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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 3:18 pm 
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I have been stable on Buprenorphine Treatment and have not abused or used any illicit opioids for over a year, but since the very beginning of treatment, I've had very severe anxiety, along with anxiety attacks in addition. This is a regular occurrence and interrupts my daily life along with interfering with my available opportunities. Since the beginning of treatment; I have expressed this issue, greatly stressing it's urgency. Each time, I was ignored. One night, after my Lover had dumped me, I experienced severe panic and anxiety, a friend offered me a hydroxyzine, it helped me greatly. mentioning this discovery to my Suboxone Doctor lead him to providing me a regular prescription to 50mg hydroxyzine, which lost its potency after two weeks of use, and has since not been sufficient in controlling my anxiety symptoms. I consulted my psychiatrist about these issues, and he was unwilling to even try a benzodiazepine. Despite me having tried all other avenues of treatment, he was unwilling to provide anymore than seroquel. So, given over a year of practically begging for anxiety treatment, since I had received no treatment, I asked a friend for a Xanax. For once in my life, I felt normal. All the anxious, invading constant panic and insecurities, they all were alleviated. I understood that Xanax was not my best choice, but I knew then that benzodiazepines were what I needed. So I asked for a safe, monitored dose of Klonopin, since it's abuse potentially has fallen greatly since it is a long acting drug. Basically, as I was asking for this, and being denied this treatment by both my psychiatrist and Suboxone Dr.,I decided I couldn't take it anymore. I started taking Xanax at therapeutic doses off the street, as it was the only benzo available on a consistent basis. Now, since I have taken Xanax and successful managed to control my anxiety with it while on buprenorphine treatment, at my most recent appointment where I admitted this to both my doctors, they decided I was addicted to the benzodiazepines. I am dependent after using them for months strictly therapeutically for my panic and anxiety, but now, both doctors refuse to continue treatment unless I admit myself to impatient care for addiction. Which would ruin the fact that I've spent an entire year putting my life back together after the last time this happened, and now, I don't want to run out of the last 6 bunavail (Buprenorphine med) that I have.... But I also can't go another day with my anxiety untreated. I don't want to buy my drugs off the street, but doctors provided me absolutely no alternative. Please... Help me find a doctor comfortable or at least capable of prescribing me both Medications, benzos, and opioid maintenance. My zip code is 44021.... I hope somebody knows a doctor who can help. I can't afford to become useless again. I work 5 days a week and depend on my livelihood to maintain a living. I don't think I can come off of Buprenorphine yet, I don't believe I can handle it, but unless I find a new doctor, neither my opioid or benzodiazepine dependance can be managed. I may be dependent on benzos, but it's because I'm the happiest I've been in a long time on controlled and safe doses I just don't know what to do.... I feel I'm doomed to withdraw.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 8:36 pm 
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I've never found a way to discuss this issue without provoking anger. Understand that I'm only trying to explain the reasons your docs don't want to prescribe benzodiazepines.

Like opioids, benzos create tolerance and withdrawal. If the relaxed fuzziness created by benzos didn't cause tolerance, I'd probably prescribe them more often. Heck, I'd probably try to find someone to prescribe them for me, if that was the case! It is difficult to determine whose 'anxiety' is severe enough to warrant treatment, vs. those who need to learn to 'tolerate life on life's terms'. But even putting that question aside, trying to relieve anxiety using benzos is similar to trying to provide relief of chronic pain using opioids. If only it worked!! But unfortunately, it doesn't. Long term use of opioids OR benzos only results in tolerance... which results in greater pain or anxiety symptoms in the long run.

The tolerance caused by benzos and opioids is the reason they are both 'controlled substances'. Human nature seeks short-term relief over long-term misery. That is just how we all are wired. There are doctors out there who are 'weak'--- who are unable to tolerate their patients' anger, and instead need to provide immediate relief for their 'symptoms'.... and those docs are called 'bad doctors'. They are not doing you any favors. At some point, their patients need to find better, more realistic and more knowledgeable doctors to help them get through weeks or months of insomnia, irritability, anxiety, tremor, and mood swings. Honest-- it is easier to avoid that path completely.

I wish I had a better answer for you... but at this point of the science, I don't. But try to accept the fact that those docs aren't evil people, deliberately trying to cause you misery... but instead are trying to do the RIGHT thing. That's how it looks to me, anyway.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2016 1:00 am 
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I just am not a case of fake anxiety. Without buprenorphine, or a benzo, or even just them combined since I've spent a year on buprenorphine at a stable dose and have just been suddenly cut off without option, I KNOW for a fact I cannot handle that. I have to be able to work, support myself, afford any medical treatment, if I am withdrawn cold turkey and don't even get a benzodiazepine to treat my anxiety.... Honestly, I can't take the pain and the doubt of it everybody has shown me. I'll give up without either. I'll spend my life useless, in psych wards and making suicide attempts. I regret ever asking for help... I dug my own grave. So I guess this means this really is the last 6 days of normalcy, but beyond that, I won't be able to handle withdraw. I don't turn to illicit opiates but if I can get none, I don't know how else to put it, but I don't believe I'll survive. With two untreated conditions, I no longer want to live with these symptoms.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2016 1:08 am 
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Without the benzodiazepine at the very least, but really buprenorphine included because I'm not ready to exit the program... This is a death sentence. I'm being left so desperate, I have no options. I absolutely refuse to lose these two medications I desperately need.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2016 2:45 pm 
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Hey benzo,

I understand and feel for u. I thankfully don't take benzo and never needed to other than one or two during withdrawal and detox. My Dr flat out refuses to prescribe suboxone and any benzodiazepines and if u test positive for it he kicks u out with no questions. There are other doctors that do but it'd be a searching game. Go to the menu and look for doctors in ur area and just call and flat out ask them if they allow it. That's about all u can do. I know it's a tough spot for u to be in but it's that or nothing.

I know right now u have no other way except to get ur xanex off the street but imo that's very risky. Ur putting urself bk into the routine of bk when u were using ur doc so be careful with that and try to find a Dr asap. Good luck!!

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2016 11:17 pm 
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From what I understand, nobody is going to help me. What happens if I go to the ER? Do I get black labeled even further and fall deeper into the 'you're an addict, you can't make decisions for yourself' hole? Or will I actually get help? Because now, I'm just about ready to completely give it all up.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 05, 2016 2:00 pm 
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Hello, I do agree with what Dr. J has said. I have worked with people who have been living with addiction and anxiety for years. Do you see a Psychiatrist on a regular. Or how about a medical doctor? Any professional who knows of your history with anxiety? Also, what have you done to try and deal with the anxiety in other,non pharmaceutical ways...yoga, meditation, relaxation techniques? If you have a record of trying these things without success you may be more likely to have a doctor prescribe a benzo. Have you tried other anti anxiety meds that are not benzos? I have had several clients talk about trazadone and how it helped them with anxiety. I also had a young woman who felt that seroquel really helped her with anxiety. I hope you are able to find some help. And, yes, I would suggest the er especially if you are feeling like you might hurt yourself. Please, post again and let us know how you are!


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 05, 2016 9:23 pm 
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Nothing is on record besides ssri's which I refuse to take, Seroquel is strictly for sleep personally and trazadone was no more effective than seroquel. I really dislike antidepressants and anti-psychotics. I have a great deal of bad experiences with these 'safer alternative'' antipsychotics, and since there is no specific trigger and I've determined CBT was 100% ineffective. Maybe even slightly damaging, I'm honestly just not willing to try the alternatives anymore. One can only take so many panic attacks before giving up on everything besides benzos. The class of meds I've tried and used successfully to better my quality of life.... But they don't care. Remember? I'm just an 'Addict' and don't know what's best for me. (they all treat me as so)


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 05, 2016 10:35 pm 
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The problem with Xanax and benzos like it, they start to create a "rebound" effect if you take them daily. In other words, your body becomes tolerant to the medication, you take more, and you experience heightened anxiety symptoms as the xanax wears off again. This cycle continues viciously the same way opiates operate in your body and brain.

I don't particularly love SSRIs, but I am taking fluoxetine which does cut back the amount of anxiety I experience. I also have a prescription for xanax, only because I might only take a pill once or twice a week. My doctor, who is also my sub doctor, would not prescribe me the xanax if I was running out every month as opposed to making my bottle of 30 last for several months. It is not really meant to be a daily medication.

I'm sorry that I don't have better news for you. I wish you the best.

Amy

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 06, 2016 12:42 am 
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It's alright. I get it. Everybody seems to have the same news for me, I was just hoping somebody would be saying something like "Oh, yeah! Of course, Dr.*** is great and isn't a total benzophobe, he'll take care of you, here's his number 216-***-****. " But I've realized nobody is going to be able to do that for me. So I'm just going to have to cold turkey 8mg's of Suboxone because Xanax is the only reason why I'm still alive. I get that it causes terrible dependency issues, but I think it's newer, longer acting cousin, Klonopin is the answer to the root of the problem that made me begin self medicating. I know I'm trading one dependency for the other, but I intend to permanently maintain my benzo, and Amphetamine prescriptions, as they improve my quality of life so greatly, I can honestly say I wouldn't be here without them. Now, I know what somebody's going to say,

"Wait, excuse me? You have anxiety and panic disorders along with other potentially undiagnosed mental illnesses, but you're on Adderall? A CII (schedule 2) controlled substance, but you claim you need a benzodiazepine?"

What may seem to be a lapse of my judgement, truly, is not. Everybody's body chemistry is different. Some people are capable of truly using these substances to better their quality of life, I believe I am one of them. I've had great success with benzodiazepines, and honestly, even better with Suboxone along with it, that drug will be severely missed as I have months of withdraw ahead of me and I've always loved opiates, to feel that warmth, comfort, even if it isn't a rush. I'm just as addicted to the feeling buprenorphine gives me. It completely removed depression from the picture for me, and if I could've found the right doctor, I would've continued maintenance with it for the rest of my life along with Klonopin, and Adderall. None of which I take for any sort of high, nor have I ever. I've just found that I'm most successful and happy in life with these things. I now understand, apparently I must say goodbye to Suboxone now if I ever wish to be seen by my doctors as a patient, not just an ex-addict, or current one. It deeply saddens me that I cannot choose by my own free will what's best for me, because I know for certain losing Suboxone will cause me a great deal of discomfort, pain, and depression, but I'm going to do what it takes to keep my Klonopin and Adderall.

One last thing to explain, the Adderall seems very counterproductive, I know, but it actually controls my anxiety and impulsiveness to some degree as well as providing me with a motivation to actually make something successful, or at least satisfying of my life. Without it, I know I'm just going nowhere. It does far more good than harm. I just worry that Suboxone withdraw will do more damage than these drugs can relieve.... I truly don't enjoy life like this... Not having the freedom to choose what I do because I asked for the help of a Suboxone doctor, but, this is all I've got left to piece together. I just hope I make it through withdraw with something less than a horror story, but I know better than that, especially jumping from the high dose of 8mg of buprenorphine a day. It is going to be truly horrible and nothing can change that.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 06, 2016 11:58 am 
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Benzos and bupe,

hello, I can totally relate to your frustration. I used to suffer with anxiety also. What has helped me tremendously is taking Beta blockers I take Propranolol 20mg 3 times a day or PRN . It is an adrenaline blocker. So it keeps my anxiety at bay but is safe to take with Subs. If i didn't have these, i would be in the same predicament as you. NOT knowing how to control my anxiety and addiction issue.

It is just another option for you so you can stay on subs and take care of your anxiety.

I had to go to rehab several years ago for Benzo addiction and this is what the docs gave me as an alternative med to take.
Plus Benzos are a catch-22. The more you take the worst your anxiety gets. and the more you have to take. It is such a miserable cycle.

I can honesty say i wish i had never started taking benzos. But now that i am off of them and taking a beta blocker. I feel like a normal person. Functioning and contributing to society.

Good luck with getting your meds sorted out!


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 06, 2016 4:22 pm 
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I've thought of beta blockers, even been offered them, but when it comes to severe panic attacks, i don't have faith in its ability to relieve me from that reaction. I'd be willing to try them if this was less urgent. My doctor wanted to give me Vivitrol, but if I received that, Suboxone wouldn't work at all, would it?

I fully understand the cycle of benzos being taken to relieve the symptoms of anxiety, can and possibly will cause a rebound effect, but that's why I'm looking to try Klonopin. I'm already using benzos to relieve my anxiety, and I'm unwilling to detox, so as far as I can see the only logical action is just to continue with them as they have produced results of relief unparalleled by anything they've so much as even suggested before.

It may sound rediculous, but with the severity and frequency of my symptoms, and how often they completely dismantle my life, I'm prepared to take benzos for the rest of my life if that is the only way they can be used therapeutically once dependent.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 06, 2016 4:42 pm 
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benzos and bup,

It seem like you have your heart set on taking benzos. So with that, i would consider the Vivitrol shot. You will have to taper off of Subs comletely and then get vivitrol. i have heard that it does help with cravings. and its better than taking NOTHING.

I would try to get at the root of your anxiety. Like what is causing it and why you can't calm yourself down with out reaching for something.

Beta blockers are not going to be as strong. However they do keep me calm "enough" to not bring on a panic attack.

I wish you could take both, but it can be a deadly combo. I am sure you are very responsible when you take it. It seems like it in your postings. But I think that risk is not something doctors wanna take on anyone.

I hope you find some peace.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 06, 2016 5:02 pm 
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I actually just declined the Vivitrol shot, doesn't it render Suboxone/benzos drugs that play with those receptors and block them from being activated? That sounds like a nightmare.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 3:28 pm 
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Just the opiate recepters not the benzo ones. It is mainly for when you taper completely off the subs and have nothing to fill the recepters with . so the Vivitrol will help to fill this.

But it is rather expensive and there are mixed reviews on it.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 08, 2016 6:19 pm 
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I've suffered from anxiety my whole life not being able to take xanax while on suboxone sucks one thing that I did find that helps is clonodine not just for cravings it also works on anxiety by lowering your blood pressure everybody is different but I asked my sub dr and he gave it to me I had origanally took them for cravings before I was on suboxone. Hope you find something that works! from -LimaOh


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 09, 2016 1:41 pm 
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Hey B&B,

As I read this thread, it looks like you have your heart set on benzos, adderall and bup w bup the drug you may stop in order to get scripts for the others? Or go illicit and keep all 3? Just thought I'd share a small part of my poly drug story. After anesthesia rapid detox, the MD there added adderall. I soon relapsed on fentanyl, benzos, ambien and continued the adderall. Much later, I went to 30 day rehab and stopped all 4. I knew I could not stay clean w abstinence only and left rehab to get on bup. Once on bup, I continued w bouts of severe anxiety and panic attacks and I well understand you in how decimating they can be. I slipped w benzos and fessed up as I knew my urine would test + for it. My Addictionologist added seroquel 25mg 4-8 X's day w 50mgs for break thru not to exceed 400mg/day. It worked really well!! Truly it did. I am off all meds now but continue to have seroquel handy if needed, which is rare these days. Michelle also said in her post, for one of her clients, seroquel worked well to manage anxiety. I also like Raudy's idea for beta blockers and am reminded of many folks utilizing beta blockers to cope w anxiety, even for their work day as well as taking it prior to a speech or presentation bc it stopped the norepinephrine from taking over w the fight-or-flight response.
Assuming you continue w your plans, do you have access for more bup to use to taper? 8mgs is a tough dose to stop CT. Also, guessing that your benzo dose is up there too - I was on it for 10yrs at a hefty dose...just the way it happens w benzos... Hoping you get this all figured out, P

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 10, 2016 8:42 pm 
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Pelican and the others already say what I would say. I've followed this thread and considered responding, and even written responses a couple times... but I have deleted them each time, realizing that 'benzosandbupe' is on her own mission to justify using benzos. I'm not going to change her mind-- and neither is anyone else.

But other people will view this thread, and hopefully learn from it. I run across this attitude at least every week or so, and one can see how easy it is for doctors to eventually just give in, rather than do the right thing. A person complains of anxiety and panic attacks. The correct treatment for panic attacks is an SSRI-- just as the correct treatment for mycoplasma infection is Zithromax or a similar antibiotic. But this patient says 'I refuse to take an SSRI', as if that attitude makes any sense at all. Any psychiatrist who has a year or more of experience has cured panic disorder many times over by prescribing an SSRI-- so the comment 'I refuse to take them' signals a patient who is focused on incorrectly treating herself, NOT seeking the relief of true panic attacks.

Likewise, she has reasons for avoiding beta blockers-- which help most people with panic disorder, but hold no interest of THIS person. Again, what patient goes to a doctor, and refuses the treatment that is known to help most patients?

After my first post, she said 'I don't have fake anxiety'. Of course, I never said her anxiety was fake-- but that is how she interpreted my answer, just as I told her she would.

I almost left the thread alone, to drop off the list of current discussions... but the situation is so classic and obvious that many people can already see it-- and hopefully others will see it as well. If one future parent reads this, and some day avoids labelling his/her child with 'anxiety', the post is worth the flack I'll probably get from benzos/bupe. If nothing else, readers will gain an understanding of why it is so difficult to treat people who insist in diagnosing and 'treating' themselves. If anyone out there really DOES have panic disorder, I encourage you to take about 20 mg of escitalopram, which almost always cures the disorder in about 3 weeks. If instead you refuse the appropriate treatments, I encourage you to find the dumbest doctor you can-- because that's the only way you'll be prescribed a benzodiazepine for panic disorder.


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