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The flip side of addiction- putting off surgery because your too afraid of becoming addicted

Started by Grhauntsgr on 08/14/2017 9:10pm

Multi level ACDF

3 separate opinions and they all concur. ACDF across 4 levels (3 c-spine 1 within my thoracic ). That's crazy I know! It's hard to believe that this is really happening, I'm only 48!! 2yrs ago my pain started. I thought it was a crook in my neck but blah blah and now here I am. Initially I was on Narcon 500 for about 10'days (& flexrill) since then I've been committed to dealing with my pain without narcotic pain medication.
Nerve blockers leave me entirely unable to function, and prednisone renders me highly agitated & makes feel like I'm losing my mind. Ive managed with essential oils, PT, chiropractor, massage thereapy meditation and constant ice. It's been anything but easy and there have been days I actually thought , "if this is how my life will be I'm not sure I want it!"

With surgery eminent, I know I will need the pain medication. Im worried that With the current national
Drug crisis Im afraid I won't be treated for my post operative pain and my suffering will
Be worse than it is right now and if I am treated with opiates will I become addicted? What can I do to not become addicted?........I'm afraid to even bring the topic up....but seriously why should I be the one to initiate this conversation why isnt this being openly discussed? This is the flip side of prescription pain pill abuse and addiction and it seems nobody is talking about it??

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2 Responses


Hello, Grhauntsgr--thanks for your post! You pose some thought-provoking questions and perspectives.

We think your concerns about opioids are absolutely legitimate. Narcotic pain medication can be addictive and cause numerous complications, but these medications can also be effective at managing your post-surgical pain. Our best advice is to talk frankly about your concerns with your doctor before your procedure. This issue is a hard one for doctors to grapple with, too, so don't hesitate to initiate the conversation.

Opioids have largely been put in a negative light in media reports lately, but these medications do have merits. We encourage you to read our overview of this class of drugs as you prepare to discuss how to safely use them with your doctor ( Opioids for Severe Back Pain and Neck Pain ).

We hope this information helps, and wish you the very best of luck for a safe surgery and smooth recovery!