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Author Topic: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla  (Read 4269 times)

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Offline Fondoo

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  • Posts: 72
Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« on: March 13, 2010, 04:29:59 PM »
Hi all,
   I think this drug may not work out. After two days my heart rate has gone from 68bpm to over a hundred and my anxiety level is so bad I am on the verge of panic.My face is still beet red. I do not think it wise to take another dose of this stuff but I thought I would run it by you all today for any input I could get.
   I have plenty of treatment options my genotype came up clear of resistances so I don't see the wisdom of putting my body and mind through any more of this. Right now I am a mess and being a weekend with my doc on vacation all next week I will not be getting any support in that direction. My emotional well being is so bad right now it is scary I never want to feel like this again.
   Any input would be appreciated thank you
    Tracy

Offline Assurbanipal

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2010, 04:50:27 PM »
Not sure if you are in the US, but if so I think you should call your doctor.  Even if (s)he is on vacation there should be a number on the voicemail to call for emergencies. And what you describe might be one (or might not). 

If you cannot get through to a doctor, go to your local emergency room.  The combination of a rash after one day and a rapid heart rate sounds like you might possibly be having an allergic reaction.  But it might just be nerves about the meds too.  But I'm no doctor and even if I were I wouldn't be checking you out over the Internet.

So call the docs line and get it checked.

Let us know how it turns out.

A
5/06 VL 1M+, CD4 22, 5% , pneumonia, thrush -- O2 support 2 months, 6/06 +Kaletra/Truvada
9/06 VL 3959 CD4 297 13.5% 12/06 VL <400 CD4 350 15.2% +Pravachol
2007 VL<400, 70, 50 CD4 408-729 16.0% -19.7%
2008 VL UD CD4 468 - 538 16.7% - 24.6% Osteoporosis 11/08 doubled Pravachol, +Calcium/D
02/09 VL 100 CD4 616 23.7% 03/09 VL 130 5/09 VL 100 CD4 540 28.4% +Actonel (osteoporosis) 7/09 VL 130
8/09  new regimen Isentress/Epzicom 9/09 VL UD CD4 621 32.7% 11/09 VL UD CD4 607 26.4% swap Isentress for Prezista/Norvir 12/09 (liver and muscle issues) VL 50
2010 VL UD CD4 573-680 26.1% - 30.9% 12/10 VL 20
2011 VL UD-20 CD4 568-673 24.7%-30.6%
2012 VL UD swap Prezista/Norvir for Reyataz drop statin CD4 768-828 26.7%-30.7%

Offline Hellraiser

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2010, 04:52:56 PM »
Definitely call the doctor or if you need to the Hospital.  With that said I would not discontinue the drug without a doctor's confirmation, the last thing you want is to develop a resistance this early in the game.  I've never heard of any of the symptoms you're having with Atripla, are you taking anything else?

Offline griezzel

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2010, 05:53:11 PM »
Definitely sounds like a bad reaction to the medication. If you cannot reach your doctor in any way, call a hospital and see if you can get any advice over the phone first. Trips to the ER are always stressful, but go if your symptoms are severe in ANY way.

I'm not an expert, but I wouldn't worry so much about a resistance to a drug you cannot take anyway. If the problems turned out not to be caused by the Atripla it could be a problem if you stopped now and started it again later. But then, there's a good chance that resistance would not develope from one interruption.

Odd that your doctor would not anticipate possible problems and not give you instructions on what to do in case you experienced trouble. If you can't talk to your doctor and be immediately prescribed a substitute for the Atripla then there's little you can do now except stop taking it. Seek professional advice, though.

Where in the world are you located?
« Last Edit: March 13, 2010, 05:58:03 PM by griezzel »

Offline Inchlingblue

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2010, 06:23:55 PM »
As I mentioned to you in another thread, this combo, because of the Sustiva component is the one most likely to cause some side effects so don't let it discourage you from meds altogether.

What other meds are you taking (either prescription or OTC)? What you're describing sounds more like a drug interaction problem than a side effect.

There's no reason why you should not be able to change but, as others have mentioned, make sure you don't stop Atripla cold turkey because this could lead to NNRTI resistance, which would limit your future options. You said your doctor is on vacation. Is there another doctor taking care of things while yours is away?

If you have no resistance issues, you might want to read Dr. Gallant's opinion on the pros and cons of each of the preferred combos for starting therapy, LINK:

http://www.hopkins-aids.edu/q_a/patient/recent_questions/lost_on_choosing_medication.html?contentInstanceId=513447&siteId=7151


If you end up with leftover Atripla, you might want to consider sending it to:

www.aidforaids.org
« Last Edit: March 13, 2010, 06:26:48 PM by Inchlingblue »

Offline newt

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2010, 06:25:51 PM »
Like others have said the combination of fast heart, anxiety and red face should be considered urgent. Let us know what happens. - matt
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Online leatherman

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2010, 07:41:34 PM »
it's times like this that you have a doctor ;), so give his office a call. If there's no answer there, get to statcare or to an ER, just in case this is an allergic reaction rather than a stress reaction.

I don't see the wisdom of putting my body and mind through any more of this. Right now I am a mess and being a weekend with my doc on vacation all next week I will not be getting any support in that direction. My emotional well being is so bad right now it is scary I never want to feel like this again.
and until you get checked out by a doctor, chill down. ;) Very few people (if any) have died within the first 72 hours of taking Atripla  :D

You do know that most reactions and side effects come within the first 2 weeks while your body adjusts to these chemicals and the HIV is killed off within your system. It's silly to think that there'll be no reaction whatsoever starting meds. For heaven sake, that's like thinking people don't suffer from nicotine withdrawal when they use a medication to stop smoking. LOL

and try to think a little more positively. ;D What if all there reactions were gone by tomrrow or the next day? ??? Would this incident still be worth of the drama of "putting you mind and body through any more of this" or "never want to feel like this again"? I've had batches of new meds putting me in the bathroom for the first two or three days (lossing fluids from too many orifices ::)), having sweats, have chills, having rashes. Thank goodness nearly everything has always cleared up with about 2 weeks. (except, what it is? Ziagen I think? were you don't get the rash UNTIL day 14 and you have to have you doctor check it out to see if it's the kind of rash that'll clear in 3 days or the kind of rash that's going to kill you. ROFL Ah, those older meds had such fun side effects LOL)

So go get checked out and get back to us when you can. If it's just anxiety, well you'll know and you'll feel better and maybe the anxiety will be lessened just by finding out. If it's an actual allergic reaction then you'll need a doctor's advice for controlling the reaction and what to do afterwards.

Best Wishes (I'll be thinking about you!!) and let us know what a doctor tells ya about this ;)
leatherman (aka mIkIE)


chart from 1992-2013; updated 2/09/13  Reyataz/Norvir/Truvada

Offline Ann

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #7 on: March 14, 2010, 11:06:01 AM »
How are you today, Fondoo? If you're not feeling better, get yourself to an ER.

If your doctor started you on meds and pissed off on holiday without giving you the number of another doctor to call if something happened, then you need to find another doctor. Pronto.

Hope you're ok.

Ann
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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

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HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline buffaloboy

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #8 on: March 14, 2010, 10:51:37 PM »
It's important that if you stop taking Atripla that you do so with your doctor's guidance, and they will want to prescribe Truvada, a component of Atripla, to take on its own for around a week to guard against resistance.

The feeling of extreme anxiety that you describe is not uncommon on Atripla and one I know only too well. The day after taking my first dose I felt like I was on the worst recreational drugs comedown ever, as well as having extreme muscle aches all over my body, and constant nausea. I managed to stick it out for around three weeks but nothing on God's earth could have made me go beyond that; it was quite literally a form of living hell.

If you do decide to stop taking Atripla remember that the treatment failed you, and not the other way around. There are other combinations you can take which will hopefullly be far more suitable for you, and given that there is a choice, no one needs to be stuck with a treatment they find intolerable. But next time, ensure you doctor gives you clear guidance about what to expect in the first few days and weeks, and advice on what to do should you have any adverse reactions.
« Last Edit: March 14, 2010, 10:54:09 PM by buffaloboy »

Offline Fondoo

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #9 on: March 17, 2010, 10:35:18 PM »
Hi all,
   Thank you for the responses they were very helpful. My doc is completely out of reach and I am wondering if I should switch docs but I live on the big island so my choices of experienced docs is severely limited so we will see.
    After I posted I decided to stop the Atripla even though I could get resistant issues I just did not have anywhere to turn for advice and a new script. The docs at the hospital have little to no experience with HIV.
   After 24 hours off the drug I still had a very rapid heart rate and severe anxiety so I went to the er. They checked me over and told me I was not in any real danger but did recommend stopping the drug if I hadn't already.
   My skin is still very red and itchy but getting better. My heart rate still seems 20beats or so above normal but getting better. The anxiety is still pretty strong but the emergency room doc prescribed some Adivan that has helped enormously. I have been prone to depression and anxiety most of my life but Yoga and a St.Johns wart supplement was handling things great. Unfortunately it's not recommended to take St.Johns Wart and ARV's I hope I can find a natural alternative. I am very leary about changing my brain chemistry with pharma drugs. I might try Holy Basil but I am afraid it may effect the ARV. Anyone have any luck with a natural serotonin booster while on ARV's?

Thank you all






Offline metekrop

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #10 on: March 18, 2010, 12:39:47 PM »
Oh I think it is okay.  That was what I was feeling when I start the med.  I took a full month dosage and then I quited for about two months.  Then I started again because I think I don't have other options.  But I changed my schedule to bed time.  I take it and just sleep.  Deep sleep will help you go off the side effects.  Previously, I used to take it at the morning with empty stomach.  I can tell you that was the time I felt depressed and thought it is the beginning of the end.  Now it is a friendly med.  I am taking it every night at about 10:30pm and run into my bed.  Even I sometimes take it when I am not home.  May be while I am driving a car or be with other people.  It is now very nice medicine.
Diag on Dec 8, 2000, CD 440 VL 44K, No Meds
Dec/08 - Feb/09 CD< 50 & VL >500k hosp'z.
St. Atripla - July/09 CD 179, VL 197k
Oct/09 CD 300 VL UD Chol 267
Mar/10 CD 468 UD, Ch 220
Aug/10 CD 460 UD, Ch 195
Dec/10 CD 492 UD, Ch 172
Mar/11 CD 636 UD, Ch 201
Aug/11 CD 530 UD, Ch 98
Jan/12 cd 616 UD, ch 189
Jul/12 CD 640 UD, Ch ?
Dec/12 CD 669 Ud, Ch 125
May/7 CD711 Ud, Ch?
Nov/ 22 663 UD, Ch,
April 17 CD 797, UD

Offline Forever England

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #11 on: March 18, 2010, 05:34:58 PM »
I'm not an expert, but it's my understanding that the Efavirenz in Atripla is not a great match for those who suffer from anxiety or depression. Does the prescribing doctor know you have such issues? If not, it's worth drawing this to his/her attention. There are plenty of options available so, if it is a case of side-effect intolerance, you should try another combination.

Everyone's different. I had trouble with Efavirenz and switched to Norvir+Reyataz in its place - I'm much better with those - there will be an option that's right for you too, it will just take some tinkering to find out.
« Last Edit: March 18, 2010, 05:37:01 PM by Forever England »

Offline papichasing

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #12 on: March 18, 2010, 08:45:13 PM »
Tracy I just started in Atripla a few weeks ago and I have to tell you that I had every single side effect that you can imagine. Thanks God after two weeks I feel that I am coming back to normal and I just feel tired now and I hope I will regain my energy soon. But trust me, not everybody can deal with Atripla. There were nights when I though it was over for me. To make things worst I developed I.R.I.S due to the fact that my CD4 was very low when I started the treatment. I have to admit that I have a wonderful doctor with a great staff that were very supportive every time that I called to let them know what was happening. Just talk to your doctor as soon as you can. There are other treatments easier to deal with. I wanted Atripla because eventually it becomes a one pill treatment and that will make it a LOT easier for me. Good luck!!!

Offline Fondoo

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #13 on: March 24, 2010, 11:10:26 PM »
I developed I.R.I.S due to the fact that my CD4 was very low when I started the treatment.

   May I ask what is I.R.I.S.? My t-cells are also real low (17 last count)

P.S. Thank you all again for the responses my replies are slow because I can only log on when I come to town. You folks have been very kind and help full.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2010, 11:15:35 PM by Fondoo »

Offline Rev. Moon

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #14 on: March 24, 2010, 11:18:13 PM »
  May I ask what is I.R.I.S.? My t-cells are also real low (17 last count)


Immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Immune_reconstitution_inflammatory_syndrome
"I have tried hard--but life is difficult, and I am a very useless person. I can hardly be said to have an independent existence. I was just a screw or a cog in the great machine I called life, and when I dropped out of it I found I was of no use anywhere else."

Offline Ferndale

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #15 on: April 03, 2010, 07:00:20 AM »
Hi everyone.  I have been on Atripla since December 2009 having been diagnosed in March 2003.  My CD4 is now 400 and VL is neg.  I did come out in a weird rash for a few days about 2 weeks into it but that quickjly went.  HOWEVER, more recently I have felt an odd sensation in my heart. It feels as if it is missing beats/ fluttering/working harder than it ought to.  It's hard to describe. I know all the stuff about not eating fatty foods and not eating 2 hours beforehand - so trty to avoid those - but it's not that - this feels a little weird.  Has or does anyone experience these kind of sensations? My choleserol level was 6.1 when I last saw my doctor, which isnt great so am working on that.  However my blood pressure was perfect. What complicated matters is that I had a skiing accident in January and ended up in A&E and lots of aches and pains, so not sure if the heart sensation is related to that (my higher cholesterol might be as I have not been so agile of late.)
Yes, I will check in with my doctor but anyone else felt this higher than usual heart rate. 

Offline kev72

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #16 on: April 03, 2010, 07:10:55 AM »
more recently I have felt an odd sensation in my heart. It feels as if it is missing beats/ fluttering/working harder than it ought to.  It's hard to describe. 

Are you familiar with Anxiety symptoms? This is a classic symptom where I get it. Also as crazy as it sounds, gas can sometimes cause the sensation you describe. I am not a doctor but it would seem odd for your heart to actually be skipping beats. When mine feels like that it is usually due to anxiety.

Offline BrotherDavid

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Re: Rapid heart rate and severe anxiety two days on Atripla
« Reply #17 on: April 04, 2010, 08:27:03 PM »
The fluttering sounds like generalized anxiety to me. It occurs sometimes when I take cold meds or excessive caffeine. You should by all means talk to you're doctor but I can bet you're heart is not skipping beats. Let us know how things turn out. I am hoping this is just a nervous reaction to starting the med. Good luck David

 


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