Friday, October 31, 2014

Thursday, September 25, 2008 rose, Community Member, asks

Q: is methadone or oxycontin a better treatment for chronic pain?

I have been on high doses of vicodin for 3 years to try to relieve pain from 30 degree curve scoliosis, 3 bulging discs, TMJD, myofascial pain syndrome and fibromyalgia. I am not willing to have back surgery, as 2 of my brothers have had similar surgeries and are now more disabled and in more pain than they were before the surgeries. The chronic pain has overtaken my life, and I have finally found a pain specialist who is willing to help me. He recommends that I try methodone or oxycontin, andwill prescribe whichever med I choose. I have a 3 year old daughter and I need to be alert and available for her, so I don't want to feel tired or impaired. Which med is best for pain? Which is least sedating? Will either of them make me feel more alert? Walking any distance, carrying my daughter or large items is nearly impossibe for me - is it ridiculous to ask for handicapped parking? I do not have health insurance right now, and know that there is quite a cost difference between the 2 meds, fortunately I don't have to take cost too much into account when I choose, so you can leave that part out. Thank you so much!
Answer This
Answers (13)
Karen Lee Richards, Health Guide
9/26/08 5:24pm

You've gotten lots of answers to your questions.  The only thing I would add regarding the methadone/oxycontin question is that everyone responds differently to different medications.  It might be a good idea to ask your doctor if you can try one (perhaps the less expensive one) to start with, then if it's not providing adequate pain relief, switch to the other.  Either way, it's always best to start with lower dosages and increase them gradually as needed.

 

As for your question about handicapped parking, it is absolutely NOT ridiculous to ask for a permit.  Their purpose is to allow easier access for those of us who cannot walk long distances.  The fact that you have a young daughter to carry makes it even more important that you be able to park nearby. 

 

I wish you the best in finding the best medication for you and in getting your handicapped parking permit.

Reply
DEEDEE, Community Member
7/23/13 4:40am

Laughing

Reply
pberry1953, Community Member
9/25/08 5:53am

Hi,

In my opinion - Methadone is the better of the two. I have been on it for a year now and have never felt doppy or groggy. My pain management doctor has me on that along with a muscle relaxer (Skelaxan).  After 3 years your body needs a rest from vicodin for sure!

Walking is still a problem when it is long distances, so I do have a handicap placard for when I go to the store. Most doctors will limit your lifting and carrying as part of your care - so tell him about your daily requirements. You might need to re-train on how you lift and carry - - which could make a big difference for you.

  Good luck and above all - take care of yourself. Don't forget to give yourself a few "mommy breaks" to ease the stress.

Patti B.

Reply
Angela, Community Member
9/25/08 7:19am

METHADONE!!!  I have been on every other pain med over the last 7 yrs.  I have been on methadone for 1&1/2 mths.  OH MY GOSH!!!  What a difference!  I can actually enjoy life again!!  Be careful when you start - the wrong amount can kill you so start low dose.  You also want to make sure you know how you react before you care for your little girl or drive so have some help that first day or 2.  Good luck!  I hope this helps.

Reply
STOKERSRUN, Community Member
9/25/08 11:40am

HI.  I WOULD GO WITH THE METHADONE BECAUSE I KNOW THREE PEOPLE PERSONALY THAT HAVE HAD SO MUCH RELIEF WITH THIS DRUG.

 

ONE LADY HAS TAKEN VICODIN FOR YEARS TOO AND DID NOT HAVE MUCH RELIEF UNTIL SHE STARTED ON THIS.  NOW SHE TELLS ME HER PAIN IS GONE.

 

I ALSO HAVE TWO NEIGHBORS WITH CRONIC BACK PAIN AND THEY BOTH SWEAR BY IT. THEY HAVE HAD BACK INJURIES AND THE PAIN FOR YEARS, AND UNTIL THEY STARTED TAKING THE METHADONE THEY HAD NO RELIEF.  THEY HAD BEEN ON EVERYTHING AND GONE THROUGH ALL KINDS OF REHAB TO HELP.

 

ONE MAN HAS BEEN ABLE TO RETURN TO WORK WHILE TAKING THE DRUG SO I WOULD IMAGINE THAT YOU CAN STILL GO ABOUT YOUR DAILY ROUTINE WITHOUT MUCH INTERFERENCE AFTER STARTING THIS THERAPY.

 

HOPE THIS HELPS.

 

DAWN

Reply
Cathy, Community Member
9/25/08 12:08pm

Methadone without a doubt, is the best pain management drug out there.  I tried everything until my Pain Management Dr. suggested Methadone.  You don't get real groggy, although you have to find the right dosage for you.  Someone said start low, they are right.  Methadone does not act like other pain meds.  It stays in your system, and so if you increase too much you can overdose.  Be sure to read all literature that comes with it.  I also use Oxycodone for "break-through pain".  The Oxycodone is good for "immediate relief", but if taken on a regular basis you will need more and more.  Thus creating more problems for yourself.  The Methadone is absolutely the better of the two.  You do have to adjust to it.  Good luck and try not to lift your daughter.  She is three and should be able to walk and do without too much lifting.

 

Good Luck

Cathy

Reply
Scooter, Community Member
9/26/08 2:02pm

I don't want to confuse you. I see all the answers above say Methadone. I've taken both and Oxycontin works better for me. I don't feel tired or feel high when I take it. The oxycontin is time release and then I take oxycodone for breakthrough pain. If price is an issue I know that Oxycontin is more expensive. Good luck

Reply
Robert, Community Member
10/17/08 8:01pm

    I can tell you my experience. Oxycontin works better on any pain that wasn't a nerve pain. Methadone works better on nerve pain.

    Mehadone makes my feel sooo tired. No sleepy mind you, just no energy. Oxycontin doesn't do that. It does however have more ups and downs while the Methadone is more constant.

Reply
Tom RP, Community Member
5/11/09 6:53pm

Why don't you have to worry about the cost difference between the two medicines.  I am about to lose my health insurance due to going out of work on disability and the answer may be helpful to me. It seems I won't be able to get medicare until I am approved for Social Security Disability and then not until after 2 years have passed. Which makes no sense since your medical condition is the very reason you are leaving work. Obviously you will need to have continuing care for 2 years after leaving work. Besides your answer are there any other ways to get your care and prescriptions for yourself and your family while you wait for Medicare?

Reply
lynn67, Community Member
9/26/09 10:55am

I know this is a bit of an old post, but just in case you are in search of help. There is a web-site called "needymeds.org". Check it out. It may not have assistance for your med, but there is a lot of help on it. I would also let your Dr. know because they may have their own resources. The one I go to has some of their own for things like asthma meds (the one I take would cost me $500.00 a month) and then works with a local hospital/medical facility to assist with others. However, the needymeds site is great. Good luck.

Reply
michelle, Community Member
4/17/10 7:15am

I feel that methadone is a great pain reliever.  It is long lasting and does not make you feel out of it.  You will be able to function and get the best relief.

Reply
bob, Community Member
8/20/10 2:51am

I took methadone for several years with good success other than feeling tired (not sleepy).  I then changed my pain management physician and my new Doc doesn't like methadone (for an unspecified reason) and doesn't prescribe it for his patients.  My pain is related to nerve damage in my spinal cord and he tried me on all types of antidepressants and Tramadol to little success.  We are now at the point where he is thinking I need opiates (but not methadone) and has been proscribing Norco (hydrocodone and acetaminophen) for the past 4 months.  I can definitively say that methadone is far better at controlling pain on a continual basis than Norco is.  

Reply
brojo1, Community Member
10/31/10 9:38am

Joe:  I have been on and off methadone since the late 70s...I am now 56. Now, though I still suffer from chronic pain- after being on methadone for last 10 years...I've detoxed to a low, low dosage--and this is my 1st weekend without. My reasoning is this: after intial relieve of my chronic pain ...being stabalized around 100mgs. I eventually reached stabalization at 190mgs.

  Now there are other complication in my case. Being an epileptic since the age 6 yrs. old (I was diagnosed wiht Petite mal siezures which only occurred in my sleep) But taking 300 mgs of dilantin all those years. (Which weakens the effect of methadone long lasting effects...My personal physician added @ %00mgs of Depacote - which supposedly is more conduve in working with the methadone's longer lasting effects.

  I did not want to be on such a high dosage and this particular environment was FAR from a health caring one. It just seemed as though all that most, not all, but most of the employees seemed very condecending in manner and attending to your immeadiates.  It took meall of 9 months to get back to 110mgs. I stuck it out a little long till I finally made it to 60mgs.  I walked at 40mgs  _  my original stating dosage.

The Center for Behavorial Health struck as a private owned money making business:  milking and dragging their feet at every turn.

One may find intial relief...but for long term I would definitly stick with a good doctor whom you feel comfortable with is not afraid to treat you with the correct needs of your pain.

 Finally. I'm sorry to say, but; I would stay away from clinics. An undertanding doctor -not afraid  of practicing his profession to help his patients remain in a comfortable environment may take some effort on the patient's part in finding, but it is worth a more than anything - when found. Stick with the doctors...in my 39yrs. of experience doctors care more - private owned pain clinics are in it for the MONEY at any cost!!!!!!

Reply
rose, Community Member
12/13/11 2:31pm

I've had two lower back surgeries and could not move much at all. I had to have my kitchen chairs set up in different places in my kitchen so I had something to lean on, on my way to the couch where I had to lay in a fetal position pretty much "all day " anyway I was taking between 60-100mg of percocet daily, I was in a pain mangement clinic and I told them nothing was helping me with my back pain and finally they asked if I would try methadone? I told them I would try "anything" at this point, the doctor told me it will take a couple of days to work but there wouldn't be a withdrawel from the percocet, two days later I was up walking with very little pain and "no" side effects. I've been taking 10mg's a day and feel great. I would try it and see what you think.

 

Reply
oakarsenal, Community Member
3/21/14 11:00am

 I have been on methadone for 3 years at a dose of 20mg 3x a day. I also take up to 15mg of percosets a day also. The reason for this is severe end stage osteoarthritis of my right shoulder. I have beetaken both of these drugs on their own and for me methadone was a better option for me at the time. The combination of the two came about as the pain in my shoulder increased 30% or so. I am alert and able to drive w/o any problems.

Reply
Answer This

Important:
We hope you find this general health information helpful. Please note however, that this Q&A is meant to support not replace the professional medical advice you receive from your doctor. No information in the Answers above is intended to diagnose or treat any condition. The views expressed in the Answers above belong to the individuals who posted them and do not necessarily reflect the views of Remedy Health Media. Remedy Health Media does not review or edit content posted by our community members, but reserves the right to remove any material it deems inappropriate.

By rose, Community Member— Last Modified: 05/06/14, First Published: 09/25/08