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Ask Dr. D. Love Your Own Question
Dr. D. Love
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 18462
Experience:  Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
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I have severe ra I have been on oxycodone for the past 9

Customer Question

I have severe ra I have been on oxycodone for the past 9 months. Now my pain mgt md wants me to take tramadol instead. I tried and I am in much pain, hands wrists, elbow. What should I do?
JA: What seems to make the symptoms worse or better? Have you noticed any swelling?
Customer: The hydrocodone reduces my pain more than anything but after surgery last january my md prescribed oxy. I do have swelling in my elbow and the joints in my fingers.
JA: Anything else in your medical history you think the doctor should know?
Customer: No I am quite frustrated that at 63 yrs old (retired teacher)I am not enjoying life.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 10 months ago.

Hello from JustAnswer.

What other treatments are being done for the RA?

Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 10 months ago.

You posted in another question - Antiimflamitory meds that do very little to relieve pain. I also have osteoarthritis I have little use of my fingers in right hand without the pain meds. I fear i will no longer be prescribed the narcotic pain meds. I have been prescribed 1 oxy per day for the next 30 days. It is so frustrating.

There are several levels of answer to what you should do.

First, specifically regarding the pain medicines, it is common for Pain Management specialists to try to get a person off chronic use of opiates. Usually, the best approach would be to try the alternative regimen that is suggested by the Pain Management specialist. If the alternative treatment regimen is not effective, then the Pain management specialist can then make another judgment about whether to resume chronic use of opiates.

It is also an option to seek another Pain Management specialist, but the new Pain Management specialist may also want to try alternative treatment regimens.

The other major aspect, though, would be to consider more aggressive treatment for the RA. It is common for anti-inflammatory medicines to offer limited help in easing the pain of RA. However, there are a number of disease-modifying drugs that can be used that are more potent. Since you are not using one of these drugs, this would be an appropriate consideration. These medicines are usually only provided by a Rheumatologist. Regardless of how the Pain Management specialist is managing the pain, it would be reasonable to consult with a Rheumatologist for consideration of using one of these drugs.

If I can provide any additional information, please let me know.