Diagnosed triple negative inflammatory breast cancer 9-17-12. Been taking 2 antidepressants since the 80s. No one looked at my meds before putting in my port or starting 18 chemos. They gave me Lorazepam everytime. The mixture of Lorazepam with the antidepressants made my bowels and stomach hurt like it was crushed glass I had eaten. 8 days in hospital after 3rd chemo. No one caught the drug interaction so I was given more Lorazepam in the hospital and when the gastro did colonoscopy and endoscopy. Gastro gave me Lorazepam before scoping me. Again no drug check. Pain continued for 2 years. Bowel movements made me vomit from the pain. Oncologist had no clue about drug interactions. I saw 8 doctors in 3 hospitals and none could recognize a severe drug interaction. Why? They view Ativan as some safe little sleeping or nausea pill instead of seeing it as a central nervous system depressant that can kill you. I had every side effect listed by the drug manuf. except seizures or convulsions. I am not out of the woods yet but I quit 9-10-14 after reading about the link between long term Lorazepam use and dementia. Early in Sept I lost the ability to complete a sentence. I ranged from rage to depression daily. My lungs ached. I felt like I had the flu all the time. I hallucinated sounds. I cried uncontrollably, I contemplated suicide daily and prayed to die. Now I am one month cold turkey and no one will help me. I can't even find a doctor who isn't on the Ativan or benzo bandwagon. They don't realize the harm they are doing. I took 1-2 mg as prescribed. I did not abuse the drug. The drug abused me to the point I nearly died.
Talked to a BC nurse today about this and she said she had several clients taking both. Spoke to an oncology nurse through Livestrong. Told her what had happened to me. She said I was jumping to conclusions about Ativan. A mental illness worker said she has taken Ativan for 20 years with no problem. That is the problem. Pfizer says use 2-4 wks. 4 months is long term. You will go through withdrawal after 2 weeks. I cannot find a medical person who realizes the harm they are inflicting on patients. I was going through breast cancer treatments while trying to survive a drug interaction. Why won't anyone listen about the dangers of this drug. Pfizer says don't give to people on antidepressant due to paradoxical effect in the brain which makes the depression worse. I did not leave home or talk to anyone for months. How are doctors and hospitals able to give this drug without looking at the manufacturer's contraindications or looking at a patient's med list?
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