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Going in For Surgery
  1. #1
    Needadvice25 is offline New Member
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    Default Going in For Surgery

    I have passed the 4 day mark today of quitting a 2 year addiction to Norco. This is following a few years sober after several years of Percocet addiction. Feeling pretty bad right now. Yea really bad even though I finally slept some last night. All the usual withdrawal symptoms. I’ve been here before and I know this is a great forum with lots of great ideas and experience from genuinely kind people. Thanks for all the great posts I’ve been reading the past two days. It’s really helping me get through this. The truth: I doubt I would be considering quitting the Norco, but I’ve got shoulder surgery scheduled a few weeks out and the orthopedist wants me a few weeks clean so the pain killers they give me will be effective. More truth: I realize the pit of addiction I’ve been in, I’m done being drugged. I don’t ever want to go though withdrawals ever again. I really want a sober, healthy life. I am worried that my post op recovery will take some pain management with opiates. Any advice is appreciated on how I should handle the surgery recovery. I think my big question is, will I have the intensity of the withdrawals even after I take opiates for a few days. My bigger question is how do avoid relapsing into my old addiction. Hopefully someone out there has some experience with this or at least some advice.
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  2. #2
    Catrina is offline Diamond Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Needadvice25 View Post
    I have passed the 4 day mark today of quitting a 2 year addiction to Norco. This is following a few years sober after several years of Percocet addiction. Feeling pretty bad right now. Yea really bad even though I finally slept some last night. All the usual withdrawal symptoms. I’ve been here before and I know this is a great forum with lots of great ideas and experience from genuinely kind people. Thanks for all the great posts I’ve been reading the past two days. It’s really helping me get through this. The truth: I doubt I would be considering quitting the Norco, but I’ve got shoulder surgery scheduled a few weeks out and the orthopedist wants me a few weeks clean so the pain killers they give me will be effective. More truth: I realize the pit of addiction I’ve been in, I’m done being drugged. I don’t ever want to go though withdrawals ever again. I really want a sober, healthy life. I am worried that my post op recovery will take some pain management with opiates. Any advice is appreciated on how I should handle the surgery recovery. I think my big question is, will I have the intensity of the withdrawals even after I take opiates for a few days. My bigger question is how do avoid relapsing into my old addiction. Hopefully someone out there has some experience with this or at least some advice.
    Hello!

    Do I remember you from before? I think I do! Anyway, I do have some recent experience with this. You're only a few weeks out from surgery...how long is a few weeks? Three, four? It may make a difference. The longer you can be without taking the Norco, the more effective they will be when you might need them after surgery. It is what it is though and I understand.

    First point, and an important one--have you discussed your abuse history with your doctor/surgeon? Now perhaps more than ever it's important to do that. I have had three back surgeries in the past year and a half. I told my surgeon before surgery that I can't be trusted with pain pills and to tell me if he ever thought that I shouldn't need them or am asking for too many. He promised me that he would give me as much time as I needed once it was time to get off of them by setting a taper plan for me. It thankfully never became an issue and I treated my post surgery discomfort mostly with Aleve or prescription strength Ibuprofen. I truly believe that although it was embarrassing to discuss this with him, it held me accountable and stubborn me didn't want to find myself begging him for help.

    As far as using them for a few days post surgery after you have completed detoxing, stopping should not be horrific so long as you keep it under control and don't use them for any longer than you need to. In the past when I would relapse if I caught it soon enough I didn't suffer terrible withdrawal symptoms but had to deal with the mental stuff. That's the trick, though. To have the sense and will power to stop before it gets out of hand. Something difficult for any addict and it certainly always was for me. If I were you, it would be my goal to try and treat your pain with over the counter meds as much as possible. If things are too painful, then what are you going to do except to use them for some relief just don't take them every 4 hours like they will likely prescribe. Maybe use a dose only at bedtime to help you get through the night and avoid them during the day entirely. Another thought is to perhaps ask your surgeon to only give you enough for a week at a time. It's such a pain to get a refill and mentally, you just might be more careful when you look into that bottle and see so few of them. I know for me, a full bottle was an invitation to indulge.

    Get your surgeon on board right from the get-go. Dependence on opiates is not news to any surgeon and they understand that we can quickly get into trouble. If you listen to him/her and follow instructions, I'm sure when the time comes he'll help you.

    Keep posting and let us know how you're doing. Best wishes.

    Peace,

    Cat

  3. #3
    Needadvice25 is offline New Member
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    Hey Cat. Thanks for the reply. Thanks for sharing your experience. You have given me some good ideas...not just in this reply, but with your posts throughout the forum. My surgery is in 13 days so I think I will have 17 days with no Norco. As for talking to my surgeon about, he does not know the extent to which I have been taking Norco. I am very private (secretive) about my drug use. Yes, especially with my doctors. I do not have much of a rapport with the surgeon as he is pretty stiff, but I will let him know that I have recently quit and want to use post op pain pills sparingly. And we'll see where it goes from there. I'm really hoping that I can tolerate the pain with as little narcotics as possible, and move on to over the counter asap. All in all this surgery might be the best thing that could have happened to me. Quitting narcotics was far from my mind.

    I found myself today way overthinking things. I was trying to figure out how good I actually felt when I was not using in the past. Trying to compare it to being high all day. Doesn't seem like being off drugs is that fun. Haha. Really trying to figure out where I am trying to get to because I can't remember what I use to feel like. I'm in a funky place in my head.

    Looking forward to getting another day under my belt, getting back some energy and being a little more hopeful.

    Cat, you are awesome. Thanks for your help.
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  4. #4
    gomphrena is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Needadvice25 View Post
    Hey Cat. Thanks for the reply. Thanks for sharing your experience. You have given me some good ideas...not just in this reply, but with your posts throughout the forum. My surgery is in 13 days so I think I will have 17 days with no Norco. As for talking to my surgeon about, he does not know the extent to which I have been taking Norco. I am very private (secretive) about my drug use. Yes, especially with my doctors. I do not have much of a rapport with the surgeon as he is pretty stiff, but I will let him know that I have recently quit and want to use post op pain pills sparingly. And we'll see where it goes from there. I'm really hoping that I can tolerate the pain with as little narcotics as possible, and move on to over the counter asap. All in all this surgery might be the best thing that could have happened to me. Quitting narcotics was far from my mind.

    I found myself today way overthinking things. I was trying to figure out how good I actually felt when I was not using in the past. Trying to compare it to being high all day. Doesn't seem like being off drugs is that fun. Haha. Really trying to figure out where I am trying to get to because I can't remember what I use to feel like. I'm in a funky place in my head.

    Looking forward to getting another day under my belt, getting back some energy and being a little more hopeful.

    Cat, you are awesome. Thanks for your help.
    Hi and first off, Cat is a goddess around here; I've faithfully read every word she's ever written, and she's so spot on for a layperson, she really should be awarded an honorary degree in aftercare, beforecare, duringcare, and anything elsecare because she knows her stuff. I can't add anything. But I will say this, that might be somewhat helpful from my perspective. I underwent shoulder surgery March 2nd for several issues - torn rotator cuff, adhesive encapsulitis (frozen shoulder), bone spurs. Like you, I was agonizing over the pain relief issues I was facing. Where our stories differ is I'm a long term chronic pain patient whose pain meds are managed by a pain clinic. With the archaic and outrageous opioid scare, my pain relief of legend is now gone, but those with my diagnoses have to suffer along. Anyway, my ortho man said just tell the pain man to call either him or his nurse, and they'll discuss the options. Great, right? Continuity of care, and all that. Well, the next visit I happened to see a young doc I had never in 4 years seen before. When I presented the plan, he said for me to just take fewer a few days before, and take more post-op. Huh? I guess he missed the lecture on dependence. Now I was really anxious. And my fears were realized when the ortho man ordered nothing for post op pain. BUT WAIT! My ortho man knew what to do. They did a nerve block in my neck, to numb the shoulder/arm pre-op.I tell you, I felt NO pain for days. Feeling gradually came back, and of course they had given me a sling for the arm to stop wearing once feeling was totally regained. But I can't help but think the angel of the Anesthesiologist gave me extra "oomph" because I was in such a tiz. Whoever has surgery and gets nothing for post-op pain??? No one, oh wait, except Cat, but she's truly a saint. (I'm not kidding!) Anyway, most people do, but you talk to your ortho as Cat advised, and really talk to the Anesthesiologist when he or she comes in before the surgery. I understand in the Surgery Center where I was, it's routine to have a nerve block for shoulders, in addition to the general anesthesia you'll be under.so it may be in your surgical suite, as well. But the docs can give you the info you need to understand, make decisions, etc.Though our situations differ somewhat - you're declining the very stuff that's given me much of my life back - none of us want to unnecessarily experience undue pain, and we may go about that end in different ways. I also have been on large doses of Ibuprofen, like Cat alluded to, with a gastric protectant med in it too (and my kidney function remains great - yay!) But I digress, ibuprofen can be a real life-saver where pain is concerned. Please excuse my typos and conjunction dysfunction - I'm doing this on my phone; at best with reading glasses, too! And, as you probably can surmise from the bursting down the door and disrupting the convo, 5 his is my very first post in this forum (I think?! I've answered someone's question somewhere, but where!? I do not know. I'm usually not this crass and annoying, but when I read your post, "shoulder surgery" and "pain" jumped out at me and slapped me silly. I can add nothing to Cat's wise counsel. May God bless you and the doctors and nurses as you go into surgery, and may you be further blessed and honored with great physical therapists afterward! This is my third week. Seems I'm progreasing slowly - but the PT's say otherwise. Take good care!

    ~Fran~

  5. #5
    Needadvice25 is offline New Member
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    Hi Fran. Thanks for the encouragement and excellent ideas. I’m gonna get going w the ibiprophen as soon as I can post op. I do have some history w long term pain management as I have been receiving remecade infusions from my rheumatologist (love that spell check) for about 3 years +/- very 2 months. It’s been effective on my pain. Way more so than the Norco. Thanks again. Passed the 5 day mark today. So much better than day 4.
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  6. #6
    Methadone insomnia is offline Junior Member
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    Hello need advice. I'm pretty new to the forum myself. Just wanted to make sure you have exhausted all other options before surgery. I have had 4 back surgeries in the last 2 years..not to scare you but i want to bring awareness that western medicine (surgery and pills) has completely failed me. I was promised 1 thing and ended up with failed back Surgeries that not only made my pain worse, but now I'm full blown disabled. I just want to make sure you tried all your other options like yoga, acupuncture, physical therapy, maybe a cortisone shot. I only say these things because i want no-one to have to suffer the way i do. There is not a day that goes by i wish i would have exhausted all my options before surgery. I'm no doctor, but it's pretty hard to find one that won't agree to do surgery on someone nowadays. I totally understand if it's your last option. There is nothing like suffering in pain. Also know this, long term pain medication can actually make your pain worse over time making your pain receptors overly sensitive. I wish you the best sorry if this scares you about your surgery i just feel obligated reading your post to inform you with options i failed to try before surgeries. Just know I'm fighting the good fight with you. I'm 7 days clean from methadone and percacet, it has been the hardest thing i ever done because i still live in agonizing pain minute to minute. But enough is enough it's sad how majority of doctors sell this legal >>>>>> to us. I know somepeople have great success with surgeries and I'm very happy for them. Western medicine has failed me tho in a big way..I wish you the best with your surgery i really hope it goes flawless for you. Grab yourself a good multi vitamin it will help with making you feel little better from the withdrawals..the medicine the doctors prescribe us suck all the nutrients out of our body's. Spectro multi-vita-min is a great one..Also get some B-12 for nerve pain and collagen powder for your joints..a great brand is Dr.axe. one more good supplement would be some magnesium oxide..make sure it's the oxide..hope some of this helps..start pumping these vitamins into your body will help with the withdrawals and the pain.
    Mr. insomnia

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