Anyone heard of using methadone for fibro?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Megumi, Dec 11, 2005.

  1. Megumi

    Megumi New Member

    Hi all,

    I just returned from New Orleans with the Red Cross. While there I met another volunteer with FM. She told me she takes methadone for it. Has anyone ever heard of that? I know methadone is what is given to former heroin addicts but I never heard of it for FM. She swears by how much it helps her.

  2. over50

    over50 New Member

    Bless your heart and courage for helping out in that situation.
    I have been taking it 20 mgs am.then Xanax,Vicodin for break through pain.
    I actually need my Dr to up my amount,it is very cheap.With ins,I pay $8.00,w/o $17.99 a month. WIsh all the drugs could be the same.
    At first it made me sleepy,but then my body adjusted. It doesnt stop all the pain,just lowers it.
    Take care.Linda
  3. jhmitch

    jhmitch New Member

    Hi Megumi!

    Recently, I read in an article about pain management that methadone is being prescribed by more doctors due to its powerful pain fighting properties.

    However, it does have a stigma due to its use in the treatment of narcotic addiction as the following excerpt from an article "PRESCRIBING METHADONE FOR PAIN by Pain Management Doctor: David J. Wilmont, M.D., explains:

    >>"Like it or not, accept it or not, a powerful stigma has been attached to methadone as a result of its status as the only legally approved drug for management of opiate and/or opioid addiction. Methadone also happens to be a superb and most efficacious medication for treatment of intractable pain. And here is where a figurative line begins to blur. It is a commonly accepted fact that different people respond differently to one medication over another, despite the fact that two or more drugs may be generally regarded as effective analgesics for use in cancer or other severe pain which presents as difficult to control. Hence, it should be no surprise that for some, no drug is superior to methadone in medication resistant cases of pain management.

    Only a few years ago, private practice physicians were either outright prohibited, or simply discouraged from prescribing methadone in the course of their medical practice for the purpose of managing or relieving pain and associated suffering within their patients so unfortunate as to be plagued with this horrific malady. Laws in this regard varied from state-to-state, further complicating the issue. And doctors had no real choice but to order some "second best" medication for these patients. It would be impossible now to calculate or even estimate just how much needless suffering resulted from the presence and enforcement of these laws, delineated to "protect" us.

    Today, circumstances have changed, although to what degree remains a matter of much discord and debate. It is now legal throughout the United States for any licensed medical doctor to prescribe methadone for any patient deemed to require it.

    However, the system which governs this prescribing is still replete with complexities. For example, let us cite, in everyday language, the plethora of requirements faced by a General Practitioner devoted to providing comfort and increased quality of life for a patient suffering with severe pain. Our mythic patient in this context clearly responds best to methadone; not at all an unusual factor, rather one routinely encountered in pain management. Our doctor must, as a precursor to treatment, begin by demonstrating, in writing, why methadone would be preferable to any other very potent narcotic agonist. By its very nature, this is a volatile declaration, extremely vulnerable to debate.

    So in order for our physician to undertake his preferred course of therapy, he or she must be well prepared to defend this decision should some highly zealous drug enforcement personnel elect to vehemently disagree. This is the sort of thing that can cause a license to practice medicine to be suspended or revoked. Or at the least, it can be a position phenomenally expensive to defend. In all likelihood, the best evidence our practitioner will have that methadone indeed should be used as opposed to another strong opiate will be, quite singularly, the testimonial of the suffering patient.

    One "brighter side," albeit to a geographically-dependent, potentially dim side as well -- is the advent of medical operations devoted exclusively to the practice of pain management. This can mean "problem solved" for patients living in large metropolitan areas. Ah, but if you suffer with severe pain (and most assuredly if it's from a cause other than cancer), the whole nightmare begins anew for those in rural areas.

    So what is the promulgating factor, the driving force behind this didactic governmental edict? The primary concern of the Drug Enforcement Administration with regard to methadone is diversion -- e.g. large scale, illegal reappropriation of supplies from legitimate channels to the black market. This whole-hearted bureaucratic mindset emerges not because there truly exists a large, great and danger-ridden diversion issue with methadone.

    In truth and conversely, methadone is not the hyperfocal supertarget of misuse many would have you believe. Because methadone blocks, at opiate receptors in the brain, other narcotics from being even close to fully and normally effective was in great part the reason it was chosen as the detox and maintenance drug of choice. For this very same reason, seasoned narcotic addicts do not particularly care for it. Certainly methadone can and is a drug subject to misuse, and its control status on Schedule II is appropriate. However, for purposes akin to "getting high," devoted druggies would quickly and readily cleave onto virtually any other very potent narcotic pursuant to the realization of that endeavor.

    The remaining question? Whom, just exactly whom is left to most likely suffer from the benefits of laws governing the use and distribution of methadone? If you're a severe pain sufferer who obtains superior analgesic effects from methadone, YOU ARE. <<"

    Hopefully, this article will help answer your question about the use of methadone.

    Best wishes!

  4. Megumi

    Megumi New Member

    Thank you all for responding with so much information. I'm in a fearful state right now - having been under the stress in New Orleans, facing the no-sun winter and cold here in Indy - I'm hopefully praying that I won't get thrown into a mega pain flare. I'm still not sure about the methadone for me but it's good to know that it is a possibility.

    Thank you all again.

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