I have a history of kidney failure, multiple deep vein thromboses, pulmonary edema, shingles and have mostly recovered (fingers crossed!) from everything thus far.
However, I have been in chronic pain for years, as I'm sure you can all relate, I have just always been aching since I was diagnosed 6 years ago...especially my upper/middle back. Words can't really describe it besides just...aching, intensely. So much so that there are often times when its hard to get out of bed or I just want to curl up into a ball and close my eyes indefinitely. I have tried acupuncture, physical therapy, massage and diet to help relive this pain and it still persists...
Pain medication has made it easier for me to still live a relatively normal life, I was able to eventually graduate college after being diagnosed my sophomore year, and now able to have a steady job and take care of my apartment, cats and myself, etc. Without it I probably can't stand up long enough to do the dishes without having to take a break and lie down. I have been taking 5 mgs of oxycodone 3x/daily for the past 5 years, but within this last year the pain seems to have gotten worse, requiring me to take more medication, and also pairing it with Tylenol.
The strange thing about my pain is that my Rheumy says it is not disease related because all of my labs are extremely good!! Most of levels are within normal range--except that my HDL cholesterol is extremely low even though I eat very healthy, I still have positive double stranded DNA, and a small amount of protein in my urine. Is it possible for me to still be achy and in pain even though my disease activity is extremely low, and possibly in clinical remission??? Is my Rheumy wrong?
My primary care doc has just recently increased my dose to 10 mgs of oxycodone 3x/daily, but it just got me worried that I am getting too dependent on pain meds and sometimes I have heard that pain medication can actually cause pain when someone is used to taking it regularly, and I was wondering if I should try to wean myself off for a little while and see how bad my back pain really is?
So, my question is whether or not this is a good/bad idea, and if anyone has experience with chronic aches/pain and using pain medication to control it/live a "regular" life? Looking at the bottle full of pills is just a little depressing/overwhelming (especially since they doubled the dose)...and I already have to take so many other medications. These past few days I have been trying to take less by taking 10 mgs 2x daily (rather than 3 times) and I'm in quite a lot of pain..I also have been getting woken up in the morning to stomach cramps and I'm worried that this might be a sign of dependence or something. What should I do??
Thank you in advance!! xx