Discussions By Condition: Nerve conditions

Neuropathy from Antibiotic

Posted In: Nerve conditions 12 Replies
  • Posted By: simplemarn
  • May 9, 2007
  • 10:13 PM

Just wondering if anyone out there has had a similar experience. A medical mystery! Had an allergic reaction to antibiotic Bactrim DS in Jan 07 (for sinus infection), with all kinds of weird symptoms, mostly nerve-related. After taking Bactrim for 5 days, ended up in ER with severe tingling in both feet/legs up to knees. Several MRI's brain, neck, back:, ENT, etc. etc. all normal. Now have vision problems (many floaters both eyes) , tingling still (never goes away) in legs, weakness, etc. Have been to Neuro, Rheumatologist, etc. All tests are normal. Lyme, lupus, MS, all neg. Any suggestions? Have been taking fish oil since Jan. but so far, no difference. Any idea (docs out there?) as to how long it takes nerves to recover from toxicity? All docs I've been to say its all due to the hyper-reaction from the antibiotic. Am seeing a Chiro right now to see if it helps.
Appreciate any responses. 27 year old female-teacher. Thank you!:confused:

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12 Replies:

  • I'm going through something similar I think. I had/have an inflammed tendon and was advised to take nurofen. Since then the symptoms have expanded to include nerve sensations between legs down inner thighs and up towards sacrum. All scans show everything to be normal save the tendonitis (where hamstring joins pelvis). I am now beginning to think the nerve symptoms are unrelated to the tendon and are actually an allergic reaction to the nurofen (I am quite allergy prone, usually to food).I've only just stopped the nurofen as I began getting severe gut cramps a few days ago (after 2 months of use) and hope the nervy stuff will clear up too. I hope it isn't irreversible as the whole thing has made sitting extremely uncomfortable and painful!!50 year old woman, previously active now reduced to lying on sofa.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I am sorry to hear about your similar experience. Doesn't it just drive you crazy? I only took the Bactrim for 5 days, and that was nearly 5 months ago, and the tingling hasn't gone away. I am going to a new primary doc tomorrow. I am wondering if I have food allergies to something or another med that could be causing this (my birth control pill?--I don't know). I suggest you stop taking anything that you might "think" could be causing the nerve reactions. My husband and I just ordered something today called "ReBuilder"---invented by a top-notch company: it is supposed to re-train damaged nerves to work again. If you type in "ReBuilder" on yahoo or google, info should come up. I will let you know if it works--looks promising! Other than that, I was told to take antioxidants to help with the nerve craziness. I hope you feel better. I wish I had something positive to say. I'm still waiting, waiting for it to get better. Keep in touch, and let me know if anything helps.
    simplemarn 2 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hello me again.I was back on the nurofen before too long as the pain became unbearable. I'm also taking gabapentin now but despite having reached 1400mg a day there is no improvement. The nerve tingles are almost not there and sadly have been replaced with excruciating pain. Both neurologist and a rheumatologist seem to think I'll get better with time and they want me to increase the gabapentin to its maximum dose of 1800mg. Luckily I have no real side effects except a bit pof drowsiness that I can shake off if I stand up. Sadly I still cannot sit at all and even lying down has become quite painfull as I guess some weight goes onto muscles ligaments tendons etc in the butt. It is no longer just the left sitting bone and tendon that hurt but just about everything in that region as well as the right hand side. I am quite despondent and really not sure I am getting the severity of my condition across to the health professionals.I hope you are having more luck with your condition.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hi,This is my story. Last June I began taking Septra (sulpha based antibiotic). After 5 days (1 day shy of a full course), I developed a very bad rash all over my shoulders, a little on my arms, stomach and legs. My lips were also swollen. Went to the emergency room. Long story short, I went through ***l. I was in horrible pain for months - my feet were on fire; every little touch was excrutiating. The doctors all said it wasn't related to my allergic reaction to Septra (they were wrong!). I lost 30lbs in 2 months. I couldn't eat, sleep, could barely move, couldn't even hold my 2year old. They put me through every test you can imagine - CT scans, lumbar punture (they thought I had MS, because I could barely walk I was in so much pain!), nerve conduction tests, multiple blood tests). Fast forward 1 year later (!), I was finally diagnosed with drug-induced peripheral neuropathy. I now take elavil once a day (30mg) and neurontin 3 times a day (1800mg total) and I can finally function. Just recently I began taking alpha-lipoic acid, Cerefolin-NAC (prescription supplement), CoQ 10, n-acetylsysteine and I began drinking Synergy drinks. I'm doing all this with the hope it will help my damaged nerves regenerate. Would love to hear other's stories.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I've used the rebuilder for about 4 months now. I was certainly skeptical at first, but am not any longer. My pain is basically gone, and so is my prescription for neurontin. I can feel my toes and feet again, and can tell what pedals my feet are on in the car for the first time in a couple of years. My doctor doesn't want to listen one bit about the fact that I am sleeping through the night with no discomfort or medication, that I do not need my walker any more or rarely use my cane, and that all I've done is this rebuilder. When he took another nerve conductivity test, he looked at it confused, as if he entered "2 + 2" in a calculator and came up with "5". He wanted a follow up visit, which I refused. I told him if he needed to see me, he could drive the hour to my house. He said that was too far. I told "4 months ago I couldn't drive at all, but today I drove the hour here and am leaving now to drive the hour back. So tell me again the reason you need to see me?" He said to make sure it wasn't a fluke. He didn't want to hear about the rebuilder and that I was not taking the neurontin. It was just not making sense to him. I told him I was no longer going to be a lemming and follow the pills off the face of the cliff. He said well, if you don't want to listen to me, then I can't help you any further. I told him he didn't help when I DID listen, and now don't need his help. I will still badger him about the rebuilder every chance I get. These uppity-ups need to realize that a dozen years of medical school and 20 years in practice doesn't mean they know all there is to know. I think they forget to continue to learn and investigage and keep their minds open. Folks, don't give up or take "no" for an answer. They don't know everything!
    pomalley 1 Replies
    • October 17, 2008
    • 07:12 PM
    • 0
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  • I've used the rebuilder for about 4 months now. I was certainly skeptical at first, but am not any longer. My pain is basically gone, and so is my prescription for neurontin. I can feel my toes and feet again, and can tell what pedals my feet are on in the car for the first time in a couple of years. My doctor doesn't want to listen one bit about the fact that I am sleeping through the night with no discomfort or medication, that I do not need my walker any more or rarely use my cane, and that all I've done is this rebuilder. When he took another nerve conductivity test, he looked at it confused, as if he entered "2 + 2" in a calculator and came up with "5". He wanted a follow up visit, which I refused. I told him if he needed to see me, he could drive the hour to my house. He said that was too far. I told "4 months ago I couldn't drive at all, but today I drove the hour here and am leaving now to drive the hour back. So tell me again the reason you need to see me?" He said to make sure it wasn't a fluke. He didn't want to hear about the rebuilder and that I was not taking the neurontin. It was just not making sense to him. I told him I was no longer going to be a lemming and follow the pills off the face of the cliff. He said well, if you don't want to listen to me, then I can't help you any further. I told him he didn't help when I DID listen, and now don't need his help. I will still badger him about the rebuilder every chance I get. These uppity-ups need to realize that a dozen years of medical school and 20 years in practice doesn't mean they know all there is to know. I think they forget to continue to learn and investigage and keep their minds open. Folks, don't give up or take "no" for an answer. They don't know everything!Remember, these doctors work for you! If you do not see improvement with one doctor fire them. Hire a new one. I also remember reading that Montel Williams went 19 years undiagnosed with MS. The doctors never got it right for 19 years.Also, when you do decide to see a new doctor, do NOT release prior medical records, doctors can at times write nasty notes in your file that you will never see but your next doctor will and even though you think your starting fresh you are NOT. Give them your history yourself and get new tests and make them work for you. Your paying for it!Remember, doctors are humans and they are NOT perfect.
    nopaintreatment.com 11 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hi, Thank you for your story. I had a very similar experience back in 1990 - a severe neurological reaction to Septra that wasn't attributed to Septra until a year later when I when given the drug a second time and ended up in hospital emergency and kept for 4 days on 100 mg of demerol every 4 hours. Terrible painful spasms and sharp darting pains. I live in an isolated area so was medi-evaced to major hospital when I was properly diagnosed with peripheral poly-neuropathy caused by a neurological reaction to Septra. I still have problems, but started taking 1800 mgs of gabapentin in 2000, it has dramatically changed my life. I can work and function again. I am now 57, so spent a good part of my active life with major restrictions. Practically couch ridden for the first year. Still debilitating episodes at times, often triggered by cold/damp weather or room, or walking/sitting on hard surfaces for period of time. Some restrictions that will likely always be there. But I have started short distance slow paced running lately, and that is helping somewhat.My initial reactions were similar to yours except no rash. Had tingling in hands and feet, then extreme hot and cold in hands and feet, then extreme sensitivity - hurt to put a facecloth on my hand to wash my face, crawled to bathroom as feet were so tender, and awful pain when put on tight clothing items such as bra and sox for months (still to some degree today). All I could handle then was loose clothing as my entire body was hypersensitive. Then the other symptoms started - spasms, head twitches, sharp stabbing pains, electric shocks, terrible sensations on my skin, voltage stabbing through various parts of my body, etc. Lost 25 lbs in two months. Was given 11 different medications in 14 days as the doctors did not know what was going on. Muscle mass was so weak I couldn't stand for more than a few minutes. Was not diagnosed the first dosage as I didn't have the rash or intestinal problems which was most common reaction. I went to ***l and back again. When I was finally properly diagnosed, the head of the Neurological Dept at the Health Sciences Centre said that if I had continued to take the Septra, I would not be here today to tell him about it. I live in Canada and listened to a science radio program (Quirks and Quarks) which one day featured Septra reactions. The guest was a doctor in Prince Edward Island who is wheelchair bound due to her severe reaction to Septra. The program said that the UK was working toward banning this drug because of the number of deaths and severe reactions that people had had from it!! The States and Canada were continuing to use the drug! I contacted the drug company to report my reaction, and they said that they could only receive this information from doctors and special forms and details had to be submitted. I truly believe that our doctors are not reporting these reactions to Septra because they don’t have time, or because in many cases, it is not properly diagnosed. Have others had similar experiences??
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • August 19, 2009
    • 06:23 PM
    • 0
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  • I am experiencing all of the same symptoms.I had a breast reduction 2 months ago , was put on 5 different major antibiotics because the left breast incision became infected and now I am experiencing the worst pain that I have ever felt in my life in my legs.I have a constant burning sensation in my thighs, my muscle feel like it is being torn apart it was isolated in one leg now I am experiencing the sensations in both legs as well as the musscles of my upper arms. I have been placed on Lyrica,Flexeril, and most recently Cymbalta, scheduled to have an MRI done in 5 days have taken a ton of blood test.I feel like this is a waste of time the doctors are not listening to me.I was healthy prior to the being given all the differnt antibiotics.I am praying that this will go away because the pain is unbearable it does not take a rocket scientist to figure this out.I will never take aonther antibiotic in this lifetime again.specifically Keflex, Clindamycin, Vancomycin, Zosyn ,Bactrim DS.Did not start feeling the sensations until I started taking Clindamycin.Docs are adamant that this is not a side effect of that drug but I beg to differ that it is.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • January 17, 2010
    • 09:35 PM
    • 0
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  • I was given Levaquin for surgery and sent home with its counterpart, Cipro. Soon I felt like a tank rolled over me. My legs and rib cage hurt, fingers were swollen, severe headache ... something wasn't right. I called my surgeon and he called in more Levaquin. Result: increased leg pain, gait was off, and bottoms of feet hurt so badly that I had to "lighten" self by holding onto my husband or furniture to walk. At no point did I think this medicine was poisoning me. It was more like, "Dayem, something very bad must have happened in surgery for me not to be healing." I saw my GP, who found no infection nevertheless prescribed ... yep, more Levaquin. Pulsing in my fingertips, racing heart, insomnia, and severe, really severe memory loss followed. I would search for the right words during conversations. Things improved after I finished the pills -- I could walk without limping and went back to work, but was fired within weeks for cognitive issues. That was a year ago. Since then I've learned that quinolones can and do ruin people. Remember my leg and foot pain? Well, I now have small fiber neuropathy, a disease where the bottoms of your feet burn. Memory and cognitive decline? After I finish typing this, I will re-read it 20 times because I often use the wrong word, leave words out, or can't figure out how to spell them. If you're thinking, "Well, you're just a typical idiot. Half the nation can't spell." No, my former job was editorial assistant, and now that career is shot. My neurologist deemed my neuropathy without known cause, or idiopathic. His nurse, however, said it's often the result of toxicity. Was I the victim of a toxic reaction to Levaquin? I can't prove this, just as I can't disprove it. Certainly, the doctors who prescribed it aren't saying. The only thing I am sure of is that someone knows. Look at the quinolones withdrawn because of toxicity. Someone is intimately aware of these drugs and they need to tell. Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quinolone
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hi all.I am currently taking Septra 3 days a week...for when ever they tell me to get off of it.So far I am having light headedness, Some itching but not much, and tingling in my hands feet and joints. I do not have any desire to eat. I get these strange headaches and always have a low grade fever. Im getting really worried because I cant feel my fingers sometimes and I am having issues with focusing my thoughts as I have the headaches as well as this wierd numb feeling in my neck. Sometimes numb and sometimes feels like hot water is being poured down my neck all the way down my spineI did all the tests. Everything is fine. However they did a Lumbar Puncture/Spinal Tap because I was in the emerger with pain in my neck, which I could barely move. I also had a higher fever than they liked and checked for Meningitis.Either way...Im tired all the time, I dont want to do anything at all, and I just feel so incredibly weak.I hope no one ever has to go through what we have all gone through,
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Pretty sure I have some kind of drug induced neuropathy from taking Bactrim. I have terrible pain throughout my legs and arms that feels like burning and electrical shocks. It has been 7 weeks since I stopped taking Bactrim (only took it for 4 days because it made me so sick with flu-like symptoms and muscle pain), and the pain is ongoing. All blood tests negative for anything else. I'd love to talk to anyone who has gone through this to exchange info about how to ease the pain/get on with life!
    Anonymous 1 Replies Flag this Response
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  • I have been suffering with bactrim induced neuoropathy and other symptoms, including a chronic cough, since March 2012. I have yet to find a dr that can understand that something so commonly used can cause such long lasting side effects. In the first few months I could barely move. Everything hurt, including my teeth. It started as a tingling sensation that started in my toes and crawled it's way up. I have made huge strides in the past 2.5 yrs but i have chronic pain. Love to here from others.
    Anonymous 1 Replies
    • September 4, 2014
    • 11:56 AM
    • 0
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