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Zoloft & Seizures

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Has anyone taken zoloft & had seizures? My Dr. Prescribed zoloft to me for depression and soon after I started taking it I had a bad seizure at the wheel... Fortunately I didn't hurt anyone including myself, but I did total the car... I know they say seizures may be a side effect of zoloft, but can they provoke seizures in anyone or just those prone to seizures?
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First Helper horselover12
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replied October 25th, 2005
Experienced User
Zoloft
Dear friend..
That is a very good question, I am now a 23 year old female who has been suffering from seizures for 2 years now ( since age 21 ) this all started when I was 21. I had recently been sad and down, parents had a divorce. I was just tired of my job I never had time off, I lived in another state to my brother and bla bla bla.. Neway, my dr said I had depression I believed him, right away he prescribed me zoloft 100 mgs I took it I was on it for a week. I always felt strange, in the head like fuzzy and pins and needles like. Like at school when your hair stands up with static electricity.
In science. Neway. I was on it for one week on the 100mgs. Then one day I was standing up in my living room and all a sudden I felt strange. I fell and seized grand mal style. I was trying to talk but no words would come out just I could hear myself squeil. But just seize. I kept going out of consiousness. I had 5 grand mals in a row. I was taken to hospital. The drs told me it couldnt have been the zoloft. I havent taken it since as I didnt believe I had depression. I now have had seizures ever since. So the zoloft I took for 1 week I believe did this to my brain.
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replied October 25th, 2005
Hi sami,

thanks so much for replying, and so quickly ! I just posted that last night & was happy to see a reply this morning when I woke up, thank you..

You said, "... I always felt strange, in the head like fuzzy and pins and needles like. Like at school when your hair stands up with static electricity... " what you're describing sounds to me like the auras I have just before a seizure... I've had seizures both with and without auras... In the case of my car accident, I did in fact have the aura but by the time I realized it, it was too late..

I really feel for you when you said you had 5 seizures in a row.. I've had one after another before myself, but goodness, never 5... I can only imagine... What I don't understand is the idea that the er doctor said it couldn't have been the zoloft... Maybe i'm wrong here, but I could have sworn one of the precautionaries they stated in the commercial for zoloft included seizures...

Like yourself, i'm now off the zoloft, and thankfully so... I'm currently on 150 mg. Twice a day of lamictal and so far so good... My last seizure was about a week or so ago, but other then that, I was seizure free for almost a year... I did, also, have some kind of cyst under my left arm pit and my general physician not only removed it, but also suggested this cyst was the cause of my seizure... I'm starting to think he was right... This last seizure was like none i've ever had before and hope never to experience again
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replied March 27th, 2010
Zoloft and Seizures
I also am 23 and started having seizures about 2 1/2 years agog after being on Zoloft for about three weeks for depression. I know take 1200 mg of Keppra for my grad mal. I had never had a seizure before and my family also does not have a previous history of seizures. I have had about 6 grand mal seizures since and have dislocated my shoulders also. I think that their has to be a connection. I felt that same out of touch feeling like I did not care about anything and nothing was real when I took the Zoloft. I think this is a strong connection and their should be stronger warnings for Zoloft. I had rather have the depression than the seizures...
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replied April 10th, 2010
Zoloft causing seritonin overdose?
I was recently placed on zoloft and clonazepam.I was having twisting and jerking motions with my arms and legs mostly partial to the right side, as well as sugar dropping frequently. Well because I was going through some hard times and the doctor said I showed signs of depression and a bad thyroid, before getting any blood work done I was prescribed these drugs, thinking my body wasnt producing enough seritonin when I was actually making too much, which we found out more with the blood work coming back and my thyroid reading 9.something Well my mood became better for a day or two then I started noticing tremors returning in my right arm and the next morning I expierienced what I believe was a siezure and had them daily for about a week or two, sometimes more than once a day and two where very severe, twice at least I lost consiousness finally with no luck getting ahold of my doc I quit taking them. My siezures are now very seldom and not severe when I have them however I no longer notice a prefered side of my body it usually includes both sides. I seem to be fighting non stop.Now Im doped up on Levothyroxine 75mcg and 5mg valiums 6 a day because when I quit the zoloft my arms and legs started wreching and twisting again so hard sometimes I feel like they will break they did this for almost a week and a half, seemingly with no relief,and no contact with doc. My muscles hurt so bad I could barely move or walk. I have also randomly fallin asleep four times that Im aware of, in the company of friends or family. Its like were talking and everythings fine and the next thing I remember is waking up, or I''ll be walking along and my whole body feels so light I just want to let go and fall. I know Zoloft may be ok for some but with a drug so controversial it should NEVER be prescribed without full knowledge of the individual. I thought maybe the valiums were making me feel stupid oh and by the way through all of this Ive been driving to work every day that I can because my doc doesnt seem interested in my aflac dissability forms(that I have been paying for). So I hope I dont fall asleep or have some episode behind the wheel.Anyway I tried twice now to lower my dosage of valium and my body begins wretching again. Half the time I cant get up for work in the morning, and if I do but dont feel safe to drive then I dont. Im already seeing an attorney about this. Zoloft being the culprit or not, this situation could have been handled alot safer. I''d like to know what the hells going on before I turn up dead from some bullcrap drug. On the brighter side I found somepeople who are helping me in cincinnati,ohio. They already have me set for an MRI and an EEG (whatever that is) so good luck to you all and God Bless. If anyone has anything similar happening or any posible ideas please feel free to write me.
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replied July 20th, 2011
Zoloft and seizures
I recently had a seizure and have been on Zoloft for the last several years. I have had my EEG and the report states that the focal point is in the left anterior temporal region with diffuse spread to the right hemisphere. I want to know what is the focal point in other's EEG's who are on zoloft and now have seizures. I have found myself overwhelmed with the diagnosis. I have been told not to drive for 3 to 6 months and put on Dilantin. I can't get in to a neurologist for 3months, so my primary care physician is treating me in the mean time. I am in the healthcare profession and I feel lost!! I can't believe that it can be such a life changing event but you can't see the specialist for 3 mos. Thank goodness for the internet or I probally would not know what I know about Zoloft. One of Zolofts contraindications is seizures And even at this, neither my doctor or pharmasist have told me about it. So my advice to all is be your own best advocate. Look out for yourself. The medical system is out of wack.
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replied July 21st, 2011
Well come to find out the seizure activity i have is tonic clonic most likely due to my bodies reaction to Zoloft. after not being able to get an answer from my dr. I chose not to refill my scrip and have battled a great number of withdrawl situations including the seizures still as well very severe bouts of anxiety and violent outbursts, nausea and other symptoms. I actually have been diagnosed with Generalized Dystonia and my specialist is looking into the possibility of onset of parkinson's disease or huntingtons. I have been in contact with Dr. Anne Blake Tracy, who is the executive director of the international coalition of drug awareness, she wrote a book called "Prozac, pancea or pandora". Dr. tracy has studied the ill effects of Selective seritonin reuptake inhibitors (S.S.R.I.s) like prozac, zoloft, paxil and a number of others in the same family of drug. The info shared with me has not been shared or even much acknowledged by my Dr. but has been studied for some time now. it is very important that any who have had bad reactions to this line of drug, read the info Dr. tracy has to offer. She has specialized in the study of these for the last 10+ years. These reactions can be far worse than people think, please read and inform others of this.
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replied February 7th, 2012
Seizures felt due to Zoloft
i have also started having seizures 2 grandmal and many smaller ones. I feel it is the zoloft I have been taking for several years. I had my first seizure when I was out of my medication for a few days. My primary has told me to stop the zoloft all together now. I am going to samsun clinic early march. The Nuero I saw in my home town told me the seizures were stress related and that I could stop having them if I wanted to!!! believe me I want to! All studies have came back negative. My Neuro also told me I was having Baisler migraines and wanted to start me on meds for it. (I have no headaches did not start meds) I am sure it is the Zoloft I have not history of seizure disorder in my family. I am in my 50 having my first eposode. I am on keppra for seizure control now. Thank you for you information and sharing your struggles
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replied February 23rd, 2012
I hope this can help someone!
I am a woman, and in 2004 when I was 23 I was prescribed Zoloft for anxiety and panic attacks. The psychiatrist that I saw prescribed 25 milligrams a day for the first month or so, but I was still experiencing severe panic attacks. Overnight the psychiatrist prescribed me to start taking 75 milligrams a day. Using this new prescription strength I had my first seizure within a week.

To elaborate a little, the seizure started out as a sensitivity to the light from my parents family room fan. The best way I can describe the pre-seizure is: In my left eye I started seeing small flashing multicolored flickers, and then passed out and had a Tonic-clonic seizure (formerly known as grand mal seizure). I was taken to the emergency room, and had multiple tests performed: blood, EEG to rule out epilepsy, MRI of my brain, and nothing showed to be wrong. I explained the increase of Zoloft to the doctors and none of them seemed to think that it could be the culprit, and they advised to keep taking it. I asked if I should continue driving and they said driving should be fine.

About another week later I was about to leave my friends house and had my second seizure (again it started with a sensitivity to the light in his room, and I had the same sensations). Almost same routine as before: emergency room, blood drawn, but no other tests. The doctors again said no need to stop taking Zoloft.

PLEASE if you take anything away from my experience understand that YOU are the master of your own life. I made the personal decision to stop taking Zoloft, and have not had any seizures since.

THAT DOES NOT MEAN THAT YOU SHOULD STOP TAKING YOUR MEDICATION, EVERYONE REACTS DIFFERENTLY. I NOW KNOW THAT IT IS EXTREMELY IMPORTANT TO GET A SECOND OPINION OR EVEN A THIRD OPINION (if needed) FROM A PROFESSIONAL DOCTOR BEFORE STOPPING ANY MEDICATION.

Having a near death experience makes you understand how precious life is. With professional counseling using cognitive behavioral therapy, I learned that I can control my anxiety and panic attacks with mind over matter. THIS TAKES TIME, PATIENCE, AND PRACTICE. IT IS NOT EASY, BUT THE REWARDS OF HAVING A BETTER LIFE IS WORTH IT. DO NOT BE ASHAMED TO GET PROFESSIONAL COUNSELING. OUR SOCIETY IS SO RUSHED AND LIFE CAN BE OVERWHELMING. PLEASE UNDERSTAND THAT IT'S NORMAL TO NEED GUIDANCE!!

I really hope that my experience can help someone understand what they're going through more, and thank you for reading this.
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replied March 13th, 2012
i believe zoloft was the reason for my seizers. doctors dont but i do. thanks for your post1 brighten my day.
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replied March 13th, 2012
zolfot and seizures
around 2008 i was put on zoloft for deppresion. after i have been on it i started getting weired feelings, like i was in a dream, strange smells, and other crazy stuff. than when i got pregant with my son i had a seizure and 2 after he was born. i did reserch on zoloft and one of the side effects was seizures, but the docs dont belive it was my mri was mormal. i never had any in my life. i was very depressed about it!! i went to see a neurologist he put me on low dose of keppra. i dont want to take it! i still believe it was the zolfot! i still want answers!!
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replied June 24th, 2012
Zoloft, Seizures and the magic number 23
My 23 year old, disabled son had a seizure a few days ago, he started taking Zoloft about 3 months ago, with the dosage increase after the first 6 weeks.

What I find really interesting (the disturbing kind of interesting!) is the number of people that have posted here that were the exact same age TWENTY THREE... By my count, I'm the ninth poster on this subject and the fourth, for the people who mention their age, to mention specifically 23. (I did catch that some people were younger at the onset of problems, but it really appears that there is a 2 year window that really needs to be looked into.)

Also, as a 43 year old woman and a medical professional with 20+ years experience, I know a seizure when I see one. But, like many, if not all of the other posters here, the doctors at two emergency rooms are insistent that he did not seize, but simply passed out due to dehydration/stress/behaviorial issues/low or high blood sugar/electrolite imbalance... take your pick because they were all said within the first few hours, and all withdrawn or reversed (ie: His electrolites are fine so we know he didn't have a seizure/The jerking movements can be caused by his electrolites being off.)

In the end, they transfered him across town to get rid of me and my demands for more than standard blood work, a chest x-ray and an EKG (you read that right, they checked his heart instead of his head!) And fighting his discharge after less than 4 hours of obsevation and about 90 seconds face to face with the first doctor. Before transfer, they did go ahead and run a CT scan on his brain and a do a quick urine dipstick after I started insisting, but ONLY because he had rolled down a small flight of stairs when he fell and because I told them that if they didn't do the dipstick, I would. In order to get him transfered, it took the help of one super nurse and I had to leave so they could do nothing but keep him, transfer him or set him out on the sidewalk. He was still discharged after being at the second hospital for only 6 hours, another round of blood tests, a bag of saline, a cheeseburger and, because I didn't come when they called me - thus the cheeseburger, saline and extra 4 hours. In the meantime, his "observation" and "care" consisted of never having him move or even stand up from the stretcher I put him on at the first hospital, not giving him his normal meds, no EEG, no neuro eval, ignoring everything we (my other teenage kids were there too) and he said about twitches, tremors and other odd movements - even when they happened WHILE THE DOCTOR WAS IN THE ROOM and almost got kicked. They went as far as to say that his chewing water, while he was confused, was NOT unusual, because, "If it had been a seizure he should be sleeping." Then going on to explain that because he has no history, wasn't sleeping (post-dictal), he had no mouth injuries and he had not urinated (though his bowels did release, which they also didn't notice then refused to acknowledge when I brought it to their attention) There was no reason to believe that he has any type of seizure.

Sorry to go on so long and give so many details, I guess I'm still in shock from the experience. And now finding this forum and the information that, despite the small number/sampling, seems to be showing a definate pattern that, at the VERY least the doctors should be aware of and looking at has been both eye opening and even more disturbing.

Thank You for taking the time to share and the best of luck!
Psyche
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replied August 2nd, 2012
I know exactly what u mean my physchologist put me on zolodt several months ago for anxiety.. a week later i started having seizures again at first is was a tonic-clonic but then i had kinds ive never had before like drop seizures and i have had absence seizures but these were different i would do this freakish hiccup thing and then unresponsive for longer than my normal absence seizures. They weaned me off the zoloft very quickly.. im still having tonic-clonics, drops, and absenses and its been over a month since i stopped taking he zoloft. We dont know what is causing itand have had a horrible time with the neurologist, she has done nothing to try and help but throw more meds at it so now im on lamictal 300mg, topimax 100mg, and they recently added another one idk the name of it. So im on three. But im still having them. Honestly that scares me im in high school bout to go back to school and in marching band.. i had a tonic-clonic monday during marching band! So idk what to do. The doctor says she thinks im either on drugs or faking my seizures... thats not really something that can be legitimately faked!
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replied October 25th, 2012
Zoloft and seizures?
Please help!
I am a thirty-nine yr old mother of two young children. I have good health except for fibromyalgia. My dr. Changed my medicine to Zoloft. I don't know any that it lent treat fibromyalgia. Of course after three weeks it wasn't working so I called the dr. She double the dose on a Monday. Friday after teaching all day I came home to pull out fall decorations. In the middle I fell to floor in a seizure. I teach special Ed Pre-k. I know seizures but until that moment I had NEVER had one. I was rushed to er with back to back seizures.
Long story short: I was transferred to two more hospitals, put in CCU for two days and finally transferred to a teaching medical hospital across the state. I was having so many seizures no one could keep count. Had two EEG's and MRI. results were no epileptic seizures. Side effects from Zoloft. I have been out of hospital for five days. No seizures for three days. Still waiting to see local neurologist .
I feel different. I have to have someone with me at all times now and of course can't drive or work. Everything is hard to do. It took me forever to type this.
Just wanting to know what to expect in my future. Still tremble only right hand and arm. In evening whole body feels like it is shaky. And sometimes still tighten up like I've been tasered.

Can anyone respond please.
Teacher now patient.
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replied June 28th, 2013
These are all very sad stories and I can only add to them.
I am 35 years old and been having seizures for 15 years now. My seizures started after being prescribed and taken welbutran, also a antidepressant. After years and many many anti-seizure meds (all of which had no or worse effects)I still do not have a working med. I have been unseen by a doctor for 4 years due to the lack of insurance but , recently was approved for state assisted coverage and I am now back under doctors care. I seen this new doctor and was prescribed zoloft for depression and other mental issues and he assured me that it doesnt lower the seizure threshold as other anti-depressants do. I do not believe this at all as after taking this med I am having 5 times more auras and I feel very strange, cant really explain it but I also feel very mean and mad. I have only been on zoloft for 1 week and thats ENUFF for me! I am no doctor by any means but I think no one with epilepsy should take anti-depressants or any man made chemical intended to work on the brain.

Good luck to all who has to endure the horrible condition and my heart goes to you.

Ron
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