phase of withdrawal, but it doesn't "fix" the underlying neuro-chemistry. It offers no guarantee that you won't relapse.

If it is "easy" to quit then it will be easier to start back. The nastiness of withdrawal symptoms is the essence of BOTH relapse and sobriety. in other words, many relapse because of the discomfort but others (me included, hopefully) will remember what a b**ch it is to quit and have no desire to go through it again.

On a related subject, Google "kindling effect" and "opiates" and you'll read that each time you go through the addiction / withdrawal process it gets harder.

Maybe there is some truth to the adage, "no pain, no gain" as it applies to addiction.

Some people report good results weaning off using Suboxone. But it has its detractors, too.

For someone who has a high degree of pain coupled with high opiate usage you can bet that depression will occur during recovery. There are effective treatments for that, but because of the severity of both you may need the care of an addictionologist and perhaps a pain management expert and psychiatrist.

It would be convenient to get the back surgery done before complete withdrawal so that he would not have to take high doses of pain meds in the near future -- the odds of relapse are higher, IMHO. But that is really a decision for an MD; I don't know how well an opiate user responds to general anaesthesia but I suspect there are special concerns and considerations.

There is a light at the end of the tunnel that is not the headlight of the approaching train. Deciding not to be an addict pays wonderful dividends, like you get to get your life back.

Good luck. This will not be easy but it will be very good if you succeed. I wish you both well.

Buzz
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Old 03-23-2006, 09:08 PM   #4 (permalink)
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If it is "easy" to quit then it will be easier to start back. The nastiness of withdrawal symptoms is the essence of BOTH relapse and sobriety. in other words, many relapse because of the discomfort but others (me included, hopefully) will remember what a b**ch it is to quit and have no desire to go through it again.[I]


Well said.
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Old 03-23-2006, 09:12 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Hi If - probably the best advice about this issue, on these forums, would be from Guy Kettelhack or Mark Sichel (Ask The Expert forums). They've both worked in the addiction field for many years.
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Old 03-23-2006, 09:40 PM   #6 (permalink)
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What I have Learned About Opiate Detox

Although I am not addicted to Opiates, I did spend the last 5 out of the last 6 mos in a Rehabilitation Facility. They house addicts of any drug, including Opiates. They taught us that out of all drugs the only one that people have died detoxing from is Alcohol. Although Opiates are the most severe in physical withdrawls an opiate addict may, at first, feel like they will die without thier dose but they will not.
I can tell you from experience that the chances of them dying while using is greater than any other drug, except alcohol. I know because my best friend lost her life to an Opiate Addiction that she managed to get by hand written priscriptions, from her Dr., after we were in a car wreck. She too had a serious back injury.
It seems to be a difficult habit for people to break but not impossible. I would strongly recommend a treatment center for your friend if that is at all possible, but that is just one opinion.
I do wish your friend the best of luck and he/she is very lucky to have a friend like you that wants to help him/her. God Bless!
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Old 03-24-2006, 05:26 PM   #7 (permalink)
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SloJen - Thank you so very much for your response here. I truly appreciate you sharing that with me. I read it to my bf last night, and I saw that he had a very emotional response to it. He is a very intelligent person, and he knows that he needs to be clean, but I think that the longer something like this goes on, the easier it is to "deal with it later". However, I try to remind him every day before I leave for work, that the moment will come when there is no more later, and that moment is irreversible. Anyway... again, I appreciate your post, and although you did not mention your doc, you did say that you have spent time in rehab. I hope that your recovery is going well, it is a hard road, but worth it.

IF
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Old 03-24-2006, 06:12 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Buzz, Golf and Margo -

Thanks for your input. I had never heard of kindled effect before, but that has piqued my interest. I have cleaned up from Crystal 7 times now, and YES each time was harder (except for some odd reason, this time was fairly easy... not sure why). However, I know each time I went back to it, I was "instantly addicted". I remeber years ago, when I could party all weekend, then get to work on Monday and not even think about it again for a couple months. After I have been clean for a while now... I convince myself that I can do that same thing again... NOPE... I pick up the pipe, take a pull, then it is all over, the next thing I know, it is 8-10 months later and I am outta $$. NOT THIS TIME!

Anyway, I bet that has a lot to do with how he got here this time. Right as we were cleaning up, the dentist perscribed him 20 vics (5mg only), but I think that was all it took. We are looking more deeply into the Suboxone route at the moment. There seem to be several threads both for and against that one.

I appreciate all the info, and Margo, thanks, I will post over the the experts forum. Thanks much & God Bless!
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Old 03-25-2006, 01:43 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I dunno . I have never known anyone who had a POSITIVE experience....although I am sure they are out there...I think withdrawal is a "natural " way the body has to deal with the detox process...some things just aren't meant to be rushed...it would seem to be easier to just detox with meds to me...but that is just my opinion!! I always had to cold turkey !! Boo hoo hoo!!!
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