Citation: J.. "Escalation Into the Grip of Hydrocodone: An Experience with Hydrocodone (exp35339)". Erowid.org. Dec 17, 2007. erowid.org/exp/35339
I was diagnosed with carpel tunnel syndrome late 2001. It was established early on the i had severe tendonitis and crepidis in my right forearm. Being that EMG tests could locate no specific entrapment of nerves, it was set about that the only relief I could achieve was through pain medication.
I started out taking Ultram (tramadol) only when the pain was unbearable. This worked, for a short time. After a few months, I was upped to Darvon (darvocet). The effects from this opioid where extremely pleasant. However, this medication was still not enough to combat the severe pain in my arm. Soon after consulting with the workers comp doctor and my personal physician, we determined that Vicodin could be the short term answer. My workers comp doctor was reluctant to give me Hydrocodone, so I sought a prescription from my physician.
I remember my first time taking the drug. I ingested two, 5/500mg pills in the morning, and it wasn't but 20 minutes later (I chewed the pills, and let them dissolve under my tongue) that I felt the euphoric effects. My pain was gone. My mind was clear, and i felt great. I had truly found my drug.
After months of taking the pills as prescribed, except for my unique ingestion method, I was told to discontinue use. I thought this would be fine, since my physical therapy dictated that I cease such a strong medication.
Then, the withdrawals. I had entered my own personal hell. It started after one day of not taking the pills. I felt the onset of flu like symptoms including muscle aches and a sever stuffy nose. Upon day two, they symptoms got so bad I had to miss work. Laying down and resting only made the RLS (restless leg syndrome, my chief complaint) worse. It felt as though there were surges of electricity running through only my legs. I could not sit still, and spent a week with no sleep. I was taking three or four shots of Nyquil to no avail. I would say worse than any Heroin withdrawal I've ever experienced.
At this point, I realized my body needed to return to the Hydro's, and then taper off at a low and slow pace. So I ordered a bottle of 120 off the internet. To my surprise, they arrived on time and had not been tampered with. Even better, they were 7.5's as opposed to the 5's that I was used to. Then, my addict mindset kicked in. Seeing that many Vicodins at my disposal prompted me to start eating 8 or 10 at a time. I thought to myself that a taper could began towards the bottom of the bottle. Let's have some fun. Bad move, J. I had gotten to the point where I was taking 13 or 14 a day just to feel normal. See, unlike most people, I took them because they made me sociable and gave me energy. Not the typical response to opiates. I later learned that the body does adapt in this sense after an extended period of time.
Well, it was only a matter of time before I ran out of the wonderful pills and spiraled back into my pit of sickness and withdrawal. It got so bad, I sought help from my doctor. Let me tell you, it takes balls to approach your family physician with an addiction. Deep down, I hoped that he would start me on a taper and I would get more Vicodin, all though I told myself I was genuinely seeking help to get off the drug.
After some testing was done, it was determined that I officially fucked off my serotonin centers. See, after being off the pills, I found myself extremely depressed for no reason. My life was great, my daughter was healthy and my love life was fantastic. However, I had developed an very bleak outlook on things. Come to find out, that after 3 years of Vicodin abuse, I had ruined my serotonin centers (the center of the brain that releases serotonin, the chemical that causes pleasure).
Now I sit, in a constant state of depression. I fear I will hate life for the remainder of mine.
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