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Re: Elevated Cortisol and NIH Hospital Visit 4WD

Posted by Elroy on December 29, 2005, at 20:27:17

In reply to Re: Elevated Cortisol and NIH Hospital Visit Elroy, posted by 4WD on December 28, 2005, at 22:59:26

> Very interesting to read all this Elroy. My doctors seem to feel the same way. Anxiety/depression driving the cortisol, and not the other way round. I've just had another round of endocrinological testing and another MRI to see if my pituitary tumor has grown since last year but no results yet. I did have an EEG which was normal.
> I've been wondering about the same issues as you. I've got to get/keep this anxiety controlled but I really dont' want to get heavily into benzo land. It scares me. So Im thinking depakote or some other mood stabilizer. Maybe even Lyrica or lithium. I don't know. I feel like "here we go again" a whole new battle of finding the right anticonvulsive drug that will work without intolerable side effects.
> I can tell you one thing. When my pdoc raised my Celexa dose from 10 mg to 20 mg I felt my jittery nervous "too much adrenaline" feeling skyrocket.
> Marsha

I am the other way around.

I am steering clear of SSRIs and SNRIs being prescribed to "help" my anxiety. They either do nothing (except intolerable side effects) or make my anxiety severely worse (which then makes the hypercortisolism worse!).

I have been on Xanax XR for over a year now (1 mg twice a day) and arbitrarily stopped it for a week (just before gonig to NIH) to see how "bad" the withdrawal effects would be. I had none - other than the anxety increase from there not being any Xanax Xr in the system!

Also while at NIH I couldn't take the morning dose of Xanax XR the first week and got by fairly well without it - so I think that a lot of the "benzo scare" is just that - as long as it isn't being abused or one has a super sensitivity to it!

Interestingly NIH psych people not only agreed with the concept of using benzos to treat the anxiety ("why use ADs for what is clearly a strictly anxiety situation?" was one of their statements), but also brought up the idea that I might be "undermedicated" with the dosage that I'm on and the increasing dosages - in conjunction with aggressive talk therapy - might actually knock the anxiety out rather than just keeping things barely subdued.


I am going to look into that option (increasing meds) possibly at some point, but first am going to talk to my psych doc about giving lower dose Dilantin a brief trial - it seems like if it is going to work that it does so in a really short time.





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