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Neurontin & rote memory

Posted by Lara T on 2/04/03 at 19:52 (108008)

I go back to the podiatrist soon to discuss how physical therapy is going (very well) and consider neurontin. I'm training to be a court reporter (a great job for people without feet, and for those with feet too), which requires A LOT of rote memorization. I've watched the posts on neurontin recently and noted that people talk about memory problems being common, particularly short-term memory. Are they the kinds of problems that you don't remember where you are in the sentence, or why you went to the front room to look for something - or would it interfere with rote memorization which has to go through short-term memory before getting to long-term memory if I remember my psych class properly?

Re: or Elavil

Lara T on 2/04/03 at 22:14 (108028)

Elavil was another drug we were going to consider if that has fewer side effects.

Re: or Elavil

Ricky J. on 2/05/03 at 08:07 (108062)

I have been on 2700 mg of nuerontin a day since October. I am an engineer, and it has effected by ability to do compensational thoughts. If I were to try and play a chess game it would make me very fustrated, because its hard for me to make complex thought. The other problem is my short term memory. I have to pay very close attention to such things as when I take my medication. I can take my medicine, then two minutes later question myself if I have taken it or not. The other side effect is that my sex drive is down to all time low, but my wife hasn't complanied.

Re: or Elavil

SteveG on 2/05/03 at 09:35 (108075)

I have been on Doxepin (same class of drug as Elavil) and have not had any memory problems. When you get up to 100mgs other side effects can occur e.g., dry mouth, sleepiness; however, these were not too pronounced and the drug worked quite well for me. I took it for a ruptured disk in my neck, but it is used for any type of neuropathic pain

Re: or Elavil

lauriel on 2/05/03 at 10:35 (108081)

I just did a search on the web on Nuerontin yesterday since my Dr wanted to put my on it. I found one site that said the reasons for the memory loss and fog was 2 things The dose not being right (actually being too low for a long period of time (adjusting to higher doses would help) and not drinking enough water, you need a minimum of 4 quarts a day. This was the only place I found this, all others said that that fog/memory problem was part of the natural side effects and to get through it if you wanted to reduce the pain. Thought was very interesting.
Laurie

Re: Neurontin & rote memory

Sharon W on 2/05/03 at 15:21 (108102)

Lara,

I e-mailed you some good info on this (but I can't include the reference because it's membership only access).

In clinical trials, only 2.2% of patients taking Neurontin (gabapentin) complained of memory problems ('amnesia'), and another 1.7% complained of 'abnormal thinking'. Amnesia is listed as a 'serious' side effect.

Neurontin is eliminated by the kidneys and is not considered liver toxic. It is important to GRADUALLY increase your dosage of this drug and, if you stop taking it, to GRADUALLY decrease it again -- stopping suddenly on your own can cause serious problems such as seizures.

Personally, I suspect the percentages for forgetfulness when taking Neurontin would be much higher if they asked people who had been taking it long-term. Forgetfulness isn't the kind of thing that you notice right away, necessarily. On top of that, many people are EMBARASSED by forgetfulness, and if they are involved in a clinical trial and don't know it is a possible side effect of the drug they may not admit to it.

Patients ESPECIALLY may not admit to forgetfulness with the doctor who prescribed the Neurontin if they suspect it is caused by the drug -- because this drug really DOES work well for a LOT of us in controlling or reducing nerve pain, and I'll bet I am not the only one who wouldn't want it taken away from me!

ELAVIL (amitriptyline) is a tricyclic antidepressant, and it does have many potential side effects. The most common of these are dizziness, drowsiness, constipation, dry mouth, urinary retention (difficulty urinating), dropping blood pressure when you stand up, blurred vision, and increased skin sensitivity to light.

The most DANGEROUS potential side effects of Elavil are hepatitis (it is metabollized by the liver), blood disorders (you should have blood and liver lab work done more frequently while taking this drug), intestinal paralyis, changes that show up on an echocardiogram, fast heartbeat, and increased blood pressure.

Elavil can increase your blood glucose. And you should NOT drink alcohol while taking it.

The truth is, ALL prescription drugs have side effects, and while I believe is good to know what those side effects ARE, it is ultimately your DOCTOR'S responsibility to decide which drug would be best for you -- and then if you have problems with it, your doctor must also decide whether the side effects you experience are serious enough to discontinue it.

I hope this is helpful.

Sharon

Re: Neurontin & rote memory

Marty on 2/06/03 at 13:07 (108219)

Nice to see your name Sharon and as always a great post!

Marty

Re: Neurontin & rote memory

Marty on 2/06/03 at 13:21 (108224)

I went from 1200mg to 1800mg at one time. I tell you from experience it messed me up. Slurred words, bad fog and memory loss. I have to use a pill container split up into days so I don't take it again. I can't remember if I took it 5 minutes ago sometimes. But I think for what your training for I could handle it because I have no problems with peoples conversations, instructions as long as I stay on one thing at a time. My problem lies when I have to multitask things split up by a small amount of time if that makes sense.

I will tell there's no way I would go off them but I guess that depends of how bad the pain is. For me that more of a distracter the medication.

Marty

Re: or Elavil

Lara T on 2/04/03 at 22:14 (108028)

Elavil was another drug we were going to consider if that has fewer side effects.

Re: or Elavil

Ricky J. on 2/05/03 at 08:07 (108062)

I have been on 2700 mg of nuerontin a day since October. I am an engineer, and it has effected by ability to do compensational thoughts. If I were to try and play a chess game it would make me very fustrated, because its hard for me to make complex thought. The other problem is my short term memory. I have to pay very close attention to such things as when I take my medication. I can take my medicine, then two minutes later question myself if I have taken it or not. The other side effect is that my sex drive is down to all time low, but my wife hasn't complanied.

Re: or Elavil

SteveG on 2/05/03 at 09:35 (108075)

I have been on Doxepin (same class of drug as Elavil) and have not had any memory problems. When you get up to 100mgs other side effects can occur e.g., dry mouth, sleepiness; however, these were not too pronounced and the drug worked quite well for me. I took it for a ruptured disk in my neck, but it is used for any type of neuropathic pain

Re: or Elavil

lauriel on 2/05/03 at 10:35 (108081)

I just did a search on the web on Nuerontin yesterday since my Dr wanted to put my on it. I found one site that said the reasons for the memory loss and fog was 2 things The dose not being right (actually being too low for a long period of time (adjusting to higher doses would help) and not drinking enough water, you need a minimum of 4 quarts a day. This was the only place I found this, all others said that that fog/memory problem was part of the natural side effects and to get through it if you wanted to reduce the pain. Thought was very interesting.
Laurie

Re: Neurontin & rote memory

Sharon W on 2/05/03 at 15:21 (108102)

Lara,

I e-mailed you some good info on this (but I can't include the reference because it's membership only access).

In clinical trials, only 2.2% of patients taking Neurontin (gabapentin) complained of memory problems ('amnesia'), and another 1.7% complained of 'abnormal thinking'. Amnesia is listed as a 'serious' side effect.

Neurontin is eliminated by the kidneys and is not considered liver toxic. It is important to GRADUALLY increase your dosage of this drug and, if you stop taking it, to GRADUALLY decrease it again -- stopping suddenly on your own can cause serious problems such as seizures.

Personally, I suspect the percentages for forgetfulness when taking Neurontin would be much higher if they asked people who had been taking it long-term. Forgetfulness isn't the kind of thing that you notice right away, necessarily. On top of that, many people are EMBARASSED by forgetfulness, and if they are involved in a clinical trial and don't know it is a possible side effect of the drug they may not admit to it.

Patients ESPECIALLY may not admit to forgetfulness with the doctor who prescribed the Neurontin if they suspect it is caused by the drug -- because this drug really DOES work well for a LOT of us in controlling or reducing nerve pain, and I'll bet I am not the only one who wouldn't want it taken away from me!

ELAVIL (amitriptyline) is a tricyclic antidepressant, and it does have many potential side effects. The most common of these are dizziness, drowsiness, constipation, dry mouth, urinary retention (difficulty urinating), dropping blood pressure when you stand up, blurred vision, and increased skin sensitivity to light.

The most DANGEROUS potential side effects of Elavil are hepatitis (it is metabollized by the liver), blood disorders (you should have blood and liver lab work done more frequently while taking this drug), intestinal paralyis, changes that show up on an echocardiogram, fast heartbeat, and increased blood pressure.

Elavil can increase your blood glucose. And you should NOT drink alcohol while taking it.

The truth is, ALL prescription drugs have side effects, and while I believe is good to know what those side effects ARE, it is ultimately your DOCTOR'S responsibility to decide which drug would be best for you -- and then if you have problems with it, your doctor must also decide whether the side effects you experience are serious enough to discontinue it.

I hope this is helpful.

Sharon

Re: Neurontin & rote memory

Marty on 2/06/03 at 13:07 (108219)

Nice to see your name Sharon and as always a great post!

Marty

Re: Neurontin & rote memory

Marty on 2/06/03 at 13:21 (108224)

I went from 1200mg to 1800mg at one time. I tell you from experience it messed me up. Slurred words, bad fog and memory loss. I have to use a pill container split up into days so I don't take it again. I can't remember if I took it 5 minutes ago sometimes. But I think for what your training for I could handle it because I have no problems with peoples conversations, instructions as long as I stay on one thing at a time. My problem lies when I have to multitask things split up by a small amount of time if that makes sense.

I will tell there's no way I would go off them but I guess that depends of how bad the pain is. For me that more of a distracter the medication.

Marty