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Cronic Consipation with Methadone
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Cronic Consipation with Methadone

I am on Methadone and as all who has been on it know it causes constipation. Well I have extremely hard stools and it is painful to go to the bathroom. Is there anything I can take that will help me to have softer stools? Any foods,stool softners, etc that would help. ha ha this is no joke. I could build houses with my stools that is how hard they are. I dread that feeling to go because I know I will be in pain trying to get it out..lol...sorry for this ****** subject but I need help!
                           Barbara
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Avatar_n_tn
Good morning Barbara,
Have you ever tried Flaxseed Oil? It is very good for you because of the Omega 3's and other great things that it contains.  I take it for that reason and I also notice that I am doing alot better in the restroom area (haha).  You just take two tablespoons of it and then drink some Orange Juice real quick.  I take Oxycontin and I have the same problem once in a while. Take Care,
Lindy.
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Avatar_n_tn
I had been on opiates for many years & had become extremely constipated.  I suffered for many years.  I finally got some good advice & started eating a high fiber cereal in the morning with lots of raisins mixed in.  I also ate prunes regularly.  And if all that didn't help, & it did not always, I use an herbal tea called Smooth Move.  It's available in all health food stores & many supermarkets too.  It is very effective & also very gentle.  Obviously adding more fiber to your diet can be done in different ways but however you do it, it will help!
Good luck!
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Avatar_n_tn
Constipation is a fairly common problem in those who use narcotics on a daily basis.  Often it is seen in cancer patients being treated with high dosages of narcotics.  Omega 3 is a good option which may help.  In addition, you may need to try laxatives, although these may cause bloating, gas and cramps.  You can also try what is known as a bulk cathartic, such as psyllium (Metamucil), which will increase mass but soften stools.  Stimulant cathartics (such as Senekot) will do the opposite of what the opiates do--namely promote intestinal motility.  My first choice for you would be to try the over the counter Senekot-S.  It will stimulate bowels and also soften stools.  If it doesn't work,  there are also prescription agents such as Cytotec, Cisapride and Colchicine which are effective for chronic constipation.  Finally, if you have become impacted and can not move your stool, you may need an enema.  These must be used very sparingly because they tend to flush out the normal mucus in the colon which helps the stools move freely.
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Avatar_n_tn
I USE A LARGE ENEMA SYRINGE< when i feel any type if movement in the rectal area, even if it may be false, I quickly insert it  with a creame or personal lube, use warm soapy water, bend over as far as possible,squirt it until it feels as coming out, hold it as long you can. then let it go, you will notice how hard the stool is, repeat it until you feel relaxed you feel. once you get the nohow, you will feel a lot BETTER !                                 BA-bee                   aLWAYS LUBE THE SYRING TIP!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
I USE A LARGE ENEMA SYRINGE< when i feel any type if movement in the rectal area, even if it may be false, I quickly insert it  with a creame or personal lube, use warm soapy water, bend over as far as possible,squirt it until it feels as coming out, hold it as long you can. then let it go, you will notice how hard the stool is, repeat it until you feel relaxed you feel. once you get the nohow, you will feel a lot BETTER !                                 BA-bee                   aLWAYS LUBE THE SYRING TIP!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
I USE A LARGE ENEMA SYRINGE< when i feel any type if movement in the rectal area, even if it may be false, I quickly insert it  with a creame or personal lube, use warm soapy water, bend over as far as possible,squirt it until it feels as coming out, hold it as long you can. then let it go, you will notice how hard the stool is, repeat it until you feel relaxed you feel. once you get the nohow, you will feel a lot BETTER !                                 BA-bee                   aLWAYS LUBE THE SYRING TIP!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
I USE A LARGE ENEMA SYRINGE< when i feel any type if movement in the rectal area, even if it may be false, I quickly insert it  with a creame or personal lube, use warm soapy water, bend over as far as possible,squirt it until it feels as coming out, hold it as long you can. then let it go, you will notice how hard the stool is, repeat it until you feel relaxed you feel. once you get the nohow, you will feel a lot BETTER !                                 BA-bee                   aLWAYS LUBE THE SYRING TIP!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
I use FLEET everytime.  It takes about 4 hours and it really cleans you out.  I have had no cramping from using it.  Good Luck I know how miserable that is.  Kimberly
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Avatar_n_tn
Barbara,
I certainly know how that feels, when your constipated you feel miserably, it actually effects my whole day...I do not like to take laxitives because if gives me alot of pain in my stomach..
burning, cramps, ect..I'm very lucky because my answer to this problem is very simple for me..everyday I eat spinach, I don't exactly know why but it's the answer for me! I just take fresh spinach, saute it with garlic and olive oil, it works like a charm for me...try it, you never know, it just may work for you..
I would give it at least 3-4 days of eating it before you decide it's not working...Good Luck!
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Avatar_f_tn
Thanks. Yes I have heard of flaxseed oil and I will check it out at my local health food store. I have been using Philips liquid gel cap stool softner but you are not suppose to use them more than 2 weeks. I am going to my doctors and see if they can prescribe me something. I really would like to pass on the enema trip it just isn't my bag! hey is that a joke? well i will try the flaxseeed oil and once again thanks for the tips. Also I was wondering if any of you have noticed swelling of the hands. I haven't gained any weight but I feel like my rings are terribley tight on my hands and one I can't even get on. When I press on my hand it turns white I sign of water retention....??
                      Barbara
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Avatar_n_tn
I don't recommend anything that's going to cause cramping if you're impacted unless you like pain (if you're several days impacted, get over the enema phobia in a hurry -- it's the only thing that will save you apart from some gruesome and humiliating medical intervention).
In addition to the very good suggestions already noted, a couple things not mentioned:
Proactive fiber-drink consumption: I drink a tablespoon to 2 tablespoons of Metamucil with 10 oz of water right before turning in -- rain or shine. It's painless, tastes like Tange, and is never a problem even when it's used unnecessarily.
Unless your condition prevents you, fast-walk at least 2 miles a day, early in the morning or mid-evening works best. I think the motion helps compensate for the narco effect on the bowel. Also any Yoga you can manage has the same effect.
Not mentioned by anyone: adopt a "return to nature" posture when going. Whose idea was it to defecate in a sitting positon? Sir John Krapper's? It's a trick to balance on Western johns, but squatting is the natural position for humans to defecate in. In Yoga, squatting-like postures are recommended for treating constipation. But they also give you great leverage -- especially when you're in crises mode with impaction and are counting on the enema to get it out. Squatting gives you effective leverage when you might otherwise strain yourself into a hernia or blown disk. Do it once and your body will confirm for you that that is the natural posture. Of course, you can over-strain in that posture too. Stop, stop, stop if you feel increased blood pressure in your head. Overdoing it in this way can be very dangerous. I don't want someone to read this, try it and stroke out! And don't ignore the other measures and expect "the squat" to save you -- I always worry when I try to give my fellow junkies advice - we always obsess on anything that seems to help us and wind up making additional problems for ourselves. Easy does it
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Avatar_n_tn
I take a minimum of 40mg of methadone daily for severe back pain. Constipation is defin-   ately a major probllem. I have successfully    countered this side effect by taking 480mg of  Docusate NA and consuming approximately 8 to   10 dried prunes before retiring. This combina- tion has proven to be very effective. If you   are still troubled by constipation, I stongly  reccomend this solution. Good luck and best    wishes.
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Avatar_n_tn
I heard flaxseed works O.K. A lot of the above are known to work. I personally use a Fleets enema. Monobasic/Dibasic phosphate type. Not the mineral oil one. If something natural works, that would be healthier. I've been drinking 60-90 mg. of methadone a day for over 30 years and have tried most of the above. What i mentioned I use just works best for me. Good luck.
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Avatar_n_tn
I take 150mg of methadone a day.  Constipation is my constant companion.  I drink Metamucil 3x day (big scoops - not just a teaspoon), I take 16 stool softener (docusate sodium 50 mg.) with stimulant laxative (sennosides 8.6 mg.) and then I ususally have to use the old fashioned enema bag (the big red one).  All of this barely keeps me going.  I would give anything to make this easier, yes, even get off the methadone.  (That's soo easy to say and soo hard to do.)
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135222_tn?1210436088
This so funny. I just got back from my Gastroenterologist for this exact problem. I am on 50mg methadone daily. Let me say first what you should not do. Do not take any form of Senna for a long time. I have been taking it every day for the past three years and it has made matters worse. My bowels are now addicted to them and it will take some time to come back to normal. Sennosides irritate the bowel and long term use can damage the nerves. I am now back on Colace (safe for longterm use) and eating like a rabbit along with flax seed oil and Benifiber. The first couple of weeks off senna was Hell. I am now back to my usual constipated self which entails having to put my feet on the ceiling to launch one out! You have to have a sense of humor about this stuff or you will go nuts! For other addicts out there with similar problems who enjoy toilet humor and a good laugh, here is a site you might want to check out called "the poop report". http://www.poopreport.com/http://www.poopreport.com/
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Avatar_n_tn
I am on 140Mg of methadone but I only take the whole dose once a week. The rest of the week i take 30MG twice a day. I'm trying to ween off myself. I have found that none of the other Laxatives or Stool softeners help except for Sanakot. I have been on methadone on and off for about 12-13 years and this has only been a problem for the last year or so. I also found that the Senokat can be addictive. So now I only take it when completely necessary. Instead I use Fiber Supplements with my drinks. I use "Fibersure" in the blue bottles for a few days then I switch to "Benifiber" for a few days. I've found that If I only take one brand my system gets used to it and it builds a tolerance so that i have to take more for it to work. So by switching between brands every few days it really make a difference. I still get the occasional stomach cramping from it but not nearly as bad as with senokot.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hey Barbara,
     Listen anyone who gets weirded out by this subject needs to grow up. Constipation needs to be treated agresively.
     Personally at 55 yo I am not going to worry about my bowels getting addicted to senna. But normally I take 3 senna tabs and 1 Amitiza capsule at bedtime and that seems to work. But even that doesn't always work so I resort to a osmotic enema like Fleets. And I do fine. Oh Amitiza is a fairly new drug, you need a prescription.
      Red
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566544_tn?1219441277
I'm pretty sure i've tried everything "out there" to relieve my chronic constipation, and nothing has come close to Mirilax.  It's now over the counter. I've been using it for a few years now, and as long as I don't get lazy with monitoring whether or not I'm getting fully emptied, I stay out of trouble.  

Mirilax is a white powder that you mix into any beverage. I usually use gatorade, or soda.  It doesnt taste at all, but is quite sweet. It's not unpleasant in the least.  It doesnt cause cramping or gas. It can take a couple days to work, however, there is usually a lot of relief from the pain and cramping the same day.  My theory is that it gets things softened up, which causes less strain on the colon.

There is a prescription drug for this prob that is supposed to practially change your life (my doctor says that).  Ive forgotten the name, but will get it from my doctor in a week or so (the ER doctor told me about this drug, but didn't send me home with a prescription).  If you want to know the name, please feel free to put a reminder note on my page here. I will forget otherwise.

I hope you get relief soon!

Catherine Anne
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Avatar_f_tn
This is a really hard thing to talk about... im one of those girls that freaks out if someone knows that I'm on my period. I feel like I can't talk to anyone because this stuff really embarrasses me! I take methadone off and on (recreationally)....I know I know. I shouldnt... I guess its been about two years. But I havent had any in about a week, close to it, and the constipation is horrible! Actually, it's the PAIN!!!! It feels like something SHARP is cutting me and today is the worst day it's ever been. I don't know what to do! I read that methadone doesnt completely break down in your stomach and peices can remain in your stool... I dont know if it's true or not but it sounds likely! to me!!! Once it starts hurting too bad, I just stop...and cry. I am not taking methadone anymore. Im not addicted...i have been occassionly taking it. (I would go about 3-5 weeks straight taking about 10-15 mgs a day and then stop taking them for 2wks -stimes 2 months at a time... I need help...today! My stomach doesnt hurt, cramp, or anything like that. I just can not use the restroom and I really really feel like I have to.

I'm about 100 pounds and I'm 22 years old. Ive never even been to a "woman doctor" or had any kind of stomach problems or health problems.... im so scared that I'm going to now.....

And im scared that these over the counter medications are going to make me have to use the restroom all freakin day or something weird! Ive never taken them.

Advice?? Please???
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Avatar_m_tn
Ive been on opiate pain meds for 2 years.I eat a big bowl of grapenuts everyday and have never had constipation.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi Amzy; Your actually pretty brave to be asking these questions. A lot of us old farts on this site wish we could go back and not take any drugs/meds at all- period! When your older you just want to feel normal again. Methadone is one of the most dangerous drugs there is, simply because it is so sneaky. Listen to your body, let it be "normal" as long as you can. Anyone who has been there will tell you, this is the best course for you. Finally, self medicating for emotional problems is like finding an adrenaline rush playing Russian Roulette. Try to get counseling, or even better, go out and help a few people in anyway you can. You'll find life in normalcy is wonderful. God bless you.  Peter
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Avatar_n_tn
I just wanted to tell you (or whoever may stumble across this), even though I know this post is super old... YOU ARE ADDICTED. If you're having any sort of pains, emotional issues (crying...) after stopping the methadone, then you are addicted darling. What someone else said, it is a very sneaky drug. It only takes about a week to become dependent. You can take one 10mg pill per day for a week and you will experience withdrawals when you stop. That's just how methadone works. It's not a drug people should take for "fun" even though the high is great. Being addicted to opiates is HELL. I've done about every drug under the sun except crack, and let me tell you.. NOTHING has grabbed me by the cojones like methadone (or other opiates)... I've been addicted now for about 4 years and I've tried to quit with various methods... Once cold turkey and I got the best results with that, making it over a month and passed the withdrawals. I then drank too much one night and let myself slip up, popped some morphine and went right back into the cycle. Eventually finding my way back to methadone. Tried quitting again with suboxone, spent thousands on that method... It worked, for about 5 months or until they tried to take me completely off the suboxone. About a week after I took the last suboxone I relapsed again. It's IMPOSSIBLE to quit this stuff on your own. BE CAREFUL PEOPLE. Smoke some pot or something, leave the opiates to the idiots like myself.
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1225714_tn?1267149104
I have been on 150mg IM of Morphine for 4 years and about to go onto Methadone (pain management). I have very adhered bowels/intestines from surgeries and several places are almost closed off, so feces just dont 'fit' through those places without severe pain, vomiting and the risk of perforation. Add to that the chronic and severe constipation and it's a recipe for disaster. I use a purgative every 3rd day to ensure my bowel is completely clean so there is no risk of impaction or blockage caused by feces. The purgative I use is called Citro-Mag, it comes in liquid form in a bottle, I drink one superlarge glass of water then drink contents of the bottle, then another large water. Within 1 - 3 hrs my entire system empties, it takes about an hr to complete. Another on the same is called PICO SALEX its powder and its mixed with water too, it does the same thing. When its ALL OUT, especially without any forcing, you feel fantastic! Ps, my hubby and daughter both have very bad gas issues, they both take 1.2 a bottle once a mnth for a full clean and bowel heath, since they have been doing this their gas issues have almost vanished. GOOD LUCK!
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1198664_tn?1368651412
Like someone said above MIRILAX is the ONLY way to go. It's powder you put in a drink no taste at all! And it does not cramp you at all either. And it's not really a laxative basically it forces water into your bowls and makes everything soft. Like the person said above it's fantastic and it's OTC now. Takes a day or two to work but just stay on it. You can take more or less when you need it and it does not harm you long term like laxatives. You can stop whenever you want
with no problems. Great stuff.
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Avatar_n_tn
I didn't read all of this thread, but what I did read I noticed no one mentioned MiraLax. This is an over the counter powder that comes in various size bottles. My mom was told to try it for her constipation from her Doctor and she got me on it since I've been suffering from chronic constipation. And I do mean chronic.

When I goto the bathroom and produce a bowel movement which is about once every week, it hurts like HELL and I often tear up just trying to get 'it' out. It is terrible and the ONLY thing I have found to help me is MiraLax. I take two spoon fulls about twice a week and I'm good to go. It makes everything come out without any pain or heaving.

So yeah I would recommend to anyone out there who has terrible constipation from Methadone or whatever to get some MiraLax, it will make your life so much easier.

All you do with it is take two spoonfulls or so and put it in a cup of water(or soda/juice) and stir it up for about 20 seconds. It dissolves completely and I take it in water and can honestly say there is no taste to it at all. It just tastes like water which is a good thing for me.
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1547495_tn?1298653315
Is there any bad time or better time to take an enema.  I am on 135 Mg of Methadone and I must admit since alot of us do not like waiting for our dose we are on a time schedule.  So alot of us do enemas just to keep things moving.  And then in like 10 minutes I will drink my dose.  And I know enemas get in your bloodstream, and today it felt as if my dose was non-existent.  So I was just wondering if drinking your dose to quick after an enema can somehow bother the effectiveness of your dose.  But I do not think so, since the issue has never come up.  If someone knows please let me know
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1547495_tn?1298653315
If I know my MMT brethren correctly, there are alot more people out there using FLEET enemas than they say.  Since it is fast, it is the perfect option for having a bowel movement in a scheduled time i.e. before you go to the clinic, or before you take your take-home.  Unfortunately, I think I have become somewhat addicted to these things and I must say that even though I would like to act like Im some OG it is kind of scary.  Any help in weening off of the enemas into a Miralax routine or Lactulose.  But even those are not time friendly.  Uh Fu@k, what to do?
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Avatar_m_tn
what about milk of magnesia? i find it to work great if u take like 6 tblespoons at a time
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Avatar_f_tn
Oh my god I can't even tell you how sorry I am for you going thru this. A few months ago I had this problem and I swear to god it was worse than child birth. I had to finally go to the dr becaus the fear of going was worse than the humiliation of telling my dr. She gave me a numbing cream for the area and suppositories. They're no fun but they eventually helped me a lot. I remember that pain and it's no joke. Try goin to your de. It's your best bet. Or you can get some over the counter numbing cream which is amazing and suppositories. Try it and hopefully it works for you!
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Avatar_m_tn
I agree. I am now on a diet of metyhadone since Sept 11, 2012 after years of on again off again Lortab use. I have NEVER experienced constipation like this with tabs(even at 10 to 15 a day). I am afraid I am at the point of no help without medical intervention as I have had maybe three bowel movements since then even WITH THE USE OF COLACE. ALL have been EXTREMELY painful. Please help.
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Avatar_f_tn
omg, I kno these comments are old, but I just had to comment for anyone else looking for relief!! I take 50mg of methadone a day, I was taking 130 a day, so trying to come off, but that's easy to say and , very hard too do!! Ivde been on some kinda opiate for 20 years! That's why I got on methadone, to get off the pills. I have been on methadone for 3 years and for the past 8 mths, omg I have been so constipated! I kno how you guys feel, i mean last night, it was so hard, it was not coming out!! I had to put a glove on, well you all kno wat came next! well, it was horrible, I mean I had blood on the end of my finger and was sooo scared! I just want to say thank you all for all of your comments, because now I kno I am not alone! From now on, it's nothing but Miralax, flaxseed oil and high fiber cereal! I wish you guys luck and easy, well you know!! THANKS AGAIN
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Avatar_f_tn
I want to THANK ALL OF YOU who told me about the miralax and the flaxseed oil, IT HAS WORKED!!!!! Well I am no longer taking the miralax, only the flaxseed oil and more fiber, but I AM SO HAPPY to be able to go to the bathroom, NORMALLY again!! THANKS AGAIN :) :)
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