I realize that these antidepressants messed up my brain chemistry.
I have been diagnosed with Occipital Neuralgia (Nerve Pain in the Occipital Region of the head) by a number of different doctors. I have tried different medications to relieve the nerve pain, but none of them seemed to relieve the pain completely. One doctor suggested I try an antidepressant. I told him that I wasnt depressed, just in pain. He told me th antidepressants help treat chronic pain. Thus, I decided to try this antidepressant called Paxil for my nerve pain.
I took it for six months, but wish I hadnt! After six months, I felt like I couldnt think straight (I was in a zombie like state), had memory loss, gained weight, experienced sexual dysfunction, etc. I came off Paxil cold turkey, but realized that was a mistake (I didnt realize at the time that I was suppose to come off these type of medications very, very slowly). The doctor wanted me back on the medication, but didnt provide an explanation. I told him why would I go back on a medication that has these side effects. I didnt go back on the medication. I became severally depressed (even though I wasnt depressed before taking the Paxil).
I almost lost my job because of my depressed mood. I honestly dont know how I managed to keep it. After about 6 months of no medication I was given short doses (a weeks worth) of anti-inflammatory steroids for my nerve pain. That made my depression worse. I read later that steroids deplete serotonin. I started to develop nerve pain down the back of my legs. I think the Depression and nerve pain down the back of my legs was caused by my brain chemistry being altered by Paxil and then the introduction of another medication made the brain chemistry worse (I didnt think about this at that time).
So by now I had Depression, Occipital Neuralgia and nerve pain down the back of my legs. Another doctor suggested that I try a different antidepressant. I told him of the unpleasant experience I had with Paxil. He recommended that I try Prozac. Told me it was different from Paxil. I tried it, but was very weary because of my experience with Paxil. The only reason I tried it was because I wanted rid of the Depression, Occipital Neuralgia and the nerve pain down the back of my legs.
After about four months on Prozac, I encountered similar side effects to the Paxil. The only difference instead of weight gain, I experienced weight loss. I came off this medication, but this time very, very slowly. I learned my lesson from my Paxil days. While on the Prozac it didnt really help my depression or nerve pain down the back of my legs. I was still depressed, had the Occipital Neuralgia and the nerve pain down the back of my legs. I didnt know what to do. I tried some exercise, but just didnt feel right.
I know that Paxil and Prozac had something to do with the way I was feeling. The Depression and nerve pain down the back of my legs became to much, that I went on another antidepressant called Celexa. I told my doctor about the experiences I had on Paxil and Prozac. He told me this is a newer antidepressant and has fewer side effects than Paxil and Prozac. I took that for about 1 and 1/2 years. It took care of my Depression, but didnt really take care of the nerve pain down the back of my legs. I eventually came off the because of the side effects. The side effects of Celexa were similar to Paxil, but not as harsh.
I am still stuck with Depression, Occipital Neuralgia and nerve pain down the back of my legs. I realize that these antidepressants messed up my brain chemistry. I have ordered PROZAC: PANACEA OR PANDORA? By Ann Blake Tracy, PhD. I hope this book can provide some answers and solutions. I am also considering taking the herb St Johns Wort, but will read the book first to see if I can get any answers/solutions to my problems.
Is there any action I can take against the makers of these drugs and the doctors that prescribed them to me? All of this has happened over a four year period. I have had the Occipital Neuralgia a lot longer than that.
This is Survivor Story number 21.
Total number of stories in current database is 48