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  1. #1
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    Does Benadryl help you?

    I have found that one of the most effective ways to head off a flare is to pop a couple of Benadryl (dye-free). I was wondering if anyone else has the same expererience.

    Also, I know that Atarax is another antihistamine commonly used to treat IC. My urologist has recommended against taking it for now because of the side effects (my symptoms have been improving without it), but I'm wondering if I'm helped by Benadryl, if I wouldn't also respond well to Atarax.

    I do take a Tagamet (cimetidine) every day, but I'm beginning to question if that's helping me at all. Does anyone have any experiences they can share about antihistamine use?
    Lori

    40 y.o. mom, wife and marketing manager

    "Il faut manger pour vivre, et non pas vivre pour manger." -- Moliere ("One should eat to live, not live to eat.")

    IC symptoms began Feb 2010; diagnosed Mar 2010

    Treatments:

    Oral
    Elmiron 3x day; Elavil 25 mg/day; Prelief (when I remember!); Benadryl and Prosed DS as needed for flares

    Other
    Acupuncture 2x/month; yoga; IC Diet; meditation and breathing exercises for stress; heating pad for flares

  2. #2
    Support Volunteer traceann's Avatar
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    In the very beginning, right when I was diagnosed - before I went on the hydroxyzine (I chose the Vistaril version instead of Atarax), I did try some Benadryl. If I can recall correctly, lol, it seemed to help a little bit. But, for me the Vistaril beat it by leaps and bounds It's the one med I asked my doc to Rx for me - after reading about it in the Guest Lecture transcripts from here, I was game to give it a go - and I am glad I did

    I found that taking it early in the evening (6 or 7 pm) for me, I don't have the sleepy feelings after I take it or the groggies the next morning. I think when I first started taking it, it did give me a few instances of feeling sleepy, but that went away after a week or so on it as my body adjusted to it. Hope this helps a little bit!
    Hugs,
    Tracey
    How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time...

    Harry arrived 2/23/09!



    *IC Volunteers are not medical authorities nor do we offer medical advice. In all cases, we strongly encourage you to discuss your medical treatment with your personal medical care provider. Only they can, and should, give medical recommendations to you.

    IC Diet Cheat Sheet:
    http://www.ic-network.com/diet/2009icdietlist.pdf



    Dx's:
    IC dx'd Nov 2004
    Lymphocytic Colitis dx'd July 2005
    Possible IBS
    Current IC Meds
    Vistaril 25mg in the evening
    Previous IC Meds taken:
    Cystoprotek - 2 caps 2x's a day
    Elmiron, 100mg 3x's a day
    Ditropan, 5 mg 3x's a day
    Others:
    Wellbutrin 150mg 2x's a day for Anxiety/IBS
    Pepcid 40mg a day for GERD
    Zytrec for Nasal Allergies
    Align Probiotic daily for IBS

  3. #3
    ICN Member Mothergoose's Avatar
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    Atarax worked well for me. I take benadryl for bad allergies, it helps with allergic reactions but not much for IC problems. The reverse is true too Atarax did not help my allergic reations.

    I think it has to do with Benadryl works fast and hit the histamines hard but for a short time. The Atarax is slower to work but works for a much longer time. It works best when taken on a regular basis. Some Dr. don't want you to take benadryl 24/7.

    I would discuss this with your Dr.

    MG

  4. #4
    ICN Member theclownster's Avatar
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    Hi there! I'm not someone who likes to take Benedryl so I can't speak to that. I have what's called an adverse reaction to Benedryl where it has the reverse effect on me than it does for most people - I do not get drowsy taking it - instead it makes me hyper, restless, edgy - almost like my heart is racing. I try to stay away from it. I love the Atarax I take. It helps my IC and also helps my skin. I have sensitive skin and have what I call skin allergies (contact dermatitis is what doctors call it). I get rashes on my chest in an allergic reaction type of way and the doctors don't know the exact cause. I used to take other antihistamines to help with this - yet I stopped them once I was prescribed Atarax for my bladder. The Atarax not only helped my bladder, it has helped my skin allergies better than any other antihistamine I've ever taken.

    I'm not sure what side effects your urologist is cautioning you about, but for me I have minimal to no side effects. In the beginning I did experience some drowsiness, yet that seemed to wear off with time. I also take it at bedtime, yet try to take it 8 to 10 hours before I need to be up the next day which helps with the drowsiness.

    Hope your symptoms continue to improve.

    Take care,
    Jennifer

  5. #5
    ICN Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by theclownster View Post
    I'm not sure what side effects your urologist is cautioning you about, but for me I have minimal to no side effects. In the beginning I did experience some drowsiness, yet that seemed to wear off with time. I also take it at bedtime, yet try to take it 8 to 10 hours before I need to be up the next day which helps with the drowsiness.
    The urologist I'm going to now is one of those "less is more" kind of doctors. He usually starts IC patients out on only Elmiron. If that doesn't help, then he might add Elavil, etc. The only reason I'm on Elavil now is because I ended up in the ER in extreme pain after my urologist told me to treat my flares with Prosed and ibuprofen. He won't prescribe pain medication.

    I brought up Atarax duing my last visit (just a routine follow-up). He mentioned drowsiness as the main issue, which does concern me a bit since the Elavil also makes me a bit tired. I've gotten used to the Benadryl to the point where it doesn't make me sleepy anymore.

    Truthfully, I don't really agree with my doctor's approach to treating IC, and I know I need to find a new one, but since I'm feeling better it's not my first priority now. But I'm glad I have this feedback to consider when talking about new treatments with my doctor. Thanks!
    Lori

    40 y.o. mom, wife and marketing manager

    "Il faut manger pour vivre, et non pas vivre pour manger." -- Moliere ("One should eat to live, not live to eat.")

    IC symptoms began Feb 2010; diagnosed Mar 2010

    Treatments:

    Oral
    Elmiron 3x day; Elavil 25 mg/day; Prelief (when I remember!); Benadryl and Prosed DS as needed for flares

    Other
    Acupuncture 2x/month; yoga; IC Diet; meditation and breathing exercises for stress; heating pad for flares

  6. #6
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    Mar 2010
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    wagamama,

    yes to benedryl, it helps me. There is no way I'm taking another hydroxyzine. felt like I was going to have a heart attack any minute after about a week on that crap. I thought to myself why not benedryl, its an antihystamine, what the heck. I tried it and I slept like a baby all night long, woke up in the morning feeling great, went to the bathroom and voided very well. symtoms always return about mid day though. I've tried taking it in the middle of the day but it doesn't seem to help as much. If you look up diphenhydramine hcl (benadryl) on wikipedia and compare with hydroxyzine, they sound like they have similar modes of action. diphenhydramine hcl is also the same thing they put in tylenol PM. I buy the Equate allergy tablets at wal-mart. they are a lot cheaper.

    Scott

  7. #7
    ICN Member
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    about 20 miles outside Dallas, TX
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    I take Benadryl to sleep. It has no effect positive or negative on my IC.
    Currently dealing with IC (diagnosed May 2001), Fibromyalgia (January 2000) and ADHD (1998 sometime) and vulvodynia (Jan. 08)

    I work in the schools helping students with disabilities. I am a speech language pathologist working as an Assistive Technology Specialist. A very do-able job with IC.

    Medications

    Meds that I take:
    Elmiron 2 x day ; Effexor XR 37.5 ; Ritalin;
    Nasonex; Atarax 10 mg (night); Lidocaine 5%; monthly B-12 shots; Pyridium as needed

    Meds I am trying
    Urell

    Supplements that help:

    Condroitin Sulfate; Calcium Citrate; Magnesium Glycinate; Olive Leaf Extract; daily probiotic

    Other treatments that help:
    Physical Therapy for PFD; Massage for Fibro; Chiropractic for Fibro; IF Unit (like a tens unit) for pain

  8. #8
    ICN Member
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    St.Joseph, Mich
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    I had the same effect with the hydroxazine. It made me hyper and would wake me out of a sound sleep and give me restless legs. Benedryl can do the same thing to me sometimes. I have problems with yeast infections. I take difflucun for them but I still have the itchiness and it is driving me crazy. Does tagamet help with that or is it to prevent mast cells?

    sully

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