What type of Doctor will prescribe ritalin for fms?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by fonda, Jul 31, 2003.

  1. fonda

    fonda New Member

    Hey all. I just had a appt with my rhuematolgist 2 weeks ago.
    I asked him if we could try me on ritalin. He said that it hasnt been approved by the FDA as a treatment for FMS, and that he could't prescribe it. Where do I go now. I need a medication that will help with the fatique from _____. And my memory isn't so good either. My son takes ritalin for ADHD. I dont condone taking other peoples medications, but I did try it for a couple of days. It made a big difference. Now, I am back to my tired self. Any suggestions? Thanks.
  2. elaine_p

    elaine_p New Member

    He must be concerned about off-label use, since there's been such a big stink about that lately. My doc prescribes it for my CFS--I think it was initially to rule out narcolepsy or something.

    Or maybe he's concerned because I think it's a Schedule II drug. (It's called "speed" on the street.)
  3. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    A doc willing to prescribe it for you, but I think prescribing meds for off-label use will not be as common since the whole lawsuit thing over Neurontin.

    Before you decide to use a stimulant, go to our library here and read Dr. Cheney's articles on Klonopin and then the one on SSRI's and stimulants. Just do a search on Dr. Cheney and it will bring up his articles.

    Dr. Cheney is an expert in CFIDS, but this is an area of overlap with FMS, so the info is pertinent to both. If, after reading the article, you still want to try a stimulant, ask for a sample of Provigil. It works in a much smaller area of the brain and therefore, I believe, has less chance of causing long-term brain damage from use.

    Love, Mikie
  4. DeMcKen

    DeMcKen New Member

    It goes without saying that everyone is different. I have been on Provigil, Adderal and Ritalin at times (prescribed by my psychiatrist before I was dxed). They helped for a short time, but overall weren't beneficial. I was more mentally alert, but could still sleep right through them and they made me very jittery and shaky after a while. I know how you feel though - I was willing to try anything to get rid of the fatigue.

    I sure wish I had an answer for you (and myself), but I'll keep you in my thougts.

  5. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    Read Dr. Cheney's articles. He believes using stimulants and SSRI's will cause long-term brain damage from stimulating a brain whose neurons are already misfiring and overfiring.

    People on Provigil said that they could get the same results from having a cup of coffe in the morning and it is much cheaper.

    I had a paradoxical reaction to Provigil and it just made me feel out of it and extremely tired. Taking it when taking Klonopin is contraindicated and that may be why. I believe I suffered from ADHD as a child and that may be why as well.

    Love, Mikie
  6. elaine_p

    elaine_p New Member

    My doc initially prescribed it 2 years ago, while I was doing another work attempt. I only took it for 5-6 weeks. It *may* have allowed me to work at the job longer than I otherwise would have been able. I was able to last 4 months (there were several short work weeks and at the end I had to reduce my hours and after two weeks of that gave notice). It took me 6 months or more to recover from the job. I'm not sure if the ritalin was really responsible for anything there or not.

    Now, I take it only when I need an extra jolt (or take a caffeine pill). The downside is it doesn't work all the time, and there are diminishing returns (can't phrase that better right now). For me, it interfered with my sleep even when I was exhausted.

    I think you should read the article Mikie mentioned and make your own decision. It's your brain and if it gives you a quality of life you can't otherwise have, the concerns about brain damage are up to you. You might find after a month or so that it doesn't work as well as it did those 2 days. As I said, my doc prescribes it for me now, but I usually take only one 5mg pill a month.
  7. imgreat

    imgreat New Member

    Dear Fonda,
    My humble opinion is take a look at your life and ask yourself if it's possible you also could be ADHD. The point that it runs in families should not be overlooked. My son was dx young and knew that myself and two siblings are also ADD. Check out a Dr.Amen in Cal. He is not in the practice of diagnosing over the internet - but sometimes Drs. don't ask the right questions for people to really understand if in fact this could be the problem. And as far as having ADD. as a child but outgrowing it is a very controversial subject. I think alot of people slow down but what about the focus they are unable to maintain? So I started on Ritalin before this three year flair. The point is the brain fog is so bad etc. etc. that any little bit of help is great! take care, Debbie
    [This Message was Edited on 08/02/2003]
  8. sumbuni

    sumbuni New Member

    I have cfs and my doc is treating me with a new drug. Strattera...it is for the treatment of ADD/ADHD..AND the fatiue of cfs and fms. It is new, and it is NOT a stimulant, which is why the docs think its so great. I have been taking it for about 3 weeks, and i do think it is helping. I don't have any side effects from it, yet, and hope i don't.

    Feel better soon!
    God Bless.