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maryellen: effexor withdrawal


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I am so thankful I found this site.

My Dr put me on effexor 3 months ago for pain I experience in my hip.

I took 100 mg daily, pill form.  I missed a dose once and was dizzy, confused, and it felt like a shock to my head. scared the heck out of me. additionally it does nothing for the pain anymore.

I cut my pills in half 50mg and seem to be doing ok it's been 7days.

I read the information on this site about 10% and ask

should I continue 50mg for another week and then cut by 10% and follow the rules?


thanks ,

one frighten woman


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Hi Maryellen,

Welcome to the forum ..

Someone knowledgeable will come to help you shortly,

but in the meantime time, please visit the Tapering Forum.

There is a lot of information there, as to how to taper Effexor slowly, and safely.

Wishing you all the best,

Love, Lexi

I am tapering Lorazepam, and my daily dose is 1.125 mgs.

I followed a long hold for 5 months, ( Nov-March 2019) hoping to find some stability, 

but it did not work. So I resumed my taper and hold pattern.
For the last 3 years, I have been using a daily microtaper, cutting .001mgs per day, with holds as needed.
Symptoms are head pressure, labored breathing, palpitations, abrupt surges of dizziness, this being my worst symptom for now, internal tremors, my latest nemesis, unsteadiness, anxiety, plus many other symptoms that cycle in, and cycle out consistently. Not a day passes, without grief :(

I take no other meds.

January 2013 - 15 day quick taper off 10 mgs of Lexapro, and 25 mgs of Sertraline,

at a detox clinic.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Maryellen,


Welcome to the forum! It is possible, sometimes, to make a large cut, initially. You could choose to reinstate some if you start to feel the slightest WD symptoms.


If you are able to maintain this large cut, I would hold there for at least two months, if it were me. Maybe even three months and then taper very slowly.


You're going to be fine, you've found a great place for support.

Edited by tezza
Added member name to title
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  • Moderator Emeritus

Welcome to the forum maryellen.


tezza gives some sound advice.


I wish you the best of luck with your journey.

July 2001 prescribed 20mg citalopram for depression;
On and off meds from 2003-2006.
February 2006 back on 20mg citalopram and stayed on it until my last attempt at tapering in September 2011.
By far the worst withdrawal symptoms ever. Reinstated to 20mg citalopram
October 2012 - found this forum!
Nov 2012 to Feb 2013 did 10% taper, got doen to 11mg - was going great until stressful situation. Cortisol levels hit the roof, hideous insomnia forced me to updose to 20mg.
March 2016 - close to 100% back to normal!

****** I am not a medical practitioner, any advice I give comes from my own experience or reading and is only my perspective ******

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 I thank all of you for quick replies and your support!  your advice is sound Tezza and I will continue my 50mg for 2 more months.


If I may I'd like to ask you.....did any physician inform you about the difficulty coming off any of these drugs? I do understand the necessity and am grateful there is relief from the strife so many experience, truly.  My Dr. who prescribe Effexor for pain did not and also as a result of taking it, I have high blood pressure which he claims is not the reason.


anyway again....I send a heart felt thank you for sharing your experience and helping me. MY fear has lessened and I know I can eventually stop taking Effexor without the horrific side effects. I will continue to participate and am going to tell others about this wonderful forum!!! It is truly a comfort to know I am not alone in this journey.


all the best, always



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  • Moderator Emeritus

No, the docs didn't tell me of any possible struggle coming off these meds. IMO, most don't know how hard it is and others don't seem to care. ( I could be wrong but it seems to be about money to some )


I'd try to write more but it's time for my grand baby to get here for the day.


We're very glad you've joined us!

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Most doctors get their information about drugs from Big Pharma sales people so it's not at all uncommon for them to be clueless about antidepressant withdrawal syndrome.  Most of us here began taking these drugs with no idea whatever of what we were getting into.  In addition, most doctors, if they advise you to taper at all, will suggest an every-other-day schedule of dosing, which is a horrible thing to do to your nervous system.


Welcome to the forum, Maryellen.  I'm glad you found us.

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor

Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/


Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.


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thank you Jemimia. I am upset with myself that I did not do more research before taking it. I thought of elevating my pain clouded my judgement. you are so right. very .very few doctors know their pharmaceuticals like they should. it will be a longer road to getting off this stuff then I thought but, I feel secure that I can do this and so much confidence comes from members.


I thank you


be well,


mary ellen

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Mary read my story you will do this it just takes time and lots of walking and supportive people..i know what this is like. Chat anytime

2007-2012started Effexor xr 225mg -150mg- Varied2months of Taper,(March 22/2012 Off Med/in W/D)Currently No medicationMarch 22/2012- August 16/2012 - Totally Off Effexor( Rough Rough time) Reinstatement for a week(didn't work)****** New Doctor******* Very nice/helpful and in touch.Tried Zoloft- No successAUGUST 17/2012- STARTED 37.5 EFFEXOR FOR ONE WEEK - NOT GOOD < STOPPED.Started Buspar Oct 11th 2012----10 mg for the first 7 days and then 15mg a day---- Taking a new route----Racing thoughts - Gone.Oct 9th ( Done Zoloft,wellbutrin week project trial to feel better) - OFFICIALLY OFF ANTI DEPRESSANT !Oct 26 - Raised Buspar to 20mg a day- Tolerating wellJan 2nd 2013-

Reduce Buspar until full off march 20th 2015 Off all medication !

Tried natural supplements to no avail

Gluten/sugar free since december 2013

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