My Champix Nightmare
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Mark

Germany

#1 May 5, 2008
My father and my family have become recent victims of the rare but severe adverse reactions linked to Champix in which my father had accidentally taken his own life during what appeared to be a major “psychotic event”. He had been drinking in combination with taking Champix which appears to have resulted in hanging himself in the garden shed. I had spoken to him only hours before and he was his usual happy self, just settling in for the night to watch some TV and have a few drinks. He was a contented happy man with everything going for him and everything to live for. He was happily married and had recently become a grandfather and was about to become one for the second time. With no financial worries and his working life nearing an end he was positively looking forward to his twilight years of watching his grand kids grow up and share his retirement with my mother, family and his wide circle of friends.

He had began taking Champix in early February and had reported to the family that he had suffered from some of the more common side-effects including vomiting, headaches and disturbed sleeping but did not elaborate on why he thought his sleep had been effected. On the 23rd of March 2008 his body was discovered by my brother at the family home. There was no note and there appears to have been no premeditation to the events. The authorities so far are treating his death as a “terrible accident” in which they believe there was no intent to end his life. In my opinion with the evidence that has been explained to me, he appears to have behaved completely out of character including damaging our home in a way that would be totally alien to my father given the pride he had in his home.

In my mind there is no doubt that these pills, which are designed to mimic the “high” from smoking by releasing dopamine which effects behaviour, had a huge part to play in my father’s premature death.

my site: www.champixruinedmylife.com
irena

Toronto, Canada

#2 May 6, 2008
This sounds very horrible but what you dont understand is that for people that smoke all their lives and have tried quiting millions of times, with or without will.. are tired of thinking they will end up with cancer and die young... (this includes me) and these pills are a miracle to quit smoking... I'm very sorry about your father however what happened to your father is very very rare. Some users of Champix which had mental illness have committed suicide yes, but thats because they either had an anxiety disorder, depression or some mental illness. So please dont put this drug down which is helping millions in the world right now to stay healthy and be smoke free.
Mark

Germany

#3 May 7, 2008
As a scientist working in drug discovery I "Do Understand" that this pill is successfull for many people. This is perpetuated by clever advertising and word of mouth reccomendation which in turn increases a drugs efficacy due to the placebo effect. I understand the mechanism of action of this drug and the reason why it is also therefore of high risk with particular patients. I am highlighting the problems here that a lack of patient monitoring and willing over prescription of this drug are having on what appears to be a proportionatley high number of severe side effects. I appreciate that this is a rare side effect and as a consequence not pushing for a total ban. I beleive there is a need for an immediate review from the MHRA & FDA on the saftey of what is a very new product. I beleive the incidents will mount as the drug gets more and more prescribed.

“Just Say No to Smoking Bans”

Since: Jul 07

Location hidden

#4 May 7, 2008
irena wrote:
This sounds very horrible but what you dont understand is that for people that smoke all their lives and have tried quiting millions of times, with or without will.. are tired of thinking they will end up with cancer and die young...(this includes me) and these pills are a miracle to quit smoking... I'm very sorry about your father however what happened to your father is very very rare. Some users of Champix which had mental illness have committed suicide yes, but thats because they either had an anxiety disorder, depression or some mental illness. So please dont put this drug down which is helping millions in the world right now to stay healthy and be smoke free.
Those who are left behind and left to deal with the consequences of a needless suicide would, no doubt, disagree with you. There are class action suits against this drug, so apparently, the horrible side effects are not so rare. Any drug that reprograms the brain you were born with is a danger people should avoid.

“Just Say No to Smoking Bans”

Since: Jul 07

Location hidden

#5 May 7, 2008
Mark wrote:
My father and my family have become recent victims of the rare but severe adverse reactions linked to Champix in which my father had accidentally taken his own life during what appeared to be a major “psychotic event”. He had been drinking in combination with taking Champix which appears to have resulted in hanging himself in the garden shed. I had spoken to him only hours before and he was his usual happy self, just settling in for the night to watch some TV and have a few drinks. He was a contented happy man with everything going for him and everything to live for. He was happily married and had recently become a grandfather and was about to become one for the second time. With no financial worries and his working life nearing an end he was positively looking forward to his twilight years of watching his grand kids grow up and share his retirement with my mother, family and his wide circle of friends.
He had began taking Champix in early February and had reported to the family that he had suffered from some of the more common side-effects including vomiting, headaches and disturbed sleeping but did not elaborate on why he thought his sleep had been effected. On the 23rd of March 2008 his body was discovered by my brother at the family home. There was no note and there appears to have been no premeditation to the events. The authorities so far are treating his death as a “terrible accident” in which they believe there was no intent to end his life. In my opinion with the evidence that has been explained to me, he appears to have behaved completely out of character including damaging our home in a way that would be totally alien to my father given the pride he had in his home.
In my mind there is no doubt that these pills, which are designed to mimic the “high” from smoking by releasing dopamine which effects behaviour, had a huge part to play in my father’s premature death.
my site: www.champixruinedmylife.com
I am so sorry for your needless loss. Hopefully, your story will save others.

“Just Say No to Smoking Bans”

Since: Jul 07

Location hidden

#6 May 7, 2008
Mark wrote:
My father and my family have become recent victims of the rare but severe adverse reactions linked to Champix in which my father had accidentally taken his own life during what appeared to be a major “psychotic event”. He had been drinking in combination with taking Champix which appears to have resulted in hanging himself in the garden shed. I had spoken to him only hours before and he was his usual happy self, just settling in for the night to watch some TV and have a few drinks. He was a contented happy man with everything going for him and everything to live for. He was happily married and had recently become a grandfather and was about to become one for the second time. With no financial worries and his working life nearing an end he was positively looking forward to his twilight years of watching his grand kids grow up and share his retirement with my mother, family and his wide circle of friends.
He had began taking Champix in early February and had reported to the family that he had suffered from some of the more common side-effects including vomiting, headaches and disturbed sleeping but did not elaborate on why he thought his sleep had been effected. On the 23rd of March 2008 his body was discovered by my brother at the family home. There was no note and there appears to have been no premeditation to the events. The authorities so far are treating his death as a “terrible accident” in which they believe there was no intent to end his life. In my opinion with the evidence that has been explained to me, he appears to have behaved completely out of character including damaging our home in a way that would be totally alien to my father given the pride he had in his home.
In my mind there is no doubt that these pills, which are designed to mimic the “high” from smoking by releasing dopamine which effects behaviour, had a huge part to play in my father’s premature death.
my site: www.champixruinedmylife.com
I don't know if you have seen this, but it is a powerful account of one person's experience with Chantix, "This Is My Brain on Chantix" " http://nymag.com/news/features/43892/...
julie

Toronto, Canada

#7 May 20, 2008
Sheri wrote:
<quoted text>
I am so sorry for your needless loss. Hopefully, your story will save others.
I have been on champix for a full 2 weeks now and 10 days smoke free... yes there are some crazy side effects but what you guys are saying is that its better to keep smoking and pray that you dont get cancer rather then giving champix a chance.

P.S: my doctor said 4 weeks of taking champix is more then enough so if your doctors are keeping you on this medication for the full 12 weeks damn right you'll go crazy... what do you expect? its a drug. I will debate over this as much as possible because i have tried every way to quit smoking and nothing has worked until i started taking champix.
feelingarealmess

Mount Waverley, Australia

#8 Jul 6, 2008
I was on champix for 5 days and have to say the experience greatly affected me. I have quit smoking numerous times before with a feeling of being on edge- so I know what withdrawing is like- and this was far more serious. The first night I fell asleep with a handful of strange dreams, by the second night I threw up around 8 times, had extreme thirst and drank juice excessivly,(which I could not keep down) and had the tremors so badly, that I had three doonas on in bed, a jacket over a sweater and the heating on. By day three I was verbally abusing my friends and boyfriend- which was followed by deep feelings of shame and suicide, the verbal abuse was so bad that I was told I was scaring people. I had even gone as far as yelling at my room mates boyfried about how he was going to end up bald! By the fifth day I quit my job and was swinging from feelings of total disconnection to utter shame and depresion. I am 24. I do not have a history of deppression or erratic behaviour, and considered myself to be patient and valued before having this experience. I am no longer taking champix, I am however convinced that somebody needs to be held responsible for this and the other cases I have heard about, no matter how young the drug is, or what information is lacking due to that- 5 days to destroy my life? thanks champix
Jennifer

Pembroke, Canada

#9 Jul 19, 2008
I've had the same horrible reaction. I had been taking champix for 2 weeks. I had had the usual reactions such as nausea, headaches, and wierd dreams. What I wasn't expecting was the psychotic episode that came next. This behavior lasted for about 4 days. I was having uncharacterisic thoughts of wanting to kill myself. My friends were concerned about my personality change. One even called 911 on me. Then one day while I was at work, I decided that taking all of my pills was the right thing to do when I got home. A feeling of peace came over me. I know this may sound wierd but everything seemed to take on a golden hue. I went home, wrote quick emails to my family on my intentions and then took a bunch of pills. Luckily my roommate came home and decided to check on me because he had noticed I had been acting uncharacteristicly depressed, flat affect. He noticed I was acting wierd and he instantly knew what I had done and got my to the hospital.

I spent 2 weeks on the psych ward. The doctor had said that he had heard of these reactions to the drug and wanted to make sure it was all out of my system before i was released.

When I finally went home, I spent 1 and a half months sleeping/recovering. This drug has had a huge impact on my life as well as my family's. I cant' imagine what they went through. I am so embarrassed of my behavior, and can't believe this even happened.

I think emphasis need to be put on these possible adverse reactions to this drug. I wasn't told about them, nor did it list them in the pamphlet that came with them.
Jennifer

Pembroke, Canada

#10 Jul 19, 2008
julie wrote:
<quoted text>
I have been on champix for a full 2 weeks now and 10 days smoke free... yes there are some crazy side effects but what you guys are saying is that its better to keep smoking and pray that you dont get cancer rather then giving champix a chance.
P.S: my doctor said 4 weeks of taking champix is more then enough so if your doctors are keeping you on this medication for the full 12 weeks damn right you'll go crazy... what do you expect? its a drug. I will debate over this as much as possible because i have tried every way to quit smoking and nothing has worked until i started taking champix.
Nice, maybe you could debate with the families of these victoms of suicide. I'm sure they would all rather have their loved ones back then to here of the exiting news of you quiting smoking. Of course its worked for people, but it needs to be closely monitored.
Ben

Saint Helier, Jersey

#11 Jul 19, 2008
Hi,
I have been taking Champix for 6 weeks now ans i don't think I can take it any more. It is making me seriously ill and I am out of control of the things that I am doing. I just want to cry! I am ashamed of the way I feel and I do not know what to do. Can you give me any advice?

Ben

[email protected]

“Just Say No to Smoking Bans”

Since: Jul 07

Location hidden

#12 Jul 19, 2008
Ben wrote:
Hi,
I have been taking Champix for 6 weeks now ans i don't think I can take it any more. It is making me seriously ill and I am out of control of the things that I am doing. I just want to cry! I am ashamed of the way I feel and I do not know what to do. Can you give me any advice?
Ben
[email protected]
Ben, you need to call your doctor right away and ask him/her what to do. There is NO reason to feel ashamed. It's the drug, not you, that is causing your despair. Do not hesitate going to the emergency room if you feel that you might hurt yourself. Please call your doctor ASAP. There are many who care and are reaching out to you.
Mark

Germany

#13 Jul 28, 2008
We have just had the inquest into my fathers death. Pfizer had sent 5 representatives to the Coroners court, 1 lawyer, 1 medical doctor, 1 pharmacovigilance expert and 2 observers. The sheer weight of their presence tells me that they took this matter very serious and as predicted used the usual "well nicotine withdrawal causes behavioural changes". When questioned by the coroner about known side effects the medical doctor repeatedly avoided saying the words "suicidal ideation", simply quoting mood swings as the only psychological symptom. Now I plan to get as many examples as possible of people having behavioural side effects and hopefully provide enough statistical evidence to back tighter control of this substance. Help in this matter is much appreciated so please email me with your story.
Mark A-W

Potton, UK

#15 Jul 31, 2008
My wife and i started taking Champix towards the end of June 2008. We decided to give up smoking on July 1st.

We have both not smoked since this date but it has been a nightmare. I have changed from having a calm, patient personality into a nasty, volatile, angry person. I am suffering from disturbing nightmares everytime i close my eyes. Even when i wake up i still see the visions of my nighmares clearly. They are very disturbing, sick and evil!

We became very angry with each other. Every conversation would be an arguement after one sentence.

I felt sick everytime i took a tablet, i became depressed, i felt my wife hated me, the kids hated me, everyone hated me, why bother living??? I read somewhere on the internet that you will only suffer these psychotic thoughts and side affects if you were disturbed already. I saw myself as average and just a normal guy. It now makes me feel that maybe i am psychotic in some way!

I was so tempted to pull the plug on my life.

I thought of my two babies and this gave me the strength to dump the champix and regain control of my life. I still haven't smoked. The reason for packing in smoking was for the babies in the first place.

It has now been five days without a champix and i can feel the "fog" lifting. I am re-entering reality. I am waking up!

The housework has gone to pot. What a mess?? I hadn't even noticed.

4 - 5 weeks on these tablets has taken me to hell and back. Im off them now. I have urges / cravings but my family are what matters and i would never subject that on them again.

Has this drug been rushed onto the market because of the smoking bans in the US, UK etc. Have there been adequate trials???

I won't smoke again so am i part of their 80% success rate!!!

“Just Say No to Smoking Bans”

Since: Jul 07

Location hidden

#16 Jul 31, 2008
Mark A-W wrote:
My wife and i started taking Champix towards the end of June 2008. We decided to give up smoking on July 1st.
We have both not smoked since this date but it has been a nightmare. I have changed from having a calm, patient personality into a nasty, volatile, angry person. I am suffering from disturbing nightmares everytime i close my eyes. Even when i wake up i still see the visions of my nighmares clearly. They are very disturbing, sick and evil!
We became very angry with each other. Every conversation would be an arguement after one sentence.
I felt sick everytime i took a tablet, i became depressed, i felt my wife hated me, the kids hated me, everyone hated me, why bother living??? I read somewhere on the internet that you will only suffer these psychotic thoughts and side affects if you were disturbed already. I saw myself as average and just a normal guy. It now makes me feel that maybe i am psychotic in some way!
I was so tempted to pull the plug on my life.
I thought of my two babies and this gave me the strength to dump the champix and regain control of my life. I still haven't smoked. The reason for packing in smoking was for the babies in the first place.
It has now been five days without a champix and i can feel the "fog" lifting. I am re-entering reality. I am waking up!
The housework has gone to pot. What a mess?? I hadn't even noticed.
4 - 5 weeks on these tablets has taken me to hell and back. Im off them now. I have urges / cravings but my family are what matters and i would never subject that on them again.
Has this drug been rushed onto the market because of the smoking bans in the US, UK etc. Have there been adequate trials???
I won't smoke again so am i part of their 80% success rate!!!
Thank God you fought the demons and are still here for your family. You should report your story to the lawyers for the class action lawsuits. I'm glad you were able to quit smoking, but there must be a safer way to do so.
Mark A-W

Newtownards, UK

#17 Aug 14, 2008
Its now been 45 days without a cigarette. I cant take it anymore.

A cigarette or my life and the life of my family.

An easy choice really. My wife is now suffering just like i had been. The fog lifted for a little while but it came back down. My wife continued taking it after i packed the drug in.

Champix nearly destroyed my life and that of my family.

The feelings and emotions that this tablet has caused has been devastating on our lives.

Time for a cigarette!! back to normal psychologically hopefully and will give in again in 6 months as advised by Doctor.

Champix sent my wife and I Physchotic, even after stopping the tablets for a few days. There has to be a better way!!!!
Gary

Ilford, UK

#18 Sep 14, 2008
I'm taking champix, and going to stop.

I need less will power to stop smoking on my own than i do to control my relentless anger with champix.

I begin to think that the only point left in existing is to release my anger.

I have never suffered from any mental illness or problems before champix. I hope I will return to being me soon. If not, then champix really did ruin my life.

Stay away from champix and NEVER TAKE WITH ALCOHOL.
reality

Cambridge, Canada

#19 Sep 16, 2008
is there anybody normal on here? you guys all talk about going through this hell when you quit smoking and take this HORRIBLE drug that although made you quit smoking also made you insane...yet you go for at least 4 weeks without smoking, which is as long as you need to quit the physical addiction...AND THEN JUST START SMOKING AGAIN??? what...the...f??? why would you go through hell and back just to enter purgatory again? at least make something of your mistakes ppl. its like climbing all the way to the top of mount everest through hell and then just sitting there saying it takes too much work to walk back down when the MUCH harder part is already over with. ya that sucks for the people that committed suicide but to say that its completely the drugs fault just because a person didn't leave a suicide note is ridiculous. there are a lot of sketchy things about this drug but people cant go blaming everyday occurances (and yes suicide IS an everyday occurance) on a pill. Maybe the dude just wanted to kill himself and this pill gave him the edge he needed? I don't care HOW close to a person you are, one can never know completely what another person is feeling if they dont want you to know.

“Just Say No to Smoking Bans”

Since: Jul 07

Location hidden

#20 Sep 17, 2008
reality wrote:
is there anybody normal on here? you guys all talk about going through this hell when you quit smoking and take this HORRIBLE drug that although made you quit smoking also made you insane...yet you go for at least 4 weeks without smoking, which is as long as you need to quit the physical addiction...AND THEN JUST START SMOKING AGAIN??? what...the...f??? why would you go through hell and back just to enter purgatory again? at least make something of your mistakes ppl. its like climbing all the way to the top of mount everest through hell and then just sitting there saying it takes too much work to walk back down when the MUCH harder part is already over with. ya that sucks for the people that committed suicide but to say that its completely the drugs fault just because a person didn't leave a suicide note is ridiculous. there are a lot of sketchy things about this drug but people cant go blaming everyday occurances (and yes suicide IS an everyday occurance) on a pill. Maybe the dude just wanted to kill himself and this pill gave him the edge he needed? I don't care HOW close to a person you are, one can never know completely what another person is feeling if they dont want you to know.
Do you even believe what you are saying? A perfectly healthy, sane person takes a drug and then a week later shoots himself for no apparent reason. This scenario repeats itself thousands of times, but you want to give the drug a pass. Go ahead... you take it. Some things in life are worse than dying, and from all that I've read, Chantix appears to be one of them. Here's a great read about one person's experience with Chantix, http://nymag.com/news/features/43892/
After reading it, would you give it to your child or your mother....even if it meant they would stop smoking?
reality

Cambridge, Canada

#21 Sep 17, 2008
thousands of times eh? too bad the drug has a 100% chance of working! See? I can make up numbers too. That story that you yourself posted listed 34 suicides amongst people taking the drug in the united states since the drug became available on the market. 34 out of millions of people is very comparable to i dunno, maybe the normal suicide rate amongst any given population. Not to mention your 'thousands of times' scenario is very implausible. Clearly your small female mind isn't working properly, maybe you should go off the pill so you stop thinking crazy. hey some things are worse than dying...ya know cuz dying from cancer and dying from suicide both results in different outcomes.

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