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Avatar universal

Drinking, depression post Treatment

Hi, I finished Treatment, at the end of Sept, it was incredibly difficult mentally as I am sure many on here can relate to, I had Genotype 1a and had a undetectable viral load at week 12, and right the way through until the end.
I am forty years old..so I should stand a pretty good chance of remaining clear.
Four weeks after treatment I remain very isolated, with disturbed moods, and pains in my hips and my feet, (planto fasciatus seems to have returned) I was treated very early on, just after having acute hepc, I didnt clear it naturally.
I have been agitated, paranoid, withdrawn and have been experiencing suicidal thoughts/obsessions, delusions of being persecuted and other strange stuff after finishing treatment ...I explained this to my nurse and he seems dismissive of it ...now that treatment is over.
Anyway I am a real low,I  have convinced myself I have not cleared it, I stupidly booked a flight on my own to Istanbul, just to get away...not speaking the language, really has only made the feeling of isolation worse, this probably was NOT the best time to go on holiday...but I thought I really needed a break the cycle of sitting around feeling sorry for myself.
I am here in this beautiful city not able to appreciate it , all i see is the rubbish and broken pavements, and become upset at the mistreatment of the animals here.....on Friday night went out and had three bottled beers, first in two years !! cant believe I did this! then the same again on saturday night drinking five beers ! and then half a bottle of wine last night. I have kept a wonderful diet...and really looked after myself.
I think I've REALLY screwed up, I just thought Sod it...I need some release..!  I know alcohol is not the answer, I feel so depressed that I've blown my chances of a SVR
I am getting a peverse comfort from starting a self destrutive process to ease the path to suicide...What on earth am I doing ? what is happening to me ?  I am taking the overnight train to a  country remote cottage I have rented...Sounds  idyllic ...but all I keep thinking about is ...its the best place to end my suffering.
I should have gone on antideppressants weeks ago ..but I refused ..I used to take Prosac, pior to treatment ,but I feared the horrible side effects ....I just cant face going back to work, my moodiness and negative attitude on treatment have almost wiped out my carear, my job involves a lot of people interaction ...I have become an outsider at work ...I have been blanking colleagues just because I feared the question ..how are you? all I did was complain , and I know that I had this mad look in my eyes, conversations were just awful ....after months of it  people have just fallen away.
Did anyone else experience anything  like this ? I feel so tortured and chemically altered I feel that Interferon has given me the equivilant of a brain injury ....I know this sounds depressing ..but my self esteem has hit rock bottom, so many people on here are so seriously ill, and I feel , like this message is a slap in the face to them...as they are probably thinking just get on with your life ....but I simply just cant seem to reassemble the mental pieces after this treatment. Has anyone experieced this ...I am I blaming Interferon/Riba for all the ills in my life ? I am trying to help myself by writing this ...but another part of me says ..dont post it ...I am so torn as what to do ...any suggestions ?
18 Responses
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Avatar universal
You are in my prayers..come home and get the help you deserve because you are worth it.You know its the meds that are lingering in your system.Hang in there and come home.There is always time for a great vacation when you feel better.Think of good things and know you are loved.This is just one of life's valley's and there will be many many more peaks for you!God speed.... now get home and talk to your Dr.Please write
back I would like to know how you are doing.
                                                      Lisa sister of Lydia.... person very sick with Hep-c
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Wow you got alot of attention with that one.. I finished tx in May and am still struggling with my brain. What I do instead of traveling, thats way too much work, is I buy things. I haven't worked in over a year and spend money like I am a millionair. Every week its some major purchase. New expensive guitar, new computer, new sound system for car, new motorcycle stuff, Then repeat the cycle. The only reason I am doing this is because I am trying to change the way I feel. I have tried multiple AD's, tried praying, tried working the 12 steps, tried sex, tried no sex. I hear you. I've had several employment offers but I am not sure I can work. Up until now I've been SVR. Monday I go in for my 6 month check. Of course it will take time to get the results. So if you read this post before then say a prayer for me. I can't quite snap out of it asRocker forlife suggests. To me thats like the old Nancy Reagan thing of"Just say no to drugs"  Yea right Nancy. I've been sober almost 13 years and it took alot more then that.
     Thanks for posting good to know I am not alone.
      Red
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Right now go to the mirror and give yourself a slap on you own face and snap out of this...think positive...you may be cured and dont even know it...for Gods sake man...get a grip...and dont give up yet...
Helpful - 0
648439 tn?1225058862
Just go to the doctor and get some immediate treatment. You do not need to feel like this.  Ring your embassy - they will tell you a good doctor.  If you have no embassy from your country, try the British Embassy or the American Embassy. Even the hotel should be able to help - most countries I travel to have a doctor on call who speaks English if you don't speak Turkish or another language.  I dunno about buying stuff over the counter, although I know you can do that in many countries.  In India often the pharmacies have a doctor in residence.  However, someone who can follow up with you might be a better choice and I have found treatment to be very thorough when travelling - more thorough then here in good old NZ.

I have been to Turkey, India, S E Asia  - travel in some of those countries can be rough and isolating and outside of your comfort zone, confronting and trying, exotic and tiring, good and bad, could well contribute to feelings of being outside your zone.......
Helpful - 0
212705 tn?1221620650
I also have been concerned abot your welfare. I hope you are ok? Please write and let us know what's happening and how you are.
Thanks

Yvonne
Helpful - 0
80575 tn?1207132364
I posted this on the thread "Istanbul" also.
___________________________________

Hi Dreyfuus,

Because Turkey is now part of the EU, I suspected that you might be a Brit.  I have many close friends from England and enjoy their company very much.  I'm educating them about what is and isn't football :-)

When I read your post it was like looking in a rear-view mirror (post treatment).  While treating I felt exactly like you described but with the help of ADs and other meds prescribed by a competent Doctor, I felt a lot better.

Now 1 year+ post successful tx and SVR, I look back at the whole experience as some surreal bump in the road.  Things will get better for you too; it's only the Interferon talking.

If you're reading this please let us know how your doing.  I've been thinking about you for the past two days.  

Cheers Mate,

miked
Helpful - 0
476246 tn?1418870914
Please let us know how you are doing.

Marcia
Helpful - 0
233616 tn?1312787196
the best thing you could have done was to post this.
there is no doubt that your mind and body are weary from the tx. Toughing it out on tx may not have beeb wisdom, but it's done. The question is, why not get some help for the interim. It can take many months before brain chemistry returns to normal...each day you operate with a seretonin deficit you are going to endure all you described.

Part of the chemical deficit can cause fixations or brain loops..where you cannot avoid rethinking a negative thought even when you want to. This is caused by the overstimulation of Riba in my opinion, which acts much like an upper. Combine this with low levels of cholesterol which many liver patients experience, and the brain feels stripped and raw...because it is.

I think you need to begin a lipid regime, check your cholesterol levels, and get into see a doctor who will take you seriously ASAP.
If your liver doc does not...I would suggest an oncologist or pschiatrist. An oncologist is a good choice because they see the effects of chemo most often and are more familiar with liver friendly drug choices than a shrink would be.
I know the scenery didn't change things...whereever we go...there we are...but if it's any consulation you are describing thoughts and feeling I, and probably most in here have had to confront and deal with. Going through it alone, and refusing any medical intervention is not the thing to help yourself. You've taken a good second step coming in here after your doctor ignored you...but now get yourself to someone who can help you.
Otherwise you are letting your fears take over (and they can cause symptoms) plus...you are letting someone's carelessness ruin your life. Why should you be thinking like this?  A pox on the persons who ignored your cry for help. You've got a lot of good years left, but you need to get mad here a little, and fight for them.
I remember when my doctor ignored me, and it almost cost me my life...until I made up my mind lying one night in agony...if I don't fight for me...she will kill me....and then I took the bull the horns and kept knocking on doors until I did get diagnosed and treated.
At some point...you've got to be willing to fight to get back that quality...you can't just let folks  brush you off who have no idea what kind of pain you are in each day.
keep us posted, please....

mb

mb
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
You are valuable, you are important and you HAVEN'T blown your SVR.  Please please give yourself a bit of time.  Get yourself to a pharmacy and get some ativan (lorazepam) for the anxiety.  Ring the British consul for help if you need it.  And please post again - we will get you through this.  You have done so much to save your life.  You have endured the hellish treatment and managed to complete it.  You are strong enough to travel and your brain works well enough to organise a holiday - this is all good.  Now do one thing more - be kind to yourself!  Don't turn this into a pissup - relax, sleep in, eat well and entertain your mind with imagining who is on the other end of this lifeline.  You posted this thread for a reason - I imagine its because you are not quite finished, not quite ready to let go.  Stick around a while.  Post again, we will get you through this.  Send me a pm if you want.  I'll talk it over with you on any terms you want.  Please.

jd
Helpful - 0
212705 tn?1221620650
"tryed to drown his sorrows but they could swim."

Well said!

The last paragraph sounds divine.
Helpful - 0
388154 tn?1306361691
No you can`t drink the virus back but you can damage the liver.
I know a guy here in Sweden he cleared the virus 2.5 years ago he was sober for 2 years
including while on treatment.

They day he stoped hes treatment he started to drink hard liquid hes been drunk ever since even developed what we call drunken legs kind of spasm he lift his legs up high and tip toes he way when walking.

This guy is a severe alcoholic hes still SVR.

One of swedens greatest writers and poets Gustaf Froding he ended up in a mental hospital and died there they say about him that he tryed to drown his sorrows but they could swim.

And they can!! Very good in alcohol so don´t you go do the same stupid thing my man.
Alcohol is a depressiv drug in to bigger quantitys.

Get your a$$ down to one of them turkish bath houses and drink tea eat good, get masage and know this thing will pass the rain will stop and the sun will shine both over the righteous as well as over the unreighteous.

ca
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Sorry about the whole kettle you're in.

First off, drinking after treatment, if desired,  should be limited to no more than two drinks a day (according to my doctor) -- so the quantities you mentioned are above that. If you continue to drink in excessive quantities you could harm your liver. That said the drinking you mentioned should have no effect on your SVR, as you either are SVR or are not at this point. At least you should get that off your mind.

Turkey can be a nice place to visit but sounds like you should get yourself home, talk to your doctor, and see your theapist if you have one. If not, time to see one. ADs may be the answer and the post treatment experience can be even more difficult than treating for some of us. The whole friend/islolation thing I can relate to very well. It was almost like I had to start a new life after treatment with many friends gone. But I have.

Hope things work out better soon.

-- Jim
Helpful - 0
80575 tn?1207132364
You're amongst friends here.

It sounds to me like you stand a pretty good chance of having cleared the virus...UND at Week 12 is considered Rapid Virological Response (RVR).  Is it the few beers and wine that makes you think you've blown your chances for SVR?  Don't continue down that path but also don't let that worry you about your chances for SVR.

You have reasons to be hopeful for SVR and get back to your life.

On my first tx the local-yocal doc didn't put me on anti-depressants and about three weeks into it I started feeling much like you described.  I made big issues out of minor things, fought with my wife and kids, paranoid, withdrawn....just losing it in general.  I was put on ADs at week 3, it took a couple of weeks for the ADs to kick-in and help.

Before being put on ADs, one day day I was so angry with my family because I didn't think they were supportive.  I went out in the garden in good clothes and proceeded to weed it by hand while yelling the whole time.  I weeded until exhaustion.

On my 2nd tx, my Doc put me on anti-depressants 3 weeks before starting tx and for almost two month after stopping tx.  Like you I don't much like the affects of ADs but they really helped me through my 2nd tx.

I worked a job during both treatments that required lots of people interaction and lots of business travel.  There were so many nights that  I'd close the hotel door at 10:00 PM.....after a plane flight, all-day customer meetings, customer drinks (which I sat there with a Coke or no alcohol beer), then customer dinners....I'd close the door and just thank God that the day was over and give me strength to do it again tomorrow.  I can relate to where you are right now.

Your nurse is ignorant.  You need to make an appointment (either through your present doc or on your own) with a psychiatrist, explain your situation, get on ADs for a couple months and probably be seen at regular appointments for awhile.

Istanbul is definitely on my to do list.  I've traveled the world and in many off-the-beaten path locations.  Every time I experience culture shock (especially if traveling alone) that I know is coming but just happens because things aren't like home.  An Interferon hang-over probably isn't a compliment to culture shock, language, travel, etc.  Is it possible to just bag your trip, get on the next plane home, be amongst family and friends and make the appointment with the psychiatrist?  You can always go back when you feel better.

Oh yeah, I do feel better.  I'm 50+ weeks post-treatment from my 2nd tx which was VX950.  I'm still UND, considered SVR and am living my life in a very normal and enjoyable way.  Things will get back to normal for you too.  

It looks bad right now through your eyes but things really aren't as bad as they feel inside to you.  It's the Interferon talking.  You are OK but need to go get help.

Keep in touch friend and let us know how we can help.  Send me an email if I can be of help.

SVR is worth it.  

miked
Helpful - 0
619345 tn?1310341421
Find the tourist dept any taxi can take you there They will speak English and Get them to call an English Speaking  doctor or an Emergency Clinic that Tourists Can go to
f
Also I would assume you can get Prozac over the counter at a Pharmacy you may also do that but a doctor will help you  Isolation is a natural with Depression we drive everyone close away but not fair to them or your family Consuling may not be easy to find in Istanbul but a doctor will prescribe what you need to get you out of the funk and stay on Anti depressants until you do not need them anymore  I think the major mistake people make is when it is time to stop the Anti d's they do not follow the rule of weaning yourself off this can be tricky but possible
You have asked for help Now you have to help yourself  SUICIDE  is not an answer it is a decision that most regret the minute they do it  Isolation is not good either but this issue is difficult as when we drive everyone away it is most time not a voluntary issue it is part of the disease of depression you can treat it  Please Get Help  Get in a Taxi and Go to the American Consul or the Tourism office They will help you get a Good Doctor or Emergency Clinic It is all you can do better not to self medicate
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
I agree, you need to get help now! You know you should not be drinking, it won't fix anything, it won't takeaway the bad feelings. Also don't isolate yourself, because you are alone with your thoughts. You need to keep your mind busy, until you can get on ad's and pull yourself together. I've read that it's not uncommon to become depressed post tx. You have gone through so much, and you've come so far. It's been a very difficult experience for your mind and body, but life will return to normal. Hang in there, take care and and please stay in touch. I want to know you're ok
     S
Helpful - 0
212705 tn?1221620650
My heart goes out to you....
I do understand all the emotional garbage that goes with this tx...it is very real  Of course, you know alcohol is the last thing you need to be doing. So stop now...
if you are an alcoholic...I bet you could find AA in Istanbul...if you're not....Stop. It is not the answer....
I think you should come home and check yourself into a hospital. Give yourself a break, let someone take care of you.
We don't know if you have compromised your SVR...Do Not Even Go There.
Remind yourself that it is the drugs that is causing this...the whole tx. It is not you. Don't give up now.....
You can get through this...
You are in my thoughts and prayers.
Please keep in touch....and please get the help you deserve.
Sincerely,
Yvonne
Helpful - 0
408795 tn?1324935675
If I were you I would get back on AD's, if you've had a hard time of getting off of them it really doesn't matter at this point as you are definitely going thru a very tough time.  I suggest you reach out to family and friends.  Even more important is to see a doctor today and be honest with the doctor.  Get some prozac or whatever it takes to get yourself out of that funk.  It's most obvious that you are in that deep hole of depression and that's understandable, but it's not acceptable to stay there.  If you have any prozacs left start taking them asap until you can see a professional.  This is truly one of the most disturbing stories I've ever read.  Also I would consider cancelling your visit to that cottage as that doesn't seem like a good place to be right now.  I stongly suggest that you pull yourself up by whatever means necessary as this is a terrible situation you find yourself in.  One last thing, alcohol is a depressant and will not help the depression at all and may make it worse.  Please do yourself a favor and get out of that funk fast!!  God Bless you  
Helpful - 0
179856 tn?1333547362
Honestly, I think you'd be best off booking a doctors appt pronto. Unfortunately interferon plays havoc and can cause all the things that you are experiencing right now. I would have thought it would be out of your system by now however - whatever the reason it seems like talking to a doctor and perhaps a short term of an antidepressant might be in order.

You went through a lot recently mentally and physically.  People in general don't understand how difficult treatment can be.  Then, all the worry afterward" what if I relapse?" it's too much, it really can be for anybody.

Try to find someone you can discuss this with who has experience in these matters.  We are only patients and as much as we have all been through there are times we are not qualified to try to figure things out.

Good luck.

Helpful - 0
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