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572713 tn?1237098502

Ultram 3months Post-Op

Hi,
I had thoracotomy 3 months ago for removal of carcnoid tumor.  I'm left with a 10" incision, a rib that was cut, and 1/2 of my left lung.  Am currently working out and trying very hard to get back to work full time.  

My current pain relievers:  Ultram ER 100mg 1 each a.m., and Norco 5/325 1 each night.  My surgeon says if I still need these meds in one month, I need to see a pain specialist.  

I really have 2 questions:  #1 - Am I abusing pain meds at this point? and #2 - Am I at risk for addiction to Ultram at this dose?  

I don't feel I'm a sissy about pain, but am starting to  wonder, based on my doc's reaction...Thanks for your help.
7 Responses
572713 tn?1237098502
To clarify - sorry!  On good days, I only take 1/2 of the Norco at night.  On bad days, I have to take Advil in addition to the daytime Ultram ER.  .
Avatar universal
Pain meds do have their place, and pain management is essential for many to function.
I think it crosses the line to addiction when you are not using it for pain, or as the dr.  prescribed. It sounds to me as though you are just controlling your pain while you heal.
However, it is really smart to be aware of the risks - pain meds are a serious problem for many.
Just because you may not be addicted, doesn't mean you will not go through withdrawal.  I have no idea at that low a dose, and for only 3 months if that is the case.  There are many on here whe struggle with Ultram - so hopefully someone will be able to help you out.  
544292 tn?1268886268
It doesn't sound like you are abusing the meds to me. The surgeon wants you o see a pain specialist so that the burden of giving you pain meds is on that doctor and not him. That is all that means. The pain specialist probably won't have a problem with the Ultram since it isn't considered a Narcotic. The Narco I know nothing about .... But surely someone else does.

That fine line between dependant and addicted ... you're probably dependant already, but the withdrawal might not be terrible off the ultram. You've been on a low doase a short time. The Narco ... no clue.

(((Hugs)))) I'm happy the surgeon was sucessful and I hope he didn't scare you into thinking you're and addict when you are just trying to manage pain. I hate ultram/tramadol but I was on it for chronic back pain and am withdrawing now. Not addicted, but dependant and w/d for me ... is a long slow walk thru hell. The good news is that my back pain is so mild now. Because the Ultram/tramadol causes pain eventually. Drugs turn on ya!

I will send my brightest and best thoughts for your healing!

Love and healing,
Emily
572713 tn?1237098502
Norco is basically Vicodin, but with less Tylenol (same amount of codeine).  I didn't take any Ultram or Norco at all yesterday, because I woke up feeling good & Advil was enough.  
I've been using the treadmill & bike for 2+ months, and I started the rowing machine last week - that was brutal on lazy muscles!  But I think my muscles are waking up and adjusting to the increased work, because I feel better in the past couple days - sore, but not "pain".
I have to be faithful in my workouts to get back to #1 job - fire & rescue.  
And I only want the meds to control the pain so that I can function during the day & sleep at night.  To be honest, my doctor did scare me a little bit.  Thanks for your support!
572713 tn?1237098502
Update...my muscles and pain are better now that I've been doing the rowing machine for a week.  
I have not taken any Ultram for 72 hours now.  
You were both right - there ARE w/d symptoms even after being on a low dose for short time.  My legs are twitchy & jumpy - worse at night.  Since I never had restless legs before, I have to assume it's from coming off Ultram.  
I think they need to put stronger warnings on their website & educate doctors more.
749561 tn?1272826714
Norco is hydrocodone / apap, Lortab with Tylenol 325mg. the lortab dosage varies. i have been on the 10's for three months post op ( multilevel spinal fusion (14 vertebra)) i just asked to have it reduced and am taking 7.5. i never liked lortab and probably will never. i quit tramadol on feb 27th 2009, i have no desire for it now. on day 6 post op while still in hospital i had a very bad day. those thoughts of, did i do the right thing, what have i done, the type of stuff that makes any pain you have 10 times worse. well , not MY doctor, but one of my doctors decided to put me on tramadol without reading my file. if he had he would have seen the notes that i didnt want it, and had to quit taking it 10 weeks before surgery or i wouldnt have the surgery. i was livid and had the nurse double check. well with reluctance i took the 50mg, thats what he wanted me to take, again not reading file, when i quit i was taking upwards of 400-600mg daily. but i took it. only one. i festered on it till i get someone to contact MY doctor. he was livid too. Ha, i was only going to post on what norco is because i take it and know what many drugs are since i have been on most, well, ALOT of pain meds in the past. end up rambling. i am 3 months post op working to be off 99% pain meds with the next 9 months, i have been off tramadol for about 6+ months and would not even think of taking it again. to anyone thinking it is hard to quit. IT IS, i had i think at least 10 days pretty bad withdraws, but WELL worth it. maybe im lucky, maybe tramadol was what i needed to get determined in life, but i know its possible. good luck!
749561 tn?1272826714
abusing, i really dont think your even close to being considered abusing, again , good luck!
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