Amitriptyline (generic of Elavil) - Merri Ellen

From: Helen Dynda (
Fri Oct 29 01:42:26 1999

I was prescribed amitriptyline (generic of Elavil) in the fall of 1975. If my memory serves me right, and what is generally true of many medications, I was prescribed the lowest strength of amitriptyline - 25mgs to start with. I was kept on 25mgs for about 2 weeks. Then my doctor prescribed 50mgs - in other words he increased the strength of the amitriptyline gradually by 25mgs every 2 weeks until I had reached a level which was giving me the therapeutic help I needed.

He also spent alot of unpaid hours counseling me. He recognized that I was in a lot of pain and also very depressed. Amitriptyline has been recognized both as an anti-depressant and that it can help with pain. Depression is a big part of chronic pain. Depression can increase the sensation of pain; so it is important to get help for the depression too.

A person's amitriptyline level, like many medications, can be monitored by having periodic blood levels drawn. When I first started seeing my psychiatrist in January 1997, she wrote out a prescription so that I would have a blood level drawn. At that time I was taking 225mgs of amitriptyline. My blood level revealed that my blood level of amitriptyline was 525mgs!! My amitriptyline level was at a toxic level in my blood. So gradually over several weeks she lowered it so that now I take only 100mgs at night.

She also started me on carbamazapine (generic of Tegretol) - starting at a low level and gradually increasing over several weeks. Currently I take 200mgs in the AM and 400mgs before bedtime. She specializes in pain management - so she knows what she is doing.

At Thu, 28 Oct 1999, Merri Ellen wrote: >
>In a post that Helen provided a link to recently...Tuesday? The author
>mentioned DeNovo adhesions. What are they? This sounds very familiar
>and I would be interested in reading about them.
>Also...just a note to say thank you to Helen and others that have been
>so generous in sharing links and information and hope. Having
>information (not available to me 17 years ago) and a balance of
>understanding and encouragement has been very beneficial.
>Helen...previous experience with elavil has been very unpleasant for me.
>Did you have to adjust dosages or take something in combination? I was
>unable to function...serious drowsiness. Same thing happened recently
>with a prescription of Levbid. I seem to be very sensitive to any drug.
>My hope is that we will find something that is effective and then get
>something else to counteract the side effects. Does this seem
>Interesting development...I have a dip in one of my incisions. What
>used to be flat has now seemingly been sucked below the natural line of
>my abdomen, in direct alignment with a pull/stabbing pain.
>This is my weak attempt at explaining what has happened.
>The ^ is where a ?suture? has resurfaced after 11 years. The V is where
>a half inch section has been dipped. Do you think this could be
>adhesions pulling on the incision line? Has anyone ever heard of such a
>Merri Ellen

The 15th century proverb which summarizes the purpose of medicine is:
* To cure sometimes, to relieve often, to comfort always. *

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