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Addax: 30 years with Fluoxetine and tapering


Addax

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I agree with Rhi. I have been jealous of you that you have been able to decrease the meds at much faster pace than I have been. But as it appears, it may not be so. you probably need a long, long hold and then going on much slower. I really do believe that this solves the problems. but now when things have gone bad, it's probably only time and stability that heals...

in 2002- 0,5 tablet cipramil for half a year, ended it uneventfully. in 2006 - citalopram for half a year, ended in horrific state, ditched the drugs CT. 2007-2008 not feeling well but drug free. in 2008 prozac 20mg + quetiapine 25mg. 2009 tried to stop, ended up in hole after couple of months, started zoloft. 2009-2011 zoloft 50mg. went to 25mg in 2011 summer, it resulted in half a year horrible suffering. reinstated, changed drugs, nothing happened. by 2012 beginning suddenly felt great and CT meds. after 4 months came suddenly most horrible human suffering that's possible. was started on prozac and questiapine. started tapering slowly, GFCF diet and Hardy Nutritionals vitamins in 2013 summer. 

current medications: 1) fluoxetine and quetiapine since Aug 2012; 2) Daily Essential Nutrients by Hardy Nutritionals 7 capsules / since May 2013 + omega3; 3) Gluten-free-casein-free diet since june 2013

Started withdrawing slowly since april 2013. Mostly around 10% cuts. 

April'13 - March'14: fluoxetine 40mg -> 19,5mg; quetiapine 50mg -> 40mg
April'14-March'15: fluoxetine 19,5mg -> 14,4mg; quetiapine 40mg -> 22mg

April'15-March'16: fluoxetine 14,4mg -> 7,4mg; quetiapine 22mg -> 15mg

April'16-March'17: fluoxetine 7,4mg -> 5,0mg; quetiapine 15mg -> 7,25mg

April'17-March'18: fluoxetine 5,0mg -> 4,0mg; quetiapine 7,25mg -> 0 (as of 1st Feb 2018)!!!!

April´18-March´19: fluoxetine 4,0mg - > 2,3mg. Jumped off fluoxetine 1,4mg due to pregnancy in July 2019. Oct 2019 severe withdrawal syndrome started.

Took mistakenly a complex for hormonal support that included pregnenolone dec2019-april2020. Stopped it april 2020 and immediately severe akathisia started. Have had life threatening akathisia since, 100% disabled, suicidal, very hard to hold on. 

 

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I'm feeling very activated. Agitated/restless, muscle tension, very fatigued, nauseous, and anxious. But with all that I have barely moved from my sofa in 2 weeks. It's been almost two weeks since my updose. Pretty much non-functional.

 

I forgot to take anything yesterday. I was kind of feeling better. Took prozac today and definitley felt an increase in the above mentioned symptoms.

 

I don't know what to do.

The above says to me the dose of Prozac is too high.

 

How are you feeling now?

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • Moderator Emeritus

I find myself still on the couch, Not functional, and suffering from near complete anhedonia. I am back to 20mg of Prozac as of a week ago. The physical symptoms of withdrawal slowly are subsiding and my sleep has improved. I'm hoping that the improvements are a good sign and it means I will at least be able to return to baseline.

 

Apathy and anhedonia are quite debilitating. Showering has become difficult. Never in my life have I experienced this... It feels like I'm losing myself and will never be the same.

1988-2012: Prozac @ 60mg (with a few stops and starts)

Fall 2012: Returned to 40mg after discontinuing and horrid withdrawal 

Fall 2013: 40mg Fluoxetine, added 150mg Wellbutrin to treat fatigue 

Winter 2014: Attempting to taper both (too fast)

April 2014: 9mg Fluoxetine + 37.5 Wellbutrin 

Summer 2014: 8 mg Fluoxetine + 0 Wellbutrin (way too fast a drop)

Late summer/Early Fall 2014: Debilitating Withdrawal symptoms 

Fall 2014 - Wellbutrin successfully kicked to the curb but…

Oct- Dec 2014: Panicked reinstatement of Fluoxetine ->30mg - held for 5yrs

Jan 2021: taper to 20mg Fluoxetine  then tapering by 1mg every 2-3 months

Fall 2022 - held at 10mg->December 2022: 9mg->Feb 2023: 8mg ->March 2023: brassmonkey slide begins: 7.8mg -> 7.6 -> 7.4->2 week hold (April)->7.2->7mg->6.8->2 week hold->6.6-> 1-month hold ->(June)-6.5->4-week hold-> (July)-6.4 (discontinued brassmonkey slide and slowed taper)-> (Aug)-6.2->(Sept)-6.0->(Oct)-5.9->(Nov)-5.8->(Dec)-5.7->wave!->(Jan)-5.8 and holding

 

My 2014 withdrawal experience: https://rxisk.org/antidepressant-withdrawal-a-prozac-story/

 

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I'm so sorry! I hope you will feel better soon!

in 2002- 0,5 tablet cipramil for half a year, ended it uneventfully. in 2006 - citalopram for half a year, ended in horrific state, ditched the drugs CT. 2007-2008 not feeling well but drug free. in 2008 prozac 20mg + quetiapine 25mg. 2009 tried to stop, ended up in hole after couple of months, started zoloft. 2009-2011 zoloft 50mg. went to 25mg in 2011 summer, it resulted in half a year horrible suffering. reinstated, changed drugs, nothing happened. by 2012 beginning suddenly felt great and CT meds. after 4 months came suddenly most horrible human suffering that's possible. was started on prozac and questiapine. started tapering slowly, GFCF diet and Hardy Nutritionals vitamins in 2013 summer. 

current medications: 1) fluoxetine and quetiapine since Aug 2012; 2) Daily Essential Nutrients by Hardy Nutritionals 7 capsules / since May 2013 + omega3; 3) Gluten-free-casein-free diet since june 2013

Started withdrawing slowly since april 2013. Mostly around 10% cuts. 

April'13 - March'14: fluoxetine 40mg -> 19,5mg; quetiapine 50mg -> 40mg
April'14-March'15: fluoxetine 19,5mg -> 14,4mg; quetiapine 40mg -> 22mg

April'15-March'16: fluoxetine 14,4mg -> 7,4mg; quetiapine 22mg -> 15mg

April'16-March'17: fluoxetine 7,4mg -> 5,0mg; quetiapine 15mg -> 7,25mg

April'17-March'18: fluoxetine 5,0mg -> 4,0mg; quetiapine 7,25mg -> 0 (as of 1st Feb 2018)!!!!

April´18-March´19: fluoxetine 4,0mg - > 2,3mg. Jumped off fluoxetine 1,4mg due to pregnancy in July 2019. Oct 2019 severe withdrawal syndrome started.

Took mistakenly a complex for hormonal support that included pregnenolone dec2019-april2020. Stopped it april 2020 and immediately severe akathisia started. Have had life threatening akathisia since, 100% disabled, suicidal, very hard to hold on. 

 

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welcome to the forum, Addax!

 

I'm also withdrawing Prozac. I'm a bit envious, because when comparing our timelines, it seems that you are able to go on much faster. I started going down from 40mg in April 2013, and I'm currently at 19,5mg, and can go down only by 0,5mg after 3-4 weeks. 

 

I have noticed that I will get the worst withdrawal 4-5 months after the decrease, that's one reason why I'm extra careful, not to cumulate the drops beyond my brain's ability to recover. my message is - be careful! :)

I am jumping in here I know ages behind been under the weather and not keeping up.  Still I have an opinion to add about prozac's delayed withdrawal.  I had a bad reaction to it long ago it was my first antidepressant taken for pain.  It did a number on me from which I did not recover. This is my story and my mind and as such this is how I see it. I know others will disagree.  I ended up taking other drugs for years but this is the one that brought down my house of cards and I have never again been the same. 

I did remain drug free for 2 years after my 2wk bout with prozac and I suffered hard and long.  I am still amazed how I got thru that time with grit or some sort of grace I cannot name. 

At around the 2 year mark I was put in a pain clinic and given another antidepressants. I had not had a nights sleep in 2 years by then. I find the effect of prozac on me different but at least as bad as Effexor.  Tho it has a better name.  I have long long thought it was one of the worst of these drugs but it may just be it is worst for me out of all the ones I have been on the other one that affected me like prozac was paxil.  

In my mind the withdrawal and all effects are just more long lasting and more powerful for prozac and I personally cringe everytime I see a crossover to prozac suggest.  I think the withdrawal is just longer not any easier and people are just less aware of the affects being caused by the drug or withdrawal as they are so loooong lasting.  Not noticed as being the cause does not make it less problematic to withdraw from or any less damaging in my opinion if anything it just makes it more deceptive. 

Rapunzel could you tell me where I could find your information on mineral and vitamins that helped you. 

Ps

Prozac is one of the drugs listed as causing mitochondrial damage.  One article I read on this in relation to damage to mitochondrial by statin drugs said co enzyme of sorts would help.  a quick search should find it... I can't recall the number if it was 8 or 10.

It may help.

WARNING THIS WILL BE LONG
Had a car accident in 85
Codeine was the pain med when I was release from hosp continuous use till 89
Given PROZAC by a specialist to help with nerve pain in my leg 89-90 not sure which year
Was not told a thing about it being a psych med thought it was a pain killer no info about psych side effects I went nuts had hallucinations. As I had a head injury and was diagnosed with a concussion in 85 I was sent to a head injury clinic in 1990 five years after the accident. I don't think they knew I had been on prozac I did not think it a big deal and never did finish the bottle of pills. I had tests of course lots of them. Was put into a pain clinic and given amitriptyline which stopped the withdrawal but had many side effects. But I could sleep something I had not done in a very long time the pain lessened. My mother got cancer in 94 they switched my meds to Zoloft to help deal with this pressure as I was her main care giver she died in 96. I stopped zoloft in 96 had withdrawal was put on paxil went nutty quit it ct put on resperidol quit it ct had withdrawal was put on Effexor... 2years later celexa was added 20mg then increased to 40mg huge personality change went wild. Did too fast taper off Celexa 05 as I felt unwell for a long time prior... quit Effexor 150mg ct 07 found ****** 8 months into withdrawal learned some things was banned from there in 08 have kept learning since. there is really not enough room here to put my history but I have a lot of opinions about a lot of things especially any of the drugs mentioned above.
One thing I would like to add here is this tidbit ALL OPIATES INCREASE SEROTONIN it is not a huge jump to being in chronic pain to being put on an ssri/snri and opiates will affect your antidepressants and your thinking.

As I do not update much I will put my quit date Nov. 17 2007 I quit Effexor cold turkey. 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1096-introducing-myself-btdt/

There is a crack in everything ..That's how the light gets in :)

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Addax,

I was surprised to read that you updosed back to 20mg, but it sounds like you have had some improvements, that's good, it may take a while before you feel a lot better, be patient and try and focus on what has improved. With every change, stabilization, if its going to happen, is going to occur in a windows and waves pattern, so if you start to feel worse again, please try and ride it out rather than make another change.

 

I also recommend reading back through your thread.

 

My guess is that after being on a high dose of Prozac, for such a long time, you needed to take more time than you have been to come off it.  When I came off my long term use of lexapro, before I found this site, I didn't understand how these drugs cause long term changes to our nervous system, and how those changes need to be allowed to slowly reverse back to a default state.  I thought it was all about just getting the drug out of our system.

 

I still believe its possible for anyone to taper off these drugs and either get off them completely or at least get down to much lower, safer dosages.  But as we keep saying here, some people have to taper much slower than others if they want to remain functional in their lives.

 

I'm sorry you are still on the couch, struggling with anhedonia and apathy, my life isn't much different to be honest, but there's nothing I can do for myself, but wait, which I've finally been able to accept.  But you are still able to tolerate the medication, so there is hope that you can get back on track, stabilize and then try again with a much slower taper, after a very long hold of course.

 

Unfortunately, once our nervous system becomes unstable, it can take a long time for it to settle down.  When it gets to this stage, making changes to drugs, supplements, foods and activities can often cause more disruption, rather than being helpful, even though in a healthy nervous system, these changes would most likely be beneficial.  Its like being stuck between the proverbial rock and hard place.

 

I hope that 20mg is going to be the improvement you are looking for, but I'm beginning to suspect that you may have to stop looking towards the drugs for improvement and accept that its going to come in time through taking good care of yourself and stability.

 

Please continue to let us know how you are doing.  I hope you feel better soon.

I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

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To btdt:

I'm taking Daily Essential Nutrients by Hardynutritionals, www.hardynutritionals.com.

in 2002- 0,5 tablet cipramil for half a year, ended it uneventfully. in 2006 - citalopram for half a year, ended in horrific state, ditched the drugs CT. 2007-2008 not feeling well but drug free. in 2008 prozac 20mg + quetiapine 25mg. 2009 tried to stop, ended up in hole after couple of months, started zoloft. 2009-2011 zoloft 50mg. went to 25mg in 2011 summer, it resulted in half a year horrible suffering. reinstated, changed drugs, nothing happened. by 2012 beginning suddenly felt great and CT meds. after 4 months came suddenly most horrible human suffering that's possible. was started on prozac and questiapine. started tapering slowly, GFCF diet and Hardy Nutritionals vitamins in 2013 summer. 

current medications: 1) fluoxetine and quetiapine since Aug 2012; 2) Daily Essential Nutrients by Hardy Nutritionals 7 capsules / since May 2013 + omega3; 3) Gluten-free-casein-free diet since june 2013

Started withdrawing slowly since april 2013. Mostly around 10% cuts. 

April'13 - March'14: fluoxetine 40mg -> 19,5mg; quetiapine 50mg -> 40mg
April'14-March'15: fluoxetine 19,5mg -> 14,4mg; quetiapine 40mg -> 22mg

April'15-March'16: fluoxetine 14,4mg -> 7,4mg; quetiapine 22mg -> 15mg

April'16-March'17: fluoxetine 7,4mg -> 5,0mg; quetiapine 15mg -> 7,25mg

April'17-March'18: fluoxetine 5,0mg -> 4,0mg; quetiapine 7,25mg -> 0 (as of 1st Feb 2018)!!!!

April´18-March´19: fluoxetine 4,0mg - > 2,3mg. Jumped off fluoxetine 1,4mg due to pregnancy in July 2019. Oct 2019 severe withdrawal syndrome started.

Took mistakenly a complex for hormonal support that included pregnenolone dec2019-april2020. Stopped it april 2020 and immediately severe akathisia started. Have had life threatening akathisia since, 100% disabled, suicidal, very hard to hold on. 

 

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To btdt:

I'm taking Daily Essential Nutrients by Hardynutritionals, www.hardynutritionals.com.

Thanks for the link I checked it and found they do not say what is in the bottle.  I found a few videos I could have watched that may have said what was in the bottle I just did not have the patients for it tonight.  Do you think this is making a big difference to you?

WARNING THIS WILL BE LONG
Had a car accident in 85
Codeine was the pain med when I was release from hosp continuous use till 89
Given PROZAC by a specialist to help with nerve pain in my leg 89-90 not sure which year
Was not told a thing about it being a psych med thought it was a pain killer no info about psych side effects I went nuts had hallucinations. As I had a head injury and was diagnosed with a concussion in 85 I was sent to a head injury clinic in 1990 five years after the accident. I don't think they knew I had been on prozac I did not think it a big deal and never did finish the bottle of pills. I had tests of course lots of them. Was put into a pain clinic and given amitriptyline which stopped the withdrawal but had many side effects. But I could sleep something I had not done in a very long time the pain lessened. My mother got cancer in 94 they switched my meds to Zoloft to help deal with this pressure as I was her main care giver she died in 96. I stopped zoloft in 96 had withdrawal was put on paxil went nutty quit it ct put on resperidol quit it ct had withdrawal was put on Effexor... 2years later celexa was added 20mg then increased to 40mg huge personality change went wild. Did too fast taper off Celexa 05 as I felt unwell for a long time prior... quit Effexor 150mg ct 07 found ****** 8 months into withdrawal learned some things was banned from there in 08 have kept learning since. there is really not enough room here to put my history but I have a lot of opinions about a lot of things especially any of the drugs mentioned above.
One thing I would like to add here is this tidbit ALL OPIATES INCREASE SEROTONIN it is not a huge jump to being in chronic pain to being put on an ssri/snri and opiates will affect your antidepressants and your thinking.

As I do not update much I will put my quit date Nov. 17 2007 I quit Effexor cold turkey. 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1096-introducing-myself-btdt/

There is a crack in everything ..That's how the light gets in :)

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I'm not happy to have gone back to 20mg but I'm trying to look at the positive side in that I'm no longer on Wellbutrin, and still 40 mg down from over 22 years at 60 mg. I updosed to twenty at the recommendation of a knowledgable Pdoc as I was not finding any relief at 10. At 20 I noticed a slight improvement early on which I hope is a good sign that this is the dose that will work and that As time goes on I'll be able to function and stabilize on to get through to next summer at which point I may attempt a micro MICRO taper. In any event I'll see where I am in a month or two and evaluate again from there.

 

I know I should expect windows and waves and don't intend or want to updose any farther, but I can't rule it out as a possibility. This experience has left me shell shocked and slightly less optimistic about my ability to tolerate withdrawal and be able to ever discontinue completely. It sucks, but what I've gone through over the last few months scared the crap out of me, my partner, and my family. I'm still struggling, but I'm able to eat, and put some coherent thoughts in writing which is more than I could push myself to do a week ago.

 

Could I have pushed through? Given up my goals and dreams? Perhaps. But when it came to the point that death seemed preferable to what I was experiencing i wasn't willing to.

1988-2012: Prozac @ 60mg (with a few stops and starts)

Fall 2012: Returned to 40mg after discontinuing and horrid withdrawal 

Fall 2013: 40mg Fluoxetine, added 150mg Wellbutrin to treat fatigue 

Winter 2014: Attempting to taper both (too fast)

April 2014: 9mg Fluoxetine + 37.5 Wellbutrin 

Summer 2014: 8 mg Fluoxetine + 0 Wellbutrin (way too fast a drop)

Late summer/Early Fall 2014: Debilitating Withdrawal symptoms 

Fall 2014 - Wellbutrin successfully kicked to the curb but…

Oct- Dec 2014: Panicked reinstatement of Fluoxetine ->30mg - held for 5yrs

Jan 2021: taper to 20mg Fluoxetine  then tapering by 1mg every 2-3 months

Fall 2022 - held at 10mg->December 2022: 9mg->Feb 2023: 8mg ->March 2023: brassmonkey slide begins: 7.8mg -> 7.6 -> 7.4->2 week hold (April)->7.2->7mg->6.8->2 week hold->6.6-> 1-month hold ->(June)-6.5->4-week hold-> (July)-6.4 (discontinued brassmonkey slide and slowed taper)-> (Aug)-6.2->(Sept)-6.0->(Oct)-5.9->(Nov)-5.8->(Dec)-5.7->wave!->(Jan)-5.8 and holding

 

My 2014 withdrawal experience: https://rxisk.org/antidepressant-withdrawal-a-prozac-story/

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

btdt:  please discuss off topic issues with rapunzel in a PM or her thread, this is Addax's topic.

 

Addax,  I'm so happy to hear that your are starting to feel better.  Don't be hard on yourself for having to updose, none of this is easy and we have to do what we need to do. You have learned valuable information about your own response to tapering and withdrawal, which will guide you when you are ready to try again.

I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

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Addax, I am glad to hear of some improvement to, and glad that you have only had to go up a little. You have dropped many milligrams of meds! This is about living our best.

1st round Prozac 1989/90, clear depression symptoms. 2nd round Prozac started 1999 when admitted to dr. I was tired. Prozac pooped out, switch to Cymbalta 3/2006. Diagnosed with bipolar disorder due to mania 6/2006--then I was taken abruptly off Cymbalta and didn't know I had SSRI withdrawal. Lots of meds for my intractable "bipolar" symptoms.

Zyprexa started about 9/06, mostly 5mg. Tapered 4/12 through12/29/12

Wellbutrin. XL 300 mg started 1/07, tapered 1/18/13 through 7/8/13

Oxazepam mostly continuously since 6/06, 30mg since 12/12, tapered 1.17.14 through 8.26.15

11/06 Lithium 600mg twice daily, 2.2.14 400mg TID DIY liquid, 2.12.14 1150mg, 3.2.14 1100mg, 3.18.14 1075mg, 4/14 updose to 1100mg, 6.1.14 900 mg capsules 7.8.14 810mg, 8.17.14 725mg, 8.24.24 700mg...10.22.14 487.5mg, 3.9.15 475mg, 4.1.15 462.5mg 4.21.15 450mg 8.11.15 375mg, 11.28.15 362.5mg, back to 375mg four days later, 3.4.16 updose to 475 (too much going on to risk trouble)

9/4/13 Toprol-XL 25mg daily for sudden hypertension, tapered 11.12.13 through 5.3.14, last 10 days or so switched to atenolol

7.4.14 Started Walsh Protocol

56 years old

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi Addax!

 

Been reading through some of your thread since reading your post on the Wellbutrin taper thread.

I hope you are getting better, as it seems you've had horrible withdrawal symptoms lately.

I just wanted to say thank you for what you are sharing on your thread! We have a lot of symptoms in common and somehow it's comforting to know there are people out there experiencing similar things in this process as so many in the medical profession do not acknowledge it.

And we learn from each other!

I'm so sorry you got the information about how Wellbutrin affects Prozac after you had quit Wellbutrin!

Wish you all the best.

1997-1999 Citalopram 20 mg

1999-2014 Sertraline 50 mg

2012 Sertraline very quick taper due to side effects. Switched to Wellbutrin 150 mg-300 mg. Reinstated Sertraline 25 mg-50 mg.

2013 Exhaustion. Wellbutrin 150 mg. Sertraline 75 mg-100 mg.

Sept 2014 Found this site. Started tapering. Sertraline 87,5 mg + Wellbutrin 150 mg 

Aug 2015 No more Wellbutrin!! Sertraline 50 mg

2016 Sertraline 35 mg (January) - 33 mg (March 21st) - 32,5 mg (July 11) - 32 mg (July 27)

2017 March 28,2 mg and holding

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Mjau-

Thank you you stopping by!

 

It was a tough way to learn about Wellbutrin's interaction with SSRIs, and of course fluoxetine (prozac) in particular. However it also mawe me feel better. I'd lost hope that I'd ever be prozac free, but realizing the relationship between the two drugs explained a lot. In some cases I read that Wellbutrin can increase plasma levels of some SSRIs by leaps and bounds and same for the half-lives. Had I known I would have decreased my Wellbutrin by maybe 2% at a time given that the relationship isn't linear and I can't find specifics on the Wellbutrin dose vs. Boost in plasma levels.

 

In the end I have stabilized and fell very good. I've had a rogue wave here and there, but I expected that. I'm on 30mg of Fluoxetine, which isn't what I wanted, but it pulled me out of the state I was in. Had I had the patience I may have stabilized at 20mg, but time is of the essence right now and I wanted the boost the extra 10 mg gave me. It's 30 mg less than i had maintained on for nearly 23 years, so that's good, and the side effects of 40mg and above haven't appeared. Hopefully they won't. I've remained Wellbutrin free which was difficult because I craved the stimulation it had once offered. Luckily at 30 mg i haven't experienced the fatigue and yawning i experienced at 40 and obviously at 60.

 

I will maintain at 30mg through at least the winter and afterward my prozac taper will be more of a micro-taper. I have a new pdoc who is more knowledgable than others I have and willing to do the research regarding things I bring to his attention.

 

I'm really ok now. The experience set me back and left me she'll-shocked, but hopefully what I learned and shared will help others avoid the same pitfall.

 

You asked in the thread about Wellbutrin how long till I crashed. It's hard to say because I don't know what my plasma levels of Prozac were or how fast they dropped in relation to my Wellbutrin taper. If you can have your plasma levels of Zoloft checked somewhat regularly as you cut your Zoloft dose that would probably be a great way to monitor your withdrawal. Just a thought.

1988-2012: Prozac @ 60mg (with a few stops and starts)

Fall 2012: Returned to 40mg after discontinuing and horrid withdrawal 

Fall 2013: 40mg Fluoxetine, added 150mg Wellbutrin to treat fatigue 

Winter 2014: Attempting to taper both (too fast)

April 2014: 9mg Fluoxetine + 37.5 Wellbutrin 

Summer 2014: 8 mg Fluoxetine + 0 Wellbutrin (way too fast a drop)

Late summer/Early Fall 2014: Debilitating Withdrawal symptoms 

Fall 2014 - Wellbutrin successfully kicked to the curb but…

Oct- Dec 2014: Panicked reinstatement of Fluoxetine ->30mg - held for 5yrs

Jan 2021: taper to 20mg Fluoxetine  then tapering by 1mg every 2-3 months

Fall 2022 - held at 10mg->December 2022: 9mg->Feb 2023: 8mg ->March 2023: brassmonkey slide begins: 7.8mg -> 7.6 -> 7.4->2 week hold (April)->7.2->7mg->6.8->2 week hold->6.6-> 1-month hold ->(June)-6.5->4-week hold-> (July)-6.4 (discontinued brassmonkey slide and slowed taper)-> (Aug)-6.2->(Sept)-6.0->(Oct)-5.9->(Nov)-5.8->(Dec)-5.7->wave!->(Jan)-5.8 and holding

 

My 2014 withdrawal experience: https://rxisk.org/antidepressant-withdrawal-a-prozac-story/

 

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So glad to hear that you have recovered from the severe withdrawal! :)

It's a big learning process - as I've noticed myself having several failed (=too quick) tapering attempts behind me. Slowness is key.

 

It all makes sense - Prozac is eliminated very slowly from the body - and as Wellbutrin slows down the elimination additionally - the withdrawal symptoms appear so much later. It really explains why this happened to you. 

 

Great that you have a pdoc that is knowledgable and able to think outside the box! (S)he will probably learn from this and bring the new knowledge to other patients - hopefully!

 

Thank you for the idea of measuring plasma levels of Zoloft! I'll keep that in mind especially if things get worse.

 

I would like to say so much more. But my concentration is pretty poor right now and English isn't my native language... Just wishing you all the best! :)

1997-1999 Citalopram 20 mg

1999-2014 Sertraline 50 mg

2012 Sertraline very quick taper due to side effects. Switched to Wellbutrin 150 mg-300 mg. Reinstated Sertraline 25 mg-50 mg.

2013 Exhaustion. Wellbutrin 150 mg. Sertraline 75 mg-100 mg.

Sept 2014 Found this site. Started tapering. Sertraline 87,5 mg + Wellbutrin 150 mg 

Aug 2015 No more Wellbutrin!! Sertraline 50 mg

2016 Sertraline 35 mg (January) - 33 mg (March 21st) - 32,5 mg (July 11) - 32 mg (July 27)

2017 March 28,2 mg and holding

 

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so glad that you are feeling better!

 

I had the same experience. after seroquel cut I wasn't able to reduce fluoxetine anymore. probably because cutting seroquel also caused fluoxetine withdrawal! right now I have recovered and moving on only with fluoxetine, to keep things more clear. and fluoxetine is the worse one for me, in regards of side effects. 

in 2002- 0,5 tablet cipramil for half a year, ended it uneventfully. in 2006 - citalopram for half a year, ended in horrific state, ditched the drugs CT. 2007-2008 not feeling well but drug free. in 2008 prozac 20mg + quetiapine 25mg. 2009 tried to stop, ended up in hole after couple of months, started zoloft. 2009-2011 zoloft 50mg. went to 25mg in 2011 summer, it resulted in half a year horrible suffering. reinstated, changed drugs, nothing happened. by 2012 beginning suddenly felt great and CT meds. after 4 months came suddenly most horrible human suffering that's possible. was started on prozac and questiapine. started tapering slowly, GFCF diet and Hardy Nutritionals vitamins in 2013 summer. 

current medications: 1) fluoxetine and quetiapine since Aug 2012; 2) Daily Essential Nutrients by Hardy Nutritionals 7 capsules / since May 2013 + omega3; 3) Gluten-free-casein-free diet since june 2013

Started withdrawing slowly since april 2013. Mostly around 10% cuts. 

April'13 - March'14: fluoxetine 40mg -> 19,5mg; quetiapine 50mg -> 40mg
April'14-March'15: fluoxetine 19,5mg -> 14,4mg; quetiapine 40mg -> 22mg

April'15-March'16: fluoxetine 14,4mg -> 7,4mg; quetiapine 22mg -> 15mg

April'16-March'17: fluoxetine 7,4mg -> 5,0mg; quetiapine 15mg -> 7,25mg

April'17-March'18: fluoxetine 5,0mg -> 4,0mg; quetiapine 7,25mg -> 0 (as of 1st Feb 2018)!!!!

April´18-March´19: fluoxetine 4,0mg - > 2,3mg. Jumped off fluoxetine 1,4mg due to pregnancy in July 2019. Oct 2019 severe withdrawal syndrome started.

Took mistakenly a complex for hormonal support that included pregnenolone dec2019-april2020. Stopped it april 2020 and immediately severe akathisia started. Have had life threatening akathisia since, 100% disabled, suicidal, very hard to hold on. 

 

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I'm so glad to hear you're doing better Addax. 

 

This is a long term process, and it's also your life that you're living as you do it, so do what you have to do. I think your plan to stay stable on 30 mg fluoxetine for a while and then microtaper makes perfect sense. 

 

I don't think you gave up your dreams, I think you just made some realistic adjustments, and that's really how it always works with dreams and goals.

 

Glad you've got your life back!

Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                1

Feb 2022            6                      0!!!                     0.00167               0.98                2.5 mg Ambien

Oct 2022       4.5 mg Lamictal    (off Celexa, off Xanax)   0.95 Valium    Ambien, 1/4 to 1/2 of a 5 mg tablet 

 

I'm not a doctor. Any advice I give is just my civilian opinion.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • Administrator

So good to hear you've stabliized, Addax.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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  • 1 month later...

Reading through your posts as I can, Addax, and it does seem like you were in a bad place and that you've improved so much. This gives me such hope. I think you did what you had to do going up on the Prozac when and to the extent that you did--getting to a dark place can be scary, and only you can know when it has to end. The wonderful thing is that you HAVE stabilized. I am hoping for some of that coming my way, and your support in my thread and reading this story helps to increase my hope that it might come as I go through this very dark time. 

 

Thanks for sharing your story and good wishes for continuing to feel well during these winter months (though it's prob pretty nice out there on the west coast haha). And congrats on being off the Wellbutrin! 

Started Zoloft 07/06, continued through 07/08 (2-month taper, going downhill 6 weeks after stopping [w/d?]) 

Lexapro started 12/08, Lexapro increased/Buspar and Topamax added in '09, continued through 08/10 (3-month taper, disastrous results after 3 week [w/d?]) 

200 mg Zoloft started around 9/10; been between 150 and 200 mg Zoloft since then, also on Topamax and Deplin, and tried things for sleep like Trazadone (worked for a while), and Ambien, Lunesta, and Mirtazapine (all failed) 

--Started tapering 200mg Zoloft--

6-26-14 (150 mg); 7-14-14 (100 mg); 8-20-14 (50 mg); 10-25-14 (25 mg); 11-18-14 (12.5 mg); 12-2-14 stopped Zoloft 

anxiety started 3 days off, depression 12 days off; both severely intensified at 5 weeks off with a work-related trigger and got progressively worse for 10 days 

Reinstated Zoloft 12.5mg on 1-15-15 (one day at 25mg) after 6 weeks and 2 days off 

Also taking 100mg Topamax and 15mg Deplin 

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I want to thank everyone that stopped by and supported me. I've written up a detailed description of my experience with horrendous withdrawal symptoms this last fall but feel some trepidation about posting it. It just sounds so unbelievable when I read it. Even though I've stabilized I still feel haunted by the experience. Almost like some kind of post traumatic response.

 

One thing I want to mention now is an example of just how subjective diagnosis are. Several weeks ago I started seeing a new therapist, as well as a new pdoc. They are in the same office and I saw them both for the first time within just a couple days of each other. I am quite sure I gave then identical descriptions of how I'd been feeling. One diagnosed me with depression, the other with generalized anxiety. Funny. I hadn't even really thought about what diagnosis they had chosen until the therapist brought it up this week.

 

I'm going to take a few deep breaths before I post my recent withdrawal experience... I swear some people will think I'm exaggerating, or outright making it up when they read it. It's like some crazy horror story.

1988-2012: Prozac @ 60mg (with a few stops and starts)

Fall 2012: Returned to 40mg after discontinuing and horrid withdrawal 

Fall 2013: 40mg Fluoxetine, added 150mg Wellbutrin to treat fatigue 

Winter 2014: Attempting to taper both (too fast)

April 2014: 9mg Fluoxetine + 37.5 Wellbutrin 

Summer 2014: 8 mg Fluoxetine + 0 Wellbutrin (way too fast a drop)

Late summer/Early Fall 2014: Debilitating Withdrawal symptoms 

Fall 2014 - Wellbutrin successfully kicked to the curb but…

Oct- Dec 2014: Panicked reinstatement of Fluoxetine ->30mg - held for 5yrs

Jan 2021: taper to 20mg Fluoxetine  then tapering by 1mg every 2-3 months

Fall 2022 - held at 10mg->December 2022: 9mg->Feb 2023: 8mg ->March 2023: brassmonkey slide begins: 7.8mg -> 7.6 -> 7.4->2 week hold (April)->7.2->7mg->6.8->2 week hold->6.6-> 1-month hold ->(June)-6.5->4-week hold-> (July)-6.4 (discontinued brassmonkey slide and slowed taper)-> (Aug)-6.2->(Sept)-6.0->(Oct)-5.9->(Nov)-5.8->(Dec)-5.7->wave!->(Jan)-5.8 and holding

 

My 2014 withdrawal experience: https://rxisk.org/antidepressant-withdrawal-a-prozac-story/

 

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I think we can have a PTSD experience which makes sense if you think of trauma as being a reaction to a life threatening situation.  Sometimes our very being in threatened through suicidal ideation, sometimes its our sense of self that we don't think will live to tell the tale.

 

One author I read suggested that trauma is a problem of memory.   The traumatic experience is stamped on our body and it hasn't got the message that the threat is over.  When you read it you trigger a threat response.   She says we have to reinforce to our body that the threat is over, in this case you have stabalised.   She talks about writing an epilogue of all the things that have happened since the threat to give the body a strong message that the trauma is in the past and you have moved on

 

This may or may not be useful to you.  Just my 2 cents worth 

 

D

Please note - I am not a medical practitioner and I do not give medical advice. I offer an opinion based on my own experiences, reading and discussion with others.On Effexor for 2 months at the start of 2005. Had extreme insomnia as an adverse reaction. Changed to mirtazapine. Have been trying to get off since mid 2008 with numerous failures including CTs and slow (but not slow enough tapers)Have slow tapered at 10 per cent or less for years. I have liquid mirtazapine made at a compounding chemist.

Was on 1.6 ml as at 19 March 2014.

Dropped to 1.5 ml 7 June 2014. Dropped to 1.4 in about September.

Dropped to 1.3 on 20 December 2014. Dropped to 1.2 in mid Jan 2015.

Dropped to 1 ml in late Feb 2015. I think my old medication had run out of puff so I tried 1ml when I got the new stuff and it seems to be going ok. Sleep has been good over the last week (as of 13/3/15).

Dropped to 1/2 ml 14/11/15 Fatigue still there as are memory and cognition problems. Sleep is patchy but liveable compared to what it has been in the past.

 

DRUG FREE - as at 1st May 2017

 

>My intro post is here - http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/2250-dalsaan

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I'm not happy to have gone back to 20mg but I'm trying to look at the positive side in that I'm no longer on Wellbutrin, and still 40 mg down from over 22 years at 60 mg. I updosed to twenty at the recommendation of a knowledgable Pdoc as I was not finding any relief at 10. At 20 I noticed a slight improvement early on which I hope is a good sign that this is the dose that will work and that As time goes on I'll be able to function and stabilize on to get through to next summer at which point I may attempt a micro MICRO taper. In any event I'll see where I am in a month or two and evaluate again from there.

 

I know I should expect windows and waves and don't intend or want to updose any farther, but I can't rule it out as a possibility. This experience has left me shell shocked and slightly less optimistic about my ability to tolerate withdrawal and be able to ever discontinue completely. It sucks, but what I've gone through over the last few months scared the crap out of me, my partner, and my family. I'm still struggling, but I'm able to eat, and put some coherent thoughts in writing which is more than I could push myself to do a week ago.

 

Could I have pushed through? Given up my goals and dreams? Perhaps. But when it came to the point that death seemed preferable to what I was experiencing i wasn't willing to.

 

Quality of life is what is important otherwise why bother with any of it.  I am not a big drug fan but really it is about feeling good and having a life whatever it takes to do that.  If I had been able to keep taking my antidepressant and have a good life I would have.  I never gave up on my drugs they gave up on me.  I don't know anything about tapering really as I have not had a successful taper ever.  I got off by going cold turkey and I was frightened to be drug my reasons are posted on here several times I won't bore you with it again. I hope you don't have to suffer like this again I hope a good long hold gets you to a good place and very tiny drops or whatever you need to do this without "too much" is the way from here on in. 

I wish you peace

WARNING THIS WILL BE LONG
Had a car accident in 85
Codeine was the pain med when I was release from hosp continuous use till 89
Given PROZAC by a specialist to help with nerve pain in my leg 89-90 not sure which year
Was not told a thing about it being a psych med thought it was a pain killer no info about psych side effects I went nuts had hallucinations. As I had a head injury and was diagnosed with a concussion in 85 I was sent to a head injury clinic in 1990 five years after the accident. I don't think they knew I had been on prozac I did not think it a big deal and never did finish the bottle of pills. I had tests of course lots of them. Was put into a pain clinic and given amitriptyline which stopped the withdrawal but had many side effects. But I could sleep something I had not done in a very long time the pain lessened. My mother got cancer in 94 they switched my meds to Zoloft to help deal with this pressure as I was her main care giver she died in 96. I stopped zoloft in 96 had withdrawal was put on paxil went nutty quit it ct put on resperidol quit it ct had withdrawal was put on Effexor... 2years later celexa was added 20mg then increased to 40mg huge personality change went wild. Did too fast taper off Celexa 05 as I felt unwell for a long time prior... quit Effexor 150mg ct 07 found ****** 8 months into withdrawal learned some things was banned from there in 08 have kept learning since. there is really not enough room here to put my history but I have a lot of opinions about a lot of things especially any of the drugs mentioned above.
One thing I would like to add here is this tidbit ALL OPIATES INCREASE SEROTONIN it is not a huge jump to being in chronic pain to being put on an ssri/snri and opiates will affect your antidepressants and your thinking.

As I do not update much I will put my quit date Nov. 17 2007 I quit Effexor cold turkey. 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1096-introducing-myself-btdt/

There is a crack in everything ..That's how the light gets in :)

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I want to thank everyone that stopped by and supported me. I've written up a detailed description of my experience with horrendous withdrawal symptoms this last fall but feel some trepidation about posting it. It just sounds so unbelievable when I read it. Even though I've stabilized I still feel haunted by the experience. Almost like some kind of post traumatic response.

 

One thing I want to mention now is an example of just how subjective diagnosis are. Several weeks ago I started seeing a new therapist, as well as a new pdoc. They are in the same office and I saw them both for the first time within just a couple days of each other. I am quite sure I gave then identical descriptions of how I'd been feeling. One diagnosed me with depression, the other with generalized anxiety. Funny. I hadn't even really thought about what diagnosis they had chosen until the therapist brought it up this week.

 

I'm going to take a few deep breaths before I post my recent withdrawal experience... I swear some people will think I'm exaggerating, or outright making it up when they read it. It's like some crazy horror story.

I watched a program on tv where they sent actors and actresses to different psychiatrists with a script to follow.  I think they were sent to 5 or so docs and at the end of it there were only two times the doctors agreed on the dx and treatment.. all offered different drugs. 

So it is a crap shoot depending on who you see and how they see you.. both these things are so subjective and left to the interpretation of the doc.  I wonder if you therapist watched the same tv show that I did.  

 

" I've written up a detailed description of my experience with horrendous withdrawal symptoms this last fall but feel some trepidation about posting it. It just sounds so unbelievable when I read it. Even though I've stabilized I still feel haunted by the experience. Almost like some kind of post traumatic response."

 

I am sorry this has happened to you .  I am going to go to a new box cause I don't know how to get out of this blue ...

WARNING THIS WILL BE LONG
Had a car accident in 85
Codeine was the pain med when I was release from hosp continuous use till 89
Given PROZAC by a specialist to help with nerve pain in my leg 89-90 not sure which year
Was not told a thing about it being a psych med thought it was a pain killer no info about psych side effects I went nuts had hallucinations. As I had a head injury and was diagnosed with a concussion in 85 I was sent to a head injury clinic in 1990 five years after the accident. I don't think they knew I had been on prozac I did not think it a big deal and never did finish the bottle of pills. I had tests of course lots of them. Was put into a pain clinic and given amitriptyline which stopped the withdrawal but had many side effects. But I could sleep something I had not done in a very long time the pain lessened. My mother got cancer in 94 they switched my meds to Zoloft to help deal with this pressure as I was her main care giver she died in 96. I stopped zoloft in 96 had withdrawal was put on paxil went nutty quit it ct put on resperidol quit it ct had withdrawal was put on Effexor... 2years later celexa was added 20mg then increased to 40mg huge personality change went wild. Did too fast taper off Celexa 05 as I felt unwell for a long time prior... quit Effexor 150mg ct 07 found ****** 8 months into withdrawal learned some things was banned from there in 08 have kept learning since. there is really not enough room here to put my history but I have a lot of opinions about a lot of things especially any of the drugs mentioned above.
One thing I would like to add here is this tidbit ALL OPIATES INCREASE SEROTONIN it is not a huge jump to being in chronic pain to being put on an ssri/snri and opiates will affect your antidepressants and your thinking.

As I do not update much I will put my quit date Nov. 17 2007 I quit Effexor cold turkey. 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1096-introducing-myself-btdt/

There is a crack in everything ..That's how the light gets in :)

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If you not comfortable posting what you have written it is ok.. but I also want you to know that a few of us have had some pretty wild things happen when we were on or tried to come off these drugs and not being believed is going to have to really stretch some of us me for one.  There is not a lot you could say to me about this sort of experience that would shock me or make me not believe you.  I don't know about others I can't say for sure... I have put some a couple one thing on here I thought others would not believe and at the time I had kept it in for 20 or so years and yes it was etched in my mind.  I did not know it was a drug reaction then.. I have known for a long time that was what it was and still I kept it in to myself trying to sort it as I did not see anyone else having anything like that experience.  One day I just blurted it out here and that was the end of it.  Don't get me wrong the experience was not an easy one to process and I don't know that I ever will actually process it as it was not anything like normal no normal thought could deal with it. So it sat there in my head for years... then one day out it came.  I don't know that it bothered anyone I think there was one question about the post but really not much interest at all.  Could be folks were thinking stay away from the crazy.. you know what that is ok too.  

 

Post it when it is right for you if posting is right for you but if it is something you want to discuss or get off your chest please know this is  a safe place.  

I wish you peace

WARNING THIS WILL BE LONG
Had a car accident in 85
Codeine was the pain med when I was release from hosp continuous use till 89
Given PROZAC by a specialist to help with nerve pain in my leg 89-90 not sure which year
Was not told a thing about it being a psych med thought it was a pain killer no info about psych side effects I went nuts had hallucinations. As I had a head injury and was diagnosed with a concussion in 85 I was sent to a head injury clinic in 1990 five years after the accident. I don't think they knew I had been on prozac I did not think it a big deal and never did finish the bottle of pills. I had tests of course lots of them. Was put into a pain clinic and given amitriptyline which stopped the withdrawal but had many side effects. But I could sleep something I had not done in a very long time the pain lessened. My mother got cancer in 94 they switched my meds to Zoloft to help deal with this pressure as I was her main care giver she died in 96. I stopped zoloft in 96 had withdrawal was put on paxil went nutty quit it ct put on resperidol quit it ct had withdrawal was put on Effexor... 2years later celexa was added 20mg then increased to 40mg huge personality change went wild. Did too fast taper off Celexa 05 as I felt unwell for a long time prior... quit Effexor 150mg ct 07 found ****** 8 months into withdrawal learned some things was banned from there in 08 have kept learning since. there is really not enough room here to put my history but I have a lot of opinions about a lot of things especially any of the drugs mentioned above.
One thing I would like to add here is this tidbit ALL OPIATES INCREASE SEROTONIN it is not a huge jump to being in chronic pain to being put on an ssri/snri and opiates will affect your antidepressants and your thinking.

As I do not update much I will put my quit date Nov. 17 2007 I quit Effexor cold turkey. 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1096-introducing-myself-btdt/

There is a crack in everything ..That's how the light gets in :)

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Dalsaan-

Thank you for your 2 cents. It makes a great deal of sense. I think the trauma is reignighted when I think about tappering again. Granted, it will be different now that I'm aware of the mistakes (confusing 10mg and 20 mg capsules) and issues (Wellbutrin's effect on plasma levels of Fluoxetine), but the idea that there is the possibility of it happening again scares the crap out of me... And angers me.

 

Btdt-

I'm going to have to find that TV show. It sounds like a very interesting research project. It's amazing to me how much variation there can be in diagnosis. Adjustment Disorder was another dx my therapist had considered.

 

My quality of life is definitely improved from where it was. I can't say however the Fluoxetine has helped me in the last decade or so. I think it's only purpose for most of the time I've been on it has been to prevent withdrawal symptoms. It was only minimally effective in treating the eating disorder I was diagnosed with at 18, and even then it was a threat to hospitalize me to treat the ED that really made me address the problem.

 

I will post the story of my experience. I just want to make sure it's complete and reflects what I went through accurately. Some of the stuff is so hard to describe.

1988-2012: Prozac @ 60mg (with a few stops and starts)

Fall 2012: Returned to 40mg after discontinuing and horrid withdrawal 

Fall 2013: 40mg Fluoxetine, added 150mg Wellbutrin to treat fatigue 

Winter 2014: Attempting to taper both (too fast)

April 2014: 9mg Fluoxetine + 37.5 Wellbutrin 

Summer 2014: 8 mg Fluoxetine + 0 Wellbutrin (way too fast a drop)

Late summer/Early Fall 2014: Debilitating Withdrawal symptoms 

Fall 2014 - Wellbutrin successfully kicked to the curb but…

Oct- Dec 2014: Panicked reinstatement of Fluoxetine ->30mg - held for 5yrs

Jan 2021: taper to 20mg Fluoxetine  then tapering by 1mg every 2-3 months

Fall 2022 - held at 10mg->December 2022: 9mg->Feb 2023: 8mg ->March 2023: brassmonkey slide begins: 7.8mg -> 7.6 -> 7.4->2 week hold (April)->7.2->7mg->6.8->2 week hold->6.6-> 1-month hold ->(June)-6.5->4-week hold-> (July)-6.4 (discontinued brassmonkey slide and slowed taper)-> (Aug)-6.2->(Sept)-6.0->(Oct)-5.9->(Nov)-5.8->(Dec)-5.7->wave!->(Jan)-5.8 and holding

 

My 2014 withdrawal experience: https://rxisk.org/antidepressant-withdrawal-a-prozac-story/

 

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You know we'll believe it,

 

The diagnosis thing is hysterical. About a year ago I was going to a pdoc who said she had ADHD and took Cymbalta. Reminded me of myself on it. Every time I went she was leaning towards a different diagnosis. It was so funny...I was a different person each time and so was she. She was quite disinhibited. Once she unbelievably told me personal details of the patient just before. I had spent a good 30 min. In the waiting room with her and would recognize her anywhere. At the next visit the dr. had added Klonopin to her regimine. Anyway, I hope you have recovered enough to find the humor in all this.

1st round Prozac 1989/90, clear depression symptoms. 2nd round Prozac started 1999 when admitted to dr. I was tired. Prozac pooped out, switch to Cymbalta 3/2006. Diagnosed with bipolar disorder due to mania 6/2006--then I was taken abruptly off Cymbalta and didn't know I had SSRI withdrawal. Lots of meds for my intractable "bipolar" symptoms.

Zyprexa started about 9/06, mostly 5mg. Tapered 4/12 through12/29/12

Wellbutrin. XL 300 mg started 1/07, tapered 1/18/13 through 7/8/13

Oxazepam mostly continuously since 6/06, 30mg since 12/12, tapered 1.17.14 through 8.26.15

11/06 Lithium 600mg twice daily, 2.2.14 400mg TID DIY liquid, 2.12.14 1150mg, 3.2.14 1100mg, 3.18.14 1075mg, 4/14 updose to 1100mg, 6.1.14 900 mg capsules 7.8.14 810mg, 8.17.14 725mg, 8.24.24 700mg...10.22.14 487.5mg, 3.9.15 475mg, 4.1.15 462.5mg 4.21.15 450mg 8.11.15 375mg, 11.28.15 362.5mg, back to 375mg four days later, 3.4.16 updose to 475 (too much going on to risk trouble)

9/4/13 Toprol-XL 25mg daily for sudden hypertension, tapered 11.12.13 through 5.3.14, last 10 days or so switched to atenolol

7.4.14 Started Walsh Protocol

56 years old

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Dalsaan-

Thank you for your 2 cents. It makes a great deal of sense. I think the trauma is reignighted when I think about tappering again. Granted, it will be different now that I'm aware of the mistakes (confusing 10mg and 20 mg capsules) and issues (Wellbutrin's effect on plasma levels of Fluoxetine), but the idea that there is the possibility of it happening again scares the crap out of me... And angers me.

 

Btdt-

I'm going to have to find that TV show. It sounds like a very interesting research project. It's amazing to me how much variation there can be in diagnosis. Adjustment Disorder was another dx my therapist had considered.

 

My quality of life is definitely improved from where it was. I can't say however the Fluoxetine has helped me in the last decade or so. I think it's only purpose for most of the time I've been on it has been to prevent withdrawal symptoms. It was only minimally effective in treating the eating disorder I was diagnosed with at 18, and even then it was a threat to hospitalize me to treat the ED that really made me address the problem.

 

I will post the story of my experience. I just want to make sure it's complete and reflects what I went through accurately. Some of the stuff is so hard to describe.

I can't find the show but I think it was based on this which I did just find though it is old.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosenhan_experiment

"Rosenhan's study was done in two parts. The first part involved the use of healthy associates or "pseudopatients" (three women and five men, including Rosenhan himself) who briefly feigned auditory hallucinations in an attempt to gain admission to 12 different psychiatric hospitals in five different States in various locations in the United States. All were admitted and diagnosed with psychiatric disorders. After admission, the pseudopatients acted normally and told staff that they felt fine and had no longer experienced any additional hallucinations. All were forced to admit to having a mental illness and agree to take antipsychotic drugs as a condition of their release. The average time that the patients spent in the hospital was 19 days. All but one were diagnosed with schizophrenia "in remission" before their release. The second part of his study involved an offended hospital administration challenging Rosenhan to send pseudopatients to its facility, whom its staff would then detect. Rosenhan agreed and in the following weeks out of 193 new patients the staff identified 41 as potential pseudopatients, with 19 of these receiving suspicion from at least 1 psychiatrist and 1 other staff member. In fact, Rosenhan had sent no one to the hospital.

The study concluded "it is clear that we cannot distinguish the sane from the insane in psychiatric hospitals" and also illustrated the dangers of dehumanization and labeling in psychiatric institutions."

The show I am talking about in my original thought was a Canadian show done by a new hour sort of show...w5 something like that.  I can't seem to find it with the terms I am searching on google that could be me or could be I need a more specific name.  Some things I watch here on our station will not be allow for viewing in States if that is where you live.. sorry I can't recall much on details...I checked it says West Coast I will assume you in the States.  

WARNING THIS WILL BE LONG
Had a car accident in 85
Codeine was the pain med when I was release from hosp continuous use till 89
Given PROZAC by a specialist to help with nerve pain in my leg 89-90 not sure which year
Was not told a thing about it being a psych med thought it was a pain killer no info about psych side effects I went nuts had hallucinations. As I had a head injury and was diagnosed with a concussion in 85 I was sent to a head injury clinic in 1990 five years after the accident. I don't think they knew I had been on prozac I did not think it a big deal and never did finish the bottle of pills. I had tests of course lots of them. Was put into a pain clinic and given amitriptyline which stopped the withdrawal but had many side effects. But I could sleep something I had not done in a very long time the pain lessened. My mother got cancer in 94 they switched my meds to Zoloft to help deal with this pressure as I was her main care giver she died in 96. I stopped zoloft in 96 had withdrawal was put on paxil went nutty quit it ct put on resperidol quit it ct had withdrawal was put on Effexor... 2years later celexa was added 20mg then increased to 40mg huge personality change went wild. Did too fast taper off Celexa 05 as I felt unwell for a long time prior... quit Effexor 150mg ct 07 found ****** 8 months into withdrawal learned some things was banned from there in 08 have kept learning since. there is really not enough room here to put my history but I have a lot of opinions about a lot of things especially any of the drugs mentioned above.
One thing I would like to add here is this tidbit ALL OPIATES INCREASE SEROTONIN it is not a huge jump to being in chronic pain to being put on an ssri/snri and opiates will affect your antidepressants and your thinking.

As I do not update much I will put my quit date Nov. 17 2007 I quit Effexor cold turkey. 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1096-introducing-myself-btdt/

There is a crack in everything ..That's how the light gets in :)

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I am sure that study could stand on its own as a thread on this site. :)

Hope your better peace :)

WARNING THIS WILL BE LONG
Had a car accident in 85
Codeine was the pain med when I was release from hosp continuous use till 89
Given PROZAC by a specialist to help with nerve pain in my leg 89-90 not sure which year
Was not told a thing about it being a psych med thought it was a pain killer no info about psych side effects I went nuts had hallucinations. As I had a head injury and was diagnosed with a concussion in 85 I was sent to a head injury clinic in 1990 five years after the accident. I don't think they knew I had been on prozac I did not think it a big deal and never did finish the bottle of pills. I had tests of course lots of them. Was put into a pain clinic and given amitriptyline which stopped the withdrawal but had many side effects. But I could sleep something I had not done in a very long time the pain lessened. My mother got cancer in 94 they switched my meds to Zoloft to help deal with this pressure as I was her main care giver she died in 96. I stopped zoloft in 96 had withdrawal was put on paxil went nutty quit it ct put on resperidol quit it ct had withdrawal was put on Effexor... 2years later celexa was added 20mg then increased to 40mg huge personality change went wild. Did too fast taper off Celexa 05 as I felt unwell for a long time prior... quit Effexor 150mg ct 07 found ****** 8 months into withdrawal learned some things was banned from there in 08 have kept learning since. there is really not enough room here to put my history but I have a lot of opinions about a lot of things especially any of the drugs mentioned above.
One thing I would like to add here is this tidbit ALL OPIATES INCREASE SEROTONIN it is not a huge jump to being in chronic pain to being put on an ssri/snri and opiates will affect your antidepressants and your thinking.

As I do not update much I will put my quit date Nov. 17 2007 I quit Effexor cold turkey. 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1096-introducing-myself-btdt/

There is a crack in everything ..That's how the light gets in :)

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • Moderator Emeritus

Update time. I was about to update my signature but thought I'd post here first.

 

I wanted to describe as best I could what I went through in the fall because it was so incredibly strange... and scary.  The great news is I made it through and have been stable for a couple of months now.

 

I'll start with why I think it happened: I made a huge error and a very dear friend unexpectedly passed away: 

 

I had made an error at one point but thought I had rectified it.  I had been dissolving 20 mg capsules to make liquid Prozac.  When I decreased my dose I mistook my 10 mg capsules for the 20 mg.  So when I made the Prozac liquid it was ½ the concentration of what I thought it was, therefore rather than a 10% to 8.1 mg, I dropped to 3.9 mg… or something like that. An over 50% drop.  Then my friend died. A week after that thinks seemed to start getting uncomfortable.  Then a few weeks after that that things started spinning out of control and I crashed into some horrible state I can only think of as hell.

 

To truly capture what happened took 5 pages.  Here's the readers digest version:

 

First, irritability and a feeling of unease.

Periods of anxiety set in that lasted for increasing longer amounts of time

Fatigue: Exhaustion and an overwhelming desire to just lay down.  This wasn't remedied by naps, if in fact I could fall asleep.

Anhedonia set in

The feeling of exhaustion and the anhedonia culminated into being unable / uninterested in getting off the couch.

I began to ruminate obsessively about things that had previously just been worries. This began around 2 am.  It was excruciating.

Insomnia: When I did fall asleep I would be awoken at 2 am with my anxiety through the roof and ruminating, as well as ligh and noise sensitivety.

Akathisia and muscle tension set in.

Blurry vision: It felt like I had a film over my eyes

Inability to concentrate or sit still for any lenth of time.  It became incredibly uncomfortable to sit still.

Muscle spasms.

Brain fog.

Had to concentrate when talking sometimes.

Akathisia became localized to the right side of my body.

My right leg felt numb and weak without actually being numb and weak.  I thought I may have had a stroke. (I hadn't)

Morning anxiety and trembling set in at somepoint during this.

Nausea, gurgling from my stomach, and a few painful stomach aches.

Uninterested in eating or bathing.

Extreme fluxuations in body temperature. 

Amenorhea: I thought withdrawal had forced my body into menapause. (It hadn't)

 

This list does not do the experience justice.  Not even close. I wanted to die.  I wished for a terminal illness or accident or anything.

 

One of the craziest parts of this is that by 4 pm I would feel almost normal.  I dreaded falling asleep because I knew if would start all over again. I never felt depressed or sad.  Cried just once, and even then it was almost forced.  I simply felt nothing aside from the dread.

 

I went to the doctor several times during this and had several blood tests done. Including being tested for Lyme Disease.  Everything came back normal.

 

I tried reinstating Wellbutrin. Within an hour the akathisa and muscle tension became worse. I was too overwhelmed by the idea of having to disolve and measure a small dose anyway.  Never took it again.

 

Reinstated to 10 mg of fluoxetine... didn't notice improvement

Reinstated to 20 mg... I was so desperate that I didn't see the improvements and bumped up to 30 mg.

I noticed improvement at 30 mg within 24 - 48 hours.  This improvement was more likely due to time rather than the actual bump in dose.  Had I waited I would probably have stabalized at 20 or maybe even 10 mg.

 

I should note that upon reinstating to 20 mg I would feeling an increase in akathasia and agitation within about a half hour of taking the capsule.  That eventually passed.

 

Two of the three psychiatrists I saw during this were clueless despite their claim to know about SSRI withdrawal.  One of the incompetant ones used a cognitive therapy that ultimately made me feel even more hopeless.  The other had me in his office for over an hour while he listed off the various drugs he could prescribe that "might help."  He ultimately prescribed a benzo for the insomnia that I took at 1/2 the dose prescribed and only for 3 nights because the rebound anxiety was very bad.

 

As I said, I've been stable for a couple of months and in the last few weeks feel very good.  I do feel like I've come out of the experienced traumatized and with some sort of posttraumatic reaction. However, that seems to be slowly subsiding.

 

The down side is that there have been some return of side effects. Mild underlying fatigue (the reason I had added the Wellbutrin in 2012), yawing, night sweats, hair thinning, mild blunting.  Aside from the nightsweats, the other side-effects are very mild and many, many of the other side effects I experienced when taking 40 mg and at 60 mg have not returened at all.

 

However, I began to notice some mild anxiety in the mornings a short time after taking the 30 mg. Something I hadn't really experienced while taking Fluoxetine in the past.  I used this to signal that it was time to start tapering. I made my first drop yesterday.  I'm now at 27 mg.

 

My plan: I will start by decreasing by 10% with holds for at the very least, a month.  Longer depending how I feel.   I will hold at 20 for perhaps 4 months as a precaution and observation period due to my experience of the delay in onset of withdrawal symptoms. I may decrease from 10% to 5% drops after that.  I will do the same at 10 mg and 5 mg, etc. but at 10 mg my drops will be increasingly smaller and holds longer, regardless of how great I'm feeling. 

 

I've shared my experience with Rxisk.com.

 

So there's the story.  It took me a long time to be able to write it.  I continue to be scared that things will unravel again. Terrified that I wll lose myself again.  But I've learned a lot since the whole experience began and between being stable and happy at 1/2 the dose I spent 22+ year on, and having eliminated Wellbutrin completely, I have pretty high hopes of success

1988-2012: Prozac @ 60mg (with a few stops and starts)

Fall 2012: Returned to 40mg after discontinuing and horrid withdrawal 

Fall 2013: 40mg Fluoxetine, added 150mg Wellbutrin to treat fatigue 

Winter 2014: Attempting to taper both (too fast)

April 2014: 9mg Fluoxetine + 37.5 Wellbutrin 

Summer 2014: 8 mg Fluoxetine + 0 Wellbutrin (way too fast a drop)

Late summer/Early Fall 2014: Debilitating Withdrawal symptoms 

Fall 2014 - Wellbutrin successfully kicked to the curb but…

Oct- Dec 2014: Panicked reinstatement of Fluoxetine ->30mg - held for 5yrs

Jan 2021: taper to 20mg Fluoxetine  then tapering by 1mg every 2-3 months

Fall 2022 - held at 10mg->December 2022: 9mg->Feb 2023: 8mg ->March 2023: brassmonkey slide begins: 7.8mg -> 7.6 -> 7.4->2 week hold (April)->7.2->7mg->6.8->2 week hold->6.6-> 1-month hold ->(June)-6.5->4-week hold-> (July)-6.4 (discontinued brassmonkey slide and slowed taper)-> (Aug)-6.2->(Sept)-6.0->(Oct)-5.9->(Nov)-5.8->(Dec)-5.7->wave!->(Jan)-5.8 and holding

 

My 2014 withdrawal experience: https://rxisk.org/antidepressant-withdrawal-a-prozac-story/

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I am so sorry that you were in such a bad place Addax, tapering isn't easy at all and mistakes happen. I'm glad that you found a dose to stabilise on. I am sorry for the loss of your friend, I can imagine how that must have felt when suffering from withdrawal, it's hard for anyone at any time but especially so in withdrawal. 

**I am not a medical professional, if in doubt please consult a doctor with withdrawal knowledge.

 

 

Different drugs occasionally (mostly benzos) 1976 - 1981 (no problem)

1993 - 2002 in and out of hospital. every type of drug + ECT. Staring with seroxat

2002  effexor. 

Tapered  March 2012 to March 2013, ending with 5 beads.

Withdrawal April 2013 . Reinstated 5 beads reduced to 4 beads May 2013

Restarted taper  Nov 2013  

OFF EFFEXOR Feb 2015    :D 

Tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

Tapering tramadol, Feb 2015 100mg , March 2015 50mg  

 July 2017 30mg.  May 15 2018 25mg

Taking fish oil, magnesium, B12, folic acid, bilberry eyebright for eye pressure. 

 

My story http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4199-hello-mammap-checking-in/page-33

 

Lesson learned, slow down taper at lower doses. Taper no more than 10% of CURRENT dose if possible

 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thank you for coming by MammaP and for your sentiments.  I can't help but wonder if somehow the loss off my friend spurred on the catastrophic withdrawal or at least contributed to it.  I was thinking about what Dr. Shipko had said about many of his patients suffering an increase in symptoms after experiencing a particularly stressful event.  One of my dogs also passed away during that time, but I was already in the throws of what was happening and the anhedonia created a huge disconnect between feeling grief and being able to express it.  

 

I have to admit, sometimes i feel a bit like a jerk for making such an immense error.  At the same time when I see the 10 mg and 20 mg capsules side-by-side, they do look a lot alike and for someone who has the attention span of a fly sometimes that can be a problem  :huh:

1988-2012: Prozac @ 60mg (with a few stops and starts)

Fall 2012: Returned to 40mg after discontinuing and horrid withdrawal 

Fall 2013: 40mg Fluoxetine, added 150mg Wellbutrin to treat fatigue 

Winter 2014: Attempting to taper both (too fast)

April 2014: 9mg Fluoxetine + 37.5 Wellbutrin 

Summer 2014: 8 mg Fluoxetine + 0 Wellbutrin (way too fast a drop)

Late summer/Early Fall 2014: Debilitating Withdrawal symptoms 

Fall 2014 - Wellbutrin successfully kicked to the curb but…

Oct- Dec 2014: Panicked reinstatement of Fluoxetine ->30mg - held for 5yrs

Jan 2021: taper to 20mg Fluoxetine  then tapering by 1mg every 2-3 months

Fall 2022 - held at 10mg->December 2022: 9mg->Feb 2023: 8mg ->March 2023: brassmonkey slide begins: 7.8mg -> 7.6 -> 7.4->2 week hold (April)->7.2->7mg->6.8->2 week hold->6.6-> 1-month hold ->(June)-6.5->4-week hold-> (July)-6.4 (discontinued brassmonkey slide and slowed taper)-> (Aug)-6.2->(Sept)-6.0->(Oct)-5.9->(Nov)-5.8->(Dec)-5.7->wave!->(Jan)-5.8 and holding

 

My 2014 withdrawal experience: https://rxisk.org/antidepressant-withdrawal-a-prozac-story/

 

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Addax, we have ALL made med errors. And they are always learning experiences. Your insights are great!

 

I agree with you on the physical impact of your friend's death. There is really a lowered resiliency in the withdrawal period (maybe always after psychotropic exposure?). Even if one "could" go faster it is probably a reason to go slow just because life happens, and going slow buffers the response somewhat.

1st round Prozac 1989/90, clear depression symptoms. 2nd round Prozac started 1999 when admitted to dr. I was tired. Prozac pooped out, switch to Cymbalta 3/2006. Diagnosed with bipolar disorder due to mania 6/2006--then I was taken abruptly off Cymbalta and didn't know I had SSRI withdrawal. Lots of meds for my intractable "bipolar" symptoms.

Zyprexa started about 9/06, mostly 5mg. Tapered 4/12 through12/29/12

Wellbutrin. XL 300 mg started 1/07, tapered 1/18/13 through 7/8/13

Oxazepam mostly continuously since 6/06, 30mg since 12/12, tapered 1.17.14 through 8.26.15

11/06 Lithium 600mg twice daily, 2.2.14 400mg TID DIY liquid, 2.12.14 1150mg, 3.2.14 1100mg, 3.18.14 1075mg, 4/14 updose to 1100mg, 6.1.14 900 mg capsules 7.8.14 810mg, 8.17.14 725mg, 8.24.24 700mg...10.22.14 487.5mg, 3.9.15 475mg, 4.1.15 462.5mg 4.21.15 450mg 8.11.15 375mg, 11.28.15 362.5mg, back to 375mg four days later, 3.4.16 updose to 475 (too much going on to risk trouble)

9/4/13 Toprol-XL 25mg daily for sudden hypertension, tapered 11.12.13 through 5.3.14, last 10 days or so switched to atenolol

7.4.14 Started Walsh Protocol

56 years old

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thanks for saying so Meimeiquest. I've just felt like it was such an avoidable error.

 

I've become hypervigilant about checking the capsules before I pop them in my mouth.  Two stripes = 20 mg, one stripe = 10mg. I wish there was a rhyme like there is for snakes. Black then yellow, poison fellow. Black then red... something.  Hmm... I guess the rhyme isn't too helpful if you can't remember it :P 

 

I definitely learned from my experience and I hope some of my insights have been helpful to others.  

1988-2012: Prozac @ 60mg (with a few stops and starts)

Fall 2012: Returned to 40mg after discontinuing and horrid withdrawal 

Fall 2013: 40mg Fluoxetine, added 150mg Wellbutrin to treat fatigue 

Winter 2014: Attempting to taper both (too fast)

April 2014: 9mg Fluoxetine + 37.5 Wellbutrin 

Summer 2014: 8 mg Fluoxetine + 0 Wellbutrin (way too fast a drop)

Late summer/Early Fall 2014: Debilitating Withdrawal symptoms 

Fall 2014 - Wellbutrin successfully kicked to the curb but…

Oct- Dec 2014: Panicked reinstatement of Fluoxetine ->30mg - held for 5yrs

Jan 2021: taper to 20mg Fluoxetine  then tapering by 1mg every 2-3 months

Fall 2022 - held at 10mg->December 2022: 9mg->Feb 2023: 8mg ->March 2023: brassmonkey slide begins: 7.8mg -> 7.6 -> 7.4->2 week hold (April)->7.2->7mg->6.8->2 week hold->6.6-> 1-month hold ->(June)-6.5->4-week hold-> (July)-6.4 (discontinued brassmonkey slide and slowed taper)-> (Aug)-6.2->(Sept)-6.0->(Oct)-5.9->(Nov)-5.8->(Dec)-5.7->wave!->(Jan)-5.8 and holding

 

My 2014 withdrawal experience: https://rxisk.org/antidepressant-withdrawal-a-prozac-story/

 

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thanks for sharing your recent story re:crash from dose drop - 

 

Years ago I crashed four months after I stopped Prozac, and was plunged into similar hell as you. Fatigue, brain fog, temp fluctutations, sensitivity to light, lasted a few years.

 

Of course my psychiatrist completely did not know what had happened to me. He started to go Freud on me.

 

The crash was waiting to happen, but was triggered during a stressful event also.

 

It's good to get affirmation on this site that what happened back then was in fact due to DC Prozac. In your case, sudden drop in dose.

Hell hath no fury as an SSRI scorned.....

 

Prozac:   20 mg 1996 – May 2003 CT to 0 mg; by Aug 03 CRASH then protracted WD 3 yrs

Zoloft:    2004 few weeks;, CT to 0 mg

Effexor:  2005 few months CT to 0 mg; bad withdrawal. 

Lexapro:  10 mg from 2009 – 2011; cut dose in half to:

Lexapro:    5 mg from 2011 – Feb. 2014; CT to 0 mg; 2 months of fatigue, followed by:
Aug - Oct 2014 Lexapro WD Insomnia Wave; sleeping very good from Nov 2014 - Nov 2015; broken sleep pattern Dec 2015 - Jan 2016

Dec 2014 - present: Brutal Lexapro WD ear ringing/head ringing/head pressure lasting for 14 months now.

 

24 months SSRI-free  

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  • Moderator Emeritus

thanks for sharing your recent story re:crash from dose drop - 

 

Years ago I crashed four months after I stopped Prozac, and was plunged into similar hell as you. Fatigue, brain fog, temp fluctutations, sensitivity to light, lasted a few years.

 

Of course my psychiatrist completely did not know what had happened to me. He started to go Freud on me.

 

The crash was waiting to happen, but was triggered during a stressful event also.

 

It's good to get affirmation on this site that what happened back then was in fact due to DC Prozac. In your case, sudden drop in dose.

 

Clearday,

 

I had read your crash story and I 'm glad you found affirmation in my account. I had found affirmation in yours. I was somewhat hesitant to post it because I kept thinking, "no one is going to believe this!"  I'm not even sure I believe it happened sometimes.

 

Although it's hard to think that it could have been worse, but I think it may have been had I not been a member of SA and not known what was going on.

1988-2012: Prozac @ 60mg (with a few stops and starts)

Fall 2012: Returned to 40mg after discontinuing and horrid withdrawal 

Fall 2013: 40mg Fluoxetine, added 150mg Wellbutrin to treat fatigue 

Winter 2014: Attempting to taper both (too fast)

April 2014: 9mg Fluoxetine + 37.5 Wellbutrin 

Summer 2014: 8 mg Fluoxetine + 0 Wellbutrin (way too fast a drop)

Late summer/Early Fall 2014: Debilitating Withdrawal symptoms 

Fall 2014 - Wellbutrin successfully kicked to the curb but…

Oct- Dec 2014: Panicked reinstatement of Fluoxetine ->30mg - held for 5yrs

Jan 2021: taper to 20mg Fluoxetine  then tapering by 1mg every 2-3 months

Fall 2022 - held at 10mg->December 2022: 9mg->Feb 2023: 8mg ->March 2023: brassmonkey slide begins: 7.8mg -> 7.6 -> 7.4->2 week hold (April)->7.2->7mg->6.8->2 week hold->6.6-> 1-month hold ->(June)-6.5->4-week hold-> (July)-6.4 (discontinued brassmonkey slide and slowed taper)-> (Aug)-6.2->(Sept)-6.0->(Oct)-5.9->(Nov)-5.8->(Dec)-5.7->wave!->(Jan)-5.8 and holding

 

My 2014 withdrawal experience: https://rxisk.org/antidepressant-withdrawal-a-prozac-story/

 

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Although it's hard to think that it could have been worse, but I think it may have been had I not been a member of SA and not known what was going on.

 

 

Amen to that! Not knowing what was going on led me to eleven years of confusion and mismanaged recovery, alcoholism to escape from the misery, then return to another SSRI which I am now in protracted WD from.

 

I cannot exaggerate how destructive it is to not know what was going on. An informed psychiatrist could have prevented all that. Instead the best my doctor could say to me during my darkest days of protracted WD was, and I kid you not, "Knock it off!" You just can't make this stuff up.

 

Thank God for SA and other sites like it. It is truly a lifesaver.   

 

Keep up the great work! I wish you the best -

Hell hath no fury as an SSRI scorned.....

 

Prozac:   20 mg 1996 – May 2003 CT to 0 mg; by Aug 03 CRASH then protracted WD 3 yrs

Zoloft:    2004 few weeks;, CT to 0 mg

Effexor:  2005 few months CT to 0 mg; bad withdrawal. 

Lexapro:  10 mg from 2009 – 2011; cut dose in half to:

Lexapro:    5 mg from 2011 – Feb. 2014; CT to 0 mg; 2 months of fatigue, followed by:
Aug - Oct 2014 Lexapro WD Insomnia Wave; sleeping very good from Nov 2014 - Nov 2015; broken sleep pattern Dec 2015 - Jan 2016

Dec 2014 - present: Brutal Lexapro WD ear ringing/head ringing/head pressure lasting for 14 months now.

 

24 months SSRI-free  

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Although it's hard to think that it could have been worse, but I think it may have been had I not been a member of SA and not known what was going on.

 

 

Amen to that! Not knowing what was going on led me to eleven years of confusion and mismanaged recovery, alcoholism to escape from the misery, then return to another SSRI which I am now in protracted WD from.

 

I cannot exaggerate how destructive it is to not know what was going on. An informed psychiatrist could have prevented all that. Instead the best my doctor could say to me during my darkest days of protracted WD was, and I kid you not, "Knock it off!" You just can't make this stuff up.

 

Thank God for SA and other sites like it. It is truly a lifesaver.   

 

Keep up the great work! I wish you the best -

 

Ditto to the Amen! 

Two cold turkey's both bad one was two years living like you posted Addax and trying to raise a child alone only after a severe reaction that was even worse... I never thought it had anything to do with the drug.  Thought I had just gone mad.  At that point I would have taken any pill they gave me to make it stop.  I think they did try trazadone but it made things worse... think I took one pill and it was a no go.  Nothing stopped it. 

Many more years drugged and a second cold turkey to follow these are the things that happen when we can't sort the truth from lies.  I think in those days doctors did not even know they were lying. Effexor wd was so much worse as I had done a lot of damage to myself in all those years of taking drugs I am so glad you found this place and did not go ct.  

I never had a successful taper but I have read a lot and if I were in you place right now I would be following my bodies cues keeping in mind the long delay till wd.  I think you have a good plan and I am sure the mods will help you to tweak it when needed.  

It also seems to me this should be the job of the drug companies it feels like they are getting a ton of damage control for free.  While I am glad people are not suffering years as badly as before something feels wrong about pharmas lack of accountability in all of this.

WARNING THIS WILL BE LONG
Had a car accident in 85
Codeine was the pain med when I was release from hosp continuous use till 89
Given PROZAC by a specialist to help with nerve pain in my leg 89-90 not sure which year
Was not told a thing about it being a psych med thought it was a pain killer no info about psych side effects I went nuts had hallucinations. As I had a head injury and was diagnosed with a concussion in 85 I was sent to a head injury clinic in 1990 five years after the accident. I don't think they knew I had been on prozac I did not think it a big deal and never did finish the bottle of pills. I had tests of course lots of them. Was put into a pain clinic and given amitriptyline which stopped the withdrawal but had many side effects. But I could sleep something I had not done in a very long time the pain lessened. My mother got cancer in 94 they switched my meds to Zoloft to help deal with this pressure as I was her main care giver she died in 96. I stopped zoloft in 96 had withdrawal was put on paxil went nutty quit it ct put on resperidol quit it ct had withdrawal was put on Effexor... 2years later celexa was added 20mg then increased to 40mg huge personality change went wild. Did too fast taper off Celexa 05 as I felt unwell for a long time prior... quit Effexor 150mg ct 07 found ****** 8 months into withdrawal learned some things was banned from there in 08 have kept learning since. there is really not enough room here to put my history but I have a lot of opinions about a lot of things especially any of the drugs mentioned above.
One thing I would like to add here is this tidbit ALL OPIATES INCREASE SEROTONIN it is not a huge jump to being in chronic pain to being put on an ssri/snri and opiates will affect your antidepressants and your thinking.

As I do not update much I will put my quit date Nov. 17 2007 I quit Effexor cold turkey. 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1096-introducing-myself-btdt/

There is a crack in everything ..That's how the light gets in :)

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