Fear of vomiting is pretty difficult to set aside when one of the listed side effects of your anti-anxiety medication is "nausea and vomiting." The problem with this for emetophobia sufferers is that they do not want to take the drug. Many people who fear vomiting subsequently have limited enjoyment of life because their emetophobia goes untreated. What is worse, emetophobia is a disorder that is often surrounded by a lot of shame. Because emetophobes are ashamed to tell their doctors exactly how terrified of vomiting they are, they lie about taking the drug. The doctor scratches her head, changes the dosage, tries different similar drugs and wonders why nothing is working.
What are your options?
Option 1 - education. Simply learning three important facts may help emetophobia sufferers with their anxiety around taking drugs that will help them.
- According to www.wrongdiagnosis.com, nausea and vomiting are listed as side effects in at least 2,929 drugs currently on the market. There are probably more. I did a lot of reading about clinical drug trials today and the protocols used to determine side effects. When drug trials are conducted, it's up to the doctor managing the patient to decide if the side effect is related to the drug. Nausea and vomiting are easy to jot down, because nausea and vomiting are normal for most people. Many anxious or depressed people get nauseous and vomit - whether they're taking a drug or not. Emetophobics do not.
- Emetophobia sufferers may get nauseous, but they will not vomit. I have talked with literally thousands of emetophobics over the past nine years on the International Emetophobia Society discussion forum. I have never heard of an emetophobic person vomiting from trying an anti-anxiety medication. They report nausea, yes. But emetophobia sufferers have a hard time distinguishing between nausea caused by a drug and nausea caused by anxiety.
- Finally, drug companies are corrupt. I could go on and on about this but suffice to say, they will report nausea and vomiting because they have to report something or people will get suspicious about the validity of the trial. Nausea is simple. People get some form of nausea on any given day. If you don't have a fear of vomiting, you may assume it's from the drug and vomit. Or you may vomit for any other reason such as illness or bad food. It all gets recorded on the drug trial.