Posted 12/17/2010 5:47 AM (GMT -6)
I've been reading upon past posts re opiod use and constipation, and I thought I was doing enough with the laxative regime a Doc and I worked out. A quick X ray last Fri showed clearly that my whole large intestine is packed again which explains the discomfort. I thought I was taking too much laxative but obviously was wrong.
I trust pharmacists for advice on these kinds of things so she said we could try increasing Bisacodyl (works like Senna but less explosive) from 1aday to 12aday (slowly) and see what happens. I use Lactulose and polyethylene glycol daily, and I also got myself a big bag of dried prunes and am scarfing those down several times a day. If that doesn't work there are the purgatives to use. I used them once before and while it was very uncomfortable, it did the trick.
Its too soon to be getting any relief from the changes yet, but I am so glad this is a clear, relatively straight forward medical problem to deal with. I often wonder if the nausea, gas, bloating, and discomfort from constipation is worth the pain relief the opioids provide, but when I've reduced my pain medication to try to alleiviate the stomach problems, I just end up back on my cane, shuffling around like my underwear fits funny and spending most of the day in bed, withdrawing from people. I've just gotto figure out an appropriate laxative sched for me.
My wife underwent chemo a few years ago to treat breast cancer and she has found she still really has to eat lots of fruit everyday, constantly drink water, and fit a one hour walk into her day to aviod constipation caused by the chemo. No laxatives. She's doing good.
Thanks for all the great, insightful info collected here. And as part of my plan to try to focus on the positive more, I need to tell you that I went out with my son (13) and a friend of mine on his trapline this past week to help him out and just make it safer than him going alone. He's just learning and I have 15 years experience. It was the most physically challenging thing I have done in 4 years and while I couldn't keep up that level of activity for long, I managed to get up and help out every day for the four days we were in the bush. It was cold, and focusing so much on keeping my son safe and me warm seemed to be as much as my brain could handle and I actually got a "break" from my pain. Plus my friend didn't catch anything which cheered me up because I was secretly cheering for the critters. It was a wonderful distraction and a great father son adventure. We used to do that kind of thing regulariy before.