opiates and Lyrica resulted in chronic constipation

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2008
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   Posted 2/4/2008 11:48 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi all,  I am new to posting on this forum but have posted on the fibromialgia forum on a few occasions.
My problem..... I started taking Lyrica 100 mg twice daily a few months ago.....I also take oxycodone 15 mg 4 times a day as well as 1 mg clonazapam to sleep and 5mg paxil.  Since adding the Lyrica I have developed chronic constipation and have been taking a stool softner or senocot with little success.  I am not new to taking narcotic pain medication.....have taken it daily for approx 5 years and did not experience constipation prior to adding Lyrica to my mix.  I have tried the added fiber and increased fluid intake route with no luck!  I like Lyrica...it has helped tremendously so don't want to give it up but I feel so worn out lately and believe that the chronic constipation may be causing this.  Does anyone have any suggestions?  Does anyone else experience chronic constipation and what do you use?
Thanks Daisy

 Disabled due to injuries recieved in auto accident in the eighties..... injuries to numerous to mention!  Fibromyalgia, arthritis and degerative disc disease, depression and anxiety disorder.

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   Posted 2/4/2008 12:07 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Daisy!

Yes, those meds will give you the big 'C'. And that's miserable. Been there myself. The narcotic pain meds I take do it to me. There are several things you can do OTC to help. Add a stool softener daily. I take two. Then, another HW member told me about Miralax and it's wonderful. It's a powder you mix with any kind of drink. I put it in my diet Squirt and you can't tell it's in there. Mixes with hot drinks too. I think it's even better than the stool softeners but I still use them too.

Hope this helps,
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Cyborg Ninja
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   Posted 2/4/2008 12:32 PM (GMT -6)   
I really doubt it was Lyrica that did it for you, even if the timing seems that way. I've never had that problem from Lyrica or have heard of it. Oxycodone 4 times a day will most certainly cause constipation, however. I've never had much help with Miralax but I dunno, maybe I didn't try it for long enough.
Current DX: Graves' disease, Crohn's disease, gallstones, scoliosis, syringomyelia

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   Posted 2/4/2008 2:32 PM (GMT -6)   
That's one of those problems that you have to keep trying different things to figure out what will work best for you. By all means, keep up with the fiber and water - it's just not enough to keep things moving. I use softeners daily, and generally that's fine. If further assistance is necessary, I'll take the softener with stimulant added. The name brand of the softener is Colace; softener with stimulant senna is Pericolace. Generics are more than 50% cheaper than brand. It's always better to avoid regular use of stimulants because your colon eventually learns to depend on them, making your problem that much worse.

If miralax doesn't help, you might try a more soluble form of fiber like citrucell. Miralax is a synthetic, and works well, but can get expensive. Most other fibers are psyllium based, and if added to quickly, will also make things worse. Keep on trying!
Living in the Republic of Texas minus a gallbladder, a couple of cervical discs, appendix, uterus, and 18" of colon; but still alive and living with my husband, 2 dogs, 1 cockatiel, 1 quaker parrot and 2 gold fish. 

Cyborg Ninja
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   Posted 2/4/2008 3:16 PM (GMT -6)   
I had no idea Miralax was like a fiber substitute. I thought it was just a stool softener. Then again, I don't know what "stool softener" technically means.
Current DX: Graves' disease, Crohn's disease, gallstones, scoliosis, syringomyelia
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New Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 7/11/2008 7:54 PM (GMT -6)   
I can sympathize. I've been on Percocet 7.5/325 6x/day and recently started in with the Lyrica. The Percocet alone caused me to start taking daily stool softener with some laxative. I just about had a system down and started getting almost regular when I started the Lyrica. YES, Lyrica DOES cause constipation. I not only read it in the literature, but I am sorry to say, I am back to the "C" word again. Even worse now than ever.

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   Posted 7/11/2008 8:50 PM (GMT -6)   
I agree with Chutzie - I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Miralax. I discovered it when my doc prescribed it, though. I still use that version (Polyethylene Glycol - the generic) so it only costs me a $5 copay for a huge bottle that lasts me a whole month. If the OTC version is too expensive, I'd suggest asking your doc if he'd write you a prescription for it. I bet he would.

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   Posted 7/11/2008 9:25 PM (GMT -6)   
HI, Daisy,
Welcome to the CP forum. I take percocet and neurontin daily, and while I hadn't noticed any daily constipation, of late I've been noticing more bloating. So I've returned to takiing a stool softener, and occasionally a stimulant. But you know sometimes I forget that regular good old prunes or prune juice can also work! Doesn't do the trick for everyone, but I think I'm going to stock up again next time I'm at the store.

Good luck!


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   Posted 7/11/2008 9:29 PM (GMT -6)   
Wow nice to know about the miralax, I might give that a try. Lots of water is supposed to help with consipation. Sorry, wish I could help you out more.
Good luck in what you choose to do and lots of soft hugz coming your way.......
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Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 50
   Posted 7/12/2008 7:35 PM (GMT -6)   
I too have chronic constipation from taking lyrica..I was on neuronton and that caused it too but not nearly as bad...I only go about once a week and I get so miserable in between...I have taking a stool softener but nothing...I don't even get the urge to go...I've read about Miralax on this site...can you take it daily or just when you feel like you are going to explode!!!  And what is the generic name and is it true you can get a prescription for it from your dr.?  I think someone said something about that..I have eaten fruits, veggies and drank enough water to float a boat!!!  What else can I do? 

Joan M
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   Posted 7/13/2008 6:27 AM (GMT -6)   
since the fda took zelnorm off the market...i have to get it though other means. i also take konstyl and think the world of it. i mix it in with juice or milk and olvatine. stool softeners were very harsh for me and i like mineral oil better. you take it at night. have a well balanced diet. i eat tons of veggies and fruits and also use kashi "go lean" cereal. lots of liquids are good too...i use herbal ice tea a lot.

yes constipation is a drag and some of it can be caused by opiates. when i used lyrica it did not cause constipation but did make me VERY TIRED AND FORGETFUL. i like mobic much better but it is not for the same thing. i have to take tramadol occasionally and have two tablespoons of konstyl when i do so.

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   Posted 8/13/2008 3:34 PM (GMT -6)   

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Date Joined Jul 2008
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   Posted 8/13/2008 4:07 PM (GMT -6)   
The worn out feeling you describe might be a direct side effect of the Lyrica. Have you tried cutting down one of your doses to see if that makes a difference?
It took me a while to get it at just the right dose to get relief without so much exhaustion. I went off it for the past 6 weeks, but have decided to go back on it at a low dose & just had a new script filled yesterday. It is tricky, but hopefully trying some different dosing combos might help. idk, just thought I'd share my experiences.

take care,

New Member

Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 3/9/2011 7:31 PM (GMT -6)   
Yup, the big "C" as everyone has called it will deffinetly cause you to have the bathroom troubles. Fortunetly, things will work out. When I first started taking the percocet I had to take stool softeners, but as time went by and I started taking the pills when I needed to rather then every 4 to 6 hours and the bathroom trips became regular and I didn't need to take the softeners anymore. At this time I take 4 10/325mg Percocets over a 24 hour period and I take Lyrica 150mg 3 times at a schedualed time every day. In the begining when they added the Lyrica I took the over the counter stool softerners for about 2 weeks and then once again things went back to normal. Especially with Lyrica, it takes time for your body to get use to the medication, rest asure, things will get better and you won't have the bathroom trouble. On a final note, everyone is different and medications react differently to each individual. Exmp: My father inlaw took two 5/325mg and within 45 minutes had to lie down and fell asleep. When I was perscribed them it made me feel like I had 3 or 4 cups of strong coffee and made me want to move around and do things. For your case I would do the stool softers for awhile and then stop them and see what happens. Most importantly, keep your doctor informed of everything! He or she will be able to help you as long as you explain everything. If you have to, make a list and give it to the doctor..That's the best advise I can give..God bless you and may He keep you strong and give you peace!

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   Posted 3/9/2011 9:07 PM (GMT -6)   
Other than WishingFuture's post I know this is an old topic, but I certainly have this trouble too. Mine gets so bad that I sometimes have to use warm water enemas to shift everything because even fibre (I use benefibre), softeners, suppositories and laxatives don't always work.

I haven't tried it - but think I am going to ask my doctor about it - but there is a new oxycodone ER medication on the market called Targin. It combines oxycodone and naloxone, so is supposed to still provide pain relief, but reduce some of the most problematic side effects of the oxy - the nausea, constipation, etc.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 230
   Posted 3/10/2011 2:11 AM (GMT -6)   
I found the easiest way to deal with The Big C was to add more fruit and fiber. I also have some fiber chews that have added calcium, so I can always chew a few of those. Haven't tried the MiraLax, but I might have too from what I've read here. Another trick I use is drinking a tall glass of milk, or having a milkshake, but then that's because I'm lactose intolerant, so 8oz of milk tends to keep things moving.
Originally injured 10/26/2007 - Initial diagnosis; Tendonitis
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11/16/09 I was finally diagnosed CRPS - Stage 2
Permanently disabled, on Percoset.
February 2011 successful SCSU trial
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Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2010
Total Posts : 62
   Posted 3/10/2011 6:47 AM (GMT -6)   
For me those fiber powders or pills actually constipate me more even with adequate water. I have heard from others similar. Some other things I have tried I will suggest is prune baby food or juice. Ground flaxseed which is healthy oil to lubricate plus fiber. A right balance of fiber in diet which varies from person to person. Same with appropriate activity which is hard in pain I do know.

spinal soldier
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Date Joined Dec 2009
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   Posted 3/11/2011 4:48 PM (GMT -6)   
MiraLax will work, it might take a while but it should get things moving without ripping your guts out like stimulant laxatives can do."biscodyl". MiraLax is polyethylene glycol which is in the "osmotic" class of laxatives i think.
L4,L5,S1 bilateral Laminectomies, Foraminotomies 2002
L4-S1 PLIF with instumentation 2008,

current Rx: MScontin 100mg q8hrs. , dilaudid 8mg q6hrs. prn, oxymorphone IR 10mg q6 ,vistaril 50mg prn nausea, Lyrica 150mg 2x,Adderall 20mgs 1x A.M. 10mg PM prn, Soma 350 mg 3X, Elavil 25 HS, diazepam 10mg bid prn, Supplements: CO-Q10 100mg, Vitamin D 1000IU, Fish-Oil1000mg EFA, B-Complex50 3x/day, ALA
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