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Opiate addiction Support for coping with Opiate addiction and Opiate addiction treatment.

 
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  #1  
Old 26-11-2013, 19:46
Lumbar-Jack Lumbar-Jack is offline
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36 days off Oxycontin and Dilaudid, following a four year Surgical Odyssey

Hello. I've come to DF so that I can relate the story of my Dog's ongoing recovery. He found this sight to be of immense help during a...difficult... time. He feels that it is only right that he share his experience in the hopes that it may help other people. He is a spinal patient: Fusion at L-4/L-5 (with a revision), and a host of congenital issues which caused him a great deal of pain. All medications were prescribed legally, and at enormous doses (well, as considered by the medical community.) He found myself hooked long after he was physically healed.

Deep down I think he knew this. He had tried to kick numerous times, but would always relapse after acute withdrawal because, "Hey, he has Legitimate pain issues! Why should he torture himself?"
My dog didn't realize that his pain level always seemed to rise to the level of medication prescribed.
His doctors tried lots of different meds: Percocets before the surgeries, Oxycontin/Oxycodone afterward, then a whirlwind of different narcotics to "see what worked best." MSContin, Fentanyl, dilaudid, Opana, Exalgo, Methadone (for pain,) back to oxycontin and dilaudid...you get it.

As cliché as it sounds, my dog realized that he was sick and tired of being sick and tired. He'd always had an addictive personality and enjoyed partying, but this...this situation was untenable.

My dog began to plan his recovery. He went to an endocrinologist to see just how badly things were out of wack. His Testosterone was at castration levels, and he was depleted of just about everything they cared to test for. The dog was totally honest with the Endo about his use and plan to get back on track. The Endo agreed to treat him. He started testosterone replacement therapy, and an aggressive vitamin regimen, coupled with what little exercise my dog could manage after letting himself atrophy for 4 years.
This phase lasted two months, while still on a substantial amount of pain meds. The Testosterone boost was crucial, in this dog owner's eyes, to his pup's recovery. It also helped immensely in the next phase.

My dog approached his prescribing Doc and asked for a taper plan. Doc happily obliged. Dog ruined the first taper in a fit of bingeing and panic. He then went crawling back begging for another chance to taper. Doc agreed. My dog Tapered from approximately 160 mgs oxycontin, and 48 mgs Dilaudid, in 21 days. He hated every second. When he took the last 5 mg 36 days ago, he loaded up on immodium, and doc wrote him scripts for Zofran (nausea) and Clonidine. This combo helped out to a great degree during the acute phase of withdrawal, along with the taper. I am not a doctor and can not recommend any medication, only relay my dogs experience. Please consult your Doctor.


First week- Awful. Pain.
Second week- lethargy.
Third week- meh.
Fourth week- Getting back to Normal, and his pain level has dropped to the point where he can manage it with Tylenol/motrin.

My dog forced himself to eat well and hit the gym every day after the first week of acute withdrawals. Lots of cardio. The Testosterone Replacement Therapy really helped there, in terms of energy, focus, and mood.

Anyhoo, he's 36 days in and feeling pretty good. Some up days, some down days.

Sorry for the long first post, but my pup asked that I be thorough.

Regards,

Lumbar-Jack






Regards, Lumbar-Jack

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Superb info.
  #2  
Old 27-11-2013, 01:08
Ambermoon Ambermoon is offline
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Re: 36 days off Oxycontin and Dilaudid, following a four year Surgical Odyssey

Hey Lumberjack,

Thanks for sharing your story. It gives me hope that I just might be able to make it. I also have a cervical fusion in my neck that resulted in nerve damage and now have herniated discs above and below the metal plate in my neck along with one in my lower back. I have been on pain meds for about 15 years. I quit cold turkey about 3 years ago and it was ROUGH. Had severe paws for 18 months. I relapsed earlier this year - quit again cold turkey and then relapsed again a month or so ago and now I am doing a taper. This is my first time doing a taper and I am finding it to be difficult.
I am just trying to take it one day at a time but I am afraid of going through WD again and of being in pain daily. It is encouraging to hear that you are managing your pain with OTC meds. I have heard that taking pain meds can exaggerate your pain and once your body is stabilized that often times the pain decreases. I haven't told my doctor anything nor my friends or family. I am just trying to do it on my own... It sounds like you had a good medical team to support you which is great. Maybe that is the key ingredient that I am missing? Well thanks for sharing and glad you are 36 days clean and on the road to recovery! Good job.
  #3  
Old 27-11-2013, 13:41
NoddingDog NoddingDog is offline
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Re: 36 days off Oxycontin and Dilaudid, following a four year Surgical Odyssey

Thanks so much for sharing this. Similar to you, L5-S1 and previous wedge fracture. Roughly four years of atrophying too, on the full spectrum of pain meds. Reached rock bottom with it all and noticed, like you, that the pain always goes up to match the meds, it is a known feature of opiates for pain, called Opioid Induced HyperAlgesia.

I want to stop using these meds now and cannot get any proper help from my doctors.

Interested in how much function you can recover after a similar time wasting, as my muscle mass is ao depleted now. Also have the equivalent for a female, hypogonadism, stopped periods, low bone mass, etc. Alas, pain meds are a double edged sword.

I'm planning a reduction/taper of some kind myself shortly. Just trying to learn what I need to stock up on and how to do it.

Please keep sharing here. It really helps to know we are not alone, especially with chronic pain and the complex addiction issues with the meds.

NoddingDog added 0 Minutes and 35 Seconds later...

Congratulationson your clean time too, please keep going, you are an inspiration!

Last edited by NoddingDog; 27-11-2013 at 13:41. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
  #4  
Old 27-11-2013, 14:15
jagz jagz is offline
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Re: 36 days off Oxycontin and Dilaudid, following a four year Surgical Odyssey

Thanks for sharing LJ. Your story is definitely inspiring.
  #5  
Old 28-11-2013, 01:54
Lumbar-Jack Lumbar-Jack is offline
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Re: 36 days off Oxycontin and Dilaudid, following a four year Surgical Odyssey

Thanks all for reading

My dog has grown tired of dictating, so I will just write in the first person.

@Ambermoon: I agree- the taper was difficult. Almost worse than acute withdrawals. Almost. I knew that CT was a recipe for disaster (for myself at least.) In retrospect I'm pretty sure I would have relapsed had I gone that route. So, even though it was unpleasant, and honestly, a lot of pain- it is what worked for me. It gave me time to come to grips with the fact that I would soon be stopping my pain meds. As you know so well, with an 18 month PAWS stint, an enormous part of recovery is mental.
I hope and pray that a taper works for you as well. If I can do it, anyone can. I promise. I don't know your pain level, but I can tell you that I am virtually pain free, as compared to life before my surgeries/dependence/addiction.
You were right about good medical support. It was crucial. My pain management Doc was a biiiiit script -happy, so I fired him. The incredulous look on his face will amuse me till my dying day
After he got canned, my surgeon stepped in to help me taper. He kind of agreed that the PM doc was a quack.
Between my surgeon, my endocrinologist, and my general practitioner, I was in good hands. I also started going to meetings during the taper process. Free therapy is always good!


@NoddingDog: I read that you're a woman, but "Boy do I feel your pain!" I powdered my coccyx (sp) while I was in college, snowboarding. You know, I was 20 and invincible aside from the congenital stuff, it was my first spinal injury. L5-S1 sounds every bit as painful as L4-L5...
I am so sorry that your medical professionals are not being of use. I would have felt incredibly betrayed had they not been there with me. Luckily, when I came completely clean to all of them, they sprung into action, on the condition that I remain honest. Completely, brutally, sometimes embarrassingly honest. (Like when I ate my first taper script in 6 days and had to swallow my pride and beg for another chance.) The endocrinologist was a godsend. He certainly identified problems that would have hindered me.
Now...Here comes some good news: I have, since beginning testosterone replacement/vitamin therapy and working out, lost 40 lbs, then gained back 25 in muscle. No fooling. I am in far better shape now than I was in my 20's.
Figure that I started working out 2 months before my taper, and now I'm 37 or 38 days clean,
so lets call it 90 days of working out. At first it was torture. I won't sugar coat it. I would spend 15 minutes on the exercise bike, go to the bathroom, puke, repeat. I didn't feel any benefit at first. By the third week I was able to do an hour of mild cardio. By the end of the two months, I was starting to get freakin ripped
I believe this preparation phase (remember, I was still on the meds) was what enabled me to have a positive enough attitude, as well as gain enough physical stamina to go through a taper. Lets face it- withdrawal is exhausting. When I went through acute withdrawal I didn't work out.
I cannot overstate (for myself at least) the value of cardio/lifting in accelerating the body's healing process.
Anyhow, at this point, I can say that I've regained 95% functionality. And I can bench about 300 lbs now, which was unthinkable years ago ;0)
As to a taper plan, there are as many ways to do it as there are addicts. What works for some may not work for others. I humbly recommend that you be gentle, but firm with yourself. You know you best. There is a ton of info, of which I am sure you are aware, out there. As I am not a doctor, I wouldn't feel right recommending a plan for you, but if you PM me I can relate what worked for me.
I can guarantee you you're not alone.


@Jagz: Thanks bud! I was inspired by other's recovery stories. The life of an addict can be bleak. a little inspiration can go a long way once the seed is planted.


In fact, thank you all for replying and for your kind words.


I'll check back in soon,
Best regards and be well,

L.J.
  #6  
Old 04-01-2014, 22:44
Lumbar-Jack Lumbar-Jack is offline
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Re: 36 days off Oxycontin and Dilaudid, following a four year Surgical Odyssey

Just thought I should check in to relay the info that my dog is at 74 or 75 days clean, and is finally feeling "normal."
Sleeps all night, not depressed, excellent energy level. The last two weeks were when he really noticed the fog lifting. Cravings are nonexistent.

Hitting the gym hard has been a godsend.

If I can do this, anyone can.

Regards,
LJ
  #7  
Old 28-01-2014, 21:58
Lumbar-Jack Lumbar-Jack is offline
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Re: 36 days off Oxycontin and Dilaudid, following a four year Surgical Odyssey

Just thought I'd check in to report that my dog is 99 days clean off all his pain meds today. His pain is manageable, and he is in high spirits.

Exercise and good eating are a crucial part of his day to day feeling of well being.

The fog lifts more and more every day. He thought he felt good 2 weeks ago, and did, but feels even better now.

Regards,
LJ

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Congratulations on 99 days clean! Thanks for sharing your inspiring story. Please keep us updated when you can.
  #8  
Old 02-02-2014, 14:35
had enough had enough is offline
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Re: 36 days off Oxycontin and Dilaudid, following a four year Surgical Odyssey

Hi Lumberjack, and others, thanks for sharing and congrats on getting clean, I'm just starting a taper to get off many years of opiate use, It does help knowing that others are doing and have suceeded in getting out of the grips of pain meds
  #9  
Old 07-02-2014, 22:28
Gordongeico Gordongeico is offline
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Re: 36 days off Oxycontin and Dilaudid, following a four year Surgical Odyssey

Over 100 days for you. Keep up your good work

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