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  1. 5 points
    Arbaclofen: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-4917428/Alcohol-replacement-pill-hit-market-2020.html?ITO=1490
  2. 4 points
    Well, 10 months AF today. I'm conflicted about celebrating or even marking milestones, there always feels like an implied "great now don't f*ck it up." Anyway, did want to mark it here regardless, I guess. Hope it's a good one out there, everyone.
  3. 3 points
    Well,I went up to 200mg on Sunday and hey presto!.... on Monday I was indifferent.I really thought I wouldn’t get there again and I’m so relieved.But I’m also apprehensive,we will just have to see how it goes.
  4. 3 points
    7 years for me today, and it's still pretty smooth sailing... Since my last update, I've finally got a hold of some decent health insurance, and I was lucky enough to find a GP that would prescribe me 160mg of Baclofen a day. He was reluctant and then dismissive at first, but came around after reading the studies and info that I had printed out for him (basically everything I've put in the Baclofen research section at TheEndofMyAddiction.org). I only asked for 160/day because that is what I was taking at the time, and I didn't want to push my luck. My bloodwork, as it has been for the past seven years, is perfect, a far cry from when I was suffering from hypertension and gout with an AST of 60+, ALT of 90+, and a GGT of 150+. In my continuing effort to only use the smallest dose of Baclofen needed to be effective, I've titrated down to 120mg/day for the past 8 months. At that level, I experience no cravings, but admittedly, and as I have reported before, the few beers I have on occasion do not taste as repulsive as they do at higher levels of Baclofen. No reason to worry, however, over the years I've grown fond of waking up clearheaded and hangover-free (Who knew ?) and I've learned to channel my energy in directions other than at the bottom of a bottle...like scuba diving! - a life-long dream of mine that was impossible for my former self. Now I go as much as I can; at home, on vacation, whenever I get the chance. You don't have to know much about the sport to understand that there is zero room for alcohol while being at depth underwater (or the night before, or even days before). Now with booze far away from the focus of my day to day, that's never a problem for me. -tk From Last year, 9/26/16: Here I am, six years later, still cured of my alcoholism. Still sharp. Still sane. Sober, but not abstinent - I still have a few beers now and again - at a level well below the World Health Organization standards of safe drinking (<4 a day, <14 a week), and less than what could be considered "moderating." I do not believe that baclofen is a path to moderate drinking, and I will go further to say that the more distance that you can put between yourself and the bottle, the better that baclofen can work for you. I'm currently at 180mg/day - after about 10 months @ 160, while I had no cravings (or drunk dreams like I had when I first dipped below 200mg/say), I felt like I might be teetering on the edge of indifference, so I jumped back up 20mg, which seems to do the trick. I was pretty surprised to find that I experienced almost the same severity of side effects (I jumped up the 20 overnight) that I had during my initial titration. Fine the first day, but on the second afternoon: somnolence, queasiness, shocks to the hands, visual disturbances etc. No fun at all - I guess I am just really sensitive to the medication. Anyway, you can read about the rest of my story here: From My anniversaries from the past on MWO: 2 years ago, 9/26/15: 5 years for me today....doesn't really seem like a big deal - I don't count days and it doesn't take any effort - but that's not to say that the trip to get here wasn't a rough one - I had severe side-effects and a difficult seven month long titration (see below). I'm currently at 160mg/day down from 280mg/day on 9/26/10 (240-220mg/day in all of 2011, 200mg/day in 2012 and 2013, 180mg/day in 2014). After all of that time, no "other shoe has dropped" - my kidney function/blood work is fine, I'm still sharp and sane, and my indifference is solid despite the couple of beers I have occasionally. I am side-effect free. I don't like to give advice on how to take Baclofen, but if I were to hazard a guess as to the longevity of my success I would say that staying at/near my switch dose for so long, and titrating down very slowly might be the key. I don't post here (MWO) much anymore for the same reason that many people are talking about leaving. I still pop in to offer evidence-based information when it's needed and to try and help people out of a jam when I can, but I no longer have the time or energy to combat the idiocy and abuse that's been dragging the Meds section down for the last 2.5 years - I've got much better things to do. I have a great life with a great person who stuck with me through this whole mess. I'm healthier than I've ever been, I've been lucky enough to get to travel and do outdoorsy stuff in a few far off (for me) places, and my job keeps me busier than I'd sometimes like to be. Now that I've cured my alcoholism, the vast majority of thoughts about alcohol that enter my head come from reading posts on this site (not that it's a problem). And as much as I like to be helpful and help people, I don't know that that can be accomplished here anymore, so maybe it's time to move on EDIT: I HAVE! THANKS EOMA!. 3 years ago, 9/26/14: Still here. Still sober*. Still healthy, sane, and sharp. The only thing that has changed is my dose, down to 180mg/day (for about 10 months now) from 280mg/day on 9/26/10. Here's a shout out to friends old and new who've helped me along the way: Ne, Redhead77, bleep, serenity, Redthread12, StuckInLA, Dr. Levin, Cinders, craving, ZenStyle, Tiptronic, beatle, Slippery Pete, Neophyte, and to Olivier and lo0p (wherever you are). * I have a couple of beers every couple of weeks - but I haven't been drunk in over 1400 days (so the app on my phone tells me - I've never had the need to count the days).. 4 years ago, 9/26/13: Today marks 3 years since I found indifference to alcohol with high-dose baclofen. My dose has been stable at 200mg/day for the pretty much the past two years. At this level I experience no cravings and zero side-effects. I'm still here and I'm happy, healthy, sane, and sober. As I've done for the duration of my indifference, I have a beer or two occasionally - every few weeks (maybe even a couple of days in a row around the year-end holidays). During those instances, I experience no pleasurable effects or further desire to get drunk (or ability to drink to excess even if I try and "test" myself), nor any cravings returning the next day. I'm not condoning moderation, and I do not want to give anyone the impression that baclofen is a pathway to it. I said "sober" because I haven't been drunk (literally or legally) in 3 years*. That might not fit your definition of sober, but that's the way I see it for me. And it's how I know that baclofen works. Alcohol is such a non-issue in my life: it's not on the radar - as a reward, or a threat. I have a hard time remembering how it fit so completely in my life before, and I'm continually amazed when I realize that I've gone on with my life for days (or weeks) and not even remembered to think about it, let alone miss it. This isn't spontaneous remission - baclofen simply makes the booze not fit anymore. * Shortly after finding indifference, I tested it with Ameisen's "drink a bottle of scotch and see if cravings return in the morning" - I passed/they didn't/obviously I was ostensibly drunk here (though it didn't feel like it). I find that 200-220mg/day is my magic number - any lower and I start having "drunk dreams," though no real cravings and even at that lower dosage I find drinking completely unenjoyable. But the mental game is no fun and I'd rather this whole business be effortless, which lucky for me it is at the proper dosage. In the interest of taking the smallest dose that remains effective, and hoping that my (alcohol damaged) brain may be healing, I will continually attempt to reduce my dose in the future. I can titrate down comfortably ~10mg/week. Any faster than that and I experience some anxiety and depression. Much faster than that (like when I dropped 40mg in 2 weeks) and I invite panic attacks towards the end of week 2. It's been a tough year with the passing of Olivier Ameisen and the licensing action against Dr. Levin. I feel as though I owe both men for saving my life: Ameisen through his original discovery and the few emails I shared with him, and Levin for returning my calls from the hospital I was admitted to for overdosing on baclofen with guidance that eventually enabled me to find indifference. Thanks for reading and thanks to the usual suspects who helped me along the way. I'm always around and I'll certainly be here in another 365 to tell you how year 4 went. 5 years ago, (9/26/12): 22 years ago - I started drinking in college. 16 years ago - I was drinking most nights, and probably pretty heavily on the weekends. It never got in the way of my life, my job, or anything really. I could stop if I really wanted to, with maybe a sweaty, sleepless night or two. I took a couple of weeks off here and there only when I had to. 10 years ago - I was drinking pretty heavily every night, and getting shitfaced on the weekends. I powered through my daily hangovers with aplomb. I could always wait until after work, or even after the gym, to start drinking, but absolutely, I needed at least 5 or 6 to fall asleep. I was concerned, but I wasn't able to cut back. 6 years ago - I could barely wait to get home from work to start drinking. I planned my days around where I could get alcohol. I carried a hip flask. I hid bottles in my house. I hid my drinking from my girlfriend. I considered a six-pack of pounders (8 US units) a sober night for me on weekdays, then I would get completely obliterated Friday and Saturday (and then Sunday) hoping to be able to taper back down to my 6 (8) beers a night maybe by Wednesday with Friday just around the corner. If I wasn't drunk enough when I went to bed, I would wake up after a few hours without being able to fall back asleep. I started drinking in the middle of the night. I started drinking in the morning. All efforts to cut back failed over and over. 4 years ago - My life was completely unraveling. I would wake up sometimes with a dry heaving, retching sickness that I could only stop with a couple of shots of liquor. I missed work. I snuck drinks on the job. I obtained some benzos to stave off my withdrawal during the day and wound up propelling my drinking to the stratosphere. I switched to the cheapest vodka. I sometimes drank mouthwash. My health was failing (Liver Panel, Gout, Blood Pressure). I felt like I was dying. I wanted to die. I went to the ER a handful of times; Outpatient detox twice, and inpatient detox twice. 3 years ago - I got home from my 2nd inhouse detox and white-knuckled for the next 5 months without alcohol. Everyday seemed like a waste - I was miserable, and I made everyone else miserable. 2 years, 7 months ago - After reading "The End of My Addiction," I started self medicating with baclofen that I purchased online, soon after from a local psychiatrist. 2 years, 4 months ago - I was hospitalized while trying to titrate too quickly on baclofen. 150mg/day to 235+mg/day.I talk a little about it here 2 years ago - I reached my "switch" - indifference to alcohol @ 280mg/day 1 year ago- http://www.mywayout.org/community/fo...ks-to-baclofen Today - Still cured of my alcoholism! Completely indifferent! I've been high dose baclofen consistently for over 2 1/2 years, currently taking 200mg/day (I was at 280 for about 6 months, then dropped to 220, was at 240 for more than a year, and then recently dropped to 200). Though I had severe side-effects throughout my titration (even continuing for a few months after my switch) I am 100% side-effect free today. I occasionally have a beer or two (every couple of weeks or so). Except for the time I tried Amesien's "drink a bottle of whisky on baclofen and see if you have cravings the next day" experiment (I passed with flying colors) I haven't been drunk in 2 years (BAC or otherwise), as it is, baclofen makes drinking more than a couple pretty unpleasant for me. I'm happy, healthy, sane, and as sharp as ever. 6 years ago, (9/26/11): It's been 365 days since I reached my "switch," indifference to alcohol at 280mg/day baclofen. I'll try and keep this short and sweet.... Some background: I'm in my 40's I drank heavily for 20 years, just about every night for the first 15, and more often during the days, then 24/7 towards the end. Typical week night for me was 8 beers and almost a pint of scotch, weekends were no holds barred. In my late thirties I had 4 trips to the ER, 2 outpatient detoxes (lorazepam), and 2 inpatient detoxes (phenobarbital). Attempts at moderation invariably put me in the exact place I left off in a month or less. CBT, SSRI's, counseling, did zero. AA was a profoundly poor fit for me as well (to put it mildly). I did try Moderation Management online, and had no luck finding Rational Recovery. I heard about, then read Ameisen's book in early 2010. I stumbled upon MWO soon after. I began titrating in March 2010 with Fexobac baclofen ordered online from India, 4rx.com. I was also extremely lucky to find a psychiatrist who began writing me a legit script in late spring 2010. Post "switch," my indifference has been effortless. My titration, however, was *definitely* not. I had very, very severe side-effects and wound up restrained in the ER and hospitalized for 5 days when I tried to increase my dose too high, too soon (recounted here). Increasing 20mg/week was too rapid for me and I settled closer to 10mg/week, and even then, day 2 after the increase was always a doozy, with intense hallucinations and shocks to my hands/fingers. All in all, it took 7 months of slow, steady titration for me to find indifference @280mg/day. I am very happy to report that today I am indifferent *and* side-effect free on high-dose baclofen (currently 220mg/day). I have been taking baclofen continuously for 19 months. My simple answer to overcoming side-effects is 1)slow, consistent titration 2)even dosing on an even schedule 60/60/60/60 at 6am/12pm/6pm/12am 3)consistency in brand of baclofen - don't interchange brands day to day and if you need to switch brands do it this way: (100% Brand A to 75% Brand A + 25% Brand B to 50% Brand A + 50% Brand B to 25% Brand A + 75% Brand B to 100% Brand B ). I've had a beer or 2 (or 3) a few times and that probably doesn't fit many people's definition of sobriety, but I know that baclofen has cured my alcohol addiction. I don't think about drinking, I don't remember about drinking, when I try and make a plan to drink a beer to enjoy the taste of it, I always forget it. I don't like to have more than 1 or 2, I don't like the feeling (it doesn't get me buzzed or drunk anymore) and I don't like how I feel in the morning. I don't have any of the cravings that made me feel like every night I was missing out because I couldn't drink a beer. I don't know if it will last forever, and maybe it's a slippery slope, but that's the way it is, and I feel confident, sane, and sharp as ever. Thank you Dr. Olivier Ameisen for making this journey possible, and Dr. Levin, Ne/Neva Eva, RedHead77, Lo0p, Cinders, craving, ZenStyle, beatle, ignominious, XXXXX, bleep, _serenity_, moglor, guardian, birdy02, Otter, and anyone I've left out, for helping me along the way. -tk
  5. 2 points
    Hi Barbara, Sorry for the terribly late reply! Such good news that you found a doctor who prescribes baclofen. It can sometimes be very difficult to find one who isn't married to the AA line of thinking. It's also wonderful that your daughter is having positive reactions to the low-dose baclofen. Baclofen is a godsend for many people with anxiety. It certainly helped me. It's hard to say what dose would stop her from binging. I was an every day drinker, and I drank the whole time I was titrating up on baclofen until one day I couldn't drink anymore. What a wonderful experience that was! Unfortunately, I went down in dosage too fast and promptly relapsed. It took a year or two of experimenting to find a dose that worked for me. I moderated for several years but have had long periods of abstinence in the last few months. I like myself better when I'm abstinent. Keep us posted on her progress!
  6. 2 points
    It's been a while since I posted last... I've been overseas on holiday with my family for the best part of a month. Lots of ups and downs but we made it. Some really enjoyable moments and some... well, not so much. I got drunk twice and had a few drinks here and there while away. Nothing of note, except as I have said before, I want to stay stopped as my goal. It is usually my sense of hopelessness, wanting to escape low feelings, that trigger a drinking episode (well blow me down :)). They are always much briefer episodes and the AL has less effect than before Bac. I got really sick with a chest infection when o/s and the short story is that I don't seem to be smoking cigarettes anymore. So not a thing left to escape my feelings with now, really... I don't know if being on ADs reduce that chances of getting colds etc, but this winter has been by far my worst for years (and first winter w/o ADs for 7 years). I have has something like 4-5 colds. I have been taking heaps of Vit C powder; sometimes it seemed to help ward off an imminent cold, other times it clearly did not. I am trying Mirtazapine again, because I have been feeling pretty flat. Either that or getting into rage with the kids, yelling at them (or my wife). Those odd side-effects I had last time have not reoccurred. The ony thing is that I must be clenching my jaw whan asleep, because my jaw muscles are sore in the morning. I also will sleep a lot if in bed - at first it was jet-lag but as it continues, I'm pretty sure it's a side-effect of the Mirtazapine. I have been more hungry than usual and so have to watch it there (a Mirtazapine SE is weight gain). Part of the problem is that I have been inactive and feeling jet-lagged/sleepy. About to go for a long walk, and have be cycling a bit too. Hoping that exercise and trying to delay satisfying the hunger pangs will work I'm only on day 4 at 1/2 a 30mg tab per day, and so far my mood seems a bit flatter if anything. I don't feel all that happy to be back home and am not all that interested in doing much. It might still be partly the process of adjusting my body time clock after a month of being on the other side of the world though. Hoping the Mirtazapine will take effect soon and won't give up on it if it's doing nothing until seeing my GP on the 30th (who might say hang in there a bit longer anyway).
  7. 2 points
    Hi and welcome, @Barbara A.. I haven't used baclofen in a few years now, but when I did (for quite a while and in large quantities) I always used Goldpharma and never had any problems with them. Some people respond very positively to low doses. I know of one woman who was an all-day every day drinker and stopped almost instantly on 30mg/day. Anyway, so it has been known to happen. Many of us take quite a bit more though. Good luck and keep us posted!
  8. 2 points
    @Nicnak I'm so pleased for you! Good advice from @Felina there.
  9. 2 points
    Welcome to you, @Barbara A. and to your daughter. Some of your questions I can't answer as I live in the UK & have no idea about prescribing doctors in the USA, tho I expect others will be along shortly with info. There has been much debate, some of it acrimonious, on this & other sites about what constitutes a "proper alcoholic". If your daughter has been convicted of drink driving & has been drunk in charge of children, then even if she "drinks without excess" most of the time & has not been a daily drinker, alcohol is still a significant blight on her life, & merits treatment. Baclofen works by reducing anxiety (social anxiety in particular) which for some of us is a motivator to drink. If your daughter has no anxiety & no cravings, I'm not sure it would be a first choice for her. Maybe something like naltrexone might indeed suit her better, but I don't think that's an "anti-craving " medication - as I understand it, it just blocks the pleasant feeling alcohol induces. Advantages are, you only have to take it once a day, & not even that often if you don't plan to drink that day. I'm not experienced in the mechanism & practicalities of naltrexone though - again others will be better qualified to help you with this. I have been taking bac for 4+ years now, having previously drunk up to 2 bottles of wine a night. Now I drink within current government guidelines in terms of units/week. Others on this site do not drink at all having increased their daily dose until they are indifferent to alcohol. I order bac online (also, like your daughter, get a small dose from my GP for "muscle spasm"). I have never been sold dud or date expired meds. In general, the sellers are motivated to satisfy the customer who will therefore come back to buy more, as with any other business. It's not in their interest to sell poor quality goods. Not saying it doesn't happen, but not aware of anyone who has been sold anything poisonous. Date expired drugs might be less effective, but often, like your groceries, they are safe & effective well beyond the sell by/use by date! If you keep researching & enquiring, I'm sure you will find something that's a "good fit" for your daughter. Don't be put off by the ignorance of the medical profession about how effective medical treatment of alcoholism is.
  10. 2 points
    Yay, in the last 5 days I have not had more than 20 oz of wine a night and a few nights only 16 oz. I am making sure whenever I can I measure my wine but when I go out I will just have to eye it. I have not been able to have less than 1 1/2 bottles of wine a night in years so this is huge. I am taking 300 mg of Gabapentin 3 X a day and find that I get very tired by about 9-10pm so just go to bed and leave wine in my glass if I ever pour more!
  11. 2 points
    @Nicnak that's fantastic, congratulations! I know this has been a difficult ride for you. So glad to hear you didn't need to go up to 280 again. Unsolicited advice: I'm thinking you probably should stay abstinent and stay at your switch dose for a good long while if you can stand it. And if you titrate down, do it sloooowly. I would venture a guess that titrating down too fast post-switch is one of the biggest baclofen mistakes. I was certainly guilty of that.
  12. 2 points
    @Mom2JTx3,thank you This whole baclofen journey has been a rocky ride and it’s not a one fits all medication so I can see getting it licensed for alcohol is going to be very hard. This is my third time indifferent,First was 180mg then 160 now 200.But I’m between times I have gone up to as much as 280mg without a switch.My brain was very confused at this much bac!!.... SE’s now are falling asleep a lot.Was in the front room the other evening and decided to do some sit-ups (don’t ask!!)..next thing I know is my son coming in and telling me to go to bed,He prob thought I was drunk:( A bit of confusion but not to bad and of course the usual constipation
  13. 2 points
    Well done stuck,that really is a great achievement all on your own!
  14. 2 points
    Good morning everyone and for those in Canada Happy Thanksgiving! Well I am off the Bac and on 300 mg of Gabapentin 3 times a day= 900 mg Total per day I also have found that in past years I am drinking and eating way too fast so I am now being very mindful of the how I eat and especially drink. I have found that if I just kinda sip or just take a small amount of wine on my tongue I enjoy it better and have not drank to excess the last few nights. I usually drink 1 1/2 bottles of wine a night but have only given permission for myself to have 2 glasses of 8 oz of wine= 16 oz. Where on 2 nights I only drank like 4 oz of the last glass of wine so I think I will push it back to 2 X 6 oz of wine= 12 oz a night cause that is really what a glass of wine is classified as. I also am hoping that eating small bites and chewing well before another bite and eating slowly will help me lose some weight along with starting to exercise more? Anyway I am feeling much better taking just the Gabapentin and sleeping better as when I was taking the Bac I felt horrible and could not function or sleep properly. Hoping you all have a nice Sunday!
  15. 2 points
    @StuckinLA squirrels mean confusion. Squirrel... what? where? My dog keeps 6 for squirrels because i unfortunately taught it that. Mind you we have no squirrels except eating walnuts. Years ago we had 3 dozen. Ne1 I have no idea.
  16. 2 points
    A mixed start to October for me. I decided to up my bac dose to see if I could find this mythical "switch". I have remained sober on about 14 units/week. but found that I was still after 4+ years mentally counting units & I decided I wanted to be free of this permanently. So. I went up from 160 mg by about 10 mg every 3 days to 200 mg. At that point I couldn't sleep, my back hurt & I had to take modafinil to function during the day. I was certainly indifferent, but suspect that might have been because even the most miniscule amount of alcohol during the day would be disastrous if you're falling asleep on your feet. And then I ended up using alcohol at night to help me finally fall asleep! Overall a disastrous experiment. I probably went up too fast, but thought after so many years on bac that I was fairly resistant to the SE. Anyway, now I'm going back down again by 10 mg every 3 days. I haven't been at 200 mg for more than about 3 days in total so I think I can safely go back down again by the same method. I plan to stay at 160 for a while while I get my equilibrium back, then titrate down very slowly! I need to give my back a chance to improve. Anyone heard from Ne? Seems a long time since she was here.
  17. 2 points
    Hello all and hope everyone is doing well out there. Can't believe it's October already - thanks for starting the check-in thread, @Felina. Here's to a sober month, or sober-ish, or whatever just all the best with your goals. Hope the switch comes soon for you, @Nicnak.
  18. 2 points
    Hi @Nicnak - I hit my switch at 190 mgs/day back in 2011 and stayed close to my switch dose for a month or so, but then titrated down WAY too fast and promptly relapsed. I spent a period of time in 2011/2012 experimenting with different dosages, but eventually settled at 140 mgs/day and stayed there for years. At that dose, I had an "off switch" and was able to drink moderately, but I wouldn't say I was truly indifferent. I went down to 120 mgs/day in January of this year. I definitely noticed a difference - alcohol tasted better to me. Instead of titrating back up I have been going for longer AF stretches and really found that I like myself better AF. Even small amounts of alcohol affect my mood and sleep for 24-48 hours afterwards. I don't see myself going below 120 anytime soon. I may actually go back up a little bit, because it felt safer to me. Where are you on your baclofen journey now? I know you said you were going back up. I really hope it works for you. <3
  19. 2 points
    Interesting that the Daily Mail is the paper to break the news about arbaclofen. This is how I found out about baclofen. They had an article about Ameisen's book so I went out and bought it straightaway. (DOI: don't buy the Mail as it's a nasty right wing paper, but sometimes read other people's copies at work. Grateful to it on that occasion)
  20. 2 points
  21. 2 points
    The paper mentions ethical considerations which means they couldn't make them drink a lot because it would make their alcoholism worse. The point I'm trying to make is that if a person was diagnosed properly then it wouldn't become a question of swinging for one drug. It would be a question of taking the right drug for the condition. Because we say that the condition is "alcoholism" we don't know which treatment is best. My thinking, from the baclofen studies, is that baclofen works by calming over-activation in the mid-brain or mesalimbic region resulting from alcohol and alcohol cues. If a person does not suffer from this, then baclofen won't work. This isn't the same thing as getting euphoria from drinking. Naltrexone would seem to me to work for people who drink for the enjoyment or euphoria of drinking, burt not because they have this hyperactivity of the limbic system from drinking cues and alcohol. One of the issues with using Naltrexone is that the brain adapts to it by creating more neuroreceptors. If you get rid of the "fun" of drinking, the brain continues to seek pleasure so it creates new pleasure receptors. This is why TSM just aims at long term reduction of drinking. Sure it works, but it's for those who drink for pleasure, not because, like Ameisen, they had unbearable anxiety. My wife didn't drink for fun, except when she was young. She drank out of anxiety but some of that anxiety may have been caused, over time, by drinking alcohol. I don't know if it's a question of how much you drink but, rather, the motivation, anxiety or pleasure. I only ever drank socially or with a meal but after many years of drinking, I got no pleasure from it. I didn't get a high, so after a while, I think, most people probably don't get such a buzz from alcohol as they did when the first started so for most people it's not so hard to stop, if that's why they started. It's like anything you do for a buzz, it wears off with time. That's why I'm not sure it's the Nal which is causing them to stop drinking, if they do, or the continued drinking under the TSM regime. The studies I've read say that Nal is for drink reduction, not for abstinence. Baclofen replaces alcohol in the brains circuitry so in people who drink for anxiety can stop drinking by taking baclofen.
  22. 2 points
    Omg,Omg. Anyone in the U.K. Check out MailOnline. There is an article about arbaclofen being released by 2020!!
  23. 2 points
    The article I posted above describes the underlying condition of drug addiction (presumably alcoholis is the same for the purposes of a discussion of baclofen) as drug-induced or drug cue-induced mid-brain (mesalimbic) neural activation and dopamine release. This seems to be a better scientific/medical description of what baclofen treats by "attenuating" dopamine release by acting on the GABAB receptor. The feeling in the brain/mind of the addict, without the attenuating effects of baclofen is a "dysphoria" or "anxiety". These last two terms are confusing because they are primarily used in psychiatry and are not neurological terms referring to recognised medical/neurological illnesses. The problem is that Ameisen, et al, picked up on these terms and applied them to alcoholism or what he saw as the underlying condition of "alcoholism". Alcoholism or drug addiction and all the behaviour and thoughts that goes with it is, in the article's terminology, a "downstream effect" of the illness. The illness is therefore better described as "alcohol-induced and alcohol cue-induced midbrain (limbic or mesalimbic) neural activation and dopamine release" which is attenuated by the dopamine reducing effects of baclofen. The diagnostic tools doctors should use for this would be what? A brain scan? Certainly a comprehensive medical case history conducted by a doctor with some idea of neurology and the illness should be overseen by a neurologist who has training in this disorder and the use of baclofen and knows how to treat the side effects of baclofen. At present, we are just getting to the point where there is a fairly sparse sprinkling of general practice doctors who are willing to give a prescription for baclofen based on a self-diagnosis by the patient of "alcoholism" based on the negative consequences of drinking and the volume of alcohol consumed. I don't think that this treatment is being pursued by professionals in the field in a way which is thoroughgoing enough to allow it to succeed as well as it could. The whole history and philosophy of alcohol treatment hamstrings anyone trying to use baclofen or prescribe it for a patient. We are still hacking our way through the dense undergrowth of a forest of confused terminology and philosophies of treatment. We need to define what is being treated, then diagnose it, then get the dosage right, deal with side effects and then, figure out ways of helping recovering sufferers deal with all the crap in their lives. This last part in itself is a huge battle because society treats all this treatment as a hoax and baclofen users, ie., alcoholics as...well...alcoholics, and therefore beyond cure or redemption and not deserving of any help or support.
  24. 2 points
    Here's an article which I found explaining baclofen from a scientific/neurological perspective. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3972727/ The gist of the article is as follows: "Relapse is a widely recognized and difficult to treat feature of the addictions. Substantial evidence implicates cue-triggered activation of the mesolimbic dopamine system as an important contributing factor. Even drug cues presented outside of conscious awareness (i.e., subliminally) produce robust activation within this circuitry, indicating the sensitivity and vulnerability of the brain to potentially problematic reward signals. Because pharmacological agents that prevent these early cue-induced responses could play an important role in relapse prevention, we examined whether baclofen—a GABAB receptor agonist that reduces mesolimbic dopamine release and conditioned drug responses in laboratory animals—could inhibit mesolimbic activation elicited by subliminal cocaine cues in cocaine-dependent individuals." I don't think you've got baclofen right. You say baclofen people are not drinking and are post AWS. There's no AWS with baclofen. AWS is a result of stopping drinking suddenly as in a detox. For instance, with the regime of "Seven Weeks to Sobriety" you have to stop drinking and it's recommended in the book that you take an anxiolitic on the first day of the program, but that if you drink very heavily, you should detox in hospital. All traditional rehabs I am aware of require abstinence before engaging in treatment because they are 12-Step based. You take baclofen while drinking but over time the effect is to reduce alcoholic craving. It's not "required" that you continue drinking while taking baclofen. You just ease up the dosage of baclofen slowly to avoid side effects and it stops the craving when you reach the right dosage. There's no AWS because you are weaning yourself off alcohol slowly over a long period. Imagine a neuroreceptor is like a glass and you can either fill it with alcohol or baclofen. The more baclofen you put in the less the glass "needs" to be filled with alcohol, so when the neuroreceptor is "full up" with baclofen, you don't want to drink alcohol. You have to keep taking baclofen to keep the glass full and if you get more stress, you take more. If you stop taking it, you want more alcohol. Nal is different. It works on a different neuroreceptor, one responsible for giving you the euphoria of alcohol, rather than taking away anxiety caused by a lack of a brain chemical. You take Nal before drinking to lessen the need for alcohol, to deaden the "fun" receptor, so in theory when you drink and don't get a buzz, over time your brain says "meh, I don't need this". This process is supposed to extinguish the desire to drink but it requires continued drinking. For me it's not so much a matter of having a "tool box". Yes, there are lots of methods out there. I have been slogging away on this project for years because the baclofen science sets out what the illness in the brain is that needs to be treated...in some people. Whether it's all people, or just some, I don't know but everyone has the same brain chemicals. We don't really get an idea of why baclofen may work for some but not for others because there's virtually no discussion of anything which could be used as a diagnosis. No one goes for a brain scan or has blood tests which would show GABA shortages in the brain. It's still a matter of doctors asking if you drink, how much, and then handing over a prescription on an almost trial and error basis. That's also how they work with anti-depressants, trying SSRI's then newer drugs like Mirtazapine. They just start with what's approved by the authorities after they thumb through the index of available medicines. I hope that makes sense.
  25. 1 point
    Happy October, everybody! Let's all have a safe and sober month. What's going on in your world? Also, just FYI I created a Checking In thread on the My Way Out board too. Seems silly, I know, but I just hate seeing the medication section languish over there. Feel free to stop by and post something
  26. 1 point
    So I got royally drunk last Sunday, from lunchtime. We had friends over for lunch and I made an arse of myself. I had dropped down from 125mg to 75mg of Bac per day when ill overseas. I didn't do it intentionally at first, I was just so sick that I forgot to take my 50mg evening dose. Once I was at 75mg I thought I'd be okay. Obviously not. Now titrating up, currently at 100mg and that seems to be enough to hold off cravings. I have been a week on half-dose and 3 days full dose of Mirt (30mg). I feel a bit calmer but still depressed. I hope it lifts soon because I'm sick of it. I have been exercising fairly reguarly, so the weight gain from taking Mirt seems to have halted. I am hungry more than I was. I'm hoping to slowly reduce my weight, but will live with how I am if it means my mood lifts. I don't think losing weight and taking Mirt have to be mutually exclusive, but I need my mood to lift first I think.
  27. 1 point
    Not sure about ADs helping with colds. Except maybe having depression lowers your immunity? Try vit D rather than Vit C & take it all the time. Most of us pale people who live in the northern hemisphere are short on Vit D. Perhaps since you poor sods in the USA have to pay for your health care, you can get your doc to do vit D levels. GPs in the UK won't do them routinely. I was on steroids for a year & because of my age (risk of osteoporosis) I was prescribed Adcal (vit D + Ca). For that entire year i didn't have a single cold - unheard of for me! I stopped taking it once I was off the steroids & low & behold, got a bad cold a few months later - right in the middle of summer. I spend lots of time outside in summer so my vit D levels should have been max right then.
  28. 1 point
    Felina, thank you so much for responding to my post. You have no idea how much encouragement my daughter and I are receiving knowing that there is someone out there that can walk beside us in the Baclofen journey! And to know that you have used Baclofen successfully is so wonderful! I don't know you, but I'm proud of you anyway! Seven years is a good track record. Have you chosen to drink at all or embrace abstinance...just curious. I am also very pleased to hear you say these pharmacy sites are still reliable. When I googled them for reviews things were said that made me leery of all of them, but if all of you are finding them reliable, then they must be. I have searched very hard to try to find a doctor who will prescribe Baclofen. Today one of my searches appears to have paid off. I have contacted a psychiatrist who I have been told by the office staff does prescribe Baclofen for alcoholism, and the staffer was rather confident that if my daughter became a patient, she would do so, particularly since she is already taking it. I will make an appointment for her next week. It will be expensive, though. $300 for the first visit and $150 thereafter, which hopefully won't be that often, after a couple of months. I would prefer to have her monitored to begin with, especially since she currently doesn't have the urge to drink, and therefore doesn't have "cravings" as a guideline right now about how far to increase her dosage. After 2-3 months if all is well she might be able to go on her own. Today I did an initial search of some prescriptions only pharmacies, and was surprised that the first once that came up (here in the USA) was almost as low as the foreign pharmacies listed on this site (.34 a pill for 270 20mg). I'm real excited about that! I realize that 20mg is a very low dosage, but interestingly today my daughter was feeling depressed and anxious about all the divorce issues facing her. Then I learned that she had not taken her Baclofen and wondered if that is why she had a difficult day; her first difficult day in the week I have been here. Then she took one 10mg pill and she seemed better after that. We decided to "ration" the pills until she can get a constant supply. So if 10-20mg Baclofen is responsible for her being "upbeat" on previous days, I'm impressed! She was up to 40mg, but backed it down to make it last longer. She said she can't tell any difference so far from the varying dosages. Based on all the testimonies I've read, I suspect that she will need a higher dosage to avoid "binging", but have no idea what that dosage will be. Thanks again for your help!
  29. 1 point
    Hi, Barbara! Re: meds on sites like alldaychemist: it has been my experience that the recommended sites provide medications that are of good quality. Those drugs are not close to their expiration date or in any way otherwise inferior. The sites that are generally recommended (River Pharmacy, All Day Chemist, Goldpharma, Inhouse Pharmacy) provide high-quality medications at a fraction of the US cost. I have used all but Inhouse Pharmacy, and can attest that they are as "clean" as any drugs sold in the US. I highly recommend them. It seems scary to order online from a foreign pharmacy, but many of us have used those sites with success. I certainly wasn't an occasional drinker. I was an all-day, all-out type. But I have been on baclofen for almost seven years. You have mentioned that your daughter takes 20 mgs/day. Generally speaking, that is usually not enough to make a difference. She can certainly benefit from that dosage, but she might find much more relief by slowly (slowly!) titrating up in dosage, and watching to see if a higher dosage helps her when she does get the urge to binge. Everyone reacts to baclofen differently. Naltrexone is always an option, but it can run quite expensive. It might be a good idea to stick with baclofen for a while first before switching/experimenting with another drug. Do I sound like I am all over the place? It is difficult to make suggestions when everyone reacts to these drugs in a different way. In any event, I am so glad you're here. Please stick around, ask questions, report on her progress, and keep us updated.
  30. 1 point
    It's I think about 3 standard glasses, just over. A restaurant pour (I believe) is 6 oz, a guiness sized pint glass is 20 oz
  31. 1 point
    Thanks so much for your response, M! It was very helpful. I don't know if you're familiar with "muscle testing" or "kinesieology" but she tested strong on Baclofen, which indicates her body liked it. In any case, we would like to see how she does on it. Even though she is not presently having "cravings" there are times she binges, and I assume something like a "craving" precedes this, but I'm not sure. Thanks for the encouragement about online ordering; there is some really scary info about it. I agree that slightly expired dates are not a huge deal. What sites do you order from that you have confidence in, if you don't mind sharing that, and how long have you been ordering from them? Right now my daughter is not drinking at all, and is doing really well; looking forward to a life without an abusive husband, who was a major trigger for her drinking. She only has about 30 10mg pills left, so we've decided that she will get off it for now (she was up to 4 a day and now down to one because she is going to run out) and see if she can tell any difference. That way if she can, she can start back up and we can order online. That way we can tell, even if there are no obvious cravings, whether or not she is benefitting. With such high doses being consumed by some it appears that you would have to be ordering all the time! Right? It could get very expensive, seems to me.
  32. 1 point
    @Nicnak Congratulations!! I'm happy for you. Guard it well.
  33. 1 point
    @Felina I put quite a bit of effort in MWO about meds. Maybe not baclofen because I cannot get it but I push options in meds.
  34. 1 point
    Thanks, all. @Mom2JTx3 I do not know of a reputable source for CBD oil, though haven't looked really. I'm in CA and have a fresh medical rx. Haven't used it in a while, and never have tried the oil. Did try an edible once, maybe 5-6 months ago, and felt absolutely nothing. Anyway, maybe someone knows of something around here? Be careful with the synthetics, though, I've heard horror stories about those.
  35. 1 point
    Glad you're sleeping, @cheeto. That is so, so important.
  36. 1 point
    Happy October everyone. Not much is new here. I’ve titrated down to 250mg and am staying here for awhile. I’m AF and have to be now, but that’s OK. At this amount of Baclofen, it’s not hard. Congratulations @StuckinLA!! There’s an interesting discussion over on MWO about CBD oil for anxiety. Does anyone use it or know a reputable source?
  37. 1 point
    Hi @Felina im at 175mg a day now and definetly drinking less but still on 1 to 1.5 bottles of wine a day but really want that elusive switch. Before when I switched it was emmediate,from drinking about 3 bottles one day to nothing the next
  38. 1 point
    I read it online in my phone via the app.As bad as buying it I suppose but it gets me the news in a format I like
  39. 1 point
    Seems there is some study into Mirtazapine alone for AUD, and for Comorbidity of Depression and AUD. No separate heading for research. Some links. Mirtazapine in Comorbid Major Depression and Alcohol Dependence: An Open-Label Trial Mirtazapine, and mirtazapine-like compounds as possible pharmacotherapy for substance abuse disorders: Evidence from the bench and the bedside ^^ Full manuscript can be found on some scientific epub/torrent sites.
  40. 1 point
    Always great to see you, tk! Congrats on another miracle year.
  41. 1 point
    @Otter curious study. At what level were these individuals drinking I wonder. A bottle of two of wine or 40oz of vodka? So Nal might make controlled drinking but the individual has increased intoxication? So in fact it is saying that the 40oz of vodka will potentially reduce to a bottle of wine? I say this because I wonder what the tipping point of levels of intoxication Naltrexone might be most effective at in curbing excessive drinking. The fact the cue's are higher in the NTX than PLC group does lead me to wonder something I have been pondering for a while. That NTX not only mutes alcohol but all highs including eating, so introduction of a flood of AL in this study may mean that the individual is still wanting and seeking an escape from discomfort and at such a point any trigger or cue can induce a craving and therefore abstinence is a struggle. In my case experiment Mirtazapine and Gabapentin to take the struggle (anxiety) off the cue based issues shown to be inherent of NTX in this study. I lapsed hard on NAL after 6 months and lost a ton of weight which had to be curbed differently. So NTX is an interesting topic but I am still cautious of swinging all for one method such as Baclofen and eliminating potentials of others for modification or a synergy of medications. Neither here nor there, but NAL alone seems in my case not be the end all. Baclofen with NAL may have been effective for me had I been given that opportunity to experiment. " Of note, our data do not establish an absolute deficit in the ability of alcohol to activate the VS in our clinical population. Because ethical considerations limit the level of brain alcohol exposure that can be assessed in treatment seeking subjects, the deficit was detected at blood alcohol levels lower than those that typically result from heavy drinking. It is therefore possible that a VS response to alcohol would occur in this population at higher levels of intoxication." This in the results is interesting that the cue's were instigated at very low levels and thats an interesting sign.
  42. 1 point
    Blimy,that was quick @StuckinLA
  43. 1 point
    Well naltrexone wasn't for me.Constantly felt unwell even after 3 weeks and everything tasted bad all day and everyday .Was in a constant bad mood and felt vey very depressed.Wasnt sure if was the naltrexone but after being off it for a while I'm sure it was. So I'm returning to baclofen in desperation.Currently drinking 1.5 bottles of wine a day and just had liver function test that shows high protein and albumin so hoping bac works soon.On 75mg at the mo
  44. 1 point
    Also, dopamine imbalance is a cause of other problems. "Several important diseases of the nervous system are associated with dysfunctions of the dopamine system, and some of the key medications used to treat them work by altering the effects of dopamine. Parkinson's disease, a degenerative condition causing tremor and motor impairment, is caused by a loss of dopamine-secreting neurons in an area of the midbrain called the substantia nigra. Its metabolic precursor L-DOPA can be manufactured, and in its pure form marketed as Levodopa is the most widely used treatment for the condition. There is evidence that schizophreniainvolves altered levels of dopamine activity, and most antipsychotic drugs used to treat this are dopamine antagonists which reduce dopamine activity.[2] Similar dopamine antagonist drugs are also some of the most effective anti-nausea agents. Restless legs syndrome and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are associated with decreased dopamine activity.[3]" Wikipedia What we are seeing are a lot of new treatments for conditions like Parkinson's Disease using baclofen, for instance, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4635348/ Arbaclofen was developed to treat autism. When doctors treat alcoholism, they tend to think that they need to get the patient first to stop drinking (just like that) and then treat the underlying mental illness. But, the underlying illness and "alcoholism" are likely to be one and the same thing. Alcohol comsumption is just a way of self-medicating. Because we a haven't seen the association of both alcoholism and things like autism and ADHD with dopamine, we talk about alcoholics who say they are only self-medicating with alcohol as being irresponsible when, in fact, they are right. Alcohol does medicate this dysphoria. It's an anxiolytic, but it isn't specific to the illness in its effect. It affects the whole body and causes behaviours which people don't like, which are anti-social and unpleasant. Baclofen is specific to the GABAB receptors so it is a better, more effective "treatment" than alcohol. My beef with people who downplay baclofen is that they overlook the science behind it but you can't blame them because even the scientists and doctors involved in baclofen research and treatment haven't even got to grips with isolating and identifying the illness and just call it alcoholism, which allows detractors to ignore the science. If we could get proper diagnosis of a clearly defined, identifiable disorder of the neurological system it would make it easier to explain and treat, without all the misinformation and antagonism between supporters of this research and others who are committed to AA or some other method. We could look at each form of treatment and measure it in terms of whether it works for this neurological condition and we could say whether or not the patient actually has the illness or drink for social reasons. I used to drink every day and I had anxiety, but not to the extent that I couldn't chocoose to have a coke rather than a glass of wine. I don't drink at all now and I don't have overwhelming anxiety so I don't have the illness. My alcohol consumption when I was in a stressful job did cause me to have worse anxiety, particularly Sunday night job anxiety so I'd always drink on a Sunday night to calm my pre-Monday, back to work anxiety. But, that's not "alcohollism". I didn't have an organic disorder. although continued alcohol consumption and stress may, I suppose, have pushed me towards having a bit of a problem and I found it hard to quit.
  45. 1 point
    @Otter, like my GP. Its easy to dismiss effects in sobriety as being caused by alcohol use and not why alcohol use was initiated in the first place. Or even if something happened during the course of normal drinking that caused a major spike in consumption. The concept that once you have your first drink at 16 you opened a door doesn't nearly work in that situation as possibly you had a fall, a stroke, a car accident and alcohol or substance use spikes and becomes the fill in gap measure. So much assumption made by AA and the gen pop. Many may have been normal drinkers before something happened.
  46. 1 point
    I'm not sure why its renamed. Substance use disorder is way to vague too. Uppers, Downers, Psychedelics, Disassociatives... Like come on. So to get this straight, its being studied for AWS. How does this encompass recovery? Because as far as I know AWS is the term for the first 72 hours and that's the misnomer being pushed as an agenda to stop diazepam use. AWS. It should be at least categorized into Immediate Withdrawal Syptoms and Alcohol Recovery Medications. Then developed further and other characteristics and exhibited behaviors and what we call PAWS might not just be "Oh, it'll pass, its because you drank so much", maybe there is something else wrong you #$#2. I would think Gabapentin is for long term use not just bing bang boom you are fixed. Now deal with the rest of the crap. Maybe the name AUD is to soften the blow those those that want to admit to over using alcohol or are dependent and to take away the shame? Sometimes I wonder about this whole disease agenda that is going on. Why are we not looking further into the brain as to why people are self medicating with alcohol. Its not all because of social influence or damaged past, its often to dampen some other chemical or brain function and physical issues. Otter I totally agree we are not looking at why these drugs work for some and not for others. What parts of the brain are damaged that are being compensated for with the medications if they do so in fact work. Still a shallow study, but at least a study is being done?! Mind you, this study because its inherently going to be flawed (again) may actually damage a potential medicine for those it can actually help. If it fails, look at why it failed. I swear some companies are funding these studies so they can push their patented drugs and not lose their hold on the market, so they are designed to fail... look at cigarettes.
  47. 1 point
    This study is interesting, for me, for one reason. It illustrates very well how even the Mayo Clinic takes the same approach to this illness which has always been taken. Look at the inclusion criteria: Inclusion Criteria: Prediction of Alcohol Withdrawal Severity Scale (PAWSS) score >4. Adults age 18 or older. Sufficient understanding of English. Hospitalized on Hospital Internal Medicine or Generose. We, and the medical profession, continue to define this illness in terms of the amount of alcohol consumed and consequences, ie., Hospitalization. The other criteria are age and language. If you think about the research being done with baclofen, for instance, the brain scans which Dr. Childress did, and which led to Ameisen taking baclofen for his anxiety, you can see a neurological disorder, a hyperactivity of the limbic region in the brain. What is the nature of the illness which the Mayo Clinic is intending to treat? By settling on Gabapentin as a treatment, they must think there is an anxiety problem, but their inclusion criteria say nothing about this. Do all people who over-use alcohol and end up in hospital do so because of a neurological problem related to the brain's anxiety coping mechanism (if that's the right way to state it)? If they don't, then those taking alcohol who don't have any such problem presumably won't respond positively. The new DSM-V criteria for "alcohol use disorder" also suffer from the same approach, in my opinion. Even the term they use shows this approach. Alcoholism was typically referred to as "alcohol misuse" or "substance abuse". If someone suffers from severe pain and takes lots of pain-killers such as codeine, would it be right to describe their illness as an "opiate use disorder" or would it be more useful to look at the cause of the pain? We've moved away from calling it alcohol abuse to a "disorder" of alcohol "use". What on earth does that mean from a medical perspective? How does is help in finding a treatment to define the illness as either an abuse of alcohol or a disorder of its use? We've had this debate here and previously, elsewhere, for years now. What's the precise name for what baclofen treats? What does baclofen do to which part of the brain and why is this part of the brain not working properly? I don't even get the impression from the French studies that they have addressed this issue. The Prescribing Guidelines describe the experience of prescribing doctors who reported that patients would come to them and ask for baclofen, with little discussion about their condition, symptoms or much of anything. There's no mention in the Guidelines of any neurological or medical "diagnosis" or taking of a case history other than that the patient complained of being addicted to alcohol. What this leads to is a division between 12-Steppers...get psycho-social support...baclofen users...lots of advice about dosage...and those who try other meds...advice about dosage. Most of us are not doctors so we can't diagnose and don't know what questions to ask. We may see reports of anxiety and then suggest baclofen, and it may or may not work. The medical profession, even those doctors using baclofen, are no better. Am I missing something?
  48. 1 point
    Hello everyone. I haven't posted much lately. Does anyone know how Ne is doing? Congratulations Stuck. So are you now teaching full-time and also looking at 2018?. Bacman, Sorry about your wife, that is a tough one. Hi to Felina, Nicnac and everyone else. Went to my husband's funeral this weekend. My daughter was pretty upset so that part of it was no fun. His kids from his first marriage organized everything and never acknowledged us, his 2nd family other than the music being Dylan's Knocking on Heaven's Door, The Stones, Joe Cocker. There was a brunch at the yacht club that was very nice. We were separated but 30 yrs is still a long time to be with someone. I spoke to him a few days before he died.
  49. 1 point
    @Alcofree mainly I will tell you my journey to abstinence. @Baclofenman @Otter and @Molly78 you might find this interesting info as a personal experience dealing with getting meds prescribed in Canada (likely similar). Edit, to answer before I get started. Health Canada only approves every day. So that is not true. It may be more effective with the Dr. Sinclair Method, "the elimination but the gov't here says every morning. I didn't give myself the chance to try it that way. Ordering out of country has its risks. One reason I steer away from ordering from out of country is that fake drugs do exist. You may work fine with APOTEX or STERINOVA or TEVA or whoever else manufactures the drug and maybe not another. The additives and binders. Its interesting, GP's in Canada hit up coaching you for AA and therapists or rehab, as the front line approach is assumed that you are depressed or anxious so you get the modern fad pill of the antidepressants. No shit you are depressed and have anxiety... its withdrawal and dependency. Beware of Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) as it increases drinking. At second base you get Naltrexone 50mg daily (health Canada doesn't approve the Dr. Sinclair method but once you have it you do as you will with it). Not sure how Canada differs because every package is x-rayed and any mail that is pill sized if screened as we have an opiod epidemic happening here. Now in my case I had done my 90 in 90 AA, 3 rehabs all of different types and had therapists and a psychologist doing biofeedback with like a skull cap and gel and sensors all over my body. So my GP didn't blink an eye at me trying naltrexone as I proved my point. I chose Campral first as I was abstinent at the time and had done some research and wanted to the combo. Though they really don't like that as they both hit the liver. More on that later in the post. So like @Baclofenmansaid, you really only get it if you are active with therapists, psychologists or CBT groups. Canada is similar but not the same in this regard to the UK. Quite closely aligned in practice but maybe a bit more liberal if you find the right ones, like Baclofen man said, "Find a new one". My GP is young so he has more addiction education than the oldschoolers and impressed by how much research I do. My goodness the tech in the new clinic my GP has. The specialist has the experience and the willingness to go off label. If you can get that far, by getting Naltrexone you can start to push harder. Naltrexone here even if you are drinking still is prescribed so long as you are active. Stop your therapy, eventually the script won't get filled. This country is connected and monitors what you are doing between doctors and your pharmacist (if they are competent) unlike the states where people double and triple fill scams. It really pays off to have open minded doctors that can see what each other are doing. It can save your life. That would be another reason I steer away from ordering from out of country unregulated and controlled. But with no options I suppose I would take the risk. Convincing your doctor to combo that with Campral (333x2 three times a day) can be a challenge; it took me a week for him to do his research (blood tests to show I was sober as its a maintenance/repair drug). Those are the two Health Canada approved medications. Of course if you are persistent you can get what I've been able to experiment with by seeking myself and my GP's referrals to bump you to see a specialist (tap your resources in your therapy sessions at the local detox or non AA addiction center). I assume you have that in the UK. I use both of those drugs concurrently and that was my mainstay for many months but it was not good enough. Soooo.... lapse. Advancing further as I am convincing and research everything bloody thing. The specialist decided to also put me on Mirtazapine which has cross for anxiety/major depressive disorder and off-label anti craving and gaining weight. Awesome, perfect Body Mass Index now. Appetite back. Could sleep. Then you get used to it and you feel OK. I experimented for a month with baclofen but was never given a script over 30mg a day so I kind of didn't want to run out mid titration so I stopped (my goodness it made me drowsy). Likely didn't give it a good enough chance and neither my GP or the specialist approved of it. I at this point knew as much as them and me and my GP joke around and talk seriously about interactions and modern therapies. He's learning a lot, I think he likes it! Having both communicating is better than one misguided and afraid to try new things alone. We need more doctors like him as there is an epidemic not only in alcohol but opiods killing multiple people daily here. We are modernizing from AA slowly into programs like SMART and CBT programs, there is even an alcoholic house that if you are a member you get their brew one glass of beer an hour. Because its better than homeless people wandering stealing. Thats pretty far in stretch of the layman's acceptable practice, but its proving to work. Same with heroin in BC. Drug reform is happening. I don't necessarily agree with letting anyone smoke pot for no reason. Like we need more high people driving around. AA's track record is abysmal. 5% at one year, and likely 1% at 5 years success. And such a horrible life reliving awful experiences of yourself and others. Its like living hell on earth in my theories. Science has moved forward dramatically. The big book was written a long time ago and says (i could go and get the book and the quote), but essentially "science has not yet found a cure". Well I'm pretty sure everyone is chemically a little different and there is not a one patch fits all but damn we have some cool stuff happening around the world. Look at Portugal, France and the Netherlands. That was a tangent, sorry. Oh the specialist is an egomaniac but whatever he prescribes so deal with it! I had a nasty life situation that was made all the worse by a drug called Trintellix here and Brintellix (long story about people getting the wrong med because the name was similar to another drug) elsewhere which is written all over this forum and My Way Out. Turns out it can make you increadibly emotional and sink you deeper into depression for a percentage of the population. I stopped everything as kind of a self sabotage and reality sets in as you sober up and life is chaos picking up the pieces mixed with getting off of a (bad for me) antidepressant. Stopped my Naltrexone and everything else so I could feel drunk because I was not happy at all. This made for some seriously messed up things happening, like drinking over the withdrawals of meds. End result I used Diazepam to come off (again) from 40oz Vodka a day. Started nal immediately and valium, then the rest all back up again after 72 hours with astonishingly very little side effects, no hallucinations, odd buzzing noises, did have the shaky spoon spill for a week. The doctors were a little afraid of me saying I was doing it outside a monitored detox, but I have done this dozens of times and sobering up with other messed up people is not my cup of tea. Thanks Ensure (the drink) and soup so I could eat again. Slam myself with some B1 (thiamine in large doses as you don't absorb it while drinking). Get my head on straight. Spend a month or two waiting for the specialist (busy man) and watching my perfect blood tests come back to normal. Some tests go as far as like 7 vials of blood. Most of the time just 2. We can check online the next day. Takes me a month to come back to normal. Now back to meds, this one for me was the switch --- Gabapentin (Neurontin) was added on the last visit to the specialist. I think I'm at about a month into Gabapentin 900mg and have no interest in drinking and don't even think about it at all. Still tapering down the 5mg valium so up the GabaP, down the V. I am indifferent to alcohol at this point. The fact I'm dedicated to forums, and have friends and I find pharma and how this works fascinating, so I stick around. I probably could go without the Campral. So as I said I would get back about liver effects of Naltrexone in relation to other drugs. Gabapentin is processed by the kidneys, so if you are duplicating medications you don't want to hit the liver to hard if you want to level out your AST/ALT/RBC/BUL/etc. So processing it works differently. In summary is I have like 1000$ in Naltrexone and likely the same in Campral. The other drugs are cheap (GabaP and Mirt). So much stock because of a nasty relapse. Specialist wanted to add Cipralex on top of this all but that drug scared the shit out of me while I was detoxing once. It is not designed for withdrawal. So I have not yet started it as I feel spot on, so why add more. In fact slowly take them down until I feel malaise. Gabapentin is like gold to me now, check out the reviews at drugs.com - Gabapentin for ALC Withdrawal including some testimony of continued use. Pretty soon my benefits run out and Campral is gonna get kicked off the list as the new benefits don't cover it. Have 6 months supply in case I need it in the future. I wasn't quite ready to quit as for fear of withdrawal effects when I started this journey, but was filling anyways. Same goes for when I relapsed, so I got tons of these drugs. I don't count days but I do know one lapse and one hard relapse occurred. I know why and when, which is why the CBT is advised with Naltrexone and I was not practicing or participating, missing appointments, etc. Took 11 months of persistence and referrals to get all this setup. Gabapentin script up to 1800mg a day (using 900-1200mg), Mirtazapine 30mg to 45mg at night, Campral (standard 666mg three times daily), Naltrexone (50mg) every morning (why because its there and I have a crap load of it as a designed safety net). As admitted alcoholics, we have reached a point where alcohol is no longer a pleasant experience or it just takes too much of a toll physically, socially, emotionally, financially, intimacy, trust... We all know. So a tip, use drugs.com or webmd.com and research what these off label drugs do. There is kind of a wink wink nudge nudge so if you actually say to the doctor you are experiencing a symptom that the off label drug is approved for, he/she will prescribe it. They cannot ethically and legally otherwise as I think Baclofenman said. If you don't say it, you don't get it. For an example I was told to say to my GP that I have back spasms as that's the health canada approved use for Gabapentin. So look up off label drugs and claim you have one or more symptoms if you want to experiment. But educate yourself before and use drug interaction charts and swap meds around to see what interactions go on (on the website, not in your body). For example I can't take over the counter Calcium because its 95% of the time mixed with Magnesium. Magnesium kills off Gabapentin's effects, just like smoking kills off mirtazapines effects. No one tells you this because they don't know. Neither told me that. You need to read a lot and link things together to essentially self prescribe things for yourself (be cautious). Read the experiments, read about brain chemistry, read about trials and how they are conducted and their success rates. Gabapentin is unusual as it can be used as a direct replacement for valium for the initial withdrawal, I like it, so I continue to use it. After lapse after lapse after lapse. I took control of the situation and worked with my doctors. I absolutely despise what alcohol does to me. So sheer determination brought me too this point. Ignoring all the indoctrination and scorn of others "white knuckling" it. F it. Nothing else worked, so meds it is. Its not weakness of character, its actual damage we have incurred on ourselves that requires the meds. Feel no shame. Learn. = Freedom. Hope that helps you a bit in terms of the way to approach your doctors and what you need to do if you really want out of the trap. I am not a doctor, this is just personal experience. Long post, rambled! Hope it wasn't preachy. Good luck OP @Alcofree.
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