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07/30/2007 06:29 PM

Fentanyl Patch for pain - Methadone Hurts

CJ aka Siskoray

W00t Wow, so after having taken Methadone up to 40 mgs twice a day for now going on almost a year, has finally gotten me into the fallout cage of withdrawals that I hope would never come.

Everything about Methadone pointed toward lesser withdrawal symptoms compared to other opiates and is even used to help people get off of crack and heroin. But let me tell you, after several days of waking up after 9 hours of sleep instead of my regular 6 hours had me waking to shakes and sweats and wondering if I was going to die until I took the morning dose, still having to wait 1 1/2 hours before feeling like I could breath again. It was the final straw when one of my daily containers ended up in the garbage one day when my kids were playing in my room and accidentally knocked off some items from my shelves that dropped into the trash below. The container was also white so when I attempted to regain the items that fell I missed this container completely which held still a day and a half of Methadone.

That day and a half was the worse day and a half of my entire life. It's like being so tired you continue to yawn and think you might be able to sleep it off and then the sudden jolt that lying down does little to ease that burning, aching, skin crawling, feeling like you could explode and only if you could you might be spared any more of this torture. Fortunately my prescription was refilled the following afternoon and after three hours of taking my dose of Methadone I finally felt like I could breath again.

But I had had enough. While Methadone does help with pain, it also causes pain so what's the point? My doctor then tells be about this patch called a Fentanyl patch which you place on your body and after 3 days, replace with another. Fentanyl, my doctor explained to me, is apparently in the same line as morphine and heroin which sounds weird, but according to many patients it's a great way to get away from pill dependency.

So today is my first day and I'm told the effects can take up to 12 hours before feeling them, so I'll let you know how it works out. Hopefully my report will be Methadone free.

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08/04/2007 07:05 PM
CJ aka Siskoray

Sad ugh!

Just a follow up. My personal experience with this patch led to several days of hugging the porcelain goddess. Apparently some people endure the heavy side affects of nausea and vomiting and receive very little benefit from the active ingredients.

While my doctor informed me of one other patient he has prescribed this for has successfully been treated with this for over a year, I wish I could say my experience was similar. So at least there is one individual I know of that did indeed have a positive experience with this alternative to pill popping.

Fortunately my doctor has prescribed a drug called Kadian which is also a longer lasting pain medication (up to 12 hours) and has so far reacted positively to me allowing me to finally cut back on methadone.

Take care everyone.


08/05/2007 12:15 AM
erleichda
erleichda  
Posts: 136
Member

Hi CJ,

I was on the fentanyl patch for awhile, but I reacted to the adhesive. It did not help me much at all with pain. I currently take immediate and timed-release hydrocodone capsules that are made at a local compounding pharmacy. After trying so many different pain meds with bad results, I find that these work the best. I had to fight with my insurance company for a year, but they finally started paying for them.

I hope the Kadian works for you. I hate taking the meds too, but we do what we have to do in order to have a life.


08/05/2007 09:41 AM
erleichda
erleichda  
Posts: 136
Member

Hi CJ,

I was on the fentanyl patch for awhile, but I reacted to the adhesive. It did not help me much at all with pain. I currently take immediate and timed-release hydrocodone capsules that are made at a local compounding pharmacy. After trying so many different pain meds with bad results, I find that these work the best. I had to fight with my insurance company for a year, but they finally started paying for them.

I hope the Kadian works for you. I hate taking the meds too, but we do what we have to do in order to have a life.


08/05/2007 03:34 PM
CJ aka Siskoray

Thanks erleichda,

Sorry to hear about your fight with insurance too. They are the worse aren't they? I mean, they're great when they approve your for those occasional flu meds, but ask them for long term care and it's a long term pain in the behind.


08/06/2007 12:51 PM
Deanna54
Posts: 1
New Member

I am new to this site, and I hope i am able to respond to some of the comments on here. I was put on Methadone for pain control and it did nothing to control pain, but made me sooooo very ill, I even lost the ability to walk. I am terrified of methadone. I have been put on the Fentanyl Patch and am still taking some oxycodone. I think I must tell you, I have been on heavy meds for 6 years now, my doctor I was seeing for 17 years, left and moved to San Diego, and I had to find a new doctor. I interviewed several, and I was shocked to find 3 out of 4 did NOT want to have me as a patient, even though when I called I was told, yes I would be accepted as a new patient. Anyway, sorry to be so long winded, I found my new doctor, and he was glad to have me as a new patient, regardless of my meds and health probs. My new doctor said he wanted to add the patch to my regime and slowly wean me off the oxycodone. We started out with the smallest dose of the patch, and it didn't hold me for pain control as I had to continue the same amount of pills. I was using 300 max oxycodone pills monthly along with other meds to maintain any level of comfort, which was never done. I was constantly in pain. Anyway, I was put on the 75 mcg. patch and have successfully over 6 months weaned myself down (with doc's help) to 2 to maybe 4 oxycodone a day!!! My pain level is managable for the first time in many years. I still have migraines at times, which I treat with Imitrex. I feel like I have met my angel in this new doc. The only thing I wanted to ask someone is this, I have restless leg syndrome and have such pains in my legs I can barely stand it. I am taking meds for the RLS but want to know, are the painful legs and feet normal?? I do not have diabetes.

08/06/2007 03:13 PM
CJ aka Siskoray

Hi Deanna and welcome to our support group.

Thank you very much for sharing your experiences. I suppose medication is just like anything you do or take and that they all react differently to everyone. I'm glad to hear that the patch worked for you and wish I could send you my unused ones since I have no need for them. lol.

As far as pain in your legs, personally I can vouch that I definitely experience this on a daily basis. I also have serious problems with my lower discs, but even before the problems with my back started I always experienced pain in my legs and especially my heals and I had a job where I sat most of the time. My pain also migrates to my arms and I also get migraines pretty regularly.

I'm glad to hear you found a good doctor that you can trust. I was also surprised to discover that there were specialists that refused to see me based on my FM and think it's criminal that doctors have a choice at all in patients they treat. The only good I believe that comes from that is that if the doctor already has a predisposition there really wouldn't be any benefit in receiving treatment from them since they most likely wouldn't be up to the task.

Thanks for your post and I hope you find this as a refuge for your suffering.


08/22/2007 12:39 AM
Grumpy
Grumpy  
Posts: 36
Member

I to am on Fentanyl and have been for 3 or so years. It fairly well controls my pain but I have had a problem for quite some time with feeling so bad on the thrid day and then several hours after changing the patch would feel better. I had them reduce the dose and I didn't feel as bad but still felt bad. They added Hydrocodone on the third day and that help significantly. They wanted to increase the dose on the Fentanyl back up but I refused because I feel that the symptoms show that my body is addicted to this medication and do not want the higher dose. I deal with the pain as well as I can.

For those that have a problem with the adhesive, I have found that the generic patches made by Mylan are a lot easier on the skin, they do not have the gel reservoir either so they are flat on the skin and do not make crinkling noises. I was having some severe reactions to the Duragsic and the other generic patch adhesives so they gave me one of the nasal allergy meds to spray on the skin before application. It seemed to help. However, the life saver came in the form of a medication called Luxiq. It is actually for a scalp condition but they told me to apply it to the skin before I apply the patch and I have not had any more blisters or red itchy problems.


09/29/2007 10:43 PM
KMKOHIO
Aunt Rinn  
Posts: 246
Member

I know exactly what the signs and symptoms of drug withdrawal can be like. I have gotten myself into something that really is affecting me that way, but I really had no other choice after going through many docs that just pass me off as a pill popper or a pill seeker. I know that doc's exist out there that are perfectly compassionate about FM and will do whatever it takes to help us out, but I have yet to find one just yet. So, I do what I have to do to get by. As bad as it might sound to admit it, this is more just to say that I can relate to how people feel when they are out of the med or the anxiety that occurs when even just one dose falls into the garbage. I think that the anxiety really adds to the start of the withdrawal, for me that is. I know after a day of not taking the med, I get all clammy, sweaty, and a big knot forms in my stomach, then as the day progresses b/c I promise myself that I really shouldn't be doing this, I just get cold which results in uncontrollable goosebumps. Ugh, it's terrible. It doesn't do me any good with the FM pain either because anxiety and stress really throws me into a tail spin.

CJ, I couldn't agree with you more about doc's that refuse to treat FM patients. Something is just not right about that and as if we need anymore discrimination in the world! But you are right, even if they couldn't refuse us, they probably wouldn't do us any good b/c we spend a lot of time trying to defend the days that we can't function like people w/o FM, so it would be terrible to have to deal with a doc that doesn't believe in us, period. Honestly, even though it's not right, I think that doc's that don't believe in us should really make a point to say so when you call to schedule an appt about it, so we can save our time, effort, and money to move on to someone that does believe in us.


10/05/2007 09:45 PM
bajaraquel
bajaraquel  
Posts: 84
Member

I'm in the unlucky camp on this patch. My intestines don't handle it well at all and it triggers diverticulitis. I also would scratch myself bloody. For those of you experiencing withdrawl, talk to your doctor about a drug called Subutex. It helps with the pain and withdrawl. One of the tricks I learned in my pain rehab aka drug rehab center. Come to think of it I learned more ways to abuse medication than I could ever have dreamed of especially this type of patch. Please remember to drink plenty of fluids while using this patch!
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