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The doctor wants my daughter to try Lyrica.  From my research it looks like a neurotin variant which has been approved in Europe for general anxiety.  Pfizer re-package now that neurotin is off-patent.  She used neurontin in past (at very high doses) and did not have any trouble getting off it.  In this case we are trying to deal with pain around an abdominal operation site that has become more prominent (stabbing pain) and Lyrica promises to help with neuropathic pain which this could be. 

Any thoughts?

Swedish Dad

 

 

See if this link works

http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=104&STORY=/www/story/03-27-2006/0004327379

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lyrica - a brand new answer to everything - even sounds kinda musical doesn't  :laugh:

 

figure out what is causing the pain and treat it - or let it heal - there really is not a drug for everything and everything for a drug.

 

drugs may cover problems - but the do not cure then or treat them - they are a cover.

 

i was given benzo's for pain - and that is how i got to know you dad - need i say more :D

 

 

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The doctor wants my daughter to try Lyrica.  From my research it looks like a neurotin variant which has been approved in Europe for general anxiety.  Pfizer re-package now that neurotin is off-patent.  She used neurontin in past (at very high doses) and did not have any trouble getting off it.  In this case we are trying to deal with pain around an abdominal operation site that has become more prominent (stabbing pain) and Lyrica promises to help with neuropathic pain which this could be. 

Any thoughts?

Swedish Dad

 

 

See if this link works

http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=104&STORY=/www/story/03-27-2006/0004327379

 

SW, I know thta Tony was on neurontin, and had a very tough time coming off it.  I don't know enough about this class of drugs to advise you, but it seems she is so close to being drug free (is she stiil on pain med?), I hate to see her back on a new one. But I do know that neurontin helps with nerve pain. Are you sure that it's not just still wd? It may ease up soon. Maybe she can just try and wait it out a little longer to see if resolves without starting the lyrica.

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Please check out my Neurontin thread for my experience with it at: http://www.benzobuddies.org/forum/index.php?topic=6761.0

 

Also please read the following.

 

Neurontin (Gabapentin) and Benzodiazepine Withdrawal

 

By

 

Dr. Reg Peart

 

Victims of Tranquilizers

 

            The attached information indicates that the pharmacological properties of neurontin (therapeutic actions, adverse reactions, and withdrawal symptoms) are similar to those of benzodiazepine and other sedative/hypnotic drugs.  Neurontin and the benzodiazepines are cross dependent and cross tolerant drugs and therefore neurontin will alleviate adverse reactions and withdrawal symptoms produced by the benzodiazepines.*

 

            Neurontin does not meet all of the criteria needed for use in tapering from benzodiazepine withdrawals.  Firstly, it has no active metabolites; secondly, the elimination half life is short and; thirdly, the drug equivalence is not reported for the various therapeutic actions.

 

            The range of the short half life i.e. 5 – 7 hours is small compared with most CNS depressant drugs. For most the upper value is 3 to 5 times the lower value.  The limited range quoted may be the result of few studies and could very well be significantly larger.  The problem of a short half-life is to some extent overcome by three divided doses/day.  With a half life of 7 hours or more accumulation of about times 2 or more can be expected, but with half-lives of 5 hours or less very little accumulation is produced and may cause interdose withdrawals, especially if tolerance occurs.

 

            I have been unable to find the drug equivalence between benzodiazepines and neurontin for the different therapeutic actions but, I have estimated the value from the anticonvulsant action for neurontin and klonopin.  This value is 1,000 mgs of neurontin is equivalent to about 5 mgs. of klonopin.

 

            From a few reports I’ve had, patients have been prescribed the anticonvulsant dose of neurontin for benzodiazepine withdrawals.  This is cause for concern because such a dose is equivalent to high levels of klonopin (5-15mgs) and could lead to difficulty in tapering from neurontin.  It would be helpful to have reports of the doses used and any difficulty or otherwise in tapering from neurontin.

 

Neurontin (Gabapentin)

           

            This information is a summary of that given in about six references including the data sheets published by Parke Davis, the manufacturer of neurontin.

 

            This drug was first marketed in the U.S. in  1981 and in the U.K. in the early 1990’s.  It appears that it was marketed after a limited number of controlled clinical trials (a total of only 543 patients) and a series of uncontrolled studies.

 

Indications/Uses

         

            For treatment of epileptic convulsions and neuropathic pain.  Some of the studies reported anxiolytic, muscle relaxant, hypnotic, and amnesic actions.

 

Cautions

 

            Special procedures are required for diabetics taking neurontin and extreme care if used for patients with renal insufficiency.

 

Dose

 

            As an anticonvulsant – 900 mgs. – 2,400 mgs./day reached gradually over a few days and given in three divided doses/day (U.K.)  Maximum value of 3,600 mgs. (U.S.)

 

            For neuropathic pain – maximum of 1,800 mgs/day reached gradually over a few days given in three divided doses/day (U.K.).  Same dose as for anticonvulsant use (U.S.)

 

Mechanism of Action

 

            Neurontin is structurally related to GABA. Its mechanism of action is unknown, but it appears to increase GABA turnover in several regions of the brain.

 

Absorption and Fate

 

            Neurontin is not metabolized by the body, i.e., it does not produce active or inactive metabolites.  It is eliminated solely by renal excretion. For elderly patients and those with renal insufficiency, the elimination half-life is up to 52 hours.  For others it is quoted as 5 – 7 hours.

 

Adverse Reactions

 

            Drowsiness, dizziness, fatigue, muscle tremor, vision disturbances, indigestion, weight gain, mood changes, hallucinations, decreased kidney function in over 60s, diarrhea, dry mouth, nausea, vomiting, peripheral oedema, anxiety, abnormal gait, amnesia, nystagmus, asthenia, parathesia, abnormal thinking, emotional lability, hyperkinesia, infections (urinary and upper respiratory tract), dysarthria, arthralgia, diplopia, amblyopia, constipation, flatulence, impotence, leucopenia, depression, psychosis, headache, pancreatitis, incontinence, alopecia, allergic reactions, rashes and angioedema, chest pain, palpitations, movement disorders, thrombocytopenia, tinnitus, acute renal failure, purpura, changes in blood pressure, seizures, confusion, impairment of mental alertness, coordination problems, ataxia, coughing, rhinitis, pharyngitis, nervousness, myalgia, back pain, dental abnormalities, puritis, twitching, fever, abdominal pain, confusion, acne, vertigo, decreased or absent reflexes, hostility, variations in blood glucose level.

 

Dependency Potential and Withdrawal Symptoms

 

            All references warn of avoiding abrupt withdrawal and the use of a tapered withdrawal.  Some references suggest the dependency potential is low, but this generally refers to short-term use and that it can significantly increase with long-term use.

 

            Withdrawal symptoms reported include – anxiety, insomnia, nausea, pain, sweating, vomiting, severe and repeated seizures, ataxia, nystagmus, fatigue and dizziness.

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I took Lyrica last year, also for pain months after surgery.  Pain managment drs. and neurologists are currently rx-ing this drug like crazy.  Apparently the drug just got approved for fibromyalgia (which I have; basically you hurt all over), and that, IMHO is just another profit avenue for the drug companies.

 

In my case, I had carpel tunnel surgery on right wrist, but had horrific burning pain in hand, wrist, forearm, elbow and into shoulder (before AND after surgery).  I did have numbness in the fingers (i.e. probably was carpel tunnel syndrome), but the other pain was overwhelming.  Nothing relieved it:  not Percocet, Vicodin, etc.  The burning pain actually got worse after surgery.  The supposed "surgery recovery" period was sheer hell.

 

I also had a nerve block.  No improvement.  After 5 -6 months a neurologist ordered Lyrica 150mg 2X/day.  It did nothing for my pain.  I only took it for about 3 weeks because the a.m. dose made me so sedated I could not function.

 

Something within me told me the pain was eventually going to go away - but I thought it could take a long, long time.  I had 2 months of occupational therapy and 2 months of physical therapy.

 

It has now been 1 year/2 months since that surgery.  Gradually, the pain has diminished.    I still have some pain, esp. with overuse, but the horrible burning pain is gone.  It is not yet my "normal right hand" (and I am right-handed), but I do think that by this time next year it will be even better.

 

I believe stress, fear, doctors, finances and emotional factors contributed to that pain (I had had major spinal surgery just 2 years before the wrist pain). 

 

So for your daughter, only you can make that call.  I also had major surgeries when I was a teenager, so I know how fearful and stressful it can be for one so young.  Perhaps you can give the drug a trial: say, 30 days, and IF she has SIGNIFICANT improvement - without bad side effects, maybe it could be a VERY short term treatment to get her over the hump. 

 

There are also forums on the internet discussing Lyrica.  You might go to some of them to do more research (check the fibromyalgia and depression forums).

Good Luck,

SpringDay

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  • 3 weeks later...

Just an update-after 3 weeks of Lyrica use my daughter developed face blotching and other problems (with no pain relief because she does not have nerve pain) and upon doctor's orders stopped taking the drug.

BIG MISTAKE!

Huge withdrawl symptoms with thru the roof anxiety.

Well...it seems even Pfizer urges careful withdrawl.

Now we are faced with real problem of the two weeks it takes to get this poison out of her system with anxiety levels never seen in the worst of benzo withdrawls.

I HATE to contemplate it but we may have to use short term use of some form of anti-anxiety med to get her off this stuff.  Does it never end?

The internet is full of horrow stories of people going into ER's in full blown c/t from this stuff and the docs do not have a clue.

Pfizer says one to two weeks to get this out of system.

What a huge mistake at this point in her return to health.

Sonata is helping or she could not manage.

What are thoughts of best strategy.  I feel horrible because a doc friend of mine suggested this med as a two-fer, it  supposedly controls anxiety and pain. I suggested it to my daughters doc and he agreed.  I should have researched the hell out of this.

She was once on mega doses of neurontin and came off that without alot of trouble.

Kicking myself

SD

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what ever she is on will not work forever - most likely any thing she is on will have adverse effects.

 

but it sounds like this is temporary - however - the procedure may uncover a need for some surgery. 

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WARNING-Lots of folks on internet complaining of SEVERE withdrawl problems with Lyrica.  Caution should be used when quitting this drug.  Commonly-  thru the roof anxiety, body twitching, body temperature change, and racing, sometimes, suicidal thoughts. 

My daughter had all of the above plus the commonly observed quick weight gain.

These problems seem to occur with rapid withdrawl from using this drug.

BE CAREFUL.

SD

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thanks for the warning - was the rapid weight gain after she quit?

 

because benzo users are complaining about that - which to me indicates that our kidneys may be stressed.

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Silver-

Rapid weight gain complaints are from folks who are put on the drug and seem to be gaining weight in first few weeks of use.  Daughter gained in 2-3 weeks of use.  She is tapering drug down now and hopes to be off in 2-4 days.  Overall clearance of drug from folks systems seems to be anecdotally reported at 2 weeks.

I might also say that for those that the drug works- principally for nerve pain-there are numerous happy users.

My complaint is that Pfizer is aggressively trying to increase the size of their potential market by going beyond neuropathic pain sufferers and trying to market to all chronic pain-anxiety-fibromyalgia folks.

BECAREFUL...and do not lose more months and years of your lives being a big pharma Guinea pig.

SD

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  • 3 weeks later...

oh no!  I think I found the reason why I'm having anxiety at night...it's call Lyrica and it's giving me paradoxical symptoms. Lots of anxiety within hour after taking it and my left leg is cramping up, not to mention that I have to pause between sentences because I forget what I'm talking about.

 

This is bad news because I couldn't taper off this med w/o having even worse symptoms, so I'm stuck here in what I think is a unique situation. I'm almost sure that if I go to a doctor he will only increase the dosage until I hit tolerance again.

 

How did I find this out?

 

Well I took my Valium 3 full hours before the Lyrica and felt fine, but (again) when I took the Lyrica the symptoms described above started.

 

What to do here as I feel I'm going to continue my taper and embrace this symptoms are non-benzo related.

 

Just to make sure I'm not wrong I will take Valium 4 hours earlier tomorrow than the Lyrica and see if the same symptoms return.

 

 

Jarocho

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Can you believe this? "Some people have experienced withdrawal symptoms after stopping treatment (long-term or short-term) with this medicine. These have included insomnia, headache, nausea, diarrhoea, flu syndrome, nervousness, depression, pain, sweating and dizziness." And do they warn anyone? (From: http://www.netdoctor.co.uk/medicines/100005038.html)

 

:muscle: :muscle: :muscle:

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sure - usually at the end of every commercial they rattle of a bunch of stuff.  the doctors on the other hand - well what can i say - ok i will say it - the doctors on the other hand are criminally negligent for pushing these drugs on people.
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I just posted on my regular thread and covered Lyrica nightmare.  I will also paste my post here.  I cannot tell you how frightening my daughters response has been to this med.  I curse the day I ever heard of it.  Here is my post:

 

 

 

Posts: 104

 

 

    Re: Help with daughter

« Reply #225 on: Today at 11:16:06 PM » Quote Modify Remove 

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Just an update for the kind souls who have been following my daughters nightmare-the abdominal pain that persisted after benzo burn stomach receded with end of benzo use was determined to be adhesions and was laproscopically dealt with last week.  That pain is gone!  Recovering now from the surgery.  All that good news.

Bad news is the continuing battle to get Lyrica out of system.  NEVER ever in her efforts to get off benzos did she have anything remotely as bad as panic/anxiety attacks that are occurring in Lyrica withdrawl.  Fortunately insomnia has begun to abate along with minor seizures.  But overtop anxiety is still persisting.

Unfortunately we have had to return to small doze benzo use to get past this.  I have scoured internet and this is common and the way Docs are getting people thru this.

We know the benzo curse and she knows and wants this to be short term.

Please think hard about using Lyrica-especially for anxiety (one poster on another site was being switched to Lyrica to help with anxiety in getting off Ativan) and understand that this drug takes weeks to get out of your system after you are done.

My daughter only used for two weeks with highest dose being 150 mg..  POISON!

SD

 

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I have not w/d from Lyrica (made one attempt but hit a wall that bounced me right back to my original dosage).  I have not heard of Lyrica tolerance, but if that's what I'm experience then I'm going just embrace these symptoms and taper off the Lyrica very slowly afterwards.

 

Like your daughter my dosage is 150mg and yes it's bad, but I did a lot of research about it on the Internet and didn't anything about it until it was too late (same with benzos).

 

I know the concensous here is to taper off one drug at a time, but I thought I should hold my taper of one of the two meds and do a slow w/d from the other. I believe benzos are worse than Lyrica, so I will just pray from this point forward that I'm able to get all the way through my benzo w/d without Lyrica doing anymore damage.

 

This sucks!

 

Jarocho

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Err! I believe my w/d sx are benzo related. I think I screwed up myself by going too quickly!

 

I cut 41.6% of my original dosage within 43 days...what was I thinking? I couldn't think I was a benzo head...darn it so I'm paying the price...

 

Slowing down and waiting for that window that I know will come soon enough.

 

Jarocho

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Slowing down and waiting for that window that I know will come soon enough.

 

Jarocho

 

(((((Jarocho)))))

 

Hoping for a window soon for you...hang in there!!

 

Love,

 

 

Jen

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Sorry no windows just feeling worse, so I think I might do the unthinkable and updose back up to 10mg and settle there for a while. 

 

I have a lot of things going on:

1) Job

2) Two kids to take care of (2 and 4 years old)

3) An iffy relationship with a girlfriend who is in rehab, but until last week was making some progress, but now is like she's back to step number 1

4) Being home alone (kids are with the babysitter due to my w/d sx)

 

I still want to hear opinions, but my mind is almost made up as I this is not letting up and I need larger windows to be able to function as a farther/employee/etc.

 

Jarocho

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  • 2 weeks later...

HELP!

We are still trying to get daughter off Lyrica and there is no question it is MANY MANY MANY more times difficult then we had getting off benzos.

Has anyone got any ideas when the withdrawal symptoms quit after taper?

We are on day 20 and it has been the worst.  Absolute anxiety all day long.

Out of desperation we are very short term using benzos which we hate but that shows how desperate we are.

On another site someone posted regarding LYrica withdrawal "Anyone considering Lyrica, for your LIFE'S Sake, please think about withdrawal which can make you feel you wish you were dead...experiencing the worst Hell here on earth!!!! Worse then anything you can imagine."  "Do not take this drug lightly!"

I CANNOT AGREE MORE!

If anyone has any info we are desperate.

Other posting have suggested 2-4 weeks.

SD

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Hi SD,

I tried to w/d from Lyrica during benzo w/d and I still remember how bad it was. Did you cold turkey your daugher off the med? If not, then how did she taper off the medication?

 

I believe I went from 150 to 75 within five days and regret it having doing it that fast.  Please post more details.

 

 

Jarocho

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Jarocho

My daughter was at 300 mg of Lyrica for 5 days at her peak and started at 150.  Total time on the poison between 2 and 3 weeks.  She began to have allergic reactions and quit per her Dr's instructions.  Three days after quitting she had horrendous withdrawl symptoms.  We re-instated at 100 mgs and dropped to 75 mgs after 2 days and then 50 for 4 days , 25 mg for 2 days, 12.5 for 3 days, 6.25 for 3 days and then off.

Lyrica withdrawal has been up and down over last 20 days.  Today has been terrible.  She does not want to give back into drug so we are hanging in with horrific conditions of unending anxiety, body temperature changes, racing thoughts, muscle twitches and spasms.  Using benzos just to keep sane.

In our experience rough periods occurr when body is adjusting to decrease or absense of drug.  Coming off benzos was similar at the end but not nearly as bad.

Others on the internet have posted that after taper they took 2-4 weeks to regain a measure of stability.  It is my take that some can get on and off this drug without problems-others pay dearly to part company with this poison.

Just like benzos.

At this moment, our experience is that it will be easier to taper back off banzos then deal with this crap.

So we are going to keep on off Lyrica.

Will let you know how it turns out.

SD

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