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What is the correct way to discontinue taking Duragesic patches? How frequently can the dose be lowered? Are there any commonn problems to going off the Duragesic patch?

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I have been on the patches for chonic back pain for 3 years- along with epidural injections. I have reached a point where I don't want to be dependent on the patches and have asked my doctor to help me get off the patch. (he is helping but is not sure it is a good idea)
I started on 50 mg, reduced to 25mg for a month, and now I am on 12mg for a month. I do have some breakthrough pain and am taking hydrocodone when needed.( I try to keep it down to 2-3 times a day 5mg to 7.5mg). I have started to get some withdrawal pains and I am now using a clonodine patch to help. Today is my first day on this patch. It is for high blood pressure, but is also used to help withdrawal from nicotine and other drugs. I am still on my journey to get off the drugs, I know I will have to handle the pain again, but want to try some methods that are not so addictive. I hope your journey is a smooth one.
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