Needing prescription pain meds after 2 months!

Posted , 7 users are following.

I'm 9 weeks post op btkr and find I still need strong pain meds. I am running out of my second refill of percocet this week and don't know how I am going to handle the pain. Has anyone else needed prescription pain meds past the 2 month mark? What did you take? Any advice about percocet? I really hate to keep taking it as it's a narcotic and addictive. I am NOT the addictive personality type. I'm a purist. My doctor has just recently put in a third refill for percocet for me but I'm struggling. I want to get off of it because it's so dangerous but I'm still in pain. Am I being ridiculous? I was only taking 3 10 mg. a day before I started weaning.

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12 Replies

  • Posted

    I can't tell you about pain duration after btkr (is that BOTH?) but I agree, as a pharmacist, not good to take that stuff for long periods. Have you tried tapering off and replacing with ibuprofen? 

    Recent studies have found alternative pain meds to be as effective as the narcotics and a lot safer (no addiction, no constipation, etc.)  I can try to find you the study I read, I think it was on WebMD but not 100% sure.

    Many doctors are only giving the heavy duty narcotics (such as Percocet) for terminal cancer patients, only.

     

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  • Posted

    Try ibprophen. This helped me a lot.—after my bilateral knee replacements.  Good luck. It will continue to get better. Keep being patient. 
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  • Posted

    Some people need the heavy duty opioids longer than others...no judgments...if you need 'em, you need 'em.  You're NOT going to get addicted since these are short-term meds.  The typical path is to start titrating off the Percocet (oxycodone+Tylenol) and start with Tramadol (Ultram).  It's a very mild opioid and is used as a transitional med from oxy- or hydro-codone down to plain OTC ibuprofen.   Probably be on the Tramadol for a few months before dropping it altogether.  Takes time and patience.

    Ask the doc for Voltaren Gel (RX in the US)...GREAT topical anti-inflammatory and pain reliever.  Works for many people.  Use it multiple times a day and especially 15 minutes before bedtime.

    How do I know all this trivia?  Married to a pharmacist for 25 years and now a 30-year psych nurse for the last eight.  Can't escape it...

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  • Posted

    I swapped to Aleve and found it controls pain as well as the narcotics.I also take over the counter turmeric,fish oil,and a glucosamine chondroitin supplements.Hope this helps and good luck
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    • Posted

      Aleve is naproxen, an NSAID...ibuprofen.  Always have to be careful will all OTC meds including all versions of ibuprofen and acetaminophen (Tylenol).  Overuse can cause stomach and liver issues.  These are NOT benign drugs...they all carry a risk...and are meant for short-term use.  If you are adding natural supplements, check for interactions.  There are many.  I know, for example, that St. John's Wort interacts negatively with lots of prescription drugs.  Be careful.  Always do your research.

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  • Posted

    There you go, I'm bowing out of this conversation since you can't argue with a pharmacist's wife. They pretty much know everything. Just ask mine. ;-)  

     

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  • Posted

    Thanks everyone for your input. Another doctor put me on gabapentin last week and I was hoping it would really help but it hasn't. I do have a prescription for 800 mg ibuprofen but it doesn't help me either. I thought and was told by my orthopedic surgeon that I must have a high threshold for pain. And I thought I'd be off all meds early on before my surgery. I do not even like to take OTC  pills when I need them unless it's really bad. So for me to still be in so much pain at this point is very frustrating. My own Mother had her knees replaced years back and she was on Norco for 3 months. I thought she was being "soft". Now here I am doing the same thing! I'm really trying to feel well enough so I can get back to playing music at my church. I've committed myself to being back for Easter. I have a friend who uses CBD oil for her pain. I actually, to my surprise, am considering it. Much safer than narcotics and she says it really works for pain. Who would have thought marijuana would turn out to be a medical benefit.

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  • Posted

    I used Percocet for 2 months because of the pain. I was worried about continuing so my doctor switch me to Tramadol. It isn’t as strong and doesn’t take the pain away but takes off the edge. You should space your Percocet to wean yourself off so you don’t have any withdrawal issues. I went from 1every 12 hours before I switched to Tramadol. If you need the Percocet because of both knees just begin decreasing the amount. I am sure your doctor can advise.
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    • Posted

      It's called titration...decreasing one med as you transition to another.  One way is to cut the tabs in half another is gradually spacing dosages but that is trickier because of a particular med's half life.  You don't want to roller coaster in and out of pain.  Tramadol (Ultram) is still classified as an opioid but a very mild one.  Add some ibuprofen and then get off the Tramadol over the course of a few months.  After a while, you'll need nothing.

      PS: The only way to be completely free of pain is to be in a coma.  The goal is to make the pain manageable as it gradually decreases over time.  

      "Never give up! Never surrender!" - Tim Allen, Galaxy Quest

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  • Posted

    If Percocet is ALL you are taking, please ask your doctor about adding another pain med (Aleve, Tylenol, etc.).

    ?It is very hard (impossible??)  for most of us to survive without some pain relief -- even a few months post op.

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