Discussions By Condition: Medical Stories

Chantix side effects

Posted In: Medical Stories 15 Replies
  • Posted By: barbaraak
  • January 5, 2008
  • 03:40 AM

I smoked for 39 years. The last 2 years I was up to 2 packs a day. I tried quitting with nicotine gum. That did not work – as soon as I stopped chewing I wanted a smoke, my blood pressure sky rocketed, I was meaner than a junk yard dog, and I gained 35 pounds in the 7 months that I was off cigarettes.

My doctor recommended Chantix. I used it and the on-line support system Pfizer has (pathetic) for 6 months. It is 9 months later and I am still smoke free. I don’t crave cigarettes. I am very happy to be a NON-SMOKER – something I never thought I would be.

However, the side effects are nasty and persistent. Some of them, had I known in advance, would have definitely made me turn down Chantix. I understand doctors want people to quit smoking (I don’t buy the attitude that the side effects of smoking out weigh all other risk factors) but I feel warnings are appropriate so consumers can make a more informed choice.

The nausea, gas, and headaches were tolerable. The dreams were/are vivid and at times frightening. BUT I have other serious side effects that I could have avoided. My doctor always stated that his goal was to put all tobacco/cigarette manufacturers out of business. He was aware of my pre-existing conditions: panic disorder, anxiety, and osteoporosis. I wasn’t told about any side effects that could exacerbate these conditions and I am having serious difficulties. I have developed fibromyalgia, severe dry mouth, serious depression with suicidal ideation, skin rashes, extreme fatigue, and sleep disorders.

Yes, I am a non-smoker and I have no desire to light up. However, the quality of my life has not improved.

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15 Replies:

  • I am currently taking Chantix and have been smoke free for over a month and I am in the process of beginning to wean myself from this drug. I had the typical side effects in the beginning (vivid dreams, nausea), nothing too uncomfortable. Now, I am having joint pain that is horrible. I am thrilled with the results, but concerned by the side effects many people are reporting, particularly when stopping this medication. I voted that yes, the FDA should reevaluate Chantix. I just would like to see it looked into further because there have been so many complaints. I am hoping they can fine tune this drug and find a way to get the same results with less severe side effects.
    neverEVERagain 2 Replies
    • January 7, 2008
    • 02:02 AM
    • 0
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  • Josh 29 M TXI just started my 4th day of Chantix. Today was the first time I noticed less of a craving to smoke and it seems when I do smoke it doesnt "do" as much for me.Ive been reading a lot of forums and something struck me. Most people have been smoking a VERY long time. Smokes have some 400+ other chemicals in them. Would anyone think that these side effects could be related to these other chemicals no long being in your system?BTW the only symptom Ive noticed is trouble falling asleep, but I get that from time to time anyways.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 21, 2008
    • 00:31 AM
    • 0
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  • Hi to everyone, hi Lori:I am new to this blog, I hope to help one person not to take this POISEN called (CHANTIX)For those of you who have no problems taking Chantix and would like to post positive, I have no clue how you got to this blog? Cause I got here by searching blue and black fingers, Joint pains, the symptoms that my poor husband, Lori an others are having in here. If you like to advertise for Pfizer, call Pfizer and praise them to get you more Chantix, for YOU, and your FAMILY. YOU LOOK LIKE CHEER LEADERS AT A FUNERAL! SO STUPID!!!For those of you that are suffering, I'm speechless, your lives, your joy, your money your health, your dreams have been robbed from you, so was ours!I asked my husband who smoked maximum 7 sigs a day to quit cold turkey as he had done it several times before> He would quit for 3-4 months and get back to it. Let me say without side effects from withdrawal. He was in good health, only slight elevated BP controlled with one pill. He was 51 years old 175 LB. in 2007 Very energetic and athletic. This time he was given the (POISON CHANTIX) by his doctor. He started Feb 2007 by May 2nd 2007 he was very ill. It started with Vivid dreams then, flue like symptoms.Every joint in his body ached. Fingers turned blue and black, in pain and spasms.Arm Pain, Wrist Pain, Insomnia, joint pain, ear aches, jaw pain, depression, Rheumatoid Arthritis, weight gain, severe elevated blood pressure. fatigue,Tongue biting. Cryogobulinemia, potassium deficiency,fall, balance disorder. gallbladder pain, vasculitis , blurred vision, elevated liver enzymes.Amputation of the effected fingers due to hospital's negligence.Doctors at the hospital thought he was on some kind of illegal drug to have cause this kind of a mess, but failed to ask us if he was on any meds. They could have checked the medical records that were faxed by the GP to the hospital to see that he was on Chantix, but they did not!My Husband is disabled now with all the above pains and aches, he can stand up about 1 hour or sit about one hour. His feet turns bloody red from vasculitis. It's been over a year, the side effects are still ongoing.IF YOU TRY THE MAJIC PILL CHANTIX, YOU WILL MAJICKLY HAVE ALL THOSE SYMPTOMS! BOYCOT PFIZER, BY NOT TAKING ANY PILLS MADE BY THEM! THIS WILL MAKE THEM THINK TWICE BEFORE THEY KILL ONE MORE FAMILY!God bless you all, and I pray that the Lord will restore your health.For those doctors who had told me Chantix could not have cause vasculitis please read! Allergic vasculitis Information on Healthline http://www.healthline.com/search?q1=allergic+vasculitis&Maro
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I used Chantix as well. Although I quit smoking I am now experiencing a nerve condition that no doctor can account for. I have a tingling/burning sensation in my groin which radiates into my lower left back. The pain is unbearable and I have been out of work for 4 months. I had mood swings after coming off chantix and was unable to handle even the smallest amount of stress. I am so fearful that this new condition will not be repairable and have yet another appointment with a neurologist tomorrow. After reading these I think we need to think class action.Although it won't help me pay my bills if I lose my job because of this condition. Before Chantix I was a perfectly healthy 48 year woman. Very scary.
    katied49 6 Replies
    • February 18, 2009
    • 10:06 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I have been on chantix for a little over 5 weeks. I had known about a majority of the side effects before starting this medication but decided to still take it because I am a tough little cookie and knew a stomach/headache/bad dream wouldn't bother me. I figure I wouldnt feel suicidal because I am engaged and WAS a very happy person. The only problem I saw in the beginning was dry mouth. By week 3 I noticed what appear to be goosebumps all over my arms. Depression and suicidal thoughts started by the end of week 3 and just the other day I noticed bald spots!!!!!!!! I am a 22 year old female and balding doesn't run in my family. My head feels like it is constantly tingly. My only hope is that the drug companies realize these are MAJOR problems and take this off the market till more research is done. Now I've read a lot of these side effects linger after your off the drug and that scares the **** outta me.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • August 23, 2009
    • 06:29 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I have been on chantix for a little over 5 weeks. I had known about a majority of the side effects before starting this medication but decided to still take it because I am a tough little cookie and knew a stomach/headache/bad dream wouldn't bother me. I figure I wouldnt feel suicidal because I am engaged and WAS a very happy person. The only problem I saw in the beginning was dry mouth. By week 3 I noticed what appear to be goosebumps all over my arms. Depression and suicidal thoughts started by the end of week 3 and just the other day I noticed bald spots!!!!!!!! I am a 22 year old female and balding doesn't run in my family. My head feels like it is constantly tingly. My only hope is that the drug companies realize these are MAJOR problems and take this off the market till more research is done. Now I've read a lot of these side effects linger after your off the drug and that scares the **** outta me.I am still suffering nerve related damage 1 year and three months later/ It is excrutiating. I also have severe bouts of depression. it is crazy what this medicine does. Now I have the joint pain severe..I am so sorry I ever took it.
    katied49 6 Replies
    • August 24, 2009
    • 01:22 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I am still suffering nerve related damage 1 year and three months later/ It is excrutiating. I also have severe bouts of depression. it is crazy what this medicine does. Now I have the joint pain severe..I am so sorry I ever took it.I had bad joint pain too was very strange. Stopped Chantix took a couple weeks but pain went away. This was over a year ago joint pain never returned.Used e-cig this WORKED. Really no side effects to speak of.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • December 17, 2009
    • 04:57 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I had bad joint pain too was very strange. Stopped Chantix took a couple weeks but pain went away. This was over a year ago joint pain never returned.Used e-cig this WORKED. Really no side effects to speak of.I'm one of the very lucky ones. No side effects at all!! I started Chantix and stopped smoking the same day. A week later I really didn't want a cigarette. For me, Chantix is great.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • December 22, 2009
    • 03:13 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I used Chantix as well. Although I quit smoking I am now experiencing a nerve condition that no doctor can account for. I have a tingling/burning sensation in my groin which radiates into my lower left back. The pain is unbearable and I have been out of work for 4 months. I had mood swings after coming off chantix and was unable to handle even the smallest amount of stress. I am so fearful that this new condition will not be repairable and have yet another appointment with a neurologist tomorrow. After reading these I think we need to think class action.Although it won't help me pay my bills if I lose my job because of this condition. Before Chantix I was a perfectly healthy 48 year woman. Very scary.Katie,I also used Chantix, about 5 days after starting it I began to have burning/tingling, on the back of my upper legs, groin and buttock, it is worse on the left side. This has been going on for over 2 years.I have been to several doctors and after a MRI of lower spine, they said I have spinal stenosis but the orthopedic doctor does not understand why it is worse on the opposite side of the stenosis. I have been referred to a neurosurgeon, at this time I am waiting to see if the surgeon I want to see will except me as a patient. Hoping to get some answers.I have thought for the longest that the Chantix has cause nerological problems. Also after 5 days of taking, I had a UTI infection, then a kidney infection and the a kidney stone...I never had problems with my kidneys prior to taking Chantix.Are you still having problems?
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 1, 2010
    • 01:23 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I took Chantix for almost 3 weeks but after having gallbladder pains for the last week, I decided the benefits of smoking a lot less did not outweigh the fact that this drug was messing with an organ. I also began to wonder what else it may be doing that I wasn't physically aware of so I quit taking it and began chewing nicorette gum. Within 24 hours the sharp, consistant pains in my gallbladder had disappeared. Chantix didn't work for me because I didn't give it the time it would have required, but I feel I made the right choice. I am disappointed that I am still a smoker but my next try will be the patch. No more drugs for me.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 7, 2010
    • 05:04 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I was a smoker for 10 years smoking a pack a day. I decided after losing 82 pounds and changing my health in that way I would quit the cigs. I took Chantix for 2 weeks and became the biggest A-Hole on the planet. Stopped the Chantix and discovered I didn't need it after all to quit. I have been off the smokes now for 11 months and have never looked back. No weight gain and feel like a new man. I ride a bicycle 5 days a week for at least 45 minutes (hard riding too), eat right, and no smoking. I can tell all of you that you do not need this drug period. All you need is the right mind set and it will be over for you. If you can replace the smokes with some sort of exercise that is fun to do you will have licked. I just picked cycling but it could be anything you like... You can do it
    mscaggs 2 Replies
    • January 28, 2010
    • 08:27 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
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  • i was on day 5 of chantix when i went to go take a piss while hangin out with a buddy of mine. the pee tingled at first so i looked down to see blood then finally a kidney stone passed through, since then i havent taken it because of the blood and im feeling sick. thank you chantix "well trade your nicotine addiction for sudden death"
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • February 9, 2010
    • 10:47 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I have just turned one year smoke free. I have never taken this drug. I smoked for 29 from the age of 7 and I smoked fairely heavy in all thoes years. I have had nearly every symtom mentioned in this tread, from stomach pain, gas, bloathing, stomach cramps, severe joint pain, neropathy of hands, arms, legs and feet, paraentisia, headaches, very vivid dreams, painful gum boils, depression, insomina, weight gain, cronic reflux, diarrohora, unexplained dental pain, hair loss, urination problems due to nerve damage. anxiety and panic attacks.......I could go on..All these apparently are geniune side effects of quitting smoking. I still suffer today from foot and and hand discomfort which is nerve damage that will get better. I find it hard to believe that anybody can point to a drug to help quit as the cause of these symtoms.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • October 17, 2010
    • 11:33 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I really have a hard time believing the above comment. Anyways I know how Champix affected me and it was extremely nasty. Here is my story:I took Champix in March of '08 and I am still suffering from most of the side effects of this poisonous drug. I started to feel some of the bad effects (nausea, mental fog, vivid dreams, trouble sleeping, sore eyes, constipation, gas) of Champix while taking it but I was determined to quit smoking. For the first month I felt exceptionally good and I was telling everyone how great it was but the euphoria came crashing down and I went into a deep depression. I would dream the entire night and feel as though I was only partially asleep. I would wake up frequently throughout the night sometimes with abdominal pain and get a bite to eat, drink, or urinate. When I woke up in the morning my eyes would be sore and I felt as though I had barely slept. My inability to sleep made me constantly tired all the time and it continued to get worse. I was determined to quit smoking so I made it through the full 3 month course. I thought I could handle the sleep deprivation and that it would go away once I stopped taking the pills but the vivid dreams continued for many months after I stopped taking it and still to this day I cannot sleep as soundly as I once could. When I stopped taking Champix is when I really got messed up. I developed Psychosis NOS, Major Depressive Disorder, suicidal, Emotional instability, aggression, rage, panic attacks, hallucination, Somatoform Disorder, Depersonalization, Delusional Parasitosis (bug crawling sensations all over my body), Cholinaergic Prurritus, Hyperacusis (sensitivity to certain frequencies of sound causing severe pain and pressure in my ears), Severe Insomnia, Memory Loss, Brain Fog, Lowered Inhibitions, Inability to handle any stress, Hair was constantly hurting all of the time and lost lots of it (27 year old male), Irritable Bowel Syndrome (started as extreme constipation and gas, fatigue, Severe Eye pain, unsightly puffy bags under eyes, excessive weight gain, gingivitis, prostate pain, frequent urination, black out and become out of control when drinking, decreased sexual pleasure and ability to maintain erections. I think that is everything!!! I went to the psych ward recently due to being suicidal and at a breaking point with my symptoms and I was treated like scum and given brain damaging neuroleptic (anti-psychotic) drugs against my will. I have made some small improvements since taking Champix but it looks like the nightmare will never truly end. If you are one of the many that gets burned by this medication be warned that the doctors will probably not be able to help you and will most likely deny that anything is even happening to you or that it is related to Champix and the side effects may be permanent. I had a similar reaction in respect to rage and disinhibition from taking Zoloft when I was younger which altered my life substantially and now Champix has put the nail in the coffin. Apparently these two drugs have a similar mechanism but Pfizer with held this information and marketed the drug in a deceiving way not mentioning any of the neuro-psychiatric and mind altering side effects of the drug when it first hit the market in order to boost sales of their poison. The medical community has know for quite some time that dopamine plays a role in mood regulation and the fact the Champix targets the “pleasure centre” of the brain makes them grossly negligent for not investigating this further and informing consumers of the potential effects. Many people including myself (I turned down a prescription of Zyban due to my experience with Zoloft) would not have taken it if we would have been informed of the risks and Pfizer obviously knew that.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • November 9, 2010
    • 04:00 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Hi to everyone, hi Lori:I am new to this blog, I hope to help one person not to take this POISEN called (CHANTIX)For those of you who have no problems taking Chantix and would like to post positive, I have no clue how you got to this blog? Cause I got here by searching blue and black fingers, Joint pains, the symptoms that my poor husband, Lori an others are having in here. If you like to advertise for Pfizer, call Pfizer and praise them to get you more Chantix, for YOU, and your FAMILY. YOU LOOK LIKE CHEER LEADERS AT A FUNERAL! SO STUPID!!!For those of you that are suffering, I'm speechless, your lives, your joy, your money your health, your dreams have been robbed from you, so was ours!I asked my husband who smoked maximum 7 sigs a day to quit cold turkey as he had done it several times before> He would quit for 3-4 months and get back to it. Let me say without side effects from withdrawal. He was in good health, only slight elevated BP controlled with one pill. He was 51 years old 175 LB. in 2007 Very energetic and athletic. This time he was given the (POISON CHANTIX) by his doctor. He started Feb 2007 by May 2nd 2007 he was very ill. It started with Vivid dreams then, flue like symptoms.Every joint in his body ached. Fingers turned blue and black, in pain and spasms.Arm Pain, Wrist Pain, Insomnia, joint pain, ear aches, jaw pain, depression, Rheumatoid Arthritis, weight gain, severe elevated blood pressure. fatigue,Tongue biting. Cryogobulinemia, potassium deficiency,fall, balance disorder. gallbladder pain, vasculitis , blurred vision, elevated liver enzymes.Amputation of the effected fingers due to hospital's negligence.Doctors at the hospital thought he was on some kind of illegal drug to have cause this kind of a mess, but failed to ask us if he was on any meds. They could have checked the medical records that were faxed by the GP to the hospital to see that he was on Chantix, but they did not!My Husband is disabled now with all the above pains and aches, he can stand up about 1 hour or sit about one hour. His feet turns bloody red from vasculitis. It's been over a year, the side effects are still ongoing.IF YOU TRY THE MAJIC PILL CHANTIX, YOU WILL MAJICKLY HAVE ALL THOSE SYMPTOMS! BOYCOT PFIZER, BY NOT TAKING ANY PILLS MADE BY THEM! THIS WILL MAKE THEM THINK TWICE BEFORE THEY KILL ONE MORE FAMILY!God bless you all, and I pray that the Lord will restore your health.For those doctors who had told me Chantix could not have cause vasculitis please read! Allergic vasculitis Information on Healthline http://www.healthline.com/search?q1=allergic+vasculitis&MaroHi I posted this back in 2008. I had discovered since then that my spouse Howard Smotherman was on cocaine and Alcohol. I had no clue since he was working in Virgin Islands and most of the time alone. I only blamed chantix because he had made me believe he does not use drugs. I do not know if the combination of cocaine, alcohol, and chantix cause this, but he should have known better not have used drugs with medication. My apologies to Chantix company.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • November 9, 2011
    • 10:57 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
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