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Opioid free for 14 days after eight years of chronic pain and steady use opioid meds

Old 04-20-2010, 01:31 PM
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Opioid free for 14 days after eight years of chronic pain and steady use opioid meds

Good Afternoon,

10ys ago I broke my spine, shattered L5/S1 disc, separated both shoulders and tore the right labrum in the rear. Main surgeries were in 2005 with mixed results. The spine was perfect but I was still having horrible pain in the shoulder. Long story short, I still have chronic pain and have been on every possible prescribed medication in that eight year period. For the first time in that time, the pain was low enough that I was able to stop the opioids and stay off of them for 14 days, so far.

My activity since being off is almost nothing, being able to shower in the morning then spending the rest of the day and night on the couch.

I will have to resume either Norco or Percocet for the pain in the near future but I am not going to let it become and every day thing again.

My question is, how long does it take your body to fully return to normal. I want to know where my pain really stands and also make the calculation with my Dr. about how much to take for break-through pain or certain activities.

I am curious whether or not I can take one or two doses of an opioid and simply stop again or if any ammount will 'hit the reset button' and necessitate another detox with the full withdrawl symptoms again.

The biggest and quickest way for my pain to spike is to sit upright in a seat. Because of this one of the worst activities I can do is ride on an airplane, which I have to to next week, and I am almost certain I will have to take one or two doses of Percocet. Does anyone know what I can expect to happen to my progress if/when this happens?

Thank you very much for your time. If I have said anything that violates policy or I am posting in the wrong area, please let me know and I will rectify the situation.

JBP

FYI - Detoxing at home: Day 1-3 was quite unpleasant. Day 4-6 was great and I was even able to jog apx. 1mi. Around day 9 and through day 13, things got very very bad. Horrible digestive distress, hives, swollen throat, etc. I have an awesome support network but I really want to know how much damage I will be doing to my chemical dependence if I have to take a couple of doses of Norco or Percocet early next month. Even worse than that, on my six day trip, capped off by airline flights, how long would I have to take opioids before I were right back were I started before I stopped using 14 days ago. It feels like I have made a huge amount of progress that I went to go to great lengths to have behind me. I am certainly willing to deal with more pain (at levels that still don't require narcotic pain meds) if it keeps me from having to do the full detox all over again.

Lastly, my diagnosis is for a lifetime of untreatable chronic pain but the level of that pain is still to be determined. The pain in the spine and shoulder blade are still improving daily, however very slowly. I am more and more confident

Thanks again.

JBP
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Old 04-20-2010, 04:24 PM
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Hi JPB

I would encourage you to discuss this fully with your doctor - none of us here know your history or specific details, and we can't give out medical advice here anyway.

There's a whole range of pain relief treatments out there - many tailored to suit those with addiction histories.

Open up a discussion with your doctor setting out your fears as you have here - and keep posting here. We also have substance abuse and a pain management forums you may be interested in.

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D
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Old 04-20-2010, 04:31 PM
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Yes, this is definitely something to talk about with your dr.

I'm glad you found us!
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Old 04-20-2010, 05:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Dee74 View Post
Hi JPB

I would encourage you to discuss this fully with your doctor - none of us here know your history or specific details, and we can't give out medical advice here anyway.

There's a whole range of pain relief treatments out there - many tailored to suit those with addiction histories.

Open up a discussion with your doctor setting out your fears as you have here - and keep posting here. We also have substance abuse and a pain management forums you may be interested in.

Welcome
D
Hi Dee and Anna,

Thank you very much for the information, I certainly will discuss with my Dr. and I will definitely check out the substance abuse and chronic pain forums. As things are improving with me, I now have the luxury of being well enough (after eight years of chronic pain, surgeries and opioid medications) to make the drugs my number one priority.

Thank you again for the time and for your input. I have no friends that suffer chronic pain or even any who have recreationally used prescription medication. I don't fall under the category of an addict/someone who abuses prescription medication for fun and I am not close to anyone who has ever had abused opioids or even other drugs. Being able learn and ask questions to people who have gone through some of the same stuff I am, is absolutly invaluable.

Thank you so much for your time and for helping people better understand their addictions and dependency. I'm scared right now because even though I'm not in that much pain anymore, my brain is still constantly thinking about medications. It is not even cravings that I get anymore, for some reason my subconsciouis still thinks about pill nearly all the time. It all seems very odd to me. Once again, I really appreciate the information and I will check the other forums in short order.

Many thanks!

JBP II
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Old 04-20-2010, 06:44 PM
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Hi JBP,

I think that's what happens with addiction - we lose ourselves and our obsessive thoughts rule our minds. Many people attempt to self-medicate and end up becoming addicts and that's how I ended up here. We do understand how difficult this is.
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