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Does Suboxone help with pain as well as methadone?
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Does Suboxone help with pain as well as methadone?

I have been on methadone for 7 years now...and have decided that its time to get off...im 34 and have done just about all the drugs out there...and NOT proud of it...I do not and have not been on any drug except for methadone for 5 years now..including alcohol....I am now a Christian and my prayers have been answered...I have NO desire to do any drugs..NONE...and would like to get off methadone ASAP...But I have a problem...I had an MRI and  I have 3 herniated discs in my lower back that I didnt even know about until i got down to  a low dose of methadone...I have come down from 110mg of methadone to 25  slowly of course....I am 6ft 1 and weigh about 210lbs...so 25mg is kinda tough....   I never thought i would be able to do this but its not just me..I have help from above...   But anyway.. I need to know if i decide to go down to 20mg of methadone then switch to Suboxone..will Suboxone help with my back pain??   I have a physical type of job and its getting hard to even work...I have a family and i MUST be able to work....I sweat ALOT 4 months a year.. Will Suboxone kick out of my system any worse than methadone when sweating??   Also paying for methadone is killing me   my insurance wont cover it..does insurance cover Suboxone  if you can get the doctor to code it as being needed for pain?...and in this case it actually IS needed for pain as well as being needed for eventual tapering off of it and being FREE of everything   which leads me to my next question...is there anything that will help with the pain that is NON-narcotic?...so that once i get off the Suboxone...I can live a normal life    sorry for being so longwinded   i tend to do that.   Thank you in advance for any help you can give.
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Suboxone is being used more and more for pain;  it will probably be overused, and eventually the appropriate cases will be identified.  The question of 'will it treat pain' is a very difficult one. It will treat pain as well as thirty mg of methadone, held at a constant level in the bloodstream, will treat pain.  As you know, tolerance takes away the potency of ANY narcotic, including buprenorphine.  But for reasons I do not understand, some people with chronic pain will continue to benefit from pain pills even after tolerance sets in.

There are good and bad things to treatment with Suboxone.  There really is a completely different subjective experience.  I have heard that from dozens of patients by now-- they talk about having their mind freed from constantly thinking about their pain pills.  Suboxone should be dosed once per day, and that allows the person to end the 'conditioning' caused by taking a pill every six hours to avoid sickness. (some docs don't get this, and dose more frequently. but half life is three days for Pete's sake!!!).

On the downside, it is very difficult to add extra pain relief at times of injury, such as herniating a new disc.  It takes a doctor willing to prescribe large amounts of narcotic at those times, and that doctor may be hard to find.

One last thing about sweating... that is a common side effect for people taking opiates.  I have found that neurontin or gabapentin stops opiate-induced sweating in many of my patients.  Talk to your doctor;  I use a dose of 300 mg three times per day.  The medication is a pretty safe and benigh med, so maybe your doc will let you try it.
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Dear Brother (from another Christian)...my heart is with you.  I too have been on methadone for 8, going on 9, years and have been trying to get off...tapered down from 70 mg/day to 17.5 mg/day, however this does not control my pain.  Have also been trying to get to the point where I can go on Suboxone, except that I've been sick since last fall.  It may be withdrawal, but my body temp won't go above 97.5..I'm freezing all the time.  Also have other medical problems and a 7 yr.old grandson who is convinced I'm dying and he is terrified.  

The doc I saw says that Suboxone is good for pain once the dosage gets adjusted.  However, while I cannot attest to that, there are some good folks here on this board who probably can.  Then, after you are on the Suboxone for a while, you can taper down (very slowly I'm told)and get off.  But..what are you going to do about the pain?  Herniated discs are said to be extremely painful (I just have chronic sciaticia).  I mean, even if you didn't have to work, you'd be in pain.  As far as non-narcotic, I don't have any answers there as that has been my only answer to my pain problem.

Remember, He will never leave you nor forsake you.
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