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I got a call today from VA Medical. I asked what the call was about & she said that since I am taking Tramadol, they want to do  a urine  drug screening test on me since I am taking Tramadol for pain. I asked her why are you all doing this and she said she does not know, " I am just following orders". Yes I am taking Tramadol for pain but I never heard of this before. I got to go give my urine for a drug screen within the next two days. Anybody out there have had to do this or heard of any veteran had to do this? I am wondering why's the VA doing this? What is this for?

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You might want to call any pharmacy and ask why this kind of test may be needed.

There is also the possibility they might want to see if you are really taking the medication. Over the past couple of years, I have heard about the VA requiring a screening before issuing refills. Here is a BVA case where the patient said they were taking it, but the urine screening found otherwise: https://www.va.gov/vetapp03/files/0316034.txt. I imagine things would not go well if someone were getting monthly refills and the test was negative.

Even though Tramadol is not officially an opiate, it is highly addictive. With the current war on opiates, it seems likely would be looking to shift patients off addictive medications to alternative treatments. It is unfortunate for patients who really them.

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45 minutes ago, Vync said:

You might want to call any pharmacy and ask why this kind of test may be needed.

There is also the possibility they might want to see if you are really taking the medication. Over the past couple of years, I have heard about the VA requiring a screening before issuing refills. Here is a BVA case where the patient said they were taking it, but the urine screening found otherwise: https://www.va.gov/vetapp03/files/0316034.txt. I imagine things would not go well if someone were getting monthly refills and the test was negative.

Even though Tramadol is not officially an opiate, it is highly addictive. With the current war on opiates, it seems likely would be looking to shift patients off addictive medications to alternative treatments. It is unfortunate for patients who really them.

Thanks Vync, what u are saying make a whole lot of sense. I will call a pharmacy & text my PCP at the VA & ask why, just as u stated. I will get back with the answers when I finish my research.

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At least they are telling you, lol, they never even let me know they were drug testing me.  The only thing I am on is benzos and fiorcet without codeine and (no illegal drug history) and i get drug tested at least 2 times a year or whenever they send me to get lab work done for anything else.  I have been on those for over a decade and found out my pcp was doing the drug testing in the last few years.  I was offended honestly but what can you do, we are less than pond scum, less than welfare recipients and honestly it is not because they are worried about us.......it is more of a cover their a$$es type deal.  NOT all VA clinics do this.  The day I no longer have to step foot in any VA clinic again will be a glorious one, not sure that will ever happen but at least the day I don't have to depend on them for all my care ;)

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I have had to to urine tests since 2014. They randomly call me and I go usually the next day. A few years ago, the VA started having Vets do urine or blood tests due to Taking Multiple Narcotics, or Pain Meds. Hasnt bothered me and I live 250 miles round trip from both the local VAs. I actually had to sign a contract due to Wounded warrior program, and my wife handling my finances, stating that I will not over medicate my self, and do random drug tests. You have nothing to worry about. Good luck and God Bless

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