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Date: 24.01.2011
From: x kerry x

Subject: gabapentin

ive been put on this along with my mtx and folic acid for my pa and hms. My rhummy is terrible and doesnt tell me anything, i always leave more confused than when i went in. Has anyone been on gabapentin before and could you tell me what it is? I have rang the hospital to see if i can change my rhummy to the on who dealt with me when i was in hospital as an inpatient last week as he was great and explained exactly what was going on, but they said they would get back to me. Are you allowed to just change your consultant or will it interfere with treatment? Thanks guys xx
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Date: 24.01.2011
From: Dalton

Subject: Re: gabapentin

Hi, I have RA and take sulphasalazine, methotrexate and amitriptyline. My specialist prescribed Gabapentin but its really toxic and my GP didnt seem to happy i'd been prescribed this aswell as everything else. They use it in epilepsy but apparently its meant to help with nerve pain. I eventually decided to take it but it made me feel awful - loads of side effects so I stopped taking it. The side affects are not good at all. Hopefully you may be okay with it but I wasnt prepared to take the risk of the side affects. You'll be able to read more about it by searching on google or yahoo. I know all medication can be toxic but luckily ive had no side effects with sulphasalazine, methotrexate and amitriptyline but the Gabapentin was not good for me at all. Hope you go on okay.
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Date: 24.01.2011
From: x kerry x

Subject: Re: gabapentin

can i ask what side effects you suffered with? Im meant to start taking it tonight but im a bit nervous x
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Date: 24.01.2011
From: Dalton

Subject: Re: gabapentin

I had really bad tummy and diahorrea, severe headaches and totally spaced out. It can increase your blood pressure quite badly aswell which isnt good as this can lead to strokes. Sorry to make it sound negative but it just had too many side affects for me and even my GP was reluctant for me to start it as its very toxic and still only relatively new to treat pain. As i say its used for epilepsy so works on the brain! I started off with 1 tablet a day then 2 and then 3 a day. Sometimes I think specialists just keep prescribing things without any thought for the side effects and even telling you fully what its for. Hope this helps.
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Date: 24.01.2011
From: x kerry x

Subject: Re: gabapentin

thanks, yes its helped alot. Do you think i should get a second opinion before i try it? My rhummy is terrible for giving me stuff but not telling me what its for. Who should i speak to about it? My med nurse? Is it to take instead of iuprofen and things like that? X
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Date: 24.01.2011
From: Dalton

Subject: Re: gabapentin

You could speak to your GP - the problem is that if the specialist has prescribed it your GP probably wont want to over ride what he has said. You could always try it like I did i.e. 1 on the first day 2 on the second day and then mine was up to 3 a day. Depends what you've been prescribed. You may be okay with it. Its definitely used for pain associated with nerve pain rather than a physical pain so it works on the nerve sensors in the brain. Its meant to help with pain such as burning, tingling, itching or pins and needs kind of pain (if that makes sense). I take amitriptyline for this kind of pain instead of the gabapentin which helps a lot and makes it easier for me to sleep. I started with 10mg of amitriptyline and now take 25mg. Its not for depression again its for pain associated with nerve pain. It was used for depression in high amounts but this amount is for nerve pain. Maybe you could ask to try this instead of gabapentin as the side effects are nil for me and I dont think overall they have major side effects.x
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Date: 24.01.2011
From: x kerry x

Subject: Re: gabapentin

i had been on amytryptalin but when i was first prescribed it i was going through a really rough time with work and my illness, i had very bad anxiety and was having panic attacks which i put down to the amytryp. I told him this and stopped taking it, but my circumstances have changed alot since then, im not in my stressfull job anymore, and i havnt had any anxiety or panic attacks since i left my job. I now think it had nothing to do with the amytryp and wana give it another shot, but when i suggested this to my rhumy he said perhaps i should get psycological help instead...which makes no sense to me, i was telling him i wasnt stressed at the moment, but i was having muscle cramps, shooting pains and spasms. Surley trying me with amytryptiline again instead of telling me to see a psyciatrist and giving me gabapentin would have made more sense :s x
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Date: 24.01.2011
From: x kerry x

Subject: Re: gabapentin

can i just add i also was on it for muscular reasons as apose to depression reasons, i just felt it was amplifying the worries i had at that point in time x
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Date: 24.01.2011
From: Dalton

Subject: Re: gabapentin

Cant believe he said you may need psychological help! It could be because he thinks you're asking about it because of your previous problems with anxiety etc. Maybe just explain to him that you're aware other people with this condition take it for the pain and that it greatly helps and he may consider prescribing it again. I would have thought he would try this before the gabapentin as thats what my specialist did. Suppose all Rheumys are different but its worth a shot.x
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Date: 24.01.2011
From: x kerry x

Subject: Re: gabapentin

he had gave me the amytrip to try first for the pain. Its my own fault really, i was in a bad way when he asked if it was helping (this was about 6month ago) and although it had helped with the muscle relaxation to start with, it stopped after a couple of weeks and i just felt it was making my moods worse, but now im not sure thats the case, i think my moods were getting worse because of my frustration at not being able to work and not having a diagnosis. Could i ask my gp to prescribe it or would it have to be my rhummy? Id rather give it another try before going straight on the gabapentin xx
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Date: 24.01.2011
From: Dalton

Subject: Re: gabapentin

Yep your GP can prescribe it. My GP initially prescribed it at 10mg and then the specialist increased it to 25mg. I'd definitely speak to the GP about it or give the gabapentin a try and see how you feel. Its not ideal is it taking all of this medication but without it there isnt a chance of living a half decent life. Im glad I hung in there with the methotrexate as I was literally crippled with pain before it started working and now its so much better. Im off to bed now so let me know how you get on, i'll log on tomorrow. Hope you go on okay. Im so tired all the time I need to get some sleep in while the little ones are in bed and another day starts.x
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Date: 24.01.2011
From: x kerry x

Subject: Re: gabapentin

god i dont know how you do it...ive got no kids to rum round after but im still always exhausted! Thanks for chatting, ill let u know how it goes! Nite nite xx
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Date: 26.01.2011
From: Dalton

Subject: Re: gabapentin

Hi Kerry,

How are you? Did you decide to try the gabapentin or are you going to see your GP first? Hope your okay. Yep it is extra tiring with children and RA. Ive got a 2 year old and 7 year old. Sometimes I feel like ive got jet lag ha! My shoulders and arms and back are killing me today - just moves around to different places when it feels like it! Speak to you soon.
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Date: 26.01.2011
From: x kerry x

Subject: Re: gabapentin

haha, yeah my pa does that, i can have pain in my ankles one minute, my shoulders the next, my wrists the next! I cant move my hot water bottle quick enough to keep up with the moving pain!! Ive had the gabapentin for 3 nights now, going up to 2 a day tomorrow. Havnt had any side effects yet...touch wood! Im still a bit wary of them, youre the only person ive spoken too who has taken them, and you didnt have a good experience so they make me a bit nervous, but im guna have to get used to scary medication, im going on mtx next week :s hope you get some well deserved rest tonight xxx
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Date: 27.01.2011
From: Dalton

Subject: Re: gabapentin

Glad you're giving them a try, hopefully they'll be okay for you. The methotrexate might make you feel a bit sickly or have a headache but it definitely subsides - they usually take 12 weeks to work for the pain but bear with them if you can - it definitely makes a big difference, Good luck. x
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Date: 28.01.2011
From: x kerry x

Subject: Re: gabapentin

thanks! I upped my dose to 2 tablets last night and felt quite dizzy and sickly after the second one but i just went to bed. Im dreading the mtx but it has to be done doesnt it! Xx
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Date: 29.01.2011
From: x kerry x

Subject: Re: gabapentin

hi dalton....2nd day of being on 2 tablets a day and i was ill last night! I felt like i was mortal drunk, i tried to go to sleep and i kept dozing in and out of conciousness, then woke up and was sick everywhere. Im still taking them today, gotta go up to 3 tomorrow so im guna just see how i am. Im seeing my med nurse on mon so guna ask her about it x
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Date: 31.01.2011
From: Dalton

Subject: Re: gabapentin

Hi Kerry, thats sounds familiar. I just felt totally out of it and with having two young children I couldnt deal with it aswell as all my other medication. Let me know how you go on. Thinking of you.
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Date: 01.02.2011
From: x kerry x

Subject: Re: gabapentin

im onto 3 a day now, and although i feel spaced, i havnt been sick off them again. I read on the internet that gabapentin are used in the usa for people with cannabis dependency. Apparently 1g of it is equivilant to 3 joints, which is maybe why it has made us sick and spaced out. I smoke cannabis, and have been continuing to do so whilst on the gabapentin, so that will be making me twice as spaced out! I might see if there are any other pain killers i can try that dont make me as drowsy! Thanks for your help dalton x
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