1. Win a Broadcaster or one of 3 Teles! The annual Supporting Member Giveaway is on. To enter Click Here. To see all the prizes and full details Click Here. To view the thread about the giveaway Click Here.

Tom Petty ... Another Victim

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by FenderGyrl, Jan 19, 2018.

  1. MDent77

    MDent77 Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,271
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2016
    Location:
    New England
    It's quite likely addiction was embedded very early in his life. It's not as if anyone {outside of Tom} could have said anything that would have made any difference. People may have earnestly tried. Tom, and many who have struggled with such issues have to come to a self-realization and seek out help.
     
  2. Nickadermis

    Nickadermis Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    55
    Posts:
    3,094
    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2016
    Location:
    Camden Point, MO
    Only two things come to my mind after reading all of this.

    Ive never met anyone who never made any mistakes.

    Toms music made me happy for a very very long time.
     
    bigbean, Omiewise65, Jakeboy and 7 others like this.
  3. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    48,903
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    Location:
    Bakersfield
    Maybe he shoulda backed down. Man, I liked that guy, and wish that he could have gone out on a better note. You know, when you go that way, the family, kids, the wife (wives) friends ect. they all have to put that little asterisk after you name when it comes up. You know Tommy was a really good guy, shame he had to go and O.D.
     
    Tele1966 likes this.
  4. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Age:
    64
    Posts:
    17,836
    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2010
    Location:
    Western Connecticut
    We all hear about the drug problem, but rarely do we concern ourselves with the pain management side of the coin.

    I have a rare disease. One of many symptoms is PAIN. I don't know how to describe the pain in a way that someone else can understand, who's never suffered similarly. Before I got sick, I'd never had any pain like this. Post-surgical came close, but wasn't as bad, and only lasted a few days or weeks. I've had this pain around the clock, never letting up, for a whole decade, and it'll likely stay with me the rest of my life.

    I have taken short-acting opiates for this pain, for ten years. Every four hours, rain or shine, day or night, without fail, I take a little pill. I estimate that this knocks back about 80% of the pain. The remaining 20% is bad enough that in the good old days, I'd have gone to the ER immediately. Now I'm more or less used to it.

    If I were to stop suddenly, within 16 hours (I think), I'd go into severe withdrawal. I don't know for sure, because in ten years, I've never missed a single dose. If I'm even 15 minutes late, the pain comes roaring back like a frieght train. Pain quickly rises to anxiety, and to panic. I'm not the anxious type, but I've seen how bad it can get, and never want to again.


    - I have a physical dependence.
    - I will get quite angry if you attempt to stand between me and my prescription.


    By many people's definition, I'm an addict. But that's simply not the case.

    What's lacking is any objective measure of what is at root an emotional issue. I know I don't have a psychogical dependence, but I doubt I can prove it, except through consistent behavior, over long periods of time.

    I've seen countless doctors, PAs, NPs, and RNs over the years. Almost without exception, every one who didn't yet know me treated me like an addict. It's either too likely, too dangerous, or (cynically) too much liability, to assume otherwise.

    On the other hand, every doctor, PA, NP, and RN who has come to know me, no longer considers it a possibility that I have a drug problem.

    Couple this with the fact that my disease is exceedingly rare, and not well understood. "You don't work, even though you look fine to me, and now you're on drugs".


    I am thoroughly disgusted by most of the assumptions posted in this thread. I wish addicts would stop misusing the lifeblood medication that I rely on, but I know that as a group, they won't. That leaves the moral outrage do-gooders who barge in and do more harm than good, trying to disallow pain doctors from prescribing any opiates, ever. Not too long ago a law was narrowly beaten in Connecticut that would have forced patients like me to go in for a physical in-person doctor visit every three days, and get a new three-day prescription each time. Of course each visit, and each prescription, has it's copay, not to mention how the heck you'd be able to maintain a schedule like this for life.

    In this case, it got very close to passing, all because an advocate mother lost her son to a drug overdose. While that's a shame, this isn't the solution. And there's no way it's reasonable for someone with such a lack of objectivity should be able to influence policy. But emotions take hold, moral outrage, Facebook lobbying. And anyone who disagrees must like dead kids, or some equally fallacious logic.

    Heroin is more dangerous than alcohol, because the progression is compressed from years to weeks, and there are no do-overs. Fentanyl is more dangerous than heroin, because the dose is so tiny and difficult to measure safely. Minor mistakes can kill. All this is true, but none of it means that abusing and ignoring chronically ill patients is OK.
     
  5. Tele1966

    Tele1966 Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    2,155
    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2014
    Location:
    US
    You are alive. You manage the drugs.

    You are not an addict.

    You are different from a person that died from a self-inflicted overdose.
     
  6. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Age:
    64
    Posts:
    17,836
    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2010
    Location:
    Western Connecticut
    Right, not an addict. Alive, yes, but barely. And not self-inflicted.

    Best practice for chronic pain mgt is to use long-acting meds (anywhere from 8-24 hours) in conjunction with short-acting for "breakthrough" pain. When I began, it was all short-acting stuff, which lasts me (and most, I think) 4 hours. So, at some point, my doctor wanted to titrate me over to long-acting. I wasn't eager, as I was stable, and whenever titrating to a different drug, different dose, you don't want to err on the side of killing the person, so you start way too low, which HURTS. This instability and extra pain over the norm goes on for weeks or months as the doc tries to dial in the dose.

    (Giving Tom, or anyone, a little benefit here, you can begin to see some possible wrinkles in the simple story, no?)


    I guess it's much easier to abuse, or to sell the short-acting stuff, which is partly / mostly why the docs want patients off it. Liability. Which again, I wasn't eager to suffer for that, but hey, I'll do my best to be a good patient. I'm certainly a captive audience.

    The long-actings break down into two groups: patch or enteric coated pill. Patch contains a VERY potent opiate like fentanyl or buprenorphine, so tiny amounts absorbed throught the skin can do the job. I hated that idea, because of the lack of control. They warn you, don't get it overly warm in the shower, for instance, or you could increase the flow and overdose. It turned out not to be an option, because I was allergic to the patch. What fun.

    So, on to the enteric pills. The idea is simple. Swallow a killing dose, and hope your stomach acid doesn't chew through the coating too quickly. Even more fun.

    We tried several enterics. The first two were supposed to be given every eight hours, and every 12. In each case, I was in a lot of pain after about 5 hours. The doc couldn't believe it.

    So, instead of pausing to *think* that I might be telling the truth, he moved up to the 24 hour hydromorphone dose.


    The signature bit of my disease is systemwide neuropathy, which among other things affects my digestive system. See where I'm going?

    Apparently my gut was chewing right through these things, giving me a large short-acting dose and then ... nothing.

    That was not good, but not likely to be fatal, in the 8 and 12 hour doses. But a full day's worth of hydromorphone in one dose? Good lord.

    I titrated over from the previous short-acting dose following instructions to the letter. That in itself is a challenge (think Tom here).

    Within 1.5 hours of taking the pill, I'm in my recliner, and I'm calmly observing myself not breathing. Don't feel like it. Lungs are flat. Jeez, not good. Maybe I should get up. Uh oh, no legs. Nothing, zip. No motion down there. Still not really breathing. Time to call 911, even though I know that'll fire off a huge friggin can of worms, including headlines of overdose and immediate Narcan-induced withdrawal for me. Better than dead.

    Yeah, good intentions. Next thing I knew, it was SIX HOURS later. I was never so glad to be alive. And I'm still on the short-acting stuff, even though it's a pain in the butt to wake in the middle of the night to take a pill.

    Every once in a while I imagine what wrong and bad things would have been said about me had I died that day. And how it would have crushed my son, knowing me, knowing better, but just never knowing for sure.


    Still disgusted.
     
  7. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

    Age:
    61
    Posts:
    26,298
    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2010
    Location:
    Maine
    Jeez @moosie , what a PITA!
    I agree that drugs don't cause addiction.
    Normal folks on post surgery or injury opiates have been asked after they run out, but don't you want more?
    They answer: "I'm not in pain any more".
    Again with emphasis: but don't you want more?".
    "Why would I want more? I'm not in pain?"

    I'd say there are also folks who have to have a little sumthin' all the time but nuthin' too strong that might find themselves in trouble if they took strong opiates for a few weeks, but there was already an issue, the drugs didn't cause it.

    There are also quite a few who drink too much and get on pain meds and then just go back to drinking too much, with no interest in the opiates.
    I sponsored a guy years ago who was an opiate addict, but relapsed on alcohol and ended up right back under the bridge. He believed he had changed from an addict into an alcoholic. I told him it was the same disease, which is what I was taught by those who walked before me.

    Yeah; really the amount of assuming that takes place when addiction comes up, I guess based on individuals that maybe partied in college but quit when they got jobs so they assume that's all there is to it...
    All the assumptions get mixed in with health care professionals and law enforcement professionals and politicians and lobbyists; producing a pot of putrid poultice that just burns the wounds deeper.

    I think it's good to have these dialogs from time to time, given the danger, especially it seems for musicians.
    That is scary though about the enteric coated slow release possibly killing you!
    I guess I'm only up on the dumb uses, not so well informed on the smarter uses.
    Ha ha I just heard on the news all the Advil I take might be messing with my testosterone!
    Maybe I'll double up on the Tylenol, but my doc wants me to take both so I don't overtax liver or kidneys.
    Hell before the 20th Century I'd be dead by now.
     
    Nickadermis, moosie and Tele1966 like this.
  8. fortj3

    fortj3 Tele-Meister

    Age:
    50
    Posts:
    285
    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2017
    Location:
    Georgia
    It's a shame. I was prescribed Hydrocodone after my elbow surgeries.
    I can see how easy it is to get addicted to them.
     
    Omiewise65 and william tele like this.
  9. william tele

    william tele Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    19,214
    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2009
    Location:
    Kansas City, MO
    As much as I'm the first to put my hand out when I've had some surgery or pinched nerve I really can't stand the way they make me feel. Between the whacked out (not in a good way) head buzz and the inability to motivate the bowels...I can't get away from Vicodin fast enough. Thank gawd for that...
     
    Toto'sDad and moosie like this.
  10. JayFreddy

    JayFreddy Poster Extraordinaire

    Age:
    55
    Posts:
    8,808
    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    Location:
    Dallas TX USA
    Fentanyl should be outlawed. Either that or legalize heroin. Or both.
     
  11. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Age:
    64
    Posts:
    17,836
    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2010
    Location:
    Western Connecticut
    So no more pain patches then. For people who can't swallow. And for pets recovering from surgery in the home.

    It's also fast acting, so it wears off more quickly, good for outpatient procedures, and generally quicker recovery times.

    There are always side effects to a decision like that.
     
    telemnemonics likes this.
  12. burntfrijoles

    burntfrijoles Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    8,132
    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Location:
    Somewhere Over The Rainbow
    I don't think anyone is really saying that addiction isn't complex, heartbreaking, devastating to the person and their family and destructive. It's a chronic illness just as depression, hypertension, diabetes, etc are. It is difficult to treat. It can be terminal.
    Still, people have the chance to fight it just as someone who has other chronic diseases has to fight. Sometimes the fight is lost.

    My sister committed suicide after years of therapy and treatment. My brother asked "why couldn't she fight it?" and my response was that she fought like hell to stay alive for over 25 years. When she reached her lifetime limit for mental health benefits, she could no longer afford to see her psychiatrist and therapist. There is little public funding for higher functioning patients like her. Mental health is totally underfunded in our country. Maybe with more counseling and treatment she could have live longer. But she fought.

    I am sure Tom fought his battle for a long time. Tom had the resources to fight his addiction. He might have still not been able to overcome it. We don't know all the factors that lead to his tragic end.
     
  13. otterhound

    otterhound Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    9,013
    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2008
    Location:
    Manheim Pa.
    They were able , they chose not to or tried and walked away .
     
  14. Mid Life Crisis

    Mid Life Crisis Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    5,141
    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2007
    Location:
    Cambridge, England
    I'm quite disappointed at some of the posts seeking to blame Tom Petty for his death and criticising him for not sorting himself out. I loved his music but didnt know enough about him to know of his drug problems. I just admired his catalogue of great music and the fact he seemed a decent human being.

    All I can say is that nobody here - absolutely nobody - can know about whatever pain he was going through in his final years. Walk a mile in someone's shoes before you judge them. It doesn't matter if you're a millionaire rock star, a member of the royal family or a homeless smack addict. Pain is the great leveller.
     
    moosie, telemnemonics and JayFreddy like this.
  15. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    48,903
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    Location:
    Bakersfield
    I've probably mentioned this before, but before I had hip surgery, they put me on Vicodin for the pain. I took 'em for quite a while, after a bit, I think they exacerbated the pain, instead of helping it. The natural thing to do if you're still hurting is take more right? Okay, then I had hip surgery, and they gave a bigger prescription for Vicodin! When my son was nearing the end, I thought to myself I wont' be able to handle what's coming if I stay on Vicodin. So, I quit cold turkey after taking them for at least a couple of years, and lots of 'em.

    I don't know, I guess the same mechanism that kicked in when I quit booze must have been actuated because to tell you the truth, it wasn't even that hard to stop. I quit maybe a month or two before my son's passing, and I've never taken another, and it's been over four years. I don't even take aspirin now.

    You are quite correct about the bowels. When I quit taking Vicodin, a few days into my abstaining from them, something was actuated deep in my ether regions and the aftermath was recorded as a 6.7 on the Richter Scale some 70 miles away at the earthquake monitoring and observation station at Parkfield Ca. Some consternation was observed among the staff, at how the Richter Scale continued to record the readings for three days, but no one was reporting any damage. Of course, the local Sanitation district were completely baffled at the overloaded sewage lagoons. Channel 29's investigative reporters were never able to come to any satisfactory conclusions on either problem.
     
  16. rand z

    rand z Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    3,666
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Location:
    trumansburg, ny
    Thank you Tom! Great energy... great voice/style, and really great song's!!

    BTW, Clapton is apparently in a lot of pain these day's with a neurological condition. He say's he doesn't want to take any pain killer's due to his past addictive behavior (heroin/alcohol).

    It's tough out there...
     
    viccortes285 and telemnemonics like this.
  17. JazzboxBlues

    JazzboxBlues Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,252
    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2014
    Location:
    Crook County IL
    I like Tom Petty and think he was an incredible talent. Not many artists are making relevant music over their entire career. He lived the Rock and Roll lifestyle. He was a man of means. It got him.

    He was a full grown man and only he in the end was capable of changing his ways. Anyone who uses hard drugs figures out they can’t be good for you. Either you quit them or they eventually quit you. There’s success stories and failures in quitting. It’s easier said than done. I wish Tom’s story had a different ending. Despite his demise he had an incredibly successful life and left an undeniable legacy.
     
  18. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

    Age:
    61
    Posts:
    26,298
    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2010
    Location:
    Maine
    Great post, and I'm very sorry about your sister.
    Suicide might be even more misunderstood than addiction.
    I've gone through the process of getting people into psych treatment and it's often a very difficult process which requires you say all the right things and none of the wrong things.
    I wasn't aware of a lifetime cap on mental health benefits, that's a tragic American health care factoid.
    In my 20 years experience with addiction recovery I've found that a huge majority of addicts have significant mental health problems not specifically related to substance abuse. And even in the relatively non judgemental environment of 12 Step recovery, many are afraid to admit or seek help with the "outside issue" of "mental illness".
    It can be a slippery slope getting off "recreational" drugs and getting on what are often experimental psych drugs; experimental because nobody knows what a psych drug will do until the patient takes it for a month or two.
    Never mind the rampant misdiagnosis in the field.
    Borderline Personality Disorder is one of the newer diagnoses which is part of the PTSD umbrella. Many in recovery suffer with it and end up treated for symptoms of other illnesses.
    Childhood abuse is the major cause, and we are freshly aware of the scope of that little secret.

    I would go so far as to say there's a good chance that many addicts got hooked on recreational drugs in the process of trying to medicate away some unbearable or unmanageable mental health problem(s).

    ...I think a lot of people really do believe addiction is not a disease, and really do blame addicts for their inability to stop using, even after they can no longer get high and instead only get consequences for their using.
    The past few years have brought us enough mental health and addiction related deaths in our little musician community to bring the gamut of beliefs into sharp focus on these pages.

    To my thinking this is a good thing, because a society that cannot understand a disease, cannot manage that disease.
    And the only path to understanding is public forum.
    We can't rely on private for profit agencies, because they focus on making money, or on lobbyists who also leverage "fact" with money.
    We can't rely on grieving families because they mostly see the pain and seldom do research beyond their small test group.
    We can't rely on the drinkers who just stop and then trumpet their proof that addiction is a fallacy.
    Yet all these views serve to clarify what we are up against, and to my eye we here have actually listened to and learned from each other a little bit on the subject over the past few years.

    I cannot condemn those who don't understand addiction being a disease.
    All of Western Medicine has pretty much failed to understand addiction, even having found it to be a disease.
     
    moosie and Frodebro like this.
  19. viccortes285

    viccortes285 Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    72
    Posts:
    1,024
    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2017
    Location:
    Phoenix
    Addiction is a illness, no one ever wants to become dependent on drugs. Yet i been shot, stabbed and needed throwing up let's theCorpsman had till I got Medivaced to the hospital in DaNang. I was lucky and weened off them as I got better.
     
    telemnemonics likes this.
  20. jimash

    jimash Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    2,673
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2013
    Location:
    NJ
    It's sad to me, that he didn't just take off and get his get hip fixed.
     
    viccortes285 and telemnemonics like this.
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.