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New medicine, first dose, feeling wretched. Do I phone gp or will they tell me to stick it out?

(22 Posts)
1ToughCookie Mon 23-Sep-19 18:21:18

Usually they say to give a new medication 2-4 weeks, but I feel worse than what I'm on medicine for and my newborn needs me now. I'm so dizzy I feel like falling, so nauseous I run to toilet, my head is pounding and when he cries (all he wants is to be held and bounced a little; he positivity screams in his basket) My partner isn't in the house and can't come home immediately and this onset a couple of hours after taking the new med.

I really don't want to take my daily dose tomorrow, but I don't know if the doctors will support me quitting straight off the bat like this. Thoughts?

(Note: baby has now decided he's going to fall asleep on my chest and sometimes smiles so thank goodness!)

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PleaseSirMyGoat Mon 23-Sep-19 18:24:42

What's the medication?

NigesFakeWalkingStick Mon 23-Sep-19 18:28:31

Depends on the medication. Is it preventing something particularly serious? I assume they wouldn't have prescribed it unless there was a need for it.

If it's antidepressants, unfortunately they do take some time to take affect, and as unpleasant as they are, the benefits (particularly if you have a newborn and may be struggling, I'm making an assumption here please don't shoot me!) do outweigh the initial crappy stage.

That said, you can always phone to speak to a GP if the symptoms are really unpleasant.

hormonesorDHbeingadick Mon 23-Sep-19 18:30:38

Maybe try a pharmacist. They may suggest things like taking them at different times of the day or building up to full dose.

1ToughCookie Mon 23-Sep-19 18:40:46

It's Candesartan. It's a blood pressure medication, but was prescribed for migraine. It's expected to have mild side effects but these vary between moderate edging on severe. I have had worse migraines than this headache in the past year but not in the recent few months.

I've been on antidepressants and beta blockers in the past to try for migraine and pmdd but never had a good outcome. Either it settles fast or it gets steadily worse with each dose. I haven't had a reaction this violent before, even propranolol took 3 days to make me this dizzy

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1ToughCookie Mon 23-Sep-19 18:42:03

(I'm even on a half dose. Only 2 whereas the starting is supposed to be 4 increasing to 8 or 16.)

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1ToughCookie Mon 23-Sep-19 19:00:58

I've also already spoken to neurologist about best time of day to take them. There is no good time only slightly better ones.

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muddledmidget Mon 23-Sep-19 19:04:17

As its a blood pressure medication it can be best to take the first few doses at bedtime, literally just as you're getting into bed. Once you've adjusted to them they can be taken at any time of day. Just be aware that if you need to get up in the night with your little one, do it slowly, jumping out of bed can make the dizziness really bad

alexdgr8 Mon 23-Sep-19 19:10:35

guess you've already studied the P.I.L. = Patient Information Leaflet, which should come with the meds.
was this prescribed by a GP or hosp doc?
try contact prescriber for advice, failing that contact a pharmacist, or ring non-emergency NHS advice line.
I always forget whether it's 101, or 111, one is police., will soon become obvious.. think 111 is NHS.
is there anyone else, friend, relative, neighbour, who could come round to give you support til your husband returns. good luck.

1ToughCookie Mon 23-Sep-19 19:11:16

@muddledmidget that was what we originally discussed---buuuut I've been having nocturnal vestibular migraines every night for six weeks. I'm incredibly dizzy and can't get out of bed. I have to sit on the bed to feed him and have to wake husband to do changing as I can't reliably walk. Adding any more to this will mean I need a sleep aid to sleep through the room spinning

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Swifey40 Mon 23-Sep-19 19:15:43

Are you on triptans for your migraines as well as the preventative?
If you have any travel sickness tablets in the house then a couple of them won't hurt and may make your nausea abate.
I had the worst migraines of my life after my second ds was born. My triggers are hormonal (go figure 😠) and tiredness, which obviously works very well with a newborn. There are different types of triptan now, longer lasting ones which may help. My neurologist put me on beta blockers, then amytryptaline, then another beta blocker and eventually topirimate which is an epilepsy drug. It's been a terrible roller coaster, but it will get better. I have now come off of all preventative medicine, because we weren't sure what was working and what wasn't. I have oral morphine for when it is really terrible, but of course you cannot take that without another adult being there to care for your baby.
Try and keep yourself hydrated, pref with something sugary and with caffeine (don't know why that helps but it does), also keep your carbs up, salty crisps are good (now is not the time for dieting, bloody sugar can aggravate migraines too). I have a migracap which is amazing, but an ice pack on the back of your neck will help too.
Nap nap nap when the baby does, bugger the housework, you need to look after you and the baby, that's all.
Good luck, pm me if you feel like a whinge! flowers cakebrew

1ToughCookie Mon 23-Sep-19 19:17:59

@alexdgr8 prescriber was GP on advice of neurologist letter.

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Oldmum55 Mon 23-Sep-19 19:53:18

Have a word with GP before taking another dose. Last year my BP med was upped to 10mg instead of 5, well I had crazy palpitations all night nearly went to A&E, didn't take the next dose and told GP who agreed.

madcatladyforever Mon 23-Sep-19 19:56:50

Candesartan made me terribly ill, I was falling asleep at work, made several mistakes and kept missing the alarm clock and being late for work. I took it for 2 months with no improvement. I have never taken such a dreadful drug ever and will never take it again.
I don't think it's you, this is failry common.

duffed Mon 23-Sep-19 20:03:25

I took this for migraine and also found it made me very ill - In my case I had low blood pressure anyway so mine just tanked.

Worth speaking to gp- they might suggest a lower dose/gradual build up or maybe it’s just not for you,

1ToughCookie Mon 23-Sep-19 20:08:49


Oh my gosh we sound so alike!
Imiprinine (however it's spelled), amitrypaline, propranolol, bilateral occipital nerve block. I just couldn't tolerate any of them above a week at max two, so I've no idea if they could've improved matters. Our next stop after this would be Botox. My triggers are basically everything but food. Light, sounds, fragrances, alcohol, super sugary things, dehydration, too hot, too much sleep, too much stress, HORMONES. I'm in artificial menopause via Prostap and Livial to stop that trigger and it's helped a ton (imagine!)

I can't take opiates. They just make me so ill and don't help my pain at all. Basically adding misery.

I usually take stemetil, ibuprofen, sometimes a dose of caffeine, and either frovatriptan or nasal zolmitriptan (if I need it fast acting). I've also got a chronic cluster headache diagnosis so hence the zolmi. And home oxygen for it, that helps with severe migraine but for pain only. And it's kind of weird that O2 works for my migraines but whatever.

Will definitely PM you to vent the frustrations of being a Frequent flier neurology patient

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1ToughCookie Mon 23-Sep-19 20:17:21

Thanks, everyone. I'll call tomorrow before the next dose is due.

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NigesFakeWalkingStick Tue 24-Sep-19 10:48:11

Oh OP that sounds beyond awful. I'd definitely be speaking to GP considering how serious they can be for you. Hope you feel a bit better today thanks

1ToughCookie Tue 24-Sep-19 15:57:47

Final results: I called GP this morning. They said they'd call back.

Around noon I started getting racing heartbeat and palpitations. The palpitations aren't precisely new---I have had ones that come and go since I was a child, didn't know it was weird until it just happened that my GP felt it once while taking my pulse-- but they've not happened in a while and the pattern was different. So I called 111 and they had a 111 nurse call me and they sent me off to the A&E to confirm it was a side effect not anything else. So I'm bored in hospital, waiting for partner to show up. A&E docs took the medicine and said to contact consultant again for another treatment.

I must say, I thought last night's show was the most exciting it was going to get.

Oh and GP still hasn't called. But I guess they've got an hour or so yet.

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NigesFakeWalkingStick Tue 24-Sep-19 17:54:13

Oh bloody hell! I hope the wait has abated now and you've been seen?

Oldmum55 Tue 24-Sep-19 18:21:53

Had you taken today's dose when it happened? Or did it happen after just taking it yesterday?

1ToughCookie Tue 24-Sep-19 19:31:14

It all happened from yesterday's dose at 13:00. I wasn't going to take the next dose today unless the doctor was very insistent that there was no way I was suffering side effects. (And then I'd not believe them. And would probably not take another. And lie and say I did any things got worse. Because fuck suffering, I've had enough and there are other preventative options available to me if this one fails.)

The A&E docs saw me. Did all their usual things, took my blood pressure and pulse twice and thrice. Because I'd been sitting so long my palpitations had calmed down, but they took my word on it. (But resumed as I was going to the car to go home, because of course) (husband drove me both ways don't worry, I wasn't driving)

So now it's been a few more hours and I'm at home. Sometimes my heart kicks up again but it's better than earlier. The A&E doctors said this type of drug takes 2 days to be removed from your body, so I can expect some lingering effects tomorrow too. What is in my favour is that it was a "baby" dose. Only 2mg whereas therapeutic dose is usually about 16mg. I'm glad my neurologist listened when I said I wasn't very confident about my ability to tolerate it. The initial dose is supposed to be 4mg or 8mg. Imagine if I'd had that instead!

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