Need help/Advice regarding withdrawing from Codeine

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Hi All

Ok so 3 and half years ago I was in a car accident and suffered from a bulging disc and whiplash, the Doctors put me straight onto Codeine Phosphate 30mg x 2 four times a day. I had them on repeat prescription and was never questioned when I ordered them. So basically I am addicted to them even though the pain I was in has subsised and now I found myself taking 12 x 30mg every day.  

One day (2 weeks ago) I had had enough of being addicted, I needed to take them to just feel 'normal', so I went to my GP and admitted all.  She was absolutely disgusted with me and was furious and basically called me a "heroin addict".  I wasnt to happy with the way she treated me tbh and she basically said if this doesnt work you need to go to Addaction.

She immediately cancelled them on repeat, fair enough, and gave me a 2 week tapering plan where I had to take 12 one day, then 11 next, and so on and so on.  I attempted this but I felt it was too quick for how long I had been taken them, i got down to 4 a day and then was really really ill with withdrawals, I decided to stick at it but after my last tablet I was so ill i had to have time off work and I went back to the docs for advice and they just upped my dosage of Amytripyline, which did not help whatsoever.

So i ended up replapsing (as I hade a few 30mg left) and I also keep buying Nurofen Plus. So Im back to square one.  I just cant handle the physical and mental effects of withdrawl, I was a mess.

So now Ive self-referred myself to Addaction and they want me to go and see them, etc etc.

Im glad i've done this now as I might get the proper help I need to stop altogether as I cant just do it cold-turkey.

I have to wait 10 days for an appt with Addaction (at my local surgery) but i was wondering if I rang my GP and explained what I have done (it was their idea) they would provide me with some meds until I see the Addaction doctor ??

I cant keep buying Nurofen Plus & Codeine Linctus online, its breaking the bank but I cant handle cold turkey.

I am married with 3 kids and my wife has noo sympathy for me at all, like my doctor, and wont give me any support whatsover

 

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  • Posted

    Omg that doctor needs to have a word with herself how disgusting to treat you like that when they should have reviewed you before it got out of hand, anyway moving on from that you've done the right thing and you will get a lot of support from this sight, in my opinion you definitely have tapered down to quick and hopefull youl get the right support and advice from addiction, please ring your docs back and ask to speak to someone else urgently so they can help you until you get your appointment, stick with it your taking the right steps to getting better, I wish you all the best but keep us informed on how your getting on no matter how difficult it gets someone will be here to help you through it 😊 Good luck x

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    • Posted

      Thank you Carolineq8 for your kind words!

      I am positive I will beat this as I dont drink or smoke, have never been addicted to any substance in the past, in good health (apart the codeine) but I just cant Cold Turkey and need help getting over that bit and I will have it beat. I tried it in the past but failed, one time i was so ill I blacked out at the top of the stairs and cut my head open.

      Its also nice someone will listen as no-one knows about this (my wife knows I have taken them in the past and has found them on a few occasions and flushed them down the loo, which doesnt help)

      I will ring my doctors in the morning, would you suggest speaking to a different doctor ?

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  • Posted

    Hi ian68673. I'm sorry to hear about what your going through and hate hearing what is becoming a common story of your GP just cutting you off. That was wrong and so was this "professional" making you feel bad about yourself. The withdrawal will cause a chemical depression as it is. I would possibly go to an emergency room and see what they can do in the meantime because you going to addaction sounds like a good thing to do. The thing about taking neurofen plus is that although you may feel fine, taking large doses of paracetemol can be deadly! The reason they put it in is to stop people abusing the codeine but when you're strung out, you likely take the chance but this is a very, very dangerous thing to do. At least try and spread your doses to every 4 hours no more than 2 because the paracetemol could give you liver failure (even if you feel fine). If you go to the emergency room at the hospital, they may be able to give you a prescription without the paracetemol until you get into this program. I feel for you and this whole addiction thing gets very, very messy with people that are not addicts themselves. I would also look for an NA meeting. There are loads of people in the same boat as you and they can offer you the strength, support and advice that you need. To go through it alone can feel nearly impossible. I went there (to NA)and i did it amidst cold turkey. It was horrible but thanks to those rooms, they saw me through and gave me the love and support i needed to get through it. Best of luck to you and please stop all the paracetemol because it's playing with fire. You can do it Ian. You really can. Spread the doses and find a meeting. All the best to you with loads of healing your direction. Take care.

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    • Posted

      hi pete58156

      I undertsand that the paracetamol isnt good for me, i do CWE to try an reduce the risk, thats sounds so bad and desperate I know.

      I have tried to cold turkey about 6 times now and failed miserably...

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    • Posted

      Hi Ian , I'm so sorry to hear your story it's so very similar to mine actually , iv been taking 8 30mg cocodamol every day for the past 7 years now , iv tried tapering down the lot , I decided enough was enough yesterday and went cold turkey , well it's not gone good I'm now waiting till the chemist opens to go and buy more ( my monthly prescription of cocodamol ) last just 10 days .. it's soul destroying it really is , I darent go to my doctor and tell them as they won't even give you and kind of pain relief after admitting addiction , I really feel for you , and my other half is disgusted too , my hand bags full of empty strips , and all the chemists know my face ,, rotating them every other day ... did you get any further with your doctor ???? ( hopefully a new one you seen this time ) thinking of you x

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    • Posted

      Hi Lyndsy26237

      Yeah our situation sounds very similar, its a shame our partners cant be more supportive, i think if mine was I would deal with this and come off them a lot easier, its stressful enough without having to hide it from her.

      I did speak to a good doctor in the end and she was very helpful and agreed to taper me down much gentler, and it is working well as Im down to 6 a day now and feeling generally ok and Im not abusing my dosage.  althought I have encountered a problem just now by my other half catching me taking my morning dose and taking the rest off me, so now I dont have any until i get my new script until wednesay

      and the panics kicking in already, so Im going to my docs in the morning and will explain whats going on and hopefully they will help me until wednesday 

      you should go speak with your doc and admit all, thats what I did and it worked for me (well not the 1st time, but the 2nd time it did)

      good luck, keep in touch x

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  • Posted

    One small piece of advice I would give is to keep a daily diary of exactly what you have taken and how you are feeling.  If you haven't done so to date then write it in retrospect and then keep up a daily entries.  You should also write down how this all started, how many times you have been reviewed and when these reviews were carried out, by whom and what was said.  I am an ex Benzidiazepine victim and am now disabled both emotionally and physically.  If I had have kept records and photpcopies of all the hand written prescriptions which were given to me which exceded safe doses I wouldn't be an emotionally disabled porper now.  This isn't helping I know and I can.t advise on this drug but I am currently withdrawing from Morphine patches and going through a similat type of hell for the second time, stupid man that I am.  Good luck Ian,  You need to face the world without drug dependance now.  On your own and drug free.  It will be worth it   ~   Clive

    PS You could also look to see what NICE says about taking this much Codene for so long?

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    • Posted

      hi clive-onpatches

      i hvae a full record of what I ordered and when as its all online, I am going to speak with a different doctor tomorrow and also wait for my addaction appt

      thanks!

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    • Posted

      Good man, You'll get there Ian. Let's see what actual help you get tomorrow. I hope you get to see someone who knows what they are talking about ~ Clive

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    • Posted

      thanks!

      I also have just browsed the NICE website about opiate addiction and withdrawal

      some very interesting information on there, is that what my GP should be following ? or is it down to the individual Doctor about what methods they use ?

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    • Posted

      Such an interesting question Ian.  When I was on the Benzos the GMC said the no person should be on these drugs for more than a month.  My doc said that that was crap and continued to prescribe the highest doses and more for a year.  I was suicidal for 9 months.  GPs seem to have a will of their own  and I have never seemed to be able to fathom it.  One might think that doctors should follow guidance from the GMC and NICE but it is evident that some don't and feel restricted by the governing bodies.  What we believe is being represented by the GMC is not necessarily what the rule of law says.  I am afraid it is all about cause and effect.  The burden of proof is on the patient to prove that they have been wrongly treated by a doctor.  NICE and the GMC simply sit behind their advice and do nothing.  All this is fraught with difficulty   ~   Clive

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  • Posted

    Hi Ian

    I cannot believe the attitude of your GP mate, absolutely pathetic!!!

    I cant really add to what everyone else has said to be honest. Just to get a different GP, i would also ask to speak to the practise managet at the surgery & put a complaint in about that GP!! The stupid Cow doesnt have a clue, you're sruggling enough as it is witbout that stupid women adding to your problems!! She should support you for gods sake not kick you when you're down!!!!

    Something i can recommend you do is to ring a drug charity that will help you. They were absolutely amazing with me & i dont know where i would be without them.

    Google release drug charity for the phone number, if you cant find it message me & i will get it you.

    All the best tomorrow mate, i really hope this Dr is better & helps you more than that other poor excuse for a GP did, stupid cow!!!

    All the best

    Ritchie

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    • Posted

      Ritchie you're a scream but you have given Ian the best advice.  My laughter at your comments took my anxiety a step back for a moment or two also.  It's plain to see that there is hope for us all.  Stick with it mate, forever she will be known as "The Stupid Cow"   ~   Clive

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  • Posted

    Hi All

    thanks for all your advice, I am going to ring the doctors in the morning and get a telephone consultation (i cant take any more of work, Ill get sacked) with a different doctor and exlpain my situation and also that I have an appt with Addiction and see of they can help me until my appt with Addaction.

    I know I have relapsed but surely they could help me for 10 days until my addaction appt ?

    Even if they give me something other than Codeine to help with the WDS until then would be a blessing

    Has anyone else done this before with their GP ?

    Thanks again

    Ian

     

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    • Posted

      Cheers Clive!

      Its right though mate, she wants striking off for how she spoke to & treated Ian!! He is strugglimg enough, doesnt know how to climb out of this hell hole he is in & she says that!!

      Ian

      I was put on a deadly amount of Oxycontin by my GP, after years of abusing i had had enough but she too was useless when i said i wanted to come off. All she said was "try to cut down" WHAT!!!! Thats like putting a bottle of Jack Daniels in front of an alcoholic & telling them not to touch a drop!!! Oxycontin is Heroin & she told me to cut down. Yet another stupid cow mate!!

      I changed surgeries & was put on a taper program, my new gp was amazing mate, he really was.

      I tapered down to 320mgs per day but then hit a brick wall, i am on methadone now to help but that will be another nightmare once the time comes.

      Good luck tomorrow & please contact release, they are great, they WILL help you

      All the best

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    • Posted

      Ian

      The gp should give you a script for codeine to help and set a date for you to start a taper program. Dont take no for an answer mate. If yet another dr dont help you, change surgeries. Make another appointment with another surgery telling them its an emergency!!

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    • Posted

      I think the only thing that can really help right now would be codeine. When i first realised i was in withdrawal i asked my dr if over the counter 8/500's would alleviate the symptoms but he said it would not work and i needed the higher dosage. Infact put me on pure codeine pellets so i didnt ingest the paracetamol

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