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How long does butalbital withdrawal last?
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How long does butalbital withdrawal last?

My wife has been on butalbital w/codein/APAP/caffeine for over 6 years and naturally, she has a dependency. Suddenly her doctor closed up shop and stopped prescribing. So, now she is off the butalbital - cold turkey and says the withdrawal is hell. Does anyone know how long the withdrawal lasts? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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Butalbital
Barbiturates may be habit-forming: Tolerance, psychological dependence, and physical
dependence may occur especially following prolonged use of high doses of barbiturates. The average daily dose for the barbiturate addict is usually about 1,500 mg. As tolerance to barbiturates develops, the amount needed to maintain the same level of intoxication increases;tolerance to a fatal dosage, however, does not increase more than twofold. As this occurs, the margin between an intoxication dosage and fatal dosage becomes smaller. The lethal dose of a barbiturate is far less if alcohol is also ingested. Major withdrawal symptoms (convulsions and delirium) may occur within 16 hours and last up to 5 days after abrupt cessation of these drugs. Intensity of withdrawal symptoms gradually declines over a period of approximately 15 days. Treatment of barbiturate dependence consists of cautious and gradual withdrawal of the drug. Barbiturate-dependent patients can be withdrawn by using a number of different withdrawal regimens. One method involves initiating treatment at the patient’s regular dosage level and gradually decreasing the daily dosage as tolerated by the patient.

http://www.pharma.us.novartis.com/product/pi/pdf/fioricet_codeine.pdf

I know this is alot of info, but I thought it may help you. Looks like your wife will be going through this for about 15 days. This drug seems to also be very dangerous to W/D from and the experts say tapering would work best, but since your wife can't do this, I guess she will have to tough it out for a few more days. I also have a problem with depression and I had to be put on an antidepressant called Celexa and it has been a life saver. Your wife might want to check into this if at all possible!

I know you said you have never heard of Opana but you said it sounded good right now. It's not!! Stay away from Opana or Oxy's!!!!!! You said you take 15-30 lortabs a day. Well, Opana or Oxys are probably 10 times more powerful and VERY addictive!!! Please, please, please dont EVER take either one of these.  You think it's bad now?? Trust me, it can get worse!! Anyway. sorry for that 'lil vent. I hope the info helps and just continue to be there for your wife even though she's angry and moody it's part of the process!
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Pete,

     First of all, your wife is one lucky lady to have such a supportive husband that is trying to find a way to help her!!! That is awesome!!! If yoy don't mind my asking, why was your wife on this med? What she is probably withdrawing from is the Codein. If I am not mistaken codien is the addictive part of that med and that is why she is going through this hell. As far as a time line for the physical withdrawal usually 3-5 day for the "worst" part to be over (tired, nausea, diahrreah (sp), muscle pain and spasms etc..). The mental part lasts much longer! Hope this helps!! I am going through the same thing as your wife. I am here if you have any questions!! Good luck!!
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Avatar_m_tn
Country_girl,

Thank you for taking the time to answer - and for all the compliments!
My wife was taking the butalbital for severe headaches.
I don't think it's the codein because opiate withdrawal is supposed to be 6 days and today is the eighth. I have heard that butalbital is addictive itself and that the withdrawal is much longer, but I don't know how much longer.
Good luck with your withdrawals...Is it from butalbital as well?

Thanks very much for your help and support.
Pete
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Avatar_n_tn
You are very welcome! I definitely understand about the headaches. I have migraines sometimes so, I feel for her! I actually took the same drug, but it made me nauseas and I stopped before I got hooked.  What symtoms (symptoms) is she having? Butalbital might take longer to w/d from. I'll see what i can find out for you, but I do have to say that the codiene is playing a part in what she is feeling. As far as my withdrawal. I am withdrawing from a drug called Opana. Very strong med and very addictive. I used to take oxycontin and was clean for a year then I have some life changing events and started taking the Opana to deal with some things that happened (excuse I know). If I find any ifo that might help, I will most definitely post it on here for you! What is your wife doing to help with her w/d symtoms (symptoms)?
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Avatar_m_tn
I am sorry you have migraines, I know how bad they are, but glad you got off it before you got hooked. She's having nausea, diahhrea, tiredness, anxiety, depression, etc. But the part that concerns me is the depression is getting worse, much worse and she's VERY moody, sometimes severe anger, or should I say rage at her doctor. I don;t know how to help her.
I never heard of Opana before, but right now it sounds pretty good. I am addicted to Norco/Lortabs and take anywhere from 15 to 30 a day. But I'm not looking for help for me, just my wife.
Thank you for looking into this for me. I really appreciate it. Hope your weekend with w/d goes ok for you.
Pete
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Avatar_n_tn
Butalbital
Barbiturates may be habit-forming: Tolerance, psychological dependence, and physical
dependence may occur especially following prolonged use of high doses of barbiturates. The average daily dose for the barbiturate addict is usually about 1,500 mg. As tolerance to barbiturates develops, the amount needed to maintain the same level of intoxication increases;tolerance to a fatal dosage, however, does not increase more than twofold. As this occurs, the margin between an intoxication dosage and fatal dosage becomes smaller. The lethal dose of a barbiturate is far less if alcohol is also ingested. Major withdrawal symptoms (convulsions and delirium) may occur within 16 hours and last up to 5 days after abrupt cessation of these drugs. Intensity of withdrawal symptoms gradually declines over a period of approximately 15 days. Treatment of barbiturate dependence consists of cautious and gradual withdrawal of the drug. Barbiturate-dependent patients can be withdrawn by using a number of different withdrawal regimens. One method involves initiating treatment at the patient’s regular dosage level and gradually decreasing the daily dosage as tolerated by the patient.

http://www.pharma.us.novartis.com/product/pi/pdf/fioricet_codeine.pdf

I know this is alot of info, but I thought it may help you. Looks like your wife will be going through this for about 15 days. This drug seems to also be very dangerous to W/D from and the experts say tapering would work best, but since your wife can't do this, I guess she will have to tough it out for a few more days. I also have a problem with depression and I had to be put on an antidepressant called Celexa and it has been a life saver. Your wife might want to check into this if at all possible!

I know you said you have never heard of Opana but you said it sounded good right now. It's not!! Stay away from Opana or Oxy's!!!!!! You said you take 15-30 lortabs a day. Well, Opana or Oxys are probably 10 times more powerful and VERY addictive!!! Please, please, please dont EVER take either one of these.  You think it's bad now?? Trust me, it can get worse!! Anyway. sorry for that 'lil vent. I hope the info helps and just continue to be there for your wife even though she's angry and moody it's part of the process!
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1135275_tn?1326582465
oh my.... as they say, good intentions pave the road to..... well, you know.

butalbital is VERY addicting...perhaps even more so than codeine. however, unlike codeine, it should NEVER be stopped cold turkey. too late now. i would suggest her finding another doc asap and going over her dail dose up until the point she stopped. i do mean ASAP too. butalbital has a very long half-life....she'll be withdrawaling for a long time.

that junk above about barbiturate addicts taking 1,500mg a day or more is not true. the average is around 1 GM...which is generally the overdose thershold for most barbiturates. many barbiturate addicts take a  much lower dose. for example, the max recommended dose of butalbital is 200mg. even at double that, you're still not even half way to 1gm.

she's probably withdrawaling from butalbital at this point, which will last a long time. depending on what her daily dose was, there may still be a seizure risk so i'd have her see a new doc soon.

barbiturate addiction is nasty business. butalbital is VERY hard to get off of and stay off of.
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1135275_tn?1326582465
i'm sorry, i need to correct myself. the max recommended dose of butalbital is 300mg daily. my bad.
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Avatar_m_tn
Country_girl,
You are a wealth of information! Thank you so much for researching this for me. I have heard some of it before, but a lot of what you said is new to me.
I will continue to be there for her. She is almost 2/3 of the way through it now, so things should start getting better. She does seem a little better today. I'll check into Celexa too.
As for me I am content doing what I am doing and am not going to try Oxys or Opana.

Again, thank you so much! I can't wait to tell her what you've told me.
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Avatar_m_tn
Thank you for posting your answer! I greatly appreciate your input.
She seems to be doing better today with the W/D and her mood has improved too. It appears that she's nearly 2/3 of the way through. To go to a doctor - who will prescribe it might make matters worse now. And it is tough to get a doctor to prescribe it.

Thanks so much for your help. I will be monitoring her progress and help her decide accordingly.
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1135275_tn?1326582465
you don't want a dr for prescription purposes....but rather to monitor for seizures.
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Avatar_m_tn
No, I don't want a doctor putting her back on it at the level she was at before. Then, she would have to go through this all over again. As far as seizures, I think she's past that point. She seems to be doing better each day. That's why I don't want her to have to go through that hell again.
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Avatar_f_tn
Just so you know....a seizure can occur up to two weeks after abruptly stopping the Fioricet.
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1135275_tn?1326582465
yes and they don't ring little warning bells, either. but hey, what do i know. i've only spent the past 20 years of my life learning about barbiturates.
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1135275_tn?1326582465
odds are a doc wouldn't even put her back on the drug. there are other drugs to prevent seizures that are typically used for this in a detox setting.
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Avatar_m_tn
Vicki,

Thank you for the info. We weren't aware of that.
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Avatar_m_tn
"but hey, what do i know. i've only spent the past 20 years of my life learning about barbiturates."

Well, why did you say so?


We went to another doctor today and he did give her anti-seizure meds. Thanks for the info!

BTW, she seems to have turned a corner and seems like she's doing much better.
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correction: Well, why didn't you say so?
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I don't mean to hang crepe here but I doubt she's turned the corner already...There's still the issue of WHY.  She needs to get to the reason she abused this drug for 6 years.

This particular addiction is so insideous and it doesn't ever go away. She's going to need
to get some help with this because it will call her name and she'll give in.

Believe me, Mayberry and I could write a book about Fioricet!!   It does not like to let go!
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1135275_tn?1326582465
no it doesn't. a lot of times, there are anxiety issues underneath that cause the over-use/abuse of this drug. if that is the case, she may benefit from getting help for that too. i'm GLAD she saw a doc. it seriously makes all things during withdrawal easier.
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Avatar_m_tn
I don't know that she's "turned the corner." All I know is that she is doing much better now and each day gets even better. WHY she abused them I believe is because she gets really bad headaches and when they seemed not to be working she would take another. Over time she had to increase because that would be the only way to control the headaches. I know, they're rebound headaches, but that's how it got started and continued. Now she can't take them because she can't get them anymore.
Yes, I can see that it does not like to let go.

Thanks for your help Vicki.
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Avatar_m_tn
mayberry,

In addition to what I wrote to Vicki (above) she does have anxiety issues and thankfully she has decided to seek counseling for the anxiety. Yes, I'm glad she saw the doctor too. It helped me as much as her by putting my mind at ease.
Why though, does anxiety contribute to the over-use/abuse of this particular drug? I'm curious.

Thanks - very much - for your help.
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Avatar_f_tn
It's a vicious cycle with Fioricet.  Actually, it's the drug that contributes to the anxiety in many cases. We all have a little anxiety and that's a good thing!  But,after using Fioricet for a period of time,we begin to take more because we have a tolerance built up and one or two does nothing for us. The anxiety of going without it is very physical and mental! We begin to use the drug just to feel normal!  That's when it becomes scary...

Barbs by their very nature,if you will, are a great med for anxiety or tension relief. That's why we loved them so much. It was just a "happy" place to be. So pitiful...
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Avatar_m_tn
I have been on butabital for over 30 years. I  cant seam to quit. i am taking 6 tablits 4 times a day
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4204073_tn?1361835076
Res, could you start your own post so we can all try to help you on it.  I was severely addicted to fiorcet and needed medical assistance to get off it.  Going to go look up what it was they gave me to help.  
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top of page, orange "post a question" box, we'll be glad to talk
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Hi-
You are definitely going to need help with this. 24 pills is over the top but, I promise you, getting away from these things is possible.

Post back-
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4204073_tn?1361835076
Hi Res, the dr gave me phenobarbital to help ease me off.  I was taking araround 16 a day.  W/d included shakes, head zaps, stomach pain, diarrhea, and horrific rebound headache pain.  They likened it to w/d from alcohol since it too is a sedative.  You can have a seizure going cold turkey off this stuff, so please get some help.  It was the hardest thing I ever did, asking my dr for help, but he was understanding and very helpful.  His number one concern was my health, not that I had gotten to the point I was at.  Please check back, im worried about you.
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Yes I am in a middle of a nightmare right now,had been taking F for my migraine headaches for years kept going up on my doses / causing rebound headaches not knowing this kept taking F stopped taking it altogether  5 days ago and started to have all these crazy things happen severe headache! Shaking, blurred vision, dizziness, racing crazy heartbeats,seeing and hearing things,sweating, and more I feel ok one minute then it starts again, I looked this up and found this forum . Didn't know it was so dangerous to juts stop any suggestions what I should do I am on my 5 day on this Hell.  T
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Is this forum still open?
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5347058_tn?1381192026
Hi there! This is an old thread. If you go to the top of the page and hit the post a question link you can tell your story and/or ask a question. You will get a lot more responses if you do it that way. Fiorcet can be dangerous to stop abruptly. It's important to slowly taper under the care of a physician. Please start your own thread and I' m sure lots of folks with experience with this med will be along to chime in. Good luck to you!
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Thanks so much for your help
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Hi sorry to bother you I posted my question a few hours ago this afternoon but I am not sure if I have done it right , I myself can see it but I am not sure if anyone can? Having a difficult time if you by. Chance see this if you can let me know if it's posted for other to see thanks so much
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Hi- Yes, your other post is on the forum and I just read it. I'll respond to that one so watch for it...
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I have averaged 3 Fiorcet with Codiene per day for about 30 years.  
I am unable to take N-Saids.  
Sometimes my doctor and I try the newer ones (Celexa, etc,) and I invariably end up in endoscopy with an ulcerated stomach lining.  
I cannot stand Morphine, Lortabs (and equivalent).
Oxycodone does nothing for my pain.
Tylenol #3 and #4 work IF I can find a pharmacist who will grind them and transfer them to capsules; (Nuts, huh) otherwise I experience severe stomach cramps.
IF I have to have any kind of major surgery, or when my interstitial cystitis acts up, my doctor gives me dilaudid and valium.  
I have half a bottle of 4mg dilaudid left from the last time, and about 60 valium. The Fiorcet is used to treat any pain that tylenol won't take care of.  
We tried plain codiene and ativan, valium with codiene, but they didn't give the same pain relief.
So am I addicted to the Fiorcet?
I smoked for about 7 years and stopped one day.
Never smoked again.
I don't crave the Fiorcet; I only take them for pain.
I don't drink very often...1-2 glasses of wine every 4 to six weeks.
In 2001 I lost 80 pounds and didn't drink for 3 years.
I don't do illegal drugs.
I don't think I have an addictive metabolism.
I cannot find another way to relieve my lumbar and cervical disc pain, the discs are damaged, while I am waiting for my yearly epidural steroid injections; the 1-2/ year migraines (I've tried the newer drugs, and beta blockers are out bcs I have hypotension); and the pain of interstitial cystitis.
I would like to hear anyone's thoughts.
If anyone has another pain med that I might substitute, I would be thrilled too hear about it.
Many thanks for listening to my concerns.
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5347058_tn?1381192026
Hi there! The question of whether you are addicted or not is one that only you can answer. After taking this med daily for 30 years, you are most definitely physically dependent and it would be very dangerous for you to abruptly stop taking it. If you are considering quitting, you really need to talk to your doctor about it and have him/her set up a taper plan for you. This is an older thread, so try going to the top of the page and hitting the orange 'post a question' link. You can ask your questions, tell your story, and start your own thread. This will allow more people to see it and you will get more support and answers. Please stick around. This is a great place to get advice and support. Good luck to you!
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