It’s not necessarily the MS treatment drug that causes so many side effects, but rather the medication to treat the symptoms of MS which cause their own side effects. It is a vicious circle of taking one drug for the main problem, followed by another to treat the side effects of that drug. I had to decide if the problem was worth the reaction I would have from it.

Over the years I have had so many prescriptions that I can’t even name them all.

An excellent example happened a few years ago when I was using Gabapentin for nerve pain and had reached a pretty high dose without getting much relief. My neurologist suggested trying Lyrica and since we always follow our doctor’s advice, I agreed.

Within two days I was extremely nauseated to the point that I couldn’t eat. The next drug was carbazepine in combination with amitriptyline at night. 

Surprise, I had worse nausea from carbazepine than with Lyrica, although the amitriptyline was helping at night. So, on to the next. Oxcarbazepine was supposed to have fewer side effects and we added Zofran (an anti-nausea drug used for chemo patients) just in case of nausea. Well, as expected, still no relief and the Zofran side effect of depression and brain fog came into play. I lived on sparkling water, chicken noodle soup, jello and tears for a three month period. At this point I had exhausted all oral possibilities and my doctor sent me to the Pain Clinic at UCH. Finally a solution! I began receiving nerve blocks every three months and only take a very small amount of Oxcarbazepine for daytime. The nerve pain is controlled to about 80%.

What a pain in the ass, literally!

If you are suffering in any way because of a chronic illness, don’t give up until you find relief!