Scary experience with new medication....warning, long!

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Scary experience with new medication....warning, long!

Postby georgiagal » Fri Mar 21, 2008 3:05 pm

I felt I needed to let everyone know about the experience I had last night with my DH.

Let me 1st start by saying that when DH is in the throws of chronic fatigue, he gets a sleepy-eye look (like Popeye). This has been the case since he was a child; however, has gotten much worse due to the fatigue he suffers. Sometimes medication can make it worse. Those of you who suffer from this, may understand what I mean.

Ok – So I went to the doctor with DH last Tuesday and because the Lortab he was taking didn’t help with the pain as much as it used to, the doctor prescribed him “Oxymorphoneâ€￾ 20 mg, taken twice per day (generic name “Opana ER). He was to also use the Lortab for break-thru pain. As I control these types of medication (due to DH’s short-term memory loss @ times), I know the medication was taken as prescribed and as little Lortab as possible was taken (not more than 2 per day).

Over the course of the last week, I noticed that DH was getting more and more sleepy, seeing & hearing things that weren’t really there (I would NOT say these were really hallucinations). Even he noticed that things were a little different. We went to his parents for dinner yesterday and he just was not himself, subtle differences.

Last night as we were getting into bed, DH became a bit more “difficultâ€￾ in trying to get him to just get into bed. Finally got him in, but he wouldn’t totally lay down. I was almost ready to call 911 – his eyes were rolling, mouth wide open and breathing was shallow. The ONLY reason I did not call 911 was because I could get him to focus for a short time and he knew who I was and where we were & his pulse was regular (but yes a little slow). Another reason I considered for not calling the paramedics was because I knew he would be labeled as a “druggieâ€￾ which, as we all know, doesn’t help when you’re trying to manage pain. (maybe not a great rationalization, but it crossed my mind).

He slept pretty late today (even though he was up eating @ 6:00 am) and he is completely fine – eyes, breathing, pulse, all is fine. I know we got lucky, and I’m sure I’ll get responses that I should have called 911.

Needless to say, we had a *ceremonial flush* this morning. He will be notifying his doctor of what happened and have them add this to what medications he is allergic to. We have discussed possibly changing him to all non-narcotic pain meds, but he has tried them and because of his high tolerance (to almost anything) they don’t work. I myself tried non-narcotic pain meds after my surgery, and I must admit that I did not have any relief. He will just have to make do with the Lortab and my controlling it.

Now, there could have been many reasons for this. It could have built up in his system too much over the course of 9 days; it could have interacted with the many other prescriptions he takes, or he simply may not be able to tolerate it.

This in no way should make anyone believe this will happen to them – this is *only* my DH’s experience with this medication. The ramifications of what could have happened to him scare the h*** out of me, but I felt it is information that should be shared with you.

Please… when taking newly prescribed medications, make sure a loved one is able to monitor you – checking for the slight changes in appearance and behavior could mean life-or-death. I can’t emphasize enough that I am ONLY wanting to make people aware of just one circumstance. This in no way is meant to scare anyone!

Sorry for this taking so long to tell this story, but I felt it important enough to give ya'll the whole story rather than a condensed version.

Thank you for taking the time to read this ridiculously long post, but please remember it. All is well, we dodged a bullet and I am certainly grateful, as is he!

GG
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Postby Robertsgirl » Fri Mar 21, 2008 3:20 pm

Thank God that you were there and able to monitor him and the effects of the medication. He is so very blessed to have you.

I took the loratabs, they did not work for me. The NS has me on Vicatin (sp). It is enough to take the head off of my headache/post decopression pain.

I hope that every thing works out for your DH.

Have a wonderful Easter.

Lisa
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Postby Amy Joe » Fri Mar 21, 2008 3:33 pm

GG thank heavens you were with him. You are 100% right on the interactions or reactions to new meds.

God Bless

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Postby dtyree » Fri Mar 21, 2008 10:09 pm

It was very good that you were there. New meds are such an unknown until we take them.

Just to relay this, whenever the docs give me new meds, I ask the pharmacist first what are the expected side effects. Based on her knowledge and information, there have been times when I have refused meds. Because once you purchase the meds, there is no return and I hate to be stuck with something that is going to screw up my body.

Peace,
David
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Postby georgiagal » Sun Mar 23, 2008 9:10 pm

Thanks for the replies. DH is doing MUCH better! Well, his tummy might hurt from the Easter feast.

GG
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Postby Vagreeneys » Sun Mar 23, 2008 10:46 pm

I am so glad that he is feeling better and yes to having someone close by to monitor new meds is a must. Also i agree with your statement about being labeled a druggie by an ER doctor could happen and you wouldn't want that also so your reasons were valid as long as you had the situation under control...Glad your Easter was good and your feast to!
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Postby Janice » Mon Mar 24, 2008 12:06 pm

Hi GG,

I'm very happy to hear that DH is doing much better. :D

When deciding to take a new medication we have no idea what could happen. I recently had a terrible allergic reaction to Advair Diskus.

I'm sure he's thankful that you were there for him.

Thanks for sharing his experience with us and the reminder to be alert when taking new meds.

Take care and you both are in my thoughts and prayers.
GOD Bless!
Janice

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Postby razzle51 » Mon Mar 24, 2008 12:39 pm

Did he quit the Opana ER ? what did the Dr. say ? Glad he is much better .
I choose not to place "DIS" in my ability.

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I am glad your husband is going better and ok!

Postby starmoon » Mon Mar 24, 2008 2:16 pm

I once had the experience with a medication and my BP went down to low 90's over low 50's, chest pain, low heart rate in the low 50's, could not walk, hardly see, felt like I want to vomit, ect.

This was early in the moring before my HB went to work. I was glad I knew what was going on, even though I should have had my HB call 911. I went into severe bradcardyia which is why I was having all those symptoms.

I made my husband stay with me until I felt I was out of the danger zone.

I knew as a nurse and when I had patients with this, we had to increase fluids, watch BP and of course if you in the hospital they give you other meds.

I stayed awake, I always have a automatic BP machine handy, had my HB take my BP every 5-10 min, I felt my pulse, drank lots of water layed in bed until it finally came up to safe numbers. Of course called my Dr. and pharm later. My pharm said I was lucky I did not go to sleep after my husband left for work, I still may not have woken up.

I know there is one thing, I can not take is opiates. I am to drug sensitive.

Same thing happened to once in the hospital after my gallbladder surgery. That was with morphine.

Any opiates they have given me, I bottom out!

I agree, when starting new medications, someone should always be with you for the first week because some times the reactions does not take affect right way. They are called anti-flactic reactions to medicaton.

Thank God you were there!

Starmoon
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Postby georgiagal » Mon Mar 24, 2008 3:27 pm

Thanks again for the additional responses.

Razzle -- yes, DH stopped taking the medication and we flushed it down the toilet. DH called the doctor's office today and let them know what was going on -- the nurse will let the doctor know.

Starmoon -- glad to hear your DH stayed with you during all of this. If that is all I get across from this and it helps someone else, I will have done my job. I sent you a pm, but I've had problems w/messages staying in my *outbox* so I don't know if/when you'll get it.

Thanks again to all who have responded. It really means a lot to both of us.

GG
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Postby Ryzing » Mon Mar 24, 2008 6:36 pm

GG-

Love the new picture!

Sorry to hear your husband had trouble - but I'm glad he's feeling better. I remember about 2 years ago I was put on PRIMIDONE for the tremors. The bottle said to take 2 pills before bed - so, of course, I did what the instructions said. For the next two days, I couldn't walk, couldn't see straight and couldn't even get dressed on my own. Apparently, the pharmacy made a mistake and I wasn't supposed to take 2 pills - only 1. But hey - I didn't have tremors!

I hope he doesn't have to go through this again. It's a good thing you were there for him. You're a good wife!

Diane
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Postby SMLady » Tue Mar 25, 2008 8:13 am

Diane, love the new picture.

I had a bad experience with a few of my meds - especially topamax which I've stated on here numerous times, but my son recently had an experience when I gave him some cold medicine. He became extremely disoriented. It was really scary. The doctor said to watch him and if he started seizing to take him to the ER. Uh, YA THINK?????????
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Postby Janice » Tue Mar 25, 2008 8:32 am

GG, that is a terrific pic of you and dh!

SMLady, that is pretty scary. I never thought about children's medication causing an allergic reaction, or at least I never heard about it until now. I hope he's doing much better now.

Take care,
GOD Bless!
Janice

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Postby SMLady » Tue Mar 25, 2008 9:41 am

Yes, he's fine. He gets sneezy and congested in the spring time, so I have a prescription antihistimine I give him, but I was out so I gave him some children's cold medicine he had never taken before. A short time later, he came in to my room and was getting frantic because he didn't know where he was and he couldn't remember my name (mom!). The doctor said to just watch him for a couple hours, blah, blah, blah.... He fell asleep and I stared at him the whole time watching for a seizure, but he was fine. Poor little guy.
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Postby Janice » Tue Mar 25, 2008 9:55 am

I can't even imagine the emotions you went through. I'm just happy to hear that he's better and you made it through this ordeal.

Our children are our life and thank GOD everything worked out ok.

Take care and give that little one (such a cutie) a hug and a kiss from a concerned friend at our wonderful forum.
GOD Bless!
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