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PostPosted: Mon Oct 20, 2014 12:20 am 
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Ok so this is just a random question. I was talking to my dr about opiate withdrawal. He used to be a corrections officer and was telling me that in most prisons they don't give people with Opiod addictions/dependancy anything as far as suboxone or methadone. Just comfort meds- Motrin, Clonidine, maybe some Immodium (sp?) anyway- i was a little shocked/upset to hear this. I asked him if that was a liability- like what if someone died?! He said that opiod withdrawal is not fatal. He said it may feel like you're dying, but you're Not. And you won't. He said alcohol and benzo withdrawal can kill you. But he's never heard of anyone dying from opiod withdrawal. And if anyone has it's very, very rare and that they probably had another health issue that- combined with the withdrawal- caused them to pass away. Any thoughts on this? Dr j if you read this i'd really like to hear what you have to say. Thanks!


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 20, 2014 12:33 am 
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Also- i'm not sure if i put this under the correct category? I couldn't find where it said what category i was posting in. I'm posting from my phone so the lay out is quite different than on a computer. Oh and i also want to put it out there- i'm not saying that my dr is wrong or anything. I was certainly shocked to hear this- but he's a dr and i'm not lol. I'm just wondering if he just told me that so i never have to worry about or be scared of it? Or maybe he just hasn't seen or heard of cases in which death does occur due to opiod withdrawal? Hell- he could just plain have no idea! So please don't take it as i don't believe my dr. It is, however, hard to believe- but i just wanted to hear some other people's views/opinions/stories on it. Thanks! And please someone, if this is under the wrong topic category- move it for me! Lol


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 20, 2014 12:16 pm 
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HI JF, probably not a good idea relying on this kind of advice when it comes from a CO.

I think for the most part, opiate withdrawl can feel we're dying, but I know a few people who had to be hospitalized after quitting IV heroin use cold turkey, apparently it's possible to suffer cardiac arrest under certain conditions. Don't know if this translates to Subs withdrawal, I would think not, if the last dose level is reasonably low.

What does your doc say?

-- ji

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 20, 2014 12:52 pm 
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Some, but very few jails allow an inmate to receive his or her maintenance medication while incarcerated. While it's true that most of the time opiate withdrawal isn't fatal,unless there are underlying medical problems, it certainly is cruel and unusual punishment to deny someone the medication that's legally prescribed to them and that they are dependent upon, lest they go into a painful and miserable detox. Certainly complications such as dehydration or extremely increased blood pressure could pose a risk of death. There have been successful lawsuits against jails who deny these medications to inmates to whom they are prescribed where the inmate actually died. In the county where I live, if you have a legal prescription for buprenorphine, you're allowed to finish your current prescription, but not to get refills. There's a doctor named Jana Burson who has a blog you can access by googling her name, where she talks about this very topic, and even talking about the lawsuits that have been won over this very issue. Enter the words suboxone or methadone in jail/prison, using the search feature, and you'll be able to read the articles she's written about it.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 20, 2014 2:20 pm 
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Hi Jackiefern,

I went ahead and moved your topic into a better section. As far as dying from opiate w/d's? Just like you, I would have to Google the question for answers. My gut says no, but like Johnny said, it could possibly cause a heart attack if you're not in the best of health.

Good answers, all of them.

We here always say to taper any addictive drug. A general rule of thumb told to me by my doctor was to reduce your dose by 10% per week.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 12:28 pm 
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He was correct - you cannot die from opiate withdrawal (unless there is another health problem, as he said). You will feel like you are, and at times wish you would, but you will not die. I just finished a few days of WD and there were moments when I thanked god I don't have a gun. It is basically your entire body being sapped of the substance that has been tickling it's pleasure centers, producing the exact opposite effect. He was also correct in stating that withdrawal from alcohol and benzodiazepines CAN be fatal. Here's an article: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/all ... t-kill-you

Best wishes,

kmt


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