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374225 tn?1269902862

Methadone Anyone???

The percocet wasn't working for me at all. I needed to take 3 to get any relief and that relief was gone in 3 hours at the maximum usually 2 hours. A close friend here suggested I seek other options and thankfully my GP was really sympathetic and wanted to help. I told her straight up that at times in the past I had been taking 3 at a time but had worked back down to 2 every 6 hours and was planning to quit for a while so they'd start working again. I think she appreciated my honesty about taking more than what was written and strangely I believe that in being honest I scored some huge points with her.

So anyway... she wrote me a scrip for Methadone. I cannot in all honesty and in polite language express what this drug has done for my pain. I still feel it but oh my gosh... My son says, "Dad show me some soccer..." and I now just get up and go outside with him. It used to be that I'd look at my watch and see that I had 3 hours left before I could take more so I'd tell him let's go out in 2 hours. That way I could play for an hour, feel my pain ramp way up and then be able to come in and take it back a notch. Now I just don't have to do that.

But I'm somewhat concerned about dependence and this drug seems to be a very hard drug to shake off when/if it's time to do that. I have severe chronic pain and maybe that will never happen and I'm worrying over nothing. I just don't know.

Many of you know that I'm not "addictive" by nature. I've expressed that and said that perhaps I'm not the one to post here in this forum. I received a lot of encouragement and so here I am asking for more guidance. My view is that you guys are the true experts. To me doctors are like Generals in a combat situation. They sit way behind the lines at a safe desk and they write out orders without fear to themselves at all. You guys (me) we are the troops that have to live out whatever the doctor wishes upon us. You are the experts.

I've quit Oxycodone 4 different times. Each time I got down to taking 6 a day and then just jumped off. The WD's were the pits but they only lasted about about 18 hours.

If I ever have to quit the methadone how much harder than the oxycodone will it be? I used to take myself off the oxycodone on my own to get the drug out of my system so it would work better. I'd take 2 very painful weeks off then start again. So I can face those WD's and do fine.

I'm sure my doctors will help me slide off the methadone but at the same time I'd sure love to hear from some of you with regards to the drug. I don't believe my pain is going to go away soon. I could be on methadone for a very long time. I've been using Oxycodone for 2 years and my pain hasn't changed at all. I think chronic pain is my new life for sure.

Do any of you have some advice? Can you possibly relate a comparative for me that might rank dropping off the oxycodone vs. the methadone. Right now my methadone dose is 10Mg 3 times a day. For them moment I'm taking 10Mg twice a day and 5Mg at bedtime. I have severe sleep apnea and I don't want to die from not breathing in my sleep and since even at 5mg I woke up sweating last night it's a concern. A real one.

Oh it's a wondeful life of pain for sure...
10 Responses
Avatar universal
Hi.

i am coming off of 30-40mgs of methadone a day for well over a year.  just took it to get high, not for pain.  tomorrow i will be one month clean of it and i am still suffering some of the physical WDs.  it is a long long road.

my sister also lives with chronic pain (pancreatitus) and is prescribed somewhere areoun 120 mgs a day.  would i tell her not to take her pain meds?  she would not be able to function without them.  

if you go that route just make sure you know what you are getting yourself into.  personally i think if you are going to take opiates for pain you may as well take what works the best for you.  my sister has been on every opiate known, and she stuck with the methadone because it is the only one that she has not built up a tolerance to after long term use.  but she has no intention of ever coming off of it, so she doesn't care about the withdrawals.

love your soldier analogy!  that is great!

good luck with whatever you decide.

Kova
352798 tn?1399301754
It boils down to living a full life. I have personally known people who used methadone for pain relief quite successfully. Just know that when you want off of it, you may be in for a rough ride.
471747 tn?1211311680
The main reason for the methadone is that it stays in your system for a couple of days even after you stop taking it, making it a little harder than OC's to get off of, it just draws out the wd's for a couple of days.  Like above I have never been on it for pain reasons, I just used it to stave off wd's when nothing else was avalible...Sorry I dont know about your previous condition which causes you pain and the extent of the injury but if you need pain medicine then you need it, that is why they made it!  
Avatar universal
Does your doctor know about your sleep apnea? Methadone causes more respiratory depression than other opiates.

I don't want to scare you...but I thought you should check out this article...

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/17/us/17methadone.html?em

Like strictly said, quality of life is really important... and methadone could definitely work for you. I have little experience with Methadone, just wanted to offer some information. Not knocking or questioning the treatment.

Good luck
374225 tn?1269902862
Yeah she does. But she gave me a look that said, "I trust you and be careful." If I wake up sweaty again tonight I'm going to not take any at bed time. Or just try 2.5Mgs.

I still have tons of percocet so maybe I'll take my last Methadone at 2:00PM and then percocet at bed time.

You don't have to scare me {DING!!!} I'm scared!!! :) It's a wild ride this life...
199177 tn?1490502134
I would try everything known to man before I took methadone . I would put methadone into search and start reading . I would have her look into other options .
Avatar universal
Just to share in short my own experience with methadone. About 6 yrs ago I got started taking methadone 40-50mgs daily for 2yrs, before I realized that the methadone wasnt really taking the pain away it was just making my body feel better to allow me to better deal with my pain. I successfully tapered off over 6months, and then had 30norco to take to ease the w/d's which they did for the first fewdays. But I have to be honest after that, I had terrible withdrawls for about 6weeks, and for the next 6months I was extemely fatigued, regularly sick(throwing up) all together felt like I had mild flu for like I said atleast 6months. Now everyone is different, and I did abuse the medication a bit, but for the w/ds were very close to being unbearable. So you would think going through that I would have known better but after being clean for over a 1yr, I tore some ligaments in my knee for the 2nd time and had to take perc 10/325's for a few months, and then made the horrible decision to back to methadone. Which then lasted almost 4yrs, along the way I got addicted to cocaine, oxycontin and other drugs to the point where I finally changed my frame of mind to get off. At that point I was taking 50mgs a day along with cocaine daily, and adding in oxy's very often aswell. To stop the oxy's and coke I upped my dose of methadone to where I was at 120-140mgs a day for another year. I finally got benefits and saw an addiction specialist who helped me taper down over 6months to 30mgs, then I chose to go suboxone route this time because methadone w/d's were too much for me to deal with. That day of switching was 62days ago, and I have to say I know I made the right choice for me. Now on the other hand, if you have such serious chronic pain, and you are going to have to be on an opiate for the rest of your life, then methadone is a better option than shorter acting opiates or even oxycontin in my opinion. Just because I know people that have been on methadone for 10-20yrs and as long as they arent abusing it, they are fully functionable, productive people. Its helped them regulate their life, to where they get some pain relief without being overly doped up, where your nodding in and out of conciousness. I think you know what you've gotten yourself into, hopefully when and if the day comes you dont need it anymore there will be easier alternatives to getting off, but whatever way you do it, its pure torture as far as Im concerned. Otherwise I would have just kept tapering down and quit, but I know with my body methadone w/d's almost make me want to end it for good, thats honestly how I felt. Ive actually heard of people who've died from methadone withdrawls, not sure if that's a fact, but Ive heard it from multiple people that it has happended. Most of the deaths involving methadone are related to mixing it with benzo's, and for that methadone related deaths are at an all time high. I dont want to sound like I hate methadone, cause it helped me for a short while, but had to pay a high price for that help. But for some, mainly with back problems who will have to be on opiates for the remainder of thier lives, in my opinion methadone can be a good choice because it allows for pain mangement and still remaining functionable when it comes to working and taking care of a family without being totally high. So there it is, my own good/bad experience with methadone, wish you all the best and a pain free day. You gotta do what ya gotta do!
374225 tn?1269902862
Thank you for that story. Very helpful.

You are right... "PURE TORTURE". What do I do?

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My gosh. Well... I wish I could afford the treatment that might help. I just don't have $5000. Ugh!
Avatar universal
From Babbee, Sept16, 2008, I had taken methadone for a year in May for back pain, then went to a pain clinic and decided to go cold turkey as the methadone was just not working and the  dose was 100mgs. a day. Big mistake, the withdrawal cold turkey has been so bad that you feel death would not hurt more. It is so bad you cannot function, loss of appetite, depression, pain, total memory confusion and you become a recluse because of the pain. Thanks for a great husband and 5 kids, I am in my 6th week and still have terrible days. I do massages, chiroprators, accupunture and yoga and still feel drained. I really hope the the methadone will work for you and if you do come off it, as the doctors say go for a clinic that does withdrawals for this poison. Good luck with what ever the future and family will help you with what ever direction you take, just be strong with your desicion and determination-a fellow person who wishes you the best. Babbee
Avatar universal
As some have told you here,methadone is a beast to come off of.I was on it for a little over a year,I never went higher then 35 mgs,which was actually too much for me so I cut down to 30 and that was my dose for most of the time.I tried to taper twice but couldn't hang through the w/ds so I went back up both times.The third time I made it down to 25 mgs and I just jumped,that was 61/2 months ago.It took 6 weeks to really feel better,the first 3 weeks were so bad for me I can't even put it into words.At 61/2 months life is a lot better,but I still struggle with fatigue,sleep issues,and bouts of depression from time to time.I was on methadone to overcome an addiction to pain pills.I don't know much about the use of methadone for chronic pain or for those suffering a terminal illness.I guess my best advice to you would be to educate yourself as much as possible about this drug,be fully aware of what you are getting yourself into,perhaps there is a better,safer option.I wish you all the best.Read sadinmichigans journal entry about methadone,it's very informative,and will perhaps give you the answers you are looking for......Kim
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