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Arthritis and narcotics
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Arthritis and narcotics

I have been lurking for a few months and this is my first time posting. I have been in PM for almost a year now. Originally it began as lower back pain which i have had 3 steroid injections with minimal relief and then 2 facet blocks with moderate relief. I was also taking 2 5/325 percocets per day with adequate relief. I am a Mom of a 5 year old and am not looking for an addiction problem on top of my pain problems.
Over the course of a year, the pain has progressed to my hands and feet and knees. They feel very sore with minimal exertion. I have seen many specialists, none of which are willing to give a definitive diagnosis yet, however "some sort of arthritis" is in the lead.
I am now taking Percocet 10/325 up to 6 times a day. Last week i went without any for a few days just to see my level of dependance and aside from a blah feeling,it wasn't too bad and the pain was fairly unchanged. Meaning the percocets help, but not much. Is that possible? I am thinking I am taking a very high dose of percocet and should feel better results no? I would appreciate your input and hope I am posting in the right forum. thanks
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I don't know if it will work for you or not but I take NOW brand black cherry pills for my arthritis. They work better than and otc or script I have tried. I took 2/3x a day for a week to build them up in my system and now take 2 per day. I do adjust when I am having bad days. The good thing about these is they are all natural and don't tear up your stomach. Consult with your doctor to make sure any other meds you are taking will not cause a reaction first though. If you try these please let me know if they help. I think most people think I am crazy when I tell them about it, Thanks Sissie
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Hi Jsk,

Welcome to our Pain Management Community. I am glad that you finally decided to post and not just lerk. :o)  ....Although I know we do have a lot of lurkers. I was one for a bit.

I am sorry to hear about your undiagnosed pain. First let me assure you that addiction should not be a major concern. There are many excellent studies conducted by reputable facilities regarding addiction in chronic pain sufferers. According to those studies ppl that have true pain and take their medications as prescribed have less then a 4% chance of addiction.  So don't let the fear of addiction stop you from taking needed pain medications.

However if you find that your pain is not touched or completely unaffected by your prescribed meds you need to consider why. Is this not the right opiate for you or simply not the right family of drugs?

We all respond differently to medications...what's effective for me may not be for you and visa verse. If your pain is extreme enough to warrant opiates (and I assume it is) then discuss this with your PMP. Short acting oxycodone (Percocet) has never been as effective on my particular pain as hydrocodone. It doesn't make sense I know...but it's a fact. Why a lesser opiate is more beneficial then a stronger one does not make a lot of sense. I simply am proof that different meds work differently on different ppl.

I also believe the location or cause of your pain matters with pain management. If I have a major pain elsewhere then Percocet is sometimes the better answer and more effective then the hydro. In my humble opinion, you and your PMP should discuss this and determine if you should try a different opiate.  

I don't need to tell you that knowing the source of your pain will be beneficial. If you have an inflammatory disorder there are other medications that may be more effective then an opiate alone. Often it's the combination of several medications that is the most effective... but you probably already know that.  

I am very glad that you have joined us and hope that you will be active in our community. I will look forward to your updates with interest.

My Best to You and Take Care,
~Tuck
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