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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 4:13 pm 
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My 2nd favorite website for Bupe info is:
http://www.helpmegetoffdrugs.com/index

It states that the optimal dose is "The lowest dose that suppresses cravings & withdrawal symptoms". This is where I want to be.

My time on opiates started with a botched hysterectomy in 2010. The pain never went away. Another surgery in 2011 to fix the first. Didn't work. So I stayed on doctor prescribed Vicodin then Vicoprophen then Dilaudid for 7.5 years. I never took more than prescribed, never really got "high", but of course I got used to it, needed more, but wouldn't take more so felt awful every day.

My doctor recommended Suboxone. Finally the day came when I said "I'm ready". I inducted at 16 mg (2 @ 8mg per day for pain). Worked perfectly from Day 1. I felt very well until I started to get those feelings of being "over medicated", so I would drop by 2 mg. I slowly reduced from 16 mg to 14, 12, 10, 8. Then when I dropped to 6 mg I had some WD symptoms so I held there until steady again without problems. Once again my body told me it was time to reduce again so I went to 5 mg. Felt great! Saw my doctor & continued to get 16 mg per day to stock pile for a rainy day. :)

I believe that I got over confident & immediately dropped to 4.5 mg & this where the problems started. I began to have severe blurry eyes after the AM dose of 4 mg (taking .5 PM for convenience). So I began to dose 3.5 AM & 1 PM. Still extreme blurry eyes AM so that I couldn't drive to work for hours. I have no cravings but just feel like crap.

I have been on Seroquel for Bipolar II for over 10 years. I take 2 at night and it's a great sleep aid. 2 nights ago (after my Seroquel dose) I felt like an elephant was sitting on my chest. I took an aspirin & elevated my legs but it didn't get better. Very scary. I took a couple of sips of melatonin & went to bed and went to sleep (thank God).

Last night I took 1/2 dose of Seroquel. The heavy chest started again but not nearly as bad. Did not take any more! No way. (But I'm sure I can't just stop that without weening down so I'll have to take 1/2 dose again for a while I'm sure.)

Took AM dose this morning and here come the blurry eyes again. Today I just feel terrible. I drug myself to work but can not concentrate at all. I wish I had stayed at 5 mg.

Should I go back up? Or should I just try to wait out all these side effects? I've been on 4.5 mg for over a week.

I just want to find my dose that makes me feel "normal" & stay there! I really think it's the key to my success. Any advice is welcome!

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:03 pm 
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Hey Dee, So you again had more elephant on the chest - chest pressure. This is my 3rd time to ask you to get it checked out. Openmind did too. As we discussed before, a .5mg bup drop, from 5mg to 4.5 would not cause your chest pressure, blurry eyes and severe fatigue. I continue to be concerned these are important signals of a real cardiac issue. Women are the worst to seek help but should. Seroquel now comes w a warning on long QT syndrome. altho is rare. Likely would have shown up on your last yrs ECG but could be new new and would predispose you to an arrhythmia.

I know you want help w your bup dosing and I'm not trying to stop this quest its just that I can't get past imo a worrisome cardiac issue.

ill leave it others to comment on increasing your dose up .5mg.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:43 pm 
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It happened again last night right after I took 1/2 dose of my Seroquel (but not nearly as bad). I'm sure that is what caused it. As I said I should not go CT off of the Seroquel and I'm sure it's going to happen again tonight after I take it. Seroquel was initially used for the treatment of seizures. Then my psychiatrist prescribed it off label for BP II & is now well accepted for BP II treatment. It works directly on the brain...as does Bupe.

I'm hoping that my brain will acclimate to both of them together in time and no more heavy chest. If not I may ween off the Seroquel due to the Bupe also helping with depression.

No worries! I promise if there is a problem I will call 911 or go to an Urgent Care Center ASAP.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 11:49 pm 
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I'm sorry, but Seroquel is not used to treat seizures. Never has been, and never should be. It is NOT an anticonvulsant. If a doctor gave it to you to treat seizures, find a better doctor!

Seroquel is an antipsychotic with effects at many receptors. It LOWERS the seizure threshold, as do many antipsychotics (i.e. it makes seizures worse, and more likely). It is indicated for bipolar disorder in high doses, usually over 500 mg or so. Seroquel is also used to augment antidepressants in Major Depressive Disorder in lower dose ranges of 200-300 mg. Only the extended release form has the depression indication. Seroquel is also used off label to help with sleep, although that use has been dropping off significantly over the past few years, because of the connection between the drug and heart disease, diabetes, and other metabolic problems.

There are many reasons that Seroquel can cause chest pressure, some of which have been mentioned. But you also could be having angina without any connection to the Seroquel. In any case, there is no possibility that buprenorphine is the reason for chest pressure. Even if buprenorphine could cause chest pressure, a side effect would happen 3-4 hours after the largest dose, when blood levels are highest-- not after a fractional dose, or 12 hours after the largest dose.

Likewise, I can't imagine a way to get to 'blurry vision' from buprenorphine. Buprenorphine makes pupils smaller, which in some people sharpens vision, but tolerance takes that effect away pretty quick. Maybe you mean something else by 'blurry vision'-- I'm interpreting it as things not appearing clear, as if needing glasses? I don't know if you have goop in your eyes that is making it hard to see when you first get up, or if you are seeing double... but the first step is to determine how your vision is 'off', which is pretty easy based on the symptoms. For example, does the 'burriness' clear when you blink a few times? Is it in both eyes or one? How long does it last, and what makes it go away? What do your eyes look like at the time-- pupil size? Bloodshot?

I'll end with the obvious thing everyone else is trying to point out-- you wrote, DeeKay, that you will call 911 'if there is a problem'. Chest heaviness IS THE PROBLEM. If you are having angina, the next thing to happen is an arrhythmia, which can suddenly make you unconscious and then dead 3 minutes later. You should have an EKG done during the chest pressure to see if there are signs of ischemia.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 12:39 am 
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Geepers - YES! Thank you Dr J!

On another thread this was discussed w Dee and I was worried today when I saw Dee with this new thread discounting her imo, angina. Folks have heart attacks and/or die from lil 'ol chest pressure. Plus i called a cardiologist friend and he said blurry vision w chest pressure and unusual fatigue can be a sign of cardiac issues. Dee, please please get checked...

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 9:48 am 
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Thank you Dr. J for the accurate description of Seroquel & the symptoms that I'm experiencing. I've been on Seroquel for so long that I was not able to explain it correctly. Thank you for the detailed information. I will be very careful not to post my perception of things. I will do my best to stick to the facts.

I had no chest problems yesterday at all. I am planning to have an EKG at my next doctors appointment. If I have even one problem I will go to an Urgent Care Center for immediate care.

Thanks again Dr. J & Pelican for your help. I'm staying at 4.5 mg and hopefully all will be well.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 12:08 pm 
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After doing some research on angina, I will be going to the doctor when the doors open Monday morning. I just didn't grasp the seriousness here...

Thanks again Dr. J & Pelican.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 1:14 pm 
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Hi DeeKay, and I hope it all works out for you with your heart issue.

Pelican is correct. Women in the past seemed to get bypassed when it came to talking about seeing a Cardiologist. Men seemed to always have the heart attacks so it stands to reason we would get checked out once we reached a certain age.

My old Internist told me many years ago that when I turn 50 to do the C & C. He explained it was for me to see a Cardiologist and have a Colonoscopy at that age. It stuck in my head and I did do what he said although a few years late.

Did he tell my wife the same thing? Nope. I've gone through my 2nd Echo Stress test, EKG, and ultrasound imaging just to make sure my ticker is okay. Now I've finally convinced my wife to do the same. She's going next week and I'll feel much better after seeing the results and getting a baseline.

So thanks for starting a thread that may save a life or two if the right people read it.

Hope you find your comfortable dose.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 1:29 pm 
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Thank you Dee for further checking and plans to go in. Hope they order a full workup, stress test etc... If you get chest pressure before Monday, per the AHA, call for help and then take an aspirin, in that order. Best always, Peli

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 6:54 pm 
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Thank you DeeKay for handling this like a responsible adult. It can be frustrating when you think someone's health is in danger and you can't get them to acknowledge there even being a problem. You clearly know this is not right, and I'm sure I speak for all of us when I say that I'm relieved to hear you say that you'll get help immediately if something should arise between now and your appointment.

And thank you to Dr. J and everyone here that has encouraged DeeKay to get medical help right away. It might seem like everyone is teaming up on you, and they are, but for all of the right reasons. And I agree that this thread had the potential to save a life.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2017 2:06 pm 
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Dee, could you please let us know how your appointment goes tomorrow?

We are an empathic bunch and these folks that have been posting in your thread really do care. Last fall I got the call that my best friend from growing up died suddenly from some sort of heart problem the night before. I found out later that he did have two weeks of symptoms that he didn't connect with a heart problem. He went to the hospital the afternoon before he died and they sent him home. The autopsy showed that he had bicuspid aortic valve, a heart defect. He was only 45.

The reason I'm bringing up my friend is because he left his wife and teenage daughters behind. He also left me and numerous other friends behind. I am just coming out of a depression that is in large part, caused by his death. Dee, you have people who love you and count on you. Your heart health affects more than just you. I am not trying to induce guilt here. I am only reminding you that you are important and loved. Thank goodness that you are convinced to go in tomorrow! I hope you are well and that the doctors figure out what might be happening in your body.

Good luck and keep us posted!!

Amy

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2017 3:49 pm 
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Hi Dee, Well you came to a place where everyone will be concerned about you until you post to tell us how your Doctor's visit went. I can tell you my husband's story that was terrifying for me. He came home from a routine visit to the Dr. to tell me that he needed to go to the ER because his heart rate was 35! I was an EMT and and knew how dangerous it was! He needed a pacemaker for an electrical problem. Once it was in, he was fine until two years ago. He went out for a walk and when he returned home he came into the bedroom and stood over me just staring. I quickly got up and followed him to the living room. He tried to tell me what was wrong but the words were all garbled. I tested him for stroke but he had no other signs or symptoms. He was then fine and talking for a few minutes and it happened again. We rushed to our Dr's office and he was examined. He was talking fine again and she suggested we go to the ER for more tests. As we were leaving, it happened again and this time it lasted! They called an ambulance and he was rushed to the hosp. They were not sure about starting the stroke protocol as he had a pacemaker and had not had any other signs or symptoms. They finally made the decision to start the medication and within two hours he was back to normal. The on call Neurologist felt the stroke was a result of untreated high blood pressure as it was high in the ER. We went to see his Cardiologist and I said I was not comfortable with that reasoning as my husband took high blood pressure medication on a regular basis. The Cardiologist agreed with me and ordered more testing. Sure enough a hole in his heart was found. This is how the blood clot traveled to his brain. He had a procedure to close the hole and has been fine since. He does have some memory issues but he is a very lucky man! And I am a very lucky woman! I have not been good with taking care of my own health and need to schedule some routine testing. Please, don't put off going to the doctor. If you don't do it for yourself do it for those who love you! Please don't forget to come back and tell us how it went!


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:54 pm 
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Michelle, it's a good thing you were an EMT and knew what to do. Your actions saved your husband's life. That's why I think this thread is so important. Both you and Dee have shared your experiences and you've let us know what to look out for. This is great stuff, and a great thread!!

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2017 9:27 pm 
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I've been on Seroquel (or Squirrelz / Rhino Stoppers as they call them in custody). It be a quite potent drug with some weird potential heart effects. When I was abusing cocaine, I'd occasionally take seroquel to sleep after a bender and it would make my heart go HAYWIRE. It'd be beating 180bpm constantly for hours then just STOP for 5 seconds and I'd be thinking to myself "am I dead now? Is this it?". Needless to say I stopped taking anti-psychotics to sleep shortly after.

Given opioid withdrawal can raise blood pressure, there could be some kinda cardiovascular interaction going on? Just speculation.

But TBH I'd attribute it more to the seroquel than the buprenorphine. Seroquel / Thorazine / Amisulpride are all antipsychotics that did weird things to my heart, with or without cocaine use. Olanzapine was always a good substitute, albeit longer half-life and more daytime drowsiness. And more pizza. Lots of pizza.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 2:57 pm 
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Thank you TJ for your experiences with Seroquel. I am now taking 1 100mg pill before bedtime (dropped from 2).

I increased my bupe from 4.5 to 5 on Monday and I am feeling very well now. I believe that I have found a comfortable dose for myself which was the original purpose of this thread.

In my initial post I way over exaggerated my tight chest feeling. (I have a tendency to do that). I won't make that mistake again. I did a search for "tight chest" & found that many others have experienced this too. Another search provided many others with the blurry eye experience also.

I've found the search function to be a wealth of information & for that I am grateful.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 4:00 pm 
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Thanks for posting back Dee. I'm glad to hear that you're still alive and kicking and that you've found the right dosage for now. Thank you for doing the right thing and getting checked over by your doctor. You know we were all concerned and I've been waiting patiently to hear about your doctor's appointment. I can only imagine how uncomfortable that experience must have been. Welcome back!! 8)

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:57 pm 
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Dearest OpenMind, thank you for caring! I really am a total "drama queen". I say the craziest things when reacting to feeling bad. Everyone decided that I was about to die right then & there, when after doing some research many folks have experienced what I experienced while trying to find the comfortable dose at the time.

You were right in your other post...I totally felt ganged up on. I suppose it was my own fault for being so darned dramatic. I will NOT do that again. It hurt me deeply. I'm very sensitive. I also have a very low threshold to pain. Yea, I'm a big 'ole sissy.

I'm at 5 mg for 4 days now & I have a new lease on life. It's a good thing because an old friend has passed away & I'll be attending a funeral on Monday. God was really looking out for me because this gives me a chance to be with my family and make more head way with mending relationships. (Although the loss of my friend is sad she was 90 & suffering).

Again, thanks for caring!

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2017 9:05 pm 
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I'm sorry for the loss of your friend even though she had lived a good, long life.

I'm also sorry that you felt ganged up by us. That wasn't the intent at all. We were just worried about you! We can be very persistent when we feel someone's health is at stake! In any case, it sounds like the symptoms have resolved and that you are feeling better and more stable on your dose.

I'm glad to be seeing you around the forum!

Amy

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 10, 2017 1:26 pm 
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Wanted to give a follow up to this discussion. After many months I have SLOWLY tapered myself down to 4 mg per day & I'm feeling fantastic! I take 2.5 mg AM & 1.5 mg PM and it's working like a charm. I'm sure many of you realize that I've just been through Hurricane Harvey. It's been extremely stressful all around. My home did not flood but the amount of destruction around me is almost unbearable.

I went to work on the Tuesday after Labor Day & it took me 5 hours & 50 minutes to make a 12 mile round trip total. They're letting water out of 2 reservoirs to prevent a breach. It's wreaking havoc with traffic due to it flooding Buffalo Bayou again. This is still going on. I desperately need to work, but can't find a route that is always open.

But I digress. I'm happy & staying at 4 mg per day. All w/d's have subsided and I have the energy I need to help others.

So if you're out there trying to find your optimal dose it is possible. Just keep working at it low & slow kids!

Thanks to everyone for your thoughts & prayers for those affected by Hurricane Harvey!

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2017 12:32 am 
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It so heartbreaking to me that you and the people around you will be dealing with this for such a long time. It seems like everyone will need to establish a new normal, but I can't even think what that would look like.

I am pleased, at least, that you have found the dose that is right for you. The dose that takes away your symptoms, but doesn't make you tired. I just hope that the clean up going on around you is done before too very long.

Amy

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