The Diabetes Forum Support Community For Diabetics Online banner
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
G

·
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well I've had so many docs visits lately and just got back from one now and I'm being trialled on an old anti-depressant drug called Allegron (nortriptyline) to see if it calms my stomach or not.
I'm a bit nervous about taking a drug traditionally used for depression and I don't like look of the side effects either.
Has anyone had any experience with this drug? If so, did you find it impacted on diabetes at all (especially if you're on insulin). On the info leaflet it says to tell your doctor if you have some conditions and one of them includes diabetes. But doc is putting me on low dosage to start with and this is based on request from gastroenterologist.
I was told it can give you blurred vision and make you groggy in the mornings... great! I'm trying to get rid of being groggy here.
Fingers crossed I don't have side effects. Doc says he's expecting to see me once per week from now and maybe fortnightly if I'm feeling better. I've been given permission to start iron supplements again at least.... so maybe that will help me be a bit more alert.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
298 Posts
My husband was on it for awhile for nerve pain. He was groggy a lot. He also gained weight on it.
 
G

·
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
that doesn't sound good Mindy.... was your husband on a high dosage? I took my first tablet last night and I have to admit that I'm feeling my usual groggy self this morning. So it sounds like this drug isn't going to be helpful to get rid of the groggy feeling I already have then. My doc also told me that they use this drug to treat migraines also (it's supposed to prevent you from having migraines apparently).... well that could be a bonus in that case for me as I get regular migraines. Geez drugs supposed to make you feel better but they always seem to have unwanted side effects. I haven't noticed any change to my stomach symptoms as yet... but that may mean I have to increase dosage or be on the drug a lot longer to see if it works. At the moment I'm on absolute minimum dosage you can go, 10mg, and I have to work my way up to max 40mg... but doc says that people with depression would normally take 150mg....eek! The tablets apparently only come in max of 25mg... so that must be a lot of tablets people take. But he mentioned that at that dosage it basically makes you a zombie which is why drug no longer popular for treating depression.
Another bug bear I have is that I still don't have a diagnosis and I'm just being put on this drug to treat an unknown condition.... with the "let's see if this works"... apparently all part of "process of elimination" docs like to refer to as part of medical science.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
718 Posts
I have major issues with docs using drugs for the "side effects" - had one doc put me on some cholesterol meds b/c the side effect was that it could help control blood sugar, even though my cholesterol was fine. One dose later, a headache and severe constipation and I threw them out.

I don't have any experience with that particular drug, but I hope it either works to your advantage or at least that the side effects aren't too bad. I also hope you get a diagnosis and treatment soon!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
298 Posts
It was a couple of years ago and couldn't remember but he said it was a low dose. He had to increase his too but it stopped working so they took him off it. Hopefully they find something that works for you.
 
G

·
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I have major issues with docs using drugs for the "side effects" - had one doc put me on some cholesterol meds b/c the side effect was that it could help control blood sugar, even though my cholesterol was fine. One dose later, a headache and severe constipation and I threw them out.

I don't have any experience with that particular drug, but I hope it either works to your advantage or at least that the side effects aren't too bad. I also hope you get a diagnosis and treatment soon!
yeah me too... I wonder sometimes.
My endocrinologist says that they now believe all diabetics should be on BP and cholesterol meds and their main reason is "as a preventative for heart disease and stroke". Apparently cardiologists in this country have been lobbying government here to include diabetics on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) to get the cholesterol meds. They tried to get me on them... but they're $100 per month without being covered on PBS... on PBS they're about $33 or so for a months supply. My endo says as soon as they can get approval for PBS they will be getting all diabetics onto cholesterol meds. My endo said he will let me know when approval comes through as he wants me on these meds. I'm not sure if your doc perhaps has been reading same research material about this as docs here? My endo told me there was some recent research findings on the matter and that's why they are now saying it's imperative to treat and control all three (BGL, BP, & cholesterol) for diabetics. Maybe that was your docs reasoning?... because endos job is to protect us from getting complications from diabetes too and that's not just about controlling your BGLs, but your BP and cholesterol levels. I didn't realise myself until it was explained to me that all three things are connected hormonally which I thought was interesting (I think most people wouldn't realise this). Endos are hormone doctors... so they should know their stuff! Here in Oz if your overall cholesterol level is 6.5 or above you do qualify for the PBS cover... but if below you don't. But endo says that they have to ensure diabetics LDL cholesterol is controlled and kept below 3 and not above.... and something about we are more prone to higher cholesterol levels than a non diabetic person would be because diabetes is a hormonal condition.... and basically it causes imbalance in our bodies. I'm learning new stuff all the time. lol.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24,394 Posts
But we need to take some of this information with a wee grain of salt, because lumping us all together in a big herd of "at-risk" patients is never good policy. As many of us have already discovered personally, our lipids and b/p respond to lowered bgl without separate drug therapy. This is just one more example of Big Pharma controlling Big Medicine.

I persuaded my own doc that I don't need meds for my cholesterol - my low-carb diet regimen keeps my lipids levels in good control.
 
G

·
Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
But we need to take some of this information with a wee grain of salt, because lumping us all together in a big herd of "at-risk" patients is never good policy. As many of us have already discovered personally, our lipids and b/p respond to lowered bgl without separate drug therapy. This is just one more example of Big Pharma controlling Big Medicine.

I persuaded my own doc that I don't need meds for my cholesterol - my low-carb diet regimen keeps my lipids levels in good control.
I agree to an extent Shanny. I have also refused to take the meds because my cholesterol levels weren't bad enough to do that.
But I also do listen to what they're telling me and how important it is to keep our LDL as low as possible. Hopefully I can continue to do that myself without the meds... but the way they're talking they don't want to leave anything to chance in future for any diabetic. I think they're taking that 'preventative' approach across the whole health scene (I'm not positive that this is a drug company pushing this). Where I live you hear a lot about 'preventing' diabetes, heart disease, obesity, etc. It seems to be the big push or sell to get people healthy. If it's going to keep me healthy I'm Ok with it. Although I don't want to have to take drugs unless it's proven my body isn't responding to my attempts. And of course my body has already proven this on me with my BGLs... to the point I now have to have insulin. I also have another hormonal condition too which can affect me. I'm being closely watched and monitored all the time. Remember I how mentioned I have to advise any change in dosages of my med to endo... well that would be partly why... they're monitoring everything I do. We only have 3 diabetic clinics in this city and they are all very busy... but they also tend to closely monitor their patients. They provide reports back to our GPs (general practitioners) that referred us to them in the first instance. These clinics form part of 3 of our biggest hospitals too.... and you know what hospitals are like... reports for everything.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
221 Posts
I agree with Shanny completely. Low carb diet controls all the said problems very easily. I dont believe too much in what a doc says, I wait and watch , probably do some R&D on the condtions post a medication. Depression can be treated easily by Yoga and breathing techniques. My condition is similar to yours , I am not responding well to the treatment and am under constant observation and got to report to the doc after testing daily. But I am not stabilizing now after starting Apidra solostar 24units thrice and lantus 40at bedtime. I walk, do yoga for 15 min , but I am wary of docs even now!
 
G

·
Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
I agree with Shanny completely. Low carb diet controls all the said problems very easily. I dont believe too much in what a doc says, I wait and watch , probably do some R&D on the condtions post a medication. Depression can be treated easily by Yoga and breathing techniques. My condition is similar to yours , I am not responding well to the treatment and am under constant observation and got to report to the doc after testing daily. But I am not stabilizing now after starting Apidra solostar 24units thrice and lantus 40at bedtime. I walk, do yoga for 15 min , but I am wary of docs even now!
I don't have depression at all. I was prescribed an anti-depressant to treat my undiagnosed gastro condition. To date I still don't know what I'm dealing with. I'm on total of 33 units of Apidra daily and 17 units of Lantus at night at the moment. I'm seeing my endo tomorrow so this may get adjusted. It appears that I may need more insulin after my last few days of BGL levels. I had reduced insulin because my GP told me to due to my symptoms I've been dealing with. I've been very groggy, extremely tired, nauseated, etc. I burp chronically 24/7 which gets very irritating... this has been going on a year now and I'm sick and tired of it. I get all sorts of spasms and things from just doing that. Yesterday at work I had yet another hiccup and burping attack (same time for both) while I had colleagues trying to talk to me... this went on for an hour.... then I just carried on burping. You can see I just want an answer to all these symptoms I'm having. I'm now back iron supplement too which probably doesn't help my stomach. My GP doc reckons I've probably got up to 12 things I'm dealing with right now... he's probably not far off it. I've got a few health issues going on and I'm juggling meds and things. Probably no wonder my BGLs are going crazy. I am still not sleeping properly either so this doesn't help.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
221 Posts
:(... anti depressants make you groggy as they are supposed to work on the nerves. They are like pregabalin or like soporifics..this is a viscious circle you know, medical conditions arising out of medications act on our guts which in turn acts on stress levels and give out gut reactions..this way..hope you thrash out these issues soon..
 
G

·
Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
well I'm slowly increasing dosage of this drug... so far no difference with my symptoms. Saw my doc today and I have to increase it to 35mgs now... but he wants me to get up to 50mgs. The aim is to have only as much as I can tolerate... without having extreme dry mouth and being too groggy to drive. I'm still belching bad and getting pain under the rib cage.... apparently that's diaphram spasms my doc says today... that would explain my hiccup & belching episodes I suppose. I think my doc is hoping this drug knocks me out at night too... but hopefully I'm alert during the day. My doc is wanting to see me every week at the moment... he's stumped over what could be wrong... so monitoring me closely. He says the fact I'm belching every few seconds is enough to make me very unwell in itself as body has to work hard to do that. My doc is still not sure that gastroparesis can be ruled out and wants all tests exhausted first.... but he says I'm not actually displaying classic symptoms for gastroparesis exactly. Apparently there is a rare condition which is same as IBS but affects your upper gut too... I forget the name. I still have no idea what I'm dealing with and I told doc today I'm not happy taking drugs without knowing what exactly they're supposed to be treating. This drug apparently works on nerves mostly to calm them he told me. If this drug doesn't work on it's own after trial, apparently I will also go back on the anti-nausea drug too to see if they can both help. Hmmm... will keep you posted. Although I'm tired and over it long ago... I know I have to put my happy hat on and stay positive... I will get an answer! :D
 
G

·
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Ok.... update. Just got back from my weekly visit to my doc and now I'm having to combine two drugs to see if my stomach will calm down. So adding 20mgs of domperidone (aka: Motilium) which is an anti-nausea medication but is known to get your gut into correct rhythm. Still on the 35mg of Allegron. My BGLs don't seem to have a pattern at the moment and really going on highs and lows without explanation. So doc not touching my insulin dosage for now (he was thinking about lowering it again... but then saw the highs I've been getting as well on same dosage). I just have to be careful as Allegron will exascerbate side effects of a hypo... well I've learnt that one already. Just having scary nights where this drug is relaxing my airways so much so that I can't seem to burp properly... so the air is building inside me... I don't like this thing! Doc says it's a good sign that the drug is starting to work... but agrees that the air has to get out too and hopefully my stomach will stop producing so much gas if they can get this thing figured out. Having to see my doc weekly for now... have a gastroenterologist appt coming up in a couple of weeks.
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top