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Restless Leg Syndrome Message Board
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Old 05-26-2010, 03:02 PM   #1
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I am really curious about a connection btween Lexapro and RLS

I am really curious about a connection btw Lexapro and RLS also. Started Lexapro for depression. I had a sleep study ~ 4 weeks later for snoring concerns, but the primary issue was periodic limb movments. A week later, I started experiencing dramatic leg twitching keeping me awake and waking my husband (new!!!) I feared it might be related to Lexapro (RLS ocurred at 5 weeks, I would've reached therapeutic dose.) Two MDs and pharmacist keep telling me RLS is not a side effect of Lexapro - but starting Lexapro is the only new variable in my world. Tapered off Lexapro but started RLS med at the same time, so I'll probably never know. Frustrating and now I'm fearful of other anti-depresseants.

 
Old 07-26-2010, 10:28 AM   #2
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Re: Please help! Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) and Antidepressants (SSRI's, MAO-I)

I am new to this forum and found it while searching for answers about RLS. I am looking for anyone that could help with advice and insight as to how I could effectively handle my situation. My doctor diagnosed me a couple of years ago but I just assumed my leg problems were from standing all day at work (12 hour shifts). She prescribed gabapentin at night and it seemed to do the trick. I was also taking prozac and ativan as needed for anxiety. I had to stop taking everything when I became pregnant with my twins last year but the symptoms were bearable and I managed with hot soaks and massages from my husband. After their birth in February I began taking my meds again but had some problems with my prozac so my doctor switched me to effexor. She also recommended that I try requip as it has less weight gain than gabapentin. The requip didnít seem to work so I only tried it for a few days and started the gabapentin again. All of a sudden my symptoms of RLS became severe Ė worse than I could have ever imagined. I started the requip again and have titrated up to 2mg at night and stopped the neurontin. I am also taking an ativan at bedtime but over the last 2 weeks I havenít slept for more than 1 complete hour without waking up to move or stretch my legs. I am up at 2 in the morning walking around b/c my legs wonít let me sleep. I am miserable and feel like a walking zombie. I am slowing titrating the requip hoping a higher dose will help but it seems strange to me that this started after I switched to the effexor. I am happy with how the effexor is working Ė I am not on edge all the time and I feel like I can handle things without snapping but if itís causing this Iím not sure if itís worth it. I have also read that RLS can get worse after pregnancy. I do not want to be stuck taking unnecessary medication and as a pharmacist I am concerned about getting dependent certain things but at this point I am pretty desperate for relief. From your experience is it normal for RLS to just get worse all of a sudden? Anyone have any experience with effexor and RLS? If your on requip what dose is working for you? Thank you so much for your help.

 
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Old 07-27-2010, 08:16 AM   #3
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Re: Please help! Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) and Antidepressants (SSRI's, MAO-I)

Please be careful with the Effexor. My husband took that for a short while and put on loads of weight and then when he tried to come off it he nearly killed me. I know this is nothing to do with RLS but I had such a bad experience with Effexor I just felt I had to say something.
Have you tried Clonazepam? It certainly worked best for me although you do become tolerant to it but that takes quite a few years. At the moment I'm taking 600mg of gabapentin and 1.5 mg Clonazepam. It works very well for me.
Another thing I have noticed is that the more excercise I do then the worse it is at night. Strange, you would think it would be the other way round.
I also tried Requip and I had really high hopes for it but it didn't work at all for me. I looked up RLS a lot on the internet one weekend and one thing that came out quite strongly was to keep your ferritin(iron stores) levels above 70. Normal level is above 15 so it's worth asking your doctor to check

Last edited by maggzz; 07-27-2010 at 08:21 AM. Reason: Wanted to add more

 
Old 07-27-2010, 01:38 PM   #4
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Re: Please help! Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) and Antidepressants (SSRI's, MAO-I)

Wow, Thanks for the heads up. I spoke to my md yesterday and she switched me from the tablets to the XR Effexor and upped my requip to 3mg at bedtime. She also said I could take 1mg of ativan if I need it. If this doesn't work I should call her back. She also said she thinks the effexor could have made my RLS worse. So if this is the case, I 'd rather switch the effexor to something else. I don't want to have to have to add medications b/c another medication is causing side effects. On the other hand, the effexor seems to be managing my anxiety quite well. Last night I did sleep better than I have in a few weeks but I'm still skeptical. Will keep you posted. Thanks for the advice.

 
Old 07-29-2010, 11:29 PM   #5
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Re: Please help! Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) and Antidepressants (SSRI's, MAO-I)

OK so it's 2:24 in the morning and I'm wide awake. I took my drs advice and upped the requip to 4mg...bad idea. The last 3 nights I've passed out nearly 30 minutes after taking it only to wake up an hour or two later ready to puke, still in pain, and with insomnia. WTH!! I just feel like crying. I refuse to take the requip anymore. I guess I will call her back in the am and see what I should do. I know she had mentioned trying me on mirapex but if it's anything like the requip I don't think so. I will have to do some research. Wow, I really sympathize with anyone going through this. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I really need to get some sleep.

 
Old 07-31-2010, 01:42 AM   #6
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Re: Please help! Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) and Antidepressants (SSRI's, MAO-I)

Doesn't sound like the Requip suits you. Reading this healthboard I've noticed that nobody else takes Clonazepam yet it's the only thing that's ever realy worked for me. It's an anticonvulsant that is used at much hugher doses to control epilepsy. Give it a try. It doesn't seem to have any side effects.
Good luck.

 
Old 07-31-2010, 05:40 AM   #7
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Re: Please help! Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) and Antidepressants (SSRI's, MAO-I)

Your right magzz! My dr called me back yesterday and switched me to gabapentin and clonazepam. She told me to titrate the gabapentin starting at 400mg at night and take 1/2 to 1mg of clonazepam. Hallelujah! I slept so good, no pain but just a little groggy this am. I did take a whole 1mg though b/c I wanted to make sure it worked. So i will probably try just 1/2 and see how that goes. She said if this doesnt work she will try sinement -- i dont want this bc it works the same way as requip. And my other option is to come off Effexor which I dont want to do b/c its really working well for my mood and anxiety (much better than prozac). So hopefully this new regimen is the answer. Thanks so much for your input and to anyone else out there, please try the clonazepam-- it does really work!!

 
Old 08-13-2010, 04:13 PM   #8
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Re: Please help! Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) and Antidepressants (SSRI's, MAO-I)

I've had RLS my whole life. I see a chiropractor for it. I also exercise with a weighted hula hoop (yes, really), which really releases tension in my lower body. I've taken SSRI's and SSNRI's and don't notice much of a difference with or without them.

 
Old 08-13-2010, 07:13 PM   #9
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Re: Please help! Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) and Antidepressants (SSRI's, MAO-I)

I also take clonazapam for rls and it has worked for me for years.

 
Old 08-13-2010, 09:26 PM   #10
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Re: I am really curious about a connection btween Lexapro and RLS

Well it's been 2 weeks on my new regimen and I've slept well every night and feel like a new person. I am still taking the Effexor which I am happy about b/c it seems to be helping my mood greatly. I hope this continues to work for me. Thanks for your support!

 
Old 10-23-2010, 03:36 AM   #11
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Re: I am really curious about a connection btween Lexapro and RLS

I started taking effexor ( an anti-depressant ) and about 3 weeks later my RLS symptoms
increased dramatically.

 
Old 10-23-2010, 03:49 AM   #12
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Re: Please help! Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) and Antidepressants (SSRI's, MAO-I)

I was taking effexor ( an anti-depressant ) and it greatly increased my symptoms of RLS.

 
Old 11-15-2010, 05:21 AM   #13
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Re: I am really curious about a connection btween Lexapro and RLS

I think there is a very strong link between RLS and Lexapro. I didn't see it until I took myself off of Lexapro. But, my RLS almost vanished once I got off of Lexapro. I was having to take Mirapex and now I'm barely taking anything. I take an occasional Lortab as needed when I have those bad RLS nights. Mirapex was not good for me. It caused alot of other problems and symptoms. A long story about that... Good luck!

 
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