Amitriptyline – Two Weeks In

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I have now been on amitriptyline for two weeks.  Well, I will take my 14th pill tonight.  It hasn’t been quite the upheaval that beginning fluoxetine was, but it has been an interesting time.

I’m on amitriptyline while my doctor is awaiting my blood results to rule out other things that can cause fatigue and muscle pain in a similar manner to fibromyalgia.  It’s used to treat both nerve pain and to improve sleep – sleep being one of the more important factors in determining your ambient pain levels during the day.  It succeeded on both counts!  With some … interesting effects.

The first morning after I began taking amitrip it felt like all my muscles were limp noodles.  Walking was an interesting experience.  My hips swung wide and I caught myself on my dresser, on door frames, on couches …  and it was hard just getting my toast from the plate to my mouth.  Nothing quite wanted to cooperate.

I felt a little spaced out.  Not as much of a space cadet as fluoxetine, fortunately.  I didn’t feel like I was permanently lightly high.  I just felt … lighter.  The physical effects of amitrip definitely contributed to the overall light feeling.  I also slept really well.  For the first week at least.

The second week was a bit rougher.  My sleep became more interrupted.  It was harder to fall asleep on the couch at 8.  It didn’t help that I had a lot more commitments in the evening that week, so I wasn’t able to relax for a bit before dozing off.  I started to feel flat, like I wanted to do nothing and be an amorphous blob again.  I began having difficulties concentrating, my words jumbled up.  I felt sluggish.  My body felt heavy, I was sore.  I still had limp noodle muscles first thing in the morning.

Last night (for reasons I’ll blog about later) I had one of the best sleeps I’ve had in a long while and I am now out of a state of pure exhaustion and into a place of just normal tiredness.  The sluggishness, difficulties concentrating, and issues with words were mainly a result of the fact that I was utterly knackered.  Getting some seriously good sleep took that extreme edge off, leaving me with a more normal tiredness I know how to deal with.

The amitrip still makes my muscles noodles, and it’s lovely, because when I wake up in the morning I am not stiff and in pain.  It leaves me a bit wobbly for a few hours, but that is getting better with the exercises my physio has given me for stability.  I am also definitely sleeping better, although not as well as I did during the first week.  I still wake up during the night, just not as frequently.  I also really notice when I have and haven’t slept well the night before – I notice a huge increase in ambient pain levels through my hips and legs and up my back when I’ve slept poorly.  The amitrip only does so much for the pain.

All in all, it’s been an okay couple of weeks.  I’m hoping things continue to improve now that I’m getting better sleep, and the sluggishness goes away the better rested I get.

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