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    Old 11-18-2003, 11:43 AM   #1
    pamIam
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    I feel stupid

    Just recently identified with anxiety, although it seems like panic, what is the difference? The more I learn about this, the more I realize I have had symptoms for years!! Like most of us, I too made a trip to the ER, where I unfortunately work as RN manager. Fast heart beat, chest pains, etc., lucky for me I had had a long bout of diarrhea after having my gall bladder removed, and they attributed my symptoms to dehydration, BUT they gave me Ativan which helped immediately. I feel uncomfortable with the diagnosis even though there is absolutely nothing I can do about it. Followed up with my PCP who gave me a prescription for xanax if needed, she wanted to give my Zoloft or Paxil but I wasn't ready to accept this diagnosis. I didn't fill it and had a huge panic attack at midnight one night and would have killed for an all night pharmacy. The symptoms seem to be getting better, decrease muscle pain, diarrhea etc but still having alot of PVC's which are irregular beats that feel like your heart flips. Is this normal? Have avoid all caffeine, doing deep breathing, learning lots from great people like you, but does it usually take a while for the symptoms to go completely away, or do they go away suddenly? I haven't taken the xanax, have been able to talk myself out of my "attacks" Is it normal to want to keep this to yourself, I feel embarrassed, I have talked to my close friend and sister who seem to feel sorry for me and this doesn't help me. What do you do to help with the side effects of a panic attack? How do you deal with this new stuff?

     
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    Old 11-18-2003, 04:59 PM   #2
    nyxin
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    Quote:
    Originally Posted by pamIam
    Just recently identified with anxiety, although it seems like panic, what is the difference? The more I learn about this, the more I realize I have had symptoms for years!! Like most of us, I too made a trip to the ER, where I unfortunately work as RN manager. Fast heart beat, chest pains, etc., lucky for me I had had a long bout of diarrhea after having my gall bladder removed, and they attributed my symptoms to dehydration, BUT they gave me Ativan which helped immediately. I feel uncomfortable with the diagnosis even though there is absolutely nothing I can do about it. Followed up with my PCP who gave me a prescription for xanax if needed, she wanted to give my Zoloft or Paxil but I wasn't ready to accept this diagnosis. I didn't fill it and had a huge panic attack at midnight one night and would have killed for an all night pharmacy. The symptoms seem to be getting better, decrease muscle pain, diarrhea etc but still having alot of PVC's which are irregular beats that feel like your heart flips. Is this normal? Have avoid all caffeine, doing deep breathing, learning lots from great people like you, but does it usually take a while for the symptoms to go completely away, or do they go away suddenly? I haven't taken the xanax, have been able to talk myself out of my "attacks" Is it normal to want to keep this to yourself, I feel embarrassed, I have talked to my close friend and sister who seem to feel sorry for me and this doesn't help me. What do you do to help with the side effects of a panic attack? How do you deal with this new stuff?
    don't feel stupid. there are a lot of people out there that have panic attacks from time to time. i started having attacks just as you describe with the heart flips and everything. i took xanax and i feel soooooo much better. this isn't a fatal condition, it's just a bump in the road and i think you should let the medication help you. i do not recommend anti-depressants for anxiety (anxiety is a high level of stress, panick attacks are the peaks of that stress i believe) xanax lets you relax without re-arranging your brain chemicals so bad. at least try the medication at night and see if it helps, and then go from there. i know you feel alone right now, but it is a chemical thing, and just as you would treat any other kind of sickness, don't be embarrassed to treat this one. i am here for you if you need to talk.

     
    Old 11-18-2003, 08:44 PM   #3
    Some12
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    I agree with "nyxin". If you are having actual panic attacks. Take the xanax but take as low a dosage as needed to ease the attacks or stop them. Hope things work out

    Sickman

     
    Old 11-19-2003, 12:58 AM   #4
    lori j
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    Quote:
    Originally Posted by pamIam
    Just recently identified with anxiety, although it seems like panic, what is the difference? The more I learn about this, the more I realize I have had symptoms for years!! Like most of us, I too made a trip to the ER, where I unfortunately work as RN manager. Fast heart beat, chest pains, etc., lucky for me I had had a long bout of diarrhea after having my gall bladder removed, and they attributed my symptoms to dehydration, BUT they gave me Ativan which helped immediately. I feel uncomfortable with the diagnosis even though there is absolutely nothing I can do about it. Followed up with my PCP who gave me a prescription for xanax if needed, she wanted to give my Zoloft or Paxil but I wasn't ready to accept this diagnosis. I didn't fill it and had a huge panic attack at midnight one night and would have killed for an all night pharmacy. The symptoms seem to be getting better, decrease muscle pain, diarrhea etc but still having alot of PVC's which are irregular beats that feel like your heart flips. Is this normal? Have avoid all caffeine, doing deep breathing, learning lots from great people like you, but does it usually take a while for the symptoms to go completely away, or do they go away suddenly? I haven't taken the xanax, have been able to talk myself out of my "attacks" Is it normal to want to keep this to yourself, I feel embarrassed, I have talked to my close friend and sister who seem to feel sorry for me and this doesn't help me. What do you do to help with the side effects of a panic attack? How do you deal with this new stuff?
    It's amazing how there is still such a stigma attached to mental problems. If WE who suffer from them, continue to keep it hidden away, there will always be a stigma. I, myself, do not hide any of it from anyone anymore. If someone has a problem accepting me as their friend because I suffer from a disease, then too bad.
    Being in the medical field yourself, you should realize that there is nothing wrong with admitting that you are sick. Yes, all this is sickness, so don't be ashamed & take any thing that will help you, be it therapy or meds.

     
    Old 11-19-2003, 01:13 AM   #5
    PurpleHaze
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    My dear PamIam, I definitly can relate to your story, I work in the medical field myself so I understand the shock to find that you are not immune from disease like we all imagine.
    My mistake was that I tried to talk to my colleagues!!! I didn't get any sympathy at all and they looked at me like I am some kind of freak. As you know Pam we deal with people with Horrible problems, Cancers, Strokes..etc and every body in the medical field feels that anxiety patients are just a waste of space and they should just toughen up, ofcourse I don't mean GPs or Psychiatrists, but mainly people in acute medicine. They start by showing lots of concern and urge you to exclude serious causes and when they know that it is definitly anxiety/PA, they feel that should be enough for you to get better and if you don't you are a disgrace!!! I am sorry to say that but that what happened to me.

    I had fantastic support from my family and GP, and I am keeping quite at work. Pam, keep a stock of Xanax, just having it will make you feel secure. I been fighting this thing for almost a year now and I just started an SSRI as i felt that I am getting worse and I exploited everything I can personnaly do. Whatever you do, keep your head up, it is a pain in the neck I know but PAs always pass. Good luck

    PH

     
    Old 11-19-2003, 06:16 AM   #6
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    That really makes me sick to my stomach, to think that these people in "acute medicine" feel we are a disgrace.
    IMO they're the disgrace, they took an oath to help people.
    I know that panic disorder isn't going to kill anyone and cancer and stroke can, but that oath doesn't say "Only help people with this problem or that problem".

    I'm like Lori, I never hide my problem.
    If someone couldn't accept me for what I was, then IMO they had a bigger problem than I did.

     
    Old 11-19-2003, 01:50 PM   #7
    pamIam
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    I think it is a big generalization to say the health care workers in acute care don't take this seriously. I think it happens alot but not all the time. I have a HUGELY different perspective on patients with anxiety and panic attacks. We have litterally hundreds of patients that come in with symptoms of heart attack and find that they are having an anxiety or panic attack, I think it is a relief to know that what is going on won't kill you, although at the time you think you are going to die. I am not embarrased that I have developed anxiety, I absolutely know that my professional collegues will definetly look at me different if I shared this with them. It is a lack of education that makes them ignorant. I will start with my family and friends to help them learn, and also it will help me. That is enough for me right now, I do not wish to share this with my co-workers for the above reasons. About the xanax, you are right to know how reassuring it is to have it handy, even if you don't need to use it. I thank you all for you response, I am still learning about this to help myself, and hope to help others as well.

     
    Old 11-19-2003, 05:27 PM   #8
    lori j
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    Quote:
    Originally Posted by pamIam
    I think it is a big generalization to say the health care workers in acute care don't take this seriously. I think it happens alot but not all the time. I have a HUGELY different perspective on patients with anxiety and panic attacks. We have litterally hundreds of patients that come in with symptoms of heart attack and find that they are having an anxiety or panic attack, I think it is a relief to know that what is going on won't kill you, although at the time you think you are going to die. I am not embarrased that I have developed anxiety, I absolutely know that my professional collegues will definetly look at me different if I shared this with them. It is a lack of education that makes them ignorant. I will start with my family and friends to help them learn, and also it will help me. That is enough for me right now, I do not wish to share this with my co-workers for the above reasons. About the xanax, you are right to know how reassuring it is to have it handy, even if you don't need to use it. I thank you all for you response, I am still learning about this to help myself, and hope to help others as well.

    Pam, it's unfortunate about the health field not being educated or understanding. I have a short example of it. A friend of mine is a Lab Supervisor, has a masters degree & was let go from her job for having to be hospitalized for a week due to her depression. She has been in Lab work for many years & has never had a work issue due to her performance. If hospitals, of all places, do not recognize it & understand it, how can any employer in any other field??? Sad!

     
    Old 11-21-2003, 05:56 AM   #9
    LJ74
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    Re: I feel stupid

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by lori j
    Pam, it's unfortunate about the health field not being educated or understanding. I have a short example of it. A friend of mine is a Lab Supervisor, has a masters degree & was let go from her job for having to be hospitalized for a week due to her depression. She has been in Lab work for many years & has never had a work issue due to her performance. If hospitals, of all places, do not recognize it & understand it, how can any employer in any other field??? Sad!


    It must be the medical field I too have Panic with Agoraphobia. Just developed it severe, within the last month. Learning and researching, has led me to realize, that I've always suffered with a bit of anxiety, especially social, but always thought it was me. (My personality)

    I'm also in the medical field and I thank GOD that I am, for the mere fact, that they Truly understand. I've been out of work now, for over a month, and don't plan to go back for another month, maybe longer. They call me all the time to see how I am doing, ask if I need anything, and tell me to take my time and to get better. Also, with all I'm going through, thank god I'm in this field, as my benefits, from being in this field, could NOT compare, to any other company out there. Meridian is WONDERFUL I have an entire support team of people who understand. Our teaching university is the best, and again, I'm thankful for them!

    Also, my doctor has explained and from what I have learned, I've developed this severe and so sudden, as I let all my symptoms go, for way too long. I had over the years, Situational panic attacks. So what happend was, I came to avoid places, and situations, over the years. When you do this, it turns into Agoraphobia, and your attacks become and everyday part of life. Don't let them go. Trust you me. Seek treatment, and if meds aren't what you want, you need to seek CBT. The only known therapy, thus far, to be proven
    WHEN done by a professional. He or she, will decide, as well as your doctor, if treatment is needed. I do both. CBT and just started on Zoloft. My life saver. I also take xanax, PRN

    There are many reasons for panic disorder, and most of the time, it's not a disorder. Can be panic attacks caused by so many different reasons. Which is why, CBT, is so important.

    One that has been proposed, which could link panic and psychosis in at least some patients, is stress-vulnerability. Within that, vulnerability to psychosis of a
    stress type constitutes a continuum, ranging from a tinyf raction of individuals with enormous vulnerabilities to the majority of the population with a negligible vulnerability. In between, there is a small but important percentage of individuals with an intermediate vulnerability. According to this, any of a variety of stressors could push an individual past his or her threshold point for the
    expression of psychotic symptoms, if the stressor was of sufficient
    magnitude.

    The stress itself could be of any sort: biological, psychological, or social. Theoretically, a panic attack in an individual who happened to have panic susceptibility as a coexisting diathesis could also act as an endogenous stressor. I had SEVERE you have no idea, stress in my life, do to my job. This IMO, pushed me to my breaking point, thus causing chronic panic like symptoms, which agoraphobia, became so severe. The worst part, of panic. Don't let it go. Get the treatment you need. Like my doctor said, sooner or later, it WILL come out, full blown, if symptoms are there, and a trigger appears. So strong, you'll be blown away, as in my case.

    Good luck to you
    -Jenifer

    Last edited by LJ74; 11-21-2003 at 06:01 AM.

     
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