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Dr put me on Amitriptyline

Posted: Mon Aug 08, 2005 10:48 pm
by Hazel
Friday night, same ole creepy jeepers. saturday night wasn't too bad, last night was horrid, leg pain...

Today was my appt with the dr. I took in all the suggested info, explained as well as I could my symptoms, asked if I needed to see a neruologist to determine why this is happening... the answer was no... she looked through the materials, then said she would start me on Amitriptyline. I asked her what it was and she said it would help me sleep.

well... brain fogged woman I r, is this a good place to start? Since I got the info home I see it is a tricyclic antidepressant... did I read some where that certain antidepressants aggrivate the problem.

Brain was so out of it today I stayed home from work, so I would be fairly coherent and feel like I didn't really accomplish anything.

Any insights appreciated... Hazel

No, you're not imagining things

Posted: Tue Aug 09, 2005 12:11 am
by sardsy75
Hi Hazel

Yes, you more than likely read that tricyclic anti-depressants can actually increase RLS symptoms.

However ... as RLS is such an individual syndrome ... everyone is different, and some of us just happen to buck the trend.

Give the amitriptyline a go for a week or so ... it will take you at least that long to get used to the "foggy" feelings the next morning as well as figure out if it is A) helping you get your much needed sleep; and B) settling your RLS.

I'm by no means a doctor, but if you feel in a few weeks time that you are literally feeling no better and that your RLS has not improved in any way ... go back to your GP and talk to her about what you've experienced whilst being on this drug. Keeping a daily diary of sleep patterns, diet, symptoms, etc can often be useful for doc visits too.

I have been on two tricyclic anti-d's in the past 18 months and neither of them have had a negative effect on my RLS. Yet for others it would probably have driven them nuts.

If you'd like more info about the drugs/treatments being used for RLS, the Southern California RLS Support Group has one of the most informative sites on this at

Hope this helps you out.

Take care of you!

Posted: Tue Aug 09, 2005 12:14 am
by ViewsAskew
Hazel, sorry you had to go through that. Many of us have had similar situations. You were right, it is an older tricyclic AD and is NOT good for RLS. It may be good for sleeping, but not for RLS.

In many ways, RLS is not a sleep disorder, it is a movement disorder. It may keep us from sleeping, but the ability to sleep is usually not the problem, it's that the movements keep up awake! Of course, some people also have insomnia etc.

Before you see her again, you need to decide if you want to try the drug. It is commonly known to worsen RLS, but not in everyone. If you don't, you have to figure out if you want to deal with her or to try someone else. if you want someone else, you can try calling them in advance and asking nurses if the doctor has any experience with RLS. Either way, you have to figure out how to help her listen to you.

Getting our doctors to help is just so, so hard. And standing our ground with them is as hard if not harder. I have a suggestion that some people find effective. Do you have a partner, a close family member or someone else you can take with you to your appointments? When we are with the doctor, we often forget what we need, especially when sleep deprived. Taking someone with us can help. We can also take notes with us and slowly cover each item. I've done both of these before and both were helpful.

If you decide not to take it and to go back, just print out the paragraph on the site that says that this is not a good drug. Then print out the one paragraph of the algorithm that says which drugs are best to try for the amount of RLS you have (intermittant or daily). The more you give the doc at one time, the more overwhelmed they feel, the less in control they feel and the more likely they are to blow you off! You can also try the approach of telling her that it's really important for you to feel you have a partner in your care. As partners, it's important for her to listen to you and you to her, and both to come to an agreement together. Ask her if she is willing. If she is not, then you may have to find someone else.


scrawlin' all over

Posted: Tue Aug 09, 2005 2:15 am
by Hazel
Will was going to go with me to this appt then his job took him out of town for 30 days. I should have called and made a later appt. I've lived with it this long.

Took the Amitriptyline two hours ago... am now crawling upright to the bathroom for my third shower... it makes me feel lathargic, the brain wants to sleep but is wide awake when I try to close my eyes and Never before have I had my entire body feel like it is being scrubbed down by three million tidy bowl men... with those whirly lil brushes///

I gave her the list of current drugs & Mayo info ... she took the material to read later. So I have confidence she will read through it. As I left I thought to myself that she focused more on sleep than the physical what do you call these crawly currents and can't remember who it was said it was like having a bottle brush run through their veins... I can relate to that one tonight. hahahaha

Just concerned that she didn't seem to think about finding the cause if there was one ie iron defiecency, neuropathy, etc. just take these and you will sleep.

Hey focusing on this has cut the heeebbeeeejeeebeees down by half though the ones on my fingers keep getting in the way.... Could have been done so much sooner if I hadn't had to correct my grammer and such like i could, hahahaha

glad the hubby is out of town, I am running the air conditioner, naked as I can't stand to have anything touching me and sweating like mad... so guess I'll hit the shower... again... the only thing not crawling is my nose...

There is my folder and the folder for the dr... I should have taken both... the tricyclic info was in it... I may give it one more dose... but honestly I can't stand the skin I'm in at the moment!..I'll mail her the info tomorrow... she wanted me back in two weeks...

thanks so much I really needed to hear sommmmmthing other than my own brain machinations.... {{{{Ann and Sardsy}}}}} big hug

Posted: Tue Aug 09, 2005 2:22 am
by Hazel

Taking time to read more carefully... the advice, less is more. You are right when we are hoping for relief especially me I can be overwhelming... I took the survey that I completed on symptoms and the entire algorithm, she did look through find and read current drugs list ...

She is has been very helpful in the past and hopefully we can work through this... NOW! I want a cure NOW! What no cure, then RELIEF NOW!

shower will have to do, then I'll read through the good for today posts!

Posted: Tue Aug 09, 2005 4:06 am
by Hazel
My husband an iron worker has on his truck a bumper sticker... what you call hell Ironworker's call a day at work...

should have been more forthright in stating my reservations about using this medication. I did drift off to sleep only to jerk awake to pain. It is going to be a n o t h e r long night. It was so bad just a while ago I thought of driving the 20 miles to the er... yet I don't have the energy to get dressed... and I don't want to appear on cops naked...

i know I can make it through this... it won't kill me right? Well going to get the rice bag and see if I can focus on something for a while...

Posted: Tue Aug 09, 2005 5:17 am
by ViewsAskew
Hazel, I wish I could PM you. I hope you get this tonight. Hopefully it will not last too much longer. At least you know now that this is one med closer to the right med :wink: . In a way, this may help your doctor 'hear' you. You will get through the night just like you have the many others before. We always do even when we wonder how we will. Jill's RLS Rebel site may help, too.

It's easy to slap yourself afterwards! I spent a ride home from a neuro vist early this winter calling myself horrible names - it didn't take me longer than leaving the parking lot before I knew I 'should have' done things differently.

Well, as my best firend says, "Shoulda, woulda, coulda."

That's what next time is for. You can call her in the morning. I often fax my doctor information. Type a little letter and send it off. She usually responds same day with a phone call. Sometimes we can work it our over the phone.

Here's to the med wearing off soon. . .


one med closer!

Posted: Tue Aug 09, 2005 3:34 pm
by ksxroads
one med closer - Motto for the day!

Atleast it is one thing that I will never take again. Last time I looked at the clock it was 4 something... then woke to sunshine around 7am... so I did get some sleep!

After six showers and standing in front of air conditioner vent, lavendar lotion, sleeping herbal sniffer bag, finally found a quilt that I could lay on without feeling a hundred knives piercing the body, moved mini microwave to coffee table so I could take turns heating rice bags without getting up, put the finding nemo aquarium scene on the tv and counted fish...

My confusion is THIS ... for years I have all ready been doing just about every little trick I have read. ON days like this one I feel like what's the use. Yet I read those that have gotten help and maybe there is a better quality of life to be experienced. My symptoms have esculated since last summer. I found this site. I think I'll strap an oar to my body to remind me of hope. hahahaha

just another brain dead day. My husband suffered from gout for years. Worked hard even though he was physically suffering. Finally after a severe attack three years ago and two weeks of hospitalization they diagnosed gout and he now takes 300mg of Alepurenol daily and functions at a much higher level.

My dad suffered for years from unexplained muscle weakness. Finally when he couldn't swallow, his eyes wouldn't focus the GP sent him to a neurologist and they diagnosed Mastavis Gravis... now with medication he can continue to farm ...

so while I know that there is a possibility of obtaining help, I wonder how far in the pit you have to go before the medical people recognize you have a problem...

rambling in a sleep deprived daze. Hazel

Posted: Tue Aug 09, 2005 7:45 pm
by LadyFox
I was on this medication recently because I was having sleep problems related to a ulnar nerve (arm) problem I've been having. While it did help me sleep somewhat better, it wrecked havoc on the RLS problem. Plus, it made me severely grumpy, angry and moody when I'd wake up. I had to tell my husband that he was not allowed to try and have any kind of conversation with me first thing in the morning. Took about 1-1/2 hours before I'd feel normal. Plus, I was craving sweets like crazy (was eating ice cream nearly every night and that is NOT like me at all). I later found out that Elavil (the brand name for this drug) can cause cravings for sweets!

Thankfully I was taken off of it, since it wasn't working very well anyway. I take Ambien now for the sleep problem, don't have any of the moodiness any longer and have stopped eating desert LOL. BTW, the Ambien is working pretty good for the RLS, because I'm so knocked out I probably don't know it is happening, I only get up now to use the bathroom and fall right back to sleep.


Posted: Tue Aug 09, 2005 9:42 pm
by Guest
Laurie, Glad to hear the Ambien works for you. Before I realized that it was possibly rls, I told the doctor I had trouble sleeping and he prescribed Ambien. Must be that I am an odd duck, as Ambien didn't phaze me one iota! oh well! Yet I didn't take it till I was in a full blown episode.

Didn't I read some where that ice cream could possibly be another trigger? Now that has me depressed! hahahaha

Have been reading all that I can and pasting and cutting bits of information.

Still not certain I want to try Rip (rest in peace) Grip (get rest in peace) oh okay I can't remember what this parkinsons med okay reguip that's it. Being home alone, which most times doesn't bother me, right now it doesn't appeal to my sense of security to drug my body any more. At leat for the time being I know I will not die from RLS any time soon.

Explained to my supervisor what I have been going through and she is understanding.

I don't often pay mind to planet cycles, but it is mercury in retrograde and I think that means miscommunication and you shouldn't try new things! Looking for excuses here!

Next weekend I will drive down to the DH job site. It is in a beautiful flint hills area of Kansas. We will take photographs and spend some time in nature. That will be good for my soul.

Right now I just want to have the energy to take care of the horses and critters, the garden and such. Take care of the bills without feeling so disorientated. So I am keeping my focus extremely limited at the moment.

Posted: Sat Aug 13, 2005 5:21 am
by Aiken
I found out about Amitriptyline after I found these forums about a month back. I had been taking 10mg as a sleep aid for a long time and decided to get off of it. I can say with no doubt about placebo or subjectivity that it was definitely exacerbating my problem. I had RLS from hip to ankle on the right and in the calf on the left, and now I've gone about 10-12 days with not much more than the upper thigh on the right bugging me.

I would rather it had gone away entirely, but hey, I'll take it.

Posted: Tue Aug 16, 2005 7:51 pm
by ksxroads
Dear Aiken,

If it wasn't so frightening, I'd say Elavil certainly could be a test for RLS! In my case it took only one pill to set the pain and reflexes off the charts.

Glad you are doing better. That is really good news. Sending you many positive thoughts that it continues... Hazel