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Day 48 off Tramadol, Withdrawal, Detox. Bad Day. :(

Aug 06, 2008 - 56 comments
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Hi Friends;

Holy Mother of Tramadol FOG!

Early morning and all morning has been ... the height of suckiness. It got better once I just cried.  I felt better after that. I think now alot of the emotional stuff is hitting me. I'm not numbed by a drug and I have 5 years of emotional cellular storage to work thru I think.

May I Trust Higher Power to restore me to sanity!?

I got an email this morning from my Mother who says she's coming here in September?  I can't even think that far in advance. I'm thinking stuff like, "I have to brush my hair and take a shower." It seems like an insurmountable prospect!

I have such respect for anyone who has come off Tramadol and .... I don't know ... maintained a life?

Mud mud mud everywhere. Walking thru mud.

I just took vitamins and a big cup of Lecithin granules which are supposed to decrease anxiety. I feel frightened and alone. These are DRUG THOUGHTS. But they get scary. It's like randomly losing your mind, and then suddenly; "POP" you are back to "normal."

This is like running a marathon and then, when you are done, they say, "OK! It's time for the Marathon!"  You say, "I just ran one?" And they say, "Phish phish no no, it's time for the marathon!"

Yeah.

Marathon Man Pain.

Idiot Tramadol.

Love and healing,
Emily

How in the world am I gonna get to work today? THAT is the question friends. It's only half a day and it seems completely out of the question. My eyes hurt, my brain hurts. The anxiety is lessening. I think I now understand why people bang their own heads against a wall.

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Avatar_m_tn
by plamp, Aug 06, 2008
=[ That's not cool of the tramadol coming back like that haha. Day 48 im still suprised your still feeling w/d its been almost 2 months. I guess that stuff just doesnt want to let go. But yeah I recall the randomness its so horrible. One second your normal and the next its back to square one. But I'm guessing this day will be the last of the bad ones. You said the past few days have been good, maybe this is the tramadols last hurrah haha, we can only hope=p.

Hang in there!


Avatar_m_tn
by seekingbetterdays, Aug 06, 2008
Hello EP,

Hang in there EP.  You are getting shelled again!  I am truly sorry to hear that for many many reasons, including your road is my road -- except that I am behind you about 3 weeks.  

I believe our paths are similar due to the similarity in Tramadol dose and longevity.  I am learning from you that it is indead a long fight.  BUT IT'S WORTH IT!  i am also learning there is litle or no info available on longer term users like us.

Every day this week, I have started strong, then about 10:30am -- like a train running on time -- the fog rolls in and the life force is just sucked out of me over about a 15 minute period.  

Once the fog rolls in, my mind and body begins to move with all the speed and grace of a herd of turtles stampeding through peanut butter.

The draining of my life force is strong enough to end all progress for the day, and all I can do to use the 15 minute transition period to plot a path of retreat.  it feels EXACTLY like it used to feel when I'd try to skip a dose of Tramadoln to taper off.

It's a very short time between functioning and non-functioning when this transition occurs.  The only good news is that today's tram-attack lasted less than 4 hours.  I hope this is an improving pattern, but remain committed to a long haul if needed.

Nice research piece you posted yesterday.  I read it several times and enjoyed it thoroughly.

By the way, I did a bit of research myself would like to present an interesting (short) article to feed your ANGER.  I want to feed your ANGER because you can use it to push through the current challenge.  

Read this -- it's short.

http://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S1090380100901873

Now that you have read the 'experts' point of view, let's review what we learned(?) from these supposedly learned doctors:.

      1.   It is their learned opinion that Tramadol is, quote: 'a non-habit forming drug'  

      2.   Use of the word 'WITHDRAWAL' should be replaced with words
             'abstinence-like symptoms' as it is much kinder.

      3.   Use of the word 'COLD TURKEY' should also be replaced with the words
             'abrupt cessation'.  ('Cold Turkey' implies an addiction.)

      4.   Use of the word  'ANALGESIC' should be used instead of the
            more alarming and addictive sounding 'synthetic-opium'.

Wouldn't you love to administer a 60 day prescription to these stooges and see how
their 'findings'  change?  You can tell they have been nowhere NEAR this stuff themselves.

I don't know what these doctors got for writing this article, but they would get 20 YEARS TO LIFE if it were up to me.

I'm ANGRY again.   I'm ready to storm the medical castle with torches and pitchforks.  All those with me hold up your hands!



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by EmilyPost, Aug 07, 2008
Hi Friends!

Thank you so much for your kindness yesterday. Which officially sucked.

Plamp you keep cracking me up with your phrasing;

You wrote, "=[ That's not cool of the tramadol coming back like that haha."

LOL! That made me laugh. Yeah. Keep in mind, I'm female, smaller than you and have been on it 5 years. So, it's more than likely going to take awhile longer. I have read about people taking ONE Tramadol 50 mg. pill a day over say 10 months and having withdrawal that is wretched. It seems like it's being stored somewhere, and everywhere ... like intramuscularly or in the fat cells.

I say that because after a very long day at work, 11 hours of so, (which with driving is 12) I seem to have reflex pain the next day or recurrence of withdrawal symptoms. It's pretty icky. I would also say the 30 day rule on this may apply to people who have been taking it a year or two or longer. As far as I can figure it's stored all kinds of strange places!

Yes, the randomness is horrible. But now that I understand where it is coming from, I feel better about it. I hope you are right and that THAT anxiety/non-hair combing/not wanting to shower/people freaking me out sense is GONE now!

In the evening of course all my energy returned and i couldn't sleep. SO I did a bunch of girlie stuff that always makes girls feel better.

Paul you also wrote, "You said the past few days have been good, maybe this is the Tramadol last hurrah haha, we can only hope=p."

Hang in there!"

Seriously! Too hilarious! I hope that was IT! UGG! I'm hanging in there. I feel like I am doing a terrible job, but then I remember that the ONLY important thing is that I stay OFF Tramadol and I feel better.

I am so glad ttat symptoms aren't bugging you Paul! It's so great to hear!

__________________________________________________________________

Dear Seeking Better Days:

I have to slap this article up here cause it is really infuriating.

______________________________________________________________
Clinical Note
Acute abstinence syndrome following abrupt cessation of long-term use of tramadol (Ultram®): a case study

E. Freyea and J. Levyb

a Pain Center, Extension of the Heinrich-Heine-University of Düsseldorf, Graf-Adolf-Strasse 16, Düsseldorf, 40211, Germany b Department of Physiology/Pharmacology, University of the Pacific (UOP), 2155 Webster Street, San Francisco, 94115, USA

Received 19 November 1999;  accepted 1 June 2000. ; Available online 25 March 2002.

References and further reading may be available for this article. To view references and further reading you must purchase this article.


Abstract
We report on a patient who had taken the centrally acting analgesic tramadol for over 1 year. The compound had proven to be sufficient to treat her painful episodes related to fibromyalgia. Due to lack of supply while being on a trip, intake of the drug was stopped abruptly, resulting in the development of classical abstinence-like symptoms within 1 week. Abstinence-like symptoms consisted of restlessness and insomnia for which the benzodiazepine lorazepam was given. Diarrhoea and abdominal cramps were treated with the peripherally active opioid loperamide, while bouts of cephalgia were treated with sumatriptan. Diffuse musculoskeltal-related pain and restless leg syndrome (RLS) were treated with dextromethorphan. All these different medications proved to be efficacious as they resulted in the cessation of symptoms. Within 1 week symptoms ceased and the patient regained her normal activities without any sequelae. Although tramadol is considered a non-habit- and non-dependence-forming analgesic, abstinence symptoms are likely to develop following abrupt cessation of intake, especially when the compound had been taken over 1 year. Therefore patients should be advised of such an effect whenever they decide to stop intake or their physician is planning to switch to another medication. To avoid abstinence-like symptoms doses should be slowly tapered down.

__________________________________________________________________

This part kills me ...

"Within 1 week symptoms ceased and the patient regained her normal activities without any sequelae.

*Haaaa-choo-Bull-Sheet!*

Even Plamp the 19 year old male with the six pack (an d not as in beer) had symptoms for longer than 7 days. And he was only on it for three months right? LIES! LIES!

I agree with you SeekingBetterDays, whoever is writing these studies should be forced to TAKE Tramadol! And be thrown in jail! So annoying!

I'm so angry! I am going to go and grab my pitchfork RIGHT NOW! And my matches!

Getting shelled right, I WAS down under there for awhile. I hate it when all the tricks I know fail. And then you're kinds just stuck there thinking, "OK, I'm juts going to lay here in pain, with massive anxiety."

For me, it is hard to let go of something like, going to work over STAYING OFF DRUGS!  Obviously I now have my priorities straight. But that's actually NOT how Tramadol sees it.

As I told my Husband yesterday, "I'm staying home cause I can barely move, I can't imagine trying to drive this way. It's ridiculous.  It's like day 5 all over again."

He's very supportive. Just wants me not to take the poison. Sweet Man.

Seeking Better Days, I really don't know if your pattern will follow mine, but it is interesting to see that YES it comes on REALLY fast. It's a 15 minute DRAIN of all ENERGY. Like your bone marrow just liquified and now you have no skeleton. It comes on fast and yes, it lasts for a few minutes, or a few hours.

I have now given myself permission to USE the anti-anxiety medication if I get shelled. It was what I did yesterday, ending up with me asleep. When I woke up, it was way better.

But I know the Tramadol Anxiety from other anxiety. It's very different.

Just giving myself permission to use it, makes me able to NOT USE IT. Does that make sense? Having enough of it also makes me less anxious. Funny how that works.

My feeling is that the anxiety post Tramadol withdrawal is going to disappear. Why do I think that? Because I didn't have an anxiety condition that required medication before I started taking Tramadol.

Funny how they just add in more drugs .... IDIOTS!

It'll get better every day Seeking Better Days. Then maybe you'll have a bad day, or maybe not. Keep in mind that I got bronchitis at Day 30, which I don't think will happen to you. :)

I'm really glad you enjoyed the research stuff. It always makes me feel better to reseacrh it and try and think it thru all the way. I feel like I have more control (ILLUSION) if I have more information.

YES! YES! You really can as you write; " You can tell they have been nowhere NEAR this stuff themselves." Yes! CHUMPS!

Makes me SO MAD!!!

You write, "I'm ready to storm the medical castle with torches and pitchforks.  All those with me hold up your hands!"

*Hold up hand! Middle finger salute* LET's GO!

Love and healing,
Emily


Avatar_n_tn
by jay742, Aug 11, 2008
HI EMILY ITS JAY,SO NOT FEELING WELL HUH SO SO SORRY,ALL I HAVE TO SAY IS TRAM CAN EAT DOG S!!T I HATE IT!!!!I AM NOW ON DAY 16 CANT BELIEVE I MADE IT THIS FAR.PAIN GONE BUT WEAKNESS AND ALWAYS TIRED STILL HERE.I HATE IT SO MUCH.IM USE TO WKING OUT PLAYING SPORTS AND JUST ALWAYS MOVING,IM PUTTING WEIGHT ON AND HATE IT IM USE TO BEING TINY I PUT ON 10POUNDSNCUZ I CANT EXERCISE,I JUST PRAY MY ENERGY LEVEL COMES BACK ASAP.GIVE ME ADVICE ON HOW TO BRING IT BK SOON.I TAKE ALL VITIMINS THAT I CAN TAKE,AND STILL NO PROGRESS,GET BK TO ME K LOTS OF LUV JAY....

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by EmilyPost, Aug 11, 2008
Hi Sweetest Jay;

Your energy will come back! No worries Jay. It just takes some time for your body to get all the tramadol OUT of you ok? I promise it gets better every day. It's just a much longer withdrawal than any of us knew about and we were lied to. Water water water and yes ... vitamins!

Have you tried the honey? That will give me a boost. Sublingual B-12's help. Eating well helps. Bananas and all the dopamine foods listed in Day 33 help. Honestly this cr%p is stuck all over your body. It take awhile to leave but YOU WILL get your energy back. I am on ... now Day 53? And I have at lest half my pre-tramadol energy back even on BAD days ok? I am also very athletic so I couldn't believe how badly taramdol kicked my butt and tok my name ... but it is better now!

Love and healing,
Emily

Will write more soon!

Avatar_n_tn
by plutonianman, Aug 12, 2008
Big Big Kudos to you!! Day 48,  you're doing great! I'm on day 34 right now coming off a several year habit of tramadol at 20-30 pills a day. This drug is bad news for addicts. I've went cold turkey off hydro and codeine before, but neither even come close to the prolonged tramadol withdrawal hell. Although the worst of the W/D is over, I have barely slept for the past 3 weeks! But very slowly, I'm starting to see the light and I know, God Willing, that my body will heal and I'll once again be able to move full force in my life. I credit a lot of this to the fact that I was laid off my job of 10 years (which was extremely stressful, working with juvenile delinquents). If I had to go to work all this time, I think I would have gave in and got more pills, since they are so simple to get online. Hell, at one point I was getting scripts from 4 different online doctors! CONGRATULATIONS CONGRATULATIONS AND CONGRATULATIONS! Its impossible to know the hell of coming off this drug unless you've been there. ***@**** if you'd like to chat sometime. I'm proud of you!!!

Erik

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by EmilyPost, Aug 13, 2008
How can I resist Plutonium Man!!?

Welcome friend! Hello and I am so sorry for what you have suffered.

It's Day 55 for me! Thank you for the kudos and right back at cha! Good job! We're in it to win it right? Tramadol can bite my lily white butt!

"It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes short again and again, who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause, who at best knows achievement and who at the worst if he fails at least fails while daring greatly so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat."
From a speech given in Paris at the Sorbonne in 1910 -Theodore Roosevelt

EXACTLY!!!

No .. no one could possibly now what Tramadol withdrawal id like unless they have been thru it It's why I want to talk to ex and current Tramadol users. I feel like only they can know the full metal jacket assault Tramadol will come at you with. It hits is ALL. The anti depressant stuff is the rough stuff. It give you crazy drug thoughts that seem like reality. In the meantime you have IDIOT Doctors denying the nature of Tramadol withdrawal (according to then there IS no Tramadol withdrawal! It's candy! Candy for everyone!!!)

I feel for you being laid off but man o man if that is what it takes to get you off ,,, so bad it! I noticed the stress/ Tramadol connection really fast!  Luckily it has become sooo repulsive to me!

Not amazed you had 4 docs writing you scripts SO grateful you didn't et a seizure and die!

"You write,"I've went cold turkey off hydro and codeine before, but neither even come close to the prolonged Tramadol withdrawal hell."

No joke. The Tramadol lethargy seems like it will hand on forever ,.. but it doesn’t; I promise I never ever though my energy would return and at day 55, after bronchitis, inhalers, missed work, and finally a car accident that totaled my car on Saturday ... My energy is KIKING! It's great!
Its impossible to know the hell of coming off this drug unless you've been there. ***@**** if you'd like to chat sometime. I'm proud of you!!!"

I am proud of YOU! And anyone who walks into Tramadol withdraw thinking it'll be easy, safe, and no dependence/ addiction. Have had plenty of peeps tell me they wanna crawl into a hole and die. Woman told me she preferred Childbirth; it was EARIER!

SO glad we all have each other!

Idiot Doctors *kicks Tramadol in the head* *and again*

Day 55 and NO Tramadol w/d symptoms ... I am healng and coming back better than ever. Hope and healing is on the way My Plutonium friend!

Love and healing,
Emily

Avatar_m_tn
by seekingbetterdays, Aug 13, 2008
Hello EP.  Good to hear from you again.    You had another car accident on Saturday!!!   Wow.  How in the heck are you hanging on.  I understand your mood heading a little better with resperct to your pain.  So sorry to hear that.

I grabbed your Teddy Roosevelt quote above.  That's a great one.  I'm using it in a power point briefing later on next week.  There are a few of my guys that need to hear and understand it.

Also -- the quote is very relevant to the pitched battle that is the fate of all who dare start the path to freedom from tramadol addiction.

I'm still recovering and almost at "Day 30".  Hard to believe!!  It seems like yesterday that looking to you with ENVY as you were at that milestone ahead of me.

PLUTONIUNMAN and I are similar in that the fatigue is fostering extra weight gain at a faster rate than you would think.  I have to get this under control.

It seems that my body is misinterpreting fatigue as “cell starvation” and pushing me to eat more.  At the same time, the fatigue cuts down on the calorie burning rigors of a normal day.  This is a MEAN ONE-TWO PUNCH.  I consider it perhaps the cruelest tactic of all  used by the Tramadol demon to drag you back down.  

I’m not certain of the solution.  Someone said mega-doses of vitamins will kill the appetite but I am not practiced in this regimen so do not want to press my luck.  I worked out this morning, but I definitely not certain I can do this every day.

I feel I am 50-60% back to my normal self in terms of stamina and energy.  If measured daily, it seems like no progess at all.  However, using week-to-week comparisons progres is easy to see.  It's getting better!!!!!

Better is a good thing.


Avatar_n_tn
by AliAnn, Aug 29, 2008
I just got prescribed Tramadol this afternoon for severe arthritis in my spine. Reading all of these short letters has me scared half to death to take it! I just got off Effexor-
RX and withdrawels were horrifieing! Thought I'd die before I got iot out of my system. I know I'd never survive the withdrawels of Tramadol as you have all described them!!. Thanks for the info. I'm calling my dioc tomorrow and telling them I want something different for my pain.  Alice-Iowa

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by SummerLynne, Aug 29, 2008
Emily, My heart goes out to your pain of having to withdraw from this drug. I have chronic pain diseases RSDS, fibromyalgia, migraines brought on by the chronic pain and most recently cancer. I was first diagnosed in 1985 and since then the VA Hosp has had me on every narcotic you can think long term. They take me off after a period of time and I have to go cold turkey and deal with horrible pain too. I feel I am losing my mind!! They keep a patient on Oxy for 5 years and then out of the blue don't refill one day...cruel, very cruel and hard to kick. I am on morphine time release capsules,morphine fast acting and liuid morphine all high doses for the past 10 days. I tried to go off of the morphine on my own and I thought I was dying. My world turned upside down. I missed 2 doses in one day and thats all I had to miss because I was a wreck. I hate the fact I have to rely on something so demanding of me to ease my chronic pain. But then I am dealing more than one diease here too.

I am fighting in your corner and hoping you get through ths really soon.Hopefully a medication can made for chronic pain that will not leave us addicitve....hey we can always hope right?  Hang in there is a light at the end of the tunnel   :)

Avatar_f_tn
by mame22, Aug 31, 2008
Hi everyone

My name is amy. and I am so glad I found you all. I had never herd of tramadal before 3 years ago. started with 2 pills a day  
and now up to 9-13 a day. It was my dirty little secret untill a few days ago when I couldnt take it any more and fessed up to my husband. HE FREEKED!!!!!   He was not angery but scared. I only had 8 pills yesterday woke up in the night with the worst restless leg jumping and panic attack. I NEED AND WANT TO GET OFF THESE PILLS.    Is there anything besides vitamins to take to get off this stuff?   I feel better just knowing I am not alone any more. Thank you all.

Avatar_n_tn
by lemonology, Sep 01, 2008
Hi, I have used tramadol for 8 years and at times took 13 -14 50mg a day in the last couple of years. I have arthritis and herniated disc problems. I've built up an immunity to the little buggers over time and now they don't seem to work at all.
I am now into day 3 of the 3 a day taper and I'm surviving, barely.
My husband of 31 years died 1 year and 10 months ago. When that happened, my drug use increased. Guess what? I have been pulled back to about a year ago in my grieving process. I've been crying and missing him, just like the months after his death.
I am not going to refill my prescription and I have 20 pills left. In one more day I'm cutting out the third pill. I'm not sleeping, at night my legs scream and hollar, especially my swollen knees. This is so very hard, life is just too hard.

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by EmilyPost, Sep 01, 2008
Hi Amy - You know I am happy you told your husband. He's a smart man that he freaked out and was worried for you. It's also a bit easier of your husband knows what you are doing and what you are up against. Mine knew, and I tried to explain w/d from Tramadol to him; but he's never had chronic pain and can't understand as well as someone who has and has taken these rat pellets.  You ask, "Is there anything besides vitamins to take to get off this stuff?"

You mean is there an easier kinder softer way out?

Not in my experience. I no longer have these symptoms. I no longer take Tramadol and haven't since I went cold turkey. I was done. Done. As in I let myself run out of pills. I was not as afraid of the withdrawal as I was of continuing to take the pills. As it stands I am now tapering off klonopin, which was given to me when Tramadol turned on me (they didn't know it was that Tramadol and neither did I. But when Tramadol turned on me it gave me horrific and unending panic attacks. Which is did during w/d to some extent, but the relief was almost immediate from the onslaught of suicidal ideation. So, that combined with NO BACK PAIN really helped encourage me to go all the way.

If you read the journals you will find many people talking about what they used to get off Tramadol. I used The Thomas Method which is linked here on a page on Med-Help. I hope this helps. You will only have 1 to 5 truly bad days after you go cold turkey.

Then it will get better.

I hope this helps!

Love and Healing,
Emily

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by EmilyPost, Sep 01, 2008
Dear SummerLynne;

You're a sweetheart. Chronic pain. Yep. I know it well. Huge hugs for you.

You write, " I was first diagnosed in 1985 and since then the VA Hosp has had me on every narcotic you can think long term. They take me off after a period of time and I have to go cold turkey and deal with horrible pain too. I feel I am losing my mind!! They keep a patient on Oxy for 5 years and then out of the blue don't refill one day...cruel, very cruel and hard to kick. I am on morphine time release capsules,morphine fast acting and liuid morphine all high doses for the past 10 days. I tried to go off of the morphine on my own and I thought I was dying. My world turned upside down. I missed 2 doses in one day and thats all I had to miss because I was a wreck. I hate the fact I have to rely on something so demanding of me to ease my chronic pain. But then I am dealing more than one diease here too."

I can actually believe that the VA does things as stupid as throwing their peeps into cold turkey withdrawal. It's mo stretch at all for me to wrap my mind around. I am however, also really sorry for your pain. Yes, you are dealing with multiple conditions. You really sound strong in your writing.

You also write, "I am fighting in your corner and hoping you get through ths really soon.Hopefully a medication can made for chronic pain that will not leave us addicitve....hey we can always hope right?  Hang in there is a light at the end of the tunnel   :) "

Thank you! Please know I am in yours as well! I am now 74 days off! YAY! No more Tramadol creepiness ... I am tapering off Klonopin. The klonopin was for the side effects of Tramadol. So one drug to help another drug? LOL! Yeah it really got to the point where I just didn't know which end was up anymore.

Yep. Opiates and Fake Opiates like Tramadol do that whole, "YOU ARE DYING," number on your head. I am so so so sorry that has happened to you. That anyone would have such stress and pain during w/d is just awful!

Yes, light at the end of the tunnel indeed! I feel as if Time Itself just skipped from June to September ... But whatever it takes right!?

Love and healing,
Emily


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by EmilyPost, Sep 01, 2008
(((Lemonology)))

I am so very sorry for your loss.

Day 3 is great at 3 when you have taken Tramadol in largish amounts.

Oh yes, of course you got pulled back to the months right after his death. No doubt you just could not handle the grief in addition to the other physical pain symptoms. Good God! Seriously God is good, but you are correct. Life IS Hard. You are doing so well to really start tapering and wanting off! That's amazing and so good.

I mean; I found a HUGE amount of my pain was being caused BY the DRUG. I hope it is the same with you. I truly hope as you come off you gain back a stability that you never knew you lost as you started upping the dose, or as it stopped working on you.

I'm just very glad you found this journal. I tried to e very detailed and the people who went thur w/d with me were also so helpful and now it is all here for anyone to read. I truly hope it helps a bit. Not sleeping? Have you tried antihistamines? TYlenol PM kinda stuff?

I think klonopin taper has activated some of the old w/d symptoms. I do sleep now, a tiny itty bitty amount of klonopin makes me pass out cold. BUT; I also know that hot hot showers, mineral salts, Hot teas and herbs all helped me sleep. As long as I got 4-6 hours I would be ok but it didn't happen until cold turkey day 7; my being able to have natural sleep.

My thoughts and prayers are with you Lemonology!

Love and Healing,
Emily

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by Bdub1969, Oct 01, 2008
Hey all,
I'm sorry to hear that all of you  are going through (or have already been through) what I am. I am a 39 year old male in very good health except for a recurring case of costochondritis. The initial injury happened about 5 years ago while bending some copper tubing while standing on a ladder. I felt a huge "pop" in my chest and it went downhill from there. The pain now resides pretty much through my entire upper torso. About 14 months ago my doctor gave me Ultram instead of Lortab to get me through a really painful flare-up (guess he thought I may get dependant on opiates, huh?....gee thanks Doc)

I thought Ultram was a wonder drug for the first couple of months so after about 3 prescriptions from doc I started buying it online...... the 2 or 3 tabs a day soon became 5-6. Did the cutting back thing several times to try and assure myself I wasn't gonna get hooked on this stuff. Tapering off does not work. Today is day 8 without any tramadol and I can honestly say the first 4 were the worst days of my life..... cold/hot flashes, night sweats, runny nose, cough, no energy at all ( till i tried to sleep), hypersensitivity to smells, sounds, sight........emotional (can't watch a tear-jerker movie yet) WEIRD ****!!!!!!!!!! It seems like all the stuff the tramadol was numbing is being dumped on me all at once.

Some of you have said something about this stuff "hiding" in the cells of the body...... It's not like that......our body is having to "re-wire" a lot of circuits in our head.

Even at day two (my worst day) the sense of knowing that what i was feeling was me, my body, no drug to numb me, gave me comfort. Anyone remember the scene in "Good Will Hunting" where he says his foster dad would lay out a belt, a wrench and ???something else and make him choose? Robin Williams (Sean, I think) says "I'd have to go with the belt".........Will chose the wrench. Why?........." 'cause f@@@ him".........same to you tramadevil........ bring it on!....thats all you got?!.... I will get through this.

Funny thing is there's no "craving" for it...... I have about 15 pills in a bottle in the glove box and have had no temptations at all.
One other thing..... be careful what you take at night when quitting tramadol....I thought a little benadryl (which usually makes me sleepy) would help me rest a little.....NOPE!!!!!!......I was up almost all night...my brain was sleepy but my body was wide awake...........


Hang in there everybody.....Let's stomp it in the face with a hob-nail boot!!!!!!!

B-dub

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by EmilyPost, Oct 01, 2008
Dear B-Dub!

Love your attitude! You are so right on track for a full recovery.

I'm so sorry the Doc put you on Tramadol. It really seems like they have no idea what it is like to try and get off it!

I am in full agreement that the first 4 days were indeed the worst of my life. Or; high up there!

And I actually like the "I'll take the wrench," kinda attitude in Good WIll Hunting. It makes sense to me in a very visceral way. Like you, I have no craving. Have been tramadol free for ?? over 100 days. I wouldn't ever take it again.

You write, "It seems like all the stuff the tramadol was numbing is being dumped on me all at once."

This is exactly what I experienced!

And anger worked much more effectively in getting and staying clean than fear of withdrawal.

My heart goes out to you! You are NOT alone :D

Love and healing,
Emily



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by Miss94, Oct 16, 2008
Hi my name is Melissa and I am on
night 3 of coming off Tramadol.  On saturday my husband found me face down in our living room having a seizure at about 5:30 in the morning.  I have never had anything like that happen to me.  About 2 years ago I went cold turkey off of this and lived in hell for 7 - 14 days and swore i would never touch the stuff again and guess what?  HERE I AM !!!!!  I knew as soon as I woke up in the ER that it was from the Tramadol so I had to fess up to my husband and tell him the truth.  The truth was that I let myself fall back into it again.  What was I thinking?  So here I am , up at 3 a.m.t with all of my limbs feeling like they are tingling and asleep and can't sleep.  The past 2 days since I got out of the hospital have been a rollercoaster from hell and now the not sleeping is gonna start and drive me insane for the next week.  I just need all the support I can get , I read all these stories and I think, "Please God , don't let mine be as bad, or let it be better than last time!!!! "   L.O.L  But I know it won't.  Good luck to all.  I am taking some natural stuff to hopefully help.  5HTP - 3 to 4 times a day so i hope that helps soon.  Any advice on anymore natural stuff that will help with especially the sleeping at night and the restless arms and legs ?????  God Bless and help us all.  Thanks for any replies.

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by CombatVeteranZ33, Oct 17, 2008
I have scaticia ( spelling, blah ) anyway, my lower back pain is bad. I've been on tramadol for about a year and a half now and im up to 2x 50mg pills in the morning, 2 in the afternoon and 2 at night then 2 before bed. Im scared to stop taking it because while i was out in iraq they stopped giving it to me for a good 3 months. the first week was horrible and i kept getting anxious legs or arms, where i had to shake them really fast because it felt like i had to, to get the weird feeling away. i got back on it after the 3mo absense and now i cant get off it, help. what do i do?.  i had my wisdom teeth pulled in iraq and i was given perks, 5mg ones and that worked wonders for my back pain, better than the tramadol. so i was taking thoes until the 60 they gave me ran out, then i was back on the tramadol. the doctors in the army wont give me perks for my back pain, so when i get out the army in a few weeks im going to the doctor where i live and get perscribed something stronger than tramadol, hopefully perks or morphine. vicodin doesnt do anything for me. and anything else ive been given, didnt work all. since ill be switching to a differnt medicine will the withdrawl from the tramadol be non existant since ill be on a narcotic medicine instead of synthetic?

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by EmilyPost, Oct 17, 2008
Hi Melissa!

I'm really sorry I missed your message here somehow. Yeah. You can have seizures WHILE ON TRAMADOL. No one has any idea what the deal is except that if the dose is increased or changes radically, people can have seizures.

Yeah. Safe. Non Opiate, non addictive my ... flowerbeds.

I'm really, really, really sorry you are going thru this again. OMG I would .. god. Sorry! I am so sorry. Thank goodness you came clean! The truth is; eventually you will NOT be on the tramadol anymore and the w/d will be gone. Remember; it's THE DRUGS. The drug voices, the drug feelings. As it goes away (which is GREAT) it feels bad. But it is a blink of an eye compared to RUNNING out; scrambling for more medicine (I have no health insurance) ... the money spent. The whole Tramadol mess.

PLUS the truth is; if you are taking it for pain? It makes pain WORSE. And it will kill you. Which you probably know better than any of us.

My main weapons? Finding as much as I could to Help myself; yes to all vitamins (I drank them in water) and B-12 and honey. HOT baths using mineral salts Batherapy Lavender .. (GOOD stuff and cheap!) I also just used it as a scrub in the shower when I started. Cause I was too weak to take a bath. Yeah it sucked. But DYING IS WORSE.

Have you tried Benadryl, passionflower, valerian root, hops, sleepy time tea? For sleep?

You can mix apple juice with tonic water (Quinine for restless legs) ...

I hope you will read the whole journal Melissa, I am thankful you are here.

It is now ... Night 4 huh?

(((Melissa)) It'll end and it will be better

Love and healing,
Emily



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by EmilyPost, Oct 17, 2008
Hi Combat Veteran;

Yes. I am very familiar with Sciatica and TRAMADOL. Here's the thing, I firmly believe that Sciatica gets worse with Tramadol. It makes it worse. It took me a very long time to realize that the Tramadol was making it worse. I've heard that he Veteran Administration is really fond of Vicodin and I agree, that stuff is horrible. Doesn't work and makes me angry. Like the worst possible version of myself. Doesn't kill pain.

Yeah, I bet the Percoset helped.

Here's a question, where is the back pain and resultant sciatica coming from? If it has been there a year and a half, where did it come from?

One really great thing I did after I stopped Tramadol is I upped my B-vitamins. It helps sciatica. Nervous system calms down with good vitamins. I fully support you seeing someone outside the Army. Thing is all these Doctors get insane and nervous about "chronic" pain and "real" opiates. They can't get into trouble for Tramadol. Idiots. But; yeah. So it is.

Yes, since you are switching to a different pain med, I am realllly hoping your Tramadol withdrawal will be minimal! Let us know how you do ok?

So sorry you got on Tramadol. It succckkkkkkkkkkkssssss

Love and healing,
Emily


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by CombatVeteranZ33, Oct 17, 2008
thanks emily for the advice. Im not sure where it came from but i had an uncle with angolosis spondolitis and my cousin, his son has the same thing. it just started once i got into the running and push ups, situps thats required in the army and also my right leg is longer than my left by 1.7cm, and i got a MRI and my disc 3 or 4 is bigger than the rest and has arthritis in it.

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by EmilyPost, Oct 17, 2008
Ack! OK now I fully understand Combat Vet!

I'm hoping a less intense workout will settle your back down. Elliptical trainer ... not running ...

Just so sorry you had to meet tramadol!

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by CombatVeteranZ33, Oct 17, 2008
me too :(

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by LSHALL, Oct 17, 2008
Boy, now I am scared witless... again.  I was feeling a bit better after having spent 36 hours completely off everything I had been given (after childbirth) for multiple kidney stones and an occluded kidney (stent placed on 8/26, removed on 10/8): T3, dilaudid, morphine, vicodin, percoset, lortab, demerol... all on dr's orders and their blessing, until they tell me I am an addict even while I am still pissing blood .  No meds for 36 hrs made me a freaking out crying, itching, hot/cold, exhausted, did I mention freaking out?? mess.  

In to see my new doctor I go late afternoon on 10/9.  She looks at my medical history (too long and involved to go into right now, but is in my profile and previous post "withdrawing from opiates"...).  She is horrified by what I have been dealing with and gives me... wait for it, wait for it... TRAMADOL.  Tells me it is nonaddictive, can be used for the fibromyalgia pain as well as w/d sxs pain.  Also she gives me Clonodine and cymbalta.  The cymbalta immediately effed me all up... the blankets on my bed were breathing swear to god, immediate suicide ideation, chest pain, jaw, neck and teeth pain, poopies like you gotta run RIGHT NOW to the toilet 20 minutes after I choked down any food at all, blurred vision, massive headaches...  I stopped that poison after 3 days and after reading posts about other people's side effects...yikes.  The clonodine makes me sleep, thank god, because I wasn't sleeping at all.  But the tramadol is weird.  I hurt all over from the fibromyalgia and am supposed to take 1q 12 hr.  I have been taking like 3 or 4 and freaking abouot how I am going to explain that one to my dr.  I hurt gawd dammit.  I am not myself.  There was a time when I would not even take ibuprophen.  Don't know what I am going to do now.  I feel ridiculously and hopelessly lost.

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by EmilyPost, Oct 17, 2008
Ahhh Sweet Shall;

Yeah. That whole ADDICT in your medical chart; bad bad idea. Bad. But you found that out.UGG! I suppose they labelled ou this huh? You know why? Cause they are terrified of the DEA saying they are over prescribing pain meds (that work) ... Catch 22 Honey Bunny!

I am constantly amazed. Is this still America? Land of the Free, Home of the Brave? Makes me very very very angry.

Yeah, she really kinda had nothing else to give you except tramadol. Ohhh I have heard some crazy stuff about Cymbalta! I was offered that FOR suicidal ieation which was coming from Tramadol. I looked it up online and freaked out and never took it. Of course, it isn't that easy to find naysayerss about TRAMADOL cause it is their non opiate pain killer that is safe as candy! You have to HUNT to find Tramadol withdrawal instructions ... I feel like I helped create a really complete journal about it. SO at least ... someone in PAIn will know; IT ENDS!

Ok so go back to said Doctor tell them exactly what you just wrote and go from there. If she is NOT helpful, she's fired. Onward. I know you must be exhausted. But I am glad you are sleeping.

(((You are never ever ever alone))))

EVER. Remember that ok? Drugs mess with your head!We are all connected thru the onds of human love!

Love and healing,
Emily



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by LSHALL, Oct 17, 2008
Emily,  

I am filing complaints with the Maine medical board against the physician who gave me T3 for fibromyalgia.  Long story there, but on top of fibromyalgia, and after months of kidney stones destroying my right ureter and blocking my kidney off, while pregnant, I fell at 8 months preg. and cracked my tailbone... Then the doctor has his secretary call and tell me they would not be refilling my script for Tylenol 3.  They wanted "nothing more to do with" me "or the script" THEY put me on in the first place.  ZERO accountability.  Not this time baby.  I am screaming to anyone and everyone who will listen.  I have a history of NO medications whatsoever, until the near death mess in 2007.  If I am an addict, I am going to drag everyone who had anything to do with prescribing me the **** and not following my progress AT ALL right through the hell I am going through, right with me.  My daughter was born on 8/22/08, addicted and needing to detox in the NICU.  Thank God I did not take more than I was told to.  These pediatricians are amazing.  They can tell from your baby's issues and sxs how much YOU took while pregnant.  They let her come home 2 days ahead of protocol precisely because they could tell I was not abusive of the T3.  She had to be induced 2 weeks early to save my kidney, then writhed in agony through her withdrawl, even with the phenobarb they were giving her.  BUT, she did so well after 4 days, they let her come home on day 5 with a short wean from the phenobarb.  Such is such a sweet baby, she is, but nervous, anxious and in danger of developmental issues because of the drug I took, prescribed legally by my idiot DO.  An osteopath prescribed this filth as the only thing that would help the fibromyalgia pain.  Is that normal???  This is the same A-hole who seriously advised me to abort, then did a sono and told me I was miscarrying anyway.  The idiocy ASTOUNDS me.  I am bitter, angry as hell and do not know what to do with all this rancor.  And I still have to deal with the chronic pain.  DAMMITOHELL!!!!!  

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by EmilyPost, Oct 18, 2008
Lsahll;

Have you spoken to a malpractice attorney about this?

Anything having to do w/ babies; malpractice attornies usually take because a ury trial is what they look for. Of course you should take every single person and his mother down with you! Freakin frack!

No nothing the DO told you to do was normal. I am very sorry.

Make some calls and find someone who will eat him for lunch? You should be mad. Sounds awful!

Just one woman's opinion ....

Love and healing,
Emily


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by Rob617, Oct 22, 2008
Hi,

My 82 year old mother has had chronic lower back & leg pain for 15+ years with little/no relief, and year by year it gets a little worse. She also has Alzheimer's disease. I'm her health care proxy and durable power of attorney.

She started Amitriptyline (20 mg/d) about 18 months ago and Tramadol (100 mg/d) about 3 months ago. Recently I found that she has been developing new dental caries at an alarming rate (about 14 new caries in the last couple months) and many of them are on the roots of her teeth - this is an indication of lack of salivary flow (dry mouth syndrome AKA xerostomia). A little research  revealed that Tramadol and Amitriptyline each produce a high incidence of dry mouth syndrome (over 10%).

Independently, her doctor recommended switching from Amitriptyline to an SSRI (Zoloft or Celexa) as these SSRI's are supposed to have fewer anticholinergic effects; that is, they do not reduce the levels of acetylcholine (a neurotransmitter) as much as Amitriptyline. Not a bad goal (since elderly folks naturally tend to have reduced levels of acetylcholine) but I was surprised she never mentioned that these SSRI's, used in conjunction with Tramadol, can cause seizures as well as induce serotonin syndrome - I had to discover that on my own. It also turns out that Zoloft and Celexa also produce a high incidence of dry mouth (over 10%) but that an alternative SSRI, Lexapro, produces a more modest incidence of dry mouth (from 6-9%). In fact, most all SSRI's other than Lexapro produce a high incidence of dry mouth (over 10%).

When I mentioned the Tramadol-SSRI interaction to the doctor she said we'd have to stop Tramadol too, but then backtracked and said we should just stay with both Tramadol and Amitriptyline. However, she seems to just pooh-pooh the dental issues and ignores my concerns about dry mouth. I asked her to consider replacing Tramadol and Amitriptyline with hydrocodone (5 mg/d), acetominophen (2000 mg/d), and Lexapro as a means of controlling her pain and keeping her mood up while not having as high an incidence of dry mouth but she just stopped talking to me via email. I have a conference call with her in 10 minutes and will get an update on her views.

Anyway, 4 days ago I cut my mother dosages in half to Tramadol (50 mg/d) and Amitriptyline (10 mg/d). The last two mornings she has complained of severe pain which I interpret as Tramadol withdrawal; a few hours after she takes her single morning dose of Tramadol (50 mg/d) she begins to feel a little better. Presently, I plan to keep her at this level until she's feeling a little more normal; then I'll drop the dose to zero (or nearly so). Plans may change depending on what her doctor tells me (and what I can learn elsewhere).

Thanks for listening,

Rob

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by EmilyPost, Oct 22, 2008
If your Mom is 82, why are they worried about using an opiate?

Bad idea that amitriptyline and Tramadol combo. THAT combination was what started Suicidal Ideation for me.

You could tell the Doc she's having worse pain from the combo and you are worried about creating a problem because of Serotonin Syndrome.

That might do it.

Healing thoughts!
Emily

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by Rob617, Nov 09, 2008
We finally have an appointment (Monday 11/10/08) so my mother and I can talk with the doctor about alternative pain medications and antidepressants. This appointment is with a more senior physician in the same practice and I'm hopeful she will listen carefully to our concerns for dry mouth. I'll be very interested to hear what she has to say about low-dose hydrocodone (coupled with acetaminophen) for pain management along with Lexapro as an antidepressant. My mother has been completely off the Tramadol for a week now and, unfortunately, her back pain has returned... so we really need something for pain relief.

Rob

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by Rob617, Nov 10, 2008
Always double check.

So we had the appointment with the more senior physician. The discussion went well in the sense that it felt as if the physician was paying attention to our concerns. When I asked how she felt about using low-dose hydrocodone, in place of tramadol, for pain relief (because I found that hydrocodone has a much lower incidence of dry mouth than tramadol), she suggested instead that we use oxycodone. She said she is more familiar (and comfortable) with oxycodone and that, like hydrocodone, it doesn't cause dry mouth.

Fortunately, I later decided to confirm this myself...

http://www.drymouth.info/practitioner/drugDetail.asp?id=5765
http://www.drymouth.info/practitioner/drugDetail.asp?id=3538
http://www.drymouth.info/practitioner/drugDetail.asp?id=3563

As the above links show, both Tramadol and Oxycodone have an incidence of dry mouth in the range of 1-10% while Hydrocodone has an incidence of dry mouth which is less that 1%.

So now I'll get back in touch with the doctor and share this information with her. I think she meant well, but simply is misinformed because dry mouth is not one of her chief concerns.

Rob

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by EmilyPost, Nov 10, 2008
Dear Rob,

I'm so glad you are helping with your Mother's Care. I cannot imagine what would happen if she did not have a good Watchdog. Such a shame that we all have to Double check. But we do.

I will hope your conversation goes well!

Love and healing,
Emily

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by Kel777, Dec 11, 2008
It was easy to buy Tramadol online, and so I thought it might give me the same sort of feeling that I would get when the doctor would give me pain pills for back pain.  Just going through a divorce and starting a new life, it was appealing to have something to make me feel better.  Fast forward 4 years and I've been taking Tramadol daily.  Interestingly, I had a friend who has terminal cancer and used to give me pills for back pain.  I didn't even know what she was giving me - I later looked stuff up and I had lortabs, oxycontins, those pills they call dilly's, I was shocked!  I had no idea what I was taking (so naive).  It seemed innocent enough to take something for back pain and I didn't have health insurance so she was trying to help me out.  So my routine (embarrassing as it is to admit - NO ONE KNOWS, NOT ANY ONE) was to take one tramadol (50 mg) in the morning, then around 2 in the afternoon, take a partial pill from my friend (like a lortab or oxy but I rarely took a whole one), and then a little more lortab or oxy at night.  I did this for TWO YEARS.  It became a habit.  I could buy the tramadol easily online and then every time I saw my friend she would ask me if I needed more pills (I never had to ask her for them - she was always wanting to help me!).  Of course I realized after a while, once I looked up the things I was taking, that I was heading down a very dangerous path.  But I couldn't seem to stop myself.  It felt so good.  Every day I would say, I'll just take them again today.  Believe it or not, I was in the middle of graduate school full time plus working practically full time.  So trying to make a longer story a little shorter (but it feels so good to write this down since absolutely no one knows - other than my cancer friend I guess, but she was SO naive, just wanting to help me) - I moved to another state away from my cancer friend, and I knew that once I was out of pills that she had given me I would have to buy them or go off of them.  I WENT OFF OF THEM (yay!) with very little effect thank goodness.  I was so afraid of withdrawals.  But of course I bumped up the tramadol intake.  I began taking about 3 a day (50 mg) which I guess after 4 years of taking them wasn't so bad - I see that most people are going to 10 or 12 a day.  But really I wasn't getting high from them, I was just taking them to feel normal.  To get rid of the prickly feeling in my legs mainly.  So now, I am in DAY 5 of being completely off the tramadol.  My regular way of buying  the tramadol went away, and I got phone calls from obvious out of the country guys trying to sell me drugs and it made me sick!!  Like I was a regular drug addict (which of course basically I am, but it really hit home!).  I decided I'm done.  So I'm very happy to be on Day 5 of being off the drugs.  Luckily and gratefully I have not had insomnia issues too bad anyway.  I have been taking a teeny bit of xanax (which I never liked too much but my cancer friend gave me those too) which helps me sleep.  But I have fallen asleep without anything too!  The worst symptom is the prickly legs.  I can hardly stand it - it is constant all day and night.  Stretching helps, hot baths or showers help, but it seems to always be there.  It isn't that bad most of the time and when I'm busy I don't notice it, but at times its worse and I can't stand it!!  Sometimes there's anxiety and sadness.  But overall not too bad.  It's amazing how I can flip from having such a strong resolve to looking at tramadol purchase websites and almost giving in!!  How can it be that strong?  I know if I just take one this prickly feeling will go away!!!  But I also know that the prickly leg feeling will go away if I just hang in there, it will go away FOREVER!!  So I guess I really am having it pretty easy compared to some.  

It sure feels good to be able to write all of this down.  My friend with cancer of course knew I was taking the pills but she was taking SO many (she has a brain tumor and in hospice care - but she has hung on WAY longer than they expected - she is a very sweet and gentle person who just wants to help someone else!), she was taking so many pills that for me to have one or at the most two a day was nothing to her.  She didn't think anything of it, but I realized what was happening and I started to feel so guilty about taking these pills from her!!!  Anyway, I'm glad that I'm at the point where it can be all over if I can hang in there!!!!

I was so glad to read all of the other posts here.  I''m not one to usually chat on the internet, but I think I have needed to do this.  It helps me feel stronger to read your stories and see what you have done with more difficult ciricumstances than mine.  But it is still hard, and your stories help so much!

Love to all of you who care - I care about you too
Kelly

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by Ashie1987, Jan 06, 2009
I just started taking 50mg trams about a month ago for nerve damage in my right shoulder and decided tonight to start doing some research on it....and after reading some of the things I've found am completely terrified to continue taking it. how is it that doctors can just fail to mention that it can be that addictive or that you can have such horrible withdrawl? I wish mine would have warned me because if he had, I would have refused it. I was told the risk of withdrawl and addiction was very very small, and it seems to me that was a blatant lie. I'm only 21, I don't take anything for fun, I don't smoke pot, and I barely even drink...the prospect of this causing a problem for me scares the living hell out of me...I'm thinking I'm done with it....any advise would be much apprechiated

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by waitingforbetterdays, Jan 30, 2009
I am now on day 3 of tramadol withdrawl.  It is horrible.  I have been taking up to 20-30 pills a day for the last 5 years.  I have been living in my bathtub.  I wish I had never tried tramadol.  

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by EmilyPost, Jan 30, 2009
http://www.medhelp.org/user_journals/show/16650

Hi WaitngForBetter Days (and anyone else)

Click on or paste the above link. The current people wthdrawing from Tramadol can help. We're actively posting on Day 22 .... so if you click on my picture, and then click on journal list you'll see day 22.

Day 3? You're so close to being over the very very worst of it! Promise ... come to;

http://www.medhelp.org/user_journals/show/16650

Love and Healing,
Emily

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by acef22, May 10, 2009
hey, hang in there. Remeber 85 percent of withdrawal symptoms are mental...if all you can think about is the drug, then you will mentally freak yourself out. I have came off of much stronger meds, (I took a bullet in the back in Iraq, and I was on Dilaudid 8mg, and Vic 10/650 for almost 2 years ...coming off of those was hell. Tramadol, is not an opiate, although the withdrawal feelings are very similar. But the worst is behind you. The first 72 hours are the worst as your body gets rid of the junk. Try activities that completely submerse you...things that take up all of your thought and time....next thing you will know, you will glance at the clock, and realize that 4-5 hours have gone by, and not once did you think about the drug. I took tramadol for about 8 months...perhaps not in crazy volumes, only about 8 per day, and the first day off, I felt a bit off....really tired, etc...but nothing in comparison to the heavy opiate hell of Dilaudid.  Remember that prayer works well.  Remember god can heal all....you simply need faith...  Faith the size of a mustard seed can move a mountain.

There is hope, have faith, and stay strong.  You (after 48 days have done an incredible accomplishment and you should be very proud. Most, can't even quit. You did!!!! Take care and God Bless.

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by Rockandahardplace, Jul 18, 2009
I am preparing to stop cold turkey in the beginning of August and would love to have this resource available.  Is there anyone out there that has been through this thing that can help talk me through it?  I have told no one about my addiction.  I am supposed to be sober.  So having someone to talk to would be wonderful.  Is this thread still active or has it moved somewhere else?  Please, someone, let me know.  Thank you so much.  ...hard place.

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by harrass, Jul 19, 2009
I have been on tramadol for various pains and then for the anti-depresant effect. this was 12 years ago and was told by the md this was ok because they were told by the drug firms  it wasn,t addictive.This did the job very well and I never abused the dose prescribed for me. I recently had to find a new primary md and she suggested I stop taking it because she was concerned about liver damage for me. OK I,ll do this , but how and who would help me? There was not a single MD that was interested in helping because they were not well versed on the problems that happen nor were they willing to try and help me find anyone. THAT,S NOT MY JOB they would say, so I had to investigate myself after repeatedly being told by pharmacists and other MDs that it should be a piece of cake and that I could  do the w/d on my own with the doctor just dropping the dose a little at a time over a period of time. I tried substance abuse facilities, psychiatrists, leads online etc. but no one will help because tramadol is not considered a narcotic and does not fall under their care plans The dose I took all these yrs. was 150-200 mgms the most daily. So I tried it alone and got myself down to 75 mgm keeping in mind all the w/d things that could happen if I went too fast. I started to get some at this level. I already was being treated for restless leg syndrome  which is a genetic problem for me and was under control with sinemet.  Then I noticed that the RLS was compounded with the lower tram. dose.I couldn,t sleep, the sinemet didn't work. I was  getting chills, tremors, sweats and anxiety.  Scared to death, very uncomfortable and wanted to end all. I,m 74 yrs old with no support from anyone except they felt sorry for me. I called back my MD and was told to go back on the 150 mgm dose till I saw her again, I did.  That MD did not believe what I went through and was convinced it was not caused by the Tram. and I should see a pain management group. To no avail. The few I contacted were not willing to take me on again believing that Tram was not a habit drug and that I could go it alone with my doctor......sigh  So because of her attitude I tried alone again  dropping 25 mgm every 2 wks. All was OK until 112.5mgm and then I started with the w/d symtoms again I got the RLS so bad I was freaking out knowing I had no where to turn. I quit and went back to the 150 mgm again and I felt OK.  SO here I am praying for some deliverence from this evil drug the medicine people believe cannot cause any nightmare problems. I did find a source online - rapid detox over 24 hrs at a special place under anesthesia  they clean your brain receptors  and you wake up with no desire for the TRAMADOL and at a cost of only $6,700.00 and no insurance of mine will cover this. It goes on and on and on. Where can the help be? When you take a drug in good faith , Why isn't there any one out there willing to follow through and try to work with us when we have to come off it? Help the Non-Abusers for being good. please.    Signed MAC

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by EmilyPost, Jul 19, 2009
MAC, click on my picture. Then click on my Journal list view. It will take you to the current thread. There are people there who are currently facing the same problems.

You have my sympathy and understanding.

Love and healing,
Emily

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by harrass, Jul 22, 2009
Thank you Emily. I will follow through MAC

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by harrass, Aug 03, 2009
From harass:  I am at the end of my rope searching for a way to get off tramadol without the withdrawal mess.  I've done research for the past 2 months and it boils down to doing this with the primary md who orders it. I have been with 3 primary md's recently who very emphatically said they would not handle this because it was not in their care plans for pts.and I do not qualify for treiatment in any detox facility because I only take 150 mgm/day. This does not fit their criteria for care and they will not reveal the minimum dose that does qualify. So I suggested  I be a bad person and try stronger doses until I do fit their plan of care  duh! There doesn't seem to be any way out except to go it alone either cold turkey or tapering. All the advice I was given was against doing it this way, you need a doctor's care the "caring" caretakers keep saying. Ring around the rosy.......  I give up. I'm back on the 150 mgm dose to stay for now unless I can find somethig else. I just recently heard from a former  user that he used a special vitamin to help him thru the worst. Does anyone know what this might be? Thanks. I will pray for all my fellow sufferers that God hears our plight and has mercy.  Harassed

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by sacha132, Aug 17, 2009
hi there,

i have been on trams following spinal surgery five yrs ago. i stopped taking them a week ago today! I just wanted to say that I know how everyone feels. i came off them once before so i knew what i was in for...... but, it does get better guys. as much as i am going through hell at the moment, i do know that i will get there......

I dont think anyone can understand how it feels unless they have been there..............you CAN do this guys. please feel free to email me if you need support.

take care xx

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by wakia, Aug 28, 2009
hello,
I was taking tramadol for back pain 2/ 50mg first thing in the morning followed by 25mg doses through out the day until 6pm for a total of 200mg a day. This was only for 2 months. Last Friday my prescription ran out and after reading soooooo many horror stories I decided to not go in for a refill....however, this meant I came of abruptly. The withdrawal hit me within 12 hours, RLS, insomnia, aches, sweating...the works. After one day feeling horrible and staying home I forced myself to take long hikes. Luckily I live in place with that has lots of beautiful mountains to wander in....hiking REALLY helped. It has been 7 days now and things are getting better as long as I stay physically active however I am still in the battle...mostly sweaty palms, chills, anxiety but I am sleeping better because I wear myself out hiking everyday. Also the hiking seems to help with RLS. It does come in waves, which is very cruel...you think it is over then WHAM!

In conclusion, tramadol helped my back pain and I felt great but even with the short time I used it the withdrawal is awful and it seems MD's just don't understand the drug well enough yet...(yes my MD told me I would have no problems coming off of it...booo on him).  The problem is now my back is killing me again...so I am taking up Yoga not pharmaceuticals. Thanks for all of your sharing as it helped me feel less alone and to all of you going through it now...get active, stay active( I know that sounds cruel but it helps)  and hang in there.  

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by bretta2k10, Jan 12, 2010
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by bretta2k10, Jan 12, 2010
I was prescribed tramadol after a badly broken ankle, 3 years later I am still unable to bend my ankle fully and was relying on Tramadol to get me through work. Physio was out of the question due to severity of pain when bending my ankle so the doctors seemed content to keep feeding me tramadol to mask the pain even though they admited I was probably making my ankle worse by doing so as I was ignoring my the pain which was a sign that something wasnt right.
I never enjoyed the effects of Tramadol and can definately say I did not enjoy them recreationaly.

At one point my pain was so bad I was prescribed codeine Phosphate ASWELL AS tramadol  (Baring in mind I am Asthmatic !!!)
This caused my breathing to become so bad my asthma medication would not work, The doctors tried 2 nebulisers and a steroid injection before realising it was down to taking Tramadol and Codeine Phosphate together.

When I first started taking them they made me feel drowsy, dizzy and sleepy,  
After a while these effects only happened when I didnt take them.
When the withdrawels first started I put it down to Flu however these symptoms subsided when I got my next prescription.

The side effects I was experienced when taking them was:

1a) Itching like a heroin addict
2a) short term memory loss
3a) Loss of eye for detail ( I lost several jobs for admin errors )
4a) improved sexual performance ( by this I mean performance time )
5a) Mood swings
6a) lack of concentration
7a) Vivid dreams every night which I could remember every morning
8a) Depression due to constantly losing jobs (for which i was prescribed anti depressents.... but refused to take)

The side effects I was experienced when NOT taking them was:

1b) Severe Restlessness
2b) Inability to fall into a deep sleep
3b) Dohorea
4b) Cold Sweats
5b) Head aches
6b) Major sneezing
7b) Virtigo like you wouldnt beleive ( like my brain was in a food processor )
8b) the oppoisite of number 4a (improved performance !!) Only lasted 6 days
9b) Lack of motivation
10b) Severe Fatigue

I stopped taking them 11 days ago after I realised that if I did take them , I would probably feel worse than I did for not taking them as I had already gone three days without.

I can definatly confirm the first four days are the worst however I still get patches of dizzyness 11 days in, I wake up feeling hung over, Im still sneezing which suggests my nerve endings are still waking up, although my ankle is throbbing I do feel better in myself.
I came this far and have no intention of going back but everytime i think I see the finish line.... it moves furhter away. !!!
3 years on the devils drug is gonna have its down side I know, but just how long will this last !!!!
Ive searched the net but am unable to determine a rough time frame.

Thank you all for posting, I've visited this site numerous times for info






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by blondys, Feb 01, 2010
Hi All,

I am currentley on day 16 of no tramadol. I was on it for 18 months for neck and back pain and had ended up on a 2000mg a day dosage. I took the last fortnight off work and went through 4 rounds of angonising injections (myofacial medicine) in order to treat the back and neck pain.

I'm through the sweats, restless and painful legs, stomache cramps and all of those inital yucky symptoms. It's my first day back at work today and I've only worked here for six months. This is one of the slowest days of my life. I've never been here without the tramadol.

I guess I'm really asking when the depression and insomnia will stop and any advice on how to deal with either of them?

I can offer the following advice for the initial symptoms
The first few days I exercised hard, the first 10 minutes I would cry and then I would use my anger at my Doc telling me this was a non adictive drug with no withdrawal symptoms, then as I got warmer I felt better and better. Once I finished the exercise the demons and aches would be gone for the rest of the day.

Wrap your legs before bed they are less reatless when hot, also anti-immflamatory rub in gels work wonders.

An if you can get massages...

I have also been prescribed serotonin. They are currrentley being made up for me and I will start taking them in two days. These are hopefully to can the depression. Will post how they work.

Thanks

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by nursingstudent65, Feb 05, 2010
I am so glad I found this!  It has been so interesting reading all of your posts.  Thank you all for sharing your stories about the terrible withdrawls you have been experiencing.  I am a second year student nurse, last semester I did my first pharmaceuticl course.  You know you are right we are told that Tramadol is a safe, non-addictive drug.  Some facilities don't even keep it locked up, it is easily accessed.  During some of my clinical experiences I have had Tramadol ordered from the Dr's for my patients'  pain mangement.  After hearing some of your stories I will question whether my patients should be perscribed this med.  

All of you battling with this I wish you the best!  May your fight with withdrawl cease quick and may you find the strength and determination to get over this!  KUDOS to all of you.

I will try and research this myself.  If I should find any information that I think you will like to know I will post here.

Thank you so much for your sharing.  Good luck!

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by SnoozyBB, Apr 01, 2010
I have a compressed fractured vertebra from a fall on March 1st. I tried 3 different serious pain meds the first week and a half but they all made me seriously sick. The doctor prescribed the Tramadol/50 mg and said that it was not a narcotic and it was up to me how much I needed for pain as long as it was only 1-2 tabs every 6 hours. I first started only taking only 1 tab every 6 hours (3 tabs day) for the first week but it didn't relieve the pain at all so I decided to increase the dose. I ended up taking 2 tabs in the morning, 2 tabs in the afternoon, and 1 at night (5 tabs a day total). Since my back started feeling better, I decided to cut down on the meds. I didn't really wean myself off of them but just decided to take just take 2 on one day and then the next only 1 tab for the whole day so basically I quite Cold Turkey. At the time I hadn't read any of this and had no knowledge that I needed to slowly come off them. Three days ago I started to get really sick but in a weird way. For the past three nights, I was going through severe Night Sweats that I have never had in my whole life. I would be up all night drenched and feeling cold and clammy at the same time as I was burning up. Yesterday was really bad so I made a doctor appointment. I told him I stopped the Tramadol but he never even considered it. They took my temp. and it was normal. He just said I must be coming down with something. When I told him by back was still in pain, he prescribed more Tramadol! Then last night was so horrible I was crying begging my husband to take me to the hospital. My body felt like it was burning up and I couldn't stop sweating. I just wanted to jump out of my skin! Then I would get chilled. The funny part is that when touched I was told I didn't feel hot. This became a mystery to me. Last night I went through another night of hell. My husband was the one who thought it may be withdrawals. I decided to look up on line and found this plus other sites of people claiming the same thing. I feel aweful and hope there is a light at the end of the tunnel soon. I never wish this on anyone and I'm really ticked off that my doctor is unaware of this. Who would think after only taking them for about 3 weeks that I would have to deal with this? It's not fair to not only have to deal with the pain I still experience but now have to deal with this on top of it. The way I feel is totally undescribable because my symptoms seem to be a little different then some who have posted here. I never want to feel like this again. This is one evil drug that doctors give the impression that because they are not a narcotic that they are safe. Bull!!! I'm glad I took the time to do some research to find what in the world was wrong with me. I just hope this doesn't last long because it's really ruining my life right now!


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by marinerhawk, Jun 29, 2010
It was good to find this place and read all of your stories!  Makes me feel like I'm not alone.  I've had 10 surgeries in the past 8 years.  4 for a perforated colon and peritonitis, 3 kidney stone, 1 foot, and most recently 2 back.  I was always on vicodin or percocet, which I was very addicted to.  I used to be able to get vicodin online but the pretty much put an end to that, but, I found out you can get tramadol online easy.  I've had to take more and more all the time and I'm getting really scared because it's a huge amount.  By the end of the day my legs don't work right.  They kind of jerk around if I'm trying to do something like put on a shoe.  I have even fallen down before and my legs didn't work well to get back up.  I've tried and tried to stop, but, it hasn't happened.  I hate that it's so easy to get.  I don't know how to make myself stop.  I have no insurance right now, so, I can't get any professional help.  For the most part, I don't take it for pain anymore, although I do have pain every day from my back.  I just can't function without it.  It's been quite a few years now and I'm getting really scared because I live alone.  I feel like I'm playing russian roulette.  I don't want to.  Every day I think "Tomorrow I'm not going to take them, or, I'm just going to take 1 and that's it."  Never happens though.  It makes no sense to me because I hate what it does to me, yet, I can't stop it.  I know if I don't stop it though I will die.  Maybe sooner than later even.  I just wish it wasn't so easy to get.  If it wasn't, I think I'd be free by now.  I am going to honestly try tomorrow to cut back.  I wanted to say that here to be held accountable.  I can't live this way anymore.  It's caused problems in every part of my life.  Sometimes I wish it would just kill me, but, I know I don't really mean it.  I am at the end of my rope though.  

Thanks for listening.  I will come back tomorrow night and tell you all that I took less.  I don't want to do the cold turkey thing.  I've been on such a huge amount that I'm afraid of what would happen to me, especially since I live alone.  I'm determined, but, I've been determined before.  I know this time has to be different though, and, I'm ready to take the first step now.  My best friend knows about this addiction and has been wonderful.  But, she doesn't know just how much I take.  It would scare her to death.  I know I shouldn't even be alive at this point.  I may not have another chance if I don't get it right this time.  I'm just terrified right now.  Terrified to stay on it and terrified to not stay on it.    

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by EmilyPost, Jun 29, 2010
Hi MarinerHawk,

Welcome. I am so sorry to hear all of this, but glad you found us and I know you can do this.

This is an old thread, so please do come over to the current thread. Part 35

http://www.medhelp.org/user_journals/show/207363/Tramadol--Ultram-Recovery-Room-Part-35?personal_page_id=142

Click here and it will take you there.

Love & Healing,
Em

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by eMORA, Jul 11, 2010
God is always aware...i was on a website for my dogs eye n jaw painful issues and reading some advice i clicked and ended up HERE somehow.  Well, my shih tzu Gizmo's vet prescribed tramadol 50mg. for pain, he still cries i'm still dealing w/what to do for him, but the thing is i get ibroprofen fr my Dr. for horrible bk pain due to 2002 the worst car accident ever in California n live as told by Cali/trasp/Dept something they called. Anyhow i grabbed one of his pills 2day bcuz i ran out a month ago n i hate pills but couldn stand the pain n looked at my husband while he prepared to give it to Giz n said its probably fine for humans n took it not knowing all i just read 2day on this site. I already have struggled w/alcohol for 10yrs this would have just been it n dragged me down.  God Bless everyone in this battle n let's remember"Don't be of this world or become attached to it or anything of it" Itz a temporary place, might as well examine yourself for the much better place it will be with ur contribution included...eMORA

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by iamanumber, Jul 17, 2010
im coming off the tramadol also.started 10 days ago.wish me luck.

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by Candylandy, Dec 12, 2011
Don't ever take this poison.  I took it for 8 years and had turned into nothing less of a stuffed animal sitting in a corner.  Yeah, it makes you feel like Superman, but we are human beings and not supposed to be Super Heroes.  I am 30 days free after going it cold turkey and this has been the hardest and most painful thing I've been through in my 44 years of living.  The amazing thing is how many folks there are out there who
take Tramadol.  I don't think doctors really care    what it does to their patients as long as it keeps  them returnIng.  The insomnia and dizziness
has been the worst two WD symptoms for me.  I
can honestly say that I would give back all those
years of feeling really good on it not to have to
suffer another minute.  My best advice is to NEVER begin taking it and if you are taking it to give it everything you have to quit.  It can be done!  30 days free!!!



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by caviar, Aug 30, 2012
the same dont take any of these pain drugs try natural remedies if side effects  they r much less dangerous try magnets for pain accapuncture any thing BUT drs prescription meds they dont even know that a small few weeks of use can become very addictive  i have severe pain when i dont take it yet i only took it for mild pain which was just starting to get me down but was more bearable than the pain im in now with withdrawal once started taking it from 3rd night i couldnt stop tried just my 2mg valium but for some reason never worked yet it did before i took codeine does anyone know WHY drs might save lives but they ruin more than they save for sure but we dont hear about that at all only the good things no BAN THE NO drug should be given that has the potential to be addictive NONE there must be alternatives as i said the pain i got from taking this crap is WORSEand has worsened anxiety which I had under control by 2mg valium which i struggled to get down from 5mg took long time lot of agony but done it and life was  starting to improve seems im addictive easily  ive never taken street drugs dont smoke and rarely did i drink so why did this happen maybe because my body not used to drugs so have low threshold the pain is in upper back feeling like pancreatitis or something of course dr put it down to hypocondria syndrome YEA DR PRESCRIPTION DRUG SYNDROME oh im sorry but im starting to hate drs for every one cares there must be dozen who dosnt but this im not blaming on dr they didnt prescribe them my daughter said i can take thwem she dosnt h have too much trouble with prescribed drugs can take codeine phenergan etc together

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