Monday, July 18, 2011

My Story with Fluoroquinolones

My story begins in the Spring of 2006 but really started a year before that.  A trip to the doctor for a sinus infection resulted in a perscription for a drug I had never taken before. The name of this antibiotic was Levaquin.  About six months later there was another sinus infection and another round of Levaquin.  A year later we moved to Arkansas and began a new journey.  Then I began to feel "funny".  At first I remember complaining of feeling like my skin was on fire, as if I had a bad sunburn, but alas, I had not been in the sun, nor was I burnt. The sun did make my skin uncomfortable. If I got hot it started flaring up and when I went into a cold room; same thing.I couldn't stand the air blowing on me.  From this strange phenonomen came others just as strange.  I began to feel a pulling in my eyes.  It was as if someone had taken their fingers and placed them against the corners of my eyes and pulled.  I started to feel a tingling in my face.  I felt like I had ants crawling in my ears.  The pulling sensation kept getting worse and worse.  There were times when I felt that I couldn't take it any longer.  I started to make appointments with different specialists.  I went to an oral surgeon, nothing.  I saw an ENT, still nothing, in fact both of these doctors said that if the "pain" as they called it were on one side only then they might have something to go on.  It wasnt'.  It affected my whole head, neck and after awhile began to affect other parts of my body.  I began to feel the pulling in my calves, and wrists. The worst of it was my face. After I went to see the ENT with no anwer I went to a local chiropractor.  Nothing.  Then I went to another ENT in Eldorado.  He diagnosed my face problem with TMJ.  I cried all the way home.  I finally had an answer and it wasn't so bad.  But, that did not explain my calves, wrists and the way hot or cold air affected my skin.  The TMJ theory was wrong.  I tried everything the doctor suggested and got little relief.  I had just about decided I was going crazy because no one could help me.  I woke up in the morning with "what I call muscle spasms in my face" and went to bed with them as well.  I remember late one afternoon, I had been laying with a heating pad on my face for hours trying to get some relief.  My nerves had gotten the best of me.  I cried and cried because I thought I would never feel normal again.  My oldest daughter, Mary, came over and brought me a valium.  I took it and in about fifteen minutes I began to feel a little better.  My youngest daughter drove me to the emergency room in Texarkana that evening.  They did a CAT scan to rule out infection in my brain.  It came back normal.  They gave me two shots.  An antibiotic and a shot of Torodal.  I went home and finally went to sleep.  The next morning it was back and was relentless. I made another appointment with a general practitioner in Texarkana the following week.  He asked me about my past health problems and when I began telling him of my sinus infections he asked me about the medicines I was given for them.  I remembered taking zpacs and Levaquin.  We discussed these drugs, when I took them, and when the symptoms began.  He is a very caring, helpful physician.  After evaluating the evidence of strange symptoms and researching what there was reported about fluoroquinolones he surmised that I had indeed been poisoned by these powerful and dangerous antibiotics.  He also commented to the fact that these drugs should only be prescribed for serious illnesses, not sinus or bladder infections, when there are other comparable drugs on the market which would clear the infection up.  He noted my records and told me to be sure and have any physician I saw for medical purposes note the same.  He also told me that when a person has this type of reaction to a drug she usually gets worse the more the drug is used.  I had a delayed reaction but apparently a life-long reaction. Because the Levaquin caused a type of  Peripheral Neuropathy the physician gave me a prescription for Lyrica.  He also gave me Valium to relax the spasms.  The Lyrica had side affects that I could not tolerate so I stopped taking it.  The valium helped tremendously. The only problem was that until I got used to it I had trouble concentrating.  He gave me a prescription for three a day. I only took one and kept using my heating pad.  Although the valium did not get rid of the problems it eased them so that I could carry on in a partial normal way.  After several years of having months of spasms other symptoms I began to feel somewhat normal.  Starting in 2009 I began to have the symptoms sporadically.  I would go a week without and several weeks with the symptoms.  I kept taking my medicine.  About a year and a half ago I hardly ever noticed the spasms.
Did I mention that when you take NSAIDS with Levaquin it is more dangerous.
A few days ago the symptoms came back.  I had not been taking the Valium because I was feeling so much better.  It began slowly.  A few twitches, pulling and tightness in my face.  Then my wrists and calves started feeling tight and strained.  I am now experiencing the symptoms all over again.  It is like they were in the very beginning.  I am not sure what has set them off again only that I have taken Ibuprophen for a headache.  I will have to go back to the doctor.  I have read that vitamin C and B12 is beneficial so I have started that regimen. I sat down and cried yesterday because the symptoms can get so bad that I can barely cope.  It is really hard for others to understand because these symptoms are out of the ordinary.  But, for someone who is going through them, it is pure hell.  It is like having a toothache and no relief in sight.  Ever since I found out what the cause was of my symptoms, and I truly believe this is the fact, I have warned my family and friends to please tell their doctor, when given a prescription, that they do not want Levaquin or any other fluoroquinolones.  There are too many other drugs on the market which can help get rid of less serious infections.  Anytime you see the name Cipro, Levaquin, Tequin, Moxifloxicin, and many others do not use them.......
Here are some web links so that you can check these drugs out for yourself.  Please do.  I would not wish this on my worse enemy.

These are just a few of the sites.  Please watch them and read about this highly dangerous antibiotic.  I thought my life was almost back to normal.  But, the symptoms came back....I will feel better again but it will take awhile and I guess I will never know when the nasty affects of the Levaquin will raise their ugly head once more.

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Lone Lilly

My little Lilly growing all alone

How smooth your velvet petal

One day your shining in your glory

Next day your almost gone

I love to see your soft delight

Your sense of dewey love

There is a freshness that dawns for me

In morning's early light



When you were my little sister
Sometimes I didn’t like you much
You were a brat, and ratted on me
When I thought I knew it all

Even though you got spanked
It was a fun ride huh?
Golf carts required no license
So why should that Barracuda?

I always wondered if the keys would
Ever be found
I didn’t tell you then cause
Besides being a brat you tattled

But then we grew up and went separate ways
You grew into a lovely young woman
You were still my little sister
But not the brat I once thought you were

We’ve shared many moments together
Stumbled and fell, yet never failed
To be there for each other
Sisters are that way

My prayer for you this special day
Is to see life come full circle
To know your worth is measured
In the kindness you bestow

We share that special bond
Only sisters can attest
To understand, not judge, just love
No matter how we fail

So be happy, enjoy the rain when you
Hoped the sun would shine
Change only if you want to
Sometimes roses bloom in winter.

By Debbie Aycock Williams 2008

I love you,
Happy Birthday

copyright 2008


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How to treat others.............


The leaves are gone and bare branches solicit the heavens The warm days are spent, lingering blades of grass Glisten from the morning frost Seeking absolution from their iniquities. Ensuing eradication wounds the external covering And when they have relented at last The hope of resurrection rests in the seed That was scattered long ago. By Debbie Aycock Williams copyright 2009

Chloe's and Joleigh's graduation from 6th grade......Katie graduated from 5th Congratulations girls!


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Life's not the breath you take..........Oh my God, they take my breath away!


Kathryn how do I describe the overwhelming pride you bring to my heart?
When I think back to that rainy night you were born until this very day that is
Filled with sunshine and happiness, accomplishments and expectations of what tomorrow holds, I remember a precious first grandchild, What excitement ensued.

From the time you pushed the front door open and went head over heals down the steps and we spent half the morning in the emergency room. Of course you were fine and I was a wreck. The hours we spent reading and playing will always be memories I cherish like no others. Memories of birthday parties, a scared little girl going into the operating room, Christmas and Easters at Granddaddy ‘s and Mama Kitten’s, vicious bathtubs, special times of doing nothing but being together. There are memories here: Toys you played with, books you read, notes you wrote and pictures you drew; Saved in a box with your name on it and They are all here in my heart, the same heart that is filled with love and pride for you Kathryn, For all you stand for, the caring, loving, kind woman you have become. You are one of God’s gifts to me. I love you.

written 2009 for her graduation 2010 Now that she has read this

in her yearbook, I can post it on my blog! I love you Kat!


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As I walk through my garden I touch the tiny leaves
Of my lonely rose bush

It stands all alone, by itself
No other nearby

The hibiscus grow profuselThey entertain each other with colors of purple and white

And mix together as the wind blows
Back and forth

But my little lonely rose bush
Has no other to share its quiet beauty

Only the bees occasionally fly by
And my fingertips when I feel the velvet petal

Someday soon, I shall plant another rosebush
So my lonely rose won't stand alone

And when I no longer walk through the garden
My little rose won't miss my loving touch.

By Debbie Aycock Williams

Copyright 2007