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Amitriptyline for back pain

(14 Posts)
L1Fracture Wed 05-Apr-17 10:49:08

I fractured a vertebrae in my back 2 years ago and have had pain ever since. I've tried various combinations of drugs; cocodamol (makes me vomit), naproxen (did nothing) , gabapentin (became tolerant to it very quickly and horrific side effects with each increase).
My current regime is slow release morphine tablets, paracetamol, ibuprofen and oramorph for when the pain is really bad. The morphine tablets only worked for 3 months, my GP is reluctant to increase it so wants me to try amitriptyline.
I've read about the tiredness and dry mouth are there any other side effects I need to be prepared for?
Surgery isn't an option because of a permanent paralysis risk.

Badders123 Wed 05-Apr-17 20:19:56

It's great
Really good med for chronic pain imo
I did have a dry mouth in the mornings but I just kept a glass of water by my bed 👍

Lucienandjean Wed 05-Apr-17 20:29:43

I agree it's good for chronic pain, particularly nerve pain. If the gabapentin worked (even briefly) it's probably nerve pain, so amitriptyline is definitely worth a try.

I found it made me very tired for about 2 weeks, then less so for a month or so. I also had a dry mouth for a while. Now, six years on, all the side effects seem to have gone, but it's still working on my pain.

If it makes you very sleepy, it may be better to take it in the early evening, so you can get up the following morning!

I haven't had to increase my dose, so I haven't developed a tolerance to it.

I hope you find it helps.

TheEmojiFormerlyKnownAsPrince Wed 05-Apr-17 20:35:54

It's fab! Had a huge huge impact on my back pain. I'd been through all the standard painkillers with little or no effect. This time 2 years ago, l was thinking that l would be unable to continue to work. Now l can garden for a whole day!

Dry mouth impact is hardly discernible. In fact l found ld forgotten about it, untilyoud mentioned it. And the sleep is great too!

L1Fracture Thu 06-Apr-17 12:36:21

I took the first one last night, I didn't sleep as well as I'd have hoped. I feel very tired today and struggling to concentrate. I have high hopes for amitriptyline because if this doesn't work I'll have to have increasingly higher doses of morphine.

TheEmojiFormerlyKnownAsPrince Sat 08-Apr-17 09:20:56

What dose are you on? It only really started working for me at a hoggish fose

TheEmojiFormerlyKnownAsPrince Sat 08-Apr-17 09:21:21

Hoggish fose🙄 Higher dose!

Realitea Sat 08-Apr-17 10:07:47

I love amitriptyline. I was expected to go up to 50mg increasing every other week but it's just impossible. 10mg is all I can manage without feeling hungover.
But 10 is enough for me.
I had a dry mouth for the first two weeks and after that I'm just normal. I do sleep well now too.

quckingduck22 Sat 08-Apr-17 10:29:42

I've been on the for 3 months now for headache/migraine and depression. The depression was made worse due to physically not being able to do anything due to my heaches that I was getting 5-6 days per week.

Nothing would shift it, tramadol other heavy pain killers.

I started off with 10mg at 7pm. I would normally go upto bed at 10 and watch tv for a hour but found was falling asleep before going to bed. Felt pretty chilled when I first was taking them but no issues in the morning.

I'm now on 20mg and take them at 9pm and that works for me. I get a solid nights sleep and in terms of headaches still get 1 per week but now easily manageable with paracetamol and goes within a hour.

I love them, they have given me my life back.

PancakesAndMapleSyrup Sat 08-Apr-17 10:36:47

I couldnt tolerate amytriptline it caused urinary retention which apparently is quite common and i was only on a 10mg dose. Oranorph was useless after a short while as like you i get used to things and tolerant quickly. One thing that has worked well for me (although morphine based) arw buprenorphine patches. Something you might want to try? Im also now off pregablin/gabapentin all that crap after getting to highest dose and nothing working anymore.

Sickofthinkingofnewnames Sat 08-Apr-17 11:01:58

I love amitriptyline.You need to give it at least four weeks to settle down.Literally had kept me going.

L1Fracture Thu 13-Apr-17 19:56:59

I'm now on 20mg a night. I think it's helping but I only started on 10mg last week and 20mg for the past couple of nights. I'm finding the tiredness overwhelming, I'm fortunate that I don't work so am sleeping a lot.
I really hope this works, I don't know why any of GPs at my practice haven't suggested it in the last 2 years. I really want to get off morphine.

maggiso Thu 13-Apr-17 21:54:27

I was prescribed low dose amitriptyline for another painful condition but found it helpful for my back pain (degenerative disc disease). I was advised to take it initially about 12 hours before I wanted to get up, to help reduce the morning inability to get up! For me it helps with getting to sleep- because without it I just cannot get comfortable enough to drop off. Pain is more tolerable after at least some sleep. I have stayed on 10mg. The dry mouth was a nuisance at first( I have another problem that makes mouth dryness worse) . I take water to bed, but also use a mouth spray ( from boots-dental expert dry mouth spray) which is useful when travelling. For me it did not help with pain control for a little while, but has been helpful in the longer term.

Crummyfunnymummy Thu 13-Apr-17 22:01:07

I put off taking it because I was worried about the side effects. Finally relented in February after procrastinating for 7 months! Wish I'd started sooner. I'm on 10mg and apart from feeling a bit tired for the first week it's been awesome!!!!!!

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