Pain Medication Tolerance

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Jim M
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 47
   Posted 11/18/2009 7:08 AM (GMT -6)   
Hello everyone, it's been awhile since I've posted here however I wanted to share about my OxyContin tolerance.

A few weeks back my medication had stopped working. Well actually, I guess it was working but I wasn't getting the relief I had been getting. So this is what I did:

I decreased my dosage for three weeks. I basically just took my breakthrough medication which was just enough to keep me out of withdrawal. So for three weeks I tolerated the pain but I managed to keep myself out of withdrawals.

At the end of three weeks I started taking my medication as prescribed. I couldn't believe it! The three weeks of taking the breakthrough medication was well worth it. Once I started taking medication that I have been neglecting myself from started working like a charm.

I don't recommend anyone else doing this however I did want to share how I lowered my tolerance and got my life back again. Looking back it was a very long three weeks. I was in pain but I was not in withdrawals. If I should find myself in the same situation again, doing the whole routine over again should really be a piece of cake.

I figured I handled the pain before I started taking medication. But my big fear was going through withdrawals. That's where the breakthrough medicine came in. Which was three Percocet a day. Once in the morning, afternoon, and at bedtime. What's really amazing after doing this I feel the same way I did when I was first prescribed my pain medication.

And by the way, my pain is nothing compared to the other people on this forum. You people are so strong! Nobody has any idea who is in good physical condition how absolutely incredibly strong all of you are. If most people lived one day in your shoes I'm not sure if they could handle it. I just want to give you all a big pat on the back! Sure, you may be in pain but Nobody can realize the mental strength most of the people on this forum have.

May you all have a pain-free day!
Jim
 


Screaming Eagle
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 4994
   Posted 11/18/2009 10:28 AM (GMT -6)   
   Good morning Jim!...and welcome to the Healing Well Chronic Pain Forum! I'm a little short on time here for a longer reply, ...and I'm sure there are going to be a number of members that will make some excellant suggestions to you. I guess that my fear for you, may be that the relief you are getting by taking off from the pain med, and then getting back on it after being off for three weeks....may be short lived. Lets hope this is not the case. How long have you been on the Oxycontin, and what is the dosage?

mrsm123
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 1116
   Posted 11/18/2009 1:02 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Jim,
I'm glad that it worked for you, but honestly, we tell everyone that if you are going to try to reduce your pain meds or stop them for any reason, you should only do so under the supervision of your PM doctor. While it is not usually dangerous, they can help you to aleviate any symptoms that might come up. Reducing meds without your doctors knowledge, while in theory is not a bad idea, can cause someone to get dismissed from their PM's office simply because they don't have the meds in their system that they are supposed to.
I'm glad that it worked for you and your pain meds are now helping better, but it's just not a good idea without your doctors knowledge.
Sandi
PLIF/TLIF Fusion w/Instrumentation L4-5 Spondololysthesis L4-5.Laminectomies L4-5, foraminal stenosis L3-4, L4-5, L5-S1, herniations L3-4, L4-5, L5-S1, central canal stenosis L3-4, L4-5 and L5-S1
POST OP CES 3/30-06
Neurogenic Bladder and Bowel, bilateral numbness legs and feet
Revision for failed Back surgery, pseudoarthrosis L4-5, hemilaminectomies L3-4, L4-5, L5-S1, bmp added to revision fusion, replaced two bent screws that were reversing out of vertebrae - August 2, 2007
On going back pain and neuropathic pain, failed back surgery, consult for scs, decided not to do that at this point.
Adhesive Arachnoiditis also......just what I didn't need..9/08- adding bilateral ulnar neuropathy with severe compression to the mix. They want me to see a surgeon for ulnar nerve surgery, but I'm not biting.
I've seen enough surgeons over the last few years.
[url=http://dragcave.net/view/xdyP][img]http://dragcave.net/image/xdyP.gif[/img][/url]


PAlady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 11/18/2009 2:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Jim,
I have to say "ditto" to Sandi's post. This definitely needs to be done in conjunction with your doctor. That being said some PM doctors will try similar things (under their supervision) to help "re-set" the body's tolerance to a given medication. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. It will be interesting to see if it lasts for you, since you were taking a short acting version of the oxycontin n the percocet. If it works, great, but please next time do it under the supervision of your doctor. And as Sandi also said, this could in addition to possibly being dangerous medically, get you dismissed from a PM for doing it without his/her support.

Good luck!

PaLady

Boxerlover
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 267
   Posted 11/18/2009 6:55 PM (GMT -6)   

Many docs used to do this, but most have found that this really doesn't do a whole lot. Most found that tolerance was right back to where it was within a short period of time.  That being said, Jim we are all different and things work differently for everyone.  If this works for you and your doc is OK with it then that is great and I am glad you found something that works for you!

Melissa


Just because you feel you might be in over your head, doesn't mean it has to be a disagreeable feeling. You may just live up to the moment.


Jim M
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 47
   Posted 11/19/2009 1:42 AM (GMT -6)   
I agree with all of you..
However, my DOC won't up me anymore.
Even if I was upped on a dosage I could not afford it.
 
I know my body very well, so I am not worried about any risk.
 
As I said in the original post, I DON'T RECOMEND THIS TO ANYONE.
But it did work for me.
 


Chutz
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 9090
   Posted 11/19/2009 2:20 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Jim,

No need to bawl you out any more, the gang did a superb job already...lol But I'm very glad you're OK and that you are doing much better. These medications many of us use are mighty powerful aren't they. I'm not afraid of them either but I do have a healthy respect for them. It does amaze me that people use them wildly and actually like the feeling they get. <<shudder> They should have to feel the pain too, IMHO.

Be safe,
Chutz
The three grand essentials of happiness are: something to do, someone to love, and something to hope for. — Alexander Chalmers

(\o/)Co-Moderator Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Forums
(/|\)
Fibromyalgia, PTSD, UC, Diabetic on insulin, collapsed disk, arthritis scattered around and a few other delights.


Jim M
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 47
   Posted 11/19/2009 5:52 AM (GMT -6)   
Chutz
Thanks for not beating me up on this post. It seems like every time I post I get flamed.
But yes, I had to do something because my doctor I believe has a phobia of opioids. I know I am under medicated. But on the other hand the price of the medication is so expensive that I can't afford it. Yes, I'm one of those people without insurance. And the nice people at Sprint decided they didn't need my service anymore.
Anyway, my pain is under control. It's just like when I was first prescribed.

40 mg OxyContin 2 times daily-three Percocet daily as needed for breakthrough pain.
 
In closing, Chutz I appreciate you not beating me up. I'll watch what I post from now on
 

 


Tirzah
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 2196
   Posted 11/19/2009 11:09 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Jim,
I'm actually going to differ slightly in opinion from the others.  I have had exactly the same experience as you had from cutting back on the medication doseage.  The only difference is that I did it in conjunction with my PM.  He actually requires that all of his patients take a "drug holiday" once a year for 1-2 weeks in order to mitigate tolerance.  As a result, I haven't had to increase my pain meds for the past 6 years.  My PM says that other than his cancer patients, the vast majority of his patients don't have to keep increasing their meds once a therapeutic dose is reached.  From what I've heard from his other patients, they feel the same as I do.  That week or two is pretty unpleasant, but being able to keep at a stable dose over the long run is well worth it.
 
I hope you will talk to your PM about this since it is important that your doctors know how much medication you are actually taken at any given time.  I've yet to know a doctor who didn't support their patients desire to temporarily cut back on their narcotic pain meds. But it is your doctor's responsibility to keep you safe & he needs all the information you have in order to do that.  On top of that, with the recent highly publicized cases of celebrities being prescribed wrong meds or too much of certain meds, the DEA wants even more careful records from doctors.  Many doctors offices are just now moving to mandated UA testing.  If your doctor knows about you decreasing your meds, it won't be a surprise if your UA test comes back with less medicine than originally prescribed.  If you don't tell him until after the fact, it could raise questions about what happened to the rest of your medication.  So I really am a strong advocate of being completely honest with doctors both to protect oneself & to protect the doctor's practice.
 
Glad you're feeling the benefit, just want to gently suggest that perhaps there might be a slightly better way to go about it. ;)
 
frances

Screaming Eagle
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 4994
   Posted 11/19/2009 11:40 AM (GMT -6)   
 Hello Jim! It looks like we take almost identical pain meds, except my dose is 30mg for working hrs, and 20mg for non working hrs of the oxycontin. The percocet is also for BT and as needed. Right now I only take two if them a day. I'm going to bring this up to my PCD and see what he says about it this next week. Thanks for the information, and hope you continue to be successful with it.
 
      Michael

PAlady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 11/19/2009 5:17 PM (GMT -6)   
Jim,
I honestly don't think I or any of the others who were simply advocating doing this under medical supervision were "flaming" you. If we had been, Chutz would have edited our posts.

In addition to the reasons already mentioned, many of us here are sensitive to these things because when a doctor does find out it's just one more reason for him/her to suspect other patients. And we have enough trouble getting pain management as it is.

I had been without insurance since July, and just was able to get a minimal version of a policy for low income people which covers very little, and no meds. I was laid off 2 years ago. So I know all about those struggles. But no one here flamed you; we don't allow that on this site, but that being said we do allow for differences of opinion expressed in respectful ways.

PaLady
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