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Jonny
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 51
   Posted 8/8/2007 10:21 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi all,
 
Have had lupus for 8 yrs since finally getting diagnosed, question is I was just put on elavil 10mg 3 months ago and made me sooooooo tired so doc changed to cymbalta 20mg (lowest dose) and had a severe allergic reaction it took a couple of benadryl shots from him to stop it now he is talking to me of samples of Lyrica or Symbyax well Im trying to decide on either of them my question is: Lyrica help with anxiety/depression/and pain Iv been looking up on websites of lyrica and symbyax and some say Lyrica does help with it and similar to neurontin (never been on that) so Im confused, obviously the symbyax helps with serotonin , norpherine (sp? ) I know your all saying check with doc but IM sure someone here has taken one of these drugs.  I see him tomorrow so I will talk intensely to him about it .  I do have samples of symbyax but he told him this past week (saw him last week) and he said hold out on the samples till he  gets the lyrica in.  Sorry so long here but was wondering which to take such a tough decision, mostly I will be on one of them for pain mostly (uppped my prednisone due to a mean sinus infection ) but as most of you know been on pred. for yrs. now and tha t can cause depression too.  Bottom line here any of you tried the Lyrica? tx Jonny (female)

Lynnwood
Forum Moderator


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 7018
   Posted 8/8/2007 10:31 AM (GMT -7)   
Sorry, no Lyrica for me -- hopefully a member will be along soon that has experience with it.

Cheers,

Lynnwood, Co-Moderator: Lupus Forum
SLE(’00), Sjogren's Syndrome, SAD, Depression, Herpes Simplex 1
Piroxicam, Plaquenil, Cellcept, Prednisone, Trazodone, Fosamax, Wellbrutrin SR, Valtrex
Links: DIAGNOSING LUPUS(4of11), LUPUS INFORMATION, LUPUS RESOURCES, Donate to HealingWell, Drug Interactions


dbab
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 4151
   Posted 8/8/2007 10:36 AM (GMT -7)   

This thread below may help you that you posted earlier, I have no experience with symbyax so I can't give you a comparison but have done okay (that I know of) with Lyrica.

http://www.healingwell.com/community/default.aspx?f=29&m=883876


"Des"
Co-Moderator ~ IBS Forum
Co-Moderator ~ Lupus Forum 
Dx: IBS 1989, Diverticulosis 2004, Idiopathic Acute Colitis 2006, UCTD 2007
Meds: Plaquenil 400mg, Chlorzoxazone 500mg, Lyrica 50mg, Protonix 40mg, Naproxen 1000mg, Klonopin PRN, Miralax 17g, Supplements


http://www.healingwell.com/donate


cured4real?
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1944
   Posted 8/8/2007 11:57 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Jonny,

My experience with lyrica was that it did nothing for my neuropathy, mood, and gave me double vision and I became allergic. If you had such a severe reaction to elavil, either the doc gave you way too much or your liver is perhaps sensitive to meds. My mom was on lyrica and it did nothing for depression or anxiety. My son had a very bad adverse reaction to neurontin, another gaba drug like lyrica, and nearly died, but a few others like it, at least during the first year they are on it, after that, most are off unless they are taking it for seizures or something like that.

I was diagnosed with type two bipolar because I was either anxious or depressed all the time. I was in excruciating pain and sick, no diagnosis had been made at this time. Before I got disability, sick, in horrible pain wanting to die, fearing I was dying, had no access to medical care except ER, where they would only do pain management and minimal testing, except for my heart. So my only route of pain management and medical care was the free mental health facility. Luckily I got a good doc who did some testing, but what I saw in the hospital there made me sick. What these medicines do to people over time and how hard it is for them to get off them, it can be bad.

I found it very important to analyze my depression, was I really in physical pain, was it caused by medication, my outlook--did I need to talk and get counselling--or was it truly clinical depression that I could help in no other way than to take strong medications to fix it.

Most psychiatric drugs are very hard on the liver, they are made up of big comples molecules that are hard for the liver to metabolize. If you are having trouble, you might try smaller doses of older antidepressants. If you are medication sensitive, you should have them check your liver. Allergies, hives are caused from histamines whose origin is in the liver.

I'm allergic to about every antidepressant due to my bad liver but I was able to take imipramine for depression over ten years at a very very low dose, like under 5 mg, also taking klonopin, a benzodiazapine for anxiety with it. I saw you were on elavil, which is a tricyclic, imipramine is not. It is a norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor and really gives you a tremendous amount of energy, strength, and mental focus, but does make you sleepy in the morning if you take it at night. It can be used for short term therapy, which means you can take it for a month or two and maybe not have to take it again for many years, this was the case when I was younger. It has been the only med I'm not allergic to, I don't know why. Imipramine is even given to small children and they make really small doses. Like elavil, it takes a while to get used to it.

Unfortunately, free mental health would not give me klonopin, though they admitted it is one of the most effective medicines there is for mild type 2 bipolar at a relatively low dose and the doc wanted to prescribe it. Later, they found out I had severe spinal problems, a thyroid problem, and AI disease and once my thyroid was treated and I got on ultram, a non-narcotic pain reliever for pain, and then plaq, I didn't a lot of the have the problems I was having. The pain was the biggest singlemost thing that improved my moods. A person cannot live in constant pain. I still take klonopin which is pretty effective with anxiety and even depression for me. I take it at night for restless leg as well, so it works on my neuropathy.

Anyway, I understand your feelings and I totally understand and it is not good for you physically to suffer from depression, I just hope that you and your docs take the time to really determine what is the true root cause, you can be in pain and not know it, you become out of touch with your body, I had to go to counselling for that. I just want you to be sure and careful with what you are doing. It is so natural to be anxious and depressed when you have chronic illness and probably chronic pain. I take ultram for that, and its very effective.

When it comes to depression or any type of "non-physical" disorder, the standard treatment is trial and error. There is blood work that can be done and testing, but it is expensive and once one comes to a doctor talking of these things, the doctor labels them "nuts" and feels totally free to just give out whatever the latest flavor of the day that he gets paid to push.

Check the sites on these drugs and remember this about package inserts--IF THE PHARMACEUTICAL COMPANIES DID NOT HAVE TO LIST THE PROBLEMS THE DRUGS CAUSED, THEY WOULDN'T. There are many lawsuits out on these new meds, but surprisingly not on the old ones. My dad was a chemical engineer and though many doctors ignore package inserts and the odds are that the medicine is not going to cause a problem, if you do have problems, you need to read them. If there are chances a medicine will cause something awful to happen, much worse than what is already going on, I think very carefully about it before I take it because murphy's law, it will happen to me. Unfortunately, doctors do not do this for their patients usually, my docs do. My docs won't give me nasty stuff unless I go in saying, look, I've got to have this.

I'm sorry this is so long, but I feel very strongly about this. The FDA has greatly loosened the requirements for drugs and this is of benefit in some cases, but not so in others. I hope you feel better and get the right meds at the right dose for you. Medications are dosed for a two hundred pound man so often they are really strong for women. Take care and let us know what you decide and I'm so glad you are looking into this and checking these drugs out. Its so important. I'm sorry you got such a bad reaction to elavil, I know exactly how bad that feels and it is terrifying, painful, frustrating, sad and just a real drag. Please know the people here are really nice and always willing to talk. They have helped me more than I can ever say.
Love, Marji
--Doctors are men who prescribe medicines of which they know little, to cure diseases of which they know less in human beings of whom they know nothing.--Voltaire (1694-1778)
Ills--Sjogrens-Lupus-like AI Disease, Hashis, Vitiligo, spinal stenosis/fusion with plate, salivary/lymphectomies, Diabetes, NAFLD, COPD, RLS, neuropathy, trigonitis, hystero, diffuse brain atrophy
Meds--Plaquenil, Evoxac, Metformin, Synthroid, HCTZ, Estradiol patch, Prosed, Klonopin, Soma, Ultram, Vicodin, Restasis, Albuterol,steroid injections, Protopic & Triamcinolone Acetonide ointments


Jonny
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 51
   Posted 8/8/2007 1:35 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi,

Im so glad all of you responded.  I see my doc tom. and will discuss alot with him.

Marji, thank you so much for your response its so nice to see people =here are so caring and informative, well Iv made a big decision for myself and will talk more on it tom. with my doc Iv decided that my depression/anxiety is more important right now and as you said that is most important especially when your in pain physically. I have decided NOT to take the Lyrica as I can see now its nada for anxiety/depression .  So hence on to the symbyax.

My doc is grea tho we have been seeing each other for 8 yrs now he has seen me thru alot..... ON the elavil its just so sedating but he did say its pretty safe of course nowadays gosh what is safe!  My biggest problem has been I was cutting my prednisone too fast so I went right back up on it which should help alot with pains.  But Im so glad you wrote what you did as I agree theFDA is waytoo lax now on new meds .  The cymbalta is the med I really had a problem with the allergic reaction was bad.  So it is a new med when you look at it closely. 

 LIke you were saying the older meds sometimes are best.  The symbyax is actually 2 old drugs put together its olanzapine/fluoxetine (prozac) which at 1st I was like oh my gosh am I sckitzo?? (SP?) but he explained NO your not I want you to get the anxiety/dep. under control so after tearing up and then bucking up I had to admit to myself and hubby ok I NEED To do this ! Im so tired of always being sick and tired so I agreed actually 4 mo ago to take any type of antidep.

For my liver checks doc since Iv been on elavil has been doing liver blood function tests every month since I started it so far so good only 1 pt above normal so Iv been lucky . He is very informative and VERY careful with especially me with all my meds (51 yrs young me) so now at the "middle age" he is more careful.  Anyways I will list my meds down here so you can see too it took 6 docs and a naturalpathic doc to finally get to this doc Iv had for 8 yrs to finally diagnose me with thyroid/lupus.  Thanks for letting me babble on here and thank you so much for all you guys info especialy you =Marji. 

Med: Prednisone 10mg (weaning slowly back to 5 due to bad sinus infect. ) Questran powder, nexium,20mg estrogen patch/ring/ evista, synthroid 50, elavil10 (will probably be switching to symbyax lowest dose is 5/25) lomotil as needed had gallbladder out last yr.  compazine as needed. ativan 1 mg as needed seems like so much but to me I dont mind taking meds as long as they help.  tx so much Jonny (female)


cured4real?
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1944
   Posted 8/8/2007 7:12 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Johnny-
You're right, the cymbalta is what I call a "new" drug, everything since prozac came out basically. I'm allergic to Paxil. prozac, zoloft, welbutrin, effexor, strattera, topamax, gabitril, lamictil, lithium, among other non-psychiatrics. Some of these I was put on as many as five times and it was very cruel of my docs, they didn't believe me. Since you had a reaction to an SSRI-cymbalta, which contains prozac, you might be allergic to any drug that is an SSRI, even though there are slight differences, at least thats what my docs told me. Talking to a drug rep once, there is a whole science to what makes certain people allergic to certain meds, how the molecules spin and all, its very complex and I don't understand it much. Anyway, I'm glad you feel like you made a decision. Remember the imipramine and klonopin, if all else fails. I had an old but very very good psychiatrist and he put me on it and it saved my life for thirteen years, though on just a baby dose. You aren't on much stuff so thats good. What is questran? is it like plaquenil? I got so much energy and good moods and relief from plaquenil.
Love, Marji
--Doctors are men who prescribe medicines of which they know little, to cure diseases of which they know less in human beings of whom they know nothing.--Voltaire (1694-1778)
Ills--Sjogrens-Lupus-like AI Disease, Hashis, Vitiligo, spinal stenosis/fusion with plate, salivary/lymphectomies, Diabetes, NAFLD, COPD, RLS, neuropathy, trigonitis, hystero, diffuse brain atrophy
Meds--Plaquenil, Evoxac, Metformin, Synthroid, HCTZ, Estradiol patch, Prosed, Klonopin, Soma, Ultram, Vicodin, Restasis, Albuterol,steroid injections, Protopic & Triamcinolone Acetonide ointments


Jonny
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 51
   Posted 8/9/2007 9:18 AM (GMT -7)   

HI Marji,\

Again thanks for being so informative and most of all caring, I was sorta surprised you said I m not on that much meds to me I am but oh well! 

 The questran my gastro doc put me on as it is a very old cholesterol med actually it was given to me for bad diarrhea since removing my gallbladder last yr not to be too graphic but food would litteraly go right threw me.  So this binds up all the bile salts and helps the going alot more, the ony good benefit from it is it lowers your cholesterol big time so there is a plus.  ITs a powder so it tastes pretty nasty but if you mix it with a sugar free juice its ok, as far as energy not that much its just basicallly works on the bowel and cholesterol.  As far as plaquenil I see alot of lupus people here on it, I know I was told once by a rheumy doc that it takes about 3 months to actually kick in is that true?  My doc now said its ok but hard on the liver enzymes so was wondering about that .  I was wondering does it help with any joint/muscle pains ? I will ask my doc today about it.  Well take care and talk soon I will let you know what the do does Im to the point to heck right now with the ad's and just go with the elavil ! As I said before the elavil was not that bad the worst allergic reaction Iv had is the cymbalta and Im just about afraid to even try the symbyax. Ill let you know tx Jonny

 


cured4real?
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1944
   Posted 8/10/2007 1:25 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Jonny--
Actually, plaquenil is hard on the kidneys, but not processed that much, if at all by the liver. Its basically quinine, the stuff they put in tonic water, sort of a derivative of it. Thats why I can take it and I'm on a pretty good dose at 400mg. It took me longer than three months to start to work, but I was on too low a dose and once the doc doubled it BANG, I felt like a new me, better than I had in years, less depressed and anxious, actually felt pretty much well! Now, without it, I can't think, course I couldn't before. It is primarily metabolized by the liver. The other good thing I learned from a post here is that there have been studies showing that it may prevent cancer, which is a good side effect!

I found out today that my liver enzymes in June were completely normal, which is rare for me so everything I'm taking is working out ok. I'm interested in the questran and may talk to my gi guy about it because I have problems, though not all the time, when i don't digest food at all, and my cholesterol is very high but the docs don't want to treat it because the new cholesterol medicines are too hard on the liver, maybe the questran might be something I could tolerate, especially since its a powder and I could potentially start with a small small dose.

I hope everything works out with your meds and you feel better and look forward to hearing from you again.
Love, Marji
--Doctors are men who prescribe medicines of which they know little, to cure diseases of which they know less in human beings of whom they know nothing.--Voltaire (1694-1778)
Ills--Sjogrens-Lupus-like AI Disease, Hashis, Vitiligo, spinal stenosis/fusion with plate, salivary/lymphectomies, Diabetes, NAFLD, COPD, RLS, neuropathy, trigonitis, hystero, diffuse brain atrophy
Meds--Plaquenil, Evoxac, Metformin, Synthroid, HCTZ, Estradiol patch, Prosed, Klonopin, Soma, Ultram, Vicodin, Restasis, Albuterol,steroid injections, Protopic & Triamcinolone Acetonide ointments

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