Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by greatgran, Sep 16, 2006.

  1. greatgran

    greatgran Member

    Could someone explain to me in plain terms exactly why anti-anxiety meds help CFS..

    I have read Dr. Chenney's article but don't fully grasp exactly what he is saying..as to how it helps...

    Would love to have a good explaination to show to my doc..As xanax has truly helped me in many ways.. I know I am dependant on xanax as I have taken it for almost five years but it has given me a somewhat funcional life as I would not have had without it..

    I do suffer from anxiety/depression and it does help with that but too it helps with many other cfs and fibro symptoms...

    Thanks for any input.
    God Bless,
  2. GBHope

    GBHope New Member

    I take Ativan/lorazepam. It helps me a lot!!! I can't take ADs. To many side-effects. I too suffer with anxiety, not really depression, just fleeting for an hour or something here and there. It has helped me be more functional too, but my doctor doesn't understand. I got it from my endocrinologist originally. I can get it from my rheumatologist too, but am going to see the psychiatrist next week to talk to her about its benefits and like you, I too am hooked; although, I only take 1 mg a day at bedtime and occasionally need a 0.5 mg more.

    Do you take it during the day and if so, how much? Also, who prescribed your Xanax? My brother and mom take Xanax because they suffer with anxiety disorder.

  3. greatgran

    greatgran Member

    My Rx calls for .05mg. three times a day but I only take half of that..So I take .25mg three to four times a day as needed...There have been a few weeks I take only .25 once or twice a day..Then when in a crash I may take up to four .25 a day...

    My PA was the first to prescibe them to me for anxiety...They were like a miracle drug but read so many negative things about them I was scared of becoming addicted..So, I saw a psych..and he tried me on many different AD's which I was unable to take..That was when he decided that xanax was probably the drug for me..After a few visits with him and finally getting a Dx of CFS/fibro my PA gives them to me...Sure hope she doesn't leave her practice...So many doctors just don't want to prescribe them...

    Before the CFS, I took xanax four times a day for over two years and had no trouble getting off of them..

    They have been a good drug for me and thank you for your reply...

  4. NO1NOS

    NO1NOS New Member

    Hi greatgran, this is my 1st time here! I love it. Reading all mess, its WOW!!!! I have all the same s&s, my history of fms is rather long, and I will share with fms friends as I can (cant be on compt..2 long) ya know,,,.
    Anyways, Im on clonapin 1mg 3x a day but need more Dr. dont understand why, immune 2 it so doesnt work as well eventually ur body gets immuned 2 meds therefor require higher dosages duh,,,2 yrs now (have been on valiun(adivan),worked just as well. Cant function without it. And yes Drs. are hesitant to prescribe due 2 dependancy yes i am,
    It was initially used for seizure pts, wk for ambulance been off since '02, job injury,comp.. anyways anti-anxiety meds are given to relax the muscles & nerves in order for pain meds 2 work more effecient it relaxes you therefor pain threshold will decrease. There have been times when I have been out of clonipan and oh my not good;( I could not get out of bed which is were i am most of the time, couldnt even touch my skin hurt so bad and find the baggiest clothes to wear so it barely touches body(bf/clothes work best ha)I also take 1 at night with my sleep med & requip 0.25mg initially use 4 restless leg synd, have that 2 but works for fm pts. If any of you wonderful people in pain would like to know more info on my story, how i live, pain diagn,,neck surgery in May from injury 4 disc replaced please write reply etc,, I hope some info helped you i know i got of track alittle in a "fog" right now ha ha yuky..
    Thank you for your message and for being here to help others and yourself Take care Take it easy! also thanks to all of you in this site I dont feel so alone anymore no 1 nos fms but us
    1 day at a time, I pray just to make it through the day or night on 3 hrs of sleep:(, thank GOD for leading me to this site i can smile knowing (unfortunatly) I'm not alone!!!!!
  5. GBHope

    GBHope New Member

    I am so glad that you started this post greatgran. I have been trying to tell everyone this, but not able to get my point across. It really helps. I see a psychiatrist next week and if she doesn't agree with this and wants me on an ADs, I am running the other way. I hope she understands I just can't take any old thing. I am extremely sensitive and have to go with what works.

  6. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    Can be caused by emotional/psychological situations and/or it can be physically induced. In our case, the drugs work because there is a physical reason we have it. Our brains are always overfiring, causing racing brain and, according to Cheney, early death of the neurons. We can sleep but without our meds, we cannot transition into the slight state of coma, which is the kind of sleep we needs to be refreshed.

    This slight seizure state can cause a host of other symptoms, including sensory overload, tinnitus, muscle spasms, and RLS. As my health continues slowly to improve overall, I seldom need the Klonopin during the day for anxiety or sensory overload. Used to be I couldn't drive because the movement of the cars around me caused panic and disorientation. I couldn't go into restaurants or stores if there was noise or harsh lighting. I found that with 1/4 of a .5 mg. pill dissolved under my tongue, I could tolerate it. It gave me back my life.

    Now, I just take it at bedtime to sleep. Eventually, as I continue to heal, I hope to be able to wean off of it. I've tried but not been successful yet. I must still need it. Several times, the Klonopin has felt less effective, a sign of tolerance. I just wean down for a bit and then go back to the original dose and it works fine.

    Logic tells me that Cheney is right in that the Klonopin protects the brain. A constant state of seizure cannot possibly be healthy. Still, I am concerned about long-term use of any drug which alters brain chemistry. I could not be functional without the Klonopin, so I had to make the decision I made. I think it was the right one for me.

    Love, Mikie
  7. greatgran

    greatgran Member

    Thanks to each of you for your replies and help...in making this easier for me to understand..

    Stress, yes I do have a lot, who wouldn't with this DD..and I can see why the anti-anxiety would help..not only anxiety but the ache/pains etc..For years there has been a lot of family stess in my life and still continues..The damands of the family that I try to meet just puts me to bed at times..Seem it never ends, when one thing seems to settle down then there is always something to take its place...So yes, stress does play a big factor in the way I feel...

    Mikie, do you mind telling me how long you have been on klonopin and so happy to hear you are improving...

    Thanks again,
  8. diannev

    diannev New Member

    Hi everybody,

    I've had anxiety problems for many years and I had a psych doc in VA who was great about prescribing the amount of valium I needed to function well. Then I got an infection, or cellulitus, or a spider bite....don't really know what it was and probably never will. It was the last straw for my body, after having a lot of surgeries for a birth defect (long story). I moved from VA to PA, near my family, and now I'm wishing I'd stayed where it was warmer and I had a doc who gave me what I needed.

    Anyway, I was diagnosed with fibro after the "bite" in May '03 and I'm now on SS Disability. I'm 46 and feel like 80! I take too many drugs and I really think I'd be able to stop taking a lot of them if my doc would give me more valium. He prescribes some but nothing close to what I used to get. It's so aggravating that doctors are afraid to prescribe things like that. I'm taking Percocet and Methadone daily, along with several other Rx's, and I know they have to be a lot worse for me than valium would be. Maybe I should talk to him about trying less of the narcotics and more of the valium.

    Sorry I'm rambling. I could go on for hours but I won't. Just know I understand and agree with all of you who function very well with anti-anxiety drugs.

  9. Slayadragon

    Slayadragon New Member

    I've been taking 1-2 mg of Klonopin (generic works fine) before bed every night for the past five years. It helps put me in a deeper sleep, and I awake much more rested. I have not needed to increase the dosage since I have started taking it and can sleep without it, and so it seems that I am not becoming dependent.

    If I wake up in the middle of the night and can't sleep, sometimes I will take .5 mg of Xanax (generic is fine). It has a shorter effect--about 4 hours. The Klonopin lasts for 6-7 hours or so, then dies off.

    Apparently both Klonopin and Xanax have mild anti-seizure activity as well as tranquilizing ones. Other benzodiazpines are rumored not to work as well. The one I tried (can't remember the name) didn't do anything, and I haven't bothered to shop around.

    My psychopharmacologist (drug doctor who treats my cyclothymia) always asks if I think the Klonopin is making me tired. My response is that if I take it during the day (which I have infrequently), it does not make me sleepy at all. It only makes me have deeper sleep at night. I wake up much more sleepy when I don't take it than when I do.

    I don't think he believes me, but I also think he is of the belief that CFS is a neurological illness (like bipolar or schizophrenia) and can be "cured" (meaning fully controlled) with psychotropic drugs. If only this were so.....

    I'm pretty sure this information is summarized in the book "From Fatigued to Fantastic." If so, there probably are some references to serious medical articles that might be useful to you. In any case, it provides a better understanding of the theory behind using this class of drugs.
  10. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    Between 5 and 6 years now. I don't think I could have a normal life without it. Thanks for the good wishes. I'm still struggling with whatever is causing my digestion problems and I'm ruuning a temp. I've heard there is a bug going around which does this but the elimination diet shows that I am allergic to wheat. Thanks again for the good wishes.

    Love, Mikie

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