The Shock of Change

The Elavil/amitriptyline experience:

I’m starting out with the understanding that some of this is in my head.

The switch from Trazodone (tetracyclic anti-depressant) to Elavil (tricyclic) for sleep and in the hope of reducing my daily headaches began last night. Elavil 25 mg.

Sleep was fitful. I was aware of every time I rolled over and I woke up as tired, if not more so, than when I went to bed. My sore back is likely responsible for the greater part of this.

I woke up this morning with that sense of disconnectedness so common with MAV and some dizziness, especially if I closed my eyes. It felt, in my head (and behind closed eyelids) that if I were to open my eyes, the room would be a spinning vortex. It never was, of course - but the sensation was there. There was also a sensation that someone had added weights to the left side of my head, which was all by lying on my shoulder. Definite tilting going on.

How much is the change in meds? How much is the new meds? How much is the lack of sleep? How much is the weather? How much is due to dealing with the pain of osteoarthritis?! Questions I’m storing up. ‘Alex, I’ll take ‘MAD MED CHANGE’ for $100, please.’

I believe Elavil is sedating, right, or should I say is supposed to be? As you may know from some of my other posts I am having a terrible time with elavil’s cousin, nortriptyline. The first night on it I slept fine, but from then on I’ve had terrible insomnia, up from 11:00 to 3:00 every night and fitfully thereafter until my clock goes off at 5:30 when sudddenly I feel like I could sleep all day. I’ve now cut back to taking it every other day in hopes of getting more sleep.

From all my reading I hear dizziness can increase with new meds, new dosages, so yes, that may be why you are feeling terrible right now. It’s a real pain trying to find something that works when it makes you feel worse than when you started and you have to question am I worse or is it the meds or is it the weather and there really is no definite yes or no and more often than not the doctor doesn’t know either. I’m struggling with all this and trying to work all day long and so wish there were easy answers.

I would start on a lower dose of amy. I used to take three quarter of a 10 mg tablet, that is still the only thing that gives me sleep. That was sedating for me, I used to wake every two hours, but sleep on and off for about 8, then, still feel tired till 3 in the afternoon! Nortryptiline never helped me sleep at all.

My guess would be that 25mg is too high to start on.