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Re: Suddenly suicidal, scared, and still medicated...

Posted by Judy on May 16, 1999, at 20:55:28

In reply to Suddenly suicidal, scared, and still medicated..., posted by Racer on May 15, 1999, at 23:07:57


I just read your post and I had to respond. I am where you are right now, but I know I will be feeling better soon because I have begun taking Nardil (an MAOI) for the 4th time in 12 years, mind you! Each time I take it, the side effects eventually drive me away, but it works SO WELL for my depression. On 45 mg per day, my brain is clearer, crisper and happier than it has ever been. Even colors seem more vivid - swear to God!

I am the one who likened us all to snowflakes, so I understand that Nardil may not work for you as it does for me; but IF IT DOES, you will feel great within weeks (you can actually feel the Nardil kick in when it starts to work), and you WILL gain weight (one of the side effects that drives me away - but a plus for you right now). Even a raw potato will taste good to you, and you will gain weight and feel healthy. You will wake up in the morning feeling more alive than you ever have.

On the down side, you will have to wash out the Effexor for 14 long days. I have used Xanax to get through the weaning period from other meds and also when I start taking Nardil because it can make you feel a bit jiggy for several days as well as when you try to get to sleep at night in the beginning. You can't eat food that contains tyramines, but it's not a big deal if you can live without any cheese except American, processed meats like pepperoni and sausage, over-ripe bananas, soy products, and several other things I never missed (pizza was the big hardship!). You will have to learn which over-the-counter meds you can't combine with Nardil; and you can't use epinephrine, so if you need an inhaler for asthma or if you carry an Epi-Pen for bee sting allergy, Nardil's out. You may have trouble with urinary retention (another of my dreaded side-effects - I sometimes have to sit on the toilet for five minutes or more before producing anything!). You might feel dizzy if you stand up too quickly. And finally, you will most likely have trouble achieving an orgasm; but it can be done even if the 'earth doesn't move' when it does happen.

These are the concessions I make when I take Nardil, but I put up with them when I need to get my head on straight and when I'm feeling the way you are now. No other meds have worked for me and I think I've tried them all. I have a daughter who has another year to go in high school and an elderly mother who recently had cardiac bipass surgery. They need me and they are the reasons that I take Nardil and put up with the side effects for as long as I can instead of throwing in the towel and staying in bed with the covers pulled over my head *or worse* (and I have considered *worse* many times when not on Nardil, trust me.)

I don't know if you're taking anything besides Effexor that may preclude your taking Nardil, but if you can give it a try, I can't recommend it any more highly. You don't have to stay on it for the rest of your life if you choose not to, and weaning off Nardil has not been a problem for me - some minor 'jolts' that are more curious than scary and certainly not in any way painful. No shakes, jitters or headaches. And if you've been on it for awhile, even after weaning off, you don't hit the skids immediately like you do with many other meds.

I can't guarantee that Nardil will work for you. I know there is no guarantee with psychopharms. What I've told you is solely my own experience. I would stay on Nardil for the rest of my days if I could just put up with the added weight, the inability to pee at will and the lack of feeling the "earth move" once in a while. I am constantly searching for a new drug that will work as well with fewer side effects.

Good luck, Racer! Keep searching for what works for you - don't give up!





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