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is a small book... 80 or so pages 

by Dr Mark Donohoe

 

Who treated/studied  Chronic Fatigue and Chemical Sensitivity

 

He made some observations I have not heard any other place that is what makes him interesting. 

 

The patients often were in apparent good health prior to the triggering event, suffered exposure to an agent, underwent a rapid and severe deterioration of health in a short period of time, and afterwards appeared to become sensitive to the effect of the particular chemical. Initially adverse reactions were only apparent to the chemical which triggered the response, but as time went by, the number and classes of chemicals causing adverse reactions increased in the so-called “spreading phenomenon”. This had to be a hypersensitivity reaction, surely. It seemed like the allergic hypersensitivity in some ways, but something did not seem right. For a start, no mechanism was known. Allergy and delayed hypersensitivity had mechanisms which, though far from totally understood, could make sense of the process, and allow for predictions to be made. (Just this week, though, a strain of mouse in which the IgE antibodies were missing, yet which still developed allergic sensitivity, was announced. It just proves that every hypothesis, no matter how ‘true’ is simply waiting for its nemesis). Many mechanisms had been put forward for multiple chemical sensitivities, many of them revolving around kindling and limbic sensitivity, yet none really made sense of the whole process. Secondly, the damage of sensitivities such as allergy are due to inflammation. If the sensitivity is non-inflammatory (as is suggested in multiple chemical sensitivities), why was the neurological deficit so profound and so long lasting after the insult? We had assumed that the neurological effect was a symptom of continued low dose exposure, but only because we assumed it was a sensitivity reaction.

I wish to propose something a little challenging, something which will annoy many people, and something about which I am more than prepared to be proven incorrect. It is a strange thing, when I consider it, because I have seen so many patients over such a long time, and have gathered so many statistics. I do not know why it has taken me so long to reach this conclusion, nor why I feel so uncomfortable about writing it. Multiple chemical sensitivities causes permanent and irreversible brain injury. Possibly other permanent injury as well, but at least brain injury. I have been seeing multiple chemical sensitivities patients for over a decade now, and I am yet to see a single multiple chemical sensitivities patient recover completely. I have seen around fifteen hundred multiple chemical sensitivities patients in that time, a few hundred in the Special Environment Allergy Clinic, and the rest in clinical practices. Some were so severe they were bedbound, some so mild that they could still work a full and normal working week. Maybe this just means I am a poor doctor. I don’t believe so, and I would defer to the hundreds of doctors around the world with greater experience. Before anyone reading says, “Hey, I am clearly better now than when I was really sick”, or “Almost all my patients get better”, I had better explain. People with multiple chemical sensitivities do get better. So do stroke victims and people who lose a limb. They get better not by recovery, but by adaptation. This is what I believe happens in multiple chemical sensitivities. What evidence do I have? Firstly, the Auditory Evoked Response Potential testing, while it improves over time with appropriate chemical avoidance and management, rarely returns to normal. It plods along over time towards normality, but most often stops well short of acceptable. Secondly, when I first started to wonder if this were true, I began to ask those patients of mine who had done well whether they were back to normal health. None said yes! Not one. They had all done well, but they had not returned to that resilient state of good health that they enjoyed before getting sick. They had lost their reserves, and their health was now more fragile, more ‘brittle’ than before. As well, although they said they were well, they all had adopted “adaptive’ techniques to help them get by. All who were working had changed jobs to ones which were less demanding of either mental function or stamina. All had found ways to minimise disability, varying from siestas, to moving home to less polluted regions, to minimising chemical use and exposure in their own homes, to writing everything on note pads or Apple Newtons (the handwriting computer, which has been almost custom made for this kind of injury - despite the shortcomings, I can thoroughly recommend the newer versions to any multiple chemical sensitivities patient. It is like an external brain which does not vary from day to day. Anyone want to talk to Apple about this?) I do admit to one confounding factor, though. As a doctor, I see those people who have health problems, not those who have fully recovered (if there are any). There may be plenty of complete 58 Killing Us Softly • chemical injury & chemical sensitivity) recoveries around, those back to their former state of health without limitation. If so, I would be more than happy that it were so. So, having got that out, what could be happening if the damage is permanent. The answers are speculative, but could be useful to consider. Well, it could be that there is an inflammatory process to the sensitivity, and this inflammation actually affects the brain. It could be that the condition leads to apoptosis (programmed cell death) of certain cells, with them simply disappearing without trace following toxic insult. It could be that, once sensitised, there is no escape from the background of volatile chemical exposure in the late twentieth century. In some ways, this could mirror the inexorable rise of asthma, in which the allergens and chemicals conspire to turn susceptible people into cases. It could also be that the process is truly direct neurotoxicity, and that once the brain cells have died, they are simply do not return. This is the hypothesis I tend to prefer at present, at least from the available choices. Why? Because it is the most important possibility to deal with, and I am aware of no facts as yet to deny its truth. This is in some ways like the precautionary principle. If I am wrong, it will do no harm to check and prove it wrong. If I am right, and we are missing widespread neurotoxic brain damage in the population, much harm is done by trivialising the problem, and attributing it to a small section of the population. My hypothesis is that the people we call “multiple chemical sensitivities” are not suffering a hypersensitivity response at all. They are suffering neurotoxic injuries, and are susceptible individuals in the normal population. To understand the difference, consider the difference between Fig 5 and Fig 6. Fig 5 shows 2 different populations, the sensitive and the normal groups. Fig 6 shows 1 population, with the left edge being the more affected group (in Australia, we have a couple of ‘ethical and environmental’ political parties, namely the Greens and Democrats. These ‘sensitive’ politicians are very different to those of the ‘tougher’ major parties. It’s a local joke, but I would bet every country can identify similar political groups). “So what?”, I hear you ask. Well, it means not all that much now. However it means a great deal in the future, and in our attitude to the risks demonstrated by people suffering multiple chemical sensitivities. If the people now complaining are part of a small, strange subgroup of the world, different from the rest of us in some essential trait, then the problem is less immediate and less ‘real’ for the rest of us. If these people are, however, the leading edge of the main curve, then we are all at risk, and the problem is both important and immediate. KUS • Dr Mark Donohoe (internet Creative

WARNING THIS WILL BE LONG
Had a car accident in 85
Codeine was the pain med when I was release from hosp continuous use till 89
Given PROZAC by a specialist to help with nerve pain in my leg 89-90 not sure which year
Was not told a thing about it being a psych med thought it was a pain killer no info about psych side effects I went nuts had hallucinations. As I had a head injury and was diagnosed with a concussion in 85 I was sent to a head injury clinic in 1990 five years after the accident. I don't think they knew I had been on prozac I did not think it a big deal and never did finish the bottle of pills. I had tests of course lots of them. Was put into a pain clinic and given amitriptyline which stopped the withdrawal but had many side effects. But I could sleep something I had not done in a very long time the pain lessened. My mother got cancer in 94 they switched my meds to Zoloft to help deal with this pressure as I was her main care giver she died in 96. I stopped zoloft in 96 had withdrawal was put on paxil went nutty quit it ct put on resperidol quit it ct had withdrawal was put on Effexor... 2years later celexa was added 20mg then increased to 40mg huge personality change went wild. Did too fast taper off Celexa 05 as I felt unwell for a long time prior... quit Effexor 150mg ct 07 found ****** 8 months into withdrawal learned some things was banned from there in 08 have kept learning since. there is really not enough room here to put my history but I have a lot of opinions about a lot of things especially any of the drugs mentioned above.
One thing I would like to add here is this tidbit ALL OPIATES INCREASE SEROTONIN it is not a huge jump to being in chronic pain to being put on an ssri/snri and opiates will affect your antidepressants and your thinking.

As I do not update much I will put my quit date Nov. 17 2007 I quit Effexor cold turkey. 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1096-introducing-myself-btdt/

There is a crack in everything ..That's how the light gets in :)

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He designed a sleep test that can tell who has cfs and mcs... simply by their sleep patterns... breathing and sleep

 

another bit here that interests me 

"s relapses of CFS. As well, the highest concentration of H3 receptors in the brain is in the olfactory bulb, at the very site of the action in MCS. Thus, a normal response designed to enhance survival (the inhibition of an over-aggressive allergic response) has an unintended (or possibly even an intended) effect of turning down the brain function, inducing sleep, and producing pathological fatigue. The change in brain function would tend to match those effects of the old antihistamines. The problems with those match the major symptoms of MCS, with the exception of the pathosmia. There is a final piece to this, and one open to experimental assessment. The H3 receptors can themselves be blocked by a drug that has been used experimentally for a number of years now to do just that. It has been researched extensively in France, and is now being used in the treatment of narcolepsy. The downside of the drug is that by blocking the H3 receptor, it blocks the inhibition of histamine, potentially increasing allergic sensitivity. In the animals so far tested, alpha methylhistamine induces what for the animals certainly seems to be a state familiar to CFS and many MCS sufferers. They sleep excessively, cannot concentrate or learn, and are fatigued very easily. The symptoms are rapidly and apparently completely reversed by the administration of the drug, without other apparent effects. OK. The name of the drug is thioperamide. I am not suggesting for a moment that it is a treatment or cure for either CFS and MCS. I am not suggesting anyone move to Paris or claim to be narcoleptic to get on a treatment program. I am simply saying that we may have a piece of the puzzle before us for a subset of the MCS sufferers where CFS is triggered, and who were previously allergic. I do suggest, however, that it may be an experimental animal model worth looking at, and it may provide a new perspective on few of our preconceptions."

WARNING THIS WILL BE LONG
Had a car accident in 85
Codeine was the pain med when I was release from hosp continuous use till 89
Given PROZAC by a specialist to help with nerve pain in my leg 89-90 not sure which year
Was not told a thing about it being a psych med thought it was a pain killer no info about psych side effects I went nuts had hallucinations. As I had a head injury and was diagnosed with a concussion in 85 I was sent to a head injury clinic in 1990 five years after the accident. I don't think they knew I had been on prozac I did not think it a big deal and never did finish the bottle of pills. I had tests of course lots of them. Was put into a pain clinic and given amitriptyline which stopped the withdrawal but had many side effects. But I could sleep something I had not done in a very long time the pain lessened. My mother got cancer in 94 they switched my meds to Zoloft to help deal with this pressure as I was her main care giver she died in 96. I stopped zoloft in 96 had withdrawal was put on paxil went nutty quit it ct put on resperidol quit it ct had withdrawal was put on Effexor... 2years later celexa was added 20mg then increased to 40mg huge personality change went wild. Did too fast taper off Celexa 05 as I felt unwell for a long time prior... quit Effexor 150mg ct 07 found ****** 8 months into withdrawal learned some things was banned from there in 08 have kept learning since. there is really not enough room here to put my history but I have a lot of opinions about a lot of things especially any of the drugs mentioned above.
One thing I would like to add here is this tidbit ALL OPIATES INCREASE SEROTONIN it is not a huge jump to being in chronic pain to being put on an ssri/snri and opiates will affect your antidepressants and your thinking.

As I do not update much I will put my quit date Nov. 17 2007 I quit Effexor cold turkey. 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1096-introducing-myself-btdt/

There is a crack in everything ..That's how the light gets in :)

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My overall question to members is: do you have a history of taking antihistamines?

I have been reading about antihistamines today. There are people who recommend Benadryl for withdrawal symptoms. My doctor gave me hydroxyzine for withdrawal symptoms. I tried both (no, not at the same time!) and generally did not like how they made me feel. It was kind of like I was slowing down, like I was about to "turn off" like a robot for good. Still, sometimes I will grab a hydroxyzine if things are really bad in the morning and I know I won't be lying down. It takes a couple of hours to give me any sort of relief, bit I do get some. Still, I hate using it.

 

So today I remembered I had some old chlorpheniramine maleate. I remember it as being rather "mild." But I didn't take any. Instead I jumped on here and searched it. Found out that a Dr. Healy recommends it as part of withdrawal management. But the members here were not too keen on it. Mainly because it is in reality an SRNI.

 

That made me start to think about my own history... And lo and behold! Allergy medicines were a staple for most of my life! Heck, I almost always had a bottle of chlorpheniramine maleate with me through my teen years and early twenties. I had horrible seasonal allergies.

 

Now here's the interesting part... I pretty much do not recall having need for my antihistamines once I started using the psych meds! Heck, the bottle I found here at home has been sitting there for years and years.

 

So, did my early dependence on antihistamines set me up to be a candidate for the meds?

 

I also examined my behavior during the years I was heavily dependent on antihistamines compared to the way I acted on the meds. And lo and behold, another discovery! My rise in anger and rage during my teen years and twenties was very similar to the anger and rage I felt on the psych meds.

 

Anecdotal, yes - but worth other people thinking about too.

 

SJ

Main thread: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/14472-shakeyjerr-say-hello/

History: Prozac & Lithium from 1999 to 2003. Ended up back on after 4 months because taking a beta-blocker caused immediate depression (just 2 doses - turned out I didn't even need it; I had no other withdrawal symptoms - I might have ended up med and withdrawal-free otherwise :(). - Switched to Effexor (75mg 3/day) and Seroquel (50mg 3/day) in 2010. - Did a self-taper during 2016. - Developed Discontinuation Syndrome 02/17.

Supplements: Magnesium-Glycinate 400mg split into 4 100mg doses throughout the day. Vitamin C 500mg - once per day. Fish Oil 1360 mg (950 mg Active Omega-3) - twice per day.

I'm not a doctor. I use the internet, experience, and trial & error. Seek medical advice if necessary.

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ShakeyJerr I'm exactly the same and I never even realised it until I read your post - I used to get terrible hayfever and it pretty much stopped when I started taking Prozac at age 21. I can only remember a handful of occasions I had to take antihistamines while I was on Prozac, and then it completely zombified me, I was practically comatose within an hour of taking it.

 

I got anger/rage on prozac too, and also in withdrawal. Funnily enough the hay fever hasn't come back yet and I've been in WD now for 20 months. I haven't had a cold since being in WD either, I think I read somewhere on here that's to do with the adrenals working overtime, but I could have got that mixed up with something else. 

2002 - Prescribed fluoxetine 20mg for mild situational depression and anxiety. Over the years also briefly swapped about on citalopram, sertraline and venlafaxine during poop out. 2012 - Cold turkeyed fluoxetine. Within 3 months was suffering from aggression, anxiety, panic attacks and paranoia. GP put me back on tablets as I was 'relapsing'. I didn't know anything about WD then. Jul 15 - Wanted to quit fluoxetine again so tapered off (skipping doses) over 6 weeks under advice of GP. Aug 15 - Last fluoxetine dose end of August 2015. Dec 15 - Had my first real crash after discontinuing. Found this site. Aug-Dec 16 - Signed off work because of a herniated disc & severe sciatica. Prescribed diazepam (took for 6 days and got WD symptoms on stopping; nausea, morning cortisol spikes, anxiety, anger) and codeine which I was on for 4 mths. Can confirm - opiate WD is nasty but nowhere near as bad or prolonged as SSRI WD!
Withdrawal symptoms have included: extreme anger and irritability, lethargy, depression and weepiness, anxiety, stomach upsets, loss of appetite, excessive sweating, muscle and back pain, insomnia, cortisol surges, akathisia, inability to cope with stress.
Things that help: herbal tinctures (rose, lemon balm, chamomile and skullcap), seaweed baths & epsom salt baths, fish oil and magnesium.

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  • 1 month later...

This is something others have noticed no need for antihistamines when on some ssri drugs...what I am curious about now it steroids we are suppose to have such things in our bodies but when I use them now they make me sick... anyone know about steroids.  Pounding heart burning mouth lips throat this is from a topical... crazy

WARNING THIS WILL BE LONG
Had a car accident in 85
Codeine was the pain med when I was release from hosp continuous use till 89
Given PROZAC by a specialist to help with nerve pain in my leg 89-90 not sure which year
Was not told a thing about it being a psych med thought it was a pain killer no info about psych side effects I went nuts had hallucinations. As I had a head injury and was diagnosed with a concussion in 85 I was sent to a head injury clinic in 1990 five years after the accident. I don't think they knew I had been on prozac I did not think it a big deal and never did finish the bottle of pills. I had tests of course lots of them. Was put into a pain clinic and given amitriptyline which stopped the withdrawal but had many side effects. But I could sleep something I had not done in a very long time the pain lessened. My mother got cancer in 94 they switched my meds to Zoloft to help deal with this pressure as I was her main care giver she died in 96. I stopped zoloft in 96 had withdrawal was put on paxil went nutty quit it ct put on resperidol quit it ct had withdrawal was put on Effexor... 2years later celexa was added 20mg then increased to 40mg huge personality change went wild. Did too fast taper off Celexa 05 as I felt unwell for a long time prior... quit Effexor 150mg ct 07 found ****** 8 months into withdrawal learned some things was banned from there in 08 have kept learning since. there is really not enough room here to put my history but I have a lot of opinions about a lot of things especially any of the drugs mentioned above.
One thing I would like to add here is this tidbit ALL OPIATES INCREASE SEROTONIN it is not a huge jump to being in chronic pain to being put on an ssri/snri and opiates will affect your antidepressants and your thinking.

As I do not update much I will put my quit date Nov. 17 2007 I quit Effexor cold turkey. 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1096-introducing-myself-btdt/

There is a crack in everything ..That's how the light gets in :)

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