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Question about travelling to USA to get a medicine???

Discussion in 'ME/CFS Doctors' started by Bunchy, Feb 4, 2015.

  1. Bunchy

    Bunchy Senior Member

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    Hi everyone,

    I hope someone can help me out here....

    I have very severe neuropathic and CNS pain (all over and inside my body sometimes) as a complication of my ME. It can make life completely intolerable at its worst and very difficult at best!

    I used to take benzos for this but developed horrible problems on them (tolerance and withdrawal symptoms) and had to get off them. Because of this, they are no longer an option for me to take now or in the future.

    The only drug that still helps me (and that I can still take without issues and only need a tiny amount) is Soma which has now been discontinued in the whole of Europe. I have no problems with them like I had with benzos and take only a miniscule dose (a quarter of a pill a day). I am using up old prescriptions saved up over the years (I had to stockpile when I knew they were discontinuing it) but I will run out in the next few years, even using such a tiny amount.

    In the past, I was able to obtain this drug from a special prescription which they sourced from Denmark for me but my pharmacy/ my doctor can't even get that for me now.

    My doctor has tried Pregabalin/Gabapentin etc to see if those would help but they don't touch the pain at all...only Soma does. She doesn't know how to help me and hasn't got any more ideas.

    So I have some questions about maybe travelling to the USA myself (with hubby) to try to get a prescription there and bring it back:

    Is it possible, if a drug is only available in the USA, to find a doctor and travel there with the sole purpose of getting a prescription for that drug?

    If you get a prescription in the US written by a US doctor, are you able, as a UK citizen to get it filled and then bring it home to the UK with you?

    If I wasn't well enough to go myself, cpuld I do a telephone consult. and have my husband go and get the prescription filled on my behalf and bring it back to the UK for me?

    The thing is, I have absolutely no idea if this is even possible and if so, how one goes about it...my doctor and pharmacy don't seem to know what my options are.

    Can anyone help?

    Sorry this post might be a bit confusing...I am really brain tired tonight so I will come back tomorrow and clarify my questions if necessary.

    I wondered about the Nancy Klimas clinic in Florida (I am familiar with Miami having travelled there years ago) but there doesn't seem to be an email address to contact her to ask if this is possible...they may not agree to just write the prescription for me and obviously I haven't an awful lot of money to waste!

    Thanks,

    Bunchy x
     
  2. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    Hi Bunchy, Im sorry to hear of your situation, I hope someone can give you Nancy Klimas email to at least ask.

    Have you tried the drug websites in which one doesnt need a prescription for prescription drugs? I suggest to have an attempt at online ordering it without a prescription rather then knocking yourself around by having to travel to another country, its truely terrible that you are even having to consider doing that.

    I dont know the link but if you message Heapsreal, Im sure he may know of a drug site which does that. (Ive a few times got things which arent supposed to be brought into my country brought in.. and Australia has the strictest regulations and customs).
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 4, 2015
    August59 likes this.
  3. minkeygirl

    minkeygirl But I Look So Good.

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    Also I doubt a US doc would rx a controlled substance without seeing in person. I don't even know if Skype would qualify.

    @heapsreal may know of a place and there is a thread here dedicated to online pharmacies. I forget where it is. I think members only.

    I just tagged heaps so he'll see this.
     
  4. minkeygirl

    minkeygirl But I Look So Good.

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  5. aquariusgirl

    aquariusgirl Senior Member

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    bunchy any idea why the soma works when nothing else does?
     
  6. Hope123

    Hope123 Senior Member

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    1) I would be careful about buying drugs online without a prescription. There is very spotty oversight of this area and that means that drugs obtained may be counterfeit, adulterated, contaminated, etc. If you look online, there are some sources telling you how to judge which sites may be more legitimate but still, it's a gamble.

    2) By law, US doctors cannot keep prescribing a medication without seeing someone at least once a year. So even if you received it now, how might you get it long-term?

    3) Importation of foreign meds into US is governed by the FDA and there are specific rules. There is probably an equivalent UK agency that oversees drugs and you might want to look up or ask for information before you go. It would be really bad if you went and then the drugs were detained at the airport.

    4) Soma is in a class of drugs called "muscle relaxants". Is there another drug in the same class you could try that is available in the UK. BTW, muscle relaxants are a misnomer because they don't really act on the muscles, rather they act on the brain. One side effect to be concerned about is drowsiness, confusion.
     
  7. brenda

    brenda Senior Member

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    Goldpharm is fine, and you do get a a script after answering qustions. Thyroid patients in the UK who are self treating, use them.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2015
  8. South

    South Senior Member

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    We can, however, do what we must do when there are "rules" in place that are not for the best for anyone (other then for governmental powermongers). We can remove the prescription from its original bottle and simply place it into a container that hides what it is, before going to the airport.

    If overseas flights involve more thorough searches through suitcases, I've heard of people emptying the contents of capsules into an innocuous container (like a container labeled "baby powder"), thus no capsules. It would make measuring the prescription in the future more difficult, but you can go to Amazon to buy the tiny spoons used to measure equivalent volumes as what the original capsules contained.
     
  9. Kina

    Kina

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    Most airlines require that you carry prescription medications in their original bottles in hand luggage. Every country has a rule about how much of a personal prescription you can carry into a country (3 months for some). I think if you only require a small amount of a medication, you might be able to stretch it out for quite a long time.

    I wouldn't advise concealing medications in your luggage because if you get caught you might get done for drug related offenses. Carrying a medication, with a doctors prescription, in your hand luggage won't raise any red flags.

    It's probably better to find out the specific rules because it would be terrible to go to the US, get a prescription, transport the meds, and have some or all confiscated at the airport due to breaking the rules.

    It's not an easy situation. Good luck.
     
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  10. liverock

    liverock Senior Member

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    According to GoldPharma website FAQ's they usually ship from the UK or India so
    there is a good chance import problems would not be relevant.
     
  11. Sherpa

    Sherpa Ex-workaholic adrenaline junkie

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    Soma (carisoprodol) is awesome. It's a great rescue remedy for a terrible crash with whole body pain, inflammation and insomnia. Much less side effects and hangover issues than other medications. I am sorry that obtaining it in the EU is such a hassle. I think it is somewhat difficult to get the average doctor in the USA to prescribe it. I think you would have a better bet trying to import. Best of luck!
     
  12. SOC

    SOC

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    This may be particularly true because Soma is officially a controlled substance (although low on the list) so no matter how innocent and moderate your use, there will be the suspicion of dealing if you appear to be trying to sneak in largish amounts. It's better to be aboveboard in this case.

    Also be aware that doctors are trained to be keep an eye out for "drug-seeking" behavior, that is, patients who come to them only for controlled substances without a real desire for medical care. Asking for a single appointment for the sole purpose of getting a Soma prescription will raise red flags, fair or not. Be careful about how you present your request (and yourself) to the doctor and his/her office.

    It might be the better strategy, if you decide to come to the US, to find a pain specialist rather than a GP/PCP or ME/CFS specialist. They're more in tune with the realities of dealing with pain and the difficulties obtaining necessary pain medications. As an added bonus, a pain specialist, with their extensive knowledge of the field, might be able to suggest other medications you haven't tried yet that would be better or more accessible to you.
     
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  13. Sushi

    Sushi Senior Member Albuquerque

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    When I bring meds into the US that have been prescribed and filled in Europe, I keep a copy of the prescription (Many countries in Europe don't put it in a personal bottle, rather a pack from the pharm company) plus a printout from the government website citing the law about how much of a prescription med you can bring into the States from abroad. I have never had to use it, but feel more comfortable having all this with me.

    Sushi
     
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  14. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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    When I wanted some B12 large bottle (UK pharmacies only stock 1ml ampoules) I contacted some pharmacies in the US, most of them were happy to ship to the UK as long as I could provide them with a prescription.. Have you tried this. Otherwise as others say buy online, much cheaper than making a trip.
     
  15. aquariusgirl

    aquariusgirl Senior Member

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    I go back and forth between US and UK with massive amounts of supplements, syringes and a lot of meds in my checked luggage including gcmaf. All legitimately prescribed. Never been stopped or checked.
     
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  16. Bunchy

    Bunchy Senior Member

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    Thanks for everyone's input. :)

    @aquariusgirl - I think Soma helps because the type of neuropathic pain I get only responds to drugs that affect GABA "a" receptors in the brain. This is why benzos but not other classes of meds used for neuropathic pain used to help me. I can't ever use them again after developing serious problems on them and having to come off them completely and permanently though!!

    Other classes of drugs usually used to treat "normal" neuropathic pain, such as Neurontin and Lyrica work on GABA "b" receptors and they did not help my pain at all in the past even at high doses.

    @SOC - I think a doctor would see that I am not remotely exhibiting drug seeking behaviour, seeing as I discontinued high dose benzos and all other drugs myself without the help of a doctor (aside from a very low dose anti nausea drug I have taken since illness onset and virtual "crumbs" of Soma now).

    A one month prescription of Soma would likely last me over a year at the amount I take! I see what you are saying about trying to find a pain specialist but to be honest, I've had bad experiences with those here in the UK. Also, many of my symptoms have improved a little in the last 18 months (some have improved a lot) and I don't want to be reassessed by what are often unhelpful pill pushing doctors making wrong assumptions about my 25 year long ME illness and battle with severe neuropathic pain and CNS symptoms which I have more or less learned to manage myself without their "help"!!! (Not angry at you but a little at the medical profession!!)

    I would never order drugs from online pharmacies either because one never knows where they are manufactured or how they are made, whether they are counterfeit, fake or even harmful. To be honest, I'd rather go without...

    Anyway, a member here who I email occasionally has kindly given me a contact email for a doctor in the USA who has treated others with this type of pain and I will see if he has any ideas.

    Any other input welcome...but if none, thanks to all who responded and I'll let you know if I get anywhere with my contact in the States.

    Love Bunchy x
     
  17. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    Are you sure you have not been unduly influenced by scare stories about online pharmacies in the media?

    Many people on this forum regularly buy drugs from online pharmacies, and rarely have any problems.

    See also this thread: Tips for Finding Reliable and Trustworthy Online Pharmacies
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2015
    Valentijn likes this.

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