Anti depressant question: Feeling very... - British Liver Trust

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Anti depressant question

Sallydog1 profile image

Feeling very down at the moment stage 3 cirrhosis but also got my leg in an air boot for 8 weeks due to ruptured Achilles can any one recommend an anti depressants that I can suggest to my gp. Thanks

29 Replies

Only your gp will know which ones you can have they have to go on individual basis it would be wrong for someone to suggest one as not everything works for everyone...

I really hope you feel better soon x

Does it really matter what the cause is richard, some people may be uncomfortable with telling why... I just think you need to stop asking and let people open up in their own time

in reply to jojokarak

Well said jojo

Hi Sally dog,

I'm sorry you are feeling so rough and having other health issues too. Have you suffered with depression before? As feeling low or down is not surprising with chronic ill health. Antidepressants can't change your circumstances, they will only work if your brain chemistry is out of wack. If you recognise this as more like a clinical depression then you should speak to your gp.

From my experience GPs don't like to prescribe antidepressants as virtually all of them have liver illness warnings. I had to see a psychiatrist who herself wasn't too keen. I had to have very regular blood tests and ultimately no medication worked at the dosages which didn't affect my liver.

In the end I had to learn how to manage my mental and physical health, it took considerable time but I got there in the end.

I hope you get the help and support you need, and that things improve for you soon.

Very best wishes x

So sorry to hear that you are having a really tough time of it. My GP put me in touch with an excellent councillor who helped me learn how to manage my mental health. I do take antidepressants as well at a dosage that is okayed by my hepatologist and this is what works for me. Speak with either your consultant or Gp as they are the best people to advise you. As Wass71 says a lot of the tablets carry liver warnings. I really hope you find you way and start to feel better soon xx

Research means nothing to someone who is suffering from depression they just need some support not questioning... Its depressing enough having cirrhosis

in reply to jojokarak

Then I'll gladly delete my post

Steak profile image
Steak in reply to jojokarak

Hi nearly 4 weeks into liver transplant. Am diabectic now with insulin as blood sugar levels were all over the place but if I have 2 stay on it it's a small price 2 pay. Hope ur ok. X

in reply to Steak

Hi steak.

I was exactly the same but came off the insulin after about 5/6 months and then 2000mg of Metformin - much preferred that to those 4 injections a day I started with...

Hope you get off your insulin soon!


Steak profile image
Steak in reply to

Thks want 2 spend xmas in tenerife ha.

in reply to Steak

Go for it 👍👍


I'm so sorry you are suffering with depression, it's terrible , I'm not surprised you have got depression with everything you've got to cope with. I have to have regular blood tests and also an ECG cos I'm on a high dose of citalopram. Hope you feel better soon. Love and hugs Lynne xxxx

Hi Sallydog, sorry you're feeling down. When I'm feeling that way I try to do something creative like sewing or painting; those coloring meditative books they sell in the magazine isles are good. You need to switch the sides of your brain from logic to the other side which deals with creativity.This will help stop you focussing on your pain and depression by distracting your brain. You may only be able to do 5 minutes to start with but you can build up to more. It helps me and I know they use in psychiatric hospitals to bring the patients out of 'themselves' and into the world at large - so to speak. Good luck.

I was prescribed Fluoxetine post transplant, but you would need to speak to your GP, as everyone is different, and also depends on other mediations you’re on.

What works for one doesn't for another. Be guided by your GP


Its something that drives you crazy, I have just lost my family trip to Poland because I couldn't walk.I have cysts in my ankle bone booked in for another guided cortisone no 4. Always worked amazingly , even though it can feel a lot worse before it works. Yep lucky me it was awful. Can I ask have you been diagnosed with depression in the past? My Mum and my daughter have both had the big black dog with them. Depression is a physiological condition, it it totally due to a chemical imbalance. A most annoying comment can be What have you got to be depressed about its not a something that causes it. My ankle has caused several problems with my hip too. One hip is perfect the other is unevenly worn burs inside and out of the joint and arthritis in my lower spine for a hat trick.You dont get back pain with this it affects the hip. Consultant said its due to me not walking correctly due to my ankle. I was in a real pickle. I had to take tiny steps with my back sliding along the wall to get to the bathroom! It may help if you see this time as you time. A chance to read that book catch up on some films do some colouring or drawing perhaps. Finding the right meds is is down to luck. They can take weeks to to start to work. I like my home just so but if you are in pain and cant walk, then its accepting the situation for now. This is so hard to do especially if you have a lot you want to or need to do. Its taken me 10 years to finally accept I'm a crock. Sunlight increases serotonin so if you can rest outside it will lift you a little. I love my garden but until my hip is injected again I guess it wont be how I planned. Wishing you a restful time I totally understand how frustrated you feel . Hazelx

Hi Sallydog1,

Your gp would be the best one to recommend an antidepressant for you. Your doctor knows all the medications you are on and which ones can be taken by those with liver disease. Also, hopefully, your gp knows you well enough to figure out which type of antidepressant might be best for you - different ones work differently.

My husband takes 2 different ones - one is used for an off label reason, that is medically acceptable.

Often, doctors will try different brands to find the one that will work best for you and my concern would be [based on my won personality] that if you hear someone has had good luck with a particular pill, that it could influence your acceptance of a different pill.

Regardless, I wish you the best - please give your doctor a call.

Best wishes,


Not sure which medications to suggest as each one seems to work differently for everyone. Some people find one does wonders while another person finds the same drug either doesnt help or makes things worse. I hope between you and the doctors you can find something that works for you best. It may take a little trial and error. In the meantime try and hang in there mentally. Its hard I know. Physical pain can be something more easily worked around when we are mentally up. But when we dont feel like doing anything and are mentally down, well the smallest of things seem out of reach to us dont they? Best wishes and as I said try to hang in there while you get it sorted out 🙂.

Thank you everyone I am not going down the anti depressant route I got out for the first time in 3 weeks yesterday ( apart from hospital visits and stays) and I feel much ch better in my head now. At the drs today for bloods done hopefully they’re good. One more question. Since being diagnosed and having my adcites drained I am having problems with food. I feel that everything is dry and it’s not that I struggle to swallow but don’t feel I want to eat. I know I must and am having 2 Fortisips a day on top of the meagre amount I am eating but normally I love my food and I would love to get back to some sort of appetite if possible. Once again I ask for your thoughts. Thanks

jojokarak profile image
jojokarak in reply to Sallydog1

It's normal unfortunately that the appetite goes when being drained... As soon as you have been drained it starts building up again and I think it makes us feel full, because it's pushing on everything and why we get out of breath..

I just lived on chicken soup and mash and skips crisps lol

I am glad your feeling better there is nothing like the sun and wind on your face x

Sallydog1 profile image
Sallydog1 in reply to jojokarak

Thanks I’ve just had a thought I don’t seem to have any taste buds on my tongue at the moment don’t know if it’s because I’ve cut salt from my diet Is your appetite getting better now .

jojokarak profile image
jojokarak in reply to Sallydog1

I am post transplant anyway 😊 my appetite through the roof that's why I am on a diet 😂

Your taste does change with cirrhosis 😔

I don't even have salt anymore I don't miss it one bit

Are you on the transplant list?

Sallydog1 profile image
Sallydog1 in reply to jojokarak

No not on the transplant list I’m 70 and have had type 2 diabetes for 20 years so transplant has never been mentioned. I will be happy if I can get rid of the ascites and not feel quite so fatigued all the time

jojokarak profile image
jojokarak in reply to Sallydog1

My ascites lasted about a year and then suddenly stopped and I know some just have on and off I hope it eases soon 😊

I used to drink dandelion tea as well it's a natural way to get rid off water 💦

in reply to jojokarak

So true Jojo how much the sun and spring air can help the mind xx

Radnor profile image
Radnor in reply to Sallydog1

That's brilliant. Serotonin is a gift from nature . You have a list of health problems that are complex. Not being able to walk properly sounded like its the final straw that hit you. I too get fed up of constantly having appointments At one time I could shop for a full day - hobbling at present to answer my door. You sounded like a strong person, today you proved it to yourself and everyone else. Hazel x

in reply to Sallydog1

I'm so pleased youve decided not to go down the antidepressant route. They can take weeks to kick in before you start to feel any benefit by which time you could have pulled yourself up out of what may merely have been a 'low'.

I know it must be difficult to move around but exercise really will help to lift your mood, even if its just sitting in the sunshine with a couple of tins of baked beans in your hands doing some arm raises and bicep curls and taking some deep breaths. You can look online for sitting exercises. Doing them little and often throughout the day will help bring your appetite back too.

Inviting a friend round to chat to will also lift your spirits i bet you could even have a good laugh lifting baked bean tins together too !

I hope you continue to feel better, look after yourself, keep smiling 🌞

I think it should be the GP's decision, of course you can do a bit of reading yourself and suggest something that sound good to you but you need to discuss it with them. Also, bear in mind anti depressants take a couple of weeks to kick in usually so don't feel discouraged. Good luck x

Next question ..has anyone else lost their sense of taste I can only taste sweet not the actual food I can’t believe how many things have happened since being diagnosed in February I’m just hoping that things will settle down a little eventually.

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