My Nightmare from Paxil

“About 2 months into the Paxil I began having bizarre and sometimes violent thoughts.”


I’ll keep my story relatively short as I know there are thousands like it.

I was given Celexa in Dec ’99 for an inner ear/off balance feeling. My family physician said I had anxiety, even though I told him that I did not feel anxious or depressed. I did not know and was not told Celexa is an anti-depressant; I was just told it would make me feel better. After 6 months of use, I felt no better or worse so I decided to discontinue cold turkey (no one informed me this is bad). I experienced the typical zaps and blah feelings, and thinking I needed the medicine, continued on it for almost 3 years, trying to quit unsuccessfully 3 times.

In October 2002, I saw a neurologist for a return of the “off balance” feeling and he also suggested anxiety. An MRI with contrast turned up nothing. He suggested I segue immediately into Paxil. I asked him if stopping Celexa one day and starting Paxil the next would be wise (I did not know anything about these meds still) and he assured me that “these medications are in the same class; there will be no issues with that”. So, since he was the expert, I believed him.

About 2 months into the Paxil I began having bizarre and sometimes violent thoughts. They were completely out of my control. They invaded my mind at will and scared the dickens out of me. I was afraid to tell my wife for fear she would think I was going insane. About a month after these thoughts started I thought maybe the Paxil was the cause so I timidly talked to a new family physician about the “way I was feeling” on Paxil and his suggestion was: UP THE DOSE! I told him I wanted off and he suggested I taper over a 2 week period (this would prove to be bad).

During this tapering process I began having violent dreams and negative thoughts about myself (I took my last dose in mid-March of ’03). The physical effects during the withdrawal process were horrible too. I was always a very confident and strong willed person so this really scared/troubled me. These sort of thoughts continued to be very “downing” to myself and got worse over the next 6 months (until around January’04). Then I found Dr. Tracy’s book on Prozac and everything started to make sense. The book has been a Godsend to me and I thank her for it. The past few months have been slowly getting better but I am still left wondering when will I feel 100% again. Can anyone answer this???

The portion of Prozac: Panacea or Pandora that discusses how alcohol reacts with a person after SSRI use is very interesting. I had a shot of whiskey at my brother’s wedding in August (I had been off of Paxil for 5 months at that point) and I swear it felt like I drank half the bottle. Prior to SSRI use I never had that problem. Now I no longer drink, even socially.

I wrote this hoping to add support to the cause of banning these medications for good. Hopefully this helps in some way.

Thank you for your time,


Nurse Gives up on Medical Profession

“Here in the US, every magazine you pick up, even the one called “Health” is full of promotions for drugs.”

Bless your heart,  Ann Blake Tracy

I came to the US in 1999 and was immediately horrified about the flippant over- medication of everyone. We lived in Holland for 10 years and of course everyone is aware of the ‘free’ society over there and the readily availability of ‘pot’. And yet, you go to any supermarket, you will NOT be able to buy over the counter drugs. Even aspirin and ibuprofen can only be bought at 20 tablets per time, and your name is recorded. Child -bearing is at home and natural, again no drugs given, unless of course there are complications and then you must go to a hospital.

Here in the US, every magazine you pick up, even the one called “Health” is full of promotions for drugs. What I find even more startling, they hit the teenage groups too, advertising “if you are blue” you can take a pill ….. more drugs. I’ve stopped watching TV!!

Every time I called to find a pediatrician, what did I hear, “if you need a repeat prescription for Ritalin…..” More drugs, this time for children.

I’m a British Registered Nurse, I’ve given up on the medical profession, all they do is prescribe drugs, it has been heart wrenching seeing people deteriorate with the side-effects of drugs, it is the 6th leading cause of death in the US.

My daughter last year almost became another victim, she was sexually assaulted, and had a head injury 2 weeks later where she lost her memory. Even though valium and Vicodin were prescribed, I refused to give these to her. She made a quick recovery and soon regained her memory but had lots of neck pain. Despite all the CAT scans, MRI and x-rays, it took a chiropractor 3 months later, to find she had a broken T1. In the mean time, she kept having black-outs and ‘seizures’ and was seen by a neurologist. He immediately diagnosed her as having panic attacks, head injury wise, she was healthy, and prescribed “Topamax”. My daughter went down-hill after that. The drug had to be gradually increased, and soon she became very withdrawn, didn’t want to socialize, was afraid to be left at home, clung by my side most of the day. She lost her appetite, began to lose weight. She started to tremble, she could not focus on reading anymore, had insomnia, if she did fall asleep, she would wake up with nightmares. Most alarming was when she couldn’t even finish her sentences, she kept losing track. Of course she was trying to go school in between all this, the public school system didn’t understand, so I took her out of school. When I called the help-line at the hospital and finally could speak to the neurologist, and even after relaying all the symptoms, he insisted that it took time for the medication to work, and should increase the dosage! The very next day, she came screaming out of her room, the pain behind her eyes was excruciating. I immediately called the neurologist, who was unavailable and the nursing staff suggested I took her to the ER room. I investigated further about the side-effects of Topamax and found that it could cause bleeding behind the eyes and possible blindness. I took her to her pediatrician and luckily there was no signs of bleeding and her pain subsided. Later that day, the neurologist called and I relayed about her eyes, he suggested again to increase the Topamax!!. Then I told him about the insomnia, trembling, etc, the list was endless. He then said she should start to wean off the drug and start Elavil.

As soon as the reduced amount of Topamax regime began, she improved immensely. Then she started on Elavil, things seem to improve for a week or so, then out of the blue, she told me she had tried to commit suicide. She showed me all her cut marks on her wrists. This put me in complete turmoil, and I prayed for help. Something told me to massage my daughter, this got her through the day, it got her to sleep at night, I weaned her off all the medication, I no longer wanted to listen to their advice and I definitely was not going to allow my daughter to be on further mind-altering medication.

Three months later, I have since completed a massage course and have fully healed my daughter just through touch. I’ve learnt that the emotional state for seizures, is running away from life, or someone or something, wasn’t this just true. I recently went on another course and it included the raindrop therapy etc, then I joined young living. I heard the tape and Ann Tracy and I want to thank her for all that she does. My goal in life is to teach as many people as possible about these mind-altering drugs. My younger brother was put on medication, at the age of 9 years, they have totally destroyed his life, he is now 42 years old, his forehead is enlarged, he trembles uncontrollably, he cannot sleep, he speech is slurred, I’ve lost count how many times he has tried to commit suicide, now and again he loses control and smashes up his apartment, people are terrified of him.

The psychiatric world is destroying our lives, psychologists in schools are dangerous, the emotional state for hyperactivity is ‘too much going on- mental confusion”. Our children are bombarded with too much knowledge, they no longer have singing and very limited recreational activities in school, they are made to sit for hours, often made to be silent. They can no longer express themselves verbally and are told how to paint etc, they cannot use their own creative ideas. This stifles children’s abilities. Then they put our kids on Ritalin or a number of other mind-altering medications because they squirm in their seats and lose concentration. I totally agree with Ann Tracy, what a holocaust.

Now my daughter is well again, I will resume writing to congress, I had written many letters when I found out that they wanted to pass a law allowing psychologists to prescribe these mind-altering meds. I am going order the book and tapes and do as much as I can in my own community, and build up my confidence and ability in order to made public speeches, I have started writing a book to help teenagers.

Thank you again for what you do.

Linda Sarll

Losing it on Prozac

“My brief exposure to Prozac left me thinking I was truly insane.”

Thank you very very much for providing this website and the services you have there.

It’s taken over 10 years for me to write this story. For years I was too ashamed to admit I suffered from depression & anxiety, so I told no one. And my brief exposure to Prozac left me thinking I was truly insane. My last experience of medicated depression left me completely ashamed regarding what happened to me. I thought I had truly gone crazy but instead I found out later, it was only my reaction to the new so-called wonder drug of the day: Prozac. Many people take this drug without experiencing what I did; however, there are enough of us so that I want to share my story so that anyone suffering the same way I did can recognize what the problem is (the drug) and find a way to get healthier with out it.

My first depression occurred when I was 17, the fall of 1977. I was prescribed an anti-depressant, most likely one of the tricyclics and recovered 6 months later. The next bout of clinical depression occurred when I was 26, again on a trycyclic for about 6 months. Then I succumbed again in 1990. I was given Prozac. My depression symptoms consisted of crying excessively and inappropriately, inability to find joy in anything, inability to get out of bed/off the sofa, my body preferred remaining motionless, I ached physically and hoped the earth would swallow me whole or that I wished I’d fall asleep and not wake up. I never truly contemplated suicide until the last 2 years, but that’s another story. Back in 1990, my psychiatrist had me on Prozac. The first week I noticed that my muscles became twitchy, I became short with people, my head ached, my depression remained the same. By the second week, my anger was boiling, I snapped at people, I made scenes in public, I yelled, screamed, threw things, pushed people in retail store lines, movie lines, post office line. Can you imagine standing in line with a customer yelling, screaming and pounding their fist on the counter? By the time the Post Office incident occurred, I had extreme violent thoughts against OTHER people. The lady behind that counter was lucky that the counter was so tall because it was all I could do to keep myself from jumping over it to strangle her. Her offence? She didn’t accept my return of my postage stamps. Somehow I found the strength to get out and sat in my car sobbing and sobbing – I couldn’t stop. This was so much worse than my original depression. On my drive home, I was pulled over my highway patrol for speeding. I still could not stop sobbing. A second patrol car pulled up. My sobbing became harder. I held onto my steering wheel for my life as there was a huge pull on me to jump out of the car in front of any oncoming vehicle so I could die. I then thought, maybe if I rushed the officers, they’d pull their guns and kill me. What little sanity I had left convinced myself that I did not want to burden either the car driver or officers with my death. I drove off, half expecting the officers to pursue, but the let me go. I figured they didn’t want to deal with a crying woman. I was scared they were going to haul me off and commit me.

At my next psych appt, the next day, I demanded to get off these crazy making pills, that I was better off them than on them. This doctor explained that it was better I was finally getting my anger out. I jumped up, slammed both hands on his desk, put my face as close to his as I could and screamed – YOU BETTER GET ME OFF THESE BEFORE I KILL SOMEONE. He relented. I was switched and weaned and I will never go back. From 1st pill to last pill took about 2 weeks. I thank God every time I remember these things that I didn’t kill anyone. You will never know how close I was to completely loosing it. It was as if part of me was watching myself do these behaviors and have thread-bare control over my actions. I remember feelings as if I were coming Unglued. That I was somehow disintegrating, being pulled about cell by cell.

A few years later, I signed up at a diet place to loose some weight. I explicitly asked if the Fen-Phen products were anything like Prozac and the doctor assured me that they were not. He was wrong. Again, by the end of the first week, I was crying uncontrollably, tears pouring down my face – this time it was more odd as I had no feelings to go along with the tears. I went in to explain, they wanted to resist refunding my money, but all they had to do was look at my face.

I went along just fine, until I had to deal with infertility. This has been the most heartbreaking, gut-wrenching life trauma I’ve ever gone through. If there was something safe and effective, I’d be on it. There is not enough money on the planet for me to ever go back to anti-depressants. So I white-knuckle it. I use natural products, essential oils, meditation tapes and I let myself cry. Honestly, the essential oils I use have been a lifesaver, same as described in the website I list below. I’ve come to grips that no matter how much I truly want to die, that dying is not the answer and suicide is a decision where I could never change my mind. I thank God that I’ve never had another homicidal thought ever since quitting the drugs. I do however have left over tremors that are probably going to be with me for the rest of my life.

If I had heard my story from a book or website or third hand, I probably wouldn’t have believed it. It seems surreal that a simple little pill that’s suppose to help could turn a quiet, shy, woman into a shrieking homicidal threat in 14 days but that’s what I lived. I’m glad it’s getting more out in the open. I’m still incredibly ashamed but now, not at my depression, but rather at my behavior I exhibited to completely innocent bystanders who happened to be in the wrong place when I walked by.


Prozac and Johnnie Brown

“The alcohol and the antidepressants almost killed him.”

am so glad I give all the glory to God that I have this information! I have a thirteen year old son who has been on a number of anti-depressants!

He has been in custody with my father a Firefighter and my step-mom who was a nurse. After my step-mom passed away almost 5 years ago my son became depressed. The Dr.’s have given him these medications for many years. I moved up to Washington because I received a call from my father saying he wanted me to come get my son! I jokingly said what’s the matter dad he’s not cute anymore! It was November 2003 when I arrived to Spokane WA. from Oakland Ca. Boy what a ride. I don’t mean the flight here!

My son had cut marks on his arms, from the ruler he was using in school. He was in trouble at school, falling asleep at his desk. They were ready to kick him out. At home he was I thought experimenting with alcohol and weed! Thank God I am a recovered addict alcoholic! This helped me in finding all his hiding places, and everything he was doing. Johnnie had told me these thing on his own He was crushing the Amphetamines his dr. had prescribed and snorting them. He would abuse them sneak them and he was stealing booze from my dads cupboard above the fridge! He was abusing inhalers. smoking weed! I removed him from the prescribed medications and had my father make an appointment to see his Dr. It was just too dangerous.

My dad started working full-time again driving school bus. I noticed my son would be laying on the floor of the shower in the morning before school. I questioned all these things for God to reveal! About February 2004 I woke up to sounds of my child crying the uncontrollable sobs! The cry that someone cries when they can’t go on ! I ran through the house he wasn’t upstairs I found him downstairs with my jacket and his shoes on with his PJ’s. He had taken my Dads gun out of the closet in the den! He cried out to me!” Where are the Bullets, I need the bullets, I can’t go on anymore, It’s only going to get worse, Where are the bullets he screamed at me!!??” My heart just broke! My very handsome beautiful child was so damaged I could not get him to come around! no matter what I said or what I prayed! I was crying too! and screamed for my dad, it was 3:00 am.

My dad called the authorities. My son was transmitted to Sacred Heart Hospital in the Adolescent Mental Health facility. the Dr.’s noticed a twitch in his Lip and his head! They put a heart monitor on him and found that he had acceleration and deceleration by 30 points! They did a MRI not all results have come in! They found he has a spot in his brain! He has MS Korea, Damage to his brain stem, he was deeply depressed and dehydrated which I thought was impossible because he was drinking distilled water by the gallons. The alcohol and the antidepressants almost killed him! So the Dr’s and Court ordered him to take them with Ramsinol, Prozac, fish oil, sleeping pills and penicillin because he is a carrier for strep! He has recently since he’s been out of the hospital cut himself once and him and his friend vandalized someone’s property and he didn’t realize what he was doing!

Knowing that he would face 180 days lock-up I feel responsible for letting him stay the night at a friends house and trusting the other parents in charge. Well everything happens for a reason! I woke up today and was given information about this web sit and Dr. Ann Blake Tracy! I was also given information about Dr. John Lindzer who God directs to heal and has a very wonderful gift!! I thank also Peter and Paula Ryan and all of this gift I give thanks to my cousin June Miller and Karen Conners! I give all the glory honor and Praise to God! and my Dad Gary Brown and my son Johnnie!

Lorrie M. Brown
(509) 276-3127

Johnnie can be reached on his AIM screen name: unsanejohnnie or on MSN at

Addicted to Effexor

“(It)…was one of the most horrible things I have ever experienced in my life.”

I also have posted “my story” on another informational site about anti-depressants, but I believe my story needs to be heard on your site as well. It is quite a bit to read, but hopefully it will help some people…

My problems with depression first started when I was about 9-10 years old. I had “normal” depression symptoms: I slept a lot, and was doing poorly in classes at school. I had school counselors lecture me every week about it, but I was in the “gifted” program at school, so it wasn’t as if I didn’t understand the material. This went on until 7th grade, when I failed ALL of my classes. My parents met with the principal of the school, who was threatening to hold me back. My parents thought there was something wrong with me, so I had an IQ test done to check my “capacity”. After 6 hours of testing, they found my IQ was 186, so no problems there…

My parents refused to put me on antidepressants for a long time. They were in denial that there was anything actually “wrong” with me, especially my mother… which was odd, because depression runs on her side of the family. They kept having me tested for everything else that could be causing the tiredness (thyroid and iron levels are the two I can remember). They changed my diet and we joined a health club, but it did nothing for me.

The doctor I had at the time pressed my parents for so long to put me on an antidepressant. My first antidepressant I went on was Zoloft, when I was 15. At first, the feelings it gave me were nice – my energy level went way up, and my parents were pleased that I was doing things around the house instead of sleeping. However, I gained 20 pounds in one month of taking it, without changing my diet at all. And as the months went by, I gradually needed more and more Zoloft, so my doctor decided to switch me to Celexa.

I was on Celexa for 4 months, but it was like I was on nothing at all. I didn’t feel any different from taking it. I was then switched to Lexapro (which is made by the same manufacturer, and is very similar I’m told), but it also did nothing. I was then put on Paxil, which I was on for about 5 months. At this time I was a senior in high school.

Paxil was one of the most horrible things I have ever experienced in my life. Side story: I also started having acid reflux disease at the same time my depression began, which I ended up having surgery for, also when I was a senior in high school. I was taking the Paxil up until when I had the surgery. The side effects of Paxil were intense to begin with, but also didn’t agree with what else I had going on with my body – I had intense abdominal pain, freakish dreams at night, sweated constantly, was nauseated / vomited frequently (which I did not have before despite the acid reflux), was dizzy, anxious, and went between being overheated and incredibly chilled… not to mention I gained 30 pounds in two weeks. This was all without changing my diet! But still my doctor pressed me to stay on the Paxil, saying it would take time, that my weight would go back down, that the side effects would simply just “go away,” but they never did.

When I was scheduled to have acid reflux surgery, I had to quit the Paxil cold turkey. All I can say is it made me feel disgusting. The memory most prominent to me about it was my sense became very distorted, especially my vision and hearing. For a long time, everything sounded muffled, like I was underwater. When I would move my head, or even just my eyes, I would feel and almost hear these “electric zaps” in my head. I had to stop driving from the intense dizziness (and have yet to drive since then), and that my vision became very blurry. I couldn’t sleep, couldn’t eat, and I was so paranoid of everything that I couldn’t be happy, or even FUNCTION… It took nearly half a year for the effects of this to go away.

Nine months after I had quit Paxil, things were too unbearable for me to live without help from an antidepressant. Despite what I had experienced in the past, I was stupid and desperate enough to try my luck again. I was prescribed Wellbutrin, which didn’t last for a week because I had an allergic reaction to it (my body broke out in a horrible rash and I looked like a lobster!). I had to wait 3 weeks for the rash to die down after stopping the medication to try a new one… this time Effexor.

Looking back on it now I wish I had NEVER, EVER started that drug. Some of the side effects I experienced at first were nausea, constant migraines, I was extremely tired but unable to fall asleep, dry mouth, nervousness, abnormal sweating, decreased appetite, vertigo, and irregular heartbeat, just to name a few. My doctor increased me to 300 mg within a month of starting – which I’m sure was far too much, because within the first few hours of taking it, I would feel almost manic and crazed… I developed social anxiety disorder, which I’ve never had in the past, and I become too scared, flustered, and embarrassed to speak in front of more than three or four people.

Well, I had been on Effexor for almost 7 months (which would have been almost a month ago, now), when I stopped taking it. The side effects were just too unbearable. Also I am having stomach problems again, this time with a hiatal hernia, so I’m unable to digest pills. My doctor tapered me off of the 300 mg of Effexor XR within a three week period – seems too fast for someone that was on that much … He tried putting me on liquid Prozac, but the medication tasted horrible and I threw up almost instantly after every time I took it, so the Prozac didn’t last longer than a week before I quit.

I am absolutely beside myself right now with my Effexor problems – nearly a month after I quit, and I am beside myself with frustration and agony. I feel like I am addicted to this drug. I threw away the bottle after I was told to stop taking it, and now I sadly regret it so much. My brain feels like it’s screaming at me to get more of these pills, the feelings I have without them are too unbearable. I literally feel like I’m going insane. My depression is more extreme right now than it has ever been in my life. I’m having borderline personality disorder symptoms. At first I was just very tired, depressed, and agitated with everything, but now I’m having the sensory disturbances again – my hearing sounds like someone is playing with a big volume knob in my head, as things are always almost too quiet for me to hear, or too loud to tolerate.

I’m too nauseated and have too much stomach/chest pain to want to eat anything, so I’ve stopped eating solid food and now just mostly consume Jell-O, broths, pudding, popsicles, and creamy soups. I take massive amounts of vitamins and protein shakes because my health has deteriorated so much from it… my coordination and vision have become so bad that I can’t drive now. I sleep 18+ hours a day, but usually wake up every 30 minutes during sleep because of intense, sick nightmares that I have, usually about me dying… I go between being incredibly depressed and almost manic, something else I’ve never experienced before. Everything feels like it’s tipped on a 45 degree angle; I’m very dizzy, and have intense vertigo. I go to art school, and had to take off the quarter it’s gotten so bad – not to mention I can’t draw now because the tremors in my hands are so bad.

When I go in for surgery for my hiatal hernia in a few weeks, I’m going to hospitalize myself because I need more help getting through this Effexor withdrawal. I honestly feel insane. I’m so depressed that I’ve started cutting my arms, and I’m not even sure why. Also I hallucinate every few hours and see things – just today I saw blood dripping down my wall, an alligator walk across my bedroom, and when I woke up from a nap this afternoon I honestly thought I saw a woman standing over my bed with a knife. I went back to see my psych for help, and all he told me was to “wait it out” and “there’s nothing I can do for you now.” Why the hell are people prescribed these drugs if the withdrawal symptoms are so HORRIBLE?!


My Life with Paxil and Klonopin

“The nightmare goes on with in me.”

I started Paxil when I was in the middle of a bad divorce. I had a great Doctor and she saw me falling apart. I told her what was going on and My life was not mine any more. I started taking Paxil before Paxil CR came about. I was up to 25mg when started. I was never told about the side effects.

Anyway I started to feel better at 1st but then I had to get off because my Health Insurance changed. I was only on it for 3 months the 1st time. Anyway things got really bad to where I wouldn’t not go out ,and was unable to think right.

My job was on the line. All I wanted to do was die. Then in July 2003 I just couldn’t take much more. Unsure of myself and the things I was thinking about scared me to no end.

I would work over nights so I didn’t have to be alone. I prayed that would keep me from hurting myself. But then it happen July 18 2003 I was told to go home and sleep take your day off and enjoy the sunshine. I told one of the ladies at work I don’t feel right about going home. She said hey you are just over tired. I started to cry and gave her my phone number in chase something happen. She said you will be just fine go and enjoy your day. I wanted to tell her I wanted to die, but just couldn’t bring myself to say it.

I went home looked around and said this is it. I have lost everything I have worked for and I am alone now. Well it was time to end my pain. My son was out of town. I have raised him well. He is out on his own now. Which was hard for me to deal with. But hell, almost 21 yrs old. I need to let him go now. So I made some calls and started to do what my mind was thinking.

And really believe it would be better this way. Well all the Paxil I had left in my apartment and what ever else I could find and two big bottles of wine, I was on my way to peace.

My best Friend talked to me for a few mins, before I blacked out. She didn’t know where I lived, But some how found me. By the time they go here I was on my way!

The next thing I could remember was waking up in the ER. Not knowing why I was there. Well I got locked up and the next day saw my new Doc.

Still feeling very unsure of things and not wanted to take the meds they want to put me on. I had to do as I was told. So here comes Paxil CR and Klonopin. I stayed in the hosp. for 4 days and went to group and saw my Doc again, but something was not right. I still had the thinking of not wanting to live.

He told me that it will take about 14 days for the Paxil CR to start working and I will start to feel better soon. And would see me in a week at his office.

Well I saw him again in a week and I told him I didn’t have the money to pay for Paxil CR. He said he would help me. Ok I trusted him so I got all the free samples I need to have. But after a month everything was the same, so he upped my dose.

And said I will see you in 6 weeks. Went back to see him feeling the same. Things were not getting any better. He upped my dose now taking 25mg plus 12.5 mgs! That gave me a dose of 37.5 well see u in 8 weeks now.

Things got really bad at work and I was not sure what would happen next. Called him on the phone and told him I was in a living hell. He told me to come see him. Well I did and the dose went up to 25 mg 2 times a day and the Klonopin 4 times a day or more as need.

I left his office with a bag full of Paxil CR and called my sister and told this is not right. Something is wrong here. If it is not working then why up the dose.

So I stopped taking the Paxil CR and My body started to break down. Get upset over every little thing. Could not sleep anymore and can not keep my mind on one thing.

I called my mom thinking I was crazy and she looked in to Paxil CR, and told me I shouldn’t have stopped taking it. I need to go back on and go off it slowly.

Well I did just that, but now new things are popping up. I can’t sleep at nite and all my joints in my body hurt. I still can’t keep my head right. And I have been off the Paxil CR and the Klonopin for a few weeks.

I need to know when I will start to feel better. But you know what I find very sad—Is that if my doc knew all this and did not tell me. How can he live with himself. I know my life will get better in time. But I need to know what else will happen to me. I think free samples are great, but I also think we need to know more about the meds we take,. And what are the long term side effect? Had I known what I do now. I would never had taken the Paxil CR.

Thank You for hearing me out. Have a great day. Peace out

maureen Phillips


A Mother’s Experience w/Antidepressants

“To the FDA Advisory Panel on Antidepressant Safety in Children.”

My name is Sylvia Olsen and I am the mother of eight children from Salt Lake City, Utah. I suffered for many years with clinical depression and in 1988 my psychiatrist put me on an SSRI medication. I was told that, because it was clinical depression, I would need to take it for the rest of my life. Subsequently, when I got pregnant with my eighth child in 1991, I asked if I could keep taking the medication. My doctor said there was no evidence of negative side effects, and since I was already on it, I just kept taking it. Looking back, I believe the medication produced an overriding feeling of “everything is fine” which clouded my judgment. Normally, I would think twice before even taking an aspirin when I was pregnant. After all, we are talking about the development of a human being.

My son, Taylor, was born weighing much less than any of my previous seven children and displaying an irritability I had never experienced. I soon noticed his body was tense all the time and his movements stiff. The slightest sound would startle him to the point of screaming and, often, even as he slept, his arms would be held stiff and straight up from his body. Although I’ve had no experience personally taking care of “crack babies”, as they used to call them, I kept thinking how he reminded me of things I had heard about them. He would cry continually and seemed to find great comfort in being wrapped very snugly in a blanket and held very tightly.

As Taylor grew, we also had to deal with episodes of unreasonable displays of anger. When he got upset about something as simple as his shoe tied wrong, it was as though he had no ability to reason. He would scream, kick, and flail completely out of control. We would have to put our arms around him to restrain him from hurting himself or trashing his room and sit there for as long as half an hour before he would start to gain control of himself and stop screaming and gnashing. Then, everything would be fine as if nothing had happened. Other than this, and some allergies and skin problems, things appeared normal until he started school.

Although, he seemed to be bright and aware at home, in school he struggled with reading, writing, spelling and math, unlike his older brothers and sisters. Even though his tantrums are almost non existent now,(we believe through the help of nutritional supplements) and his academics have improved a lot, he has always required remedial help. One thing that always comes up when talking to school aids who have worked with Taylor, particularly, one-on-one, is that they are puzzled by one thing in his learning process. He will appear to understand something perfectly, a math process for instance, and even be doing it on his own for a while, when suddenly, in the middle of the same work, it’s as though a light bulb goes off and he has no knowledge of even being taught the process. Then, later, he knows how to do the problem again as if he never lost it! They say it appears to be some odd kind of glitch in his brain, and I believe it is just another symptom of the developmental problems due to the SSRIs I was taking when pregnant with Taylor.

I believe there are safe and affective ways of dealing with clinical depression in children other than the use of SSRIs and that the benefits do not outweigh the risks and unknown side effects.

Antidepressants do not actually heal the human mind. If they did, then we would see a decline in depression across our nation, but we do not. Please look at the possibility that there is another way to treat this growing problem that, I believe, SSRIs only mask. Even John March, chief of child psychiatry at Duke University, who receives grants from Lilly and research funds from Pfizer, said, “These medicines are not a panacea, and will not, on average, carry kids to remission.”

After eight years on these medications, I once spent a several months trying to cut back by just a few milligrams and suffered terrible bouts of depression from the withdrawal. Yet, later, through the help of a nutritionist, I was able to wean off of them completely in just a three month period. That was seven years ago and I have not suffered from depression since.

Sylvia Olsen
St. George, UT

Mental Health Professional Experience with Reglan

“I had a severe acute dystonic reaction to this medication.”

I am a 34 year old female with a masters degree in mental health counseling.

My name is Leslie Toplin and I am from Cape Coral, Florida.

In May of 2003, I was admitted to the hospital with acute pancreatitis. After 5 days of tx I was getting better, no problems.

Upon being released from the hospital, I was sent home with a prescription of Reglan (metoclopramide).

After taking the 4th dose I had to call 911. My heart was racing and pounding out of my chest. I thought I was having a heart attack right there and those would be my last moments.

My head and neck were jerked back. The back of my head felt like it was being ripped through a vice. My limbs were shaking etc.

It turned out that I had a severe acute dystonic reaction to this medication.

Ironically, my ER doctor had done an internship at a mental facility and knew what it was. He injected me with Cojentin and my symptoms (temporarily) subsided.

Now, I am left with the equivalent of a severe head and back injury and neurological problems.

The ER doctor told me that he sees this in 1 out of every 150 people or something like that. He said that despite the fact that Reglan (metoclopramide) is prescribed as a drug for nausea and gastrointestinal distress, it has the same molecular components as Haldol. It also, unbelievably, passes the blood brain barrier and fools with the neuroreceptors in the basal ganglia.

Why would a medication for nausea…do all that to your brain?

Currently I have the only attorney in the country who specializes in litigating this medication and he told me a lot more.

My neurologist could not see anything on my CAT scans or MRI. So I have this horrible injury with no evidence for it. With the exception of what happened in the ER.

Then, my general practitioner tried to put me on Paxil and Ativan after that initial episode. I had never been on a psychiatric medication in my whole life.

Anyway, if you want to hear more about my story or have any questions, feel free to contact me. (239) 574-5073. I thought you might be interested to hear the story of this medication and how it is also killing babies all over the world.

It is not your traditional psychiatric medication, but it is one in disguise.

I think the work you are doing is great. I can’t wait until the same light is shed on Reglan.

Leslie Toplin

My Husband Took His Life on Zoloft

“I am convinced that SSRIs caused akathisia…driving him to suicide very rapidly.”

Dear all,

I am an emergency nurse in Ireland and I was married to Niall a 39 yr Nurse Tutor (psychiatry). Niall committed suicide on the 26th of December 2003 out of the blue, no note, no planning, against his beliefs and his character. Abandoning his 3 children (whom he adored) (5yr, 3yr and 10 months) in the house and my oldest boy (5yr) found him hanging in the garden shed. He was prescribed sertraline 50mg OD for mild depression after 4 days (adverse effects???) (I was not aware he changed drugs) the GP changed it to paroxetine 20mg OD which he took for 13 days before committing suicide. We had a lovely Xmas day and he was not suicidal then. I am convinced that SSRIs caused akathisia on the 26th driving him to suicide very rapidly, he had no choice or say in the matter. Frightening!!

Nuria O’Mahony

Celexa Cost Me a Year of My Life

“I feel like a foreigner in my own body.”

Two years ago, I noticed that I started getting hand tremors. As time went by, I started having other problems, such as anxiety and forgetfulness. I figured these problems were due to stress, so I decided to see a therapist. The therapist suggested that I see a psychiatrist that she worked with. At first, I found the suggestion, to visit the psychiatrist, as being necessary and excessive, until I found a large, hard bump on my neck, disoriented, and started having speech difficulties.

My first visit to the psychiatrist, the psychiatrist told me she had no clue about what was going on with me. A week later, she claimed that I probably had an anxiety problem, and so she put me on 3 pills of Celexa. I felt the dosage was too high, so I convinced her to lower the dosage to half a pill.

The first time I took the pill, I noticed that I started having difficulties. I reported this to the psychiatrist, and in turn, she told me to increase my dosage from half a pill to a pill and a half. After following her advice, I immediately started having difficulties. In the day, I found myself dazed and confused. I also had difficulties sticking to a topic, communicating with others, a deterioration of my thoughts and my perceptions altered. Other problems I had during the day included forgetfulness, confused order of events, apathy, fatigue, light-headedness, sleepiness( once slept for 20 hrs. straight and other times I have passed out) that interfered with tasks, and depression.

At night was a different story. During the night, I found my heart pounding loudly and rapidly, while my chest and legs were in pain. I felt shocks in my head , and fluttering on the back of my head. Simultaneously, I felt electrical shock-like impulse go through my legs. The shock was so potent that I could feel my legs being lifted from my bed and falling back down.

Eventually it got to a point that my period was altered. I immediately notified the psychiatrist ( I notified her a number of times in the past) and told her that I need to get off the drug. She told me to get off the drug immediately. I followed her advice and stopped the drug immediately. One night, I felt this inundation of negative ideas, and I felt my body getting tense. The next thing I know, something in my head goes off. Simultaneously, my eyes opened up( I was unaware that my eyes were going to open up), and I felt this shock radiating from the back of my neck down to my toes. A moment later, I found myself unable to move (I literally was unable to control the movement of my body, except for my neck, for three days).

After this incident, I dealt with a myriad of different problems. When I got off the drug, I noticed that everything that I was dealing with while on the medication, exacerbated after the medication. I also encountered new problems, such as personality change, insomnia (once I was unable to sleep for 2 weeks), ringing in the ears, dizziness, incontinence, disorient( unable to recognize people or places), ambivalent feelings of stupor and intense energy, inability to learn new information, difficulties writing and thinking about abstract concepts, talking difficulty ( synthesizing words into sentences and slurring), difficulties telling the difference b/w shapes, inability to rationalize or slow thinking (I was unable to figure out how to open a door, diurnal headaches (that wake me up from my sleep or occur intermittently during the day) and recurrent muscle spasms.

As a result of these problems, I took more than a year off. My state has improved dramatically ( in part because of the simple writing (including vocab.) and mathematics exercises); however, I can’t comprehend why this all happened. I also can’t understand why I am unable to remember my past, previous to this event. It really pains me to look at albums and not be able to recall the past. I feel like a foreigner in my own body. My life has changed so drastically. What should I do?