Can anyone tell me approximately how it takes for bowel probs to subside when coming off co-codamol?

Posted , 6 users are following.

Like so many other people who have been prescribed co-codamol, its adverse effects on my bowel have been really bad. I've been taking it for almost five years now for a spinal issue and when, soon after starting them, I developed what was eventually diagnosed as IBS, not a single medic suggested that it could be down to the pills. Recently, however, I saw a colorectal consultant who said that it was almost certainly codeine causing my problems and that I should stop taking them if at all poss and see 'how things went'. I cut down from 3 doses of 30/500mg to 2 doses, from there to 45/500mg twice daily and, after 3 weeks at that level, decided I could stop them altogether ... and what a daft thing to do that was! Thought I was going bonkers until I found these posts and realised that I wasn't alone in experiencing all the weird and horrible sensations I was having because of the sudden withdrawal. However, I think, having read, what you've all said, that I can just about cope with that stuff, but what I'm finding truly difficult is managing the diarrhoea. Within an hour or two of eating, I'm visiting the bathroom every 30 minutes or so for the rest of the day - and it's really explosive too! Sorry to be graphic about that, but if anybody out there has experienced this and could give me a clue as to how long it might last, I'd be very grateful.

Thanks to everyone who's taken the time to write these posts, they've helped me no end.

 

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  • Posted

    Only thing ibe found to work is oover counter immodium or cheap generic does the same thing. It won't last but I apperiate what it feels like get some good books and toilet paper in the freezer for when it starts to burn. Honestly tototally feel and felt your pain. Also diet change helps but that's more long term x
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    • Posted

      Thanks very much for your replies, Nicola. Although it's a pretty selfish way to think, it just helps knowing that other people have gone through the same thing. Love the bit about putting loo roll in the freezer - never thought of that! I hope you feel good now and that 2015 is a good year for you.

      Roz x

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    • Posted

      There is more graphic ways to cure the pain but ill spare all the commenters brains from the mental images lol. Hope it passes soon and feEling better I've got opposite problem now can't go if I try x
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  • Posted

    I've just stopped using cocodomol and experienced the same problem - bottle of kaolin over the counter remedy did the trick for me - took a tablespoon 3 separate times over just one day and everything has settled down.  I'm on my 20th day now since stopping taking them and getting stronger daily although I still get hot and cold sweats and feel very trembly first thing in the morning - but so much better than I was a week ago so I know I'm improving.  Good luck - hope you manage to stay off these terrible chemicals.
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    • Posted

      Hi Eunice,

      Many thanks for taking the time to reply. My husband has just gone to the pharmacy for both kaolin and immodium, so if, when I start to eat again, the diarrhoea comes back, I can give each one a try to see if either work for me. Glad to know you're feeling better each day and I hope you never slide back onto codeine. Happy new year to you.

      Roz

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  • Posted

    Hi Roz, exactly the same is happening to me and it's been over five weeks now, I've been doing the same as nicola27201 and using cheap generic immodium (from Poundland) which helps a bit but still need to be aware of the need to be near a toilet. This was probably the drawback of going cold turkey. My wife has IBS and I've been using some of her Alverine Citrate caps which also calm it down a bit. Just got to hang in there I guess..
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    • Posted

      Hi Andrew,

      Wow, 5 weeks and you're still having problems, I really hope you get over it soon. It's only been 5 days for me so far and I've really seen enough of our bathroom already! The low ab cramps are the worst part for me, they're not easing off despite a starvation diet yesterday to try and get some control. The pain feels like gas to me as it moves around quite a bit, perhaps a trip to my GP next week may be on the cards.

      I hope you have a better year to look forward to.

      Roz

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    • Posted

      Hi again Andrew,

      Sorry to ask you such a specific question, but do you have actual diarrhoea (ver yloose, fluid stools) still or is it that you just have to 'go' a lot of times - as if your bowel doesn't empty properly? That's what's happening to me now, and just wondering if you were the same.

      Roz

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    • Posted

      Hi again Roz,

      yeah not to put too fine a point on it it was explosive diarrhoea pretty much every half hour ish, what a nightmare....It's finally calming down a lot after 5/6 weeks...I think if I had to do it again I would have tailed off slowly,it's just I like to do things quickly and get them over with...The flu-like symptoms went after two weeks if that's any consolation...Yay me..smile

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    • Posted

      Thanks for that Andrew. Glad to hear things seem to be calming down a bit for you at last.

      I'm at day 12 and, apart from the digestive/bowel probs (which have improved slightly today) I feel relatively normal.

      We'll all get there in the end I suppose. There was a good programme on Radio 4 this afternoon all about the over-prescribing of opioids and the damage they do. Hardly news to us, eh?

       

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    • Posted

      Hi Andrew,

      Well, 7 days further on and I was just wondering if things were still improving for you, I hope they are. It seems like the bowel probs are probably the last thing to put themselves right, people on other forums have said that they still have a few mild issues several months down the line.

      I think my symptoms are tailing off a bit each day, but still quite a way from being normal (think I've forgotten what 'normal' is actually!)

       

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  • Posted

    Hi Roz, I tried going cold turkey with the co/mol and thought i had flu, which turned out not to be and was the withdrawl effects, I too had stomach cramps and diahhorea (sorry, i can never spell that word correctly) but my symptoms only lasted 7-10 days or so and i started back on the tablets as i couldn't cope with the withdrawl, I never gave imodium a single thought, so go with that as it seems to have worked for others x good luck x
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    • Posted

      Lydia, thank you very much for your reply although I was sorry to read you'd gone back on those awful pills. Can't you think about giving withdrawal another go using immodium or kaolin as has been suggested to me? I just hope I can stay off them long enough to feel better.

      Perhaps the new year will be an improved one for you, I hope so anyway.

      Roz x

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    • Posted

      I am wanting to come of, but the last time it was aweful, never felt so ill and couldn't function properly, im being cowardly and waiting until all my issues on my script have run out, then i've no choice but to "Do it"....crickey, giving up smoking 16 months ago was hard enough, but not near as hard as coming of co/mol !! rolleyes
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    • Posted

      Head to doctor honestly they can be really helpful or not so much they may just suggest tappering your amounts slowly or cold turkey with tablets to help wit side effects. Way I see it is doctors have duty to really help as they have created the issue by handing codiene like sweets without a second thought and not considering the persons life after this drug has taken hold x
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    • Posted

      I agree with Nicola and think a trip to your GP is essential before you try to come off the codeine again. I wouldn't recomend that you let yourself run out of tablets and then cold turkey it, that's way too tough.
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