Pain Pill Addiction and Neuropathy - Looking for Guidance

Posted by mom29907 @mom29907, Feb 2 7:22am

I am a neuropathy sufferer, CMT, with minimal pain right now. However, my mother suffers from painful peripheral neuropathy. She is the reason I joined this group. I am looking for advice and guidance. My mother was treated by a neurologist for years and prescribed Percocet. She became addicted. Recently, her neurologist referred her to a pain clinic. Her Percocet prescription needed increased and he told her he could not do it. At the pain clinic, she was prescribed methadone. Upon her return visit, the doctor at the clinic “released” her, said she was an abuser of her pills. So, she not only is dealing with chronic pain she is suffering from withdraw symptoms from years of pill addiction. Watching this is heartbreaking. I am desperate to get her treatment for both conditions but she isn’t making it easy. I am looking for suggestion for successful treatments that don’t involve opioids. I was going to encourage her to try laser therapy but don’t think that will be an option due to how expensive it is. Any guidance, suggestions, etc. would be so greatly appreciated.

Liked by da20pilot

Hello. I'm very sorry to read your story. I am a chronic pain sufferer from progressive small fiber poly neuropathy and my mom a chronic pain sufferer for 41 years from a motorcycle accident. Her pain management Dr fired her too. Not due to misuse but from the not so nice panic and desperation she displayed over her pain. I felt it was an incredibly insensitive move on their behalf. She was devasted and turned to her long time PCP who stepped up to the plate and switched her from Oxy to Hydro. Obviously, opiods wear down and we build tolerance. PM decided no more drugs and were only wanting to help her with implants and injections, which she declined. Yes, my mom is addicted but not an an abuser by any means. I'm so sorry for your poor mom. It's cruel what they've done to her. I suggest her PCP first. There are many methods to ease her withdrawal. Someone must help. Best of luck.
Rachel

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Hello @mom29907, I would like to add my welcome to Connect along with @rwinney and others. I'm sorry to hear about your mother's struggle with pain from neuropathy and the withdrawal from the pain pills. I also have peripheral neuropathy but I only have numbness. I do take supplements which help me and seems to have slowed or stopped the progression of the neuropathy. I posted my story earlier on Connect here: https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/anyone-here-dealing-with-peripheral-neuropathy/?pg=42#comment-65985

Has your mother tried getting a second opinion? Just wondering if there may be a better treatment plan at a different pain clinic. Mayo Clinic has a Pain Rehabilitation Center that might be helpful – https://www.mayoclinic.org/departments-centers/pain-rehabilitation-center/overview
Here's the Pain Management Handbook from the website – https://www.mayoclinic.org/documents/mc1459-02-pdf/doc-20078829

@artscaping and @jimhd might have some suggestions for you. Thank you for being an advocate for your mothers health.

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Hi, @mom29907. I'd like to add my welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. Glad you've been in contact with @johnbishop and also @rwinney. A few other members who also may have input related to dealing with the pain pill addiction in your mom related to her neuropathy treatment and have some guidance and suggestions include @bkerker @las1067 @pamegannp.

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Hello @mom29907, let me add my welcome to you as you have just joined Mayo Connect. I can certainly understand your concern and your predicament. I also had an elderly relative who had pain problems and was used to taking opioids to solve the problem. When her PCP removed them she was beside herself. (Her PCP also removed her from benzos at the same time.) I took my relative to a psychiatrist who was very helpful in putting her on non-addictive meds for pain. It did require hospitalization in order to provide time for adjustment but it was well worth it.

Has your mom considered seeing a psychiatrist? This type of doctor understands meds and might be able to help your mom wean off of the meds she is used to taking as well as providing some relief with some other type of meds that can be used for pain problems, such as anti-depressant meds that can be quite helpful for pain.

Will you post again and let me know how she is doing?

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@mom29907 I'd like to add my welcome as well We all have chronic pain and found some useful tools to help Here's some I use Hot showers ,Epsom salts tub or washcloth At my age if I get down can't get up easily, ice bags relieve the inflammation Ginger -Tumeric tea and Tens unit but it's only a short period they last I'm so sorry your Mom is addicted My story is 2 back fractures I was on heavy duty narcotics I still am on Tramadol which is a synthetic narc .At the time I was on 4 a day but now 1-2 as needed for pain I pray she and you will find some help Ask Dr about this or Elivile as Theresa suggested God bless both of you

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You may want to look into Cymbalta and low dose Lyrica. Then do what ever you have to but don't go to the E. R. or clinic to get meds. It might be considered drug seeking.
I've had SFN for 15 yrs. It's been very difficult and is still a challenge with meds and quality if life.

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@johnbishop

Hello @mom29907, I would like to add my welcome to Connect along with @rwinney and others. I'm sorry to hear about your mother's struggle with pain from neuropathy and the withdrawal from the pain pills. I also have peripheral neuropathy but I only have numbness. I do take supplements which help me and seems to have slowed or stopped the progression of the neuropathy. I posted my story earlier on Connect here: https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/anyone-here-dealing-with-peripheral-neuropathy/?pg=42#comment-65985

Has your mother tried getting a second opinion? Just wondering if there may be a better treatment plan at a different pain clinic. Mayo Clinic has a Pain Rehabilitation Center that might be helpful – https://www.mayoclinic.org/departments-centers/pain-rehabilitation-center/overview
Here's the Pain Management Handbook from the website – https://www.mayoclinic.org/documents/mc1459-02-pdf/doc-20078829

@artscaping and @jimhd might have some suggestions for you. Thank you for being an advocate for your mothers health.

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@mom29907, Good evening. It is with some reflective joy that I see Connect members jumping in to help you and your Mom. We are not medical experts who diagnose and prescribe. I am an enthusiastic advocate of shared decision making. This means you and your Mom and her PCP or other clinician need to sit down and have a chat about the most appropriate and beneficial treatments for her, given her age, past addictions, and current state of wellness. All of us have lived the life of a patient or as in your case, also a caregiver.

At this point in my life with SFN (small fiber neuropathy), I have chosen to use only medical cannabis for pain management. There is no threat of addiction. There is no need for tapering on and off medications. There are few side effects…..and lots of product choices. The dispensary staff can often help with product selection and appropriate dosages. Many of our members have found sleep to be easier and pain to be milder. I don't think there is anything that will take away the pain from this affliction 100%.

CBT or cognitive behavioral therapy has been known to provide emotional support. I have not experienced CBT and yet have seen it work with friends and family members.

Of amazing help is restorative yoga, to keep the muscles stretched in a healthy way, and mindful meditation, that lets us learn how to train ourselves to stay in the present. The past is gone, the future hasn't happened. Mindfully, we can learn to live for now and practice self-compassion.

What kinds of activities does your mother enjoy? Would she be a candidate for a pain management course like the one at Mayo Rochester?
https://www.mayoclinic.org/departments-centers/pain-rehabilitation-center/overview
What else would you like to know about? What else would it be important to know about your mother? Be safe. Chris

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Thank you all for your responses. It is so reassuring to know that there are others who understand my situation and are able to offer advice and support. I am most appreciative. At this point, I am waiting on my mom admit that the problem is more than just her daily struggle with her neuropathy pain. I remind her often that there are options and help available. She just needs to take that first step. As of now, she still thinks that she is going to be able to handle this on her own.

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Mayo's Pain and Rehabilitation Program helps people who are addicted to meds taper them safely.

They have several strategies that help other than meds.

Have a great day!

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@mom29907

Thank you all for your responses. It is so reassuring to know that there are others who understand my situation and are able to offer advice and support. I am most appreciative. At this point, I am waiting on my mom admit that the problem is more than just her daily struggle with her neuropathy pain. I remind her often that there are options and help available. She just needs to take that first step. As of now, she still thinks that she is going to be able to handle this on her own.

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@mom29907, waiting for someone to come to a realization that they need help sounds painful, cause it's basically out of your control. Thoughts?

When the doctor at the pain clinic called your mom an "abuser" of her pills, how did she react?

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@lisalucier

Hi, @mom29907. I'd like to add my welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. Glad you've been in contact with @johnbishop and also @rwinney. A few other members who also may have input related to dealing with the pain pill addiction in your mom related to her neuropathy treatment and have some guidance and suggestions include @bkerker @las1067 @pamegannp.

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I just saw a NEUROLOGIST who knew what he was talking about. HE TOOK ME OFF THE HORRIBLE DRUG TRAMADOL, and put me on GABAPENTIN which is a whole lot better and less addictive. VITAMINS and a good diet with lots of vegetables and COFFEE with the meds (the caffeine adds to the GABA) and takes a whole lot of the pain away…I ACTUALLY FEEL BETTER….on insulin 24 years, it still works, no sugar or sweets, no bread, good diet with lots of veggies chicken fish lots of water to thin the blood and flush out the kidneys. AT least a half a gallon and a quart every day. THIS DID A LOT FOR THE PAIN…..Hope my health helps yours..M.

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@lisalucier

@mom29907, waiting for someone to come to a realization that they need help sounds painful, cause it's basically out of your control. Thoughts?

When the doctor at the pain clinic called your mom an "abuser" of her pills, how did she react?

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DOCTOR WITH NO BEDSIDE MANNER? SHAME ON HIM….hope your MOM can beat her addiction. I WILL PRAY FOR HER…GOD HEARS US…..OUR NEUROPATHIES AND OUR PAINS>>>>M.

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@mom29907

Thank you all for your responses. It is so reassuring to know that there are others who understand my situation and are able to offer advice and support. I am most appreciative. At this point, I am waiting on my mom admit that the problem is more than just her daily struggle with her neuropathy pain. I remind her often that there are options and help available. She just needs to take that first step. As of now, she still thinks that she is going to be able to handle this on her own.

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DID THAT ON MY OWN, didn't help much til I FOUND A GOOD NEUROLOGIST WHO ACTUALLY CARES ….I am better but still have the DIABETES AND THE NEUROPATHY, it does NOT leave but must be controlled with diet and some pills and some exercise even in a chair when it hurts….look up on the net…the water is amazing to help it actually waters down the pain…HALF A GALLON A DAY and a QUART..flushes out the pain and keeps the kidneys clean….I never knew until I did it…pee a lot ..so what…M.

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You might wet your pants in the a m when you get up…I do it some It is a small price to pay for keeping the possible dialysis away from my body.
.Most people are seriously dehydrated which makes the pain WORSE..water helps…It sounds silly but it WORKS>….

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@margaretob

You might wet your pants in the a m when you get up…I do it some It is a small price to pay for keeping the possible dialysis away from my body.
.Most people are seriously dehydrated which makes the pain WORSE..water helps…It sounds silly but it WORKS>….

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I agree with you 100% about water. Good for you for being a great advocate and doing whatcha gotta do!

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