PINGS AND “ROO”-LESSNESS

If you are reading this, I’m sorry for you.  Like me, you are missing Bonnaroo.  That is just wrong.  We should be there.  The only thing I can do for you is to provide this link.  I spent almost two hours digging around on the site, listening to music and reading about the bands there this year as well as previously.

I think I mentioned that we had the big (dying) tree in our backyard cut down a couple weeks ago.  It took a little while to get used to it being gone, but now I have a panoramic view of the sky from my swing that is especially nice at night.  The stars put on a great show.  Sadly, since I’ve been sitting out at night, the Moon hasn’t made an appearance.  But I know he’s up there and that makes it all ok.

The other issue I referred to yesterday… I had been prescribed Lexapro by my doctor over a year ago.  Lexapro is basically an antidepressant, but is supposedly great for treating symptoms of menopause also.  When I first started taking it, I had barely made it through about six weeks of night sweats that kept me from sleeping undisturbed more than two hours at a time.  That kind of sleep disruption wreaks havoc with your daylight functioning.  Seriously.  I think you can imagine.  The pills seemed to help with that for a time.  I recently decided that I didn’t want to take it any longer and discussed it with my doctor.  She assured me that if I took half the prescribed dosage for two weeks and then stopped, I would be fine.  I had told her that I had heard horror stories of people who had such a hard time getting off it that they opened up the capsules and counted the little granules of  medication and decreased it one itty bitty granule every day.  Someone near and dear to me warned me of what she referred to as “brain pings” and that they were, by no means, fun.  But the doc pooh-poohed this and assured me that I would suffer no such problem.

She’s full of shit and I am looking forward to pointing that out to her, first chance I get.

At first the “pings” were minimal, maybe 3-5 per day for the first few days.  I stopped taking the Lexapro on Friday the 15th, following doctor’s orders.  Yesterday was definitely my worst day.  It seemed like I was pinging as much as I wasn’t.  I hope they ease up soon.

The pings are very hard to describe.  They vary; sometimes feeling like a quick little compression about the duration of the time it takes to hiccup.  And sometimes it feels like an electric shock racing through my head.  There is no pain involved and it doesn’t seem to interfere with my already-less-than-proficient brain skills.  More than anything, it’s just annoying as all get-out.

I’ve been reading articles online while I’m writing this and just came across this:

Discontinuation of Treatment with Lexapro

During marketing of Lexapro and other SSRIs and SNRIs (serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors), there have been spontaneous reports of adverse events occurring upon discontinuation of these drugs, particularly when abrupt, including the following: dysphoric mood, irritability, agitation, dizziness, sensory disturbances (e.g., paresthesias such as electric shock sensations), anxiety, confusion, headache, lethargy, emotional lability, insomnia, and hypomania. While these events are generally self-limiting, there have been reports of serious discontinuation symptoms.

Hmm. “Paresthesia.” I might want to go look that up.  In the mean time, you have a great day and enjoy what’s left of the weekend. 

I miss you, Dad…

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14 responses to “PINGS AND “ROO”-LESSNESS

  1. I didn’t know. God help you. I call them snaps or zaps; it seems like a better description. It’s the most unnerving thing ever. It does get better though. Hopefully sooner, than later.

  2. I can’t think of anything comforting or funny to say. Even with all that material, whats wrong with me…

  3. Hazel, oops, all this time I was thinking you said “pings.” Snaps is the perfect word, it’s like a rubber band snapping in your head. Today they were a little stronger but not as frequent. It’s not something you can get used to so I’m hoping they stop soon.

    BD, no need. I know you got a lot going on. Knowing you took the time read makes me feel better. Thanks.
    Hope all’s going as planned with you and JT.

  4. Sorry to hear of your annoying issue. I can’t even imagine how irritating it must be. On the other hand, I know I’m a day late, but Happy Anniversary to you and PD!!!!

  5. Wow…that sounds truly annoying. At least there’s no pain…that’s the upside, I suppose. I’ll keep my fingers crossed for it to go away.

  6. Sorry to hear about this crap. Shannon was on Lexapro at one point, but was fortunate never to have felt any of these symptoms. Effexor’s the only one that ever gave her trouble (and boy, did it?!).

    I hope this gets out of your system soon.

  7. Natalie, annoying as… heck, I guess. Thanks for the anniversary wishes. What year are you and Ryan on?

    Mokker, actually, the pain is centered in the area below my waistline, in the back. 😉

    Mark, I’m swearing off all medication from here on in. That was the only pill I was on, and that was enough. Thanks. You’ll have to tell me about the Effexor one day.

  8. When I decided to go cold turkey on mine, I got vertigo. Freaked me the fu** out. I am back on it because the depression got worse four months later. I hope all goes well for you.

  9. DJ, you’re kidding. I got dizzy twice last night and once today. Last night I blamed it on tiredness and today on the heat. Sigh… Now I see dizziness listed in the “adverse events on discontinuation” that I posted up there. I overlooked it the first time. I remember my doctor telling me that she takes it and never intends to quit. Now I know why. What a bitch…
    Thanks for the honesty and concern. Now, go win lots of money so we can party when you get back!

  10. i will totally be with you in spirit when you do this “She’s full of shit and I am looking forward to pointing that out to her, first chance I get.”

    went through a similar situation many years ago with paxil. i explained my side effects and was told by the nurse that “she’d never heard of those symptoms before.” (therefore they did not exist in her mind.)

    at that time they did not know how addictive paxil was. i can say i wanted to jump over the counter and clobber her.

  11. Piglet, I hear you. Do you suppose there is such a thing as two people being too much alike???

  12. Before I clicked on the link, I thought for sure that Bonaroo was something that happened in Australia.

    Lexapro for menopause? That’s one I haven’t tried yet. As an antidepressant, I mean, not as a menopause curative.

  13. HI, I JUST READ YOUR POST ON THESE DAMN BRAIN PINGS!
    I WAS ON PAXIL FOR A WHILE AND IT DROVE ME CRAZY WITH THESE SHOCKS.
    I HAVE FIBROMIALGIA AND AM BEING TREATED WITH GABAPENTIN AND CYMBALTA. A STRANGE COMBO METHINKS BUT SUPPOSED TO HELP THE FIBROMIALGIA!
    WITH THE PAXIL THE PINGS WERE CONSTANT…..WITH THE CYMBALTA NOT AS BAD. WHO NEEDS TO HAVE THIS GOING ON IN THEIR HEAD DAY AFTER DAY. SEEING MY DOC IN 2 DAYS AND AM GOING TO COMPLAIN YET ONCE AGAIN. I HAVE CUT THE CYMBALTA CAPSULES IN HALF BECAUSE THE 60 MILIGRAMS WERE PINGING ALL DAY LONG. UNREAL!
    GOOD LUCK TO YOU AND THANKS FOR LETTING ME KNOW THAT I AM NOT THE ONLY ONE THAT HAS THIS CRAP!

  14. Hi Elizabeth,
    Oooh man, do I feel for you. No, you’re not alone. Don’t be impatient, though. I wrote this post in Mid June and just have gotten over the pings in the last couple of weeks. But (and you won’t want to hear this but I must be honest with you) I was at a loud concert over the weekend with lots of flashing lights and before the night was over, my pings were back and I’ve got them still. Less severe than I did originally, but they are back. All the best to you 🙂

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