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Questions about pain medications

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    Questions about pain medications

    I have a family member 3 weeks after a T12 incomplete spinal cord injury & fusion. She was released from rehabilitation hospital this with many medications (pays out of pocket since insurance doesn't cover) She has been prescribed Flexeril (every 8 hrs as needed), Neurontin, Roxicodone (every 4 hrs as needed), and Lyrica as well as over the counter acetaminophen as needed for pain. Are Neurontin and Lyrica both needed? Do some individuals take pain medications forever? The pain medication she takes makes sleepy and "out of it" -which I know are side effects. She will be going to her neuro doctor when we can get an appointment for us to ask about her medications about possibly slowly decreasing her medicines.

    I've taken Neurontin and Lyrica for nerve pain but not at the same time. My doctor started me on Neurontin. When that no longer seemed to help he prescribed Lyrica. Neither one helped much and the side effects I experienced were bad; brain fog, weight gain, lack of emotion and hair loss. I could hardly remember anything. Now I take Cymbalta 60 mg a day & 50 mg of Amitriptyline at bedtime. This combination works much better with less side effects for me but doesn't get rid of all the pain. I took Skelaxin(it's like Flexeril) for muscular skeletal pain for a while but it didn't help so my doctor prescribed a low dose Valium that I take once a day, it works for me. I take the valium around noon and it doesn't make me feel drowsy. Neurontin, Lyrica and Skelaxin all made me drowsy when I first started taking them, it eventually went away but I still had the brain fog. I can't imagine taking all those together plus the others you mentioned, it would definitely make you sleepy. I never did feel very drowsy when I started taking Cymbalta.

    Unfortunately from what I've experienced and heard from others I don't think the nerve pain we experience will ever completely go away so we must continue taking medication to get what relief we can. I still have pain 24/7 and have days that are really bad but not as many as I did before this combination. Hopefully someday soon they will find a drug or procedure to help us live pain free.
    Last edited by sreneet; 10 Mar 2013, 2:32 AM. Reason: Forgot something


      perhaps you've resolved this but def ask doc about both being prescribed. I haven't actually seen that...and if paying out of pocket and things are tight, neurontin is way cheaper than Lyrica. May in time find she has to try something else but for starters, makes sense to try the cheaper. I didn't find much difference in the two as far as effectiveness (i.e., one is as minimally effective as the other, unfortunately).


        I remember leaving rehab w/ umpteen scripts. I'm atypical but my monthly scripts now are prn xanax. That's it. And i have graves disease plus sci! I just learned bit by bit what I needed, what I could live with. I found I'd rather have spasms than be on baclofen. The bladders meds became redundant for me-again, I'm not typical. I never learned to conquer nerve pain. I live with it until I can't. That's where the xanax comes in. All the spasm drugs and neuro pain drugs weakened me so they threatened to stop my recovery in its tracks. I was recovering a lot so I made some choices. FTR I think I made the right ones.

        If you can't reach a specialty doctor soon, perhaps a pharmacist could advise you on combining neurontin and lyrica?

        Good luck.
        Does This Wheelchair Make My Ass Look Fat?


          Bethany offers good advice. What medications work is very personal and depends on how you weight the side effects of these meds versus the good they do in making your life worth living. Hey, if the side effects are worse than the benefit than don't pay for it or use it. Try to simplify your meds.

          Yes, one may have a life time of chronic pain and take these meds to your grave. In my case, this is been going on for 11 years , ever since SCI. Hey, it ain't getting better. Sorry for the bad news.

          Neurontin versus Lyrica.

          I have tried three times to just use Neurontin and not the expensive Lyrica. If I succeeded, I could save 116 dollars a month. That is a lot of handcrafted Starbucks coffee drinks right there. But I haven't succeeded. Lyrica works where Neurontin was just side effects and no benefit. I am back taking Lyrica.
          There are some days, like Bethany says , that I think , hey, maybe I wouldn't be any better if I throw out the whole wheelbarrow of meds and just have an occasional xanax/valium when I just can't take it? I have tried 'drugless holidays' without success. I don't have the toughness to sustain that much suffering, and I don't see myself as a 'softy'.
          I go back to the Lyrica, Nortripyline, etc. - and try to get through the day.


            I test myself periodically to see if i need my meds and when i end up in "hell" i say never doing that again until i try it again---we can be so stupid sometimes,despite years and years of college.




              the best for relief the pain you can take Ultracet. it's will be work for perifer and central