How Levaquin Tried to Kill Me, but I Fought Back

img_5379I have a very serious story to share. I’ve put off writing it for a number of reasons: fear that writing it down gives it more power or permanence in my life, fear that the story isn’t actually over, shame that I allowed this to happen at all, especially given what happened to my dog Holly. That’s probably the biggest reason I’ve put off sharing this on the blog and on social media: I should know better than to just blindly trust a doctor prescribing medication. That killed my dog. And it could’ve killed me.

On April 20, 2016, my doctor (now former) prescribed a fluoroquinolone antibiotic called Levaquin (actually I took the generic, levafloxacin — more on that later) to treat a sinus infection. The only warning he gave me was to take a probiotic along with it, as it might upset my stomach. I’d been a patient of his for years and had no reason to question his medical advice. While I’d never taken a fluoroquinolone class antibiotic before, I trusted he knew best.

Ah, trust. There’s that word. I guarantee you there are some who will read this post and scorn me for just trusting my doctor and not doing research. I know this will happen because it happened after Holly died and it happened to my face when I told people about what Levaquin did to me. Because it’s easy to put on moral superiority when it’s someone else’s pain. If you’re gearing up to comment about how stupid I was to blindly trust my doctor, do everyone a favor and just don’t. I won’t approve your comment anyway.

The morning of April 23, after taking my fourth dose (of a 14-day course), I ended up in the ER with breathing difficulties, racing heart, vertigo to the point of being unable to stand, and extreme anxiety. Let that sink in for a moment: my first symptoms of an adverse reaction were serious enough to justify a trip to the emergency room.

It took the ER techs four tries to get an IV started. While laying there I developed internal tremors–I don’t know how else to describe them other than to say there were earthquakes going on inside my body. I asked the doctor if this was a reaction to Levaquin. He said no, if it was a reaction, my lips would be swollen or my throat would be closing. He said these symptoms were simply me being dehydrated.

He was grossly misinformed. What I actually was experiencing in that moment was an attack on my central nervous system.

Over the next couple of days my symptoms escalated to include: pain in my hamstrings and hips, roaming anxiety, mental fog and confusion, uncontrollable muscle twitching, dizziness, internal trembling, inability to regulate body temperature, difficulty breathing, middle ear pressure and tinnitus, racing heart, insomnia, myoclonus, peripheral neuropathy.

Any one of those symptoms alone is troubling. Combined, they were terrifying.

Then came the word loss and cognitive dysfunction.

Word loss: I would look at an object, know what the object was and be unable to get the name of the object out of my mouth. Remember, I’m an author. I make a living using words. At this point I figured my writing career was over.

Cognitive dysfunction: I couldn’t process information, especially if I had to process more than one information input at a time. For example, if I was driving (one input) and someone said something to me (second input), I would lose the ability to focus on either.

Some of the most crushing moments in this journey came when my friends laughed at me when they witnessed my cognitive impairment first hand, even though I’d told them I’d been poisoned by Levaquin and was going through severe trauma. They actually laughed at me. In fact, what I found is that for the most part, people don’t want to hear that you’re struggling. It makes them uncomfortable. What they want to hear is that you’re fine, because that way there’s no responsibility on their part. I quickly discerned who truly wanted to hear how I was doing and who just wanted me to tell them I was “fine”. I’m so grateful to those friends who actually listened and cared. (Thank you.)

Overwhelmed with this onslaught of symptoms, I of course made an appointment to go back to my doctor, but wasn’t able to get in to see him until the following week. So I opted to see his assistant at the end of the week, still 3 days away. In the meantime, I took to the internet to research what the hell was happening to me.

What I found scared me to death. Story after story of people crippled by this medication. Some cases were so severe, people took one pill and never walked again. If you think I’m kidding, go look for yourself.

During that search I came across a site called FloxieHope. There I found stories not only of people who’d been adversely affected by Levaquin (as well as Cipro, Avelox and other fluoroquinolone antibiotics), but people who had recovered. I scoured the recovery stories, making a list of the things they’d done to get better. From that list I made a plan of action and got to work.

Later that week, I did see my doctor’s assistant. She ran standard tests to check system function, but (as is the case with most people poisoned by FQs) all my numbers came back normal. In today’s medical world, normal numbers means no problem. While the assistant agreed something was happening to me, because my numbers were normal, she had no way of treating me. When I explained to her and even showed her the research I’d done online for how others have recovered, she literally told me to stop reading the internet.

Let me say this as clearly as I can: researching on the internet saved my life.

At this point my doctor, clueless on how to help me and probably afraid I was going to sue him, started passing me off to different specialists. The only one who was of any help at all was my neurologist. He is the only doctor in this process who knew that fluoroquinolone antibiotics cause memory loss and neuropathy (both which he diagnosed me with).

Based on what I’d read from recovery stories, I sought the advice of a naturopath. I also began acupuncture and therapeutic massage. And I prayed. A LOT.

I cannot begin to describe the anguish I was in at this point. I don’t use that word lightly. My body hurt. Every time I tried to fall asleep, myoclonus would startle me awake. Anxiety attacks hit me out of nowhere. I couldn’t think. I couldn’t eat, either. Not only had the antibiotic wrecked my intestines, it had also caused strange issues with my ability to swallow. I also experienced heartburn, which I never have. My guess is this had something to do with the central nervous system damage and smooth muscle function.

I want to stop here and note a couple of things. First of all, two weeks after I took Levaquin, the FDA updated the safety guidelines to state that doctors should not prescribe fluoroquinolone antibiotics for routine infections. This is something I’d literally argued with my doctor about. I told him this medication was like a nuclear bomb going off in my body. He maintained he’d followed standard protocol according to (flawed) FDA guidelines regarding these drugs. (You can read more about the history of those guidelines here.) I have to say, I can’t help but wonder what my life would be like today had the FDA not dragged their feet and instead updated those guidelines even a couple of months earlier.

I contacted a lawyer a month after the initial reaction. He said if I’d taken the name brand medication, Levaquin, I would have a slam dunk case. But because I took levafloxacin, the generic form, I couldn’t sue the manufacturers, because there is a law in America that consumers cannot sue the manufacturers of generic medication. That’s right: no recourse and no justice for people damaged by generic forms of medication. Keep in mind that many insurance companies require patients take generic forms if they exist. The only action I could take, the lawyer told me, was to contact my representatives and ask them to change the law. Isn’t that great? God bless America. (Needless to say, I’m not a huge fan of Big Pharma or Big Gov.)

Armed with the recovery stories from FloxieHope, my naturopath and I came up with a regimen of supplements to counteract and heal the damage done to my body. It was a bit like throwing spaghetti at the wall and seeing what stuck, but I was desperate to try anything if it would get me my life back.

Here are the things that helped me recover from Levaquin toxicity, as well as additional information for those seeking help. Please note that not everything works for everyone. What helped me might not help you. Because there is no set treatment or protocol for FQ toxicity, you have to try things and see if they help. If they don’t, then don’t use them. That being said, here’s what helped me:

  • MagnesiumLevaquin robs your body of magnesium, but having an abundance of magnesium available in your body can help prevent and repair damage
    • Magnesium chloride and magnesium threonate are good forms to take
    • Add magnesium in liquid form to your drinking water and drink it throughout the day. I used brand called ReMag.
    • Natural Calm is a magnesium citrate drink that can help calm anxiety, which is helpful before sleeping, but it can irritate your stomach
    • Magnesium threonate crosses the blood-brain barrier and specifically targets brain function, which can help with brain fog
    • Epsom salt baths help relax your muscles and rid your joints of pain, but also get magnesium into our system. Very helpful before trying to sleep.
    • Magnesium lotion is like a miracle for aching joints. You can find it at health food stores such as Sprouts.
  • TurmericTaking turmeric supplements or eating foods rich in turmeric can help fight inflammation
  • Bone broth and anti-inflammation diet
    • Eating a clean diet that is high in anti-inflammatory foods will help you recover faster
    • Avoid sugar and gluten as much as possible, as both impede brain function
    • Bone broth can help with immune function, gut health and supply collagen
  • ProbioticsTake a good probiotic to help get your gut flora in balance. Studies show your gut health directly affects your brain health and function.
    • Fermented foods (sauerkraut, kefir) are also hugely beneficial to gut health
  • Active B VitaminsB vitamins are essential for nerve function as well as memory. Taking the active form (often has “methyl” in the name or an L in front of it) makes them more bioavailable to your body
    • I like the Jarrow’s B-Right. I could tell a different in energy levels and mental clarity after I started them.
  • ALA, NAC, TaurineThese supplements support detoxification and help restore nerve function
  • CoQ10, MitoQFluoroquinolones break down cell walls and kill mitochondria. That’s how they work. So even after the drug is out of your system, it leaves a trail of mitochondria damage, which some think is permanent. (That hasn’t been the case for me.) Because mitochondria are your energy centers for your cells, this leads to mental and muscle fatigue, as well as other problems due to poor cellular function.
    • I found CoQ10 helped with my energy levels. I splurged on two months of MitoQ and felt a big difference. Because it’s expensive, though, I switched to Jarrow’s brand QH+ PQQ. I also found it effective.
  • Healthy fatsAdding lots of healthy fats to your diet will help boost your brain health and help get neurogenesis (birthing new neurons) get started again.
    • Coconut oil, MCT oil, avocados and avocado oil, and grass-fed butter are excellent sources of Omega-3 acids which maintain brain health and even reverse neurological decline (such as Alzheimer’s)
  • Tart Cherry JuiceFull of natural melatonin, so very useful before sleeping. I used the concentrate so I could mix my own ratio depending on how much help I needed getting to sleep.
    • If insomnia was really bad, or I woke up in the night, I’d take liquid melatonin as well.
      • My doc prescribed Xanax to help me sleep, but it gave me extreme paranoia, waking nightmares and hallucinations.
  • Thorne Basic Detox NutrientsThis is a multivitamin that has the active B vitamins, but also has phosphatidylcholine, which helps rebuild cell walls and detox the liver.
    • I would take this OR active B vitamins, not both at the same time.
  • L-theanineI’ve added this recently and find it helps with focus and lifting brain fog
  • CollagenLevaquin damages connective tissue, not only in your joints but also in your skin, your teeth, everywhere
    • I think collagen quickened my recovery, by helping replace what was being broken down by the drug
    • Most powdered forms taste like cow (ugh). The brand I prefer is Bulletproof Collagen Protein. It has hardly any taste. I blend it into my coffee, along with grass-fed butter.
  • Eat foods that boost glutathione
    • Glutathione is a product made by your liver that helps detox bad stuff. Certain foods boost glutathione production: brussel sprouts, broccoli, parsley, cabbage, cauliflower.
  • Keep moving
    • Continue to move, even if your joints hurt, but take care to do so carefully so you don’t tax your tendons or risk falling
    • Using your muscles will help heal mitochondria, but don’t overdo it. Go slow and work your way up after you start regaining your energy.
    • I did qigong in the beginning, going very slow
  • Meditate and pray
    • Levaquin fries your central nervous system, skewing your autonomic system so that your sympathetic (fight or flight) gets amped up, and your parasympathetic (relaxation) gets suppressed. This is one of the reasons people experience extreme anxiety when on levaquin.
    • Every night when I soaked in the epsom salt bath, I’d have a chat with God about how we were going to get through this and this wasn’t how I was going to end. Your mileage may vary as far as your spiritual life goes, but I found this to be immensely helpful, especially in helping calm down the anxiety and fear. I had faith that I’d get better. That’s what our bodies do. They heal. I knew my job was to support my body in doing its job.
  • Acupuncture
    • I did a series of whole-body acupuncture sessions, mostly to target neuropathy in my hands and feet. It helped the neuropathy, but also helped calm down my whole body. I don’t know how, but it worked. The first couple of sessions were odd, but after that I actually liked it.
  • Drink water
    • I drank a gallon a day to help move the drug out of my system
  • Therapeutic Massage
    • I experienced a lot of tendon and joint pain, and found therapeutic massage helped. I think it also helped move the levaquin out of my tissues and lymphatic system.

Some advice for anyone going through this:

If your doctor won’t listen to you or believe you (and odds are they won’t), trust your gut and find another doctor if possible. It took me three months to get an appointment with a new doctor, but it was worth the wait. I found a new doctor who is willing to work with my naturopath and doesn’t mind that I do alternative treatments such as acupuncture. She also didn’t question if this had really happened to me, but rather ordered additional tests that my original doctor didn’t order, to rule out other kinds of damage and risks.

6a0ff12746a60b5ec15ab5d692ad4d8e.jpgI’ve found that my mindset made a huge difference in this journey. A week after that initial ER visit, I had this overwhelming compulsion to get a massage, despite being in terrible pain. I called some places near my home, but they were booked all weekend. This was at noon on a Saturday. I called another place a little farther away, and they had an opening at 1pm. I raced over there. Chatting with the therapist a bit beforehand to explain what was happening, we came to realize we both were believers. During the massage, the therapist prayed over me. Now, your mileage may vary, but for me, that was pretty amazing. At the end of the session, he said he’d wondered what was up with that opening in his schedule on a Saturday, since he’s usually booked solid. He said clearly God knew I needed that slot. To me, that was a sign that I wasn’t in this alone, and that I was going to get better. I told myself Levaquin poisoning was part of my story, but it wasn’t the end of my story. This wasn’t the end of me. Reminding me of this every day kept me going. I rejected letting this poisoning settle and become who I am. I didn’t and won’t let this define me.

One of the parting shots of Levaquin toxicity is hair loss. Mine started shedding two months after I took the medication. It came out in handfuls. It’s like Levaquin’s one last way of giving you the finger. It’s bad enough that you hurt and you can’t think. Then your hair thins out. Mine got to the point where I didn’t want to leave the house. It was really awful. Again, with the help of internet resources and my naturopath, I did some things to kick-start the regrowth process: Wellness Mama’s Hair Growth Serum, castor oil, essential oils, liquid biotin drops, collagen, and zinc supplements. It’s now five months after the shedding began and a lot of it has regrown. I cut it back to a pixie cut so the difference in lengths isn’t as obvious. It’s definitely growing in.

img_5786I’m now almost seven months out from taking that first dose of Levaquin. I’d say I’m about 98% better. I’m writing again, thank God. When people ask when my next book is coming out, I feel a sense of shame. This medication robbed me of most of this year, and that is time I’ll never get back. Still, I have so much to be grateful for. Everyday I’m grateful I haven’t suffered an aortic aneurysm or snapped an Achilles tendon. I still experience some joint and ligament pain depending on what I eat and how I exercise. And while I can tell my cognitive function isn’t 100% yet, I’m going to get there. I’m going to come back from this better than I was before.

This is not the end of me. This has only shown me how strong I am. 

If you’ve taken Levaquin, Cipro, Avelox or any other form of fluoroquinolone antibiotic and think you’ve suffered adverse affects, please visit FloxieHope. The stories and information on that site saved my life. Please also feel free to leave a comment or share your story below. My post about Holly and Deramaxx has proven informative and useful to others. My hope is this post will be helpful as well. That being said, I reserve the right to delete any disparaging remarks. If you have nothing beneficial to add to the conversation, go elsewhere. And if you know someone going through chronic illness or health crisis, please show them compassion, patience and understanding. For the love of God, don’t laugh at them.

TL:DR – Taking Levaquin can seriously damage your health. Proceed with caution.

UPDATE December 2018: Thank you to everyone who has read and shared this post. Thank you to everyone who has reached out to me with encouragement and with their own stories about fluoroquinolone antibiotics. My hope has always been that by sharing my story I might help others either in their own recovery journey or in warning them of the dangers of these medications. Knowing that my story is helping others makes my having gone through it somehow meaningful. It wasn’t in vain. So thank you for reaching out to me and letting me know my story has helped you. I’ve put everything in here, all the information I have to share. I receive a lot of requests from people asking for help, and while I understand what you’re going through, I cannot offer more than what I’ve written here. My tendency is to wrap my arms around the entire world, to help the whole world. I am one person, though, and I can’t carry the world. Please understand if I am unable to respond personally to your messages. Please know that my heart goes out to you, and I freely offer my story here to you in hopes it may help you as you find healing. Above all I wish you wholeness and joy. Thank you. -Amy


157 Comments Add yours

  1. Larissa D says:

    I remember when you first posted about this on your personal FB. I had never heard about it, and over 17 years as a hospital RN, I have administered many doses of this antibiotic class. Within days of you posting, I read the FDA’s warning. Shortly after that, I had a patient start displaying strange neurological symptoms after 3 doses of IV levaquin. Thankfully, my doctor who was on that day had also read the new guidelines. We aren’t using it as much as we used to. Thank you for sharing your experience. I’m sorry you had this happen to you, and pray for your complete recovery.

    1. Andrea Siani says:

      My son in law is a DPT and after my experience with FQAD he is very aware of the serious side effects and sees patients often that he can trace their tendon issues/nerves (on the Epic medical record program) to having recently taken a fluoroquinolone antibiotic. The serious debilitating side effects are currently going unrecognized because there is no biomarker and they are also hard to attribute to an antibiotic when awareness is so low.The increase in tendon, joint, back and other unexplained muscular skeletal conditions can often be traced back to FQ antibiotics. Change is slow but awareness is growing. Thanks you for listening to your friend.

    2. Marie Desilets says:

      Thank you for sharing your info Amy. I am 60..have taken flouro’s about 8 times in ten years..never knowing that my growing number of health issues were related. In 2015 I was given back to back rx’s of levaquin..that was the straw that broke the camel’s back..all he’ll broke loose. I won’t go into what I’ve been through and continue to experience. I’m just thankful for your input. I “rescued” my elderly mom and elderly mother-in-law from receiving this poison that I’m sure would have killed them. Had I not been present on 2 dif occasions ..the doc’s would have written out their death sentence..I can’t believe how the FDA is able to keep this on the market and not remove it from the shelf!!! And how the medical professionals STILL don’t seem to have all the facts.

      1. Todd says:

        Appreciate you and what you shared. I scratched my leg on some rocks at a local lake. 12 days later the infection I had brewing really took off. After 6 of keflex I was hospitalized for 4 days and pumped with IV antibiotics. Its still uncertain what exactly my infection/cellulitis was. After the hospital I spent 20 days on generic levaquin. I honestly thought the joint warnings and potential side effects were bogus and took the “won’t happen to me” attitude. It’s now 2.5 weeks post last dose and I’ve been feeling the side effects every day. Mostly joint pain. My shoulders, knees, back, and ankles hurt. I began my treadmill exercise a 5 days ago and when I attempted the third day the pain was unbearable in my right ankle (Achilles tendon). I’ve begun my research and have been amazed what I’ve found. Never would’ve guessed. My doctors were very concerned about the course of events and medicines they were using to treat my infection, so I don’t have comments to share about that. They didn’t know what I had other than it was bad and treated it with the “hard stuff” to save my leg.
        Your advice is solid and nicely combines all the post dose research I’ve been doing (especially prayer) So, here’s to healing up and getting back to and even better than I was before my little scratch. T.W.

    3. Kim says:

      Amy, just wanted to say Thank you!!! I will continue to fight this battle that only a handful believes.
      Love and prayers—-Kim

    4. Barb says:

      To Everyone Reading This,

      I’m so sorry for your experience and the loss of you dog. I feel for you. Also, I just finished reading this article, and although I have only commented to a blog online, I feel I have to respond to your story.

      It’s amazing I even saw your story but so glad I did. I was doing research online looking for answers for my, almost identical, symptoms. I was on Levaquin 3 weeks ago, and 5 days into taking the 10 day course of 750 mg. for 10 days for a sinus infection, I suddenly started having pain. I haven’t been to my Dr. for it yet so don’t have an official diagnosis, but I’m sure it’s going to be very similar, if not the same, due to Levaquin toxicity. I just want to thank you for sharing this story. This experience is alienating and to not have understanding from the medical community just multiplied that alienation, as my Dr. doesn’t see any urgency in getting me in because he doesn’t believe Levaquin is capable of this. I have an appointment with a new Dr. soon.

      I began researching this problem last week and stumbled upon the name of Dr. who is the head , is a watchdog group and the one responsible for fighting for this cause. This is a serious problem,and has resulted in the makers of Levaquin having to put a warning on the label warning patients of these possible side effects, Currently, he’s fighting for awareness of aneurysm risk, as well as others. I contacted him because to wanted to know if there was a treatment and if my symptoms sounded like those of others affected. He responded to my email and I have joined his cause. He said he is getting 3 emails a week, on average, of people experiencing this from Levaquin.

      I wanted to let you know how much I appreciate your advice because you have given me hope. Also, thought you and other readers might be interested to know there’s a group fighting for this cause and you have a lot of support.

      Thank you so much!

      I w

      I be

      1. Randy R says:

        How long did it take for the muscle twitches and myclonic jerks to stop?

      2. eli says:

        whats the name of the doctor?

  2. Dion Lucas says:

    Amy, first of all, thank you for sharing your story. You are very brave in doing so and by doing that have informed people not only about this awful drug but to trust your instinks, question your doctor even if you have trusted he or she for a long time, get informed through the Internet, and fight like hell when you need too. Even though I know most of your story, reading it here, all at once, makes it even more powerful. I’m holding back tears as I type this. I know you know that right about the exact time this started happening to you, we too trusted our oral surgeon in prescribing Percocet to our handicapped daughter after having her wisdom teeth removed, to see her two days later in the ER with a near fatal overdose, even with us following the prescription dose correctly. Although the stories are different, the similarities are what sticks with me. Don’t have complete trust in anyone in the medical community and get all the information you possibly can before starting or putting a loved one on any drug. My heart goes out to you. I love you and wait for the day you post a follow up saying you are 100% my friend. PS: I completely agree with you on the faith part. God had a different plan and he wasn’t ready for you to come to heaven just yet.

  3. Unfortunately, I can believe some of your friends laughed at you. I got it all the time and try to make light of it. But some days it is tough. I snapped once at my family when they laughed and asked if they would laugh at someone in a wheelchair or someone missing limbs. Haha, it’s funny to laugh at my disability caused by chemo & a stroke. They felt really bad and had no idea- because I was always trying to make light of it to put on a brave face- how much it bothered me. Maybe if you explained it that way to the friends who did laugh they would understand. Though it is horrible that they did that to you.

  4. bkonigsberg says:

    I’m glad you wrote about this. I know it isn’t easy to share stories like this, and you are brave to do so. Thank you! Also, I’m glad you’re 98%! Here’s to 100% soon!

  5. Nannette White says:


    I just read your blog post with tears in my eyes. I have not been the friend I wish I was.

    I love you. I am so sad this journey has been so long… And so hard, and so much on your own.

    And then again, I am so thankful for your tenacity….will….strength and love for research…. And that God has been on your side throughout.

    Thank you for writing this blog, which I know is going to help SO many people!

    I love you, dear friend!


  6. Irene says:

    Amy, I am so sorry you went through such a painful and harrowing experience. It also sounded so demoralizing to not be believed. But you had such resilience that you kept going, did your research and I thank you for sharing your stories AND the things that helped.
    Interestingly, turmeric and probiotics help inflammation with Inflammatory Bowel Disorders, too. It is so important to have the community like you got in your healing therapist. And hard to deal with the pain of what people say and do, not realizing how much it impacts a person going through it..Sometimes it just helps to have someone asks what they can do, or bring you coffee or lotion or something like that. I think it is like war trauma — only when so,some has been in the trenches with you, do they “get it”.
    That support is golden. And so am glad your faith helped. I am glad you got through this and are embracing the days. It really helped me to read this, even though I wish you did not have to go through so much pain to be sharing this piece of your life journey. I sen dyou big hugs and my sincerest gratitiude for this post an de your presence in my life, as it has been and as it continues to be.

  7. Lisa says:

    Hi Amy,

    Thank you so much for writing about your journey through fluoroquinolone toxicity! I’m so glad that you have made such a wonderful recovery, and I’m also glad that helped you! Can I please reblog this post on I think that the people in the “floxie” community would appreciate hearing about your journey and your healing methods.

    For some reason I can’t think of much to say right now (it’s late, and I’m a morning person), but I’m so glad that you have recovered so well and that you shared your story with your community!

    Hugs of gratitude,

  8. Kristi says:


    You were the first one to connect the dots for me. I took Levaquin 2x. 7.5 years before you and again 6 years ago and from day 3 post-Levaquin I was completely changed. For 7 years doctors tested me to try and determine what was wrong with me. They literally had no idea I was reeling from Levaquin side-effects. It wasn’t until you shared your story and I realized it was the “same” as mine that I checked my medical and pharmacy records to discover that I’d taken Levaquin. I had no idea! I literally took the antibiotic 2x and, though I thought I was going to die, never recognized the pain as being a side-effect. I literally just thought I had the worst bronchitis known to man or the swine flu and was dying.

    Thanks to your sharing your story, I have finally begun to intelligently heal. I love you. Thank you.


    1. Cheryl says:

      Hi Kristi – can I ask, after 7 years, how you have finally begun to intelligently heal and what are your symptoms? I am caring for my brother who is 8 years into his suffering from taking Levaquin and being not believed or treated by numerous doctors, painful emgs, being prescribed knock out painkillers, losing his business and any quality of life, he has now waived the white flag and moved from FL to IL to have me try to help find him anyone here who can relieve his suffering. I believe he most likely has permanent nerve damage, central nervous system damage and autonomic nerve damage in conjunction with digestive issues and PTSD and are really overwhelmed as to where to start to seek help for him. I just read Amy’s story and I am just not sure if trying all the things she did to heal would even work since it has been 8 long years of suffering for my brother with his symptoms? I hope you are feeling better and appreciate any comments or suggestions that you are able to provide?! Be well and thanks for listening.

  9. Dad says:

    What an Incredible Woman….that daughter of mine/ours… MTTNG!

    1. Chelsea says:

      I am a new Floxie. It has been almost a year and I seriously have almost all the same symptoms as this story! This is crazy to me!

      May I ask how long until you started noticing relief from your symptoms? I know everyone is different but I need some hope from someone who has been through it.

      1. Hi Chelsea. I’m sorry you’re going through this. Some of my symptoms (such as digestive issues) improved after 3 or so months of taking supplements and taking deliberate steps to heal. Other symptoms took much longer, such as the neurological issues. By the 1 year anniversary of being floxed, most of my symptoms were greatly improved or gone, and only a few nagging things remained. Like you said, though: everyone is unique and everyone’s journey is different. What made the difference for me was daily deliberate actions to aid in my healing and believing I would get better.

  10. What a nightmare! Am glad you figured it out and are on the mend.

  11. Frank says: are strong , but you are also LUCKY! I am glad for you. I am 20 months out with peripheral neuropathy from Cipro. I used to climb mountains and now…crippled. I am doing many of the supplements that you have. The irony is I was a 33 year veteran Paramedic. I completely worshipped at the alter of Medicine and now I am betrayed by it.

    1. I’m so sorry, Frank.

  12. Dawn Valenzuela says:

    Reading your story was like reading my own. I was also floxed by levafloxcin and had the same symptoms plus a set of bonus symptoms such as rib dislocation problems and lymph drainage problems. I’d love to try all the same things you have but I’m restricted by the fact that insurance doesn’t cover these remedies and I went broke and into debt with all my own and my husband’s medical expenses this past year. He has congestive heart failure and COPD. You know how stress cause our symptoms to get worse? Yeah, well I’ve had more than my fair share of stress this year.
    Your story gives me hope though and I too have strong faith that God will bring me through this. I will do as many of the least expensive things you had success with and continue to pray for my own healing as well as yours and other like us. Blessings

    1. I’m so sorry, Dawn.

  13. Bettina says:

    Dear Amy, thank you for sharing. Your story is so inspiring and so valuable, specially for me that I was just intoxicated by Levoproxacin 10 days ago. I am experiencing the exact same symptoms 😦
    I would love if you could share a bit of the progression/regression of your symptoms.
    What did you experience 1st week, 1st month, 2nd month, etc. As well as how did it work for you in terms of getting worst everyday and them healing with no setbacks? And what triggered setbacks and long they lasted? Where you able to drive the whole time? Did you reduce your walking, and work activities at what extent? Would you recommend some mental rest? Like 15 days or so? Or to apply for a short term disability? Or FMLA, I am scared about neurologico symptoms to get worst because overdoing it?
    I am 41, very soon 42, single mom and full time engineer, that cognitive piece is extremely scary 😦 as well as the panick attacks, insomnia, etc. All new to us.
    I hope soon I will be able to advocate for others as you are doing it now and yes!:this experience can only make us better people, stronger, more humble, prioritizing helping others and caring for others. Now I know that as soon as I get stronger I will help others with disabilities mentally and physically, disabilities are really tough and I will become more active on helping because we all can be there and we need to have a better community to support them.

    All my respects girl, you have done it so with so much courage, faith and love that we all feel extremely hopeful and inspired.

    Thanks, Bettina

    1. Sarah says:

      Bettina, I am 5 days out and have same symptoms and questions…. do you have any insight?

      1. Bettina says:

        Hello Sarah, I am 12 weeks out now, I can email you if you have questions.

  14. Doug Lieuwen says:

    I think it is human nature to trust our doctors not to poison us. I took cipro year after year and suffered terribly for it. I just wrote my recovery story as well. I too believe in the power of prayer.

    1. This experience taught me the power of prayer and faith. I wouldn’t be where I am now without it. I hope you’re recovering well, Doug.

  15. I am wondering about your swallowing difficulties. I have never met anyone else who experienced that symptom. Is it gone now? Was there anything specific you did for it? It is quite scary.

    1. Cindy says:

      I wish I had known all this last month on July 9th when I too trusted a doctor who gave no warning and prescribed levoflaxacin for my first time for a sinus infection. One pill and my throat thickened, my tongue felt like a flaming fire. Straight to the ER and received Benadryl 50 mg and Pepcid 20 mg. It did help the symptoms, but the damage was done and ready to hijack my body. I have lived on Benadryl and pepcid mostly because the Benadryl is the only thing to calm my mental health deep dark depression. This article by Amy has given me hope. My functional medicine person is working with me on the supplements. The Paleo powder from Nutriwest really helps with collegen replacement. I had to wear a neck brace for a long time but that supplement has helped me gain some strength. But now it has moved into my rib cage and down my right leg and extreme nasea. I case manage Special Education students and I already took a day off to go to the ER to check out my heart. So far so good, but that fear of where will it strike next is quite debilitating. I am taking the magnesium, B12, and Vitamin D and now I am following a lectin free diet to help my stomach battle this ravaging poison. I had an endoscope done and they dilated where it was thickened, but it already feels thick again. It will be 2 months on Sept 9 and only one pill has made me feel like death is imminent. But I too have faith in God and I ask for healing everyday because my 13 year old daughter was adopted from China 12 years ago and I am single and I get so angry due to the grief and loss process that she may have to grow up with my sister.

      1. I’m so sorry, Cindy.

    2. Hi Shannon. It is scary. I’m sorry you had it, too. I think it was related to vagus nerve damage. When my nerves began to heal, the swallowing problem faded away. It took a while, though.

  16. Gary says:

    Hi Amy.

    Good story – Similar to mine. My levaquin adventure with legal options is also the same.

  17. Bettina says:

    Dear Amy, thank you for having the love and courage to share your Levofloxacin journey with us. It brings so much hope and inspiration to all of us.

    I got poisoned with that medication 13 days ago, exact same journey as yours, ER on day 2, them exponential decline cognitive, mental, musculoskeletal, hair loss, etc; absolutely all your symptoms. I have to add mild urinary incontinence, dryness all over my body (mouth, eyes, skin, vaginal) and difficulty swallowing.

    I am 41, single mom, full time engineer and very active before this medication.

    1. I wanted to ask you what to expect in terms of the recovery over time? Like week 1, month1, month2, etc

    2. Setbacks – what trigger them and how you manage them? As well as how long it took to return to healing time again after a setback.

    3. Thyroid – did you check your thyroid? I feel like this medication attacked badly.

    4. Menopause – where you in automatic menopause stage after taking Levofloxacin?

    5. Hair loss- my hair is falling more and more everyday, thinning badly. I want to do PRP platelet rich plasma with biotin. I wonder if that treatment would aggravate the natural course of detoxification?

    6. I started physical therapy, going slowly with the stretching, proprioceptive exercises, kegels, and tapping. Tapping is helping a lot with walking, joint stability and pain. Still I am able to walk not much, mainly for the risk of rupture – where you able to drive, walk, etc after your Levo assault? If so how much did you walk and what risks did you find?

    7. Glutatione IVs- Have you try them? I heard 2 grams is a good start, did you try other I treatments?

    8. Aquilles tendon – when we’re you start wearing heels and do more walking, etc

    9. Sex – when were you able to feel again the same drive after Levofloxacin? On top of dryness, I have no sex drive at all after Levofloxacin

    10. Panick attacks- I started experiencing this the night I was taken to ER, how did you cope with it and how they improved?

    Sorry for so many questions, I think this drug is extremely harmful, and we should spread the word to stop others from being poisoned. Nothing justifies this suffering, Dr’s should stop prescribing it, spend more time with their patients and find less harmful options for antibiotics.

    Thanks again Amy for sharing

    Much love,


  18. Amy. My mom was just prescribed levofloxacin today. I’m so glad she told me the name of her prescription because I immediately remembered this post. She’s going back to her doctor in the morning to tell him all the concerns we have over levofloxacin and to seek out alternative treatment. I’m so sorry you went through so much, but I’m grateful to God that you shared about it so I could prevent my mom from possibly having the same devastating reaction.

    Thank you.

  19. Joey Scoleri says:

    Your story is amazing and inspiring. I took 4 pills of levaquin and went through horrible anxiety, panic attacks and symptoms of neuropathy which have improved in the 6 weeks since I stopped. Nowhere near what you described but highly relatable. My acupuncturist told me I got off easy. I still get discouraged (am almost at 7 weeks off it) because I get better then suffer a setback but your story helped me a lot already. Thank you so much and I will continue the homeopathic path I am on. God bless you (I prayed and pray a ton – it helps so much).

  20. Lisa says:

    Reblogged this on Floxie Hope and commented:
    This is Amy’s story of fluoroquinolone toxicity and recovery. It’s wonderful! Thank you for writing this, Amy! I am so glad that this is not the end of you, and that this horrible experience has shown you how strong you truly are. xoxoxo


  21. tammyrenzi says:

    Amy, thank you for sharing your story. I’ve never read the story of another Levaquin victim whose symptoms were so similar to mine. I share all of your symptoms except the stomach issues. The cognitive issues and anxiety, paired with the insomnia, were the hardest – but then again I am not sure that the snapping spine and inability to do more than shuffle along most days weren’t equally as painful. Just different pain I guess! That said, I am 10 years out and largely healed. Eating healthy foods, keeping my vitamin levels checked and supplementing (though I wish I could get it all from food, I can’t!), gentle yoga, daily walks of now 4 – 5 miles, and meditating have really helped. Levaquin was the beginning of quite a long nightmare, but though it I have become stronger, fitter, and overall healthier. Never would I wish it on another person, though. My story is on FloxieHope (Tammy’s story), and I am now hiking, exercising (brisk walking, not running! body couldn’t handle that!), writing, and running my own tutoring business. Keeping a good outlook is essential. Ridding myself of negative people in my life was essential. I now know that I am stronger than this and, no matter what comes my way, I will sit with it and be ok! I have met several people on Floxie Hope who are positive and uplifting, and we enjoy cheering each other on. For anyone reading this, it’s hard but don’t let anxiety, depression, or negative thinking keep you down. Get help – self help books and taking an MBSR class really helped me. Life can be beautiful again!

    1. Thank you so much for sharing your inspiring story, Tammy! Life is beautiful.

  22. Ben says:

    Great share. I wanted to add a few things that might help others. Two things scream out at me. It made such a difference to me when I stayed active. Walks. Anything. The longer a wallowed in bed resting. Reading. The worse I felt. I would feel so much better when I did stuff. As much as I could without pushing myself too hard. Secondly, you MUST watch what you eat from now on. Absolutely no cheap foreign seafood – it’s full of quinolones. I travel quite a bit and notice I ache after eating meats on foreign countries. Quinolones are banned in food producing animals in the USA but are widely used out of the US. Sure the amounts we get when we eat it aren’t too much – but enough for the floxed body to be triggered. Last thing, for those of us who have healed (mostly), we can look at this as a blessing because we now know better. Not to blindly trust out doctors and avoid something even worse. We now are careful what we eat and avoid crap. We take better care of ourselves. I know some of us have it much worse. I am about 96% healed. I work out. Weight lift. Snowboard. But a year ago I was a mess.

    1. Wonderful words, Ben. Thank you for sharing them!

  23. samara Souza cidade says:

    Olá sou brasileira casada amigavelmente,mãe de três filhos 10,8,e 1 ano….
    Há 4 meses atrás tive uma leve infeção de urina,tomei 7 comprimidos de norfloxacino de 500mg por dia…
    Bendito medicamento,dias de ttrempres,sindrome do pânico,depressão forte,alucinações,estômago preso,rins infecionados,bexiga,doia muito,continência urinaria e renal,tudo preso arroto,espiro,tosse,tudo se prendeu dentro de mim,pressão super alta,sendo que a minha é baixa,fortes cefaleias intensas,sem suor,fraqueza constante,calafrios,trastorno de ansiedade,pela misericórdia gente o que é isso,eu me procurava e não me encontrava,agora imagina eu estava amamentado meu filho de 9meses que o medicamento excretou no leite e mexeu no sistema nervoso dele,e agora mãe e filho,abalados,sem dormir super mal,os médicos não entendiam,diziam que antibióticos,não fazia isso,diziam que eu procurasse um psicólogo que a vida de filhos e marido deixava a vida estressada, eu queria avançar neles quando ouvia isso quantas crueldades e quanta falta de conhecimento com o nosso corpo,meu Deus,enfim tirei médicos de sena e coloquei a fé em prprática,hoje me sinto melhor 4meses depois,mais não estou totalmente curada sinto meus tendões repuxarem,tendinite,braços,dores de cabeça,depressao e ansiedade,estou tomando complexo B,muito chã de camomila,jasmine,me ajudaram muito,logo logo irei passar com meu clínico e pedir cloreto de magnésio PA,porque sei que é bom pros nervos e tudo mais,a maioria dos relatos que vi p magnésio e a alimentação balanceadas ajudou muito,,,,,emfim aainda estou assustada com o episódio foram dias de horrores em minha vida e em familia,mexeu em muitas coisas,fiquei louca desesperada,procurando meios e termos para a situação,encontrei vocês graças a Deus e estou muito feliz pq felizmente e infelizmente descobrir que foi pq do medicamentos tudo isso,estou buscando em Deus a cura sempre na igreja oro todos os dias estou me recuperando e esperando tudo isso passar logo de vez da minha vida,desejo que todos vocês fiquem bem,que jesus possa guiá-los em bpm caminho e que a cura e libertação seja concedida através do amor de Deus em nossas vidas….
    Feliz. Natal….

    Qualquer dúvida estarei aqui,e se poderem me ajudar tb fico grata pela dedicação de ttodos….abraços sam

  24. CL says:

    Thank you for sharing your story. It’s clear you have a gift for writing and God wasn’t going to let this take it away from you! I was floxed in 2004, at that time there weren’t stories on the Internet and support groups like there is now. Your story will indeed help others!

  25. Brooke says:

    I just recently had a hysterectomy, post open 2 weeks. They gave me straight up Levaquin in my IV. After I was wheeled into my room I started dealing with uncontrollable muscle spams, itching, brain fog,my breathing was erratic enigh that i had to wear oxygen my temprature ranged any where between 94 degrees to 100 degrees and it 9nly took me seconds to go from one extreme to the other, and despite the heavy amount of narcotic pain meds and nausea meds, I couldn’t sleep. I wanted to, but couldn’t. Less than a week later it was discovered that I had formed an abcess the size of a 20 week old baby. Emergency surgery with another dose of Levaquin. It’s been a week since that surgery, and I am dealing with all this crap. Despite keeping my house warm,wearing socks, heavy Flannel pj’s, with sweaters, my temperature fluctuates wildly, although today it’s been at 94 to 95.6 degrees. And the brain fog is almost as frustrating. I too can look at an object and know what it is, but when I try to talk about the object, I cant get the words to come out correctly. I try to sleep, my muscles jerk so hard that I’ve nearly fallen out of bed. And speaking of sleep, or lack thereof, I used to go to bed around 9. It’s going on Midnight and I’m so exhausted I could cry, but I can’t sleep. Levaquin hasn’t ruined my life quite to your extent, it has made a drastic and not good change in mine. I hope you get 100% better.

  26. D. Mullins says:

    My own family does not believe me. I have been sick for so long, they think I am overreacting.

    1. I’m so sorry, D.

  27. Becky says:

    I have LOTS of TENDON PAIN in my arms!! I have been afraid to have a massage due to they might rupture! What are you thoughts of this? I tried PT and it didn’t help. I can’t put any strain on them without pain. Wondering what your thoughts are for this?

    1. EG says:

      Becky – Did are you taking any supplements? They really can help you, but take 2-3 months (in my experience) to start showing some affects. One of the best places to get some advice on supplements is with Kerri Knox (Holistic Nurse). Also for your tendons a regular Epson salt (magnesium) bath might help a lot. Kerri Knox wrote a book which you purchase and download over the Internet which addresses these supplements and other helpful stff. They have helped a lot of people, so you should get on these ASAP.

  28. Azz says:

    I took the poison just a week ago for a mere sinus infection (I’m 33) If all the symptoms you mentioned weren’t bad enough I’m also suffering from psychosis. This is the scariest symptom for me I hope one day I can also get better I I’ll try my best just the same as you did. At least I have hope now.

    1. greendingy says:

      please know this is normal. Try to stay calm. Go onto The Fluorolone Toxicity Solution and download the book. You have to take the supplements mentioned in this sight. AND CHLORELLA. If you are in bed, like I am(also got poisioned 3 weks ago)…do everything from the computer. This is an epidemic. There is alot of information. I ruptured 2 tendons, one severely in 2009 because I never heard of this. Until I got so sick this time I looked it up and when I saw the words TENDON RUPTURE, BOOM…I went on a search and definitely had been posisoned. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. do the research and what you have to do to get better.

  29. Kay says:

    This is crazy. I was prescribed a compound formula of Levaquin hemihydrate for staph after sinus surgery. Had to inhale directly into sinuses for 60 days. I have no doubt it was this Levaquin poison that caused my issues. I experienced almost all these symptoms and never associated to this horrible drug. My son was murdered less than a year before and most doctors thought the severe Pain, Panic Attacks, Anexity and extreme fatigue were a result of grief. They had me convinced as well. I just recently after suffering for 3 years saw an article in a magazine and read the symptoms and side effects of others and realized that I had been poisoned. Looking forward to retirement in a couple of years and now I can barely make it through the day, much less know how I can make it 2 more years. I feel I lost my life as well.

    1. Rob G says:

      So sorry to hear your story. At least now you know what you’re dealing with and can take the steps to heal. Check for inspiration and read all the stories and make your own supplement, diet, and mental health plan. Then get offline and take each day as it comes and know that you will get better. This is what all the recovered Floxies say works. I’m new in this (2 weeks) but am hopeful for recovery. Good luck to you, I wish you the very best and hope you are healthy again by retirement.

  30. Cheryl Hanstke says:

    Thank you for,sharing, I will be reposting. Have not written my story yet but I will, you have inspired. My journey took longer because I didn’t start looking til almost 3 years out from initial floxing. Every time I raised this as a possibility I was put off by my doctors, surgeon, specialists etc….what did I know, more menopause than adverse reaction, don’t be sillly, never happened before and very rare are a small sampling of what I was told. However. You don’t just become disabled, virtually over night! I was -a 54 yr old active, healthy, engaged, fit, self employed single mom of teenage twins. Over night I was bed ridden and they became my care givers. They lost their youthful innocence due to this drug, grew up way too fast, and I lost me. Not until I found a NP doctor who understood what was going on did I begin the long journey to healing. I lost nearly 6 years of my life….I am now ready to cut the long hair I have grown because I was always too sick to get it done. I’m bringing back the old me before CIpro exploded inside of me and destroyed my health. I want to be that spunky short lady with spiky hair who managed to have it all….well mostly, some days LOL!! Thanks for your story, it sounded like the Coles notes version of mine!! Continued health my dear, faith and healing. Kept me going too!!

    St Catharines ON Canada

    1. KK says:

      How you got control over heart palpitation and Insomnia? I am taking Anxiety pill daily that’s currently helping with sleep and palpitations control. Are you getting natural sleep without any aid now ?
      My magnesium vitamin level is normal but still having anxiety that reaches to pick in the afternoon and a single pill in night controlling that well.

  31. Sarah plato says:

    Hi. Your story is so similar to mine… I’m two years out now. I had nightmares night one, peripheral neuropathy by night three, bad blood sugar drops day 4, then I stopped taking the generic levaquin. Then things got so much worse. I too read up as much as I could on it and the horror stories. I started charcoal immediately and magnesium. But it was already too late, within a week I would slowly loose my limbs ability and by two weeks out I was completely paralyzed, couldn’t regulate my breathing or heart rate and said my goodbyes. Thankfully I too researched what to do and started wahls level 3 diet, tons of supplements from the toxicity solution guide, and daily Meyers cocktail iv’s. I can say it’s been a tough road but I’m two years out and doing much better but have relapsed a bit every so often some more major than others but none the less better. Feel free to reach out to me if you want. God bless. Glad you persevered. Keep the hope.

  32. Alexandra says:

    Hey i will like to know what help the most to recover i got floxed When i went to the doctor in Mexico i had an infection in my Stomach and the doctor prescribed me lavaquin he never warned me of any Side effects he just said take it you will feel better he prescribed to me for 7 days o500 mg i only took the first dose at fisrt then i dicided to take half of it for 5 days or 6 until i felt the side affects from the medeine i had insomnia enxiety i couldnt sweat anymore. I thought my symtoms were goen to go away soon but no then i was soposed then when i got back from my vacations i did a research and i saw that i got floxed the symtoms will get worst i cant sleep mt enxiety gets worst than ever i feep down being sick i feep burning sensations inside my head and pressure it kinda stop while taking Nac but idk if its helping i have lot of muscles spasm i take Magnesium vitamin b12 and vitamin C and multivitamin and vitamin D3 and NAC and Coq10 but idk if those things will help of if theres other stuff that can help me i wana know what can help mee without harming me more that i am already please anyome email me that will be really helpfull. My email is

    1. Everyone is different, Alexandra. My timeline may not be the same as yours. Just do what you can each day to move toward healing. I hope you’re doing well.

  33. CJ says:

    First off, I’m SO sorry about your dog. That is horrifying & my heart breaks for you. I can honestly feel your pain to such a degree on all of it! (We lost a dog to liver failure due to Rimadyl years ago)….I also feel your pain on the Levaquin. Unfortunately, I was on it for almost a year. I (like you), trusted all the Dr’s & I am paying dearly for it. Here’s my story…. It started with a bunch of sinus infections over a year long period. I was prescribed several antibiotics & nothing worked. I had a CT scan which showed a nasty infection in all of my sinus cavities excluding the Sphenoid. Again, trusting a Dr… went ahead with surgery. Biggest mistake of my life. They accidentally removed too much turbinate, so now my nose had no way of filtering all the allergens, toxins, etc. This set me up for a sinus infection every other month. After years of Amoxicillin, Bactrim & Augmentin (allergic to most others), a Dr. gave me 2 weeks of Avelox. I didn’t feel better & they moved on to Levaquin. At this point, I had been to an ENT, Allergist & Immunologist. They found some immune disfunction causing my re-current infections (CVID) At this point they said I needed 3 months of Levaquin because the infection was so hard to treat. To be honest, I didn’t notice any terrible side effects other than some stiffness. I still ran 5 days a week & was actually feeling better on the Levaquin. A month after I was done with it, the Sinus infection was back & guess what…. 3 more months of Levaquin & now steroids to boot. Google steroids & Levaquin (God knows I should of!), but I was so DESPERATE to feel good again. I was so sick & would have done anything to feel better. I believed my sinus infection could become dangerous because of my immune deficiency, so I figured they knew best. That’s when all hell broke loose. This time I started feeling so achy, joint pain, heel pain, but the worst was my neck. Omg, awful constant pain. Now I’m popping Tylenol to deal with the pain so I could go to work. During the last week of the Levaquin, they increased the dose to 750mg for 7 days. It killed to get out of bed, I was dizzy, sore, hallucinating & had no memory left. NO ONE understood. My teeth were literally cracking I left & right. That’s when I started to do my own research (the Dr’s all told me it’s not the Levaquin that only affects tendons & my problem sounded more muscular. I heard…. You’re just getting older(I was 39 & the year before was running 35-40 miles a week). Today I have constant pain, brain fog, balance, vision problems & was recently diagnosed Hypothyroid. I know I may have had some sinus infections but I was otherwise very healthy before the Levaquin. I was probably in better shape at 39, then I was at 20. Now, if I can do yoga & go for a long walk it’s amazing. I completely empathize with all that you’ve been through & appreciate all the recommendations. I’m now working with a Naturopath & taking many of these supplements in the hopes for a recovery. I have lost friends through this process because no one believes an antibiotic could cause all this damage. Thank you for sharing your story & letting the rest of us know we are not alone. God Bless!

    1. Jana Chapman says:

      Hi CJ, I literally feel your pain, but thankfully the surgery helped me. I too will be looking for a naturopath.

  34. Matt Burns says:

    Thank you for sharing the story. I took Levaquin last summer and it was a disaster. The problem is that I was diagnosed with Lyme a couple weeks after and I don’t know what symptoms I can attribute to the Lyme and what I can attribute to Levaquin toxicity. I have experienced all the symptoms you describe. Major anxiety. Brain fog. Cognitive function. Hair loss. Tremors. Temp fluctuation. The works. But ALL these symptoms can be linked to Lyme, too. So frustrating. I don’t know how to sort it out but after Levaquin it was like a nuclear bomb went off inside me, as you say. I take a ton of supplements, including the magnesium, CoQ10, and glutathione, so I’m hoping to repair myself eventually. If you’re interested, here is my own story entitled “Levaquin with a Twist of Lyme”:

    1. The symptoms are so similar! My naturopath is actually a Lyme specialist and she explained how they both act as neurotoxins. Thank you for sharing your story, Matt. I hope you are well.

  35. MIKE says:

    Thank you for taking the time to share your story and give hope to others. I was also given the generic version in February 2018. Luckily my symptoms weren’t as fast or as severe as yours. A few weeks after I started getting numb down my arm and feet. Thought it was due other health problems. Seemed to go away for a week or so but has returned. Just saw a post someone had up on Facebook about these drugs which got me to look into them. Will need to get some testing done to make sure no more damage such as aneurysms. Thank you again for your story. Hope you have 100% recovery and they stop with this dangerous drug

    1. Thank you for sharing your experience, Mike. I hope you are doing well.

  36. I was told about your story the other day through my blog. I just wanted to thank you so much for sharing your story. I shared mine and it’s been a whirlwind, but a worth it one. So glad you told yours as well. Power to ya sister!

    1. Power to you, too! Thank you for sharing your story, too.

  37. Patricia Roshaven says:

    Very interesting. Today I started on Lefofloxacin 250 mg for 3 days for a UTI. I’m wondering what is ahead for me. I am allergic to penicillin, Cipro and Bactrim, so Lefofloxacin seems to be the only remaining choice. I’m wondering what dosage you were taking when things went so badly. Thank you for all this information. I’m starting on your recommendations now, even though, so far, I do not have any side effects.

    1. Lefofloxacin is another name for Levaquin. If you’re allergic to Cipro (a fluoroquinolone), why would your doctor prescribe it? Yikes. I hope you don’t have any problems with it.

      1. Randall Richardson says:

        Amy, when you talk about swallowing issues? What did you have?

      2. Hi Randall. It felt like the muscles in my throat were weak or paralyzed. When lying on my back, I’d get a choking sensation, like I needed to swallow but couldn’t. It was as if my body forgot how to do it. Based on my research, I think this was linked to damage to my vagus nerve.

    2. Patti says:

      If your allergic to cipro your allergic to levaquin , different NAMES,,,, SAME ANIMAL ,,, BEWARE!!!!!

      1. Dave says:

        After levofloxacin in late 2019 for sinusitis and bronchitis, (or COVID😉) I told my doctor recently no more quinolones unless I’m dying. There are other antibiotics for UTI’s and/or whatever.
        Amox, penicillin, sulfa drugs like Bactrim which I just took for sinus infection etc. Ask your doctor for something else. Of course if you read about any of them or any drug, they all have potential side effects.

  38. Dawn Carter says:

    I just read this, and I have taken levofloxacin before and have had a million issues they could never figure out. I have 3 cystic fibrosis children who have had to take cipro like tictacs. My youngest was a strong athletic little guy who played football and everything now 6 years later he has rhumetoid arthritis lives in severe pain with so many issues the doctors can’t figure out. I am so angry and devastated that my sons cf has gotten worse because of the other issues impeding his wellness. And how did I not know any of this? They just prescribed him another month long cipro last week. And I had to rush him to the er last night for another 2 weeks stay. I get to watch my son decline, when he could have flourished. I found this because I have been sick and had to see a different doc today who gave me yup levoquin for some strange illness they can’t figure out ( ulcers on my uvula and inflamed lymph glands). So when I took it and started itching alittle I looked it up and found a butt ton of things. And you. I am throwing my bottle away. But have no idea what to do for my 3 boys. Cipro is the go too cf med. How many cfers have died because of this? And how do I convince a teenager to do any of this? This is devastating, and I feel so guilty I didn’t learn this sooner!

    1. Dawn, I’m so sorry you’re dealing with all of this. 😞

  39. Debbie says:

    Thank you do much for sharing your story I just experienced this one week ago and thought after the first pill I was going to die! This is is so helpful and I am encouraged L would write more but am nauseated!

    1. I’m so sorry, Debbie.

  40. Gregory Brown, aka, whstlr... says:

    Thank you Amy, finally have answers to why I lost everything… Peace myFriend, whstlr…

    1. Whstlr, your comment broke my heart. I’m so sorry.

  41. Teresa Segal says:

    I want to thank you so much for your blog
    I recently stopped taking Levaquin after experiencing more pain, the likes of which I’ve never experienced before!
    I don’t have all of your side effects thank God but I can empathize with you.
    I got a prescription for Levaquin because I had double pnuemonia that I didn’t know I had.
    I went to my Dr and he didn’t listen to my chest or anything and I told him I thought I had bronchitis.
    My original reason for seeing him was for a CT scan showed four shadows on my lungs.
    He wasn’t even aware of it because his PA called me and told me I needed a CT scan.
    When I told him about my bronchitis (or what I thought was bronchitis) he put me on a zpak.
    I had a follow up CT scan for the original issue of the shadows on my lungs which I was referred to a pulmonary Dr.
    The MA also said that “you still have double pnuemonia”?
    I never knew I even had pnuemonia although I probably should have but I’m no Dr.
    She then proceeded to tell me that Dr prescribed Levaquin for my pnuemonia.
    I was prescribed 10 500 mgs of Levaquin.
    On the 6th day I had in my right leg. I attributed it to arthritis because of my age (I’m 60 years old)

    By the 9th day I was in excruciating pain and couldn’t understand what happened to me, (the only thing different I’d done was take new medication, Levaquin) I called my pharmacist who told me to immediately discontinue it.
    I called my Dr on the Saturday I quit taking it on the emerald after hours phone number.
    He then prescribed another Zpak.
    Needless to say I haven’t taken it.
    I on day 9 of being off of Levaquin and I’ve yet to see a Dr because I assumed the knee pain, dizziness and lack of attention span (I thought it was tendonitis) would go away after I stopped taking that poisonous Levaquin.
    After reading your story I realized that I was lucky in a sense that I didn’t suffer like you.
    My heart aches for you!
    It appears from your blog that Levaquin can still cause side effects even after we stop taking it?
    I’ve been through a side effect once where I couldn’t speak what I was thinking and I was never more frightened. The medication was for depression.
    After reading your article, I’m leaving my POS Dr and I wish I was financially able to sue him for what he’s done to me.
    Needless to say I am not going back to him and he’s been my Dr for over 15 years.
    My pharmacist told me more about what I should do and how danger and widespread Levaquin is.
    He also said it’s one of the top antibiotics on the market.
    I hope my comment makes sense.
    I don’t have a website. I’m just another victim of Levaquin.
    I’m seeing an orthopedic surgeon ASAP as my pharmacist thinks it’s either a ruptured tendon or possibly a tendon that has fallen apart.
    Thank you so much for your blog.
    It’s helped me realize I wasn’t losing my mind.

    1. Jana Chapman says:

      Don’t forget to look into the collagen replacement that Amy wrote about. Anything to repair & replace that destructive side effect.

    2. Thank you for sharing your experience here, Teresa. I’m so sorry.

  42. Ruthel says:

    Thanks for this post and sorry for what happened. I took two of these drug and stopped it. I was not able to sleep for 2days and 2 nights. I had been sick before i took it so i already was sleep deprived. After taking it, i was so exhausted,depressed and anxious. I am amazed at how scary this drug is yet docs prescribe it without so much warning. The doc wanted to lower the dose only but I said “no, i am not going to have anymore of it in my system”.

    1. Good for you, Ruthel. I hope you’re doing well now.

  43. Adam Lomax says:

    Thanks for writing this Amy. I’m in a similar situation to you, recently reacted to a Fluoroquinolone. I’m doing all the necessary things but I wonder – did you just take the standard dose of MitoQ (10mg) or double the dose. I’m currently just doing 10 a day, alongside about 400mg Ubinquinol. Thinking of either doubling the dose or moving to Ubiquionol and PQQ. Thanks !

    1. Hi Adam. I took the standard dose of MitoQ for two months, then switched to CoQ10 + PQQ by Jarrow. I think MitoQ is great but it was just too expensive. I hope you are doing well.

  44. Kristi says:


    I am a 43 yr old woman w/RA, Fibromyalgia and a whole slew of other health issues- this all before taking Levaquin 14 days ago. After the 2nd dose(I was prescribed Generic Levaquin for 10 days) I was in bed until 4 days ago- and that is only bc I said ENOUGH I am getting out of this bed. I went to my regular PCP(the dr that “diagnosed” me w/a UTI was a dr at urgent care in the same facility) he immediately said Levaquin is the reason you are having these problems(I was FURIOUS) and he also informed me that the length(10 days) that it was prescribed to me was entirely to long.
    He put me on another prednisone therapy at this point, but my knees are so painful I just sit and so – they are both so swollen you cannot even see my knee caps. The pain alone is herendous!
    I am in the process of contacting the dr that prescribed this medication their superiors and will go as high as I have to- to get this heard.
    It is an absolute outcry that it has not been taken off the shelves!
    I cannot tell you enough how much I appreciate your story and you for telling it!

    Fingers crossed I can get some of your suggestions started tomorrow and get on the road to recovery!

    Thanks again!

    1. Kristi, I’m sorry you’re going through this. Totally agree with everything you said here. I hope you’re finding your way toward healing.

  45. adilyusufzai says:

    I am a 22 year old male recently i had a urine infection so was prescribed levofloxacin for 14 days but after one week of taking it i had severe joint pains,cold sensation going in my joints and spine really irritating and painful i went back to my dr to get me on another antibiotic as it has so adverse effects on me but he just laughed at me saying that it’s not because of this anitbiotic and made me feel like i am just stupid but on my insistence he prescribed me another antibiotic i-e ciprofloxacin which then i searched about i found it more worse than levofloxacin so didn’t take that at all but now i am really suffering from extreme pain, peripheral neuropathy symptoms due to that one week course of levofloxacin really want to recover it from it, i should have never taken this toxic drug but really annoyed on these doctors why they are still prescribing it when it has so worse effects

    1. Soban shahid says:

      Adil can we talk I too am 22 and took ciproflaxcin. Send me your e mail or whatever.

    2. Justin says:

      How are you feeling now? I can tell you things do get better, may get worse, but tend to improve with time. This is one of my favorite Flox recovery stories (also great advice on how to recover with supps). I’m 26 and was Floxed about 5 weeks ago. I had severe depression, anxiety, insomnia, tingling in my feet/legs, heart palpitations, night sweats, etc. All of those are now gone or subsided 95%. Last week I started noticing sore joints/tendons but they aren’t terrible. Stick to the regime, don’t lose hope, realize that there are going to be good days and bad days, and hopefully push through. I think we all can recover if we’re patient and diligent. I also suspect from a demographic search of severe Floxies and just general human biology that being younger gives you a better chance at a quicker recovery.

      1. Nick says:

        Guys, I’m 18 years old and I’ve taken Avepox for 4 days. I stopped taking it 3 days ago.So far I haven’t had any symptoms. I would love to talk to somebody my age however because I’m terrified from what could happen to me. My email is . Please reach out to me, I think hearing from people my age who have the same problems and experiences in life as me would make me feel much better. Thanks.

      2. I hope you haven’t had any adverse reactions, Nick.

      3. Thank you, Justin. I’m sorry this happened to you, but so glad you’re recovering well. Your outlook and advice here are so good!

  46. Lynn says:

    The unfortunate part about my story is I have Lyme plus many coinfections that cause similar symptoms. I went to a new lyme doctor reported to her I could not tolerate that class of medicine from a bad experience with Ciproflaxin but she still insisted I take Levaquin and would not order anything other antibiotic. Lyme doctors are not cheap and to start with another I would be out $600 and time in saving for that amount. Another instance for treating MRSA in nares again the choice was between 2 fluoroquinolones and no other choice. I picked one and didn’t take it. My background occupation was RN and I feel duped by both the Pharmaceutical and medical systems…but more importantly the ignorant Lyme doctor whose care I was under.

    1. Jana Chapman says:

      My husband has had VRSA. Anytime there is an external wound, it is treated by Epsom Salt w/betadine soak & treat with antibiotic cream Mupirocin & cover.

    2. Lynn, have you considered seeing a naturopath? Mine is a Lyme expert and doesn’t prescribe fluoroquinolones. It might be worth looking into. Also, have you heard of cistus incanus (ie, Rock rose)? It’s an herbal antiviral antimicrobial that is being used in Lyme treatment and other situations. Here’s a link to a post you might find helpful:

  47. I am on the phone with my friend right now. Five years ago she had an infection and in the ER. They prescribed levaquin for two weeks. She has been in a wheelchair and has severe cognitive impairment. I am so pissed off that pharmaceuticals are off limits if they are generic. Pharmaceuticals are the worst thing ever for us. This gov. is in bed with them and we don’t stand a chance because of this…. prayers for all of you suffering. xo

  48. John Chapman says:


    I took many doses of levaquin in the 90’s. I have had 1 dosing (7 day) of Ciprofloxacin in the past year.

    First, the ligament damage is progressive. I went to a napropathic healer. (It eased oodles of back & hip pain.) I requested that my right foot be adjusted which felt wonderful at the time. A month later, I was having surgery to repair the lisfranc ligament on the first & 2nd toes. 6 weeks later my anterior tibialis tendon had ruptured & I was into surgery again. Less that 9 mos from the initial surgery & the outside 2 toes are now in big trouble.

    I tried a couple of months of capsule collagen, but didn’t see big enough improvement to continue. From your article, I guess I’ll get the one that tastes like cow. LOL loved the descriptor.

    I have neuropathy in feet & up 4 inches onto legs. I have researched some autoimmune protocols and ..
    I guess what I’m asking, is do you think a naturapath could help someone whose damage is so old? Oh & to add a kick to it, I was diagnosed with “trigger points” (fibromyalgia) in the early 1970’s. The method of treatment at that time was Indocin (steroid) & large doses of muscle relaxants.

    I just turned 59, but feel like I’m 70. I too have developed depression, anxiety & insomnia. These problems run in my genetic lineage, so I never attributed them to floxin toxin.

    Well, I would love a couldn’t hurt to try response. It is nice to vent & fully know that someone will understand what it means to hurt all over.
    Hugs, Jana

    1. Hi Jana. First of all, I’m sorry you’ve been through so much because of these drugs. Second. i think there’s always hope for healing and improvement. That’s what our bodies are designed to do. I’d say it’s definitely worth talking to a naturopath. It’s also worthwhile researching what has helped others and giving things a try. The human body is amazing and designed to heal. Cell turnover is happening all the time. I believe when we give our bodies good nutrients and support, it will move toward healing and health. You might want to check out articles and videos by Dr Mercola, Dr Berg, Dr Mandell, Dr Circus, Dr Axe. They have a lot of good info on trigger points, inflammation, nutrition, anxiety, etc.

  49. Julie Tepetla says:

    Thank you for sharing what helped! I too had adverse reactions to high dose levaquin after sepsis, i also have fibromyalgia and ended up with tendonistis and severe joint pain throughout my body. Some of these things listed I have tried, but the ones I havent I am going to give a shot. Thank you again for the insight and share! ❤

    1. I’m glad you found the post helpful, Julie, and I’m sorry this happened to you, too.

  50. Mitzi says:

    I was hit by Cipro a year ago in January. I took magnesium and did chiropractic care (still do). My question is, do you know how long we wait to see if the toxicity is still there? How long do we have to worry if we are going to have another symptom arise? My doctor said I shouldn’t experience anything outside of one year. The backs of my ankles hurt a couple weeks ago. My shoulder hurts now. I had a nerve block just three days ago in my neck from compressed nerves. Is this all from Cipro??? I would LOVE to feel like I can just live a normal life again and leave this fear behind without another thought.

    1. Hi Mitzi. I’m sorry you went through this, too. I don’t know how long the effects last, but I feel like my joints and tendons aren’t the same after being floxed. While I stay active. I’m always aware of how much stress I’m putting on my joints and how much they hurt after vigorous activity. Personally, I think there’s continued benefit in taking collagen and drinking bone broth to help keep my tendons and joints healthy. Better safe than sorry, I guess, but your mileage may vary.

  51. Juliet says:

    Iam sorry you had to go through this. iam also encouraged that you fought and worn.
    I too was prescribed the smae medicine for a sinusitis infection. and i have suffered side effects since then. it all began with burning flushes on my face and later the flushes spread all over my fingers are numb and my skin, on my skin, even if you pinch me i cant feel pain.has any one experienced this? how did you over come it?

    1. I’m sorry you’re going through this, Juliet. The symptoms you describe sound like they could be nerve related, like neuropathy. My neuropathy felt more like shooting pains, coldness, and pins and needles. Based on my neurologist’s advice. I took B vitamins, magnesium and the other supplements I mention in my post, as well as had weekly acupuncture treatments. This approach helped me greatly with these symptoms.

  52. Steve says:

    Thanks for sharing. I had cipro in 2013 and afibed
    Ended back in er. Dr blamed it om low potassium.

    I since ruptured my right achillies completely and 1.5 yrs later partial rupture on my left. I been trying to find out if they were cipro related when i ran across ur article
    Have had knee pain for awhile. I just happened to put liquid magnesuim on it about 2 months ago and have been pain free since and able to run for the first time in years! Put the mag
    on several times a day
    After reading about others who found immediate relief using liquid magnesium i started wondering about the cipro connection again. Except for stories like yours there is very little info. on it

    Thanks again , you have helped a lot of people

    1. Magnesium oil and lotion are amazing for helping joint, tendon and muscle pain! I’m so glad you discovered this, Steve, and that my story helped confirm what you found. I still use it almost daily. It’s like a miracle. You might be interested in checking out the work of Dr Sircus regarding magnesium: Wishing you good health!

  53. Hillary says:

    Thank you for the wonderful information! I will be following your advice on the vitamins in hopes to detox the Levaquin out of my system.
    Hugs to you-

    1. I pray they help you the way they did me, Hillary. Hugs.

  54. Crys says:

    Amy, I’ve had to share you story with friends and family because I could not find the words myself-they were all gone, quite literally. I had a slew of additional reactions as well. I am so grateful for some of the resources I’ve had and doctors who didn’t discount my problems. I have learned just this week that I have had an unknown and undiagnosed autoimmune that was triggered by the introduction of Levaquin. I’ve also learned that it is VERY common for all antibiotics to set off undetected autoimmune symptoms that many of us have hiding as either other “problems” or not aware at all because we maintain a normal/healthy lifestyle and haven’t introduced the trigger to our bodies previously. I ask anyone reading this who has not been tested yet-get tested for autoimmunes. Don’t let them stop just because a routine panel plus Rheumatoid comes back normal/negative. Keep asking. Keep testing.

    1. I’m so sorry this happened to you as well, but it’s great you had some doctors who didn’t dismiss you. And I’m glad my story helped you express your own. I wonder if the autoimmune situation is a result of the damage FQs do to the intestinal tract. Dr. Axe discussed autoimmune disorders and his protocol involves healing the gut and the gut flora. Might be worth looking into. Thank you for commenting and sharing this advice here. Wishing you healing.

      1. Crystal says:

        It wasn’t. The diagnosis actually accounted and made sense of issues that had been dismissed as normal. Occasional dry skin, tired when stressed, asthma, migraines. Things that we just learn to live with and don’t look further into because an Aleve or good lotion fixes it and then it’s gone for a long while. I actually live with a Celiac and am already strictly gluten free and am very familiar with your suggestions. It’s part of the reason I didn’t have flare ups. The body is an interesting thing and your suggestions about flora and digestion are dead on. Thank you so much for being mentally strong enough to share and speak out for others to see we aren’t alone.

      2. Wow, that is really eye opening. Thank you so much for sharing this info, Crystal. Very helpful!

  55. Sharon says:

    Good information but the long, long list of supplements makes me feel pretty discouraged as I have a very limited income and can’t afford even a small percentage of these. I took the generic as well, so I guess that answers my question about whether it’s possible to sue the company that makes it. I’ve experienced a number of difficult physical problems and illnesses in my 60+ years but this is so difficult to deal with. My nerves are too shot right now to read all the comments but I will visit floxiehope some time and try to continue to work on helping myself get better. I wish everyone here the best in recovery.

    1. Sharon, I’m sorry this happened to you, too. And trust me, I understand what you mean about the expense of supplements. If I were you, this is what I’d do: eat a clean diet, full of fresh vegetables, drink bone broth, and supplement with magnesium and B vitamins. I would buy the most affordable but quality brand supplement possible. That combo would address mitochondria health, joint pain and tendon repair, and nerve regeneration. I’m not a doctor, but based on what I went through, those dietary changes and supplements were key in helping me get better.

      1. Sharon says:

        Thank you for your kind and thoughtful response Amy. This list of supplements and ideas of how to best help myself sounds much more manageable. I don’t wish anyone else to go through this but it does help to talk to others who understand. Thanks so much.

  56. Elisha Wheatcraft says:

    Thank you for sharing your story!!! The stomach, leg and ankle pain my new Dr diagnosed what was going on. Though I didn’t know about the hair loss,brainfog, anxiety I was experiencing was a side affect. After dr told me what was going on I was to scared to look online due to what it would say. Being a woman of faith I just kept in prayer. Never experienced anything like this. I try extremely hard to hide my pain and what I’m going through. I work with a young lady who from my Interactions with her she was always kind. She had asked why I was walking the way I was. I told her what happened. And she she it’s a real thing and chatted with me for a few. In that moment I felt not alone she told me about your website and you went through it as well. I fought hard not to be emotional I was at work and didn’t want to break down hearing there was hope when the Dr told me it can be life long. To live with this pain and now knowing the other side effects I have hope. So thank you!!

    1. I’m sorry you’re going through this, too, Elisha, but so glad you found my post helpful. It helps me to know my story is helping others, so thank you for commenting. There is definitely reason to have hope, despite how scary this thing is. I have healed, as have so many others. You’re not alone. Keep going. Keep believing.

  57. Matt Lagreca says:

    Hi Amy, my name is Matt and I’m sitting in the neurologists office as I type this. I had a vasectomy two weeks ago and was given Cipro intravenously and sent home with a 4 day supply of 500 mg twice a day. Days later I developed severe burning and itching in my feet and legs. There’s no visible rash or skin abnormalities. It almost seems neurological in nature. I don’t know where to turn. I have four children and always thought of myself as healthy. Is this a side effect of this drug?

    1. Hi Matt. I’m sorry you’re going through this. I’m not a doctor, but that sounds like it could be peripheral neuropathy or somehow nerve related. The FDA safety guidelines say that is a possible side effect of fluoroquinolones. What did your neurologist say?

  58. Dear Amy:

    Thank you for your post, my sister just found it. Though I did a good amount of research, I hadn’t run into it. I took Levaquin…same brand of generic as you, so good to know that I shouldn’t bother with trying to sue them. I actually didn’t know what I had because mine happened gradually. I didn’t have an ER visit. I had taken it for the recurring pneumonia I couldn’t get rid of.

    And yes, it attacked my CNS and Enteric too. Same aches and hurts you described. Same brain fog. Same eating problems (I’ve totally gone to meats, fruits and veggies, only dairy I eat is cheese. I use coconut milk for everything else.) And in 8 weeks all my hair fell out. All. And the docs were useless as well. Endocrinologists, dermatologists, all kinds–but I couldn’t get my doc to recommend a neurologist! And honestly, because my numbers were normal, docs just told me I had developed an autoimmune and they may never know what type. They all gave up on me. They thought I was nuts. There was NO talk about the Levaquin and it took two years for me to figure it out!

    But like you, I had my faith and my determination. I have been seeing a naturopath as well. She has helped with a few things, but I still have aches and pains. I am on about everything–including the Thorne Detox Nutrients that you talked about. However, I did not try the hair treatment that you did. I will investigate that because after almost three years, I’m tired of being bald. Actually no eyebrows, lashes or anything. It’s been a tough go. I’ve had to redefine what beauty is, but I know in the long run that has helped me understand myself better and leave all the unnecessary stuff behind.

    I too am an author and teacher. For a while, I worried that the brain fog would mean I would lose my job. Thankfully, my brain has recovered as well. And honestly, as much as I didn’t want to do it, I went on replacement hormone therapy and that cleared up the rest of my anxiety and residual fog. Boy, that whole anxiety thing was awful. A-W-F-U-L. I don’t know where I’d be without God. Without my faith.

    I would love to compare notes someday if you are up for it. I appreciate your post more than you know!

    Thank you again!


  59. Ioanna Haden says:

    I am 68 years old and came down with a crud that’s been going around our town. My doctor prescribed 250 mg of generic Levofloxacin for 6 days. I took the first pill this morning and THEN I found your site. I can’t believe he prescribed something like this. So far nothing has happened except for a little mild diarrhea and it’s been over 12 hours. I am drinking tons of water to flush this stuff out of my system. How soon can I consider myself out of the woods?

    1. Hi Ioanna. Hopefully you won’t have an adverse reaction. You could take some tums or other form of magnesium if you want to counter or diminish the effects of the medication. I would talk to your doctor about getting a different med if you do need an antibiotic. I hope that helps and you kick the crud quickly.

      1. Ioanna Haden says:

        Amy, thank you so much for your answer. I consider myself extremely fortunate. No immediate dangerous reactions, Just a sleepless night. . Of course, I only took one pill, but at my age, it could have been a lot worse. I immediately got a new Rx for amoxicillin, which is a lot more benign.
        Your site is a blessing, and a reminder to all of us to check out our medications!!

      2. I’m so glad to hear this!!

      3. Ioanna Haden says:

        Amy, thank you so much for your answer. I consider myself extremely fortunate. No immediate dangerous reactions, Just a sleepless night. . Of course, I only took one pill, but at my age, it could have been a lot worse. I immediately got a new Rx for amoxicillin, which is a lot more benign.
        Your site is a blessing, and a reminder to all of us to check out our medications!!

  60. Dennis W Sneed says:

    My story is almost identical to yours, i was floxed by levaquin in March or 2016, as slow three year recovery… then BAM. I was prescribed Doxyclycline for an infected tick bite, five days into the Doxy ALL of my flox sympoms have came crashing back, nerves, all joints, weigh loss everything, i am now three weeks out on my relapse taking all of my supplements again, being stared at by docs like i’m form another planet. I just have to hope i heal, again.

    1. Wow, that is scary, Dennis. I’m so sorry! Since you were bit by a tick, I wonder if your symptoms are related more to a tick/Lyme situation than a relapse caused by the doxy. I say this because the naturopath I saw was a Lyme expert and she said the symptoms are almost identical. Both FQs and Lyme are neurotoxins and follow the same neurotoxin cycle/pathway in the body. It might be worthwhile seeing a Lyme specialist or naturopath. Regardless I hope you find healing quickly!

  61. Chris says:

    Hi Amy. I recently went through a very similar reaction that you went through. I’m roughly a month out and still feel like crap. Daily roaming anxiety( I had extream anxiety and panic attacks first few weeks), still cant eat much, etc. Im finally starting to sleep a bit and thats good. I was wondering how long the all around crappy feeling and roaming anxiety, no appetite lasted for you? I still feel as though my body and brain is still working through this. I’m still having more bad days then good (although I do feel like myself on occasion). Im following your protocol on supplements ,etc. Your article really helped me get past those first few crazy weeks. Ty:)

    1. I’m sorry this happened to you, too, Chris. The all around crappy feeling lasted at least six months for me. The anxiety began to wain around 3-4 months, but didn’t go away entirely for a long time. The appetite and digestive issues resolved first, around 2-3 months after my initial reaction. I’m glad you’re finding my post helpful. Wishing you a full recovery and good health. It takes time. Lots of time. Try to be as patient with yourself as possible.

      1. Chris says:

        Hi Amy! So the first 6 months were really bad, actually they were HORRIBLE! I took levofloxacin 750 x 4 for a sinus infection and was taking flonase at the time. My natural Dr who specializes in treating the floxed said that it(flonase) made my symptoms much much worse. You said it perfectly…its like an atomic bomb went off! I had EXTREME anxiety, EXTREME numb face\brain, EXTREME dizziness, EXTREME panic attacks, EXTREME nueropothy\electrical vibrations from head to toe, EXTREME brain zaps, crazy scary brain vibrations, couldn’t eat for months, nausea for months, crazy thoughts, nuero toxicity, horrible nightmares, digestive issues, night sweats.. just to name a few. 2 emergency room visits with brain mri’s(totally normal). I literally stared at the walls for months. I felt like a was dying. It was rough! I’m 10 months out and doing alot better! Its crazy to think you can go from a normal healthy life(no prior issues at all) to straight fear with crazy horrible bizzare symtoms and feel like your dying OVER NIGHT! I wanted to leave my experience here for folks who might be having EXTREME, HORRIBLE, CRAZY, BIZZARE symptoms to let them know that it will get better. It took me about 8 months before I started feeling ok and at 9 months I started having 80% days. I still have days I just dont feel very well (symptoms flaring )but I’ve learned to ride them out until it passes. im MUCH better now and hopefully on my way to a full recovery. I run a few miles a week. I can watch tv and movies again. I surf with my friends again. I’m thinking about starting my own company again. Life is slowly getting back to normal. Thanks again Amy, your story has helped me get through those rough MONTHS! Hopefully mine will help others as well:) it takes time but you will get better:)

      2. That is such a great description of what it feels like being floxed, Chris. And your experience sounds so similar to mine, and many others. Thank you for sharing it. You’re definitely going to help readers here. Please also consider adding your story to the site as well. I’m so glad you’re enjoying life again and I pray you do start your own company!

  62. Laura says:

    Hi Amy,

    I’m really sorry to add to your long list of comments. I’m about 2.5 months from taking Levaquin. I had some joint pain but most of that has resolved. The anxiety has been the worst. I seemed to have a stretch where I was getting better and then last week had another panic attack and extreme anxiety. It’s so helpful to hear that you got better. Would you say that your anxiety is 100% better? I’m trying really hard to keep faith that God will heal me. The horror stories don’t make the anxiety any better. I’m newly married and so afraid that I’ll never get my life back. Did you experience more panic attacks after the first one you had?

  63. Lidia says:

    Thank you for sharing your story and providing some hope. I’m happy to hear you have almost completely recovered. Can you tell me if your tinnitus too has completely gone away and if so was there something particular that helped with that?

    1. Hi Lidia. Yes, the tinnitus is gone. I think magnesium had the biggest impact on it, though my guess is everything I did to support nerve health helped. While I don’t know for sure, I think the tinnitus was caused by nerve damage. If you search for info on magnesium and tinnitus, you’ll find studies showing a connection between them. I hope this helps.

      1. Lidia says:

        Thank you for your quick reply. I have actually adopted your protocol on most of the supplements you suggested and have to say even though it’s only been a week, I have noticed an improvement with the muscles and rotator cuff in my right arm. Still a way to go and I need to pack a lot of patience, which I have very little of these days. I’m hoping the magnesium does help with the tinnitus as I’m taking a lot of it and hope it goes away sooner rather than later. . I will google more on that as you suggest. My anxiety has lessened too and I’m so grateful to you for researching and posting what helped you.

      2. I’m so sorry this happened to you, too, Lidia, but I am happy to hear my posts and suggestions are helping. It definitely takes time to heal from this, and it isn’t always an uphill climb. Keep going, though. Be patient with your body and support it as it heals.

  64. Lidia says:

    Thank you, Amy. I meant to ask you if you recall how long it took for your tinnitus to go away and if it was gradual or suddenly gone. Mine is intermittent but can be loud at times. I really appreciate your feedback. Thank you again.

    1. The tinnitus was one of those symptoms that I noticed one day was gone and wasn’t sure exactly when it had stopped. Like yours, mine was intermittent (also loud, piercing and very annoying). I’m pretty sure it went away around 3 months after the start of my symptoms.

  65. Patty says:

    Thank you so very much. I have the same symptoms with some additional ones. I will follow your advise to help me. I have also reached out on face book to let the world know and hopefully this nightmare will not effect others. Stay strong and keep the faith I will also, Thx again Patty

  66. David L Peters Sr says:

    Sinusitis and bronchitis Dec. 10ish 2019. Levofloxacin prescribed. God bless you and what you’ve been through. I had some aches and pains, minor though in the calves and tendons.

    Worst side effect for me has been tinitus in one ear and I associate it with this drug.

    The downside as I understand it, things can continue to happen months after finishing the drug.

    On top of this, like your Dr, he prescribed Prednisone now to clean out my ear tubes, eutachions, this one has some awesome side effects as well. SMH. I see him Jan. 14, 2020. May have to find another Dr.

    God bless!


    1. Hi Dave. From what I’ve read, prednisone makes the symptoms worse. There’s a lot of evidence magnesium helps with tinnitus, so be sure to read up on that. You might look into N-A-C, too. I was just reading the other day about NAC and tinnitus. Basically support your nerve health. I hope you’re doing OK.

      1. Dave Peters Sr says:

        I took notes of these and will check them out. Forgot to mention the most irritating thing about my tinitus. Musical ear syndrome. My ear has been playing Amazing Grace for a week or more. It is bothersome. High pitched sounds otherwise. Once in a while it switches to Oh Come All Ye Faithful or Silent Night. Weird is all I can say.

    2. David Peters Sr says:

      Well, bronchitis and sinusitis is gone. Still have tinitus and noticed blurry vision or blurrier I guess. Hearing loss also, me have been there already….May be related to Levofloxacin and Prednisone, may just need new glasses. Following up with ENT and eye Dr shortly.

      Still some I’ll call minor muscle and tendon pain. Hope to have dodged the bullet and am not certain at this point he hasn’t prescribed these before. Still praying it stays away doesn’t attack later.

      While in treatment I did experience tightness in tendons, fatigue, red face, tinitus, limp from calf tightening up, eyes hurt, teeth hurt, pins and needles. All were brief and not lasting, but I took it as a warning to stay away from these drugs unless to save my life. Still don’t know why he skipped over all others and went directly to these. Thanks for the reply.


      1. Just reading your symptoms brings back a bunch of unpleasant memories. I hope you’ve dodged the bullet, too.

  67. Judy Weinberg says:

    Nothing but love for everything you’ve experienced and shared on your website. I’m going to take this story in hand when I visit my doctor who blew off my concerns and said the only thing she could do was to put that I was allergic to Cipro in my chart so it would never be prescribed again. Oh, and she told me to lose weight….like that’s going to fix everything that Cipro has robbed me of. My tendons are destroyed. I don’t know how I’m going to get through this, but I am a survivor and I will get through it somehow. Thank you for sharing your story, information and hope! All the best to you Amy!

    1. I’m so sorry, Judy. I hope the information is helpful and your doctor listens.

  68. Erik says:

    Hi Amy,
    I had my horror in 2006 that lasted until 2012. I thought I was cured and I went about my own life even though trauma was always there. I was 90% good until few weeks back. On 12/29/2019 I took amoxicillin/clarytromicin antibiotics for h pylori (even though I swore will never take ABX again in my life). Only two doses after all issues that I thought were all cured and gone forever returned again!!! First started with anxiety, neuropathy feet and hands, sleep issues, joint pains and cracking, you name it. I JUST COULD NOT BELIEVE, SERIOUSLY AGAIN !!! Now 1 month after I am better, sleep is better but God knows what have I started again with this. Maybe my body was always partially damaged and very sensitive to other chemicals. I am extremely upset. All that hard work, ability to reclaim life …fell in the water and starting over again. But what if this time does not work? What if damage is now for good and all will be becoming worse. Have you heard of anyone having similar issues? Any hope….take care Erik

    1. Hi Erik. I’m so sorry. Wow, that is really scary, especially after so much time feeling better. I hope it’s gone for good and you only continue to be well and get stronger. I do have a friend who relapsed when taking prednisone a number of years after initially being floxed. You might check floxiehope.combfor more stories and info of people relapsing.

  69. erik says:

    Hi Amy, did you friend recover from prednisone relapse episode ever? And if yes, how did it take?

    1. Hi Erik. She’s doing much better and seeing improvements all the time. I don’t think she’d say she’s back to 100%, though. She won’t stop working toward being healed. I know that for sure. I hope you don’t, either.

  70. Micheal says:

    Amy, I had a very recent scary situation, I had. difficulty breathing for almost. 4 weeks. I was given some amoxicin and it wasn”t conducive to bronchitis. I was desperate and wanted to do anything to get relief. I thought I was done!!!! I remember hearing, that a drug called levaquin was great for bronchitis. I was able to get some, not knowing the side effects, again didn’t care because I couldn’t breath!!!! I thought I was gonna die. I took a few…
    Nothing,still couldn’t breath. Was so desperate I ended up taking ‘5’ in one day!!!!!!!! I got the runs and a few days later still do
    My bronchitis is almost over
    I happened to come across your article and now I feel
    I helped one issue but how I feel I”m done for anyway!!!!! I now I wish I see your article even though I was so desperate , I thought I was gonna die from the bronchitis!! I couldn’t breath for 3 weeks! Now, I feel I’m not gonna make it . I was so desparate to get relief for my breathing that any kind of consequences never entered my mind. Now I’m sitting at home waiting for my organs to fail, my tendons to rupture my nerves to cause severe pain etc, et c. I saved myself in a desperation but now I’m gonna go from this!!!! I know now my futur is Done!!!!!!! The levaquin. Were 750 mg!!!!!! Please pray for me….Please!!!!! Again, I was desperate and couldn’t breath and thought it was over for me. Now I find. It is Anyway!!!!! Just waiting for the end now. GOD help this poor desperate fool!!!!

    1. Hi Michael. I’m not a medical doctor, but it sounds like you need to see one. I hope you do and are able to get some help.

    2. David Peters Sr says:


      I am not a doctor, but definitely see one that works with floxing, see the notes about supplements throughout this article and My acute sinusitis and bronchitis was similar with levofloxacin etc.. Mine was Dec. 2019 into January 2020. Also consider asking about an antibody test for covid-19. I’m not sure yet, but I could have had it. Prayers for you, stick with prayer and faith. Most folks who are floxed do get better eventually as I understand it. God bless and good luck.

  71. Prasenjeet Paul says:

    Hi Amy,

    Thanks for sharing your story. My doctor prescribed me 500mg of Levofloxacin for 7 days for urine infection. Now, after 2 months, their are internal trembling, brain fog which has impacted my normal life. Also, a fall in b12 levels. Can you please let me know how long you had to go through internal trembling and were you more discomfortable if you sat on hard surfaces.

    1. Hi, Prasenjeet. I’m so sorry this is happening to you. That internal trembling is really upsetting. I remember it, and the other symptoms, all too well. For me, the trembling last a few months. It was very intense at the beginning. After about three months, the trembling was mostly in my fingers and in the muscles of my arms and legs. I was very relieved when the trembling stopped. The other symptoms, especially the joint pain, took a very long time to go away. Even a year later I’d still get pain in my hip joints. This was one of my longest lasting symptoms. The brain fog didn’t last quite as long, but it also took many months to get better. But I did get better. I hope and pray you do, too. Just keep going, believing you’re going to get there and supporting your body as it heals. Your body is designed to heal. Remember that, and celebrate every bit of progress along the way.

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