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stephsurf

Anxiety/panic And Lyrica/neurontin Anybody Have Similar Experiences?

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Hello,

I guess this is just to see if anybody else is in a similar situation or has had similar experiences.

I am diagnosed with POTS but I guess the random symptoms leading me to think I was half crazy and the time it took to get anybody to listen, no doubt I have to accept has made me anxious. Now that I have been diagnosed, I obviously am more aware of why I have certain symptoms, but I seem to have a lingering anxious feeling that won't go away, which every so often turns in to what I can only think are panic attacks which happen at the strangest times, mostly when I am not doing anything much at night time and am feeling overly sleepy.

What I have noticed however is that they have always occurred during times when I feel really tired or have possibly over-exerted myself (after exercise trying to cure this thing!) Its almost as if my body gets a really tired, weak feeling and because it makes me feel so terrible, in the deliriousness my body starts to panic for no particular reason. Really I think this is one of the worst things that is holding me back at the moment as I am due to start an exercise program which I will have to undertake every day, yet I am starting to worry that I won't be able to keep up full commitment if I keep having these horrible episodes which make me feel extremely horrible and this lasts in to the next day too (mainly because I get very little sleep after them). I am also thinking that possibly my IBS/acid reflux is being exacerbated by this too as the drugs that I have tried only dampen these particular symptoms a little bit such as lansoprazole/zantac.

I had tried an SSRI (Zoloft) a few months ago and I know they take a few weeks to work, but the initial symptoms were beyond what I would deem acceptable, especially when I was at a pretty low point in the whole process. So I quit taking it. Initially this was more to try and correct the autonomic side of things rather than low mood. Now I've begun to think that anxiety is playing a bigger role than I would like I have recently been prescribed pregabalin (lyrica) which I see quite a few people are on here. Initially this was a consideration from my neurologist due to the headaches, chronic fatigue and vague aches and pains I was getting all the time.

My question is has anybody got any advice surrounding pregabalin and whether it has taken the edge off of the anxious feelings that I guess a lot of us get with this illness? Its just a little disheartening as I was never ever an anxious person before all of this!

Thanks all in advance

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I have episodes exactly like what you describe. I used to experience them as anxiety too, although now they feel more like I'm just hyped up on a lot of caffeine. I don't think they're real anxiety - I think it's some sort of imbalance with epinephrine/norepinephrine. Mine also happen after overexertion, either immediately or a few hours later. It doesn't even have to be exercise - sometimes it just happens after being upright too long or um..intimate moments with my boyfriend. They usually happen at night and sometimes even wake me up. It's the worst combination of feeling really wired and being exhausted, and I can't sleep til it wears off so I'm a wreck the next day. And it also causes a flare-up of IBS symptoms for me. I gave up on exercise because they just kept happening every single time.

I haven't tried any meds for this yet, mostly because I seem to have bad reactions to absolutely everything, so I can't tell you whether anything does/doesn't help - but just commenting to say I get the exact same pattern of symptoms. I hope you figure out how to manage it - and if you do, please let us know!

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I've definately had some of the panic attack like episode; with me they were always random as well, never occuring because of an anxious sitution just coming on out of nowhere. I stopped having those since last year though I'm not sure why. Also I was on gabapentin for about a month, which is pretty similair to lyrica. It didn't affect me that much other than the first day where I definately felt like I was in a noticably calmer state them normal. To me it feels somewhat similiar to taking a benzodiazepine, which I guess both drugs work on gaba receptors, but I stopped it because it really didn't help any of my symptoms, though it didn't hurt them either.

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The feelings that you describe are common to any disorder linked to the autonomic nervous system. Your nervous system is compromised and reacts more strongly to external and internal events. When someone who is 'normal' fit and healthy they may have a mild stress response to an event, but to someone like ourselves then this becomes magnified 10 fold. As part of this process we become jittery, anxious, edgy, nervy etc you name it. The gabapentin/lyrica didn't help that in me but the tricyclic antidepressant has helped calm my nerves. My moods have changed and I assert myself more and I'm maybe less calm and accepting. I do tend to have less patience but I think other people have this issue, too, especially when you don't feel well.

Overexertion will also make you feel wired and anxious as well as pretty ill.

I still get paranoia and anxiety feelings but thankfully they are fleeting. The IBS flare-ups for me are a good indicator as to how stressed I am. Some meditation and relaxation do help an awful lot.

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I would tell you to be careful with adding medications. My son is extremely sensitive to some of the meds you mentioned. Lyric caused his heart to race. I would tell you to start with the lowest dosage possible and then move up gradually. The worst part about POTS is that you have no idea how these medications are affecting hormone or neurotransmitters levels in your body. When my son is overly tired, his symptoms do get his worse. It's been a real balancing act for us.

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I have exactly what you are talking about. I write again about it in a thread about night breathing problems. When I first was experiencing (jerky/shaky spells that some would call panic attacks), they were similar in timing to my grand mal seizures that were under control w keppra. My Neuro and I thought maybe they were partial seizures so he added lyrica. I thought it helped and have been on that combo for about ten ys. (75mg am/75mg pm; one time, they were worse after another med change so my neuro had me double the night dose...and I started hallucinating!! Very not good!).

But I still have milder versions. I now think what happens is my Bp drops too low at night sometimes, hr too low, and my body responds w a flood of adrenaline...resulting in the over response of shaking. Yes, after exercising lately, every time. Which is weird because I've been working out fir years :(

I've been told that antidepressants help to even out the body's physiological response to stress but haven't gone there.

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I have episodes exactly like what you describe. I used to experience them as anxiety too, although now they feel more like I'm just hyped up on a lot of caffeine. I don't think they're real anxiety - I think it's some sort of imbalance with epinephrine/norepinephrine. Mine also happen after overexertion, either immediately or a few hours later. It doesn't even have to be exercise - sometimes it just happens after being upright too long or um..intimate moments with my boyfriend. They usually happen at night and sometimes even wake me up. It's the worst combination of feeling really wired and being exhausted, and I can't sleep til it wears off so I'm a wreck the next day. And it also causes a flare-up of IBS symptoms for me. I gave up on exercise because they just kept happening every single time.

I haven't tried any meds for this yet, mostly because I seem to have bad reactions to absolutely everything, so I can't tell you whether anything does/doesn't help - but just commenting to say I get the exact same pattern of symptoms. I hope you figure out how to manage it - and if you do, please let us know!

Oh wow, this was me last night! I was overwound but exhausted and couldn't sleep till I was super super exhausted and even then my heart rate had a hard time slowing down. Or my heart rate slowed down but felt like my heart was pounding too hard - it was scary! I was awake all night with it. A couple of times when the tachycardia got real bad I nearly phoned for an ambulance :blink:

I do feel like a wreck today too! Like I just have not slept enough - and lately my sleep schedule has been so wacko, I sleep all day and up all night no matter my efforts to try to fix it.

I have bad reactions to meds too. Two nights ago I tried to reset my sleep schedule by taking one antihistamine (the drowsy kind). It made my brain super sleepy but made my heart rate speed up so that I was unable to fall asleep any earlier than I would have.

My naturopath said to try motherwort as it is a heart tonic and is good for slowing the heart rate down. I was taking it in cups of water, sipping it through the night. During the height of the 'attack' as I call it, nothing was helping, not even slow deep breathing. Eventually I was able to fall asleep well after daylight but I don't know if that was the motherwort finally kicking in or just sheer exhaustion!

So I do know what you're all talking about! If anyone figures out a fix, let us know!

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