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Date of last update: 8/19/2017.

Forum Name: Surgery Topics

Question: post reangulation arm/wrist surgery pain question

 lms - Sat Jan 26, 2008 11:08 am

Hi, i had surgery on the jan 17 '08. The dctr has me on vicoden 2 every 4 hours as needed for pain. Its been alittle over a week after surgery yes still hurts but how long can i expect to be on pain med like the vicoden before a non narcotic med will work? tramadol and/or advil dosnt help the pain at all yet..only the vicoden. has the bone rebroken in surgery , a graft (bone) put in to reangle the head of bone to wrist to correct position and have a plate w/6 screws holding it all together. I have an appoinment to change the splint/bandage on tues. 29th. i don't take the vicoden at night anymore i just try to sleep thru it hurting im down to about 6 -8 vicoden a day depending on how it feels ( cold is making it hurt alot also) how long can i expect to be able to get vicoden for pain seeing as nothing else works atm? im afraid to try anything diff. until it dosent hurt so bad so i wont get into a bind of uncontroled hurting again.


 John Kenyon, CNA - Fri Aug 08, 2008 11:24 pm

User avatar Hello -

This is a tricky question and it will get a tricky answer. The Vicoden will have to be used until the doctor's evaluation of the pain without it, and this is often accomplished by stepping the patient down via tramadol for perhaps a week once it is decided there has been enough healing time to warrant a trial with something less potent. Then you may be able to use NDAIDs (ibuprofin, naprosyn) in prescription doses until the pain has totally subsided.

It is difficult for anyone to predict the exact timetable for natural pain cessation, which is why eventually you'll have to be weaned off the Vicoden. It can be taken for some time (assuming no prior drug dependency problems), but because of the nature of the surgery your pain may only abate slowly, and you may need something for a while. The sooner you can stop the opiods the better, but a week is pretty early to be looking for significant pain abatement.

I know this is (deliberately) vague, but everyone is different with regards to this. Hopefully this is helpful. Good luck to you.

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