I use methadone for pain relief. My answers to you are:
a) No. I was previously using vicodin (hydrocodone) and when I started seeing a pain specialist, he suggested that I switch to methadone because it lasts much longer (6 to 8 hours, as compared to 2 to 3 hours for the vicodin), therefore I wouldn't be taking pills all of the time.
Vicodin isn't nearly as strong as the methadone, and it was beginning to hurt my stomach. The methadone has been really great for me. I don't have a constant chronic bad pain. Mine spikes with each stone, and then levels out at about a 3 on the pain scale until another one hits me. So I only take it when I am in pain, I don't have the constant flow of it into my system like some of the people on this site do. I am thankful for that, because I am scared to death of addiction and withdrawl.
I recently had a surgery to clean some of the stones out of my collection ducts, which was supposed to relieve the pain level. Unfortunately, it seems to have all come back. I felt pretty great for a while, but now I am going from dull aches to feeling like a screwdriver is lodged in my back (my favorite metaphore).
You can read about the surgery in my journals if you are interested. I'm not saying it was a failure, just that things aren't going too good right now.
Sorry for getting off of the subject.
In summary I just want to say ... YAY FOR METHADONE!
Becky I am sorry to hear the pain levels are coming back... grrr mine are starting only in the right as well. I wonder how Julie is. Hollie just had Dr. Wolf redo the procedure only on the right side. I am not willing to do this that frequently, he told me the average pain relief was two years before it had to be repeated.
Have they tried you on an oral antibiotics to see if that would help the pain levels?
It might be worth it??
I am on methadone, because I would not go on pain management and it began effecting my health. MY GP at the time literally insisted I go on it,,,,
that is the only good thing that doctor did for me. MY GP now prefers the methadone to morphine. A pain management place wanted me just on more and more morphine
however I learned that morphine only effects one type of pain receptor. Methadone
does several, then I have break through meds that hit other pain receptors.
Becky, I am really bummed your not doing well... I am hopeful though about some more research... e-mail me if you can!
I may be off the board for a while Drew comes home tonight and the wedding is next week so please watch out for one another OK>..
and I will be back on once they get off on the honeymoon and I sleep the exhaustion off LOL.
HI just got an e-mail from Julia, She can't post on here from work and
does not get online at home. She does however read the posts etc. Below is
her update. (Becky, Hollie, Nancy, and Julia, along with anyone else who had the surgery, we NEED to stay in contact. This is the only way to know the long term
outcomes of the treatments etc. It is only together can we make a difference for MSKer's.!!)
Things with me are still very good physically. I haven’t been on narcotics of much strength since October – knock on wood. I still pass some stones here and there but nothing major. I haven’t had a kidney infection either although I don’t get those as much as stone pain.
Anyway, I hope you are doing well too. Feel free to post that I am still doing well post surgery!