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483733 tn?1326798446

Drugs

OK, I am a week and a half out from surgery.  I had my cyst, right ovary and tube removed and a lot of adhesions worked on.  I had a vertical laporatomy that goes from my bikini line to 2 inches above my belly button.  My doctor gave me a prescription for 40 percocet when I left the hospital.  The prescription said one or two every four hours.  I've been doing one every 4 hours and have done well with that.  Last Friday I had half of my staples out and the nurse who did it told me not to be a hero and take the drugs if needed and that my body needs to put my energy into healing and not into pain management.  Today I went to get the other half out and a different nurse was there.  I asked for a renewal and she questioned whether I should need it.  My husband heard this and is now worried that I am getting addicted and doesn't know what enough is.  I am still in pain and some days are better than others.  I have only taken 2 pills so far today and will take another before bed.  I I hurt and am very upset that my husband doesn't trust me to manage this.  

What is realistic?  How do you know if you are relying on the drugs too much?
11 Responses
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194838 tn?1303428544
Hi Trudie,

A week and a half out from surgery with a large incission (sp) ?, lots of adhesions worked on and removal of ovary and tube would mean a lot of internal trauma !! . Im sure you won,t be dependent on the pain killers if you took them for another week or so , dependency occurs when you have been taking them for months im sure . Its impossible to function  and rest well when you are in pain . You should have told that nurse that you wouldn,t be asking for more unless you needed them !!! honestly it makes me really cross sometimes when you are vulnerable and treated like you are making a fuss , thats what the meds are for a temporary measure while you are healing from the major surgery you just had !!!!.
I hope you feel better soon , best wishes Angie
Helpful - 0
356929 tn?1246389756
Hi Trudie,
    I think your body tells you in no uncertain terms if pain pills are indicated.. You'll know when the time has come to slow down on them..I don't think you have been on the pain med that long !! As Angie said, if it was a month or so that would be different. I can understand how your husband is worried though in this day and age.It isn't a matter of trust I don't think...  He's  just afraid and they act weird when they are afraid and are not in control...
     No disrespect intended for sure BUT--- Have you ever been around a MAN that had surgery ?? HA... No question they would be on the pain pills plus !! Are you kidding !!!
     That is major surgery you had.. your body needs time to heal... I would do exactly what you are doing.. And tell hubby that they wouldn't give them to you unless they felt comfortable doing so.Furthermore, it's not up to the nurse.. it's up to the Dr. !!! You take care and hope you feel better soon...
Love,
Sandy
Helpful - 0
488689 tn?1337993158
You just had major surgery a week and a half ago, and this is exactly why short term pain medication was prescribed for you. The nurse has no right to say anything to you about your meds the doctor gave you, that is between you and your surgeon. You will know when you don't need them anymore, as your pain levels decrease so will your need for the drugs.
There is a lot of misconception about pain medication and addiction. Short term use of pain medication under the care of a physician is not even in the addiction ballpark. I have been on long term pain management for a failed spinal surgery and know a lot about this subject. The stigma attached to pain medication is the reason why so many people suffer needlessly with conditions they are under medicated for, but in all the hospitals I've been in for my surgeries, I have always been asked if my pain levels are being adequately controlled. There are specialists that work only in that field for people who need long term pain management. There is also a difference between addiction and drug dependency, one is a disease and one is a physical dependency on a needed medication that can be tapered down when necessary. There is no psychological component to drug dependency, as there is in drug addiction.
You have nothing to worry about, and you should call your doctor if you are concerned about having any withdrawal issues when you go off the meds. If the total amount of pills he gave you is only 40 for your entire recovery, that is really very conservative.
Valerie
Helpful - 0
225036 tn?1294509400
Hi Trudie, I agree with all of the other ladies.  One week out of surgery is not that long, especially with the long AND verticle incision.  I can understand your husbands concern, but YOU know your body better than anyone and YOU know if you need to be taking pain pills or not.  You will NOT become addicted after a week or two of taking them.  My doctor recently prescribed me the exact same thing for pain before my surgery, and my surgery is not even till July 17th.  I say, if you feel you need them, call your doctor tomorrow and tell them so.  Maybe ask for the sympathetic nurse though :-)  Hope you feel better soon.  
Hugs,
Kasie
Helpful - 0
408163 tn?1242949501
Trudie,
I am so glad things are moving along. Now you listent to me. I go through this with patients all the time. This is what I tell them when they become concerned about becoming addicted to pain medication. You are NOT going to get addicted to the meds when you are having pain. It is impossible, people become addicted when they are not having pain and therefore get a sort of high from the meds. You may build up a little of a tolerance for the medication, but not an addiction. You take them for as long as you need them. That is what they are for. Your body is trying to heal and as one of the ladies stated needs to focus on that rather than on pain control. Statistics show that less than .01 % of patients become addicted to the pain medication. Please don't worry about this. Your hubby im sure is just concerned about you, after all you have been through. Take a deep breath, (and a pill or two....lol) and relax. You will be off them as soon as your body is ready..!!!
Hugs
Laney
Helpful - 0
483733 tn?1326798446
Thank you ladies - your comments are very helpful and validated my own thoughts.  Hubby and I had quite an argument on what addiction meant.  I've had many surgeries worse than this in the past (and before his time) and never had an issue.  He believes that as long as I take meds that I will feel pain until I go through a few days without.  I also believe that the addiciton relates to a high and I am certainly not getting that.  I think he is more concerned about a physical dependency and by slowly reducing dose that can certainly be managed if it exists.  A good night's sleep also helped my emotions around this one.  Thanks again!
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Hi Trudie,
I can relate to what you were saying about the nurse questioning the need for more pain pills. My Dr's PA actually did the same with me. First of all not everyone's threshold for pain is the same! I agree with the other ladies, its not like your abusing them or anything. It would be different if you were asking for a refill way too soon, but you are just following what the script said. Actually i would say you are doing very well with the quantity you are taking. For my first 2 weeks i was taking mine (Vicodin) 2 pills EVERY 4 hours around the clock! You aren't taking these pills for a high you are taking them for PAIN RELIEF!!!  You should talk to your Dr about this and i am sure he will be more sympathetic than his nurse. I even paged my Dr (on a Sunday) after his nurse on Friday told me to take 4 ibuprofen every 4 hours! He instantly called in a refill of 30 for me no questions asked! Only you will know when you wont need to take them. NOT the nurse.
Take care...
        
Helpful - 0
489774 tn?1212935663
I'm glad you're up and about. it has been a little over 2 weeks since I had surgery and I am still take my meds. I only take 2 a day. the doctor prescribed loratab (which I never filled because they make me sick) and 800 mg of motrin. (90 tablets) I filled the motrin. and that's what I have been taking. I like it, because it does not make me tired and it must be working, because I have no pain what so ever. but it's not a strong medicine. I didn't really have much pain to begin with. I went for my 2 week check up this past monday and my dr. asked if I need to refill my prescriptions, I told her no, I was fine. I still have more than half the bottle left. I had a large vertical incision too, but mine was underneath my belly button. I didn't have staples. they told me they stitched me from inside...whatever that means. I have steri-strips, which are still on, except for a couple at the bottom. I still have some burning, and my underwear irritates it. but I am learning to cope with it. I go back for my final check up on July 14. I highly doubt that you are relying on the meds too much. you have been through major surgery. I didn't have staples, but to me, that seems more painful. what type of pain are you having? is it from the actual incision? just curious, because I don't have pain, more just the burning. which I don't really care for. I did not remove my uterus, so therefore still have periods, which I just started yesterday. I normally have bad cramps, so that 800 mg of motrin really comes in handy.
please tell your husband to trust that you know what's best for you. and like someone said, most men are babies, they have no idea what women have to go through.
if you need to talk, I am here.
oh, I was also taking (regular) 200 mg of motrin in between the 800 mg, the first week or so.
Wendy
Helpful - 0
483733 tn?1326798446
Hi Wendy, since I posted my pain has gone down and am only taking a few each day.  My pain is more on the inside.  They had a lot of problems excising my tube and ovary because of the scar tissue from previous surgeries and I can still feel pain in that area inside.  My incision is only itchy, no longer pain there.  I'm so glad you had a better go at the pain management.  I can now see the light!
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Hi Trudie
Sorry to hear you're having a hard time w/ the pain.   I will say that 40 percocet may sound like alot to be prescribed but the safe dosage is 1-2 every 4 hrs (or 6-12/day).  40 isn't going to last long especially if you need 2 at a time - I needed 2/time here and there but tried to get by w/ 1 as you're doing.  You are not going to get addicted to these as long as you're taking them as prescribed and you have been; you've been taking less than the allowed dosage in fact which is not the sign of an addict!
Providers are on alert these days since this is a wildly abused drug but that doesn't mean that everyone (or most) who take it will become addicted.  Again, take it as presribed and no more as you've been doing and you'll be fine.  
Did your doctor also prescibe Motrin? I had 600mg Motrin as well and that helped more w/ the 'inside' pain as you described and the percocet, for me, helped more w/ the incision pain.  With all due respect to your husband, telling someone that they will  feel pain while taking pain meds and therefore go a few days without doesn't make any sense at all and I say this as a nurse and as a patient who has had 3 major abdominal surgeries and a laparoscopic.  You just had MAJOR abdominal surgery!!! You didn't just have a hangnail!!!
Helpful - 0
483733 tn?1326798446
This whole situation has resolved itself.  He's backed down (he cares but likes to try and control me which is a big mistake) and my pain has been decreasing so I am actually going longer between doses.  I am getting awful leg pains though and researched that you can get these as you are coming off the percocet.  Oh joy!  They didn't prescribe Motrin but I can buy that over the counter here in Canada so will give that a try.  It is the internal pain that remains so that may be helpful.
Helpful - 0
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