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Old 02-07-2004, 10:24 PM   #1
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AmericanOrange HB User
Please, some advice: fatigue, hypochondria, I'm a mess

hey folks

I've suffered various levels of fatigue for some 3 years now. I'm a 23 year old male, recently graduated from college. I work a rather intensive job at a coffee shop (for instance, i'm working the overnight midnight-8am shift tonight).

Since this last summer, I've been having episodes that last from 3 days to a week of intense fatigue, worse than normal. Tonight a just feel aweful and I have to work all night. I just feel very weak, no apetite, sleepy even though I got plenty of rest.

I went to the doctor a few months ago...in fact I went twice. Both times he did exhaustive blood tests..for pretty much anything he could think of, and they all came out fine. He asked how my mood was and instantly something clicked and i kind of choked up a little bit.

the biggest problem i have is the fatique. I'm just always soooo tired and lethargic. Some nights i have a good amount of energy for my range, and can work pretty hard at my job. Other nights, or weeks, I'm just dead. I oversleep, don't eat, and then think ALL THE TIME about how tired I am.

On top of this, I'm a hypochondriac..... not VERY serious, but I usually assume I have cancer for almost every thing, from the fatigue to some pains.

I was prescribed Lexapro, but I'm scared to take it. I've read how it causes tiredness, and it just seems dangerous for somebody as tired as me to take something like that. I can't afford to lose any work days if i'm too tired. But on the flip side, i'm tempted to take it because i desperately want more energy and less apathy, emptiness, etc.

Sorry for the long post, and i'm sure there are a bunch of people to relate. Have you found that your meds have helped you feel less tired? I really feel that I felt more energy, i'd be a much much much happier and productive person.

thanks
AO

 
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Old 02-07-2004, 10:32 PM   #2
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Angel77 HB User
Re: Please, some advice: fatigue, hypochondria, I'm a mess

The thing you have got to understand about drug warnings is that they include things that every subject in their studies experienced, even if it wasn't likely related, just to cover their butts. Most of what is listed, you will never experience. In fact, Lexapro is usually wake promoting. Your fatigue could be caused by many factors, one being depression, another, a sleep disorder. Hop on the sleep disorder board and you'll see my story and many others. You need to take the Lex to help with your anxiety.

You are having panic attacks for some reason, keep a journal of your sleep patterns, feeling of health and well being, what has been going on at that time and you might find a correlation. You should also know that hypochondria is in itself a disorder that can also be successfully treated. It's usually found in people with high anxiety and nothing to be ashamed of. But you also could have a medical condtion that is triggering things. Very rarely will you have a deadly disease or life altering one. Most of the time they are just something that needs to be treated by the doc and no worries in a short amount of time.

Also, hop on the thread, life on a positive note....you could use a lift. Hope this finds you well, holler and let me know what you think of the sleep board or if you have any questions.....Angel
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Old 02-07-2004, 10:48 PM   #3
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hauser8411 HB User
Wink Re: Please, some advice: fatigue, hypochondria, I'm a mess

Hey, I can relate quite a bit to your position...i had depression for almost 3 years before doctors even thought about testing me for it. I had the same thing as you...the tiredness...if i saw something on tv i always thought that i had that disease and all that...i know it might not help..but they put me on the highest dose of zoloft there is, it worked out pretty good i feel great although im still on it..im kind of scared to go off of it I dont want to sink back into that...zoloft doesn't work for alot of people i guess...but it does for me. Just trying to help...you'll get better!!!

 
Old 02-07-2004, 11:06 PM   #4
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Angel77 HB User
Re: Please, some advice: fatigue, hypochondria, I'm a mess

Once you find something that works, stay on it!! Very few people with severe depression or anxiety can successfully go off of them without relapsing. They are not a crutch like many think, they are a needed chemical that your brain needs to right itself....therefore, necessary! Don't let anyone tell you otherwise.
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Old 02-07-2004, 11:55 PM   #5
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attheendofmyrope HB User
Re: Please, some advice: fatigue, hypochondria, I'm a mess

Hi. I suggest you go ahead and try the Lexapro. I am a 27 year-old female, a mother of four small children. I am on Lexapro 20mg and before it, I was just like you---tired all the time, going from doctor to doctor with dozens of medical tests and they kept coming back normal. I was afraid of the side effects of antidepressants and resisted taking them but I'm glad I did now. I now have the energy to go to the gym which is something that I could not even imagine trying to do before. Good luck!

Staci

 
Old 02-08-2004, 11:10 AM   #6
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montreal1951 HB User
Re: Please, some advice: fatigue, hypochondria, I'm a mess

Quote:
Originally Posted by AmericanOrange
hey folks

I've suffered various levels of fatigue for some 3 years now. I'm a 23 year old male, recently graduated from college. I work a rather intensive job at a coffee shop (for instance, i'm working the overnight midnight-8am shift tonight).

Since this last summer, I've been having episodes that last from 3 days to a week of intense fatigue, worse than normal. Tonight a just feel aweful and I have to work all night. I just feel very weak, no apetite, sleepy even though I got plenty of rest.

I went to the doctor a few months ago...in fact I went twice. Both times he did exhaustive blood tests..for pretty much anything he could think of, and they all came out fine. He asked how my mood was and instantly something clicked and i kind of choked up a little bit.

the biggest problem i have is the fatique. I'm just always soooo tired and lethargic. Some nights i have a good amount of energy for my range, and can work pretty hard at my job. Other nights, or weeks, I'm just dead. I oversleep, don't eat, and then think ALL THE TIME about how tired I am.

On top of this, I'm a hypochondriac..... not VERY serious, but I usually assume I have cancer for almost every thing, from the fatigue to some pains.

I was prescribed Lexapro, but I'm scared to take it. I've read how it causes tiredness, and it just seems dangerous for somebody as tired as me to take something like that. I can't afford to lose any work days if i'm too tired. But on the flip side, i'm tempted to take it because i desperately want more energy and less apathy, emptiness, etc.

Sorry for the long post, and i'm sure there are a bunch of people to relate. Have you found that your meds have helped you feel less tired? I really feel that I felt more energy, i'd be a much much much happier and productive person.

thanks
AO
Some people can work from midnight to 8 am. Some cannot. It has to do with whether you are a night owl or a morning sparrow. You cannot change your day/night (circadian) rythym. Your body is telling you to stop now. If you don't you may get really sick. There is substantial evidence that people who work shiftwork (by this they mean not 9am - 5 pm) get more illnesses than others. You may be depressed on top of this, which is dangerous. You could get so tired that you fall asleep at the wheel.
If you have already suffered from fatigue for 3 years now - perhaps you may have chronic fatigue syndrome. You say you are a hypochondriac - but even hypochondriacs get sick and die!
There are no bloodtests for chronic fatigue syndrome, disordered circadian rythym (actually there are - but for research only), depression (actually there is a cortisol test - for research mainly) and dysthymia (chronic low level depression).
Worse, just because all your test are normal - the tests only tell you what is in the blood or extracellular fluid, not what is in the tissues.
So you may want to find another job and another doctor.
Good luck and I hope you get better.

 
Old 02-08-2004, 05:28 PM   #7
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Crossbow HB User
Re: Please, some advice: fatigue, hypochondria, I'm a mess

Definitely try the Lexapro. Look at it this way: So what if it makes you tired? You can always try something else. Take it for a month and see how it goes.

Also, I wanted to point out: You're not a hypochondriac. True hypochondria is when the patient actually manifests the symptoms of the disease they think they have, when tests show they don't have it. What you are is a worry-wart. Antidepressants will help with that.
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Last edited by Crossbow; 02-08-2004 at 05:28 PM.

 
Old 02-09-2004, 05:06 PM   #8
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billy7772 HB User
Re: Please, some advice: fatigue, hypochondria, I'm a mess

American Orange-
You may need meds in the short run but I suggest you look into Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). I was convinced I had just about every serious ailment under the sun for many years. I eventually learned it has little to do with the symptoms and everything to do with the way I was thinking about the symptoms. CBT has since changed my life. It's all about using the tools to learn to think more clearly and accurately about things and once you do your anxiety/depression will miraculously begin to lift before your eyes. My favorite starter book on CBT is "Been There, Done That? Do This! by Sam Obitz. You may also want to check with your local university as many offer CBT programs for little or no charge. Good Luck

Billy
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