Ibruprofen changed to Matrifen Transdermal patches fentanyl

Hi all, hope your all having a pain free day or at least less pain than yesterday. I asked the question to every one about my tummy pains on Ibuprofen yesterday and some advised to see my GP . I wanted to let you all know what the outcome was as it may help someone else in the same predicament. Well i managed to get an appointment this morning at 9.30am . My GP was very good ,as we have not long lived up here i had not seen him that often i think twice since we've been here. He asked me all about my RA and how the pain was, how i was coping . He even picked up about my blood pressure being high, as at the hospital two weeks ago it was 180/103, then last week it was 140/80 and this week 150/80,

i told him i had been experiencing bad tummy pains and nausea and wondered if i needed stomach protectors. He asked if the Ibuprofen and paracetamol worked effectively and how much relief i got. I told him they just took the edge off the pain thats all . He said he was more concerned about my blood pressure and said he was sure that the ibuprofen was causing this as well as my tummy pains. He gave me two options i could continue with ibuprofen and have to take stomach protectors as well as blood pressure tablets for the rest of my life or i could change and try Matrifen 12 micrograms/hour transdermal patches fentanyl which are worn on the top half of the torso ie, on the chest or arm they release pain relief gently into the blood stream and you wear one for 3 days thats how long they last, then change it to a fresh one. It gives constant pain relief but it is a higher pain relief that will possibly give me more reilef than what ive been getting. I've agreed to try them and he wants to see me next week to see how i'm getting on. I wonder have any of you had this type of pain relief and if so how did you get on? I'm hope they work or it will be trial and error with my pain relief as well as my RA and given my past record on meds i'm hoping i dont have any severe side effects. Hugs to all Lena xx:))

16 Replies

  • wow.. huge jump in pain killer, you have gone from mini cooper to a ferrari!!. are you In a lot of pain? they are strong but effective, did he not consider co-codamol or tramadol first?

    you might feel v tired/ dizzy with them but I CANT speak from personal experience, they should be effective. check re driving though!!

    . Hope they suit you x

  • hi Ali, my pain has been moderate but escalates when not had steroid injection , i stayed on Ibuprofen because i wanted to see if the dmards worked but as they didnt my pain relief was never changed ,so i have been suffering unneccessary he said as i should have come earlier to increase pain relief. I cant take tramadol or co-codamol due to side effects of sickness and they make me feel spaced out. So he gave me these. He said if they cause to much drowsiness for driving to come back he has started me on 12 mg. Are these very strong then? I have put one on at 10.50am only thing ive noticed is funny sensation on my tongue tingling and i have slept for and hour but thats not unusual. I have to go back in a weeks time to see how i'm getting on if i've not had any adverse reactions.

  • yes main concern could be driving., you must be careful.... when I saw registrar in jan as an emergency his theory was that my pain was pushing blood pressure up the appointment 170/107!!. prolonged steroid use on my part due to long gaps in treatment and long appointment waits havent helped!!

  • And be careful about using heating pads, electric blankets and hot baths. I think it's explained on the leaflet that comes with them, but heat releases to drug faster and that can cause problems. but otherwise enjoy pain free time.. Polly

  • Hi Polly, yes your right it explains this in the leaflet and my GP told me about this too. I dont know about you but it frightens me when they change the meds and you are in the unknown about how its going to effect you. I just hope they work ok . Ali is good though her knowledge of drugs is really helpful. thanks polly i'm hoping i will get rid of the pain this morning it was like i had two drills going through my knees and my elbows, but the rest of my joints have been moderate, its when the steroid wears off i am crippled with pain. At present it has subsiided would this be the drug working already i wonder? hugs lena :)xx

  • Wow your bloods were as high as mine. yes i agree same here about long waits and gaps in treatment Ali, i have had three steroid injections but he ruled them out and said that the pain would not cause high blood pressure but i have to go back for bp in 4 weeks 10th may, to see if its come down . Thank you Ali i will monitor it if these are not compatible and i'm hoping they will be ok, what other pain relief is there i could ask for that wont knock me off my feet?

  • ..my registrar said he wash very certain it was my pain and in my case lots of courses of oral steroid tablets which had pushed up BP,.. injections work in slightly different way and now I HAVE had one would chose them over oral tablets xx

  • I mean was!! certain... time for my nap xx

  • with bp the lower reading ie th3 80.,90, 100 is more significant.. so called resting BP.. .target should be 130 or 140 max over 80.

  • Hi Lena, I have taken Fentanyl for three years due to nausea with other painkillers. I started on 12 mcg/hr then after about a year upped to 25 and this week had to up it again to 50 as my pain is awful, as I am awaiting starting a bilogic as the steroid injection I had two months ago has not lasted enough until I can get a biologic start date from the hospital.

    Fentanyl is known for causing constipation so I have two to three semi soft figs each day and ensure lots of fruit and veggies.

    As for my Fentanyl Side effects ... Well it does make me sleepy since going up from a lower dose and the past three days going up to 50 I do feel a little spaced out, but my GP said it would make him feel soaked but I need to take something to stop me going mad with my pain. I still hurt very much when I move ... I have got major problems with inflammation and swelling round the knees so that is Diclofenac nor doing as much as I would like it to and RA out of control, but I found and find that Fentanyl deals with the soft tissue pains which can be quite acute and nasty when I am flaring. Dampens down the flare. I hope it helps you very much too.

    As said above, don't use a heat pad or hot water bottle near the area you have your patch on. It delivers the drug through faster I was told. Makes sense. I was also told to remember not to scratch it or wear it where a sleeve etc could rub/press/irritate it. You need to alternative the upper arm you use each time you change and ensure the skin is freshly washed and dried. I do a plain warm water wash to the arm always before applying a new patch as if you have dry skin on the arm which may shed, it is not going to adhere properly to your skin. (Surprising how my skin gets dry in a few hours!) The patches stay in tact perfectly through showers and swimming.

    Good luck ;-)

    Julie xx

  • hi julie, Thank you for your post. well i put my patch on frday at 10.50am was fine all day then at 10pm i had a wave of nausea come over me and i couldnt stop vomiting, sweating, and my head was spinning like i had just come off the waltzers at a fair ground , i was shaking from head to foot and i couldnt walk properly i was swaying all over the place trying to get to the bedroom to lye down, my husband took the patch off , it was really frightening how fast it came on.it has took me till today to get back to normality. I couldnt focus saturday and it zapped all my energy although it had stopped all my pain.Did you experience this at all?? it says on the leaflet these are side effects and to seek medical advice, so will have to see my doctor Monday.

    Hugs Lena :)

  • Hi i just came on line to see if there was anything on here re these patches and see these posts... Hope you dont mind me jumping in... i have arthiritus of the spine/hip and the pain in the lower half of my back is horrendous,, I cant take anything with codeine in so co-codamol and co-dydramol are both out... have tried tramadol as they used to give me them in hospital and again they make me sick, so gp suggested i try the patches.... gave me the 25mg ones and they just make me feel sick and i do vomit with them... i cant drink tea or coffee and it seems when i am getting near to a meal time i start feeling sick again... also feel light headed at times and hot sweats... i also have to be careful he said as i have suffered with chest problems and they say i am asthmatic although i have a pump i never really needed it as dont have many probs only in the winter if i get a cold it always goes to my chest but have found on the patches i am getting short of breath... i have just removed the patch after the 3 days and have decided not to put another one on... as i have to look after grandchildren and do school runs and cant deal with this sickness..... i have to go back to the gp monday so will speak to him then but just feeling very depressed at the moment as he told me there was nothing else they could offer me as i cant take codeine... the pain is so severe at times especially in the mornings and i cant even get out of bed i have to sort of roll off and it takes ages for me to be able to manage to walk normally... i dont know if this seems to make sense to anyone else but i just hope someone understands and knows how i am feeling... I am 60 used to be very active and this is driving me insane... i was in hospital for nearly 7 months in 2008 due to a botched op for something else and spent alot of time in bed 6 weeks in icu and not allowed up and dont know really if this made my back worse... Anyone else have any ideas or suggestions because anything would be welcome with the way i am feeling right now... thank you all xx

  • Hi Lena - I am sorry you have had such a severe reaction. How awful. So many crazy things all at once :-(

    My reactions were minimal on 12 mcg when I started three years ago. Just tiredness and sight constipation. When I went up to 25mcg I felt more tired and slightly more constipated and same goes for recent increase to 50 but this week since the increase to 50, I do feel a little nauseous. I certainly haven't had anything like the reactions you have and and so sorry to hear that when then relieved your pain.

  • Oops ...zapped off before I finished. So I hope you can get some alternative pain relief as you can't have those kind of reactions. Nothing you have described is tolerable. :-(. Let js know how you go on and good luck

    Love Julie x

  • I have taken fentanyl for nearly four years had to lessen my dose to 12 as I was spaced and couldn't get thru the day. Pain still here but nothing like it was. Does anyone find that the day its changed they are like a live wire then the day it needs changing your energy gone xx

  • Sorry my name Lainey the letter above xx

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