First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

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First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby Tooth&Nail » Sat Nov 04, 2017 9:42 am

Hey everyone been a lurker for awhile now and finally decided to post. My experience is pretty much the same as everyone else who has been trapped on this garbage for a long period of time. It "worked" in the beginning (although I never liked it much but it did do what it was intended by keeping me from craving opiates) but as the years went by it slowly turned into nothing but debilitating side effects. At first it just started with the usual extreme constipation, which I thought I was ready for because of dealing with it from regular opiates but as you all know the subs are like 10x worse and it became so uncomfortable and zapped all my energy, I slept for the longest time sitting up in my recliner because it hurt too much to lay down from being so bloated and backed up.

I had all the "moving around like a 90 year old" effects Ive seen people on here describe and I started when I was 25 and am 32 now so obviously Im not supposed to feel like that. I was only ever on 2mgs for the entire time ( Prescribed' 16mgs and then down to 12mgs but never took that much always stayed at 2mgs or below). What made me finally quit was for the last couple years Ive had this knot/pressure/tightness feeling under my sternum and above my belly button that never went away. It concerned the hell out of me and basically just consumed my daily life that I thought I had gallbladder or pancreatitis issues. I thought quitting would slowly make that terrible feeling fade but its still hanging on after all these days off it. its now less of a bloating and constipation feeling and has moved up into my chest and I feel it between my shoulder blades, its worse in the mornings but its always there and extremely noticeable when I have to take a breath. I went into immediate care the other day because it got so severely uncomfortable I thought I was having a heart attack and they took my BP and an EKG and they said my EKG was "extremely concerning" and to get over the the ER and they would call me an ambulance if I preferred, I declined and got a ride. Well after getting my blood work done, an EKG and an ultra sound they said everything looked good and that if its anything it might be an ulcer or gastritis but I just don't know what to think.

Im really anxious over this and it just feels like I have a huge painful weight on my chest when I breath, its like a deep ache that I can feel through to my back and like I just feel short of breath and as if my chest won't allow my lungs to expand but they said everything was ok. Its just a really weird feeling thats hard to describe, it also is this sort of rigid feeling that is in between my pecks and down to my belly button, like a straight line. My withdrawal was pretty intense as I didn't taper at all I just jumped from my normal 2mg dose and had zero comfort meds. I literally didn't sleep for a month, I rested and layed there the best I could going from chair to couch to bath tub rinse and repeat over and over again but I never once could sleep until about 30 days had passed.

I was just wondering if anyone has ever felt any of that chest/back dual pain I have described because I feel so alone with this because I don't know any sub users IRL to talk to about it and all the doctors just lie or naive about it when I ask and say its impossible to be related to it. Its just really weird because my mental state has cleared up and feels as if its healed way more than the physical feelings from withdrawal and with regular opiates that was always the opposite way it worked. Anyways sorry for the huge post, just wanted to share my experience and introduce myself.
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Re: First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby SmottleB » Sat Nov 04, 2017 12:53 pm

Hey I’m new on here today was my first post also. Congrats on so many days off.. and especially without any thing. I’m no doctor, but this whole process is stressful. Stress and stress relief are a key part of this journey. Stress can cause lots of ailments, obviously so does sub. For me stress caused IBS which felt to me like what you described. That was years ago. The prescription was Zantac 150 and a big case of chill the fuck out... so I told myself I wouldn’t worry... and surprisingly it went away then. I no longer need the Zantac. I just thought it might help. Be proud of 73 days that’s amazing I wish I was there!
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Re: First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby Tooth&Nail » Sat Nov 04, 2017 1:10 pm

Thanks for the kind words, you can get where I am too you just have to be at the end of your rope with this poison and are fed up with being sick and tired. Withdrawal is scary as well all know but honestly just like the John F kennedy quote "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself" really resonated with me because I spent so many damn years in terrible fear and anxiety of quitting this awful drug that I allowed it to continue to keep me sick out of panic "how will I get through this I'll never make it" you know the dril Im sure. I would give it half ass attempts to stop in the past but I was always setting myself up to fail because I had a huge freaking stash of the stuff in my drawer, I convinced myself "It will be less scary to quit if I have a stash around just in case it gets too bad" which was just about the worst thing I could do, I always convinced myself just a little bit to sleep after a few days. This time I purposely ran out, my dr retired two years before I finally quit and I lived off of extras I saved because of how much they over prescribe the stuff and I purposely didn't find a new doctor. Its weird because even though I was scared it was almost a liberating feeling to get down to that last pill and despite the fear I was excited that "this is the last pill I will ever take of this stuff".
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Re: First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby Don_Pisto » Sat Nov 04, 2017 5:04 pm

Hello and welcome. Everyone is different but yes there have been others who described similar issues that you’re experiencing. The person that jumped the same day as me wound up suffering extreme back pain while I had zero pain. This is an example how we are all so different. It takes time to fully readjust to being off opiates and your still healing.

It’s good you got it checked out though. Be careful getting medical advice on the internet, but you already know that. Probably if you check out fine medically, the pain stuff could indeed be part of your healing. Hopefully others that experienced this, and overcame, will chime in. I know it could be nerve wracking not knowing, but you should be damn proud to be off that poison and do know there’s some time needed to get back to pre-opiate “normal”

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Re: First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby Tooth&Nail » Sat Nov 04, 2017 5:38 pm

Yeah sometimes I forget Im even off it and to give myself some credit for it because Im still stressing over symptoms but eve feeling bad it is a relief to not have to wake up and start taking that crap right away. Subutex is the weirdest drug ever to me, I hated the stuff but it was so damn addicting. Even though I only took 2mgs at most a day I pretty much did the stuff all day long in little bumps, Id do it before work, on break, when I got home before and after I exercised etc. it was a ritual just like regular opiates just without any of the euphoria.
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Re: First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby Dcleanist » Sat Nov 04, 2017 8:05 pm

Welcome

Ive had chest pain from my heart inlarging from racing so long and to big for its cavity. A doctors best advice is, get a second opinion. You/we are younger and have better chances of tomorrow. Peace
The voice of reason is reasonably late.
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Re: First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby DietDoc » Sat Nov 04, 2017 9:05 pm

I could write pages and pages. But right now I pressed for time. Urgent Care Centers are the bottom of the barrel for medical care. They’re for cuts, scraps and bruises. The Emergency Department is never a good place to go for a non-acute, chronic condition, which clearly you have.

You need to have an extensive, highly professional history taken. From a doctor in their office.

For now:

Do you smoke (any type)?
Any alcohol use?
Any use of NSAIDs (Motrin, aspirin, etc)?
Have you ever done a 2-4 week course Prilosec?
Did your blood work include a helicobacter pilori culture?

This is just a basic best guess but I’d put my money on you having multiple duodenal ulcers and GERD (easy to treat, reverse and cure). Suboxone can alter they way the GI tract functions anywhere along its course and it does so many different things at different sites that Suboxone could have led to this condition but stopping Suboxone won’t reverse or cure it. Closing the barn door is only useful before the horse gets out...get it? And of course...what’s your diet like?

You need the proper million dollar medical work up, not in the Emergency Department. You need to have a gastrointestinal endoscopy. Please tell me you’ve taken Prilosec!!!!
I have two wolves fighting in my heart. One wolf is a vengeful, angry one. The other wolf is a loving, compassionate one. Which wolf will win the fight in my heart? The one I feed.

Buprenorphine: 9+ years @ 16 mg/d ave. - Tapering @ < .5 mg/d
Alprazolam: Tapered off May 2016 - Started again October 2017 currently tapering again
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Re: First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby syd » Sun Nov 05, 2017 8:19 am

DietDoc pretty much said everything I told you yesterday in relation to getting better testing. But I have to strongly disagree with his suggestion of taking Prilosec.

Long term use of PPI's (Prilosec, Nexium, etc) have been linked to kidney disease. The studies of early onset dementia are there, too. Google!

A recent study showed a slightly higher incidence of stomach cancer when Prilosec is used in ppl with pylori.
You need stomach acid to help with gastic emptying. If you take any other medications, PPI's can delay their absorption.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20012198

My pc locked yesterday before I could finish responding to you. Just to reiterate, fermented foods are your friend. They contain probiotics which will balance you gastric acid & fight pylori.

Eating well is a much better option that getting on the PPI train. Avoid fried foods, heavy meals & carbonated beverages. Be mindful of your last meals when you do have an "attack". A couple of gulps of buttermilk can soothe your gut in a matter of minutes. Try it!

If you would rather take the Probiotic pills, you have to get the ones that are refrigerated because the live cultures will not live outside of refrigeration & you are wasting your money on them.
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Re: First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby Eyedotz » Sun Nov 05, 2017 8:35 am

When I quit sub... the end of my taper and the first 6 months caused a number of physical symptoms which i believe was the physical adjustment to no longer having opioids in my system. I had silent gerd. Self diagnosed because, like you, the doctors couldn’t tell me shit. It slowly got better over time and now I’m fine. Silent gerd isn’t like gerd because you don’t have the typical acid reflux. Google silent gerd and gerd because the symptoms may match. I agree with syd about the risk of ppi’s. Honestly dude, change your diet. Eat low acidic foods...especially. Drink water not soda. Keep coffee intake low. I think you’re experiencing some type of paws... NEVER take medical advice from a forum, but I’m only offering my opinion based on my experience. If you read my jump thread (long I know) you can hear me talking about it.
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Re: First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby DietDoc » Sun Nov 05, 2017 11:31 am

There is a risk with any medication. Period. The long-term use of PPI like Prilosec have been positively associated with several sequela such as kidney disease. However, if you look you’ll see I am speaking about 14 days of use. There is no evidence that such short term use has any lasting negative effects. Take Carafate instead. Different mechanics, same result. Ulcer disease is serious, if that’s in fact what’s going on, based upon what little history you gave there is a high index of suspicion for GI lesions. Probiotic health, although important, will not heal open mucosal defects. I have not examined you nor taken a proper history so remember all this is just theoretical.

I have decided that this will be the last post I proffer any medical or clinical advice. I love everyone here but it’s still the internet, so unless you’re getting my care via a virtual clinic I’m not going to write posts like these. Although I’d help anyone, anytime, anywhere. I also think I should use PMs more as that would have been a better avenue of exchange.

Depending on your answers to my questions, and a physical exam, you could be at risk for a GI bleed. I’ve seen many of them in 30 year olds. Did they do a Guiac test on your stool?

You need a proper work-up. I will say, having both lived 20 years longer and having seen 1000s of patients (and no one wants to hear this but it’s a good thing) it’s highly likely you’ll get better and there is a reasonable chance you’ll never know for sure what was causing your symptoms. I’ve seen that too many times to count. The addictive personality we all endure is predisposed to somatization reactions and we’ve all had them, wether we’ve known it or not.

Anyway, I hope the very general advice and information I and others have given you helps. Lifestyle is everything. It determines both your long and short term health. If you want a source of the right advice check out my associates at PCRM.org
I have two wolves fighting in my heart. One wolf is a vengeful, angry one. The other wolf is a loving, compassionate one. Which wolf will win the fight in my heart? The one I feed.

Buprenorphine: 9+ years @ 16 mg/d ave. - Tapering @ < .5 mg/d
Alprazolam: Tapered off May 2016 - Started again October 2017 currently tapering again
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Re: First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby cheeps » Sun Nov 05, 2017 12:15 pm

DD....have you ever found my thread now that its in active topics?
10 yrs on methadone
Meth free 10/08
Back & Neck surgeries
Oxy free 12/06/14
More surgeries 2016-17
2017 Oxy taper in progress
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Re: First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby cheeps » Sun Nov 05, 2017 12:18 pm

I have decided that this will be the last post I proffer any medical or clinical advice. I love everyone here but it’s still the internet, so unless you’re getting my care via a virtual clinic I’m not going to write posts like these. Although I’d help anyone, anytime, anywhere. I also think I should use PMs more as that would have been a better avenue of exchange.


yeah....you're prolly right about this...we have to be careful and use disclaimers. Glad you brought it up. BTW....I love that website you just mentioned.
10 yrs on methadone
Meth free 10/08
Back & Neck surgeries
Oxy free 12/06/14
More surgeries 2016-17
2017 Oxy taper in progress
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Re: First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby Subverted DietDoc » Sun Nov 05, 2017 2:02 pm

Cheeps...

I wrote you a post but lost your thread...what is it again?

Thanks for the nice PM and the good advice. I’m here to get of buprenorphine and support others doing the same. I can be doc in a box when I’m finally off that damm stuff.

Sorry to hear about your situation.

Best -

Steve
I have two wolves fighting in my heart. One wolf is a vengeful, angry one. The other wolf is a loving, compassionate one. Which wolf will win the fight in my heart? The one I feed.

Buprenorphine: 9+ years @ 16 mg/d ave. - Tapering @ < .5 mg/d
Alprazolam: Tapered off May 2016 - Started again October 2017 currently tapering
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Re: First post, 73 days off subutex after 7 years

Postby Tooth&Nail » Sun Nov 05, 2017 2:13 pm

Thanks for replying to my thread everyone, sad to say Im just doing terrible today the pain in unbearable and the follow up with the gastro doctor recommended by the ER I called them and they are saying they cant get me in for a month and I just can't take it anymore, I literally feel like the pain is killing me and can't wait that long and will have to call around more which even doing that seems daunting feeling this way. The thing with fermented foods and the probiotics well I can't take any probiotics, Ive tried them several times in the past hoping "this time will be different" and they ALWAYS make my symptoms worse for long stretches of time like up to a month.

They completely shut down everything in terms of constipation and make it feel like nothing moves at all and causes even more extreme discomfort. IM just terrified I feel like Im not going to make it through this pain, the lead suit and all that shit while miserable I could get through because I would just go out and ride my skateboard, go for walks and exercise to cope with it but this shit is making it so I can't do anything but sit in a chair hunched over all day, I can't even go back to work I had to tell the temp service I work for that I found a good temporary opportunity that I couldn't pass up and I would be back after it was over if that was ok and they said not to pass it up but truthfully that was just a lie so I could try and wait this out and heal at home.

Its just weird because the restlessness of the first few weeks seemed to almost distract me from this and all I could think about was "if only I could sleep Ill be getting better" and now I can sleep long stretches of time (no meds just sleeping naturally) but it seems to make it even worse when I wake up. I just don't want to be told I have stomach cancer and Im gonna have to shit in a bag the rest of my life because some unscrupulous A-hole doctor never mentioned this was possible. I dug out one of the pharmacy printouts from old sub Rx's and read the whole slew of side effects and wouldn't ya know it buried like a thousand side effects down which I never saw before was "if you have severe of persistent stomach pain contact Dr immediately" and I have had discomfort for years and always thought it was the constipation and although worried I always thought it was that and trapped gas etc.

It seems as if now its so much worse because even though I felt they did nothing sub was somehow covering some of the pain, either that or because my mu receptors are so depleted now the pain is just feeling way more intense I dont know what to think. The odd part is that while on subs despite this pain I could eat spicy foods that were very spicy without any problem so I never thought it was an ulcer. Sorry for not having something more upbeat to post for my first thread on here its just scaring me that this pain is now my life now. Im almost even afraid to post and read on here now because just reading symptoms of what it could be or couldn't be and if its serious or not makes me panic. Anyways thanks again everyone for taking the time to post I appreciate it.
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