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Anti-depressants? Anti-depressants?

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Unread 04-29-2004, 03:01 PM

Now this thread is bumped up and I did read it. It is a great post with good info! Thanks!

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Unread 04-30-2004, 05:46 AM


Of the ladies taking effexor, how long did it take to help with the hot flashes? I have been taking it a couple weeks and it really hasn't helped that much. Just wondering if it will work for me. Thanks,

Unread 04-30-2004, 02:52 PM

thanks for bumping this post. I had my hyst in 2000. Within 6 month I was put on effexor for major depression, not so much hot flashes. I have tried unsuccessfully a couple of times to tapper of them but I am afraid I will be taking them forever and I am only 36. However, I am considering trying the bioidentical hormones. I finally found a few dr's in this area who are working with them. You might talk to your dr about this option. From what I read the antidepressant is usually what most dr's prescribe. It does take a few weeks to start working so don't give up yet.
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Unread 05-01-2004, 10:49 AM
A Soapbox Moment

My "Soapbox Moment" regarding non-HRT answers to menopausal symptoms:

I'm glad this thread got bumped because there is a lot of conflicting information out there right now regarding soy products and menopause -- a lot of conflicting information in general right now, where menopause is concerned.

I was already on Paxil long before my hyst. -- this may be the reason I'm not having a bad time with hot flashes and night sweats. However, I don't recommend Paxil in particular. Paxil is one of those anti-depressants that give some people terrible physical withdrawal symptoms even after only one missed dose. I am one of those people. I've been tapering off the Paxil gradually, and I'm not sure which anti-depressant we'll be replacing it with. My doc is going to work with me on this. I need the anti-depressant to combat depression, and it seems that its effect on the hot flashes is one of those wonderful side-benefits.

I'm not an expert on soy, but I do know that there are different types of soy preparations and that they have different effects on the body. For instance, miso soup is different than a soy milk. My docs don't want me making any radical changes to my diet right now, other than eating lots of protein and piling on the calories to put some weight back on. Of course, in my "case" there are a lot of things going on besides the instant menopause right now.

Things going on include:
--taking anticoagulants due to a DVT (deep vein thrombosis)
--needing to stabilize the level of the Warfarin
(and, with Warfarin, there are Vitamin K cautions which
include some of the soy products.)
--working on pain management so also needing to watch
creatinin levels along with the clotting factor.

So basically my docs don't want me eating more or less of anything no matter what benefits I've read about including or excluding whatever-it-is from my diet.

The best and safest thing we can do for ourselves is to schedule a consultation with the oncologist regarding all the 'alternative therapies' that are out there before trying anything on the basis of something we've read. I won't even take a vitamin pill right now without consulting with my doc! No rush, though -- I know that what I eat is providing me with vitamins and minerals, so it's just "not time yet" to call and ask about vitamin pills. And, as other things have been more important, "on fire," as they say, I still haven't scheduled that consultation, so I'm just writing down all my questions about things that sound like good alternatives to HRT.

I know I am being an ultra-conservative about this, but I truly feel that the doctor should be consulted before trying out new things, even though they are either natural, or available without a prescription. For instance, overloading on one particular vitamin can upset the balance of other vitamins -- so many things act together and not alone. I'm eager to add more calcium to my diet to prevent osteoporosis, but I know that it needs to maintain the correct proportion with magnesium, potassium and Vitamin D levels to be properly effective, and not to throw one of those others out of balance.

That's the end of my "soapbox moment." Thank you for listening!
Unread 05-01-2004, 06:57 PM

I was put on Effexcor three weeks after my TAH for hot falshes and nite sweats, 37.5 mg 2x's a day. The nite sweat disappeared almost imedialtey, and as for teh hot flashes, I rarely get them during the day, only one or two at nite, just before I go to sleep. I haven't gained any weight, as a matter of fact, have lost 20 lbs since surgery in December 2003.
Effexcor was also given to my sister for the same reason, however, she still has one ovary and has Breast Cancer. She takes 75 mg one time a day and refers to it as her "happy pill". I won't say its my 'Happy pill" but I have noticed that I do not stress over things like I did in the past. NO HRT or soy for me. PCP appt Monday, next gyn f/u in October. Doctors feel everything was caught, and I am cancer free, but, I still have that feeling that somethig else will creep up. Hey, whatever it is, I'll deal with it, have to much to look forward to!
Get all the info you can, and with the DR's help, you too will be able to look foward to the better things in life.
Unread 05-03-2004, 05:19 PM

I asked my primary doc for effexor since I had read that it helps with the hot flashes and since I have up to about 15 hot flashes a day (so bad that I'm dripping sweat) I thought it would be worth a try since I can't take HRT because of endo CA. He said there was no proof it works (even though I had copies of studies to show him) and that menopause should not cause me to need antidepressants for any reason. Not only would he not give me the effexor; he took me off the elavil I have been on for almost 5 years! Needless to say, I am currently looking for a new PMD. I would like a woman but the only female docs on my insurance plan I wouldn't send my worst enemy to so it may be a while before I find someone.
Unread 05-04-2004, 04:31 PM

Hey girls, I'm reading everyones replys with my eyes wide open. I had a TAH 2/11/04 for endometrial cancer that was graded at 1A. Thankfully, no treatments were needed, but I do have to return every 3 months for pap smears of the vaginal cuff, and if all goes well, the visits will be further apart. But the depression and sleepless nights are about to get to me. I do have hot flashes, but they don't seem to be so bad. My DR said no to HRT, and I didn't want anything synthetic because of my family history of breast cancer (my mother). I had read a lot about bio-identicals, and visited a DR yesterday with hopes of getting some relief, and to my dismay, was told that endometrical cancer was/is caused by too much estrogen. She does not want to put me on any estrogen but has suggested some progestrone. I had lab work done and will get the results in a few weeks. Now I don't know where to turn. I think I can tolerate the hot flashes, but the depression is something else. And not being able to sleep!!! Is this something that will truly get better with time? How much time does it take?

I'm also worried 'bout bone loss. I am taking calcium supplements and now beginning to wonder is that is enough.

If anyone has any suggestions, I'm all ears. I am not myself, and my family is suffering terribly.

Is Effexor a synthetic drug? I don't seen my surgeon until June, but am wondering if I should give him a call and see what he suggests.

Thanks for all the wonderful tips.
Unread 05-04-2004, 05:22 PM

I took Effexor for only 4 days...probably not long enoughto give it chance...but then it was time to go to my Gyn.,...he gave me at bedtime and that has been great no Flashes since I started taking it...and not the Zombie, light headed, dizzy effect of the Effexor....He said it would not be as hard to stop taking either if I decide to do that...Ande
Unread 05-14-2004, 01:44 AM

take effexor, (150mg) for depression. It took a few weeks to work but it is really helping me. I was suprised to read about people taking it for hot flushes and night sweats. I have found that since taking it I get night sweats and assumed it was a side effect.
Unread 05-14-2004, 02:13 PM

Actually it is a God send if you are not allergic. I found out way after i was done with Chemo for OVCA that I was allergic to it. But, to tell you the truth...I had taken Paxil...lousy drug....Effexor was good. No one will be able to tell you are taking it..they all will think you have a great if those folks who notice really care. But, that is life. If you can tolerate it and you feel you need it..take it...didn't do anything for my hotflashes,etc., but, it helped my mood alot.
Love, Sally

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