Extreme Health Anxiety and Panic Disorder
To start I'm a 26m with history of anxiety/depression. About a month ago (july 21) I was bit (small bite) and licked a lot by my friends dog who had an open wound of an unknown source (which he also licked). Once I returned home, I began to research rabies pretty obsessively and made a case for myself that I had contracted it. This sent me into an extreme panic attack and I ended up at the doctor's office explaining my situation. He tried to reassure me that I was simply suffering from a panic attack, so he prescribed me with Xanax. I have not felt the same since this initial attack. Since then I have suffered from 3 more attacks. The last one I needed an ambulance because my whole body had gone numb and I broke out into a cold sweat. After having doctors tell me not to worry about rabies I started to wonder why I had no appetite and no desire to do anything. I found another article on the internet linking panic attacks with pancreatic cancer and again I convinced myself I had pancreatic cancer. After weeks of not eating/sleeping well at all I had a CT scan of my entire abdomen and no masses were found. Had tons of bloodwork done, stool samples, etc, and physically the doctors can't find anything wrong with me. The day after the CT scan was the day I woke up with tons of diarrhea and extreme anxiety (anxiety seems to be especially bad upon waking). Wondering why I could only get 3 hours of sleep after being reassured I did not have pancreatic cancer I began to research more on the internet. I started reading about rabies again. This is when my whole body went numb and I broke out in a cold sweat, my mom called 911. By the time we made it to the hospital all my vitals had stabilized and I was feeling a bit better. The first thing the doctor said to me was to take rabies off my list of fears. He then checked out the CT scans that had been done from my previous hospital visit and said everything looked great. After doing more blood work/urine samples/etc he strongly suggested I see a psychiatrist. What really terrifies me is that on the ride home I began to think about rabies again and I can't stop thinking about it. An endless streams of WHAT IF'S run through my head and I have not been functioning well at all. I'm still afraid, every single day, all day, constantly worried that something is dreadfully wrong with me physically. Reality seems to have lost all its flavor. I no longer eat regularly, sleep regularly. I no longer feel like me. It seems like the bulk of my day is spent DREADING death. I keep running it through my mind, over and over again, and I keep using the internet compulsively. It's been almost 4 weeks since my first attack, will I ever feel like me again? Just felt like sharing my story and was wondering if anyone could relate?
Last edited by ntness; 08-15-2009 at 10:44 PM.