Endometriosis UK
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Pain Relief Advice

Hi everyone.

New to this forum and just thought I would see if anyone could offer some advice on pain relief they use? I was put on the pill when I 14 due to heavy/painful periods and have been on it ever since. I am now 26 and came off the pill in Septemeber 2014. For the past four weeks I have been in absolute agony, with pain ranging between a scale of 7 - 9. After three trips to A&E and countless tests and appointments, having ruled our pretty much everything else, the specialist has finally recommended I have a laparoscopy to confirm if I have endometriosis. Waiting time is 6 weeks and they have advised I take a combination of paracetamol, co-codomal and ibuprofen in the meantime. I have been on Tramadol for the last four weeks with little or no pain relief....however it is really impacting on my work and social life (as is the pain) but if i can get the right combination of pain relief, i am hoping the next 6 weeks won't be the same as the last four.

Can anyone recommend anything or offer any insight on what they find works well? I am living with a hot water bottle on my stomach which is soothing but I haven't been able to leave the house in weeks and don't want the next 6 weeks to be the same.

Thank you in advance for your help and advice


2 Replies

Hiya sorry to hear you are feeling so unwell. I have the exact same problem as you with the pain killers not working. Tramadol barely touches me either, just makes me feel spaced out. I have no real solutions only empathy as I am currently trying to find some pain relief other than the combined pill (only thing that works for me) so that we can try for a family. Not allowed to take the opiates whilst trying.

Mefemamic Acid can help quite a bit providing you take it regularly about a week before your period/expected pains. I have found since I have used this that I have not even needed the tramadol as often. If that does not work I know it sounds silly but sometimes soluble codeine works better for me than the tablets, gets in system quicker. I get 30/500 dose from GP. Dihydorcodeine is pretty good too.

I find what works best for me is alternating between these painkillers as I build up immunity really quickly. I have read that taking antihistamines daily has helped some women, I am about to try that myself this week. I have on occasion needed to go to A&E for morphine it has been that bad. Hopefully when you get your diagnosis they will be able to identify the best form of treatment for you. Are you able to go back on the pill until you get your laparoscopy? I know how frustrating it can be to have to be on pill. We nearly got to the end of the '1 year' of trying for a baby before I had a haemorhage and had to go back on the pill and to the specialist :( I hope it works out for you. Endometriosis UK website has a really good pain management leaflet. I read that last night and plan to try some of the things I have not yet. Hope it goes well x


If you don't get enough relief with mefenamic acid, ask to swap the ibuprofen for naproxen - you can take it continually (in my case twice a day) if you are in daily chronic pain... Normally with endometriosis they recommend just taking it slightly before and during ovulation and period, which is okay if your pain is confined to just then, but some of us have to take continual pain meds.

You can continue to take the co-codamol with the naproxen, but mustn't take other NSAIDs (ibuprofen, mefenamic acid etc). Be careful and don't take paracetamol on top of co-codamol (unless you reduce the co-codamol dosage to compensate for the added paracetamol) as too much paracetamol is potentially very damaging. When taking multiple different meds it is easy to take too much by mistake. If in doubt ask a pharmacist to double check the combination you are taking.

You might find a TENS machine helps - you can buy one. Also warm baths and things like badger balm muscle rub are quite soothing as they help relax tense muscles (which in my case adds to the pain as I tense up in reaction to the endo pain).


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