Question: I have been using Dihyrocodeine for about 2 years. I started using a sunbed about 6 weeks ago & found that the pain in my arms stopped altogether so I stopped the Dihydrocodeine. Since then I have experienced the most horrendous headaches & fainting spells. I have been to see my GP who tells me I now have an addiction to Codeine & that I should have been told to be weaned off rather than just stopping them. THANKS FOR THE WARNING. He said that in effect I have gone “Cold Turkey” & I now have to go through a “coming down” regime & must NEVER take anything with Codeine in again.
Answer 1: I was on over the maximum therapeutic dose of codeine phosphate a day and have been for over 5 years – yes my body has also ADAPTED to large doses of opiate pain relief. My doctors answer to its lack of effectiveness is to attempt to prescribe dihydracodiene a stronger opiate. I am at present like yourself reducing the dosage. After this period of time the pain relief effects are not great so I have learned to live with the pain. RSI is not my only problem.
Addictive pain relief is prescribed without any thought to the consequences by most GPs. In my case there was no alternative – I have intolerances to the other drugs tried. The positive side is that I have gradually adapted to the pain levels that I experience. The negative is that I have to go through a gradual detoxification. As far as never taking anything with codeine in again. I think your doctor should wake up, smell the coffee and move into the 21st century. What he would have probably said if he was honest is ‘There is a temporary problem,
I the doctor am responsible, If codiene is used again I the doctor must not be so stupid and lazy’ perhaps followed by ‘I the doctor am very sorry’. As some of you may have gathered there are flames of fury coming off me at the moment. I have a friend in the voluntary sector who works in the addiction field, every day there are more and more people seeking help due to the damn incompetence of doctors. Pain relief is often denied because of previous ‘problems’ of patients etc. etc. As people with RSI we know about the levels of knowledge in our own field. This stupidity and laziness is endemic.