I said No to Paxil and Ativan

My doctor said it was clinical depression. It did not occur to me that it could be a real reaction to real things, not just a ‘chemical imbalance’. “

Hello. I have PTSD and recently have become very depressed, despite the fact that my boyfriend and I have been fighting, I got into a car accident, I realized that I did no’t want to study what I was almost ready to graduate in, started a new job and gained weight….

My doctor said it was clinical depression. It did not occur to me that it could be a real reaction to real things, not just a ‘chemical imbalance’. Like she had said.

I know I have PTSD – but mine has n’ot made me sad. But being a trusting person I listened to them when they told me to take medication….

They prescribed Paxil and Ativan. When my doctor was writing the prescription for Ativan – I told her I absolutely did not want to take that because I had read about the different types of medications and that class of drugs was addictive and I did no’t want to take drugs long term. Mind you I am already paranoid of medications. As a survivor of horrendous child abuse, I fear any MIND ALTERING substance. When I told my doctor know, she asked why…she then preceded to tell me to just take it if I get “panicky” and related to the feeling I get when something bad happens and I feel overwhelmed. She said it would be ok. I reluctantly took the prescription and told her repeatedly that I would probably never take it…

I also went into full detail of the stories I had heard about in the Prozac family of people killing themselves out of the blue. She reassured me that is for people that were previously psychotic…and that it only happened when these drugs first came out and that it only happened because some psychiatrist thought since it worked so well on depression it might work on other things…and assured me that it was because they had previously wanted to commit suicide. NEVER mentioning any of the side effects, aside from nausea, dry mouth and “initial anxiety”.

So she gave me the trial month – with no insertions. I took one about 5 hours ago. And then my friends mom called and we were talking, I was telling her about taking Paxil. She said be careful – those make people go nuts. She said her friend hung himself and then I stopped her, I was already scared. I don’t have any suicidal thoughts, let alone, homicidal thoughts. I did no’t want to hear this. Now I feel high and stiff. And I don’t like it. After she told me that I went on the internet and looked up “suicide and Paxil” and came up with so many horror stories of people going crazy. And I even read the drug information on the homepage of the drug company…and it names so many. I learned that it can cause seizures (which I had when I was an infant and my doctor knows) it says most people feel anxiety – which is already a problem I have – I don’t need to feel more – I read that it says you can have nameless amounts of things. Not to mention it said the doctors normally prescribe them with an anti-anxiety so in case the person feels “agitated, homicidal, aggressive or suicidal” they can take those and calm down (a.k.a…pass out). This is not ok. I can’t believe my doctor recommended them to me especially when I told her that I WOULD NOT TAKE THE ANTI-ANXIETY MEDICINE… I told her I would fill it but would not take it out of fear.

I am so freaked out.

I feel for you and I am sorry that happened to your Matthew and hope that in some way you know that you convinced me not to take this anymore. I will go to sleep praying I will be okay through the night. God bless you.

Cena

 

This is Survivor Story number 6.
Total number of stories in current database is 96

11/16/2000

Five Weeks to Psychosis on Prozac

“It was close to 2 years before I could laugh again.”

 

My name is Amy. I started taking 20 mg. of Prozac in April, 1992. My doctor thought I was depressed due to empty nest syndrome and menopause.

I had always been a very open and trusting person, so I swallowed my first capsule without reading the insert in the bottle. I trusted my doctor. The first week I noticed I was sleeping less. I had been sleeping between 7 and 8 hours a night and now I was sleeping about 6 hours a night. But this did not concern me. I suddenly had a lot to ponder. I began ruminating on how people had done me wrong. . I first focused on my 3 cousins (whom I had not seen in years). I thought they were betraying me behind my back. To add to this worry, I began obsessing about incidents in history such as the destruction of Cambodia and Tibet by the Communists and the tragedy of the Holocaust. I sat at my kitchen table and cried for hours about this. At my part time job, I felt that the other employees were taking advantage of me. I had never felt this way before and it seemed like a revelation to me.

By the 4th week on Prozac, I was sleeping only 4 hours a night but it did not concern me because I had so many important things to think about. I would pick up a book to read and would think that there was some special message in there for me. I was sure of this when the printed matter on the page began jumping out at me. Nothing like this had ever happened to me before. I began to make a special effort to act normal around people because suddenly these people would appear to me as being unreal. I became terrified that they were unreal but I must not let them know this. During the next several weeks I became confused in my driving and would lose my sense of direction. I thought that I could not concentrate on my driving because I was so terrified of what else was happening. I never once suspected that it was the Prozac.
My husband of 28 years became concerned about me but I kept saying I’ll be better as soon as this Prozac takes effect. I told him none of my symptoms. I felt that everything wrong in the world was my problem and I must solve it. At no time in my life had I ever thought of suicide. It wasn’t as though I had ever thought of suicide and then dismissed the idea. It was just that the thought of suicide had never occurred to me. By my 9th week on Prozac I felt suicidal. I went to my doctor and told him that I was going to kill myself because I could not endure this suffering. He immediately told me to discontinue the Prozac and he gave me some sleeping medication. I thought this meant that the Prozac had not worked for me and that I was having a nervous breakdown. The next day I began having visual hallucinations. I was so terrified that I went to my doctor in an incoherent state. He put me in the hospital and I was there for 3 weeks as an inpatient. My husband visited me every night after work. We both thought that I had a nervous breakdown. No doctor told us differently. I was given Thorazine and I began to sleep again. Then my health insurance ran out and I came back home. When I left the hospital, I was told to see a psychologist once a week. The psychologist and I discussed my childhood. One day, three months later, my husband said Do you think the Prozac could have contributed to your breakdown .No , I said, Prozac is a drug that helps mental disturbances. It would not cause mental disturbance.

My husband found the insert to my bottle of Prozac. We began to read it. We saw that hallucinations, depersonalization, paranoia and confusion were all listed as adverse reactions. I still could not believe it so I sent for my hospital record. I was amazed to see that on the fourth day of my hospitalization the physician had written Patient had psychotic reaction to Prozac. These symptoms started after use. We investigated this matter but were never given a satisfactory answer for why the doctors kept this a secret. The saddest part of this story is that it took so long for me to completely recover. It was close to 2 years before I could laugh again. It was almost 4 years before the idea of forgiveness even began to stir in my soul. Now, in my 6th year, I am completely recovered and enjoying life again, but I will never forget this trip through hell.

My husband, children and I are now dedicated to warning others about the dangers of Prozac.

 

10/29/1998

Years 2000 and Prior

This is Survivor Story number 34.
Total number of stories in current database is 96