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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 5:36 pm 
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New user here... did a search, but could not find existing entries specific to our situation.

My wife confessed to me this past weekend that she was addicted to pain pills (lortab mainly) after having knee surgery 1.5 years ago. She is wanting to start suboxone treatments to get off the pills. But, she is probably gonna need another knee surgery in 1 - 2 months. So, a couple of questions:

Should the suboxone treatments be started before the surgery, or should she wait until after the surgery?

With either option above, what (if anything) should we tell the surgeon so that he can adequately treat her pain after surgery?

Thanks for the advice I'm hoping you can provide!


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2012 10:15 am 
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Hi and welcome! I imagine it wasn't easy for you to hear that your wife is an addict. I commend you for your support and concern for your wife. There will be challenges but she can beat this and your love and support will be a very crucial part of the equation.

Acute pain can be a very difficult thing to treat in sub patients but allowing an addiction to continue can be dangerous. The two of you will have to discuss the pro's and con's and decide the best choice. I can understand her hesitation to start sub a month prior to a surgery. If this were me I would likely wait until after my surgery. You can minimize her addiction by taking control of her meds. Discuss what she needs everyday to stay out of withdrawl and dispense to her only what is needed.

Besides the fact that pain control is difficult on sub it would also be difficult to stabilize on sub with a surgery only a month away. She would have to stop the sub prior to her surgery and have to wait until she is off the pain meds to get back on. Only she knows the danger of waiting and will have to make this decision.

If she chooses to start sub there are some articles in the surgery on sub section that have excellent info on treating acute pain in sub patients. Members that have required pain relief for procedures print the article out and share it with their Dr's. I wish I could give you more solid advice but this is really a decision only the two of you can make.

If there are any other questions you have don't hesitate to ask, we'll do our best to answer them. I suggest that you have your wife check out our forum, this can be a very hard time for her and support is very valuable. I am a stay at home mom that became addicted due to taking pain meds for a chronic pain condition and like your wife I came clean to my husband and got on sub. He has been very supporting and invaluable to my recovery but it has been just as important that I've had this forum. The knowledge and support from other's fighting the same fight is very important to me and it will likely be for your wife as well.

Whatever she decides I wish her success!


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2012 6:36 pm 
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Breezy -- thanks for the advice, and kind words. They were very touching to my wife.

She has decided to wait until after the surgery before deciding about suboxone. After reading more on this site, we see that her addiction level is not really that high. Since this past weekend she has cut back on what she was taking, and planning on reducing more as the surgery gets closer. In the afternoons / evenings she is feeling better, more alert, involved; the mornings are a little tough (aches, diarrhea, anxiety), but nothing she can't handle.

Is continuing to taper down from the pain pills a good idea?


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2012 7:45 pm 
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gville, If your wife is able to taper down the pills and not resume using them, that would be great. Suboxone is for people who have tried to taper and stop on thier own, but couldn't. Good luck, Steve


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