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703238 tn?1297098358

Hydrocodone for Bipolar

I have been told that Hydrocodone is sometimes perscribed to people with Bipolar disorder. Is this true?
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Avatar universal
I take hydrocodone when I need a break from the depression and pain. I am most often depressed and at times suicidal. I feel normal when I take it. I have taken it intermittently for 20 years and have no addiction. The most often I have taken it is once a week. Also, taking 150mg of cymbalta lifts the depression and physical pain. I can not find a dr. who will prescribe this amount. I only have a few extra a month so I exist in depression and pain for most of the time.
Special K, i can't remember the real name, is being used for depression. Is too expensive for me. So I continue to suffer. I have tried at least 15 combo of psych drugs, I am better but my life is still not worth living with all the pain.
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6726276 tn?1421126668
This is a very old thread. I'll throw my 2 cents in anyway.
   I know of no Pdoc who prescribes opioids for bipolar. What people with bipolar do is self medicate. Weaver gave an excellent post as usual & I agree with him.
  Manic is more fun than depression. Be very careful. Opioids trigger mania & then to cope we sometimes combine them with binge drinking.
  So no. Opioids are not for Bipolar disorder. They are for pain control after surgery.  
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Avatar universal
This is a topic I have seen many times and is very controversial. I, and other addict/bipolar I know, all agree that our time on opiates did decrease our bipolar symptoms. Eventually, the opiates had worse side effects than my bipolar and my bipolar was far worse, after I quit. It took about 2 years to recover from opiate addiction and detox. Now, I suppose I view all meds similarly. We have to decide if the side effects are worth the benefit, whether it be flat affect of Lamictal or chemical dependance to narcotics. I for one, cannot control narcotics, narcotics meaning opiate or opioid drugs.

I used opiates successfully for several years, but my tolerance started to make me have to take more and more for the same benefit. Once the tolerance was real high, I would go hypo manic and take way to many, I almost died multiple times. Death is a pretty major side effect of bipolar treatment, so I decided it wasn't worth it anymore. I never went psychotic on opiates, so they did calm my bipolar, but I sure did after detox, way more than I ever had in my past. I had my first mixed state, I think influenced by the long recovery from opiate addiction. Others may have better luck treating bipolar with opiates, I do know doctors who prescribe them to bipolar, but most every bipolar I know who gets mixed up in narcotics wants to quit, eventually. Opiate detox was a close second in severity to my psychotic break, so they helped until they didn't. Just my two cents from my experience. Choose wisely, weighing all options, but most of all, don't get lost in the medication, they are supposed to help, not make life worse.
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Avatar universal
You are right everyone is different but vicodin, oxycodone, hydrocodone, fentanyl, ete.  are all drugs used for pain such as muscle pain, bone pain, cancer pain or complications after cancer.   They are never used for Bipolar treatment.  You really do need to see a psychiatrist and let them know what you are using.  You are only setting yourself up for a great fall.  What happens when you can't get those drugs anymore?  When your doctor decides you don't need them or your street dealer decides to charge double the price you are paying now.  You will buy those drugs anyway regardless of what your daily bills are such as housing, electricity, and food.  What then.  The people I have seen that do this resort to selling their bodies or whatever the street seller asks for.  Please Please go see a psychiatrist.  It will only help you.  We are not hostile to you we are just urging you to find real help vicodin is just a bandaid for what problems you have.
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10023336 tn?1407292546
Its funny I ran across this. Although years later, but someone might read this. I have been battling Bipolar with psychotic episodes for nearly 30 years now. The only pill that ever worked is Hydrocodone. I will go to the emergency room and pretend I'm in pain to get it to stay even keel. A lot of doctors are nutty as fruitcakes and don't want us on this. I am still in search of a great doctor to prescribe this to me as treatment on a regular basis. The only thing is DO NOT DRINK ALCOHOL, or do drugs. This stuff calms me from mania and keep me regulated from tripping and going into a depressed state. I don't sense a "high" I guess because that is how bad my chemical imbalance is.
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Avatar universal
I also have Bi Polar disorder. I take Vicodin or Oxycodone for knee pain. 60 tablets can last me a year. I do not take them everyday, but I have noticed that I have more energy, in a more positive mood and actually feel like doing things when I have taken either pain med. So like you, I have the same exact question and cannot seem to get a reasonable answer.
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707563 tn?1626361905
Hi everyone -

This thread is from several years ago.

Please note that narcotics are indeed addictive, and take with caution. Some people do need them for medical reasons, but even when taking them for valid reasons, you can still become addicted.

Emily
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Avatar universal
you're wrong
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Avatar universal
you are hostile and drive people away...when i went into my doctor for the required paper work for pain management with a specialist there i told him Norco is good for my head...he said 'knowing you , it is'...he diagnosed me bipolar years ago and knows me well...absolutely, an opiate can be used moderately to calm a biploar episode...definitely , in my experience can avoid a needless anger episode with grace...Monkeyc and others on here deny being hostile but what i'm reading is a whole lot of anti drug, hysterical, look out you might be a dope addict stuff...many of you have had problems with drugs, ok...many others may be helped by them...check with your doctors...you ain't no doctor that's for sure...i just hit on this post and seems to me you're so quick to play drug rehab counselor...for anyone out there wondering if an opiate can help calm you...for me, for me and my doctor agrees...YES...just be careful...and don't listen to these guys telling you you are this or that or in denial...nonsense
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Avatar universal
to each their own...some people get hysterical about opiate use or addiction...addiction is doing what i want to do repeatedly to the exclusion of wholeness...if something is taking away from becoming a more complete person then one may be missing out...
...when i went into my doctor for the required pain management paperwork he agreed with me that 'Norco' may darn well be good for my head (bipolar)...
...each person is different and reacts differently to opiates...some are simply afraid or poo poo their use because society says this or that...
...my doctor said 'KNOWING YOU, IT DOES'...now, some other person with bipolar may be aggravated...sometimes the use may calm and at other times it may not calm...generally speaking i found, without doubt, moderate opiate use will absolutely calm me and , right now , keep me from saying something i shouldn't...
take care
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2010625 tn?1329372056
I know lortab can actually cause mood swings which is not good for bipolar. Not to mention pain killers can be addictive. Its not good to self medicate.
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Avatar universal
I had a massive manic break after a ten day recovery from surgery in hospital. I was on Dilaudid there; sent home with Vicodin. Took a Vic in the evening, stayed up all night scribbling weird notes. have not been the same since. googled a little and see that it's apparently happened to others--unless they are all shills for Scientology.

I don't think heroin causes any tissue damage in the abdomen. It's quite benign other than ruining your life if you can;t afford it. if you can, you're all good.

But, it does not treat bipolar illness. It could only mask symptoms or make them worse.
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Avatar universal
The question was:

"I have been told that Hydrocodone is sometimes perscribed to people with Bipolar disorder. Is this true?"

The answer, according to Dr. David Sosin (who does not do it), is "Yes,
Vicodin is prescribed for biplor patients."

Whether it treats the condition well or at all is not what was asked.
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Avatar universal
I bet it could. It affects dopamine to work  on the pain if I remember correctly and anything that affects dopamine affects mood. You probably already do but taking 1500mg of glucosamine a day can really help with arthritis pain. In studies it was as effective as ibuprofen, but it takes a month before it starts to help. Another option I used was injections directly into the joint. They can only do them once every 6 months as they will disintegrate the point. It burns like a SOB for a day, and then took down my pain considerably. They put it into my jaw joints.

Good luck. I know how hard it is to be in pain. Thankfully surgery took my pain from a '9' out of ten most days down to a more manageable '3'.
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Avatar universal
I agree with you...I felt some hostility and judgement in some of those answers. Anyway, I just thought I'd share my experience with you. It's why I'm on the internet now, looking for information, not opinions. For a few months I was taking hydrocone for osteoarthritis. It worked well and I kept the dose down, never more than 20mg/day, worrying about addiction. I'm an unmedicated bipolar and a recovering alcoholic. I have to admit, the happy side effect was nice, lots of energy and less pain, I was getting stuff done. Very suddenly, 2 weeks ago, the bipolar exploded. I was in the black hole type of depression and on the verge of panic at the same time, all the time for a few days and nights. I figured that the hydrocodone had to have something to do with it so I quit. Actually went through withdrawals. Now, I'm back to normal mentally and the arthritis hurts like hell. Now, I want to know if the hydrocodone caused the bipolar flareup.
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Avatar universal
I found I got some fibromyalgia symptom improvement when I started taking lamotrigine for my bipolar. It could be coincidence though.

I am sorry you are in so much pain. I've been in similar pain and it was the hardest 4 years of my life (Thankfully surgery helped my pain. I still have pain but it is 30% versus 100%). The difference between you and this person is this person was not taking the medications for physical pain and was not obtaining them legally. They were using them to numb out mental pain and self medicate. If you take these medications for physical pain that is what they were designed for. Taking them for any other reason is usually addiction.
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Avatar universal
I have bipolar and I am dealing with chronic pain symtoms...three bulging discs and horrible headaches. These chronic pain symtoms are burning muscle spasms all throughout my body, some fibromyalgia symptoms as well. I have my right shoulder that has been painful for about two months now. I have missed work and my the quality of life...I have none. For those who speak of addiction I pose this question to you...If you are in terrible pain what is the answer for treatment??? I am already on Elavil, Prozac, and Klonipin for the Bipolar, the anxiety, and the horrible pain symptoms.

I have seen doctors and they have seen me...crying, hurting, fatigued from not sleeping due to this persistant pain. Before you attack other's, and, yes you were attacking this poor person you should live this nightmare that you cannot awake from, while all along noone is listening or helping.

Two MRI's later I am still dealing with this and it continues to wreak havoc on my body.
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Avatar universal
I took a lot of pain medication for many years prescribed by a doctor for a severely painful condition. Not vicodin but I was taking percocet 3 every four hours for pain, and low dose Ketamine in the later stages. Never did anything to help my bipolar. I still got depressed. I think it may have made the hypomania worse. I can't remember. I can't remember a lot from this time in my life - likely due to the medication. Using these drugs is very hard on your body. And you will develop a tolerance where you need more to get the same effect. This happens to everyone who uses it, even if it is for medical reasons and you are not addicted.

It is not a solution for bipolar disorder, it is an addiction. And many many bipolar people self medicate. I think something like 60% of people with Bipolar Disorder have self medicated in their lifetimes. It is a really high proportion. Thing is it doesn't work. Just causes more issues. I hope you go to detox, and get yourself on some proper medications. Your life really is at stake here.
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1360950 tn?1277656603
I have never heard of a pain medication prescribed for Bipolar.
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Avatar universal
While it is true that vicodin WILL make you feel better,it is NOT ment to be used for ANY mental disorder.The long term side effects are dangerous and
should be watched by your PHYSICIAN very carefully.It is extreamly important
that a patient not be fooled by he short term positive effects it can have on them.Any RESPONSIBLE PHYSICIAN would NEVER prescribe a narcotic to treat
a mental disorder.That would be a completly contradicting course of treatment for ANY mental disorder.Please talk to you physician and be compleatly truthfull about your state of mind and how you are feeling.
Your LIFE my depend on it.
Signed-----A very concerned physician.
Good luck I hope you receive the help you my need.
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607502 tn?1288247540
A read of other posts in the addiction forum will show that the OP is actually not getting drugs from a doctor but from another source.

She admits that she has an addiction which is step one, I wish her every success in getting the help she needs and we of course will help any way we can.
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Avatar universal
It would be absurd and irresponsible for any doctor to prescribe pain meds (especially one's which are known to be addictive and misused) for Bi-Polar.  They are not meant for that, not to be prescribed as such.  

I often am suspect of anyone who wants or is trying to find a way to be prescribed pain meds for ailments other than..................pain.

It's called drug seeking behavior.
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Avatar universal
If you are still here, be aware that everything people are saying about Vicodin really is true. It may be that you were prescribed Vicodin after surgery or for an injury and maybe you've discovered that you don't feel as bad when you take it. You will be in for a rude awakening if you are taking it in doses larger than prescribed and/or more frequently than prescribed. When your prescription runs out, you may have a major crash. At that point, you will be going hat in hand to your doctor for more or trying to obtain it illegally. That is when things can get really out of control and you don't want to be arrested. There are better places to detox than jail!  

Please consider that addiction is a mechanism that works separately from bipolar, but one that can make bipolar symptoms much, much worse to the point of endangering your life. If you are not seeing a psychiatrist, I hope that you find one. Opiates are great for what they are meant to do, but they are not meant for people with mental illness.

If you have an issue with chronic physical pain, there are some other non-addictive options - or your doctor may choose to alternate which medications s/he uses. There are way to manage those problems and a medicine cabinet full of Vicodin is not the way. If you were to become extremely depressed or suicidal, it would not be wise to have a pharmacy of drugs to choose from. Trust me, I know about this! The last thing most of us need is another problem to overcome. Good luck.
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222267 tn?1253302210
Sorry if you think I was 'hostile'.  But narcotics are NOT used to treat Bipolar.  There are some pretty vulnerable people that come to this forum for answers about medications and so forth.  Vicoden is not a treatment for Bipolar.  Ya, maybe it numbs you so you can't feel anything but it's going to come back and bite you in the arss.  I know that your doctor has not prescribed this drug to you as a treatment plan.  It's just plain irresponsible.  I asked you earlier where you were getting your medication from and you didn't answer.  Do you have a psychiatrist?  A regular doctor?  We all know that everyone is different.  If you choose to self medicate, thats on you.  I wish you would listen a little to what people are really trying to say to you.  You asked.  You are not getting the response you want and it's upsetting you.  They have a great Addiction Forum on this site that maybe you should look at.  It can't hurt.  Ask them if they have ever heard of a Narcotic treatment for a mental disorder.  They might have the answers you want to hear.
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