What is Tramadol?

Hi everyone. I have been seeing the word Tramadol on this website. When I have migraines, I take Hydrocodone. I used to take a medicine that was strictly for Migraines - but last year my insurance decided to take it off their list of available medicines. Is it a pain med? Would it help my Fibro?? The Hydrocodone I take on occasion only works for my headaches. It doesn't do anything as far as taking away my Fibro pain. Thanks! Love, Laurie


Hi Laurie, I have tried it, but it was not a med for me, though many on the site find it helpful. I take morphine, which does help, but don't like to take it all of the time, don't want to drive on it or be taking it when I have the grandkids. The Rheumatologist agreed. Do not give up a med to try this if you do not have to, but ask your Dr about it.

I take Tramadol occasionally. It does help some, but not much. Still some help is better than no help. I only take it when things get really bad. It is used for pain. I take Meloxicam daily for pain and it works better than the Tramadol. The Meloxicam is also an anti inflammatory and not a narcotic. Tramadol is "narcotic like", whatever that means. When I take the Tramadol, it is in conjunction with the Meloxicam, not instead of. Here is more info on Tramadol:


If hydrocodone helped your headaches, it is possible Tramadol might work. Fioricet works for many people for headache too.

The last pain medication I had that worked well for was Vioxx and we all know what happened to that. :o( Very sad day for me when the FDA decided to pull it. I went to my doctor and asked her for more and she said she beleived the drug was safe too, but she could not give me any. She also said she had already turned down more than a few requests for it.

Wah. I want my Vioxx back.

Heart attack schmart attack. It just worked and did not make me spacey and high at all. Stupid FDA. Bad FDA.

Ok I am done pouting. For now.

Hope Tramadol works for you.

Hi Laurie, I take Tramadol and have for years. I take this for pain, in the begining it was great but as time goes on my pain is getting worse and the Tramadol just takes the edge off for me. I have tried other pain meds and they haven't worked. We are all so different with these meds, I guess it's just a hit or miss thing. I hope you find something that works for you. Hugs, Robin

Hi Laurie, I take tramadol daily for pain and find it works well for pain. I also take Celebrex on occasion which is an anti inflammatory and relpax for migraines because nothing else works! I don’t take tramadol at night because I find it disturbs my sleep even more than it already is. I have panadiene forte for extra pain support and diazapam for muscle spasms. It sounds like a lot but sometimes I need to take very little medication and other days its seems like I have to take a combination just to get some sort of relief. I have tried the antidepressants and anticonvulsants and they had terrible side affects for me. Tramadol is a slow release pain killer that is not as addictive or hard on the stomach as codeine and I find it the best for my pain so far. Of course I would love to not take anything but I have a young child to look after so I can’t rest and recover as much as I would like to and will take what I need to maintain some sort of lifestyle. I hate taking drugs but accept that I would not be able to do anything much without them so they are the lessor of two evils for me! Lol!

I also take Tramadol daily. I spent 2 weeks off of it recently and I was in agony! I never truly realized until that time that the Tramadol I take 4 times a day was actually helping me!

As for what it is, it is a non-controlled pain reliever that once introduced into your system works as an narcotic would. So, it is on the fringes of the narcotic family. I also take Norflex as a muscle relaxant and Valium for my anxiety but its a bonus that it also helps with muscle stiffness as well. At the same time, what works for others may not work for you. If you do decide to try it good luck!

Hi Dominique - It's Laurie here. I am so jealous! Celebrex was the ONLY anti - inflammatory that worked for me! I had to get off it last year, because my insurance 'decided' they didn't want to pay for it anymore. I have a new appointment with a female doctor.. I didn't like to other doctor, he was very rude and abrupt with me. I got out of there really quick - but not before I said a few things to him!! LOL I woke up this morning (very early, as usual), with one of my famous headaches - a Miragine. So it will be another day with pain, (sigh). Honestly, I just can't seem to win the ''pain thing!!'' I either wake up in Fibro pain OR a Migraine. I will ask my nurse, Megan, about the Tramadol and look at some other options that my help me. The facct that it is a slow-release medicine appeals to me. Thanks so much for responding to my post, Dominique! Hugs!! Laurie

Tramadol is a non narcotic it works like an opoid. It attaches to the opoid receptors in your body just like your hydrocodone (vicodin). I am on suboxone right now which acts in a similar way. I am in it to detox from fentanyl. I would ask your Dr about it but it has interactions with many other drugs. Good luck!

Hi Keirsten,

In what form did you take fentanyl? Patch, lollipop (actiq) or something else? I was once on the Actiq and while at Johns Hopkins a Pain Management Dr I saw there hit the ceiling about it, he called my Dr and screamed at him telling him this was an 'end of life drug only'. I'll tell you what, it really helped the stenosis pain, which is crushing!

I cannot take Codeine, but with Phenergan, can take Morphine (Opana). My biggest problem is joint an bone pain. I see you belong to the arthritis group, so you understand this, I'm sure!

I love it. Great med for me. It is different for everyone but I find it just as useful as percocet for short term treatment. I prefer to mix them for best results.

I was given a prescription of Tramadol for fibro pain. One pill does not work very well, but if I take another one, I start to cry. And, the crying goes on all day even though I really don't feel sad. What is interesting, is that I also cry when I am given morphine. So, there must be something in common in their ingredients. Needless to say, I don't take Tramadol very often.

Hi, Laurie! Irma here. . . I have been on hydrocodone for years. . . I have to take it three times a day. . . For months I would get migraines - specially starting Friday - finally, I told my doctor and he gave me Maxalt - the generic kind - The first time I had to take four in total; the next time, which happened TWO WEEKS later I took only 2. . . my migraines are gone for about 4 months now. . . I am sooo happy - the headache, backache, feet and shoulders are always there but I get relief by taking the hydrocodone - I could take up to 2 at the time every 4-6 hours but like many of us I am afraid to get addicted - I guess when the pain is really unbearable I will have to do it. . . I am home so I can control hydrocodone, still, I take it every single day. . . Twice I take it with my high blood pressure and clonazepan for spasms. . . at night I take it with Elavil and Celexa. . . Elavil and Celexa tend to make you groggy (sp). . . my doctor suggested I take at night and I discontinued the sleep medication. . . I wish I had some reflief from the stiffness and pain on my hands. . . I would say that on a scale of 1-10 I am always on a 4. . .


Hi Laurie. From what I understand Tramadol and Ultram are both non narcotic pain relievers that work at about the same level a vicodin. Tramadol is short acting and the Ultram is the longer acting version. Again, this is what I understand about the drug. I did take it for awhile. Doctors who are concerned about prescribing narcotics often prescribe Tramadol as an alternative. It does help with pain relief. It was, in my case, as addictive as a narcotic. We all have to deal with addiction in our own way though. Many of us have to take these meds every day, are addicted, know it and live with it. Lots of times when prescribing a narcotic our doc's will have us sign a "narcotic agreement". I don't believe that's necessary with tramadol so it makes it easier for the doc. Most doc's would rather we took tramadol. But if it doesn't work for you ask for another, maybe a narcotic version. Vicodin, btw, is very inexpensive. I'm not sure about the Tramadol.

Please correct me, anybody, if I have misspoken. I believe this to be true, but I'm never sure of anything anymore.



I have tramadol but I only take it when I get desperate and need to take something. it usually makes me sleep and only in that way helps with the pain!!! barb

Yes. - Hydrocodone is very inexpensive; however, my doctor gives me only 100 at the time - He says he can't give me more - He used to give me morphine but I had to go see him and he had to write a prescription - with the hydrocodone he just orders online and I ask the pharmacy to mail it to me so that I do not pay more. . . on the rest he gives me enough for three months.



Hi Irma - Laurie here. It's very possible that one or some of your meds could cause you to retain water. I don't know enough to tell you which meds might be causing it. I retain water too, but it started many years ago in my 8th month of pregnancy with my daughter, Kim. I had no real trouble until about 2 years ago It was pretty bad. My nurse gave me medicine to take every day or evening to get rid of it. It's very good. You might want to ask your doctor if it would be okay for you?? It's called hydrochlorothiazide. It's a long name, but it does work! it's twelve point 5 mg once a day. It's very normal during depression to cry. I do too, when I am really down. I take an anti depressant and another med for anxiety. They both work really well for me. But I DO still get depressed sometimes and anxious when I am in a lot of pain. Irma don't worry about this. It's very normal and it's okay to cry. It helps to keep you from holding it all inside. Hugs!! Laurie


Resa, too bad they shelved the Vioxx. It was a Cox-2 inhibitor NSAID, which there are different ones. Have you tried Mobic or Celebrex? It does the same thing for others I've known so maybe you could ask your Doctor for one of those instead?

Laurie: Tramadol is technically a non-narcotic but it's very similar in the way it acts, it just doesn't do it as strongly. So how it would work for you depends on your system and level of pain you have. Vicodin (hydrocodone) is a narcotic that works much better for pain that's intense because it's much stronger. The positive side of tramadol is that since the FDA have classified it as a non-narcotic, some Doctors will more easily write a script for it instead of a narcotic. If you haven't tried it, it's definitely worth a try if your Doctor thinks it would help. Personally, I have both tramadol and vicodin on hand. When my pain is really bad...to the point of tears, I reach (if I can reach) for the vicodin. But when it's not so bad, I use the tramadol. Hope that helps? Gail

Oh, I also wanted to mention about the slow release of Tramadol. Tramadol comes in three different varieties. Regular Tramadol, which is not a slow release version. Then there's Tramadol ER (extended-release), which is the slow release form. Then there is Ultracet, which is the name brand for a combination of tramadol and acetaminophen (tylenol). Hope that helps. : )

I find tramadol very effective in reducing pain levels that are very high and can be debilitating. I am not recommending and I only do it because I read it was safe. I use a little motrin and tramadol at the same time. I do not use it daily as i do not want my body to get used to it. It does very little for my headaches.