The pain patch is strong and will cause withdrawal symptoms that are not to pleasant and there are stiff requirments on how scripts are written and how soon you can get a refill. It was a real hassle for me, but might not be for you.
You might want to give ultram (tramadol) a try. It has no acetaminaphen and I can take it and have for a long time. It is non-addicting and if you take the max dose three times a day every day and keep it in your system, it can work pretty well. Then you can use vicodin when you need it for breakthrough pain. I find vicodin stops working very well after a while and you have to be careful because your liver can stop breaking narcotics down and they won't work for you, I've had that problem pre-surgery. You are likely going to have to live with some pain, or you can live pain free and never know if something really bad goes wrong. You have a choice. You can develop serious problems on the pain patch and not even know it because you don't feel pain. That's one of the reasons why I went off, besides the fact that after a while it was depressing being on narcotics. It took me three days to get off and it was very uncomfortable and I took a ton of klonopin to help me get off. I will only go back on again if I never have to go off again.
You could take oxycontin, roxicet, which they gave me for a while has no tylenol in it, but it is very addicting, its what all the kids are dying on and addicted to. There is a lower formulation of hydrocodone with less acetaminaphen, a 10/350 and I prefer them when I can get them.
The klonopin I take at night also increases the effects of my pain medicine, which is good. Anyway, I don't mean to be negative, but being completely out of pain isn't all its cracked up to be sometimes. Narcotics can be hard on your breathing, you can stop breathing on them. Ultram works like a narcotic, but is non-narcotic, and does not affect the breathing like narcotics do. It is not an NSAID or narcotic but its own class of drug. I thank God for it. I get 180 a month and use them all, then I get a small amount of vicodin and on bad months I can call in and get more. I wish they'd put me on a lower acetaminaphen formula or maybe back on the occasional roxicet, but they made me a little jittery.
Another thought is demerol pills, which are very inexpensive and work well for pain and are probably less addicting than oxycodone, but they last along time. They don't contain any aspirin, though you might need an antinausea medicine with some of these meds.
I hope you get fixed up ok. Some say ultram is not good for the liver, but I've been able to take for well over 5 years, quit and then have been taking it for about 5 more. There was no withdrawal when I stopped at all. It is a good med, and because you liver is a little compromised it will probably be stronger for you than for other people. It gives me the same feeling as taking a vicodin, though I have more energy and feel a little less out of it. Well, so much for drug talk. Try to be sparing on the opiates, even if you switch between demorol and hydrocodone or something, because it really is horrible when they stop working and you can develop an allergy to them if they back up in your system due to liver problems, and that would not be good. Take care and let us know what happens.
--Doctors are men who prescribe medicines of which they know little, to cure diseases of which they know less in human beings of whom they know nothing.--Voltaire (1694-1778)
Ills--Sjogrens-Lupus-like AI Disease, Hashis, Vitiligo, spinal stenosis/fusion with plate, salivary/lymphectomies, Diabetes, NAFLD, COPD, RLS, neuropathy, trigonitis, hystero, diffuse brain atrophy
Meds--Plaquenil, Evoxac, Metformin, Synthroid, HCTZ, Estradiol patch, Prosed, Klonopin, Soma, Ultram, Vicodin, Restasis, Albuterol,steroid injections, Protopic & Triamcinolone Acetonide ointments