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    What dose is too much?
    An_252265 posted:
    I am on high dose narcotics for intractable back pain suffered after an injury in 2001. I am very tolerant to pain medications. I am 35 years old and currently take Opana ER 40 mg three times a day and hydromorphone 12-16mg every 4 hours as needed for pain. My pain management doctor wants to change my Opana ER to MS Contin 200 mg twice a day. I'm very nervous about the change. If it works great, but if it doesn't then what? I have tried everything to mechanically fix my pain including surgery x 3, SCS, and too many pain management procedures to count. I would do anything to NOT be on this high dose of medication, but frankly I can not tolerate the pain.

    Also, I would like to discuss another nagging issue on my mind....In addition to the physical pain that a chronic pain patient suffers on a daily basis they deal with the emotional toll that society places on them. Frankly, I am tired of SOCIETY treating me like I am the scum of the earth because I am on these medications. My PCP was away on vacation last week and the covering physician REFUSED to fill my script. He would only provide a 3 day prescription until my PCP was back in the office! This made me have to drive 5 hours again on Monday to fill my monthly script. This was supposed to be a full workday for me. Our society is very undereducated on the treatment of pain. They make me feel that I am doing something wrong when all I want to do is control my pain. I am a very high functioning member of society.... I am thus far very fortunate that I have had the ability to work and maintain a good income to support myself and my husband. I feel as if I have no avenue to vent or people look at me like I just "want more pain meds". I am hoping that this Pain Management Community provides me with a support network.
    gail2767 responded:
    I have been a pain management patient for almost 1 1/2 year and I too feel like I am being treated like a drug addict. I work full time and support my family, but I could not do it without the pain medication. My PCP tells me I need to get off the pain meds and I've told her when you find that magic wand that will make my back pain tolerable, give me a call. I don't want to be a smart a**, but I just get tired of people treating me like I take the pain med for recreational use. Hang in there, we know why we take it and I think we all would give up every drug to be moderately out of pain. IMHO..
    Anon_1421 replied to gail2767's response:
    Yeah I just love when a doctor says a patient "needs to get off the pain meds"....and then what? We're supposed to sit on the couch in too much pain to have any kind of life? Become a burden to our families? Kill ourselves when the constant pain, every minute of every day becomes just too much to bear? I wish that every doctor who said this would have to spend one week in our broken, pain filled bodies-without any kind of prescription pain medication-and the patient they said that to would have the pleasure of telling them-oh, it isn't that bad is it? Just take some aspirin or ibuprofen........
    tuloud54 replied to Anon_1421's response:
    5 minutes is all it would take for anyone to realize the pain I deal with.Never thought I would need strong pain meds but really had no choice.Click my link to read previous discussions but know that you are not alone.Knowing this does not lessen the pain but at least may give you a glimmer of hope.Until it happens to you there is now way to explain so give up convincing anyone but your dr the pain you are truly in.Best of luck and please don't quit trying.It just should not be this hard to ease suffering.Painfully lee,Tom
    edc99353 replied to tuloud54's response:
    Pain meds work best when taken at first sign of pain at rest, and avoided pain meds when doing PT. PT and RICE should be done often, with low impact. NEVER OVER DO IT!
    annette030 responded:
    Frankly, if you don't tell people you are on opioids, SOCIETY cannot treat you like the "scum of the earth". I don't discuss my health problems with anyone except my husband. Maybe I am too private.

    My doctor also had practice members who did not agree with her way of doing things. She warned her patients not to even ask other members of the practice for pain meds. She had emergency surgery and was not in a position to warn her patients, the guy covering for her did the same thing the doctor did that you went and saw. I don't blame him for feeling the way he does. She left the practice soon after that. Other than that one time, she has always told me about her vacations, etc. It has been over 15 years with only that one hitch, it can be done.

    I only see my doctor once every three months, she gives me three RXs for my two pain meds, must you actually see yours every month? 5 hours each way, or round trip? Either way it is too far to drive. My doc moved to solo practice 30 minutes away and said she would certainly understand if it was too far to travel. Most of her mobile patients went with her.

    Take care, Annette
    _swank_ replied to annette030's response:
    I agree with Annette 100%. If you don't tell people about your issues and what meds you're on they won't treat you like scum. I also only discuss things with my husband. Not even my closest friends or family know that I take pain meds. My employer is also clueless. My pain meds allow me to work full-time and despite having some painful days, I have never missed a day of work due to pain.

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