Paranoia and Hypomania

I wanted to see if any of you had experienced paranoia shortly after quitting finasteride. One month after I discontinued the medication I developed very bizarre mood symptoms that don’t seem to be exactly reported by anything I have read on here.

One month after I quit I had an onset of general anxiety that did not seem connected to any environmental factors. It was a steady nervousness that didn’t really fluctuate, almost similar to a nausea. Within the next week, I had developed hypomanic symptoms: decreased need for sleep, aggressiveness, sentiments of grandiosity. But in addition to the hypomanic-like symptoms, I became very fearful, irrationally paranoid and had an overwhelming sense of discomfort when talking to people who were intense or anxious themselves. This transcended typical social anxiety as I would feel threatened when walking down the street. At some points my mood would fluctuate to sadness, depression and then a state of normalcy within a couple hours for reasons that were beyond my comprehension. I also experienced a period of a couple days where it felt like I had electrical currents running through my head which occasionally would concentrate into punctuated zaps in my head. A friend of mine told me this resembled a seizure (as she had epilepsy) and could make biological sense due to perturbations in neurosteroids.

I was living in London at the time so I visited the NHS and they were quick to ascribe my problems to normal exam-time stress and anxiety. Unfortunately, I had my graduate school finals during this period which I barely passed but these disturbances gradually phased out over the next 6 months.

I know many PFS-sufferers complain of cognitive brain fog but I’m not sure if that’s what I had experienced. I’m curious if anybody would comment on similar experiences they’ve had. This episode happened to me about one-year ago and I still haven’t been able to fully make sense of it, but during that period a lot of my friends commented that I was acting very strange.

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Had this quite strong and it peaked when I was on propecia. It’s tapered significantly since quitting. It got much better through time, reduced stress, and paleo diet. I need to sleep enough or this becomes a problem again.

Basically my memory is poor and I forget things, like I start to forget repeatedly whet I intended to do after getting up, etc. I think it’s associated or caused by the poor short term memory. For me it comes and goes still depending on the above factors.

I had this too, and I still am slightly paranoid about things. I was walking around London thinking everyone was laughing at me and stuff.

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My paranoia was a bit more severe. I was highly suspicious that all of my online accounts were being monitored and I was afraid to use computers to send messages for about a week. The trigger event was that I was living in the UK and had received a message that somebody logged into my Gmail account from the US. I recently had my laptop backlight burn out and over the next 24 hours, I had the left speaker break in 3 pairs of headphones while listening to my iTouch. Pretty unusual in normal circumstances, but I couldn’t help but focus on the worst-case-scenario in that biological state.

Did any of your friends/family express extreme concern for your health/stability? My parents wanted me to visit the emergency room during this point for manic-like symptoms so I visited the local health service and they referred me to the university’s counseling service. He did not seem too phased and was under the impression that bi-weekly talk therapy would be sufficient. Very inaccurate in retrospect.

Hello Frustrated,
Yes, I experienced both of those symptoms exactly how you described them… I was VERY VERY paranoid, especially out in public, I remember going to a sketchy-ish restaraunt where the waiter was a fairly weird guy… even though I ate my food anyway, I was almost conviced that they were going to put drugs in my food!

I experienced mood swings where I would feel amped up one minute and depressed/sad/scared the next

I had so many experiences like this it was scary. Don’t worry your symptoms will probably fade away I’m a little more than 10 months off and I feel pretty much normal. I’m back here to tell people to stop worrying because I was so paranoid that I was going to stay like that forever.

Gaba, meditation and yoga really helped…harder exercise like running or lifting weights made it worse in some cases.

My anxiousness went away years ago. Fish oil, probiotic and checking mineral levels helped balance me out. Still have headache, fog and unhappinesss.

Eating less breads, grains and sugars etc helped also. Even now when I eat pizza for example at lunch, I get anxious slightly still… More organic and raw diet will help. Fried foods and eating out and stuff from a box is a problem.

Exercise has been proven to help with anxiety also. With PFS, we gotta take care of ourselves more than the average person. It’s hard but we gotta tough it out. Also when I read people taking other meds to fix what Propecia has done… it amazes me. Drugs clearly have side effects and this whole site needs to start reading into other alternative/natural treatments. Conventional medicine allows the FDA to approve such drugs for the masses that totally screw our bodies.

I had hypomania while on Propecia and paranoia right after i quit. My mental state is normal now regarding that aspect.

I experienced this 8 weeks after I quit cold turkey I was on P for 11years. The first 4 weeks I was ontop of thye world then I became increasingly depressed and paranoid these feelings have minimized now slight anxiety. I have been taking calm tablets and natural testosterone boosters from a natural path. Still struggle to get a decent sleep.

This seems very similar to my symptoms - my sexual side effects subsided but the paranoia and drastic mood swings continued. It’s been 4 months off propecia and I’ve been on bi polar meds for a month now to try and combat this symptom.

It’s really good to hear you recovered. Did you take any supplements or was it just time?

me. but i’m developing it now, almost two years after quitting finasteride. It is even true that i’m currently tapering off antidepressants, so this might be related to this?
i’m scared of legal consequences of what i write/say/draw/photograph… And i wanted to be an artist, just sayin’…

If I had to guess man it probably has to do with quitting the ADs, but pfs May have predisposed you to this

Damn this is a really old post. Seven years later and I am still unfortunately not any better. The cause of all of this is something that is or resembles bipolar disorder. It started at the same time I initially took Propecia. Unfortunately I have been prescribed a lot of medications and they don’t really work, I still get dreadful mood cycles that are coming more and more frequently even. It is terribly painful, but at this point I have a better sense to question my feeling of intense fear so that I now am less likely to act on these impulses even if they feel really bad.

I was hoping Sage-217 would be the drug to treat this but that hope has decreased with the failure of the depression trial last year.

We still have @silentpain89 sage update

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He should be updating is soon I think he said at the end of this month right?

Yeah which is tomorrow

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do you have paranoia again?

Yes, it still happens from time to time. The way to deal with it is to realize that when you feel that much fear, you are probably being totally irrational since that degree of emotional response isn’t helpful to protect you from any risk or threat. Your brain is basically glitching or going haywire. Once you recognize that, stay as calm as possible and as quick as you can get yourself to a safe and quiet spot and allow yourself to settle down. Call a friend or family member and tell them you’re freaking out and they can talk you down a bit and you should be able to settle down pretty quickly. If your brain is constantly activating the fear response, completely irrespective of what’s going on in the outside world, you’re going to have to see a doctor ASAP.

I’ve been consulting with a doctor regarding this same issue myself. It may be both of psychological and physiological origin. I, for one, have noticed that I’ve a very poor response to stress because I easily get panic attacks and feelings of being overwhelmed. Getting bloodworks unveiled low E2 and issues with adrenals and both may exacerbate a preexisting fear/anxiety.

IDK what drug you took, but finasteride reduces allopgregnanolone which is involved in managing the body’s response to stress.

The paranoia has physiological origins but will respond to external/environmental factors. I’ve learned to mentally stay collected when it arises and remove the outside factors that are exacerbating the paranoia. It’s not easy or pleasant at all, but it’s the best way I’ve figured out how to reduce the suffering.

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