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Long term use of narcotics

Im curious as to how long you consider too long for somebody to be on narcotics. I ask because I was on narcotics for well over a year not by choice but because of severe pain related to disc rupture as well as stenosis of the spinal canal due to spondylthesis (where the vertebrae slip against each other pinch nerves and can cause permenant damage including paralysis if it persists). Now heres where the problem came. Due to BCBS of NC repeatedly fighting against what my neurosurgeons diagnosis and that fusion surgery was the only option to decompress due to disc rupture and then the slippage I was in significant pain to the point I was on 15mg of Oxycodone 1-2pills every 4-6hrs as needed (I had been on high end percocet but due to the tylenol in the percocets I had to be taken off related to elevated liver enzymes). So it took until this past April (started in Feb 2011) to finally get the cheap insurance idiots who had such people as a Family Practice MD reviewing my case (how the hell a GP is qualified to determine the appropriateness of spinal surgery is beyond me) I was only then finally able to get the proper surgery done.. There were times my pain was so bad prior to surgery I had to go to the ER to get stronger IV pain meds to get my pain to a tolerable level due to severe exacerbations. The assumption that all people on narcotics chose to take them to "get high" or what not is very unfair assumption by someone Im guessing has little knowledge of pain control or medical knowledge in general. There is admittedly issues with Rx Drug Abuse but not every single person being treated for chronic pain has a choice and maybe just maybe the problem isnt the person but being left out in the cold by some paper pushing putz in an office building.

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