Fibromyalgia Research UK
Making sure no one has to manage Fibromyalgia alone
Help, My Doctor wants to take my medication away
What to do if your doctor wants to take your medication away from you
THEY TOOK AN OATH TO HELP US
Firstly, if your doctor is refusing to up your dosage this is totally different to taking them away. If your Doctor decides you are on the correct dosage for your needs then this is completely acceptable and should be approached in a different manner to this post.
According to the new guidelines, doctors should ask opioid users to consider taking the lowest effective dose and possibly even discontinue their medication.
physicians should initially try non-opioid medications and other treatments such as cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness training.
opioid tapering should be a voluntary process and that forcing patients to reduce their dose “may cause more problems than we are trying to solve.”
Some doctors are acting out of fear that they could face disciplinary action from medical authorities if they are deemed to be prescribing opioids at excessive levels
it is important to differentiate between people who are misusing opioids because they have a disorder such as addiction and patients who take the drugs to control pain so they can function day-to-day.
doctors should use their own clinical judgment to determine the best approach and patients need to be consulted about their care.
“If patients are getting weaned aggressively, inappropriately… Once a patient lodges a complaint, “then we would do an investigation.”
Am I Addicted to Prescription Drugs?
If you’ve been using prescription drugs in a way that was not intended by your doctor, then it is possible that you are dependent on them, and dependency often leads to addiction.
Signs of Addiction
If you are using prescription drugs that were not prescribed to you, that is a strong sign that you may be addicted. If you have been prescribed the drug you are taking but are now using it in larger quantities than you were prescribed or for reasons other than why the doctor prescribed it, you may be addicted. A strong indicator that you are addicted to prescription drugs is if you go from doctor to doctor in an effort to get more prescriptions for the drug.
red eyes behavior changes can also signal dependency. If your personality has been changing and you don’t enjoy things you used to enjoy, your prescription drug use may be to blame. Sometimes, when people are addicted to a prescription drug, they will neglect their personal hygiene or appear to have glazed or red eyes. Those addicted to drugs may neglect important responsibilities in order to spend more time using. For example, those addicted to drugs are more likely to call in sick to work or fail to take care of daily chores.
Those who are abusing prescription drugs may have periods of time that they can’t remember, called blackouts. If you can’t remember events that happened recently or conversations that you had, you may be addicted to prescription drugs. Another warning sign is if you continue to use the drug after the pain or illness has gone away. Obviously we suffer from fibro fog and you may have to point this out to the Doctor if he raises it.
Furthermore, just because you need an increasing dose of medication to control your pain does not mean that you are addicted. You may need an increased dose because the underlying issue that is causing your pain is worsening. Don’t avoid taking prescription drugs because of an unfounded fear of addiction. Talk to your doctor – if you are in pain, it is important that the pain is managed. Most people who take prescription drugs do not become addicted to them.
If your Doctor suggests taking your medication away from you ask them why? State that you have not become addicted to them and are using them within the recommended guidelines, I would also mention you have “no quality of life” without them, every Doctor has to give you a month or two to come off your medication safely and if they don’t you can tell them that you are within your rights to report them.
Sometimes however coming off your medication may not always be a bad thing, there are very effective therapies that are available to us. I think if nothing else the Doctors taking our pain medication away from us, it has shown us we have to consider alternatives as well as our medications, walking, swimming and gentle yoga are all great alternatives for us to do.