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To think the GP could just cough up the good stuff?

(91 Posts)
Pantone363 Thu 04-Jun-15 18:21:43

Longstanding and boring OCD diagnosis, successfully treated with private CBT and a maintenance SSRI dose. At its worse upwards of 5 panic attacks a day. Currently about 4 a year (go me).

So I have the SSRI meds and when I have a panic attack I have a 2.5mg diazepam that I can take if I feel I can't handle the panic. I haven't taken one for over 9 mths. Mostly just knowing I have them is comforting and I work through the panic. For those of you know don't know 2.5mg is a minuscule amount.

Last week I lost my handbag which had my last 4 tablets. Repeat prescription refused and doctor asked to see me first (my old GP has retired).

Basically GP refused to prescribe and looked aghast that I expected her to. Asked if I had tried breathing exercises hmm and basically said she wouldn't give me any as they are addictive and uneccesary.

I understand that but I was basically asking for 5 tablets at a tiny dose which would last over a year! Hardly a drug habit. DPS threw his neck out last year and the GP handed him a script for 5mg diaz about 12 tablets! My friend got some for a fear of flying!

So AIBU a to think the doc should just cough up the good stuff and not fob me off with breathing exercises (which I'm well versed with and do not work by the point I would take the Diaz)

specialsubject Thu 04-Jun-15 18:24:11

diazepam also needed in this house for a different reason. And yes, getting the needed medication adds huge amounts of unnecessary stress.

I entirely sympathise. And I also blame the saddos who use it to get fun because that's why it is a controlled drug.

it is NOT addictive for many people BTW.

ChuffinAda Thu 04-Jun-15 18:26:45

Tbh I'm on the fence with this.

You've got the condition under control and haven't needed them for nearly a year which is an incredible achievement. It could be a waste of money to prescribe again and you never need them.

But I know how you feel. I have ocd, anxiety and depression and fully understand the psychological crutch the medication provides

Electrolux Thu 04-Jun-15 18:29:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Skiptonlass Thu 04-Jun-15 18:31:12

I'm going to play devils advocate her and side with your GP.

Nothing I say below is at all how I think YOU would behave, so please do t think this is at all directed personally, but see it from the other side.

You wouldn't believe how many people 'lose' their prescription, or have their tablets lost/stolen/eaten by the dog. All the benzos are pretty addictive and you become tolerant very quickly. ...and it's irresponsible of a GP to dole out tablets when asked instead of promoting psychological techniques.

Now I do understand your frustration because I know that some people genuinely need them, but I do see her point of view. Benzos are massively abused.

You're much better off seeing someone who can work with you on your anxiety and prescribe as needed. A GP is probably not that person.

crje Thu 04-Jun-15 18:31:45


She is exacerbating the issue.
The meds are there to lean on if you need them .

The adrenaline surging during a panic attack makes breathing very difficult to control. She is showing little understanding of your condition with her advice.

Tell her to shove her deep breathing up her arse & get a new GP

Bubbles1986 Thu 04-Jun-15 18:33:15

God yes I completely agree with you. I used to take 20mg per car journey as I have PTSD due to having been involved in 5 car accidents that despite all being quite serious (for example one of the lesser ones involved being hit in a Micra by a speeding to an emergency fire engine) i escaped unscathed. This is then exacerbated by my ocd which tells me that I've been too lucky and the next time I get in a car I am definatly going to die. I make maybe 4 unavoidable car journeys a year maximum, I live far away from all mine and dh family so sometimes I do have to travel. The doctors have now told me that unless I attend PTSD therapy 30 miles away (umm how am I supposed to get there I'm bloody petrified of travelling) that i cannot even have 5mg for travel (i asked if they could at least give me that, even though i have quite high natural tolerance to diazepam, so it wouldnt touch the sides) so I'm basically stuck unable to go anywhere. Similar to you, at potentially 20mg a year (ideally 80mg maximum) I'm hardley an addict.

Pantone363 Thu 04-Jun-15 18:33:30

ironically my DM (who never got her OCD under control and has needed years of impatient and outpatient MH services) has hundreds of them stashed in her house. She is supposed to take two a day and never does yet picks up her script monthly! They all just sit in a Tupperware box on her fridge.

It is a psychological crutch but they do take the edge of especially if the panic attack is at night and I start worrying more about not sleeping.

Electrolux Thu 04-Jun-15 18:33:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SaulGood Thu 04-Jun-15 18:37:00

Is there another GP you can see?

I do understand why benzodiazepines have to be very carefully monitored and not handed out without very good reason as they can easily lead to addiction but clearly, your individual circumstances suggest that it's an absolute remote and almost irrelevant possibility. The prescription of them would ensure your continued health and prevent over-reliance on other medications should your symptoms worsen due to the refusal.

Go back. Absolutely go back.

Pantone363 Thu 04-Jun-15 18:37:27

Bubbles that's ridiculous!

Before I had them on repeat I was always careful not to ask for Diaz by name (always a red flag) and just hope the GP would prescribe.

My friend has an awful dental phobia and was prescribed 20mg to take before an extraction. That's my yearly dose.

Gottagetmoving Thu 04-Jun-15 18:40:21

If your GP refused your prescription she should have offered some other treatment or therapy. You have really done well managing panics without relying on the tablets so you may never need them if you get some therapy or panic management options.
Trouble is, you are not ready to let go of the security of having the tablets there and your GP should have helped you with that.

Bubbles1986 Thu 04-Jun-15 18:41:16

Pantone363 sorry I'm terrible at understanding peoples tone in writing, do you mean I'm being ridiculous or the doctors are?

Pantone363 Thu 04-Jun-15 18:45:08

The doctorss Bubbles! God not you, it's ridiculous they won't prescibe to you/and expect you to travel that 30 miles

Bubbles1986 Thu 04-Jun-15 18:49:35

Ah thank you. Yes they didn't really seem to get why I couldn't travel to therapy to help with my fear of travel haha. I had my CBT locally though before they said they couldn't help and I needed the specialised PTSD therapy so I'm hoping that they will eventually have a practitioner within walking distance

wfrances Thu 04-Jun-15 18:51:14

i have severe ptsd ,severe agoraphobia and social phobia, acute anxiety and paranoia -i could go on ......
and my psych wont give me any , not even 1 tiny dose .

Bubbles1986 Thu 04-Jun-15 18:54:05

It's unfair isn't it wFrances. When your mh conditions are so severe your left with little quality of life that they are unwilling to prescribe something that could help even a bit

Pantone363 Thu 04-Jun-15 19:21:18

And actually Francis I would question which is better, living as you are now or living a normal life with a benzo addiction? (Worst case scenario obviously)

CrohnicallyInflexible Thu 04-Jun-15 19:28:19

I understand the difficulties with GPs not prescribing 'willy nilly'. And that people with drug problems often make up excuses about losing tablets etc.

However, the OP clearly hasn't collected a prescription in over 9 months (she says that's the last time she took one). She's asking for 5 low dose tablets- that don't even add up to a standard dose for someone who has a larger than usual tolerance!

If the GP had delved a bit deeper, she would have learned that the OP has been through CBT and seen a huge improvement, that she takes a maintenance dose of an SSRI, and the diazepam is purely an emergency med.

Can you see a different doctor at the same practice? Or would you be able to seek a private prescription?

For what it's worth, I suffer from anxiety, treated with an SSRI, I have 2mg diazepam and when I switched doctors and went to see the new one, she offered me another prescription without being asked.

Pantone363 Thu 04-Jun-15 22:18:00

Yes I'm going to see another GP (slightly worried they will close ranks on me though)

Fromparistoberlin73 Thu 04-Jun-15 22:25:18

Ahem - get a different GP and just nab some of your mothers OP - if she had that many stashed ?

FarFromAnyRoad Thu 04-Jun-15 22:28:51

I wonder if you're from the same neck of the woods as me OP! My GP retired and new one first of all cut my painkillers in half - made me wait two weeks whilst he thought about my repeat prescription and yesterday has taken away - yes! Taken away! - 80% of my previous painkiller regime that was prescribed by a pain specialist at a private hospital! I'm not allowing myself to go right into one about it but it'd be fair to say I'm right on the bloody edge!

BabyMurloc Thu 04-Jun-15 22:29:48


I understand the restrictions BUT the OP has not taken any for months so it's not a frequent prescription. It's an incase of emergency prescription.

I have some for this EXACT same reason. Mine are probably almost out of date now because I've not taken them in so long. I have 2 in my purse. There is a HUGE psychological benefit to knowing they are there. I daren't check the date in case I realise I can't actually take them.

Fromparistoberlin73 Thu 04-Jun-15 22:32:37

But I think you have a case and are not BU - and really well done

AssembleTheMinions Thu 04-Jun-15 22:32:58

I think if they can see that your rarely need them (as in don't request frequent prescriptions) then they should have just given you them. I know exactly what you mean about the knowledge that you have them being comforting. I'm suffer badly from migraines and know that if I run out of at tablets it seems to accelerate the symptoms. it's probably just in my mind though

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