Non-Opiate, Non-NSAID pain relievers
June 11, 2013 11:50 PM Subscribe
Atypical fibromyalgia (I.E. Docs can't figure out why I have chronic pain and fatigue). Medications I've tried thus far for fibromyalgia have been bust, more or less. The only thing that works for me is tylenol 3, but I'm building a tolerance and it gives me insomnia. What haven't I tried? Special Snowflake details inside.
posted by [insert clever name here] to Health & Fitness (22 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
I really don't want to be on narcotics. The next thing my doctor prescribed is butran patches (buprenorphine). This seems like a dangerous road to addiction, though I've read in some ways it's less addictive than other narcotics.
I'm very sensitive to a lot of medications, including opiates. Tylenol 3 worked for a long time only taking 1/2 a pill. But I've either built up a tolerance or the pain is getting worse (I think it's a little of column A, a little of column B). Other opiates make me sick, and when I had surgery a couple years ago, I had to have an antiemetic to keep from barfing all over the place. And I still did, especially once the antiemetic they gave me under anesthetics wore off. The two times I've had hydrocodone I barfed all over the place. Tylenol 3 didn't make me nauseous, thankfully, but it had another problem, beside increasing tolerance - it gave me really bad insomnia so I often had to choose between staying awake from pain, or staying awake from tylenol 3 induced insomnia. Looking back, Percocet had a similar problem with insomnia after the first two days on it. (I was on it for 5 days).
I have tried other pain meds. Tramadol gave me head pain that was as intense as a migraine but different, and made my whole body feel shaky/weird/on fire. Lyrica and neurontin make the pain worse. Neurontin had also insomnia as a side effect. Cymbalta aggravated my restless leg syndrome and made me twitchy/spastic/want to tear my skin off. Generic Prozac did the same. I've been told by my sleep doctor that I should expect that from pretty much any antidepressant. He gave a longer explanation, but the short version was that however antidepressants affect the brain, they affect it in such a way that changes dopamine in a way to worsen restless leg syndrome.
Savella wasn't bad but did start to elevate my blood pressure and RLS, and may have caused or worsened some severe hand pain. I say may because I had some mild hand pain before, and after it's been on and off, though no where nearly as bad as the 12 days I was on the Savella titration pack.
Ibuprofin and Celebrix work a little, but have chewed my stomach to pieces so I can't take those anymore. Calcium Channel Blocker (taken for high blood pressure, not pain) caused a pretty big flair up of restless leg syndrome and PLMD episodes.
I'm fairly worried about the butran patches. In addition to addiction issues, I don't know if I'll be in a foggy cloud the whole time, and I saw one of the possible side effects is insomnia. I really struggle with sleep, and it seems like anything that MIGHT cause insomnia with me does. I am desperate for some good sleep, have sleep medication, but either the pain or tylenol 3 throw a wrench in sleeping most nights. Last sleep study I was getting 0 stage 4 sleep, in part due to alpha intrusions from pain, and in part due to PLM.
So, I have tried a lot of medications. But, much to my surprise, I found a small number more that aren't opiates. I'm hoping for even more suggestions. The ones I've found but haven't spoken to my doctor about are: Clonidine, Marinol, and acetamenophen at 4000mg/daily. Pot is not an option, it's not legal in the state, and I've been told I'll be kicked out of the pain program if I use it, and that I could be subject to random drug tests. I haven't yet, but that's just not something I want to deal with. I'm hoping there are some others that I haven't been able to find with a simple web search.
I'm not interested in hearing any Natural/Alternative medicines unless there is some actual evidence based proof that it works.