My Doctors Don't Agree on my Meds! What to Do?

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-09-2012
My Doctors Don't Agree on my Meds! What to Do?
Fri, 03-29-2013 - 8:52pm

I have been seeing a doc at my local low cost clinic since Jan. She is the first doc to dx me w/fibro after nearly 2 years of being ill. B/f that I was told it was all in my head and was ref to my local mental health clinic where the psych put me on Paxil. The doc at the low cost clinic can't prescribe ADs so she has requested me to get my psych to change me to Cymbalta instead.

The psych refuses to do so b/c my "mood is so much better" and this is after two tries including a letter from my other doc saying I have fibro w/CFS and need either Cymbalta or Effextor b/c Paxil is sedating and may be contributing to my fatigue. My psych refused again at a second appt and has now dropped me as a patient, I believe as a result of her feeling "second guessed" by my new doc. 

The next psych appointment through the system isn't until June. Assuming that new doc will do so, I will have to taper Paxil for a month and then wait for Cymbalta to start being effective (so *maybe* by Aug I might feel better!). I started the process w/mental health in Nov and since I am unemployed/uninsiured I don't have many options. It just seems to strange to have to "wait" a total of nine months to get the right med.

I feel as if I am being held hostage on Paxil by the psych as she clearly does not "believe" in fibro and isn't interested in helping me w/it. 

Has anyone experienced anything similar? Any suggestions on a step b/t now and June b/c it seems so far from now.

TY for reading!

Community Leader
Registered: 10-22-2001


It just seems so wrong...

While their egos are bruised you are left in limbo basically abandonned, so not right.

I am so sorry that you are going through this.


iVillage Member
Registered: 06-06-2000

It stinks when doctors are more interested in being "right" than treating you.  However, Cymbalta isn't a miracle cure for fibro, has a lot of side effects, and is HUGELY expensive.  I think it's around $1.50/pill or more, if I'm not mistaken, possibly more?  There are a lot of people I've heard from on this board that tried Cymbalta with very bad results, and others who were helped by it.  LIke all meds for fibro, no two people react the same, so there's no magic formula for making you feel better, sadly.  If your depression is well controlled by the Paxil, changing your meds could make it worse than it was to begin with, so that's one consideration your psych doc had.   I suspect the DR you are seeing at the low cost clinic is either a Nurse Practitioner or a PA, and maybe not an MD, if she can't prescrive AD??  I ask because there are a lot of different things you can do to feel better with fibro, and most docs are very reluctant to change an antidepressant that's working, especially for a drug with worse side effects that you wouldn't be able to afford or get at a low cost; to them, it wouldn't make sense.  I'm not saying it's right, but from their perspective, it's not the best thing for you.

What symptoms are you having now, besides the fatigue?  What other things have you tried so far to get yourself feeling better?  I ask because there are many, many things you can do, besides medications, that will help, and many other medications that can improve your symptoms while you wait for your next appointment.  For example, have you been tested for vitamin deficiencies, like D and iron?  How's your sleep?  Diet?  Do you exercise?  Take any herbs?  A lot of people are lucky enough to take very few meds, if any, with diet, exercise, herbs, meditation, and good sleep habits.  I'm not one of them, sadly, but I am able to get by with Tramadol for pain and flexeril for sleep as my only fibro meds.  Both are very inexpensive and effective, with few side effects, though with tramadol, the side effects are a plus for me, since one of them is that it tends to keep you AWAKE, so I actually feel more alert and energetic when I take it, just not around bedtime, lol.  

I think, in your situation, financially, etc, the best bet is to explore some other options for improving your fibro symptoms and trying not to get too stressed out or upset about having to wait so long.  Check out some of the articles here on iVillage about treatments for fibro and try some or all of the things you CAN do, like changing your diet, sleep habits, and exercise while you wait.  It may seem lame, but to be honest, those are the things that are most important to your feeling better, and YOU are the one in control of those as well.  If you have an questions, please don't hesitate to ask.  We're here for each other.  (((HUGS)))