Secret Side Effects

There are 20 comments on the May 10, 2006, KNXV story titled Secret Side Effects. In it, KNXV reports that:

Millions of prescriptions have been written for drugs that some people say have led them to compulsively overeat, obsess about sex, and gamble away their life savings.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at KNXV.

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OMG

Renton, WA

#1 May 31, 2006
I was just looking up the side effects to see if it causes gas. I gamble now, gamble with the stock market, and have gained 70 pounds! No kidding (since taking)..5mg a day for rls.
Matt - ParkinsonsInfo

Salt Lake City, UT

#2 Jun 9, 2006
There is a lot of talk about this in the news, and in professional literature. If you are having this experience, call your doctor. She or he will take it very seriously. RLS is difficult and frustrating. However, the side effects are may be hurting you, and others, more than the RLS.

Matt
www.MyParkinsonsInfo.com
jmc

Denver, CO

#3 Jan 5, 2007
I have MS. The RLS I also have was painful, made it impossible to sit or sleep and would come back several times a night. I was sleeping 5 or less hours every 24. I have taken .5 to .75 mg of mirapex daily for 4 years and it has been a godsend. No side effects except some drowsiness. It would have to be a major side effect before I would give it up. My mother takes a smaller dosage for her RLS.
Peggy

Lakewood, WA

#4 Apr 2, 2007
To the person from Bellevue, Wa who commented in this space in 2006- are you still here? I would like to talk to you. I am in Redmond and had a TERRIBLE experience while on this drug.
ann

Renton, WA

#5 May 5, 2007
Peggy in Redmond, I had a terrible, life-changing experience with Mirapex when taking it for fibromyalgia.

I can't believe Mirapex is still on the market.
Karen Hall

United States

#6 May 7, 2007
I've been taking Mirapex now for 3 years and have had "NO" side effects.

I take Mirapex with carbidopa/levo 25/100, carbidopa/levo 50/200, amandatime,singular,hyzaar,cre astar,triamtrene all with no problems.

doesn't it's good out weight the bad?

Karen Hall
ann

Renton, WA

#7 May 10, 2007
If you've been taking it for 3 years with no side effects, you're probably fine. I didn't start having the compulsive side effects until after 7 months.

For me, the benefits were outweighed by the side effects. I didn't sleep more than 3-4 hrs. a night for over a year, became hypersexual and had an affair after 14 yrs. of marriage, and basically became another person. All of my relationships suffered. I'm separated and getting divorced. I have been depressed because of what happened while on it, and took a bunch of pills one night in an attempt to be free of the emotional pain. I'm still going through therapy because of it.

The problem is, that you don't really realize you're different, but others can see it. But it's not so obvious that they really know what it is that's different.

I feel that it's a dangerous medication for some people, and doctors don't seem to get it. I didn't even tell my doctor about the hypersexuality because I was too embarrassed. How many other people haven't said anything for the same reason?

Anyway, I would definately watch for compulsive behaviors, because it can really mess up your life.
Karen Hall wrote:
I've been taking Mirapex now for 3 years and have had "NO" side effects.
I take Mirapex with carbidopa/levo 25/100, carbidopa/levo 50/200, amandatime,singular,hyzaar,cre astar,triamtrene all with no problems.
doesn't it's good out weight the bad?
Karen Hall
ann

Renton, WA

#8 May 10, 2007
I meant NOT outweighed--
Janice

Worcester, MA

#9 Jun 8, 2007
I am on Mirapex now (for parkinson's)...into my 2nd week.

I have extreme tiredness and a little dizzyness and some neausa.

BUT

I can move!!! I am doing more in the past two weeks than I have in the past 2 years!

I am 38 and was diagnosed at age 35.

Question for you all, how do you cope with the side effects? Did anyone adjust to them after awhile. I am hopeful that this drug will work for me!

Thanks!
Rhoda

Provo, UT

#10 Jun 14, 2007
Requip seemed to cause compulsions, especially spending money. Dullness of mind was apparent to me, also. So far, carbadopa seems to work well. Any side effects to selegiline? Am thinking of requesting it.
Ken

Irvine, CA

#11 Jun 22, 2007
I am shocked to learn that so many of my problem behaviors have been linked to Mirapex: compulsive shopping, gambling, drinking, porn. 50 pounds weight gain. However, I am hesitant to duck personal responsibility for these behaviors. And Mirapex does help my creepy crawlies and foot pain.

I was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome by Dr. Jay Goldstein in 1987, fibromyalgia in early 90s. After Dr. Goldstein's early retirement, I have tried to find a doc with his expertise. So far, no joy. My neurologist has been very helpful with sleep disorders, RLS and peripheral neuropathy (possibly related to diabetes). However, my current downward spiral has included not following up with appointments and referrals.

Ideas? Comments?
Peggy

Lakewood, WA

#12 Jul 18, 2007
Ann, if you still check this site periodically, please send a note! I haven't been here in awhile, but I finally remembered to bookmark this site so I'll come back more often.

And Ken, I have talked with so many people who have had similar side effects from Mirapex. These behaviors are classic for a certain percentage of patients who take the drug. It is not a matter of personal responsibility.

The drug attaches to certain dopamine receptors that are responsible for impulse control and reward. But for some, it makes things go haywire. And the result is the gambling, porn, shopping, eating....

Let me ask you a question regarding the your behaviors. Have you ever awakened in the morning and said to yourself, "I am NOT going to gamble, look at porn, or whatever today." and you meant it with all your heart??? And then you find yourself doing it anyway? If you answered "yes", then trust me, you are not alone, and you truly had no choice in the matter.

You will find, as hundreds of others have, that when your system is cleared of this drug, these urges will go away. Please consider that before you lose everything, as I did.

Yes, the drug works great for RLS. But there are other alternatives out there. Maybe not quite as effective, but for me, I'll take "not quite as effective" over the devastation that this drug caused in my life.
David

Warrenton, VA

#13 Jul 19, 2007
Where can I get this drug? Or where can I find the girls who are taking this drug? I mean, girls who are becoming hypersexual because of this drug and this is considered a bad thing? Sounds like gold to me!
A Wade

United States

#14 Sep 27, 2007
My heart goes out for the people whose lives have been dramatically altered for the worse by this medication, especially the ones who did not have any way of knowing that it could do this to them. You should probably file a class action suit against Boehringer Ingelheim; it can't undo what has been done, but at least you can put your life back together, especially if you sold your house or used up your life savings for gambling.

For some conditions, there really *is* no "less effective" drug available. I have been handicapped by FMS for over 5 years, unable to work, remember conversations for more than 5 minutes, and the lot. It has cost me my career, the woman I loved more than anyone else ever (I'm nearly 40, for reference). In phase 2 clinical trials, no other drug has even come close to the levels of improvement seen with Mirapex. After battling doctors who believe it's just a mental illness, trying to find a safe place to live and stay, losing most of my friends, and watching my career circle the drain, I am extremely excited to be able to try this drug to see if it can help. I'm on five drugs with now, and at best they make me, as my old rheumatologist put it, "a comfortable vegetable". I want my life back, and I'm willing to risk side effects to get it back.

That said, I am very aware of the possible side effects, as are my few remaining friends, so any big problems can be headed off before they get terribly serious. I am getting significant nausea and have been having somnolence issues at times, but I'm willing to stick it out, titrate up my dosage, and at least give this drug a shot. There really is nothing else for FMS that works like Mirapex does. The potential side effects may not be worth it for treatment of RLS, but they sure as hell are for me with my fibromyalgia.
harmonygirl

Ocean Isle Beach, NC

#15 Dec 5, 2007
I changed from reqip to mirapex this year after reqip was no longer effective for my severe RLS. Almost 50, my family thinks it is wigging me out. I left my husband of 28 years on Thanksgiving day, been coming for over a year i just kept it quiet. No side effects that I have noticed, going through peri-menopause so I am on cymbalta for 3 yaers now.Has anyone had any experience mixing there drugs.
Mike

Taylorsville, KY

#16 Dec 15, 2007
OMG wrote:
I was just looking up the side effects to see if it causes gas. I gamble now, gamble with the stock market, and have gained 70 pounds! No kidding (since taking)..5mg a day for rls.
Have you heard of the Mangosteen? There has been a great many good results using this awesome botanical. I can't say if you will have the same great results. You may want to research it for yourself and try it www.InformationOnMangosteen.info it has decades of science behind it.
Mike

Taylorsville, KY

#17 Dec 15, 2007
ann wrote:
If you've been taking it for 3 years with no side effects, you're probably fine. I didn't start having the compulsive side effects until after 7 months.
For me, the benefits were outweighed by the side effects. I didn't sleep more than 3-4 hrs. a night for over a year, became hypersexual and had an affair after 14 yrs. of marriage, and basically became another person. All of my relationships suffered. I'm separated and getting divorced. I have been depressed because of what happened while on it, and took a bunch of pills one night in an attempt to be free of the emotional pain. I'm still going through therapy because of it.
The problem is, that you don't really realize you're different, but others can see it. But it's not so obvious that they really know what it is that's different.
I feel that it's a dangerous medication for some people, and doctors don't seem to get it. I didn't even tell my doctor about the hypersexuality because I was too embarrassed. How many other people haven't said anything for the same reason?
Anyway, I would definately watch for compulsive behaviors, because it can really mess up your life.
<quoted text>
Have you heard of the Mangosteen? There has been a great many good results using this awesome botanical. I can't say if you will have the same great results. You may want to research it for yourself and try it www.InformationOnMangosteen.info it has decades of science behind it.
ROGER G

Pittsburgh, PA

#18 Apr 3, 2008
IWAS TAKING REQUIP FOR RLS I DID NOT DRINK OR GAMBLR OR SMOKE AND DID NOT HAVE A CRIMINAL RECORD
I WAS A INS SALESMAN OF 30 YEARS AND ATTENDED CHURCH 3 TIMES A WEEK AFTER SEVERAL MONTHS OF TAKING REQUIP I WAS AT A BUISNESS MEETING AND OUT OF THE BLUE I WANTED TO GET DRUNK NOT JUST HAVE A DRINK BUT GET DRUNK AFTER THAT I COULD NOT QUIT I I STARTED GAMBLING AND GOING TO BARS I HAVE BENN IN PRISON 10 TIMES IN THREE YEARS FOR TWO DUIS I STOLE A LATTER FROM A CHURCH 3 DRIVING ON SUSPENDED LICENCE I LOST MY JOB MY WIFER AND MY FIVE BOYS AND MY REPATATION AS A LAW ABIDING PERSON MY LIFE HAS BENN DESTROYED BY REQUIP WHEN I GOT OFF OF REQUIP THE DRINKING WENT AWAY AND THE
GAMBLING BUT I HAVE LOST EVERYTHING PLEASE WARN OTHERS ABOUT REQUIP THE COMPANY GLAXO SMITH AND KLINE IS KEEPING IT A SECRET AND DOES NOT WANT TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR WHAT THEY HAVE DONE I AM SUFFERING FROM DEPRESSION AND TRAMA AS A RESULT AND I AM FACED WITH DEFENDING MYSELF IN COURT BECAUSE OF MY CRIMINAL ACTIVITY PLEASE COMMENT ABOUT MY EXPERIENCE ROGER G
Jack

Loughborough, UK

#19 Apr 5, 2008
Roger,

Please seek help and try to get your neurologist to help. It's never too late to turn your life back around, even though I know that you have lost a lot. Try to seek the help of those close around you; your priest, neurologist, family, etc.

You will be in my prayers.
ROGER G

Pittsburgh, PA

#20 Apr 7, 2008
Peggy wrote:
Ann, if you still check this site periodically, please send a note! I haven't been here in awhile, but I finally remembered to bookmark this site so I'll come back more often.
And Ken, I have talked with so many people who have had similar side effects from Mirapex. These behaviors are classic for a certain percentage of patients who take the drug. It is not a matter of personal responsibility.
The drug attaches to certain dopamine receptors that are responsible for impulse control and reward. But for some, it makes things go haywire. And the result is the gambling, porn, shopping, eating....
Let me ask you a question regarding the your behaviors. Have you ever awakened in the morning and said to yourself, "I am NOT going to gamble, look at porn, or whatever today." and you meant it with all your heart??? And then you find yourself doing it anyway? If you answered "yes", then trust me, you are not alone, and you truly had no choice in the matter.
You will find, as hundreds of others have, that when your system is cleared of this drug, these urges will go away. Please consider that before you lose everything, as I did.
Yes, the drug works great for RLS. But there are other alternatives out there. Maybe not quite as effective, but for me, I'll take "not quite as effective" over the devastation that this drug caused in my life.
PEGGY I HAD THE SAME THOUGHT PROCESS THAT I WAS NOT GOING TO DRINK OR GAMBLE BUT A UNCONTROLABLE URGE TOOK OVER THAT I COULD NOT STOP AND I WAS DRINKING AND GAMBLING IT WAS LIKE I WAS POSSESED BY A DEMON IT WAS VERY FRUSTRATING I WAS VERY SERIOUSE ABOUT STOPPING THE URGES BUT COULD NOT STOP EVEN ANTI DRINKING MEDS DID NOT WORK I WAS DRINKING ON TOP OF THE PILLS THEY HAD KNOW EFFECT ON ME I DID GET SICK ONE TIME BUT THAT WAS ALL ROGER G

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