Ciprofloxacin after effects advice please!

Posted , 4 users are following.

Hello Brief background

Female aged 71, have Asthma,Allergic Rhinitis,high blood pressure,hypothyroidism,IBS, Diverticulosis osteo arthritis, glaucoma and have suffered from Anxiety for a number of years.

About 4 weeks ago I was given a course of penicillin after many visits to gp for a cold which was lasted over 5 weeks as it turned out. I had a very red throat and most awful choking cough and lost my voice completely not good as I sing in a choir and it is back but not quite 100%. After I finished the penicillin I had an upset digestive system like all antibiotics but also developed was I thought was an UTI (have had them before after colds). I saw a doctor not my usual one but had seen him in the past. He thought thrush and prescribed for that ( I did not think it was however) I returned a week later when I got blood in urine and a sample was taken and sent to lab. He said in the meantime I will prescribe antibiotics. So far so good. I collected the prescription and went home. I was alarmed when I saw he had prescribed ciprofloxacin 500 2 a day for 7 days. I would have been none the wiser except my husband had a really bad reaction to these some years ago. Was burning hot itched and said he felt like he would explode fortunately the gp stopped the cipro and gave him antihistamine and he was soon better. I took one tablet and whether or not it was just anxiety I started to feel a bit spaced out. I went back in the afternoon to ask the gp for advice he said it was just anxiety and not a reaction. He said it was quite safe and he himself had taken it and in all his years as a gp had only one person have a reaction. I felt somewhat reassured but not completely happy. I completed the course and did not really have any side effects except for some digestive discomfort which I would expect but no Diarrhoea. After finishing the last tablet I returned to gp and he confirmed the sample was positive for an infection. This was one week ago. I have had some trouble in the last week with digestive system to be expected as I have existing digestive problems but is settling down now. I thought my neck arthritis was flaring up as during the time I was ill I was doing a lot of laying around and no neck exercises which I usually do. The pain was exactly the same. Now I am feeling stressed waking really early (have had this before). Rhinitis is flaring up but that could be to do with a change of medication. I have odd itching sensations which last seconds and can be anywhere on the body. My scalp is itchy and I have like tension headache and sinus facial pain, although the neck arthritis causes headaches and head pain. Once again I have had all these in the past either as anxiety or separate problem. I am so concerned that this might be the start of long term effects of this drug as I have read so many terrible experiences from patients who have taken cipro. I have an appointment in 2 weeks with my usual gp and I am going to tell her that I never want to take them again. What do you all think, could this be that start of problems related to this drug or just my normal symptoms. I thankfully don't take nsaids and I am a steroid responder so will not take these unless there is no alternative. I understand these can make symptoms worse. I was hoping to go back to my choir tomorrow and hope it will take my mind of things. Thanks for reading this. I truly hope that everyone affected by this terrible drug will recover fully or at least enough to lead a good life.

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  • Posted

    You've got a lot to consider here but at least you know what sort of things to be looking out for with the Cipro. At this stage anything is possible and it's up to you to decide if what you are experiencing is your 'normal'. You know not to take Ibuprofen or other NSAID for the pain and you are wary of steroids so you are better armed than most people who take this.

    Taking your mind off it may well help, so I hope yu were able to go to your choir. One of the symptoms is anxiety, of course, but if you are feeling anxious anyway this won't help you at all. If you are on edge monitoring every twinge, you will feel stressed and stress causes inflammation which can lead to other things so the best plan at the moment is to relax and try to forget about it.

    Whether anything happens or not over the next 2 weeks, at least you have decided you never want these antibiotics again and that can be entered on your notes (and also on your husband's, I hope). If you do find you have pains or problems starting which have no other explanation, make sure you tell your doctor and ask him to send in a Yellow Card Report - you can also send one in. It's easy to do online so just look for it.

    Unfortunately, if you find you do have an adverse reaction, there's not really much your doctor can do for you as rest and time do seem to be the main healers. You could start to take a good multimineral tablet and make sure you have plenty of antioxidants and vitamins as these are known to help protect the cells from FQ damage. Never exceed the RDA of course. Also take a variety of probiotics as your gut will have suffered.

    Insomnia and itching could be symptoms. Your husband sounds like he had a narrow escape when the doctor stopped the pills as antihistamine alone is not known to be a treatment. Many sufferers have the terrible burning symptoms - and some are given antihistamine - but this is the first I've heard that the problem soon stopped.

    I do hope all goes well with you and that you don't experience anything worse. When you see your doctor you can say that the MHRA will soon be sending out a letter about the serious side effects! They issued one safety update just last week to warn that FQs can cause aortic problems but this will apparently be an actual letter to every doctor so a bit more special (they get hundreds of safety updates each month).

    Please post here if you have any questions or other symptoms that appear and I'll get an alert.

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    • Posted

      A vascular surgeon at our local hospital denied the section of the report I sent him on the danger of Flouroquinolones to patients with aortic aneurysms.

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your reply. Yes I did go to my choir and I got through it ok voice held out except for one or two top notes. It is a Rock and Pop choir so there are a lot of moves as well. Very enjoyable but I ache a lot afterwards. Wish I was as fit as some of the 70 somethings in the choir there is no much more I could do in the way of gigs etc. Anyway I love singing and it was good to catch up everyone and have a cuppa as well. I did sleep better obviously had a better day anxiety wise but today aching and tired which is normal for me after some choir sessions.

      I looked back on my husbands medical letter and I had forgotten that he had one prostate biopsy in around 2005 and was obviously given cipro and other antibiotic which is believe is standard for this procedure to stop infection. He did not react this time round but it was the 2nd time in 2010 that he had the reaction which as you know cleared quickly and I think he was back to normal within 2/3 days but had improvement as soon as he stopped the tablets. I have read that it is a build up of this antibiotic that can often course problems which makes me adamant that I will never take this again in fact any antibiotic unless really necessary.

      As for the symptoms they do seem to be very much like my normal ones heightened by anxiety. The itching has improved and I think the headaches are a combination of arthritis in neck and spine and rhinitis. I have always been a headache suffererer tension type, migraine with vomiting around menopause and migraine with aura but not so bad headache. Obviously prone to headaches. I am eating natural organic yogurt, kefir drinks , yakult I also take calcium.vitD3. As you know I will see my own gp in 2 weeks, definitely get an earlier appointment if things get worse. I will mention MHRA will be sending out a letter to gp's soon as well. Just to be sure what should I really be looking out for in the way of symptoms apart from popping tendons.

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    • Posted

      Hi Derek, typical that a lone surgeon thinks he knows better then the supposed wisdom from the MHRA!

      I'm sure all consultants/surgeons etc. are on such a high pay grade that they feel they're above paying attention to any warnings issued by our health regulator. Your surgeon needs to ask himself why tendons are always an issue (because they are 90% type 1 collagen) and what do our artery walls consist of? I don't know the percentage here (I've seen 40% mentioned along with 50% elastin ) but I have this quote:

      "Collagen is the ubiquitous load-bearing and reinforcing element in arterial walls and thus forms an important structural basis". I can supply the link if needed! I also believe elastin IS adversely affected but not sure of the mechanism yet.

      Maybe your surgeon needs to take a refresher in both the histology of arterial walls and the mechanism of action of the Fluoroquinolones.

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    • Posted

      I'm afraid just about anything could turn out to be a symptom - or not! The best answer will have to be look out for any aches, pains or feelings that don't go away and you can't class as normal. Under 'feelings' this could be anxiety, panic attacks, depression, crying (and can't stop), insomnia and hallucinations.

      Tingling, burning and itchyness, especially in the extremities, you are aware of. Also the popping and other joint noises, along with pain (stabbing, persistent, agonising maybe). The full list is on the packet leaflet but these are the main ones.

      I'm sorry it isn't a clear list but you will have to go along with your instincts as to whether you feel something is wrong. As I said before, there's not much you can do if you have been affected apart from rest and relaxing. Stress and tension make it all worse. Your doctor may suggest tests and things but these very rarely show anything of interest - and often lead to some doctors saying it's all in your mind!

      I hope this is just a blip and you get your vitality back soon!

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    • Posted

      Thanks for your reply. Thank you for your advice I do feel better in myself today although my eyes have been sore and nose twitchy so could be rhinitis or the fact that I have been a bit lax in my eye routine cleaning as I have blepharitis diagnosed years ago before even I had glaucoma. Also lack of sleep does not help. Certainly not so anxious today so choir must have helped. I have a meal with daughter and family arranged for next week and a trip to christmas market with my son in laws Mum, so things to look forward to. I guess you are right best to not get stressed and carry on. It will be 2 weeks on Monday since I took my last cipro. Not sure what your position is with regards to you having suffered from the effects of this drug but I hope you are well and will continue to be so. You are right about doctors I think that once you have a diagnosis of anxiety then every single symptom is blamed on that. Take care and thank you for taking the time to reply.

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    • Posted

      Hello again Something just occured to me and I thought I would ask your opinion. Many of the people you read about that have been affected by this awful drug Ciprofloxacin are young fit and healthly people with no health problems so I cannot understand why any doctor would not realise the Cipro must be to blame. People like myself especially those over 60 with various health problems and used to pain and other symptoms will obviously have a hard time deciding if the symptoms they have are normal for them or not unless it is a completely different type of symptom. So what I was wondering would Cipro simply make existing problems worse for example join pain from arthritis or headaches in a migraine sufferer. Has anyone ever mentioned this as far as you remember. My GP appointment is next week. I also have an underactive thyroid and I know that infections and viruses can really knock the thyroid function off until it recovers. In fact many of the symptoms are the same as Fibromyalgia and ME. Does anyone know how many people in the UK are affected or is as I suspect that they don't report them or doctors put it down to something else. I am trying just to relax and not think about it but it is hard when you suffer from anxiety. I will certainly tell my GP about the letter coming out to them.

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  • Posted

    Just an update it is now 3 weeks on Sunday since completing the course of Ciprofloxacin. Today I saw my gp and after listening to what has been happening and me saying I never want them again. She said she would record it in my records as an adverse reaction to this drug. I don't think she can be completely sure but certainly she was open to the fact it might be a reaction to Cipro or maybe a exacerbation of my normal symptoms of anxiety joint pain etc caused by taking this drug. I told her I researched the subject and told her about the letter they should be receiving soon.

    I am going to see how things go over the next month and if no improvements in neck and shoulder pain she will refer me to the hospital. At the moment I still have some intermittent itching I think caused when I am anxious, Some intermittant jaw and face pain both sides or one at a time once again anxiety but I do have neck arthritis and rhinitis so they could be contributing. Arthritis pain in spine and knee is much as it is normally. I am praying it was not the Cipro and trying to deal with the anxiety. Yesterday despite the heavy rain I went shopping with my daughter did not feel good for an hour or so but head pain went away as I relaxed and chatted and looked for Christmas presents. Today my head is hurting again and odd pains in hands and neck.

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