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Question about pain meds....I am in SHOCK! Question about pain meds....I am in SHOCK!

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Unread 01-30-2003, 03:10 PM
That part never really goes away and answers to ?'s

The breaking down part never really goes away BECAUSE there is such a stigma associated with them (narcotics) even for people who are in ligitimate dibilitating pain. Now, my reaction is down to a "twinge" compared to a year and a half ago of me just dying inside every time I had to go get a refill.

But, I get "hostile" now if someone mistreats me at a pharmacy or if doctors hone in on that too much. I go into GROSS details about my condition with some of them and they usually shut up. If they don't I ask for my RX back and I take it someplace else. Luckily, My PM group has a PHarmacy inside and they never ever give me grief. They even count my pills in front of me if I ask them too.

And by "schedules" Hydrocodone and Lortab and methodone are On the same SCHEDULE - that would be schedule 2 as most narcotics are. However, in some states methodone and oxycontin are more closely monitored by the STATE govt. And the Federal govt has different issuing standards. But other than being a different drug, they're the same. They're both narcotics.

It comes down to this: Do I want to stay in bed 24/7 and rely on the govt to keep me and my family up and rely on neighbors and church members to do my housework? Or do I want to swallow this pill and keep my mouth shut about what I get from the pharmacy and do it myself?

I *do* understand what you're going through. Both of you. I went through it myself. Had it not been from someone on this board, I never would have gone. But this decent, kind, and respectable lady told me her story and I was swayed. And after about the first month...I was ready to accept this as my fate. This is not to say I didn't have relapses. I did. But, I'd go to this or that specialist and once again hear, "Sorry. You're going to have to learn to live with this". Then I'd go back to the pain group and get my meds for the next month. Without them. I'd be either a bag lady on the streets, or someone on welfare.

I'm not knocking welfare or disability. I'm not! There's nothing wrong with that. But even if I went on disability, I would neve be able to function as a person: mom, wife, mother, citizen DUE to my pain levels.

And truthfully, it's human nature to talk about other people for SOME individuals. So those same individuals who'd talk about you for taking these meds would also talk about you being "lazy" or a "hypochondriac" for not being able to function as a wife, mother, girlfriend, citizen, jane doe without them. Sad, but true.

And you KNOW it's true.

It's really hard to get over the stigma because in the 80's (and I'm a child of the 80's) it was "Just say No" to any and ALL drugs. And I did. And it's stuck with me. However, without them. I cannot function. Saying no when you're sick is like saying no to plasma when you're in shock. It might not kill you right then and there, but slowly your real life will die.

I'm not saying don't form other coping mechanisms. DO. I go to accupunture. Take BETTER care of myself BECAUSE of the meds (diet, exercise, supplements,etc). And, I have a regular check up each month with the PM Group even if I'm not sick. I also pray alot and try to find things that bring me joy.

I had to see a pain therapist to deal with the "stigma" of being a pain patient. Not because of the drugs, but because of what being in pain has done to my life. I'm still quite angry about it. And I feel sorry for myself other times. And sometimes I have rage. It's normal, but still a process. Having help with that helps me.

So, there are other things, but for some of us...without the drugs the other coping mechanisms are USELESS because we're in too much pain to talk, walk, listen, or interact.

Staying in bed staring at the ceiling or making it to work and not being able to function did it for me. That was what drove me to this decision.

Without the drugs, I think I'd be suicidal from the pain. I was getting that way...and I NEVER thought I'd say that. There are people who kill themselves every year because they can't afford medication or are not afforded the opportunity to get them when they NEED them.

I'm not talking about addiciton. I'm talking about pain.

Here's more on that:

PLEASE! Read the article in the NYTIMES It's considered ground breaking and it is. You may have to register. It doesn't cost anything and it's well worth it Here's an excerpt and the link:
Melanie ThernStrom:
A modern chronicler of hell might look to the lives of chronic-pain patients for inspiration. Theirs is a special suffering, a separate chamber, the dimensions of which materialize at the New England Medical Center pain clinic in downtown Boston. Inside the cement tower, all sights and sounds of the neighborhood -- the swans in the Public Garden, the lanterns of Chinatown -- disappear, collapsing into a small examining room in which there are only three things: the doctor, the patient and pain. Of these, as the endless daily parade of desperation and diagnoses makes evident, it is pain whose presence predominates.

''Yes, yes,'' sighs Dr. Daniel Carr, who is the clinic's medical director. ''Some of my patients are on the border of human life. Chronic pain is like water damage to a house -- if it goes on long enough, the house collapses. By the time most patients make their way to a pain clinic, it's very late.'' What the majority of doctors see in a chronic-pain patient is an overwhelming, off-putting ruin: a ruined body and a ruined life. It is Carr's job to rescue the crushed person within, to locate the original source of pain -- the leak, the structural instability -- and begin to rebuild: psychically, psychologically, socially.

For leaders in the field like Carr, this year marks a critical watershed. In January, the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations, the basic national health care review board, implemented the first national standards requiring pain assessment and control in all hospitals and nursing homes. Standards for evaluating and managing pain in lab animals have long been tightly regulated, but curiously there had never before been any legal equivalent for people. Maine took the further step last year of passing its own legislation requiring the aggressive treatment of pain, and California and other states are considering following suit..................................
Research has begun to shed light on this: unlike ordinary or acute pain, which is a function of a healthy nervous system, chronic pain resembles a disease, a pathology of the nervous system that produces abnormal changes in the brain and spinal cord. New technology, like functional imaging, which is generating the first portraits of brains in action, is revealing the nature of pain's pathology.

Far from being simply an unpleasant experience that people should endure with a stiff upper lip, pain turns out to be harmful to the body. Pain unleashes a cascade of negative hormones like cortisol that adversely affect the immune system and kidney function. Patients treated with morphine heal more quickly after surgery. A recent study suggests that adequate cancer-pain treatment may influence the prospects for survival: rats with tumors given morphine actually live longer than those that do not receive it.

Paradigm shifts occur slowly; if arriving at a new medical conception of pain has been difficult and protracted, disseminating the knowledge will be more so. Pain treatment belongs primarily in the hands of ordinary physicians, most of whom know little about it. Less than 1 percent of them have been trained as pain specialists, and medical schools and textbooks give the subject very little attention. The primary painkillers -- opiates, like OxyContin -- are widely feared, misunderstood and underused. (A 1998 study of elderly women in nursing homes with metastatic breast cancer found that only a quarter received adequate pain treatment; one-quarter received no treatment at all.)

NY Times Chronic Pain Article Pain THE Disease

Please, Please read this article. It has so much critical information in it. Don't take my word for anything (and I only scratched the surface) read the entire article and then tell me what you think. It discusses the pathology of pain. That's brand new stuff. It's about 8 pages long and is by far the most insightful article I've ever seen on pain.

Hidden Disabilities and Resources
Pain Thread with Article links re: Pain the Disease

I hope you can all find a happy medium. It's not easy. You have to really find your own balance and your own way. But keep trying!

Luv, Anj

"We must all die. But that I can save a person from days of torture, that is what I feel is my great and ever-new privilege. Pain is a more terrible lord of mankind than even death itself." -Albert Schweitzer
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Unread 01-30-2003, 05:02 PM
Question about pain meds....I am in SHOCK!

Thank you so much for taking the time to help everyone else out, especially now with what you're going through.

Love and prayers are headed your way,
Unread 01-31-2003, 06:04 AM
Question about pain meds....I am in SHOCK!

I also understand all to well I have been using Narcotic Pain meds for over 3 years...when I 1st started I was appalled..I didnt want to mask the pain, I wanted it to be fixed! The more I learned, the worse I felt & I finally decided to go the Pain Mgmt route. I only wish I wouldve done it sooner. Yes, there is a stigma attatched to these & I have received many *comments* from Drs, Nurses ect..but I then go into great detail of my situation, they then understand I see the same Dr as Angie, so my Pharmacy is in the clinic & they are great in fact, I've transferred all my scripts there!
From all I've read, Methadone is a wonderful med for Chronic Pain. Many fear it b/c it's use for treating Heroine addicts. There are only 5,000 Drs here who are certified in Pain Mgmt, the reason why we get so many snide remarks about our use of pain meds, they are uneducated. Here is some info that has helped me in my negative feelings toward my long-term use of Narcotics: Valuable

Controlled Substances:

Pain & Related Medicines:

Women and Pain:

Addiction vs dependance:

Pain Control After Surgery: Pain Medicines:

Pain management gaining acceptance:

Misunderstood Prescription Drugs and Needless Pain:

US NC: OPED: Series Masks The True Nature Of Drug Abuse:

All About Pain -- Doctors for Pain -

You Have Chronic Pain: Now What?

Oral Methadone Effective as First-line Opioid
Treatment for Chronic Non-Cancer pain:

Pain and the Law:


Risk Of Addiction To Pain Relief Is Small,Expert Says:

Most Commonly Used Medications:

Good Luck Dawn Please keep us posted on how your doing...(((hugs)))
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Unread 01-31-2003, 09:28 AM
Question about pain meds....I am in SHOCK!


*Please* try the methadone - it has helped me IMMENSELY. And I have chronic pain from various problems, & it has helped with all of them.
I dont have much time at the moment because I have to get ready for my neurosurgeon app. But I will be back on some time tonite after work - probly after I get my 7 yr. old to bed.
Hang in there girl - I know its hard. But you can do it - & we are here for you
I will be back later with more info, ok ? In the meantime, try the methadone. You dont deserve to be in pain 24/7 .



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