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(23 Posts)
GallifreytoTrensalore Mon 27-May-13 12:37:16

I was prescribed tramadol for a painful back, I take cocodamol on a regular basis but it wasn't helping. The tramadol was great and helped with the pain so have stopped the tramadol and started cocodamol again and I'm in agony again.
Can you take tramadol long term?

Forgetfulmog Mon 27-May-13 12:39:48

What do you mean by long term? Your Gp won't let you use it for long term if its dangerous. I used it for about 4 months with a slipped disc & was fine. Have you been referred for Physio or anything?

chubbymomie2012 Mon 27-May-13 12:40:17

I take team afoul for my back when it flares up but I'm waiting on an ortho referral so it won't b long term. My aunt is very overweight and has problems with her knees and she takes them long term but I'd be worried they r addictive since they contain a morphine salt.
Is the source of your pain being investigated?

GallifreytoTrensalore Mon 27-May-13 19:36:37

Sorry just read that back and it isn't very clear!

I take cocodamol 30/500mg 4 times daily and have done for the last 3 years. I have 2 herniated discs at L1 and S5 which gives me permanent sciatica in my left leg, pins and needles etc and I can't bend or pick anything up. I also have fibromyalgia. I use a stick to walk and sometimes a wheelchair.
The other week I slipped over and hurt my back on the right hand side, was in agony that the cocodamol wasn't touching so I asked the doctor for something stronger and she gave me tramadol, initially even that didn't help but after a couple of weeks and a few visits to my chiropractor I felt ok and stopped taking the tramadol and started my usual cocodamol. The last few days have been agony again and I feel that the cocodamol is not strong enough any more.
I've been seeing my chiropractor twice a week since february and although I am a lot better the fall has made me much worse again.
So I suppose my question is can I continue to take tramadol long term?

Or is there something else I can try? I am also on amitriptyline and naproxen. Surely I can't just keep taking more and more painkillers all the time?

I was chatting to someone the other day and he had the same problems which were cured by having an operation on his back. He told me to go and insist on being referred. However 3 years ago I was admitted to hospital with full on cauda equine syndrome and they didn't operate then so why would they now?

Feeling very disillusioned by the NHS and in particular my GP sad

IcaMorgan Mon 27-May-13 19:47:53

ive been on tramadol for years

you just have to remember never to drink alcohol on them

CMOTDibbler Mon 27-May-13 19:54:19

I've been taking trammy for nearly three years - if you are taking it consistently then you want the sustained release as it evens out the dose through the day and night.

But if your pain is nerve based, you need a nerve pain drug like gabapentin or pregbalin.

Ask for a referral to the pain clinic (appts are like hens teeth though so take ages to come through) and to a spinal surgeon to talk about possibilities. They are loathe to do fusions as they are risky, but my mums first one worked brilliantly for a few years

Forgetfulmog Mon 27-May-13 19:54:49

Fucking hell. I'm sorry OP but your last post warranted that. How the hell have you not been operated on? I had the beginnings of Cauda Equina 2 years ago & had a dischetomy (I had 3 herniated discs, but only one was causing the Cauda). Do you know why they won't operate? I cannot believe you're suffering like this. Do you have money for a private referral? Whereabouts are you? I can recommend an excellent consultant where I am.

GallifreytoTrensalore Mon 27-May-13 20:45:52

lol Forgetful!
Don't apologise it's what I say regularly!!
It was very odd, first of all I was told I would have to have an operation, then my MRI scan was sent over to a specialist neurological centre and they said it wasn't bad enough to operate on. There was another girl on my ward who had the same symptoms and she wasn't operated on either!
At one point they thought I had Guillian-Barre Syndrome as I couldn't move my legs at all, but that was ruled out too. I was in hospital for 3 weeks and they didn't do a thing except give me painkillers. Its was a bloody disaster and I haven't been right since.

I am seriously thinking of going private tbh, I live in East Sussex but would travel to see the right person. At the moment I'm spending £35 a week on a chiropractor. If you can recommend someone I would be very grateful.
Thank you x

Forgetfulmog Mon 27-May-13 21:28:07

Ok will PM you

TigerseyeMum Mon 27-May-13 22:16:17

I take it regularly for disc pain, it's ok but makes me a bit wooh.

I don't know a huge amount about back problems but I do know the evidence base for spinal fusions is poor, they are common in the USA as a result of private healthcare but the uk is loathe to follow that route. It is very much a last resort, I was told I could have one only if I exhausted a other avenues.

I had osteopathy twice weekly for 3 years (luckily he did bogof) and in the end this solved the problem so my body could heal. I had ruptured 2 discs, by the way.

sashh Tue 28-May-13 06:23:57

I'm on daily tramadol, will see the rhumatologist in 12 months and I expect to be on them until at least then.

gallifrey Tue 28-May-13 18:15:41

Ok so it looks like a trip back to the doctors then to ask for some more! I saw a new one last time who seemed to be quite good, will ask for her again I think.

woahthere Tue 28-May-13 18:38:45

I got addicted to tramadol after a week of taking it. Tramadol withdrawal is the most hellish thing i have ever had to deal with. i nearly killed myself because of it. Pleas be very careful. Some people can get addicted to stuff very easily.

Longdistance Tue 28-May-13 18:48:27

I'm on Tramadol ATM. I've had surgery on my leg after breaking in.

It is an opiated drug ie; from the family of heroin, but am sure a lot milder.

I have managed to stop taking them, but will take one if I have some pain, so know I'm not addicted, as will take paracetamol first.

gallifrey Tue 28-May-13 19:39:47

It's strange isn't it that some people get addicted to things and yet I was taking it for 3 weeks and just stopped. I have been on cocodamol for 3 years and just stopped that too with no withdrawal.

Longdistance Tue 28-May-13 19:54:34

I was on it for a month. I still have some, and repeat prescription if I want it. But, only take one if in real agony, as used to take two before.
When I was in hospital, they handed them out like candy lol. I didn't gt on with a drug hat was co oxy something, as that made me feel sick and dizzy, so was given Tramadol instead.

woahthere Wed 29-May-13 18:52:39

Reading up about it (I did a lot) tramadol withdrawal is worse than heroin withdrawal as it takes longer but the same symptoms. I still feel traumatised about it.

It is strange how easy it is for some people to get addicted....I better not ever try heroin! All I can say is, I didnt abuse it, didnt take too many kept it minimal to start with. Different people react differently I suppose!

Twinklestarstwinklestars Wed 29-May-13 18:57:14

I was on it for 6 months with a fractured hip I took it with paracetamol as it worked better for me, I always felt normal on it. I stopped as soon as I got pregnant with no ill effects.

BreadHamBread Wed 29-May-13 19:02:13

I have 3 knackered discs and a couple of old brakes and take pregabalin, naproxen, codeine and nefopam. I can't take tramadol anymore because I developed epilepsy a couple of years ago, but can honestly say I find the nefopam more effective, especially with nerve pain.

On the surgery front I've been advised against it as they said it would only result in more problems either side of the fused areas. I tried the Pain Clinic and went with great hopes, but the only thing they did was double my pregabalin dose!

The only thing I've found helps at the moment is swimming (anything but breaststroke) and a really good pilates class. My core strength has really improved and the stretches help with all the spasms.

Good luck.

NulliusInBlurba Wed 29-May-13 19:10:58

I've been taking tramadol for a long, long time to help me cope with endometriosis pain. It is prescribed by a trained anaesthetist at a pain clinic - I wouldn't be happy with a GP prescribing it long term. Firstly, if you take the same dose long term you will no longer feel dizzy or stoned - that only happens when you start off or take it irregularly. Secondly, if you take it long term you MUST get regular (at least once a year) blood tests to check that it's not affecting liver and kidney function. This is something GPs might not be so aware of.

I use the medication in combination with other techniques - muscle relaxation (Jacobsen), yoga, heat therapy (aka hot water bottle on the painful spot). The pain clinic also tries out acupuncture and neural therapy. My doctor has warned me that if I'm ever in a position to reduce the dose of tramadol, the reduction has to be done as slowly and carefully as with ADs, over a period of months.

chocolatelime Wed 29-May-13 22:47:48

My DH also used to take a cocktail of painkillers, including Tramadol, as he suffered severe sciatic pain due to a herniated disc (L5/S1). He carried on as best as he could until a day at the beginning of this year when he must damaged the area further following some gardening work.

The pain was significant & at this point he had suffered from this issue for 2 years and so there was no hope that the disc would repair itself. My DH opted for surgery and it was the best thing he ever did. An hour and a half on the operating table and then as soon as he woke up, the pain that he had suffered with for so long had gone. He was back to work after 3 weeks and has never looked back. It took a further month to gradually withdraw from all of the painkillers. His surgeon expressed frustration that it had taken so long for DH to be referred to him.

Anyway, DH found Tramadol very helpful. At his worst he was taking Pregabilin, Tramadol, Naxproxen, Diclofenac (suppositries), Amitriptyline, Diazepam - I think that's everything, hard to remember back now. He also used a TENS machine which he found fairly effective which we bought from Ebay and Max Strength Deep Heat.

So I suppose that my answer is, yes, you can take Tramadol long term, but do investigate the other alternatives as well and it is worth finding out if surgery would be appropriate in your case. My DH also has MS, which slowed down the diagnosis as neuropathic pain was suspected for some time, but it turned out in the end that the disc was to blame all along for all the symptoms he was experiencing.

And one last thing, we did go private in the end and this did speed everything up significantly for us.

Do go back to your GP and discuss the options available to you. You have my utmost sympathy & I do hope that you can get some additional pain relief to make your life a bit easier.

Barry1935 Thu 30-Mar-17 23:08:44

Can tramanol paracetamol tablets cause bleeding in urine

WorshipTheGourd Mon 03-Apr-17 18:00:40

just placemarking as relevant to me but nothing helpful to add to OP.

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