Wider use of methadone to ease pain is proving deadly

The one girl's death was another example of a growing national problem in which methadone's transition from detox drug to pain reliever has put it in the hands of people who don't understand its effects. Full Story
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“Too soon old, too late smart..”

Since: Feb 07

Bethlehem, PA

#1 May 9, 2008
''Methadone is an important drug, a valuable treatment for narcotic withdrawal,"
And also a valuable treatment for pain. It is so sad that people with chronic pain, who are trying to continue working and live as contributing members to society, have so much increased difficulty in obtaining enough relief to allow them to do so because of the people who abuse it as a recreational drug.
Opinionated

Allentown, PA

#2 May 9, 2008
What is the matter with people today? No-one reads instructions anymore? There are already warning labels and side effects listed on drug bottles and the papers that come with them when filling your prescription. Doesn't anyone know how to read anymore? It's your own fault if something happens to you because you are too ignorant to read for cyring out loud!
Pachacutec

Fort Collins, CO

#3 May 9, 2008
I think doctors do their part to "push" these drugs on people. I was given a prescription for a strong drug for my arthritis and I asked what would happen when my body adjusted to the medication and the pain came back. I was told I'd just be given a stronger prescription! Turned into a junky? Nope, I'll do without, first.

“GO PIGS ! 4/9/09”

Since: Apr 08

Bethlehem,Pa

#4 May 9, 2008
Sarah-Sally wrote:
''Methadone is an important drug, a valuable treatment for narcotic withdrawal,"
And also a valuable treatment for pain. It is so sad that people with chronic pain, who are trying to continue working and live as contributing members to society, have so much increased difficulty in obtaining enough relief to allow them to do so because of the people who abuse it as a recreational drug.
BRAVO !
AWESOME POST. Finally a post that states fact and common sense.
Do You Have A Clue

Scranton, PA

#5 May 9, 2008
Sarah-Sally wrote:
''Methadone is an important"

I agree with this statement. I am a severe migraine suffer, and fortunately I HATE TAKING MEDS, which is one of the reasons why they get so bad. However, MY DOCTOR is still VERY cautious in what he prescribes to me.
Opinionated

Allentown, PA

#6 May 9, 2008
Pachacutec wrote:
I think doctors do their part to "push" these drugs on people. I was given a prescription for a strong drug for my arthritis and I asked what would happen when my body adjusted to the medication and the pain came back. I was told I'd just be given a stronger prescription! Turned into a junky? Nope, I'll do without, first.
It is still up to you to read the bottle and accompanying drug literature. And also, your doctor isn't turning you into a junkie, only you can do that to yourself.
greynomo

Slatington, PA

#7 May 9, 2008
Sarah-Sally wrote:
''Methadone is an important drug, a valuable treatment for narcotic withdrawal,"
And also a valuable treatment for pain. It is so sad that people with chronic pain, who are trying to continue working and live as contributing members to society, have so much increased difficulty in obtaining enough relief to allow them to do so because of the people who abuse it as a recreational drug.
Sally, I don't have time to get into this debate today. But I just wanted you to know that there are people dying from thier 1st prescribed dose. It's not just poeple abusing it. Also, research the downfalls of the pain relief. I'm not an expert on this but I've been learning a lot about it lately. It also was "switched" from the oxy prescription because of the over use of oxy in this country. But my main point is don't believe it is only kids od-ing or addicts strung out. It is regular people, taking a regular prescribed dose and not waking up.
BTW/nice to see you.
LivnLearn

Rock Port, MO

#8 May 9, 2008
question for, "Do You Have A Clue" from Ashfield, PA. I am also a severe migraine sufferer and have been most of my life. The worst began 6 years ago, and after outrageous amounts of medication trials, I was put on 3/10mg per day of Methadone last August and has worked wonders. I have been on another pain management forum and have received major contridiction regarding methadone being used for severe migrane pain. People there feel that methadone is completely the wrong choice for this type of pain.

I was wondering about your experience and how you treat your migranes.

Since: Dec 06

United States

#9 May 9, 2008
In 2005 Methadone is indicated in over 4600 deaths nationwide and this number is underestimated due to an error in ICD10 coding and non uniform procedures in reporting and determining causes of death. Methadone is killing more people than any other prescription drug, killing 2 people for every 100 exposed.

Methadone is now the #2 Killer Drug in the U.S. Methadone is more addictive then any other pain medication including heroin and because of it’s extremely long half life, cardio toxic risks, numerous fatal drug interactions, dosages based on tolerance, and small margin of error. Up until Nov 2006 the government and pharmaceutical companies have been suppressing the numerous health and fatality risks related to methadone.

there are between 800,000 & 900,000 (some stats give diff numbers) heroin addicts in the U.S and 1,881 people died from heroin in the U.S. in 2004.

there are 200,000 people on methadone for drug treatment and I don't have the number of people on it for pain but even if we double the 200,000 and assume it's 400,000 total people on methadone there were 3,849 deaths in 2004

It looks like the "gold standard" is killing more then the drug its supposed to save people from!!!!

Every day 10.9 people die from Methadone (according to 2004 stats, not
including car accident deaths caused by drivers under the influence of Methadone)


We (the families of methadone victims) are requesting new laws surrounding who can prescribe Methadone, clinic rules and regulations as well as stiffer penalties for those caught selling their take home doses. The whole methadone maintenance system needs an overhauling. We cannot continue to allow a legal medication to be killing more people then the illegal drugs. Our government cannot be allowed to use tax dollars to fund their legal drug dealing operations.

Current statistics show that nearly 4000 people a year die from methadone. These deaths are mostly happening to pain management and detoxification patients’ wit hi n the first 10 days of taking initial dose. Most of these deaths are related to methadone prescribed with other medications that react as additives with the methadone. Diversion of methadone is a serious problem because it lands t hi s most deadly drug on streets. Statistics also state that methadone is contributing to more deaths nationwide then heroin and only second to cocaine deaths.

The potential of abuse, diversion, and overdose to new patients being prescribed methadone is overwhelming. The unique properties of methadone, it's long half life, and it's negative interaction with numerous drugs make it an optimal choice as a last result treatment for chronic pain and addiction.

Helping America Reduce Methadone Deaths
www. HARMD. org
LivnLearn

Rock Port, MO

#10 May 9, 2008
This is copied from another forum, but I thought the information would be benefical here as well.

Finding Normal:

http://www.youtube.com/watch ...

This video is so awesome!!! No its better than awesome. If you want truthful and correct information about methadone and you want to put your fears to rest...then go and see this.

“PAIN RELIEF IS A HUMAN RIGHT”

Since: Feb 08

AOL

#11 May 9, 2008
Thank you Live and Learn for posting this.

I am in agreement with most ya'll on this thread. I take methadone for pain also and it has worked wonders for me. Anyone who has not been in chronic relentless pain will never have a clue as to what it feels like to be able to finally get relief and what it means to us to be able to have somewhat of a life again due to the pain relief methadone brings.

We are supposed to be compassionate and just give up our beliefs when someone dies of methadone irregardless of the circumstances. We are supposed to feel compassion when someone dies of an overdose but never to call them an addict but when someone suffering from addiction only has methadone as their last and only hope ..they are just a junkie and f*** em because methadone kills. And methadone should just be ripped from the market even tho it has helped well over 250,000 people +pain patients who are on it. It will continue to be used for addiction and it will be continued to be used for pain. Yes there are other alternatives for pain but why should I have to change my pain medication that works because someone didnt use good judgement and overdosed or a doctor who was not trained properly gave it to someone they shouldnt or started someone on a wrong dose. HOw is that our fault? Its NOT. I do wish doctors would get trained if they are to prescribe it and I wish diversion would stop as well becauase it might hurt my treatment someday. So instead of all this onesidedness people need to work together and make the drug safer for all w/out hurting the ones who already are on it and have complied with the rules at the clinics and making some poor patients have to be subjected to humiliating contracts etc when all they are looking for is pain relief.

Its a two way street here...folks. Methadone can and does save people's lives, but if its abused and not treated with respect and prescribed properly, methadone will take a life as well.

Unfortunately all drugs are double edged sword because they can kill and they can save at the same time.
Do You Have A Clue

Scranton, PA

#12 May 9, 2008
LivnLearn -

i only take very short timeframes of meds, that is part of the problem, i am currently on fioricet and i just started it but hopefully it will subside. we use to resort to perocet or darvocet however, the withdrawls are horrible so we are trying this. when i went to the hospital the other day, they gave me a mixed of benadryl and something that started with an "r" and it worked for about 12 hours.
Rick

Pleasantville, NJ

#13 May 9, 2008
"And in January, several companies that make methadone all agreed to voluntarily restrict distribution of the 40-milligram tablets that were resulting in a majority of overdoses. They'll go only to the more highly controlled methadone clinics."
So, if you want to get the 40 mg pills you have to go to a highly controlled methadone clinic?
MMTer

Monroe, MI

#14 May 9, 2008
Rick: No, you cannot get the 40mg. from methadone clinics...you never could.
It was the pain patients that were being given the tablets.
The clinics mostly have the liquid form.
The people that are dying are mostly the ones that are taking it for pain because the majority of them do not have the tolerance to opoids that the addiction patients have.

You can no longer get the 40mg. tablets.
They did NOT "go only to the more highly controlled methadone clinics" that is a fallacy.

Since: May 08

Rock Port, MO

#15 May 9, 2008
Please be very careful with Fioricet, that is how my problems with pain medication began over 6 years ago. It has an extremely high rate of dependency, this information is from the doctor that took care of me when I was hospitalized after years of using Fioricet and Tramadol. Fioricet was one of the first headache/migraine meds that was used, is what I was told. It seems that tollerance builds very quickly. But I agree it works very well on the short term. It was just the beginning of my problems. Good Luck

Since: Dec 06

United States

#16 May 9, 2008
You CAN get the 40mg from a methadone clinic and you have ALWAYS been able too

Please don't give out incorrect information

Since: May 08

Rock Port, MO

#17 May 9, 2008
When my migranes are so bad that I need to go to the ER they give me a combination of Tordal and Fentergin (spelling is wrong but that is how they sound) one is for pain and the other is for nausea. They work very well, but you will need someone to drive you home.
MMTer

Monroe, MI

#18 May 9, 2008
Melis11577 wrote:
You CAN get the 40mg from a methadone clinic and you have ALWAYS been able too
Please don't give out incorrect information
Please inform me which clinics will do this?
MMTer

Monroe, MI

#19 May 9, 2008
LivnLearn wrote:
When my migranes are so bad that I need to go to the ER they give me a combination of Tordal and Fentergin (spelling is wrong but that is how they sound) one is for pain and the other is for nausea. They work very well, but you will need someone to drive you home.
Thats Torodol and Phenergan.
Torodol is a great med for pain...but it is also an NSAID so you need to be very careful with it and not take it for a long time.
You don't need anyone to drive you for the torodol part, but for the phenergan as it is an anti nauseant and will make you drousy.
MMTer

Monroe, MI

#20 May 9, 2008
Melis11577 wrote:
You CAN get the 40mg from a methadone clinic and you have ALWAYS been able too
Please don't give out incorrect information
I'm still waiting!!!???????

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