substitute for morphine

sundial1999 Community Member November 17, 2007
  • i am presently on morphine and oxycodone for my cancer pain.  i would like to know if there is something other than morphine.  i have been taking it for 20 months now i would like to find something different.  if anyone know of something better i would like to know.....thanks teresa
23 Comments
  • Anonymous
    mrmr
    Sep. 12, 2010

    Amidone

  • Anonymous
    victoria
    Nov. 24, 2007

     Hello Teresa,

     my name is victoria and as you can tell i am new to this site. but as a person with fibromyalgia for 30 yrs. i am not new to pain and as a nurse(now disabled) i have worked with many cancer pts. in the hosp. first then as owner/operater of a small home health service for ten years. I am sorry to hear you having such a difficult...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

     Hello Teresa,

     my name is victoria and as you can tell i am new to this site. but as a person with fibromyalgia for 30 yrs. i am not new to pain and as a nurse(now disabled) i have worked with many cancer pts. in the hosp. first then as owner/operater of a small home health service for ten years. I am sorry to hear you having such a difficult time and the pain must be excrucating,but remission is terrific news. There have been some really good and logical sugesstons given already. I do have to ask if you have Hospice coming to you home and if not, why not? Even in remission i believe they will come in and as i have worked with them many times, including with my dad when he had lung cancer,i have to say they are a God send.their main goals are to help have the best quality of life with the most comfort. they also then would be the ones to discuss med. changes with either your dr. or one of theirs. it sound to me that in over 1&1/2 yr. you really have not upped your meds. much at all. I have to admire that and it's no wonder they seem to have stopped working.i have to ask do you only take them prn(as needed)or do you at least take the morphine every 4 hrs. on a regular schedule then the oxy every 6 hrs. for breakthrough. I would think in your situation that you hurt constantly. if you try to wait till you just can't stand the pain any longer then take something it is very difficult, if not impossible, to get it under control so you would feel any relief at all. i have been told and have heard drs. tell pts. not to wait but when the pain starts take meds.as prescribed and on a regular schedule. if this is what you are doing talk to your dr about it and see if he agrees or what he suggests. also as jim stated a pain journal not only helps you but it helps the drs. and i believe too it is probably time to up your meds.again and to approach the dr.as jim suggested, tell him what you are going thru and even tell him you are invovled with this site and have gotten some feedback but you want to know what he thinks needs to be done because the pain seems to be increasing in intensity and more often. just what you told us, that they just don't seem to be working anymore. he does not want you to suffer and i believe will do evrything possible to give you better relief. if you are not using hospice,you can still call and speak to a nurse and ask her advice with the understanding that it is just that ,+hey cannot and will not over ride your dr.but just tell them the situation and say if you were treating me, what would you suggest and ask them how to appproch your dr about it. they are very knowledgable and kindly helpful. be sure you ask to speak to a nurse or nurse manager and not just the one that answers the phone(unless she is a nurse). i have learned to do other things that help temporarily, as does everything,(temporarily)but shoot it's better than none at all. heat is my best friend,such as Henry the heating pad,hot baths or showers,try to find something good in each day,no matter how small. like i could get out of bed today,and when the pain is the most excruciating i try to do something to make someone else feel better even if it is the last thing in the world i feel like doing. what goes around always comes around. i usually have to do this by phone and simply ask how they are doing then try to say something,anything encouaging or just listen and that let's then know somebody cared enough to call and ask how they are when they know you must hurt much more than them. by the time you hang up you both feel like you are worthwhile after all. there is something you can do and for maybe for a brief period of time the pain didn't feel quiet as bad.i have to remember we all have good days and bad days and really bad days but we are here to help each other through it. i have been up all nite because the pain was just too great to sleep but because of that i have now in some way met you and feel i have a new confidant and for the last hour i forgot it hurt sooo much. thank you for sharing and caring. you have helped me be able to get through the day and maybe tonight i will sleep. shoot nobody ever died from lack of sleep and it always comes sooner or later and if i leave the house it could happen anywhere if i have been up for 24 to 78 hrs,which happpens at least 1-2 times a month. no i do not drive, i stopped three yrs. ago. but i have fallen asleep in walmart, in one of those riding carts. right in the school supply isle when everybody was getting stuff for school. also fell asleep sitting in the lobby of a radio station once. when your up all nite there are very few people to talk to at 2-3 o'clock in the morning except dj's. i listen to the radio most of the time. i dropped by some brownies for all of them and the program director talked to me a little tooo long then i made the mistake of sitting down & bam i was out like a light. it's embarrassing but what can you do??? i just laugh about it and alot of stuff,  if i didn't i'd be crying all the time. i did not mean to write a book but i hope something i said helped in some way. ihope you have already talked with your dr by now really,as it is now the 24th . if you have not,don't suffer needlessly,call your dr. or since it's sat. and you may not get him, go to the emergency room and get something to relieve you until you can see him on monday. don't put it off and try to be brave. bravery never makes pain feel better----only much worse.thank you for listening and I pray your remission last many years and you will get your meds.that are more effective,longer lasting and brighter days to come.      with love and admiration,

                     victoria

    reply

    • sundial1999
      Nov. 24, 2007
      Thanks....I really appreciate getting all of that information.  Most people don't take the time to write that much but I did appreciate it and needed it.  I go back to my pain management doctor on the 29th of this month.  Last month he did make reference to that fact that I had been going there a while.  I wanted to open up the discussion...
      RHMLucky777
      Read More
      Thanks....I really appreciate getting all of that information.  Most people don't take the time to write that much but I did appreciate it and needed it.  I go back to my pain management doctor on the 29th of this month.  Last month he did make reference to that fact that I had been going there a while.  I wanted to open up the discussion then but in Florida they have such a problem with people trying to "scam" the system that I'm scared to say anything.  I know I'm in a different situation than those people but I can't afford for the doctor to take me off or cut me back.  I've been on this medication with him for months now.  He knows I'm considered terminal but he kept wanting to put a morphine pump in me.  I don't want to go that route and I'm scared that's what he's going to want to do.  I don't think that the mg he is giving me is much in regards to my condition and my pain.  I will approach him Thursday when I go see him.....I will reread your message to me before I go so I know how to talk to my doctor.  I have no experience in matters like this.  Never needed pain medication before this.....thanks again....Teresa
    • Anonymous
      victoria
      Nov. 24, 2007

       Teresa,

       hi, have you been up all nite too. LOL.  I understand your thinking and your fears about having him cut you back or off but as you said your situation is very different. there will always be people seeking drugs just to have drugs and for that reason drs. everywhere, in every state are under extreme scrutiny as to how many scripts they...

      RHMLucky777

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       Teresa,

       hi, have you been up all nite too. LOL.  I understand your thinking and your fears about having him cut you back or off but as you said your situation is very different. there will always be people seeking drugs just to have drugs and for that reason drs. everywhere, in every state are under extreme scrutiny as to how many scripts they are writting for narcotics. especially the ones that seem to be the only ones that help people with chronic pain conditions. cancer is not considered chronic, even tho it does last three months or more ,which is the critria for a condition to be considered chronic. so with your siuation a dr. would just,in my opinion cruel, not to help you be more comfortable. i also saw a pain management dr. that wanted to do the morphine drip pump and i did not like the idea either. i only saw this dr. a couple of times and he had his plan set,which was the above mentioned as his ultimate goal. he also had an ego bigger than Texas and he lacked  any kind of considerate bed side manner. the last time i saw him iwas sitting in a chair and he was standing so i had to look up at him to talk to him. at that time it was my neck and shoulders that were in so much pain(with fibro the pain sorta moves around, everyday is a surprise). so i said this to him and ask if he would mind sitting down to talk to me. he looked at me like i was crazy then at his nurse and said, to her , i don't ever sit down, do i? she  replied , seldom and he continued to stand. He then informed me that 95% of his patients were off all their meds. and doing great. I asked , do you mean they have pump? yes, he boasted( i swear i am not exaggerating). at that point i stood because my neck was killing me from looking up at him and i said that is not something i would prefere to do. is there another option? not that he knew of, he said and if i did not comply with his plan then he would send me back to my primary dr., he could refer me to another pain mgmt dr. who would tell me the same thing. soooo i looked him straight in the eye and said i do not believe that is the only treatment but i do believe that you have a morphine pump yourself and you have it cranked up all the way and i will not be back and left with my head held high. on the flip side of that i have known people with chronic pain that have been on this kind of pump for years and will tell you it is the bes thing since mamma's apple pie and they function pretty well, depending on diagnosis. sooo, it is really up to you and what you are willing to do and be satisfied with. no one can make that decision for you or at least i believe we should be a major player in our health care choices. choices being the key word. we know our minds, our bodies, our beliefs and the drs. we see ony know us by test results and what we choose to tell them. if we get to talk to them for 15 minutes a visit, we have accomplished a great feat for the day. it is not their fault,not only are they way over loaded due to lack of drs., but they are also under a great deal of pressure by the gov., don't get me wrong, i will consider everything they suggest and will be compliant if i believe it 1. is something i can live with,because it is my body and mind that is going home with me ,not theirs 2. believe it will decrease level of discomfort enough to make a change 3.if my dr. has always been up front and honest with me and has taken the time to listen to me and work with me as a team 4. will not disrespect my choices, even if they don't quiet agree 5. i totally respect their opinion, after all i have yet to complete med school and never will in this lifetime but again if it is not something i am comfortable with then and they are insistant,my way or the highway, i will take the highway and it is very,very diffficult to find a dr. that knows that with fibro about all you can do is treat the symptoms and then i have my part of the other things only i can do to keep the pain level down as much as possible, lite exercise,meditation, deep breathing exercises, do not over extend or overexert, etc.,but when we are no longer a team it just does not work. you said you seeing a pain mgmt. dr. why are you not seeeing an oncologist or are you but he prefered for a pain mgmt to be in charge of those medications. which is not uncommon these days, in fact it's pretty much the norm for the reasons i stated above, the drs. are under a great deal of scrutiny and also insurance companies are in control of most everything. i would suggest you consider calling  any hospice service in your area and just talk to a nurse to ask her opinion of how to talk with your pain doc. in fact you might ask what they would or could offer you in the way of care(Hospice). i am amazed no one has refered you to them, in your condition. you do not have to be dying to have their services. i really hope that did not sound morbid, i truly did not mean it that way or in any way to deny you the pleasure of rejoicing over being in remission, for that is certainly worthy of rejoicing over. i get the feeling from what you described you have been through that you are one tough Lady. i admire that emminsely!!! luv victoria

    • sundial1999
      Nov. 24, 2007
      thank you for taking so much time to answer my questions and offerring suggestions...my pain management doctor is a "funny" man in some ways...I have yet to learn how to read him...(if you know what i mean).  I do go to a very good oncologist and he's the one who referred me to pain management.  I have medicaid so that could be an insurance...
      RHMLucky777
      Read More
      thank you for taking so much time to answer my questions and offerring suggestions...my pain management doctor is a "funny" man in some ways...I have yet to learn how to read him...(if you know what i mean).  I do go to a very good oncologist and he's the one who referred me to pain management.  I have medicaid so that could be an insurance move there too.  I don't know .. he set it up and I do what he says.  The first time I went to pain management he wrote my scripts wrong and it took me three months to get it straightened out.  I don't know how knowledgable he really is...I've heard good and bad about him.  He said I've been on these meds for a while now...so I'm not sure what thats suppose to mean.....does it mean I should come off or go up....my cancer might be remission but in my case it isn't going to completely go away...thats a given now at my stage.   I have pills to sleep but of course I still wake up all during the night.  I would really like to sleep a complete night.....that would be different.  I'm just tired of this.....HELP
    • Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Dec. 04, 2007

      dear teresa,

       

       so sorry i have been out of contact so long. i have not forgotten you and i hope you have had time to look into some of the things me and others have suggested. if not  i understand  and will continue to commmunicate with you as long as you will let me. i slipped in the kitchen on a waxed floor(caregivers should worn you about...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      dear teresa,

       

       so sorry i have been out of contact so long. i have not forgotten you and i hope you have had time to look into some of the things me and others have suggested. if not  i understand  and will continue to commmunicate with you as long as you will let me. i slipped in the kitchen on a waxed floor(caregivers should worn you about things like that. anyway  i landed flat on my back, hit my head on the cainet on the way down, it knocked me out briefly and hurt the nery middle of my back right on the spine. so i have been down for some time, i probably should have gone to er but i really, really hate that. it has been several weeks since it happened and even tho it is better it still hurts pretty bad. i will so the doc on thurs. so he will xray it but i believeve it will be fine so i'm not worrried. anyway this char is not veery comfortable right now but i just wanted to touch base and let you know you are still on my mind and in my prayers daily and i will write moe later. let me hear from you and tell me how you are doing. luv, victoria

    • sundial1999
      Dec. 04, 2007
      Sorry to hear about your fall...I know that probably hurt like "_____"...thanks for getting back to me.  I did see my pain management doctor last Thursday and got a big surprise when I got there.  They wanted a urine test to check for my levels.  I had just left McDonald's and so couldn't go to the bathroom since I just went. ...
      RHMLucky777
      Read More
      Sorry to hear about your fall...I know that probably hurt like "_____"...thanks for getting back to me.  I did see my pain management doctor last Thursday and got a big surprise when I got there.  They wanted a urine test to check for my levels.  I had just left McDonald's and so couldn't go to the bathroom since I just went.  They said try before I leave but I never went.  They'll probably get me next time....I know my levels are probably not what they should be.  Haven't been taking as many pills are they say I can.  I seen the PA instead of the doctor.  Told her that the meds weren't working quite as good as use to and she made a note of it in my file...reminded her how long I've been on the same two medications without an increase in milligram.  See said I will see the doctor on January 8th.  Since I went on the 29 of November my scripts will be due again on the 29th of December so I have to call three days early so they'll be ready for pick then.  If you would like to email me at my email address you can...or else instant message me at yahoo messenger....sundial1999@yahoo.com....I would like for us to keep communicating back and forth if you would like that.....
    • Carl
      Dec. 17, 2013

      I have been directed to take the drugs, keep the pain under control. For me. this is true, due to a high level of pain relief, it takes a big boost to get back to normal.

       

       

  • Anonymous
    victoria
    Nov. 24, 2007

    hello Tersa,

      My name is Victoria and i too am new to this site

  • sundial1999
    Nov. 21, 2007
    I forgot....i take 30 mg morphine every 4 hours as needs and the oxy 20 mg every six hours as needed.............after a while it's like i'm hardly even taking it.
    • simmonsgrad03
      Nov. 24, 2007

      fentanyl patch lasts for 3 days, and they can increase the dose. It decrease nausea because it is absorbed through the skin. Ask for a nausea med if you are having it with the pain med.  You will need something for break through pain (maybe viocdin?), pain that is above your under lying pain. Ask for a refferal to pain managment - they will treat your...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      fentanyl patch lasts for 3 days, and they can increase the dose. It decrease nausea because it is absorbed through the skin. Ask for a nausea med if you are having it with the pain med.  You will need something for break through pain (maybe viocdin?), pain that is above your under lying pain. Ask for a refferal to pain managment - they will treat your cancer pain much better.

      Best of luck. 

    • sundial1999
      Nov. 24, 2007
      the oxy 20 mg and morphine 30 mg is what my pain management doctor is giving me.....it just isn't enough at this stage.  he mentioned wanting to put a morphine pump in me and i don't want to go that route.....i don't know anything about patches either but my radiation nurse advised me against it.....i feel trapped at this point....HELP
  • Jim
    Jim
    Nov. 18, 2007

    sundial1999,

    I'm not sure why you want to switch off the morph and Oxy , if its because they aren't handling the pain , ask for higher doses , although many docs aren't too receptive with us asking .

     

    Then fentanyl suckers worked great for me when I had a chance to use them. But that was only during an in hospital stay , my pain management doc...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    sundial1999,

    I'm not sure why you want to switch off the morph and Oxy , if its because they aren't handling the pain , ask for higher doses , although many docs aren't too receptive with us asking .

     

    Then fentanyl suckers worked great for me when I had a chance to use them. But that was only during an in hospital stay , my pain management doc doesn't believe in break thru pain meds.

     

    I know multiple people who swear by medical marijuana too. If that is an option for you. many states allow it , a friend of mine in California , swears that, for her cancer pain it works better than her morphine prescription usually does.

    Unfortunately in most states it is against the law .

     

    I wish you well in you cancer treatments and hope you come away with total recovery

    Jim 

    • sundial1999
      Nov. 19, 2007

      i've been on the morpine since feb 2006 they went from 15 mg to 30 mg but i've been on it for over a year now...also the oxy i've been on close to a year too.  i'm kinda scared to ask the doc to up the strength but something needs to happen.....i need more relief.  he did say i've been going to him for a while and ask me how things...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      i've been on the morpine since feb 2006 they went from 15 mg to 30 mg but i've been on it for over a year now...also the oxy i've been on close to a year too.  i'm kinda scared to ask the doc to up the strength but something needs to happen.....i need more relief.  he did say i've been going to him for a while and ask me how things are working for me...i have to have something but am scared at how they act about pain management.........do you think it's time to ask to up the strength?

    • Jim
      Jim
      Nov. 21, 2007

      If your only getting 30 mgs of morph a day ,

      I would ask for more ,

      but better yet put it this way to your doc.

      Tell him your base pain levels are rising and you are feeling more pain and you don't know what to do.

      Tell him you are trying to deal with it but its getting harder to everyday. 

      Its always better to let them make the suggestion that its time...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      If your only getting 30 mgs of morph a day ,

      I would ask for more ,

      but better yet put it this way to your doc.

      Tell him your base pain levels are rising and you are feeling more pain and you don't know what to do.

      Tell him you are trying to deal with it but its getting harder to everyday. 

      Its always better to let them make the suggestion that its time to increase your doses.

      Sometimes keeping a pain journal and taking that in with you helps when talking to the docs.

      That way you can go into more detail when he asks things like when your pain is worst / what is causing the levels to run higher.

      Or better yet he takes the time to read it. 

       

       It would be easier for me to say if I knew exactly what was wrong with you and how much your pain meds are per day  morph/oxy.

       

      Also what other methods do you use to try to cut your pain ? 

       

       

       

       

       

    • sundial1999
      Nov. 21, 2007
      i have stage 4 lung cancer and bone cancer in my left femur and thigh/hip.  I have a metal plate in my femur and also pins in my leg and a rod in my hip where the cancer mass was eating away at my femur bone.  As for the lung cancer isn't inoperable.  i've had chemo and radiation...i was told i was terminal and had 6 to 18 month to live....that...
      RHMLucky777
      Read More
      i have stage 4 lung cancer and bone cancer in my left femur and thigh/hip.  I have a metal plate in my femur and also pins in my leg and a rod in my hip where the cancer mass was eating away at my femur bone.  As for the lung cancer isn't inoperable.  i've had chemo and radiation...i was told i was terminal and had 6 to 18 month to live....that was on feb 7 2006....now they say i'm in remission....for how long....only God knows....i'm 50 years old and i don't want to go yet...................but i don't like the mental anguish or the physical pain...........
  • Anonymous
    Betty
    Nov. 18, 2007

    Ron, your first response is the best one I have read. I also have gone through multiple of types meds the past 5 years and it is truly a tedious process. I would also recommend the Fentanyl patches and the Actiq pops for breakthrough pain if needed, it's just a regular type of sucker with the pain med in it. Ask your doc, it's not permanent so you can...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    Ron, your first response is the best one I have read. I also have gone through multiple of types meds the past 5 years and it is truly a tedious process. I would also recommend the Fentanyl patches and the Actiq pops for breakthrough pain if needed, it's just a regular type of sucker with the pain med in it. Ask your doc, it's not permanent so you can always try something else.

    Good luck.

    • Carl
      Dec. 17, 2013

      I agree, also all feedback is helpfull.

  • Betty Boop Too
    Nov. 18, 2007

    Sundial1999

    I'm sorry to hear about your cancer pain and I'm hoping that you are getting all the proper treatment and medications to get you through this difficult time.

    Your wanting to quit taking your morphine?  may I just ask if it's not working for you? Are the side effects bothersome? or are you just wanting to try something different because...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    Sundial1999

    I'm sorry to hear about your cancer pain and I'm hoping that you are getting all the proper treatment and medications to get you through this difficult time.

    Your wanting to quit taking your morphine?  may I just ask if it's not working for you? Are the side effects bothersome? or are you just wanting to try something different because you'd really rather take a non-narcotic pain reliever?

    The reason I ask, is if you were just wanting us to throw out different medications so you can go back to your doctor and discuss it with him/her and then maybe you'd have some idea's or can hear some others personal experiences with a particular med, then maybe it would help lead you in the direction of what your looking for.

    There are many different choices out there and it's kind of hard to give you any idea's, unless we have some idea as to whether your needing more relief or maybe are feeling over medicated.  If it's because you just don't want to take Morphine, then I certainly think that's understandible too.

    Hope to talk to you soon

    Betty

    • sundial1999
      Nov. 18, 2007
      I really don't think it is working as well as it use to.  Also it does make me sick to my stomach at times.  I'm kinda scared to ask the doctor to up the milligrams of the oxycodone so I thought I would be better off trying something better than the morphine.
    • Carl
      Dec. 17, 2013

      My doctors and I ( yes "WE") as a team, decided if I need pain relief I take it. It's my body and my pain. Pain relief is very personnel. We were brought up fearing the pharmacy

       

       I have tried a variety of different pain reliefs, and the difference between most is very little. Even the fear of addiction, seems extremely overrated. One must qualify...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      My doctors and I ( yes "WE") as a team, decided if I need pain relief I take it. It's my body and my pain. Pain relief is very personnel. We were brought up fearing the pharmacy

       

       I have tried a variety of different pain reliefs, and the difference between most is very little. Even the fear of addiction, seems extremely overrated. One must qualify the support I take daily for free.

       

      Pain Relief:

       

      1gm = quick acting and use as needed

      3mg = Long lasting slow dissolve

      222=  head & pain relief

      Pot= 1 to 3 joints a day for nausea, stomach irritation

       

       

  • whiter
    Nov. 18, 2007

    Hello Teresa.  This is whiter (Ron) and I am new to this website.  I am on the fentanyl patch for chronic low back pain.  I have heard that the fentanyl patch is excellent for cancer patients.  Also sorry for your cancer!!  Along with the fentanyl patch, the make ACTIQ(fentanyl sucker) for breakthrough pain!!  Hope this helps,...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    Hello Teresa.  This is whiter (Ron) and I am new to this website.  I am on the fentanyl patch for chronic low back pain.  I have heard that the fentanyl patch is excellent for cancer patients.  Also sorry for your cancer!!  Along with the fentanyl patch, the make ACTIQ(fentanyl sucker) for breakthrough pain!!  Hope this helps, and the best of luck with your cancer.

     

                                            Ron

    • sundial1999
      Nov. 18, 2007
      I have no idea how a patch would work for me.  Also what is this "sucker" you are talking about.  Right now they say my cancer is in remission but for how long is anyone's guess.  I hope to be around for a while longer.....God willing.
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