There are horror stories about this drug seroquel, the horror stories are based on the side effects users experience. These experiences sounds fearful and horrifying, the drug will give you results but the side effects are something else as it can mess with the mind. In fact, in some countries, this drug is black boxed to be used on elderly people with dementia.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) listed out warnings to both patients and doctors about the effects of the drug which may be dangerous. These side effects makes up the horror stories told by patients who have used this drug. Before we go into these horror stories, let us explain this drug, its uses and side effects.
WHAT IS SEROQUEL?
Seroquel is a brand name for the drug – quetiapine, this is a prescription drug that comes in a tablet. The tablets has two versions which are the immediate-release and extended-release. The immediate-release gets into the bloodstream as soon as it is released while the extended-release takes some time to get into the bloodstream. The immediate-release is known as seroquel while the extended-release is seroquel XR.
Seroquel is classified under a class of drugs known as atypical antipsychotics. It is not really known how this drug works but it is believed that it helps to control the amount of dopamine and serotonin in the brain, regulating these chemicals helps to control the condition of the body. This drug quetiapine was approved in 1997 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and it is sold under the brand name Seroquel.
USES OF SEROQUEL
Some uses of seroquel are to be used in treating:
According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), this is a serious psychiatric problem that causes dysfunctional thinking, hallucinations, and delusions. Schizophrenia can affect the behavior, thoughts and feelings of the patient.
This is a mental illness that affects not only the mood but feelings, thoughts and functionality. It removes feelings of pleasure, shuts off connectedness, suppresses pleasure and hope. Dpression can cause emotional pain to both the patient and those around as well.
3. Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder is a mental condition that extremely shifts the mood and energy level of the patient. There will be periods when the mood will be extremely elevated or irritable with periods of depression as well.
4. Depressive Psychosis
This is a condition that causes the patient to see, hear, smell or believe things that are not real, these are accompanied with sadness, hopelessness and depression.
5. Arteriosclerotic Dementia Depressive Features
This is a loss of brain condition that hardens the blood vessels thereby affecting thoughts, behaviors, language and judgement including depression.
6. Dementia Depressive Features
Dementia depressive features makes the memory and thinking to become worse. Patients have feelings of being desperate but are not able to express their sadness in words.
SIDE EFFECTS OF SEROQUEL
There are side effects of seroquel depending on the form or version of the drug.
The immediate-release version of seroquel can cause the following:
- Pain in the stomach
- Dry mouth
- Nausea and vomiting
- Weight gain
- Sore throat
- Faster heart beat
- Increase in appetite
- Difficulty in movement
The extended-release version can cause the following side effects:
- Dry mouth
- Increase in appetite
- Difficulty in movement
- Stuffy nose
These common side effects are expected to go away after few days or within weeks. If they continue after weeks, you should see a doctor. There are serious side effects of seroquel that needs medical attention as soon as they are experienced as they are life threatening.
These serious side effects are:
- High fever
- Excessive sweating
- Suicidal thoughts
- High or low blood pressure
- Irregular heartbeat and breathing
- Stiff muscles
- Frequent urination
- Extreme hunger and thirst
- Severe indigestion
- Fruity smelling breath
- Severe confusion
- High level of fats in the blood
- Weight gain
- Involuntary movement in the face, eyes, tongue and other body parts that cannot be controlled
- High blood pressure in children and teenagers
- Decrease in blood pressure when standing up quickly after sitting or lying down
- Low white blood cell count
- Difficulty in swallowing
- Breast enlargement in both men and women
- Erectile dysfunction
- Milky discharge from the nipples without breastfeeding a baby
- Absence of menstrual period
- Abnormal thyroid levels
- Blurry vision
- Loss of vision
- Feeling of cloud in the lens of the eye
- Increase in body temperature
- Stroke and death especially in elderly people with dementia.
SEROQUEL HORROR STORIES
These stories are from people who have used seroquel prescribed for them, their names may be hidden as some were anonymous users.
1. The first story is for a patient who was prescribed seroquel for depression:
The drug completely messed up my life, my body was put to sleep but my mind was wide awake. I could not move, passed in and out. I slept walked, started having panic attacks for the first time in 9 years to where they were debilitating. The panic became worse that I was afraid to leave the house or do simple things like showering as I entered into psychosis.
I feel like I was in my body but having an outer body experience for weeks, in absolute terror. There were also hallucinations every time I would first wake up, these hallucinations were scary that they made me sleep with my mom as a grown adult, even at a low dose of 50 when I was on 150. This pill will mess up your life completely and leave you worse than before while leaving you to pick up the pieces. Doctors will not listen.
2. The second user used the drug to treat bipolar disorder:
My psychiatrist prescribed 100mg of seroquel to be taken at bedtime. The first morning, I could not get out of bed, I felt like I was drinking all night and had a horrible hangover. It literally took me 20 minutes to get out of my bed and another 20 minutes to get my thoughts together, it was a nightmare. The next night, I broke the pill into half and it was not as bad as the first night, it was tolerable.
The third night, I forgot to break the pill and took 1 again, I felt like a zombie. I was totally disoriented and could not get our of bed. The way I see it, if a medication does not work for you the first time you take it, then do not keep taking it.
3. This story is by a Mad Mother:
My son was on seroquel for a couple of years. In the last six months or maybe longer, he started seeing and hearing things. He also started turning his phone off and isolating himself. A month ago, my 38 year old just stood up and left state without telling me till he was already gone. I got a mother’s worse nightmare phone call from another state.
It said my son was in the hospital for self harm, he had a psychotic break down and gouged his eyes. They may have to remove his left eye and he is blind in the right eye. I am heartbroken, do not let any of your loved ones take that drug.
4. From Curlydeb
Since 2012, I have been taking 800 mg seroquel XR. I used to hold down two jobs , I have worked since high school. I have no kids but I am very close to my big family and taken part in every family event. Back in 2012, I had difficulty in getting sleep , doctors prescribed seroquel saying I am bipolar. Before the prescription, I have never gotten mad at anyone and I get along with everyone, I am not an angry person.
After taking this drug for sometime, it changed my life and destroyed my relationship with family and friends. I literally became a zombie, I never answered my door, all I did was sleep. I missed out on many family events, now my family members are in my life asking me what is wrong.
I cannot stop moving my head from left to right.. my doctor hasn’t done any blood work on me for several years but he still made me to continue taking these drugs. I cannot function anymore. I have always loved and lived my life till this drug came into my life.
5. Michael, son of 78-year-old Scott:
I have seen my father suffer almost all through his entire life because of schizophrenia. His condition was miserable that he had prescriptions from medication to medication. I clearly remember his journey with seroquel because it was a painful one. The drug made him a zombie, he would just start throwing things away in his anger outbursts. His condition became worse after using the drug and he would behave like a maniac. Later as the treatment continued, he started suffering from paranoia.
He would always say our neighbors are trying to kill him and that made him live in fear. Till today, he has not recovered from the horror of seroquel. He was suffering from a mental illness, yes, but he was still somewhat himself. This drug completely threw him off and made him an entirely different person.
Seroquel may be an effective drug but it has so many side effects that are dangerous than some of the illnesses being treated. Some users have narrated their horror stories of their experiences with this drug. This is why you should never take this drug without prescription and if you notice any side effects especially the serous ones, you should see your doctor immediately.