Chantix Champix 6

Chantix Champix Reviews: How long does the suffering have to go on?

*Update: If you or a loved one has suffered a bad reaction to Champix and you are based in the U.K., you can report it to the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) here. The more people do that the clearer the true picture will become. Protect others! Report it.*

**Update 2, 4th November 2011:

The American Food & Drug Administration (FDA) were reported in the Business section of the Washington Post as reassuring smokers that Chantix (known as Champix everywhere outside the USA) does not increase psychiatric problems, according to two small studies involving 26,000 smokers.  Since this flies in the face of everything else they know about Chantix already, it is surely irresponsible to say such a thing at this time, because the caveats added to the story further down do not carry anything like the weight of the inevitable headline.  Meanwhile, this article in the Daily Mail reports a study which states exactly the opposite.

Why?  Because the Daily Mail is not bending over backward to assist the pharmaceutical industry – even at the expense of smokers’ lives, if that’s what it takes – whereas the FDA very clearly is.  The testing and approvals system is corrupt as hell, using every possible means of dragging their feet so that Chantix/Champix stays on the market and remains ‘approved’ regardless of how many individual smokers’ lives are ruined by the drug.

The Truth Will Out Campaign has been trying to alert smokers (and doctors) to the dangers of this drug since Autumn of 2008, but just imagine the frustration of this commentator on the new Daily Mail report:

“Oh now they make this a huge statement. My mom used it in mid 2007. She ended up in a mental hospital. Thanks Champix. This stuff shouldn’t even be on the market!!! I still can’t understand why it is, with all these accounts of suicide! I read horror story’s back then after this happened to my mom about people killing themselves or having illness such as bi-polar disorder activated in them. My rule with all drugs is, if it hasn’t been on the market for more then 10 years…DO NOT take it. You never want to be the guinea pig. Sorry for all those who ended their lives because they were manipulated this drug.

– Danielle, USA,
3/11/2011 6:08″**

 

Chantix Champix 6

by hypnotherapist Chris Holmes

*Update: If you or a loved one has suffered a bad reaction to Champix and you are based in the U.K., you can report it to the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) here. The more people do that the clearer the true picture will become. Protect others! Report it.*

Recently a couple of contributors to this blog – who have started to take Champix or Chantix themselves and feel fine on it – have commented that the page they are reading here “seems very negative”.

This is my sixth blog post on Champix/Chantix. I check all comments that come in, and with the obvious exception of spam each comment is added to the site, which means that what you read here is exactly what I have received. If I suspect a comment is bogus I will still add it to the site, and then say why I think it is bogus. Even when it seems I’m mistaken about that, I leave the whole exchange up there for everyone to read, I don’t cover it up. Sometimes it is hard to tell what is genuine and what is not.

So if someone suggests that it seems too negative, I suggest that they read all the comments that follow all six blog posts, the majority of which follow the original post entitled “Champix/Chantix” and the fourth one “Champix/Chantix 4: Enough Already”.

Now look at this:

Review Centre

You might reasonably ask the question “Why do these reviews mostly seem very positive when the ones on some other blogs like Truth Will Out mostly seem pretty negative, often alarmingly so?”

The answer seems to lie in the fact that many of these ‘rave’ reviews are posted very early on in the Champix users experience.  The fact that they feel no urge to smoke at that stage makes a very big impression, and if side effects are minimal at that point it is not surprising that the review they post is bordering on ecstatic.

But we know from the trials that at least half of those smokers will start again when they come off the medication, so this kind of early assessment is premature.  We also know from the comments that have come in to truth Will Out that although nasty side effects can kick in quite quickly, it is more common for them to happen with prolonged use beyond the six-week or eight-week point.

Now read the latest comment to pop up in my mailbox:

Sheanin wrote:

“I’m so glad I found this website – I only wish I had found it a little sooner.

You have confirmed what I had started to suspect myself as a user of Champix. Although I had only smoked on and off for about 6 years, I was prescribed the drug to help me quit a few weeks ago. As I was desperate to quit once and for all, I went for it. I soon wished I hadn’t.

Last week, I had to admit to myself that I was quickly becoming ill on so many fronts that I had to see my doctor again – and fast. I was told to stop taking Champix immediately. I had spent just over a week feeling as though I had been locked into a tiny little cocoon somewhere in the furthest corners of my mind while a robot took me over.

Sure, I got little waves of euphoria here and there each time I reached a milestone – but with each milestone that euphoria would crash to an even deeper low. In addition, my body was going to pieces; I was constantly nauseated, constantly wishing I could curl up and sleep, suffering from aches and pains absolutely everywhere – it was never ending. As a single mum to two small children, one of whom is disabled, I knew – even from the depths of that little cocoon – that I couldn’t let things continue.

I grew up around depression and mental illness and I had always sworn to myself that my children would never be exposed to those things. So, upon seeing the doctor, I was told to come off the drug immediately, which I did four days ago. And even now, I am suffering the consequences. Since that day, I have gone through what I now know to be terrible withdrawal; every side effect suffered during those few weeks has returned with a vengeance. I have been almost permanently locked in my bathroom, unable to eat, unable to look after my children, permanently in pain. At one point, I felt like I was dying.

All I can say is that I am so relieved to have come off this drug, even if I am still suffering now. I’m sure this sickness will pass and I’m positive that I need no crutches whatsoever to stop me from smoking at this stage, I haven’t had a smoke in almost a month and now associate cigarettes with the sheer torture I’ve gone through during the last few days. If I’d never started smoking in the first place, I’d never have been introduced to the absolute terror that is Champix and I wouldn’t be sitting here now clutching my abdomen with tears in my eyes. This drug should be banned completely; the government slaps scary pictures on cigarette packets but continues to sell them – while nobody gets thoroughly warned about Champix and what it’s highly likely to do to your body.

I’d sooner spend the rest of my life licking tar from the footpath.”

Not Worth The Risk

My point about Champix is really very simple: why risk a hideous experience like that if you have not already tried all the methods that CANNOT POSSIBLY do that to you?  Especially when hypnotherapy, the Allen Carr method and acupuncture all produce better results anyway! (See Evidence section.)

To save money?

And to all those sweet innocents who have suggested brightly that if they feel a bit funny they’ll simply stop taking it, over to Sheanin:

“I was told to come off the drug immediately, which I did four days ago. And even now, I am suffering the consequences. Since that day, I have gone through what I now know to be terrible withdrawal; every side effect suffered during those few weeks has returned with a vengeance. I have been almost permanently locked in my bathroom, unable to eat, unable to look after my children, permanently in pain. At one point, I felt like I was dying.”

And some people have.  Take risks if you want, people, but don’t kid yourself this could never happen to you.  I mean even with Russian Roulette, if there’s six chambers and only one bullet, the odds are very much in your favour that you won’t die the first time you pull that trigger.  Wanna play?

Nicotine: The Drug That Never Was

safer alternative

Related posts:

The truth about why this drug is misconceived anyway, like NRT

Two weeks on Champix

Champix Chantix murders and suicide

Champix Chantix suicide

Champix Chantix seizures and epilepsy

44% success rate? No, 86% failure rate for Champix Chantix

More smokers’ comments follow this post

More smokers’ reviews of Champix Chantix

My original post on Champix Chantix April 2008, and almost 300 comments that followed

Article: Why willpower is irrelevant!

The Truth Will Out, Pfizer!

257 thoughts on “Chantix Champix 6”

  1. HI, I started this drug this morning. My husband was at work and I was home with our 9 month old son. When my hubby got home and finished mowing the lawn, he came in about 3pm and I was wiped out. I couldn’t keep my eyes open. I am not a person who falls asleep easily, i usually go to bed after midnight every night, but I crawled from the toilet (non-stop runs) to the bed and was out cold in less then 5 minutes. I googled champix and made my way to this site through comments on another site. What I have read here is scary and I am not taking this drug anymore. I am returning them to the chemist first thing in the morning. I thought it was just me, How could one tablet cause this? Well I am telling you this drug is dangerous. After just one tablet i feel like I have not slept in over a month, I can barely keep my eyes open. My husband has made me promise not to take anymore, he dosn’t have to worry, I won’t be taking anymore. PLEASE people, listen to Chris and all the others that are telling you this drug is bad news. I have stomach cramps as I am writing this and I have not eaten since this morning about an hour after taking the tablet. It is 12 hours now since I took that tablet, this is how quick it can get into your system. Please listen, flush them down the toilet, grind them up and put in the bin or hand back to your chemist..just get rid of them!
    Thank you Chris for this informative site, i’m so glad to have found it and to know that i am not being paranoid about the drug. Thank you so much.
    Kind Regards
    Angel

  2. Just wanted to add that I am in Australia and the only side effects warnings i got was from the chemist, not the doctor! He said I may get nausea, strange thoughts and in severe side effect cases, severe depression and suicidal thoughts. He assured me that this was only in the most severest cases. One more thing, I have had 2 strokes and I don’t think they took that into account when prescribing this drug for me. I am now going to go and have hypnotherepy instead. Thanks again.

  3. Angel, thanks for the message and please try to make sure the doctor makes an official report about the medication, that is the only thing Pfizer cannot dismiss or ignore.

    Anyone who has suffered a bad reaction or knows someone who has, please make sure it gets reported, otherwise (as far as Pfizer is concerned) it never happened. Protect the innocent! Report it!

    This is my sixth blogpost on Champix, for any new readers there are hundreds of comments about Champix on this site – if you want to read some of them click the blog category (to the top right of this page) Champix/Chantix. The majority of comments follow the original blog post “Champix/Chantix”, and the one called “Champix/Chantix 4 – Enough Already”.

    Please feel free to add comments of your own. They don’t appear immediately on the site, but usually will within a day or two.

    Good luck with the hypnotherapy Angel! More info about that here.

  4. I have been taking Champix for 4 weeks. The first three of those weeks went so damn smooth. Week four has thoroughly scared the living shit right out of me. I can’t believe the change in side effects. I damn near left my fiance before I sat down and started to look up and read some blogs on this stuff. My doctor didn’t mention any of thes wild side effects. I read the pamphlet from front to back, and the severe depression/mood swings and anger were only listed as VERY RARE. I would describe myslef as a very strong-minded person, and have always had a good grip on my emotions. I didn’t think there was any way that this drug could be causing such things in ME, right? Had myself convinced all these feeling were real. Got to reading some stuff today and burst out crying. Thank Christ it wasn’t too late. I had my fiance read some of the same articles and blogs I had looked into, and thankfully it wasn’t too late to reapair the damage I have done. I am going to my doctor tomorrow and intend to stop taking the pills. My questions are, however, as follows. Do you know how long this shit takes to get out of your system? I am concerned that it will be quite some time before these feelings disappear, although at least my family and I are now aware that they are fabricated by the drug and not my personal feelings. Also, how hard should I expect the cravings to come back after I have stopped taking the drug? You seem to be very well-versed on this stuff, so hopefully you may be able to shed some insight that I may not recieve from my doctor. Please email me if you get around to it. Thank you

  5. I’ll answer this here, as others will want to know this too. First of all – and I’m saying this to everybody who has a problem with this medication – please make sure your doctor files an official notification of the bad reaction. This is NOT RARE, but the drug company (Pfizer) and the medical authorities will seek to deny this for as long as they can. Already there are more official reports of bad reactions to Champix Chantix than any other medication, but that’s only the tip of the iceberg. Doctors seem to be incredibly slow in waking up to this, and are still handing the stuff out without warnings, and even to people with a history of severe depression which is contrary to the current guidelines.

    However, as we can see from Josh’s post (and many others on the ‘net), we might as well burn the guidelines because these horrific reactions can happen to ANYONE, not just people with previous mental health issues. From the feedback we’ve had so far, Josh, it seems that a steady return to normality is the usual experience, but it can take quite some time in some cases. Please do give us more feedback from your own experiences, because your recovery may be (hopefully) one of the rapid ones, in which case that will be more reassuring to anyone in a similar position. I wish I could reply with more certainty, but the fact is only a handful of contributors to this blog keep popping back to keep us informed, so we simply don’t know the true story with the bad reaction cases that never reported back.

    I made a prediction about Champix on an Australian medical blog well over a year ago, and got called all sorts of names for doing so. No-one wants to believe that a horror story is unfolding but it IS, and the longer Pfizer and the medical authorities in the U.S., Canada, Australia and the U.K. try to pretend it’s not happening the more people will end up dead, divorced, damaged and injured.

    Virtually every working day of my life I shut down some sort of smoking habit, be it tobacco or cannabis, heavy smoker or social smoker, makes no difference as long as they want to quit. How long are medical authorities like the B.M.A. going to carry on pretending people like me are quacks or liars when THEY are the ones who are killing people? It makes me sick.

    Josh, if the cravings come back just read the info on smoking here. Read the extract from Nicotine: The Drug That Never Was published on this site entitled “Why Cravings are Not Withdrawal Symptoms”, and if it sounds perfectly reasonable why not have a think about doing it the easy way?

    Doctors: don’t prescribe the suicide pills. First do no harm, right?

  6. Hello.
    I started taking Champix on the 30th of April despite reading many of the reviews on this forum prior to taking the pills. To be honest, I haven’t had a single side effect from these pills yet as of day 17 and have been smoke free for 1 week today. Infact i probably feel happier now than i did before knowing the fact that i can kick the habit. I used to smoke between 25-40 a day and easily cut that down to under 10 in the first week. I’ll admit, driving home from work or after eating a large meal i do instantly think “cigarette,” but after a week of no smoking, i just tell myself “no.” Going to cut my tablets in half this week and only have them in the morning. By next week i plan to come off the medication.
    After watching a video on youtube regarding champix and it’s side effects (BBC Scotland programme) i discovered than only 0.1% of people in Scotland suffered serious side effects. So from a statistical point of view, you chances of killing yourself are very slim.

  7. You do what you like, Michael. At least you’ve read about it, so if it turns around and slams your brain you have the dubious comfort of knowing that you went into it with your eyes open.

    The chances of killing yourself if you use hypnotherapy, the Allen Carr approach or acupuncture are nil. Absolute NIL. The likelihood of succeeding with any of those three methods are higher than achieving real (not temporary) success with Champix.

    The official stats about bad reactions are only those that have been officially reported, which I believe is only the tip of the iceberg. Look, if anyone still opts to take Champix after reading about all this, good luck to ’em. I’m only doing this because so many smokers have come on here (and various other blogs) absolutely livid because they were told nothing, and some of them have a history of depression and shouldn’t even have been given it.

    Once everybody knows that there are serious risks – and let’s face it, Michael, if you hanged yourself on this shit, do you think your family would take any comfort from the fact that lots of other people didn’t? – I’ll happily shut up about it because to be frank I’m bored to death with this campaigning crap, it’s really not my thing but whilst the medical authorities are still conspiring with the drug companies to play it down I’m going to keep on shouting about it.

    There’ll come a point when it is common knowledge that Champix is a killer and usually doesn’t work anyway, and there’ll come a point when everybody understands what an outrageous con the nicotine replacement poisoning scam is. At which point this Campaign and this blog closes. But not before.

    Hope Champix doesn’t harm you Michael. Quitting the drug early and reducing the dose does seem to help with that. All the best.

  8. I took champix for 4 weeks, I did feel sick and a bit low on them, but didnt smoke, however, I knew I wasnt feeling myself on them, by week 3 was convinced they were making me too emotional, but figured as there was only a week left to go, I might as well finish them. I wish to god I had not!
    I have been off the tablets for a week now, I feel like I am walking around in a fog, I burst out crying for no reason at all, My friend tells me, my driving is aggresive, my mood swings are illogical and I feel like I dont know what to do with myself. My Doctor would not give me anything to cheer me up, just said if i was still feeling this way in a week to go back!!..I want to know when this depressive feeling will go, and if I will ever be me again?..can anyone help?

  9. Hang on in there Rach, it seems from the feedback we’ve had so far that there is a gradual return to normal, if so the worst is already behind you. Please keep us posted because the more info I have on that the easier it is to reassure people with certainty.

    Please please please report it, make sure the GP files an official complaint. This is NOT a criticism of the GP in any way, nor would it ever be veiwed as such. The approvals system depends upon patients giving feedback on bad reactions, so to protect others please insist upon the reaction being reported. Also, read all the comments following the six posts on Champix here in the blog. You will see that you are not alone.

    Legal cases are being mounted now all over the world, class actions are likely to be more effective than individuals trying to sue a drug company so if you have been caused unnecessary suffering by Champix Chantix, there will be a chance to hit back. I will be doing a post about this very shortly with advice for anyone with an interest in making Pfizer pay for their callous indifference to the loss and suffering of individual smokers and their families. We are now half way through 2010 – the first alarm bells were sounded in the U.S. in 2007. Harm suffered in the last three years it NOT ACCIDENTAL.

  10. can anyone help
    my partner took this awfull tablets that should be banned for 6 weeks, gradually he bacame this person i didnt know, aggitated, depressed, confused, extremely tired, he has isolated himself from others, to be honest i cant describe him at the mo, he thought these tablets were the best thing ever, untill at the 6 week point people were telling him he was acting like he was drunk, then he stopped them, 4 weeks down the line no improvement, it has ruined our relationship, how long does it take to return to normal or is it a permanent thing?

  11. Hi Emma,

    don’t despair, although the return to normal can take a while it does seem to happen gradually so far as we know at the moment. Please try to remember IT’S N OT HIM, IT’S THE DRUG. He took it in good faith, please don’t hold him responsible. Complain, report it, read all the Champix/Chantix posts here and on other blogs.

    Support him, be patient, please keep us posted. Make some notes. There are legal aspects to this, and I will be posting more information about that here soon.

  12. thanks chris
    i have heard and read so many horror stories on this drug its frightening, i work for the nhs and i intend to complain and do whatever i can to stop this happening to others, its evil, am sure he will be distraught and angry to when he recovers and realises what this drug has done him and us, being patient is hard but am trying and keep telling myself its the drug. thanks

  13. i not been on here for ages but have been on previous champix blogs of chris’s.as a previous champix user 2xs i can really sympathise with a lot of comments regarding what users of this drug are saying.it never stopped me smoking ‘long term’ anyway.the side effects from this drug can often be horrendous not only to the unsuspecting user but friends/family and others can also be affected.i have known one succesful suicide and one attempted suicide in the past 2 years.i suffered with mood swings,depression,anger / frustration and contstant nausea.the only thing good this drug ever did was get me off my coffee addiction-even now the smell of coffee makes me heave yet i used to drink cups of it a day.i would never touch this drug champix again-but luckily i dont need to as at the ‘moment’ im a non smoker.i put alot of this down to using an electronic ciggie with bouts of ‘occassional’ once a month smoking binges!!please consider the alternatives to champix.when you first use it and feel it is suppressing the smoking urges-you think great-but the longer you take it-by 3 to 6 weeks the bad side of it hits you.when you come off it the urge to smoke returns in some cases often with very very strong urges/desires.good luck.

  14. One point i forgot to add it took me a while to feel ‘normal’ again.my head was often fuzzy and there seemed to be ‘gaps’ in my day.i for example once couldnt remember driving home! i once found myself confused and panicky as to where i was when i was in familar surroundings.you often forget about smoking anyway because you are so preoccupied with feeling crap.good luck.

    Hello Chris!!

  15. i used i stopped smoking but 10 weeks in after taking champix for only 3 week i have never spent so much time at the docs stomach realy bad .stop smoking and do not eat what a wonder as a wieght loss 1 stone in 1 week.do using also of tablets plus patches ,which is what i wanted to use in the first place but we(idiots) trust our medical proffesionals.and my temper thank my wife loves me our i would me on my 3 rd divorce now but at 30 a day for over30 year i need to stop

  16. Michael I help people quit all the time, 2 hours in a comfy chair and it’s all done. No risk, no pills no toxins, no patches just home free. Don’t put yourself through it, man! It’s just an old habit, you don’t need to be punished!

    Honestly folks, hypnotherapy doesn’t hurt, it isn’t remotely weird or dangerous, it’s just a communication process. These bastards are damaging and killing people for no reason at all – please, read more about hypnotherapy here.

  17. this is an update for all those poor people wondering how long it takes to return back to ‘normal’. my partner was on this drug for 6 weeks and suffered horrific side effects, its been 7 weeks off the drug and he is still sufferering and our relationship is virtually non existant, although there is some improvement extreme tiredness, forgetfullness and strange moods is still a big problem.

  18. Hi Emma, thanks for the update but I’m sad to hear that his recovery hasn’t been more rapid. Keep telling yourself it WILL get better, the worst is behind you (I know that’s easy for ME to say).

    Have you heard anything about this drug within the NHS? Also, is there anything more we can do to warn everybody because I know doctors are NOT being told the facts about all this, the info on side effects is woefully inadequate.

  19. cant express the amount of stress it has caused but trying to bare with it,
    the nhs stop smoking service said they recognise that there are some side effects, and that people are made aware of it when they first go on to the pills and that its very rare for people to actually experience any, thats a joke for starters, you just have to do a little research to find out there is a huge amount of people suffering.
    i spoke to my own gp yesterday and he said he actually not heard of anyone suffering any side effects and said he issues loads of the stuff, he was actually very keen to listen to my story so he could help future patients, told him to read forums on a few web sites, said he was interested and would, will see when i go back in a few weeks.
    the thing thats annoyed me most is, docs, medical staff etc have kept saying to me that my partner must have been suffering from major depression or mental issues before starting the drug and this is not true.
    as for making people aware of it, no one seems to know or want to know, guess we just have to keep trying, i am hoping that my gp will take an interest

  20. This is the official line from the Champix Camp: the suffering is ‘nicotine withdrawal’ – a suggestion already rejected by the US Surgeon-General – and if you suffer mental problems then you must have been mentally ill already.

    These are callous lies: they are playing it down and playing for time. Every reaction that is not officially reported ‘never happened’. How many are going unreported because the people involved have no idea Champix does things like this to people?

    I know perfectly well that lots of people have taken Champix and suffered negligible side effects. That is not the point – this drug was supposed to be SAFE FOR EVERYONE. Who decided that the deaths and casualities don’t matter because of the relative numbers? When Rhys Jones was shot dead on his way to football practice, did we all think: “Well it’s a shame but lets not be too negative about this – lots of kids get to football practice and back without being shot”?

    No-one should suffer harm from something given to them by their doctor which is supposed to improve their health. This is especially true when safer and more successful methods are already available. These are not isolated cases. Champix should be withdrawn – it has an 86% failure rate anyway (link).

  21. Hi,
    I ws very interested to come across people’s experiences taking Champix. My uncle committed suicide in Dec 2007. He had been taking Champix and to quote him “it’s taken me to dark places I never knew existed”. He had taken anti-depressants for many years and they worked for him and he lived his life happily because of them. To me, it is inconceivable that somebody taking antidepressants should be prescribed Champix in the 1st place.

    I can’t say it is because of the Champix that he committed suicide, but I can say that they sent him into a personality changing depression. I also heard a radio programme where a doctor told of his negative experiences taking Champix and quoted many stories of suicide.

    I believe that my uncle would be here today had he not taken this drug. I think it should be withdrawn immediately as there are too many stories like this. It seems to me it is a life and death situation and should be treated as such.

  22. Nik, how can you follow Jackie’s message with such an off-hand remark?

    I’ve seen quite a few posts like this, on this and other blogs, which do not acknowledge the suffering of others at all. Would you stroll around villages in Cumbria saying: “I think shotguns are brilliant”? Have a bit of sensitivity for Christ’s sake.

    I can’t help wondering if posts like this are even real, or if they really come from internet ‘pharmacies’, worried about their sales dropping off.

  23. In the Northern Ireland your GP will NOT give you Champix if your are depressed or if it runs in the family, or for example if you had an emotional childhood/adulthood, heart medication diabities etc, an they also give you a health check to make sure your fit body/mentally they also tell you that the tablet has extreme side effects i.e depression/mood swings/sickness etc and they warn you of suicide thoughts and weird dreams, an they also require you to talk to a councilor each week whislt taking champix. Its seem that alot of people are not being made aware of the effects an GPS are not doing there Jobs, my sypanthys for every1.
    Yours Sincerely
    Danielle

  24. I took Champix 2 yrs ago. I was a normal healthy 31 yr old mother of 2. 4 days after taking Champix my world changed. It literally felt like something broke in my head. I was suicidal, I became bedridden and missed months of work. I couldn’t care for myself of my family. I cried all the time. my health spiraled downward and eventually I was hospiutalized. I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. This my psychiatrist says was likely caused by Champix. It triggered a permanent mental illness in me. My life has never been the same. I reported my side effects to HEALTH CANADA AND PHIZER a week after I took the “medication” I would beg anyone listening PLEASE DON’T TAKE THIS POISON. I ALONG WITH 2 OTHER WOMEN HAVE STARTED A CLASS ACTION LAW SUIT IN BC CANADA. IF YOU HAVE BEEN HARMED BY THIS DRUG YOU MUST REPORT IT TO THE PROPER AUTHORITIES. IN CANADA IT IS HEALTH CANADA. PHIZER SHOULD KNOW TOO. Although I Don’t think they give a shit. They’ve taken my health from me. Where’s the justice. When will the government LISTEN?? WHEN IS ENOUGH ENOUGH?????

  25. A very good question. I wrote my fourth blogpost on Champix entitled: “Enough Already” in September 2008. 144 comments follow that post, many of them reporting the same things, and there are many more following my original Champix post earlier that year.

    Make no mistake: Pfizer know all about this. The FDA know all about it: they are “investigating” Champix. In the U.K. all the medical authorities know all about it – the BMA, NICE, the MHRA. They just DON’T CARE. What is going on here is standard procedure: ignore the stories for as long as possible, then issue lots of denials, go through the motions of “investigating” which takes FOREVER, issue “new guidelines” which are totally insufficient when it comes to protecting people and all the while KEEP SELLING. Eventually a few cases will come to court but by that time they will have made so much money that they can afford to pay out anyway. They don’t care who dies or has their life ruined. Just look at all the previous drug scandals.

    They don’t tell doctors the truth though. They just get fed a load of drug company hype, and it takes them ages to realise the extent of the horror. Obviously if doctors knew the truth they wouldn’t prescribe it, and that would spoil everything. So they’re the ‘mushrooms’ – kept in the dark and fed on shit.

    Justice? There isn’t any justice. There are lawsuits though, and I wish ’em well. But if there were any justice, the medical authorities involved would be protecting the public instead of protecting their friends in the pharmaceutical world. The FDA would withdraw the licence, the MHRA in the UK. But they won’t. They don’t care how many people kill themselves, they’ll help Pfizer’s lawyers muddy the waters indefinitely with bullshit about “nicotine withdrawal” and “investigations” and piddling about with guidelines and warnings that they know perfectly well won’t protect people properly. But not air-traffic controllers and pilots – oh, no, they’re just banned from using it. You know why? I’ll tell you. If Champix makes an ordinary smoker freak out and attack someone or kill themselves, they can just let the smoker be the subject of the investigation and Pfizer can get away with their usual bullshit that “there’s no evidence there’s a link”, and in that case it’s just one human tragedy, tough shit. As you were, all carry on regardless. But if a pilot freaks out on Champix and ploughs his plane into Heathrow’s main terminal, well – even Pfizer aren’t big enough to brazen that one out! Then there’d be a REAL investigation, and not just by the fucking toothless FDA. Then the game would really be up, so no, they’re not going to risk that one but all you little people, it’s okay for you to all risk your necks individually.

    Vile corruption. Truly vile and sickening. And it doesn’t work anyway for 86% of smokers in the long run, and they knew that all along.

  26. I started Champix 10 days ago. The first week was ok although I experienced a nose bleed, felt sick all day and could have slept for a week. I mentioned to my nurse that I had had a nose bleed and she brushed it off and said it was unrelated.

    I started the second week and for a whole day I felt like I had been drugged, I couldnt work and even felt uncomfortable to drive my hour commute home.

    I reduced my dose and decided I couldnt function in my job. I was sat at my desk yesterday talking to someone and suddenly I was seconds away from passing out. I was sat down, I had eaten, I didnt feel unwell at the time. It was lucky that I wasnt driving otherwise I think I may have ended up hitting something. I have decided to ditch the tablets, it would be easier to continue smoking! Im hoping that only taking them for about 10 days that it will work out of my system quickly.

  27. Hi Deborah! I hope so too.

    And I’m glad you weren’t driving, because guess who would have got the blame? Look at the small print on the leaflet regarding side effects. The crucial warning not to drive “if affected” covers their ass if they can get you to admit in court that you felt different in any way BEFORE the driving incident.

    “The first week was ok although I experienced a nose bleed, felt sick all day and could have slept for a week.”

    That would do fine for Pfizer’s lawyers, because you see it isn’t REALLY a warning, it’s a get-out clause. Sorry, you should’ve read the leaflet like we told you to (Always read the leaflet). You felt funny, should have avoided driving. Your fault, we’re outa here!

    Bastards, aren’t they? Someone could have been killed, but do they care?

  28. hello again, this is probably the final update i will write on here, my partner has been off the champix for 4 months now and is worse than ever, he is going about his every life (in a fashion) but is not the person he was, complete personality transplant, i persuaded him to go back to the doctors, they told him was tired and to take a week off work, i give up our relationship has ended and all because of this drug, this could be the new him now, i can not stress how much it changed him, it must be hard for him to feel so desperately tired, depressed, and confused and i dont think he realises how is being half the time, but there is only so much someone can take, he has not stopped smoking so all this for nothing, please do not take this drug, i gave up smoking to and these are not withdrawl symptoms from nicotine

  29. Hi

    I am planning on giving up smoking and have heard loads about Champix So i looked it up…… and i am so glad i did!

    After reading various articals U.S and U.K based i can quite happily say that i WILL NOT BOTHER!

    Is sounds awful and the side effects that i have read about are all sooo similar.

    How is this even legal?

    I am now going to go for the patches, gum etc ANYTHING except Champix…

  30. Highest success rates:
    1). Hypnotherapy
    2) Allen Carr’s original book The Easy Way To Stop Smoking
    3) Acupuncture

    None of these could ever harm you. They work better than the suicide pills anyway. Festival Lou says: “How is this even legal?” Emma says: “I gave up smoking too and these are not withdrawal symptoms from nicotine.”

    Pfizer know that perfectly well, the murdering fucking liars. And they still won’t withdraw it until they are forced to withdraw it by law, which takes such a criminally long time to happen because of all the corruption involved. Read Emma’s posts again, and remember that name: PFIZER.

    Emma, I’m so sorry for all that you and your partner have lost. And all because he wanted to improve his health. This is not an accident because they KNEW there were cases like this in the USA before it was ever approved for use in the U.K., Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Doctors, please don’t prescribe this highly unpredictable concoction – it doesn’t work for the vast majority of smokers in the long run anyway, it simply isn’t worth the risk.

  31. I have not had a cigarette for 10 months – and thanks to Champix. I tried patches, cold turkey, zyban, will power, naturepathic cures and i was a smoker for 35 years.
    I am feeling that you Chris are trying to promote your own methods – are you a hypnotherapist?
    Horses for courses and mind control?
    Thank you Champix – and everyone needs to try whatever they can…..

  32. “Mind control”? Hypnotherapy isn’t mind control, it is a communication process – pure and simple.

    Yes, I am a hypnotherapist and very proud of it, but this site isn’t here to promote hypnotherapy, my other website does that. This site is to warn people about the lies they are being told about NRT and dangerous drugs like Champix, which usually don’t work anyway.

    I didn’t say they NEVER work, so it is possible that Greenbean is a real smoker who quit with Champix. Only it is noticeable that all these “Thank you, Champix!” posts totally ignore all the heartbreaking stories from people like Emma and Alicia, like they really couldn’t care less about any of that. Maybe Greenbean didn’t read much of the site at all. In fact that is obvious from the fact of having to ASK if I’m a hypnotherapist!

    So Greenbean – if you are a real person and not just one of those gangsters flogging dangerous drugs from “internet pharmacies” who might be a bit worried about their sales going down – I suggest you take a little more time to read what this horrific medication has done to a lot of other people, then maybe you’ll see why I’m doing this.

    I have spent a great deal of time on the Truth Will Out Campaign. It has cost me dearly, and certainly hasn’t created any business for my hypnotherapy practice – I never thought it would. The majority of people reading this don’t even live in the same country as I do. The fact is, most smokers do not know the extent of the misinformation that is encouraging them to try quit products that don’t work, and that’s why they’re still smoking. Many of those smokers pay with their lives.

    “…everyone needs to try whatever they can…”

    No, everyone needs to know about the dangers and the drug company hype, so that they can stop wasting their time with things that don’t work for the vast majority in the long run because they’re barking up the wrong tree in the first place. I’m going out of my way to protect people, which I happen to think is a worthwhile thing to do in itself. You’re just plugging a drug – perhaps quite innocently, I don’t know. Read up on it. It’s scary.

  33. Took two complete scripts between Oct. ’06 – Oct. ’07.

    Two hospital stays in ’08.

    Jan. ’08 – – taken by ambulance in middle of nite w/horrific headache, extreme shortness of breath and stomach spasms so strong, they felt like contractions. Stayed a week. Received morphine, oxygen, antibiotics thru IV. Released w/diagnosis – – possible virus.

    May ’08 – – had great day at work as usual. Daughter called and said, “mom, what’s wrong? You haven’t been yourself for MONTHS!” Smiled, picked up keys, took drive to rural area, picking up 3 bottles of sleeping pills and diabetic razor thingy’s along the way…sang to the oldies station…bought big mountain dew…found a closed used car lot…parked on an angle to blend in…wrote short note, “it’s been real…”

    Woke up six days later when being taken off ventilator…surrounded by sad, confused family members…waiting for an answer. Didn’t have one. Spent time in psyche unit…followed up w/intense inpatient/outpatient therapy, counseling w/psychiatrist and therapist, leave from work…ostracized by those closest to me.

    It’s been two years. My feet are just NOW solidly grounded. I’m not crazy. But, I FELT crazy for a long, long time. Before my “attempt”…I had deceased loved ones coming to my room at nite, trying to convince me that my job was done here…and it was time to go. They were so real…so happy….so CONVINCING!! I could FEEL their hug….said, “heaven is NOTHING what you picture! It’s FUN….it’s a BLAST…and EVERYone is happy and healthy!!! I so wanted to be w/them. Looked around and felt the rest of the world was crazy for staying.

    With my daughters married and my six grandchildren healthy and happy, and my husband of 37 years could SURELY find a young replacement….it WAS a good time to go. God was just bein a silly and overlooked the fact that I’ve overstayed my visit!!

    The drug is real. Reality is no longer attainable. The spiral is out of your control. The mind boggling dreams/hallucinations are strong and convincing. Never again will I be fool enough to believe that just because a drug is FDA approved…it must be ok!! We were all lied to. Do NOT take this drug. Do NOT!!!

  34. Well, this is what i’ve been trying to warn people about for the last two years, entirely because of comments like this. And a few people have tried to suggest I’m only doing that to promote hypnotherapy, or I’m just trying to sell my book – which isn’t about Champix anyway!

    Has it not occurred to any of the critics of this site that I might just be trying to protect people from this MENTAL, psycho drug? And so is Terri.

    Truth Will Out, Pfizer. And it will have your name all over it PFIZER PFIZER PFIZER PFIZER PFIZER PFIZER PFIZER. Evil. They know exactly what they’re doing. Don’t take the suicide pills. Doctors: don’t prescribe them. First do no harm.

  35. Hi

    I took the tablet for about 10 days, after the sixth day i did stop smoking but the side effects are really bad. reading one report I feel I had the same effects where my head feels really heavy and I do feel drunk and unable to concentrate my brain and my eyes completely. I decided after 10 days to give it up as I was a walking Zombie after the third day. This is my second day of not taking the tablet but I still dont feel completely in control of my mind and thought at times I feel like Im in a cacoon. I know the doctor did ask me about Mental health issue but reading on here it seems like this is more common then they actually say and as for making you drowse who needs coco at night. I think this product should definatly be banned from use.

  36. Hi Chris

    I just wanted to thank you for this blog, and to thank you for BELIEVING ME!!!! You work so hard to get the message out there. You really are a “CHAMPION AGAINST CHAMPIX” Phizer must be stopped. While It’s true they’ll make their billion dollar profit off this drug, long before we settle this in court. I’m confident they will pay in the long run. It’s up to all of us to speak out, to scream and yell, to stand for what is right. Phizer manufactures many drugs, this is only one. My God…Is it any wonder we are dealing with the level of cancers, diseases like fibromyalgia, MS. Just a crazy thought..Is there a link here?

  37. I’ve just had someone having a go at me on another thread on this site because he successfully quit with Champix and is so thrilled that he calls my attempts to warn smokers – or “scare them off”, as he put it – shameful.

    Hm. First, they said Champix was safe. Then they said there was “no evidence” that the drug was responsible for bad reactions or suicides. Next, they claimed that such things were “extremely rare”. Then the FDA started investigating the drug and Pfizer were forced to put a black box warning on the packaging. It is already banned in certain occupations and I think it is only a matter of time before the full truth becomes undeniable and the drug is withdrawn.

    Whether pharmaceuticals are causing other nasty conditions I’m not in a position to say, but this kind of thing makes you wonder: link

  38. I am just starting my 4th week of Champix.Stopped smoking on the 8th day and havent smoked since.
    The first 2 or 3 days were very easy and then the cravings started which need willpower not to give in to.
    However after that I have had no problems.I am often thinking about smoking but do not feel the need to smoke.
    As far as I am concerned so far I think Champix is wonderfull.
    Good luck to all!!

  39. Hi John, thanks for your contribution.

    I’m curious, though – if Champix stopped the cravings for the first 2 or 3 days, why did they start again if you were still taking Champix?

    If you want to go on thinking Champix is wonderful, keep your fingers crossed and DON’T read any more of this site. And if you start feeling ill, strange or very emotional for no apparent reason, stop taking it.

  40. Hi Chris
    As to your 1st paragraph I have no idea.Maybe my brain wasnt in tune with my body.
    As to your 2nd paragraph I think it important to be aware of the negative as well as the positive and then make my decisions based on how I feel.

  41. Best of luck, John! As is quite clear from the chappie who was angry with me on the other thread, it works for some!

    Actually, although I urge people not to take this medication what I really think is that it should be regarded as a last resort because it involves risk. It seems to me that from a purely logical point of view the safest methods should be the first ones recommended, because that reduces overall risk.

    The daft thing is, the safest methods also have the best long-term results: hypnotherapy, Allen Carr’s approach (particularly his original book) and acupuncture. After that, the electronic cigarette seems to be quite popular with smokers and a few manage to quit with NRT and/or willpower. Whilst Zyban and Champix remain legal of course any smoker should be free to try those too, but my point is that since the long-term success rates of those are only about 13% to 14% anyway, why take the risk if you haven’t already tried the safer, more successful methods?

    It’s just common sense, isn’t it? I would really welcome a comment on this particular point from prescribing doctors. After all, you don’t have to give your name or anything.

    More than two years, this site has been up. The readership stats continue to soar ever higher. The silence from the medical profession is deafening.

  42. Re comments on champix i have been on them for a week 1sst taking one a day then two a day of 0.5mg now i am on two tabs a day of 1mg i have had no side affects to speak of appart from a little nausia at 1st i think it all depends on the person not everyone suffers bad sideaffects its just scare mongery Bill from the uk

  43. Hi Bill! Thanks for your contribution.

    Bill has been on the tablets for a week.

    From this, he has concluded that myself – after collecting feedback on the medication for two and a half years – and all the contributors who have told us of serious reactions on this, and all the other Champix threads on this site (there’s about ten of them now, hundreds of comments in) are all “scaremongers”.

    As if this were the only blog on the internet raising concerns. As if the drug were not already under investigation by the FDA. As if Pfizer had not already been forced to put the strongest ‘black border’ warning on the packaging of the medication…

    People have died, Bill. Many, many more have had their health and their relationships ruined, been hospitalised, forced to stop working – some people are terrified that they will never recover and you are saying to all these people that because you are okay personally after ONE WHOLE WEEK on the tablets, they are all just scaremongers.

    Anyone else want to dismiss the suffering of thousands of people all over the world? Anyone just been on Champix for a day or two? Don’t hesitate to assume you know all about it!

    Bill’s right about one thing though – it DOES depend upon the person. Not everyone is going to be horribly shocked by a devastating reaction that may ruin their life. Good luck Bill. Hope your blind assumption that you won’t turn out to be “the kind of person” to suffer a reaction pays off. (An unlucky person, in other words… a.k.a. a “scaremonger”.

  44. Hi Chris.
    On Day 33.Still not smoking.Still no side effects.
    Just read your attack on Bill for daring to raise an opininion contrary to yours.
    Do you ever factor in the countless deaths and illnesses caused by smoking?This basic fact seems to get lost in the emotion of pro and against lobbies for Champix.

    John

  45. “An opinion”? He’s been on the tablets a week.

    Anyway, it’s not his innocent opinion about the drug that bugged me – anyone has the right to come on here and voice an opinion, even after only a week. But if they call those of us trying to warn of serious side effects – which are real, don’t forget – “scaremongers”, well I make no apologies. He is insulting the memory of all the victims of this stupid bogus wonderpill AND all of their loved ones, not to mention dismissing the agonies of everyone who has posted their tale of woe here, and on other blogs too.

    Name them, Bill. Name the people who have put their stories on here who you think are scaremongering. Pick out the particular tales of pain and suffering which you, in your extensive experience of Champix have decided are LYING for no apparent reason.

    John, you keep coming back with the same black and white argument that the internet drug shops use as their dopey marketing strategy: deaths from smoking can be really horrible, therefore whatever is wrong with Champix – the sad fact that it only works for 14% in the long run, and it may hospitalise you, cause you to go nuts and attack someone or kill yourself, ruin your marriage or wreck your health – isn’t that STILL better than dying of lung cancer? As if those were your only choices!

    Hypnotherapy, Allen Carr, acupuncture. Proven better long term results (see Evidence section on this site), and NO RISK.

    What don’t you understand about that, John? By the way, the vast majority of serious reactions seem to happen after week 5. Your course is 84 days, and until you have actually done the whole thing AND not started again afterwards, you aren’t a success you are simply “on Champix”.

  46. I have tried all the methods to stop that you suggested.All of them unsuccessful.I have a very serious smoking related illness that if I dont stop smoking will cause me to lose limbs.This in turn will make me very depressed and will probably result in me taking my own life.I am not taking Champix as if it were a medal of honour.I am taking it to stay alive.
    You seem to imply that there is only one opinion that counts and its yours.
    Of course at the moment I am only on Champix(surprised you didnt put in Yah Boo Sucks).I think your comments are beggining to sound like they come from the school playground.
    Wont email you again till I have completed the course.

    John

  47. OK John, I have to say that this site isn’t really aimed at people like yourself. I have said on other threads that as long as Champix and Zyban are legal, of course people should be free to try them but it should be as a last resort, AFTER they have tried the methods that have never been linked to suicides such as hypnotherapy, the Allen Carr method and acupuncture.

    If you have tried those and none of them worked for you, you have a serious illness and are facing possible amputations that could leave you feeling suicidal sometimes then OF COURSE Champix is a valid option at that stage! If I were in your position I would even consider it myself!

    But you have to realise, John, most smokers are not in your position. Most of the people who have posted horror stories here were perfectly healthy before they started taking this drug, and those are the people I am trying to warn. And all I am saying to them is BE AWARE. If they haven’t already tried the safe routes, try those first. And can I just remind you why? This was Jackie O’Brien’s post (22):

    “Hi,
    I was very interested to come across people’s experiences taking Champix. My uncle committed suicide in Dec 2007. He had been taking Champix and to quote him “it’s taken me to dark places I never knew existed”. He had taken anti-depressants for many years and they worked for him and he lived his life happily because of them. To me, it is inconceivable that somebody taking antidepressants should be prescribed Champix in the 1st place.

    I can’t say it is because of the Champix that he committed suicide, but I can say that they sent him into a personality changing depression. I also heard a radio programme where a doctor told of his negative experiences taking Champix and quoted many stories of suicide.

    I believe that my uncle would be here today had he not taken this drug. I think it should be withdrawn immediately as there are too many stories like this. It seems to me it is a life and death situation and should be treated as such.”

    Seriously John, for people who are not really in your situation and have not already tried the safer alternatives, do you think I am wrong to warn them of these dangers? I am not trying to influence people in your situation, that’s a different matter. I really hope you succeed. I hope Bill does – but I object to being called a “scaremonger” because I am not making this up. Ask Jackie. I would say ask her uncle but he’s dead.

  48. Chris
    I think you are absolutely right to warn people of the potential downside of this drug.However I think it even more important that the medical proffession get on top of this and either declare it safe to certain categories of people or unsafe.
    If that were the case I feel there would be less emotion from both sides and more fact.

    Regards

    John

  49. That’s a very reasonable suggestion, and the truth is that my heightened feelings about NRT and Champix are entirely because of the persistent inaction by medical authorities and approval bodies around the world who just seem to be entirely in league with the drug companies. Nothing else can explain their continued support of nicotine replacement products in the face of all the evidence that they perform no better than willpower in the long run, and the way they are “investigating” Champix indefinitely whilst some smokers are being seriously harmed by it.

    Doctors are caught in the middle. If something is officially passed as a medication then they are obliged to prescribe it, and they seem to have been told virtually nothing about the really bad reactions.

    To keep a sense of perspective, this drug has been taken by very large numbers of people and it clearly does little or no harm to the majority – but the suggestion that bad reactions are “extremely rare” is evidently not true either.

    As always – Truth Will Out. Eventually. Best wishes John – please do keep us updated!

  50. I started taking Champix on 22nd July 2010 and I thought it was the best thing since sliced bread; BOY WAS I MISTAKEN!!!!!!! Ok yes I have stopped smoking and I stopped 10 days into the course, I was advised by the nurse at my local surgery that I needed to carry on with the medication for a total of 12 weeks. Well let me just say that am I HELL carrying on with Champix; my journey so far after the 2 week initial starter course has been the worst ride of my life… Not only has it stopped me smoking which is good but also don’t want to drink either; I am no way near a massive drinker I would say a social drinker a few beers over the weekend. I started to withdraw my self from socialising I would not answer calls I put myself in to my own little place in my own mind;

    I would say me personally am a very strong minded person; my friends would say the same. So read on and see how Champix changed me.

    Having the weirdest of thoughts, feeling like my eyes could stay shut forever, tiredness galore; short tempered; laziness, forgetfulness, I day dream more than ever, dreams whilst sleeping feel real, not thinking straight oh man can I go on. Yesterday was my turning point after taking my morning dose of Champix, I starting thinking of all worst case scenarios in all aspects of life, to be honest I think I felt suicidal!!!!! I have 2 beautiful children at home and a beautiful wife and as a father and husband I need to be there for them, I need to support them, guide them, help them not think like I was thinking!!!!!!!!! I was stupid and only spoke about this to my wife yesterday during my time at work we both agreed that Champix was to blame, my wife also told me that she had not known where I had been and I have not been myself for the past 2 weeks.
    I have not taken Champix since last night 26/08/2010, this morning I am feeling better than I did yesterday morning I feel less tired and I am more aware of what I am doing, I hope this feeling goes away I need to get my myself back to my self so to speak.

    When I myself feel a little clearer minded I will add to my blog – right now I’m climbing out of this hole.

    As to Champix theyre in the bin,

    AS THE OLD SAY GOES “SAY NO TO DRUGS”

    I found this website yesterday and I was relieved to find out that I was not only the person have these or similar symptoms; all I can say is be strong peeps nothing lasts forever unless you want it to, mind over matter.

  51. Many thanks for this blog. I had to stop taking this vile drug some days ago owing to the side effects. On a positive, I haven’t smoked for a month now and it does help to conquer the cravings. But, I would never recommend anybody take this.

    I had heard there were some problems with some people but thought it would amount to the odd headache. Interesting to see that headaches aren’t discussed often here. But the nausea, stomach pain, aches and pain where not normally experienced and the mental effects are. I noticed a subtle effect within a few days, like having a rewire in my head. I had leg ache for a fortnight or so, just from standing up. Back, neck and shoulder ache too.

    I found myself feeling “woozy” quite often and after two weeks on this I found I didn’t feel safe to drive. I couldn’t feel proud of myself that I had achieved a milestone one week after stopping smoking (34 years as a smoker). In fact my motivation level for anything was through the floor. I cut down to one pill a day after 3 weeks, and took myself off them a week later. I have experienced despair on one occasion and have cried for no reason. All this not regular behaviour for me. And as for the dreams..They need no comment. Bizarre and stressful to say the least.

    I seem to be feeling better the longer I don’t take these pills, It’s only 5 days now but I haven’t got any worse. Still woke late today though, dreams – a – plenty.

    I hope this post will help others who are experiencing these effects. I found an identity with others when I read through their experiences. And I do feel proud not to have smoked, it is quite liberating. However, these pills should be seen as a last resort.

    Tony

  52. HIYA CHRIS im back! perhaps some of you should know i know 1 suicide via hanging and 1 attempted suicide from this drug.i too have took it 2 xs.its dangerous and should be banned.i have to keep coming on here to remind ‘newbies’ on this drug the risks.i smoke occasionally now and i didnt stop cos of champix or hypnotherapy.i still class myself as a smoker.i just dont want to smoke sometimes.

  53. Hi Jane!

    If you class yourself as a smoker, you are one. The outcome of a hypnotherapy session will always be along the lines of what the client actually wants. If you would genuinely prefer to be a non-smoker by the end of it, that will be the outcome. If you would prefer to be a smoker “sometimes”, then you will be!

    Hypnotherapy can not stop anyone smoking against their will. Against their expectations, yes – but not against their will.

  54. i know have the choice to smoke now.im not in the conflict i was once in with myself if you remember.i dont beat myself up when i do choose to smoke.i have long periods of not smoking-but i dont suffer when i dont smoke.there is no more pain.i am choosing to be a smoker.
    i am so pleased your campaign is going from strength to strength.
    i dont know anybody else on champix but when i was at doctors the other week i had to see one of the nurses who is part of the smoking cessation clinic and she remembers me and when i took champix.she told me that the failure rate of this drug is high and the side effects are thank goodness preventing alot of people taking it for more than a few weeks.its reality is finally becoming more known and its no longer the ‘miracle’ drug it was supposed to be 2 or 3 years ago!

  55. “i dont beat myself up when i do choose to smoke..”

    Good! You shouldn’t. Smoking isn’t a crime. When you change things, you should be cool about it because it’s easier. When I quit heroin I didn’t say to myself; “I must never take heroin again! I’m such a bad person!”

    No, I just left it alone for a while. I haven’t made any big decisions about it. I don’t think I’ve bothered with it at all since 1988, but that’s mainly because I’ve had other things to do and heroin is really good at stopping you doing ANYTHING useful, so it’s just counter-productive, I can’t really fit it in. I probably won’t find time for it any time in the future either, I’ve got stuff to do.

    I’ve quit a number of different substances that developed into habits, and I’ve found that this attitude works very well for me. As a hypnotherapist I encounter most difficulty with clients that have built up the whole business of quitting into a REALLY BIG DEAL – so much so that they cannot cope with it. In my view there is too much fuss about smoking anyway, ever since it got (wrongly) classed as a drug addiction. In the process of positive change playing down the importance of all this behaviour is a worthwhile tactic. Takes the pressure off.

  56. First of all I understand everybody who must be against the drug after having bad effects. I sympathize with everybody on this blog who had really bad experiences. My personal opinion on it is that effects will be different on each persons. Some people tried everything and this worked for them. I personally had a good experience in quitting with it and in Canada if at first doctors were a bit septic no its been approved by every doctors and pharmacists as the most effective smoking cessation tool. I know people who had really bad side effects but also know a lot of people who had none. It all has to do whether you have a tendency for depression or not. You wont know until you try it. Of course I wouldn’t recommend it for any one already suffering from depression. I take cipralex and was told by 3 doctors to double my anti-depressants and then take champix since it worsens the effects of depression. Bottom line is I wouldn’t completely trash this med just because you had bad side effects. For some people it is the only thing that works. I smoked for 15 years 30 smokes a day and tried every possible way and the only one that worked for me was champix. But I understand everybody fears after having such bad experiences and my apologies to everybody that had a ruined relation ship or death in the family. My message is for everybody reading this. Be aware of the effects and make your choice considering your antecedent regarding your mental and physical health. Stop reading all the horror stories since there is bad experiences with any drugs. If this works for you perfect, if it doesn’t then get off the thing but all those stories are isolated events and I dont think people should spend their time reading all these and getting scared. Every doctors is prescribing the thing and its been aproved so unless everybody starts dying so far its done a pretty good job. But thanks for all your stories. Its always good to know all the sides. Good luck to everybody trying to quit, hope you find the best way

  57. Simone, you were given Champix even though you are being treated for depression. That is against current guidelines. If you had suffered a bad reaction yourself, do you think you would be all philosophical about it? You stated:

    “It all has to do whether you have a tendency for depression or not.”

    Actually that is NOT TRUE. We have now heard many accounts of serious mental and emotional reactions – including suicides – in smokers with no previous history of depression.

    “You wont know until you try it.”

    That’s right: you won’t know if you are going to freak out and attack somebody, ruin your marriage or kill yourself until you try it. So form an orderly queue – Pfizer made enough for everybody. Won’t it be fun finding out which of us will be posting comments here later like Terri’s (No.35):

    “The drug is real. Reality is no longer attainable. The spiral is out of your control. The mind boggling dreams/hallucinations are strong and convincing. Never again will I be fool enough to believe that just because a drug is FDA approved…it must be ok!! We were all lied to. Do NOT take this drug. Do NOT!!!”

    But then, Simone’s suggestion is that you should:

    “Stop reading all the horror stories since there is bad experiences with any drugs.”

    Which roughly translated means: “It didn’t happen to me.” She actually states: “Bottom line is I wouldn’t completely trash this med just because you had bad side effects.”

    I don’t think that warning people about real dangers is “trashing” the drug. Doctors and pharmacists should be warning them but they often aren’t. I’m informing smokers that there are better methods that don’t involve risk anyway. Doctors and pharmacists should be telling them that too, but they certainly are not. Is it because they don’t know? If so, WHY don’t they know? Who is failing to inform them or misinforming them? Lives are at stake here.

    Hypnotherapy, Allen Carr’s original book and acupuncture all have zero side effects and better long-term outcomes than any of the meds. When is the medical profession going to start putting the well-being of their patients before the interests of the pharmaceutical industry?

  58. When you see a loved one hanging from a rope then you will know about it.How can a level headed person with no history of depression or anxiety suddenly become withdrawn start behaving irrationally,thoughts of suicide,not knowing where they were half an hour-pieces of their life missing,weird erotic dreams of a sexual or horrifying nature-the list is endless…Champix is a dangerous and unpreditable drug-yes true you dont know till you start taking it what it may do to you-but why risk it.For pitys sake you are only smoking-big deal-its legal.There are simpler ways of stopping-stop making big issue out of it.Why endure weeks of nauseating and personality changes! yes i been on this drug and yes i know somebody whose husband hanged himself cos of this drug and yes i know what i talking about.

  59. PLEASE HELP ME!!!!!!! I am 43, live in Australia and have never smoked in my life. My 22 yr old son has smoked since he was 16 and recently had a son and decided to give up. He used Champix-quite successfully-he no longer smokes. He finished taking Champix 3-4 weeks ago. He became a bit moody while on it but now has gradually become an angry, threatening young man. Two days ago I put my daughter in law and my grandson on a plane for their own protection as he was threatening and extremely nasty. When I try to talk to him now he is saying things like “So what if I love her I love him more and I’ll kill the c@#*”. He says things to her that are inexcusable and I am scared he will end up doing something to someone that will see him behind bars or dead. I lost my ex to suicide and fear now for my son, his partner, my grandson and anyone around him. He got violent with a complete stranger a week ago while playing a social game of soccer, he speaks to my daughter with absolute contempt………. am I trying to make excuses by thinking the cause may be Champix….he has been off it for some time now-surely it can’t still be in his system and causing these emotions??????? Can it?? Please respond I am desperate. As I said I have never smoked and so have no idea about any of this..some of the stories I have heard and read are frightening. To all of you that have quit either smoking or Champix because of the ill effects CONGRATULATIONS, either is an achievement!!!! I’m just not sure if my son’s moods are because of this abominable drug. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you.

  60. Debbie, I have had several reports of shocking side-effects continuing after coming off the medication, and it is also quite common for the side effects to be fairly mild for the first few weeks. Some smokers freak out almost immediately on Champix but it seems to be far more common – if there are going to be bad side-effects at all – for them to get worse towards the end of the course.

    If I were you I would first try to make sure he hasn’t acquired more of the stuff from somewhere and is still on it. Even if not, he needs to be made aware that Champix seems to have affected him in a negative way and his behaviour is out of character. For this reason he should NOT be making any big decisions at this time. If you can get him to read about similar reactions to the drug on the internet, this may help him to gain some insight into the cause of his own change of feelings. He needs time to normalise and calm down. Reassure him that the nasty effects of Champix usually subside as time goes by, but it may take a while.

    The doctors need to be informed, and these reactions should always be reported to the medical authorities concerned. If not, Pfizer (the drug’s manufacturer) can simply act as if they NEVER HAPPENED. This has allowed them so far, to literally get away with murder. I use the word “murder” quite deliberately, because they know damn well this is happening but they won’t stop it until they are forced to stop, just like Harold Shipman.

  61. Thank you so much Chris. I appreciate you taking the time to reply. I talked to my son and at first he defended his behaviour by saying he had been off Champix for a month so I was talking s*@# and it was everyone else with the problem. After I told him that I have read reports where side effects got worse after going off Champix and it may still be in his system he became quiet and reflective….I hope he is beginning to understand what is happening. Thank you once again. Coming on here actually made me feel a bit better-like I’m not the worst Mum in the world for raising such a nasty person!!! THANK YOU!!!

  62. You’re welcome, Deb!

    There’s a TV actor over here in the UK who was recently prosecuted following a very violent domestic incident in which he assaulted his then girlfriend, but the judge cleared him of all charges because he was taking Champix at the time and had also been drinking alcohol. His defence – that the violent assault was caused by that toxic combination – was accepted but it easily could have gone the other way.

    After the case was reported there were numerous damning comments attached by members of the public to the newspaper’s on-line copy of the story, some from people who clearly know nothing about Champix condemning the man for “using the drug as an excuse” for his violent behaviour.

    Here’s the acid test: Was he violent before taking that? We all have moods and get a bit shouty now and then, but had he previously dragged any women around by the hair and repeatedly punched them for no apparent reason? There are men who do, but the newspaper story did not consider this aspect of the case at all.

    So Debbie, if your son was not an “angry, threatening young man” BEFORE taking Champix, then he is NOT a nasty person at all, but yet another victim of this evil, over-hyped, killer drug. Everyone concerned needs to understand that so that all this damage can be healed.

    And please: report the drug, make sure it is officially reported back to the drug safety authorities. Protect others! Too much of this is being quietly swept under the carpet, and it’s a crime. Best wishes, Deb.

  63. Hi there i did say on my first BLOG that i would come back and give a further update when i was feeling clearer; well here we go, weirdest of thoughts, feeling like my eyes could stay shut forever, tiredness galore; short tempered; laziness, forgetfulness, I day dream more than ever, dreams whilst sleeping feel real, not thinking straight are all gone well apart from the day dreaming i think thats normal though. But really i am feeling real again and now it’s mind over matter with regards to smoking, to be honest i dont want to smoke which i think is half the battle.

  64. Thanks for this, Manoj – this is what people need to hear, if they’ve been affected… the most common question is: “Will I ever feel normal again?”

    On the evidence in so far, it seems to vary a bit, so your return to normal is very ggod news, thanks for the update.

    As for tobacco – well it sucks!

  65. Really? Its not the medication that is making people irritable,depressed, and discontent. It’s the lack of nicotine and the loss of a best friend “Cigarettes”. I personally believe if ya wanna quit the side effects from taking Chantix are minimal compared to the side effects of continuing to smoke. Whinning about some weird thoughts when you could be hooked up to oxygen, coughing up blood, killing you childrens mother or father slowly and talk about stinking. Gross!!!
    A person does have to want to quit or they will stop taking Chantix in order to get high on the nicotine again.

  66. “Get high on nicotine”? There is no high. That’s why smoking tobacco is so utterly pointless.

    Charlene clearly has never been a smoker. The “lack of nicotine” suggestion has already been officially dismissed by the US Surgeon-General on the very sensible grounds that most of the world’s ex-smokers – including myself – quit without any help at all and none of us attacked anyone or hanged ourselves.

    It’s CHAMPIX. Those half-baked attempts to muddy the waters won’t wash here. The smoker’s choices are many, they are not limited to a) Champix or b) dying horribly. That’s a Pfizer marketing ploy, go post it somewhere else.

  67. Hi,
    I had an appointment at my surgery this morning and was hoping to come away with a prescription for Champix. I had a nice chat with a nurse who didn’t really seem to know that much about the drug but was happy to prescribe after telling me that side affects such as nausea and headaches were mild and that other bad affects were rare. When I got home I opened the pack and read the poster sized information filled leaflet and was really quite excited at the fact that Champix along with willpower was going to help me quit smoking!
    I took my 1st pill and then decided (which is what I should have done before going to my surgery) to do a little more research online. I wanted to see some reviews from successful quitters who have used Champix.
    I am so glad I came across this site……it has made up my mind NOT to carry on with this drug. I had a nervous breakdown 5 years ago and the trauma of that still lives with me. I do not want anything like Champix to trigger something off…..not that I am a head case or anything like that, but reading some peoples experiences on here brought it all back to me when your head is not quite yours!!
    I will now be seeking another route in helping me kick the habit…..probably hypnotherapy, and a lot less harmful by what I ‘ve read on here!!

  68. Well what can I say, I searched coming off Champix and came across this website. I am suitably scared.
    Everytime I have been to see my GP he has moaned about my smoking habit, I finally succomed to giving up after a relationship breakdown and feeling I needed a fresh start. I have been taking Champix for 5 weeks now, the inital elation of suceeding at not smoking has turned into a constant battle with depressive moods, lethargy, crying and last night I started contemplating self harm. Its finally hit home that these are not normal thoughts for me or anyone. I work with vulerable people with health problems and I am sorry that I have waited so long to do something about this. Had it been a client I would have marched them down to their GP sooner. But I didnt want to believe that it was happening to me. I should have known better and realised it was Champix doing this to me rather than just feeling low. I havent taken it this morning and since reading this I am going to call NHS direct for some advice. I really hope the come down from it wont take so long.

  69. Hi Danielle, thanks for your contribution.

    I no longer regard the NHS as reliable when it comes to advice about the safety or otherwise of Champix. However, I tell everyone to REPORT bad side effects, otherwise your experience counts for nothing and it will just keep happening to others. Some of them will end up dead or their life ruined, so it really does MATTER.

    Wishing you a very swift and complete recovery!

  70. I am now on Day 6 of Champix and from day 1 just stopped smoking. i tried out of habit to smoke on Day 1 both after lunch and dinner as these tend to be the most satisfying times, but it tasted so disgusting and I got nothing from it. After day 1 i just didn’t bother to buy any more tobacco and haven’t smoked since. I was very conscious of the side effects though and I think it’s important to choose this drug with your eyes wide open. Unfortunately I have tried everything else and spent around £500 on hypnosis. the first time I had it (£250) I didn’t smoke for a year so i would recommend it first but make sure you find a highly qualified therapist as the second time I went I was totally ripped off. Anyway, back to Champix… the nausea in the mornings is the worst and I felt overwhelmingly exhausted at times on te first few days but have also had periods of such high energy that I’m almost manic. In the last 5 days I have springcleaned the entire house, built shel;es, furniture shopped, cleared out the cellar, involving various trips to the tip, and all whilst I have been working too. Is this normal? I knew I would have more energy from not smoking but this is something else. Not only that but I have M.S. so i feel like I’m going to pay for this at some point. Please let me know if you have experienced this as i don’t trust my G.P. or the ‘Smoking Cessation’ rep – they’re obviously paid to promote this drug.

  71. Hi Suzie!

    First of all, £250 is steep for hypnotherapy. If you’re in Harley Street that’s pretty standard or even cheap, but here in the normal world (!) we don’t charge that. Also, it sounds like you went somewhere different for the later attempt – why was that, just out of interest? Why didn’t you go back to the therapist you succeeded with first time?

    re Champix: nothing is ‘normal’ but I just had an email from a woman whose daughter has developed MS-like symptoms which started when she was on Champix, and she was asking if there were any connections. Fact is, I don’t know.

    I’d say it’s not worth the risk – but then, I’m a hypnotherapist. I use that to help people quit almost every day of my working life. No risk.

    Champix is pretty poor at helping anyone STAY STOPPED in the long run. About 14% success, that’s all. That’s a lousy success rate to risk your life over.

  72. Hi, Chris! I wrote to you a couple months ago and wanted to follow-up. My story is #35. I have written to Janet Woodcock, FDA and Thomas J. Moore, ISMP and many other important people to drive my message home.

    It’s been 2 1/2 years since my “attempt”….. hurts like yesterday. I was a closet smoker, 2 – 4 cigs per day. When the grandkids started…it was time to stop. Married 37 years, mother of 2, nana of 6, a job I’ve loved for 23 years, friends and loving siblings…I had it all!!

    As a teen, I feared/respected drugs…at 55 I can describe first hand an hallucination. For months prior, deceased loved ones came to my room at nite so happy and healthy and trying desperately to CONVINCE me my job was really done here!! It got to the point that to live…seemed silly…funny even!!

    I cannot believe I was so willing to go. I shudder now when I look back. I’m embarrased, shocked and sorry. So…sorry. Suicide is not an option. It just ISN’T. Yet, it seemed like the right and ONLY thing to do at the time. Once Chantix is in your system only God knows how or where you’ll land/end up. You’re as strong as a mouse in the grips of a hungry boa. There is no way out. It will own you…for a long, long time.

  73. Hello All
    I am half way though my 2nd attempt on Champix, first one was same time last year.
    I have experienced the more common of the many possible side effects of this drug.. the dreams, the perpetual lethargy coupled with waking every night up to 7 or 8 times, the nausea, the ulcers, the sore throat, the bad sinus’s, food tasting odd, plus the slight shift in mood and personality, not a massive turn around but enough for those around me to notice before I clock onto it. I haven’t though been in any excruciating pain (just the odd off tummy, usually through over-eating) nor felt suicidal at any time.. thankfully. So I feel very middle of the road and feel awful for those who are blatantly not suited to this drug and jealous of those who sail through with no ill effect.. you are the very lucky and blessed of us.
    I also know of others (friends and family) who have used this drug: my father took the pills for 7 days and had to come off them due to the horrendous side effects, however, he does have a very cynical nature to begin with and so really wasn’t suited to this to start with… a friend is currently on them too and doing alright with milder side effects. So it seems to me that experiences can vary quite considerably and it really is a gamble whether the drug is suited to you or not. To be fair, I feel worse at the start of the course, as my body and mind are trying to adjust to all the changes but it doesn’t seem to worsen and the nausea lessens too, then all you need to be able to cope with is the exhaustion (which never seems to wain).. is it sounding like fun yet 🙂
    So my advice would be to take in all the facts and take with care and be sure that those around you are aware of what you are taking so that should you experience the more serious of the side effects, you have people around you to help and support you.
    Good luck if you are about to embark on this journey and good luck also to those who have chosen not to tread this particular path to a smoking free existence, may something else work to help you achieve it.

  74. where the hell do i start…

    im 9 weeks into a 3 month course of champix, and i have been praising it so high i not smoked or anything its been the best thing ever…..
    the last week or so i have missed a few and on 4 occasions just the past wek just taking 1.. i have had side effects from it in the first cople weeks but i didnt reailse that i had become somoene else untill about 4 days ago.

    for no reasons whatsoever and even the smallest things just set me off crying, i couldnt believe it when i was telling my friend that i would be better off dead cos nobody cares anyway…. and even earlier today i was crying my eyes out cos my son wanted to go round to his mates and im alone at home and didnt want to be alone.. feeling lonely, all i have done for the past week or so is sleep day and night… its not me is it.. plz say its these damn pills. i havent taken my tonights one and im not taking anymore. my nurse sees me every week and asks me how things are going since taking these tablets, and the last 2 weeks i can say that i lied and said i was fine when i knew i wasnt. i think im depressed, but i feel so happy at the fact that its the tablets that has been messing with my head and its not me… really helped me get a grip tonight knowing that.

    i found this site looking for side effects of champix to check on it cos its the only medication i have taken in over a year.

    for me it feels ike i have cought it just in time that its not taken over my mind and i havent let it spiral out of control… but i have been through so much the past week or so with it i was wondering what was happening to me.. even the 2 holidays i have coming up trips of a lifetime i have thought what the hell i dont wanna go anyway.. and just sat in home and only went out when i really had to. I CANT BELIEVE IT knowing that its the pills has like given me a cure… i feel so much better. the smell of cigarettes makes me really ill even if someone in the street walks by me now the smell is so strong it makes me feel sick, im assuming this is exagerated by the pills as well? im scared ill sart smoking again cos i dont want to ew. omg i cant say how happy i am its the pills i swear… 6 hours ago i was crying my eyes out thinking im better off dead. and now i feel so much better.

  75. Hi,

    Background: Diagnosed with Cervical Cancer 7 yrs ago. Underwent a Wertheim’s hysterectomy with 100% success.

    Diagnosed with Clinical Depression after the loss of our first baby 15 yrs ago. Treated with antidepressants and have never relapsed.

    I’m at the end of day 12 of Champix. I am still smoking the same as usual (12-15 a day). I have a follow-up appt tomorrow with the Practice Nurse and I have some concerns about the drug…… hence my own investigations.

    First week: Experienced constant nausea and extreme tiredness. Stopped drinking alcohol completely.

    Second week: Nausea stopped completely. Tiredness is a major problem as I just want to sleep all the time. I think the extreme tiredness is making me irritable and I can’t be bothered to do anything….. it’s such a massive effort. I feel cold…… really cold in my bones. I am constantly shivering like I have flu; which I haven’t got as I have no headache, temperature etc…… and my appetite is really good.

    On Day 10 I had a sore throat and sore gums. I also have a furry tongue which tastes vile. I checked my gums in the bathroom mirror before bed and I have mouth ulcers.

    I’m not happy! I’m going to tell all this to the nurse tomorrow and I’m not taking these tablets again……. they aren’t even working on me…… if I had actually stopped smoking then maybe, just maybe, I would try a little longer but this situation is insane.

    The Practice Nurse advised me NOT to read the list of side effects as it would put me off taking the tablets. I followed her advice and didn’t put a single negative thought into my head.

    Only my mouth is so sore, my gums so swollen and last night I woke at 4am with what felt like toothache. My head was throbbing on the pillow so badly I had to sit up. I don’t even know if it is safe to take aspirin or paracetamol with Champix? So here I am……. and I feel like I’m lucky not to be suffering even worse effects.

    God help us all…… this is no way to live…… and why am I still smoking on them?

  76. “The Practice Nurse advised me NOT to read the list of side effects as it would put me off taking the tablets. I followed her advice and didn’t put a single negative thought into my head.”

    That advice is nothing short of irresponsible. Those official warnings are your only safeguard, AND if you suffered a major bad reaction and tried to sue Pfizer later, the very fact that you had not read the warnings would invalidate your case.

    Sandra, the standard of medical care you just described is appalling. You are quite right: “…this situation is insane”. If you have a medical history of depression you should never have been prescribed them anyway, it is against the guidelines. Get off it quick, there are much SAFER methods of quitting that work better anyway.

  77. Thank you for your comments Chris, and I quite agree with what you say.

    Update: Went to see Practice Nurse this afternoon. Informed her of the side effects mentioned and that I was still smoking. She has taken me off Champix, but sidelined the side effects. Admitted that tablets cause nausea, but refused to accept that the tablets caused the swollen gums and mouth ulcers which I still have. She said that they could be down to an underlying problem.

    I do not accept this as I had my 6 monthly dental check-up the week before I started Champix and everything was fine. The last time I had a mouth ulcer was when I was a teenager, I use to get them between age 13-15 and have never had one since.

    The Nurse said that I was only the 3rd or 4th person she had treated with Champix in 3.1/2 yrs that had not stopped smoking whilst on the drug. I felt like a freak.

    She has prescribed NRT 25mg patches and 1.5mg NRT mini lozenges for now. My next appointment is on 03/11/10.

    I am glad I found this site, but sad to read of so many who found it too late.

    There is something that is bothering me Chris. Today, before the nurse got the prescription for the NRT signed off by a doctor, she filled in a form and asked me to sign it; which I did. She admitted that she had not done this before…… so I’m guessing that she should have done it when she issued the Champix.

    I have a feeling that my experience, side-effects and the fact that Champix didn’t work will never be officially recorded. If this is the case, then only positive feedback is being recorded and sent back to Local Health Authorities and Pfizer.

    Sandra

  78. 1) You are NOT a freak and she had no right to suggest that. Everyone involved in smoking cessation knows that the results of a medication on the ground will not live up to the hype associated with the original drug trials because a lot of that is clever marketing. Even in the trials, the best result ever recorded at 12 weeks (ie the end of the course) was 44%. Even then, half of those started again by 28 weeks. In other words, what she is telling you CANNOT be true. The evidence is that the long term outcomes are as low as about 14%, but even whilst still taking the medication, only about half of smokers stop altogether.

    2) Re ulcers and swelling: these have certainly been reported as well as quite a lot of other horrible physical side effects including kidney problems, skin blistering and coming off, nasty rashes and breathing problems to name but a few. Either she is trying to fool you, or she doesn’t know what she is talking about and I’m not sure which is worse.

    3) You are right, a lot of this is going unreported, which is why there is a link at the top of this page to the MHRA where you can report it yourself, and please do.

    In my view that practice nurse urgently needs re-training before someone dies. Sandra, what you really need is a smoking cessation specialist! NRT? Have a look at the homepage! That’s where all this started! That’s what the Truth Will Out site is really all about – or it was until Champix revealed its ugly nature. NRT is an out-and-out con, same “success rate” as willpower alone. And they’ve known that for years.

    The most successful methods are also the safest: Hypnotherapy, the original Allen Carr book and acupuncture – all these beat the meds and with no risk.

  79. Chris,

    I will use the link to report my personal experience of Champix and its complete ineffectiveness (well on me at least).

    It was the gum inflammation and mouth ulcers that were the final straw for me. That’s when I ‘broke the rules’ and read the listed side effects. It’s also what brought me onto this site.

    I’ve tried NRT in the past. It is only effective while you are taking it….. as soon as you stop the cravings come back and the vicious cycle returns.

    I’ve read all of Allan Carr’s books. They helped me to understand the psychology behind why you smoke, but failed to have the impact and resolve required for actually quitting.

    I have never tried Hypnotherapy or Acupuncture. I will certainly look into Hypnotherapy.

    I believe Champix should be renamed to SHAMpix!

  80. Hi Chris,

    I came across your website prior to commencing treatment using Champix, I had seen successful results from colleagues at work. I only wish now that I had heeded some of the warnings.
    I began taking the tablets just after separating from my partner, something which I did not want to happen, and was a motivating factor in me finally taking steps to change several things in my life. At first, I began to experience nausea, sleep deprivation, general lethargy, loss of appetite etc. My feelings after two weeks when I managed to stop smoking were, that if tiredness, nausea etc were what I had to suffer for a while, then it really wasn’t a big price to pay for finally being able to quit. That was until the end of the fourth week of taking the tablets, when it became painfully clear that actually, there was a much more serious issue, which had been developing slowly, but did not become noticeable until one evening when a near total emotional collapse occurred. I immediately stopped taking the tablets, but after seven days, I am still in a seriously bad way emotionally and feel like I am on the brink of a breakdown. What is particularly frightening is that what I am going through now, I do not have any control over. Still cannot sleep, loss of appetite is still an issue, I get the shakes, everything feels like it’s too much to cope with, and when you find yourself rationalising doing harm to yourself, it’s time to seek help before things get out of hand.
    I have been signed off again from work for the second week now, but to be honest, my GP does not seem to know how to deal with this.
    When I first went to see him, and you did not need a medical degree to see that I was in a bad way then, he told me stop taking them, which I had anyway, and prescribed me Lorazepam. Well, that just made things even worse. Sure I felt great whilst taking one of those, and I actually slept, but the resulting crash the following morning after the Lorazepam wore off was incredible.
    His response today, again was, don’t worry it will leave your system and tried to prescribe yet another drug to alter my state.
    I am completely emotionally exhausted, upset nearly all the time, cannot think straight, cannot eat properly, sleep is erratic at best. Does anyone know how long this kind of thing goes on because I almost at the end of being able to cope with what is happening to me.
    I acknowledge the fact that there are also external factors here, my desperately trying to rescue the situation with my partner being the biggest, but I am scared, as I feel like I am trapped in a mind that has no rationale, is beyond my control, and is scaring the hell out of me. And there does not seem to be anywhere to turn.
    Pfizer advised my local pharmacist that the drugs should clear my system in 5-7 times the half life of the drug, which apparently is 24 hours. I am now seven days into stopping Champix and the effects are not easing.
    What am I meant to do?????

  81. Hi All

    Coming off Champix – Follow Up to Post 53

    Now 2 months or so after coming off the pills. I can report that the bad effects seem to have worn off. It’s probably difficult to determine one’s sanity but I feel pretty much back to normal. I would say though that it took a month or so before the awful dreams and lethargy lifted.

    I had a “massive withdrawal from smoking” phase after about 2 weeks, but I think my revolting time with the drugs galvanized me into getting through it quite easily. Now chew gum but haven’t had a smoke for 3 months!!

    It’s great to be an ex smoker and talk to people from this perspective – Seems like all the smokers I speak to want to give up. My advice is not to even think about taking Champix. My smoking cessation nurse is going to look into it for herself also. Result!

    I’ve not visited this blog for a while and reading my and others’ accounts really brings it home to me just how far away I was. I summed it up then and now by saying it is the worst thing I have ever put into my body.

    So, if you have given up Champix, give it a month before you decide how you feel, the effects do not stop immediately. In fact for the first week they intensified but..

    I have recovered from them fully and not relapsed as a smoker.

    Be encouraged and Sweet Dreams!!

    Tony

  82. Hi Robert,

    This is the main reason I always try to check for new messages coming in every day, in case one like this comes in which needs urgently attending to. First of all Robert, it is very clear to me – from your analysis of the situation, your cogency and your awareness of how the emotional issues may be contributary factors – that there is nothing wrong with your mind except the TEMPORARY effects of Champix.

    What should you do? Hang on in there because you are through the worst of it already and it WILL get better. And when it does, you’ll be hugely relieved that you didn’t act upon any of those impulses to harm yourself. Also, you two might yet have a chance to get back together so you have to give that every chance. To help you through I would suggest friends and family, as long as that’s feasible. The medical profession only have chemicals to offer, and what you really want is to feel normal again.

    Consider yourself as being ‘in recovery’ and all thoughts and feelings as transitory, just sweat it out. You’ll get there, but each recovery is different – from what we’re hearing – some rapid, some gradual but as you’ve survived the worst of it PLEASE just give yourself time. No big decisions. No deep thinking! Forget about the tobacco thing – or if you’ve quit already and seem okay with it, roll with it, but you don’t have to deal with the relationship issues until normal service resumes with the brain. And it will – forget what the pharmacist said, everyone is different, I’ve already heard quite a few people say it took longer than that in their case, but they recovered okay in due course.

    Distressed, for sure. Unhinged? Certainly not. You’re not going to have a breakdown, you just need to regard the thoughts that go through your mind – just for the time being – as temporary reactions to a medication which you certainly won’t take again, so you’re going to be okay in a while. Please don’t hesitate to keep this contact going if that helps. We can do that privately if you prefer, I’ll only put on the site the communications you feel okay to share, rest assured. And take good care of yourself, you need nursing back to health.

  83. Hi Chris,

    Thank you so much for your response.
    I cannot tell you how much your response has taken away some of the feelings of isolation that have been making this so much harder to deal with.
    I think this is probably the worst experience I have ever been through, and as well as the emotional turmoil, I still have loss of appetite, my weight has dropped dramatically in the last two weeks. I know this is not helping with the feelings of general exhaustion, whilst driving home earlier, I nearly passed out behind the wheel.
    I have been suffering from headaches, I guess due to the lack of sleep and general stress.
    When I do actually sleep, I wake up drenched in sweat, my jaw aching like I have been applying massive pressure to it.
    I have given up with my GP, he is a waste of time, his only solution lying in his prescription pad. He actually suggested anti-depressants today.
    Unfortunately, I cannot shut off the deep thinking, I have had to make some very big decisions, one of which actually prompted me to start this medication in the first place.
    And as much as I do have a few good people who are there for me, one of whom had to keep me sane till nearly 03:00 on the phone last night, the one person I wish was there, isn’t.
    But I guess that is a contributing factor, and not necessarily a direct effect of this medication.
    Once again, thank you Chris.
    Nice to know that actually, despite everything pointing to it, I am not having some kind of breakdown.
    I would strongly suggest anyone thinking of commencing this medication, think long and hard, because whilst there are people who do not have a negative experience with Champix. The last week for me has been a living nightmare. One I would not wish on anyone.

  84. Hi Chris,

    another bad day today. really struggling to keep it together.
    I don’t understand the way this is affecting me.
    Last night I spent a few hours out with a friend, talking through many issues that are very relevant to my current emotional state and I felt OK. First evening for a while I haven’t gone to bed in complete distress.
    Managed about 4.5 hours sleep, woke up before 5 in a very emotional state and cannot seem to keep it under control today.
    It’s extremely exhausting and is having a very negative effect on my well being.
    There is so much I am trying to sort out in my life at the moment, but this whole situation is making it impossible.
    The feeling of being on the brink of a complete emotional collapse are back with a vengeance.
    I just want it to stop.
    There is too much riding on this for me and I have already paid too high a price.
    Family is not an option for me to fall back on here and I don’t want to feel like I am bothering the few people who I can turn to.
    Feeling very alone and in a dark place right now.
    Not good.

  85. It’s now 11 days since I stopped taking Champix, and finally the fog has cleared. This has been the worst experience I have ever been through. This medication is dangerous. The price for trying to give up smoking using this method has been way too high. I truly hope that anyone considering asking for Champix has the presence of mind to heed all the warnings.
    I wish i had,
    Time to move on and get back on track with life. The emotional scars will take some time to fully heal, but at least now the hell of the past month is over.
    Why this was ever passed for use is beyond me. Whilst the pharmaceutical company rakes in the profits, countless people are left to pick up the pieces. Any drugs that mess with the brain should never be made so readily available. I can’t help but feel that we are all guinea pigs for the corporate profit machine.

  86. Couldn’t have put it better myself, Robert – you just summed up the entire message of the Truth Will Out Campaign. I’m just sorry you had to go through that nightmare to find that out, and that’s why I’m telling the world.

    Most of all, I’m glad you’re back with us! Welcome back, my friend. Please stay in touch, I was really worried about you there for a while. It really is a very unpredictable and dangerous chemical concoction. Scary.

  87. Hi all,
    I have been on Champix since 20th Oct and quit smoking on the 24th yet since Friday which was day 9 of taking them i have felt really weird, really tierd all the time, i dont feel like me anymore. I have no energy and even though i stayed on the 2x.5mg per day and not the 1mg x 2 per day i have now decided to stop taking them all together. I have not smoked since the 24th but i cant handle these tablets they are just so awful. I cant drive i feel shaky, i have nearly missed the steps on the stairs a few times as i dont feel im in my own body. The dreams i can handle but how i feel now its ruining my life. Im stopping the tablets from now and will let ya know when the tierdness etc starts to ease up. Im seeing my nurse this tuesday and we can discuss another treatment but honestly those Champix yes i rated them good when i first started but OMG not now. They have taken away my va va voom and i hate it.

  88. Hi Jo, thanks for your contribution to the debate over this crazy drug. Yes please do give us some more feedback later on recovery time, the more info we get on that, the easier it is to reassure people who are seriously freaking out like Rob was over the last few days.

    I hope you’re feeling back in touch with your body soon. I must confess I’m beginning to loathe the medical profession as a whole for recommending just about anything the drug companies produce – even if it nearly kills people – but never the safest and most effective options: Hypnotherapy, the original Allen Carr book and acupuncture. I know acupuncture has fairly modest success with smokers – something like 25% – but that still beats the long-term outcome of ALL the pharma products, so why is the taxpayers’ valuable cash being frittered away on these dangerous failures?

    Because of their massive lobbying power with the politicians who decide on the healthcare policies. Does anyone seriously regard that as a “conspiracy theory”? It’s just hard political fact. The politicians understand the threat: if they don’t roll over, these global companies can move their operations to other countries instead of employing people here. They’re so untouchable they make the Mafia look like playground bullies.

    Simple solution, people: Don’t take the meds.

  89. Hi Chris
    I agree with you the only people who benefit from these drugs are the makers and TBH i did not want to be a guinea pig but my HCP did not offer my Zyban as they dont give that out anymore to patients.
    I have never felt so rough in my entire life. These have taken away most of each day since friday morning and im not even past 2 weeks on them yet. I am hoping that because i have not taken too many weeks of these that the withdrawel will be easier but we will see.
    I am finding it hard to focus whilst taking these and i was knitting to keep myself busy but since Friday i cant see the needles so thats out of the window for the present anyhow.
    I will buy a copy of Allen Carr’s book and see if that can help me too, but as you have put at the end~ Simple Solution Dont take the meds, i totally agree. Its not worth it.

  90. In the interests of balance, I suppose I have to point out that there are some smokers who do actually stop permanently with Champix (not just temporarily) and only suffer temporary bad side effects or even none at all. But as there are more successful methods that have no risk factors whatsoever, as you say Jo, “It’s not worth it.” Or at least, Champix should only be considered as a last resort and ONLY if the smoker is made fully aware of the risks.

    To prescribe or sell Champix to innocent, unsuspecting smokers is a terrible thing to do, now that we know that it can drive anyone – with or without a previous history of mental instability – to the point of suicide.

    Jo, I hope you feel well again very soon.

  91. Update-
    I took my last tablet yesterday morning and then decided that i wont be taking anymore. I had a very bad night, waking up every hour on the hour and i kept tossing and turning. On getting up this morning and NOT having anymore of those pills i have noticed that i am not quite so tierd unlike yesterday, i actually felt hungry for a change today as i have not wanted to eat for days asthe smell of food made me feel ill, i would then have to force myself to eat something. My head is a little clearer but not completely mind you. I have also noticed i only have a slight headache, the shaking is subsiding and i managed to get down the stairs without almost falling down. I still dont feel ready to drive my car yet, i will leave that a few days longer and still walk everywhere. I have made a list of the side effects that i have experienced whilst taking these tablets and will take that up to my quit nurse tomorrow. I still dont have a desire to smoke and yes i get the odd thought that something is missing but i just grab my knitting or have a mint and that thought soon passes me by. In a way i regret taking the meds but at the same time they helped me quit. I hope i can stay off of the ciggies now and not go back but i just wish that i had understood these tablets and there effects at the start. I would never put anyone off taking them but as we all say everyone is different so these can effect you indifferent ways but if you do decide to try them do so with caution and if like me on the 9th day you start to feel strange etc then stop them then dont wait.
    There are other ways to help us quit and now i am not smoking i dont want anymore chemicals in my body so tomorrow im going to mention to my quit nurse that i have stopped the treatment, give her my list of side effects and not go onto NRT or anything. Im going to read the Allen Carr book and make sure that i have stopped smoking for good. Fingers crossed tomorrow i will have a bit more energy and that tonight i will sleep better.

  92. I’ve been on chantix for a month and loved it up until I tried to quit taking it. After 2 days of no chantix, I had an emotional breakdown, couldn’ t sleep. I’ve always considered myself a very happy person, I’ve never experienced depression, anxiety, or just an overall heaviness like this… It got so bad, I went back on chantix, and my husband convinced me to wean myself off of them… I’m taking a half a pill twice a day now, the depression has been rough, I’m doing my best to stay positive about the situation.

    I did read on another forum that if you take Holy Basil, it helps with the chantix withdrawls. It’s a natural herb found at most health food stores, so I’m picking some up tonight. PRAYING it helps. I’ll keep you guys posted on the results.

    I’m so glad I found this forum. I thought I was going crazy with feeling this way! I hate putting my husband through all this emotional distress, I know it’s getting hard for him. I just want to get better. My prayers are for all of you.

  93. I started Champix back in March 2010 and only got to week 5 as I became really aggitated and angry. I remember sitting at the intersection behind a car at a red light and just had this urge to ram the car in front of me through the intersection because I was getting aggitated at how long the lights were taking. This is when I stopped taking them. Before this though I had episodes where I burst in tears, an absolute emotional wreck. Looking back now, I also realise I was behaving quite strangly too & felt wierd. Only a week or two after stopping taking the Champix my partner tried committing suicide. He as well had been taking Champix and we both started at the same time yet he did not get up to week 5 like me. We broke up and it is now November 2010…I feel like I’ve lost the last 6-7 months as I have been suffering a severe depression to the extent I ended up at the hospital having a break down, thinking about suicide on a constant basis. I am on antidepressant medication. Worst thing about this is I have suffered from depression in the past (4-5 years ago) and they prescribed this drug to me knowing my history. I was told it was a very rare side effect and to monitor my moods. You don’t even realise you’re in a black hole until sometimes it’s too late……this drug is DANGEROUS. This has been a living nightmare and I would not wish this on even my worst enemy

  94. Day 2 – Holy Basil is helping with the mood swings and the other side effects. I’d recommend picking some up at your health food store…

  95. Was considering starting on Champix this week to help me come off the cigarettes but after reading the comments on this site I think I’ll give it a miss and go for hypnotherapy or acupuncture instead, seems a lot safer and doesn’t have any of the side effects like this drug does. Thanks Chris

  96. hi again follow up to comment number 58
    well after reading here that night i was in a right state that day… havent had any champix since, and glad to say im almost back to normal and smoke free…. then it got me thinking.. when people give up smoking the anxiety is experienced anyway no matter what u try so that was just elevated with the champix i think…
    to be fair i think that taking it worked and looking back even the crap sde affects was worth it.
    being smoke free now since august the 2nd was worth a couple of week so feeling like crap… in the past when i tried giving up with patches etc i had the mood swings, anxiety attacks, feelings of desperation.. that will always be part of giving up no matter what method u choose.. after reading not just here but other smoking sites, u will find that there are people feeling all these side effects from giving up smoking in general… but i did start feeling shakey depressed and sorry for myself.. without a doubt i blame the champix… all i would say is.. if u have exhausted all other methods then it IS worth a go, ur gonna feel like crap no matter how u do it, just be aware that if u start feeling depressed to stop taking them right away.. im smoke free for 4 months for the first time in 25 years… a few weeks of the sickness headaches and depression was it worth it.. hell ye .. sorry just was, and the fact that i have experienced the downside to champix.. this goodside outweighs it by far.

  97. Hi there,
    Have read some of the troubles people have been through on champix and I have to say I have been taking them for about 9 weeks now and I think the only side affect I’ve had has been tiredness. I read all the information on the packet and my doctor said I had to go back after the first month to make sure everything was ok. In the first week I still smoked but cut down drastically towards the end of it and then into the second week I set the date ( as your told to do) to stop smoking and haven’t had a sober smoke since. I say a sober smoke as the couple of times I’ve had a drink I’ve wanted a smoke, but have lit one up and after a couple of puffs put it out. So, thankfully it has worked for me.
    I tried Allen Carrs book and quit for 9 months but then started again. As I said I’m in week 9 and feeling confident about never having another cigarette.
    I appreciate other people have struggled with champix but from my personal experience it has worked for me.
    Thankyou for listening.

  98. Hi Laura!

    I’m glad you’re doing well so far, but bear in mind that you are still on the drug at the moment. It’s interesting how people interpret “success” and “failure”. It is seven weeks since you quit – apart from the odd slip – and you are still taking Champix, yet already you have concluded that “it has worked for me”.

    Presumably at the seven week stage you were saying the same thing about the Allen Carr book. Presumably you were still saying that at the seven month stage too, yet now Allen’s book would no longer be the quitting method of choice because two months after that you started again. That turned your interpretation of the Carr method from “Success!” to “temporary success = not lasting success = not success”.

    There are so many people on the blogs claiming that Champix “has worked” for them when in fact they are still taking it, or have only just quit taking it. Forgive me for pointing this out, but that is rather like one of my clients pausing in the middle of their hypnotherapy session to phone home saying “It’s worked! Already I don’t want a cigarette!”… or making that bold statement when they arrived home. Most people would be thinking: “Well, its a bit early to say really, isn’t it?”

    When Champix was originally approved it was on the basis of its best performance at 12 weeks from a number of different trial groups. At 28 weeks, half of those people were smoking again, yet all the newspaper hype that followed quoted the figure at 12 weeks AS IF that were the actual performance to be expected of the method.

    Hype? Fraud? You decide. It certainly ain’t “scientific”.

    Lisa: you suggested:

    “when people give up smoking the anxiety is experienced anyway no matter what u try…”

    and

    “ur gonna feel like crap no matter how u do it…”

    Not true, actually, I’ve been helping smokers with hypnotherapy for ten years now and not one of my successful clients feels like that. And most of them are successful. Allen Carr quite rightly pointed out that what makes quitting with willpower seem hard are the conflicts in the mind of the smoker/drinker/gambler. Hypnotherapy shuts down the cravings, but it also gets rid of the conflicts too – so, no stress or anxiety.

    Of course, it has to be done properly for that to be the case.

    Best of luck to you both. Champix does genuinely work for some people, and of course it doesn’t make EVERYONE hang themselves, or else even the BMA would be having second thoughts about it by now.

  99. I’m on the fence. I know there are side affects to this drug, but I’m trying to weigh the pros and cons. I’m just trying to remember that smoking kills. Champix may be a temporary lesser evil. I’ve only quit for 3 days, and it’s my second time around on the stuff. The last time I had crazy dreams (nightmares), and upon waking, I didn’t know if I was awake or sleeping…very confusing! But, I’m back on it thinking that it’s better for me in the long run.

    I do know someone who became suicidal on Champix, which was completely out of character for her.

    Everyone knows that all side effects don’t affect all people, but pay attention to your own, and make an educated decision. I’m not crazy about the stuff, but I HATE smoking.

    I would cough until I threw up many mornings. I would wake every night, coughing. I would wake the whole house. I spend over three hundred dollars a month on cigarettes. I stink. People don’t want a long term relationship with someone who smokes. The list goes on.

    These are the things I keep my focus on.

    It’s fantastic that you have this blog to educate people. It’s an absolutely necessary part of the quitting process.

    Wish me luck!

  100. Good luck Pamela – will you keep us posted?

    Time and time again I pick up from smokers’ attitudes – to quitting, and to the fact that they have a smoking habit – that many smokers seem to feel so annoyed with themselves for still being a smoker that they feel as if they SHOULD suffer to some degree on Champix! As if they deserve it, or as if it is an inevitable part of quitting smoking – like it could never be any other way.

    This is a) a guilt trip, sometimes encouraged by loved ones or medical personnel,

    b) an assumption based on earlier attempts to quit the hard way, and

    c) the erroneous notion of “nicotine withdrawal”.

    With hypnotherapy, we can wipe all that out, and the cravings too. Usually in one session, which is a rather pleasant experience, actually. But hey, guys, if you’d rather beat yourselves with broken bottles, lay down on a bed of nails, or – worse still, take a tablet that might take all the joy out of your world – well, Pfizer made plenty to go around, that’s for sure.

    14% long-term success, that’s all. “The benefits outweigh the risks?” No, Pfizer – I really don’t think that they do. But we’ll see who’s right, won’t we? The Truth Will Out.

  101. I took champix in 2008 and at first it was reaally good. Went from 40 cigs a day to three. But after around day four i noticed I felt a little wierd. Jusgt couldnt put my finger on it. It was like there was something in the back of my mind. Then BANG instantly i thought, “Im dangerous!” I was a normal 21 year old 5 foot girl. Never really even yelled at anyone before. I had horrible intrusive thoughts and thought I had been breaking into houses in my sleep and hurting people. I knew this wasnt right but i was so scared and it felt so real, so i thought it only made sense that a very bad evil person hacked my mind and was taking over. I was terrified eventually, i would be gone and this would have complete control. The only sensible thing to do seemed to be suicide. Save others from myself and whatever was taking over. I luckily knew something was wrong and decided to call an ambulance. I was put on medication and monitored eventually, diagnosed with OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) which i never had before, and will have now for life. I am now 23 and on disability because I cant leave the house with out returning every 20 mins to make sure it hasnt burned down.
    My dad took them also, and could not stop watching TV since. His personality completely changed. Literally cannot turn TV off. Has Foxtel in everyroom now and costs so much he cant pay the morgage. 2 years later mum had enough and asked him to do something, get away from the telly, we were losing our house, due to $500+ foxtel bills. She asked him to choose between her and TV. He took the Tv and they are now divorced after 31 years marriage. Thanks champix. I lost so much.

    if you think your drug is so safe I have an idea. If they want to prove they trust it themselves, why dont their CEO and highups, take the drug for four weeks. This would be interesting…

  102. This email came in today via the Contact Us page:

    christine wrote:

    “I feel that I have to write something here. I have been smoking for 50yrs. My doctor suggested Champix. The Hospital doctor also suggested the use of champix.
    I was in my seventh week, feeling very ill, then, I had a convulsion in the night (I live alone). Week eight, I looked at the packet of pills and I thought to myself, these things are killing me, I stopped there and then…not for a cigarette, it stopped that! I just felt so ILL… I decided I would rather die…not one pleasure left in life (I am 69).

    I am now having the odd cigarette, not because I want one – I am trying to feel happy again. Now twelve days without champix and still feel sick. Happy Christmas..not. Appetite gone, cigarettes disgusting, in fact darn right miserable… I may have 10yrs left..let me be happy…..PLEASE.. don’t touch this stuff….my son did the full course….twice…first time lost work which cost him money, but no cigarettes for 8 months… second time it didn’t work.

    I ask doctors, is champix to the over 60’s worth more than the latter years of pleasure obtained from a smoke!!”

    Christine raises an interesting question here: What is “health”? It doesn’t sound like Champix has improved her health, does it? It certainly seems to have ruined her quality of life. Of course she might start feeling better, physically, but the problem is that Champix does nothing to address the perception that smoking is “one of life’s pleasures”. So even if it works at first, smokers are very likely to feel bereft later, and drift back to smoking.

    Hypnotherapy is the only quit mode that can address issues like that NOT ONLY on a conscious level – as a quit counsellor might do – but also at the all-important Subconscious level.

    However, Christine is quite right to question the insistence that every smoker should stop smoking. It is a prejudice, and it goes too far. Lots of things kill people, but if we get rid of them all we end up with a joyless, pointless and timid existence which lacks everything that is truly great about the human spirit. I am not anti-smoking, I only help people who have already decided that they would prefer to quit. Everyone else can smoke themselves into a frenzy if they like, I really don’t have an opinion on that. After all, if you avoid a smoking-related death, you only meet a different fate. Whether or not it turns out to be ‘better’ is really an open question, isn’t it?

  103. I think what you are doing here is a wonderful thing and a great way to educate people about Champix. I have taken Champix for 6 weeks in the past and I never experienced any side effects. However, when I came off the drug (they tell you to just stop taking it, not to wean yourself off) I went nuts, talk about mental problems, so I do agree that it can certainly be a horrible drug. I ended up starting smoking again 3 months later. I am taking Champix again now because I feel that I can’t quit without it, and believe you me, I have tried a lot of ways. I am on week 13. Around week 9 I started just taking one pill a day and when I’m on my last package I will start taking one every 2 days to try and wean myself off. So far the only side effects I have experienced is tiredness and constipation, but only mildly. I have been smoke free for 9 weeks and hope that it continues after I am finished using Champix. I hope that when I stop taking it that I don’t lose it again like I did last time. This is a great place to share war stories about Champix, this is mine. Thank you Chris for helping to properly educate people on the possible dangers of taking Champix.

  104. My 60 yr old friend is going to start taking these tabs tomorrow. He’s smoked since he was 15
    He drinks a lot and has rather a volatile personality, also melancholic. He already has lucid dreams, so it will be interesting to see what he reports after a few days of this mind-altering drug. I will write a diary here on his behalf. If that’s okay.
    Personally, I think these drug companies will soon be sponsoring the NHS.

  105. Keep a VERY close eye on your friend Billie. The side effects are sneaky but volitile. i have recently recovered from that shit and i didnt realize what the problem was until it was too late. remember 2 stop him @the 1st signs of a bad reaction because the Champix withdrawl is WAAAAY worse than the actual cycle. I got lucky.

  106. Just a quick comment: Shaun’s warning is important, but I just wanted to add that not everyone has a bad withdrawal experience from Champix: some report feeling better as soon as they come off it, some recover from side effects gradually, some don’t recover and yes, Shaun’s quite right, some report getting worse, although not necessarily permanently.

    And some people kill themselves.

    By the way, Billie, the drug companies don’t need to spend any of their money sponsoring the NHS – we pay for that. But they do spend a lot of money treating health professionals and decision-makers to lavish conferences (marketing) in interesting locations, so you’re quite right really.

  107. Hi,

    I saw the comments on this and other sites and just wanted to add my experience with Champix.
    I have been using them for about 18 days now and cannot stop singing their praise. I had tried other methods such as all NRT (chewing, sweets, patches, inhalator etc) with and without support, Allen Car method and did not succeed. I stopped smoking on the 3rd day of taking the tablets and have been none smoker for just over two weeks and the only side affect I have experienced was slight indegestion early on, but I have always had problems with indegestion, so not sure if it was the tablets or not.
    I am not saying there are no side affects, but not everyone experiences them and as long as you know about them before you start taking them and you go into it with your eyes open. I would not want people campaigning on it either as I probably would not have taken them had it been a big media issue, as I am really thrilled that I am now a non smoker thanks to them.

    I know, I know it is still early days, but i say start as you mean to go on, so i really do believe that I have quit for good.

    If anybody is going to spend time, effort and energy on campaigning, i think we should spend it on fighting the cigaretted and stopping more young people from taking it up.

    My opinion only.
    Good luck to everyone whichever method they choose.
    Abs

  108. I refer you to my comment 101 above.

    Abs, after three years I find myself answering the very same points over and over again, so from now on I’m just going to refer people to my previous answers.

    It is also obvious from a lot of these comments that they haven’t read around the site much, maybe just read that particular post. This website is actually campaigning against Nicotine Replacement Therapy because it doesn’t work. So thanks for your comments in support of my Campaign, Abs: NRT didn’t work for you either!

    Best of luck, Abs. Will you come back and tell us what happens when you come off Champix?

  109. Oh by the way – the fact that you feel ok after 18 days can be misleading. Look what Andrew told us after being on Champix for just four weeks (the first three were fine, he says):

    “…the crashing wave of deep and dark depression, bursting into tears for no reason at all, the feeling of no light in the world and that nobody would even care if you were gone and worst of them all the belief that that low dark feeling was something that could only be fixed by taking your own life. Ive just lived this hell after taking Champix for a mere 4 weeks, first 3 were fine but wow that 4th week and i roller-coasted from ready to punch someone in the face for talking too loudly to wanting to floor my car 200 kms into a wall. I had read online about people reactions before mine kicked in and honestly thought everyone was a nut-job bad mouthing a drug that worked as i had stopped smoking and felt great, but let me tell anyone who reads this and brushes off the more extreme sounding posts IT IS NO JOKE. I went from wanting to simply give up smoking one week to sitting in a mental health clinic 4 weeks later continually in disbelief at how the hell i managed to end up there.”

    THAT’S what my Campaign is about Abs. I sincerely hope this does not happen to you. It has happened to rather a lot of people now, and I’m trying to warn people who genuinely didn’t realise that.

    People like yourself, in fact. So when you said:

    “I would not want people campaigning on it either as I probably would not have taken them had it been a big media issue, as I am really thrilled that I am now a non smoker thanks to them.”

    a) You’re not a non-smoker, you’re in the early stages of being on Champix, and

    b) Telling people the truth is not just “a media issue”. Would you rather no-one was warned? Are you crazy? Andrew ended up in a mental health clinic. Before that, he thought exactly what you thought – namely that:

    “everyone was a nut-job bad mouthing a drug that worked as i had stopped smoking and felt great, but let me tell anyone who reads this and brushes off the more extreme sounding posts IT IS NO JOKE.”

  110. Hi. I was on Champix for 7 weeks and I was definately one who was just raving about Champix to begin with. It did reduce the cravings. Very few side effects except the nausea and gas to begin with. Around week 4 the side effests started, extreme fatigue, mucle and joint pains, severe stomach pains and vomiting and then extreme agression alternating with complete crying jags out of the blue for no reason. I have now been off the Champix for 8 days and having an aweful time with extreme dizziness to the point where I can hardly function. I am going to have no choice but go to see a Doctor. I would not recommend this drug to anyone. Sure hope this stops soon but I amhearing from other peole that it took them months to get over the effects of Champix.

  111. I just returned from seeing a doctor and talking to a Pharmacist and according to both of them no one is having any problems or side effects from the Champix. Funny that sure isn’t what I have experienced personally, what I see, hear or read. So what do we do to make the medical profession listen to what we are saying? It says get your Doctor to register the side effects you are having but how do we do that if they aren’t taking what we say seriously? Anyone have any suggestions?

  112. Yes, I have a suggestion: threaten to sue them for negligence because they endangered your safety and your life by seriously misleading you about the official warnings and the enormous number of complaints that have already been made about Champix (Chantix in the U.S.) A claim of ignorance is no defence: the onus is on them to be more well-informed about this matter than anyone else: they are the people who are prescribing it.

    It’s complacency. And it is killing people, Doc. Wake up.

    *N.B. If you live in the U.K. you can also report your side effects directly to the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (M.H.R.A.) using the link at the top of the article at the start of this thread of comments. Presumably other countries have similar schemes in place – investigate! Google it: “How do I alert medical authorities to drug side effects in…” Canada/Australia/Italy/wherever you live

    Don’t allow them to dismiss you and your personal experience. Protect others! Report it, or else as far as Pfizer and the medical authorities are concerned, it ‘never happened’. Believe me, you are not alone if Champix did you harm. I’m hearing regular reports from new clients who tried it last year or the year before, and about half of them
    report bad reactions but when I ask them if they reported it: “No, I just stopped taking it.”

    But so many people HAVE reported bad side effects that your Doctor and Pharmacist don’t have a leg to stand on if they try to claim that they don’t know that. They would have to be paying zero attention to the whole Champix debate over the last three years to be genuinely unaware of it, and that would be very negligent if they are prescribing or supplying it. It is their professional responsibility to be more well-informed about it than anyone else is, obviously.

    Champix Chantix has a black box warning on it, for God’s sake! It has already been implicated in many suicides and suicide attempts, as well as thousands of other horrific reactions. Don’t be fobbed off, Deb, they know perfectly well. As usual with these things, they are trying to suggest that it’s JUST YOU, and hope that you quietly go away.

    If everyone who has ever had a bad reaction to Champix/Chantix took it upon themselves to find out who to report it to and made an official complaint, that would amount to such a record number that Pfizer would be forced to withdraw it immediately. They are desperately hoping that you all just quietly go away, or leave it to other people to report it. Think of it as hitting back at the drug that hurt you, or your loved one and MAKE YOUR VOICE HEARD.

    Then the Truth Will Out.

  113. boo hoo so you feel sick and sorry for yourself. now imagine having lung cancer and knowing your never gonna see yor children grow up. champix or slow lingering death from cancer…think i know what i’d choice. this website sucks

  114. So does your simplistic argument – like Champix or lung cancer were your only two choices!

    There are many ways to quit smoking without taking dangerous chemical concoctions that weren’t properly tested in the first place because Pfizer just wanted to grab their latest Licence To Print Money regardless of whether it really worked in the long run or whether any individual smokers got their brains mashed up.

    James doesn’t care about that either, and one has to wonder why.

  115. i’ve been on champix for just over 4 weeks now and it was all going well apart from the strange dreams up but after reading these comments i am seriously thinking of stopping but it sounds like it might be just as bad. how long does it stay in your system once you stop?

  116. I took Champix last year and was on them for two weeks but felt sick – I think through not eating enough before taking them. I’m about to pick up a new pack tonight and reading this is a little concerning. Do I start this or not? I don’t have the willpower to do it alone and stress in my life makes it even harder to quit – pathetic excuses I know given all the risks associated with smoking plus the amount of money I’m burning.

  117. Hi Sparky, the answer is: it varies. I’ve heard far more accounts of people feeling better after quitting than feeling worse though. Far more. And let’s face it, you’ve got to stop taking it anyway at some point, so as a lot of the real nasty effects tend to come with prolonged use, I’d say it’s safer to ditch it sooner.

    Hi Worried,

    Can I refer you to my answer above (No.7) to Michael’s post? Otherwise I just end up writing the same things over and over again! Also: NOT “pathetic excuses”, but real experiences! If you find a good hypnotherapist they’ll help you get past all that much more easily and without willpower being required. For more info on that click here. Best of luck to you, whatever you decide.

  118. This one ended up in the junk email, just spotted it and rescued it!

    Dave Allison wrote:
    Found your site when researching CHAMPIX.

    used for twenty days and became very very depressed, suicidal.

    Stopped taking the champix and reported to my doctor who I am seeing again
    tomorrow.

    CHAMPIX is a killer and thanks to your site I am being sent a yellow card to
    report to the MHRA.

    Best wishes Dave.

  119. I was a non smoker for 10 years after quitting the first time. When I quit the first time it was cold turkey. I was very fortunate as I had withdrawals for just 1 day. Then a year and half ago I found myself lighting up with a friend and a beer. Thinking I could quit anytime….

    Well needless to say here I am desperate and humiliated enough to take this drug Champix. I wouldn’t even go to my regular MD because I was so embarrassed of smoking again. So a walk in clinic Dr. gave the perscription no questions asked. Well I am on Day 13 of this drug and have quit smoking. But is it worth the cost? I have spent the last two weeks completely bedridden. I was convinced I had the flu. My daughter was home from school sick all week as well. What was disconcerting was that our symptoms varied, drastically. I would take the pill in the morning to find myself running to the toilet to vomit. Then I would take Tylenol Migraine to mask the headache and then gravol to kill the nausea. I had sharp pains in my abdomen. I had no appetite which is not unusual for me but weighing 115lbs cannot afford to go weeks without eating. I became so dehydrated. I can honestly say my life stopped for these past two weeks. I literally never left my bed. I have slept enough these past two weeks to last me a whole year. (and I’m still tired) I have twin 10 year olds and a company to run. I couldn’t even raise my head to make payroll. My husband has had to take on double the tasks as I have been completely wiped out. The pain in my lower back feels like knives and all my extremities are aching which I thought were flu systems. I have just spent the past few hours while my head is in a fog (drugged feeling) reading this blog. I did go to my regular MD today and he had me go to the Lab for blood work. He also has advised me to cut the dose in half as he knows my body can’t metabolize medication well. He felt the dose was too strong for me. I have once in my life battled circumstantial depression and was diagnosed with PTSD. I have experienced insanity at its worst and vowed after being completely healed I would never go through that again. I can tell you in a very short time the feeling and emotions that have derived from this mind altering drug it’s absolutely astounding. I feel I’m welcoming the desperation of what I once was freed from. Now that’s insanity… I am also on Effexor 37.5 mg for anxiety and my MD was annoyed that the other doc didn’t even ask if I was on anything before prescribing. I did ask my doctor today if I should just go off this drug. He told me that statistics say anyone that doesn’t follow through with the full course has 20% success rate vs 80% success rate if you do follow through. As bad as I want to stop smoking I want my sanity more. Does anyone know the repercussions of just stopping mid stream?

  120. Marsha, your Doctor has seriously misinformed you about the success rates of this medication. In the clinical trials, the highest success rate ever recorded for the full 12 week course was 44%, but half of those people started smoking again by eighteen weeks.

    This means the medication has been hyped to a scandalous degree and independent studies suggest that the real, long-term success rate is probably no better than Zyban, about 14%. Zyban was once hailed as a “wonder drug”, but it isn’t, and some people had bad side effects from that too. Some suicides were linked to the drug, but that is nothing compared to the damage Champix (Chantix in the U.S.) is causing.

    As I have heard many reports of people stopping early and recovering their health, and fewer of people getting worse or not recovering, I would advise you to get off it quick and please, PLEASE REPORT IT.

    And… can I refer you to my comment 103 above? Stop punishing yourself, bin the suicide pills and GET WELL, love!

  121. Chris, thank you for your reply.

    After writing this a couple of days ago my physical symptoms switched as fast as a light into emotional and mental symptoms. I became irrational and angry instantly. Any altercation seemed to magnify tenfold. I used language that would never come from my mouth. My heart began to palpitate and I saw red. I am a person very in tuned to her body and I felt the change immediately in my mind. A shift transpired in my mind, I knew it wasn’t me and what was worse is that I could not control it. I went into full panic fearing my demise. It may sound melodramatic but this was a state I remembered very well from years ago that stole 3 ½ years of my life and another 3 ½ years of healing. A place no one in their right mind would ever choose to go. Especially by my doctor’s hand….
    Anyone that tries to say this is not a mind altering drug should be forced to take this medication themselves.
    I have since gone off this medication instantly. No weaning off. Through my faith and prayer life I have felt an immediate change back to myself mentally but am still dealing with the aftermath of the physical reactions of this suicide drug. I am still experiencing the extreme tiredness, aches and pains and my mind isn’t as sharp as I would like. A far cry from what I just went through. So I am very blessed.
    I have had a smoke and it didn’t taste good and no I don’t feel guilty. I will deal with that addiction once my body rids the poison of this drug. Nothing in life matters if you don’t have your sanity….Nothing
    I will be going back to my MD to discuss the severity of this drug and I will ask him to document my experience.
    Chris, I absolutely admire you for what you are doing. If I can be of any benefit in warning people of this killer drug I would be honored.

  122. It’s been almost 3 yrs since I took Champix. I’ve written here before, and numerous other sites. I’m appauled at the number of reports I’ve read. (My personal experience is noted about half way up the page.) I’m frustrated, and scared. Scared because the ads for this poison are pumped constantly. The prescriptions flow, and the innocent consume. YOU ARE A FOOL IF YOU READ ALL OF THESE WARNINGS AND TAKE CHAMPIX ANYWAYS. My life has changed forever on account of it. Please, report any and all side effects. Chris is right. If it doesn’t get reported, it’s as if it never happened. PEOPLE ARE DYING! OTHERS ARE GOING FREAKI’ CRAZY. This is no joke. It literally takes minutes to report the side effects. The result may save a life. Thank you Chris for providing this forum, so that someone hears me.

  123. Good point. You and I both know the pharmaceutical companies are in bed with government. What’s up with Pfizer winning an award for Champix? (Prix Galien 2009 for most innovative product) Who were these monkey’s anyways? What the heck is the criteria for winning? ” Prix Galien Innovative Product Award is presented to the company whose product has been deemed to have made the most significant overall contribution to patient care in Canada in terms of clinical efficacy, benefits and innovation.” That’s a direct quote. If it was wasn’t so sad I’d laugh. Most significant contribution to patient care???? OUTRAGEOUS!! The only thing the Canadian government and Pharmaceutical companies care about is the almighty buck. It’s painfully clear patient care doesn’t even make their radar.

  124. Having read all the comments, I’ll add in my own empirical experience.

    Day – ?? 6 weeks roughly

    Things I’ve done which are suggested against:

    1) Not been eating properly (combination of lack of desire, lifestyle & unwillingness to put weight on)

    2) Drinking alcohol heavily – during this period, I’ve actually increased the amount I was drinking, which from the evidence I’ve read is about the worst thing you can do.

    3) Drinking lots of coffee

    Side effects:

    #1 Light nose bleeds, left nostril only (which I find strange – why not both?)
    #2 Mild pins & needles over scalp
    #3 headaches
    #4 wild thinking / mania [although, I acknowledge that I used cigarettes as a mood controlling device / anxiety remover]
    #5 Probable paranoia, however given world events, one can be forgiven for wondering at what is really going on (!)

    As of yet, no depression, no suicidal thoughts, no weird dreams etc

    My next question might sound like a side effect, but it is a rational one (I hope) having read these comments, and thought about it: does anyone have links to the actual medical trials / data of this product?

    I’m slightly worried that the company who provided my drug is a private one based in the mental health department of the local NHS and that this drug has other, perhaps less advertised, aims. i.e. If it has altered my receptors to nicotine, what else has it done?

    This might sound paranoid, however – the film might have said “Take the Blue Pill”, but I’m not so sure that this little blue pill is as innocent as it is supposed to be.

    That said – smoking was killing me anyway, this is a brave new world.

  125. i am on my 4th week of champix . i must admit i havnt smoked for 3 weeks . the last week i have very bad sleep with wierd dreams and been left with severe tiredness during the day . also very edgey . i cut the tablets down to 1 aday as from yesterday but after reading reviews i am going to stop them all together . i hope i dont start smokeing again and reading your reviews will keep me positive to stay smoke free .

  126. may i all so add not every one is able to have access to the web site so they can not read reviews like these so have no idea the side effects these tablets may leave . so surely your gp is at liberty to tell you when they prescribe these tablets to you .

  127. now on week 4 of no smokeing . stopped taking champix a week ago after reading reviews and havnt even wanted a cigarette .sleep is much improved and noas edgey as i was . i wouldnt take champix again and hopefully never smoke again .

  128. Gonna be lengthy, I fear…

    57 year old female, fit & otherwise healthy, no history of psychological issues, smoker for 30 years:

    On Champix now 53 days; off cigarettes 44 days.

    WEEKS 1-3: SEVERE diarrhea & gas, vivid dreams, trouble falling and staying asleep, leg cramps, neck/shoulder pain, nausea, headaches, nosebleeds, halitosis.

    SINCE week 3: all above have diminished significantly, but experiencing very early morning waking and inability to return to sleep.

    DURING past week: cold sore developed on lip 6 days ago, cankers developed inside mouth 5 days ago.

    Reported these to Pfizer Canada yesterday. Did not ask for their advice or recommendation as: a) they clearly state they won’t give it, and b) I had read the package insert.

    Just wanted to know if these symptoms resolved themselves while continuing to take the drug, according to their data from clinical trials.

    Their pharmacist recommended I see a doctor, but when pressed for their documented trials info, the response was vague. “Monitor symptoms. See a doctor if they do not resolve or get worse.”

    Decided to read the 47 page page product monograph here:

    http://www.pfizer.ca/en/our_products/products/monograph/152

    and have become alarmed at what they term “Less Common Clinical Trial Adverse Drug Reactions” on pages 17-19, which include MS, angioedema, pulmonary embolism and cataract
    subcapsular, ocular vascular disorder, and vitreous floaters (these last 3 under eye disorders). None of these are insignificant diseases.

    Given the shimmering white line at the outer edge of my left eye field of vision which began yesterday afternoon, I will be seeing an ophthalmologist ASAP and my family doctor in 3 days.

    I will also reduce my Champix dosage to half over the next 3 days, then even further over the following few days (unless any current symptoms worsen), given the “tapering” Pfizer’s pharmacist discussed with me yesterday, indicating it might not be necessary to taper.

    I had asked about weaning as I thought I would quit the drug at week 10. The pharmacist didn’t have any conclusive data either way on to taper off or not.

    My concerns are, in the absence of psychologigal adverse effects, that the physical dangers are also great and may not be reversible.

    Chris, do you have any data on serious medical problems from this drug?

  129. I’m just collecting feedback from smokers, and that does include mental, emotional and serious physical reactions and damage, some of it ongoing.

    Smokers have told me of suicides, attempted suicides, violent assaults, kidney problems, skin problems, ulcers, seizures including epilepsy in people with no previous history of seizures.. the list just goes on and on.

    Let’s face it: if the manufacturers’ pharmacist cannot advise you because they have no conclusive data, then no-one does which means that the Great Champix Experiment is exactly that. Scary, isn’t it?

  130. I quote:

    I check all comments that come in, and with the obvious exception of spam each comment is added to the site

    I fear this is untrue, I left a heartfelt comment and comments made after mine have been added, but mine hasnt.

  131. Really? There is only one possibility if what you are saying is true: it might have got into the SPAM folder by accident and got deleted along with the mountains of crap from internet drug dealers and pornographers.

    Do feel free to contribute your comments once again, and I will make sure they are added to the site.

    Then you can stop fearing that I am a liar.

  132. This came in through the email thingy:

    annemarie mccreath wrote:

    in the past 3 weeks only hubby gone from a husky voice ?cold to cancer of the
    larynx..so were stopping smokin on monday.i will too,how could i smoke near
    him.. been to a quit smokin meeting…why do i want a spray,why patches and
    worse of all ,why champix…cold turkey for us,and weel laugh & be grumpy
    together! he got the all clear yesterday !!! so it was a wake up call.were in
    our fifties and love life…wish us luck!! great site chris….champix sounds a
    nightmare.im an rgn and every drug has side-effects chris…..while the
    companies make billions…..

    GOOD LUCK, ANNE-MARIE & HUBBY! And thanks, for your message.

  133. Thanks Chris. What I said is true, so fear not as I am not a liar. Accidentally got into the spam folder?
    I only shared my experiences and extended my heartfelt sadness to people who have suffered tragically. Obviously my support and compassion deserved to be spam.

    Good luck with the cause.

  134. Felicity: re-send it! Just a glitch, I think.

    Here’s another one:

    Georgia wrote:
    Hello Chris,
    I took champix for 2 weeks in Feb 2009, I had to stop taking it as I could not
    stop crying and had become deeply depressed. I feel as though I have never
    returned to normal. I have continued to have vivid dreams, grind my teeth
    (causing terrible migraines), I have the worst mood swing… sometimes I laugh
    until I cry, and at others all I can think about is committing suicide, hurting
    anyone that gets in my way and wanting to go to sleep and never wake up. I have
    also been diagnosed with an underactive thyroid (I am only 23) the Dr puts this
    all down to stress…. I accepted this at first, but 2 years down the line with
    no improvement… I am very lucky, I have a big group of close friends, loving
    family, a boyfriend who I adore, no money worries…yet I can not shake this
    feeling?! I have done mass research but have not found much information about
    people still suffering this way so far down the line…. I am just messaging you
    to see if you have? Is it possible that it has made permanent changes within the
    structure/chemical balance of my brain? I am beyond desperation… Look forward
    to hearing from you.

  135. Georgia’s message came in through the email facility, and I answered it directly.

    Felicity did not re-send any message. Or if she did, I didn’t get it. According to the Stats, 297 people clicked on the Contact Us page already in March, but I’ve only received seven messages this month so far via that route. That is a fact, make of it what you will bearing in mind that email is not a secure messaging service at all.

    This came in today though:

    adrienne campion wrote:
    on day 13 of champix. sleeping all the time and feeling sick morning noon and
    night. Im not a moaner and nothing usually beats me but these tablets are just
    wrong – i couldnt bring myself to take a tablet this morning as i woke up for
    the second time this week with migraine. I wouldnt recommend them to an enemy
    and im still smoking.

  136. Lisa wrote:
    My partner has been totally apathetic since he took this Chantix over a year
    ago. Can the affects be this lasting? I’m wondering if an individual has a
    history of depression/apathy etc., would the effects of taking this drug for the
    full course cause a more permanent reaction or bring on a long lasting
    depression. Please respond! Thank You

  137. Hi Lisa,

    The fact is, I don’t know. The doctor doesn’t know. The pharmacist doesn’t know. Pfizer, the manufacturer, don’t know.

    The Great Champix Chantix Experiment rolls on.

  138. Hi, I am on day 7(I think) of Champix – the last one before you head up to 2 x 1mg tablets per day. I thought I would share my journey with you.

    I am a girl in her mid twenties with a history of self harm, suicide and depression. My Doctor didn’t ask me about any of this before prescribing me the tablets. In fact what actually happened was this:

    Me – Hi, I would like to give up smoking. My BF is on Champix and he seems to be doing pretty well, I was wondering how I would go about getting it?
    Doctor – Here is a prescription. Good Luck!

    To be honest, I knew very little about the drug until I got home, read the packaging and then a couple of days ago, I found this website. I am fairly disgusted that there wasn’t even a mention of depression etc. or questions on mental health history from my Doctor.

    So, my BF is a week and a bit ahead of me and I don’t think I have noticed much different about him as yet. He started slowing down on the smokes fairly early on, day 4 or 5 I think. He hasn’t had a smoke free day yet but he has gone down from 20/30 per day to around 1/2.

    As I mentioned, its day 7 for me and I have noticed tiredness like I have never felt before in my life. I head to bed around 11/12 and I am struggling to get up at 9am to the point where I have been late for work a couple times. I have serious periods throughout the day where it feels as if I can’t keep my eyes open and last night I had the worst headache. I very, very rarely get headaches and never to the point where I need painkillers but last night I did.

    I had severe gas on days 3 & 4 to the point where I was making myself gag but aside from that, I haven’t had any other side effects – no crazy dreams, no nausea etc. In fact, I haven’t noticed that my smoking patterns have changed either which is saddening. By this point, my BF had seriously cut down but I think I’m smoking just the same as I usually would. I guess I will wait and see until the end of this “Starter” packet and make my decision from there. I don’t see the point in carrying on with something that could POTENTIALLY drive me crazy if it’s not going to do the job intended.

    I will keep you updated with my progress and any problems that I may face with these tablets. Good luck to all of those out there who wants to give up smoking and it’s good to know that websites like this are out there!

  139. by email:

    Joe wrote:
    Wow!! Your site may have saved my life. Had the Pharmacist bothered to keep my appointment, I may well have been on Champix by now .Fantastic site and absolutely right about Allen Carr. I remember reading his book and kept waiting for him to reveal ‘his method!’ but that never comes. He didn’t have a method.

    Off to see a hypnotherapist!
    Joe

  140. Best of luck, Joe!

    One woman who Allen Carr treated personally reckoned he tried to bore her into quitting!

    Actually, I think he had a pretty good method:

    1) Quit smoking with hypnotherapy

    2) Decide it wasn’t the hypnotherapy, you did it yourself

    3) Set yourself up as a quit smoking therapist with no training whatsoever

    4) Write a book that points out how futile smoking is over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over again until the reader cannot even think of smoking without spontaneously losing consciousness

    5) Write another one, only even longer, every year until your demise

    6) Keep denying that your hypnotherapy session helped you at all, and yet mysteriously include a hypnotherapy angle in your franchised Easyway ‘clinics’

    7) Keep changing the published stories of how you quit yourself until the final version no longer features a hypnotherapy session at all.

    Having said all that, and for all his faults as a writer – pompous, pedantic, self-aggrandizing – I like Allen Carr. I especially like his first book, and the one on alcohol which is a bit OTT but nevertheless quite original and worth reading. It probably wouldn’t actually stop you drinking, but it might slow you down a bit. After all, you can’t hold a glass, a bottle and a book all at the same time, can you?

  141. Just thought that I would leave you a little update on my progress following from comment number 143.

    I am not on day 6 of my second pack of Champix and the tiredness and mood swings seem to have gone away. The only thing is, I still haven’t given up smoking. I have gone down from around 20 per day to around 10 per day but I was expecting more of a result than this at this point if I am to be honest. The only reason that I think I have really cut down is because I can’t quite manage a full cigarette and therefore only smoke half of one at a time.

    My better half is a packet ahead of me I believe and he is on his third day of not smoking at all so there is hope for me yet!

  142. Just my 5 eggs worth – I lasted 20 days on Champix. It did its job, it stopped me smoking and I am determined to keep it that way because there is no way in hell that I’m putting me and my OH through the last 3 weeks for nothing. I have been an totally crazy bitch, how the hell I’m not single now is beyond me. I stopped taking it 2 days ago, and I am desperate for my head to come back to the way it used to be. The dreams have mostly settled, I hope the mood swings are settling a little (I’m starting to be able to see what I’ve been like and cringing about it like you would not believe so I guess they must be to a degree), the aching legs are a little better, I’m not quite as utterly exhausted as I was but the cotton wool stuffing my head is stiff well and truly there. I really do want me back.

    I wish I’d done more research before I started on it, no way would I recommend it to anyone. Yes, there are people who it works for without side effects, but there seem to be an even greater number of people on the other side of that fence. Horrendous drug, utterly horrendous.

  143. I have come just from the pharmacy after collecting my Champix script which is free to anyone who meets the criteria as it’s subsidised by the goverment. I live in New Zealand. They are determined to wipe out smoking in this country which is all well and good. As a person living on my own on a fairly low wage, Champix sounded like a dream come true. My GP has known me for several years and knows that I’ve been on anti-depressants – albeit a low dose – for several years. I’m positive he is trying to help me and knows very little about the nightmarish side-effects that I’ve been reading about in this blog. After reading these posts I will definately NOT be taking Champix and will call my GP to let him know. Yes I want to give up smoking but not at the expense of mine or my family’s welfare and safe being. Thanks to you all for warning me.

  144. Hi guy’s, it’s shocking to hear some story’s of whats been happening to you all on these tablets.
    Mostly cause depression.
    I’ve been taking these tablets for 3 weeks now. The only side effect i have are mad ass dreams and not feeling as hungry as normal (not a bad thing for a woman really)
    I’ve not smoked in 19 days, Last time i tried one it made me want to be sick.
    Most people on here who have had the depression side are classing them selfs as “strong minded” Me I’ve suffered with depression since a young teen, what really put me back on taking the tablets as i couldn’t bare the bi-polar becoming any worse, but in need to stop i took the chance, I am glad i did. I feel better in myself for not smoking, loosing weight, and saving money.
    Personally i think it depends on the person rather than the drug!
    Any drug can cause very bad side effects, the tablet i was on before pro-zac for bi-polar made me a lot worse than people taking champix. Personally i do think yeah it depends on the person.
    Best of luck

  145. You’re bi-polar and they gave you CHAMPIX? Which negligent, ignorant, reckless medical practitioner did that then, contrary to all the current guidelines, putting your life seriously at risk?

    Now check this.

  146. I started Champix on Wednesday 27th April 2011. It started to disagree with me from the start but just the feeling a little sick so I stuck with it. By Friday (after just 3 tablets) I was feeling very unwell so decided to stop taking the tablets. Saturday I was bed ridden with bad stomach cramps and I was vomiting. I was taken to hospital on Sunday with really high blood pressure, a resting heart rate of 140!! and bad stomach cramps.

    They kept me in overnight and I was released last night. Now I am sure Champix could be a red herring to the stomach problems I was experiencing but it seems somewhat of a coincidence

    On speaking to the hospital they said I should never have been prescribed Champix at all since the doctors were aware of my high blood pressure. However, they were actually shocked by the effect the drug had on my body.

    I am now on day 4 of not having a tablet and my stomach is better but my sleeping is not. I am restless of an evening and can sleep for only about an hour at most before waking up and then getting palpitations and anxious, I also have strange dreams still that do not make any sense.

    I am hoping because I only took 3 tablets that it will not stay with me for long but reading some of these comments I’m not so sure.

    I wish everybody luck that takes this drug but in all honesty I would not recommend it ANYBODY!!

  147. As you can see, Danny, I complied with your request in your follow-up message and removed the surname. I also tried to reply by email but the message bounced back, so I’m reproducing it here:

    “Surname removed, as requested! And thanks for your valuable contribution. Please make sure the bad reaction was officially reported too, by the prescriber.

    By the way, anxiety reactions sometimes follow sudden illness and/or bad reactions to medicines. This is only indirectly caused by the medication, and hypnotherapy will quell it if it doesn’t subside by itself. You would need a hypnotherapist who understands the connection though. Basically your Subconscious mind is generating panic reactions ‘cos it doesn’t know what the hell happened! It only needs suitable reassurance that: a) the cause is known, and got rid of, and b) it will never happen again. The fact that your conscious mind already knows these facts is irrelevant – the conscious mind cannot tell the Subconscious anything, that’s what hypnotherapists are for.

    The anxiety reactions may subside by themselves though, so try that first if it seems to be easing. In the meantime, it helps to know that sleeplessness and anxiety are uncomfortable but NOT dangerous.

    Wishing you full and speedy recovery.

    Chris”

  148. Just wanted to add a few word to what others have put. I started taking Champix on 08/04/11 with a quite date of 17/04. I have so far managed the urge to have a smoke, and after smoking since the age of 14 (I am now 35) feel impressed with what i have managed to achieve.
    I have been one of the lucky ones, as yet I have had no side effects, I just eat a,little more rather than smoking.
    I have found the routine the hardest to break, having got used to having a smoke before work, at my break and a couple a lunchtime.
    I have aslo managed a ‘night on the tiles’ without having a smoke, which, to be honest, I didn’t think I could manage.
    Don’t think of the money you will save, as you always seem to spend it on something else, think about how much healthier you will feel, the fact that you don’t smell of stale smoke, (nobody likes that). And the fact that if it’s chucking it down with rain you’re not going to get soaked going outside for that after dinner smoke.
    Good luck folks, as i say I haven’t had a ciggy for almost three weeks, which when I was smoking 20 a day is a bonus. I will be honest I still want one every now and then, but willpower takes over and i resit the urge.

    Hugo

  149. Sounds like Hugo’s doing okay, but I have to say – speaking as a hypnotherapist – it all seems a bit long-winded and unnecessary. In contrast, a cool dude called Herbie popped into my office this morning, we had a chat for an hour, then he put his feet up and chilled out while I explained a few things to his Subconscious mind. He was awake throughout this, not asleep as many people imagine. Afterwards he was fine: no withdrawal, no cravings, he WON’T be eating more and he didn’t need any tablets so: NO RISK. He WAS smoking cigarettes and cannabis sometimes too, but after that session this morning I’m sure he’ll never smoke again, but even if he did, I could always fix it again anyway, just as easily.

    Anyone who wants to quit smoking can do that, all they need is a good hypnotherapist and to approach the process with the right attitude. Takes about 2 hours, all done and dusted. So what the hell does anyone need medication for, Doc?

  150. No-one has mentioned about stomach problems. i have tried champix on and off 3 times for the past 4 years, it was only after my third time on them i realised it was the champix causing my food intolerance. i can’t eat anything without my stomach ballooning to a size i look 6 months pregnant. i have to buy bigger clothes even though i don’t eat much, i feel frumpy, i’ve never been over weight in my life, but there is nothing i can eat without my stomach swelling. As i start eating i can feel my stomach bloating as the food is going down. I thought i had IBS, but my daughter has the same problem after using champix. i’ve tried peppermint pils for bloating, ginger tea for digestion. i just can’t eat anything and its getting me so down!

    Any suggestions would be most appreciated

  151. I used Champix in September 2009 for about 3 weeks before stopping abruptly. While I was on it I felt fine. The first three days were an emotional roller coaster, but I account that to nicotine withdrawl. I managed to quit smoking and coffee. In fact, anything that was bad for me I managed to quit. I felt great. My energy levels were stable, I was eating healthy and doing regular exercise. Since I felt so good I decided I did not need the pills any longer. And it was afterwards that had an extreme effect on me. I lived in my own personal hell for quite some time… and I am still stuggling with certain after affects to this day. I also noticed quite a fair amount of symptoms that others have not mentioned here, but I have read elsewhere. Since no Dr. I have seen will recognize that it was champix that did this to me, I cannot say whether they were all from this drug with proof-however I am a very concious individual when it comes to my body. To make my story shorter I will try to post in point form my severe symptoms ( that I kept for 6 months, then tapered off slowly) :
    * first odd sign after quitting Champix was inability to control bladder functions… I thought I was drinking too much water. This is better now, but I literally wet myself while jogging. I had NO control over it.
    * euphoric symptoms; feeling like I was on top of the world
    * then the rapid heart beat started… later turned into panic attacks that would last for DAYS not minutes…they were never ending… this was the worst part and the longest lasting effect. They just stopped recently.
    * loss of spacial awareness… I found it difficult to drive… ran into a few snowbanks as I could not accuratley judge how far away they were while backing up
    * severe migraines… with and without pain. I experienced the migraine aura that you aquire before onset of migraine more frequently than the actual pain itself.
    * inability to absorb and retain written information… I was almost dyslexic?? I couldn’t form the meaning of words as I was reading and therefore nothing made sense without careful scrutiny. Also, black words on white paper was very difficult to read as it hurt my eyes.
    *phototobia- I could not go outside, look out a window on a cloudy day even without my eyes feeling like they were burning out of my head. To this day I need sunglasses, however it is not as severe as before. LED lights blind me and I cannot use CFL bulbs anymore.
    * Floaters in one eye- There were so many in my left eye that I found it hard to see out of it. I still have one but the rest are gone now.
    * Severe blistering on my back. I went to emerg and tried to explain my symptoms to the Doc. No to Champix, however he gave me an antibiotic and tested my thyroid as I have a goiter. Test results came back and my TSH was non existent but T4 and T3 were fine. My family Dr that prescribed me Champix left his practise and this left me without a Dr., so on my second trip to emerg for follow up, I was sent to an endocrinologist, who sent me to a psychiatrist. Still all saying no to Champix and I quote “maybe you have a mental problem”. I have never heard of mental problems causing severe blisters or you to pee your pants… but I went to see the Psych-who gave me a clean bill and sent me to get my thyroid fixed. Champix has not been tested on persons with thyroid problems and I beliee this is what caused the imbalance there, as I had been stable for roughly ten years before, and am again now (without treatment)
    * muscle weakness- I couldn’t do push-ups or situps, etc.
    * shortness of breath- walking up stairs was worse than when I was a smoker. running made my lungs feel like they were caving in.
    There were many other things that I experienced that are hard to describe unless you have lived them. I get better everyday, however there are still times when my moods flictuate and I am very tired. And I did start smoking again. I needed something to deal with the panic attacks… so it was a vicious cycle for me. Now I am yearning to quit, but it is harder than ever. I tried the patch, and literally my moods were out of control. It will be harder here on in because of this drug. PLEASE if you are considering it… STOP. It is not worth the suffering. I read a study that stated the reason why Champix can claim a higher success rate at smoking cessation than items such as the patch, is because the pill does not contain nictotine. BUT the amount of time the smokers quit for is virtually the same. I tell everyone that is considering Champix my story, and most of them decide not to take it. I hope that you will make the right decision as well.

  152. This one came in by email today:

    lynne ******* wrote:
    8 weeks ago my father was fit and healthy and his gp put him on champix , day 2 he was being sick headaches and poor co-ordination , day 6 went back to gp and was told to put up with side effects, day 12 rushed to hospital and day 14 told he had a brain tumour , 2 weeks ago tumour was removed but later had a major bleed on brain, and has been left unable to walk, talk, swallow solids and is still in hospital, I blaime champix as he was fit and healthy before taking it ,
    any thoughts

  153. The single factor that seems to have allowed Champix to hurt/kill so many people is its unpredictability. Many people are unaffected, so they vouch for it. It often works in the short term, so some people rave about it but most of them end up back smoking again, sometimes with nasty side effects that hadn’t even started when they were raving about its “effectiveness”.

    Lynne’s father was ill within 2 days, but Amanda was on it for three weeks and felt fine until she stopped taking it, then went through hell. It is not surprising that doctors are unlikely to realise the true picture from their own prescribing experience alone, and it appears that they rather innocently assume that the testing procedures should have picked up any problems with side effects.

    Well we now know that Pfizer skewed the safety assessments by submitting reports of many serious side-effects to the FDA through “the wrong channels” so that the drug won approval for safety on false grounds. I’m sure they’ll claim that this was an innocent error, but with their track record only a moron would believe that. In any case, this latest revelation of drug company deviousness and deception is certainly grounds for the immediate withdrawal of the drug from the marketplace, otherwise the FDA is obviously an institution Pfizer can simply thumb its nose at and get away with it.

    These individual stories of suffering and tragedy acumulating here on the Truth Will Out blog – and other blogs too – are an even more urgent reason: BAN CHAMPIX, and prosecute the individuals who misled the FDA and thereby treated the safety procedures with utter contempt in pursuit of profit. They are ruthless, cowardly killers, just as if they had barged into those people’s homes and attacked them. Their dishonesty has put millions of individuals at risk, and they must not be allowed to get away with it.

    If you or I made false statements to acquire a driving licence – for example – and was then involved in an accident where someone lost their life, we would be jailed for the deception, wouldn’t we? This is exactly the same kind of case, except that hundreds of people have now lost their lives after taking this evil drug.

    Pfizer’s deception

  154. Hi Chris,
    After I googled champix, this was the first site i clicked so before I left it i thought i would add my “off-the-cuff” 2 cents worth.

    Dosage Duration – five weeks
    Compliance – I sometime only take one tablet or span three over two days.
    Still Smoking – Yes, but a lot less
    Ability not to smoke – very good
    Ability to choose not to smoke – every second one
    Side-Effects – sleeping upto 16hrs a day, wild dreams, huge lack of motivation, nausea, big weight gain, flatulance,
    Depression – yes, but only when i have no tobacco at hand, but this is typical for me, i can’t give things up unless I have some on hand.
    Conclusions – 1.) I feel this drug is punishing me. 2.) as i am still smoking ill prolly have to go cold-turkey…

    thanks for the site Chris

  155. Hi

    I have tried Alan Carr, hypnotherapy, NRT and Zyban. I am a 37 year old male, smoking about 50 a day, started 20 years ago, history of drink and drug use, used anti-depressants (Citalopram) for 6 months last year.

    I am now using Champix. I feel nauseous for about 20 minutes after taking a pill. This abates if I eat at the same time.

    I had vivid dreams for the first few days. I now sleep much better than I used to. I frequently “forget” to smoke or can’t be bothered to go buy some. I’m down to less than 20 a day on week two.

    I will be using my hypnotherapy scripts augment this treatment.

    My overall impression: positive.

    One data point.

  156. I started taking champix on 28/03/11, with 9/04/11 being the last day i had a cigarette. The side effects have been horrendous,Now several months down the line and I have stopped taking the tablet on 22/06/11 but i feel really irratated and feel like shutting myself in a dark room, feel really sad and arguing with my husband all the time over the most stupid things, feel like if i wasn’t here then it would be better. How long before the tablet comes out of my system as I can’t stand this anymore, I love my husband so very much and don’t want to ruin our marriage because of these stupid tablets. I am crying as I am typing this and don’t know what to do, please help

  157. i dont believe these side effects are common, i think its just that people with “horror” stories are more likely to search out a site like this and post their story and also those who are researching to decide if they should take it….

    so i want to post for those who are trying to decide if they should take it

    I have taken it twice as i was one of the 50% who started again, but i have managed to stay smoke free for just over a year this time 🙂 The only side effect i had was a little nausea, which is pretty good for someone with a history of depression and shouldn’t have even been taking them :). anyway i have done a little research of my own i asked my facebook friends for their stories….. the result were…. out of 52 who had taken champix 48 are still not smoking, 16 suffered nausea 4 of them said it was so bad that they stopped taking them before they had finished, and 1 suffered a little bit of anxiety but not so bad that they stopped taking them, not 1 of them suffered from serious side effects like those posted here

    i will still recommend champix to anyone who wants to quit, there are serious but rare side effects to pretty much any medication you take……. not that i doubt anyone who has posted here its just, like i said,i believe its only the people with the horror stories who search out these sites

  158. “…so i want to post for those who are trying to decide if they should take it”

    This is marketing. How do I know? Because no-one bigs up Champix more than Pfizer, and even they have never claimed that the success rate was higher than 44%. That was the highest figure they managed to reach in their own trials at 12 weeks, and although that fell to 22% at 28 weeks, they hyped the 12 week figure as if it was the real outcome.

    This person says 48 out of 52 are still not smoking, which would be a 92% success rate. Just not credible, Sam. Like most people trying to sell the drug, you got a bit carried away.

  159. This was the other comment that came in today, on another thread:

    “i have been backwards and forwards to doctors and hospital suffering from chest pains, depression lack of breath can,t walk more than 20 metres before i stop for breath i,v had all types of tests they can,tfind the problem i took champix in april 2011 for 14 days yes i stoped smoking but have never been the same since i can,t do my job properly so i,m on the sick been on 4mounths and no sign of going back champix has ruind my life i have memory loss have no energy i have no idea how long i have to suffer this i wish i had never stoped smoking if this is my future”

    Two weeks on Champix. Two hours with a good hypnotherapist, job done. No risk, no effort, costs less than 1 months’ cigarettes.

    Don’t believe me? Okay, take the mindfuck pills if you trust Pfizer more than me. Choose your outcome, but hypnotherapy never resulted in this kind of horrific shit, that’s for sure. With hypnotherapy – as with acupuncture and the Allen Carr method – absolute worst-case scenario: nothing happens. Success way more likely than the meds.

    So: why are you prescribing the suicide pills, Doc? Is it because you get paid for every script and no-one will ever blame you if the smoker hangs themselves? Or just because you assumed that what Pfizer tells you is true?

    When I click my fingers, you’ll wake up.

  160. Hi Chris

    It seems to me that everytime someone puts up a positive message about Champix, you don’t respond well to it. I am on Champix and I feel great I have family history of depression – my moods are great. However I can report that I am a lot hungrier and I do feel a little sick in the stomach but other than that all good….. I would rather have those side effects than have some form of cancer……..

  161. Yeah, like those are your only choices: cancer or Champix. That suggestion is constantly used by the internet drug shops as a marketing strategy. Yolanda, you are still taking the drug and you don’t say how long you’ve been on it. The blogs are full of people singing Champix’s praises because they personally haven’t suffered any of the real nasties, and for the time being they aren’t smoking.

    Unlike you, I have been receiving these reports for more than three years. I’ve read hundreds of them. This drug would never have been approved by the FDA in the first place if the true facts had not been hidden from them by the manufacturer, and if YOU had copped for any of the really bad reactions – or a loved one did – you would be saying “Ban Champix now, keep up the good work Chris” like all those people do, so maybe you should read around a bit more – not just this blog, but all of them.

    Hope it doesn’t happen to you.

    Champix (Chantix in the U.S.) WILL be banned. Already, the French Health Minister has withdrawn public funding from the drug on safety grounds, following the revelation that Pfizer misled the FDA by submitting hundreds of reports of bad reactions – including suicides – “through the wrong channels” so they were missed in a crucial safety review.

    Yolanda, it is people like you I am trying to protect.

  162. Hello Chris

    Firstly, please do not publish my email address.

    I have visited your site a few times over the past 3 years. I was a smoker for approximately 30 years when I decided I wanted to stop. I live in Australia. A doctor I saw once, prescribed it to me in January of 2008. I stopped within about 10 to 12 days of starting, and am still going good. I took the whole course of Champix, I think that is 12-14 weeks if I remember correctly, because the doctor said that is when it proves to be most successful. I had no history of depression or any remotely related mental illness. The worst side effects I had whilst on Champix, were the very realistic awful dreams I had. And I would have a number of dreams every nighht. The result was that I would wake frequently and would be tired all of the time. I also experienced extreme anger attacks which I had to hide from everybody. I was extremely depressed and considered suicide on a on a number of occassions. I thought about it a lot. Not sure how I managed not to activate these thoughts. I was forever crying, on the bus to work, at my desk, during lunchtime, on the way home, in the shower at home and so on. I am a very controlled, private person and therefore never allowed myself to demonstrate and divulge these feelings to others, not even my husband as I thought he would think I am being silly. I have become paranoid about certain aspects of my life for example my husbands family and have thoughts of them disliking me and trying to break up my marriage – we have been married 33 years and this has never occurred before. There are other issues too. I have lost all selfconfidence, I feel insecure, I have panick attacks, I feel unhappy most of the time and I have no reason to feel this way. I am in a professional career which is quite demanding and I feel I am forever having to put up a front to the world whilst most of the time I would just like to fall apart .
    I am addressing this to you today because I cannot figure out how long this is supposed to last. I have been hanging on all of this time thinking it has to pass but it is now taking too long. It has been over three years since I stopped taking Champix but I assure you, I am not the same person I was before. I do not like the person I have become, I do not like the way I feel every day. I have become a discontented angry, quarrelsome person and this is not me.

  163. Okay, just read those last three sentences over again. Three YEARS. So all those people who have been trying to suggest that the problem is really “nicotine withdrawal” – obviously not. It’s Champix. Chantix. Varenicline, what ever they call it, it is a very dangerous drug indeed.

  164. chris im not a marketer im not trying to sell anything, im a stay at home mum who quit smoking after almost 20 years 🙂 52 is a small number of people and you cant base statistics on that, its just my own research amongst my small group of friends who have tried this so called terrible drug 😀

  165. Sam, I have never said that the horrific side effects are what usually happens, but that it is so unpredictable that no-one knows, if they take it, whether they will get success, suffering or suicide.

    Most people who take Champix are smoking again by the end of a year. All the independent studies put that figure at somewhere between 14% and 20% success long term.

    The hype and over-enthusiasm about this drug was always caused by the fact that it often has a promising short-term effect. Your straw poll cannot have been looking at the real results (how many smokers have not returned to tobacco after twelve months), and may even include people who are still on the drug.

  166. Hi all

    I’m 18, have smoked for 5 years. Used Champix twice – First around 6 months ago, however only used for 14 days as my hair was falling out and the doc wouldn’t re-prescribe. I did quit smoking anyway, only for around 3 months though. Had a hairdressers appointment a few weeks ago and she said my scalp was in bad condition and hair loss could of been caused by that, therefore I decided to go back to docs as I wanted to quit smoking again. I have been taking champix for 10 whole days. Around day 6 I started feeling very sick, even been sick on some occasions. Other the past few days, have experienced severe backache, muscle ache all over the place, and mild headaches. Have developed a horrible and almost unbearable pain in my chest which makes me cry on some occasions. Can’t stop sleeping, started becoming forgetful, i.e not remembering drives home and what im doing at work. On around day 8, I spent most of my evening crying other stuff that would not bother me – Even had suicidal thoughts. Thought to myself that evening that it ‘wouldn’t bother me’ if i didn’t wake up. When I start to fall asleep I see horrible, scary images of men with burnt faces, skeletons etc. Sounds really stupid but seems so real and terrifying. Last night I lay in bed, my back was absolutely killing, my chest was hurting more then ever, and can just remember laying there unable to open my eyes which were full of tears seeing horrible images, only too suddenly have to jump out of my bed to be sick. Absolutely horrific experience with this drug. Have not took today, backache and chest pain still remains. Suprisingly however, only on a few occasions have I thought of smoking. I completely seized from smoking only yesterday so suprised but will keep going without the drug. I would not recommend this drug for anyone. Have had lots of arguements since taking and I am sympathising with those who have said I have been out of order, even though I didn’t think I was!

  167. Pfizer apologists will try to tell you that all those horrific symptoms are “nicotine withdrawal”. What a pathetic lie that is. It is evil to peddle that misleading nonsense. It’s cruel.

    Ash, have you ever tried hypnotherapy for anything? My smoking client spends two hours lazing around in a comfy chair while I explain stuff – first to their conscious mind, then to their Subconscious.

    Problem gone. No smoking, no weight gain, no cravings, no “nicotine withdrawal”… sorted. Eleven years, I’ve been doing this.

    No, the cause of all your suffering, Ash, was not nicotine withdrawal – it was all caused by drug companies, corrupt medical authorities and government health departments, in every country where The Evil Champix has invaded… except France: the first country to withdraw public funding for it on safety grounds.

    The last country to do that will thereby reveal itself to be the most corrupt. Sadly, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if it turned out to be the U.K.

  168. I have been on champix for 9 days now and have had bad dreams and broken sleep…. I am normally a great sleeper! Also I woke up in the night with really bad toothache, like an abcess pain. The toothache has been on and off for the last 3 days, and I feel generally unwell, headaches, abdominal pain, sick, tired & achy. Still smoking but feeling less & less enjoyment from them, although I know ‘will power ‘needs to kick in at some point.
    I reminded myself this morning that I must make an appointment with both my doctor & my dentist for all these problems that seem to have hit me at once and now, after finding this site, have realised it must be the CHAMPIX! Think I will stop taking today and hope that I start to feel better. Is there any ‘more’ side effects I may experience by just stopping?

  169. Sorry Chris, just found the answer to my question on your site!! Will stop today, Im so glad I found this information, and I will definately report my experience to my GP…. thanks.

  170. My husband Denis was given Champix 6 weeks ago even though he was under the doctor complaining of being short of breath. The “smoking nurse” in the surgery was unaware of this albeit Denis did tell her, after seeing the report in the Sun paper, we contacted the Doctor who ordered him to stop taking this immediately, (he even called us !!) he has been into hospital unable to breath for over 2 weeks, back home we await a diagnosis, they think maybe a very rare one called ambyloidosis (uncurable and untreatable) a desease in the heart caused by proteins produced in the blood, I am sure they will tell us that Champix had nothing to do with this, but it does make you think?? seems a coincedence to me, he took it for a month, we accept that the underlying condition was happening before the tablets, but concerned that Champix may have worsened this condition.

  171. I started taking Champix 18 days ago. So far so good. I read the warnings that came in the pack and enlisted a few friends to be my “mood monitors”. I was also concerned about my sleep because I am not a good sleeper at the best of times. I’ve had some minor sleep disturbances, but am glad I am waking up without coughing after 11 days of being smoke free. I think everyone should read the warnings and be careful! these are mental disturbances they talk about so you may not know they are manifesting. I decided to try it because of the recommendation from a few friends that have been non-smokers for 6 months or more. I am considering going off it but think I should go to the doctor first. I am lucky because he talked to me for a long time about how ready I am, and about my emotional state. My dreams are more vivid, and I wonder if my arthritis is flaring up but I am keeping my eye on it. The dreams are just more involved, deeper. I’d probably recommend it to a friend, with the caveat that they set up a network of people too, and make sure they have counselling of some sort like I have with my doctor. I am so sad to hear about these bad experiences and hope that alternatives can help those people it isn’t right for. Gum has worked for me in the past, hypnotherapy had no effect, and the nicotine patch made me terribly sick. The best thing I think people can do is to do your research into why you smoke in the first place and try what seems right. Go in with your eyes open and don’t give up!
    BTW, the most dire warnings I heard before trying it came from people that smoke that have never tried Champix. Sounded like the addiction gremlin talking to me!

  172. Kelly concludes:

    “The best thing I think people can do is to do your research into why you smoke in the first place…”

    I recommend “Nicotine: The Drug That Never Was” – the only book so far published which explains why “the addiction gremlin” doesn’t exist. Cravings are real, but they have nothing to do with nicotine or anything else in the smoke, and any decent hypnotherapist can shut them down in one session.

    Can’t speak for the hypnotherapist Kelly saw – maybe they were a beginner.

  173. I too started taking Champix about 20 days ago- been smoke free for 9.Like Kelly I too read the side effects and weighed up the pros and cons- at this point in time the pros outweigh the cons- I have stopped smoking after over 35years- never thought I would be able to do it.However I do experience severe nausea especially after taking morning dose.I am not a breakfast fan but now ensure I have had at least a couple of slices of toast first- this have drastically reduced the symptoms of nausea. In addition I am having more vivid dreams and has a couple of nightmares and difficulty getting off to sleep. My stomach feels very bloated – however I put this down to eating more! The only psychological effects it has had is a feelings of depersonalisation- which I am keepingan eye on- and have let friends know I am having these feelings.
    After reading this site however I am now worried I am may develop more svere symptoms and how I will come off the champix withoug resorting to smoking again. I have been told I will take them for 12 weeks- Any advice re coming off them?

  174. Hi Lynn, thanks for sharing. It is difficult to offer advice when the experiences reported by others vary so drastically. I wouldn’t want any of my loved ones to touch this stuff with a barge pole, and if any of them were on it I would want them to stop taking it as soon as possible, that’s really all I can say.

    “Medical advice” also varies enormously, from doctors who don’t want to prescribe it to idiots who tell smokers it is “perfectly safe”.

    It’s your life. Your mind. Your safety. Not theirs.

  175. Hi,

    emma i understand you at 100% i have the same problem with my wife that have been personality transplant too –
    she start to rage for for unknown reason and … 2 years its finish and she continu to persecut me on my job on my social place … she send angry people after me etc etc….

    the soul of my wife josee disapear and been replaced by a crazy woman … not my wife at all

    its hard for me … but i need to stop think to this girl and finish a 11 years old relation … not because she just dont love me … but she is under this new girl into the same body. With all the emma (same history on this blog) i compatise

    and for this people that chantix change their mind … they dont know and continu to live their new personality … and continu to harras me with rage i never see when she stop to do this? i dont know

  176. i dont understand all the wackjobs here. i took champix for just over a week (8) days and that was my stop date. i continued for a furthedr two weeks and hey presto – have not smoked since – no side effects (except my wife is bitching about the beating)… champix works and works well. my phyc and chem told me – like 4 weeks and that is all. this stuff is the bomb

  177. Has it not occured to you, John, that the drug is highly unpredictable and you were simply fortunate enough to be unaffected?

    Nice of you to dismiss less fortunate people as “wackjobs”. Clearly you do not understand them, as you say. It’s most likely because you aren’t a very understanding person.

  178. Hi I have read your website several times and even given doctor and Psychiatrists printed off copies to show the effect that this drug is having on people.
    Nick my 54 year old husband took champix for 10days in March 2010, he could not get anymore tablets as the nurse was off sick so decided to do without.( he had stopped smoking).
    4days later I had to ring anambulance at 4 in the morning as he was going in and out of consciouness, the treatment at the hospital was not good but they kept him in for observations at my insistance but could not find anything wrong so sent him home, I told them about champix but they were not interested.
    Over the next few weeks things got a lot worse, Nick found it difficult to walk, talk, write… he had severe muscle spasms and involuntary muscle movements, he had balance problem and short term memory problems, his behaviour became quite childlike and his brakes were off, he said exactly what he thought. Things came to a head when it was raining and Nick was in the garden in his underwear. I rang our doctor and asked to go private to see someone, she arranged for us to go to hospital, they did all the tests blood, urine, scans, spinal tap but still could find no reason for this to happen, they suggested that Nick saw a psychiatrist, he has been seeing him since June this year, he has said that he can find no reason for Nick’s problems and has passed it back to the hospital.
    At present Nick suffers short term memory loss, a change in personality and cognitive ability, he takes everything you say literally, he has no awareness of danger and has developed tourretism and obsessive behaviour (touching dotes) he still has balance problems and difficulty walking and gets tired easily.
    At our last doctors appointment I told the doctor I believe that Nick is having fits between a few seconds and a minute we are trying to get a diagnosis and have an appointment with a senior neurologist at the end of this month. Our Gp has told them our suspicions so perhaps this time someone will listen. How can somone go from a normal man working as a carer to this for no reason and the only thing that changed was that he took champix, we are now on 8 months and things are still not getting better, if you met Nick you would think he had learning difficulties.
    I am so frustrated that no one will admit what has caused it and because they will not or cannot diagnose it we can not get any allowances to help look after him. I work full time and betweem my family and myself we look after him.
    If I could turn back time I would but as its not possible I will just keep going and hope someone will take responsibilty and try to stop this drug harming anyone else.
    I will always be here for Nick but this company hid certain results to get this drug licensed they need to be stopped.

  179. I am on day 8 of taking Champix. I experienced a lot of side effects – nausea, diarrhea, feeling dazed/spaced out and very very tired, but wanted to stick with the tablets hoping that these would pass as my body got used to the side-effects. I wish I had known how bad this drug could get or I would never have bothered!
    Last night, I was worried as I felt so very tired and fed up and I knew that the dose would double again today.
    This morning, just looking at the tablet made me feel ill (I guess my body was trying to tell me something!) but I had some toast and the tablet. Within minutes I was retching and throwing up. I sat all morning shivering and shaking, exhausted, but eventually had to go into work. I spent the following hours alternating between blind fury at those around me and crying for no reason, back and forth. I had to go home. All the way home from work I couldn’t stop crying and felt truly and utterly miserable. I kept telling myself that this must be the Champix, as I was perfectly happy two weeks ago, but it was like my brain was carrying on this depressive conversation on its own without my control. At one point, I briefly considered whether buying razorblades was a good idea, “just in case” and I made an emergency appt with the GP. I was told to immediately stop taking Champix but the GP couldn’t tell me how long this will all take to stop and go away now I have stopped taking the tablets. The GP kept asking if I was on other medication or if I had suffered mental health problems in the past – he seemed astonished that anyone who had never been mentally ill could be so out of control.
    I hope this all goes away, I just feel totally numb and can’t think straight. I just want this all to end, wish I had never taken this stupid drug. I cn totally understand how people end up killing themselves on this – it just plants these thoughts and feelings in you. There is nothing you can do to control it, they are just there, as real as if a family member had died or something.
    Irritated that the GP hasd no helpful advice now – happy to prescribe this stuff, but when it goes wrong they just shrug and say “sometimes this happens”. No advice, no indication of how long this will continue.
    I hope the above makes sense – I really am all over the place since starting this course. But before it I was fine, a happy normal person. Just hope I can get back to that 🙁

  180. Have just been reading all the comments on this and am shocked that so many have experienced the same as me and much much worse. And pretty disgusted by the cavalier and “I’m alright Jack” comments by the people who it has worked for.
    Yes, fantastic that you have been spared this, thank your lucky stars by all means, but to take the attitude of “well, I was just fine and that’s all that matters” is pretty vile.
    Plus, re-reading the leaflet, there really is no warning that Champix can cause these serious mental health problems. In fact, it says “Depressed mood may appear during smoking cessation with or without treatment. Depression, rarely including suicidal thoughts and suicide attempt, has been reported in patients undergoing a smoking cessation attempt. These feelings have also been reported while attempting to quit smoking with Champix”.
    Deliberately written to minimise the part of the Champix, even though (like myself) many of those suffering hadn’t even got to the quitting smoking part. It’s an absolute farce and I will be insisting that my GP reports this.

  181. Champix works… All these people who are moaning and complaining remind me of the exact same sort of people who “freak out” when smoking a joint or would try to kill themselves if they took acid (LSD).. The adjustment period that you all talk about is perfectly normal, yes you will feel nausea and possibly get the runs but I can assure you it will pass and if you explain this to your doctor there is a supplementary mediation to ease these symptoms. Now for those people who committed suicide, if it was not champix it may have been caused by something else down the track, how can you be certain champix caused it ?… Grow a spine and deal with the fact that you might have to do a little hard work to kick a habit that will DEFINATELY kill you down the track…. Mental toughness certainly went out with the Greatest Generation.

  182. Hi Scott! You sound like ever such a nice fellow. I used to spell “definitely” wrong too, by the way.

    “Grow a spine”? Well I’ve done every drug there is, many times – really hammered some of them too… and I had a real needle fetish, so I put a lot of that straight into my bloodstream, knowing damn well it could kill me in seconds. Occasionally it nearly did. None of that ever stopped me: I only stopped because eventually I got bored, and of course ill.

    On top of that, I’ve done a lot of other scary and dangerous things too, like bungee jumps and abseiling down tall buildings. I really like doing dangerous things.

    I would not risk taking Champix even if I was still a smoker. Because everything else I did was a calculated risk based on my experience, knowledge and judgement, and Champix is totally unpredictable.

    Incidentally, smoking does not kill 100% of smokers, so “definitely” is wrong whichever way you spell it. And the frequency of suicide attempts and actual suicides is much higher in Champix than any other medication.

    Finally, Champix DOESN’T work in at least 80% of smokers in the long run, and temporary success doesn’t save any smoker from the long term risks of smoking, so it has a lousy success rate anyway and just isn’t worth the risk. Get your facts straight.

  183. I have been taking Champix for around 3 weeks, 2 weeks since my last cig and have been told its a 15 week course.

    i have not had any side effects, not even the small ones like abnormal dreams.

    The only thing that worried me was when i went back to my doctor for more Champix as i had run out he asked if i had experienced any side effects, when i said no he genuinely looked surprised to hear this and said ‘really’?

    I’m guessing he see’s a lot of people with side effects,

    anyway i’m going to stick with the Champix for now and see how it goes because touch wood i have never experienced any side effects with any medication so hoping it will be the same here.

  184. i live in South Manchester myself so if Champix fails we can try Hypnotherapy

    I have considered it before to be honest but find it very difficult to believe it would help.

    Will keep you posted

  185. Hi James!

    I welcome skeptics, as I said in the book. I always ask them: “On what detailed knowledge and experience of hypnotherapy is that skepticism based?” Whereupon they always tell me that they don’t HAVE any detailed knowledge or experience of hypnotherapy… which I knew already, because if they DID, they would not be skeptical. Just interested.

    Doubts are usually based on seeing Stage Hypnosis, NOT hypnotherapy. Most people have never seen any hypnotherapy, but they’ll have seen Stage Hypnosis! And you’re RIGHT to be skeptical about that, as I explain to each of my clients, and also in detail in the book.

  186. Hello,

    I’ve been taking champix for three weeks. I initially thought it was going well as although I suffer from anxiety I was not significantly more anxious or depressed. However, I have been finding it hard to get to sleep, have had panic attacks and lots of suicidal/ self harming urges. I have been given valium by my doctor ‘for emergencies. I am very depressed about my current state. I want to come off these tablets asap. Advice suggests I should be on them for three months minimum. If I want to disregard this how should I wean myself off? If someone out there can advise me, please do.

  187. heya, im on my 3rd week of champix, quit smoking 2 weeks ago and feel like it was no big challenge.

    I spent 95 pounds on hypnotherapy. waste of money for me
    didnt work
    so i was happy that i was able to get tablets for free from the doctor.

    i have read the side effects of this drug many times over the last few weeks and am keeping tabs on how im feeling compared to these.

    so far i have felt sick, had headaches and been over-reactive but in my opinion if it doesnt get worse than this then i am glad i went through the course. i am 20 years old and will be bettering my life without smoking!!!

  188. btw chris, think you should give up with your hynoptherapy comments. You obviously believe in what you do. but it does not work for everyone so dont give false hope and allow people to go out and waste a fortune over ur advice!!

  189. Okay Joanna, you enjoy your nausea, your headaches and your emotional over-reactions. Hope you don’t kill your family or hang yourself, develop heart problems, end up in court or hospital, lose your job or your mind on Champix… but if you do…

    hey, at least the tablets were “free”.

    Long term success of Champix: less than 20%. Hypnotherapy has a much higher success rate but since it is entirely a learning process it does require at least average intelligence and a positive attitude, so no – not everyone responds positively. And as I certainly don’t wish to give “false hope” to anyone, here’s my latest piece of hypnotherapy advice: If you are seriously below average intelligence and/or have a bad attitude: DON’T CALL ME, or any other professional hypnotherapist. That way you don’t get disappointed and we don’t get the blame for the fact that you’re mentally challenged or have an unusually negative outlook. That’s not a failure of the METHOD – that kind of person will fail in all sorts of things.

    Hannah: the manufacturer’s advice is to stop taking the medication if you are suffering side-effects. They do NOT suggest that you wean yourself off, and they certainly don’t suggest that you should carry on regardless. Just stop, and report the reactions to your doctor. Make sure he/she reports them through the official channels, or no record of that ever reaches the people who monitor medicines for safety.

    There are much safer and more successful methods of quitting. (See above)

  190. I took the full Champix course when it was suggested by my GP in March this year.
    Yes I had some side effects early on. Wild dreams, some nausea and a few metabolic adjustments after 57 years of smoking.
    However, from day one I lost all desire/craving for nicotine. I have now been cigarette free for 9 months and I know I could not have done it without Champix.
    The bulk of comments here are negative to the product but then again 190+ comments from the possible millions world wide who have used the pill is small potatoes!
    We all have different metabolisms and react in different ways but I know that neither hypnotism nor acupuncture would do it for me.

  191. That’s interesting, Hamish: you “know” neither hypnotism or acupuncture would work for you? You haven’t tried them, you just “know”. Do you “know” what this week’s lottery numbers are going to be as well?

    There are 190 comments on this thread, but there are a couple of dozen posts on Champix on this site now, and some of them have more comments than that. Then there are all the other Champix warning blogs that also have hundreds of comments, and the fact that there are more official complaints about this drug than any other medication on the market – and this story isn’t over.

    When the story is over, Hamish, you’ll realise you were damn lucky. Lucky it didn’t harm you, and even luckier that it actually worked for you, because for more than 80% it fails in the long run anyway.

    I’m glad you’re okay though. I never said it didn’t work for anyone – just that doctors should recommend all the safe therapies before suggesting any risky ones. It’s a no-brainer really.

  192. I made a decision today to stop taking Champix and after reading these comments I know I have done the right thing.

    I weaned myself off anti-depressents to start taking Champix (started the course about 3 weeks ago) and was warned by the doctor about the risks. As I had taken the drug 4 years ago with no bad affects I thought I would be fine this time. I wasn’t.

    I had the nausea to start so cut out my morning pill which helped. The last week or so my mood swings have been out of control. I feel so angry all the time and I’m constantly shouting at everyone which is then followed by guilt, especially when its my 3 year old who is bearing the brunt.

    I actually thought I might be OK if I just stop taking the tablets and go back on my anti-depressents but now after reading other people’s comments it seems it may take some time.

    I’ve stopped smoking but I ask myself if it was worth feeling like this to achieve it?

  193. Hello, I have been smoking 32 years and tried everything. I am now on champics again for the third time. The first time I was on chapics I was having bad dreams, I was depressed for about a week, around 4th week. Once the champic wore off after 3 month, the arguments with my family got really bad. So I started smoking again. Now again I’m on the champics again in my 6th week. I sit.in my bedroom every night away from my family alone, im agitated and depressed but i am no longer smoking. I need to stop taking these tablets now, I have chest pain and bad back ache and my gums are bleeding again. I forgot to mention I crashed my car on the second time I took champics, however they do stop you smoking …

  194. I actually looked at this site before taking Champix to do some research etc. I thought this site was set up by a competitor source to defame the product…. Well I have taken Champix for 12 days and have thrown the rest away. I felt absolutely depressed. I used to excercise 3-4 times a week. Within 10 minutes of a workout I just can not be bothered and spiral into such a depression. Sleeping properly is impossible… The dreams were ok (actually enjoyed them) but jeez my waking life was a living hell!

    Its a dreadfull situation that such a product can be released on to the market.

    John

  195. Hi Chris,

    In one of your replies you say that you overcame heroine addiction… If that’s so, respect! Statistically speaking, you’re one out of a hundred. (out of curiosity: how long we’re you on heroine?)
    I myself am an ex-heroine user along with my girl, although we’re on methadone, but reducing our dosage. In a few months, we want to switch to an opiat with a shorter half-life such as hydromorphone, and then undergo a withdrawal with Ibogaine (extremely promising btw…)
    We are also smokers, and since smoking is continuously-with every inhale actually-stimulating your dopamine receptors, I concluded to myself that quitting smoking would change my whole brain “reward philosophy” and chemistry…
    To me, it sounded reasonable to stimulate the nicotinic receptors with something less harmful and addictive, such as Champix… But that’s before I started reading about its side effects. It is my first day without smoking, and if I undertook this, it’s because I know that I CANNOT fail under no circumstances.
    Simply because of my other addiction: if I fail nicotine, how will I fight opioids??
    That’s why I wanted all chances on my side, and most accessible and most advertised was Champix… It’s my first day with that pill as well. I admit I feel unusually drowsy…
    My question is: since I’m a very analytical and rational person, is there a place where I could read statistics or hard facts about Champix? Not that I dismiss the testimonies written here, but they are quite subjective and emotional, whereas HARD FACTS will be a lot more convincing for MY brain. 🙂
    Thank you for your hard work.
    Sergey

  196. Oh God, wind back to the early 1980s?

    I don’t think I deserve respect for the way I quit heroin, because actually I didn’t want to at the time. This was before heroin was widely used, there was an explosion in popularity around 1983-4, but I got into it a couple of years before that and although I knew loads of people who took drugs, none of them took heroin or expressed any interest in it. I think they were all frightened of its reputation.

    Its reputation was exactly what intrigued me. So when I finally found a source – and it was only one – I got pretty excited about it. In fact I didn’t just get into it, I fell in love with it completely. And I changed – but I didn’t know I’d changed.

    After a little over a year, there was a problem with the source. For a while, I couldn’t get it – but I had no idea that this was going to turn out to be indefinite, I was always on a promise: “There’ll be some on Tuesday”, “Sorry it’s going to be next week now…” So I never thought of myself as “coming off” heroin – I had no such intention.

    It was horrible, but most of that was emotional. I felt like crap, but serious drug explorers expect to feel physically ill sometimes, it comes with the territory. No, it was the emotional side that shocked me a bit – I felt heartbroken. Lovesick.

    I kind of never got over it, but I did get back to normal in every other respect, and that’s when I began to realise that heroin turns you into a different person but you don’t realise it. So I had a bit of a conflict over it later, when it became easily available. I was still using drugs regularly then – mostly amphetamine – and I did take heroin occasionally but never regularly. Part of me really wanted to but I had ambitions, and back when I was using regularly all that went out the window and I really did nothing for a year, which in retrospect I felt was just lazy and worthless. That’s not me.

    So I decided that heroin is a great drug if you’re terminally ill, and I made a deal with myself: I can do it again, but only if I’m terminally ill. In truth I did do it all over again with codeine later, but it wasn’t quite as freaky and dramatic as my heroin year.

    Of course, if you’ve been using heroin for years, none of that will sound dramatic to you! My speed habit and needle fetish was much more the real thing, but it didn’t have the same emotional component to it that heroin did.

    This might sound bizarre to people who’ve never used heroin for any length of time, but you know how people feel about a lover who moved on as “the one that got away”, and there’s a sort of wistful longing attached to the memory? That’s how I feel about heroin on an emotional level.

    On an intellectual level I think I had a damn lucky escape, even if I did just switch to other drugs really, at the time.

    “Is there a place where I could read statistics or hard facts about Champix?” Yes: with regard to the actual failure rate of Champix, as opposed to the drug company’s hype in the press, this website is very informative. I have no connection with these guys, by the way.

    As to dopamine, nicotine receptors, rewards systems in the brain – I don’t buy any of it. Smoking isn’t an addiction, it’s a compulsive habit. It just looks like an addiction, feels like an addiction. Champix is supposed to block nicotine receptors, not stimulate them – but it does totally different things to different people and the worst side effects are so horrendous that it certainly isn’t worth the risk in my view, because it’s REAL success rate in the long run (ie at one year follow up) seems to be around 17% at best, even with all the hype.

    A heroin habit IS a real drug addiction but it is a compulsive habit as well, which is different from tobacco.. btw I really do not believe that your success with ditching opiates will be conditional on ditching tobacco too. Be careful what you suggest to yourself. As an expert in giving things up, I’ve noticed that we can make it seem ten times as hard for ourselves by constantly telling ourselves how hard it is – which is why I can’t be bothered with twelve step programmes and rehab.

    Each to his own, but heroin aside, I have only ever quit anything when I am thoroughly sick of it and ditching it seems more of a relief than a wrench. Allen Carr was of the opinion that the only thing that makes these things seem difficult is the conflict we are in over quitting: part of us doesn’t want to, which was certainly true of me and heroin. I hadn’t finished with it yet. With everything else, I’d absolutely done it to death and got bored with the endless repetition of the same old shit every day, so quitting seemed like a new adventure – a liberation.

    After that, you just avoid the euphoric recall and don’t look back – never look back.

  197. “The endless repetition of the same old shit every day, so quitting seemed like a new adventure-a liberation”…. To you Chris,- most certainly. Actually, i think that’s exactly the reason why it’s called CYCLE OF ADDICTION and unaware citizens are just completely buffled and blown into full miscomprehepnsion, disbelief and utterly sheer judgement because it is hard to grasp how somebody could SLOWLY and PAINFULLY KILL one’s soul, body and mind and NOT wake-up in the process. My mother, she would always reminisce about how she saves my from Soviet Union and Israel’s Army and how I ultimately messed things up for myself on this beautiful continent… My point is that the cycle of addiction is hugely IRRATIONAL and therefore VERY hard to grasp for a balanced individual..
    I wouldn’t easily agree that smoking is EXCLUSIVELY a “compulsive habit”…
    Nicotine starvation causes identifiable physical AND psychological symptoms that would NOT disappear merely because I condition myself the right way. Although self-conditioning or hypnosys does help to staggeringly alleviate those withdrawal symptoms!!!
    Now the REWARD SYSTEMS IN OUR BRAIN, it’s a tool to chemically and thus emotionally compensate the irreplaceable or/and challenging actions of everyday life. (like paying attention, learning, making an effort, etc…).
    Now to imagine that nicotine “puffs” would parasite on those vital pathways of our brain seems AT LEAST worthy of my consideration as plausible.

    Reading and analyzing all the input from users about Champix gives me an idea of something hazardous and “pushed through for the profits…”
    But I wouldn’t be myself if I didn’t ask: those numbers, 14% and 17% of success rate, records of undesirable side effects, proven and registered cases of suicide, etc, etc… Where can I get official numbers and registries and/or statistics about Champix data? I mean the best remedy for helthy skepticism are hard numbers, black on white…
    Also, I think quitting smoking is the best option there is to show to your own self that breaking an addiction IS POSSIBLE and renouncing to a chemical substance is is very doable…. That will bring the experience and confidence needed to break any destructive behaviors or addiction cycles…
    Anyway, just thinking out loud 🙂
    Thanks for your time

  198. Hi Sergey! As I said, smoking looks like, and feels like an addiction but there is a difference. Please understand I’m talking about what an expert hypnotherapist can do, not a user with self-hypnosis or a CD!

    Nearly twelve years, I’ve been working with smokers and I found that the habit, the cravings and ALL SYMPTOMS of a smoking habit can be shut down in a hypnotherapy session in less than two hours PROVIDING the smoker genuinely wants to quit at that time. Think about it: if the tobacco habit were a genuine drug dependency then that simply would not be possible for any hypnotherapist to do. That’s how I discovered it was a compulsive habit, not a drug addiction. Since then I have developed the same methodology to shut down gambling habits, cocaine habits, crack habits, cannabis habits and alcohol habits. In a single session. I’m not saying any old hypnotherapist can do that, but I can – I’ve done it thousands of times with tobacco. But I’ve never been able to do it with heroin.

    But I did NOT go on to say to you: “So, you should be able to quit easily with a bit of self-hypnosis…” NO! Expert help is required. And it probably helps a lot that I’ve had many of these habits myself.

    Champix data? Try the manufacturer. They’ll tell you a load of lies. Try the Food and Drug Administration. They will also tell you a load of lies, but the lies will not be quite as outrageous as those of the manufacturer. Try the medical authorities. They’ll tell you what the official story is, but don’t confuse that with the truth.

    No-one knows the truth. But it is much worse than the official story.

    If you take Champix, you might be lucky. Not everyone is damaged by Champix, but there is no way to tell in advance who might be. It could actually work for you, but for most people it is not a permanent solution. It certainly isn’t safe: there are more official complaints against this medication than any other medication currently available, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Most people who have bad reactions do not make an official complaint.

    How do I know? Over the past three years I have met many smokers who tried Champix, and most of them said they had to stop taking it because it made them ill, but when I ask them if an official complaint was lodged, the answer has always been “no”.

    I understand your thinking about showing yourself that breaking an addiction is possible, but the whole “addiction” model is just another way of telling ourselves that we “need” it, we “can’t stop” and that we are “trapped” and it is a huge, insurmountable problem.

    Yeah, for as long as you keep using.

  199. I took Champix for 3 months. I had some mild side effects, such as headaches, nausea and vivid dreams. I have been depressed for a period of time some years ago due to stress which was successfully treated with medication. I was very wary of taking Champix at the start, however I can now say that if ever there was a wonder drug invented it is Champix.
    I am smoke free 12 months now. I have every sympathy for people who have posted here with horrific stories of their Champix experiences. It is a very strong drug. However, it WORKS. For SOME people, such as myself. Don’t be scaremongered, every medication has side effects, just because some people have awful reactions to it doesn’t mean you will!

  200. If ever there was a wonder drug it was aspirin.

    Just because Champix occasionally manages to do exactly what it is supposed to do does not justify the label “Wonder Drug”. I understand your personal joy, Dan, but you’re only saying that because it didn’t damage or kill you or someone you love. I take exception to the “scaremongering” suggestion because it implies that what I’m telling smokers is not true. The calls for this drug to be withdrawn are getting louder and louder even within the medical community.

    If you have a history of depressive illness, whoever prescribed it to you went against the prescribing guidelines. Do you think they were right to put your mental health at risk in that way? You were very wary, and if you HAD suffered a bad reaction or committed suicide, that would have been yet one more completely avoidable tragedy. So when you say: “I have every sympathy…” you are merely paying lip service to all those personal tragedies because your personal success in giving up smoking is way more significant to you than all the personal Champix tragedies in the world put together.

    It must be, because you’re telling other smokers: “Don’t be scaremongered, every medication has side effects…” when you have no way of knowing what it will do to them. There are more reports of serious side effects from Champix, including deaths and murders, than any other drug currently available. So bigging it up just because you were lucky has unpredictable consequences.

    What if someone accepted your reassurances over all the warnings from elsewhere, and then they were unlucky and it ruined their life? What would you say to them, Dan?

    “Oh, well, I was alright…”?

  201. Getting on your high horse there slightly?
    You take exception to me saying scaremongering-I take exception to you saying I’m only paying lip service to someone’s terrible experience. I can only report on my own experience and no-one else’s. And why shouldn’t I? It worked for ME.
    As for your statement about someone taking my reassurances and then Champix ruined their life? Who would? I am not a doctor, I’m an anonymous person on the Internet who took Champix successfully and says so. That’s all.

  202. Hi,
    I’ve used Champix in the past and I stopped smoking for two years. I never finished the course, and I halved the tablets. I decided to use them again as I can only remember the one side effect hitting me which was nausea and that stopped when I halved the tablets.
    It’s now day 13 on the tablets and for the past two days I’ve been feeling anxious, confused, racing heart, sick, headache and today I just can’t stop crying and feel so so sad like something terrible has happened.
    I just want people to know, I was truly a believer of this tablet but now I’m scared and think I’ll stop taking them and find another way to stop. I know for sure I can’t go through another day like today.

  203. Jo, you’re not the first to tell us that you were ok first time around but the experience was different on the second course. It is so damn unpredictable! But you see what I mean? When it actually happens to YOU, suddenly you get what I’m on about! Freaky, isn’t it?

    Dan, “scaremongering” means spreading fears that are unjustified because the danger is unreal, imagined or falsely suggested for some sneaky purpose which is dishonest. Maybe you didn’t really mean to suggest that is what this site is doing, but if you did, please tell me exactly what I am telling people that you don’t believe is true.

    If you were only reporting on your own success I wouldn’t have thought there was anything wrong with that, but you didn’t stop at that. You told people not to be put off by warnings – even though you freely admit to knowing that the medication has seriously harmed hundreds or thousands of innocent smokers already, so your personal experience is no basis for reassuring everyone else. Then you called it a Wonder Drug, which not even the manufacturer is seriously suggesting any longer, now that we know about the 80% failure rate and all the fatalities and hospitalisations… and then you stated “every medication has side effects” as if the side effects of any other nasty drug are in anywhere near the same league as Champix.

    The last reassurance that “just because some people have awful reactions doesn’t mean you will!” is complacent as hell, Dan. Just because you didn’t doesn’t mean they won’t. Reassuring anyone about the probable ‘safety’ of this drug is frankly dangerous, especially when it sometimes only hurts people SECOND time around!

    The thing is, Dan, I’ve been hearing these horror stories for nearly four years now. Not only on this thread, or even on this site, but on many blogs totally unrelated to this one. Hundreds and hundreds of stories, many of which would make any normal person weep. Innocent people and their families ripped apart by this drug. You’ve probably read very little of that and you’ve personally suffered not at all, in fact you’ve quit smoking which is great. But that’s just great for you – it doesn’t make Champix great.

    There are lots of ways to quit smoking, and the most successful methods involve no risk, but they aren’t drug company products so the medical authorities don’t endorse them. NONE of these people needed to die or be seriously damaged, and NONE of them need to be smoking either.

    I’m trying to save lives, marriages, families and stop drug companies and health authorities destroying those things by lying to smokers. I’m determined to fight it, so if it sounds to you like I’m on my high horse, I guess I’m not surprised. If everyone out there already knew the terrible truth about Champix, I wouldn’t need to bother blowing the whistle. When everybody does know, they won’t be dismissing me as a scaremongerer. But it will still be too late for thousands of Champix victims around the world.

    You are right, Dan: you can only report your own experience and no-one else’s. But if I was in your position and I knew that the drug was randomly harming significant numbers of other people, I would stop short of recommending it and suggesting that other people should ignore all these warnings from people who have had their lives ruined by the same drug. Do you see what I mean?

    I’m sure you’re a great bloke and you wouldn’t wish any harm on anyone. I think you’re just chuffed to bits about being a non-smoker and you haven’t had any cause to read hundreds of personal messages of the sort that sometimes just make me break down and sob for a few minutes for the suffering of people I’ve never even met. It changes you. And it would CERTAINLY change your feelings about Champix.

  204. Ah here. I won’t have you put words in my mouth so I’ll wish you all the best on your crusade. Sorry to have caused you any offence, none was intended.
    Dan.

  205. None taken, Dan – although if you read back through our exchange I don’t think I put words in your mouth – except speculatively, but then I was asking you what YOU would say to such a person. Apart from that I just took issue with some of the things you actually did say… but just check this out, this message came in this morning from Siobhan on the ‘Australia Bites Back’ post thread – thought I’d reproduce it here in case anyone wonders why I’m bothering with my “crusade”:

    “I took Champix for four weeks. Ten days into the course I started to feel slightly high and developed mild restless leg syndrome. I persevered for another couple of weeks but decided to give up as I had started to feel a bit wound up in general (the “high” had faded away at this stage). I thought that if I stopped taking champix then the side effects would go away. I was so wrong!

    “After about a week I started to think everyone hated me (paranoia) and that I had done horrible things (delusional). The “high” came back and I thought it would be a great idea to kill myself. In my mind, I thought this was the best idea I ever had. I checked out several bridges in the area and then proceeded to try to-launch myself off one of them. Fortunately someone had noticed my strange behaviour and rang the police. They rescued me but if they had arrived 10 seconds later I would definitely be dead by now.

    “I spent the next 10 weeks in a psychiatric ward. I was completely crazy ay this stage and getting crazier by the minute. I thought the food and water was poisoned and that my family was in cahoots with the staff to have me murdered. This is just a brief description of my descent into insanity, courtesy of Champix. It was actually much worse I have described and just thinking about it makes me quite fearful. I was prescribed two heavy duty anti psychotic drugs but that’s a whole other story. Thankfully I have made a complete recovery and I am now a fully functioning member of society. I should also mention that I had no psychiatric history prior to my experience with Champix. There should be a worldwide ban on this drug.”

    Try telling Siobhan that Champix is a Wonder Drug. This blog is not scaremongering – not everyone makes a full recovery and Siobhan damn nearly killed herself. N.B.: “no psychiatric history prior to my experience with Champix.” If that’s not terrifying I don’t know what is.

  206. I have given up smoking twice with Champix.
    The first time I had bad dreams and strange thoughts, the second time I just got a little sleepy. I think your reactions is all to do with the mental state your unconscious. I have sveral friends and work colleagues who have all given up smoking on Champix with nothing more than a bit of nausea.
    If they stopped me smoking when nothing else did I think the side effects are worth it.
    Some people on here need to gain more control of their minds, deal with your issues.
    Man up and stop looking for excuses!

  207. Er, have you READ the post above yours, Scott? Any of the others on this thread, at all? Any other threads? Any other blogs?

    Obviously not, so the “man up” suggestion is hardly applicable to the absolute nightmare many smokers and their families are going through. It’s not their “issues”, Scott, it just didn’t HAPPEN TO YOU, or your friends. It doesn’t happen to everyone, you see. No-one has ever suggested it did. You and your friends are not super-brave, or stronger, or “more together” – you just hardly got any side effects compared to the smokers who died, killed someone or ended up in a psychiatric ward or a prison cell courtesy of Champix.

    It’s RANDOM. It’s not something to be smug about, this drug kills people.

  208. My husband and i have been taking Champix (AUS) for the last 3 weeks and on the Blue tabs. It is making us insane. The last few days we have been at each others throats. Its getting to the point where no matter what we say, we fight about it. I am only taking half the dose as i was concerned from the that it would affect me. He is on 2 blue tabs. I am a highly strung person generally and this drug has made me 1000% worse. My husband is the more level headed one out of us and even he is getting pretty narky and mean. I am starting to feel a bit depressed and my agression is getting worse. Freaky dreams, feeling tired a little sick, light headed.
    Our marriage is at risk now and i am worried.
    I know for a fact that it is the Champix that has done this.
    The worst thing is neither of us can see at times that were are being crazy; denial all the way.
    This pill is the devil.
    It messes with your mind BIG TIME.
    After a big fight this morning we said we will stop taking them as its not worth it. I am not smoking and neither is he now. I also read EASYWAY too; am about to start his other book SCANDAL.
    I wish i never touched these things.
    How long will this poison last in our system for??
    When will we feel like our old selfs again??

  209. Alan Carr is so right about “tobacco control” being a scandal. Harvard University have just proven NRT doesn’t work at all, I’ve been saying it for years after the Borland report – the UK government’s own research project! – showed the success rate at 6%, same as willpower, in 2005… and smokers are still being prescribed this rubbish at the taxpayers’ expense!

    As for Champix, it’s a killer and it still has an 83% failure rate at one year – not worth the risk. Hang on in there, Bianca – and for the sake of smokers everywhere, make sure the bad reactions get reported through official channels. This seems to be the only way we’re going to get this evil drug withdrawn. Most people do recover, though it can take a while – can you keep us posted? The more feedback I get on that, the easier it is to reassure people who ask that question. Best wishes to both of you for a speedy recovery.

  210. I took Chatix for 5 Days. After the first Day I noticed my face was red and swollen, but I had just had microderm abbrasion , so thought maybe it was that. Day 4 my daughter was over for dinner and commented on how how Big my lips and swollen my face was. Day 5 Skin peeling on face, rash on face, blister on lips, neck red, and rashed. Day 6 went to pharmacy and got Benadryl , went home , went to sleep, woke up and I was still swollen and rash was worse. Went to the ER that night, they had to give me steriods, more benadryl, and they gave me something else. The Doctor in the ER said to me this drug is dangerous and he has seen many suicides and deaths from allergic reations and people loosing their mind and killing themselves. I am now off Chantix for day 4 and my neck is still peeling red and raw, my skin is still peeling on my face and rashed (it looks horrible) I have trouble breating at times and have to carry a EPIpen with me incase I cannot breathe. I am wondering when this is going to finally get out of my system? My neck is so red and raw that I am worried I may have to go back to the doctor because he told me that if my skin starts Sloughing or I get blisters in my mouth I need to get back to the ER as soon as possible! If I would have even read a board like this , I would have NEVER taken this Drug! The ER doctor was very against this drug and said it should not even be on the Market. (to me that speaks volumes) I will admit I am very anal about my skin and hair and both are a mess from this (My hair is breaking off like crazy) I never want to even see my doctor who prescribed this to me, for if she would have told me any of these things could happen, I would have NEVER taken it! I am a person is allergic to so many things , and this is the worse reaction I have ever had in my life from a medicine! I pray for everyone who has taken this drug and is having problems!

  211. “Some people on here need to gain more control of their minds, deal with your issues. Man up and stop looking for excuses!”

    That’s what Scott said. He hasn’t the faintest idea what is happening out there – but the Doctor that Donna saw in ER does:

    “The Doctor in the ER said to me this drug is dangerous and he has seen many suicides and deaths from allergic reations and people loosing their mind and killing themselves.”

    So why are THOSE doctors not telling the OTHER doctors FOR GOD’S SAKE DON’T PRESCRIBE IT?

    Once again, it is very clear that the prescribing doctor DID NOT warn the smoker of the dangers. There are only two possibilities: either they don’t know, which is very frightening as they are supposed to be experts – or they DO know, but are choosing not to warn people which is nothing short of evil.

    Donna, I’ll pray for you too, to make a full recovery. Thanks for helping me to fight for this nightmare to be brought to a close – I cannot believe how long it is taking.

  212. Hi Chris, thanks for your comments! 🙂
    Nearly 7 days off this disgusting drug and i feel much better. Both my husband and i are much happier.
    It took about 5 days to get out of our system but i am definitely feeling much more like myself.
    Its unbelieveable; the more people i speak to, the more bad things i hear about this drug.
    I just cant believe that Any Government would allow this drug to be sold!! A facebook friend who works in a psych hospital says that she has seen people being admitted due to this drug. I am going to see my doctor today and will give them a serve about this drug.
    I wonder how many people will have to suffer before they remove this drug off the market!
    I just hope i dont get any of the post side effects like alot of people on this forum.
    Something needs to be done about this deadly drug!!!
    Good on you Chris for exposing this drug for what it really is!!

  213. I did not have the faintest Idea what was going on out there myself till now after the fact doing research on this horrfic drug! It makes me sick when I read people calling it the wonder drug! The only wonder about this drug is you will wonder where you hair or skin goes, or your mind. Today I have to go to the dermatoligist for my skin is still burnt and raw on my neck ( it is burning my from the inside out) My lips are blistering again, and my hair is falling out in clumps! I have alopecia that is spreading like crazy! I was only on this for 5 Days, I cannot imagine if I was on it longer what would have happened! I have terrible anixiety right now. People need to do some research, google around, the horror stories are all out there on the web. (and there are way more Horror stories than good ones) I even came across a site that had the reports of suicides and attempted suicides and the other effects of this, it was ALARMING ! I am spreading the word as much as I can on this, and will continue too! I will continue to pray every night for people who’s doctors prescribe them this, this drug not only can mess your brain up ,it can mess your life up! Read around people , some people do not come back from the mess it does to your brain! Thank you for this site, I just wish I had found it sooner, and I would have NEVER taken this, I would have did more reaseach and googled like I am not, and I would not be in the spot like I am now. I am counting my blessing though, because the stories I have read, I am lucky to be only suffering these effects!

  214. and one other thing I would like to add, read around, you may feel fine when first taking it, beware also, side effects and many othetr things happen after you Discontinue Use!

  215. Wow, having read the articles and messages on this site I am glad that I’m not alone in my psychological response to this drug.
    I am usually the calmest, most approachable, relaxed and understanding of people with the patience of a saint. However, after only a few days into use I have stopped and returned to using patches after turning into an over-opinionated, argumentative, challenging and emotionally damaged individual, with thoughts of self harm, depressive mood swings and feelings of despair.
    My mood sank rapidly after I started taking Champix, and I have changed so much it really is quite scary – and even though I’ve stopped taking the tablets, my depression, nightmares and challenging behaviour remain. Will I return to my normal self? I hope so, I truly hope so because I don’t know the person that I’ve become. Why has no-one sued the manufacturers yet? There appears to be a plethora of evidence to support the damage that this ‘medication’ is capable of, and if my partner was not so understanding and supportive I dread to think where I would be now.
    I wonder how long it will take to recover…if at all.

  216. The manufacturer, Pfizer, are facing individual lawsuits and class actions already but all the drug giants seem to just regard this an an occupational hazard that they set a little money aside for, which will be a drop in the ocean compared to what they make, and are still making, from the global sales of the drug.

    No-one knows who will return to normal and who will not, it seems to be totally unpredictable. Your chances are better than average if you weren’t on it long – that’s about as much as I can say from the feedback we have so far. And please, please make sure the bad reaction is reported through the official channels by your doctor. If everyone did that it would have been withdrawn already.

    As for the patches: check this out.

  217. Hi I was on Champix for just over 5 weeks and everything seemed fine when suddenly I started feeling very down and very teary…not me at all, phoned my doctor crying my eyes out and he told me to get off them asap, which I did and things just got worse and worse!!! I have now been off them for 9 weeks and still don’t feel myself, having panic attacks and suffering anxiety on a daily basis and headaches every day, the doctor has tried putting my on Mirtazapine, I took one and was like a zombie for a day so never took them anymore, the docs don’t really seem to want to help me, making me feel like its all in my head, never ever been like this before (am 42 with 5 kids), needless to say I don’t smoke anymore (3 months now) after smoking 50 a day for 25 years but now I wish I hadn’t bothered cos I feel so horrible and stressed out everyday, have been tempted to start again to see if that makes me feel better, how long am I going to feel like this??? Have just bought some St Johns Wort cos that did help but then I stopped taking it..

  218. WOW! I really wish I had researched Champix and read all these comments before I started taking it!

    I have been taking Champix for 6 weeks and discontinued use 3 days ago, the reason for me stopping was that I was terribly bloated for a month and couldn’t cope with it anymore, but after reading comments about the drug I realise it is affecting me in a lot of other ways too.

    I constantly feel ‘down’ and miserable and this has been taken out on my family. I had the weird dreams. I feel like my body has slowed down and I am doing things in slow motion but also I am having to really think about what I am doing and its all such an effort. At work I am terrible, having conversations and finding I havent actually listened to what people are saying.

    I had a drink for my birthday and totally lost 12 hours, I couldnt remember a thing and I was very ill, sick all night, which yes I had a drink but that is not me, I realised today that it has to be the tablets as last night, after alcohol again, and I was not drunk, I had a 10 minute episode in which I thought I was going to pass out, my head was so fuzzy, my ears like I was under water and I found it so hard to co-ordinate. This did pass after 10 minutes but it scared me and is far from normal.

    I hope these tablets come out of my system quickly as I now know they are making me ill and have now been flushed down the loo!

    I hope others research them properly before taking.

    Hence to say, I did quit smoking for a month but started again the day after I stopped the tablets although I cant see me smoking for long as they are tasting terrible!

  219. when I drank on new years eve about 10 days after I came off the drug I was sick for about 4 days and thats when the anxiety started, I have never in my life known anything like it, actually spoke to a chemist about it all today and she agreed that the drug is dangerous!!!!

  220. Hi All, Ive been on Champix here in Australia for three weeks now. Ive noticed ive gone from a bubbly person to a house bound hermit who does nothing but sleep. I constantly feel that i am dreaming and sudden movements affect my balance. Ive noticed these symptoms increasing in the last few days. I go to uni and seem to get emotional over trivial things and lashed out at a teacher. This all seems out of character for me. The worst thing id have to say was at a dinner party i was drinking some scotch and completely blacked out until the next morning. Little did i know i was up all night partying but dont remember a single thing. This was when i first started wondering what is this drug doing to me. Sure it works with cravings but the side effects out weight the positives.

  221. This drug is very unpredictable on its own, but mixed with alcohol, even more so. That’s been known since US musician Carter Albrecht was shot dead by a frightened neighbour for hammering on his door for no apparent reason in 2007. Since then, people have woken up in hospital with no memory of a suicide attempt – family members not speaking to them, not realising the Champix connection – or in jail, being told they’ve done something terrible which they cannot remember at all. Can you imagine anything worse? And when they face trial, will the fact that they were on this drug be enough to save them from the full force of the law?

    Now more evidence is coming to light of Champix triggering epilepsy in people who never had it before, ruining more lives that way. Apparently, NO-ONE should be prescribed this drug without a gene test to make sure it won’t trigger epilepsy. Pfizer already know about this problem. They’re still aggressively marketing the drug, no warnings, KNOWING it is going to cause epilepsy in some individuals.

    I sincerely hope that Pfizer’s reputation is so badly damaged by their own actions that the company never recovers from it, because some of their victims will never recover. Already, I check every product I buy that might be made by a drug company to make sure it’s not Pfizer. After four years of reading these horror stories, and their callous, self-seving denials, I’m boycotting them forever.

  222. I only got to number 6 mike and am confused you say we can have a say but then you contradicted yourself i was on champix and had been for 10 weeks no side affects what’s so ever i have now been smoke free for 10 months my mum husband and a few of my mates have been on this tablet from my giving up again no side affect my uncle and aunt who smoked 30/40 each per day are no smoke free for just over a year again no side effects unless we had a good batch i think we all need to know about the side effects but not concentrate on the negatives as i work for the nos if we conentrated on the negatives of model medicines then i wouldn’t be able to save lives!!.

  223. I’m dubious about any message that claims that about 8 people or more ALL used it, ALL succeeded and ALL had no side effects. It is not impossible as a fluke, but there is no such thing as a “good batch”, the fact is that the drug affects different people in completely different ways.

    The very best result Pfizer ever managed to get in the clinical trials, after running lots of small trials for different lengths of time so they could pick the one that looked the most promising and hype that figure in the newspapers later (standard procedure now), was 44% at twelve weeks. They did not mention in the newspapers that this “success rate” dwindled to 22% by 24 weeks, but it did.

    So Julie’s list of herself, her mum, her husband, a few mates (let’s say 3?) and her uncle and aunt? All still smoke-free long-term? That’s 100% success with eight people. It is extremely unusual for any drug to perform better in real life than it does in the clinical trials, but if this is a fluke, you can understand Julie’s enthusiasm for Champix!

    So she stopped reading at post no.6. Didn’t want to hear about 8, 10, 12, 13, 14, 18, 20, 22, 26, 28, 30… or this one, that also came in today on a different thread:

    “Our son took his life after two weeks on this drug. He had a new car, a beautiful fiance… he was 23, a sweet kind and caring person. All he wanted to do was improve himself by quitting smoking. Two weeks in, he completely changed. Champix killed our boy. People need to know… this is not a “side effect”, this is a direct effect. He is gone and all of us suffer now. Champix killed our boy. They murdered our son for profit.”

    I didn’t write any of these, and I think everyone should read them. Julie said: “I think we all need to know about the side effects but not concentrate on the negatives…” I think she is genuinely unaware of just how horrendous the negatives are with this particular medication. Sorry Julie, it’s a fact. There are SAFE ways to stop smoking that are also more successful than Champix ever was in clinical trials, but Pfizer don’t want the smokers of the world to know. There have been far more deaths and horrible reactions than you realise. You need to read up on it.

  224. i took champix last year for approximately 6 weeks. Its wonderful,. i havent touched a ciggarette since and i have no desire to. i have developed a new hobby have new friends and a new outlook on life,
    NEW HOBBY: riding rollercoasters, i go from high to low constantly,,, and its terrifying
    NEW FRIENDS: the thoughts in my head that when i am driving make me wonder what it would be like to crash the car, that when i am alone tell me to reach for the painkillers (i have a son)
    NEW OUTLOOK: life sucks, everyone hates me, i want to be alone, i dont want to be alone,

    but ya know what, according to my doctor in a years time i will be able to be classified as a non smoker, my goal in life,,, to make it to that year, right now i am not sure i will

  225. I have to agree with Julie Chris. We understand that you and many others have had adverse side effects to Champix but its your GP’s responsibility to determine if the drug is right for you and your own responsibility to be honest with your GP. I live in Ireland and my sister went to our GP to get Champix. The GP refused to prescribe the drug to her as she has a history of clinical depression (10 years ago.). My sister accepted his advice and has sought other treatments.

    Many people have suffered from some mental illness or another without ever being diagnosed by a professional (due to Stigma etc. they wont go to a doctor). These people need to be honest with themselves and inform their GP or he/she won’t be able to make an informed decision.

    I have had many friends who have quit using Champix without any serious side effects. Like all drugs, its down to your GP to decide if it is right for you. Its wrong to say that the drug should be banned because it was prescribed to people who should not have been taking it.

    I sympathise with all the people who have suffered from this drug. Perhaps a drug like Bupropion would have been more apt.

  226. Would you like to explain this view of yours to the family of the person being described here:

    “Our son took his life after two weeks on this drug. He had a new car, a beautiful fiance… he was 23, a sweet kind and caring person. All he wanted to do was improve himself by quitting smoking. Two weeks in, he completely changed. Champix killed our boy. People need to know… this is not a “side effect”, this is a direct effect. He is gone and all of us suffer now. Champix killed our boy. They murdered our son for profit.”

    Billy, you are quite wrong: I have never taken Champix, I haven’t smoked for 14 years. You haven’t read much of this site, just like Julie. You seem to be implying that the only people who are affected by Champix are those who have a history of mental illness, disclosed or not disclosed. Frankly, that is ignorant rubbish.

    As for Zyban (Bupropion) – are you kidding? That was YESTERDAY’S “wonder drug”. It has a failure rate even higher than Champix. Champix should be banned because it has wildly unpredictable side effects which include truly horrific physical illnesses and damage, and some of it doesn’t subside even long after the drug has been discontinued.

    If you still think this is just about depression, you are WAY behind the news. This drug causes grand mal epilepsy in people who have never had epilepsy before – and that’s just one example.

    Can people please stop ‘correcting’ me when they’ve only just glanced at this issue? I’ve been listening to horror stories from victims and their bereaved families for FOUR YEARS NOW. Click on the Champix/Chantix blog category and read all that, and all the comments from smokers and/or their families and stop being complacent about this carnage.

    We can be sure Julie was exaggerating Champix success, for reasons I’ve stated above. Billy says: “I have had many friends who have quit using Champix without any serious side effects.”

    All right: How many exactly, Billy? You also seem to be implying 100% success – long-term, NOT short term because temporary change doesn’t count – and 100% free from serious harm from the drug. No such results were ever found in the trials, and drugs NEVER perform better in the field than they do in the trials. Are you just exaggerating in an off-hand way because you know a few people who have just been lucky (I’m quite prepared to believe THAT), or is this another Champix whitewash like Julie’s post?

  227. I have been taking Champix for one week, the first few days were fine but as soon as the doseage went up to 1mg a day I started feeling extremely tired and have been sleeping all the time. Even to sit up has been an effort and I keep going back to bed. This, for someone who leads an active lifestyle and works 2 jobs is very unusual behaviour, it has been all I can do to get into work the last few days. I have also experienced extreme nausea and have been told that just within a few days of taking the tablets I am losing my personality! Neadless to say I have stopped taking the tablets, I can only imagine how other ppl taking the medication for much longer have been feeling. I have no question that this has been caused by the Champix. …. for those saying that this drug is ok, I can only suggest that this will affect ppl in different ways, but there are alot more cases of adverse reactions than those with positive experiences – otherwise why would it carry a black box warning. Having tried this drug I now understand the above statements, they are not scaremongering, just trying to warn ppl!

  228. Not sure where to start. I was a perfectly happy, constructive, outgoing, and active person. I wanted to quit the butts. Now , after Champix-thank God I had the brains to quit after two weeks, I’m left wondering what just happened. I have no memory of the two weeks, missed appointments, lack of sleep, nausea, and a phycotic string of events that rivals some horror movies. Like driving along talking to myself, and having a strange voice enter my head and getting mad at me, it freaked me out so bad I had to pull over and looked around my car to see who was talking to me. I forgot my helper of 15 years name. Heard the phone ring and spent 15 minutes looking for it, just to be told it was in my hand, This drug is evil, Stay away, I hope this buzz in my head goes away, cause if it doesn’t, I will be in the local ward for disturbed people soon. And sleep…wow. I usually funtion on 6 hours, now I need 10 and still can’t funtion. I keep forgetting to eat. I forget everything. I hope this hasn’t sparked a family hereditary early onset alzheimers.. but fear it’s too late

  229. hi Chris, I’m very new to this! I must say, when I first looked at this forum – as I was so excited about getting champix as I’m eager to give up n nothing else seems to help, I originally thought what a load of nonsense! why would they be prescribed if people suffer. I also thought that any other medication with all it’s side effects havent affected me so why should this 1!?!!!!!
    well!!!!!!! I used champix for 6 days and I tell u, from a stable minded person! I suffered TERRIBLE side effects, I felt as if I was in a dark dark place, was actually physically sick, had no energy – at all, slept for 36 hours then wide awake the next night, everything tasted weird, I was snapping and depressed!
    I will never ever go back to these, I personally believe they are severely dangerous, but, I don’t want to annoy anyone who have found them successful as I salute them for quitting smoking! I’d rather feel like ME and try a different technique! oh – and the TERRIBLE migraines!!!! :/
    sorry to rant but I thought I would share, best of luck Chris with this, and good luck to all the quitters :)))
    Michelle x

  230. ps I feel paul’s pain, his comment was worded much better than mine he has described everything, the nightmares were awful 🙁 thank god I’m free!! x

  231. I live in South Africa. Am a woman in my early 20’s. Went to GP today to get Zyban. He told me that Champix is much better and works wonders. I have never heard of it before and specifically asked him about side effects as I am a teacher and wouldn’t want mood swings to affect my job. I now have the pills and am unsure and worried about taking them. What are my other options for quitting? I don’t smoke a lot – maybe 8 a day and have been smoking for 6 years now but find it very difficult to stop on my own. The stories I have read today have really scared me!!!!

  232. Ps – GP assured me side affects are rare and less than zyban… Havnt started the pills yet either. Not sure if its worth the risk?

  233. It certainly isn’t if it goes badly for you – at which point it is too late. Some people have reported still being very badly affected two years down the line.

    Even if you do take Champix, the chances of being successful in the long run are only about 15%, same as Zyban. It’s rubbish. Hypnotherapy, the Allen Carr book and acupuncture all score better than that with NO RISK.

    Your GPs assurances are WRONG. Champix has more reported serious side effects than any other medication still on the market. Doctors don’t know the facts. They only know what the drug company has told them, and they are the biggest and most ruthless liars in the world. They are called Pfizer. Google “Pfizer Champix concerns” and you’ll see what I mean.

  234. Hmmm… I guess I’m in the “15% Club” because Champix absolutely worked for me (one month smoke-free today). An added benefit was that it affected my drinking the same way: I went from a 9-12 beer per day drinker to almost zero. I have had 2 beers in the past month, on two separate occasions while out to eat with the family, and I do not crave alcohol (or cigarettes) anymore.
    I’m not sure about all of the potential pitfalls, but my experience has been very positive. I had a couple of disturbing dreams during the first week of ‘full treatment,’ but those dreams were disturbing because I had started smoking again in them! I have experienced no physical side effects.
    I wish I could address all of the concerns listed in this thread, but I can only speak from my own experience. I can, in all honesty, say that Champix has changed my life in two ways that I thought would NEVER happen! I am totally satisfied, and I wholeheartedly recommend Champix (with doctor’s approval). My wife and children would agree!

  235. Hi Milt! Congratulations on your deliverance!

    Hardly surprising that we’re going to hear from some of the 15% from time to time, is it? They must be a bit perplexed by the reports from the other 85%.

    The fact is, this drug is totally unpredictable. Sometimes it even does what it’s supposed to do.

  236. Hi Chris. Interesting reading seeing as i’ve just taken my 1st Champix pill. I seriously need to quit smoking and have tried practically everything, so here goes. Hopefully I’ll be in the 15% club. Will keep you posted. Please don’t flame me if I succeed.

  237. Hello, Sk… er, pal! Good luck. Champix doesn’t harm everyone, and some people do succeed. As a matter of fact, I had a smoker in today who succeeded with Champix two years ago, and although he said the drug “did his head in”, I don’t think he meant seriously or permanently. Obviously he started smoking again, but that’s because Champix doesn’t alter the smoker’s BELIEFS about smoking. Hypnotherapy does, if it is done properly and accepted by the client.

    If you succeed with Champix, Sk… Skinbobrabbit? That’s a lovely name, by the way! Unusual. Yes, if you succeed, good for you! I wouldn’t dream of flaming anyone with a name like that. It would be like torching a Disney character, and that’s just WRONG. Best wishes!

  238. Cheers, Chris. Don’t think my character is anything that Disney would be happy about though haha.
    Anyroad, I’m on day 3 and nothing to report so far other than a bit of a wierd dream last night. Nothing unusual about that though.

  239. Day 10 and I’ve not smoked today for the 1st time in *cough *cough years. I don’t want a cigarette and haven’t craved for them for about 3 days really. They started to taste odd on about day 5.
    Side effects? Get a bit of a rumbling stomach with the 1st pill of the day and had a couple of wierd dreams, but so far nothing bad to report. Feeling pretty good about quitting too. My partner started the same time as me and she’s just had a sickly feeling in the mornings, but other than that nothing so far with her either.

  240. HEY! Don’t you be coming on here telling everyone you bought someone else’s book! Mine is much more up to the minute, he wrote that in the 1980s, smoking was different then. Thanks for the update, tho’.

  241. Smoking was different then? Hmmmm… Maybe the cost.
    Anyway. Up to week 5 and me and the mrs have had no bad side effects other than the odd wierd dream and a queasy stomach once or twice. We’re off for 2 weeks in the sun tomorrow and can’t wait for our first smoke free holiday.
    Allen Carr’s book rocks btw 😉

  242. “Smoking was different then” was a joke, Skinbob. Allen Carr’s original book is very good. I’ve read eight of his books. The one on alcohol is good too. Have a nice holiday, you two.

  243. I really wish I’d found this site before I started taking Champix, I definately wouldn’t have taken it and would have saved myself so much misery!
    I started taking Champix 4 weeks ago and have had problems from week one, not realsing it was related to this evil drug. My symptoms have incliuding nausea, constipation, stomach cramps, weight gain, vision problems, sore throat and losing my voice, flu symptoms, forever tired and memory loss, both short term and long. I have had hallucinations, visual and audial, thankfully fleetingly and have also had fleeting thoughts of suicide. I am starting to feel depressed, but I think that’s because I’ve been feeling ill for these 4 weeks with no sign of recovering. My GP said it was pyschological withdrawal, gave me a script for antibiotics and told me to carry on with the good work of not smoking! I’m worried for my job too, I only started 4 months ago, have already used up all my sick leave and am not working to my potentail. Oh, I’m a Mental Health nurse and the side effects that some of these people describe frighten me to death! IT IS NOT a withdrawal from nicotine.
    For all you people who are having postive experiences using Champix, please be aware of the possible side effects and ask your nearest and dearest to keep a close eye on you.

  244. To all the people saying this is scaremongering, or that ‘of course all the people with a bad experience will come on the internet to share it’ – please don’t be so blind to the facts that are staring you in the face. Maybe it worked for you. If it did, I am so happy for you, and a bit jealous. Because for me (well, my partner) and many, many other people, it has been an absolute nightmare.

    Also, if you are happy after 3 weeks – be careful. Don’t get too confident, it wasn’t until 4 weeks that my partner tried to break up with me, told me he wanted to stab my boss, scared the crap out of me, and is somewhere between psychotic and suicidal.

    Just watch your moods, please. I love my partner more than anything, and I’d rather see him smoking than mentally tormented.

    Good luck Chris.

  245. Update! If anyone is reading this, please flush those tablets immediately if you haven’t already. My partner has finally come back to normal after two weeks of being angry, suicidal, confused, depressed and difficult. IT has been one of the worst experiences I’ve ever been through, NO LIE. This is so difficult to deal with, and so sad.

    Just remember, whatever the one you love does or says, it’s NOT ACTUALLY THEM. I’ve taken some serious abuse over the last few weeks, it’s been an absolute nightmare. And then on Thurs, he woke up feeling better, and life has been perfect again since then!

    Be careful, and don’t dismiss what is written here for you to read.

  246. I am seriously beginning to feel that this drug is causing more problems than it purports to solve. My wife had to stop taking it after 3 weeks due to the side effects.
    It is a very very dangerous drug, in my opinion, probably more dangerous than then smoking.
    If you are considering taking it PLEASE do some indepth research, if you are taking it, good luck.

  247. Is it normal to get angry at the slightest thing when taking champix?
    I have only been taking them for one week, but find myself getting angry at the slightest thing!!!! Please someone reply .

  248. Uncontrollable anger? Oh yes – and the rest! First of all, this drug has approx. a 15% success rate if you look at the results at one year. That’s 85% failure.

    Now follow the link below, read through the comments that follow from Champix users, then ask yourself these two questions: “Was I properly warned about this? Do I want to try suing the manufacturer AFTER my life is ruined, or should I play safe?” There are much safer ways to quit smoking.

    More info

  249. Hi-have been on champix for 4 wks after smoking 20 a day for 27yrs. I stopeed smoking 10days ago. Ive been fine…until today. So low….so very tired, read all the posts on here and have binned the tablets! When I started on these my smoking cessation nurse warned me about depression, but nothing else.
    Thankyou for this blog..so pleased Ive read it.

  250. Well I came across this site because I was looking for answers as to why I had so many of the side effects and tbh the mouth ulsers where the last straw as it seems the only side effect that was left was depression…… I’m on day 20 and have stopped smoking on the day I picked day 12 but more or less stoped on day 8……at first I thought the drug was like a miracle drug but as time went on I’ve realised I was being strong and having to cope with the endless side effects as much as I would if I went cold turkey….. Which I have done plenty of times without wondering if I’m seriously ill and need to head to the hospital (not over the mouth ulsers) the pains in my limps and brain not working properly. I’m grateful I came across this website tonight and I will nor take anymore of the pills…… Cold turkey from now on 🙂 thanks

  251. Glad to have found this. Really needed the help to ditch the smokes and the stupid cigarette gum..it was ridiculous. Knowing full well that this was ‘black box’ medication, my doc made me quite aware of that and was fairly certain that I wouldn’t need the required amounts..so I was told to stick with half pills for the duration but stay on them for the 12 weeks. Well, within the first couple of days, cried during sex and told my man that he was an ass. Totally not myself at all. I noticed that some things bothered me way more than usual. I was I guess feeling agitated most days. So been taking these pills for almost 8 weeks I think and just in the past couple of days, I have noticed the sensations in my mouth increasing..my tongue has felt kinda fuzzy or tingly since I started but now the sensation has now gone a bit further..my gums were starting to feel strange, tongue was even more so, this morning, I am eating toast and my mouth feels like it is full of razor blades! I have chosen to ditch the pills. I have quit both the smokes and gum..now to repair the relationship..

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