Jump to content

WillBeHereTomorrow: Troubles with Effexor.


WillBeHereTomorrow

Recommended Posts

I'm so thankful that this place exists and it makes me feel less lonely facing these challenges. I was prescibred Effexor in 2013 and although it seemed to be helping at first, I discovered after a couple of years that it was making me worse. I have been trying to taper for several years, both with the help of doctors and on my own.

 

My last attempt at tapering Effexor was between April 2023 and january 2024, from 150 mg I tapered ~10 % every four weeks, to be more exact 12,5 mg every four weeks. In hindsight and after reading things on this site I realize this was way too fast. Things we're going alright until I hit 25 mg and got more and more pain in my body, increased fear and anxiety and waking up at night due to panic attacks. I tried reinstating, 37,5 mg for a week, then 75 mg for a week but everything made a turn for the worse. I couldn't work and became increasingly depressed and suicidal, tried for a few weeks to go up to 150 mg Venlafaxine but nothing seemed to help. I wasn't taking to the drug anymore. Were all these symtoms withdrawal?

In this weakened state the doctor prescribed Brintellix 10 mg and I started a cross taper between the drugs. The side effects of Brintellix were and are horrible, first I was on 10 mg for 10 days, then 20 mg for 10 days, then 15 mg, 10 mg, 5 mg, 2.5 mg and finally 0.4 mg which I'm on right now. I've been on Brintellix for 7 weeks and totally off Effexor for the last 2 weeks. I am somewhat stable, but everytime I take a dose of Brintellix I get horrible anxiety and akathisia. If I skip a dose of Brintellix for a day I don't get these symtoms so they aren't related to Effexor withdrawal I think.

 

At the moment I'm having mild brain zaps and brain fog as my main Effexor withdrawal symtoms, they can also be withdrawal from decreasing the dose of Brintellix from 20 mg to 0.4 mg in a matter of weeks. I don't know what to do, I feel I can't keep taking Brintellix because of the horrible anxiety and akathisia. Should I drop the Brintellix and hope for the best without antidepressants? I have been on Effexor for more than 10 years and I'm very afraid of PAWS. Should I reinstate a small dose of Effexor and taper slowly from there?

 

I can't afford to not be somewhat functional, I have kids who need me and I need to be able to work.

 

I'm lost and very scared, please help me.

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment
  • Moderator

Hello, and welcome to Surviving Antidepressants. We are a peer support forum to assist in tapering off psychiatric drugs safely, or recovering from psychiatric drug withdrawal.

 

This topic is for anything relating to you, and any questions you have. Please do not start another topic.

 

We recommend tapering by no more than 10% of your CURRENT dose each month, to limit withdrawal symptoms. E.g. 10mg --> 9mg --> 8.1mg --> 7.29mg

 

All the answers you are looking for regarding tapering and antidepressant withdrawal are on this site. Please search around and continue to read as much as you can manage. Use the site search function to search for specific words or phrases, such as drugs or symptoms.

 

Here are a few of the most useful links:

 

--------Important topics in the Tapering forum and FAQ--------

 

Micro tapering

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

Taking multiple psych drugs? Which drug to taper first?

 

How to make a liquid from tablets or capsules

 

Using a scale to weigh and measure doses

 

--------From the Symptoms and Self-Care Forums--------
 
What is withdrawal syndrome?
 
About reinstating and stabilizing to reduce withdrawal symptoms
 
The Windows and Waves Pattern of Stabilization

 

Hypersensitivity and Kindling

 

We only recommend two supplements. Omega 3 Fish Oil and Magnesium. Both should be introduced separately and increased slowly.

 

Regards

Erimus

Active Monday-Friday UK time

 

Taper calculator spreadsheet

 

MEDICATION:

1) Sertraline:

50mg - Oct 2020, 100mg - Dec 2020, 50mg - April 2021, 75mg - May 2021, 50mg - Sep 2021, 55mg - 23 Feb 2024, 60mg - 20 March 2024, Start tapering - 24 April 2024

Current dose: 55.09mg  (1 July 2024)

2) Mirtazapine:

15mg - Nov 2020

SUPPLEMENTS:

Cod liver oil, Magnesium, Vitamin C

Link to comment
  • Moderator
Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

At the moment I'm having mild brain zaps and brain fog as my main Effexor withdrawal symtoms, they can also be withdrawal from decreasing the dose of Brintellix from 20 mg to 0.4 mg in a matter of weeks. I don't know what to do, I feel I can't keep taking Brintellix because of the horrible anxiety and akathisia. Should I drop the Brintellix and hope for the best without antidepressants? I have been on Effexor for more than 10 years and I'm very afraid of PAWS. Should I reinstate a small dose of Effexor and taper slowly from there?

I would be considering stopping the brintellix and reinstating a small amount of effexor. Whatever path you take you must stick with it for many months, and you must also understand that you will experience the ups and downs of stabilisation. What your mind and body needs is consistency. I would stop the brintellix, wait a week for it to leave your system, and then attempt a reintroduction of effexor at around 2-5mg.

Edited by Erimus

Active Monday-Friday UK time

 

Taper calculator spreadsheet

 

MEDICATION:

1) Sertraline:

50mg - Oct 2020, 100mg - Dec 2020, 50mg - April 2021, 75mg - May 2021, 50mg - Sep 2021, 55mg - 23 Feb 2024, 60mg - 20 March 2024, Start tapering - 24 April 2024

Current dose: 55.09mg  (1 July 2024)

2) Mirtazapine:

15mg - Nov 2020

SUPPLEMENTS:

Cod liver oil, Magnesium, Vitamin C

Link to comment
18 minutes ago, Erimus said:

I would be considering stopping the brintellix and reinstating a small amount of effexor. Whatever path you take you must stick with it for many months, and you must also understand that you will experience the ups and downs of stabilisation. What your mind and body needs is consistency. I would stop the brintellix, wait a week for it to leave your system, and then attempt a reintroduction of effexor at around 5mg.

Thank you for the reply, it is much appreciated. I have a few difficult months behind me and I'm not in the best mental shape I have ever been in.

 

But my own thoughts have been echoing your suggestion. I need to get off the Brintellix and reintroduce a small dose of Effexor.

 

I will taper off the rest off the Brintellix. I have been using an ethanol based solution in hopes of finding a dose I can stabilise at. Sadly there hasn't been one, even low doses gives me unbearable symptoms. Why I don't know. 

 

I will drop it and give an update some time after. I hope for the best.

 

 

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment

Lowering my dose of Brintellix slowly, had 0.2 mg yesterday. Doing 0.1 mg today and 0.05 tomorrow. Will be dropping it completely on Sunday. Side effects seem to lessen the more I'm lowering the dose and the more the plasma concentration is lessening. Brain zaps,brain fog and fatigue are picking up, hope it's temporary.

 

I'm having a hard time being in the present moment with my kids, but I'm trying. We play games and go for bike rides, mostly I'm not feeling well and not in the mood of interacting. I don't want this having an effect on them and hopefully all of this is temporary. How much of this can kids between 3-7 understand? 

 

I'm trying to do this slowly, the best I can. Taking slow, long walks in nature seems to help me a bit in going through this. I don't know what else to do, what gives you guys relief?

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment
  • Mentor
Posted (edited)
On 5/22/2024 at 8:36 AM, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

I can't afford to not be somewhat functional, I have kids who need me and I need to be able to work.

 

3 hours ago, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

I don't know what else to do, what gives you guys relief?

 

Try to give yourself time and rest. Put recovery first.

Your kids will understand if you explain them that you are ill and need to rest. They won't understand if you try to act as if everything was ok and they are feeling at the same time that something is wrong. Tell them that everything will be good again and that you simply need to rest and take your medicine.

And this is actually also what most likely will happen. If you rest a lot and slowly taper into Venlafaxine again, you probably will feel pretty good again in about 8 weeks.

 

Do you have a partner or family that can help you? Are you working right now?

Edited by Alfred1977

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

Link to comment
3 hours ago, Alfred1977 said:

 

 

Try to give yourself time and rest. Put recovery first.

Your kids will understand if you explain them that you are ill and need to rest. They won't understand if you try to act as if everything was ok and they are feeling at the same time that something is wrong. Tell them that everything will be good again and that you simply need to rest and take your medicine.

And this is actually also what most likely will happen. If you rest a lot and slowly taper into Venlafaxine again, you probably will feel pretty good again in about 8 weeks.

 

 

Thank you for your input, it's hard to put things into context when you're suffering. My thoughts are racing all the time and trying to find a solution to all these problems. I guess I have to realize I'm in withdrawal and give myself a break. 

 

I've not been well since January and I don't want it affecting my family anymore than it has. I've tried acting more normal lately, I want things to go back to normal. But this might go on for a while... I'll try telling them I'm still ill and need to rest more...

3 hours ago, Alfred1977 said:

Do you have a partner or family that can help you? Are you working right now?

My wife is thankfully very understanding and is giving me space to work things through. I was off work for 2 months and working part-time right now. I can't afford being off much more.

 

Maybe things will be looking up in a few weeks.

 

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment
  • Mentor
On 5/22/2024 at 8:36 AM, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

My last attempt at tapering Effexor was between April 2023 and january 2024, from 150 mg I tapered ~10 % every four weeks, to be more exact 12,5 mg every four weeks. In hindsight and after reading things on this site I realize this was way too fast. Things we're going alright until I hit 25 mg and got more and more pain in my body, increased fear and anxiety and waking up at night due to panic attacks. I tried reinstating, 37,5 mg for a week, then 75 mg for a week but everything made a turn for the worse. I couldn't work and became increasingly depressed and suicidal, tried for a few weeks to go up to 150 mg Venlafaxine but nothing seemed to help. I wasn't taking to the drug anymore. Were all these symtoms withdrawal?

In this weakened state the doctor prescribed Brintellix 10 mg and I started a cross taper between the drugs. The side effects of Brintellix were and are horrible, first I was on 10 mg for 10 days, then 20 mg for 10 days, then 15 mg, 10 mg, 5 mg, 2.5 mg and finally 0.4 mg which I'm on right now. I've been on Brintellix for 7 weeks and totally off Effexor for the last 2 weeks. I am somewhat stable, but everytime I take a dose of Brintellix I get horrible anxiety and akathisia. If I skip a dose of Brintellix for a day I don't get these symtoms so they aren't related to Effexor withdrawal I think.

 

At the moment I'm having mild brain zaps and brain fog as my main Effexor withdrawal symtoms, they can also be withdrawal from decreasing the dose of Brintellix from 20 mg to 0.4 mg in a matter of weeks. I don't know what to do, I feel I can't keep taking Brintellix because of the horrible anxiety and akathisia. Should I drop the Brintellix and hope for the best without antidepressants? I have been on Effexor for more than 10 years and I'm very afraid of PAWS. Should I reinstate a small dose of Effexor and taper slowly from there?

 

Updosing an SSRI can cause enormous stress, especially when you withdrew before or your nervous system is destabilized. It is possible that this happened to you when you tried reinstating 37.5, 75 and 150mg Venlafaxine the first time as well as when you tried Brintellix (instead of side effects). Doctors often switch the drug in situations like this, which is usually a bad idea. It is best to stay with the drug that your nervous system is used to and that gave you withdrawal in the first place. However, reinstating a high or therapeutic dose (what doctors also like to do) is also usually a bad idea. SSRIs are already extremely powerful at low doses and jumping from withdrawal onto a high dose puts enormous strain on your nervous system. So when reinstating you want to do this gently. Start at a lower dose and see how it works out. After 7-10 days you can reassess your condition and move gradually higher in dose if you feel this would help.

2 hours ago, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

I can't afford being off much more.

I am sorry to hear this. Being in withdrawal is really tough. Having to work in withdrawal is even tougher.

 

Do you know how to get small doses of Venlafaxine? Or do you need help with that?

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

Link to comment
  • Erimus changed the title to WillBeHereTomorrow: Troubles with Effexor.
1 hour ago, Alfred1977 said:

 

Updosing an SSRI can cause enormous stress, especially when you withdrew before or your nervous system is destabilized. It is possible that this happened to you when you tried reinstating 37.5, 75 and 150mg Venlafaxine the first time as well as when you tried Brintellix (instead of side effects). Doctors often switch the drug in situations like this, which is usually a bad idea. It is best to stay with the drug that your nervous system is used to and that gave you withdrawal in the first place. However, reinstating a high or therapeutic dose (what doctors also like to do) is also usually a bad idea. SSRIs are already extremely powerful at low doses and jumping from withdrawal onto a high dose puts enormous strain on your nervous system. So when reinstating you want to do this gently. Start at a lower dose and see how it works out. After 7-10 days you can reassess your condition and move gradually higher in dose if you feel this would help.

I remember panicking at the end of my last Effexor taper. Everything was going relatively smoothly until the drop from 37.5 mg to 25 mg when all hell broke loose. From what I've read the SERT occupancy takes a steep drop around these doses. Wish I knew then what I know now. 

 

Every measure after the massive withdrawal has made everything worse. I'm really sensitive now and can't handle any substances. I've had to give up sugar, caffeine and nicotine as they became intolerable.

 

Hopefully reinstatement is still possible. I will find out in a week or so.

1 hour ago, Alfred1977 said:

 

Do you know how to get small doses of Venlafaxine? Or do you need help with that?

When cross tapering I got a different brand of Venlafaxine with about 150 beads in a 37.5 mg capsule. I'll probably count beads with them when reinstating. 

 

 

 

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment
  • Mentor
4 minutes ago, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

From what I've read the SERT occupancy takes a steep drop around these doses.

As far as I know there is not much data out there and SERT occupancy probably will vary individually. However in one scientific paper it is estimated that SERT occupancy at 5mg Venlafaxine is about 40% (around 60% at 10mg and 80% at 75mg). So around 5mg and below things probably will be tricky and Venlafaxine can give you a hellish rollercoaster of emotions...especially when you feel very sensitive to the drug. So be careful.

 

11 minutes ago, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

When cross tapering I got a different brand of Venlafaxine with about 150 beads in a 37.5 mg capsule. I'll probably count beads with them when reinstating. 

If you find the strength to do it, count a couple of capsules and calculate the average active ingredient per bead. Maybe your wife can help you. You can buy third party gelatin capsules and fill them with the beads. I think counting beads is a good option at low doses. For example, if your beads contained an average ai of 37.5mg/150=0.25mg and you reinstated at 2mg, you would put 8 beads in gelatin capsule and take it. This is doable without an additional nervous breakdown caused by counting thousands of microbeads.

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

Link to comment

Thank you @Alfred1977 for your support, insight and kindness. I will consider these things in the coming days.

 

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment
  • Mentor
1 hour ago, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

Thank you @Alfred1977 for your support, insight and kindness. I will consider these things in the coming days.

You are welcome and good luck! 🙂

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

Link to comment

I've now been off Brintellix for 2 days and have decided to reinstate Effexor from today. The dose of Brintellix has been so low the past 2 weeks, I figure it has pretty much left me.

 

I'm experiencing double withdrawal, lots of symptoms overlapping. Can't really tell what's what. 

 

I think it's better to try the reinstatement sooner than later. I realize from reading other statements here that stabilization will probably take many months.

 

Since I'm very sensitive at the moment I'm starting out low at 1.5 mg for a week or two.

 

Hoping for the best.

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment

Remembered I was on Concerta for a while a few years back, added to signature.

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment
  • Mentor
Posted (edited)
On 5/26/2024 at 10:04 PM, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

I think it's better to try the reinstatement sooner than later.


I think this is a wise decision.
 

On 5/26/2024 at 10:04 PM, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

Since I'm very sensitive at the moment I'm starting out low at 1.5 mg for a week or two.


I think you will ultimately end up on a higher dose, but it’s good you started out low. I found that my symptoms got a bit better for a day or two after reinstatement then got tough again. I waited a few more days and if they were still bad, I added a few more beads. If that resulted in less symptoms the next day or two, I knew I was on the right track. I repeated the cycle of adding, trying to make it up to 10 days between updoses, but that was impossible with the first few updoses as I was desperate for improvement. Eventually, I got to a point where I no longer saw improvement with a tiny updose and my symptoms started to feel quite a bit worse. I knew to stop updosing then. 
 

Remember to updose just a few beads at a time, sometimes even just 1 bead.

 

If using name-brand Effexor, make sure you’re getting a variety of small, medium, and large beads in each dose. The size of beads helps determine the time-release of the product. Once you get set on a specific dose, you can tweak the ratio of the different sizes to make them similar to what’s in a full capsule. It didn’t make a whole lot of difference to me when I first started reinstatement, but did make a difference later on in the process.

 

Once you decide on a final dose, plan to hold for several months to let your body and brain stabilize.

 

Good luck!

 

Edited by FindRest

1988-1996  Various AD’s, all classifications.  1996-2019  Effexor XR 37.5mg to 150mg. Jan 2017 onward, 37.5 mg.

2019  Apr 11 - July 24: Trials of Latuda then Rexulti. CT'd off per dr.  Jul 24: CT Effexor (per dr)  Sep 9-19: Viibryd, CT (per dr).  Sep 23-27: Trintellix. CT (per dr).  Sep 28 - Oct 24:  Prozac 10mg.  Oct 24:  Stop Prozac, began Pristiq 25mg->50->25mg.

2020  Feb 1: CT Pristiq. Feb 1: Reinstated Effexor XR (10 large beads) gradually increasing to 22 beads (15L+7M) or 9.072mgai on Mar, 2020.

2021  Started Jan w 21 beads (13L+8M) or 8.47mgai ended Dec: 17 beads (7L+9M+1S) or 6.19mgai. Severe COVID + TIA.

2022  Ended yr w 14 beads (3L+5M+5S+1XS) or 4.5mgai. Major jaw injury during year + family tragedy.

2023  Jan: 13 beads (2L+5M+5S+1XS) or 4.2mgai; Feb: 12 beads (2L+4M+5S+1XS) or 3.9mgai; Mar: 11 beads (2L+4M+4S+1XS) or 3.6mgai, Apr: 10 beads (2L+3M+4S+1XS) or 3.3mgai; Jun: 9 beads (2L+3M+3S+1XS) or 3mgai,

 

Current: July, 2023: Effexor XR -  9 beads (2L+3M+3S+1XS) or 2.7 mgai

Other current meds: Ambien 10mg 3.935mg , clonazepam .125mg .107mg, omeprazoleSynthroid, Premarin.  Supplements: D3, C, probiotic, K2-MK7, Mg Glycinate

Link to comment
2 hours ago, FindRest said:

I think you will ultimately end up on a higher dose, but it’s good you started out low. I found that my symptoms got a bit better for a day or two after reinstatement then got tough again. I waited a few more days and if they were still bad, I added a few more beads. If that resulted in less symptoms the next day or two, I knew I was on the right track. I repeated the cycle of adding, trying to make it up to 10 days between updoses, but that was impossible with the first few updoses as I was desperate for improvement. Eventually, I got to a point where I no longer saw improvement with a tiny updose and my symptoms started to feel quite a bit worse. I knew to stop updosing then. 

 

 

This is interesting, I'm on my third day of reinstatement and feeling a tiny bit better today. I'm hoping for steady improvement now, but you're probably right that it will fluctuate quite a bit and eventually I'll have to updose. I'm trying to at least hold out for a week at 1.5 mg before making changes, it's difficult but I'm so sensitive after the whole Brintellix-affair I don't want to risk anything. I'll probably end up updosing to 2.5 mg next week, we'll see.

 

2 hours ago, FindRest said:

If using name-brand Effexor, make sure you’re getting a variety of small, medium, and large beads in each dose. The size of beads helps determine the time-release of the product. Once you get set on a specific dose, you can tweak the ratio of the different sizes to make them similar to what’s in a full capsule. It didn’t make a whole lot of difference to me when I first started reinstatement, but did make a difference later on in the process.

 

 

I'm using KrKa 37,5 mg extended release, the beads all are the same size. I'm hoping that they all contain active ingredient, but I don't know for sure.

 

Thank you for the concern and input @FindRest, every little bit helps! 🙂 Now I need to rest.

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment
On 5/25/2024 at 3:01 AM, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

I remember panicking at the end of my last Effexor taper. Everything was going relatively smoothly until the drop from 37.5 mg to 25 mg when all hell broke loose. From what I've read the SERT occupancy takes a steep drop around these doses. Wish I knew then what I know now. 

 

Every measure after the massive withdrawal has made everything worse. I'm really sensitive now and can't handle any substances. I've had to give up sugar, caffeine and nicotine as they became intolerable.

 

Hopefully reinstatement is still possible. I will find out in a week or so.

When cross tapering I got a different brand of Venlafaxine with about 150 beads in a 37.5 mg capsule. I'll probably count beads with them when reinstating. 

 

 

 

Hi there, it sounds like you have been going through something very similar to myself. I also have been tapering Venlafaxine slowly from 300mg over about 5 years. Like you, things were going smoothly until the 37.5mg point. I got down to about 29mg then exactly as you described "all hell broke loose". I thought I was reducing really slowly- about 2.3% per week and was removing one bead per week in the period from 18-26 beads. I got such hellish panic attacks from morning til evening, shaking crying and wanting to end my life. 

I slowly started introducing a few beads every few days until things settled down but, I'm still getting bad anxiety and crying. 

I'm working my way up to 37.5mg to see if things will stabilise. 

I know that the temptation to keep upping and upping the dose to relieve the hell is strong. 

I really feel for you and you are being incredibly brave and doing the right thing reaching out to others on this forum who have experience good advice. 

I absolutely agree with reinstating small amounts and changing very slowly, maybe every 4-6 weeks if possible. 

Wishing you all the best

1995-1997  Prozac, Fluvoxamine, Escitalopram 10mg. 2003 Venlafaxine 150mg, CT'd effexor 2005, reinstated Effexor 2005.  2007 switch to Escitalopram 10mg

2009 cease escitalopram Crash, hospital  ECT 2009 Reinstate Effexor 150mg.

2011  Fast tapered off 150mg, WD symptoms reinsated 150mg Effexor swithed to Pristiq 50mg 2012

2016 slow but linear taper Desvenlafaxine over one year, 2017 severe WD, hospitalisation ECT, doctors reinstate Effexor 300mg and 4mg Alprazolam. 2017 tapered and stopped Alprazolam.

2018-2023 Slow microtaper Venlafaxine taking out one beead a day from 300mg capsule down to 37.5mg, hold for six months.

2023 began taper reducing 2.3% per week,  and reached about 29 beads out of 37.5mg capsule in April 2024  (30 mg). 

April 2024 Doctor increased Effexor up to 37.5mg due to stress, which caused serotonin toxicity, so I dropped 29 beads for 4 days.  I exprienced horrific withdrawal symptoms and became suicidal so gradually reinstated bead by bead up to 37.5mg Effexor. Began Diazepam 5mg as required

May 2024  until present -  Holding on 37.5mg Effexor and Diazepam 5mg -15mg daily

 

Link to comment
2 hours ago, Pinkslippers said:

Hi there, it sounds like you have been going through something very similar to myself. I also have been tapering Venlafaxine slowly from 300mg over about 5 years. Like you, things were going smoothly until the 37.5mg point. I got down to about 29mg then exactly as you described "all hell broke loose". I thought I was reducing really slowly- about 2.3% per week and was removing one bead per week in the period from 18-26 beads. I got such hellish panic attacks from morning til evening, shaking crying and wanting to end my life.

I'm so sorry to hear that you're going through the same thing. Venlafaxine SERT occupancy % starts to decline more and more rapidly after 37.5 mg, of course this is individual. But some people get into big trouble going below 37.5 mg.

 

Were you doing the brassmonkey slide taper before things went south? I'm already thinking of possible tapering strategies, it's probably foolish, I haven't even stabilized yet. 🫠

 

3 hours ago, Pinkslippers said:

I know that the temptation to keep upping and upping the dose to relieve the hell is strong. 

I really feel for you and you are being incredibly brave and doing the right thing reaching out to others on this forum who have experience good advice. 

I absolutely agree with reinstating small amounts and changing very slowly, maybe every 4-6 weeks if possible. 

Wishing you all the best

The temptation is strong yes. I was seeing some improvements in symtoms at 1.5 mg, at least according to my daily journals which I will post soon. So I decided to updose to 5 mg yesterday after a few days on 1.5 mg. And after yesterdays and todays doses I'm seeing some more improvements. I have never been a patient man, I'm glad I wasn't punished for it this time.

 

I wish you all the best as well, hopefully you'll stabilise soon. Sending some healing your way.

 

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment

Some daily journal notes coming up:

 

27/5

05.30 Tired, chestpain, brain zaps

06.00 Venlafaxine 1.5 mg

06.20 Breakfast

06.40 Anxiety increasing, pressure over chest

06.50 Work

07.00 Headache

07.20 Cognitive decline, brain fog

07.50 Anxiety increasing, feeling of hopelessness and doom

08.05 Confusion, increased sound and light sensitivity

08.20 Banana and water, feeling slightly better

09.00 Feeling a lot better suddenly

09.30 Worsening headache, feeling emotional

10.00 Feeling better again, less anxiety

10.20 Headache disappears

11.00 Lunch, confused, disoriented, wave of panic, hopelessness and SI

12.00 Wave of DR

12.40 Heart palpatations

13.00 Extreme brainfog, can't concentrate on work

14.00 Came home, feels a little bit better

15.00 Resting on the couch, chest pain

16.00 Feeling slightly better, played with the kids

16.10 Too tired to continue

16.30 Dinner

17.00 Massive rage

17.30 Short walk

20.00 Melatonin and ramipril

21.30 Sleeping

 

Cold symtoms through the whole day, I don't have a cold.

 

28.5

 

05.30 Woke up drenched in sweat, headache, heart palpations

06.00 Anxiety increasing

06.15 Venlafaxine 1.5 mg

06.20 Breakfast

06.50 Work

07.15 Tired, irritated, feeling hopeless

08.00 Banana and water, feeling a little better

08.15 Headache and exhaustion

09.30 Cognitive decline, horrible anxiety, feeling doomed

10.00 Confused and scared

10.15 Anxiety spiking

10.30 Lunch, feeling a little better

11.40 Cognitive decline, horrible anxiety, can't concentrate

12.50 feeling a little better, small window?

13.30 Anxiety back with a vengeance

14.10 Came home, felt better

14.30 Short bikeride with kids

15.00 Exhausted, resting on couch, pressure over chest

16.30 Dinner

17.00 Tired and angry

18.30 Exhausted, headache

20.00 Melatonin and ramipril

21.30 Sleeping

 

No more cold symtoms, GI symtoms getting worse.

 

29.5

 

05.30 Woke up, anxiety, feeling of dread and doom. Feels better than Monday and Tuesday all things considered.

06.30 Venlafaxine 1.5 mg

06.45 GI issues still bad

07.00 Breakfast

07.20 Brainzaps for dessert 🥲

07.40 Getting kids to school and daycare

08.00 Cognitive decline, increased anxiety, brainfog

08.30 Back home, having a day off

09.30 Longer walk in nature, racing thoughts, anxiety spiking

10.20 Confused, massive brainfog, exhausted

10.30 Overall better than Monday and Tuesday

11.30 Lunch

12.00 Racing thoughts, anxiety, palpatation

13.30 Resting on the couch, chestpain and pressure

15.00 Fetched the kids, anxiety spiking

17.00 Extreme brainfog, confused, scared

20.00 Melatonin and ramipril

21.30 Sleeping

 

Haven't had any weeping spells the last 3-4 days. Akathisia went away after stopping Brintellix, thank God.

 

After I went through the notes and actually feeling a little better on Wednesday I upped the dose to 5.0 mg on Thursday. Already feeling some more small improvements, thankfully my body and CNS seems to be accepting of the Venlafaxine even though I'm sensitive at the moment.

 

WBHT over and out.

 

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment

@Erimus How many days should I hold at 5.0 mg before considering upping again? Any advice? My CNS seems to be accepting the drug.

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment
1 hour ago, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

I'm so sorry to hear that you're going through the same thing. Venlafaxine SERT occupancy % starts to decline more and more rapidly after 37.5 mg, of course this is individual. But some people get into big trouble going below 37.5 mg.

 

Were you doing the brassmonkey slide taper before things went south? I'm already thinking of possible tapering strategies, it's probably foolish, I haven't even stabilized yet. 🫠

 

The temptation is strong yes. I was seeing some improvements in symtoms at 1.5 mg, at least according to my daily journals which I will post soon. So I decided to updose to 5 mg yesterday after a few days on 1.5 mg. And after yesterdays and todays doses I'm seeing some more improvements. I have never been a patient man, I'm glad I wasn't punished for it this time.

 

I wish you all the best as well, hopefully you'll stabilise soon. Sending some healing your way.

 

Thank you for your kind reply. 

No I wasn't doing the brass monkey slide taper, I was doing my own tapering based on going down roughly 2.3% per week (about 3 beads per week), for a few weeks which I realise was too fast, then slowing to one bead per week. It seemed to go ok until 26 beads. I understand the impatience! It's so difficult drop tiny doses and stay there for months. But I guess that's what I'm going to to this time. The brass monkey slide sounds like a strong and proven strategy. 

Yes the key is to stabilise for a while first. 

I'm very glad your updoses are having  positive effects! That's so good. I'm currently on a liquid dose of 35mg, gradually updosing to 37.5mg in order to stabilise. 

 

Also sending you healing and fast recovery 

1995-1997  Prozac, Fluvoxamine, Escitalopram 10mg. 2003 Venlafaxine 150mg, CT'd effexor 2005, reinstated Effexor 2005.  2007 switch to Escitalopram 10mg

2009 cease escitalopram Crash, hospital  ECT 2009 Reinstate Effexor 150mg.

2011  Fast tapered off 150mg, WD symptoms reinsated 150mg Effexor swithed to Pristiq 50mg 2012

2016 slow but linear taper Desvenlafaxine over one year, 2017 severe WD, hospitalisation ECT, doctors reinstate Effexor 300mg and 4mg Alprazolam. 2017 tapered and stopped Alprazolam.

2018-2023 Slow microtaper Venlafaxine taking out one beead a day from 300mg capsule down to 37.5mg, hold for six months.

2023 began taper reducing 2.3% per week,  and reached about 29 beads out of 37.5mg capsule in April 2024  (30 mg). 

April 2024 Doctor increased Effexor up to 37.5mg due to stress, which caused serotonin toxicity, so I dropped 29 beads for 4 days.  I exprienced horrific withdrawal symptoms and became suicidal so gradually reinstated bead by bead up to 37.5mg Effexor. Began Diazepam 5mg as required

May 2024  until present -  Holding on 37.5mg Effexor and Diazepam 5mg -15mg daily

 

Link to comment
  • Moderator
3 hours ago, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

@Erimus How many days should I hold at 5.0 mg before considering upping again? Any advice? My CNS seems to be accepting the drug.

If things are improving there is no need to further increase the dose. Allow the windows and waves to progress for a few weeks at 5mg.

Active Monday-Friday UK time

 

Taper calculator spreadsheet

 

MEDICATION:

1) Sertraline:

50mg - Oct 2020, 100mg - Dec 2020, 50mg - April 2021, 75mg - May 2021, 50mg - Sep 2021, 55mg - 23 Feb 2024, 60mg - 20 March 2024, Start tapering - 24 April 2024

Current dose: 55.09mg  (1 July 2024)

2) Mirtazapine:

15mg - Nov 2020

SUPPLEMENTS:

Cod liver oil, Magnesium, Vitamin C

Link to comment
2 minutes ago, Erimus said:

If things are improving there is no need to further increase the dose. Allow the windows and waves to progress for a few weeks at 5mg.

As always I much appreciate your input.

 

I'll hold at 5 mg and keep track of symptoms. 

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment

Hi @WillBeHereTomorrow

 

How are you doing today?

Supplements: Vit D3, Fish oil, Magnesium bisglycenate 200mg (when needed), Melatonin 1.25mg (when needed), Camomile tea (1 cup before bed), THC oil (0.03ml once a week, don't do this to yourself), Vit C 500mg a day
Started effexor in 2011.

Stopped effexor in 2012 (fast tamper).

Got back on effexor in 2012.

Tried stopping effexor again in 2014 (I'm not sure?), fast tamper again.

Started effexor again in 2014.

Switched to Escitalopram in 2016 I believe

Stopped Escitalopram 10mg cold turkey on January 3 2024.

Reinstated Escitalopram 5mg on april 2 2024.

Down to 1mg on april 3 2024, 1.25mg on april 11 2024

 

 

Link to comment
1 minute ago, Tweed9674 said:

Hi @WillBeHereTomorrow

 

How are you doing today?

Hey @Tweed9674, nice of you to stop by!

 

It's been rough if I'm honest, I seem to be moving in the right direction, but some days just really zap all the energy out of me. 

 

I'm working part time at the moment. Today at work derealization hits me big time, I feel like an anxious alien around all these people. Nothing feels real, everyone's on autopilot, I'm on autopilot. I can laugh about it now when I'm cozy in my evening window, but yeah it ain't easy. 

 

From what I've read about switching drugs, going off drugs, reinstating and timelines to stabilize I'm looking at 3-6 months before being somewhat stable (hopefully). Seems a long way off when you're living one day at a time.

 

But it's not all bad, I have my morning windows between 0600-0800 and my evening windows between 1900-2100. And my walks to keep me sane in between when I have the time and opportunity for them. Didn't today, kids had soccer practice. Oh well, it's a new day tomorrow.

 

 

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment

Navigating through WD while parenting and keeping a job is quite an ordeal!

 

Stay strong!

Supplements: Vit D3, Fish oil, Magnesium bisglycenate 200mg (when needed), Melatonin 1.25mg (when needed), Camomile tea (1 cup before bed), THC oil (0.03ml once a week, don't do this to yourself), Vit C 500mg a day
Started effexor in 2011.

Stopped effexor in 2012 (fast tamper).

Got back on effexor in 2012.

Tried stopping effexor again in 2014 (I'm not sure?), fast tamper again.

Started effexor again in 2014.

Switched to Escitalopram in 2016 I believe

Stopped Escitalopram 10mg cold turkey on January 3 2024.

Reinstated Escitalopram 5mg on april 2 2024.

Down to 1mg on april 3 2024, 1.25mg on april 11 2024

 

 

Link to comment
  • 2 weeks later...

A small update is in order I feel, or maybe it's more of a vent. I tried to hold my reinstatement of 5 mg for a while, but couldn't do it. My life was falling apart, probably not in reality, but in my felt sense of things. I guess that was just the withdrawal talking. It's probably falling apart in reality as well, I might be in denial.

 

Anyway I started to slowly titrate my dose upwards and I'm now on 16 mg of Venlafaxine. I've been on this dose for a few days and I'm now evaluating my current condition. Being in double withdrawal is difficult, because it's very hard to tell what is causing what. My windows are few and far between, the waves of one withdrawal follows the wave from the other. Panic, DP/DR, severe depression, heavy brainfog, SI, intrusive thoughts, exhaustion and so much more felt with the intensity of a thousand suns. I'm finding it hard to relax even in the evenings. My sleep is also deteriorating, waking earlier and earlier each morning.

 

Upping the dose hasn't brought me much trouble but not much relief either. I now realize the only thing that will heal or improve me is time, a lot of it. I knew it logically but I didn't want to believe it. I needed an easy way out of this hell I've fallen into but there will be none to be found. There is little comfort to be found in withdrawal and I feel incredibly lonely. I need to keep a steady dose and let my nervous system settle, updosing more won't be saving me this time.

 

I have a constant urge to let my GP put me on another AD in the hopes of it helping. But I know it won't help and will probably kindle me even harder. Last we talked over the phone, he wanted to put me on another AD as an adjunct to the Brintellix, trying to cover up all the hell it was raising. I didn't take him up on the offer thankfully.

 

So I'm left to wander alone in this desolate landscape cut off from humanity and cut off from myself. Each day I get up and fight, my kids need me and I love them dearly. I keep going for their sake the best I can. They need a functioning father, I never had one.

 

So the plan for now is hold, hold and hold the dose. Changing the dose won't help it will only prolong or deepen my suffering. I expect many months of suffering and I'm preparing myself mentally the best I can. I will keep myself in compassion and hope for the best.

 

Sorry for all the doom and gloom, but this is where I'm at. I send compassion to myself and to each and everyone on this site suffering. May all be well.

 

-WBHT

 

 

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment
  • Mentor

I am sorry to hear this. Can you somehow get sick leave?

I feel you. I also dosed up quickly after my reinstatement because I wanted "this" to end quickly. In my case it turned up the anxiety and insomnia quite heavily.

Earlier drug history:

Paroxetine  2001 until 2003, quit cold turkey, don't remember dose; Venlafaxine 2005 until Dez. 2023, mostly 75mg xr per day, for about 4 years 37.5mg xr; quite a lot of Antihistamines because of allergy; there were other drugs that I don't remember all, but nothing what I consistently took over a longer period of time, for example Lorazepam 0.5mg prn.

Recent developments:

Dez 2023 - 03/13/2024 quitting Venlafaxine 75mg (skipping doses); 04/07/2024 reinstating Venlafaxine 12,5mg; 04/17/2024 Venlafaxine 25mg; 4/29/24 until 5/4/24 Trimipramine, 5mg going down to zero over 5 days

Drugs right now:

Venlafaxine 25mg; supplements: 500mg magnesium, 100mg aspirin and melatonin spray

 

I am no medical expert. I am dependent on Venlafaxine, trying to find and give peer support in this community and simply giving my opinion. Double check any information before you take action, for example with your doctor.

 

First they sell addictive drugs as harmless and then they leave you alone dosing fractions of a mg correctly or plunging into the abyss.

Link to comment

Hang in there @WillBeHereTomorrow

 

How is your sleep at 16mg?

Are you still able to take a walk from time to time?

Supplements: Vit D3, Fish oil, Magnesium bisglycenate 200mg (when needed), Melatonin 1.25mg (when needed), Camomile tea (1 cup before bed), THC oil (0.03ml once a week, don't do this to yourself), Vit C 500mg a day
Started effexor in 2011.

Stopped effexor in 2012 (fast tamper).

Got back on effexor in 2012.

Tried stopping effexor again in 2014 (I'm not sure?), fast tamper again.

Started effexor again in 2014.

Switched to Escitalopram in 2016 I believe

Stopped Escitalopram 10mg cold turkey on January 3 2024.

Reinstated Escitalopram 5mg on april 2 2024.

Down to 1mg on april 3 2024, 1.25mg on april 11 2024

 

 

Link to comment
  • Mentor
7 hours ago, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

So the plan for now is hold, hold and hold the dose.


I think this is wise. Things might be rocky for a few months after that rapid increase. It was my experience that a very long hold without changing the dose in either direction is what stabilized me more than anything else. Some days will better. Some days will be worse. Eventually, you’ll have more better days (not necessarily “good” days). The key is to hold firm. Keep a daily symptom list. This allows you to see the progress you are making and also reminds you on those bad days that things have gotten better in the past when you experienced those same bad days.

1988-1996  Various AD’s, all classifications.  1996-2019  Effexor XR 37.5mg to 150mg. Jan 2017 onward, 37.5 mg.

2019  Apr 11 - July 24: Trials of Latuda then Rexulti. CT'd off per dr.  Jul 24: CT Effexor (per dr)  Sep 9-19: Viibryd, CT (per dr).  Sep 23-27: Trintellix. CT (per dr).  Sep 28 - Oct 24:  Prozac 10mg.  Oct 24:  Stop Prozac, began Pristiq 25mg->50->25mg.

2020  Feb 1: CT Pristiq. Feb 1: Reinstated Effexor XR (10 large beads) gradually increasing to 22 beads (15L+7M) or 9.072mgai on Mar, 2020.

2021  Started Jan w 21 beads (13L+8M) or 8.47mgai ended Dec: 17 beads (7L+9M+1S) or 6.19mgai. Severe COVID + TIA.

2022  Ended yr w 14 beads (3L+5M+5S+1XS) or 4.5mgai. Major jaw injury during year + family tragedy.

2023  Jan: 13 beads (2L+5M+5S+1XS) or 4.2mgai; Feb: 12 beads (2L+4M+5S+1XS) or 3.9mgai; Mar: 11 beads (2L+4M+4S+1XS) or 3.6mgai, Apr: 10 beads (2L+3M+4S+1XS) or 3.3mgai; Jun: 9 beads (2L+3M+3S+1XS) or 3mgai,

 

Current: July, 2023: Effexor XR -  9 beads (2L+3M+3S+1XS) or 2.7 mgai

Other current meds: Ambien 10mg 3.935mg , clonazepam .125mg .107mg, omeprazoleSynthroid, Premarin.  Supplements: D3, C, probiotic, K2-MK7, Mg Glycinate

Link to comment
3 hours ago, Tweed9674 said:

Hang in there @WillBeHereTomorrow

 

How is your sleep at 16mg?

Are you still able to take a walk from time to time?

I slept a bit better tonight, 7 hours. I've been getting 4-6 hours the last few weeks and waking every morning at 04.00 without being able to get back to sleep. 

 

I still go for walks, but my increasing exhaustion hinders me in most things.

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment
1 hour ago, FindRest said:


I think this is wise. Things might be rocky for a few months after that rapid increase. It was my experience that a very long hold without changing the dose in either direction is what stabilized me more than anything else. Some days will better. Some days will be worse. Eventually, you’ll have more better days (not necessarily “good” days). The key is to hold firm. Keep a daily symptom list. This allows you to see the progress you are making and also reminds you on those bad days that things have gotten better in the past when you experienced those same bad days.

I guess your right. I'm so desperate for a quick fix but there will be none to be found. I think I'm mostly suffering from brintellix withdrawal, I was on it 7 weeks total, 3-4 weeks on 15-20 mg. I didn't feel well during that time and was badly kindled. I didn't know I was in withdrawal from the too fast taper before that. I thought I had a relapse or worsening of my "condition". I didn't know, I made so many mistakes along the way. I didn't know.

 

The good part right now is that I'm tolerating venlafaxine, I haven't felt worse on any dose. But it isn't helping much, at least not yet.

 

I'll try to keep a daily journal again. Most days I'm just really confused and my short term memory is shot. I'm in survival mode.

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment
  • Mentor
1 hour ago, WillBeHereTomorrow said:

I think I'm mostly suffering from brintellix withdrawal, I was on it 7 weeks total, 3-4 weeks on 15-20 mg.

 I would disagree with this. It’s almost always the AD that you were on the longest and tapered too fast from that causes the majority of the WD symptoms. Brintellix was only taken a short while, and the Venlafaxine WD was already taking place. 
 

Don’t beat yourself for making “mistakes”. None of us would be here had we not trusted the doctors in the first place. All we can do now is do the best we can, with the information we have now. 

1988-1996  Various AD’s, all classifications.  1996-2019  Effexor XR 37.5mg to 150mg. Jan 2017 onward, 37.5 mg.

2019  Apr 11 - July 24: Trials of Latuda then Rexulti. CT'd off per dr.  Jul 24: CT Effexor (per dr)  Sep 9-19: Viibryd, CT (per dr).  Sep 23-27: Trintellix. CT (per dr).  Sep 28 - Oct 24:  Prozac 10mg.  Oct 24:  Stop Prozac, began Pristiq 25mg->50->25mg.

2020  Feb 1: CT Pristiq. Feb 1: Reinstated Effexor XR (10 large beads) gradually increasing to 22 beads (15L+7M) or 9.072mgai on Mar, 2020.

2021  Started Jan w 21 beads (13L+8M) or 8.47mgai ended Dec: 17 beads (7L+9M+1S) or 6.19mgai. Severe COVID + TIA.

2022  Ended yr w 14 beads (3L+5M+5S+1XS) or 4.5mgai. Major jaw injury during year + family tragedy.

2023  Jan: 13 beads (2L+5M+5S+1XS) or 4.2mgai; Feb: 12 beads (2L+4M+5S+1XS) or 3.9mgai; Mar: 11 beads (2L+4M+4S+1XS) or 3.6mgai, Apr: 10 beads (2L+3M+4S+1XS) or 3.3mgai; Jun: 9 beads (2L+3M+3S+1XS) or 3mgai,

 

Current: July, 2023: Effexor XR -  9 beads (2L+3M+3S+1XS) or 2.7 mgai

Other current meds: Ambien 10mg 3.935mg , clonazepam .125mg .107mg, omeprazoleSynthroid, Premarin.  Supplements: D3, C, probiotic, K2-MK7, Mg Glycinate

Link to comment
2 minutes ago, FindRest said:

 I would disagree with this. It’s almost always the AD that you were on the longest and tapered too fast from that causes the majority of the WD symptoms. Brintellix was only taken a short while, and the Venlafaxine WD was already taking place. 

I know you're right. My mind is just desperately thinking through all of this all the time. Trying to make sense of what is, what has been and what is to be. Ruminations is a big part of WD, I'm finding it hard to detach. I've always been the worrying kind, now it's magnified 100x.

 

22 minutes ago, FindRest said:

Don’t beat yourself for making “mistakes”. None of us would be here had we not trusted the doctors in the first place. All we can do now is do the best we can, with the information we have now. 

Thank you for reminding me @FindRest.

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment

Strangely I'm feeling better today a few hours after waking up, the exhaustion is extreme. I'm on the couch, probably will be most of the day.

 

But I feel a little calm, it's strange. I haven't had a window this time of day in 6 months. It's like the gargantuan wave reached a crescendo the past few days and now I'm almost "normal".

 

Maybe I'm seeing some improvement, at least the possibility for improvement. I know another wave is probably around the corner but for now I can rest for a while in my body and mind. 

 

Thanks for checking in on me @Tweed9674 , @FindRest and @Alfred1977.

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

Link to comment
9 hours ago, Alfred1977 said:

I am sorry to hear this. Can you somehow get sick leave?

I feel you. I also dosed up quickly after my reinstatement because I wanted "this" to end quickly. In my case it turned up the anxiety and insomnia quite heavily.

Sorry, I somehow missed your message earlier. I'm thinking about going on long term disability if my situation doesn't improve in the coming weeks.

 

My titrating upwards has mostly brought me more fatigue, otherwise feels much the same. Today a bit better.

2010-2012 Zoloft, Wellbutrin, only tried these for a few weeks and then stopped them CT, can't remember the exact year.
2015 Mirtazapine for a short while, can't remember dosage
2016 Seroquel for a while, 25 mg at

night.

2019-2020 Concerta 27-36 mg, tapered off in 4 weeks

2013-2024 Effexor in varying doses, from 75 mg to 300 mg.

2023 April - 2024 January Tapered down from 150 mg to 25 mg and crashed. Tried increasing dose to 50, 75 and 150 mg without much success.
2024 March-April Tapering Effexor from 150 mg and introducing Trintellix 20 mg. Quit caffeine and nicotine, couldn't handle them anymore.

2024 May Venlafaxine reinstatement 1.5 mg-->16 mg, 5mg ramipril, 0,5 mg melatonin.

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