Fran's Story

 In early February 2004, I was prescribed 7 days of Cipro for a UTI (at a walk-in clinic).  I didn't feel completely better, so went back after 2 weeks to same clinic, different doctor and was then given Levaquin for 7 days.  Also at that time, I started to take Advil for pelvic pain.

On the 3rd or 4th day of the Levaquin, I woke suddenly one night with severe tingling from head to foot and electrical sensations in right lower arm and behind right knee. I also felt very anxious and I thought I was having a stroke. My son drove me to emergency where after a 6 hour wait, I was given a CT scan, chest Xray, ekg, blood tests and was told a few hours later all was okay and they dismissed it as stress.  (I had no reason to be stressed at that time and never suffered from panic attacks ever before). 

Several days later I felt worse, very "depersonalized" & agitated so I went back to emergency - was dismissed again for stress and "possible fibromyalgia".  During this time I missed a few days of work and could hardly cope when I did go to work.  Went to my family doctor who was puzzled and almost looked at me as if I was crazy but he ordered an ultrasound as I was still having pelvic spasms - in case it was a uterine fibroid pressing on a nerve. ... and he prescribed a short term prescription for Ativan, which helped. 

He seemed to think I may be suffering stress as I was "menopausal"  but I said things were much easier in my life now than ever before so I had no reason to suddenly react the way I did... but yes, I was anxious and stressed about what was happening, that I knew my body but stress was not what started it! I was becoming increasingly angry at getting dismissed.

The ultrasound turned out okay and the only other test that was abnormal was my blood pressure was higher than usual.  The UTI was finally cured, however.

In desperation, I then went to a preventive health MD who ordered many specific tests and an MRI - all these turned out to be normal as well.  I was sure finding out what wasn't wrong with me! I then tried to recall exactly when things started to go wrong and suddenly had the inspiration to look into ADR of Levaquin and Cipro ...then I knew what really happened.  My doctors seemed skeptical but later said yes, it could be possible.

Almost 3 months later, I still have tingling, numbness, electrical sensations, anxiety, a sore lower right arm (this is the worst as it feels like it seizes up all the time), minor Achilles tendon pain as well as some sleep disturbance and sore joints. I also still feel somewhat depersonalized but overall it is about 20% better. I have learned to live with this and continue to hope it will get better over time.

Last Updated 5/06/04