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I was prescribed gabapentin
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I was prescribed gabapentin

I was prescribed gabapentin along with my Fentanly, but the pharmacist kind of scared me due to the doses I was prescribed. I was to start on 300mg. capsules 3 times a day, then the next week go up to 6-300 capsules  (2-3 times a day), then the next week 9 capsules per day ( 3-300mg, capsules per day). I had never taken it before, and when the Pain Management Dr. told me that I might start walking into walls!, (which I forgot to even TELL the pharmecist!),he told me I may not want to go that high! Well, I was afraid to even start the regimen, so only took it one time, and got so sleepy, I stopped. That was about 2 weeks ago, and I have stopped the Fentanyl, due to allergic reaction to the adhesive, (squares that are not going away!). Well, here's the incredible part, at least to me. My sciatic nerve down my left leg has been feeling like it is in the deep freezing water, you know that deep ache?, well, the doctor does NOT understand my description, but it is the most accurate one I know of! He put me on the Opana, which was the most horrifying experience I have EVER felt with a drug, I swear it was like I had th stomach flu, and headache, and no pain relief, so right now, I am WAITING for my ORIGINAl medication to be okayed, Oxycontin, the ONLY thing that ever worked but they didn't want to pay for it, but FINALLY, I am back to my old doctor with a referral from the insurance Dr. to stop trying, and go back to what worked. I am so happy, but the reason I am posting is that I took the gabapentin today, I was in so much pain, and only little oxycodones for breakthrough pain.Today I took my first and second dose, like he wanted, and right this minute, I don't know if it will continue, my sciatic nerve pain has lessened by at least 50%! It is like a miracle. I have had that unending nerve pain since 1995! Since I had my first back surgery! I mean every minute of every day, even when I was ON the oxycontin and could walk again, the sciatic pain was SO bad!The gabapentin has ACTUALLY worked I think! Nothing has EVER worked on me, and yesterday he said I was sort of a genetic freak, (I am not sure what words he used, but that was the gist of it, since I had had epidurals, every opiate, and synthetic, and didn't get any pain relief,) lots of stomach problems, and I got  ischemic colitis (I would NOT even try the methadone,he tried to talk me into that several times, it is so cheap!) my oldest daughter is a heroin addict and also takes methadone as a chaser, it seemed like it, anyway, I wasn't going to even try it, and haven't, even if my reasons are anecdotal, I saw my daughter on it and well...I will just leave it at that. I realize people must get relief from it, and I don't want to seem judgemental, really. I am not going to start next week taking 2- 3 times a day if the lowest amount works, so tomorrow will be my second day of the gabapentin, and I will see! Has anybody else gotten much relief from nerve pain from the gabapentin, (HE, the Pain management Dr. says it is muscle pain, but my surgeries were to my back, and the leg nerve is what is always killing me) I guess the real name is Neurontin, I think. I was really against adding more meds, I Hate the fact I have to take lisinipril, and I weaned myself off 12 YEARS of Paxil, It took me 6 months I did it so slow, that medication is SO hard to stop, especially if you have been on it for years! I don't even remember why or WHO put me on it! I think after my son died they just assumed I needed it, I never asked for it, and it doesn't help the grieving, believe me. Well, I have rambled so long but really am interested in the relief by using gabapentin?
12 Comments Post a Comment
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675718_tn?1321008971
i took that it really works for chronic pain
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Avatar_m_tn
i have had some good relief also. I do wonder about starting with 300 mg. It seems like a lot to me. i take 50mg  4 times a day! and it works for me. also oxy along with it. Seems like a good combo. what do the rest of you think?
     Don't forget to do some positive stuff now that you are able with some relief. Just keep adding the pos and the neg will go.  om   yogadon
    
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Avatar_f_tn
Neurontin/Gabapentin is dosed differently than many other medications...

The therapeutic levels are usually from 1600mg to 3600mg daily.

So, your Dr. is starting you at a very appropriate dosage..

If you feel that the weekly tirating dosage is going up too quickly...just speak with your Dr.

Neurontin, just like Lyrica and Cymbalta are actual nerve pain meds so it's no surprising at all that you are getting good relief from your sciatic nerve pain.

This is where most opiates do not really work well for this type of pain. Opiates have their place...but they are more about making us "not care" as much about the pain and that's it. That is why when patients are in chronic pain management...the focus should never be on just an opiate. That is one small piece of the puzzle for pain management.



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Avatar_f_tn
Thanks for posting, I woke up, which means I slept some!, and i hadn't in the previous 2 days, not one minute! I took a capsule, and I am really praying I get some relief, my nerve pain has eturned, but I don't remember how long it took to kick in yesterday....will wait and see. I think this Doctor has a tendency to go HIGH on the doses, but I also see my original orthopedic doctor, and they have kind of been working together. My usual Doctor, who I LOVE, has been advising me if i am afraid the meds seem too high, like when I was told to slap 4 100 mg. fentanyl patches on, without any titration. I spoke to him, because I didn't think it was safe, and neither did HE. So I went slower, but did go up to 4 patches at a time, with little to no relief. Now that I am back to just my wonderful old Doctor, and with the insurance Doctors approval, (and referral!), I will be able to communicate better for sure, and not have to drive the round trip, 2 hour drive to see the insurance Doc. whenever there was a problem, question, or just for 4 week check ups and meds. I am so happy about that, and IF the Insurance Doctors prescription for gabapentin continues to help, it will be a wondreful combo! I have NEVER had any relief, it is so unrelenting! But everybody, thanks so much, and I WILL take the least amount I need, I have never FELT anything like a high off any of my meds....ever!, Well, maybe in highschool, but I am 57 years old now and haven't touched or felt that way since I was 18!
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Avatar_m_tn
i should have explained a bit more and i appreciate your help in clearing this up weathergirl. Many of us have found that Lyrica, Cymbalta, etc. have a better effect and seem to have fewer side effects than the Gabapentin. I wrongly it seems assumed that your doctor would give you one of these and they come in lower dosages hence my mistake---but you might ask about it next visit. It does work well for some of us and my doctor friends and even some acupuncture and chinese medicine docs (my daughter among them) do prefer it in cases of certain presentations of pain (imagine that!).
      On a quick side note---have you seen dalubaba's posts sharing laughing and clapping techniques---or the screaming to relieve pain "tool". This crazy stuff works if you give it a chance!!!!OK--stay positive-when ya can.   om    yogadon
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Avatar_f_tn
The other thing to be cognizant of is that many of the nerve pain meds tend to have people craving carbohydrates, sugar, and salt so they end up gaining weight.

If you recognize this up front and be mindful of a diet that includes some carbs but complex ones instead of simple ones. As well as limit your salt, sugars, and alcohol. Along with upping your fluid intake..preferrably water at least 10-12 glasses a day. (I drink 12-14)..Just make sure you discuss with your Dr. if you have any other health issues like kidney problems and the water intake.

As well as keeping up with daily exercise approved by your Dr. Even if it's just walking daily at 30-45 minutes...this will help any type of weight gain.

Good luck and keep us posted:)
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Avatar_m_tn
Re: Fentanyl patch skin reaction  Have you tried using the Mylan brand patches?  They are smaller & all transparent.  Unlike the other brand my insurance company tried to force me to use. They were huge, flesh colored & made a crinkling sound whenever I moved.  I broke out in a rash when I used them.  My PCP in upstate NY wrote Fentanyl 75 mcg/Q48* but everyone from Pain Management was adamantly against me being on it.  I Thank God with all my heart that my PCP ordered it for me.  It was the ONLY thing that helped make the pain somewhat tolerable.
I hear that Gabapentin can be a lifesaver for some.....Unfortunately, I would fall asleep mid-sentence when I tried taking the smallest dose.  I hope that you are able to have some long-term pain relief.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi, I am so glad you mentioned that, because the doctor mentioned that people gain weight on the gabapentin, but he said they wouldn't actually EAT more, they would just gain the weight! I didn't get into it more than that, but I have lost at least 40 pounds since they started screwing with my medications in late January. I was happy thaat I was getting thinner without trying, but I was never hungry for ANYTHING, and that isn't normal. I gained weight on the oxycontin because it seemed to slow my metabolism down so much, and I wasn't hungry then either, but I didn't lose weight, which I always thought was weird. Tonight is my second day of the gabapentin, and so far, so good. My nerve pain in my leg has less lessened, but I will give it a few more days to see if I get side effects. Still waiting for my regular meds, but tomorrow is Monday, and they should be there, I have been yaking my breakthrough meds, and I will be out of those BEFORE I even get my prescription filled. What are the side affects, and the differences between Lyrica,  and the other  one you mentioned, because originally my doctor (my older one) didn't think the insurance would pay for it, but the P.M. doctor is suggesting it, so I WOULD be able to switch, without worrying about the cost. The P.M. doctor only mentioned the weight gain, and on too much the walking into walls! Please give me a few things I MIGHT run into! thanks in advance!
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Avatar_m_tn
I am taking 50mg 4 times a day (lyrica) and it works well and only side effect i notice is some sleepiness. I have lost weight but i have other variables to consider. The side effects are of course going to be more pronounced at higher doses.    
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Avatar_f_tn
Did you feel dizzy or lightheaded on the Lyrica, because I definately do on the Neurontin. I took the initial lowest dose prescribed, and haven't increaded like he wan't me to...I wanted to see how the lowest dose did! He DED tell me that people walk into wall, etc...I can see mtself doing it, IF I was to incease my dose, which I will not do. Does it help with your nerve pain? I feel a slight decease on the Neurontin...but I don't like the feelings, I have never taken anything, even the opiate I usually take never gave me a "feeling" at all! I am not used to the clumsiness, or restlessness, can't quite describe it, but I FEEL different...and yet, my sciatic pain seems a little better. Since he mentioned a few he wanted to try...Lyrica, and Cybmbalta, just wondering if the side affects are less. I would appreciate any info, or advice, these classes of drugs I am unfamiliar with taking!I THINK he said the Lyrica was in the same class as the Neurontin, but the Cynbalta was an antideppressant. which I just got OFF of one, and don't like the thought of going back on one...even though I realize it is to help with nerve pain, and not depression, antidepressants are SO hard to wean off of! Thanks in advance.
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Avatar_m_tn
yes the lyrica definitely helps with my nerve pain and my doctor just said that i am taking a low dosage but many people do and don't end up needing more. It really is true that people have huge differences in their response to medications. So you could tell your doc you would like to try the lyrica--he did mention trying it! And yes there can be some spaciness----be sure and eat a meal before you take it and that should help.  Let us know if it works for you.  Om   don
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Avatar_f_tn
I get to see my wonderful back doctor on Oct. 23rd, and will ask about the Lyrica. The gabapentin, even though I have remained on the lowest dose, (the P.M. doctor wanted me to triple it by now!), I was finding myself getting lightheaded, and kind of weird-feeling, although it did seem to help the nerve pain...don't like that feeling!), I need a cortisone injection in my shoulder SO BAD, can barely drive, and my knee too, I have bursitis and arthritis and every 3 1/2 weeks my shoulder is aching so bad can hardly lift it, and NO power steering!  WILL let you know if they approve the Lyrica, and how it is working, thanks so much for the post!
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