Copaxone and Anxiety

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
[ << Previous Thread | Next Thread >> ]

littlechina
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 97
   Posted 2/9/2008 3:13 PM (GMT -7)   
I have been on Copaxone for year now. For the most part, my side effects have been very minimal and I just had another MRI to see how it's working up there in the ol' brain (still awaiting results on that one). The only major problem I am having is anxiety. I read in all my Copaxone literature that this could be a possible side effect, but I didn't think too much of it. I have always been prone to some mild anxiety (thanks to genetics) but nothing that wasn't manageable and nothing that ever affected my day to day life.

Over the last five months or so, however, my anxiety has escalated significantly, to the point where it IS affecting my day to day life. Panic attacks are occurring on an increasingly regular basis, which has impacted my job and my social life. My husband, God bless him, is so understanding and is doing his best to be supportive and nurturing, but I know this is not easy for him.

It's horrible. I don't feel like myself anymore at all and I'm not sure what to do. I'm not too keen on the idea of taking anxiety medication to fix a problem caused by my other medication. I don't want to be on a lot of different medications...I don't even take Tylenol if I don't have to, preferring to exhaust all natural methods first. My doctor is horribly judgmental and opinionated and I don't feel comfortable talking to him about this at all (I'm currently looking for a new neuro).

Anyway, I guess my question is to those of you out there on Copaxone. Has anyone else experienced issues with anxiety as a result of getting on this medication? If so, how do you cope? What has helped you?

Appreciate your input!
~Niki

Gretchen1
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 3550
   Posted 2/9/2008 4:41 PM (GMT -7)   

Hey Niki,

Wow that sound awful.  I have been on Copaxone for just a little over a year.  I too have some mild anxiety problems.  I think partly genetics partly just who I am.  It is a control thing for me.  Having control issues and MS, not a great combo. 

I am so glad to hear that you are looking for a new neuro.  You don't need to be feeling guilty on top of your anxiety.  Sheeesh have some more anxiety.  I really think you need to talk to a doctor though.  What about your GP?  My GP is great about this sort of thing.  My neuro is quite a distance from me and although she is readily accessable by phone or e-mail, I find it easier to just see my GP.  He keeps in contact with the neuro. 

Ok I am rambling here, the bottom line is that you are suffering.  You need some relief.  I know you are not happy to take new/ more meds but talk to a doctor. 

I am not seeing an increase with my anxiety.  I do exerercise quite a lot.  I have found that getting my heart rate up 5 or more times a week really helps my frame of mind.  This is a bit new for me.  I have been on an aerobic bent for about  a year now.  I am currently adding some strength training to this mix.  My point being this helps my anxiety.

Also, just because you are feeling anxious does not absolutely mean the it is caused by the copaxone.  What about talking to a therapist??  Could you be feeling more anxious because you are fairly newly diagnosed??  Good luck with this.  I truly hope you get some relief soon.  Anxiety is miserable.

Love and prayers,


Gretchen       co-moderator MS board       diagnosed with MS July 2006


Kiera
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 364
   Posted 2/9/2008 8:56 PM (GMT -7)   
I agree with Gretchen on two counts: 1. anxiety is miserable , and 2. control freak and ms sheesh what a mix (i happened to be one also).

Ive been on copaxone for awhile but consistently not long enough to tell you if the anxiety attacks ive had lately are coming from that or from all im going through. Keeping in mind that MS is stressful enough, then add any new thing (good or bad) and you can get an ugly mix. Now the thing about good is alot of people dont associate good thinigs with stress, when they actually can cause more than bad things at times. An example would be expecting a guest at your home. The cleaning, making the guest room up , shopping for the food that you will serve, planning or just anticipating their arrival..all of these things can lead up to Stress and Anxiety. Either way its not a pretty thing to feel.

I've had 3 panic attacks that is not usual for me in the past 2 weeks (i have had more stress also), but still these attacks did seem to come on in the middle of nothing. Not even worrisome thoughts. I didn't think of copaxone and keep in mind im certainly not a pro at this, i think most of the copaxone warnings happen within a certain time frame of the shot. Some can happen a little later than per sey the 15 minute/30 minute guideline.

Id suggest to try and time when you take your shot to when the next attack occurs to see if there is correlation. Copaxone has less side effects than the other medicines and although its possible, if its outside of an hour from taking your shot, i would think it is from stress.

Taking medicine on top of medicine--sigh. It can be a very real and bad issue. The problem here though is that when anything alters your normal function is when to see what can be done. Since your neuro seems a little hard to reach (not physically)id consult my gp or maybe even a counselor after i called the support system of copaxone.

Taking one medicine to cure another is not a good approach, but if you have copaxone as your only choice it might be a thing that could be taken for a small amount of time? Then weaned off of. You seem very sensible and I've no doubt that you would make sure you were weaned.

These are all just suggestions. Id time it by the injection/call Copaxone support (cant think of name how good is that?) /call gp for advice and if the first areas didnt reveal anything Id see a counselor. There are counselor's that do not use medicine. You can always opt for that.

In the meantime, i know its hard. I hate anxiety and that's probably why it hangs around....i hope yours is shortlived and im sure it will be. Might just be a hurdle..sometimes shining less light on something keeps it from growing bigger. Just an idea!


thanks

kiera
Every day brings us closer to what we reach for .........in all things.
 
Kiera


littlechina
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 97
   Posted 2/9/2008 9:53 PM (GMT -7)   
You know, that is a good point you both bring up that I didn't really think about. Perhaps it's not the Copaxone that's brought on my anxiety, but just the stress of having MS. I too am a bit of a control freak....I need to have all my ducks in a row to feel at ease. MS certainly has it's way of throwing my ducks out of whack.

I've done a lot of thinking today, and I've realized that majority of my anxiety and panic attacks happen in the morning...getting ready for work, trying to get out of the door on time or during my morning at work. None of these things are easy, especially as I'm so fatigued that getting out of bed in the morning is a real challenge. Which makes getting to work on time a challenge. I don't stay on top of my laundry, because of the fatigue, so in the morning I'm always scrambling for something to wear. Just added stress I don't need, and I think that throws me into overload and I snap.

Fatigue is a real problem, and I think that since that is causing a lot of disruptions to my schedule, that is what may be bringing on the anxiety. I think that is where I need to put some focus and see how it goes. I know that upping my physical exercise is a big key, it's just so hard when some days staying upright is about all I can do. But I need to apply some problem solving and find a way to make it work.

Thanks for your input, both of you. I really appreciate it!!

Gretchen1
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 3550
   Posted 2/9/2008 11:00 PM (GMT -7)   

Niki,

You have done some good thinking here.  Good for you.  You need to come up with some strategies for de stressing your mornings.  Could you get help with the laundry??  Is there a teenager in need of some cash you could pay to help you out?? 

I am not too experienced with the fatigue.  I have some.  I sleep hard.  I need lots of sleep.  I do pretty well during the day.  I can't help you with the exercise thing.  I have no idea if that makes fatigure worse or better.  I am a very early riser.  I get on the eliptical at about 5 am. I used to have a treadmill but I have a left foot that hated that. That is the only time I will do it.  If I don't do it first thing, I won't do it at all.  I just know it really helps my head.  I work out lots of things in my head while working out.  What about starting really, really easy?  Just do some simple stretches and deep breathing.  You could maybe try a short walk, perhaps during your lunch break.  I don't know what you are able to do.  I know that some with MS can exercise and for others it is really out of the question. 

Again, good luck and let us know how you are doing.  It is so good to see you back here.  By the way, I love the visual of whacked out ducks :-) .  I NEED my ducks in a row too. 

Love and prayers,


Gretchen       co-moderator MS board       diagnosed with MS July 2006

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
Forum Information
Currently it is Wednesday, December 13, 2017 2:35 AM (GMT -7)
There are a total of 2,904,692 posts in 318,782 threads.
View Active Threads


Who's Online
This forum has 158164 registered members. Please welcome our newest member, Sickaz.
198 Guest(s), 2 Registered Member(s) are currently online.  Details
NiceCupOfTea, Subdenis