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  Valium Users Past & Present

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Author Topic:   Valium Users Past & Present
Karl
Veteran

Posts: 148
Registered: Nov 98

posted 01-27-1999 02:22 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Karl     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Psych Doc has had me on valium for five
months to reduce anxiety and to relax GI smooth muscle. Doc insists it's the best med in the interim to settle things down. The valium is a "double edged sword", it has helped with spasms and anxiety, but lately it has made me more depressed despite taking an SSRI. I tried to reduce the dosage a month ago and resulted in worse "C" IBS symptoms. Psych Doc is adamant about valium in the interim and SSRI in the long term. GI Doc, like many other posts, basically says you may have a mix of IBS and somatization and prescribed bentyl.

REQUEST any input from past or present valium users on their experiences treating IBS with valium.

Thank You,

Karl

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LindaB
Veteran

Posts: 647
Registered: Jan 99

posted 01-27-1999 10:03 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LindaB     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Haven't had any experience with Valium for IBS, but used it several years ago for severe back pain. The doc then said it was "still the best of the smooth muscle relaxers", but I was zonked when I was on it and just stayed in bed.

For IBS I have used both Dicyclamine and Hyoscyamine. The Dicy worked for a while, but I think the "HiHo" was better. What is SSRI?

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Karl
Veteran

Posts: 148
Registered: Nov 98

posted 01-28-1999 12:13 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Karl     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
LindaB,
SSRI stands for selective
serotonin reuptake inhibitor, an antidepressent. Thanx for your input.

Karl

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AmeyD
Veteran

Posts: 12
Registered: Dec 98

posted 01-28-1999 03:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for AmeyD   Click Here to Email AmeyD     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Hi there!

My husband, Tim, has also been perscribed valium. During his vomiting episodes where he ends up in ER, valium is the only thing the doctors can give him that helps his system calm down. He usually takes it at night, since most of his nausea and vomiting (tied to the BMs) happens in the morning.

I think because he doesn't use it a lot during the day, he's not into the depression mode.

Hope this helps!

Amey

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heykate
Veteran

Posts: 556
Registered: Jan 99

posted 01-29-1999 06:04 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for heykate   Click Here to Email heykate     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Hi Karl - I have been using Valium for 25 years for IBS. My secret is to use it sparingly, only when I have an episode. When I do have an episode, I take about 10 to 13 miligrams in 2 1/2 miligram installments. If I take it too fast, and because I'm not addicted, it makes me way too dizzy. In smaller doses, it gradually relaxes the spasms until they disappear. I've been doing this for about 15 years (except when I was pregnant or nursing, natch)and it has saved me many times. I don't treat small episodes with Valium - Immodium or Pepto for the small ones. Only when the spasms are so severe I start vomiting. So, I can go two weeks to two months between doses and have not become addicted to it. I can't take anti-depressants - I get panic attacks on them - Been on Prozac, Paxil, Pamelor and Desiryl. Don't know why they do it, but I ended up in the hospital in tachacardia (sp)(heartbeat - 180 per minute) while on the Pamelor. After three days on both Paxil or Prozac, the same stuff starts again. So, I pretty much have to rely on natural cures and using the Valium sparingly. I have read and heard that other people have good experiences with them. Have you tried Bentyl or Librax? I've read they can be helpful, too (I've tried them - Valium was better for me). I'm assuming you've tried diet and other natural things. Good luck.

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Karl
Veteran

Posts: 148
Registered: Nov 98

posted 01-29-1999 07:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Karl     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
HeyKate,
Thank you for your inputs. One of my problems starts about 2-4 hours after lunch. My colon feels like a tightly wound rubber band and my rectum builds up pressure. The valium seems to relax that portion of my GI tract and allows periodic gas to pass; thus, relieving some pain and pressure. As I stated, I weaned myself from 15 down to 5mg a day and the pain and pressure resumed.

Psych Doc seems to think I have to take 5mg three times a day and keep it built up in my body -.it sucks...feel tired and no motivation. The foods I can eat are shrinking...don't know if it's in my head or GI tract. I find it hard to relax these days (new at IBS). I've lost 18 lbs with "C" IBS and all docs say it's not medically significant. I haven't tried librax (Psych Doc says it's not as good as valium) and bentyl causes constipation.

I'm grateful that I only have IBS (knock on wood), but don't like being tranquilized with no end game in sight. Seems that my Psych Doc is content with keeping me drugged which runs contrary to my disdain of drugs. It's ironic that a Psych Doc at least made my IBS less painful and how numerous GI Docs preached fiber, water, etc. with no improvement. One GI Doc gave me the impression my symptoms were all psychologically driven. One day you can't wait for the next morning to tackle life and overnight your GI system goes beserk, then ten months later you dread each day and have to $ pay for GI Docs' indifference.

I don't know or am skeptical on how an SSRI will control the IBS once most of the valium is withdrawn or used only during attacks. It's rocket science to me.

Karl

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heykate
Veteran

Posts: 556
Registered: Jan 99

posted 01-30-1999 10:47 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heykate   Click Here to Email heykate     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Karl - Several things came to mind reading your note - First of all, I'm surprised that your psych doc insists on keeping you on valium 3x a day - he must think your anxiety is causing your symptoms. I wonder why he hasn't prescribed an antidepressant? Have you tried the anti-anxiety drugs out there? While valium is definitely my drug of choice and works the best for me, I am well aware of its dangers. I have heard far too many sad stories about valium addiction to want to ruin it for myself. I know that 5mg 3x a day has addicted others I know. Have you discussed your fears of addiction to him? He seems to want to treat BOTH your IBS and anxiety together. I know that some people claim that the valium stops working for IBS after a while. Which is why I use it sparingly.

Have you tried massage or relaxation exercises? I know people who have had great relief thru massage, and I would be much worse if I didn't force myself to do relaxation exercises on a regular basis (this came about because of a doctor 6 years ago who felt up against a wall with my symptoms - she insisted I start doing them, as well as muscle exercises, and so I did. They help me a great deal - I am grateful to her for insisting.) Diet is important - you don't drink coffee or alcohol, do you? Dairy products kill me - I drink Rice Dream (which I happen to like).

I am NOT a doctor, but my opinion is that probably the SSRI will be better than the valium for you - using the valium as I do for serious episodes. Keep us posted.

IP:

Karl
Veteran

Posts: 148
Registered: Nov 98

posted 01-30-1999 01:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Karl     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
HeyKate,

Psych Doc did prescribe a new antidepressent, celexa. Doc insists on valium versus other anti-anxiety meds. I've made it clear to him my fears of addiction and withdrawal...his reply is I'm on a low dosing (15mg)...he believes 30-40 mg is high dosing. My wife gives me massages. I light scented candles at night, go for walks, do breathing exercises, and pray everyday for both her and me. I may drink a small amount of coffee when my bowels are on that verge of go or no go and it usually works. Thank you again for sharing your experience and knowledge.

Take Care,
Karl

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heykate
Veteran

Posts: 556
Registered: Jan 99

posted 01-31-1999 08:43 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heykate   Click Here to Email heykate     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Karl - Good luck with your treatment. Perhaps if the new anti-depressant works well you can withdraw the valium. Sounds like you are doing all the right things (prayer being utmost, in my opinion). Keep me posted about your progress. It's always hit or miss with this thing!

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merylkl
Veteran

Posts: 10
Registered: Jan 99

posted 01-31-1999 09:24 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for merylkl   Click Here to Email merylkl     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
I have used valium in the past in conjunction with the anti-anxietal drug, Buspar. I only used the valium to "take the edge off" when my pain and stress were severe, e.g., right after I moved, finding a new job, etc. I am glad that I no longer take the valium but I still take the Buspar (non-addictive) and Prilosec (reflux). The buspar (I take 30 mg per day, 5 in the morning to chill me out, and 15 at night that helps me sleep). Is there anyone else out there who has had the success I have had with the Buspar? I started taking it after a horrible episode where I couldn't keep anything down for 3 months. The pain was horrible and I was bed ridden the entire time. After a GI threw his hands up and said there was nothing else he could do for me, he sent me to a fabulous psychiatrist who worked with me until I was able to get some relief.

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alyson
Veteran

Posts: 171
Registered: Jul 98

posted 02-02-1999 01:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for alyson   Click Here to Email alyson     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
Hi Karl and also Merylkl, I have been using valium for a few years to help deal with my IBS. I also take it usually only when the anxiety is so bad that I know an attack of D is imminent. It has really been a life saver in a lot of ways but lately it has not been enough for my general anxiety so my psych put me on the buspar. The buspar has some wacky side affects for me and I don't know how long I can do it. It is definately disturbing my sleep and making my monthly cycle a nightmare. Any problems like this Meryl??? Just curious. I am looking for the ultimate head and tummy drug but so far...no luck A

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K
Veteran

Posts: 314
Registered: Oct 98

posted 02-02-1999 11:53 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for K   Click Here to Email K     Edit/Delete Message Reply w/Quote
I have tried BuSpar, without much success. It made me really dizzy and sort of nauseous, and seemed to actually cause more D.

IP:

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