Started taking Nalmefene (Selincro)...anxiety and PTSD

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hi I recently managed to wean myself off (GP controlled) the antidepressants I was on for PTSD (ex-forces), however I tend to compensate with alcohol which I did for about 10 days until I got back in control...anyway!

I went through an online consultation and purchased Selincro to help but now I am reading that it should be taken if you are reducing alcohol, I am on zero units and have been for 2 weeks now. I took my first Selincro yesterday but feel very anxious today and have been all night, is this normal? Is it just in my head?! Should I stick with taking it for a week as other have spoken about?

should I not be taking this type of medication...?

please help

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8 Replies

  • Posted

    It should be taken on the days that you consume alcohol only and two hors beforehand, no good taking it in the morning and then going out for a binge in the evening.

    It is not to be consumed on alcohol free days. It isn't a detox like say diazepam. If you've managed to stay alcohol free for ten days, can you not abstain without drugs? Or is your fear that you are likely to relapse?

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    • Posted

      Hi and thank you for your reply. I mainly got it just to strengthen my reslove not to drink and there is always the fear I suppose of relapse.
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  • Posted

    Hi Felix,

    Selincro is only for those who are currently drinking.  I don't understand how you were approved during the online consultation as they usually ask you to complete how many units you have drank in the previous 2 weeks.....

    Anyway, I would suggest you take a moment to fully read the leaflet that came with the tablets so that you understand what it is for.

    In a nutshell, Selincro blocks the receptors in the brain that receive the endorphins from all activities, including alcohol drinking.  If you take the medication, wait 2 hours for the receptors to be completely blocked and then drink, you will not receive the usual 'rush' of endorphins.  That is why it helps reduce consumption - there is no usual reward associated with drinking, and so the compulsion to continue drinking reduces over time, too.

    However, if you take it and not drink you are blocking ALL endorphins - so you will also not receive any endorphin reward from excercise, spicy meals, sex.... all those things.

    You should ONLY take this medication if you intend to drink and you should always wait 2 hours between taking the tablet and slowly drinking.

     

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    • Posted

      "I don't understand how you were approved during the online consultation as they usually ask you to complete how many units you have drank in the previous 2 weeks"

      Joanna,

      It's called fibbing, we all do it to some extent, especially where alcohol is concerned.wink

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    • Posted

      thanks Joanna, I just filled in the proforma, which I was very honest in and even the fact that it had been a week since I last had anything to drink and a Dr got back to me and reccomended those ones, I bought bloody 84 of them which cost £306! your comment actually explains a lot and the resons I felt the way I did yesterday...I actually don't want to drink full stop which I know I can as I hadn't actually drank anything for a couple of years previous as I know I am pretty weak hence wanting a crutch so to speak to be on hand!

      John

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    • Posted

      Not sure what the rules are on returning medications, but maybe you could contact them and ask if you can return any unopened packets?

      If not, well at least you have them 'just in case' your cravings start to overwhelm you and the use-by date are usually pretty long. 

      If your cravings do become overwhelming, then follow the instructions and take one tablet, 2 hours prior to drinking.  Then drink slowly and recognise their is no 'rush'.

       

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  • Posted

    Hi Felix

    I mistakenly thought I could use nalmefene just on the days I was tempted to drink, in the belief that it would help me abstain on those days. I too can go days without, whilst i'm working.

    The first tablet I took (without alcohol) in ignorance and I too had awful anxiety for a few days after. However, I had been suffering from anxiety and mild depression before I started Nalmefene. 

    The science behind this drug's activity and its blockage of the release of endorpine meant that because I was anxious and low to begin with (but not ever taking conventional medication), I experienced these feelings a few days after taking the drug - even when taking it correctly (with alcohol). This has improved somewhat after my 4th tablet, and my view is that it was the initial side effects making me miserable as I couldn't enjoy anything, not even food.

    I am persevering through the side effects because i'm in this for the long game. I am convinced this is the answer for me personally and it could be for you. If you goal is to avoid releapse, you still need to take it on the days you drink and abide by the golden rule - take one tablet and wait 2 hours before your first drink.

    I'm sure your anxiety will reduce in time but I would suggest you take guidence from your GP in the event your anxiety is difficult to manage. It may be worth asking for Nalmefene from your GP or at least telling your GP what you are doing.

    Good luck mate.

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