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Prednisone years later and feel back in benzo w/d!!


[Ti...]

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I haven’t posted here in years! I  just took Prednisone for four days and feel like I’m back in Benzo Withdrawal!! Stopping the drug is not stopping these symptoms!!

 

I’m very agitated/akathisia, burning skin, no appetite/nausea, not sleepy at night, horrible mornings (and most of day), heart palpitations, tachycardia, dizzy, muscle weakness in legs. The hot flashes improved once off the meds.

 

I’m also recently recovered from mold sickness so I’m sure that plays a part.

 

This forum has smart people. Can anyone tell me why I feel like I’m in severe benzo withdrawal again and will I be ok? So scared!!

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Apparently anxiety can be a side effect of taking steroids! This is actually the exact reason why I ended up taking Ativan in the first place! I took steroids for too long, and didn’t know about the potential side effects. I wish someone had told me!

 

I believe there’s something stimulating about steroids; It ramps up your body ... that’s what’s probably causing your current symptoms.

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Yes but I’m off the Prednisone and feeling awful. The first two days on didn’t feel as bad as now.

 

I’m reading that they are cross-tolerant to benzos and work on GABA?! :(

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Similar to you, even after I stoped the steroids, I had awful debilitating chemical anxiety. I think several weeks passed, and it still hadn’t dissipated.  That’s how I ended up taking Ativan in the first place (which I obviously regret!)

 

You may want to check the Ashton manual for the other medications section, and see what it says about steroids. I seem to recall that they should be avoided, but I don’t know the science behind it.

 

 

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Hi Tina,

 

I'm sorry you are back here after taking prednisone. Steroids do impact the HPA axis, which for some sensitive people who have been through withdrawal, can be very fragile.  Many of the symptoms you describe are side effects of steroids in general. 

 

How long has it been since your last dose?

 

Steroids can stay in the system for up to 3 weeks. I would think that things should settle for you after that period of time.

 

A friend in the medical field once told me that oral steroids can cause more side effects than injected ones. I've had injections due to bad shoulder issues and have just a few minor effects, flushing, high energy right after and mild insomnia. They eased up after a couple of days.

 

Let us know how you are doing now.

 

PG  :smitten:

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Hi Pianogirl!!

 

I remember you well from years ago. Over the years I’ve been so careful with meds. I can’t believe I let this one slip! I have been reading that Prednisone is cross-tolerant with benzos and acts on GABA. I can’t believe how sick I am right now. You may remember I had extremely difficult taper after a very short time on Ativan. I feel like all the benzo w/d symptoms came back overnight!

 

I only took it for 4 days but I’m small and apparently the starting dose I took is quite large-20 mg. I actually only took 1/2 of the 40 mg prescribed. I also took one dose a month ago and didn’t think I could tolerate it as it made me feel weird. But unfortunately I tried it again. So 5 doses total in month, but 4 in a row this last week. I have been off of it for 3 or 4 days now and honestly the symptoms are getting worse, not the other way around. So that leads me to think I’m actually in withdrawal, not just experiencing side-effects. I think it compromised my HPA axis at the first dose and I’ve heard it takes a long time for that to re-regulate. Wish I never took this poison. :(

 

-TinaCA

 

 

 

Hi Tina,

 

I'm sorry you are back here after taking prednisone. Steroids do impact the HPA axis, which for some sensitive people who have been through withdrawal, can be very fragile.  Many of the symptoms you describe are side effects of steroids in general. 

 

How long has it been since your last dose?

 

Steroids can stay in the system for up to 3 weeks. I would think that things should settle for you after that period of time.

 

A friend in the medical field once told me that oral steroids can cause more side effects than injected ones. I've had injections due to bad shoulder issues and have just a few minor effects, flushing, high energy right after and mild insomnia. They eased up after a couple of days.

 

Let us know how you are doing now.

 

PG  :smitten:

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Hi Pianogirl!!

 

I remember you well from years ago. Over the years I’ve been so careful with meds. I can’t believe I let this one slip! I have been reading that Prednisone is cross-tolerant with benzos and acts on GABA. I can’t believe how sick I am right now. You may remember I had extremely difficult taper after a very short time on Ativan. I feel like all the benzo w/d symptoms came back overnight!

 

I only took it for 4 days but I’m small and apparently the starting dose I took is quite large-20 mg. I actually only took 1/2 of the 40 mg prescribed. I also took one dose a month ago and didn’t think I could tolerate it as it made me feel weird. But unfortunately I tried it again. So 5 doses total in month, but 4 in a row this last week. I have been off of it for 3 or 4 days now and honestly the symptoms are getting worse, not the other way around. So that leads me to think I’m actually in withdrawal, not just experiencing side-effects. I think it compromised my HPA axis at the first dose and I’ve heard it takes a long time for that to re-regulate. Wish I never took this poison. :(

 

-TinaCA

 

 

 

Hi Tina,

 

I'm sorry you are back here after taking prednisone. Steroids do impact the HPA axis, which for some sensitive people who have been through withdrawal, can be very fragile.  Many of the symptoms you describe are side effects of steroids in general. 

 

How long has it been since your last dose?

 

Steroids can stay in the system for up to 3 weeks. I would think that things should settle for you after that period of time.

 

A friend in the medical field once told me that oral steroids can cause more side effects than injected ones. I've had injections due to bad shoulder issues and have just a few minor effects, flushing, high energy right after and mild insomnia. They eased up after a couple of days.

 

Let us know how you are doing now.

 

PG  :smitten:

 

Gosh Tina, what a terrible thing to happen. You've just stopped the steroid a few days ago so it might take a while for your body to settle down.  If you stopped suddenly, that could impact how you feel as well, that's why the dose pack is usually self tapering where you take less and less each day.

 

Us small folk seem to be very sensitive to amounts of medication. Forever I have taken just child's doses of anything.

 

I hope you feel better soon.

 

PG  :smitten:

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[78...]

Here's what Prof. Ashton says about setbacks:

 

    One mechanism which might be involved in long-term (and possibly permanent) effects of benzodiazepines is an alteration in the activity of benzodiazepine receptors in brain GABA neurones. These receptors down-regulate (become fewer) as tolerance to benzodiazepines develop with chronic use. Such down-regulation is a homeostatic response of the body to the constant presence of the drugs. Since benzodiazepines themselves enhance the actions of GABA, extra benzodiazepine receptors are no longer needed, so many are, in effect, discarded. These down-regulated receptors are absorbed into neurones where, over time, they undergo various changes including alterations in gene expression. When these receptors are slowly reinstated after drug withdrawal, they may return in a slightly altered form. They may not be quite so efficient as before in increasing the actions of GABA, the natural ‘calming’ neurotransmitter. As a result, the brain may be generally less sensitive to GABA and the individual is left with heightened central nervous system excitability and increased sensitivity to stress. Molecular biologists point out that changes in gene expression can be very slow, or even unable, to reverse…

 

    It is not unusual to experience recurrence of apparent benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms years after a successful withdrawal and a return to normal health [“setbacks”]. This particular pattern of symptoms is unique to the individual, depending on his physical and psychological makeup, and no doubt on the innate density of his/her benzodiazepine receptors and the balance of his endozepines. The experience of benzodiazepine withdrawal is deeply etched into the mind and memory of those who have been through it, and it is actually physically present in the strength and connections of their neural synapses, as all memories are. These recurrent symptoms are all signs of GABA underactivity with its accompanying increased output of excitatory neurotransmitters, resulting in a hyperactive, hypersensitive central nervous system. The mechanism is exactly the same as that of benzodiazepine withdrawal, which is why the symptoms are the same.

 

    In nearly every case of apparent recurrence, the precipitating cause for the return of symptoms turns out, on close inspection, to be an increase in environmental stress. The trigger may be a new stress or worry which may be unrecognised so that the return of symptoms seems to occur out of the blue. Contributing factors can be an infection, surgery, dental problems, work problems, fatigue, bereavement, family problems, loss of sleep, adverse reaction to a drug, change of environment—almost anything.

 

    It is not clear why many people report experiencing adverse effects from new drugs or drugs they have tolerated before taking benzodiazepines. The drugs involved are so disparate – from skin ointments to eye drops to local anaesthetics to antidepressants, steroids and many others – that it is difficult to attribute these reactions to metabolic effects, allergies or other known effects. Presumably the general hypersensitivity of the nervous system magnifies the reaction to any foreign substances, but no clear explanation has yet emerged. An exception is quinolone antibiotics which displace benzodiazepines from their binding sites and should not be taken by patients on, or recently on, benzodiazepines.

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Thank you everyone. I am 6 days off the “meds” (poison) and feel like I’m in full cold-turkey benzo withdrawal. This is hell on earth and so scary!!! The nonstop akathisia and insomnia is unbearable. :(
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I just finished 5 days on PREDNISONE for a severe asthma flare up, AND I’m having the same issues as you describe.  It’s miserable. 🥵 
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  • 2 weeks later...
[4c...]

TinaCA,

 

This happened to me 4 times with other medications that were not benzo or antidepressants, I think it is akathisia in itself and steroids can cause  akathisia as with other drugs depending on the person. You have to ride it out and I have known others having reactions to steroids. It really depends on the time line but you will improve and it will lift.

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