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Why am I having aching legs while on Suboxem?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 1970
Answered : 5986 Questions
Hello, I'm in withdrawl from Suboxem-after being on it for 7 years. I can handle most of the symptoms except for my aches in my legs, they hurt and are very weak. The situation is worse because I am a server and cannot afford to take time off! Imagine waiting on tables in severe PAWS, it is pretty miserable. I've been saying I have the flu but it is so much worse than that. Any advice on how to get through this? It is now day 6 and I don't see how I'm going to get through this! Thank you, XXXXXXX
Posted Tue, 28 Jan 2014 in Medicines and Side Effects
Answered by Dr. Vasudha Jayant Athavale 7 hours later
Brief Answer: Have determination, slow tappering, medicines . Detailed Answer: Hi XXXX, Thanks for the query through XXXXXXX forum. Suboxem has Bupremorphine, which is an opiod preparation. You were taking it for 7 years. Naturally you were addicted to it, & withdrawal is difficult for you, especially so because of your profession. I understand your concern. The problem you have is due to the Neuroexcitatory effect of the drug-making muscles more sensitive, bringing about uncontrollable twitching... This makes muscles weak .The effect being made non evident due to pain relieving/anxiolytic action of Suboxem. Now, when the drug is being withdrawn, the muscle weakness remains uncombated-so the trouble! * You can overcome this problem, by- - A very gradual tapering of the drug with majors to decrease the pain, so as to make it comfortable. -Take start Ibuprophen 800 mg. as maximum as four times a day ( 6 hourly/ according to your doctor's advice).Do not take it on empty stomach, can be accompanied by antacid to avoid acidity. - You are 46, might be are in perimenopausal stage, this might be exaggerating the muscle weakness, due to calcium deficiency. Have calcium, vitamin D, Vitamin E & vitamin B12 supplements to improve muscle health. - Other side effects of Suboxem withdrawal/menopause namely-anxiety, depression, insomnia may have a contributory effect in your symptoms. Try to have a composed mind, strong will & determination by psychological exercises like concentration/meditation. * All these things are to be done under your doctor's guidance/advice. A psychologist’s consultation may prove helpful. In this way a positive attitude, gradual tapering of Suboxem assisted by pain relievers & nutritional supplements with calcium, vitamin D, and vitamin E & Vitamin B 12. Would help you in smooth& complete withdrawal of Suboxem. I hope the information given helps you & informs you well, to overcome your trouble. I will be happy to help, n case of follow up query. Thanks.
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Follow-up: Why am I having aching legs while on Suboxem? 30 minutes later
Thank you, I've been taking Advil-800mg every six hours already and helps a little but not a lot. I understand the advice of gradul tapering of the drug but what does "with majors to decrease the pain" mean? My Dr lowered my dose to 8mg a day for awhile, then 4mg for a month then decided that was enough. I really think she should have gone 2mg etc. I understand that everyone is different but she assured that I would only experience minor discomfort. I am so disappointed in her lack of understanding and do not wish for her to be my Dr anymore so tapering the Suboxem is not an option. Please,tell me something that I can't find myself on the internet! I thought this was a miracle drug when I used it for an opiate addiction, it eliminated all cravings and I felt normal on it. If I would have had a clue to how bad the withdrawl was, I would have never started it. Thank you.
Answered by Dr. Vasudha Jayant Athavale 3 hours later
Brief Answer: A focused approach, withdrawal with doctor's help Detailed Answer: Hi XXXX, Received your follow up query. Thanks. Withdrawal from Suboxem is a long procedure, a gradual withdrawal is essential & it's over weeks, months & sometimes year's process, depending on symptoms & individual. * You seem to have some misunderstanding about your doctor, please revisit her, and tell your problem she may agree for a slower withdrawal. If not, you can always have 2nd opinion/try another Suboxem doctor. BUT withdrawal without a doctor's supervision is not advisable. * Advil 800 mg is also an Ibuprophen preparation, with less risk of side effects. If it's not giving you relief, you can try Acetoaminophen 1000mg four hourly-along with antacids, after food---as per need. * muscle weakness is well taken care of by calcium, Vitamin D,E & B12 supplements. In fact I would advice you to have a well balanced diet with sufficient proteins/carbohydrates/iron too. *From your query you seem to be tense, irritated, depressed due to the withdrawal symptoms.50% of pain is said to be Psychological Please understand to withdraw from the drug is easier / better than to have Suboxen addiction/toxicity. To have good quality of life should be one's aim, while facing withdrawal symptoms. * From this point of view- -You should try & have sufficient rest form your work. Engage you time in the task you like most. - Join 12 step support group. - take help of a psychologist/psychotherapist.Have anxiolytic with his advice. * You can take help of Interventions like-Acupuncture therapy, lesser therapy, Radiofrequensy nuro modulation.- In the end, I would say , In these days of modern technology, science is progressing day by day So to provide you all possible old/new treatment options after judging them in light of personal medical knowledge/experience ---one has to use internet. No miss understanding please!. Hope, you gather enough courage & information to stick to the withdrawal plan. I will be happy to help, in case of further query. Thanks.
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