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Day 62, Tramadol Detox, Cold Turkey Withdrawal

Aug 20, 2008 - 8 comments



Back pain


Day 62






cold turkey


klonopin taper

Day 62

I think I did not really believe in he 30 day, 60 day, 90 day flare up/trigger but I'm just going to go ahead and say that; that's probably true.

Even if you aren't "addicted" and are "dependant" on a substance, something strange happens around those days. Which it has for me. Triggered seemingly out of nowhere was indeed massive and unrelenting anxiety. Maybe it's the whole fat cell turn over of toxins? Who knows? But yeah, in my experience with tramadol I am seeing this as quite true.

Part of this is of course that the car accident I just had on 8-9-08? was probably rated as severe. So, another severe car accident. I thought I was doing ok all week at work UNTIL the weekend or maybe Friday night. Then it felt like someone had taken a bat to my upper back. My arms literally felt as if they would fall out of their sockets. Which would be unfortunately (insert some swear words here) and inconvenient. Seeing as how I love a fresh manicure ....

Anyhow, I'll say this. This pain I am in right now. It's causing me anxiety. The accident itself cause some post traumatic accident anxiety. I finally just turned the whole thing over to an attorney I know fairly well. Sorry lawyer Lady, I'm going to make a crack and say, "Yeah, but how well can you ever know a Lawyer?" He's a PI attorney so ...

Ok so here's what happens that I attribute to the way Tramadol has re-wired and re-fired my brains. Physical pain onset. Instead of thinking; Oh I should grab an ice pack and some OTC pain killer I go to ... panic. 0-to anxiety attack in 60 seconds.

This morning I woke up and thought, "Oh my Gawd I am in so much pain I wish I were dead."  This thought scared me because it's that same ole suicidal ideation back again and it's been here a couple of days mainly in the morning. I simply cannot fall asleep early enough and I can't lay in bed half asleep, half awake because my brain and the bad drug thoughts come back and shell me. Badly.

For me Suicidal Ideation was NON stop when I used Tramadol. I think it took a few months to show up, after I started using it. But no doctor ever caught it; so I got diagnosed with a panic disorder and put on klonopin. So I am not sure if the panic diagnosis is real or not. Again. This whole experience has made me realize why people bang their head against a wall.

So I drug my body downstairs, Got all the cats fed, grabbed an ice pack and realized another crucial point is that I am letting myself get too cold. Bad for a number of reasons but esp bad if you are say; using ICE PACKS to decrease swelling post car accident.

And. I'm running out of Klonopin. Which I think I have been on for about 3 years? I quit once thinking that the klonopin was giving me the suicidal ideation. And yes. Benzo withdrawal was very very bad. But honestly unless I get myself to a psychiatrist soon, I'll e on a "run out of klonopin taper."  Seeing a psychiatrist; How will that happen? I no longer have medical insurance. I'm going to run out of Klonopin. Funny thing is that running out of klonopin will cause you anxiety if you are dependant on it. Hopefully ... I'll either get to an understanding Doc who can taper me, or .... (train of thought is now officially lost. This would never happen in Germany where trains run on time to the second and probably never ever get lost!)

Also I think the reality of seeing my smashed up car all weekend really did a number on my head. The reality of it is that I could have been killed. People get killed in that kind of accident all of the time. Their occipital bone slides forward and servers their spinal cord, paralyses or kills them. So after spending a weekend seeing that squished car by Tuesday going back to work was a head trip. So much anxiety about driving. Because again, another accident another bad driver. And my car, was really running beautifully. I had spent money to get it fixed. It had new brakes, new battery, new alternator, oil change, new brakes.


And now it is completely totaled. Squished. I know I am to be grateful that I am still alive and hurt, but not seriously hurt. I'm scared because the lower back pain which vanished is back with a vengeance and ... I was really enjoying it being gone! I mean, as much as you can enjoy this when you have withdrawal going on at the same time.

I hope all of you are well. Let me know if you can how you are doing. The Tramadol is a horrible drug and for me the experience was hair raising to say the least! I really really hope you all are making it thru, it's really nice. Even if your car is totaled and even if you get bronchitis in the middle of all of it. It is wonderful to laugh again. A real laugh, not a fake one. I never realized how much my laugh had vanished, until it returned.

Love and healing,

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Avatar universal
by plamp, Aug 21, 2008
Its ok em! Hang in there, you have made alot of progress and there will always be setbacks regardless of how well things are going. Can't let that bring you down!

Yeah the suicidal ideations are always there on tramadol. its funny because every other drug i've experimented with or been on has not had that aspect to it when I am actually on the drug rather than craving it. Even when I consistently took it I still had those ideations ESPECIALLY in the morning. I remember I got to work on a cloudy day once and I had just got my assignment and I just stood there and helplessly looked at the sky which corresponded with my mood of utter despair and worthlessness. Tramadol really is a very complex and random drug that needs to be extensively studied. I have tried anti anxiety and depression meds and even they aren't like this when you are on them and taking them consistently. Tramadol will **** you even if your quenching the cravings by showing up with its good old randomness to bring you down. Never try this drug. Never take this drug. You would be better off taking vicodins every day (which I did for a month before I started tramadol) doesnt mess with your mind and doesnt have the excruciating random effects.

544292 tn?1268886268
by EmilyPost, Aug 22, 2008
Thanks Plamp!

You're a sweetheart. And you are correct. Setbacks are normal. Big Crazy Car Accidents are horrible in every way. Ok but at least today I can go for a massage. Yay for Chinese Reflexology!

I finally cleaned up some heavy duty paperwork and got what I believe is a good attorney working for me. The other one should be named The Lawyer Guy Who Doesn't Return My Calls. So hopefully he can get me in to see someone who can help with the accident pain which has hit like a ton of bricks.

Plamp it is true about Tramadol and Suicidal Ideation. It wasn't here constantly at the end, now it attacks early morning causing me to basically JUMP out of bed! And as far as I can tell, the drugs I have been on don't cause it (in me) either. Only the Tramadol. And of course, now that I am so far out,  it has lessened to the point that of course I almost "forget" where it is coming from. I don't crave it BTW, I'm done. I'm repulsed by it. Literally like poison to me.

So strange Paul that you write, "Even when I consistently took it I still had those ideations ESPECIALLY in the morning. I remember I got to work on a cloudy day once and I had just got my assignment and I just stood there and helplessly looked at the sky which corresponded with my mood of utter despair and worthlessness."

Exactly. Yes. Exactly. Whatever body chemistry it is that we all share, Tramadol is the wrong drug in every way. The head trip comes in when you read that of course it is safer than bubble gum!

Anyone else still out there? Let us hear form you if you can!

Love and healing,

Yes. Excruciatingly RANDOM. Yep!

Avatar universal
by seekingbetterdays, Aug 24, 2008
Hi ya'll.  I'm just checking in to say hello.

I'm still taking one day at a time.  The better days are beginning to show up.  I'm still not back 100% though. Perhaps 75%.   I've grown to accept this, and will just keep putting"clean days" behind me until it is normal again.  The fatigue shows up mostly in the middle of the day, but the time it tortures me is diminishing slowly.  I have learned not to measure improvement by day, but rather by week.  It is noticable by week and it makes me feel better to think of improvement that way.  For the record, EP, I never did disclose my recovery to anyone.  The toughest time to do this was week two when the flu aliby wasn't working so well, and my inability to pull my part of the normal family and work chores was noticable.  however, after week two I found I could muster my strength and rally to the task at hand at least enough to fool everyone -- at least I'm pretty sure I did.  Looking back, I am glad I was able to make it through to at least this point in total secret.  I say this because I now know the true time it takes to recover for a full blown 4-5 yr. tramadol dependancy.   One one of your last blogs, EP, you mentioned your close family support and from your writing it seemed it was diminishing.  I feel for you, and hope that the full measure fo support you deserve is back in your life.  I'm still one thankful guy when it comes to you EP.   I was just hanging out at the bottom of the Tramadol valley and on this blog as a spectator when your journal inspired me to begin the journey to recovery.  Wow! I thankful - and always will be.

Avatar universal
by Sue1507, Sep 03, 2008
I've never contacted anyone on a website before but thought it might help.  I've been in chronic knee pain for 6 years now, had an unsuccessful knee op last year, went for a second opinion and am going to have another op in 3 weeks' time with a specialist whom I trust.  He gave me a cortisone injection last month so I stopped the painkillers as I hate taking drugs.  I have been taking Tramadol for the past 14 months (one before bed time to alleviate the night pain) and I specifically asked the GP whether they were addictive.  It seems that I should have been inquiring as to the best way to withdraw from the tablets and what side effects there might be.  As soon as I stopped taking Tramadol, the withdrawal symptoms kicked in and I felt that I was going crazy - didn't sleep; irritable and anxious and my body felt as though it was on another planet.  It's been necessary to take time off work as I can't concentrate and get extremely tired.  Currently I'm drinking heaps of water, going for a walk every day and eating healthy food, in between collapsing in a heap of tiredness and trying to spend good time with my 2 young children.  My brain feels as though it is in a fog.  Any further advice as to how I can get through this would be most welcomed.  I've been reading posts from other people and my thoughts certainly go out to them as it sounds very tough.

544292 tn?1268886268
by EmilyPost, Sep 04, 2008
Hi Sue,

First, I am so sorry that you found yourself in chronic pain.

How long have you been off the Tramadol? Looks like you just stopped right? Cold Turkey. Yep. Been there.

Oh back at you about my heart going out to you! Yes, the, "I am Going Crazy and or/Dying" is a huge "symptom of the withdrawal from Tramadol. And yeah, I believe you would have withdrawal after "only" one 100? Extended Release? Or even one 50 mg Tramadol over 14 months.  Completely and entirely true. Remember this, it's helpful.

You aren't going crazy, It's Just Withdrawal. Which is a symptom that will pass and you will get thru it and you will not feel like death warmed over for much longer.

I used The Thomas Recipe. Which I will paste in for you. I used B-12 sublinguals and honey like it was going out of style. Both helped me (sometimes) snap out of the Fog that Tramadol Withdrawal causes.

This is a vitamin and amino acid protocol which I also used.

So effective. In other places in my journal (and the kind people who answered me) you will be able to find other useful info, or maybe just comfort. Knowing you aren't alone and all of us, have recovered.

Love and healing,

599071 tn?1300072302
by madtram, Sep 04, 2008
Hi Emily & other tramadol warriors.  Emily, I have found your battle cries most inspiring & am so grateful to have found your journal, as we all know, it's so much easier to find tramadol suppliers than meaningful information about this drug.
Nothing new about my story; was on a, {thankfully},usually only 50mg daily dose for trigeminal neuralgia, for 3 years.  I partly blame myself as I did take it unquestioningly when I'm usually a lot more proactive about my health management.  Unfortunately, one of the major effects of drug tolerance for me was brain fog & fatigue so it took me a long time to figure out why I was feeling so lousy in spite of my health junky lifestyle.
I'm a couple of weeks or so behind you on the CT withdrawal schedule & my only hope is that the compulsory character development really will make me a better person.
Things I have found most helpful thru withdrawal are: your posts, truly I would have otherwise have been completely unprepared for the random insanity of the side effects; DLPA which has helped significantly with the anxiety & passion flower herb helps with sleep.
The ongoing biggy for me is the random lie down on the spot exhaustion & my belief that I am a weak willed whimp for giving into it.  Just gotta believe the person with the motivation & drive will break thru the tramadol residue.
Lifewise, the experience has been a big obstacle in my med school studies as although i have had doctors' certificates this disability has gone on so long that I expect to get kicked out.  I would like to argue that it's relevant experience on a number of levels but am scared they might mark " substance abuse" on my file.
Painwise, although mine is intensely distracting when present, it's no way constant like some of you. Emily you are a real trooper & role model.
Here's to all this being just a bad dream.

599071 tn?1300072302
by madtram, Sep 04, 2008
Forgot to add that mega size, 15 gram daily doses of inositol have also made a big dent in the anxiety & should also help the liver detox process.   As a B vitamin, it's water soluble & has been tested on humans at even higher doses without side effects.   It has virtually no taste so you can mix with water, juice or shakes if you prefer.  Not sure if the rats love it tho.

544292 tn?1268886268
by EmilyPost, Sep 04, 2008
Dear MadTram;

Oh I am so happy to hear that you found anything here at all helpful. Thank goodness! I will say that you do have a legitimate reason to be on meds and since Tramadol isn't considered a higher grade narcotic, but rather a harmless jelly bean; I don't think they would write anything like that in your file you sweetheart! I do understand the fear very well. It would be very different if you were on say; Vicodin. Then they'd be on you like white on rice. I hope that helps you relax, withdrawal makes us go to the worst place in our heads.  

I am now 77 days out and I have no withdrawal symptoms at ALL from Tramadol. None. Nadda. ZIP. I have the occasional intrusive thought and the occasional Suicidal Ideation (won't lie about that) but it's not the constant repeative drive you crazy Fiesta that was happening in my head at the end, when I decided Tramadol was going to murder me.

Be gentle with yourself. I am like you, very driven, very on the go. Tramadol Withdrawal; It absolutely kicked my butt and took my name. So I lost time from work. Yes, I know it is a HUGE PROBLEM when you are in school. And when you are working. Problem is; for me; Tramadol had clearly turned on me. It's all relative. Yes, I lost money. Yes, I destabilized my life somewhat. But, my feeling is that Tramadol makes people worse because it's side effects are increased pain and even neuropathy. Which is freakin scary. The fact that RANDOMLY you can't function ... A huge and annoying and frightening disability!  Esp. for type A personalities. I'm more like Type A Plus! LOL!

I remember the collapse in a heap of sweaty exhaustion after 15 minutes phases. They pass I promise! I don't know how long you have been off, but they pass. And maybe they come back randomly. It makes sense, because of the way the drug is processed and made. In a lab.

I promise you that the randomness for me, has eased up. I was NOT expecting for Tramadol to have that level of disability during withdrawal, but I stopped because I wanted to stop and I have a severe aversion to it now.

LOL! Rats like Tramadol! So funny. Lordie how I hate rats!

And yeah, you really just have to Go To War. Kick its Butt. It's trying to murder you or harm you? All bets are off! No Geneva Convention!

I took alot more, I was on it longer, and then at the end, I took even more plus anything anyone had that would help me. So, I'm not amazed that I had terrible w/d.

You aren't a weak willed wimp. The Tramadol is being stored in so many different places and from what I can figure out, it is random because of the way it is made. It's a synthetic mix of faux opiates and an old as dirt antidepressant as a side dish. ANNOYING! SO ANNOYING! What in the world are these Doctors doing to people; telling them this stuff is harmless and no w/d!? So bad. And yeah, I know about the Internet and it's ... lies about Tramadol. It sounds GREAT doesn't it? Until it tries to murder you or eat your brain and destroy your life. Or; cause greater pain.

OK so DLPA, Passionflower and Inositol. Thanks you for your experience and specific advice, I sure do appreciate it! When I get a chance, I wanna go thru the whole journal and pull up everything that anyone has ever found helpful. That way; a newbie will have some kind if big outline of the process. I think that would be helpful.

I will say that I look at the time I was tapering and the time I went cold turkey and I missed work. Almost all of July is like a dream. I NEVER want to forget how bad it got. Never ever. Because then I would be in danger. It's another huge reason I wrote this journal. It helps me to go back and read.

Love and healing;

SeekingBetterDays; I'm so happy for you! Good job Buddy! :D Plamp you're a doll baby!

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