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Tramadol & Ultram Recovery Room Part 14

Aug 05, 2009 - 190 comments
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tramadol

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ultram

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Recovery

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Pain

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bad withdrawal

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taper

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cold turkey

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quit tramadol

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quit ultram



Hi everyone!

Welcome to Part 14!

Please come in and make yourself at home.

We're all glad you made it here.

Love and healing,
Emily

Comments
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by ty1987, Aug 05, 2009
Many of you have suggested antidepressants..I was considering this until I read that antidepressants + Tramadol = seizures. Is this true? Thanks for all the support..it really means a lot to me.

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by ImDone79, Aug 05, 2009
I am hlueening very bak right now
I cant evev typy right

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by ImDone79, Aug 05, 2009
i am halucinationg like crazy right now and cant typel  evereything i see is moving

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by Bulldemon, Aug 05, 2009
Yah ive read that while taking tramadol , You cannot take anitdeppressants or It will increase the risk of seizures. I cant back up that info I know others can, but I know I've read it in multiple places. Hey all doing good something like 2 and a half weeks off tramadol . Doing alot better here, Imdone79 Ive not heard of hallucinations yet, that is something to definatley be concerned about , I would call your doctor asap. Keep up the good fight all !

God bless,
Brandon


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by 12Stepper, Aug 05, 2009
ImDone, I don't recall anyone here mentioning that symptom. It does sound serious, though. You will feel better if you know what is going on, so please have a doctor assess your condition as soon as possible. We don't want to take any chances with this stuff.

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by iontheprize, Aug 05, 2009
Today was a really intense day on this site.  More to say later but would like to say that I have personally experienced 2 hallucinations while going through w/ds and others have written about it before.  Some are scary as hell and others are just bizarre.  I think that there is a connection to the drug although not as common.

About having suicidal thoughts... it is a physician that needs to evaluate severity of suicidal ideation as INTENT is what directs the course of treatment and keeping someone safe.  Ty1987 was in an incredibly dark place this morning and that dark place is nothing to gamble with.  A physician can determine what can be given.  I'm quite sure that the risk of seizure (as we all had while increasing our T dose) is less important than the risk of death from suicide.  This is all for a medical professional to evaluate and monitor.

I am passionate about this as I have worked with suicidal persons and have a dear friend that in one single moment, took his life.  The problem with trying to go through the hell of deep depression alone, is taking on the risk of having THAT ONE MOMENT that ends it all.  

My heart literally feels heavy about the absolute suffering that TY1987 and others feel today.   When a person is in those times of despair, physical energy is depleted too.  I am concerned about people who isolate themselves and feel what was written this morning.  So as a WARRIOR, with the shreds of energy that remain, get yourself in for help or call 1-800-SUICIDE as Emily suggested.  

We are all here to help, but when medically or emotionally someone is in crisis, it's time to get to a trained professional and know that we'll be here waiting for you.

~jessica

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by Gerty411, Aug 05, 2009
Hi you all,

Ty , I feel your sadness and pain.  At first tramadol made me the happiest girl in the whole usa.  As I got more addicted I realized that the pills did not make me happy.  I soon developed an intense fear and anxiety that I wouldn't have enough pills.  This completly overshadowed my entire existence.  

This coupled with the failure of a relationship or any disappointment can be extremely detrimental.  I think it would be a good idea for you to seek counseling asap.  

Iamdone I  am also concerned about your hallucinations.  I hope you are ok.


Day 2 of 100 mg.  Overall it feels wonderfu not to be running up to the closet every 1-2 hours for a pill.  I'm pretty sure I spent more time in my closet than with my family.

Take care everyone,


Gerty






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by iontheprize, Aug 05, 2009
"in the closet".... great metaphor!

Good night all....get some good rest and wake up feeling even better than you did today.  Congratulations to all who reached personal milestones today and gave their best; no matter how seemingly small.  All of us has had success today.

~jessica

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by ImDone79, Aug 05, 2009
Hi everyone!  I am good now.  I had about a 15 minute period earlier that everything started to move and I couldn't see the keys to type!  I went and layed down and it is better.  I got some valarian root and immodium and I have been ok today.  I am starting up with the cold sweats again, they have not been bothering me much all day but now that I am planning on going to bed, I am freezing yet sweating!!!  Take care everyone,  

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by damnitol, Aug 05, 2009
Sorry this is long winded, I won't be upset if you don't read it all. I wrote it as a "journal" but really feel the need to share...

I made it to day 7. I feel like a Superhero! And the next minute I feel like I've been hit by a Mack Truck. But I made it to 7.

9 days ago I was taking 10+ pills at a time every 4 hours, and I felt like sh**.
8 days ago I took the last 5 pills I had, and I felt like sh**.
7 days ago I took 0 pills, and I REALLY felt like sh**.
Today, I took 0 pills, and I feel like a little bit happier sh**.

I do not by any means feel like I am out of the woods. I do, however, see a clearing on the horizon.
I am laughing again. Something I didn't do very much of while on the pills and something I REALLY didn't do much of while first coming off them.
I wonder what I can do with all the energy I will have. I used to spend it in a drugged stupor worrying about pills, when will I get more pills, how will I get them, how will I pay for them, how many should I take, when can I take more?

Part of me is getting really angry. I was given tramadol because I broke my back many years ago. It was a "safe" drug. No withdrawal symptoms. I even told my Dr. that I had been addicted to painkillers due to a chronic hip issue, that I would rather take nothing than risk being addicted again. (The first Dr. for my hip put me on one narc or another every 4 hours night and day for a year without telling my mother I may get addicted... I was 12). I was assured this wonder drug was harmless, like taking ibuprophen, or naproxen sodium, but it would help more.

6 years later, I have FINALLY STOPPED TAKING THESE "SAFE" PILLS! For 7 days anyway. By far the longest I've ever gone without taking them in the 6 years since I started. I started like I was supposed to, only as needed (which was every time I could take them, because I never really got complete relief, only a drugged haze), then I started taking more to get minimal relief, and more and more and more and more.

I have moments of clarity (and moments when I'd like some clarity) these last few days, and I find myself noticing differences between what "TRAMADOL DANA" and "REAL DANA" would do. Today, for instance.

I walked out to the car wearing one PINK shoe and one BLACK shoe. I was supposed to be going to work.
I've read about other people having a little "foggy headedness" or "forgetfulness" (ie: giving the dog coffee, getting lost on the way to your kid's game : ) This was my latest, and I've found it says a lot about me. I was trying to decide which shoes to wear. I put on one of each. I got distracted by my turtle. Yes, my turtle. He is in a tank. He does not make noise, and yet I got distracted enough that I picked up my purse and walked down the six flights of stairs to go to my car. In two mismatched shoes.

TRAMADOL DANA would've stomped back upstairs, angry that I would be late, put on the other BLACK shoe, stomped all the way back down, and pulled way.
REAL DANA laughed my a** off. (I'm laughing a lot more now...) And then I seriously considered wearing mismatched shoes rather than walk up the flights of stairs. (So REAL DANA doesn't really like stairs yet... I'll give her time. She's been through a lot in the last 7 days).  I eventually made it up, grabbed the PINK shoes, stopped to refill my coffee, and made it back to my car. Yes, I was a couple of minutes late to work, I almost died climbing up and then back down the stairs, but I LAUGHED!

Everything everyone has said here is helpful. Withdrawal is hell. Take vitamins, take hot baths, tonic water actually helped my restless legs once they were a little milder, if you have access to a Dr. talk to them about things to help you with the anxiety and the depression. If it gets too big for you to deal with alone get the help you need. TALK TO PEOPLE. Post here. There are (sadly) hundreds of people here who have gone through it, are going through it, will be going through it. And the best piece of advice I can give to anyone, the one thing that has gotten me through this is remembering to LET myself laugh. I punished myself so hard for letting it get to this point. I beat myself up time and time again mentally and physically. Deciding to take control, deciding to stop taking pills, for me, could only happen after deciding to stop blaming myself. I just didn't have the energy to do both. I had to stop focusing on what I did wrong in order to set things right. And now that I've decided to set things right, I find the urge to laugh creeping up on me.  And sometimes I have to actively let myself laugh. I no longer have to be hard on myself. I am doing good and I am doing well.

I hope you are both doing good, and doing well.

Love,
REAL DANA

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by EmilyPost, Aug 06, 2009
Ty no one here is telling you that you should go on anti-depressants. No one here can tell you that, because we're not qualified to do that. What we're saying is that you expressed intense despair and went a step beyond suicidal Ideation ("I wish I were dead") to planning it or having thoughts of how ... which is intent.

I was so relieved to see you post. Did you know that on a few sites they'll kick you off for writing what you did about suicide? They feel that it triggers people. I feel that if you can't talk about it; you don't get better. And people are terrified to talk about it. So it becomes a crazy cycle that people really are helpless against because no one is taking action. You need to take action because clinical depression and suicidality won't wait. A permanent solution to a temporary problem, is what they say suicide is.

I really do want you to take some action, as exhausted as you do sound. Because it won't get better without action. Tramadol made me have suicidal ideation. I almost fell over when i picked up a day planner form two freakin years ago and on page one it had a suicide hot line written down. Dude. So freakin' wring and 100% caused by Tramadol. *kicks tramadol in the head* Little bastage!!

Hallucinations ... yes. It happens. On Tramadol and coming off benzos. Been there.

Dana two mismatched shoes and a turtle! You make me fall in love with you :D

So glad you are all here and fighting the good fight!

Love and healing,
Emily

((((ion))))

((((((((((everyone))))))))))

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by FormerlySane, Aug 06, 2009
Dana:  congrats on a week.  There's no going back now, it's headfirst into the rest of your tram free life!  I'll bet you have a fun laugh, keep doing it!!  Tomorrow is day eight Dana, then nine, pretty soon you'r at two weeks, then three, then a month, then a year.  And by that point, you're back to the Dana that all your friends used to know and love...your actually drug-free self.

Today is day #100 for me.  Guess who called last night...one of the online tram companies!  No email this time because I haven't ordered from them for so long (used to be 180 tab bottles twice per month).  One of the phone sales people from India or someplace similar.  I just told her that I won't be buying the tram anymore and hung up (while giving her the finger with my other hand).  I kinda wanted to be rude to her, but none of this is her fault directly, she probably has no idea what tram is, she just gets paid to make phone calls, and probably not paid very much.  Six or eight weeks ago I probably would have laid into her with a white, hot, fiery passion from hell, telling her about what she's peddling to innocent people.  Anyway, Kharma's wrath will eventually come to her companies bosses that DO know what tram is.  Wish I could be there to see it (and participate).  There should be a little kharmic wrath coming to the doctors that have told us it's non-addictive, take as much as you want, especially the ones that wouldn't listen to us when we told them the dangers of this stuff.  Just a little for them, the rest for the drug companies that manufacture it, the ones that make millions off of our addictions and love for us to stay addicted.  *ssholes = all of them.  Right on par with the tobacco companies.  I'm 6'2 at 250 lbs and about 7% body fat, shaved head and covered with tribal tattoos on 30% of my body, so I dream of the intimidation factor affer running into one of these docs in a dark alley.  Sorry, but it would just be soooo much fun for me!  I'd love to throw one of them agains a wall in a dark alley and ask them if they know what their "non-addictive" drugs are doing to people.  And just maybe, in those few minutes, I could give him a taste of the pain we've all felt.  Enough to cover everybody in Emily's thread.  Just so he knows, that's all.

Makes you wonder about other people in other countries that can go into any pharmacy and buy this stuff OTC, right there on the spot.  How many addicts do they have in those contries?  How many people's lives are being trashed there?  Places like tourist areas in Mexico, where the staff at the resorts has to be "on" for 16 hours per day.  We went to Club Med in Mexico back in April.  Tram was on every shelf in every pharmacy we went into.  Those people have it at their fingertips 24/7 and a job that requires them to be "on" during their entire workday, six days per week.  After watching them for a week, seeing the stuff they do to entertain bitchy American tourists ALL DAY LONG, I guarantee they were on 20-30 tabs per day to do what they do.  Have a seizure...no big deal, happens to everybody...you;ll be fine, get back on stage!

ImDone: glad you sounded a little better with your last post, you had a few of us a little worried for a while there.

(((((Emily))))), you are a saint, the true definintion of one.  I owe a GREAT deal to you for starting this blog over a year ago.  Up until the end of May I had read every single post in ever single thread you had started.  Without the info provided there, I would NOT be on day 100.  You and the others played a significant role in saving my life, my marriage, and my career.  I owe you a debt that cannot be repaid in this lifetime.  But if there's something I can ever do, please, please ask.  Take care Emily, I truely hope life is good for you now.

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by iontheprize, Aug 06, 2009
Dana, thank you for the laugh this morning!  Two mismatched shoes, what a riot!  I found that before leaving for work I would remember one thing I needed from upstairs.  By the time I got up there, I would forget.  So, as long as I was there,  i would spray a bit of perfume and head back down.  At the bottom step, I'd curse and head back up because I remembered what it was.  It'd get back to my room and just stand there trying so hard to remember what was so important that I made yet another trip upstairs.  I couldn't, so I'd touch up my make up.  I'd get back downstairs again, and DOUBLE CURSE...I remember!  Head back up all the while saying it out loud over and over til I got to where I needed to be without forgetting....  all of this was to address my daily compulsion to check my curling iron and that it is OFF.  How could I forget that?  LOL.  Of course, who can forget our friend who had Mr. Crump (dog) in the fridge for a moment (or two).  He got put away instead of the milk.

FormerlyS - Day 100!  That's fantastic!!! You give us all hope and I know you aren't alone with your impressions of Ms. Emily.  

Emily, it must be hard to find shirts that accomodate those wings of yours.

Have a good day everybody....

~jessica

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by Gerty411, Aug 06, 2009
Good morning y"all

I slept all night and feel somewhat good.  Today will be day 3 of 100/mg.  

Formerlysane, you hit the nail of the head.  I have drug companies calling me every hour for refills, There are tons of reminder emails also.  It's easier to get tramadol than any other drug.  I actually am in the phase where I frigging hate the drug companies and those nameless peoplen who badger me for refills. My husband and kids don't even answer the  phone during the day because of the number of calls.  I asked them not to call but they don't stop.  

But it is not there fault that I am a tramadol addict.  I know that is my doing.  There will always be something or someone  who will tempt us or test are resolve.

I sound like a preacher.

The traminator will not prevail!!!

Take care ,

Gerty

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by Lillyval, Aug 06, 2009
Ty - I was on Celexa and moderate to high doses of tramadol (400-600mg/day) for two years withouy any issues (besides tram addiction).  The combination of the two does lower the seizure threshold, but combining the two doesn't necessarily CAUSE a seizure - if that makes any sense.  Right now I'm tapering down on tram while tapering up on Celexa.  Hope some of this info. helps.

Gerty - I am also on day 3 of 100mg.  It's good to have someone at the same place on the journey!  Change your e-mail and even your phone number if you have to.  I'm living proof that it only takes one errant click to really mess things up for yourself:)

FormerlySane - That was an insightful message.  I read somwhere (and I wish I had saved it) that in some Iraqi cities the drug abuse rate for young men is about 30% and the drug of choice is TRAMADOL!  They're unemployed with no prospects and I guess tram is really easy to get.  It's sick.

Nancy- I've been thinking a lot about how you said you got your dreams back.  That statement is so layered with meaning it gave me chills.  It reminded me that before drugs I had what I too considered prophetic dreams.  What a thing to lose!

Dana - Thanks for reminding us we can laugh again!

Thank you everyone for being here.  I wish you all healing.
Lilly



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by Lillyval, Aug 06, 2009
I should have added that both the Celexa and the tramadol were prescribed knowingly by the same doctor.

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by findingfarrah, Aug 06, 2009
I had posted on a previous page, so I am not sure if others viewed it...sorry if it is repetitive,

I am looking for advice about withdrawal from tramadol. I was taking tramacet 2x daily for the past few weeks, and before that just once a day for about a year ( tramadol 37.5mg along with acetaminophen). I recently missed two days of medication and had the worst flu like symptoms of my life. I had chills, sweats, stomach upset, diarrhea and extreme fatigue. My pharmacist suggested I had the flu because " you cannot suffer withdrawal from such a low dose, especially since it has not been taken for several years"....I have been reading the posts here, and can really relate, so I want off this stuff, but fear the night sweats and frequent trips to the bathroom.. any advice?????

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by hadenough55, Aug 06, 2009
Gerty- I have the same problem with the phone calls at work. Every day. So I tried telling them I wasn't here anymore,then I told them I was dead. They still called. Now I just scream and curse at them. I wish there was a way to stop those callers.
Imdone79- Glad to hear your doing better. I know those chills and sweats suck but they should pass in a few days. Good luck.
Real Dana - Congrats- keep it up
Today is day 9 c/t for me. Can't believe I still crave it at times after what I went through with w/d. Still have about 100 T's left. Don't have the nerve to flush them or maybe I'm justcheap. Ha
Good luck to all. Kenny

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by hadenough55, Aug 06, 2009
Findingfarrah- Try immodium for diarrhea and long showers for sweats. It shouldn't last too long on your dosage.Hope this helps.

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by FormerlySane, Aug 06, 2009
hadenough, I flushed almost a full bottle (180 count) on my day 9, there was maybe only about 10 gone from it.  It was the absolute best thing I did, and for a brief moment I felt incredible!!  The went right back to the W/Ds again.  I shudder to think what I would have down if I'd hung on to them.

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by 12Stepper, Aug 06, 2009
It is aggrevating how little the medical profession knows about this stuff. Findingfarrah, after hearing your symptoms and reading these journals for awhile, I am sure what you describe is withdrawal and not the flu but withdrawal from tramadol. Most people who have gotten off tram have hit bottom with using it and will either go cold turkey or develop a tapering plan and never go back there again.

There are herbal (e.g. valarium root) and OTC (e.g. immodium) remedies listed in these pages that have worked well for us, but the key has been determination to experience whatever it takes to stay off. If you can take a few days to treat yourself as if you have the flu using the remedies discussed in these journals, that would be helpful. If you get worried about any symptom, some medical help may be required--with someone more savvy than the pharmacist if you can find someone.

It helped me a lot to learn about withdrawal symptoms, both physical and mental, to recognize that it is withdrawal causing the restless legs, insomnia, depression, fatigue, etc. and not something else. Most of the symptoms are outlined in these journals, plus there is an excellent article on Post Acute Withdrawal Symdrome (PAWS) to help explain the longer term symptoms and how to deal with them.

Not everyone has had severe physical withdrawal symptoms. Mine were very mild. Others have only lasted a couple of days. Whatever it takes, it's worth it to get off tram forever. Take care and please let us know how you are doing.



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by nancy652, Aug 06, 2009
wow what great posts! every single one. gerty you  are so funny! the happiest girl....that's so cute. We must be about the same age. Lilly and Gerty I'm now on 100 mgs too! Today is two 50's one morning,  one at night. Tomorrow the same. Sat 75mg,  Sunday 50 and I think I will ten have one or two to spit up for 25 mgs Monday and 12 mgs Tuesday , maybe wednesday. You get the drift.
Formerly sane and damnitol...keep writing! I love your posts! I want to know every word of what you're thinking. It helps alot.
Dana your posts made my day. Turtle lovers unite! I like iguanas too. Imagine how distracted you'd be with one of those guys!
By the way, non Tramadol Nancy won my case. I attribute that to you guys. Thanks to all here so much for the thoughts and support. Since I do consumer protection cases, the FDA is in my sites nows. It might take awhile, but I'll get there. You'll know me when you see me cause I'm little but I'm mean. :)
12 stepper that article sounds really interesting. thanks.
love
N

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by Diddy420, Aug 06, 2009
Hello everyone - I am new to this site, but hoping to jump in the forum. Sorry about the name. That was selected by a friend trying to help me out of my situation. So she set me up with this site, and told me to seek some support and advice.The 420 was her little joke. I do hope that does not offend anyone.

On to the issue:

I am really struggling with the Tramadol. I have been on it for close to a year now, for some shoulder injuries. Over the course of the year, I have jumped from the recommended dose of 8pills/day to 15 at times. This went up and down, and presently, I have managed to work my way down. Over the past year, I have also been prescribed the usual pain pills (Oxy's, Vic, Norco), but have not really had an issue with moving past them.

Starting about 3 1/2 weeks ago I began substituting the Tram with Oxy's. I would not take the Tram for a couple of days, and take the Oxy's instead. After about 3 weeks, I felt pretty confident I was done with the Tram because I was down to 2 pills/day. I decided I was tappered enough to quite, so last Saturday I stopped all together. Prior to that, I took my last Tram on the previous Thursday.

So Monday (8/3) was when the horror began, and I thought I would be able to tough it out with vitamins, sleep, green tea, Ibuprofen. It appears I was wrong... Tuesday was worse, and yesterday was a nightmare. So I gave in yesterday and took one and a half Tram. I felt perfectly fine after that, aside from the disgust I felt for my weakness. It's pathetic. Today, I have taken one and a half, and I feel normal. This is my struggle...

I want to be completely done with the Tram and all other meds. I have literally been robbed of all ambition. The injuries I was originally put on the Tram for were due to a fight career I once had. So here I am a year later, 20lbs lighter, have not worked out in probably 8months, and really have no desire to. I honestly just want to be me again. Drug free, in great shape, and pleasant to be around. Instead, I am stuck in this dumb ass rut, crawling back to the Tram.

Okay, so that's a pretty condensed description of my situation. If anyone has any more questions, please feel free to ask, I am happy to answer. What I am hoping to gain here is real advice on how to get off this shit. Every forum I have read thus far does not really say how to preceed from where I am. My thought (as recommended by a Pharmacist friend) is to drop by a 1/4 of a pill/week. So I maintain the 1 1/2 for the remainder of this week, then next wednesday, I drop to 1 1/4, and so on from there until I am do 1/4 of a pill, and maintain that for a week or so, then on to zero. I know that sounds pretty simplistic, and I am in no way trying to diminish the power of the Tramadol hold. Please trust that I have tried to quite the shit several times prior to now. This is by far the best I have ever done, and I do feel motivated and confident I can do it. I suppose I was really just hoping to get some advice from people that know, and have been through this, and succeeded in overcoming it.

I thank you all in advance for your replies. Sorry for the long post. I do look forward to hearing back from any of you.
Thanks again,
d

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by nancy652, Aug 06, 2009
welcome Diddy. I am in such a fog I don't even know what's potentially offensive about your name. Or I might be too old.:) Anyway we all have bigger worries. Your taper sounds great. Some of us taper and some quit cold turkey. Both are tough. I am doing a quick taper of 25 to 50 mgs a day. So I was at about 12 pills of 50 mgs a day when I started and I am now about a week later at 2 pills of 50 mgs a day. I will stop totally on Monday or Tuesday. Some consider that a very fast taper. It works for me cause I have done it once before. My struggle will be to keep off it once and for all. Anyway we welcome you. Your best plan is WHATEVER WORKS FOR YOU so you can be free of this drug if your wish is to be so. welcome again. You will get lots of feedback. keep posting.
N

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by FormerlySane, Aug 06, 2009
Welcome Diddy.  I did not taper so don't have much advice there.  I went from 20-30 pills per day for a couple years down to 8-12 for several months, then CT on april 29th.  There's no sugar coating, it was a new level of hell for me that lasted a good month.  These are the things that helped me:

Valarian Root (anxiety and sleep)
Advil (pain, anxiety, and restless legs)
Sleepy Time Tea (anxiety and sleep)
Multi-Vitamin (everything)
Omega-3 fish oils (overall health)
Melatonin (sleep)
Ambien or Lunesta (sleep...but I have been taking those for insomnia for years, not at the same time)
Some good music on your ipod (music helped me kind of "escape" my head...if that makes sense)
Keep yourself busy
Get a good pair of sunglasses for when you go outside, the sun hurts for the first few days
Exercise when you can, even if it's just a walk around the block at night.
Read these threads!!!!!  Knowing all the other people out there that had kicked this and were kicking it the same time as me helped a lot!!

All the threads going back to Emily's first will list the above stuff, reading them is how I found out about it all.  There may be some more that I missed that will help you.

Nancy...good job, you're almost there, and congrats on your case!


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by FormerlySane, Aug 06, 2009
Forgot one...vodka lemonade!!!

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by findingfarrah, Aug 06, 2009
thanks for the advice everyone, after just reducing my dose from 2/day to 1/day.. today i thought i would try cold turkey, but was struggling and by afternoon had to take 1/2 tab.. i felt very anxious and shaking inside.. i have never suffered from anxiety or panic attacks so this was the worse symptom for me..

good luck to everyone, keep fighting!!

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by 2Sue, Aug 06, 2009
Hi,im nearly 5 months post tram and have posted on previous pages of my withdrawal.
I  feel the need to tell about my great aunt, During my recovery,about april/may she was taken to hospital for a broken wrist. When i visited she was a shadow of her former self and i immediately recognised the signs..she'd been taken tramadol for a few months for her sciatica and her daughter was beside herself with worry at her decline but didnt know the link. I was livid. you see my great aunt is 81 and they thought she was 'on her way out' I had a chat with her about tram and  she kindly, with a grin and a wink give me her tissue with the tram shed been given by nurses in,every time i visited. Wise Old Owl.lol.
It is very difficult to tell an 81 year old that her symptoms could last months after shed stopped them and even harder to tell medics and her daughter who was so worried about her state.
Anyway she got home a couple of days after stopping tram with no support and as i was suffering to and had a family couldnt always be there. but her daughter was and lo and behold next thing she was admitted to a psychiatry unit for the aged....(im glad i wasnt old) and what an awful depressing place to be and she just sat there suffering with these symptoms we have all experienced and know well with not a jot of support. yes she had severe anxiety, depression etc,etc. Did they then recognise tram symptoms...NONONO. they put her on antipsychotic drugs.but because she went even lower ,surprise surprise, they changed them to anti depressants in the last few weeks..
I just wanted to say she is her usual self again  thank god. she is going home this week.

However the psychiatrists think they have 'made her better' but between us i think, in fact i know she would have got there much quicker if theyd just bloody left her alone to recover..and follow the natural process of recovery of tram withdrawal. (sorry don't mean to make that sound trivial at all).
Shes been through the mill and away from her home and support network, friends, family. (restricted support because of limited visiting).....BUT SHES GOT THERE.....AS i knew she would....SO IF AN 81 year old can get to the other side.........
take a day (or an  hour) at a time and you'll get through .my great aunt and i did.
my thoughts are with you all
SUE    

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by FormerlySane, Aug 06, 2009
Wow Sue!  I never underestimate how tough some elderly folks are.  Many of them have been through numerous hells the rest of us couldn't imagine.

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by 12Stepper, Aug 06, 2009
Wonderful posts, so inspiring! Welcome onboard Diddy. This is definitely one of the most dedicated groups of warriors I've ever known. So kind and fun, too. I'm sure you'll get lots of ideas for tapering, slow and fast. It seems like everyone sets their own pace. The important thing is to keep getting miligrams away from it for good.

About 8 weeks tram free and I still have bad days of anxiety and depression but it's starting to surprise me when they happen--better than being surprised by good days like in the beginning!  I'm not above taking antidepressants, but just want to wait and see if I can't get my endorphins going on their own (or whatever needs to kick in). I'm exercising an hour a day now and it really helps. I keep wondering how long this will go on but I guess there's no real way to know. Just have to be (something I'm not) PATIENT!

Thank you for compiling the list FormerlySane. I used tylanol PM or benedryl to help sleep but then realized that that too causes depression when stopped, so I tapered off that and now Sleepytime Tea Plus (with valerium root) or just a Valerium or Passion Flower capsule are helpful sleep aides. Great story 2Sue, another tale about how harmful this stuff really is! She is lucky to have you there--what a fortunate "coincidence." :)




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by Diddy420, Aug 06, 2009
Thanks so much everyone for the feedback. FormerlySane - Thanks for the list man. That's awesome. I will be sure to keep everyone posted on my progress, and if I can be of any assistance to anyone, please let me know!

Thank you so much, have a great night to all of you.
d

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by FormerlySane, Aug 06, 2009
I just realized there's a couple more I forgot:  

B12.  Get the sublingual tablets, they help with energy and mood a lot.
ZMA, a supplement sold at most GNC type stores, helps with sleep also.  It's just zinc and magnesium in the right amounts.

I'm absolutely more than happy to help, just repaying the kitty to all those that helped me.  You guys are all going to make it.  Dedication and determination!!

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by iontheprize, Aug 06, 2009
FindingFarrah - Best wishes to you!  As an FYI, some time ago I found random post written by a physician who had a leg injury.  She took a dose similar to yours (smaller) for a few weeks and was shocked to go through ALL of the withdrawals.  I have read of this happening to those who have taken as little as one tab a day.

Fearing w/d and being uncomfortable from it is understandable!  That's why this post (we) are here...for the support to get through.  You can do it!

~jessica

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by kevzx81, Aug 06, 2009
Hi All- Here is a little something I came across online today.
For anyone feeling angry at doctors etc-this is for you.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
By
staff writer                                                                            
15/08/08


A new study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry shows that of all professionals doctors and nurses have the highest suicide mortality rates in the UK.

This research, carried out  by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), has found that compared to the population as a whole, a higher number of deaths due to suicide in England and Wales have  been recorded among practicing health professionals.

These new findings, published in the July 2008 issue of the British Journal of Psychiatry,are based on the study of data collected by the Office for National Statistics to examine suicide by occupation between 2001 and 2005.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Emily- They seem to be taking their own medicine in the uk too!

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by Gerty411, Aug 06, 2009
Hi you all,

I'm  still hanging tight.  Today I actually enjoyed driving with my stereo blasting.  I haven't done that for ever.

I'm not pissed at the health care professionals.  I'm pissed at the pharmaceutical companies and the government/fda for turning there head to the massive tramadol and prescription drug abuse problem in this country right now.

Lilly and Nancy, it is wonderful to know that we are all making progress..

WhenI was at the height of my tramadol addiction I was also drinking quite alot and shopping alot.  I feel very guilty for being loaded half of the time.  Funny thing, since I began my taper those urges have gone away.  Ha anyone else experienced this?

Ty I hope you are feeling better tonight.

Tomorrows Friday and I don't need to be worried about missing my fedex shipment of Tramadol and beeing ---- out of luck over the weekend!!!

Take care Y'all

Gerty

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by FinallyFred, Aug 07, 2009
Lilly, Gerty, & Nancy,  CONGRATULATIONS on your steady tapers.  Each of you are SO strong and determined.  There is NO WAY in hell that I could get off this drug the way that you three are doing it now.  Wowie wow wow!!!  

Those online drug pushers are ruthless.  Annoyingly so.  Some of you recall the story about the time I ALMOST placed an order online, just as I was arriving at that place of hope.  I left off my account # - talk about tram-a-fog, so it didn't go through.  But I got those annoying emails and calls nonetheless. But it's been eight months since I have heard from the bastards.  

I was having supper tonight with Mrs. Fred.  Some person (speaking such broken English I could barely understand her) told me it was time to ship me an order of meds.  Now I am on BP meds that I get  mail order regularly, so I thought it was legit.  I nquired about the sort of meds she wanted to ship me.  "TRAMADOL".  I wanted to puck.  WTF?  

Hello 2Sue,  I seem to recall you telling us about your aunt in April.  Glad that BOTH of you beat this thing.  (((hugs)))

findingfarrah,  Geez, your story is a bit frightening, in that you weren't taking this for very long.  You are being so wise and brave to kick this thing in the head.  It gets nothing but worse with more time on the drug.  I hope you keep posting.

Diddy420,  Welcome to the house of pain.  You hae a good plan and it sounds like some support for the battle you are in.  I athered from one of your posts that you have been in battles before?  Moving forward, look at this as the fight of your life.  Any amount of determination short of a declaration of an all out WAR against this powerful drug will leave us on the loosing end of the card.  

Damnitol - congratulations on putting seven (7) days between you and the last lovely little white pill.  It has been said many times before around here, but recovery is not eactly linear.  Linear as in every day gets easier than the one before - NOT NECESSARILY SO.

And to the others out there fighting this fight, don't let up.  Don't loose the investment you have made in your FREEDOM.  This is a fight that ONLY you can do FOR YOURSELF.  

When I was in early recovery/acute withdrawal like some of you are RIGHT NOW, I had days when I wanted to give up and give in.  (I still had pills plus another RX I could have picked up.)  But ALL of the symptoms you are describing today are the same ones I fought back in December.  Some times, the only thing that kept me moving forward was the knowledge that every tiny moment I put between myself and the last "lovely" was one moment closer I was getting to wellness.  

Some times this is a slow singular journey.  Take strength in knowing that you are not alone.  

Like many of you, I posted here like a madman those first days.  In my first post here I began by stating "this place may just save my life".  And those next miserable days of acute withdrawal, I LIVED my tiny moments as though (1) I still had a life,  (2) my life was worth saving, (3) there existed a HOPE that if I did what others before me had done, no matter how i felt in that moment, there might be HOPE for me too.

FinallyFred was NOT a victory name I chose for myself after I reached the other side. It was my first affirmation of HOPE in the long road that stretched ahead.  A belief that despite the failures over the prior six years EVERY DAY, despite the withdrawal symptoms I was already feeling, despite the TOLERANCE I had built up to this drug, despite taking a drug EVERY DAY for over six years that continued making me feel less and less well, despite all thee reason to despair, I CLUNG to the HOPE that this simply had to work this time.  

Higher Power:  I went to one of those meetings this past week, where those of us go who are allergic to alcohol.  (clears throat) And we were talking about the role of a "higher power" in defeating our drug of choice (DOC).  Someone happened to mention that their DOC had been kicking their as* for years and that the power of that drug apparently was more powerful than they were.  And as I heard that, I began to recognize myself again for what I was - not the highest power on the planet.  Indeed, many drugs are more powerful than I am.  So I began to appreciate what I had forgotten...if we intend to defeat a drug more powerful than we are, our battle will require a power, force, or hope more powerful than we are in order to do what I
could not do for myself in six years.

I can't say whether it was this group or a devine being that served as my higher power against the battle with tramadol.  it hardly matters.  I don't believe that anyone here is trying to win converts to a particular power greater than themselves.  But I think that that if we intend to beat a power greater than us (tramadol), having a power greater than myself MAY just be required.  

At least in my case it helped.  Faith is the substance of things hoped for.  And the evidence of things not yet seen.  Hope is the single most important element in the battle at hand.  And it isn't even mentioned in the "thomas recipe".

Moving through withdrawal, you will have pain and symptoms too numberous to mention here.  You know what those are.  Yes, there ARE products to lessen those symptoms, but nobody should expect this fight to be easy.  Nobody should expect to come out the other side without feeling like they did battle with Ivan the Gorrilla.  Nobody should expect it to be over until Ivan lets go.  Until the tramadol that we so willingly wrapped around our brain recepters leaves our body completely.  And that WILL happen.  At least it did for me.

So in the heat of battle take comfort in knowing that these temporary symptoms will show the way to freedome for each one of you, the way they did for me.  Take on these symptoms as your badge of freedom and road to victory over this terrible drug.  

Maybe having HOPE isn't that important.  

It's really no big deal.

It's just a matter of life and death.

Courage, Strength and LOVE to ALL my fellow warriors.  

fred.  


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by madtram, Aug 07, 2009
Finally (& Forever) Fred, once again a timely reminder of the power of the mind.  A recent study established that women whose bodies had ceased ovulating for some time, regained this function after only being taught cognitive behavioural therapy techniques which helped them change the way they thought about the problem.   In addition to being side effect free & much cheaper than IVF, there's no need for doctors, let alone online pill pushers.

The relevance of this for all of us who are not currently wishing to fall pregnant is that the primary impact of the new way of thinking was to restore the functioning of the hypothalamus which is integral to healthy sleep quality; hormone function & neurotransmission, all of which have been knocked around by the trams.

The humour & strength you all display on this forum are weapons that will inevitably have the cowardly tramadol returning to the underworld with a stake through its heart just to ensure its blood sucking days are over.

Diddy, everyone's response to tramadol is subtly unique with regard to severity, duration & extent of withdrawal symptoms & this extends to tapering schedules.  However, I can tell you that at least two other members tapered from doses of 200mg p.d. to a final dose level of 10mg p.d., over a period of two to three months & reported having no significant symptoms when they finally quit.  Assuming you have 50mg caps or pills, your proposed schedule of reducing by 12.5mg a day sounds reasonable.

Others of us have felt equally lousy on the lower doses & felt that the taper was just prolonging the agony, so see how you go.  You have done well to get down as far as you have, so you are clearly not weak at all & this bodes well for a successful taper.    As long as you are never increasing your dose on a taper, you are beating this.

Yours in hope,

Michelle




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by findingfarrah, Aug 07, 2009
Good morning everyone,

thanks to iontheprize and finallyfred for words of advice and encouragement..i appreciate all the help.

yesterday i spoke to my family doctor and told him about how i was feeling with the withdrawal agony, and he told me that he was unaware of these possibilities when prescribed such a low dose.. he also said he was going to submit the information to the drug company who makes this crap and list my experience as an "adverse event"...regardless of what he says he will do and what he actually does, doesn't really matter to me... i have made a decision for myself to get off this stuff... what he does in his medical practice is his choice..

i would really like to thank those of you who shared your stories here (those who beat this and those who may be struggling with much higher doses/withdrawal/addiction). it has opened my eyes to where i could be a few years down the road and it has inspired me to try to beat it now.. thanks from the bottom of my heart.

wishing everyone a successful day!

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by Lillyval, Aug 07, 2009
Wow, what great posts on this forum.  I wish I could respond to everyone.

2Sue - What happened to your great aunt is heinous.  I am so sorry she went through all of that.  She sounds like a pillar of strength and I'm glad she's better now.

findingfarrah - I too was told it couldn't be the tramadol and it might be the flu, but we know better.  I think you're doing the right thing to go down to 1 pill a day for a week or so, then maybe half.  You'll still have symptoms but soon you will kick this crap to the curb.

Diddy - Michelle (madtram) brings up a good point about prolonging the agony at low doses.  You might want to drop by 50mg a week to just end it sooner.  I'm doing that now and it's working for me.

Fred - great insights.  I will hold onto your statement that "Hope is the single most important element in the battle at hand".

Nancy - congratualtions!  Something about your posts gives me a visceral reaction.  I feel like I'm right there going through the trails and successes with you.  But like you said, win or lose, you're winning against the evil tram.  AWESOME.

My update:  I'm doing well at 100mg.  I'm acutally going to do what the doctor suggested *coughs* and hold at this level for 10 days.  The only reason being that I have a vacation planned (with the in-laws!) in a week and I'm timing this so I am not going down to zero on vacation.  Today my husband commented that I seem more "normal" (in a good way).  I'm taking one 100mg time release tablet each morning and I don't have any highs and lows or watcing the clock, and my physical withdrawals have been surpisingly minimal so far.

I wish you all hope an healing.
Lilly

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by phlebo1, Aug 07, 2009
Hi everyone, I've been reading all your post and thought maybe I could get some good advice or encouragement from someone here.  
I have been taking tram for about 3 years.  I tried many times to go c/t and always failed miserably.  About 7 months ago I found out I was pregnant.  At that time I was taking 22 pills a day!!(horrible).  In my first trimester I went c/t, my doc knew about it and gave me tylenol 3's to help with the w/d's.  It didn't work that well.  After two weeks of total hell, missing work, etc.  I started taking the tram again.  Since that time I have been trying to wean myself and not doing the greatest of job with it.  I am currently around 6-7 pills a day which seeing that I was taking 22/day at the beginning, I've come a long way. But, I still have a long way to go.  Some times I feel like weaning isn't even possible.  Has anyone on here successfully weaned and if so, how did you do it?  I don't have that many pills left and can't afford more.  I'm running out of time with this pregnancy so I have to get off.  So, any advice?  Currently I am suffering some w/d's from tapering and I have no energy at all.  I have started taking 40mg of prozac to try to help with any depression which I've experienced BIG time in the past.  

Any help or advice anyone on here could give would be greatly appreciated.  I like reading all your posts and I'm happy that there are people who have seemed to beat this monster.  I find myself feeling extremely lonely in my struggles.  No one in my life knows about this and to be honest, I'm very, very scared.

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by nancy652, Aug 07, 2009
I too tapered when I found out I was pregnant with my fourth baby many years back. At the time I was at what I considered a max dose of 8 a day so I congratulate you on your success in cutting down as much as you have. I did a quick taper from 8 to 0 over two weeks at that time. DO NOT  let that discourage you. I hadn't been taking them that long and I thought long and hard about continuing to take it when pregnant. I read every available medical study there was about taking it while pregnant.

I thought about continuing to use it while pregnant as I had significant panic issues before ever taking taking Tramadol...since a child. They arose during my third pregnancy before I had ever heard of Tramadol. I went through a three week hell of nonstop panic, possibly triggered by hormones or possibly a terrible earthquake of temporal lobe seizures,  which have shown up for me on some EEG's. During my fourth pregnancy I was extremely frightened that it would happen again. The tramadol was initially so soothing for me that I always saw it as a possible "magic amulet" against the panic. I was terrified about both taking it and not taking it. I thought if I took it while pregnant it might guarantee that I would not experience such an episode again. But I tapered from the 8. The panic didn't come, luckily. When I had the baby,  I of course began taking the tramadol again and managed over the past two years to work my way up to a steady dose of between 10 and 15 a day. I am tapering from that dose now.

Your doctor seems to know what's going on. The good thing is that I would be willing to bet millions of women worldwide have been in your situation. I do not believe, nor do the studies show, Tramadol to be teratogenic even at your dose. Not even close. That being said, it does cross the placenta and you will not want your baby to withdraw as you know yourself how uncomfortable that is. I AM NOT A DOCTOR. I am aware of chemistry enough and have studied Tramadol extensively. As you probably know, it is a synthetic opiate. Many people here can tell you how it is converted by the body and which opiate receptors it binds with. I will just say that as an opiate, it crosses the placenta like any other opiate.It is not so much that it will cause harm per se, though I believe with any opiate depressed respiration (breathing) when the baby is born is always an issue...but many women have used opiates in pregnancy and to assist delivery. It is just that,  in your case, abrupt withdrawl is extremely uncomfortable for everyone involved, baby and you. Also, this has nothing to do with you...it just reminds me to ask..someone can update me here if I'm wrong,  but Tramadol does not normally show up on a standard drug assay test for opiates because it is converted by the body in a certain way. Only certain opiates show...at least when I did my research. They may well have developed a screen for T by now but I haven't read about it. This isn't your concern anyway.

If your doctor knows what's happening still, he or she can help. YOU CAN TAPER. IT CAN BE DONE. I have done so twice by 25 to 50 mg's a day..once when pregnant as discussed above. Others go slower or faster or cold turkey. We all feel awful...some of us for awhile, some not so much. None of us are doctors...that I know of,  so we're not giving medical advice. But Emily,  our angel (really) who started this thread once said something like no one ever dies from wd. And she is correct that no one has seizures from wd either. Read FinallyFred's post above. Read them all...Lillyval,  Gerty,  Iontheprize, Formallysane...we all are doing it/did it. We were as scared as you and some of us have been pregnant. My goal if I were you would be to taper down to nothing so I was free from the drug several days before giving birth so you and the baby's bodies aren't stressed. But that is me. It is only my opinion. I can tell you for sure though that everyone is here for you no matter what. The fear you feel now is worse than what you'll feel when you quit. That's why you're here. You know that. You already feel worse than you will when you stop. You're taking care of yourself with this fear...it's forcing you to stop and feel better.

Many hugs,
Nancy

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by flippers, Aug 07, 2009
Phlebo1 -

Being scared, I feel, is a good thing. For me, it was the only thing that could get me to quick. I never had luck with quitting tram, tapering, lowering my dose, until I got really scared, which happened back in May when I started to read all these posts. I was really devistated because I was hearing ALL of the things that I feared, but did not want to hear. Like some here, I did a quick one week taper down to a managable dose (50 to 150 mg day) then quit completely after that. I feel strongly about getting off ASAP and getting days between you and your last dose.  Knowing what I know now, I should have just quit c/t because my w/d's were about the same during tapers and attempted c/t's, just that it lasted about 4 days when I decided to quit. I was on 100 to 150 mg a day, so I can't speak for the high dosers here, but I convinced that a fast taper down to one or two pills a day would make a nice jump off point.

Flip

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by FormerlySane, Aug 07, 2009
I second flippers post.  It was ultimately fear that got me to quit.  I'd had one seizure from the tram a little over a year before I quit.  At that time I was taking 20-30 50 mg pills per day.  After the seizure I dropped down to 8-12 per day.  That entire time of doing the 8-12 I was going through W/Ds.  Extreme foggy head was the biggest one.  It was the fear of having another seizure that finally got me to quit.  I was most afraid of having one when I was driving and killing somebody else.  I would think about having a seizure and hitting another car at 60+ mph, a car that had a family in it and I killed a child, somebodies wife, or husband.  Once that thought got into my head, it was only a matter of days before I decided to stop the tram and never look back.  That same thought will keep me from ever taking it again as well.

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by deboka, Aug 07, 2009
I am so glad that I found this site. My mother had a tramadol addiction, as did my husband and I - a few years ago. All stemming from my RA doctor prescribing me a drug that was a "non-narcotic" and "not addiction causing" for my severe rheumatoid arthritis that I was diagosed with 10 years ago. Someone was talking about the hallucinations, yes...my mother experienced them and it was very sad. At first, I thought she was having a stroke or something because she was acting very weird. She was stumbling and talking about little squirrels hiding under chairs in her office. She even took a coin purse full to the brim with change and dumped it all over a desk in her office in front of her supervisor and told her it was HER MONEY!! I then took her to the ER and found out it was from her withdrawal. Thank God that it was not a stroke or anything - she also had seizures because of her overdosing on the ultram and many ER visits. She would take 8+ pills every few hours, if not more. She made it off the pills for several weeks...I am sorry to say she passed away from an unrelated health issue (congestive heart failure) last year. I miss her so much, but I am glad that she is no longer suffering from the addiction anymore. But it CAN BE DONE!! Withdrawal symptoms are a b*tch, but you can get through them if you want to get better. I did! Twice!

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by deboka, Aug 07, 2009
Oh and I forgot to mention that the day after my mom passed away, one of the online ultram sales people called to see if my mom wanted to have her rx delivered and I told them that she passed away. It was some guy from India like formerlysane mentioned, and he hung up on me! And then a few weeks later the same guy called AGAIN and asked me if he could speak with my mom and I told him again that she had passed away and cussed his a** out for selling the stuff!!

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by HOPEreturns, Aug 07, 2009
Hello!

Long time... no post....  If see that you are still here Fred and Emily!  WOW!  You two are truly inspirations!  I hope everyone else along with Fred and Emily are doing well!  I am actually still "weening" but now with the help of my husband.  He locks the meds up and gives me the amt that I need.  I finally "gave in" and "broke down" three days ago.  I sure thought I could ween myself off, but no success!  It's like I am soooooo terrified of the withdrawals!  I am currently taking 6 per day.  I feel soooo much better.  I am still looking forward to the day when I can say I don't take pain meds!  Good luck to all!

Love, Hope

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by KC67, Aug 07, 2009
Flippers and FormerlySane - yes, fear is what initially got me to quit as well.  Which was then replaced with all-out anger and WAR against the stupid drug that was controlling me!  FormerlySane, you said it perfectly about having a seizure (while driving) and killing another person.  The pain of withdrawal would be no comparison to the lifelong pain of having a car accident while on Tramadol and taking someone's life.

Now that I am over 100+ days clean of Tramadol, I find myself very wary of other drivers.  

I am wondering how many people out there are driving on Tramadol - like I did for so many years - thinking that I was "ok" and perfectly capable of driving.  It scares me because there are thousands out there that have not yet found this site and are still in the clutches of this terrible drug - driving and operating machinery - thinking that they are "ok" - maybe only seconds away from suffering a seizure.

Deboka - yes, the emails and the phone calls are simply maddening!  You tell them that you are no longer taking Trams and they still persist.  Someone mentioned earlier that the poor souls are just doing what they are told - making an hourly wage by sending emails and making phone calls.  That is probably correct.  It's their bosses that KNOW the addictive potential of this drug and hope that we will eventually "cave in" to our previous addiction.

It is my fear of "caving in" that keeps me coming back to this site on a daily basis.  I read all of your posts and it is such a powerful reminder of all the fear and anger and suffering that I endured for years on this drug.  First, when I reached tolerance and second, during the 60+ days of physical withdrawal and emotional depression/anxiety.

Gerty - yes!  I too drank way too much while on Tramadol.  And I too have experienced a big cutback in my alcohol consumption post-Tramadol.  I was never even a big drinker pre-Tramadol, but alcohol seemed to take the jittery-energy-edge off and I was able to tolerate larger quantities of both alcohol and Tram. than I ever had before.  Alcohol actually tastes repulsive to me now.  Funny huh?  Now, the only vice I have is food.  For some reason, when I quit Tramadol, I was hungry all the time and I craved breads and carbs.  So, I am working at taking off the last 10 pounds  - the last remnant of this whole Trama-ordeal.

Fred - what a beautifully written statement (above) when you said, "Faith is the substance of things hoped for.  And the evidence of things not yet seen.  Hope is the single most important element in the battle at hand.  And it isn't even mentioned in the "thomas recipe". "

YES!  "Hope" should totally be included in the Thomas Recipe!  Seriously.  You can manage your withdrawals with all of the vitamins and drugs he recommends, but without the HOPE of successfully beating this drug for the rest of your life....well, it just wouldn't be possible.  

Friends, hope IS a reality.  There are so many people who have successfully beat this drug.  There are others who have beat it, then found themselves back in Tramadol's clutches once again....only to be back here at this site with more determination than ever to defeat it once and for all.  The good news is:  there IS hope.  

How sad would it be if all of us were reporting that life without Tramadol was NOT better?  That the withdrawals NEVER subsided?  That the only hope was to take Tramadol in ever increasing doses for the rest of your life?

Very sad....but NOT true!

Countless folks have testified that their lives ARE better once the Tramadol withdrawals had left their bodies.  That even though they were afraid to discover their REAL personalities aside from Tramadol, they found that they were "OK". ..that they could laugh again and even have energy without the use of a tiny white pill.  

This was true for me and for so many others...so I will sign off...

Sincerely with HOPE and love,
KC




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by KC67, Aug 07, 2009
Welcome back HopeReturns!  I think I was posting at the same time as you were.

Good to see you back and that you are doing well.

KC

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by Gerty411, Aug 07, 2009
I'm on day 12 of my journey and still hanging tight  In that time I've

1.  Truly realized I am a tramadol addict.
2.Worked hard to wean myself from 15/day to 2 pills/day
3.Learned there are alot of people out there just like me.
4.strenthened my resolve  to get of this drug.

Not much more to write about.  I'm going to eat my unusually high carb dinner  and crash.  I'm completely bone-crunching exhausted.

Monday I plan to wean done to 1pill/day.  


Take care y'all

The traminator will Not prevail!!!

Gerty  

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by ImDone79, Aug 07, 2009
Question for all...... did any of you experience chest discomfort during withdrawal?? ever since day one I have had a nagging dull pain right over my mid chest and sometimes to the upper left chest but it does not radiate anywhere and I have no arm pain or any other cardiac symptoms,  I am sure it is related but I just need some input.  I probably have asked this already but its the anxiety getting the best of me.

Thanks

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by KC67, Aug 08, 2009
ImDone - Yes.  I had chest pain, racing heart, and it seemed like I was experiencing the beginnings of a heart attack.  Very scary.  But they went away as more time passed from my last dose of Tram.

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by Lillyval, Aug 08, 2009
phlebo- Sorry to hear you're in such a tough situation, but you're doing the right thing.  You've already made huge progress on tapering.  Your best bet is to keep tapering with the pills you have left.  It will suck, but like someone said above, it's better to go through it now than watch the baby go through it when he/she is born.  Pregnancy is a great motivator to do things for our health that we wouldn't do otherwise.  Take good care of yourself and enlist anyone you can to help you and care for you.  Many on this site of gotten off and stayed off of the evil tram.  YOU CAN DO IT!

Yesterday there were some posts about laughing again, and later in the day I found myself absolutely cracking up like I haven't done in a long time.  Then within an hour or so I had a STRONG urge to use.  I swear it's like a demon that watches me and when it sees I'm starting to have a life again want to take me down.  BUT I'M NOT LETTING IT this time!

Courage and healing to everyone, we can do this!
Lilly

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by nancy652, Aug 08, 2009
well Today my dose just 1. It's starting to catch up to me, as last night for the first time I really had insomnia and RLS. My dose is stating to die before its built-up half life expires from my body and I am officially in wd. The good news is that in a few days I will be technically free of this particular misery. But I know from doing this twice before that I need to be careful here. My brain synapses,  long lulled and pruned by Tramadol,  actually start unwinding again to try to make new connections and sometimes I go a little crazy. I really have used this drug to suppress my creativity...I have done so consciously and it comes at a cost. So when I stop using the T my thoughts start leaping and all that I ever was...my past, my stories,  myself....that other self that listened only to itself and not the Tramadol,  wants back in. That other suppressed self is creative and spiritual and visionary and romantic and more...much more than you want to know, really...and a little wild for a lawyer and mother of four. So my task is to merge the two, the responsible,  conservatively dressed, ultra precise person with the poet,  the actual poet without feaking anyone out. The Tramadol made that possible, but it killed the pure soul.

So there you have it. A very kind soul from this board pm'd me yesterday and told me how well I was doing and I loved her for that. She is just GOOD. And kind. I didn't get to finish the converstion we were having because I felt really bad for the pregnant woman who posted so I was busy writing the post above. She told me that someone else told her how well I seemed to be doing and I so much appreciated that. And it is true that it is possible for me to cut the dose of this drug in increments and not feel like I'm going to die. I'm very disciplined. But here you see my real struggle: This drug stole my soul and I let it gladly. I welcomed it. I needed to fit in. Don't get me wrong - I love what I do. I love my boring pleadings and slicing and dicing some provision in a contract to make some greedy soul pay the piper. But I don't like it that I didn't trust myself enough to let that be ALL THAT THERE WAS. That I needed T to suppress what could have been properly placed passion and not a wild ride into an affair or some other inappropriate behavior.

Last time I quit those synapses that I talked about above....and they really,  when you see them in a depiction...look like tendrils...came growing back so fast that they grew like dreaded kudzu vine. They just went crazy and I couldn't merge my two selves in a cohesive manner. So I went back to the Tramadol then. And that, my dear new friends and fellow warriors,  is my tramadol struggle. The goal for today...and I'll smile as I say this...is to grow like my favorite plant, the passiflora incarnata instead of the dreaded Pueraria lobata. To be the host plant for the beautiful zebra longwing and not some crazy vine.

oh...and Gerty...yes to the shopping question. There was nothing I liked more than being zonked on T and firing up the internet browser for a credit card spree.

Iontheprize...you are a blessing. thank you for being there and going out of your way.

Ok folks....on your way now to fight your battles. Thanks again for listening. I would not be able to do this without this forum keeping me honest.
Love
N

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by gettinglifeback, Aug 08, 2009
Just curious if anyone saw the reports on Billy May's toxicology reports?  Aside from the cocain use, it said he had "theraputic" levels of hydrocodone, Oxy, TRAMADOL,diazepam and Xanax and possibly something else in his system at the time of death.  Found it interesting that you could have "theraputic" levels of so many similar drugs in your system at once..how is that theraputic?? It was Michael Jackson and Billy passing within a few days of each other that actually scared me enough to go CT with all my meds.

I am currently day 38 and still having a rough time...am I the only one over 30 days out and still suffering?  Mostly emotional issuses, very irritable, crying, mad at the world. My husband isn't understanding that I feel so bad and he is now just mad at me too and that isn't helping.  I am still having anxiety issues almost daily along with the pain and discomfort in my legs.  I still take at least one epsom salt jacuzzi a day to try to relax the legs. Take Valarian and Melatonin to sleep(am getting 4-6 hours a night) St. John's Wort, 5-HTP, DLPA(not seeing much help with it yet, but it's only been a week on it) my vit. B-12 and my multivit. Oh,,have frequent headaches too.  I really thought by now I would have a day here and there where I feel "good" followed by a bad day maybe but not a good hour followed by several bad hours.  Sorry, feeling self-pity I guess.

I think the other issue that has sent me into a deeper depression is that I had my md appointment on Tues.  I made sure I didn't make this appointment until I had been at least 30 days out so I could go in with pride (my md didn't know I was going off everything). When I told him I had stopped all my pain medications, Zoloft, Neurontin and such he let's just say was less than supportive.....he didn't seem to "get it". When I told him the terrible time with the Tramadol I could tell he didn't believe me.  I guess I'm not shocked, he is the one who prescribed all this junk, but I would have appreciated a "good job".  

Ok, I guess enough of the whining for me right now. Good luck to all of you who are doing an amazing job fighting this poision...may your resolve stay strong!
Missy

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by iontheprize, Aug 08, 2009
Missy, where you are at today (physically and mentally) is what drove me to join this site.  I thought I was losing my mind and that I must have had some mystery diagnosis.  I waited to see the physician....saw several doctors who were baffled by my symptoms.  I waited so that if bloodwork were to be taken, that it wouldn't reflect some messed up liver panel.  Everything came out "normal" except b12.  I couldn't believe that w/d symptoms would still be present some 5 weeks into being free of T.  However, I was taking a large dose (15-20 tabs/day) for at least 18 months.  I just went back to threads 12 and 13 to remember the day that I wrote I had my first full day of feeling good.  It was on day 42.  

The good comes and goes and now I'm having mostly good.  The only thing that still bugs me a bit is my knee pain, but the leg restlessness is pretty much gone too.  Some people take longer than others and your path of recovery is uniquely yours.  

Emily told me to be patient with myself and to be kind to myself...that helped so much.  I'm passing that on to you knowing that you will hang in there and soon be able to start writing about the hours/days/weeks that you are feeling better and better.

~jessica

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by iontheprize, Aug 08, 2009
Hello all!  As now I have been a part of this site for several weeks and several threads, I must say that it has brought a feeling of community and strength that would not have existed without you.  It’s amazing the bonds and deep feelings of care and concern that this site elicits within me.  I am grateful for the people that have months and months and months in who continue to post to share their hearts and wisdom (you know who you are).  I spend time worrying about those that we know are in the worst of the battle that we don’t hear from for a while.  However, what remains consistent is the support.  What remains is the shared humor of goofy things that we do while emerging from our thick, sticky film of Tramadol.  What remains is sharing the joy of conquering fear and addiction.  What remains is the support through our fears of self-discovery.

I am in a place I believe is FREE of symptoms.  I am in a calm and peaceful place.  I know that I have a lot of work to do on myself and my thinking in order that I can stay on this path.  I don’t know what the next step really is, but I do know that it will include you.  

Thank you all for your direct and indirect support and baring your very souls.  It is this absolute honesty that provides reassurance, support and courage for us all.  

The song “The Rose” has a line in it that was quite meaningful to me while suffering from those hellacious 6 weeks of painful w/d and not feeling any benefit from my efforts.  It played over and over in my mind…

“When the night has been too lonely and the road has been too long. . . just remember in the winter, far beneath the bitter snow, lies the seed, that with the sun’s love, in the spring, becomes the rose.”

For all of you in your times of suffering, remember that you are suffering in order that you BLOOM.
~jessica


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by Gerty411, Aug 08, 2009
Hi Y'aal,

Thank God for this site!  I would still be waiting anxiously for that crappin fed ex man if it weren't for all of you!  Seriously I've gained so much comfort and support from "talking" with everyone. It' given me
so much strength and solace.

Nancy I will be decreasing my dose to 50mg on Monday I also go into some wd symptoms between doses.  It's the price I will gladly pay to be of those little b-------s.  Sorry, I have the mouth of a truck driver.  I started  taking tramadol because of a lot of reasons.  One of them was that I was sad and they made me happy no matter what.  I could have all my limbs cut off and stil have a smile on my face.  Truth is I think I not only used them for the buzz but also to cover up all the sadness and anxiety in my life.  Since weaning down I don't feel sad or depressed, I just have thought about things I haven't thought about in years.

Imdone, I do occasionally have chest tightness that I'v noticed since beginning my taper.  You never know though--if in continues or worsens it might be best to get it checked out..I purchased valerian root, vit b12 and melatonin.  Will see if that makes things a bit easier.

Well time for another sweet.  Just think, I can use all of the money I saved from tramadol to buy a whole new wardrobe!

Take care!

The traminator will NOT prevail.


  

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by Gerty411, Aug 08, 2009
Just realized I forgot to sign my post.[brain fog}

Love, Gerty

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by iontheprize, Aug 08, 2009
LOL on the "Crappin FedEx man".  Oh God, that made me laugh.  I was thinking that the company would probably start having to lay off delivery persons if people weren't able to order this junk.

Gerty, I was a Tram-o-shopper.  My guest bedroom is proof.  It became my warehouse for purchased goods.  UGH.  Good thing is I'm spending so much less money per month due to no T and no purchases via whatever method.  The internet ordering got me into some checkbook balancing snafus as I would not remember to write down what I spent (or where) and therefore needed hours to balance the checkbook.  I've had zero problems balancing the checkbook since stopping.  Anyway, not too long ago I'd come home to a package or two at my door and think, "HMMMM, whatever could that be?"  Good Lord, it's sad when you still can't remember ordering even when you look at what's in the package.  Anyway, T put me in the mood to shop.  So I did.  Sad thing is, I have absolute self-loathing everytime I walk into that room and see of tall of this crap that I have yet to put away.  Evidence of T ruling my life and driving poor decision making.  In making peace with that, I've given a lot of those purchases away to charity or to people I know.

On another note....

Today I really gave some thought as to why I quit T.  It's rather peculiar to me.  It wasn't for the money I was spending or how it was my dirty secret...  I happened to catch this little snip of Oprah one day just as I was taking my dog out for a walk.  It was about people who are living in tent cities.  Literally, cities.  They lost their jobs, homes and belongings and are living in tents.  Many of those people will not tell their families out of shame.  Regular people like me living in a tent along with everything they now possesss.  I felt ablsolute shame and guilt that I could be so frivolous with money as to be spending hundreds per month on something I didn't even need when other people are living in tents.  That was it.  I tapered from 20 to 0 in four days.  I find it amazing that 2 minutes of TV led to a rash of thinking that led me HERE.  I am in the NOW as much as I can be as tomorrow is a little scary sometimes.  I just want to be proud of ME and not be wasteful or frivolous with the blessings that I have.  Just wanted to share that with you....

~jessica

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by findingfarrah, Aug 09, 2009
Hello everyone,

I have been two days without tramadol, and was wondering if anyone knows of natural/herbal remedies for chronic pain.... my pharmacist said i should ask my doctor about going on neurontin instead of tramacet.. but i really don't want more drugs that could be terrible for me in the long run..any suggestions are greatly appreciated!

Thanks again for everyone's honesty here and having the courage to share their stories!



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by TrulyGreatful, Aug 09, 2009
by  TrulyGrateful      9th Aug 2009   8:18pm

Well here goes. I've never posted anything on the internet before, gosh I don't even e-mail, but I was so blown away when I found this site I felt compelled to write.

I was prescribed tramadol along with amyrtiptiline about four years ago as I suffer pretty badly from fibromyalgia.

Anyway, the amytriptiline was dumped after a few months as it made me feel so drugged up, but I continued taking the tramadol as it just made me feel a little distanced from the pain. The Doctor had given it as easily as paracetamol and I never gave it a second thought that it was dangerous.

Well, it seemed to help at first, but within a year I was a wreck and in a far worse state than before. I felt so ill and fragile all the time and the only thing that settled the palpatations, cold sweats and terrible clawing ache in body and mind was the tramadol. Everything became about the tramadol and when I could take the next dose. I came to absolutely loathe these evil pills and myself and yet felt totally helpless and unable to stop taking them.

I have two beautiful daughters, 2 lovely grandchildren and a wonderful loving family, and yet it all just made me feel so worthless and guilty. I felt so emotionally detached and tormented. How had I become this wretched shell of a person?

And so things went on until the beginning of May when the pharmacist gave me the wrong medication, trazodone instead of tramadol. I had previously received different looking packaging so didn't think anything was amiss. On the Thursday afternoon I took what I believed to be my normal pill and pretty quickly fell into what felt like a living hell. I can only describe the following few days as truly horrendous and the most frightening experience of my life. I had no idea what was happening to me and was absolutely terrified. There were demons in there I never would have thought I could imagine. I just wanted to die.  

On the Monday afternoon I managed to leave the bedroom, something was telling me to check the leaflet inside the medication and I realised that the nightmare was cold turkey from the tramadol. As bad as I still felt I vowed never to take another one.
And yet when I finally felt strong enough to visit the doctor on the Thursday he didn't agree and even after relating the week of hell to the pharmacist all he offered me was more of the poison. Unbelievable. Are they really oblivious to the dangers or are they all in denial?

Now I just feel Truly Grateful , hence my nickname on this post, especially to the pharmacist. If not for his mistake that day I'd still be in the clutches of that vile drug, it truly was a blessing in disguise. I really believe it was meant to happen.

After three months something prompted me to type in tramadol withdrawal and after spending hours over the past two days reading your stories I can finally let go of the self doubt, and tell myself that Yes I was right and No, I'm not nuts.

My heartfelt thanks go out to Emily and all you wonderful people, your generosity of spirit is awesome.

Love Love Love

TD


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by Gerty411, Aug 09, 2009
Hi Y'all,

Today is the first day in a long time that I've felt so well.  Unbelievable energy and a crisp clear feeling.  I felt so well thatI chose to decrease my dose to 50 mg /day now instead of waiting .  Sometimes it 's better to strike while the irons hot as sometimes you dont't get a second chance.  I've got the bull by the balls and I am not letting go!

Lil and Nancy,  I hope your day has gone well!

As always,

Gerty

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by madtram, Aug 09, 2009
Dear Farrah, congrats on making it to two days, it will get so much better for you soon.  I have a couple of suggestions for natural pain remedies. The amino acid D-phenylalanine in 5 gram doses has been found to stimulate the production of natural endorphins which help to reduce our perception of pain.   It doesn't work for everyone but I have been taking it for months & have definitely found pain is more manageable.  You need to get d-phenylalanine as you would have to take a very high dose of DLPA to get the same amount of d-phenylalanine as was used in the studies.  There are at least a couple of online sources, (iHerb & Seacoast Vitamins).

Curcumin, (needs to be a formula with bioperine included to achieve bioavailability) is a natural extract of turmeric, the Indian Spice which has anti-inflammatory properties equivalent to nurofen & paracetamol but without the stomach & liver toxicity.

The effects of these are subtle but for me they have taken the edge off sufficiently that I have not needed any opiates.

I have not taken Neurontin myself but know people who do very well on it.  It seems to be one of those drugs that will suit you or not from early on, I haven't come across any reports of it turning on people down the track.  Askapatient.com is a useful site if you want to check out reports from others who have taken a drug.

Low dose naltrexone which has very low side effects & also stimulates the production of natural endorphins is also being used to successfully manage pain in some conditions.  There are lots of references available if you google.  This site has a good explanation of the biochemistry involved:-

http://painsandiego.com/2009/05/26/low-dose-naltrexone-ldn/

I haven't tried LDN but would if I could find a doctor in my area to prescribe.  There are a few other medhelp posts about it & a member, Ginsa has recorded a journal of her experiences:-

http://www.medhelp.org/user_journals/show/102743?personal_page_id=501860

Best to all,

Michelle

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by mrcrump, Aug 09, 2009
To my fellow soldiers in the Tramadol war, day 40, no symptoms, just mild fatigue. Theres hope for humans in early stages of withdrawals.

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by mrcrump, Aug 09, 2009
TD, good for you that you discovered your nightmare to be Tram withdrawals. It was almost like you went into it blindly, you didn't have to go through the mental torture of deciding to quit. Your family and you sound amazing, and I'm glad you made it through to the other side. Stay strong, and be happy. Hope you hang around here, and share your story with other newbies.   -KS

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by mrcrump, Aug 09, 2009
finding farrah, you should do what feels right to you. My advice is doctors tend to want to shut up patients that might bother them alot with oh say withdrawal problems, so they prescribe more poison. I am not sure off the top of my head about a natural supplement for chronic pain. I just think that if you are going through withdrawals then you need to relax and give your body time to heal. It is working hard to expel the Tramadol from your body and I wouldn't throw another med on top of it, for your body to work on also. It's going through enough as I'm sure your feeling.
When I went through my severe withdrawals, I drank lots and lots of caffeinated drinks, to give my body some energy. That alone was enough to make my body aches go away..(temporarily of course). So just go with what your body is telling you. I hope you figure this out in a timely fashion, look up some herbal remedies on the internet, I'm sure you will find something, and will get more honest advice then you would from a doctor. Good Luck, KS




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by 2Sue, Aug 10, 2009
Hi finding farrah,
the first couple of days of tram, i ended up in casualty cause i couldnt deal with the pain,.The pain does escalate post tram. However im sure the tram was to blame, wanting me to take it....i persevered with mild analgesia,paracetamol and ibuprofen and suffered. ..I got a TENS machine (not the kind used in pregnancy but similar) which helped immensley..Its better for muscle pain though...
The pain does settle in time..each week got easier for me and when i eventualaly could be bothered running helped of all things.Its 5 month post tram for me and im finding i can now have days without machine or pain killers (paracetamol and ibuprofen).but know they work if i need them. I dont think my condition has improved..but its the best the pain has been.
Sue

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by Captain_Backfire, Aug 10, 2009
I just have to say that I love you guys so much. <3<3

I'm on day 6, and I feel like death. To everybody who's sent me emails, Imdone for her phone call (which I hope to do again, you silly girl. <3) and all the support everyone's been showing, you're all amazing, and I couldn't love you more. I've been truly struggling. Trying to keep up with my son, my animals, my house, work, etc.... I'm spent. My body feels like it's on shut-down mode, and I just keep wondering when it's going to end.... It's like... It comes in waves. For 2 days, I wasn't doing too bad, but then it was like a slap in the face with a brick. The pain's been unbearable, and NOTHING seems to be doing any good. I think I've OD'd on Ibuprofen (okay, so I'm exaggerating a little, but not by much...) and muscle-relaxers just trying to get some kind of relief, but as my luck always has it, it did virtually nothing. No energy, and the muscle/bone aches are God awful. Please tell me this doesn't go on forever.....

I've been taking the Valerian Root, which I thought was doing something, but these past few days have shown me otherwise. B12, multi-vitamins, and I'm just at my wits end. And the humidity doesn't seem to help matters at all. Ack. And now I'm just whining. -_- I just wanted to let everyone who's been looking for me know that I'm not dead, nor back on those horrible little T's.... Just exhausted, physically and mentally burned out, and really just needing a vacation that I can't have.

When I don't feel so lousy, I'll post more. <3

Love,

   Sarah

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by nancy652, Aug 10, 2009
Iontheprize you are the best. hugs. how are you today? I wanted to pm you but I'm working and need to move quick.
Sarah, you are my hero really and truly. I had no idea what was happening with you and here you show up still fighting. You are absolutely amazing. I needed to hear from you to go on today i think.
Gerty...good move to cut when you feel good. I actually kept my dose to 50 for two days in a row Saturday and Sunday. It was the first time I did not make a 25 mg cut. I need to not be in acute withdrawl today for a meeting. That being said, I have two of these devils left. Today I will take about about 2/3 of one...about 33 mgs. Tomorrow will be 25 and Wednesday and beyond into Thursday and Friday ...the crumbs :) For those who haven't read my story it's not because I can't get more. I easily can. This is just how I quit.
I was a little surprised this weekend to see how badly I felt after getting down to that one a day. If I remember correctly,  I dropped from 1 to 0 pretty easilt last time. But I had severe restless legs and insomnia this weekend Friday and sat nights. I tried homeopatheic passsionflower,  B-12,  advil, tylenol and several teas which included linden and one with trace amounts of poppy seeds. When I say trace I mean like eating a bagel. None helped alot so I ate some midnight soup and read and thought. It was not terrible.
I have rewarded my hard work by buying myself and dh two Leonard Cohen tickets this morning. It is really strange that since I wrote last week here about the dreams I used to have and the spiritual suppression I engaged in (consciously) by imbibing the tramadol,  my life has rewarded with with many pleasant surprises/coincidences/synchronicities that have been absent for me for many years. One of these was Leonard Cohen, my appreciation for whom dates back a long time. Sat. I read that he is showing up here soon and i had been thinking about his words alot since trying to quit this drug. And here he is. Nice.
Lillyval..thinking of you and findingfarah, valerian does not work for pain but it does work for other things. There are legal herbs for pain but injesting enough of them can be tricky and some have their own drawbacks. One is kratom. It has worked for me and is legal almost everywhere in the states (they won't ship to you if they can't) but it has an addicition potential. I personally think it would be tough to take enough to get addicted as it is rather foul,  but I am very interested in plant pharmacology and this plant does work quite well for some purposes. That being said,  it certainly would be easier to use a nonaddicting pharmaceutical from an md (not Tramadol as we know!) Folks have mentioned neurontin which I know nothing about. I would check with an md even for herb use but frankly,  most doctors don't even seen to understand the drugs they actually prescribe...much less a plant.
well I did go on and on didn't I?  Talk to you later. Hugs again esp. to you Ion.
love
Nancy

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by endofthetunnel, Aug 10, 2009
Hello again,

I have been reading a little and see that a lot of people have published since I was here last (July 7, 2009).  I just posted my story and I haven’t been back till now.  For the benefit of those who may have missed it, I will copy and paste it again after I get up to date.  

Since July, I have seen both of my doctors (Pulmonologist and Neurologist).  I told the Pulmonologist that it was difficult to parse the positive effects of starting the CPAP therapy and having stopped the negative effects of Tramadol but, since then, I have had time to think it out and this is the way I see it:  The Tramadol was causing me ‘all over’ physical pain and it was partly responsible for my being tired and mentally ‘dull’ all of the time.  The pain was most evident in the mornings when I woke.  It went away when I took 100 mg of Tramadol.  I had been on it for about 6 years.  I reduced my dosage beginning on June 20th and took my last pill on July 6th.  This was no real problem for me.  I have lots of aches and pains due to arthritis and back problems so I counted myself luck to have solved the problem of pain in the morning from the tramadol.  It was like turning a light switch.  Of course at the same time I was, for the first time in over 10 years, feeling the positive effects of getting a good night’s sleep.  For those not familiar with Apnea, that means that I was getting enough air when I slept because the sleep was not interrupted by my stopping breathing for 10 seconds or more (average of every 3 or 4 minutes).  Like the drug, this condition also plays havoc with your ability to concentrate and function with energy throughout the day.  Without a doubt, getting rid of the Tramadol was #1 in importance for the positive effects of the therapy to take hold.  The withdrawal from Tramadol was interesting too.  Like some of the other posters, I had a hard time pinning down the effects of withdrawal.  Like some, I felt that the symptoms would come and go.  That is, at times, I felt dazed and tired even though I should have been getting better with the CPAP therapy.  I had diarrhea, sweats, but most of all it was the on and off unpredictability of just feeling dull and out of it.  I surfed around and found out about all of the vitamins, and homeopathics stuff and for the most part, I tried them.  I can’t say with clarity what the results were but I got through the withdrawal ok.  Of course, it helped that I am retired and I didn’t have to function in the world other than to attend to my own needs.  After about three weeks, I had 3 ‘really-good-days’ even though they coincided with a heat wave here in Texas and my home airconditioning going out.  I was a contractor and I had been used to working in the heat before my knees and back went bad and I started taking the drug.  While on the drug, I was totally wiped out by any physical stress and only able to work a few minutes at a time and then rest for an hour.  In those 3 days, I suddenly felt like myself again and had no problem working outside on my condensing unit to get the a/c up and running again.  I felt like the ‘life-force’ had come back to me so I could shrug off the heat.  After those 3 days, I began to feel sluggish again but, then and now I don’t think that the effects of the drug have anything to do with it.  So, I am rambling here but maybe it will help somebody to know how long it took me to feel that the drug was no longer a part of the equation.  

As I said, I told my doctors.  I made sure that the pulmonologist knew that the effects were not that of a normal opioid.  I think that he was not aware of the dual ‘nature’ of the synthetic drug.  Clearly, he was not cued for the symptoms I told him about at my first appointment.  He just assumed that it was all Apnea.  The conversation with the neurologist was more interesting.  He did not know that Tramadol worked on serotonin (like an antidepressant).  He had prescribed a low dose of Ritalin for me to help with the tired feeling.  Ritalin also works on serotonin.  Although I was not able to find hard evidence on the web of interactions between the two, I felt that there was an interaction with me if I went from 5mg Ritalin 2xday to 3x per day.  It was slight but it just did not set well so I did not like to take it.  As far as the effects of stopping Tramadol and loosing the pain in the morning, he was very interested.  He told me that he had been taking timed release Tramadol for a physical condition for over 6 years and, he also had a hard time in the mornings.  He assured me that he was going to look into it.  He was not aware of the so-called antidepressant effects of tramadol and that it worked on serotonin.  So, I felt pretty good at having helped him with that and maybe it will help others too.

As far as the weight loss goes, the positive effects of getting my energy back caused me to have a  huge appetite.  Even with increased activity, I have been lucky to maintain my weight.  This spike in appetite is starting to subside after a week or so and I may figure this out in the near future but for now I have to be patient.  I honestly believe that I can work within my new parameters of mental alertness and get things back to normal.  Normal to me means what nature intended and that means free of artificial and unnecessary stuff.

Best of luck to all of you.

Here is my original post:


July 7, 2009 Thanks to all who have shared their stories.  These have been a great help to me in accurately diagnosing my problems and symptoms.

I have been using Tramadol since 2003 when my doctors at the V.A. Medical Center switched my arthritis pain medication from Lodine to Tramadol.  Contrary to what you might think, I am not upset with them for this.  It was a choice between Vicodin and Tramadol.  I always hated the way Vicodin 'dumbed me down' so I counted myself lucky to have encountered a medical tech who prescribed the Tramadol as a long-term alternative.  However, I do blame the VA  and ultimately, the government for not allowing patients to receive effective medications.  
They offered me Lodine and when it didn't work, I had to buy Vioxx out of my own pocket (hundreds of $ sent to Canada).  As a matter of policy, the VA regularly dispenses drugs and treatment based upon their budget and, like some other drugs I needed, the more effective ones were off limits.  For as long as I took it,  I hated the side effects of Tramadol - sweating, pinprick itching, and as I know now, the physical pain when 'it wanted more' and a psychological side-effect of never feeling well.  Until read the blog, I didn't know about the depressing 'antidepressant' properties.

I realize that, for many of you,  Tramadol ruined you health in more dramatic ways than it did mine.  Again, part of what they say about this drug is true.  It does affect people differently.  Since 2003, I have had 3 major surgeries (Lung resection and bilateral total knee replacement) .  While in the hospital, I was always given the Lortabs and, of course, other more short term pain killers.  But, I always went back to my maintenance dose of Tramadol (4 to 6/day) between surgeries because I believed that it was for my arthritis (mainly severe back and knee pain). Since I have completed rehabilitation for my second knee, I expected certain things to be better -  and initially, they were just because I was so happy to be able to walk normally again.  I launched into various repair and remodeling jobs around the house and accomplished a lot until I had time to sit down, relax, and think about my new reality.  I had been hobbled by my knees and recuperation from the lung resection so long, that I was in a do or die survival mode and I didn't have time to think about feeling decent or normal like everyone else.  I came to the conclusion that I still had a ways to go because I still didn't feel good.  I went to a Neurologist last October and had a brain MRI and EKG.  Everything checked out.  One thing he told me was that I my nasal passages and sinuses showed a chronic condition.  By myself, I began to explore that avenue.  My assessment had been that I somehow felt I wasn't getting enough air or oxygen.  My complaint was that I always felt tired and I had so much pain in when I woke in the morning that I had to take my medications and just lay in bed for an hour while the drugs took effect (TRAMADOL and Tylenol).  Then, I could go about my business.  But, the lack of energy and sometimes dark thoughts, was plaguing me.  Then, I went to a sleep specialist.  The result of my sleep test was that I had a mild to moderate case of Sleep Apnea.  This condition can cause lots of problems and symptoms of the kind I was experiencing.  Even my doctor at the VA (I stopped going there in 2005), had offered Apnea as a possible problem but I never had it checked.   So, last month,  I got the CPAP machine and noticed an improvement in my mental acuity right away.  BUT still, I had to face the day when I awoke with pain throughout my body and I needed to take my Tramadol and Tylenol just to get out of bed.  Finally, I thought I was on to something!  I began googling and reading the blogs and message boards.  I found this one and read EmilyPost.  When she talked about her reactions, I said "Bingo!"  I decided to stop the Tramadol and started on Naproxen (NSAID arthritis medication).

In the last three weeks, I have steadily reduced the Tramadol.  I have not had a pill in two days as of 7-6-09.   I am still experiencing withdrawal symptoms but I no longer have the 'all-over' pain when I awake.  I can just get up and go about my business.  I have more mental and physical energy too.  I believe that, if I had found that the Tramadol connection a year ago, I probably would not have figured out that I had Apnea.  I would accepted the relief from the drug's effects to be 'as good as it is going to get'  but thankfully, I can count on additional improvement in the future when I get into the habit of sleeping normally.  This will have positive effects on other aspects of my heath and longevity also.  I am 65, 6'2" and I weigh 210.  I am counting on knocking that down to at least 190 or so in the near future.  I no longer feel listless!  

God bless all who have suffered the negative effects of this drug.  It is true that the doctors do not tell you enough about it.  I have asked both a Neurologist and a Pulmonologist and both have said it is not a 'real opioid'  and it is not the problem.  I will tell them what I have learned when I see them next month.  They will have a hard time denying the results.


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by Diddy420, Aug 10, 2009
Hello All - I hope the weekend went well for the rest of you. Things are good here. I am still on track, and in fact I skipped a dose yesterday, so today I am riding out the waves until I take the 1 1/4 taper. Things seem to be going well. I took the advice of formerlysane and finally worked out. It was awesome! As wierd as it may sound, it was wonderful to be punched and kicked again : )

I will keep everyone posted on things and my progress. I do hope everyone is feeling strong and focused. I really hope to succeed here, and be a source of encouragement to everyone else in this struggle. Thanks everyone!

Best,
diddy

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by Callisto99, Aug 10, 2009
Hiya you all.
As you can probably see, I'm brand new to this forum. I've been reading all your entries for a couple of days now, since I stopped Tramadol 7 days ago, and was consequently going up the wall, not knowng what the problem was. I then had to find out from YOU GUYS (a supposed to my own GP, who gave me the stuff in the first place), that I was experiencing a  lovely bout of C/T!!! I think without this site I wouldn't have stuck with it, I wouldn't have seen an end to it. After the first week completly without it, I can honestly say I'm starting to feel a teeney bit better. At least I don't feel like a near death experince every day anymore. I don't think for a moment that I'm throughwith it yet, but I might just be getting closer.
Even though you have done absolutly nothing, thank you for your support.

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by 1113, Aug 10, 2009
so before the weekend i needed to get my script refilled or i was going to be out on friday. I kept telling myself that i was going to refill it, but in the back of mind i knew i didn't really want to.  I wanted to see how i would fare on the weekend without the "t" so i didn't call it in on time.

i had about 10 Tylenol3's around the house, and i figure that i could get by with those if things got bad.   Well it's monday and I haven't had a "t" since my friday 50mgs dose, and I don't really care to have one at the moment either.  Problem is that now that my script is ready i don't know what to do.  I don't want to go and get them, but at the same time i know that i haven't gone through true withdrawals b/c of the T3's.  

tough desicion, but i did make it through the weekend without a hiccup, so that was good.  Sleep pretty good on friday, sat, and last night.....  had enough energy to do all the work around the house that was needed, went out to eat with the wife and kids, i mean it was a good weekend overall.    Now it's decision time.....

what do you guys think about my current state of withdrawals since i used some T3's to help out over the weekend.  if i don't pick up now do you think that i will still be starting over at day one.  It's been about 16 hours since my last 60mgs of codeine, but so far so good.

Opinions Please

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by 1113, Aug 10, 2009
apologize for any missed spellings or grammar.  didn't have time to proof read .



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by iontheprize, Aug 10, 2009
1113, I always think that each person's path to recovery is uniquely their own, but if you've made it this far, if it were me, II'd keep on going.  Your body has been without T for some hours/days and you are well enough to post!  Good for you!  Fantastic!  It's been since Friday without T, that's such an accomplishment!  

Nancy...about pain.... the ONLY thing that helped me with pain and RLS was Epsom Salt baths.  Sometimes i was in too much pain to draw them, but when I did, aghhhhhhh.  The pain was gone for some minutes and I felt at peace with my body.  Then I would go to bed.  Maybe that will work for you.

Our journey seems long even if it's bad just for a few days.  Be strong; it can be done.  

Endofthetunnel....you were on Tram for so long and have come so far!  Thank you for sharing your story; you sound WELL. :)  For me, I went through serious w/d stuff for 6 weeks and 8 weeks in, still have cloudy times.  

SO SO glad to hear from you Ms Sarah!  You are fighting like a champ.  I'm so proud of you!

Keep on YOUR path; keep fighting.  

~jessica

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by Lillyval, Aug 10, 2009
Glad to hear everyone still here fighting the good fight.  I've been dealing with some big non-tram related problems and also haven't been feeling too good the last couple of days.  But I just wanted to let everyone know I'm still here, still tapering and still determined.  I'll post more when I have more time.
Take care,
Lilly

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by MarkNina, Aug 10, 2009
Nina Update!

Hello eveyone, doing my best to keep up with the posts, but a very busy weekend here. Nina is now down to 100mg a day, 50 in the morning and 50 at night (as from Friday).

Surprisingly there has been not as bad a reaction (yet!) as the other drops. Don't get me wrong, she is still hurting all over and now it seems that the insomnia side of it is kicking in. Also, like some others have said, lots of sneezing! and she is generally still feeling crap. She is fighting on though, with a 6 year old and 3 year old to keep her occupied!! When I get in from work she virtually collapses into bed!

We are all off on holiday in a weeks time and Nina is considering staying on the 100mg per day until we get back, rather that risk getting the bad w/d's and messing up the holiday. What do you reckon? (she is due to drop to 50mg two days before we leave and we are only going for a week)

Captain_Backfire, keep fighting! Just think of your son and how great it is going to be when this is over!

Good luck everyone!

Mark (and Nina!)



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by nancy652, Aug 10, 2009
wow what awesome posts...especiially from endofthe tunnel which I read with great interest. I too have legitimate pain issues but in no way am I dealing with your complex and very real medical situation. However, what really strikes me is this continued refrain I hear on here about this morning pain that is so overwhelming regardless of our individual base levels of pain. Also, the repreated reports of intense morning tiredness. I was beginning to sleep over 12 hours a day. I am a middle aged woman, thin and in general good health besides the issues that led me to the Tramadol in the first place. The morning on even low therapeutic levels of T were awful for me. I too would need a dose sometimes before arising to begin the day. My body began to feel very stressed. Physically (and I have psychological issues for quitting as well) it was this that bothered me the most. Initially the Tramadol (in the beginning) made me sleep more lightly and pleasantly...almost an extended reverie...if you will, with an easy wake-up. With continued use though the sleep needs grew great. I was not tired during the day but those first two hours were abhorent. I jokingly told a friend that we could never have morning meetings because I was suicidal till 11:00. That was black humor diguising the truth that this drug plays havoc with mood and pain, an effect that seems intensified for most of us in the morning.
This drug actually has all the earmarks of a drug that should not be used for long-term pain, which is precisely what it is prescribed for when either the md or patient is reluctant to use a "real" opiate. I am beginning to have serious questions about the studies done on this drug and I've started to research its history with Ortho and have in the past read everything I could get my hands on anyway. I know that someone mentioned that a class action had been filed and I can't find it. I see "remnants" of some news about it on the internet which leads me to believe the case was filed and pulled or settled quietly or that the info has been cleansed. I would appreciate any info we can find.
I do not necessarily think we need to file a case about this drug. But as a consumer protection lawyer, I'd love to beat down some doors at the FDA. When I read all your stories and especially stories like that from endofthetunnel, I am fighting mad...which I did not have the energy to be till I started this process. There are ways to bring this issue to the forefront of the medical profession and regulatory agencies without making any class actions lawyers rich or even filing a case at all. It's not about that. It's about getting some honest information out about this drug and forcing the right people to see it. This misinformation campaign being perpetuated either purposely or negligently about Tramadol needs to stop.

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by madtram, Aug 10, 2009
1113, don't go back, u are so much closer to reaching a tramadol free life.  I would get enough T3s to enable u to taper off those as u are only dealing with codeine withdrawal & not the complex effects of tramadol.

Tunnel, so glad u are feeling better & great job for persevering to untangle the tramadol side effects from your other medical issues.  I am still amazed that a neurologist could not be aware that tramadol is an opioid & 5ht2 agonist, it's right there in the PDR.

I think that everyone's sleep quality will be adversely affected if they are on tram for long enough.  Tramadol disrupts the functioning of the hypothalamus pituitary adrenal axis which regulates all our hormones & the sleep wake cycle.  On tramadol, you have very little REM sleep, (that's why u stop dreaming).  REM sleep is necessary for cell repair so without it u will always feel tired & are likely to take more tramadol in search of a pick me up.

Nancy, it would be great to see more mds educated about the truth of tramadol & only something like an FDA black box warning is likely to get their attention.  You are right that there is a big gap between the phase 3 & 4 trials which were all short term, (less than 3 months) & the prescribing practices.  Of course if tram is only ok for short term use, it loses a lot of its competitive advantage over straight opiates so u will be sure to see a major fight from the pharma companies especially as they have a virtually identical new for of tramadol going through the approval process right now.

Battle on, warriors,

Michelle


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by Gerty411, Aug 10, 2009
hi y'all,

Today I felt as bad as I did when I started tapering 2 weeks ago.  I've tapered fairly quickly form 750mg/day to 50mg/day.  Hopefuly things will get a little better over the next several days.  I've taking vit b12, melatonin and valerian root.

Today after a full day in the office and at the hospital I became so fatigued I had to lie down and sleep.  After my nap I discovered a deskful of paper work that I had signed off on which I can't remember doing.  

I know one thing.  I never ever want to go through this withdrawal again.

Because I am a healthcare professional I absolutely don't feel comfortable discussing my addiciton with my pcp or going to any local 12 step meetins.  My plan this week is to contact my previous psychologist who I feel I can trust for assistance with aftercare.

Once again thankyou all for all of your words of wisdom and caring.

Gerty








.

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by FinallyFred, Aug 10, 2009
1113,  I'm with madtram and Jessica.  Don't go back on tramadol if you can help it.  You have an investment to protect at this point.  You may have a few more rough days, but you are 1/2 way through.  You'll see...I promise.

Fred

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by findingfarrah, Aug 11, 2009
Thanks so much to nacy652, madtram, mrcrump and 2Sue for your advice on the chronic pain.. i will definately look into those suggested options. I have to admit, i am feeling better, just very tired.. kinda like a heat wave that comes and goes. anyway, i am sure the roughest part is behind me now.. (i hope).. as i am tram free..

1113...it sounds like you are doing so well, you should try to keep going without the tramadol, even if you need to take t3's just to get through it.. good luck and keep us posted on your progress, we are here to help and listen.

Gerty411... i can totally relate to not wanting everyone to know about your problems with tramadol.. i am too a healthcare professional and for me it is very shameful when I am expected to "know better". hang in there..

nancy 652.. i agree with the lack of testing long term on this drug. Here in canada.. my prescription indicated it is for short term use only, however when i would question my doctor about its safety past a few months, he always said.. "it is the safest choice for chronic pain"...

wishing you all health and healing!

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by nancy652, Aug 11, 2009
Gerty I am with you. The quick taper is very tough. I felt great Friday morning and like hell over the weekend. I am down to about 25 mgs today and tomorrow. I expect that the rest of this week I will be not well. I'm also sorry that your colleages can't help - it must be very frustrating being in a setting where help is close and you can't get it. Just know that I am right there with you...that there are alot of us out there looking like pros and suffering inside, just trying to get on with this human process. It feels awful right now but I think we know its worth it.
farrah...wishing you well

madtram...wow...your quote:

"I think that everyone's sleep quality will be adversely affected if they are on tram for long enough.  Tramadol disrupts the functioning of the hypothalamus pituitary adrenal axis which regulates all our hormones & the sleep wake cycle.  On tramadol, you have very little REM sleep, (that's why u stop dreaming).  REM sleep is necessary for cell repair so without it u will always feel tired & are likely to take more tramadol in search of a pick me up. "

that explains alot. That's a completely thorough answer to my question. Now to research. Thank you so much.

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by hadenough55, Aug 11, 2009
Hello everyone,
Today is day14 of c/t for me. All is well and didn't have a strong urge to take a T this weekend. Reading some of the other posts I feel very forunate. I might make it this time. Good luck to all.

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by FormerlySane, Aug 11, 2009
Excellent hadenough!!  Huge congrats on day 14!!  You're doing it!

Nancy, you're almost there.  I know how awful you feel right now.  Just remember that the days are coming where you will feel wonderful again.  I promise!

Sarah, you're on day SEVEN, one week free!!!!

Personally, I'm embarking on a new mission...to quit chewing tobacco (I know...yuck!).  With everything I've learned on here abouot addiction, I figure I can use that to help with the nicotine addiction.  The things that helped with the tram issues should help with quitting tobacco (I hope).  So here we go again!!

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by Callisto99, Aug 11, 2009
Hiya you all,
It's now day 8 and I thought I was doing alright,  but I think I might need some advice now. Since I've come off of god only knows how many Tramadol a day (it must've been at least 1000mg a day, (I didn't count, just took them as and when the pain hit me) I have been told, coming off so much Tramadol at once is actually dangerous and can cause seizures. I'm now totally panicked and am thinking I have to take at least a certain amount so that won't happen. Could it happen after 8 days of not taking any? I'm still having w/d sysmptoms (sweats, flu, woolly head, depression, well you all know I suppose....) I live in England and most of those things you get in the US are not available here. Advice please. Thank you.
Callisto99

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by FormerlySane, Aug 11, 2009
Callisto...don't worry, you won't have a seizure from NOT taking them.  Seizures happen most often when a big dose is taken or your regular dose is increased dramatically.  If you're on day 8 (congrats), you'll be fine.

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by phlebo1, Aug 11, 2009
Nancy652-  I just want to say thank you for responding to my first post on here.  (I'm the pregnant one who was trying to taper).  

Everyone on the addiction forum told me I had to tell my doc about still using the tramadol.  He knew I was using it in he first trimester but thought I had stopped.
Well, I called him yesterday and told him that I had been taking it this entire time and he was NOT happy!  He basically turned his back on me.  He told me that I should stop taking it and there's really nothing he can do to help!!!  Everyone had me convinced that he would be understanding and help me and he just sounded disappointed and disgusted and said he had no answers for me!!!  Now I wish I had never told him.

Now I need some advice and info if anyone can share any.  Today is my last day of pills.  I can NOT afford to buy anymore.  Tomorrow will be day one c/t.  I am really scared.  My doc said that going through w/d's is not dangerous but I've read people on the forum say it can cause labor???
Has anyone on here gone c/t from tramadol and if so, how long will I feel awful?  Does anyone have any advice of things I can do to make the w/d's not as bad?  I have three small kids that I will still have to take care of through this.  
Any advice about going c/t would be sooooooo greatly appreciated.  My doc basically turned his back on me so I really could use some help.  I have no choice on this, I'm out of pills.  I'm really, really scared!  Can anyone offer any words???

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by chrissie145, Aug 11, 2009
Can you help me please?  I was given tramadol last September for frozen shoulders. I realised by Christmas that I was addicted and came off Cold Turkey on Dec 29th.  I lasted 13 days and went back on  just 2 x 50mg a day (morning and evening)  Then 3 weeks later I had days of panic attacks and ended up begging the pyschiatric hospital to take me in as i was suicidal. I explained what I was taking. (Tramadol and zolpidem for sleep).

Now I can see that I was actually suffering withdrawals whilst still on a sub theraputic dose of tramadol. I didnt know that then and neither it seemed did the doctors! So they gave me diazepam - 15mg a day and Mirtazipine antidepressant!!!!

So now I am addicted to both diazepam and tramadol. I have reduced the diazepam to 8mg a day. But trying to taper the tramadol was hard as I didnt know which drug was causing withdrawals. I have lost my whole year as I have become weaker and very sick - unable to go out as my mind is so agitated I cant be with people.  

I am aged 65 and as I dont even drink or smoke I am horrified to find myself a drug addict!

I resolved to go cold turkey on the tramadol 17 days ago.  I have only a little money but invested over a thousand pounds in a clinic to detox my body (colonics etc). I truly thought that when the detox was over I would be free to get on with reducing the diazepam slowly.

How wrong have I been.  I am now on Day 17 without tramadol and I am seriously suicidal.  I cannot think straight or do anything. The depression hits me like a kick in the stomach from the minute I open my eyes. On waking I just pray for the day to disappear so that I can take a sleeping tablet and escape.  (I want to lose that habit too - but would not survive without those few hours of peace.)


I look back at the whole of this year and see that tramadol has stolen it from me. Not just from me but from my children and grandchildren also. I have enough tramadol here to kill me. I will not take one to ease my pain. If I do that I will take the lot and sleep forever.  I cannot lead my life like this.  I am fighting back but this is day 17 and I am in torment. I wasnt on a heavy dose. For the first 2 days I took 300mg but afterwards used probably 200mg a day .

Most of you seem to have been over the worst by this time. I did wonder if I am having diazepam withdrawals too, but when I take my 4mg twice a day I get no relief from the awfulness which I believe are the tramadol w/d.

Is there anyone who can encourage me please. I live alone and am so scared that I will not make it.

Thank you.
Chrissie

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by nancy652, Aug 11, 2009
oh dear phelbo and Chrissie this is terrible to know you are suffering. Phelbo your doctor is an ignorant schumck. I was afarid that he would do that. I don't know where you live and forgot if he was the one that initially prescibed to you but if he was I wish I was there for you to get on the phone and threaten him with his license. I don't know when you are due or any of your particulars, just that you are about 8 months pregnant? Do you have acccess to another doctor?
I have not heard that going c/t can cause labor. But it can cause misery and I still believe that as you are pregnant you need some compassionate medical guidance today. What is your current dose? Tell us more so we can try and help.

Chrissie:
I am so worried about you. Being suicidal on day 17 out...or on any day...calls for some immediate intervention. Emily addressed this kind of emergency above. I so so feel for you darling. You can indeed make it but you need a friend and comfort now, today...this moment from a real human being.  We all here would love to help you and are right here, but we are second best...at best. Who can you call right now? Do you have any numbers for anyone at all? What can we do to help?

Nancy

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by EmilyPost, Aug 11, 2009
TD - oh yes, yes. Amityptaline. That stuff is terrible. I forgot about it. I dumped it after two weeks, down a toilet. Distanced from the pain on Tramadol is kind right, and then distanced from everything else. Your authentic self, your soul, your relationships, your finances  ... and on down the line.

Trazadone instead of Tramadol? You must be kidding. Um. Yeah. I actually don't believe they are oblivious to the dangers of Tramadol. I think they are aware and don't care. The schedule allows them to give it out like candy. There's no danger to them, only to us. It's sickening.

So I am sitting here thinking about your experience TD, and it's making me think some pretty solid thoughts about the ultimate sameness of Tramadol withdrawal. You had no consciousness that you were going cold turkey but you saw demons (yes) and wanted to die (yes) and basically went to hell and came back. (yes) The whole "It's only a psychological problem, not 'real withdrawal' from Tramadol ... " seems blown out of the water by such stories.

1113, you should stop and not take more. What's the point of taking more when you have days between you and your last dose.

Jessica ... Tent City ... amen sister friend amen ... I get it.

Chrissie you really do need to reach out to someone. call 1-800-Suicide, national number. Call now, don't wait. Nothing crazy happens when you call  that number, you just talk to someone who will help.


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by iontheprize, Aug 11, 2009
Chrissie....You have reached out and spent so much time pouring out your heart.  You want to be free of this emotional pain AND YOU WILL BE.  Emily is right, call that number NOW.  Just talk.

What you feel right now is a hellacious symptom of GETTING FREE of the sticky, filthy film of Tramadol.  It will pass.  It will pass.  

It's easy to compare to other people, but your path to wellness is your own.  I was really sick for 6 weeks.  I was really depressed for a couple of weeks.  Others have had longer periods of symptoms.  It's just moment by moment, hour by hour.  BELIEVE that your reprieve is coming.  It will come.  

CALL the hotline to get through this crisis.  We will be here waiting to hear from you.

LOVE TO YOU MS CHRISSIE

~jessica

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by grandmagirl, Aug 11, 2009
Happy Tuesday....


The grandma girl up-date....

I've been off Tram for 5 mos now..What a ride that was..I am feeling back to normal. Haven't felt this way for about a year. The W/D was just crazy stuff...

I remember lots of depression going. Glad to report it's all GONE..Thank God...

I can relate to all of you that are going through depression.. The good news is ..It really will go away if you stay off of the Tram and all the other crap your doctors are gong to try to feed you..too try and fix you...


You are going to have to FIX YOURSELF...sorry but that's life...Suck it up and do the right thing. Make the calls you need to ....and get on with getting yourself well...If you want it bad enough ..you will figure it out.

MORE pills are NOT going to help you in the long run...I tried to pull myself out of depression by going on more crappy pills and finally I just flused everything and .....miracle ..started to feel better.

Lots of good food...

Lots of good laughs with friends and family

Lots of rest

Lots of vitamins

Lots of faith


You can do it...If you really want to get well bad enough...


Peaceful wishes from California

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by iontheprize, Aug 11, 2009
THE PROPHET ~ Kahlil Gibran

ON PAIN:

"It is the bitter potion by which the physician within you heals your sick self.  Therefore trust the physician, and drink his remedy in silence and tranquility: For his hand, though heavy and hard, is guided by the tender hand of the Unseen, and the cup he brings, though it burn your lips, has been fashioned with the clay which the Potter has moistened with His own sacred tears."

I read those sentences over and over night after night after night when I was hurting so much and so alone.  I had to make meaning out of my physical and emotional pain.  It helped me in my darkest times and I hope that it can help you too.

~jessica  



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by miriam1975, Aug 11, 2009


I'm day five off hydrocodone (soccer mom here.. sort of embarrassing).

I feel guilty that I can't clean the house, I'm not up to cooking. I twitch and don't even feel like playing with the kids.

It was their FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL yesterday and I don't even remember if I asked them about it because I had not slept the night before.

I feel sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo guilty. Today I forced myself to smile and greet them after school and it is a struggle to feel out those dozens of forms for their school. But I have to... my husband is helping so much that I can't just lie here crying.

I hope this gets better. Thank you for this thread.... I needed , and have.. read every word.

xoxoxoxoxo
Me, spouse of superman and mommy two the cutest boys in the universe

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by iontheprize, Aug 11, 2009
Chrissie, You are in the UK aren't you?  The hotline mentioned above is a US number.  I don't know where you are but am positive there is a hotline for you.  

Phelbo1, It appears that you don't have a choice about when and how you stop.  As scared as you are, maybe the best thing for you to do would be to focus on the moment.  Take things as they come and ask for guidance or help as you need it.  Your experience will unfold and we'll be here to support you.  

You ladies let us know how you are doing when you can.

~jessica

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by EmilyPost, Aug 11, 2009
In the UK dial 08457 90 90 90.

Chrissie that's the number for Befrienders dot org

They are very good ....

You can go to their website as well ...

Samaritans dot org



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by Gerty411, Aug 11, 2009
Hi Y'all,

Somehow I got through another day.  I find that the second day after a dose reduction the most difficult.  It's like running into a brick wall at 60mph.  My plan is to drop to 25mg/dy over the weekend and hopefuly be free of this hell by next week.  I've made it futher thatn I ever would of by myself.  

Nancy, it is awful not being able to confide in my pcp {he sends me patients- can you imagine how that would be taken?}
My partner is a sweety but I cannot risk this problem gettin out.  It could affect my liscensure and career.  Let me tell you, I have no idea how I've continued to work over the last 2weeks.

miriam, I beleive that alot of us girls suffer from "woman's disease".  We are programmed to feel and also genuinely beleive that we must be perfect at the office, and at the same time keep a perfect house and be the perfect mother.  For me that is one of the reasons I stayed with tramadol for 2 years.  I felt like I was wonder woman.  My advice is to realize It is about you right now.  You need to cut yourself a break and use your energy to keep on the road to recovery.  Your children and family probably will not remember a dirty house or a missed lunch .  What they will remember is the fact that you  were there with  love and a smile.

love you all,

Gerty





  



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by MIKEHELP, Aug 12, 2009
hi my names michael.
im 21 years old.
in august o8 i started to run and exerise
to get fit and i noticed
when i run my legs
burnt and became really itchy
it is/was a horrible feeling
i went doctors
she was useles gave me 2 weeks  ibuprofen
then i ended up seing a physio
she miss diangosed me
i then noticed pains getting worse .
nerve pain all over
mainly legs and lower back
sometimes in my arms
wrists
even my jaw when i eat ( rarely)
about 2 months ago i had a mri scan of my back and  a nerve test conducted.
the specialist couldnt detect a problem
so he referred me to a neurologist
im seing the neurologist in september 9th
anyway shortly after the scans i got onto tramadol
WOW  at first i got short burts of drowsyness
which was so nice
it was amazing. i became hooked
from the nice sensations and finally after a year pain relief.
then my friend died of sds and a late unexpected phone call
i had no luck sleeping
( have history of bad sleep)
so my sleep was fucked for some reason i decided to stop taking my tramadol
only until my sleep got fixed
well as you can guess my sleep didnt get fixed.
the second day of no tramadol
i felt like i was dead a zombie.
sweating profusely. flu like
i straight away new why
i then said there is no way im experiencing this again
i am not going back on these stupid pills
as this withdrawal is just way too much
if id have known all this i would have lived in the seriously
horrible nerve pain ive been living in.
ive read the thomas detox. so far so good
hot baths are an absolute miracle
they not only help tramadol withdrawal
but my nerve and back/leg pains. ( for like a hour or 2)
anyway i got seriously stressed sunday night
and rang my dad saying i cant live like this
from sunday to tuesday i had 2 hours sleep
and thrown up two times.
tuesday to today i had some good sleep around 6 7pm to 4/5am
that helped alot. im going to go shopping for the ingredients from the thomas recipe.
sorry this is so goddam long. i feel better ive written this.

Michael

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by TrulyGreatful, Aug 12, 2009
Dear Chrissie

I was so distressed this morning to hear of the torment you are in, I only wish I could be with you, You really could do with a helping hand right now , human comfort is such a powerful thing.
I also live in England and Emily is right about the Samaritans, they're wonderful people.
Reading your words was so painful as I, like eveyone here, know just what you are going through.

From my own experience I would say Day 17 is still very early on in the recovery process and I think you are doing absolutely great!!! I cannot believe how powerful the effects of  the withdrawal from this drug truly are. The depression is soul destroying, I know, and it can last for a while, but that too will pass given time, please believe me. It is a vile weapon used by this drug to try and destroy your resolve, but have faith, you will become stronger and it will weaken! Although it seems impossible, relief is just around the corner, just you hold on Darling, you're not alone, we're all with you. If you could ditch the tams you have left I think it would help, just the act may help you to feel more in control and less helpless.

You deserve so much more. The rewards are amazing. You will regain YOUR LIFE !!!!

Love Love Love

TD





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by TrulyGreatful, Aug 12, 2009
Good Morning To All

I don't have much time this morning and so would just like to wish you All The Best for today !

See Ya Later

Love Love Love

TD

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by TrulyGreatful, Aug 12, 2009
Dear phlebo1

I only wish I could say otherwise but I think the awfulness of withdrawal are inevitable. It seems such a sad fact that this is the only escape. I find it despicable for a doctor to turn his back on a patient in need of help. Do try to get some support from some other health specialist. Here in England we see a midwife while pregnant, I don't know if anything similar is available to you. I hope you can get somebody to help with your children as you could do with looking after yourself right now. My thoughts and prayers are with you. Take care.

Love  Love Love

TD

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by phlebo1, Aug 12, 2009
Thanks for all the nice words.  Today is day one with no tram.  I'm scared out of my mind!!  I was taking anywhere from 6-9 pills a day.  Not only am I 31 weeks pregnant but I have three young boys here at home that I need to take care of.  I'm really, really scared.  Also, I am very much underweight and have only gained 8 pounds this pregnancy.  When I go through w/d's I can't eat and I know I will lose weight so that is a big fear I have as well.
My doc has completely turned his back on me and wants nothing to do with this so I am truly on my own and vey much scared out of my mind.  
Has anyone gone c/t before and if so, how long did your w/d's last?  I would be nice if I at least had some sort of goal to look forward to.  
Any words of advice anyone has would be greatly appreciated.  At this point I can use any help I can get.

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by chrissie145, Aug 12, 2009
Bless you all for your love and caring. I too wish I could hug a real live person who has been through this.  I am so thin but  struggle to get a meal ready. I am in Somerton Somerset. (Nr Yeovil) I have struggled this far again today but am going crazy with the anxiety and shaking.  I have copied down the help number - thank you.  Its almost too much to speak though.

I have heard of a machine, sometimes called NET and sometimes called BEST. A friend is looking for one for me. It is supposed to help by stimulating endorphin production.

I am heart broken as I have never even smoked a cigarette. I trusted my doctor and this is what has happened. If only I could put a time on it then I would have something to aim for.

Thank you for listening to me when you all have your own journey.
Love Chrissie

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by Lillyval, Aug 12, 2009
phlebo - recruit anyone and everyone you can to help with the kids, the house, whatever so you can just take care of you and the baby.  The next 2-4 days will be the worst and then hopefully you'll be able to eat more and start feeling better.

Chrissie - I'm sending you loving and healing thoughts.  Reach out for help even if it feels like lifting a 1000 lb. weight.  And flush those god-awful tramadols down the toilet.

Nancy and Gerty - I'm down to 50 mg today.  The brain fog is major.  Nancy - there's so much you have said that I want to respond to.  As opposed to taking on the FDA I've been thinking about writing a huge expose.  I'd interview Emily and others on this forum and include info. about trams effects, lack of testing, internet sales - the whole ball of wax.  But at the moment it's getting togher just to post and get through the day.

Jessica - I love the way you call it the "sticky, filthy film of tramadol".  That's got to be the best characterization I've ever heard of this sick drug.  Thanks for the quote on pain.  I'm sure I'll be needing it soon.

Hugs ((((Everyone)))))
Lilly

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by TRAMMAN999, Aug 12, 2009
I have been lurking around this forum through July/August. I posted a couple of times in July. I have learned a lot and am sort of comforted that so many people are in the same situation as myself. (that doesn't sound very nice!! - but you know what I mean!?)
A short question and I would like a short concise answer from someone who has gone cold turkey. (Tramadol)
I have a weak ahead where I have the opportunity to go cold turkey i.e. I have no tasks to attend to; no people to see etc. I am ready for the challenge!
Question:     By day 4/5 will I be able to function enough to be amongst people and interact throughout a day?
Thank you in anticipation.
PS If you look at my tracker you will see that I am floundering - gone back up to 200/300mg/day! (guilt!)

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by nancy652, Aug 12, 2009
Welcome Miriam, Tramman and Mike, first of all. My heart goes out to all. Miriam don't be ashamed. I am a mom too. We are human first and as you can see we are all sorts, every kind of soul...the only people on here that I haven't personally seen 'fess up are md's themselves...though perhaps they did before my time here. In fact, I've actually been impressed by the articulateness of all the forum members here...we are perhaps kindred souls in more ways than one.

Chrissy and Phelbo I'm so glad you're back here. We are here for you.

Jessica all night last night I thought of your words as well...Gerty's too. I just am so glad you're here. too

Lilyval...you're right: writing is the most powerful tool on the planet. It is my thing and if it is yours as well....then that's the way to go. It is the most powerful consumer protection tool on the planet....highly underused and generally done badly. If we can write a sophisticated, precise and devestating piece, I can make sure it gets in the right hands. I am kind of an expert at starting (and sometimes quelling) consumer firestorms. When we feel better, we can certainly talk, if you like. I am here for the duration :).

An unexpected gift...last night I had what felt like terminal insomnia. Close to dawn, I was still sleepless but getting some nice ideas about reclaiming my life. All of a sudden one of the Perseid meteors blazed through the sky over the ocean. It was amazing I could see it because some bright lights lie between me and the beach a mile out. It was so bright that my siamese cat (former potential front man for my facetiousTramadol vet shopping spree) leapt out of bed and ran to the window to lift his paw to try and bat at the blaze. Wow!

While it was painful to be awake at such an hour....all night, in fact...I was rather honored to be privy to a moment that I would have otherwise missed zonked on T: A small reward.

Oh...and today, the final 25mg down that hatch. And that's all she wrote:).

Love
Nancy

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by FormerlySane, Aug 12, 2009
TRAMMAN...I believe it depends on how long you've been taking tram and how much you were doing.  The longer the use and the higher the dose seems to correlate with how long the W/Ds last.  I used for about three years (give or take a couple months) and was as high as 20-30 pills per day for the first couple years.  It was a good two weeks after quitting before it let up just a little, another two weeks before I felt like the worst was over.  that first month was horrible.  Another month before I was about 90% better.  It lasted a long time for me.  However, everybody is different.  Get all the supplements mentioned to help with anxiety, sleep, pain, lack of energy, and depression.  The stuff REALLY does help.

One thing for me, I had to work the entire time I was W/D-ing, 12 hour days, five days/wk.  Looking back, I think that helped.  I work directly with people all day long.  I'm a personal trainer and had to hide everything I was feeling.  Some could tell I wasn't feeling good, I just told them I was having some insomnia problems.  Being around people and having to force myself to act normal helped take my mind off everything.  My clients made me have to focus on different things.  If I had tried to stay home to go through W/Ds, I don't think I could have made it.  April 29th was my first day without and trams, the entire month of May I was also dealing with a couple banks trying (and I succeeded) in getting a loan to grow my business.  I had tram W/D while trying to listen to bankers explain everything to me, AND hide what I was feeling.  That was a new hell for me.  

Many others here have experienced worse things than me while going through W/Ds.  I would say they are probably some of the strongest people on the entire planet.  I have more respect for the people here than any other group I have ever known.

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by 1113, Aug 12, 2009
ok,

All so far so good....   i did go pick up my script but have only had 1 tramadol since monday.  I have used Immodium AD for good results so far....  i can feel my body calm down after i have taken about 10mgs.  my body has felt really good the last two days.  haven't had any fatigue, or too much depression....   as a matter of fact i feel like i am on a natural high since i haven't had a horrible day just yet.    i know counting my chickens just yet, but so far so good.....


talk to you tomorrow gotta go watch the US play Mexico in world cup qualify right now.......    I hope that we can come out with a draw, but playing in Mexico city is always tough.

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by 1113, Aug 12, 2009
wow, major grammar errors....

edit:

as a matter of fact i feel like i am on a natural high because i have been excited that i haven't had a horrible day just yet.    i am not counting my chickens yet, but so far so good.....  tomorrow could be the day it turns around and bites me in the ass.



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by nancy652, Aug 12, 2009
good for you 1113. I also found imodium ad to very helpful .I did have a leftover children's strength coedine sough syrup at the lowest possible dosage the last time I quit. That very small amount...perhaps a teaspoon in the am and one at night seemed to help me very much that time. I think I had only three days worth and it improved the situation. I am having more wd symptons this time around even though my taper schdeule has been the same. I think I can chalk that up to two more years of increased usage at a higher dose (that maxed out between or skipped from 8 to 10, 12 ...very occasionally 15 - 50 mg tabs per day and monthly cutbacks below eight for a few days...repeat ad naseum) . I was able to remain on a max dose for several years of 8 mgs a day but the awful thing about Tramadol is YOU WILL increase your dose if you stay on it long enough and can get the access. This is a non-negotiable part of the deal. It might take a year or it might take 10, but if you have continued free access...it will happen. I don't care if you are an iron man triathlete. Tramadol will kick your @** and you will be happy to have it kick it once again in order to up the dose.
Great job for you down to one since Monday.
Hope everyone else is ok.

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by 1113, Aug 12, 2009
nancy,

thanks for the words....  i will say that so far i have been fortunate enough to not up my usage.  i started off at 3-4 a day about 2 years ago... maxed out at 6 a day for about 8 months.  taperped down to 1-2 pills a day at the begining of this year and then went back up to 3 a day for the past 4 months.   so I have been able to controll my intake thus far, but it's only been 2 years.

this week.... so far so good.   feeling better all the time.  i really think the weekend of just using T3's really helped out alot.    

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by iontheprize, Aug 12, 2009
Chrissie, I'm really proud of you for getting through yesterday.  Not only that, but you reached out to a friend who is now working to help you too.  It will get better sweet Chrissie.  Make small goals to mark your progress (i.e. talked to a friend, felt ok for an hour).  I swear it helps and you will progress and heal and find yourself again.  It will pass.  Be strong and know that you are never, never alone.  

Phlebo...the standard saying is that the worst should be over by days 7-10.  Again, your path is your own.  It might be shorter, it might not.  Your fear might wind up being the worse than what is ahead.  Anxiety is also a symptom of w/d.  Do what you can to relax, if it's as simple as doing breathing exercises or positive affirmations while you go to the bathroom.  It will be ok...one thing at a time.  YOU ARE ON DAY ONE!  That is huge and you haven't been able to say that in some time. Take a moment and feel some pride in place of that fear!

Nancy, I had tears in my eyes when I read about you taking your last dose!  Now you can really let go, fight and move forward!  

Tramman, there is no perfect day to walk into the sunset without a bottle of pills.  you have the gift of free time.  Use it and kick some butt!

Michael, welcome and how are you today?


A personal thingie:

Today, I sent a complimentary email to a supervisor about one of her direct reports.  This employee that inspired my email goes by the name "T"  The supervisor responded to me and the last sentence of that response to me was, "We can't live without our T"

I just stared at that line for a few minutes and it inspired a pride that I AM LIVING WITHOUT that T.  Day 60 and still needing the boxing gloves, but I keep making good choices.

WE CAN LIVE WITHOUT that T

~jessica

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by iontheprize, Aug 12, 2009
BTW, I almost didn't make it from 59 to 60.  I can't believe I did, actually.

THANK YOU for helping me get to this day!

From the heart
~ jessica

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by Gerty411, Aug 12, 2009
hi all,


WD is kicking in .  

gerty

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by FinallyFred, Aug 13, 2009
Hello T Warriors!

I have been busy/away a great deal so please forgive me if I don't respond by name per se.  Just some random thoughts after catching up on all of your posts this past week or so.

Several have asked about the duration of ACUTE withdrawal symptoms by going cold turkey.  I echo what has alrteady been said.  To some extent the duration of acute withdrawal  is dependant on the amount and length of time on the drug.  Some have a rougher time with withdrawal than do others.  We are all unique.

But I was on the tram-o-crap for more than six years taking 400 mg./day.  Here's my concise withdrawal picture for the benefit of those jumping or considering jumping:  I actually did a quick 5 day "taper" and then stopped c/t.  I am not at all convniced that c/t phase was any harder than the fast (and stupid) taper that I did.

I technically had that week off, but I had offered to handle a mediation for an associate on what was my day ONE.  I made it through DAY 1 without taking any trams, which is the key to any beginning.  Day 2 was somewhat more difficult, but I had arranged to have lunch with some dear old friends.  Again, I kept the appointment, didn't take any trams, and survived.  By days 3 & 4 the lack of sleep and RLS symptoms began to accumulate and those were by far my hardest days.  (I was posting like a mad man here during that time).  By Day 5 I felt like I had turned the corner.  I actually got 4-5 hours sleep.  I returned to work oficially on day 7, though to be fair, I was working from home, reading email, returning phone calls, reviewing correspondence, but really NOT functioning very efficiently.  BTW, I always felt that for myself - day 1 began 24 hours after taking my last dose.  

TRAMMMAN, if you have a window of 4-5 days without a great many responsibilities, I would take advantage of that window in time to get through this.  

Post Acute Withdrawal is that period of time after we make it out of the hole.  When the gut wrenching pain and flu like symptoms have subsided, we begin to get at least a moderate amount of sleep at night, etc.  When I was pressed by KC, I used to tell her that this period takes "weeks and weeks".  During that time, we continue to experience depression (or "the blues" as I have found guys describe depression), anxiety, lack of focus/concentration, over the top emotions, sneezing , walking into walls,  and crying jags.  In short, that period of time when we still aren't our old selves, but at least we can sense the light at the end of the tunnel.  It is regretable that we must need to go through this period, but what really are our options.  

I don't know about anyone else, but at some point in my tramadol use, I took the drug to "hurt" my brain receptors.  With wreckless abandon, I took the drug and prayed it would do it's worst to me.  I took it as though I was bullit proof.  At the time, I thought it helped me focus, that it gave me energy, that it might make me feel less UNWELL.  Wrong, wrong, and wrong!

Toward the end, my TOLERANCE to the drug had built up over time such that I now realize I was in a CONSTANT state of WITHDRAWAL for years. I took more than my 400 mgs.day at the start of every rx cycle and by the last week of every cycle, I was in living HELL.  I wouldn't sleep for days and I could barely frunction.

I appreciated Jessica's reason for stopping.  We each have our own motivation for stopping the madness.  For me, I was sick and tired of repeating the MADNESS of constant withdrawal.  I was sick and tired of planning life around when my next circled RX day would be.  I was sick and tired of going hat in hand to my doctor - and cursing him if he dared to take a day off on MY rx day, such that my prescription didn't get filled.  When I would experience another 24 hours of living hell without my drug.  

And can you believe that I wasn't aware that I could have bought this drug online until I had decided to stop the madness?  I TOTALLY understand people taking 20 or more of this evil pill per day just to feel less UNWELL.  I am afraid that I would still be lost baby lost if I had gone there.

Tolerance means that more and more of the drug is required over time just to make us feel less UNWELL.  In time, a person has but three options:  (1) take more and more of the drug, just to feel less unwell, (2) take the same prescribed dose as I did and feel like hell while on the drug, or (3) QUIT.  

I talked last week about the importance of HOPE.  (thanks KC).  I seriously don't believe that anyone can get free of the physical dependance on tramadol without doing time in hell.  No amount of hope and determination less than an all out declaration of WAR on this drug will suffice.  

I expect that some of you have come to feel that old Fred is a hard ass.  Talking about the pain of withdrawal and how there is no kind, soft way through this deal.  Believe me when I say that there is nothing I would like to do more than to give EVERY newcomer a magic pill to make the ride gentle and easy.  But what preperation for the FIGHT would that be?

I HEAR the reasons offered by some as to why sobriety (just for them) is unattainable and I shake my head.  The fact of the matter is that there ARE many reasons why doing this WILL be the hardest thing many of us have ever done.  While each person is unique, we aren't so terminally unique as to disqualify ANY of us from making it through the hardest thing we may ever do.  Many of us have children, many of us have responsible jobs, and many of us had medical reasons for being on this drug to begin with.  But the only people  I have witnessed becoming successful in overcoming the physical/mental dependance/addiction to this drug, are those who through hope and determination, find a way to let go of the reasons for failure and grab hold of the possibility that this time may be different than all of our past attempts to beat this drug.

I am racking my brain to reflect on the big and small accomplishments I have achieved in my life.  (successful diet and excercise programs, making it through law school, "landing" the girl of my dreams, overcoming the desire to drink alcohol, completing successful projects in my business or personal life, etc. etc.)  And I can't think of ANY of those accomplishments that I simply WANDERED into.  I can't think of a time when success dropped into my lap without a terribly difficult fight on my part.

If anyone beginning this journey sets out while hanging onto the reasons for failing they may as well not even try to get free from this evil little white pill.  Because from where I sit, nothing less than 200% effort will enable one to succeed when it comes to T.

The ultimate costs for not succeeding are too great to allow ourselves to become bogged down with negative thoughts and reasons why it cannot be done.  

This is a horribly strong drug.  And if a drug this powerful wants me - it can't have me.  I implore you to gird yourselves with strong positive thoughts and approach this battle as THE battle of your life.  nine months for anythi

You can succeed.  

Courage Fellow Warriors,

Fred

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by MIKEHELP, Aug 13, 2009
ionetheprize. im doing better thanks. from sunday to wednesday i had 9 hours sleep. last night i fell asleep  9 and got up 8.
that sleep made me feel great. today im going to see my doctor. to tell him ive stopped taking tramadol even though i should be on them and im not going to take them any more. im also going to check with him the thomas detox is ok for me to follow.
I also feel like writing a letter to the government as apart from this tramadol when i was 16 i was wrongly diagnosed with adhd.
what followed was ritalin which my body hated and then dexedrine. wich is dexampethamine . amphetamine  yes.
what followed from that was blackouts, sweaty hands. 3 hour sleeps a day, seing colours and other wierd shit.

Michael.

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by iontheprize, Aug 13, 2009
Fred, what a powerful message to all of us.  Thank you.

A little something of progress for me to share: when I was taking T for all that time the only dreams I had were horrible.  Truly nightmares and worse.  I have been happy to have dreams of nonsensical nature that don't have me waking up in a panic or feeling like demons are in the room.  I just woke up from a really happy dream; like I used to have as a teenager.  I dreamed that it was pouring rain in the middle of the day.  No lightning or thunder, just rain.  I was staying in some kind of hotel and my view was over a city that I imagine Italy would look like.  I felt exhilerated in the dream and all I wanted to do was to go outside and twirl around in that pouring rain; like in a movie.  I didn't care about my hair or my clothes getting soaked, I just wanted to feel the rain.  

My alarm went off before I got to twirl around, but if it wouldn't have I might not have remembered the dream.  This is a big deal for me and am so excited, I had to share.

Good luck at the doctor's Michael.

Gerty, you are in the hearts and minds of many.  

~jessica

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by Lillyval, Aug 13, 2009
I woke up this morning and thought of all of you who are suffering today Gertie, Chrissy, phlebo, Nancy,  Sarah,  sorry I can't remember everyone's name today buy WD's are starting to kick in.  Being in solidarity with you all is really helping me.  I pray for all of your suffering to be eased.

There's so much I could say about the battle with tram, but I feel like I'm dragging a heavy weight and this is such an effort.  I took an immodium and I'm about to take some emergen-C and I'm just going to take it 1 hour or even 1 minute at a time.  Whatever it takes to get free of this rat poison.
Courage everyone,
Lilly

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by Ali1226172, Aug 13, 2009
There are so many post so I can no respond to everyone but this one is for Ty-  DO NOT TAKE TRAMADOL WITH ANITDEPRESSENTS!! IT WILL WITHOUT A DOUBT ELEVATE YOUR RISK OF A SEIZURE, PANIC ATTACKS, OR SUCIIDAL THOUGHTS!!  From what I read this is not a good idea for you, but I am not a doctor- I am simply giving you the information from the Rx on tramadol.  The others who know me on here know that I am trying to quit oxys and roxys but I recently got my hands on some tramadol that I found on a friend and stupidly I took it!! I am on antidepressents and have been for a year, so I can tell you first hand DO NOT TAKE THE TWO TOGETHER!! I had a severe panic attack and my entire body broke into a sweat, my hands started to shake and I nearly passed out!  I thought for sure that I was having a heart attack, it was very scary!  So Please TY DO NOT MIX THESE TWO, it will def be dancing with the devil if you do.  I suggest you seek medical help and THERAPY- I am in the process of finding a psychologist myself and am fighting to stop this madness.  If your not strong enough to give up the tramadol all and all then wait until you can before you begin any antidepressent!! ALSO BE HONEST WITH UR DOCTOR ABOUT UR ABUSE so you don't have an accidental overdose or anything!! Take care, I hope this helps- good luck kid, just remember you are not ALONE- we are all suffering here but there is a light at the end of the tunnel we just have to get through the darkness to get there!!

GOOD LUCK- KEEP ME POSTED

PS- STILL SOBER EVERYONE :)

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by mon_cheri, Aug 13, 2009
hello all,
  im not sure if im doing this right,,,,, it'll feel good to get it off my chest regaurdless.
  i am realizing, i have an addiction to tramadol. for a long time, i thought it was masking a deeper issue, such as MS or another neuro problem. but as i read your posts, the painful tingly "jimmy leggs" i call them, cold extremeties, (hands, feet, and nose), cold sweats, sleepless nights... i realize i am truly dependant on these pills.
  i started like many of you, a true problem, osteoarthritis, due to an injury/surgery.

  i am feeling angry b/c i refused narcotics, as i am a single mother, i work hard, this was promised to be non addictive non narcotic. i am going to try and minimize my dosage each week. is it possible to do it alone? im afraid i wont have the strength. these pills do give me energy and take my pain away. i am afraid that once i start hurting, i will just keep taking more, as this is what got me in trouble in the first place.
    but i would like to have another baby at some point, and dont feel it would be safe to have one on this.
   i did read above that someone is pregnant on this. i am afraid for the baby to be addicted.
i feel i have a very long road ahead of me. and feel alone. if any one has any helpful hints, i will gladly listen.
Be Well.
XO

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by MIKEHELP, Aug 13, 2009
i was on 400 mg of tramadol a day and 20mg of amiltrypiline anti -depressants.!!!!!! just went to the doc to tell him i gone cold turkey and wont take them even thought i have too.!!!!!. People need to realise to not always accept what doctors say as the truth. And to do proper research before you start taking serious drugs like semi synthetic opiates.

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by Callisto99, Aug 13, 2009
FormerlySane,
thanks so much for the reassurance and the advice, I am relaxing. I read your post yesterday and I can't agree more about the fact all those people who post on here deserve a medal for courage and strength!! Until I came off Tramadol I didn't actually realise that there was a problem, soon found out what that stuff does to your life, though. And then to find this site and to see that I was not the only one going through this was a godsend and probably the only reason I'm still sticking with it ( day 10) . I just wish I had somthing to offer in return.
It is absolutley amazing what just a few posts, written on some website have done for me. Knowing that every post has come about through horrendous suffering, which was created by the people who I used to trust (doctors) and who really should know best, (my a**e!!!!) has now made me extremely aware of all the BS they kept telling me. Like Amitriptyine and Tramadol is no problem. And I was wondering why I was having RLS all the time.....
I'll be sticking around for a while
I can't really say much I would feel as though I'm patronising you all, but hang in there, with all those great people about and this massive support system you'll get there in the end. I wholeheartedly believe that!!!
Keep going
Callisto

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by pattipoo64, Aug 13, 2009
Tramadol is kicking my ASS and keeping me under its spell.If i have to go a few days without, the withdrawal is horrendous, you would think  I would'nt keep doin it to myself, but when you get that perfect high from them, yer layin in bed with that quiet euphoric, lovey dovey feeling, it is unforgettable, and i always want that feeling. Its gonna be so hard to get over these, they are so easy to get! I need suggestions.        from mamastoner44

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by Printer989, Aug 13, 2009
Good afternoon everybody,        

I was on Ultram for about 3 years, And i have been clean for about 6 months now. During the 3 years i was on Ultram i developed heart burn, bloody stools, dark circles around my eyes or raccoon eyes, dry mouth etc. My problem is i didn't experience any withdrawals when i stoped taking Ultram but, the things i developed that i mentioned i still have those ailments. The heart burn, bloody stools, continue even at the present time of being off this medicine for 6 months, The raccoon eyes are gone though. "My point is"  taking Ultram i believe has given me permanent ailments that i didn't have before i started taking this medicine, The entire reason for me quitting this medicine was so that these symptoms would clear up but they haven't yet. I am in the process now of searching the internet trying to figure out if Ultram can give you permanent damage even after you stop taking it. What i'm experiencing could in fact be withdrawal symptoms and 6 months is still not long enough for my body to be back to normal.

I do know that taking any pain killer can give you liver damage!  

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by 12Stepper, Aug 13, 2009
Just checking in with all the positive activity here. It still amazes me how many of us there are.

Moncheri, you can do this. It would be great if you had someone in your life to support you through this, someone you trust not to judge you who will be supportive and help you walk through the whole thing. Some people have actually been able to get help from MDs in getting prescriptions to help them get off T; but others got no help (or more problematic scripts) from MDs. Even if you don't have someone to confide in, if you read through the threads, you'll see that you are not alone. You can read people's stories from the very start and see that they survived every type of reaction possible when going off. You might find that after reading all the horror stories, your experience won't be so bad, or you'll be able to relate to someone who survived the same thing. Your recent sharing was valuable to me, for example, since I have been experiencing cold extremities, and I wondered if it was from the effects of T, or just bad circulation.

Much of my inspiration came from reading these posts: I identified totally with the harm T had done to our lives, with the nightmare of w/d, and the road to better and better days.

I'm about 9 weeks tram-free and have no desire to use this or another opiate again. There are people posting with more time T-free than myself and it gives me hope to hear them say they are their old selves again. My only symptom now is occasional sadness, which went away completely last time after a brisk walk. Best wishes to all the Warriors!

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by Callisto99, Aug 13, 2009
Hiya there Printer989
I've read your post and might now just possibly be able to give some advice to somody else... I've been given Tram for chronic sciatia and a crumbling generative lower lumbar. On top of that I'm also lumbered with another condition. The symopms you are describing fit the profile very well, but unfortunatly they look like somethig like M.E.N.1. It may be that you didn't notice the sysmptoms due to taking Tram, but the classic syptoms are commonly heartburn, tarry stools, (which can cause bleeds), high calcium levels, a constant thirst, weight gain without reason, in women lactation, without being pregnant and not so commonly, enlargemt of extremities, which will only be noticable after years. There is another site specialised for these things. But some of the symtopms sound bang like mine. And it's always worth just bing checked out, since this a genetical fault and the soner discovered te better it is. Give this site a go, it's called A.M.E.N.D
Keep me posted and congrats of kicked Trama-bad 6 mths ago
Callisto

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by findingfarrah, Aug 13, 2009
Hello everyone.. today i am one week tram free!! i feel so much better, and as tough as it was the first few days, the w/d's do subside. i still feel tired etc.. but not violently ill like i did in the beginning of coming off this stuff.

pattipoo64..... i feel for you.. i know the feeling you are talking about and when on tram, you feel like it is the best way to deal with everything, but i can assure you.. that being off the tram is actually  much more rewarding than you many think.. here is my list of the good that has come to my life in just one week off the tram:

- more patience with my daughter
- feeling like the "fog" has lifted
- moments of fatigue coupled with a super improvement in energy
- less pain (isn't that ironic as i was on this stuff to beat chronic pain from a few car accidents)
- no urge to check how many tabs i have left, how long till i can get more etc.. it is freedom like i never imagined
- being aware of other coping mechanisms and herbal remedies to feel better overall..i am really focused on trying to get healthy, and reading and sharing info here has been extremely beneficial to me
-increased sex drive.. which i thought i would never get back..

i am not sure if this will help you, but for me.. knowing that others made it and could be ok without tramadol was what got me through the rough patches.. trust me.. you will be better off if you are off it than on..

wishing everyone health and recovery!!






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by chrissie145, Aug 13, 2009
Today is day 19 and I am fighting not to make it my last day on this planet. I am not in physical pain. I am just paralysed by the w/d and cannot think straight or do anything. I am depressed, shaking and anxious.  I have discovered a place in Scotland where they use the NET machine. If I was on street drugs or just tramadol they could help me. But because I am on 8 mg diazepam; 7.5mg zopiclone and 45mg of mirtazipine (antidepressant) they cannot help me. Their advice is to go back on tramadol or another opiod and come off the other drugs first and then they will help me get off the opiod with their NET machine. This is so what I dont want to do - not after 19 days - but how many more days can I take.

They advised me to speak to my community drugs team. Turning Point are my local one and they will not help me as I am not on street drugs! My doctor is away for a month and her locum told me that she doesnt know what to do to help me!!!

This time last year I was happy and energetic. I spent a week with my 7 year old grandson and we have a photo of me climbing a tree!  The tramadol led to all the other drugs and now I am destroyed.

Is there anyone else out there who is on diazepam or sleepers too? Please let me know if you are!

Love to all who are struggling. Sorry to whinge but I am seriously scared.

Chrissie



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by nancy652, Aug 13, 2009
Chrissie the short answer is yes I think many of us have been on both Tram and what we call here benzos (valium etc) and what I assume is ambien and other sleep meds. I know I have. You must do what ever you need to do to survive. At the end of the day you are out there and we are in here and we cannot presume to know your anguish.

So I say gather all the info you can, call Emily's number she gave you and make the decision that gets you through the night. No one here will judge NO MATTER WHAT.  Just stay with us.

I was going to just check in because I wanted to post a quick hi especially to Jessica.

Gerty day 1 for me with no meds too. Lilly, I know this is pretty much it for you too. I'm with you right here. It was the thought of you that got me through the day.  This where the taper pays off for me because its not terrible. I hope you are able to have moments of peace tonight because you have made it here. I have thrown myself into my work and my work now includes taking this drug down.

Love to all
Nancy

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by avisg, Aug 13, 2009
Here is the problem benzos are just as addictive as the tramadol when you are in the middle of WD you are prime to cross addict from one to the other and benzos are even worse to come off of .I highly recommend you steer clear of them
avis

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by madtram, Aug 13, 2009
Dear Chrissie,so sorry for your suffering.  The tramadol induced insomnia also lead me to zopiclone which did fix the insomnia but I believe prolonged my recovery significantly.

Zopiclone acts on the same benzo receptors as Xanax & valium & is therefore much closer to a straight benzo than a sleep med & has similar withdrawal problems.

Since you are also on diazepam, you are effectively getting a double dose of benzos as your zopiclone dose is equivalent to 10 mg of valium & this may be adding to your woes.  I don't think going back to tramadol is the solution but I would start tapering off the benzos ASAP.

Ambien is a better sleep med for withdrawal as it acts on the benzo receptors more selectively so if you need a sleep med for a while longer, I would consider talking to your doc about switching.

Either way, the sooner you can taper off all benzos, the sooner you will feel better.  As the zopiclone is similar to the valium, you could stop the zopiclone & start a valium taper when you have stabilised again.

So Chrissie try not to be scared.  This is a tough situation, no doubt, but there is a reason you feel so bad which means it can be fixed & the end is in sight.

Taking benzos with tramadol has an additive effect which means that it increases the strength of both drugs & withdrawal is harder but can be done.  As Nancy said, many of us have withdrawn from both.

Your thoughts & moods will be muddled during withdrawal but this will pass as your brain has the opportunity to heal, this I guarantee you.

Nancy, I loved your last tramadol consuming thought, "this was all she wrote".  I hope that your day one is kind to you & Gerty.

Best to all.

Michelle



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by Gerty411, Aug 13, 2009
Hi y'all,

Everytime I feel like the pain and suffering is too much to bear, Fred comes through with another eloquent essay that is like an ungent on a wound.  Thankyou, thankyou, thankyou!  I am on day 5 of 50mg/day.  I plan to cut down to 25/mg day this coming Monday.

It's been exactly one month since the last fedex man came to deliver my stash.  I bet they think I  died.

Oh, get this----I recently had  my thyroid hormone levels checked and they are very low.  My doctor asked me how much synthoid I was on.  I discovered that I was taking half of the prescribed dose.  I suspect I completely missed those recomendations as I was zonked out on tramadol.  It really brings all of scary effects of this drug to me.  Now I can go through withdrawal and be severly hypothroid at the same time!  Hopefully the increased synthroid dose will be kicking in by next week.  

The funniest thing to date is I keep sinnging in my head     -----Feeeed x  maan----  to the song My Sharona.


Peace be to you all,

The traminator will not prevail

Gerty


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by mon_cheri, Aug 13, 2009
12STEPPER---
thank you for your encouraging post. since then, i have opened up to my mother and a co worker and have recieved great support and advice. i have felt ashamed for letting this drug take control of me, i didnt think i could be the same person without it. i have been on it for 3 years+ at about 300-400mg per day. as a person with chronic lower back pain, it gave me relief and energy that i had lost. now im realizing that i would just rather have the back pain....
    I AM HAPPY TO REPORT.... this is my first day toward recovery and i have almost cut my dose intake in half! i went from taking 350-ish mg to 175mgs... it was definatly a good start, the w/d were minimal, and i can deal with it. every few days i plan on decreasing. and have made up my mind to turn my pills over to my mother and have her dose me if i cant cooperate w/ myself, lol. i hope all these days feel as rewarding, i would like to leave these days in the dust.

MIKEHELP---
i feel as though some drs are misled about this drug as well. i do trust my dr. i have talked to pharmacists who claim this is the safest miracle drug ever. however, that being said,,, that is why i am going to try and do this myself. i dont want another drug to fix this ones mess, that leads to an endless road .... going cold turkey, i just cant. the 'sickness' is just too much for me. i have a 4 yr old, i need to maintain some level of sanity.

FINDINGFARRAH---
  it was as though i had written that list! everything you listed are the things i am striving for!!!
- more patients with my daughter,
- a more rewarding...ambitious sex drive
- no more pill counting!!!! i would really splurge when i first got my bottle, then would be sick trying to stretch them out until the next refill! i went to florida, and was so concerned with that, that it ruined alot of other things i could have been focusing on!


All of your posts are so important to me!
GERTY, I will send you a present so the fed ex man knows you are still alive! lol.

*** i am reading alot of posts where people are weeks into their recovery, not on tram anymore, and are still having RLS, muscle and bone pain, ect.....has any one had permenant proven damage from this drug, neurological. aside from liver/kidney. i know that is possible. i have to wonder why the physical w/d pain is so long....................**********

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by FinallyFred, Aug 14, 2009
Nancy,  You are doing really well - you sound so determined.  You can do this.  You WILL do this, I just know it.

You said, " I have thrown myself into my work and my work now includes taking this drug down".   YAY!!!  

I believe that you (and someone else) were talking the other day about getting the word out to the FDA.  (((Applaus.)))  My strong suit is NOT knowing my way around the interwebs.  But I was snooping around some of the information out there and I have noticed that some of the common sites (Wikpeadia, Ask.com, etc.  ) are at least including some stranger warnings about the danger of this drug.  If you our anyone else could submit articles to thee sites, the TRUTH will slowly get out.  

Gerty, Lilly, and others, you can get through this.  There IS life after tramadol,  It is possible to win this fight.  You'll see.

Courage, Strength and Love to you guys.

Fred


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by Trees_and_Tablets, Aug 14, 2009
Hello Everyone.

It's now coming up 8 weeks since my last Tramadol and I don't miss it one bit.

The legacy it leaves me is without doubt the worst thing ever.

Like all mentioned here the first 5 days were really bad, but knowing that the intense pain and anguish was going to subside soon kept me focused and filled with conviction.

At week 3 I felt pretty good - a bit irritable and self assured but ok.

Then at week 5 depression - more melancholy really. Sadness about times gone by and no excitement about times to come. But worse for me was the skin sensitivity. I couldn't wear anything without feeling it was scratching/ hurting me. My wife came home each day with more and different clothes to help, but nothing felt good. Even the wind blowing on me hurt.

More research and reading. P.A.W.S - Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome. Seemed to be what was happening to me and could last a good while longer.

So I tried some non-drowsy anti-histamines (Loratadine). They helped a little I thought, but not sufficiently well to allow me to go out.

My Doctor started me on a very low dose of Citalopram (SSRI) and for a week the starting symptoms were awful - sweaty and fuzzy.

Then just at the end of last week I started to feel ok mood wise, but the skin was still a major problem.

I have constantly kept my doc up to date with all my research, info from this site, and she has been terrific.

This week she spoke to a drug dependancy unit, and then to a consultant pain physician.

I had been on 300mg of Tramadol for over 10 years. Prior to that for 8 years I had taken either Dihydracodeine of Co-proxomol.

18 years of fairly strong opiate of synthetic opiate substances. My nerves are raw and not firing properly. Hardly a surprise after being blasted for the last 2 decades.

So my doc recommended, not forced, Gabapentin, saying that this would help with the skin.

So I googled both positive and negative, and given the fact that I will NEVER easily take an opiate based medication again, I considered it a worthwhile experiment. It is emitted by the body almost totally and not metabolised into anything else, and can be withdrawn from over a short 1 or 2 week taper.

Within 4 hours of my first tablet my skin was back to 'normal' (not sure I know what that is anymore), and I was able to wear a collared shirt and shorts.

I had been really really struggling with this and my life was intolerable. I've even had to cancel a £3000 holiday to the USA because of it and I doubt I'm covered on my insurance for that - but there was no way I could have gone.

I guess I had developed the opposite of what I was for the last 18 years. For 18 years it was a case of whatever it takes to get by that's ok - medication? just give it me. But then I turned and felt like I didn't want any help again - I wanted to be totally free and never take anything else ever.

Now I am getting a little better each day, and I will only take this stuff as long as needed - perhaps 2 or 3 months.

I don't feel beaten or defeated in any way - more that I am now better aware of what meds can do and which ones to steer clear of. The right stuff can make a difference, and do it in a beneficial way. I hope :)

I would never have given in and gone back to Tramadol. If needed I would have just stayed indoors for as long as it took and weathered out the storm. I feel instead as though I am still in a much better place than I was on T and am working just to combat the final stages of ridding my body of this terrible terrible medication.

Best wishes and maximum positive thoughts to all those fighting this thing.

Stephen


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by grandmagirl, Aug 14, 2009
Stephen...I'm so glad you posted...it sounds like you have been to hell and back. I'm just so glad your getting better. It does take a while before we pop out of the tram fog and pain...But when it happens it feels so good...Your very brave Peaceful wishes from california...

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by nancy652, Aug 14, 2009
Not a great day physically. If you would have told me I'd still feel like this this many days out, I wouldn't have believed it. But I know this drug so mentally I was prepared. It is hard though. I'm starting to even out the sleep schedule at 6 hours a night. It will improve but at least I'm getting into the school schedule early:) I am doing alot of research into the history of T along with my other work. It keeps me distracted and I've taken Fred's advice to be mad. Thanks friend. A tip of the hat. And where were you at my mediation last week? I needed a friend. I think lawyers have a special affinity for this drug.  I keep meeting collegues who were prescribed it. But we sure all suffer no matter what our jobs.

Love to Jessica for all her thoughts. I hope to catch up with you this weekend. ;)

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by BM7, Aug 14, 2009
I started reading this site about 20 days ago I knew I had to stop the tram.(400mg for 4yrs) After readng this site I was more scared than ever to stop. After talking to my doc. she said the best way was med. detox. But with work,money,shame and fear I did not think I could it. I did it anyway and was released Thur at 1:00. This is day 7 without tram and I feel GREAT. Not only did I learn alot.I was there with people just like me.They gave me  just enough Subox to get over the hardest times.(4mg 4 times and 2mg 3 times). I have tried to stop before by myself and could not do it.I know alot of people do it by themselves, but this is very hard and can be very dangerous. I learned that there is no shame in getting medical help for a medical problem. I hope that if you are having a hard time or the more dangerous systoms(w/d) you look at this option. It is not as hard to walk in there as you may think. Good luck however you stop! Because at the end of the day thats what is most important. GOOD HEALING AND GOD BLESS       Scott

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by BM7, Aug 14, 2009
After reading what I just posted I don't want anyone to get the wrong idea, for day 7 I feel great but I still have some of the withdraw symptoms I am still very tired, lots of aches and pains, as well as alot of mental fog! As we all know this will last awhile!!!! After trying to stop many times before this is my first day 7 without tram and that is what feels great!!! God Bless Scott

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by Gerty411, Aug 14, 2009
HI y'ALL,

Not much to post.  Its funny, at this stage I don't have any desire for tramadol and I haven't even had a desire for even a sip of beer.   When I was eating tram like candy I drank tons of etoh.  

I would love to have energy.  By 3-4pm Iam spent and really not able to do much.  I feel like I really messed myself up and it may take months before I'm back.  Now I know what people with chronic illnesses go through

Wierd crazy technicolor dreams are my new enjoyment.

And it does feel good having more regular bms.[one of my many obsessions]


Gerty

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by FinallyFred, Aug 15, 2009
(((dear Gerty)))  I am chuckling at your comment, " When I was eating tram like candy I drank tons of etoh".   Chuckling because ETOH is a word I would use too, it's in POLICE reports and med records, but I doubt many outside the medical/legal community know what you are talking about.  

You, Nancy, Lilly (and I am certain I am forgetting someone else here) are doing SO wonderfully.  I expect that even if you aren't feeling that wonderful today, you are well on the road to beating this horrible demon bugger and you all will be feeling so much better by this time next week.  Keep staying in the moment, trying to add tny moments to tiny moments and this too is possible.

go Nancy go.  Yes, hold onto the anger.  It's a powerful motivator.  Please forgive me if I fuel your fire!   I once said that when I retire, I would make exposing the truth about tramadol my life's work.  Unfortunately, by that time, imagine the countless MILLIONS who will have become addicted to the tram-a-crap.  If you are able to work 50-60 hours a week and rip the socks off the dirty little tramadol secret at the same time, my hat is off to YOU.  

I don't know what you past "online customers" of this stuff do to get the folks at deathbytramadol.com to STOP contacting you.  I only "nearly placed an order " and though that was nine months ago, I have gotten two calls in the last week from someone I could barely understand telling ME that my tramadol order was ready to be shipped!   I'm just glad I  have kept hanging out with you guys.  You keep reminding me what a joy it is to get off this stuff.  Your stories keep me from ever placing an order with those bastards.

Nancy, you will need to fill us in on the straight scoop on the history of this drug.  From what I recall, it was a drug that originated in Germany in the mid 90s.  If any newcomer ventures here and reads this - the history of this drug is not very long.  The trials have been tightly controlled by the manufacturers and WALLA, the published results seemed to convince the regulatory powers that be that this was a largely SAFE drug.  

Slowly, the TRUTH will get out.  Unfortunately, that will be a little too late for people like us.

People Like Us:  What I like about Emily's  place is that it is a melting pot of so many varied individuals, of different personalities, gifts and talents that is is frightening really.  TRAMADOL is no respecter of persons.  It takes down the meat cutter and doctor both the same way.  But in so doing, the blessing is that - gathered within these walls  are an emense number of good people with different gifts.  Some can barely string three words together.  I have witnessed some here who most certainly seem to be  poets or writers of some renown.  Shall we assume that the columist writing for the New York Times is immune to tramadol?  

Some have the kindest gift of empathy and are able to offer sweet words of encouragement to the newcomer.  Others understand the technical ins and outs of how the drug works and what the medically indicated remedies may be.  Some offer the gift or research and are able to take the fight to places the rest of us know not of.  Still others like myself ,disclaim any of these talents and seem sadly inclined only to kick you all in the rump once in a while!

The beauty of this place is that it will take ALL of our gifts and talents to win the WAR on this drug we now seek to unwind from off the backs of the good people of this world.  Lacking any better summation, Hillery may have been right when she said, "it takes a village".

But not to worry, tramadol is only a SYNTHETIC OPIATE.  

But in truth, SYNTHETIC before the word OPIATE offers only cold comfort to those wanting to believe that it is somehow less powerful, kinder, gentler than the REAL OPIATES.  

I now run my car on a synthetic  petroleum product.  When these products first came out, I was sketical.  Somehow afraid that they were "less than" the real oil that comes out of the ground.  My mechanic finally convinced me that these SYNTHETIC petroleum products are more oil than REAL oil ever thought of being.  My mechanic finally convinced me that these SYNTHETICS will work harder, deliver more punch, and go longer between oil changes than the REAL oil ever thought of doing for me.  

I am old enough to remember when shirts were 100% cotton.  My family  took a drive once, many years ago -  into some southern states and I picked cotton from the side of the road.  They used to spin this stuff into cloth.  

Today it is difficult to find a shirt or pair of trousers without at least SOME if not all SNYTHETIC fibers .  These man made fibers are cheaper to produce, the profit margin is far greater, and I am told the shirts made of SYNTHETIC materials are stronger and more durable than 100% cotton shirts.  

So the next time you google tramadol and see that it is a SYNTHETIC, please don't be fooled into thinking it is in ANY way less than the real opiates.  It does the same job on you.  It's just that this drug tramadol works harder, delivers more punch, will take you further betwen doses, is cheaper to produce, it is stronger and it has a greater profit margin than the REAL opiates ever thought having.

Sweet Dreams to all (I hope),

Your friend, Fred

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by TrulyGreatful, Aug 15, 2009
Good Morning everyone, I would like to wish you all the best day possible.

Knowing how relentless the struggle to break free seems, I'm hoping to offer some encouragement.

It has been Three and a half months now since I was saved from the hell of tramadol and this last few weeks I can honestly say that I finally feel like my old self again.

The over-riding thoughts for all of us while in withdrawal seem to be, How much longer will it last? & Will I ever feel well again?
Well, although it does last a hell of a lot longer than we hope,

                   YES, YOU WILL FEEL WELL AGAIN !!!        THE PRIZE IS DEFINITELY WORTH THE FIGHT !!!
  
After the initial first days of living hell, and the subsequent few weeks of suffering some pretty awful symptoms, I too found the lasting psychological effects of extreme anxiety and depression soul destroying.
At about eight weeks in I went the doctors and was prescribed prozac, but I just felt so uneasy taking another drug. I took them reluctantly for a couple of weeks and then stopped, deep down I just knew this was not what I needed.
What I really could have done with was some reassurance that this was also due to the tramadol and would also pass. I think I knew this deep down and just wanted confirmation, but I suppose after spending so long making every decision based on fear and dread I was finding it hard to trust my own instincts.

Anyway, the good news is that those instincts were right and over the following weeks I began to feel progressively better, healthier, stronger, happier and REAL ! At last I really feel able to say I am FREE !

I only hope my recovery story may be of some inspiration if things feel hopeless.  

I have so much respect and admiration for all of you as I read of each battle fought and victory achieved. I salute you!
You are all heroes in this war and never forget,  EVEN HEROES HAVE THE RIGHT TO BLEED !!!  

Love Love Love

TD



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by saphire1, Aug 15, 2009
hi all. I have been off T since July 1. the problem I am ahving is severe neck and upper back pain. i do have 3 herniated cervical discs but this pain is worse than the original pain. I' am taking all the suppliments vitamins, empson salt baths, tylenol, motrin...but nothing seems to work. This pain seamed  to start  1 week into w/d. on occaision when the pain was so bad at my last resort i would take 1/2 vicoden.  (used 4 pills in 6 weeks) . the vicoden would relieve the pain for a few hrs but would return just as bad or worse.  at first potassium replacement helped. I got 2 days of releif. I no longer have any otherw/d symptoms except these awful stabbing pains. I went to my  DR on mon. he gave me anther set of trigger point injections. Relief lasted 2 days and Im back to square one. he told me to use the ultram and vicoden as needed, but that is not an option.  Emily said in response to some one else before getting a treatment wait 1 year to see what your true pain pattern is. Is this still w/d.? All other symptoms od w/d are gone except this pain. Instead of getting better with time, it seems to be getting  worse. I havent read any one else seeming to have this. These episodes are triggered by minimal exertion, sometimes even reading the paper. Yesterday my husband said try a benedryl. that seemed to help.the pain. Is there anyone else haveing this type of hypersesitivity and if so how do you deal with it. Is there any corelation with tissue histamine relaease and post w/d??? .. someone told me it was exposed nerve endings that were previosly coated with opiates. I tried to reserch it but got more confused and uncomfortable. Short term memory is still a bit of a problem and sitting at the computer for periods of time is a problem.  I just want to feel better and I am getting discouraged.

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by Trees_and_Tablets, Aug 15, 2009
Saphire1

In my last post (a few entries ago), I mentioned that the hypersensitivity manifested itself with me by skin pain and soreness combined with a continual tingling pain all over. I got some non sleepy anti histamines from Walmart (Asda in the UK) and they helped a lot with no side effects at all. Definitely worth a try.

Apparently it takes some time for your system to start producing the feel good stuff because the opiates have been doing it instead.

Good luck and best wishes,
Stephen

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by Printer989, Aug 15, 2009
Thanks for the response Callisto99, I'm gonna check out that website you mentioned because i researched sciatia and i do have the weight gain, and the pain behind my thighs that i thought was caused by my computer chair.

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by Lillyval, Aug 15, 2009
I'm leaving tomorrow for "vacation" with my in-laws.  Not just parents-in-law but sisters, brothers, cousins -everybody.  I can't remember when I've ever dreaded anything more.  I've seriously considered staying home but I really think I'm too depressed to be by myself for a week.  If it weren't for the trip I'd be going down to zero tram this week but having been through it before I can't do it in that setting.  So I'll be maintaining at a very low dose for one more week.

What's worse is my 17 year old cat disappeared about 4 days ago.  We live near the forest so I always figured when her time came she would just wander off and die, but now that it may really be happening I'm sick over the fact that she may be out there suffering.  I'll be looking for her today, but tomorrow I'm supposed to leave town.  Then what?

I've been crying a lot.  My husband is trying to be supportive but he's getting very frustrated with me.  I truly appreciate all the support I have gotten here.  I come here most every day and share your pain and triumphs.   I won't have access to a computer on "vacation" so I'll have to go for a week without all of you.  My faith is stronger than ever.  I believe that we will recover.  I remember someone in NA many, many years ago making the statement, "God didn't get me this far so he could drop kick me now".  I'll be sending you healing thoughts while I'm away.
Peace, hope and courage,
Lilly

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by saphire1, Aug 15, 2009
Treesandtabs thanks for the reply.  this pain is so weird. It feels like a muscle spasm but you cant massage it out like a normal spasm. i just read your previous post and you explained it...abnormal firing of nerves. where your pain was at the skins surface, mine more internal  The benedryl seemed to helped but made me sleepy. I  will try a nondrowsy type. If it doesn't work, I'll ask my doc for the neurotinin.  I had been on lyrica for nerve pain before but had to get off of it because of  side efffects. the lyrica is second generation to the gabapentin and is much stronger. I will try anything that will help. my bigest fear however is getting dependance on something else even if just an anti histamine. but as longas i know it is temporary I think I can deal with it.do you know how long this raw nerve-random firing takes to get out of your system?






















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by Gerty411, Aug 15, 2009
Dear Lil,

I'm so sorry about your cat.  I hope you can figure things out before your trip.

I understand your anxiety about your upcoming trip.  I think it is wise to not wean off completely during the vacation.  I do beleive that you should go.  You have to begin to deal with unpleasant things without t.  You have made such progress.

We will all be here and you will be in my thoughts daily!

Gerty

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by Trees_and_Tablets, Aug 15, 2009
saphire1,

Don't think we're allowed to post links here, but if you google P.A.W.S. you'll find a great explanation of what is going on with your longer term recovery. It appears that the initial feeling of 'being better' is some kind of immediate 'rebound' and the full recovery takes a bit longer dependent on usage. From my research I would say 6 months seems to be the norm for a full recovery post cessation.

I don't think the anti-histamine will cause any dependancy, my doc doesn't think so. But I know your fear and the fact that our brains are still so mucked up from T makes you doubt everything and worry incessantly.

I think most drugs that can help you off the last throws of withdrawal are probably a load less bad for you than T was, and anything that helps to ease the pain is worth a go. The end goal doesn't change - only the way of achieving it.

Hang on in there,
Stephen

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by hadenough55, Aug 15, 2009
Lil, sorry about your cat. Lost my beagle of 10 years a little over a year ago. So I know how you feel. Also it was my fault. I was cleaning my gas grill and he got a hold of some of the crap that came off it and died of a stomach infection. That is when I started taking more of the T on a steady basis. I have been c/t for 17 days now and also going on vacation. So use to taking more on vacation and anxious to see what happens this time. I don't want to go back to my old ways. Keep up your dose to you get back. Good luck to all.

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by saphire1, Aug 15, 2009
trees and tablets

thanks for the info.



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by nancy652, Aug 15, 2009
Hi all...FinallyFred thank you for the info. That is my understanding as well as to the background info I have seen. Thank you for your constant appearance on the board. You and Emily...the fact that you are there and so articulate...it says it all. It makes us able to go on because there are some people here who display some really sophisticated knowledge in their fields and every bit of info helps. Everyone's story helps, no matter who they are, in whatever way they can say it. Some people's stories just really speak to me....and some exchanges on here kind of blow me away, the casual exchage of some pretty esoteric information about this drug. Some people have obviously been studying up.

So...though I won't respond to every word above since my last, you can be sure I have read every word. Some twice. :)

Hugs to you all and a quick story: My siamese...I wish I could tell you his name but I can't because it's unusual and well...you know, just can't put myself out there. So anyway...every night at 4:00 am he gets up off my bed and goes to the sliding door windows in my room. Every single night without fail, he just sits there from 4:00 to 6:00 a.m. almost on the dot. He looks around and watches the sun come up and checks out the action.

Now the action at my place involves an unobstructed high-rise view toward the east. And this siamese is DOING SOMETHING when he looks out. He is working. This is his job, in his mind. But I was never able to figure out what his job was.

First I thought it was some protection instinct, due to the obvious "dead of the night" timetable. It might have started out like that. But it seemed more like he was just "reporting for duty." This morning I finally figured it out.

After his lookout, beginning at 6:10 or so...food and morning ablutions. But his morning moods aren't consistent. They change every day. In fact, they change...like the weather.

This morning, after his lookout, he ate quickly and then hid. This was kind of unusual. But then twenty minutes later, a thunderstorm swept though from the south and moved quickly through the area.

My siamese is a weatherman.

And...I'm just saying...he's not underground.

So, apparently you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows. But..you all already knew that :)
And you can take the fact that I already knew that too in any way that you want:)

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by jbr999, Aug 16, 2009
Hi all,

I'm new to this forum, and have read many of the more recent posts, and I am so glad to have found a community of people that have had similar experiences with the big T.  I've been on it for approx. 2 years, often ordering it online for $125 for 180 tabs, which last me usually about a month and a half.  One time Fedex came to the house on Sat. when I wasn't home and I had to go to and pick them up the following Monday.  I thought, no big deal,  I'll get them Monday.  Well, I didn't sleep Saturday or Sunday night, the pain came back with a vengeance (I have a herniated disc ) and I was sweating, headachy,
and my legs felt as though there was a fire burning inside them.  Then I wondered--was this withdrawal, or is this just the way I would feel without any drugs?  I had a suspicion that some of these feelings were related to withdrawal, but I didn't want to believe that.  Of course I went back on the Tramadol, and thought that I would try to wean down slowly. I did manage to wean down to 2x 50mg a day and then went 5 days without any.  I thought, "If this is withdrawal,  surely the symptoms will be gone in 5 days."  5 days later, I still felt like s#%T.  So, I concluded that it couldn't be withdrawal, since it lasted so long.
Now in these forums I see that it can last much longer!  This is disheartening.  Now I'm taking 2-3 per day, and can't imagine going to work (I'm an RN on a busy floor--heavy physical work) without any help from the tramadol.  Motrin, tylenol, naproxen
give some relief from the original back pain, but they don't touch the burning in my legs.  I went to the Dr. a couple of months ago and they did an electrical test that showed 'moderate neuropathy'  in my legs. I'm guessing this is the source of the burning sensation in my legs--but why should I have neuropathy?  I'm not a diabetic, and am healthy otherwise.
Anyway, after reading many post here,  I know I need to get off these things, and I know it will not be easy.
I have a 'vacation' coming up next month,  and I'm thinking I can wean off during that time. Right now I'm at 2-3 50mg tabs a day, plus motrin 600mg about 3x a day.  Any suggestions will be much appreciated

jbr999


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by kevzx81, Aug 16, 2009
jbr999>you are now at the same dosage level as I was when I began my taper. I found w/d after taper much better than going cold turkey (which I also did by accident).Opinions differ though,especially for those with a personal addiction.
I also battled it out during the holiday (xmas in my case). SUCKS huh?! But a most worthwhile sacrifice in the end...

I am wondering how long your vacation lasts? Perhaps it might work to taper towards your vacation and then jump off
on day 1 of it. This would seem to make the best use of time while enabling you to keep working meantime.

I guess you already know this,being an RN,but in case you dont:Tramadol is available in soluble form.I found this worked well to precisely control my taper.I also timed my doses according to my daily schedule,varying them by up to 3-4 hours.

However you decide to do it, courage to you in the battle ahead.

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by nancy652, Aug 16, 2009
Hi all...my siamese says I need to watch Tropical depression Bill :)
welcome jbr!

so...I am not sleeping regularly, yet. Late to bed, early to rise. I'm getting alot of work done, which is a wd effect I didn't expect. I am now four days totally off Tramadol, done over a two week period taper from 12 to 0,  50 mg pills a day. Last night I had a little less than 6 hours sleep. It is kind of nice to be up early in the morning.

Bad things:
I never knew there were "restless arms". A new low. I have had moderate RLS since a child, never treated. While it has not been awful, it has not been great since last week. Then, two nights ago, while trying to sleep, my arms started to feel uncomfortable in the same way at the shoulders. Bad. Lots of moving around, switching position. A heating pad helped. Still a few chills and sweats. They don't come for long, just a few minutes before bed and upon awakening.

Cravings are few. Tramadol is not an option, so it's kind of like...move along. This is the whole problem (and solution): I can't have any. Next.

I'm a little hyper, then exhausted. There's no middle right now. And exhausted doesn't mean sleep. It means some downtime and then up to read, maybe down again and up to eat. Big-time cravings, like pregnancy. I'm craving very spicy food which plays havoc with the stomach. I don't care. Green tobasco rules. Fried eggplant. Major protein cravings, both red meat and sushi. Super rare meat...redder than you need to know about.  Japanese food with pickled ginger. Big breakfasts with fried eggs and potatoes. I haven't gained an ounce because I'm actually moving around like a normal person instead of trying to preserve a T cocoon. ooops..that's good, so let's go there:

Good things:
While I have always spent a great deal of time (almost all of it) with my kids, I have learned more about them in the past week than in the last year because I have been forced from my routine, which was unnatura,l into a new one, which is more suitable for household maintenance. When I began T it helped with my mood and with nightime maintenance of the children. As discussed above, night in the beginning was more of a reverie and I awakened easily. This helps with four children at home. But then it got ugly and I paid dearly with major sleep needs that were never filled. Now I am UP! I'm UP! up, up up! and cooking! alot!

I could never read well with Tramadol in my system. A compelling mystery: I was, before Tramadol, a voracious reader who when left alone would consume a book a day for as many days as I was able. And those were alot. Since I have stopped the tramadol I am both reading and writing more precisely, though my spelling is mysteriously impaired. Age? I think not :).
My analytical skills have made a stunning comeback. I am craving puzzles of very kind like I am craving fried eggplant with hot sauce.

My soul has returned. And I mean that literally. It was mad at me, but has made a tenative reappearance in those dead of night moments I am now awake...which are alot:). I am a quite spiritual person with a definite belief in the idea of spirit and soul. It makes no difference my denomination or if there even is one. It doesn't matter because I'm talking about rediscovering the everyday spiritual moments that make a difference to all of us...an odd coincidence that has meaning, a dream about a dear friend, an urge to follow a line of thought that suddenly makes sense.

While on Tramadol I prayed for these moments every night and they wouldn't come. Ever. I knew why. I gave it every chance and then I had to stop the Tramadol. The opiate gods are not kind to those who use who are not in true need. With my use, I attempted to make an end-run around that the opiate's power. It is not possible. Use too much, use it wrong, use too long and it will burn you. Worse, it will isolate you from your own power cause you're giving it all away to IT. There are no lies. It is an equation. You are on a simple switch circuit when you use opiates. Legitmate use means your opiate switch is closed and voila! Opiate power flows. No one knows but you. Only you know when you need it and only you know when that need ends. Mine ended.

Despite my duel with tramadol, I don't think regulation is probably the answer. Opiates, in a sense, are the most important drugs on the planet. Life would truly not be worth living for many without them. I think they are probably underprescibed in many cases when they can offer relief, under the guidance of a truly interested doctor and not a "pain management specialist" of the type that has co-opted what was once a legitimate field. I believe it appropriate in some cases for either psychic OR physical pain. People with psychic pain choose a warm opiate embrace for a reason. How about feeling suicidal? Is that a legitmate reason to want relief? Is that not painful?

But we know what happens when use opiate use gets out of control, and we feed addiction and tolerance through surrepitious online buys. Waiting for the FEDEX man like he's a dealer. How embarassing is that? Or when drugs are foolishly thrown your way by a practicioner who cannot see the process through and is "surprised" when your need for relief has become an adddiction. Why can't we share these things with our doctors without feeling like criminals? Part of the reason why is because they themselves are scared of the DEA, the same group that signed off on this sh**. Its tragic when grandmothers suffer wd and don't even know what it is till they meet Emilypost and friends. The shame of feeling like a "drug addict" to a person of a certain age must be immense. Who needs this? It's awful. And more importantly, this particular drug is strange. Even its path to the market was odd. At the very least, the lies about Tramadol's nonnarcotic and nonaddictive properties need to stop.  That way, if you choose to use, you know what's going on.

Hugs to Jessica and the rest of my friends here. Thanks for being here for me.

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by damnitol, Aug 16, 2009
Saphire1,
I have been having the same kind of thing, only lower back and hip (where my pain was originally). I have found that Percogesic (otc pain reliever) seems to help. It has acetaminophen (tylenol) and phenyltoloxamine citrate (an antihistamine) in it. It helps me more than just tylenol and doesn't seem to make me as drowsy as benadryl. Just a suggestion!
Dana

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by MIKEHELP, Aug 16, 2009
IM SO GLAD I WAS ONLY ON TRAMADOL 2 OR 3 MONTHS BEFORE I REALISED HOW BAD THE WITHDRAWAL WAS.
AND I GOT OUT EARLY. I COULD HAVE BEEN ON THEM FOR OVER A YEAR. I REALLY THINK IF PEOPLE WANT TO GET CLEAN THEY SHOULDNT EVEN TAPER. JUST STOP TAKING THE DRUGS FULL STOP. OF COURSE ITS WORSE THEN TAPERING. BUT IF YOUR TAKING ANY TRAMADOL EVEN DURING TAPERING YOU COULD BE MORE LIKELY TO TAKE MORE OR STICK IT OUT. JUST STOP AND SEEK ALTERNATE SOURCES OF RELIEF. IE HOT BATHS, FAMILY, VITAMINS, MINERALS, EXERCISE AND REST.

I KNOW THINK IM OVER MY TRAMADOL HOWEVER THE PAIN FROM MY LOWER DISC HERNIATION IS EVER PRESENT. I STILL HAVE THE RUNS QUITE BADELY AND MY BONES SEEM TO ACHE ALOT. ESPECIALLY MY RIBS.
I KNOW I HAVE 1 BRUISED OR DAMAGER RIB BUT NOW RIBS ON BOTH SIDES ARE IN PAIN.


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by iontheprize, Aug 16, 2009
On this moment....

I find myself two months in and a bit lost.  I'm only sharing this because I feel an obligation to all of you to do so.  As a warrior in the heat of the battle, my purpose was clear and the enemy was obvious.  I fought cravings, pain, pain, pain, lethargy, depression, illness of w/d and feeling like it would never end.  It took 6 weeks, but that ended.

So here I am.  I'm still a warrior, but as if I'm resting in my gear.  Living near the most beautiful grounds of major civil war battles, I appreciate their beauty as they appear today.  It's almost as if I'm resting against a tree along a hilly plain with the heavy cloak of armor.  It's quiet.  I can see beauty of morning fog, the sound of birds, sight of deer, the beauty of a clear sky with big puffy clouds and hear the peaceful sounds of just nature; of calm.  So, I'm not quite sure what the enemy is anymore.  I'm twiddling my thumbs wondering what is next.  I'm in a place of fragile safety, but not knowing how to WIN.  Like my issues with the game of chess.  I'm good, but have never check-mated an opponent.

I'm really feeling things.  Tram numbed me more than I realize.  I feel angry and sad.  I feel frustrated and tired of feeling those things.  I'm exhausted. All the while, my life is ramping up for some major changes and losses and I'm living on faith that I can get through all of it.

My focus is gone again.  I can't read and focus like I could a few weeks ago.  My memory is shot.  I feel so discouraged.  As a person with education who understands mental health, physical health, coping etc....I find myself needing to be the student again.  The student of living life.  

This week, for an extremely superficial reason, I nearly relapsed.  I didn't.  There were about 5 reasons that I didn't.  One of them was that I felt I owed it to all of you to stay strong and get through. This week it has been moment by moment...and not for tram, but for whatever it may be to dull these feelings that I am too tired to feel.

I always try to post something postive and encouraging.  However, I wrote to a person once, "and so it goes, we kick some butt, shed some tears and live our life."  

For me, a person who took T liberally for recreational use, I find these days harder than the others and when I understand the next thing that "clicks" to help me move forward in my next stage of reclaiming my life I will share it with you.

I know that there are discoveries to be made on this difficult journey.  The reward is moving forward and sharing for others.  I know this can happen because of people like Fred, Emily, KC, Madtram etc who continue to show us that the days of being free can continue to accrue.  

~jessica

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by TrulyGreatful, Aug 16, 2009
Dear jbr999
It sounds like sound advice from kevzx81 above as he was at the same level as yourself.
I think it's a great idea to take the opportunity of your vacation, be kind to yourself, you know this isn't going to be easy.
Whenever you feel disheartened and have a little wobble, just keep reminding yourself, It's Worth It, Whatever It Takes, It's Worth It !
p.s. did you suffer the burning in your legs originally, or only since taking the tramadol?

Dear Gerty
Thank you so much for the lovely little bed-time story about your cat (I read it just before turning in last night) I fell asleep with a smile on my face, absolutely priceless!

Dear Nancy
I, like yourself, have been thrilled to rediscover old pleasures such as music.
I was lucky enough to go see Leonard Cohen a couple of weeks ago and think you're in for a treat. It was an amazing concert
truly uplifting. Now this is the type of healing we could all do with on prescription!

Dear Chrissie and Plebo, you're in my prayers. Hope you are both o.k.

xxx  Best Wishes for Health and Happiness to all  xxx

Love Love Love

TD  







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by chrissie145, Aug 16, 2009
I have caught up with the last few posts and am encouraged by the fact that I am not alone.  But this really is a lonely battle and one we each have to ultimately face by ourselves. You all seem so brave and can even laugh at yourselves!

At aged 65 I have become reclusive as I cant stop shaking and any conversation seems trivial. The only thing in my mind is "How much longer this agony".  I have only been off Tramadol for 22 days but realise that I have been withdrawing for 8 months!!!  Once I realised at Christmas that I was taking the tablets to feel better in my mood and not because my frozen shoulders were hurting I resolved to take just 2 a day. One at 8am and one at 6 pm.  I had no idea why I was agitated and shaking all day. In fact I thought it was because I needed the diazepam I took at the same time!  The truth hit home when my daily dose needed raising for me to get any relief at these times. If I took 50mg I could sit blissed out for 4 hours - but it kept me sick as I could do nothing else and then needed more!!!!

I ended up on diazepam because the doctors misread the signs back in February. I know now I was withdrawing from tramadol and the panic attack I had was due to this. The doctors then added 45mg mirtazapine and  15mg of diazepam to the mix. (I have therm down to 8mg now)

Many thanks to Michelle and Nancy who responded to my last post. I need a bit of advice again please.

This is Day 22 of C/T from tramadol. I have had the worst day yet. I shake all over and cannot do or think of anything except how long this will last!  I am asking myself the following questions:
Is the shaking due to W/D
or is it a side effect of mirtazapine - and can I go C/T off mirtazapine
or have I become tolerant to the 8mg of diazepam and I am shaking for more of that.
or is this how I really am.

How do I unpick this mess that I am in.  I cannot reduce diazepam again until the T w/d stop - or can I?

I am frail and thin and so very scared. Sorry to be a wimp but I dont know what to do next.  I could be putting up with this forever thinking its the T when maybe its one of the other drugs.  I am sure someone will have some common sense to share with me over this.

Well donje all you brave warriors. PLease can you help a slightly frailer one?

Chrissie





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by madtram, Aug 16, 2009
Chrissie, you are doing great, you have 22 days off the most toxic of your meds, tramadol.

The shaking is withdrawal related for sure.  It's difficult to know which substance is the strongest influence given that all psychoactive drugs can cause nervous system side effects.

However, based on the known pharmacology of mirtazapine & the benzos you are taking, (valium & zopiclone), this is my best guess:

Taking tramadol & the benzos together has an additive effect so now that you have withdrawn the tram, you are also experiencing a decreased effect from the benzos, that is, you are already experiencing some benzo withdrawal without decreasing your dose.

I think the mirtazapine is less likely to be the culprit as it is more associated with lethargy than nervous system stimulation & your symptoms are classic benzo withdrawal.

You should consult your doc, (I'm only a med student), but based on the recommendations of Dr Ashton, the benzo specialist, I would try stopping the zopiclone completely & slightly increasing the valium then when you feel strong enough, you can taper off the valium.

I would stick with the mirtazapine for now as it should help to stabilise your nervous system.  It is much more straight forward to discontinue than benzos, when you do want to stop.

Please don't hold back from posting, we are all here to support one another through the withdrawal process.  It's not quite live chat but there's usually someone close by.

Let me know if you have more questions,

Hugs from Michelle


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by madtram, Aug 16, 2009
Jessica, I too feel like I am learning how to live again, in kind of a teenage way sometimes.  Being perimenopausal with hormones all over the spectrum is probably contributing but at the same time it is a process. It makes sense that after all that high energy invested in withdrawal, there will be downtime, if we were plants, we would probably die off a little before sprouting again.

Nancy, pre-tram, I had been a reasonably regular meditator but once tram set in, I drifted away under its influence instead.  Even though I still believed in the powerful benefits of meditation, I couldn't find that place, couldn't still the brain buzz, it was a big loss.  It has taken, to quote our Fred, "weeks & weeks" but at last that access to my subconscious has returned & I had forgotten how fulfilling it can be.  

Kev, so good to see you.  How does your garden grow? Down here we have crazy weather.  I badly need rain for my veges & my water tank, having had dry summer most of the winter.  Yesterday, the southern states had freezing conditions with major storms while less than 9 hours by car away, people were sweating at the beach.  But covering the earth with concrete & burning fossil fuels makes no difference, right.

On that note, blessings to all from a small corner of our tiny mud ball somewhere on the edge of the universe.

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by Gerty411, Aug 16, 2009
Hi y'all,

Yesterday in a moment of utter clarity I realized I have spent at least half of my life in search of the "holy grail" , aka  the altered state.  In a way I'm glad a I let my guard down with tramadol.  I beleive that the process of withdrawal from this and counseling will help me with my issues.  I wish I knew why I have issues and other people don't.  I beleive its a combo of genetics and psychological tendencies.

I decreased my dose to 25 mg/dy. today.  I'm mean as a snake and driving my family crazy with my mood swings .

Once again thankyou all for giving me the strength to continue on this path.  I know the rewards will be worth while.

Thank god for my husband who's been there nonstop since I began my taper. By this time next week I will be free of t.  

That scares the hell out of me!

Peace to all,

Love, Gerty

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by nancy652, Aug 16, 2009
Hi to all the great souls here and especially to you Jessica, my other angel who inspired me to start this process besides Emily. I read your post and I just want you to know how much I appreciated your thoughts and your honesty. You have been an inspiration to me every single day here. I am so glad you're here and I think asking the difficult questions is what I need to do too. Please keep writin no matter what here and to me. It means alot to me, more than you know.

Michelle you are amazing. The world needs doctors like you will no doubt be. No wonder you sound so knowledgeable. You are :)

Gerty I'm right there with you. Tonight is hard for me, too. I have actual pain and there's nothing I can do about it. It just has to hurt and I've worked much of my life to avoid it if I could. My legs are feeling terrible and I think the T was covering isssues that I now need to deal with in an alternative, nonnarcotic way. Plus, my body is stressed from the detox and it adds to the pain.

I'm becoming more of a morning person. Who would have thought.

hugs to all
N

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by 12Stepper, Aug 16, 2009
So good to hear about people getting their souls back! Welcome to Jbr999. I don't have a suggestion as to the taper vs. cold turkey--by coming here regularly and really being sick and tired (hitting bottom) with the tramadol, people have had success both ways. Some people have documented their taper and shared about each decrease along the way, as well as the symptoms they have. We are glad to have you among us.

I've enjoyed reading all the posts tonight and glad to see Kevzx still on his compost heap. It's about week 9 now tram free and I'm still having some depression on and off. When it's on it feels like it will never go away and when it's off it's hard to believe I was ever depressed. Isn't that a lot like tramadol? Tricky! Still, because of the on/off nature, I really know it's withdrawal. I have to remember that I was prescribed ativan at the same time as tramadol and the two probably messed up my natural feel-good brain chemicals for longer than just on one of them alone. I don't mean to complain since I am having a great day, but just in case anyone has something like this happening at nine weeks, you will know what's going on.

Such a great inspiring group to read. Thank you all for sharing!

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by 12Stepper, Aug 16, 2009
Forgot to mention, Yogi tea "Kava Stress Relief" is great as a sleep aid for anyone still suffering from insomnia. Again, it is so good to see so many of you posting and letting us share in your joys and pain.

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by saphire1, Aug 17, 2009
treesandtabs,
thanks for the advice. the loratidine is working.1st day pain was down by 75% 2nd 90%. I think the mild pain I have left is from my original injury and that i can tolerate. the pain had steadly gotton worse after week 2. I never corelated it with stopping the benedryl wich i was taking for runny nose and anxiety. I was getting so discourged. because after that acute phase you start to feel better physicallly even with the emotional rollercoaster. the pain was getting so bad i thought i would lose my mind. i could not do anything but ly in bed or the recliner with a heating pad to my  upper back and neck.  2 sets of trigerpoint injections later ,the antihistamines did the trick. I got on my treadmill for 45 min yesterday morning then actually went to a barbeque in the afternoon. I had not been out of my house in two weeks except to go to the dr.'s

damitol,
I herd someone mention percogesic before but I am so glad you expalined it.was tylenol with  anantihistamine. I thought it was another form of percoset/percodan and immediately discounted using it thinking it was a narcotic.

until my past injury I never had a problem with drugs. I have had a few surgerys,sprains, broken bone here or there but nver used for more than a few days. but with the chronic pain from 3 herniated cervical discs with degeneration and spinal stenosis gradually built up a tolerance which snowballed into an addiction. I was soon taking fentynal,lyrica, soma, vicodin and ultram on a daily basis. I started detoxing one med at a time in dec. july 1 was first day med free. buta few days when pain was so bad 1/2 vicdin would make it bearable but the pain anxiety and sweats would return. that was enough for me to bite the bullet a few days. but once again when I couldnt stand it 1/2 vicodin would give a few hrs relief. i now belive with the antihistamine i  am past using the crutch.

mikehelp
are you using an anti histamine for pain. as you can see from the above post it really helps. PAWS(post acute withdrawl symptoms) site as suggeted to me by trees andtabs is also informative to view.

jbr999
you mentioned you had a herniated disc. if it is low back that is probably the cause of the neuropathy. the sciatic nerve runs from the lowback down the legs. 25 years ago i had simalar neuropathy in my left leg caused by a ruptured lumbar disc. before surgery i couldn;t work. after surgery i was back to work after a few weeks of therapy. ask your dr questions and dont be afraid to get a second opinion.

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by MIKEHELP, Aug 17, 2009
i got a herniated disc in my lower back, and extreme nerve pain in my whole body espceially my legs and feet.
ive had it for a year now. at first my dad didnt believe me and he would shout at me to go get a job.
i could have been fixed ages ago as i had bupa for a few months but my dad couldnt be fu £ $ e d to check.
my family dont understand the pain im in. i see a neurologist on september 9th. im still going thru it drug free.
i hate surgery though it sends shudders down my back.

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by chrissie145, Aug 17, 2009
Thank you Michelle.  I echo the sentiment that we need doctors like you! If only my GP understood so well.

What you say makes sense but I am afraid to stop the zopiclone as I wont get any sleep at all. I did take a quarter off my mirtazapine last night and only got 4 hours (with the zopiclone) as the mirtazapine helped me sleep. I can see that i shall have to increase my diazepam though.

Thank you for ebcouragement and good luck to all out there.

Chrissie

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by 2Sue, Aug 17, 2009
Hi Chrissie,
i dont know if youve read past posts, my great aunt who is 81, has just come through tram withdrawal,, she got them at xmas for sciatica and only myself , who also recovered from tram, recognised the signs of withdrawal....
Like you she was living alone and suffering but she didnt know why.....She ended up in a psychiatry unit for the aged..At the time i thought it was not the place for her, she was shaking, extremely anxious, totally depressed,not herself at all. But as shes got better she has made some friends there, has started knitting (the shakes have stopped) and she is through it.It has taken a few months as they put her un anti psychotics and antidepressants....in hindsite it probably saved her as she felt like you with the suicidal thoughts (as i also have had) and thought it was the end for her. The loneliness and worry of how she was feeling really got to her...she hated the place at first and was so paranoid cause shed never ever been in hospital before ,but if shed stayed at home  it would have been worse for her...
please get all the support you can..take one day at a time...it will pass.Stay with this site haowever bad you feel,its a lifesaver.
My great aunt is home now and im so proud of her and great we have her back to her witty self.
sue

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by nancy652, Aug 17, 2009
Hope you all are well.

I feel pretty awful today. It might be my worst yet. Children are sick with some kind of flu and I think I am feeling worst b/c of that. I can't tell if hip and leg pain is that, wd or sciatic nerve. Anyway, just miserable. And about 9 hours sleep over 48 because I am so uncomfotable. I think my body tried to do me a favor by giving me a hyper-boost to jump the Tramadol habit, but now I need to go through this. Epsom salts do help Jessica. I was in and out of the bath every few hours last night. I found sitting in hot water to my waist with cool washclothes for my face helped. esp with the epsom or sea salt added to the water. Honestly, nothing else does right now...my old standbys valerian etc. don't help and benadryl is making my sciatic nerve or legs very restless. I'm tired but no comfort.

Just waiting. Thinking of all of you.

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by iontheprize, Aug 17, 2009
Nancy, when I was in acute w/d NOTHING helped except those baths.  Pathetic as it sounds, there were times that I was too weak and in too much pain to even draw the bath.  They relaxed me, took away the pain for a while and helped with the RLS stuff enough so that I could fall asleep.  The wonderful thing is that you've had a glimpse into your future.  You had the exciting beginnings of a re-awakening that is ready for you again when you get through this.  Your positive spirit and energy has delighted and inspired so many.  So now it's time to take care of you and heal.  

Michelle, thank you for normalizing where I'm at now.  I'm relieved.  I love the analogy of a pruning of the self and ready to bloom again!  

Healing energy to all of you....

~jessica

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by nancy652, Aug 17, 2009
thank you Jessica. I was too tired to mention that last night I only had sea salt, so this morning I told my husband to bring the epson salts home from the store. Right after I wrote I soaked and I felt noticeably better and have continued to feel a bit better, really much better, till now. It's quite amazing. I have no idea if it's just good timing or not, but maybe all my cravings and the need for certain minerals have something to do with the epsom salts seeming to make me feel so noticeably better. Thank goodness I remembered what you said. I was a little worried at how awful I felt yesterday and today.

Thank you for the sweet words.

Hugs to all,
N

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by nancy652, Aug 17, 2009
I'm back for a sec. I wanted to tell you all that I was so impressed by the epsom salts today that I researched magnesium and was shocked to see that almost everything I was craving was a good to excellent source of magnesium. I still need a regular night's sleep but even though I am very tired, I feel more normal rsince the soaks than I think I have in many years. I'm not actualIy sure because I can't remember. I am shocked. I really felt awful earlier. I think the stress of the detox depleted essential minerals, esp. magnesium and the epsom helped me absorb it to some therapeutic levels. My hip feels so relaxed right now and I have no urge to keep moving my legs. Perhaps it is just relief from the nonstop pain I have been in for about two days. I soaked two or three times throughout the past five hours.

I just wanted to report this as NOTHING  has offered me much relief in this detox as it appears that the epsom has. Not B vitamins alleve, asprin, benadryl or even the small dose of tranzene I had to help taper. I am quite amazed. I wanted to post this in the hope that if you are suffering, you at least give it a try. Maybe it was good timing, but wow. Also, I took tylenol and drank some cola this morning.

Jessica, it feels like you saved my life today.

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by kevzx81, Aug 18, 2009
Michelle-The garden grows poorly;not enough sun,too much rain and cloud cover.Wheat is late ripening in the fields and eveyone is acting like everythings normal. There is a massive upswing in indoor crop production....a good excuse to buy a growlight! Regarding fossil fuels etc; My local road system causes me to drive 4 miles to and from a supermarket 1 mile away. Whereupon the checkout clerk pesters me to recycle my carrier bags to help the environment.
I smile at them and say"I have a large diesel engine and no next of kin" while grinning maniacally. It gets some interesting reactions.
But yes,freak weather on the east coast uk. dangerous tidal surges,freak storms,constant high pressure. And the media is very quiet regarding the several hundred such reports filed by agencies this year.
Keep a party hat handy..the end is nigh lol.

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by FinallyFred, Aug 18, 2009
Hello Tramadol Warriors -   I have read your amazing posts and am just lurking this evening.  All the best.  Fred

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by iontheprize, Aug 18, 2009
About Epsom salt, for a while people may have thought I had stock in it as I seemed to mention it all the time.  LOL.  One of the things that I read was this: "I always knew that soaking in a tub full of hot water with a few cups of Epsom Salts was good for relaxing muscles and drawing toxins from the body, but I could never figure out why. And it wasn’t until I spent some time at the Epsom Salt Industry Council web site that I learned that epsom salts—made of the mineral magnesium sulfate—are also a sedative for the nervous system."   (http://www.care2.com/greenliving/use-epsom-salts-13-wonderful-ways.html)

I would imagine nasty T leaving my body while enjoying the relief of moments without pain.

Nancy, hang in there.  I hope your family is feeling better and that they are able to help out their wounded warrior.  Hugs to you!

So, everyone do your best, take care of you and heal...

~jessica

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by MIKEHELP, Aug 18, 2009
yeaa im now fully over my tamadol, even my poo is turning into something normal.
i too found hot baths where amazing. not only for withdrawal but my back and legs.
great if epsom salts are a sedative for the nervous systems i just bought half a kilo of the stuff.
its cheap too. how much shall i put in 1 bath?. im one of those idiots that overdose lotions and creamse thinking more the better which isnt always the truth. also people try using RADOX MUSLCE SOAK. that  $H1T works wonders.
im now going to have a hot bath with loads of muslce soak and epsom salts.

p.s before my injury i was on a diet and into running and exercise and two martial arts.
There is a book i strongly advise all of you to buy it is called  " The Optimum Nutrition Bible" by Patrick  Holford.

toodle dooes


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by MIKEHELP, Aug 18, 2009
i just had a epsom salt bath. there is definetly some proof. my skin also feels really really nice.
this is what research i have found on epsom salts ;
This brings us to Epsom salt. Known scientifically as hydrated magnesium sulfate, Epsom salt is rich in both magnesium and sulfate. While both magnesium and sulfate can be poorly absorbed through the stomach, studies show increased magnesium levels from soaking in a bath enriched with Epsom salt! Magnesium and sulfate are both easily absorbed through the skin. Sulfates play an important role in the formation of brain tissue, joint proteins and the proteins that line the walls of the digestive tract. They stimulate the pancreas to generate digestive enzymes and are thought to help detoxify the body of medicines and environmental contaminants.

Researchers and physicians suggest these health benefits from proper magnesium and sulfate levels, as listed on the web site of the Epsom Salt Industry Council:

Improved heart and circulatory health, reducing irregular heartbeats, preventing hardening of the arteries, reducing blood clots and lowering blood pressure.
Improved ability for the body to use insulin, reducing the incidence or severity of diabetes.
Flushed toxins and heavy metals from the cells, easing muscle pain and helping the body to eliminate harmful substances.
Improved nerve function by electrolyte regulation. Also, calcium is the main conductor for electrical current in the body, and magnesium is necessary to maintain proper calcium levels in the blood.
Relieved stress. Excess adrenaline and stress are believed to drain magnesium, a natural stress reliever, from the body. Magnesium is necessary for the body to bind adequate amounts of serotonin, a mood-elevating chemical within the brain that creates a feeling of well being and relaxation.
Reduced inflammation to relieve pain and muscle cramps.
Improved oxygen use.
Improved absorption of nutrients.
Improved formation of joint proteins, brain tissue and mucin proteins.
Prevention or easing of migraine headaches.


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by nancy652, Aug 18, 2009
Hi Mike, Jessica and Fred and all...hugs

I did sleep last night a solid five to six hours which when I was on Tramadol two shot weeks back would have killed me. I am experiencing a natural wake-up before sunrise for the past several days. I couldn't be more surprised as I am NOT a morning person even before T. I'm not sure if this will last. To tell you the truth I was always a little afraid when I woke up early...like life was too intense at that time.

So I woke at 5, greeted the siamese who was had reported for duty at his post an hour before, looked outside and thought...I wonder what it would be like to be one of those people who gets up in the morning and goes for a walk. Checked out the stars and planets which were really, really bright.  Thought about some writing and a case I'm working on. Thought about some interesting patterns in my work and circular patterns in general, looked at the clouds.

This was really the first "normal" night and wake scedule I've had in many years, thanks to Jessica's blessed epsom salts which really helped me turn the corner yesterday.

I was really interested in the sky. It was superbeautiful. Then I thought that the crazy siamese had turned me into a weatherman too, and I AM NOT KIDDING at that very moment he came over to me to nuzzle. He has never done this between the hours of four and six, as I jokingly, but truthfully, related above. I think he was waiting for me to notice we had, at heart, the same job. Please let me tell you, I am not a "cat person". I love most animals, but I do not spend an inordinate amount of time noticing cat behavior. This is some new non Tramadol thing.

So I petted the cat and I got up. I went for a walk around my building grounds and saw a waxing moon, mars, venus and what i think was the gemini constellation. Then I swan for a few minutes...more of a float, really. Took a few notes in my notebook, etc. Came home and everyone slowly woke up and wandered out. Read the paper. Made breakfast for the kids.

I was a normal person in the morning. It was really nice and i couldn't have done it without this site.

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by EmilyPost, Aug 18, 2009
This thread is Closed.

Please move to Part 15



http://www.medhelp.org/user_journals/show/114350

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by Maxx14, Sep 02, 2009
Hi, I am new. I'm 40 years old, female, married with husband and 2 year old daughter. We are middle class, both work, generally financially ok but careful with money. I discovered Tramadol 1 year ago after I learned that the cough syrup with codeine I was taking for my sinus infections made me really happy and I wanted to have something like that on hand. I could by Tramadol online without a prescription and charge my business credit card, which my husband doesn't see. I remember the wonderful day that I spent with my extended family my first time after taking 2 pills. Normally this family causes anxiety, they never listen to anything I say, and I really just want to be home alone, reading a book. But I actually enjoyed being there, watching my daughter play with them, and I felt like I was finally, after MANY years of trying to, live in the moment. I wanted that feeling ALL THE TIME. So fast forward, now I've found myself taking up to 30 pills a day. Usually less than 10 but sometimes I get a little crazy. I have faked my work hours so I can pay my credit card. This is repulsive, I can't believe I'm even writing this. I've had the FedEx packages sent to my workplace as well as my home, once under my husbands nose on a Saturday when I had been out of pills for 3 days and could barely stand up. We had a couple of vacations this summer and I ran out of pills at the end and it was utter hell. Trying to take care of everyone and do things that were supposed to be fun but were just awful. I could barely give my daughter a bath, much less play with her.Then I get the 3 or so pills into my system and I feel like a heroin addict might feel (I never tried this) and wait for that warm happy feeling to settle over me. And the extra ENERGY I get from this drug! Wow, I would justify my "extra" work hours (I work by the hour) by saying to myself that I work extra fast when I've got Tramadol in me. God, that is so sick, can this really be me??? I thought I was an honest person. And my relationship with my husband has even improved, because on Tramadol I have a "so what" attitude about his anger toward me and also the things that formerly irritated me about him don't any longer. I feel like I'm even closer to my husband and daughter when I'm on Tramadol, because I'm not distracted, I'm so present with them. So I've now decided (for the 10th time) that I must stop this, and I am tapering down now. I should add that I had an eating disorder up until 10 years ago (all gone, thank god) and also problems with alcohol so I am clearly an addict. I don't know if I ever could say I was an alcoholic because when I discovered Tramadol, alcohol ceased to interest me, and I still can have a drink sometimes, but it is no big deal and I don't really care for it anymore. Clearly I have switched addictions. What next? Needle in the arm? I have a grim picture of myself for the future if I cannot get a handle on this. I obviously cannot deal with my life as a sober person, I'm not clueless about that, and I've been trying for years to put down substances and increase my self-awareness and self-esteem so that I can deal with issues without any drugs, but I cannot let go, it seems. I've tried AA and I can't get God in there for some reason so I'm honestly not interested in hearing this from anybody, although it doesn't seem like people talk about that here, thanks. Today I took my last 3 and am waiting for the package to ship tomorrow. I have to get through tonight and tomorrow morning with the sweats and lack of energy but I do want to do this tapering down. I cannot stop CT, I have too many obligations and I cannot let anyone know what I've been doing.

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by Maxx14, Sep 02, 2009
Oh I need to move to Part 15...

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by stupiddogz, Sep 25, 2009
I'm just wondering about ultram, after reading a TON of posts on here about it..and to be quite honest, i am SHOCKED! i am bipolar, as well as a recovering addict (i used to take 50 norco 10/300 a day) and finally got off all of that. now the meds i take are:

tramadol 300-400 mgs a day
baclofen 20 mg 2-3 times a day
zettia  (not sure mgs, but 1 a day for colostrol)
lovaza 4 per day (coloetrol)
and xanax .5 mgs 4 x a day

i detoxed off some heavy duty psych meds and totally came off them all(weaned over many months)in march of 09. no more psych meds till ihad a massive panic attack in august, which resulted in the xanax, but i am stopping that as soon as i get into therapy consistantly next month (it was a 2 month wait to get in, ffs!)

my question is how come after being so addicted to opiates, and and all opiates, ive had no issues with ultram? i take the lowest dose i can mamage with each day, usually 300 mgs, sometimes 200, rarely 400. been like this for about 2 yrs maybe, and when i was on opiates i hade severe pain, something like the paradoxal effect of the more opiates you take, the more pain you feel, something like that.  now i go to medical massage as often as i can go, maybe 2 times a week now, and have moderate pain every day but i manage to get by, taking motrin along with the ultram instead of more ultram.

but my drs gave me the ultram knowing of my past addiction, they said it was fine, non addictive, but im seeing not so from what ive read here...and im just questioning this all now after about 2 yrs because this month i picked up my Rx a few days ago, and for the first time ever i noticed there was a 'control' label on the bottle. WTF! so now what? im getting worried i dont have many options for pain relief left, and im trying to manage with as little meds possible as i can without being in massive pain every day, because i still have moderate pain every day ive just learned to live with. i cant even run with my 3 & 5 yr old ffs, and this is bothering me!

what is going on with ultram?!?!? why did they give me something that has this effects on people when they know im an addict??? hard core pill addict??? what am i supposed to do now? only once in a while ill notice i get a buzz from them if i forget and take the doses too close together, but i just thought it was my bipolar or something, never the ultram. my husband says though, if he takes one of them, at 50 mgs or 100, he is all f'd up, massive buzz. what kind of mess am i into now???? im worried.....help!!! im taking them as Rx (for once in my life, NOT abusing the pills for a buzz) and now im just reading all of this today, its like a bomb just dropped on me.....

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by TheUltramateWarrior, Oct 08, 2009
Greeting's to all.
I have come from a mysterious place to give what I have to all.
Yeah my name was inspired by the greeting of warrior's by Emily Post.
I will just cut right to the battle at hand.
Today is day four for me of stopping Tramadol cold.
I have seen worse battle's in life,however it is still a hard fight indeed.
I was taking about 20 50mg a day and started out on only four a day.
I have only took them for about three month's and I just built up a fast tolerance and ended up at 20 a day,give or take.
Prescribed from my doc of course for an injury.
So anyway I started researching alot and have been all over and landed here on day 2.
It was good to see people that were being sane and positive about this subject.
Regular people from all walk's of life.
Other forum's like to kid around and love to talk about the joy of drug use.
I have decided to give out a few tip's that I have gathered and of a personal discovery that I made last night.
It was night 3,last night.
I had been up and had not slept in two night's and feeling low on energy,I made a strong cup of columbian coffee.
Strong cup of coffee,good taster's choice regular,just not cheap garbage.
Like two spoonfulls per 8 or 10 ounces.
Ok so yeah I have been getting slammed all night by the jerking withdrawal's and never by day it seemed.
I wake up and drink coffee,good strong coffee everyday about three good cup's.
So yeah I woke up yesterday had coffee,had no energy by 2 o'clock so figured I would pound down another Coffee at about 2:30pm.
Yeah so knowing I was not going to sleep on only night three,but was encouraged from what I have read here and was looking toward's the future in the hope of sleep on maybe tonight night 4 or 5 or 6.
I laid down and watched the end of astronaut farmer and it was now 430pm then 5 pm came and I thought wow maybe I will be sleeping tommorow or maybe even tonight because I had no jerking withdrawal at all,no power surge's of the withdrawal.
630pm,surges return and then I am awake all night jerking,getting up walking around laying down and I am like oh no it has returned and was mad.
So I prepared for the third night at 7 of no sleep and having shock's all night long.
Oh and yes immodium or generic helps this and takes away about half of the restless legs and make's you feel better then without,just wanted to say that and take twice the dose if you can,I noticed no problem at all doing so.
Needless I am now down to the regular dose for day four.
I know that this is chaotic,but hey this is a war and I am at war.
Ok at 2am on the dot,I say well I might as well pound down a coffee,because there will be no sleep tonight because of the shocking withdrawal's.
So I drank the coffee and it was strong.
Now this is only for the first couple night's when there is no way you will sleep anyway,so it will not disturb anything anyway.
Maybe tonight I will get a bit of sleep,so I might not drink some tonight,but I wish I had on the first 2 night's.
Ok ten minutes after drinking the coffee any and all surging/shocking withdrawal's were gone.
I was not going to sleep,but I also was not wired from the coffee to the huge tiredness of my lack of sleeping.
So I was watching TV peacefully and 99% free of withdrawal,it was gone.
So strong coffee makes the withdrawal shocks stop and allows you to just be alive without the shocks and that is important for the first few night's when you will not sleep at all.
Ok so I said after noticing it all gone at 2:10 am,I am going to see how long this last's for and the remember and report it to that forum.
So yeah here it is.
Coffee stop's the withdrawal's 99% for about 2 to 3 hour's per one strong cup.
Meaning if you are not going to sleep anyway on night1 or 2 or 3 or maybe 4,you might as well be withdrawal free all night.
Ok so it is morning now and I have drank another coffee and it is 7am where I am and I know a little secret that will help the battle in the beginning.
So coffee is a drug and it will release some seratonin and some dopamine and therefore will stop your withdrawal symptom's of the shock's.
Now you will be so tired from not sleeping that you will not feel wired and what is to lose you will not sleep anyway in the first three night's.
Plus it is perfect for the daytime shock's as well.
There it is my story and my contribution,night four tonight and yes I will win.
Have the greatest day everyone.
T.U.W.

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by sublimer, Oct 23, 2009
4 weeks after coming off tramadol I feel like I'm finally waking up and smelling the roses. I've had hallucinations, paranoia, heard voices and even had delusions of grandeur plus a whole heap of physical withdrawal symptoms. I was prescribed a high dose because of a herniated disc which was opearted on (finally) last August. I've had so little asleep that i once passed out at the keyboard and banged my head on the desk top. I know they helped me get through the chronic pain but NO ONE told me coming off them would be so hard. The itchy skin and restless leg syndrome has been awful. Tramadol gave me such bad constipation that I had suspected acute appendicitis! If I get offered Tramadol again I'll ask, "What are the alternatives?"

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by recordcollector, Dec 02, 2009
Hello all

I posted here a few months back after coming off cold turkey but then relapsed a month later - so I felt embarrassed!

However I came off again about a month ago and used the taper method - much easier!

I was only on about 250mg a day during the addiction, but for the last year was taking it to feel "normal".

As I said in my previous posts, now I start to wonder if I will ever feel "normal" again - that bright sprightly guy who always looked on the bright side - where is he?  1 month down the line I feel depressed, angry and with little motivation.  I can get things done if they have to be but sitting in front of a computer is very tiring and boring.  I moved into a nice new house but have little enthusiasm for the new things it offers that I never had before.

Having recently seperated from the wife and daughter I am finding it hard seperate natural sadness about that and Tramadol withdrawal - it is evil!  Sadness is not on illness and I shouldn't be taking pills for it, however I can't see the light at the end of the tunnel.  Luckily most of the physical withdrawal has gone, I only occassionally get visual wobblies, a bit odd.  Strangely I seem to have developed tinnitus, hmmm ....

however ....

Great to see so many people who were more heavily addicted kicking it - good luck everyone.

Gradual withdrawal worked for me.  I ended up with 3 tabs left and taking a half day - I eventually just flushed them down the toilet - it was a fond farewell.

Some have said it can take 6 months to get back to "normal" - even for only a 250mg a day addicition?

Thanks in advance for any responses.

Cheers eveyone and good luck,

S.

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by DizzyMom34, Dec 11, 2009
Oh, wow. Thank God for all these posts, or I would feel like I was the only one. I caught myself last night plotting how to cancel a trip to take my little one to see her grandparents on Christmas, just so I could be home to order Tramadol since I am running out. I can't live like this anymore... I can't spend hundreds of dollars on this drug, and be enslaved to FedEx to get my supply. Today is hard. I just went from a minimum of  8-10 a day for the last six months, to three pills a day, two in the morning and one in the evening. Today is my second day of only 150mg a day, and my little girl just came up to me and said, "What's wrong, Mama? Mama, you cryin'?" I have a schedule all written out... I am going to do another 5 days of 150mg, and then 5 days of 100mg, and then 5 days of 75mg, 5 days of 50mg, 5 days of 25 mg, and then none. Do you think I can do this and still be functional for my little girl? Luckily, I don't have a job to be at, but I have to take care of my three-year-old all by myself. AND, for half of this time, I will be visiting my family over the holidays, for Christsakes. I am scared. Good luck to everyone... we're all together in this hellacious boat.

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by madtram, Dec 11, 2009
Welcome, Dizzy, your new freer life is just around the corner, you can do this thing.

Your taper schedule looks fine.

We have moved to a new thread.  Copy paste your post to:-

http://www.medhelp.org/user_journals/show/142432

everyone is waiting to support you through.

Best wishes,
M

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