Being prescribed antidepressants a few weeks back to control my headaches more than anything else, I put starting them off because of my Hysterectomy surgery. (Though, I can’t say I was all for the idea either). I didn’t want the drugs to interfere with each other. I’m no pharmacist but after watching stories about the death of Heath Ledger, Anna Nicole Smith and the like where a combination of prescription drugs lead to their untimely death, I’m a bit sceptical, to say the least.
I decided that I’d start the drugs after my surgery but totally forgot this morning so decided tomorrow will be good enough. Then, earlier today, I get a text from my GP saying:
“I have received a letter from the Neurology clinic today mentioning they have started you on Venlafaxine. It would be important to check some blood tests and get an ECG about 1m after starting this treatment“.
I immediately had the hair on the back of my neck standing up. Now, something I should have done initially but failed to do it, I Googled the symptoms, treatment, etc. for this specific drug. What I read had me going HELL TO THE NO! on this one. My headaches are few and far between, in fact, I haven’t had one in months and some days I hardly know I have Hydrocephalus. And, the only reason I went in search of help last year, was because the sleeping episodes (thinking my ETV is possibly closing) and knowledge that my slit ventricles could lead to a coma had me concerned beyond reason.
It’s a scary reality I live in. One where I don’t know which way to go within 2 seconds of each other. I question all the time and I suppose dealing with these medical specialists over the last 10 years has me acting all hard arsed and rebellious. Having been released from the hospital yesterday, with a prescription of Ibuprofen and Tramadol as an example, two of the drugs which, increases the risk of side effects while using Venlafaxine. Do I blame the doctors for not knowing that these two things don’t play nice together? Do I blame myself for going to so many different doctors that I’m on a different page with each of them? Well…no. I did the research into the side effects and based on what I found, I made a decision for my own well being because this is where I believe my power lies. I WILL NOT BE PUTTING THAT DRUG INTO MY BODY.
I’m taking a stand against it the only way I know how. I also realise fully that this ultimately leaves me back at square one but I also take full cognisance of how it puts me back into relying purely on faith to get me through this journey. Am I being dumb..? Maybe…But, I’m OK with that.
It’s all fine and well to say use it, it’ll never happen to you or it won’t be that bad. What do I do if it does get that bad..? What if it’s too late? Then what? Just stopping this drug too quickly comes with its own set of symptoms that I most definitely don’t want either…so the equation is easily made: Don’t start so you don’t have to stop.
This is a list of the side effects and warnings when using Venlafaxine: