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merrygirl
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Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 702
   Posted 12/25/2009 5:17 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi everyone! hope you all had a great holiday!

Mine was fantastic despite a stupid mistake I made. I took a bath last night and took my fent patch off. Well I didnt want to put a new one on while still wet, so I waited.........and then forgot.

I woke up in a world of hurt. I also think I was having withdrawls, which I dont think I ever had before. I was jumpy, eyes watering alot, yawning, kinda shaky, severe pain and just not feeling well. I realized this at about 11am. I put a new one on and took an oxycodone. I got better, but still the pain is out of this world. Can someone tell me what withdarawls are like?

It is mostly my feet and mostly the bottoms. It is not like I have been on them or anything. This is the second and last time I have done this!!!!

I still managed to have the best christmas ever, so I am thankful that I wasnt in bed all day.

i hope you all had a great pain free day and that Santa was good to you.
Chronic Lyme Disease
Fibromyalgia
Chronic fatigue syndrome
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
Sleep Apnea
Hypothyroidism
Adrenal Fatigue
 


Screaming Eagle
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Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 12/25/2009 6:22 PM (GMT -7)   
Hello merrygirl! I don't know anything about the patch, but I also think I have small withdrawals. I just posed this questions to a friend of mine here just this last week. As I'm coming off of my meds on a daily basis, I too, get to feeling awful! No shakes, but an increase in pain of course, but have that all over sick feeling. As soon as I take the meds, I'm fine again. I would also be interested in a answer from someone too!

mrsm123
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 1228
   Posted 12/25/2009 9:04 PM (GMT -7)   
You described withdrawal symptoms very well. Shakiness, yawning with eyes tearing constantly, increased pain levels, and as it continues, diarrehea possibly, upset stomach, jitteriness. It usually worsens for the first three days and then gradually subsides over the following few days.
SE, why are you having those symptoms on a daily basis? That should not be happening, unless you aren't taking your meds as you are supposed to. You might be noticing that you are loosing some of the blood plasma levels of your meds. I can't recall what you are taking but no one should experience those symptoms on a daily basis unless something else isn't right.
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.
Avascular necrosis of left wrist- maybe hips too


straydog
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Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 13455
   Posted 12/25/2009 10:34 PM (GMT -7)   
Merrygirl you should always leave your patch on and not take it off until you are getting ready to put a new one on. That way the meds stay at a constant level. If they are not adhering good you might contact the maker of your brand and many times they will provide you with something to cover the patch with to help keep it dry. I bought Tegaderm covers to help keep my patch on and it covered it very well. As you found out withdrawals are not much fun. Hang in there.
 

crohns disease dx 2002 & small bowel resection, still looking for remission whatever that is, chronic pain 22 yrs, added ulcerative colitis 6-05 to the mix, high blood pressure 28 yrs, aortic heart valve insuffiency, depression, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis lumbar spine, scoliosis lumbar spine, peripheral neuropathy hands & feet, COPD & on oxygen therapy, lupus & psoriasis and psoratic arthritis. Several other health issues just not enough room to list it all. Too many surgeries to list and too many medications to list. Currently on 17 different daily medications. Intrathecal pain pump implanted June 05.


Screaming Eagle
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Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 12/25/2009 10:50 PM (GMT -7)   
Sandi, I never feel as though as I'm getting enough pain med to last me the 12 hrs it is supposed to. I'm on Oxycontin, and I'm supposed to take it every 12hrs. It wears off in 8hrs, so I go 4hrs with out pain relief. Remember my body has multiple injury's, upper neck, lower back DDD, and tendinitis in both elbows. (not sure I spelled that right.) It is as though my whole body is in shock from the injuries....that is the best way I can describe it. My Dr, wants me to wean myself off of the meds as much as possible before the surgery, and I have started, by getting off of the Percocet's. I have really had no problem doing so, as I'm still on the Oxycontin. My PCD, told me to do it at my own pace. The symptoms I feel are watery eyes, pain, a sick feeling...just shy of the flu type feelings. I asked my DR...about this a few weeks ago, and he said it is due to my need for more meds, as I have built up a tolerances to the meds. I will have to say that 6 to 8 months ago I did not have this problem. All I had was an increase in pain, but the meds did not last long enough. The Percocet's were only lasting me 2hrs...and then I could feel the down hill feeling along with pain. I really think my tolerance is rapidly growing on a daily basis. This has me worried, as I feel like a drug head that needs the meds....you know, like I'm hooked on them. I was always under the impression, that if you were taking the meds for pain, that you would not feel this way. Oh.....I can hear the chewing me out a coming from other members! Right now I'm plenty scared of everything...coming off the meds and suffering the withdrawals....and also the surgery that a date has yet to be set for. I will have to make another apt. with my PCD as my wife and I want a second opinion, from a neurosurgeon. I hate to ask too much here on the HW forum, as I hate being judged by what I call badge happy, members. I'm not really pointing fingers at anyone here, but I have seen evidence of that in only my opinion. For the most part everyone here has been very supportive of my plight here. I'm probably using the wrong wording here, so sorry if I have offended anyone here. I'm just a little gun shy, right now. I did however ask one of the members that I thoroughly trust for a non judgmental opinion, so I'm not sitting back and continuing to either suffer, or make an error with out checking on it....thus the reason, why I gingerly mentioned it tonight. I have always been much better at supporting others than myself. Sorry for the mental whining, and maybe it has something with reducing my intake of pain meds. You have me more than a little curious now about my condition, and that maybe I have missed something. I have been on the Percocet's for the last 6 to 7 years now, and thought this may be normal. Do you really think there may be something wrong?

Michael

Post Edited (Screaming Eagle) : 12/26/2009 8:03:33 AM (GMT-7)


straydog
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 13455
   Posted 12/26/2009 10:55 AM (GMT -7)   
SE I have terrible tolerance issues not just with pain meds but all meds. We had an awful time with oral pain meds, I was either allergic to them or the side effects ate me alive. If we found something that agreed with me it was always short lived. This is why I ended up with a pump. There are others here at the forum on Oxy and many of them like you were only getting 8 hours of relief instead of 12.
 
The only thing that concerns me somwhat is your PCP I assume is the one rxing the Oyx to you. That dr should be the one in control of weaning you from them when it is time. A dr is better qualified at doing that rather than a patient having to pitch hit doing that. There are other meds that can be given to a person to help with any withdrawal effects. Since there is no surgery date set, it seems odd that you should have to go w/o pain relief. Don't get me wrong, I understand the drs wanting you off of the meds at surgery. But, the problem is you don't have a date set. If you had a target date then the drs could work at getting you pretty much off or down to a very low dose. I hope what I am trying to say makes sense, sometimes its harder putting it in words, lol. I just think its wrong for a person to have suffer needlessly.
 

crohns disease dx 2002 & small bowel resection, still looking for remission whatever that is, chronic pain 22 yrs, added ulcerative colitis 6-05 to the mix, high blood pressure 28 yrs, aortic heart valve insuffiency, depression, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis lumbar spine, scoliosis lumbar spine, peripheral neuropathy hands & feet, COPD & on oxygen therapy, lupus & psoriasis and psoratic arthritis. Several other health issues just not enough room to list it all. Too many surgeries to list and too many medications to list. Currently on 17 different daily medications. Intrathecal pain pump implanted June 05.


Screaming Eagle
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 12/26/2009 11:17 AM (GMT -7)   
Good morning Stray! I agree with you! However the PCD did ask me to start weaning myself off the meds, and told me that he wanted me to slack off of the Percocet's first, then he will lower my dosage of the Oxycontin to the 20mg instead of the 30mg. I sincerely thank you for your concern, and like always, you are right on target with your recommendations and your concern. I think there is nobody more concerned than I am at this time....thus the question here. I tend to leave important information out of my postings, and that is an error of mine. Again Thanks!

I actually think the Dr forgot to schedule my appt with a surgeon. It is understandable, since he already scheduled several other things for me, and given the time of year, I think some of them could not get me in until after the Holiday is over with. I will keep all here updated as best I can when I find out more. Bless all of you, and really Im more concerned about all of you. Stray, how are you doing now? I know PaLady is having a terrible time with computer problems also.

straydog
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 13455
   Posted 12/26/2009 11:57 AM (GMT -7)   

SE I am having computer problems too. I came on this am and found 3 exact posts on this thread here alone, lol. So, I went in and deleted them gawd. What next. A minute ago it kicked me out and said I needed to log in so I lost a response I did to a post. Last night I kept getting knocked off the forum for some reason. 

My ortho told me this week he thinks I tore scar tissue loose in my arm and that really set things back on improvement. That hacked me off. But, then while making candy Christmas Eve I was holding a pan of melted chocolate and dipping the candy in it with the bad hand, finally I just started screaming in pain with my hand, I could not take it anymore. I should have had the brace on doing that little project, but I had my hands in so much water during this time I took it off to keep it dry. Well, I screwed up royal on that deal, imagine that. I nearly dropped the pan but managed to get it to the counter. I got the candy done before the horrible pain set in. But, as my luck would go I stood there screaming in pain and trying to get the brace on at the same time. I ate some Ibuprophen and it helped, but omg I have one fat swollen hand now. I am paying for that candy making.  I was up till 2:30 in the morning baking and wrapping last minute stuff. I remembered last night I bought the little tornado a set of walkie talkies at the last minute and forgot to give them to him. Oh well, I am consistent, I always forget one present every year, lol. I have this tape stuff they gave me at PT to put on my wrist and arm for the swelling, it makes the tissue adsorb the fluid and gets some of the swelling to go down.

We had a great Christmas and a wonderful dinner with tons of food. I was like an old dog, once I got my belly full, I found a chair by the fire and my lights went out. The kids all know I have problems sleeping so they left me alone and I slept till 7:00 PM!!! I slept right thru the others all leaving, lol. Only reason the little tornado let granny sleep was he had tons of new toys to entertain himself with. When I woke up his daddy had hooked up the Wii to the tv and the 4 yr old was kicking dad's butt on the golf course, lol. I cracked up, cause little one plays those games on the hardestr level and he was waxing dad in golf. Both are golf nuts. That was his big toy from granny and papaw this year. He is such a hoot. His Nana bought him some additional pieces to the Wii game cause she knew we had bought him one. So when he opened hers first he said I have extra pieces I can take to Nana's or Aunt M's to play on their Wii. So, then he was given the set as the last gift to open. We were not sure he realized that he had the actual game console, so his Nana said well Cole what have you got there, he thought for a minute, then he said Nana I have my very own Wii game and extra pieces. He is a very smart little guy to just be 4 yrs old. Of course granny brags too, lol.

SE I just am not sure your dr is having you do this taper thing the proper way, and I see the potential for you to be in some serious needless pain. I don't wish that on anyone. I think when he decides to lower the Oxy dose, I would ask for something to help me relax a little to ward off some of the effects. That would not be an unsual request either. I think I have asked before, but don't you have a neurosurgeon lined up to do your surgery? And are you also going to have a second opinion too? Sorry for the questions but the mind is still still tired today. I just think it would have been better all the way around if you would have had an actual surgery date before having you do the taper. I hope you can get everything set up soon. Have you called your dr to find out when anything is set up yet? I would at this point stay on top of them.

I am in Fort Worth and we had a white Christmas which is very unusual. I read Wichita Falls which is a little north of here had 11 inches of snow. My sister lives in Okla, City and she got 14 inches and they set a new record. They have also had some deaths reported. They had blizzard conditions. I was worried she might lose her power, so many had.

I am out of here and going to go crawl in my bed and take myself a nap. That is something I rarely ever do, lol But, truth is, I wore myself out that last week and I am still tired, lol. Take care sure hope this all works out ok for you.


 

crohns disease dx 2002 & small bowel resection, still looking for remission whatever that is, chronic pain 22 yrs, added ulcerative colitis 6-05 to the mix, high blood pressure 28 yrs, aortic heart valve insuffiency, depression, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis lumbar spine, scoliosis lumbar spine, peripheral neuropathy hands & feet, COPD & on oxygen therapy, lupus & psoriasis and psoratic arthritis. Several other health issues just not enough room to list it all. Too many surgeries to list and too many medications to list. Currently on 17 different daily medications. Intrathecal pain pump implanted June 05.


skeye
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 12/26/2009 1:02 PM (GMT -7)   
Merry,

Yikes! Be careful with baths & fentanyl patches -- heat destroys the time release mechanism & if you aren't careful, you can overdose!

What you describe does sound like it could be withdrawls, especially if it stopped within a few hours of putting a new patch on!

Hope you're feeling better!

Skeye

Tirzah
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 2280
   Posted 12/26/2009 8:03 PM (GMT -7)   
Merry,
Sounds like you did the right thing by taking off the patch before the bath. I made that mistake once & it was not pretty (thank God I was visiting my mom & she was able to pull the patch off, put me in ice water & keep me from choking).

As for the withdrawal, yes it does sound like fentanyl withdrawal symptoms. It might take a while for you to build back up enough in your system before you start feeling better. Try to give yourself a few days to start feeling better. The withdrawal should go away quickly, but it might take a bit to get the pain to go away. It's great that you were able to go several hours without the medication before you were in pain. Perhaps that is something to discuss with your doctor. Maybe you can wait a few hours in between changing patches, but not manage skipping a dose overnight. Anything to lower dependence as far as I'm concerned (but that's between you & your doctor). I'm working on cutting back on my dosing schedule & it is rough but my pain level is slightly improved & fentanyl is such a hard drug to withdraw from. I hate having my entire life tied to whether my insurance company's computers are working on a given week or not, so I am even trying to learn to live with a bit more pain than before (gosh that is tough!).

Hang in there & know that your pain will come back under control almost certainly. Fentanyl's half-life is 7 hours, so that means that since the patch doses you every hour you have a small amount of the medication that builds up over time. It will just take a couple days to build back up that reserve amount of the medication in your body.

hugs,
frances

Michael,
I can sympathize. My PM lets me set my own schedule for cutting down as well. He's tried to set the schedule in the past, but that didn't work out so well. Every body is different. Your doc should at least set guidelines for what sorts of symptoms indicate serious issues & that mean that you should either call him, go to the hospital or take more of the narcotics (severe dehydration, too high bp, etc.). There are good non-narcotic meds for withdrawal, like Suzy mentioned. I am going very slowly cutting back on the meds right now, but in the past when I have needed to go faster (for various reasons), I have been prescribed Catapres patches (clonidine). They are wonderful. Help with watery eyes, runny nose, blood pressure, heart issues (I have an extra heartbeat, so we have to be careful) & pretty much every other symptom except for the creepy crawly feeling in my legs. Catapres is on label for high blood pressure but the generic is so cheap that even if your insurance won't cover it you can probably pay for it out of pocket. One patch lasts 7 days. Like the fentanyl patches, you have to be careful about heat with the patch on as it can cause too much of the med to be released & can cause fainting, or other crisis resulting from low bp.

feel better,
frances

straydog
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 13455
   Posted 12/27/2009 11:42 AM (GMT -7)   
Frances are you saying that you removed your Fentanyl patches when you bathed? My PM dr said to never remove one unless it was time to change it. My Mom was on them too with her lung cancer and we were told the same thing with her. I did not take hot showers, just warm and it never increased the release of medication. The only time I had trouble was in the summer months and if I was outside and got too hot, yes, then it did release too much and it was awful. That was a serious drawback with Fentanyl living where the temps could get pretty extreme in the summer.

Frances, we don't see much of you around anymore, so I always assume you are doing very well.lol. At least I sure hope so, you have had some rough times. Kudos to you on reducing your meds, I sure hope you are successful there. I honestly believe many times the pain is worse with certain medications. Take care and let us hear from you.
 

crohns disease dx 2002 & small bowel resection, still looking for remission whatever that is, chronic pain 22 yrs, added ulcerative colitis 6-05 to the mix, high blood pressure 28 yrs, aortic heart valve insuffiency, depression, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis lumbar spine, scoliosis lumbar spine, peripheral neuropathy hands & feet, COPD & on oxygen therapy, lupus & psoriasis and psoratic arthritis. Several other health issues just not enough room to list it all. Too many surgeries to list and too many medications to list. Currently on 17 different daily medications. Intrathecal pain pump implanted June 05.


merrygirl
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 702
   Posted 12/27/2009 1:53 PM (GMT -7)   
my temp runs 100 degrees for what reason we dont know. I think it does speed up the rate of my fentanyl. I have to change my patch every 2 days instead of every 3. I do take hot baths as well and dont always change my patch unless it is time. THe hot baths I need to get through some days, and i do fine,
Chronic Lyme Disease
Fibromyalgia
Chronic fatigue syndrome
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
Sleep Apnea
Hypothyroidism
Adrenal Fatigue
 


Tirzah
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 2280
   Posted 12/27/2009 2:24 PM (GMT -7)   
Susie,
I was told to leave the patches for 72 hours straight that it was okay to get them wet & everything. Unfortunately, this was some time ago before they had the obvious warnings about heat & patches. I overdosed on the patches & my mom found me blacked out in the tub. She called my neurologist who had prescribed the patch & was told to remove the patch, keep me upright so I didn't choke on my own vomit & to immediately put me in ice water & call 911. She was too frantic & never actually called 911, but she did get the patch off & ran cold water which she put ice in. I was then quite violently ill but at least it got enough of the drug out of my system to make it through.

Heat & fentanyl DO NOT MIX. It doesn't matter if it is a heating pad, a hot bath or a fever. It changes the absorption rate. It can and does cause lethal overdoses. The issue as it was explained to me was not how hot the patch got, but how hot I got. I can't swear that is the case for everyone, but it seemed to be the issue for me. The water was not especially hot in my case. It really is not particularly safe to be taking hot baths with the patches on. Apparently long warm showers when you are feeling a bit under the weather are not a great idea either. We're not sure what role the drain backing up may have contributed to the issue (about a foot or so of water was in the base of the tub/shower) but I definitely was not lying down taking a bath.

I'm not saying that no one should ever bathe with the patches on. That's to be determined by each person's doctor but it is something to discuss & something to be very careful about. I am not on the patches currently (no surprise there, right?), but I am on Fentora & Actiq. I was given the exact same warning about hot baths & those medications. Now, at least, I recognize the onset of symptoms of an overdose & I can immediately change the water all the way to cold (so unpleasant!). But even with that, I have had mild overdoses from fentanyl, even without the patches, if I take a dose too close to when I'm taking a toasty shower or bath. I've been on it for 6 years & have had a pretty stable dosing schedule the whole time so it's not due to an increase in the meds. It's just a sneaky side effect that is amplified in me in particular because with my thyroid issues my body temperature sometimes will spike with little prompting. I know others have had issues with it because of thyroid issues, heart conditions & a myriad of other problems that cause their temperature to rise.

Such a tricky little drug. You know how the saying goes -- can't live with it, can't live without it.

Thanks for asking, though. I am doing better. Not 100%, but so much better. I've actually been able to be at my temp job every day. :) Now to work on getting there on time. One battle at a time, right? I've been reading your posts even though I haven't been posting myself. Sorry you've had such a rough time of it lately. Hopefully your happy days are on their way.

blessings,
frances

straydog
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 13455
   Posted 12/27/2009 4:44 PM (GMT -7)   

Wow Frances, cannot believe that no one warned you about heat and Fentyl patches. My Mom was on them in the  early 90's and both her dr and the pharmacist warned us about heat and things relating to heat. Then later it was the same with me when I was put on them. I wore mine 72 hours although the last day was not pretty, they only lasted 48 hours. In the winter I had no problem with them but summer was a whole different issue from me overheating while outside and too much was released. I hated that feeling when that happened too.

Yes, I knew you were working a temp job and I was so glad when you landed it.  Any potential of it becoming full time work for you? Take care of yourself.


 

crohns disease dx 2002 & small bowel resection, still looking for remission whatever that is, chronic pain 22 yrs, added ulcerative colitis 6-05 to the mix, high blood pressure 28 yrs, aortic heart valve insuffiency, depression, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis lumbar spine, scoliosis lumbar spine, peripheral neuropathy hands & feet, COPD & on oxygen therapy, lupus & psoriasis and psoratic arthritis. Several other health issues just not enough room to list it all. Too many surgeries to list and too many medications to list. Currently on 17 different daily medications. Intrathecal pain pump implanted June 05.

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