Amber’s Recovery story – Cipro Toxicity

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*The following is an individual’s story of surviving fluoroquinolone toxicity. It is not medical advice. Please see the disclaimer at the bottom of the story. Thank you, and please be cautious with all treatments. 

November 4th 2013 I was prescribed Cipro for a UTI.  I can’t remember the mg at this point but I do remember that the doctor wanted me to take two pills a day for ten days.  Which I thought at the time was a little strange but I didn’t question it.  From the beginning the pills made me sick.  I just didn’t feel right on them but I kept taking them for about five days then decided to go off of them.  Please keep in mind the beginning of my story starts with having no clue what was wrong with me.  I did not know about Cipro toxicity until one year later when I started to do research on my own.

Unlike many others my symptoms did not hit right away.  The first system was sciatic nerve pain up my left leg.  I thought I pulled it at work and just took it easy for a week.  That went away.  The second symptom was a small itchy, throbbing pain on my right foot.  I thought I had a fungus since my boyfriend had slightly the same symptoms on his foot.  Both of these symptoms came two months separate of each other.  In February four months after taking my first pill I was hit with so many symptoms I had no idea what was causing it.  My hands and face started to go numb and tingly.  I started to read up on my symptoms and that right there could be the worst thing that you can do.  I found out that search engines are not your friend and you soon become a hypochondriac.  I of course thought I had MS or ALS or any other disease.  I couldn’t eat, I barley slept, and started drinking nightly.  I would wake up every morning and wonder what new symptom of some sort of disease that I had would poke its head up today.

I went to two neurologists.  The first one did what she thought was best.  I had an MRI with and without contrast, EMG, and some blood work was taken.  She found nothing wrong and then told me sometimes you just get tingly.  That wasn’t a sufficient answer for me.  By the time I went to the next neurologist I had twenty-five different neurological symptoms going on.  They did a series of tests and found nothing.  At that point they wanted to start giving me different prescriptions to basically cover up what I was feeling.  I refused.  When I told her my anxiety was high (I had little anxiety issues before my floxing) a light bulb must of went off because that is when she recommended me to see a behavioral health specialist.  Because you must be crazy if the medical community can find nothing wrong with you right?  That was the turning point for me.  I was officially done with doctors and started to research things on my own.  I just by accident stumbled upon the “small” percentage who have Cipro side effects.  And they matched me! I was so excited to learn that what was going on was real.  It didn’t matter to me that there wasn’t a cure I was just happy to learn that what I was going through was real and others had the same experience.  I was directed to a facebook site and met lots of great people on there.  Many of them have the same symptoms as what I did and knowing that there were others out there just like me made me feel a million times better!

I can describe to you some issues that I had and what I did to help myself.

Symptoms:

Brain fog – Even though I had a hard time concentrating I still had work and school and was not about to stop either.

Eye issues – including pain, light sensitivity, and dry eye.

Bee stings throughout my body

Vibration sensations

Muscle twitching

Pain in my legs- I had a hard time walking up the stairs to my apartment.  I would feel like I just ran a mile when I only took a few steps.

Anxiety

Sensitivity to alcohol and caffeine.

Sunburnt sensation all of my body

Hot spots on my legs

Migraines

Back ache

Supplements:

Magnesium- to help with the twitching

Min-col

Folic Acid

Vitamin C

Multi-Vitamin

B12

B6

Before I knew what was causing all of my issues I was in a very bad place.  But as they say knowledge is power.  Once you know what is causing your symptoms you can then try different things to see what helps YOU.  The number one thing that helped me was/is staying positive.  Your mind has the biggest power over your healing.  I try to turn the situation around and make it a positive one.  My friends and family now know the dangers that these drugs can cause.  I try to make sure that others will not have to go through the pain and confusion that I did. 

I am 95% better. I had a flare in June which lasted about a month. All very small issues most of which I ignore.

The road to recovery is not an easy one and I am not saying that you won’t have relapses because you will.  And when you do you have to push through that no matter how long it lasts and how frustrated you are.  At two years out I want to say that I am 95% healed.  Only thing lingering is some dry eye and random twitches.  But I can handle it in hopes that one day it will be completely gone.

** The story above is truthful, accurate and told to the best of the ability of the writer. It is not intended as medical advice. No person who submits his or her story, nor the people associated with Floxie Hope, diagnoses or treats any illness. The story above should not be substituted for professionally provided medical advice. Please consult your doctor before trying anything that has been mentioned in this story, or in any other story on this site. Please also note that people have varying responses to the treatments mentioned in each story. What helps one person may not help, and may even hurt, another person. It is important that you understand that supplements, IVs, essential oils, and all other treatments, affect people differently depending on the millions of variables that make each of us unique. Please use appropriate caution and prudence, and get professional medical advice.

15 thoughts on “Amber’s Recovery story – Cipro Toxicity

  1. Kelly January 23, 2016 at 4:52 am Reply

    Hi Amber, I’m so glad you have made such a great recovery in 2 years. I have used that same description, sunburnt feeling. Doctors definitely have to think I’m crazy! My worst symptom is the eye pain, dryness and sensitivity. How long until you started seeing improvement with that? I am 9 months out.

    • Amber February 9, 2016 at 8:56 pm Reply

      Hi kelly,

      Sorry it took so long to reply. I would say about 15 months out. Relapses got longer in between and symptoms got smaller. Please find me on fb for additional questions. Amber Marie on fb. 🙂

  2. Lisa March 20, 2016 at 6:59 am Reply

    Were you taking b6 that whole time?

    • Amber bankerd April 7, 2016 at 10:10 am Reply

      No, I was not taking b6 the whole time.

  3. L July 26, 2016 at 10:20 am Reply

    Glad you are doing so much better…and that you put “small” in quotations marks!

  4. Anetta July 26, 2016 at 1:26 pm Reply

    I took Cipro a few years ago. I started having severe anxiety issues. Insomnia, depression. My bowels stopped working and I had a severe sensation of a knot at the location of my appendix. I had severe constipation and abdominal pain. I never recovered from the anxiety and ended up on benzodiazepines. These took many years of my life. Apart from this antibiotic affecting the CNS it most probably wipes out most of the good bacteria in our intestines. Now I try to stay away from any antibiotic as much as possible.

    • Richard August 24, 2016 at 12:11 pm Reply

      When did your constipation subside as mine started a week ago and is horrific.

      Really terrified that it will never diminish..

      Please reply asap *hopefully with encouraging news!!

      Richard

  5. L July 26, 2016 at 1:54 pm Reply

    yeah, I hope to never have to take another antibiotic again. oil of oregano is great for many infections.

  6. Dani July 29, 2016 at 4:48 am Reply

    Hello there!
    I am glad to hear that there is hope of recovery from this. I took cipro for 2 days (started Saturday) and felt awful (whole body hurt and I was sick to my stomach). I just didn’t feel right so I stopped taking it Sunday and asked my doctor’s office to switch my antibiotic Monday morning (which they did). I told them I was having muscle pain with the cipro, but they pretty much dismissed it. On sunday night my heel was a bit sore, but I didn’t think much of it then or when it hurt a bit Monday and Tuesday. By Wednesday at lunch, I couldn’t even stand on my left foot because it hurt so badly. I looked back at the FDA warnings that came with the medication and sure enough, a page and a half was dedicated to Achilles tendonitis and tendon rupture!
    My doctor couldn’t fit me in that day and so I went to the ER. Luckily, the doctor there said that its Achilles tendonitis caused by Cipro and put le in a boot for the next 3 weeks at least with instructions to keep it elevated and iced. I can’t even begin to describe my relief, especially after reading so many cases of people who’s doctors didn’t believe them!
    Yesterday, I noticed numbness/tingling in the left side of my jaw and pain in my left arm. So far, things seem to be confined to that side. I go to a podiatrist on Tuesday and I’m hoping that he’ll connect the dots like the ER Doctor did!
    Thanks for posting your story and for giving others some hope!!! So glad that you’re doing better!

  7. L July 29, 2016 at 8:21 am Reply

    Your doctor no only ignored earlier warnings, but the latest one saying do NOT use for UTIs. If I were you, I would go after him legally.

  8. Luz February 7, 2017 at 1:06 pm Reply

    Hi Amber thank you so much for sharing your story! It is very inspirational! I am 19 months out and I am too having problems with headaches. How are your headaches going? Have they gone away. Did you do anything in particular to help that? Did you take any supplements for the headaches. Any advice will be really appreciate it! Much light your way.

    • Amber February 7, 2017 at 9:34 pm Reply

      Hi Luz,

      My headaches were very early on. I did notice that birth control was causing me to have more headaches (not sure if that is even an option for you). In the beginning I didn’t know about how advil and the like can effect us so I always took advil to relieve the headaches. I don’t really think they bothered me to much. Young Living makes essential oils and I believe they have different oils to rub on your head to help relieve pain.

      I hope you are feeling better soon!

      • Luz February 8, 2017 at 5:15 pm Reply

        Hi Amber thank you for taking the time to get back with me. No not birth control and i dont take anything for the pain i try to weight it out but its painful. My headaches were worse at the beginning but still havent gone away completely. I have them most of the time. I really dont find a culprit for them. I will try YL eo and see if that helps. Thank you again and i am happy to know that you are feeling great.

        Luz

  9. lmoverman March 3, 2017 at 7:43 pm Reply

    Hi Amber,

    Thank you for sharing your story! I have similar symptoms to the ones you listed. Right now it’s mostly hot spots in my legs, tingling on my scalp, blurred vision and the sunburned feeling. Do you recall how long it was until the sunburned feeling subsided? Or if there was anything that helped ease the symptoms? Thank you in advance for any advice you can offer.

    Linda

    • Amber March 6, 2017 at 7:32 am Reply

      Hi Linda,

      I had the sunburn sensation early on when I didn’t know what was causing it. With that being said I didn’t take anything for it. For me, I found that it was more annoying than painful. I’m going to say it was completely gone in about a year. I didn’t have the sunburn sensation or hot spots constantly. It would come and go. Towards the one year mark it would only come on when I was stressed or angry about something. My emotions and state of mind definitely had a factor on what my body was doing and how I was feeling.

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