Pain Concern
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Chroinc pain

Hi first post so be gentle with me :)

Had lower back pain started last year sciatia in left leg and lower pain now I'm getting sciatia in both legs I'm taking tramadol 6x aday 50 mg plus amitriptyline 30 mg the trouble is the tramadol is not working I've seen a specialist last week I going to have. MRI scan and help with what else would help with the pain.?


19 Replies

Hi Theorb, welcome to the forum :)

I suffer with pain in my legs and nothing seemed to help that, but the migraines I have was helped a bit with gabapentin, not sure if you could suggest that to give that a try, other than that i've tried the amitriptyline and have tried co-codamol which helps my back, but I don't suffer a huge amount with my back.

Sorry I can't be of any more help. I took a gabapentin and a paracetomal tablet together once and it almost wiped the migraine away for the first time in over 3 years I was almost migraine free but I wouldn't do that again because it sent me a bit loopy.

I think it's just trying different painkillers and hopefully one will work for you. :)

I hope something helps you sooner rather than later.


Yes I've heard of gabapentin I'm going back to the gp soon so I will ask he was waiting till the specialist saw me the amptriptyline woks wonders for me I'm getting a good night sleep it's just the effects in the morning that I feel

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The amptriptyline did nothing for my migraines but what works for one person may not help for others, I've tried 6 different pain meds for my migraines and apart from the once when I had 2 pain meds at once when I wasn't supposed to, nothing has helped me but I've spoke to people who have took paracetomal and it's got rid of their migraine, I know it's not the same as what you suffer from but it's the only thing that popped in to my head.

When I was on gabapentin I never slept good always took ages to get to sleep or i couldn't stay asleep but I was like since being about 7 but since stopping the gabapentin I've been getting to sleep a lot quicker and staying asleep for a lot longer than I was before, last 5 nights I've slept for at least 6 hours straight with no interruptions. That's nothing to do with pain management but I only say it to warn you that if you do get put on it you may have problems with sleeping but with anything it affects people in different ways, I didn't have bad side-effects but I did hallucinate a lot of animals in weird places, mainly the gym or in my house.

Sorry started rambling there, I do that sometimes and don't realise.

Hope you find something that helps you helps you soon :)


I started with codine which gave me awful side effects like hearing and seeing things plus bad dreams and sweating then co codamol gave me bad constipation for days yes what drugs work some don't we are all different


I've tried co-codamol that made my migraines ten times worse, and extremely dizzy the room just wouldn't stop spinning for hours after I took even 1 tablet I'd end up with bad side effects, I started on otc painkillers to help my head and legs, but they didn't help so went doctors and got co-codamol then the ami painkillers and then gabapentin, which helped me somewhat for the migraines.

I have recently found out that the pain in my legs stem from how young I was walking and how the bones in my legs grew, so when I see the orthopedic doctor I have something to go on. I hope the mri scan shows something that can be dealt with and can be sorted quickly, (hope that last bit made sense)

Fingers crossed you get prescribed something that will help you. :)


We are always nice and gentle on this forum! Welcome.

Pain is different for everyone and your tolerance of one drug is a non starter for someone else. Pain relief is just that. It is unlikely anyone will get compleyely pain free but with management of your condition together with assorted drugs and possibly other therapies - you will get a good degree of relief.

I presume your GP put you on hese meds? it is always worth going back to him and asking for a review as tour condition has worsened. As a huge advocate of the pain clinic they will be able to asses you and prescribe according.

Slow release patches are a god way of geting even relief. Again worth discussing.

Hope this helps.

Pat x

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Hi pat

Thank you for your response the Gp has not mentioned pain management had physio and hydro which only mad matters worse I did say about patches the fact it's the discs should make things better the focus can be on them and the sciatia


Glad you are having an MRI and seeing a specialist. Is it a rheumatologist? Sciatic type pain in both legs isn't usually true sciatica (which by definition can only happen on one side at a time), but can be caused by other things, including inflammatory back pain (spondyloarthritis), which would show some signs on an MRI. Do you get any relief from NSAIDs (like ibuprofen or naproxen)? If you do, then thats another sign that might point to inflammatory back pain. Even though most people think of ibuprofen as being a mild pain killer, it is an extremely effective antiinflammatory, so would give much more relief on inflammatory back pain than even much stronger painkillers like tramadol. If you want to try NSAIDs, then ask your GP to prescribe them, as the prescribable doses are much higher than the over the counter doses. You also need to take them regularly if you take them for inflammation, rather than taking them "just as needed for pain".

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Thank you for the information I will mention that when I see the GP next time I forgot to say I take meloxicam since last year


I had sciatica in both legs due to a central prolapse of two discs.

I also had foot drop and trouble emptying bladder and bowel.

I needed surgery twice in the space of a year to release the pressure on the nerves.

I used tens and acupuncture and pain meds, still do over twenty years later!

Good luck


Thanks the specialist did ask about bladder and bowel


I have found that narcotic pain killers don't really help with my sciatic pain, and my doctor also mentioned that as well. I have found Gabapentin helps better with nerve pain, as others have mentioned. But I do take pain meds for my discs (L4/L5/L5/S1), I'm not sure what the equivalent to hydrocodone is in England? (If that's where u are) But again, Gabapentin has been great for me.. Hope everything works out for you! :)


Think my pain is in the same area as your is I do remember the physio talking about that region of my back the last time I saw her as I said tramadol is doing nothing for me I will ask for something to help


Hi Theorb, I have suffered nerve damage to the sciatic nerve after an accident 8 years ago, I have been on more drugs than I can remember, currently I am on 30 pills a day and I am still in pain. One of the things I noticed is that if I attempt normal things I.E. try to iron without success, go up the shops etc I am left with severe pain. So what helps , ne thing is to try to not overdo things by Pacing yourself count the steps and control your breathing. I cannot emphasise how important these 2 things are ! ! !. I personally still suffer more than I could ever say but it helps to take the edge of it. And I know people that by doing these 2 items they can control there pain, please give it a try it costs nothing and you have nothing to lose.


30 pills a day gosh that's a lot to take I don't bother with ironing hurts to much to stand in one place it's the hovering I found the hardest wig a upright hover it's hard work I end up on my knees doing it as bending over is hell .

Walking is still hard kerbs I still find it difficult to step up only go as far as the local shop which I'm lucky it near my house the stairs are the challenge to beat


Hi Theorb,

Re hoovering, having had severe back pain for some time, my husband bought me a Dyson DC59, the very light weight one, which recharges by hanging on the wall. It is brilliant, we have a dog and cat, live on an unmade road - VERY dusty, my husband had all the doors and windows open during the lovely warm weather we had this summer, dust everywhere, but the Dyson is so easy to use, needs emptying frequently as it is a small container but certainly takes away the strain on the back. Thankfully we are now in a bungalow so don't often have to cope with stairs.

Do you do exercises for your legs? I do them on my bed every morning before I get up for 10 minutes and this does help to get me moving.

Best wishes,




Yes I use the dyson having a sheepdog too leaves his hair all over the house :) I still do the exercises the physio gave me last year


hello theorb reading your post you sound like what I am going thru ihave had this pain for about 10 years did have surgery for sciatica but now my pain is back after 3-4 years and started on left side again and now going too otherside. I am on tramadol 3 50mg a day and amitriplyin I have been reading about tramadol and read it is addicting and am very concerned about how much does a person have too take too get hooked on this drug. and you were saying you will be going for an MRI would you please get back too me when you find out your results. I am hoping too get in for another MRI but could take up too a year before getting in. thanks al



I've had back pain since my early 20's I'm 43 now it's been on and off but the last year has been the most painful I've ever had not had any surgery at all only physio which did nothing at all.

The tramadol 6x5mg per day is not touching the pain amitriptyline I take before bedtime 3x10mg helps me to sleep but soon as the morning the pain is back its taking me a year of asking gps for a MRI scan the sciatia is in both legs now

The date for the scan is the 20 th nov I will update the outcome

Push your Gp into another scan

I was told to ask for better painkillers and I will


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