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Readers Respond: Have You Been Reluctant to Use Pain Pills?

Responses: 19

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Updated March 17, 2010

Pain pills are often prescribed to control arthritis pain, including osteoarthritis. Some patients avoid pain pills because they fear side effects, including physical or psychological dependence.

There is a stigma associated with pain pills. Did it ever concern you that your family, friends, or even your doctor would view you as an addict or abuser of pain pills? Did you fear becoming addicted or mostly fear what others thought? Were you ever reluctant to use pain pills? Or, did you not worry about it, feeling instead that the disease justified their use?

Spoke with my doctor

I was concerned when I first started taking tramadol 10 years ago. So, I spoke with my doctor. We agreed to use it for 6 months then wean away and use OTC pain killers for a month. Two things. First, tramadol best for pain, if you take regularly and not allow the pain to overwhelm (harder to knock it back down). Second, since we had a plan I have not had to increase dosage from 3-4 50mg a day for all this time. Additionally, my dog was so arthritic at age 3 (black lab) she could not go up and down steps. The vet recommended fusing her hips. Do one hip and later to the other. We decided to try tramadol with her 1-2 50mg per day (she's over 100lbs) with same routine as mine. She is now 6, happy, playful and goes up and down steps many times a day. Quality of life for both of us is so dramatically better. Painkillers are like any other medication. When used for specific purpose, it's a godsend. For those that say, "I don't like to take pills or painkillers". I say "Suffer then".
—Guest John

Pain meds

I don't want to get addicted. Also, they don't really seem to put a dent in the pain.
—Guest Joy

Have You Been Reluctant to Pain Killers

@ Guest Hope: NO,You DON'T UNDERSTAND what it's like to not have full range of motion OR to be in such pain & UNABLE to fill your Rx's because of what the DEA has done in this nightmare called:"War on Drugs" NO,YOU DON'T Get It ! I don't wish pain on ANYONE, however people that throw stones have no idea what they're talking about regarding Pain Killers. Opioids have been stigmatized because of Dealers, Addicts, Crooked Dr's & Pharmacists BECAUSE THEIR GREED & MISUSE. The"Chronic Pain Patients" have been made to suffer! We are being profiled, & denied, both good Dr. Care & our Medicines .. when we can find a Doctor to write them or the Dr's we've been with for years write them. We STILL can not find a pharmacy to fill them THANKS to the fear that the DEA has unfairly instilled in our Good, Law-Abiding Drs & *Pharmacists!! Yes, they too* have attacked ! This is a travesty of Justice In Every Sense. In America "The Land of the Free", Free to be treated by Dr's & Free to have our medicine.
—Guest elinor

Don't use them on good days

Everyone has days without crippling pain if non-cancerous. Taper off on the days it's acceptable.
—Guest T K Lawson RPhT

Pain pills a dream

When you need pain medication there is nothing that is even close to the relief that narcotics bring and everyone gets physically tolerant but you just have to have a doctor wean you down if you hopefully are lucky enough to be able to get off em so stop bitchin people!!
—Guest Gurst Eddie D

I am angry about Vioxx!

I know this is not the drug under consideration, but I would rather have Vioxx back. It took care of my arthritis pain like nothing else before or since. I go to a clinic which has 9 rheumatologists and with the thousands of patients to whom they prescribed Vioxx, NOT ONE of them ever showed any adverse effects to it. With Vioxx I never needed any other pain meds. I have had bilateral hip and bilateral knee replacements and I need shoulder replacements now but don't think I could take the pain and the long rehab involved. I truly wish there were a pain killer which worked wonderfully and had no potential to be effective as an upper for abusers.
—Guest Miz Jane

Pain Meds

I have been on pain meds since 1997. I have diabetic neuropathy in my feet and lower legs, often causing a lot of pain. I also have arthritis in my spine and have since had spinal fusion performed on my complete spine, from my neck to my tail bone. All of this has caused me to have pain that often makes it impossible for me to do my regular activities. I have tried several pain medications. I started with Vicodin in 1997 and was switched to morphine when the Vicodin no longer worked. I am still using the morphine but was not getting the relief I had hoped to get. My new pain doctor adjusted my dosage of morphine and added Cymbalta to my pain regimen. I now have the relief that I had hoped to get. I still have an occasional bad day, but not very often. Give up my pain meds, NEVER. Am I addicted, I don't know, but I do know that I can not tolerate the pain without them.
—Guest Squeakers43

Painkiller

I dont know much about it but to me painkiller is killing you. If you dont trust me, seek with your pharmacist not a doctor.
—Guest pitung

Painfree

I understand how one must feel to not be able to have full range of motion with your body but it's better to hope than to give into this thing called pain.
—Guest Hope

Pain meds

My first joint replacement was in 91, I've had 5 other joint replacements. More joints are affected. For 20 years I've been on the same pain meds (tramadol) they are no longer working. I do not want to fuse my ankles/bilateral. I need to get on a different medication. I was on oxycontin but because of all the attention I chose to stop it. Can I get other pain medication that has worked with other people. Thanks
—Guest GuestNancy

Domino effect

I am leary of one drug causing the need for another. I take NSAIDS and it makes my ankles swell. Then they want to put you on lisinopril. If I don't take the NSAIDS, my ankles don't swell.
—Guest bcmadhouse

A no-pill solution

I have been wearing new high-tech p.j's that help my pain considerably I read about them in Women's World magazine ... the arthritis in my hip is much better by wearing them.. called Goodnighties. I guess I should write and thank them.
—lisamomtofour

Only helps some...better than nothing

Reading the literature on pain relief with hydroxycodone for chronic pain, the relief one can expect is about 10%. That is not much, but is much appreciated. Gabapentin does help quite a bit but cannot take it because of rashes and swelling of the lower legs....sadly. Mayo, Cleveland, and Boston all quote 10% relief with narcotics....so results seem fairly consistent. Hoping for better meds....some day. Equally frustrating for docs as well as patients.
—johnblaisdell

Reluctance to using Pain Pills

Having been prescribed large doses of painkillers and NSAIDS, I made the decision in associating with my doctor to slowly reduce the used of both of these, then eventually cutting one and then the other out altogether to see which, if any, are entirely necessary. The results of these actions are that I only take either or both as and when required. NSAIDS only being applied if inflammation is evident and then only for 4 or 5 days. I get regular exercise playing Lawn Bowls 4 or more times a week; this places some strain and compression on the leg joints, knees in particular. Furthermore I do not believe in the use of supports or strapping, I prefer to keep the muscles surrounding the affected areas "toned Up" and used regularly, this in itself by creating increased blood flow reduces the pain and inflammation.
—billcbill

Reluctant??

I had my shoulder (rotator cuff) operated on and had terrible pain before, during, and after; all of this pain was grossly undertreated even while in the hospital. I actually had a broken morphine pump post-op and the Dr. did over-compensate, to the point of me vomiting from being high. My pain never really "disappeared" it was as if it was in a box, in a closet. I then was crushed years later in a work related accident. The problem was mechanically repaired, but CONSTANT PAIN. It affected everything from walikng to sex to sleep, to my mood, to my life. All things just mentioned deteriorated. I was given little pain treatment from some doctors, but was on pain meds. Found a Dr. that did prescribe them, oxycodone, to me. After being on them a while I did need higher doses to achieve the same relief, but escape from pain was necessary. So if you need 'em, you do. If not you are just getting high, who are we to say what is right.
—michaelbee
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