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Back here, Boss, sorry, i had a 4-hour trip back home from Xmas visit to friends. Responding to your question: I started zoloft early October with Inderal and Klonopin--had to quit those two others due to dry heaves and depressed breathing at nite and skipped heartbeats (PVCs). A new shrink said double the zoloft from 25 to 50. As I said, the 50 was too much. Two things going on here for me, as a panicker and phobic and PTSD survivor:

1- Extreme panickers need something to calm them down. Zoloft is a stimulant. However, Klonopin is extremely nauseating and confusing for me. It is also a benzodiazopine, which is addictive. But there are a few to choose from.

2-Inderal is a beta blocker and lowers the heart rate. It works to stop panic, as does Klonopin, but for me, it caused, for the first time ever, repeated arrhythmia. When I went off the Inderal, the heart problem stopped. But again, not everyone has those side effects--a few there to choose from too.

3-Zoloft, for all its side effects, prevents me from having the extreme palpitations, but does not stop the confusion and sleepless nites and zombyism. It causes all those symptoms I told you about in my first reply.

So the solution for me is to know that my body can function without the meds, BUT: it took, as the doc told me, time with meds for my nervous system to settle down after years of panic attacks, long enough for me to commit to work weekly and for a long time with the therapist to resolve the PTSD. Anxiety over a long time can change your physical nervous system, especially the hyperventilation, which affects the other systems in your body (digestive, cardio, etc). That's why they suggest temporary meds DURING therapy and then taper off the meds and CONTINUE therapy. My nervous system is like a dog. I have to heal it and retrain it. I need help to do that.

4- It's taken a few years to eliminate the meds that don't work. It took that long because I was a basket case and not able to make decisions--talk back to docs, change meds, change docs if necessary. Other people don't take so long and request that their docs keep trying till they get the best mix. Unfortunately, these drugs are different for different people, and it's taken a few different docs and shrinks and therapists to get the best team to pro-actively watch each other and work together.

Feel like a guinea pig yet? I'm not out of the woods yet, not by a long shot, but think about these different pieces of the solution I just mentioned, and, if necessary, when you panic, post it here. I do--even if it's every night. Because on this forum, you get a reality check. That is such a relief. get back to us soon, Trucky

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