QUESTION for anybody who knows their chemistry

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by popgun, Feb 13, 2003.

  1. popgun

    popgun New Member

    For 3 yrs I have taken 50 mgs of Elivil, and 20mgs of Paxil in COMBO (together) 2hrs prior to sleep. After 3 days I had a marked improvement with fibro-fog,memory,fatgue,and sleep.Chemically I know they both have something to do with seritonin but I can't find any reason for it to work. I just had read an article on it, I would suggest you get your Drs OK to try it. Its sure been good for me.I don't loose my keys every ten mins, and I have had a plus in remembering phone #s.
    [This Message was Edited on 02/18/2003]
  2. TerriM

    TerriM New Member

    I'm glad that is working for you . . . 50mg. Elavil sounds high for the normal low dose sleeping aid. Elavil is a tricyclic antidepressant that in large doses is an antidepressant and in small doses a sleep/pain aid -- plus I believe it does somehow enhance the immune system (it did with me . . . I didn't have any infections of any type while on it -- I know they say Doxepin does this also & it is a tricyclic). Paxil is a SSRI (Selective Seratonin Reuptake Inhibitor) . . . it keeps the Seratonin neurotransmitter in the synapse longer for reabsorbtion/reuse . . . basically if you are low in seratonin it will keep it out there so that you can get more benefit from it. I'm not sure why exactly a combination of them would work . . . I was unable to take Paxil.

    I would caution anyone who hasn't tried Elavil before to take a MUCH smaller dose than that at first to try it for sleep. The highest dose for sleep my dr. recommended was 10 mg. and I had to start at 2.5 mg. and work my way up . . . it will make you feel like a zombie and last well into the next day if you don't start slow!
  3. layinglow

    layinglow New Member

    Elavil works well for some--50 mgs. is not a high dosage for some, especially after three years.
    Those who are very sensitive to drugs might be zonked by that dosage, I know many with FM/CFS are quite sensitive. After starting out on what seems to be a common dosage for sleep of 25 mg., I progressed to 70mgs. before noticing any effect at all. Unfortunately, although initially making me sleepy, I was still having about 20 wake ups per night. In addition to that it caused weight gain, and really increased restless leg syndrome.
    (I have sinced switched to klonopin and it has really made a difference.)
    During the time I was taking elavil, I also began taking Paxil. I did have a bad reaction to the combo, and would suggest anyone taking those to be aware of the symptoms of serotonin syndrome.
    Best wishes, LL
  4. Cactuslil

    Cactuslil New Member

    Where to start? I will start at the end. A couple of months ago I was worsening. The tremors were hardly controlled by the beta blocker (inderal); my hands were affected by this tremor (I was a musician), my vocal chords made me sound like I was using tremelo!

    I fell down tooo many times. My irritable bowel even got in on all of this too. The vertigo was horrific.

    After being treated six years ago with an array of meds I am down to relatively few and I know and understand why I take these meds I do take.

    Turns out I had Tardives Dystonia; a rare side-effect of SSRI's. The doc #1 had put me on steroids (Pred) so my vocal chords could hold out for the musical jaunt but all in all I could hold up to the rigors of a real tight start-up band...I also had a.....4-5 year old little boy, no husband, but he did pay child support, thank Heavens.

    The doc had to increase and increase the Pred. as each time he tried to get me off I ended up in the hospital!

    He dumped me. Wouldn't even let me say goodbye. The doctor who shed a tear when he told me I had tumors on the chest wall! I begged, tried to get the ins. lady to talk with him. I was in the middle of a divorce, a disability claim with no diagnosis and without his continued search I was at square one! He would not waiver! My daughter, 29, continues to go to him and he always jokes with her about me trying to diagnose myself!

    Moral of the story. No medication behave perfectly in everyone. There was the one above who could not tolerate Paxil; there is every other person having problems with eflexor and their libido.

    I think at one time it was routine for rheumies to augment traditional pain medication with SSRI's as an off-label use; and it did work wonders for many. I have just about tried them all as a psychiatric patient. I have dysthymia. The death sentence to depressives, so to speak; I am fighting that to the hilt. Being dysthymic puts a kink in every med they give.

    Had I not taken certain of the SSRI's I took, I would not have had side-effects which robbed me of my career. Even though it has been ten years, it feels like yesterday when I realized I would never again play for the public and this was a direct effect of SSRI's. Now when I quit taking XYZ the Tardives effect was gone; however I have read that Thorazine given to a person with this reaction to SSRI's will have a permanent condition!! Thorazine is sometimes used presurgery for its sedating effect!

    Sounds corny but we must be our own physician. Read all you can, learn from others, share with others, and above all else make sure each and every doc you see knows you medical history. Two weeks ago as I prepared for surgery on my mandible, my doc was astounded that I have Sjordens. I told him if he had read my file, he would have known.

    Anyway, for many years I took SSRI's with no problem. Something went awry this go-round and I paid for it royally! Caveat Emptor. Cactus'