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PostPosted: Fri Apr 24, 2009 7:33 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 22, 2009 8:34 pm
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Location: Utah
I've tried to post my story a twice, but couldn't get through it. So here's hoping the third times a charm.
I am 35 yrs old, married to my jr. highschool sweetheart, and have two teenagers. I was in my second year of nursing school when I had a car accident that changed my life. I started taking hydrocodone for the pain. by the time I had my back surgery I was taking methadone, ms contin, and hydrocodone in an attempt to control the chronic pain. By the time I had surgery my tolerance was so high the doctors couldn't control the pain. I will never forget what it felt like to wake up from surgery. They brought in a pain specialist to try to manage my pain with little results. After surgery I was taking 90 mg of methadone, 48 mg of dilaudid, 1800 mg of nuerontin per day. I can't really remember how many 10 mg hydrocodones per day I was taking. I think I was taking 20 mg every four hours or so. Before my surgery I promised myself that I would get off the pain pills so I could see the actual benefit from having the surgery. Four months post op I started to taper off of everything. I quit taking the ms contin and lortab without too much trouble as long as I kept taking the methadone. When I got down to 10 mg a day of methadone I quit cold turkey. I made it 14 days before I realized that I needed serious help. I called my insurance company to make sure my rehab would be covered. They explained my benefits and gave me a list of hospitals to choose from. I called the hospitals to make arrangements for admission and everyone of them told me I had to pay a huge deposit before they would admit me. They explained that opiate withdrawal is not dangerous enough for any insurance company in Utah to pay for my care. I called the insurance company back and got a huge run around. I finally was so frustrated I told the insurance rep that I wasn't trying to get into rehab because I didn't have any pills left. I told him how many and what type of pills I had left. I asked if the insurance company would pay to save my life if I took everything. Needless to say, he called an ambulance and a couple of police officers to take me to the hospital. The paramedics that came would not take me to the hospital that actually had a rehab facility that could help me. After they took my vital signs and put me on a heart monitor they told me they had to take me to the closest hospital because they were afraid I would stroke out on the way. I was told by the er doc that he didn't want to keep me as a suicide risk because they didn't have the facilities to help with the withdrawal, which was the primary issue. He told me I would probably have to take pain meds for the rest of my life. They got me stabilized and discharged me. They gave me back the suitcase full of pills the police took and let me go. A nurse let me use her phone to call my sister in California. She looked up suboxone online and gave me the address of a doctor close by. I walked to his office in my bathrobe carrying the overnight bag full of pills. He saw me that night even though he had an office full of patients. I didn't want to take suboxone as I thought it would just be switching addictions. The doc that gave me methadone had told me it was not as addicting as other opiates because you don't get the same euphoria with it; and look where that got me. My withdrawals were so bad by then I didn't feel like I had any other options. I took my first dose when I got home. My husband wrapped me in quilts and held me down on the bed while we waited for the suboxone to kick in. Almost two hours later I started to feel human again. I had almost two months on the suboxone when my sister, Carey, called to tell me she had just found our other sister dead. She found her with a trash can full of empty pill bottles next to her. My sister was also a chronic pain sufferer. She was only 37 years old. We had talked about how hard it was to live with pain all the time, and how the ups and down of dealing with pain pills and the tolerance you build to them making them ineffective. I guess she got tired of the rollercoaster ride. I have been off the pain pills for 15 months now. I still have chronic pain. When I was on higher doses of the suboxone it helped with that, but not so much now that I am down to .5 mg a day. When I get tired of the rollercoaster I remember how hard it is on my family to not have my sister anymore. So that is my story, or part of it anyway. I know exactly what will happen to me if I ever go back. So I keep telling myself i just have to make it through today.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2009 5:33 pm 
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Hi Cricket,
First I want to offer my sympathies on the loss of your sister. You must be devastated.
I've been on Suboxone since December and will stay on it long term for my chronic pain (Fibromyalgia). I take 24 mg per day (3-8mg pills). I'm aware that my dosage may be considered to high and just unnecessary.
(I don't recall if the Suboxdoc has ever said whether the dosage for pain control is different than for addiction.) It does not erase my pain completely but does keep it manageable.
I wish you the best.
Melissa


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PostPosted: Wed May 13, 2009 12:02 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 12, 2009 10:02 am
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Location: Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
Cricket,
I am sorry for your loss!!! But I am glad you finally got your post up so other people, including me can learn from it. I am also an addict currently in recovery ( I think thats the right terminology ?) Maybe someone will read your post and will be driven to get some help. I have been on suboxone & clean for 3 months and hope to stay clean period. I'm not kidding myself I know it is a lifelong battle. But I want to live to battle another day!!! Again thanks for sharing your terrible loss with us and I hope you & your family find some peace knowing your sister is in a better place and has no more pain.... Continued success in your recovery!
God Bless
TW


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PostPosted: Wed May 13, 2009 6:41 pm 
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Location: Kingston, Ontario, Canada
[font=Comic Sans MS] [/font] Well done Cricket -
you now have completed (the short version) of your Story.
My experience has been that as I re-write, or speak, mine over and over down the years - it gets longer and longer as I remember more and come to understand more of what it was really all about.
( BTW, I think you should consider yourself as being very lucky: after you finish Being Mom, you could have a career as a "natural" writer. )
My baby brother also gave up the fight in 2003, at the age of 52. He and his wife were both addicts, and were found after 10 days, with half of their drugs solidified in the blender.
We were / are a dysfunctional family, and the shock to my Mother (now 96 yo) and the rest of us was quite disproportionate to what would be an 'ordinary' death in the family. Suicide echoes in the minds of the family members for a very long time, and plants real doubts about one's own constitution.
I quit my alcoholic drinking 30 years ago, using AA and the 12 Steps. Now that my Diabetes has finally brought me Neuropathic Pain in both feet, and I have been introduced to Morphine, and now Hydromorphone: I feel I am facing the near-inevitability of having to come off of painkillers ~ for surgery, or some as yet unknown reason, sooner or later ~ so I am Lurking around here and trying to absorb all that I can about the Suboxone, for when that dreaded day finally arrives.
I am not in any position to tell anyone how to live their lives: but for people seeking to remain free of their addiction, simply going to an AA or NA meeting and taking a shot at understanding the 12 Steps just might be what decides between success, or an endlessly cursed life.


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