Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Paxil and the blahs

Paxil (paroxetine) used to be my favorite choice of medications for the longterm control of anxiety. It worked quickly, and rapid relief of anxiety is a good thing.

I've mentioned before, however, how some people experience a dulling of emotion on Paxil. One patient yesterday called it 'robot mode.' That 'whatever dude' sort of attitude may be a welcome relief from all overwhelm all the time, but patients like this lady eventually want more from life than just freedom from fretting. In particular, she hated the inertia she felt at days' end when choosing between attending her kids' sports events versus sitting quietly doing nothing at all.

Unfortunately, in her case, no drugs at all is not a choice. Job, kids, financial worries, and her serious generalized anxiety disorder just don't work out together. Adding Wellbutrin didn't help; we're trying Effexor now.


dorsey said...

My friend had the same issue with Paxil, added ritalin. It worked well for him but his girlfriend complained he talked too much on that combo.

Anonymous said...

Effexor is just as bad as paxil. Why not suggest a good psychologist who does cognitive behavioral therapy.