Medication problems...too much, too many, possible long term effects??

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Blue727
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 5/3/2007 8:11 PM (GMT -6)   
Over the last 3-4 years, I have been on Xanax, Paxil, Cymbalta, Buspirone, Clomipramine (had to go to E.R. on this stuff after one dose), Clonazepan, Mirtazipine, Zoloft, Zyprexa, Seroquel, Prozac and Welbutrin.  I currently take 20 mg of Lexapro and 10 mg of Ambien for sleep.  Today I was prescribed 1 mg of Risperdal.  I haven't taken the Risperdal, but I feel I am getting no better with the Lexapro.  I have had every test done except seeing a ENT and Neurologist.  My problem is that my eyes feel really strange all the time.  Like everyone is staring at me, some problems with dizziness, depth perception, lighting and such.  The pdoc told me for being 27 and having these symptoms it is almost comical....I had a hard time finding the humor in it.
 
The pdoc told me it's something I'm just going to have to live with as they didn't find anything, but that is something else I have a hard time dealing with.  I don't sleep well, find myself grinding my teeth, feeling like my body is going a million miles a minute....cold to start the night, sweating when I wake up and for the rest of the day, irratability, fear of going crazy....you name it.
 
My questions are....could the Lexapro be causing this even though I have been on it for like 2 months?  Could I just not need medicine....maybe the medicine causes this???  Thanks for the input.  Any body else experience a problem with their eyes??  This has been my chief complaint over the years and I feel I wouldn't have the anxiety or depression if I new what was wrong.

ChristianWithHope
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 119
   Posted 5/3/2007 10:59 PM (GMT -6)   
Blue,
Maybe it's time for a second or third opinion. Your doc doesn't sounds like someone I'd want to trust my brain chemistry with.
I've not had the eye experience, but all of us suffer from varying forms of physical symptomology.
1. Do you have a counselor that you really trust?
2. Do you have a support group of any sort that you meet with regularly?
3. Has your pdoc adjusted you Lexapro at all since you first started taking it?
Don't give up...there is MUCH to hope for!

debaser
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1745
   Posted 5/3/2007 11:34 PM (GMT -6)   
I believe you've already posted this exact question before. Again, go to a new psychiatrist and tell him you want to start over from the ground up. That should be your first step. If your eyes are feeling strange you could see an ophthalmologist while you're at it.
My Brain: My friend, My enemy: A blog to chronicle my attempt to recover from anxiety/panic disorder
anxietypanicdisorder.blogspot.com/


Blue727
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 5/4/2007 8:26 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks for the replies!
 
I do have a good counselor, however, he is the boss of the pdoc I am seeing.  Every person I have seen has diagnosed me with anxiety, depression and OCD tendencies, but nothing seems to work.  My ex and my family agree that I have only gotten worse being on medicine.  I have never went more than a month or two over the last 3-4 years without being on some kind of medicine that I listed.
 
My Lexapro has not been adjusted since I started it.  They started me out with 20 mg and have kept me there.  I cannot sleep, vivid bad dreams when I do and waking up all the time, clenching my teeth feeling like my body is going a million miles a minute.  I also feel my social anxiety has gotten much worse since starting this medication and my involuntary body twitches.  Is this something you have heard of although I have been on it for over two months??
 
debaser
 
I think I did post something like this before, but I am still really confused.  I'm just not sure I want to quit my medicines, as I'm afraid it will get worse, but obviously it's not doing me any good. 

debaser
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1745
   Posted 5/4/2007 8:54 AM (GMT -6)   
Again, that's why you need a fresh perspective. A second opinion. Maybe a tear down and rebuild of your pharmacological regimen. We can offer support and some advice, but when it comes down to it this is a doctor/patient problem that you need to address.
My Brain: My friend, My enemy: A blog to chronicle my attempt to recover from anxiety/panic disorder
anxietypanicdisorder.blogspot.com/


Blue727
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 5/4/2007 9:56 AM (GMT -6)   
debaser
 
Thanks for your input...it's appreciated.  I just basically wanted to see if, in your opinion, I could not be tolerating the medications well.  Even though I am not taking those all at the same time, I have never went longer than like 2 months at the most without being on something.  Even though most of them are more than likely out of my system, I have started almost one right after the other and was wondering if they could be effecting me negatively...maybe increasing my serotonin level over time or something to that extent.
 
Your insight is much appreciated, as this has really been a struggle.  I just wish something would work or someone could tell me what I need to do.  Thanks Again debaser!!

Howlyncat
Elite Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 5/4/2007 12:10 PM (GMT -6)   
Totally agree with JD and Debaser on this

I wish you all the best please do seek out professional help as posted and keep us in the loop
Thoughts and prayers are with you
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olivia of course
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1523
   Posted 5/4/2007 12:20 PM (GMT -6)   
Blue,

I experienced something with the eye stuff like you did. That happened to me when I was on Seroquel for about 2 months in 2006. I was taking 50mg and eventually lowered it to 25mg to see if it would go away and it never did.

Even after being off it for a few weeks, my right eye especially would get blurry. Then I would feel sharp pain in the eye area and I would get lightheaded and feel like I am going to pass out. I would get shortness of breath and sweating, and would feel like the world was going to collapse on me. It happened to both eyes, but the right was worse.

It felt aweful, and no one else knew what I was talking about. I switched to Zyprexa after a while. Seroquel sure wasn't for me.
 
But if what you are talking about is with Lexapro, then you shoud def. get a 2nd opinion.  I have not heard of those symptoms happening to anyone on Lexapro.  I would get it checked out asap.

Best wishes!  :-)

@~ Olivia

"Don't let your yesterday, ruin your today"

Post Edited (olivia of course) : 5/4/2007 11:27:46 AM (GMT-6)


manyembers
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 424
   Posted 5/4/2007 1:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Blue,

I have chronic anxiety and post traumatic stress disorder. In my case, these things are related to my childhood which was highly dysfunctional and traumatic, but there is also a physiological factor. In my own search to feel better I've done a candida cleanse and noticed that after cleansing, the anxiety I have was much less. I also noticed a connection with overall 'toxicity' and panic attacks. So I highly recommend looking into some natural solutions to help support the process of lessening one's tendency towards these things. That said...

I could be way off base, but just from my own experience, (and seven years of reading on this stuff), I'm just going to share what I perceive in your case. A lot of your symptoms sound like they could be caused by either candida or particularly parasites. If you look up the symptoms for these things on google, it might give you a context to see if it's something you'd like to investigate further. Most conventional practitioners don't take either of these things too seriously, if at all. But you could look into finding a naturaopathic dr. if you're open to that. Or you could simply find a good parasite cleanse at your local health store, and give it a go. May as well try it and see. However, make sure you check with your doctor first about the herbs in the cleanse as you don't want to do anything that will interact poorly with your meds.

Candida, parasites, heavy metal toxicity and toxicity in general can cause panic attacks and heightened anxiety. Food intolerances could also be behind some of what you are experiencing.

I pray you find what you need. Answers can take awhile to find, but sometimes it just takes perseverance, some good cries, and time and then they come. Hang in there! - manyembers

harry4
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 1449
   Posted 5/4/2007 2:58 PM (GMT -6)   

to blue, your psych is an idiot, I wouldnt take any antipsychotics

why not just take benzos, clonazepam, etc for a while

it helps a lot tp learn new ways of relaxing and calming yourself, massage, jacuzzis, hot tube etc all help to relax you

try wearing sunglasses of differernt tints, when nervous or stressed its normal to feel everyone is looking at you ( and judging you harshly)


recovered former longtime anxiety and panic attack sufferer and helper of other sufferers  but no training or  qualifications in medicine or psychology, any remarks that may be taken as advice must be confirmed with doctor or other health professional
emails are welcome but do mention healingwell to avoid risk of deletion as spam


Blue727
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 5/4/2007 4:19 PM (GMT -6)   
 
I wish I had that, but I have had every test known to mankind done.  about 3 years ago, my doc's physician's assistant stated he thought it was a parasite, but that's where it ended.  Any ideas on what to do or what tests to ask for?
 
harry4;
 
I had posted before in hopes you would reply.  As you can see from my posts, I have tried many medications with no help.  I was hospitalized in a inpatient facility in hopes they would clean me off of everything and start from scratch, but that didn't happen.  I had convinced myself about 3 years ago, based on my symptoms that I had schizophrenia, but that has been ruled out by everyone I have seen.  I really think the medicines are worse for me than everything.  I have been on the Lexapro for almost 3 months and I feel the last 2 weeks the symptoms have gotten worse.  My social anxiety, lack of sleep, jitters and involuntary movements have gotten worse, as well as my headaches.  I feel exhausted yet when I try to sleep, I find my body feels like it's going to get up and run, my jaw (teeth) are clenched, I'm cold when I go to bed, but wake up sweating unbelievably, irratible, moody, no motivation and I have pain in my left ear and my right ear sometimes feels like a blown speaker.  When I sleep with my right ear down, I wake up shaking and trembling.  My doc's have told me if it was schizophrenia more than likely I wouldn't be researching what was wrong with me and it would be full blown by now.
 
Any suggestions or ideas?  Based on your opinion, do you think the medicines could be making me worse?  I have never went more than 2 months in the last 3-4 years without being on one of the medicines I have listed.  Is it possible that although I haven't been on them at the same time or for a long time they could have increased my serotonin level too much?  I had to go the ER on Clomipramine (very bad ordeal) after taking one dose.  My parents said all of my siblings including myself don't tolerate medications very well and I was wondering if it's possible for me to see bad side effects after almost 3 months of use (it states usually up to 6 weeks before side effects are gone)?  I also take Prilosec everyday for GERD. 
 
My family has also said that if I took 2-3 days and did nothing but sleep I would be better, as I just quit my stressful (burnout) of a job and maybe the rest is what I need.  As you can see from my prior posts http://www.healingwell.com/community/default.aspx?f=9&m=796347 I have had like a physchotic break or whatever it's called, but it's only ever been following a night of drinking.  I think the worst case scenario the following day and let my mind run (OCD) until it becomes almost debilitating.  Once I've worried it off, I don't even think about it anymore (a couple of weeks or something like that).  I've always been a high energy, worrying type of person, but it got better when I started Zoloft, went out and drank (got worse), started Xanax (had a bad episode) with it and it went downhill from there.  Thanks for your help, as I feel like I'm running out of options.  I really appreciate it.

debaser
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1745
   Posted 5/4/2007 4:28 PM (GMT -6)   
Blue,

I seriously doubt that drugs you took months ago would still be affecting you. I seriously, seriously doubt it. But it's not a medical opinion and that's what you need. To my knowledge, no HW poster is an MD and that's where you need to go for help with this. A pharmacist may help some, but really, a doctor would be much better.

What are you on RIGHT NOW and what, if anything, have you stopped taking in the last month or so? How long have you been on the lexapro?
My Brain: My friend, My enemy: A blog to chronicle my attempt to recover from anxiety/panic disorder
anxietypanicdisorder.blogspot.com/

Post Edited (debaser) : 5/4/2007 3:30:30 PM (GMT-6)


Blue727
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 5/4/2007 5:01 PM (GMT -6)   
I am currently taking 20 mg of Lexapro (for almost 12 weeks) and 10 mg of Ambien to sleep, along with 1 20 mg of Prilosec daily.  I stopped taking the Clonezapan maybe three weeks ago, but I was never really on it to begin with.  I took it every now and then, but never the full 2 mg daily.  I completely understand nobody on here is an MD, but getting the advice of so many people with a vast knowledge of this stuff will never hurt.  Thanks for the help.

debaser
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1745
   Posted 5/4/2007 5:56 PM (GMT -6)   
I checked a database for interactions between the following drugs and found none:

Clonazepam Oral
Lexapro Oral
Ambien Oral
Prilosec Oral
Risperdal Oral

If it were me I'd be uncomfortable taking that many meds, even if you left the Clonazepam off. That's why, if I were you, I'd find new doctors and ask them to re-evaluate your treatment.
My Brain: My friend, My enemy: A blog to chronicle my attempt to recover from anxiety/panic disorder
anxietypanicdisorder.blogspot.com/


Blue727
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 5/4/2007 7:47 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks debaser!
 
I am only taking Prilosec 20 mg, Lexapro 20 mg and Ambien 10 mg to sleep.  I really don't know what to think, as I cannot sleep even with the Ambien and my entire day I feel like my body is just going to run away!  I can barely even go in public anymore, as my eyes feel like they are popping out of my head and moving constantly when I talk to someone, well actually even when I'm at home alone.  The confusion over what to do or what to think is becoming a real burden.  I love going to the doctor and having them say "you have a really big chart for only being 27".  Love that.
 
I've heard everything from thyroid, parasite, inner ear problems, neurological problems, but yet no answers.  I have never seen an ENT or a neurologist, but I just feel like I'm grasping at slippery straws by doing that.  My head hurst a lot, my ears a lot, I look really tired (and hear it all the time), but nothing seems to help.  I realize it's more than likely anxiety and depression, but it has gotten astronomically worse in the last 2-3 weeks, to the point I don't even want to leave my house.  I just feel the Lexapro has become a problem for me.  Sorry for venting, but I really do appreciate it.  I have two kids 5 and under and I feel like my life is over....no relationship, I don't want them to be embarrased of me and such.  My eyes and my body feel like they are going non stop.  I am going to try and sleep for like the next two days, as I quit my very stressful, dead end, burnout job a week ago and I think sleep will help me relax my mind.  Thanks Again!!

debaser
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1745
   Posted 5/4/2007 8:21 PM (GMT -6)   
Lexapro is an SSRI, right? It will, for the first few weeks, actually cause anxiety in some cases. I've heard of lots of doctors prescribing short-acting benzos to counteract that side-effect (which I believe is listed as fairly common) during the first month or so. You know how it goes: if these side effects do not go away or are troublesome, see your doctor.

And you know what else they say: "Just give yourself to Jesus". Well, find a doctor, tell him or her you want to start over, and "give" yourself to him. Let them make the decisions.
My Brain: My friend, My enemy: A blog to chronicle my attempt to recover from anxiety/panic disorder
anxietypanicdisorder.blogspot.com/


Blue727
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 5/4/2007 9:44 PM (GMT -6)   
Yes, Lexapro is an SSRI, but wow, I can really tell the difference in a negative way.  My body is out of control on this stuff.  Lately I feel sick to my stomach, kind of like the flu, panic attacks (never before), cannot sleep even with 10 mg of Ambien (and if I do, it's for a short period of time and very bad, vivid dreams), I find myself trying to focus on things to the point that it makes my neck twitch, involuntary twitching of the legs and sometimes arms, head feels like a can of soup...the other problem I noticed within the last week, is now when I take the Ambien, I can barely walk and stumble into things (only last about 10-15 minutes).
 
Does anyone know if you can take Simply Sleep (by Tylenol) over the counter with 20 mg of Lexapro (taken in the morning)?  The active ingredient is Diphenhydramine HCI and it's 25 mg.
 
debaser....thanks for the help.  I would search for this info....but I don't know how.  Thanks Again!

manyembers
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 424
   Posted 5/4/2007 9:44 PM (GMT -6)   
hi Blue,

Do you still see the dr.'s assistant who suggested that last time? From what you said, he suggested it, but you didn't actually have a test done for parasites did you? If not, then you could go back to him/her and ask them what they think you should do. If it is a parasite, like I said, you may or may not have success treating it with a regular med. doctor - depending on his/her paradigm. In my own journey, it has been like this: 3 years ago I went to my dr. twice stating I thought I had parasites. I think he humored me by giving me 'tests' for it. Over the course of a year he gave me forms to have two stool tests done - only later I learned that test only looked for like 3 possible parasites. Not very helpful. I have a great dr. now. I actually drew him a picture of something I actually saw in my stools and he almost immediately diagnosed me and gave me (and my husband) a prescription to kill the intruder(s). I have the prescription awaiting on my desk. My first dr. assured me parasites are not anything to really consider, while my new doctor told me they are very very common. So all that to say, it will probably depend a lot upon your doctor's personal view of parasites/worms as to whether or not it will be helpful. I would just write down all your symptoms and if you do happen to have anything out of the ordinary happening with your stools/bm (sorry, if that's too much information) - but write it down. Give as much info. as you can.

Candida also is not diagnosed very accurately with conventional medical tests. If you're open to it, you could talk to a knowledgeable person at a local health food store. But just take notes, and understand they may or may not be helpful. But if you want to try a cleanse, cloves, black walnut hull, wormwood are the three key herbs needed to kill the eggs, larvae and adults ACCORDING TO WHAT I HAVE READ, but I'm not an expert.

All the best. Hope you feel better soon! mb

Post Edited (manyembers) : 5/4/2007 8:46:09 PM (GMT-6)


Blue727
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 5/4/2007 10:05 PM (GMT -6)   
 
Thanks for your help.  Not too much information at all, actually everything is very helpful in this quest.  I really think I need to discontinue this Lexapro ASAP!  I know they say side effects usually wear off within 4 weeks, but my family members have always had a low or intolerance to many medications.  I can tell within the last 2 weeks that this stuff has really kicked in.  I feel I could run a marathon, although I am tired.  My body is in that constant fight or flight mode and it has actually started causing me to have panic attacks, which I really have never had before.
 
What kind of symptoms did you have?  I know they won't be the same or anything like that, but everything and anything could help me at this point.  I not only think I don't respond well to SSRI's, but I don't think I respond well to any of these meds.  Like I said, my problems usually stemmed from a night of drinking and a little OCD tendencies.  My family said "if we would have known this was going to happen, we would have never suggested any of it."  By biggest problem (in my opinion) is the fact that they never gave me time in between medications to wien off or anything to see if that was a problem.  It was always (Thursday for instance) stop this one and start this one on the same day.  My pdoc just told me a couple weeks ago, if the Clonazepan wasn't working to stop it.  It was never wien yourself off or anything like that.  Crazy stuff, but I'm convinced this stuff is making me worse than ever.  Thanks for the insight into this.  Hope all is well.
 

ChristianWithHope
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 119
   Posted 5/4/2007 10:52 PM (GMT -6)   
Blue,
When are you scheduled to talk to a different doctor/psychiatrist?
It's certainly possible that you don't react well to Lexapro. But it could just as easily be that the dosage is off. If it's too high or too low, you won't receive a therapeutic effect. It doesn't sound like they've changed the meds at all since you started taking it 3 months ago.
You're right that something needs to change. If you've been on an SSRI for 3 months with no positive results, then your doc should have given your something different.
I would start by finding a different doc. And do NOT take yourself off the meds. Thnnks

manyembers
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 424
   Posted 5/5/2007 1:27 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Blue,

YOU WROTE: I don't sleep well, find myself grinding my teeth, feeling like my body is going a million miles a minute....cold to start the night, sweating when I wake up and for the rest of the day, irratability, fear of going crazy....you name it.

MY REPLY: Okay, I've read a lot of different sources that list symptoms of parasites, and most list "Grinding teeth at night." Not sleeping well can be related to many things, but can also be attributed to parasites/candida/toxicity. Feeling like your body is going a million miles a minute - I get this too. In my case, as embarrassing as it is to write, it is often much better after a good bowel movement - which is why I think there is a toxicity/parasite element involved. When these things die they give off toxic substances which are then swept out by the eliminative organs. Night sweats can be parasite related. I tend to get these off and on. But this can also be hormonal or other things. Irritability and fear of going crazy also parasite/candida/toxicity related. The fear of going crazy is something I tend to get again when I am too toxic or symptoms of candida are resurfacing. OCD symptoms - had these coming back as well before I went on a cleansing regimine again a few months ago.

With parasites etc., like I mentioned, they give off toxic substances when they die, and likely just in general (waste products). These things can mess with the central nervous system as well as affecting thinking (brain fog). I think that the chronic anxiety plays off these things and vice versa. I have not had a stable enough life or finances to do a complete cleanse, but can say from the amount I did several years ago, it made a real difference in anxiety levels and I'm making my way back to taking care of things more thoroughly this time round.

You mentioned alcohol - this is again just throwing something out there as a possibility, but candida feed on alcohol, so if you notice when you have alcohol, or sugar (which they also feed on) that your symptoms of anxiety and OCD are worse, there MAY be a connection.

I encourage you, if you think any of these things might be a possibility, to just do a search on google and read up on the symptoms and e-mail your questions to some of the sites you find. Don't trust everyone who replies as there are some kooks out there and people who just want money, but if you do your investigating, over time you may find there is common ground in what you read or in replies you get which may help to pinpoint some things. It could be that parasite(s) are present, but are only part of the problem. But solving part of the problem is better than nothing! Step by step.

take care, mb

debaser
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1745
   Posted 5/5/2007 1:11 PM (GMT -6)   
I have to vehemently disagree. I don't think it's a good idea for this person to go off and start googling up information about parasites. He should discuss it with a medical doctor and whether or not he has them should be determined scientifically. Anxiety Disorders are strange animals...when you start googling something, suddenly you have very real symptoms whether you have the disease or not.

He could do what I did: show up at a good teaching hospital and start at their "Center for Diagnostic Medicine" or equivalent. From there they'll unturn every stone. In such an environment there's a very large number of very good doctors. You can do the trial and error thing with trying to find a doctor yourself, or you just jump in where your odds at finding quality specialists are much higher than normal. From there he can also do what I recommended, which is re-evaluate his entire treatment of anxiety. Another benefit of doing it this way is you can typically go on several concurrent tracks with one doctor supervising the whole thing. Most insurance plans have a teaching hospital in-network, too.
My Brain: My friend, My enemy: A blog to chronicle my attempt to recover from anxiety/panic disorder
anxietypanicdisorder.blogspot.com/

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