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Paradoxical reactions and benzos


[li...]

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Since it seems that was what I was dealing with:

 

Not much that I could find here, except:

 

http://www.benzobuddies.org/forum/index.php?topic=18837.msg288312#msg288312

 

By Colin:

 

'Yes, it can be confusing, since the symptoms can be so similar. Paradoxical effects are probably rare, or certainly more unusual than tolerance effects (which are identical to withdrawal effects). If someone suspects that they are suffering from paradoxical effects, it is pretty straightforward to determin if it is indeed paradoxical effects or tolerance effects. If you have become tolerant of benzodiazepines, then you should experience some relief from the withdrawal-type effects a short while after taking a dose or if you increase your dose. Conversely, if you feel worse a short while after taking a dose, or if you experience less symptoms upon cutting your dose, this is associated with paradoxical effects.

 

Generally speaking, if suffering from paradoxical effects, you will probably follow an accelerated withdrawal from your benzodiazepines. It all depends upon the severity of the paradoxical effects. Fortunately, paradoxical effects are not reported very often.'

 

Increasing my dose doesn't help (neither does decreasing!!)

 

'Conversely, if you feel worse a short while after taking a dose,[/b] or if you experience less symptoms upon cutting your dose, this is associated with paradoxical effects'

I often, but not always feel worse after taking a dose. Also, I may feel better but more alert, stimulating/energized or agitated.

 

Paradoxical ? (It has been getting worse!)

Cutting a dose will not reduce symptoms, although I may feel less alert/coherent, less stimulated, less agitated. But then I will feel benzo W/D at full strength or what body has been gone through (clonazepam has analgesic properties) over the years.

 

I know I've been repeating myself. Diazepam seems to be a problem drug, and I don't have much confidence in diazepam like drugs such as Librium.

 

Shortly after I switched GPs in 2013 partly because of a different health issue I suggested that I may be paradoxical, and that I should get off sooner rather than later. ('my good years')

This was mostly ignored/dismissed/I was asked to wait etc.

 

Now I have a very strong physical dependence, and ever since I was on that lorazepam moving the dose by 'an inch' got me extreme results.

Paradoxical or not ? Get off ASAP or not ? How ?

The thing is, my health is such ('medical abuse' to keep it short) that the clonazepam is pretty much the one thing holding everything together. Tiny changes in doses can cause major differences in effect. I have no healthy circadian rhythm, smooth functioning body, this is not my first picnic. I may be hypothyroid etc. but the GP is the gatekeeper and insurance won't pay without referrals so there is a lot I don't know.

 

Paradoxical drugs and long term dependence ... seems tricky for the docs.

 

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  • 1 month later...

Liberty,

 

The difficulty in people be able to reply to your posts is that you've said you can't switch your benzo, you can't taper. I believe micro/daily tapering has been suggested to you and you can't do that either. Unfortunately, that doesn't really leave any options. It's hard to suggest and alternative as your signature doesn't convey what the problems are/were...its a little vague. Perhaps, an update would allow members to help you think outside the box?

 

Have you considered the possibility that you aren't currently ready to be benzo-free? Maybe you could discuss with your doctor that you feel you have some health issues you'd like to address first so you can taper in better mind set/healthier body.

 

 

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Horrible, I was typing all that and then my browser crashed ...

 

Trying again:

 

Liquid: faster acting, hitting me harder, shorter acting, different effect. Oversensitivity.

 

Adjunctive drugs ? In the USA, docs push those frequently. Where I live it's almost the opposite. And this website tends to discourage additional drugs ...

 

Non-diazepam (Tranxene, Librium, diazepam) like benzo's or other drugs ?

 

A normal clonazepam taper would be an achievement of Olympic proportions.

My bad somatic health translates in problems with tapering. (issues with sleep, lack of energy/exhaustion etc) Not gonna spell out the details.

'Maybe you could discuss with your doctor that you feel you have some health issues you'd like to address first so you can taper in better mind set/healthier body.' Not an option, unfortunately.

I need to have two GPs judged (by their peers?). Different healthcare system, referrals of GPs are required. It's not as if I can trust my current GP, he put me in this position.

We can't just pick our docs. But it's not as if healthcare is for free .

I've been told 'get off the drug first' as if I'd been on 20 mg temazepam for 6 months ...

In a way, I'd need to be my own GP ...

 

About the paradoxical: a few people told me 'CT', others 'slow, s-l-o-w-l-y'. Yeah ...

I need to get of this poison. The stuff does things it shouldn't do. And the paradoxical and physical health thing interact ... The worse my health/level of functioning the more the harsh effect and side effect profile comes to the fore ...

Diazepam is so different, shorter acting, accumulates massively with active metabolites ...

 

I've contacted or tried to contact a few people (David Healy: no response yet). That benzo une edu thing: no response. Perseverance is gone, of course. (can't blame her!) Here there are no docs who are psychopharmacologists.

Suggestions ?

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I think you can say that clonazepam is toxic to me. Both because of what it does, and because of my health. (lorazepam also did its thingy)

 

Local healthcare is very poor. I don't have the 'big bucks' to go international. (no insurance)

So my expectations are not high.

 

So you could say 'get rid of it ASAP'. Fair assesment. CT, so harsh. ('burning alive')

Then what ? At least lorazepam was fair, in the sense that it was medium acting and I was doing more or less OK till I developed tolerance and dependence (drug was way too 'addicting').

 

Diazepam (and diazepam-like drugs such as Tranxene and Librium) ? Short acting (slight exagerration), active metabolites and accumulating way too much. (Diazepam 5-8 times daily dose> 200-320 mg !). 'dirty drug' (pharmacologically) It's not as if I'm healthy and 'it's just the benzo'

 

(pheno, I'd have to do it myself since in this country no doc has experience with it)

 

There MUST BE something else. Any other benzo ? I know there is no proper substitute for normal somatic healthcare, but we do what we can/must.

 

Tapering clonazepam rapidly, while staying in bed (drug may last longer), getting up because of akathisia, going back to bed because of exhaustion ... It doesn't seem that good ...

 

It is insane that the choice should be between clonazepam and diazepam ...

 

I'm getting in a hurry ... Outside the box ? Don't be afraid to challenge the status quo.

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[02...]

You've been a member since September of 2011 - since staying on benzos tends to make people sicker rather than healthier, I'm wondering if the poor health from which you now suffer has remained the same or deteriorated during these five years?

 

If it has gotten worse, then getting off Klonopin as soon as possible seems logical. However, there's no other drug that takes away the difficulty of withdrawal. If there were, we all would have gotten on it.

 

So the choices are to taper or microtaper from Klonopin or a different benzo, do a rapid taper, get off cold turkey, or stay on benzos.

 

I'll reiterate what Kiddo said:

 

Liberty,

 

The difficulty in people be able to reply to your posts is that you've said you can't switch your benzo, you can't taper. I believe micro/daily tapering has been suggested to you and you can't do that either. Unfortunately, that doesn't really leave any options. It's hard to suggest and alternative as your signature doesn't convey what the problems are/were...its a little vague. Perhaps, an update would allow members to help you think outside the box?

 

Have you considered the possibility that you aren't currently ready to be benzo-free? Maybe you could discuss with your doctor that you feel you have some health issues you'd like to address first so you can taper in better mind set/healthier body.

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Leslie,

 

K on its own had been bad for my health, there were some other issues and I had a GP playing around, telling me I couldn't get treatment for a few major issues if it was related to the clonazepam (some were, some were not) ... I know it's weird (GP referrals required). They just don't know this drug, and the only high potency benzos GPs know are/is lorazepam. And even that one ... Anyway, in 2011 my health was fine, peachy ... Now I'm in hell, trashed.

 

Just a quick remark: it's sick that I'm too sick to do a slow or rapid direct 'normal' taper. Tapering K is bad for my health ... And no, I don't want to act difficult but the health issues and the K and L have done much damage ...

 

A bit more: K is at least partly paradoxical. It's not as if I feel paradoxical all the time.

 

I think I responded somewhere how I responded to the liquid ? Not good !

 

Once, in 2014 (circumstances relevant! in particulary I don't react well to antimuscarinic drugs at all!) I tried a somewhat fast taper, faster since things were getting harder at a lower dose (1.25 mg ? 1 mg?) Strange issues like a simultaneous mild urge to vomit and a burning hunger that felt like pain ... I realized my body could not adapt to the dose changes fast enough, and I got back on the old dose. I had given my body a tremendous blow and it took months to recover. It damaged my health.

Aside from my very first attempt, tapering the drug caused loss of muscle mass. Each successive attempt caused more rapid and extreme loss of muscle mass (even before the lorazepam!).  Combined with an increased in visceral fat, which suggests excessive production of catabolic hormones or HPA axis disturbances. And increased intestinal distress. General kindling.

 

My very first attempt: spontaneous recollection of event that happened long ago. Now it's more like cognitive dysfunction when I try to taper.

 

Now my muscles are thin fibers, in some ways I'm pretty much like in a state of overtraining. Exercise is not good, not exercising is not good either. My physical condition is very poor.

 

As someone put it, this drug is 'physically destabilizing'.

 

I'm sure there are disturbances in neurotransmitters and neuro-hormonal disturbances.

I suspect a disturbance in dopamine/acetylcholine. I once took solifenacin (muscarinic antagonist), technically off label, and it helped me with intestinal distress but I had to pay a price ! Mebeverine, about the same but different. Long lasting effects (months).

 

Taking a dose may partly alleviate withdrawal and make me more alert, but I think it also does make me more alert above 'baseline', sometimes. (paradoxical)

 

When I rest, activation of the autonomous nervous system and digestive nervous system/'enteric nervous system' is common. It doesn't happen always, but often.  Basically, resting while not sleeping is bad. It gets stronger when tapering.

 

It doesn't just act on GABA. But we can't ignore that either. For the technically inclined, https://www.hindawi.com/journals/aps/2012/416864/ and that's just benzos in general.

 

A CT would more or less fry my brain, suffering in the order of magnitude of burning alive. It would have been 'easier' years ago. I deeply regret not having done a CT a few years back. the worst at that time I would have experienced would have been not sleeping for a few months ...

 

And all the stress, chronic insomnia since I went from lorazepam back to clonazepam must have done a number on my brain. I 'm worthless without sleep, and I'm not saying that to be difficult.

 

I just hate V and the 'benzo bath'. Short acting, different, 'addictive' etc. I don't want to add fuel to the fire.

 

'Have you considered the possibility that you aren't currently ready to be benzo-free? Maybe you could discuss with your doctor that you feel you have some health issues you'd like to address first so you can taper in better mind set/healthier body.'

Medically, very little is possible within the framework of what is 'normal'. A challenge at best. Bad healthcare system, little choice.

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'

Have you considered the possibility that you aren't currently ready to be benzo-free? Maybe you could discuss with your doctor that you feel you have some health issues you'd like to address first so you can taper in better mind set/healthier body.'

 

It looks like that's not an option. I sort of have to get better by 'getting off'. Yeah, big mistake trusting this GP.

 

Anyone else get the 'it's not an illness' dismissive attitude ? It's physical, but illness or not ...

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  • 2 weeks later...

Liberty.

 

I have to agree with kiddo for the most part, as I've tried to figure out a solution for you as you know and I can really can't come up with anything given your current circumstances and  In your body. I really think you will be suffering until you're off and I really don't know to tell you which tapering plan you should use. But you know I always wish you the best of luck and I hope you can find a solution to your problem .

 

Hugs, Betsy ❤️

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I'm just going to ask for the opinions of the members.

 

First of all, I am 'not fine', it is 'not just the benzo', the local healthcare system is lousy and very restrictive, and I've been lied to by doctors. I'll leave it at that. It seems there is little I can do about that on the short run, let's leave it at that.

 

Clonazepam is at least partly paradoxical. My impression is that it's getting worse. Now, from experience I know I am NOT healing while tapering, rather it exerts a great strain on the body.

 

What really helps ? 'getting off' (CT), or switching to diazepam (my experiences are not good, it's a beast of a drug on its own) and tapering ?

 

I more or less have the impression that my brain is fried.

 

I am researching bromazepam and other alternative approaches, but I wonder if I am at the stage where nothing helps ...

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  • 6 years later...
  • 1 year later...
[ca...]
On 30/11/2016 at 10:07, [[l...] said:

I'm just going to ask for the opinions of the members.

First of all, I am 'not fine', it is 'not just the benzo', the local healthcare system is lousy and very restrictive, and I've been lied to by doctors. I'll leave it at that. It seems there is little I can do about that on the short run, let's leave it at that.

Clonazepam is at least partly paradoxical. My impression is that it's getting worse. Now, from experience I know I am NOT healing while tapering, rather it exerts a great strain on the body.

What really helps ? 'getting off' (CT), or switching to diazepam (my experiences are not good, it's a beast of a drug on its own) and tapering ?

I more or less have the impression that my brain is fried.

I am researching bromazepam and other alternative approaches, but I wonder if I am at the stage where nothing helps ...

I am stuck in a similar situation. I am paradoxical and still have 26mgs down to go. I do not know what to do. What did you end up doing?

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