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Glee
12-21-2004, 21:21
http://health.discovery.com/news/healthscout/article.jsp?aid=523017

I know that this has been in the news some before but again today they are making a big deal on it... I lived on this stuff for 5 months this year on the AT and plan on going back this Feb and wonder how my knees will hold up without it. I would take 2 every morning and then 2 at night when I got into camp. It would help keep the swelling down in my knees... If I was in a lot of pain I would take more. However, now they are saying not to take it for any period of more then 10 days... Also, from a few of the news reports that I've seen, it appears that Advil is in the same group of pain relievers

Moose2001
12-21-2004, 21:40
I hear you and my frustration is mounting over this. I used VIOXX for almost my entire 2003 hike. I started getting ready for 2005 and went back to the doc and got my VIOXX script refilled. The day I got the prescription filled is the day they took VIOXX off the market. My doctor switched me to Celebrex. Now they are saying it might have the same problem. My doctor said no problem. Switch to Aleve!!! OK...now what!!! I've tried hiking and just using Advil but it doesn't control the swelling in my knees enough. I'm thinking that unless the pull Celebrex from the market, I'm using it. I'm on the lowest dose possible. It REALLY sucks getting old!!! :)

FatMan
12-21-2004, 22:19
Taking Aleve can give you a heart attack.

Hiking up mountains can give you a heart attack.


Ain't gonna stop me from doing either one.:D

Jack Tarlin
12-21-2004, 22:44
To date, their doesn't seem to be a problem with the most commonly used hiker painkiller, Ibuprofen.

But if your stomach will permit it, one might be better off with plain old aspirin.

Tractor
12-21-2004, 22:56
...what if, say, we were hiking along and the knees/back/whatever starting hurting like hell and we had the vioxx/celebrex/aleve/advil handy and.....didn't take any? What would we do then? Might we, oh, slow down or put on a knee brace or make camp a bit sooner that day perhaps?? ...and the doc says "if it hurts when you do it that way, quit doing it that way". I dunno. I few hikes ago I think I about killed myself taking way too many advil for knee pain. Seems I caused way more knee problems taking the stuff since i was masking the pain and causing more damage along the way. I'm learning.

TDale
12-21-2004, 23:07
"Seems I caused way more knee problems taking the stuff since i was masking the pain and causing more damage along the way."

Tractor, that's just plain smart.

Pain is a signal that damage is being done to your body.

Lone Wolf
12-21-2004, 23:17
Pain is weakness leaving the body. Suck it up and hike without pills.

weary
12-22-2004, 00:29
I'm mostly with Lone Wolf. I rarely take medicines -- especially after amiodarone, given to regulate my heart rhythym after I had a leaky valve replaced with a bit of pork skin, poisoned my lungs. I learned too late that this was a common side effect, though the heart specialist failed to recognize the symptoms. I had been walking five miles a day and suddenly couldn't get 150 feet to the head of my driveway to pick up the mail. The doctor said, "just keep walking and you'll be okay." Eventually a physician's assistant recognized the problem after my wife while we were on vacation took me to a small town hospital emergency room. I didn't sue. But I have a new respect for those "shyster" lawyers these days.

The lungs healed, though the scar tissue remains, which isn't great for climbing mountains. My family doctor recommended Aleve years ago for arthritis. Later he gave me a batch of sample Viox and a prescription. I had used a bottle or two of aleve, and two sample Viox pills before Viox was pulled from the market.

I worry mostly about my knees. They don't especially hurt but the noise they make everytime I move worries me. I do get a painful ankle from time to time, most recently this morning. In desperation I took eight of my baby aspirin before I went out this afternoon to take my annual solstice photos for a card I send every year to the directors of my town land trust.

Tell that 52-year-old kid who complained about getting old that he has a long way to go.

Weary

JillJones
12-22-2004, 00:38
"Seems I caused way more knee problems taking the stuff since i was masking the pain and causing more damage along the way."

(Tractor, that's just plain smart. Pain is a signal that damage is being done to your body.)

I agree we should listen to what our bodies are telling us. However, there are many people who suffer from a number of illnesses, or past injuries that have nothing to do with how many miles they walk a day. They could be sitting in front of a TV 24/7 and be in as much pain as if they were knocking out 20 milers. However, itís these meds, which enable them to be able to try and do the AT. There are many ways to try to deal with pain... These meds are one of them...

screwysquirrel
12-22-2004, 01:16
I worry mostly about my knees. They don't especially hurt but the noise they make everytime I move worries me. I do get a painful ankle from time to time, most recently this morning.
Weary
Darn you're 72 years old, many people that old would be lucky just to complain about their knees and ankles. :banana

Blue Jay
12-22-2004, 09:14
...what if, say, we were hiking along and the knees/back/whatever starting hurting like hell and we had the vioxx/celebrex/aleve/advil handy and.....didn't take any? What would we do then? Might we, oh, slow down or put on a knee brace or make camp a bit sooner that day perhaps?? ...and the doc says "if it hurts when you do it that way, quit doing it that way". I dunno. I few hikes ago I think I about killed myself taking way too many advil for knee pain. Seems I caused way more knee problems taking the stuff since i was masking the pain and causing more damage along the way. I'm learning.

BINGO
Slow down, do less miles, lower weight, nah take a pill. Drug companies don't lie. They're here to help us.

gravityman
12-22-2004, 11:35
To date, their doesn't seem to be a problem with the most commonly used hiker painkiller, Ibuprofen.

But if your stomach will permit it, one might be better off with plain old aspirin.

aspirin helps the pain, but I don't believe it helps with the swelling. Ibuprofen does.

Gravity

Critterman
12-22-2004, 12:47
To date, their doesn't seem to be a problem with the most commonly used hiker painkiller, Ibuprofen.

But if your stomach will permit it, one might be better off with plain old aspirin.

Ibuprofen and aleve really upset my stomach but I have found that ketoprofen ( Orudis ) doesn't. It is hard to find in some stores but Walmart in my area always has it.

weary
12-22-2004, 13:04
aspirin helps the pain, but I don't believe it helps with the swelling. Ibuprofen does. Gravity

I think aspirin in fact reduces inflamation. It's Tylenol that is strictly an analgesic. However, no one should take my word for this. These comments are based on vague memories.

Weary

whitedove
12-22-2004, 14:41
You are right Weary,

Aspirin relieves pain, fever, the redness and swelling that can accompany injuries, and even in contracting certain muscles. It is very hard on the stomach if taken extensively. Coated tablets are best because they bypass the stomach before dissolving. This is the best choice as far as pain/inflammation reduction but many can not tolerate the therapy.

Acetaminophen (Tylenol) is used to relieve mild to moderate pain and to reduce fever. It does not relieve the stiffness, redness, and swelling of arthritis. It is very hard on the liver if taken extensively.

Naproxen (Aleve) is used to relieve the pain, tenderness, inflammation and stiffness caused by gout, arthritis, and other inflammatory conditions. Any nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug can cause side effects, especially when it is used for a long time or in large doses.


Adults should not take any medication for pain for more than 10 days without talking to a doctor. Any more than 10 days means your body is telling you something. Hello!


Following directions that are printed on the bottle or given by a doctor is important. Every drug has side effects, it is usually a toss up between what is worse..... the condition being treated or the potential side effect.

Glee if you had to take so many and for so long to relieve your pain, I think it would be in your best interests to consult your doctor, also there are many non-medical interventions that you can try. Not doing this may cause you not to be able to hike at all ever again.

neo
12-22-2004, 14:57
the only pain med that works for me is good ole vitamin I:sun NEO

Puck
12-22-2004, 16:16
Every drug has side effects, it is usually a toss up between what is worse..... the condition being treated or the potential side effect.

Every drug has effects those we want and those we don't want. The important point of pharmacology is; drugs produce a toxic effect. They change our biology and our biochemistry.

There are alternatives....accupuncture, homoepathy etc. They may or not be functional on the trail for long hikes.

Toolshed
12-22-2004, 16:46
[QUOTE=Puck]Every drug has effects those we want and those we don't want. The important point of pharmacology is; drugs produce a toxic effect. They change our biology and our biochemistry.
QUOTE]

No, I think the important point of Pharmacology is that Drugs Save Lives. The utilization of drugs within a course of therapy also has an extremely high propensity to keep folks out of hospitals and allow them to live on their own longer in their own familiar homes rather than in long term care facilities.

I beleive that we, as consumers, must make smarter choices (right on Whitedove and BlueJay) and expect that as we age we should adjust the physical demands we put on our bodies (catastrophic and chronic disease states aside) and try to hinder our dependency on lifestyle drugs.

I work in Big Pharma and enjoy the fact that we help people. We have a responsibility to our investors to return profits as well as to the public to try to save lives and help folks live better and more meaningful lives. That doesn't mean our end goal is to find a cure for the 50 year old guy who wants to do 25 miles a day and have no lingerng effects, however, if one of the outcomes of a drug discovery is just that, and it contributes to our return to our investors, then all the better.

It will always come down to the consumer to live their life in moderation and employ common sense when trying to balance their desires with their physical abilities.

Finally, I don't just speak from industry experience but from a patient perspective. I have had reconstructive knee surgery (and now carry 3 screws in my knee joint), Endocarditis (with a 3 week hospital stay and 8 weeks on IV Drugs) and 2 open heart surgeries to replace the aortic valve in my heart.
If it weren't for the pharmaceutical industry, I would already be dead instead of being able to enjoy my wife & son, my coworkers and my section hikes. Maybe we don't get it right 1 out of 100 tries, but think of how much better the lives of those 99 are....

Puck
12-22-2004, 16:59
Toolshed

I am also in the industry. I will never say that drugs have not helped people. They have also hurt people. Drugs have effects on the body by shutting down or modifing a function. If we want and anticipate the outcome it is a benefit. If we don't want it and hope we wont suffer from adverse events and reactions it is called a side effect. Yes it is a trade off, benfit vs risk. But there are risks.

orangebug
12-22-2004, 20:10
Every drug has a risk and a benefit. It is important for people taking meds to understand those factors and to be informed in their decisions whether to take a medication or not.

I suspect that Merck over reacted in removing Vioxx, but may have painted themselves in a corner by failing to report past adverse research findings. We have long known that at least some of the NSAIDs (Non Steriodal Anti Inflammatory Drugs) interfere with aspirin's ability to reduce platelet clumping. This reduction in platelet clumping may be a reason that Aspirin reduces risks of heart attack and stroke. Further review of these recent studies may tell us that these newer agents enhance platelet clumping, but currently, we really don't know. We do know that Ibuprofen is a significant blocker of Aspirin's beneficial action.

Aspirin remains a wonder drug. Acetomenaphen - Tylenol - would have a great difficulty becoming a prescribable drug in today's regulatory environment due to the significant likelihood of liver injury at modestly elevated dosages. We know these studies show most problems with Aleve and Celebrex related to higher dosages and prolonged use. This is counter to current wisdom among physicians to cycle among these agents and to use the least dosage that is effective in the patient.

There is no absolutely safe drug. The latest news should demonstrate that there was poor value in the cost for the latest and greatly advertised COX 2 inhibiters -Vioxx, Celebrex and Bexxtra.

Sly
12-23-2004, 02:12
My routine is to take two Vitamin I and an Aleve nightly, whether I need it or not, for the first 2-3 weeks on a long hike to reduce swelling. It's my experience this time period helps reduce the impact in getting one's body fit for the long haul

After that, I may do the same for a exceptionally long or difficult day.

The way I see it, a "normal" person has two options.

1) Take the drugs to help prevent injury in the early going.

2) Don't take the drugs and have a very good chance of not making it to North Carolina.

Once you reach Fontana Dam, grin and bear it. :D

gravityman
12-23-2004, 12:10
You are right Weary,

Aspirin relieves pain, fever, the redness and swelling that can accompany injuries, and even in contracting certain muscles. It is very hard on the stomach if taken extensively. Coated tablets are best because they bypass the stomach before dissolving. This is the best choice as far as pain/inflammation reduction but many can not tolerate the therapy.

Acetaminophen (Tylenol) is used to relieve mild to moderate pain and to reduce fever. It does not relieve the stiffness, redness, and swelling of arthritis. It is very hard on the liver if taken extensively.

Naproxen (Aleve) is used to relieve the pain, tenderness, inflammation and stiffness caused by gout, arthritis, and other inflammatory conditions. Any nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug can cause side effects, especially when it is used for a long time or in large doses.


Adults should not take any medication for pain for more than 10 days without talking to a doctor. Any more than 10 days means your body is telling you something. Hello!


Following directions that are printed on the bottle or given by a doctor is important. Every drug has side effects, it is usually a toss up between what is worse..... the condition being treated or the potential side effect.

Glee if you had to take so many and for so long to relieve your pain, I think it would be in your best interests to consult your doctor, also there are many non-medical interventions that you can try. Not doing this may cause you not to be able to hike at all ever again.

Ah, excellent! Thanks for correcting me! I had no idea... I might try some aspirin to see how well it works...

Gravity