I have been taking Tramadol, between 200-300 mgs per day for moderate to severe pain in my colon where I have IBS and nerve damage. It has worked remarkably well managing my pain for app. a year now. It is gradual declining in its effectiveness but in the last two days, I feel no pain release. The problem is that lately I have been developing tolerance. Without it, I have to resort to Bentyl which has horrible side effects and then I need to take a valium or Klonipin (klonopin) to counteract the side effects. I am normally mobile and energetic on Tramadol and can leave the house, but on Bentyl I am sick in bed. Some relief from Bentyl, but not like Tramadol. When I don't take Tramadol, my only withdrawal is that I get extremely fatigue but that can also be from my IBS and pain. I have read before that if you stop taking Tramadol for a few days, then you will lose your tolerance for the drug and can start up again with good results. Does anyboy know anything about this? Please respon
I believe you will have to stop taking the tramadol longer than a few days to get your tolrence down. You will mst likely have to stop for a few weeks and then start it again. You should ask your dr to increase your dose as your on a reltivity low dose or ask for some hydro to take in between the tramadol. I used to take the hydro and tramadol and take one at one dose then the other at another dose. Like take the hydro in the morn and then 4 or 5 hrs later take the tramadol. This gives you more relief too.
I took 400 mg of Tramadol daily for about 5 years and while there was some tolerance effect I didn’t feel that it kept increasing the way it does with other drugs like Valium for example. To reduce the tolerance would require dropping back to a lower dosage for longer than just a few days. You could try taking an over the counter painkiller containing Paracetamol with the Tramadol. A doctor told me that it’s safe to do and that Tramadol actually works better when taken with Paracetamol. The fatigue you mentioned when you stop taking it is likely to be at least partially due to the letdown you typically get when you suddenly stop taking it after your body has become used to it. Conversely feeling ‘mobile and energetic’ when on it is would be due to the mood lift you get from taking it which is part and parcel of its pain relieving action (and what makes it a drug not without its dangers and downside).
I'm not sure what Hydro is. Hydrocotin? My doctor will not give me anything stronger than Tramadol and I'd be afraid to take it anyway due to the fact that I like the effects of pain pills too much and I would become addicted to it knowing me. But I am in pain so I have to resort to taking a Bentyl and a Valium or Klonopin. (Funny I have never gotten addicted to tranquilizers or developed a tolerance.) As far as what Mareke said, you must be from the UK, because I looked up paracetamol and that is the same as acetaminophen which is in Tylenol. I appreciate both your help.
If you are worried about getting hooked on the hydrocodone, then you should know that the potential for addiction to Tramadol is just as great, and Tramadol is not as easy to get away from as hydrocodone is. The way Tramadol works is that it attaches itself to the MU receptor in the brain, which is the same receptor that opiates attach themselves to. Until recently, doctors have prescribed Tramadol with abandon, because it was billed as being "non-addictive" because it is not an opiate. It has been discovered, however, that the patients who have been taking Tramadol are becoming just as addicted to it as they are to opiates because of the way the drug works. The other thing is, if you stop taking hydrocodone suddenly, you will have the feeling of having a bad case of the flu for a few days, but as bad as those symptoms feel, they will not harm you other than to make you feel lousy. If you stop taking Tramadol suddenly, you run the risk of having seizures. If you take a bit too much hydrocodone, you might get sleepy and have a difficult time staying awake. If you take too much Tramadol, it could lead to seizures. And it takes a much smaller overdose of Tramadol to cause death than it takes of oxycodone. If your doctor doesn't want to prescribe anything stronger than Tramadol, my advice would be to look around for another doctor. Either that or get the whole scoop on Tramadol from your pharmacist and then go to your doctor with it and say look, I need something for pain, but I don't want to be putting this junk into my system any longer, PLEASE give me something better for my pain. Remember, doctors work for us, just like accountant would or a lawyer or other professional. If they don't want to listen to you, fire then and find someone who will listen to your concerns and follow your suggestions. It's your body. If Tramdol is no longer working for you, or if there is something else you would like to try, ask him for it. If he gives you the speech about not wanting to prescribe an opiate, tell him about Tramadol and that you would rather take something that is a bit stronger, but at least it's SAFE. Tell him that you are aware of Tramadol's addictive properties and that if you are going to be putting yourself at risk for addiction, you would rather do it with something that you get results from and that doesn't have the potential to cause seizures.
Ghilly there is at least one statement you made that I believe is incorrect and creates a wrong impression about the safety of Tramadol. Since I was on Tramadol for 5 years I did a fair amount of reading on it and my understanding is that Tramadol is a relatively safe drug with no deaths recorded from an overdose. The only exception is one possible case of a severely underweight woman that took a huge amount of something like ten or fifteen times the maximum recommended dose and even then it’s not certain that the Tramadol killed her. Tramadol is actually safer than common over the counter drugs like Tylenol containing acetaminophen which in overdose has led to many cases of liver failure and death. In overdose Tramadol causes unpleasant effects such as nausea, vomiting, drowsiness and a small percentage of people may be prone to seizures especially if it is taken in combination with certain other drugs. If you overdose on Tramadol there is little risk of dying but if you do the same with an over the counter drug containing acetaminophen there is a significant risk of dying from liver failure.
The main downside of Tramadol lies in it being subtly addictive. It produces a feeling of increased energy and gives a mood lift (it actually wouldn’t be a bad anti-depressant because of this) and the increased energy and mood lift can become as much a reason for the person taking it as for pain relief. If you stop taking Tramadol the withdrawal symptoms that last for several days are fairly unpleasant-a feeling of tiredness, restlessness, inability to sleep, rebound pain etc. The worst of these symptoms last for 3 or at the most 4 days. Once the onset of withdrawal begins people naturally tend do the easy thing and take more Tramadol to rid themselves of the unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. The sensible way to withdraw from it would be to gradually reduce the dose or if you don’t want to do it this way take a drug like Valium (not addictive for me) which would enable you to sleep and reduce the unpleasant withdrawal symptoms considerably.
While Tramadol is relatively safe its addictive qualities are subtle and underestimated by people that innocently start taking it for pain relief and then gradually without realising it wind up taking it as much for the mood lift and increased energy levels as for its pain relieving properties. This is what happened to me. Tramadol is only good for certain kinds of pain from my experience and would not be effective for severe pain such as you might experience from a disc that is pressing on a nerve causing excruciating pain.
I don't know if you have read any of the posts on the Addiction - Substance Abuse board, but there are many people posting over there who have had horrible problems with Tramadol, and especially in getting away from it. Many people have claimed that it was much more difficult to get away from than actual opiates, and considering the fact that its pain relief properties are not nearly on a par with some of the milder opiates, it's a poor choice for long term pain management. I'm glad that you had success with the drug, but on the whole, it has become a huge problem in the pain management community, and thankfully doctors are finally realizing that it's not nearly as safe OR effective as they originally thought.
Yes I have read many posts about how hard people found getting off Tramadol but it’s wrong to conclude that these complaints mean that Tramadol is worse than other painkillers. I suspect it would be harder to get off stronger opiate painkillers than Tramadol because the withdrawal symptoms from stronger opiates are likely to be worse and last longer. The reason so many people have made negative comments about Tramadol is likely to be because it is the first drug most doctors prescribe for moderate pain and many people that it was prescribed to should only have been on it intermittently at best or not at all and these are the people you see damning the drug on forums.
On the other hand people on stronger opiates like oxcycontin, morphine etc tend to be patients who are in severe pain with long term medical conditions that justify the use of such drugs because no doctor would prescribe such drugs unless there was a clear condition justifying the prescription or the doctor would risk losing his licence. Patients on these stronger opiates would tend to be the type that were in so much pain they considered the pain relief they got from these stronger drugs far more important to them than addiction and you would not tend to find them on forums damning the drugs they were prescribed because they became addicted. Such patients would be grateful for the pain relief and consider addiction unimportant.
The complaints on forums about Tramadol reflect the widespread prescribing of it to a wider population for a wider spectrum of less serious conditions and its more frequent inappropriate continual use compared to harder to get stronger opiates rather than because Tramadol is inherently a worse drug than genuine opiates. If you go to a doctor complaining of migraines or some other condition that waxes and wanes but you take Tramadol every day and find yourself addicted you are likely to complain loud and long on forums about how evil the drug is when in fact it was your unwise use of Tramadol rather than anything inherently bad about the drug that was the real problem.
Mareke, I for one am glad that you posted and expressed your thoughts & experience with Tramadol. As a regular Tramadol user who is beginning to weigh its pros against its cons, I came to this forum to obtain information, not necessarily to ask a question. If you look at the top of each thread, you will notice that it states that the forums are a community for 'discussions' and that is what you were doing....discussing. Yes, a question is typically what OPENS a thread but discussion is what keeps it going and what ultimately offers the most valuable information to people like me. So, thank you for posting :-) Sandy
First off your pain medicine is a seratonin increasing med. i feel that cymbalta does the same job. You are on ungodly ammount of this stuff daily, If you become dependent on this stuff it probably is more of a security blanket effect than a dependency problem. I have horrible problems with my stomach and have been using marinol for it. I also take tincture of opium drops since paregoric has been discontinued. Try talking to your GI doctor.for homeopatathic cures also. I have been tlo Shands and the Medical University In Atlanta,. There are no new IBS drugs oh the horizon. I have been stuck at home even with these drugs. Nothing stops jy proablem.
I have been taking Tramadol for over 2 years. I started taking it for lower back pain. My Doctor started giving it to me because I told him other medications made me sleepy. Tramadol worked great until I recently started to feel pain in my legs. I use to run and ride a bicycle for several miles a day. I even took Tramadol before long bike rides. I felt no pain and thought I gave me more power to do more. I know have severe leg pain that I feel Tramadol has given me. I also lift weights and have lost strength that I feel the Tramadol is to blame for that also. I'm now cutting the 50MG pills in sections and taking each 2 times a day. I hope to get off this insidious medication.
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