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I have used and stooped using Lustral several times now. The main reason that I attempted to use such a drug was that I was under tremendous stress due to the projects I had to run and was pressed-flat under the responsibility due to the poor performance of my staff. I could not blame those people since I knew that it would be difficult task to accomplish but could not answer the clients needs which made me mad.
My reactions to the drug included most of whatever other people said having exprerienced but to varying degrees.
I am not the only one using it in the family, this shows that the education and up-bringing can provide a decisive background to what we troubled experience. I found that I needed not to rely on the drug to cure me on its own and I had to do something to change my environment and daily life.
If you are of those who feel trapped in an environment and cannot breathe, than you will have to continue with the drug a long way. Having seen it in the family, I can tell that especially if you are an over/sensitive person and things you live through are not as rough to an outsider of medium stamina (how you can rate it I cannot describe) than you are really in trouble. Because the drug cannot fix anything substantial to make you feel better and just helps you go through the day. Thus, please use the boost of the drug to make changes in your dailiy life as some have referred to have attempted.
My current condition may also be of some importance to some readers where I am using the drug to stabilize my blood pressure that shoots anywhere between low to high during the difficult moments during the day (trying to have civilized discussions and forced manners with people not worth a penny etc..., sorry, you may not believe but it is true, there are useless people on earth and they are more in numbers...)
A side effect I must warn from own experience is theeth-gritting and jaw-clamping (I do not know these terms would describe well what I experienced) If you have some history of dental problems related to a stress condition do not think Lustral can help. On the contrary it might make it worse. You have to get rid of the old methods that you used for trapping or dealing with stress if they were things harming such as those described.
I hope everyone finds a hope or solution in what all of us share in here.
I used Lustral (sertraline hcl) for almost 3 years, the dose was originally 100mgs once a day but it rose to 150mgs. My symptoms were long term depression, PTSD from combat service and OCD. Prior to Lustral I had been on Seroxat, but I had too many side effects. The problem with self assessment like this is that I cannot be certain whether the drug worked or whether I just got better anyway. I certainly don't feel that Lustral was a 'magic bullet' and that after starting it I got better, but at the time my judgement might have been impaired. I think it pertinent to note that I took steps to improve my situation by giving up alcohol and taking exercise. I also took part in CBT, which was probably more beneficial than the drug. I no longer take Lustral, I made the decision to stop as I did have a couple of long term side effects, the most important of which was the loss of libido. I also felt that I needed to 'move on', as it were.
I've been on Lustral for 20 months now and am gradually starting the process of giving it up. My problems stared in April 2001. I had returned from a very relaxing 2 years away to a high pressure job in a new company, and I was constantly nervous about impressing the bosses and giving a good impression. At the time, I was also doing Cocaine regularly at the weekends along side a heavy exersize regime and a diet program that consisted of "lose weight fast" pills which increased my metabolism and therefore the anxiety I was feeling at the time. The "crash" - which is the only way to descibe it - came after a particularly excessive weekend. It felt like I had been removed from my body, and I couldn't make sense of what people were saying, or concentrate. I had no "mental" control. I have always been a worrier but this was like a lightening bolt hitting me and to be honest it was scary. This feeling of anxiousness continued for about a week and then started to subside. I had taken a few days off work but when I returned the same feelings of immese worry built up again...the concentration started going...and I was back to square one. I was told it was a panic attack caused by depression..but the odd thing is that I had been quite happy! Literally every day was a worry...not about external pressure but the worry of having another attack....it was (and to a degree still is) always forefront in my mind which made work a difficulty. I struggled on for about 2 months, and things started to get better however after another excessive weekend the same thing happened. At this point I went to councelling and continued until December. During this, I was told that this anxiety was cyclical and was recommended to take some "calmants" to try to break the ongoing chain. I saw my doctor and he prescribed lustral. The anxiety increase for about 2 weeks and since then...every day...little by little....I think ab
out it less. Its been a long process however the fact that I still work where I do - and the fact that my job is a sociable one where you are expected to go out drinking and having dinner...means that I want to be 100 percent before I come off anything. I'm too scared to have a relapse. I haven't had another attack for 2 years now but there is still the anxiety or worry of having another one. But unlike before these thoughts come intermitantly.....possibly once a day or if things are going well once every two days. It was a scary time for me...not for what was happening around me but what was happening in my head. I have always been in control of this and it was a very weird experience. To summarise, Lustral has done me good and to be honest I feel no different (exept for the decreased anxiety) to how I felt before. I am still amusing (i hope!) can have a good time and like to live life. I should probably adhere more to the "reduce alchohol" rule, and possibly I should stick away from the occasional bit of recreational drug use (once every six months or so!!) but it has helped me build up my confidence again and its now getting to the stage where I would like to come off as I feel much more capable to do so. If you're feeling anxious, or down, don't worry about taking what is basically a little white tablet. I was worried that i'd become some sort of zombified husk but I feel good, healthy, happy and more confident.
THIS IS HORRIBLE. I NEVER SEE NANYTHING WORSE THAN WHATEVER THIS IS. I SAW IT ON THE STREET AND PUT IT IN MY POCKET AND TOOK IT HOME BUT WHEN I GOT HOMNE I R4EALIZED HOW BGI A MISTAKE I HAD MADE. IT SUCKS SO BAD I URINATED ON IT AND FLUSHED IT DOWN THE TOILET WITH THE REST OF MY CRAP. THE TV GUIDE THE WEEKLY BILLS MY PARKING TICKETS AND SOEM EXPLOSIVES. THIS THING IS SO BAD I HATE IT. IF YOU LIKE IT YOU ARE STUPID. GO DIE AND SHUT UP ABOUT IT BECUASE IT SUCKS.
incredibly helpful - Advantages: relaxing, clarity of thought, better night sleep - Disadvantages: headache, tummy upset, tiredness
I have been on Sertraline or Lustral since November 1999. As a 20 something I would never have thought that depression would affect me. As a 30 something I have gone through many stressful events in my life since my 20's. How different life can be from one decade to another! Marriage, Husband diagnosed with heart condition Moving house x3, Infertility, Miscarriage, Family bereavement threatened miscarriage, severe pre-eclampsia - son with ADHD, miscarriage unplanned pregnancy. My depression became evident after the birth of my first child- Postnatal Depression or PND but was complicated by the fact that my mother who was like my best friend had died of stomach cancer 3 weeks before I concieved my son. I was initially treated with Prozac which helped me a great deal so I rushed myself to 'get off antidepressants'& was only on it for 7 months. After my next baby I got PND again, only this time more severely.I was prescribed Gaminil or Lophipramine that time as I was breastfeeding & was also prescribed Cyclogest-natural progesterone.These together had a good impact on my PND.Unfortunately I was again keen to stop antidepressants as I was returning to work & I stopped taking them far too soon & too quickly. I was then put back on Prozac as it had worked well before.But this time it did not help at all, I became more anxious & agitated resulting in a 'nervious breakdown' 4 days before I was due to return to work. Melaril was then added to reduce the anxiety & agitation & I was told to persevere with the Prozac to see if the side effects improved.3 months later my GP finally changed it to Lustral & I improved greatly & returned to work. 3 months later I fell pregnant again -big shock but very wanted- my specialist urged me to continue taking Lustral throughout the pregnancy & while breastfeeding which I did feeling guilty & worried what it would do to my baby-I
was convinced she would be deformed despite all the scans looking ok. She was & is perfect-the most laid back of my children! Despite this I still got PND so my Lustral was increased to 100mg then 150mg which I remain on & am also taking Lithium . I have no desire to rapidly reduce the dose & am taking things day by day. In summary; Lustral has worked for me but everyone is different so go back to your GP if side effects are bad or mood has not improved after 6 weeks.
I have a history of depression and am also diagnosed with what is known as a borderline personality. It is stable but the depression keeps on reoccurring. The past twelve months have been horrendous for me. My father was dying from lung cancer, I was in the final year of my honours degree, money was tight (isn’t it always?!), Shane broke his back, Tiny (my beloved cat) died and then my father-in-law was in ITU post routine surgery. All in all, a bit of a rough year! I was experiencing drastic change in appetite with weight gain. My insomnia was returning. I became manic in my actions, but experienced a loss of pleasure and/or interest in favoured activities. My sexual drive was non-existent. I lack of energy and was tired. Most importantly I was feelings of worthlessness, with unjustified guilt or lack of self-esteem. My concentration and memory became extremely poor (not good when studying for an honours degree!). I was also having recurring thoughts of death or suicide. By April 2000 I was in my GP’s surgery, crying my heart out. He gave me time and listened. I was reluctant to take tablets after my experience in the past, but Nick (the GP) felt that a Sertraline drug would help. I was prescribed Lustral 50mg daily, which was then increased to 100mg daily. Initially, I had to visit Nick once a week to monitor my progress. My mood improved, however when it was planned that I would come off the tablet, another setback occurred. As a result I have been taking this drug for fourteen months. ** What is Lustral** Lustral (Sertraline) is a selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor (SSRI) used in oral administration. Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor is a class of drugs, which interferes with Serotonin transport and is used in treating depression. This type of drug is chemically unrelated to other SSRIs, tricyclic, tetracyclic, or other available antidepressant agents. Lustral is used to treat Anxiety, Depression, Obs
essive-compulsive disorder and Panic disorder. **Reasons to taking Avoid Lustral (unless sanctioned by GP)** 1) Any bleeding disorders. 2) Are under the age of sixteen years old. 3) Being treated with other medication, e.g. Lithium. 4) Breast feeding an infant. 5) Driving or using machinery whilst taking this medication. 6) Ever had ECT (Electroconvulsive Therapy). 7) Had an allergic reaction to Lustral on a past occasion. 8) Have any form of kidney disease. 9) Intend to drink alcohol. 10) Suffer from Diabetes 11) Suffer from epilepsy. 12) Suffer from liver disease. 13) Taken Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors within the past two weeks. 14) Taking aspirin or any NSAID’S (Non-Steroid Anti-inflammatory Drugs). 15) Taking trytophan, tramadol, warfarin, Diazepam etc 16) Think or are pregnant. NB: Avoid taking St. John’s Wort whilst on this medication as an adverse reaction can occur. **Taking Lustral** This is an oral medication that should be taken after food. It should be taken with water, swallowed whole and not chewed. Medication should be taken daily around the same time of day. The packets are labelled so that it is easy to see if that day’s dose has been taken. Missing a tablet is not a problem; just start the course the next day. **Side Effects** 1) Abdominal pain. (I find this occurs if I take Lustral on an empty stomach). 2) Change in sexual drive or function. 3) Diarrhoea. 4) Dry mouth. 5) Dizziness. (I experience this during the night). 6) Feeling and being sick. (I find this occurs if I take Lustral on an empty stomach). 7) Indigestion. (I find this occurs if I take Lustral on an empty stomach). 8) Loss of appetite 9) Not being able to sleep.
10) Shaky feeling. (If I forget to take the tablets). 11) Sweating. (I experience this during the night). 12) Upset stomach. (I find this occurs if I take Lustral on an empty stomach). **Duration for taking Lustral** This should be discussed with the doctor as people respond differently. Some people may need to continue taking them for months or even years. It is usually necessary to take them for at the very least a month after the symptoms have disappeared. Usually it is best to take them for at least 6 to 12 months to make sure of recovery. If the depressed has reoccurred, it is best to keep taking an antidepressant for several years, as this will reduce the chance of the symptoms reoccurring. Lustral is not addictive, but if taken for eight weeks or more the user may experience some mild "discontinuation" effects if suddenly stopped. This does not mean that the antidepressant Lustral is addictive. Thus antidepressants, if stopped suddenly, may produce some "discontinuation" symptoms but these are more of an "adjustment" reaction from sudden removal of a drug rather than withdrawal. The GP/Doctor can provide a regime to reduce the medication and thus reduce the symptoms. Lustral has worked for me. I find that my day to day activities of daily living and quality of life has been greatly improved. I would say to anyone worried about taking this medication: ‘Give it a try. I does not work for everyone, but you will never know unless you try’. **More information on Lustral** Pfizer Limited, Sandwich, England. Or contact the local Pharmacist or General Practitioner.
My GP prescribed me 'Lustral' (also marketed as 'Sertraline' and 'Besitran' in UK - 'Zoloft' in USA), after trying a couple of other antidepressants for major depression. Lustral (Sertraline hydrochloride) is an anti-depressant drug that works specifically on the neuro-transmitter, serotonin. Serotonin levels in the brain are linked to mood, and depression can be caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain that usually takes the form of low levels of serotonin. Serotonin is responsible for transporting messages across the neurons in the brain, and when there is a deficiency of this chemical, this process is disrupted, and it is this that contributes to a person's low mood, or depression. Sertraline is classed as an SSRI anti-depressant - 'Selective Serotonin Re-Uptake Inhibitor' It is prescribed for depression, as well as OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). The usual dose of Sertraline tablets is 50mg taken once a day, but dosages up to a maximum of 200mg can be prescribed. The drug is available in both 50mg and 100mg tablets. I was initially prescribed just 50mg, which was raised to 150mg over the course of my treatment. Lustral, as with other anti-depressant medicines requires an average of 2-4 weeks (sometimes slightly longer), before it can begin to ease the symptoms of the illness. Side effects can include: - Dry-mouth - Feeling or being sick - Loss of appetite - Sweating - Change in sex-drive or function - Insomnia or excessive tiredness - Tremors - Dizziness These side-fx are usually short-lived and mild, but there are some cases of more serious side-effects manifesting during treatment. However, this is rare and should always be reported to a doctor immediately. I continued with treatment for roughly 6 months after my first Sertraline prescription. For me, Lustral didn't provide the 'miracle cure' I had been hoping
for, but many people have told me that they their symptoms improved dramatically with Sertraline treatment. The side effects I experienced were fairly mild, and although I had quite a serious problem with tremor and shaking whilst on treatment, I think it would be unfair for me to 'place the blame' solely on the Sertraline, as there were many other factors influencing my state at the time. My condition didn't really improve at all whilst on Sertraline, but then as with all medications (especially those prescribed for depression), people respond differently. I think that there were a lot of causes for my depression that simply could NOT be cured by medication solely. During Sertraline treatment I felt 'empty'. I found it difficult to feel anything at all whilst on the medication, and I felt as though I had 'lost myself'. I was mentally sluggish, and extremely forgetful during my treatment, but again, it is difficult to know how much of this should be attributed solely to the Sertraline. I have to be honest. I am not in favour of medications prescribed to 'influence our mood and sense of well-being'. However, I do believe that depression can be a serious mental illness that effects everything about us, and can alter our sense of 'rationality' enormously. Therefore, I believe that anti-depressants are a necessity when the illness becomes serious, especially when 'the sufferer' has been experiencing suicidal impulses. I really had 'no choice' but to opt for medication during my last 'bout' of clinical depression, but I wouldn't have taken this option if my illness hadn't become so advanced. It is important to remember that people respond very differently to medications, and although Sertraline didn't really improve my condition, this is not to say that Sertraline could not help improve symptoms in somebody else. With treatment for depression, it i
s often the case of finding the right drug that works for YOU..This may take time, but if you are in a desperate situation, then I think it is worth it....
This is a fairly difficult opinion for me to write, but I want to do it, to maybe help other new Mums out there who are suffering Post Natal Depression and are faced with difficult decision like I was. When I had my son, I felt on top of the world. I was surprised how good I felt, because after I had my daughter six years earlier, I felt very depressed very quickly. But this time felt different and I was very relieved. Unfortunately it was short lived! Three months later I realised I had sunk into a depression. I was crying all the time, felt I couldn’t cope and was even having feelings of ending it all. I kept it to myself because I didn’t want anyone to know I wasn’t coping. But as time went on, it got worse and people started to notice how bad I was feeling. A good friend rang my doctor and he came to see me. He prescribed Lustral (an SSRI – an antidepressant in the same ‘family’ as Prozac) and sleeping tablets. But I was breastfeeding. I discussed it with him and he said Lustral was ‘the safest’ Antidepressant to take while breastfeeding. But after he left I really wasn’t happy with it. I desperately wanted to carry on breastfeeding (‘til my son was at least a year old) but felt so guilty about taking medications that might reach him through my milk. I spoke to my Health Visitor who told me that the way I was feeling was doing my son far more damage than the Lustral would, and if any of it did get to him it would be tiny tiny amounts. So, reluctantly, I took the tablets, and gradually I started to feel a little better. Having had SSRIs before, Lustral isn’t my favourite, but it had reached the stage where something had to be done and Lustral was the only option open to me. Six months on, I am still taking it and I am still breastfeeding. I don’t feel right, but I feel much better. I still hate the thought of taking something
like that while still feeding my son, but have sort of come to terms with it in my mind. I don’t even like to think where we would be now, if I hadn’t decided to take it. By the way, I never took the sleeping tablets! I refused point blank, even though again my doctor said they were ‘thought to be safe’. Luckily my sleeping patterns gradually improved with my general mood. If this opinion helps one Mum, in a similar position, it was worth writing!
I have recently been prescribed the drug Lustral and I have found it most beneficial to me so I thought that I would share my story with you. I am not saying that this drug will work for everyone as what works for one person does not necessarily work for another. My own experience began in January 2000, when I was working for Walsall MBC as the accountant for Education Services. The department, which is effectively the Local Education Authority, had been the subject of an Ofsted inspection. I guess those of you in the teaching profession have just crossed yourselves! The report was ‘damning’ and voiced a lot of criticisms in the way that the LEA was being run, some were fair, some not so fair in my own opinion, but that’s another story. Although the main weaknesses had been highlighted in the direct provision of services to the schools the resulting pressure took its toll on us all. I took some time off suffering from a heavy cold and I realised that there was something more to the way I was feeling. I saw my GP who diagnosed stress and depression. He put me on a course of Lofepramine, which I took for three months. I showed no signs of improvement so I stopped taking them. I told my doctor but he took no notice, in fact apart from giving me sick notes he gave me no help whatsoever and was positively nasty to me on more than one occasion. I was lucky to have the love and support of a wonderful partner during this time – I don’t think I could have got through it without him. I also had my family and some very good friends, all of whom helped me and during the year my condition stabilised to a certain extent, although I was still unable to return to work. Eventually, after I had been on sick leave for twelve months, I was dismissed by Walsall MBC due to the fact that I could not return to work. Despite numerous visits from my Personnel Officer during the year nothing had been done to facilita
te a return to work for me. So, after 30 years with the authority, I left. I had always expected to leave with a party for my friends with speeches and toasts, instead no one really realised that I had gone. This affected me very badly. I became depressed again and eventually, after my partner had accompanied me on a visit to my GP to have a word with him on my behalf, he finally referred me to someone who could help me. I saw the specialist in January 2001, by which time I was quite ill again. I did tell him that I did not want to take any more drugs but he told me that I needed something to give me a boost and suggested that I try a course of Lustral and he took the trouble to explain something about the drug to me. Essentially it is one of a group of Selective Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitors (SSRI’s for short) and contains sertraline. My condition had been caused by a lack of Serotonin (nicknamed the happy hormone) in my brain and this drug would help redress the balance. He explained that I might have mild side effects such as nausea, dizziness, headaches etc, but that I should continue to take the tablets as these would probably wear off. Obviously, if they didn’t, I was to get back in touch with him! He also explained that it would take between two and four weeks for the beneficial effects of the tablets to be felt. The symptoms that I had been experiencing were disturbed sleep, (as shown by submitting opinions to Dooyoo at 4.30am!) irritability, crying, extreme mood swings, comfort eating, irrational behaviour and forgetfulness. I am also probably beginning the menopause as it tends to be a few years earlier for those of us who have had an hysterectomy. How my partner put up with me I’ll never know, I wouldn’t have blamed him for going back to live with his mom! I had to take one Lustral tablet a day, in the morning, with food for one week and then two a day thereafter. I was told that I could still h
ave a drink if I wanted to but not to excess or the tablets would stop working. I began to take the tablets, one a day with a bowl of cereal in the morning. At first I experienced quite a few dizzy turns, queasy spells and splitting headaches and I almost gave up taking them, but I decided to persevere. I actually took just one a day for almost a fortnight until the side effects had worn off. I am still taking two a day and the improvement in my health has been dramatic. I now sleep much better and am usually still asleep when the alarm goes off. I have more energy now and I am a lot calmer and more able to ‘take things in my stride’ rather than flying off the handle. I don’t bite my partner’s head off as much which is just as well as he is now in the throes of doing his final year at University so the last thing he needs is me being neurotic! I even found my self singing (for want of a better word!) as I was working in the house the other day and I haven’t done that for a long while. I had also put on a lot of weight during my illness and the lead up to it and I now feel strong enough to start eating healthily and trying to loose some of it. There is a comprehensive leaflet enclosed in each box of tablets explaining what effect the tablets will have, what side effects might be experienced, what conditions would prohibit someone taking the tablets etc. As I said at the beginning of this opinion I realise that Lustral might not work for everyone but they really have helped me.
Used to treat obsessive-compulsive disorder and depression. Please only write here of you have had a direct experience of this medication and have useful information to share