Heart Damage Caused by Ecstasy Use?? Untreated Overdoses??
I am going through a very difficult & confusing time in regards to a few possible UNTREATED over doses (3 between the months of April/May of 2008 to October 5, 2008. 3 of the incidents occured after taking ecstasy pills & the most recent incident occured a day ago after snorting 20 mg oxycontin. I know.. drugs are bad mmmkay???
I'm 22 years old, no health problems, I use to smoke, use to be a semi heavy drug user (mostly X & oxycontin),
I'm about 115-125 lbs (my weight bounces back and forth from time to time), NEVER had heart problems, not prone to anxiety or panic attacks and then. BAM!! All of the following happened in the midst of going through a divorce, a nasty custody battle, very stressful times.. very stressful but before you continue to read this... I DON'T THINK I'M HAVING ANXIETY OR PANIC ATTACKS. Here is my story.
The 1st "OD" incident was the worst in which I snorted about 9-14 little bumps of cocaine and then went to a desert rave for the weekend with a bunch of so called "friends". The 1st night we arrived I took roughly 8 pills of "x" didn't sleep until the next afternoon but only for about 25 minutes, didn't eat anything until the 2nd night in which i ingested another 8-12 pills of "x" after eating a bit of food. The pills were without a doubt, cut with meth.
As I was getting ready to settle down for the remainder of the evening... I began to feel this zap in my chest... kinda like a tickle zap tho... then it intensified and finally, it got so bad that it started to burn and my heart was beating so fast and so hard.... it hurt a lot. I layed in the RV trying to focus on my breathing, eyes closed and clutching my chest with each moment that the pain got worse and worse and worse. Now, the majority of my "friends" payed no attention to my agonising pain so after laying in our camper/RV for hours, I noticed that the sun was up and I decided to go outside thinking that maybe it would help if I could just get some fresh air... big mistake.
I sat in a chair in front of our fire, not too close tho I was hot enough but I tried to calm myself down.... and I began to black out... I am a stubborn person & refused to die young (sounds silly but anyway) so I began to focus on my breathing again, trying to meditate or something so I wouldn't start convulsing or what ever happens when you OD. I didn't want to die so I layed down on a huge luvsack bean bag type of thing and the friend who gave me the pills earlier that evening and the evening before layed behind me and helped me focus on my breathing.
After roughly 8 hours of feeling as if I was going to die or that my heart was going to explode... this girl from our camp fed me some benedryl... oblong pink pills & to my surprise... I fell asleep & woke up alive. The pain in my chest had subsided a little bit but not completely. I noticed that if I moved, the pain would come back immediately. I was hot and tired and dehydrated and being that the RV was sitting 5 feet away from where I layed on the luvsack/bean bag I finally managed to crawl back into one of the beds where I spent the remainder of the day laying around crying because I was in so much pain & gripping my chest with my hand, scratching at my breast area where the pain was located roughly (so much that I actually scarred my skin from my nails). I remember touching the area where my chest was hurting and it instantly put me in tears... not sure why it hurt so bad but it HURT worse than anything I've yet to experience in my young life. If I got up or tried to sit all the way up to take a drink or to shift my body a bit, the pain would start again... I would have to focus on my breathing patterns and I felt like I was going to die all over again & for 2 days it continued to hurt maybe longer. I was financially stressed at that time & too scared to see a doctor (being in the midst of a custody battle I figured it would look TERRIBLE on my part if I had any record of an OD).
Ya think I would have stopped doing drugs after that, right??? No, an addiction can and will consume your every being...
The 2nd time something similar to this experience happened was a month or 2 later after taking only 1 pill which I noticed, caused me to panic only I had no zaps to my heart at all, just severe chest pain in the middle of my chest, almost a burning sensation I guess you can say. Some guy saw me sitting by myself and noticed that I was having a hard time so he fed me xanax and I passed out woke up and to my surprise I was still alive & the pain had subsided.. I rule this specific out as anxiety/ a panic attack.
Again, you think I would have stopped doing drugs after 2 near death incidents... addictions suck!!!
The 3rd time I felt zaps and pain to my heart area again like the 1st incident but unlike the 2nd, it had happened after taking 4 pills of X (on my birthday of all days) and I really thought that I was going to die, the pain lasted for a day or two... tho I don't remember how I escaped death once again, I just fell asleep and woke up NOT in pain. WTF??? Anyway, that whole day and night, I spent the remainder ofmy time laying in my bed clutching my heart area/ the left side of my chest and crying... because it seriously felt like I was going to die.. again.
This last time is scaring the Hell out of me.... I am done with drugs & fighting one hell of an addiction... but so far, winning!!! I've even quit smoking and won't take ANYTHING at all.
The most recent incident was a about a week ago, after doing oxycontin for 2 months give or take, I began to notice this feeling of pressure in the left upper side of my chest. It was such a wierd feeling and starting worrying me, so I decided that it was finally time to get clean. I am now back with my husband *we decided that a divorce wasn't good for anyone after all* =) I am in my son's life and I'm happy mostly, wanting to live now more than ever but was still dealing with drug addiction so I figured I would snort 20 mgs of oxycontin and then gradually work myself off of the stuff for good...not a good idea, I know, I should have gone to a doctor. I was on the phone w/ a friend and I went out for a cig and started feeling the high kick in only this time it wasn't making me feel good... more nervous and worried and panicy... I tried to brush it off but not even 30 mins later I began having chest pains all over again. WTF??? NO SHOCKING or ZAP feelings to my chest but a lot of pressure and now severe chest pain that radiates all through out the upper left side and somewhat on the right side of my chest. I've seen 3 doctors now 2 in the ER in which I was diagnosed with pleurisy or something like that, he sent me home with a prescription for an anti inflamatory which I never got filled I just brushed it off for as long as I could... then this last incident with the oxy... which I'm not even sure if it has anything to do with the SEVERE pain I've been feeling for almost 1 - 2 weeks now... I went to my fam's doctor and he said that I have costiocondritis (painful inflamation in the chest, not sure what causes it, prescribed me with Naproxen & Clonodine to help me get off the drugs & not freak out. OK, I have learned my lesson... don't do drugs!!! I get it... now plz someone tell me wtf is going on with my chest. I'm taking the meds & still, the pain has yet to subside & my patients is wearing thin. I honestly feel like I'm losing my mind over this & it's making my home life stressful & difficult to say the least. I've had 2 EKGs & Xrays, both were normal, I don't get why I'm in so much pain and distress... I've been crying for days, feeling sad, helpless, there's no cure, I hurt, I don't want to die, what's wrong with me? Did I damage my heart? Is there a way to tell & if so can it be fixed? *cries* help me plz? What happened to me the 2x that I felt zaps to my heart while practically ODing??? Heart attack? Minor heart attack?? thanks -Jen
Can ANYBODY help me?
You really moved me - I have never read anything like your drug experience before - you describe it so vividly and although not caused by drugs many of us on this site have spent many hours with pounding hearts convinced of death.
I have a severe reaction to alcohol but it only happens after the fun - usually in the early dark lonely hours of the next morning - Typical examples - working in Poland and having a fantastic Friday night our with a large number of Polish people drinking 100% neat vodaka - I was staying in a large flat in the grounds of our factory with no one else there - woke up at 2am with a heart racing to destruction - couldnt move - it made it worse - no phone - no one to shout for help - no one wondering where I was - I was on my own.
I lay there desperate not to die - couldn't even get up for water -I couldn't believe that my heart could take hours of this pounding and my only hope was the dawn - for some reason I figured that if I made it till the sun came up I had a chance.
Another ' great night' (still hadn't learned my lesson) saw me even worse with not only the heart but my left side numb and my hand twisted like a claw and completely numb - this time people were around and a doctor was called - gave me a morphime injection and sent me off in an ambulance to hospital where i stayed in intensive care for a day and then on the cardiac ward for a week with people regularly dying around me in the night. All the test in the world and there was 'nothing' wrong with me - my heat was in excellent shape - I was JUST extremely allergic to toxins from alcohol. the bad news for me is that i had an 'ALL OR NOTHING' personality which meant that I couldn't just have a few drinks but had to keep on and on 'having a great time' until the price had to be paid.
So enough of that - in our own ways many of us on this site have been through similar experiences to yours through our own addictive personalities.
So - moving on - you know like I know that YOUR body has a big time problem with certain toxins - It doesn't matter that your friends might be OK with it - YOU ARE NOT.
So step one - YOU KNOW THIS _ YOU WANT TO LIVE AND AVOID THOSE FEELINGS AGAIN - SO ITS A NO BRAINER - STOP IT NOW.
Things then get simpler (easy to say but they can) - your doc says that you have COSTIOCONDRITIS and is treating you for it so keep on at him until it is cured. then if you still feel pain go back and insist on test until you know that everything is OK.
Read the posts on this site about how people have moved forward but all of this is no use if you DO NOT LISTEN TO YOUR UNIQUE BODY and stop abusing it. It is making it 100% clear to you that it will not put up with that abuse.
Next you will need to fill your life with somrthing that gives you a natural high - for me it turned out to be mountains - I haven't a clue why as I had not the slightest interest in the outdoors but now it is my CRUTCH around which the rest of my rules are based.
WOW you're probably asleep by now - but go for it and let us all know how you get on as we care and will be here to talk to you.
You have given a lot to thing about. I hope if any young people read this, it will hit home. When I was young I experimented. We all thing we are immortal. I swear that drug use (even though mine was minimal, I tried several) is responsible for half my problems yet today. There are just people in the world sensitive to taking drugs. I went from that to cutting up a prescribed drug into miniscule pieces to try! My daughter cannot take drugs either. It causes panic attacks in her, too. I think I'll stick to the healthiest living I can. My vices now all concern FOOD! But you should be totally checked out by your doctor and be honest with him. Then move on with a clean life! Good luck!
Thank you for your comforting words *though your story had me in tears a bit because I can absolutely without a doubt, relate to the feelings that you were having after drinking & then being alone* I have a severe case of costiocondritis which I am treating but I've yet to find out what really went on the 2x I felt that I was ODing... my personal diagnosis is that I was ODing from taking too many "bad/CUT" pills of X. I personally believe that they were most likely cut with meth or some form of speed & god only knows what else could have been in them. I understand completely when talking about finding something that gives me a natural high... I'm still searching... =) Hopeful to tho. =) I will keep you posted regarding my test results & my progress. Much luv -Jen
X causes a rapid depletion of serotonin in the brain (the 'feel good' substance in the brain, which is released all at once by X and then delayed in being reabsorbed). Taking that amount of X left your brain without serotonin. the immediate result is severe panic attack, crushing chest pain and shortness of breath with an impending sense of doom (covinced you will die). Damage to the brains ability to make serotonin can be long lasting and it is likely that ANY subsequent use of X will cause similar attacks....possibly for life.Aas far as other drugs, all drugs of abuse release serotonin and dopamine (the 'reward' chemicals in the brain) to some extent....so the party is over. Quite a buzz kill, but after testing it out a few more times you will be scared ******** to use....and since your 'high' will be a nightmare, you may be 'lucky' since it can be much easier to stop under these conditions. As far as actual heart damage, the meth/cocaine use along with dehydration certainly can cause it. More likely this is all serotonin. You may need an antidepressant (prescribed apporpiately by an MD....NOT by you :), since in the short term you may be quite depressed and be prone to panic attacks due to the brains inability to make serotonin after such heavy use. Talk to you doc, be honest...medical records are confidential.
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