What's the worst side effect you have experienced taking a prescribed medicine?

disykat

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jun 5, 2000
INteresting about the statins and kidneys. My mom was sick for almost a year before figuring out her kidneys were failing. They finally tied it to the statins she was on reacting to the solution she was given for her colonoscopy. I'm not positive, but Crestor sounds right. She wasn't able to reverse the damage at that point, but has maintained at about 18% function for the last 15 years so she's done okay.

If they'd done a full panel the first time she went in they would have found it, but the way insurance worked she kept having to go back in one test at a time. We finally started to figure it out when my SIL, who is a pharmacist, read an article that came out in the latest medical journal and called my parents who then told their doc.
 

Soldier's*Sweeties

DIS Veteran
Joined
Apr 3, 2009
I have all the terrible side effects to prednisone, so I try to avoid that one as much as possible.
I once took meloxicam to deal with a particularly bad bout of costochondritis and I had the most horrible vivid disturbingly violent nightmares.
I also had bad side effects from prednisone.

Interesting that your mom and sister are allergic too.

Both my sister and I are allergic to sulfa.
My daughter and I are allergic to sulfa drugs.
 
  • jacki123

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Feb 3, 2015
    I was taking a med for high cholesterol and it felt like ice water was going thru my veins. I tried 2 different ones with other side effects. Doctor finally said no more.
     

    MIGrandma

    Lives in the middle-of-the-mitten.
    Joined
    Aug 12, 2009
    Mine was Compazine, happened back in 1978. My doctor prescribed it for me to control nausea during pregnancy. On the third day of taking it I told my DH I felt "odd." He laughed it off, saying it was just being pregnant. I tried taking a nap, but a little while later I couldn't control my arm muscles (my arms would just fly up uncontrollably) and my mouth was screwed up to the left, and my eyes rolled back. He rushed me to our doctor's office and they let me come in the back door so other patients didn't see me. The doctor stood in the doorway and was telling my husband I was having a classic reaction to the medication and I just said "could you please DO SOMETHING about it?!" He gave me a shot to bring me out of it. Later that evening we decided to go out for supper, and I felt that "odd" sensation coming back. We went to the ER and I remember laying on the gurney trying to lay on my arms to keep them still. They gave me another shot and that was that.

    I stopped taking the Compazine.

    But, now my daughter is taking it (she is having chemo for breast cancer) and I told her yesterday what happened to me, so she would not be so freaked out if it happens to her.
     

    jaybirdsmommy

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 27, 2008
    Went to the DR for a migraine (couldn't even open my eyes, it hurt so bad). I was nursing and DH was out of town so I told him I couldn't take anything that would knock me out, being my son's only caretaker. I'm not sure what he gave me but I took 1 and did not sleep for 3 days. Not only couldn't I sleep, I couldn't even sit still. I was doing laps around the living room at like 3am. Never took another one, threw the rest of the bottle out.

    edited to add: Prednisone turns me into:furious:.
     

    Lilacs4Me

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 31, 2015
    1. I once had a reaction to the sun with an antibiotic. It was horrible. Anywhere the sun had touched caused a bright red, hot, itchy rash that took a week to go away. I couldn't sleep, sit, stand, etc without feeling an intense itch. The pharmacist mentioned that I might be sensitive to the sun while on the medication, but I thought she just meant that I would sunburn easier. She never said that the sun's UV rays would interact with the chemicals in the medication and cause what was effectively an allergic reaction! PSA kids: if the Rx bottle warns you to limit sun exposure to bare skin to the sun while on this medication, BELIEVE IT and take it seriously!!

    2. I had vertigo for the first time a few years ago, and went to the urgent care because I didn't know what was wrong with me. The doctor sent me home with a motion sickness pill Rx. It was these tiny little white pills - that ended up knocking me out cold for 3 days lol On the 3rd day I thought I would be OK to go to work since the last (and only 2nd total) pill I took was Sat evening, slept through all of Sunday, and it was now Monday.

    I had a 20-min commute, and I noticed that by the time my building was in sight ( it was a 12 floor building, so I could see it from a distance) my eyes were getting heavy.

    By 8:15am, I was having a hard time keeping my thoughts on work.

    By 9:30, I was dead asleep in a meeting where my boss was presenting with the lights off. She drove me home after the meeting lol She knew what was going on, and didn't want me to drive myself home. Several months later, the story came up again and I showed her my notebook where I was taking notes and trying SO HARD to stay awake. There are some words, then some unintelligible scribbles, then literally a line down the paper. It's now a legendary story in my department. :sad2::rotfl2:

    I have never taken another one of those pills again no matter how bad the vertigo episodes get!
     
  • DLgal

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 12, 2013
    I just remembered this one...Yaz birth control gave me blood clots after taking it for only 2 months. I had had bad reactions to a few other hormonal birth control pills in the past, but my doctor wanted to try this to help my migraines. Clearly, BCP are not my friend.
     

    jaybirdsmommy

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 27, 2008
    I've got another one - an anti-depressant I was on many years ago. It made me so tired, I was going to bed at 7-8ish and my DH was having to physically pull me out of bed at 7am. I stopped taking it after I realized that I had spent an entire day at work just staring at my computer screen without ever having turned the computer on.
     

    OnceUponATime15

    Disney frequent flyer..
    Joined
    Oct 14, 2013
    INteresting about the statins and kidneys. My mom was sick for almost a year before figuring out her kidneys were failing. They finally tied it to the statins she was on reacting to the solution she was given for her colonoscopy. I'm not positive, but Crestor sounds right. She wasn't able to reverse the damage at that point, but has maintained at about 18% function for the last 15 years so she's done okay.

    If they'd done a full panel the first time she went in they would have found it, but the way insurance worked she kept having to go back in one test at a time. We finally started to figure it out when my SIL, who is a pharmacist, read an article that came out in the latest medical journal and called my parents who then told their doc.
    My Mom has statin induced kidney disease (CKD) as well. Very similar story to your Mom’s. Lipitor, drs kept telling her it was very safe. Wasn’t until my problems with statins, that the drs made the connection.

    Mom has been holding at 22/23% kidney function for about 10 years, she is in the care of a team of drs & support people in a kidney clinic - they monitor her every 3 months (although the next appointment was pushed to six months)
     

    lifesavacation

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 24, 2016
    Mine was Compazine, happened back in 1978. My doctor prescribed it for me to control nausea during pregnancy. On the third day of taking it I told my DH I felt "odd." He laughed it off, saying it was just being pregnant. I tried taking a nap, but a little while later I couldn't control my arm muscles (my arms would just fly up uncontrollably) and my mouth was screwed up to the left, and my eyes rolled back. He rushed me to our doctor's office and they let me come in the back door so other patients didn't see me. The doctor stood in the doorway and was telling my husband I was having a classic reaction to the medication and I just said "could you please DO SOMETHING about it?!" He gave me a shot to bring me out of it. Later that evening we decided to go out for supper, and I felt that "odd" sensation coming back. We went to the ER and I remember laying on the gurney trying to lay on my arms to keep them still. They gave me another shot and that was that.

    I stopped taking the Compazine.

    But, now my daughter is taking it (she is having chemo for breast cancer) and I told her yesterday what happened to me, so she would not be so freaked out if it happens to her.
    The exact same reaction happened to my good friend, even down to the weird jaw/mouth thing.
     
  • MTSU

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Apr 12, 2018
    Worse side effects for me came from a drug called Propecia for hair loss. I stopped taking it 8 years ago and I still feel the side effects.
     

    anneboleyn

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 1, 2015
    I just remembered this one...Yaz birth control gave me blood clots after taking it for only 2 months. I had had bad reactions to a few other hormonal birth control pills in the past, but my doctor wanted to try this to help my migraines. Clearly, BCP are not my friend.
    Yaz made me nuts. Anytime someone gets irritated over something dumb, my friends and I call it a Yaz Attack because of me lol. I was ready to flip a table at all times when I was on it, and I was never like that before! When I get PMS, I cry over dumb stuff (like The Great British Bake-off, for example lol) but Yaz made me angry. Other bc pills made me want to walk in front of a bus all the time because they made me so depressed. I just don’t react well to them.

    There was also the time I accidentally got drunk at work when I took Robitussin on any empty stomach. That stuff does not mess around!
     

    EJ42

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    May 21, 2019
    I've had a few in my medical past, just wondering about you or a family member. Did you call your doctor, go to ER and/or stop taking the meds if you felt it was serious enough?
    Hives so bad that they all blended together until my entire body was just one big hive. That was one of the least pleasant experiences of my life.
     

    abdmom

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 6, 2008
    I have had a lot of side effects from different medications/treatments. After having my second child, I went back on BCPs and immediately experienced feelings of low self-esteem. I had experienced the same feelings for many years before I was married and on BCPs, but no one had ever made the link to the medication.

    I've been fighting thrush for the past 2 months after having got it from a steroid inhaler. I also have severe tinnitus which started right after an MRI.

    I had a steroid injection a couple of years ago to a joint and while it cured my joint, it also gave me: hirsutism, flushing, quick to anger and post-menopausal bleeding. Luckily all of those went away.
     

    McKelly

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 22, 2004
    Sulfa drugs give me hallucinations. They put me on a statin for high cholesterol and my liver numbers were bad, so they took me off of that. The numbers started getting better a month later, better three months after that, and now they want to recheck in a year. They say your liver will rebound. They put me on a steroid for back pain once (predinisone?) and I didn't sleep for three days and I was dreaming of ways to kill my DH - seriously. Roid rage?
     

    Belle_1989

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Apr 4, 2016
    I was on the birth control implanon for less then 3 months it not only made me feel insane ( I hated my husband and never wanted to be around him because the sight of him sent me into a rage ) but physically it caused me to have over 40 bruises between both of my legs at the same time.

    ETA After reading everyone elses stories mine side effect feels very minor lol
     

    Sabeking

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 2, 2004
    I was put on 2 different antibiotics at the same time for a total of 2500 mg for 10 days for diverticulitis. I lost 13 pounds and spent three days straight in the bathroom. It was insane. The doctor finally told me to drop one antibiotic at day seven. I decided at that point to take my weight loss and go with it. I have since lost another 15 in 3 months and am down to a size 6! I have not weighed that since my wedding.
     

    bcla

    On our rugged Eastern foothills.....
    Joined
    Nov 28, 2012
    To prescribed medication? Probably just drowsiness from narcotics, but not much different than normal antihistamines.

    It was after it went non-prescription, but 180 mg tablets of fexofenadine gave me the shakes. I was feeling extremely jittery like I had way too much coffee. I never had an issue with the 60 mg prescription capsules of Allegra. I asked a pharmacist, who said it would be OK to cut the tablets and take each half once a day. I'm not that precise, but I haven't had that side-effect with half-pills.

    Also not prescription per se, but I've had problems with all the common antibiotic ointments. I started getting contact dermatitis from all of them. Doctors suggested going from Neosporin to Polysporin. When that created sensitivity I went to bacitracin. When that no longer worked it was plain petroleum jelly. One doctor said those ointments weren't typically needed, but petroleum jelly would keep a wound sealed and the body will fight germs.

    Also from a medical device - some types of bandages will give me hives. They're typically the puffy foam ones that are supposed to be more flexible. I looked it up and it might be phtalate sensitivity. I'd get these tiny blisters in clusters outside of where the bandage covered my skin. Literally dozens of tiny blisters packed together like pomegranate seeds. I probably needed a steroid cream to speed up the healing, but I just stopped using them and it went away.
     

    Sand Wedge

    Registered
    Joined
    Apr 12, 2019
    I took one and was unconscious (literally) 20 minutes afterwards. Not sleepy. Not drowsy. Completely and comprehensively out.

    Then there was another on, where I was wired (not so bad) but - much worse - I experienced tactile hallucinations, amongst other things. By that I mean my eyeballs were falling out and I had ants under my skin.
     

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