Jump to content

Poulesportive: Trying to get off Cymbalta and think I tapered too fast


Poulesportive

Recommended Posts

Hi everyone,

 

I am looking for advice on how to better manage my Cymbalta taper. 

 

After 25+ years on SSRIs, always on a low dose, and lots of failed attempts to get off medication due to intense withdrawal symptoms,  I read about The Withdrawal Project (Inner Compass Initiative) in the New York Times and figured maybe my attempts had failed due to tapering way too fast. I am really motivated to at least try to get off of antidepressants because SSRIs now give me the runs. I think my body is just done with this class of medication. While I have an excellent GI doc and am waiting on the biopsy results from an endoscopy/colonoscopy, I have decided to taper from Cymbalta while I wait, and it's been 5 weeks.

 

The withdrawal symptoms hit me over the weekend like a Mack truck. I am taking out 9 beads a day from a 20 mg Cymbalta capsule, which is about a 9% reduction in medication. I know that I could take fewer beads out and restore mental health, comfort, and brain function but if I take fewer beads out I will have to manage three days of diarrhea. My body reacts to any increase of medication. Meanwhile, though my brain feels like crap, my digestive system is loving the decrease. 

 

If I could somehow KNOW that the withdrawal symptoms would eventually go away at -9 beads a day, I would do everything in my power to hang in there. But of course, I really don't know. In general, do withdrawal symptoms dissipate with time? Right now I am dealing with brain fog, night sweats, night waking in a state of panic several times a night (for zero reason), a clenched stomach (intense anxiety), the inability to enjoy anything, no appetite, and a desire to avoid people until I feel better (I feel like crawling into a cave). My job is community relations and I could not feel LESS like relating to the community right now.

 

Advice or suggestions welcomed. Thank you so much for any thoughts on starting a taper. 

 

 

 

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello, Poulesportive, and welcome to SA. 

 

It does sound like you are having withdrawal symptoms. 

 

9% per day is way, way too fast. 

Please don't reduce at that rate any more. 

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/topic/1024-why-taper-by-10-of-my-dosage/

We do recommend 10% (or less) reductions, but that is per month. 

 

The good news is, if you have been reducing at this rate only recently, there is a very good chance to get stable and taper at a slower, gentler rate. 

 

To start with, could you let us know a little about your medication history by creating a "signature" using these instructions: http://survivingantidepressants.org/topic/12364-please-put-your-withdrawal-history-in-your-signature/

Please especially put the dates and dosages of your most recent decreases.

 

 

Edited by SkyBlue
italics

 

2020: After 18+ years (entire adult life) on Paxil, a dangerous doctor-led "taper" in 2015, and four years tapering off the last 1 mg thanks to SA and the Brassmonkey slide, 

I AM COMPLETELY FREE OF PAXIL! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! Forever.

 

2021: Began conservative, proper, CNS-respecting taper of Zoloft, led by the only expert on me -- me. Making own liquid. 5-10% plus holds.

2022: Holding on Zoloft for now. Current dose 47 mg. Hanging in, hanging on. Severe protracted PAWS, windows and waves. While I may not be doing "a lot" by outside standards, things are graaaaadually getting better

 

Yoga (gentle to medium); walks; daily breath practice; nutrition, fruits/veg; nature; water; EastEnders (lol); practicing self-compassion, self-care; boundaries; connection; allowing feelings; t r u s t ing that I, too, will heal. (--> may need to be reminded of this.)

"You are not alone, and this is not the end of your story." - Baylissa

Link to comment

Hi SkyBlue,

 

Thank you for responding! I just added a signature with my recent medication history, hope it comes through. I unfortunately am failing at a 10% per month taper - meaning that I am not taking 9 MORE beads out each day; but simply am opening a Cymbalta capsule each day and taking out 9 beads. I counted the beads in one capsule and there were 102, so 9 beads is about a 9% decrease in dose. That's about what I've been doing for 5 weeks. Full disclosure: I started by taking 11 beads out but noticed hair trigger mood changes and decided to only take 7 beads out; after a couple of weeks feeling great I thought I was ready for more and for the past maybe 14 days have been taking 9 beads out. 

 

The anxiety, sad thoughts, insomnia, lack of appetite, brain fog, short term memory loss and feelings of persistent dread are knocking me out and are simply not related to anything going on in reality. It's got to be withdrawal. I'm going to only take 8 beads out tomorrow, and gradually go back up to full 20 mg dose if I have to. I can't tolerate the withdrawal; I could risk my job if I keep trying to function this way. I do really want off of this drug. But I can't do it at 10% a month, even though that had seemed conservative to both me and my psychiatrist. 

 

Advice welcomed.

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment

Hi SkyBlue/everyone, 

 

Posting an update - I took only 8 beads out this morning, not 9. At least, I think I did - some beads spilled so I'm not 100%. I really need to be way more careful. Reading around on this website, my sense is that my taper might not be working because I am on the lowest prescribed dose of Cymbalta and apparently the taper is harder at the lower medication levels. I really wish I'd started slower. 

 

If I can hack it, I"m going to stay at -8 and if things don't improve I'll go to -7. Really hoping not to go back up to full dose. 

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus
8 hours ago, Poulesportive said:

I took only 8 beads out this morning, not 9. At least, I think I did - some beads spilled so I'm not 100%. I really need to be way more careful. Reading around on this website, my sense is that my taper might not be working because I am on the lowest prescribed dose of Cymbalta and apparently the taper is harder at the lower medication levels. 

 

If I can hack it, I"m going to stay at -8 and if things don't improve I'll go to -7. Really hoping not to go back up to full dose. 

 

Ah, ok. I misread and I'm really glad you're not going 9% every day!

 

 Yes, you are correct that the lower dosage levels might be more difficult. Some people do 5% per month or less at the lower dosages. (More info if you're interested in the technical reasons for why that is can be found by searching "sert capacity and lower doses" on this site.)

 

Going up to your full original dose is not recommended--please read the topic on Reinstatement. 

And yes please be extra careful. I know it's difficult w the beads, but if there's any doubt best to redo that day's dose. A huge pain but worth it. 

 

2020: After 18+ years (entire adult life) on Paxil, a dangerous doctor-led "taper" in 2015, and four years tapering off the last 1 mg thanks to SA and the Brassmonkey slide, 

I AM COMPLETELY FREE OF PAXIL! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! Forever.

 

2021: Began conservative, proper, CNS-respecting taper of Zoloft, led by the only expert on me -- me. Making own liquid. 5-10% plus holds.

2022: Holding on Zoloft for now. Current dose 47 mg. Hanging in, hanging on. Severe protracted PAWS, windows and waves. While I may not be doing "a lot" by outside standards, things are graaaaadually getting better

 

Yoga (gentle to medium); walks; daily breath practice; nutrition, fruits/veg; nature; water; EastEnders (lol); practicing self-compassion, self-care; boundaries; connection; allowing feelings; t r u s t ing that I, too, will heal. (--> may need to be reminded of this.)

"You are not alone, and this is not the end of your story." - Baylissa

Link to comment
  • mammaP changed the title to Poulesportive: Trying to get off Cymbalta and think I tapered too fast.

SkyBlue, thanks so much. I did a search on Reinstatement and read up. What I'm learning on this website is so profound. I know my psychiatrist means well, but honestly, he might as well be bleeding me with leeches. 

 

My goal is to stay at -8 beads for a month and let my body and brain stabilize. I feel better each day, and will not try that big of a drop in dosage again. It's very frustrating to think that I might have to be on Cymbalta (or another psych med) for several more years, but it turns out that I don't have to think about that right now at all.

 

Through the SA website, I found Dr. Kelly Brogan's website, and am reading about her wholistic approach to recovery from depression. I am going to focus on making some of the changes to my diet that are recommended there, including reducing and hopefully learning to eliminate gluten.  I eliminated alcohol in February of 2017 (just added this to my signature) and that was quite helpful. But now I see there are many more actions I can take to improve my health that are probably a better use of time than complaining about how slow my taper is :)

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus
8 hours ago, Poulesportive said:

SkyBlue, thanks so much. I did a search on Reinstatement and read up. 

 

My goal is to stay at -8 beads for a month and let my body and brain stabilize. I feel better each day, and will not try that big of a drop in dosage again. 

 

But now I see there are many more actions I can take to improve my health that are probably a better use of time than complaining about how slow my taper is :)

 

You're very welcome. 

 

Yes, it's been said that the ssri era is going to go down in history as a very un-enlightened time in "medicine." Thankfully, we here on this site are going to free ourselves. : ) 

I am so, so glad you're going to stabilize for a while. It really, really is beneficial. And you're feeling better each day, which is an excellent sign. As our JanCarol says, "Holding is a blessing."

 

By the way, I don't see you inordinately complaining about slowly tapering. You're allowed to feel impatient--it's part of the process--and the good news is, a) even though you might feel impatient, you're wisely choosing to hold, then go slowly; and b) the more gently you taper, things really do improve as you go down (with waves and windows of course, but generally better).

 

Keep letting us know how you're doing! 

 

2020: After 18+ years (entire adult life) on Paxil, a dangerous doctor-led "taper" in 2015, and four years tapering off the last 1 mg thanks to SA and the Brassmonkey slide, 

I AM COMPLETELY FREE OF PAXIL! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! Forever.

 

2021: Began conservative, proper, CNS-respecting taper of Zoloft, led by the only expert on me -- me. Making own liquid. 5-10% plus holds.

2022: Holding on Zoloft for now. Current dose 47 mg. Hanging in, hanging on. Severe protracted PAWS, windows and waves. While I may not be doing "a lot" by outside standards, things are graaaaadually getting better

 

Yoga (gentle to medium); walks; daily breath practice; nutrition, fruits/veg; nature; water; EastEnders (lol); practicing self-compassion, self-care; boundaries; connection; allowing feelings; t r u s t ing that I, too, will heal. (--> may need to be reminded of this.)

"You are not alone, and this is not the end of your story." - Baylissa

Link to comment
  • 2 weeks later...

Hi SkyBlue,

 

Just posting an update here. Am now at 7 weeks out, after starting a taper off of 20 mg Cymbalta. I am continuing to hold at 18.5 mg (roughly) even though I am feeling really good and would like to try another drop in dosage. Unfortunately I looked at my calendar and there are several things this month that I need to be fully functional for. The WD symptoms after an attempted 10% drop in dosage came on so quickly, were so severe, and were so wildly inconvenient that I just really want to avoid going through that again.

 

I don't feel comfortable going down 5% (which would be about 4 beads) so the next time I drop in dosage I'll probably do 2 beads, and anticipate that I might feel WD symptoms after 2 or 3 weeks of feeling no change at all (this is what happened the first time). It's hard to face the reality that this taper is going to take anywhere from 4 to 7 years to complete, but I know this is better than being occasionally non-functional, or worse, doing long-lasting damage to my central nervous system.

 

Anyway - I feel great! Diet and exercise changes are helping. 

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment
  • ChessieCat changed the title to Poulesportive: Trying to get off Cymbalta and think I tapered too fast
  • Moderator Emeritus
4 hours ago, Poulesportive said:

I don't feel comfortable going down 5% (which would be about 4 beads) so the next time I drop in dosage I'll probably do 2 beads, and anticipate that I might feel WD symptoms after 2 or 3 weeks of feeling no change at all (this is what happened the first time). It's hard to face the reality that this taper is going to take anywhere from 4 to 7 years to complete, but I know this is better than being occasionally non-functional, or worse, doing long-lasting damage to my central nervous system.

 

Sounds like a sensible plan.  It isn't about how many years it takes, it is about minimising withdrawal symptoms and having a good quality of life.

2001–2002 paroxetine

2003  citalopram

2004-2008  paroxetine (various failed tapers) 
2008  paroxetine slow taper down to

2016  Aug off paroxetine
2016  citalopram May 20mg  Oct 15mg … slow taper down
2018  citalopram 13 Feb 4.6mg 15 Mar 4.4mg 29 Apr 4.2mg 6 Jul 4.1mg 17 Aug 4.0mg  18 Nov 3.8mg
2019  15 Mar 3.6mg  21 May 3.4mg  26 Dec 3.2mg 

2020  19 Feb 3.0mg 19 Jul 2.9mg 16 Sep 2.8mg 25 Oct 2.7mg 23 Oct 2.6mg 24 Dec 2.5mg

2021   29 Aug 2.4mg   15 Nov 2.3mg

Link to comment
Quote

It's hard to face the reality that this taper is going to take anywhere from 4 to 7 years to complete, but I know this is better than being occasionally non-functional, or worse, doing long-lasting damage to my central nervous system.

 

Yes, this.

 

In a few weeks, my taper will be four years in, although I know I have taken longer than necessary. I have taken my time and really prioritized feeling well almost all of the time. I have delayed drops if I know something stressful is coming up, and have had long holds. I was quite upset to realize that I have 3.5 years more to go, but it is what it is. I have to function. Life has gone on and I am well. There is no point in rushing off, having a breakdown, and going back on the pills. (Which is what happened last time.) Some people can maybe rush off, but I am not one of them.

 

It is what it is. It doesn't mean we have to like it!

 

 

2005 St John's Wort / 2006-2012 Lexapro 20mg, 2 failed attempts to stop, tapered over 4.5 months in early 2012

January 2013 started Sertraline, over time worked up to 100mg

July 2014 Sertraline dropped from 100mg to 75mg, held for six months, slower tapering until 2019 22 Dec 3.2mg

2020 Sertraline 19 Jan 3.1mg, 26 Jan 3.0mg; 1 Mar 2.9, 7 Mar 2.8, May (some drops here) 24 May 2.5, May 29 2.4, June 21 2.3, June 28 2.2mg,  July 4 2.1mg, July 24 (or maybe a bit before) 2mg, early Nov switched to home made suspension; 29 Nov 1.8mg; approx 25 Dec 1.6mg)

2021 Some time in about Jan/Feb realised probably on more like 1.8mg and poss mixing error in making suspension; doses after 10 Feb accurate; 10 Feb 1.6mg; 7 Mar 1.4, continued monthly

10% drops until 1mg, then dropped 0.1mg monthly.

May 2022,0.1mg, now dropping 0.01mg per week

29 August 2022 - first day of zero!

My thread here at SA: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/1775-bubbles/page/21/

Current: Armour Thyroid

 

 

Link to comment
17 hours ago, Songbird said:

 

Sounds like a sensible plan.  It isn't about how many years it takes, it is about minimising withdrawal symptoms and having a good quality of life.

 

Thanks so much, Songbird. Good to know it seems reasonable. I guess I just needed to write it here to be able to accept it.

 

By the way, I like "various failed tapers" in your signature. I had so many of those before finding my way to this website :) .  

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment
16 hours ago, bubbles said:

 

 

It is what it is. It doesn't mean we have to like it!

 

 

 

Bubbles, thank you, this made me laugh! I definitely do not like it. But it is really great to hear from others on this journey. I do find it comforting that, thanks to this website, we need not be alone in this.

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment

It is good to know we are not alone isn't it?

2005 St John's Wort / 2006-2012 Lexapro 20mg, 2 failed attempts to stop, tapered over 4.5 months in early 2012

January 2013 started Sertraline, over time worked up to 100mg

July 2014 Sertraline dropped from 100mg to 75mg, held for six months, slower tapering until 2019 22 Dec 3.2mg

2020 Sertraline 19 Jan 3.1mg, 26 Jan 3.0mg; 1 Mar 2.9, 7 Mar 2.8, May (some drops here) 24 May 2.5, May 29 2.4, June 21 2.3, June 28 2.2mg,  July 4 2.1mg, July 24 (or maybe a bit before) 2mg, early Nov switched to home made suspension; 29 Nov 1.8mg; approx 25 Dec 1.6mg)

2021 Some time in about Jan/Feb realised probably on more like 1.8mg and poss mixing error in making suspension; doses after 10 Feb accurate; 10 Feb 1.6mg; 7 Mar 1.4, continued monthly

10% drops until 1mg, then dropped 0.1mg monthly.

May 2022,0.1mg, now dropping 0.01mg per week

29 August 2022 - first day of zero!

My thread here at SA: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/1775-bubbles/page/21/

Current: Armour Thyroid

 

 

Link to comment

Hi everyone,

 

The past few days I've been feeling way too high-energy agitated in the mornings, kind of manic. Things calm by the evening. Never had this feeling in my life; it's definitely the result of going down from 20 to about 18.5 mg Cymbalta (taking out 8 beads). 

 

My sentiment is "whatever." I am getting off of this effing medication. Granted, it's going to take a long time, but I am able to put aside the manic feelings and just deal with life; it's not interfering. Just a new, weird normal. 

 

I notice that I don't feel like eating, and I'm losing weight. People keep saying how good I look. If only they knew - I'm not a Cymbalta gas-bag anymore (or at least not at the moment).

 

I'm going to continue to hold, and if the too-much-energy thing continues I might consider giving up coffee. However, I love coffee, so we'll see. Possibly it could help with the chronic insomnia but geez Louise. I get so tired of trying to manage all these symptoms. I think the insomnia could be perimenopause (I'm 49) so I might try to see an ob/gyn.  When in doubt, blame it on "the change" :)

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus
1 hour ago, Poulesportive said:

I'm going to continue to hold, and if the too-much-energy thing continues I might consider giving up coffee. However, I love coffee, so we'll see. 

 

It's best to avoid stimulants such as caffeine during withdrawal -  I switched to decaf coffee.

2001–2002 paroxetine

2003  citalopram

2004-2008  paroxetine (various failed tapers) 
2008  paroxetine slow taper down to

2016  Aug off paroxetine
2016  citalopram May 20mg  Oct 15mg … slow taper down
2018  citalopram 13 Feb 4.6mg 15 Mar 4.4mg 29 Apr 4.2mg 6 Jul 4.1mg 17 Aug 4.0mg  18 Nov 3.8mg
2019  15 Mar 3.6mg  21 May 3.4mg  26 Dec 3.2mg 

2020  19 Feb 3.0mg 19 Jul 2.9mg 16 Sep 2.8mg 25 Oct 2.7mg 23 Oct 2.6mg 24 Dec 2.5mg

2021   29 Aug 2.4mg   15 Nov 2.3mg

Link to comment
37 minutes ago, Songbird said:

 

It's best to avoid stimulants such as caffeine during withdrawal -  I switched to decaf coffee.

 

I have a feeling I will have to do the same. Thank you for letting me know. Trying to scale way back on gluten, dairy and junk at the moment - it is overwhelming to think about the things in my diet I should probably get rid of.

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment

@Poulesportive

 

your analogy of being bled by leeches is sheer genius!  Thx for the laugh 

1997-2006 - Prozac 20mg

2006-2015 - Lexapro 15mg, Klonopin .5mg PRN

2015 - Paxil | 2016 - Remeron 30mg | Mar 2017 - Lexapro 7.5mg, Kpin .5mg |July 2017 - Pristiq 50mg, Kpin 1mg

Oct 2017 - Celexa 20mg, Kpin .5mg | Feb 2018 - celexa 20mg, Kpin to Valium 7.5mg 

April 2018 - rapid taper of Celexa and Valium leading to crash

May 2018 -  Aug  2019 - Fluoxetine 15 mg, Valium 3.5mg

Aug 2019 -April 2020 - Micro liquid taper off 3.5mg valium end April 6 2020. Liquid Fluoxetine 12mg per day

May 2020 - Nov 2021 -   liquid fluoxetine 12mg per day.

Dec 2021 Direct switch from 12mg generic liquid fluoxetine to 10mg Prozac Capsule | May 24 2022 - 9.5mg | July 1 9.2mg | Aug 14 9.0mg | Aug 30 8.9mg | Dec 1 8.8mg

*Zero alcohol since July 2020.  Supplement include 3000 mg Fish oil, 1000mg Vit C.  100mcg B12

Link to comment
On 6/9/2018 at 11:06 PM, methuselah said:

@Poulesportive

 

your analogy of being bled by leeches is sheer genius!  Thx for the laugh 

Lol, thanks Methuselah!

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment

Hi all,

 

Weird symptoms last week. Last Monday I felt a little....too good, almost high, for no apparent reason, and by Tuesday I felt drugged, so I got worried about my recent Cymbalta refill and went to talk to the pharmacist. But it's the same generic (by Prasco) duloxetine that I've been taking all along - nothing has changed. Not sure if I felt drugged because I'm losing weight after cutting out junk food, or because some of the capsules had more beads than normal from the manufacturer....

 

Anyway I started taking 9 beads out instead of just 8 and am thinking of getting a scale so I can taper by weight and make sure dosing is even.

 

This week I started taking 200 mg of Magnesium glycinate for my insomnia, muscle cramps and morning anxiety. While it could be placebo effect, I really do feel better on all three fronts, so will continue taking it! Also joined Cymbalta Hurts Worse and Magnesium Advocacy Group on Facebook. Get behind me, Satan :) :) 

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment
  • 2 weeks later...

Posting a quick update. I'm taking 10 beads out now, so am probably taking around 18 mg of Cymbalta from my 20 mg prescription. Feeling great. I am super cautious about tapering as I never want to go through again the withdrawal experience that I suffered in May. 

 

Based on the last 30 days, it seems like I can taper by taking out 1 bead every two weeks with no negative consequences, although I will hold if going through any major stressors.  

 

The 200 mg Magnesium glycinate capsules seem like a truly amazing aid to my recovery. I can sleep through the night until the first light now - something that was not possible before I started taking magnesium.  The startle effect on waking is much reduced and some mornings is completely nonexistent.  I feel calmer through the day taking the magnesium.  And I've only had one weird muscle cramp since I started taking it (and that was during yoga class).  

 

I take the magnesium in the morning, and if I remember (which is not often), I take another at bed time. 

 

Hope this note is finding everyone in a window. Beautiful summer day here in New York.

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment

Your withdrawals sound exactly like mine. The night waking in panic is horrible. I like how positive you are in this thread which has just given me some hope with my own situation!

 

Im currently on my first attempt at withdrawl, 90 days AD free. Pretty sure I tapered too quickly though.

 

Definitely going to try this magnesium! I work in a lab so that shouldnt be hard to find. Joke! 

Started Sertraline August 2017 - 1 day - Didn't tolerate
Switched to Mirtazapine 1 day later - Worked very well..?
Took Mirtazapine for 6 months:

15mg for 4 months 

7.5mg for 40 days 

3.7mg for 10 days 

2mg for 7 days 

(Smaller doses were inaccurate, breaking pills up into segments just by eye)
Tapered completely off Mirtazapine in April 2018. 

 

Link to comment

Hi Ox123! Thanks for the kind words. Congratulations to you on being AD free - I can't wait to get there. I will try to follow your thread (not that I know how to do this but will figure it out), as I am really interested to know how it is for people transitioning off of ADs in their first year. I am hoping that by the time I get there, things like diet, exercise, supplements will be enough to keep me out of the deep waves.

 

For more info on Magnesium in all its forms, check out the Magnesium Advocacy Group on Facebook. I joined that group recently, simply because my magnesium supplement seemed to be helping me so much, and it's been really interesting to read about people with all kinds of chronic illnesses who are apparently finding relief following something called the Root Cause Protocol. This is a regimen that I don't understand but the least stringent interpretation is "eat sensibly and take magnesium." It's actually more complicated but I have limited time and have to simplify :) 

 

 

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment
  • 3 weeks later...

Posting quick update. Disappointed after counting beads in 5 capsules and realizing average is higher than I expected. Average of 112 beads per capsule. Sigh. I feel like I am never going to get off this stuff. However, I may be interviewing for a job next week so I really can't afford to destabilize myself. I am going to start taking 12 beads out instead of just 11. 

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment

Oh no. First day of vacation and accidentally took extra dose of Cymbalta. This is the first time this has happened and it's because I was in a rush while packing and didn't count beads before leaving, just threw extra pills in the case to take beads out later. 

 

This means instead of taking the 18 mg of Cymbalta that I normally take, today it's 36 mg.

 

Can anyone tell me what to expect? Also, I really want to skip a dose tomorrow since I accidentally doubled my dose today.

 

I cannot stand being enslaved to this so called "medicine."  Have never had this much Cymbalta in my system before.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment

Feeling kind of dizzy and dry mouth but nothing I can't handle. Has anyone accidentally double dosed? Worried this is going to screw up my taper.

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

I would just go back to normal dose tomorrow.  Cymbalta has a very short half life - skipping doses could potentially exacerbate rather than help.

 

See:  I messed up - I took too much, took too little, or skipped a dose

2001–2002 paroxetine

2003  citalopram

2004-2008  paroxetine (various failed tapers) 
2008  paroxetine slow taper down to

2016  Aug off paroxetine
2016  citalopram May 20mg  Oct 15mg … slow taper down
2018  citalopram 13 Feb 4.6mg 15 Mar 4.4mg 29 Apr 4.2mg 6 Jul 4.1mg 17 Aug 4.0mg  18 Nov 3.8mg
2019  15 Mar 3.6mg  21 May 3.4mg  26 Dec 3.2mg 

2020  19 Feb 3.0mg 19 Jul 2.9mg 16 Sep 2.8mg 25 Oct 2.7mg 23 Oct 2.6mg 24 Dec 2.5mg

2021   29 Aug 2.4mg   15 Nov 2.3mg

Link to comment

Not taking Cymbalta, but I've done that sort of thing once or twice. :( I've just moved on and it hasn't been an issue for me.

 

Hope all goes well.

2005 St John's Wort / 2006-2012 Lexapro 20mg, 2 failed attempts to stop, tapered over 4.5 months in early 2012

January 2013 started Sertraline, over time worked up to 100mg

July 2014 Sertraline dropped from 100mg to 75mg, held for six months, slower tapering until 2019 22 Dec 3.2mg

2020 Sertraline 19 Jan 3.1mg, 26 Jan 3.0mg; 1 Mar 2.9, 7 Mar 2.8, May (some drops here) 24 May 2.5, May 29 2.4, June 21 2.3, June 28 2.2mg,  July 4 2.1mg, July 24 (or maybe a bit before) 2mg, early Nov switched to home made suspension; 29 Nov 1.8mg; approx 25 Dec 1.6mg)

2021 Some time in about Jan/Feb realised probably on more like 1.8mg and poss mixing error in making suspension; doses after 10 Feb accurate; 10 Feb 1.6mg; 7 Mar 1.4, continued monthly

10% drops until 1mg, then dropped 0.1mg monthly.

May 2022,0.1mg, now dropping 0.01mg per week

29 August 2022 - first day of zero!

My thread here at SA: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/1775-bubbles/page/21/

Current: Armour Thyroid

 

 

Link to comment
3 hours ago, Songbird said:

I would just go back to normal dose tomorrow.  Cymbalta has a very short half life - skipping doses could potentially exacerbate rather than help.

 

See:  I messed up - I took too much, took too little, or skipped a dose

 

Thanks so much for this, Songbird. I looked all over for a threat on this topic but could not find. Today was okay. Will take normal dose tomorrow; hope this doesn't screw things up too badly. 

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment
3 hours ago, bubbles said:

Not taking Cymbalta, but I've done that sort of thing once or twice. :( I've just moved on and it hasn't been an issue for me.

 

Hope all goes well.

 

Thanks for letting me know, Bubbles. That is my plan - sure hope I don't lose the 3 months of progress I've made on this taper. Moving on is definitely the hope!

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment

Quick note here about accidentally taking a double dose of Cymbalta on Saturday. If there was ever a doubt that this medication caused my digestive problems - which there was NOT - the accidental dose increase makes it pretty clear what Cymbalta does to my intestines. Four days later things are starting to settle down but I've still got the bloating. 

 

Insomnia and cortisol spikes on waking are both significant problems this week, although it's not just due to the double dose, I also went down to 100 beads, which was more than a 1 bead drop (probably a 2-3 bead drop on average). I've been doubling magnesium from 200 mg to 400 mg to try to compensate.

 

Took Altostrata's suggestion regarding morning light and am sleeping with a sleep mask. This helps a great deal more than I thought it would. 

 

It's going to be a long four+ years getting off this medication. Wish I'd found this site sooner!

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi poulesportes, 

 

I accidentally doubled up on my meds once too n it affected me for a little while but I did eventually stabilise again. If you only did it once it shouldn’t take too long to stabilise. I can’t remember now how long it took me. 

 

Some people on here have accidently taken the wrong dose for a lot longer, a week or more without realising it but I can’t remember who they were. 

 

I hope you stabilise again soon 💚

Seroquel. 2019:➡️ From 7.25mg to 5.80mg. 2020➡️5.60 to 4.80. 2021➡️4.60 to 4.0.  2022➡️3.95 to 3.55. 2023➡️ From 3.50 to 3.25.  2024➡️Jan15=3.20✔️ Feb19=3.15✔️ March26=3.10✔️May1=3.05✔️This is NOT medical advice.Consult your doctor.

Link to comment
  • 1 month later...

Posting today to say I have got to do something new about the free floating anxiety. Please God, I can't do any kind of medication, either prescription or over the counter. I really do not want to drug this. I want to SOLVE this. 

 

Still on 98 microbeads of Cymbalta and have been for weeks. Some time in August, I had a significant mishap counting beads. In the space of one week, I accidentally took a double dose (my 2nd of the summer). Then I accidentally left 20 beads out of a capsule - this happened TWICE - it had to do with the container I was holding counted beads in (5 compartments of 20 beads each and I just forgot to pour the beads from the last compartment into the capsule before taking it).

 

Ever since that week of mistakes with bead counting, the anxiety has overwhelmed everything I am doing to heal:  eating well, yoga, therapy, AA, taking magnesium glycinate, and now meditating twice a day. 

 

SIGH.  I've increased the magnesium from 200 mg/day to 600 mg/day (when I can remember to take it). I know I need to add exercise but it's hard to find the time.

 

Holding at 98 beads and feeling really, really discouraged.

 

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment

I'm tapering Cymbalta, too, and it is a real battle.  I started at 60 mg and am now down to 30.5 mg.  I'm weighing the beads as bead counting is too tedious and, oddly, not as accurate as weighing since the beads in my capsules are not exactly uniform in size.  For the most part they're the same, but there are some that tend to be a bit smaller. 

 

I am cutting 2.5% a week but may have to slow down as I get lower.  Also, I tapered a benzo and completed that on Jan 11, 2018, so I'm finding the further I get away from it, the better I am with the AD taper.  

 

I'm sorry you're having such a rough time and being stuck at 98 beads.  Believe me, I know how it feels.  This is a very wicked drug and I wish I'd never heard of it!

 

2016-Aug-Prescribed 2 mg Ativan & 10 mg Ambien; Oct-c/o from 20 mg Lexapro to 60 mg Cymbalta; Nov-Dec-Tapered off 10 mg Ambien    

2017-Jan-Feb c/o from 1.75 mg Ativan to 13 mg Valium & begin daily liquid micro taper; May-taper Cymbalta 60 mg to 48 mg with severe withdrawals.  Begin 11 month Cymbalta hold.

2018-Jan 11 completed Valium taper; Apr-Resume Cymbalta taper.  Interval dose progress: Apr 43 mg; May 40 mg; Jul 35 mg; Sep 29 mg; Dec 21 mg; 

2019- Apr 14 mg; Jun 11 mg; Aug 9 mg; Oct 7 mg; Nov 6 mg

2020-Jan 5.2 mg; Feb 4.8 mg; Mar 4.3 mg; Apr 3.9 mg; May 3.5 mg; Jun 3.3 mg; Jul 2.9 mg; Aug 2.7 mg; 28 Sep 2.4 mg/12 beads; 25 Oct 2.2 mg/11 beads; 22 Nov 2.0 mg/10 beads; 20 Dec 1.8 mg/9 beads

2021- 17 Jan 1.6 mg/8 beads; 14 Feb 1.4 mg/7 beads; 18 Mar 1.2 mg/6 beads; 18 Apr 1.0 mg/5 beads; 16 May

0.8 mg/4 beads; 13 Jun 0.6 mg/3 beads; 11 Jul 0.5 mg/2 beads; 8 Aug .03 mg/1 bead; 5 Sep 0 mg.

Brutal, agonizing, slow 4.5 year Cymbalta taper completed as of 5 Sep 2021.  100% psych drug free.  

 

 

 

Link to comment
  • 2 weeks later...
On 9/15/2018 at 2:59 PM, gardenlady said:

I'm tapering Cymbalta, too, and it is a real battle.  

 

Hi Gardenlady! Sorry for delay in reply, I didn't see this until just now. Congrats on finishing your benzo taper! I am so impressed with how determined you are to get off of ADs. Glad to make your acquaintance :) 

 

My anxiety is gone, I'm at 97 beads, and this week I'm trying to tackle my insomnia. I quit coffee cold turkey for 4 days because I had read on Dr. Kelly Brogan's website (or perhaps one of her eblasts, which I had signed up for) that coffee stimulates cortisol production and eliminating it can reduce insomnia. 

 

Today was day 5, and I can officially say that quitting coffee does NOT work for me. Despite being caffeine-free, I still woke up at 5 AM. I took half a Benadryl and then overslept till 8 AM, wreaking havoc on my family's morning routine. At that point, I caved in and had a cup of coffee. This taper is going to proceed with coffee in the mornings.

 

However, I think I can knock out the diet soda instead. Limiting caffeine is possible; giving it up entirely isn't, at least not right now. The worst part of this little experiment was seeing how I had zero motivation to get out of bed knowing that morning coffee wasn't happening. I simply could not muster the energy to care enough about being late. A 30+ year habit is hard to break - and that morning coffee routine is such a pleasure. I hadn't realized how much I relied on the ritual - and the energy boost.

 

Your taper is going fast - that is amazing! I have a scale, but am still getting used to it. It will return different values for the same 97 beads if I take them off the little dish and put them back on - same exact beads, different weight measurements, even after calibrating. So I don't trust it. Not sure if it's the scale that's defective or if I'm doing something wrong. 

 

Do you really garden? Because that, too is supposed to lower cortisol levels....

 

 

 

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment
  • 2 weeks later...

Noting here that I am in a window. Hallelujah. Between August & Sept I had four weeks of unbearable anxiety due to messing up my Cymbalta dose 3 times in one week (travel really screws up my taper). It's gone, thank God. Feeling really good, peaceful - just the morning adrenaline pounding away at 5:30 AM but that's sleeping in pretty late these days.

 

Am at 95 beads as of yesterday. Have probably lost about 10 lbs since starting this taper in April. At 124 lbs now - noting for future reference as people are commenting on the weight loss. I had to stop eating gluten - a plant based diet really makes a huge difference to my energy levels.

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment
  • 2 months later...

Just updating. Had to go on Paxil in December after really awful November dealing with unrelenting anxiety after tapering down to 92 beads of Cymbalta. Now at 90 beads Cymbalta and 7.5 mg Paxil. Dropping today to 80 beads Cymbalta and upping to 10 mg Paxil. Goal is to get off Cymbalta entirely. 

 

Maybe I've been on antidepressants for too long (close to 30 years) to ever get off them. I don't know. I'm just really really glad to not feel anxious all day long, every single day, for zero reason. This is the first time in weeks I haven't felt like bashing my head against the wall. 

 

September 2016 - Paxil 12.5 mg CR stopped working for depression and anxiety after about 15 years on it

October - December 2016 - Wellbutrin not effective for depression; Lexapro gave me a panic attack

December 2016 - January 2018 - Zoloft low dose (can't remember) - this drug, in my opinion, ruined my digestive system

January 2018 - Tapering Zoloft while adding 5 mg Prozac intensified digestive problems; doctor insisted on immediate CT

February 2018 - 21 days CT after about 25 years on antidepressants. A living hell, not functional except at work. 

March - April 2018 - Prescribed Cymbalta 20 mg. Reduced 10% in April due to weight gain, digestive issues. and experienced severe withdrawal (extreme anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, night sweats)

May 2018 - Updosed and held at 18.5 mg Cymbalta. 

December 2018 - switch to 20 mg Paxil after continued, slow taper on Cymbalta produced unmanageable anxiety. 

Jan-Feb 2019 - started tapering on Paxil; currently 2.5 mg Paxil and 75 mg Wellbutrin

 

Link to comment

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Terms of Use Privacy Policy