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  1. I’m 65 years old and have been on antidepressants since 1992. I don’t have a record of the dates of my medication history. I took Prozac for many years, but after it seemed to become ineffective, I was prescribed Cymbalta, which increased in dosage over the years. At some point, when it appeared that the Cymbalta was not as effective, I was prescribed Lamictal. Up until I began withdrawing from Cymbalta I was taking 120mg of Cymbalta and 200mg of Lamictal. I am still taking the 200 mg of Lamictal. I’ve joined this forum in search of help and support in withdrawing from Cymbalta and perhaps eventually, the Lamictal as well. Beginning at the end of January, I started withdrawing and under the guidance of a psychiatrist, dropped from 120mg to 0mg by about the 1st of March. After feeling very sick, I started doing research on the web and found a lot of resources regarding antidepressant discontinuation syndrome and am now seeking help and resources to help me cope. in February, my psychiatrist prescribed 150mg of Wellbutrin at the point when I was taking 30mg of Cymbalta. I was also prescribed Seroquel and Olanzapine during this time, each of which I only took a few times because I was feeling so sick. With the Wellbutrin, I had a short period of being very hyper. Then I lost my appetite and couldn’t eat, had extreme fatigue, insomnia and nausea. I thought it was a reaction to the Wellbutrin. The dr then prescribed a lower dose of Wellbutrin and I was still experiencing the same symptoms. After stopping taking the Wellbutrin for a week, I started taking 10mg of Prozac for a week, and then 20mg for about 5 days, and continued having the same symptoms. I stopped taking the Prozac about 2 weeks ago. I thought that the new antidepressants were what was making me sick....until I started doing research on the internet and learned about antidepressant discontinuation syndrome. Now it’s obvious to me that my dr knew nothing about the discontinuation issues either. He kept insisting my symptoms were a result of the new medications. I am trying to cope the best I can by walking 45 minutes a day, eating as well as I can, even though I have no appetite and am nauseous, and doing guided medications to sleep at night. Even with the meditation, I don’t sleep very many hours and I’ve lost 20+ pounds. This process is very hard on my husband. He is as understanding as he can be without experiencing it but I know he feels like he has lost his wife. I feel like I’ve lost me too and that maybe I’ll never recover. I have questions about taking magnesium and about working with a functional medicine dr during this time. I feel like I need to work with a dr during my recovery, but I’m not sure where to turn. I will not be using the previous psychiatrist. I am willing to learn all I can to help in my recovery. I have joined the Cymbalta Hurts Worse Facebook group and am joining the Withdrawal Project Support group as well. I would like to have as many resources as possible. I understand that this post will be reviewed before it is posted. I’m not certain about what should be written in the Introduction post. Will you be able to make suggestions on making any changes that could be made.
  2. angielynn78ii Over the last 10 years I’ve been on antidepressants. At different stages I was on Pristiq, Celexa, Cymbalta, Viibryd and Prozac. I was also on Lamictal and Klonopin. I am proud to say that I am currently free of all prescription medications. I took my last dose of Prozac 27 days ago. I’m surviving but I look forward to thriving. I could say so much and really want to share more but currently I just don’t have the energy or clarity. I will write again when able.
  3. Steph Hello I am trying to get off cymbalta 60 mg. I am using a generic Dulexetine HCL 60 mg cap with yellow and green color and H and 748 markings. I counted 350 beads inside. How do I begin tapering off of stopping? I’ve ran out before and I’ve never felt so bad and I’ve quit klonopin and heroin cold turkey. My therapist suggested I try wellbutrin instead of cymbalta because it’s not helping and im havinf too many side effects and suicidal thoughts still. Can I take them at the same time while I taper off cymbalta?
  4. I have been on antidepressants since i was 16 for anxiety and depression, I am 35 now. Doctors have bounced me back and forth between medications due to worsening feelings of anxiety and depressed or the medication just crapping out. I just want to preface this by saying I have struggled with drug addiction since I was a teenager. After seeing many psychologists and psychiatrists and Dr's I was started on antidepressants probably at age 15 or 16. In hindsight I believe most of my issues with anxiety and depression were due to me being a drug addict. I have been clean since 2012. I don't really remember what drugs I took when and the dosages prior to 2013- 2014. At that time I was 30mg of Cymbalta. I did well on this drug but it was very expensive with my high deductible health Insurance. I decided to switch to Effexor because it was cheap and I did well on it in the past. I was only taken off of the Effexor in the past because i had high blood pressure when I was in a rehab, go figure... I remember being on the effexor at 150 mg for awhile. At some point, I was having severe anxiety and my Dr. bumped me up to 225mg. I was aright for awhile and then began have issues with anxiety again. My Dr. sent me to a psychiatrist who bumped me up to 300mg. I was feeling better and stayed at this dosage for awhile. After a few years I began to feel numb to life and my emotions. I wanted to be able to feel again, for better or for worse. I decided I didn't want to be on antidepressants anymore. I could not successfully reduce the dosage without feeling withdrawal symptoms and I did not know to do a slow taper at that time. The Dr's did not understand when I told them I was having withdrawal symptoms. Their answer was to increase the dose or switch drugs. After reading about how hard it was to get off this drug i decided to try lexapro. After researching cross tapering I successfully switched to 20mg of lexapro. I felt fine after a few months although I was having some side effects such as excessive hunger and tiredness. I manged to get down to 15mg and these side effects went away. I then tried to go to 10 mg, this is where my withdrawal problems started. I tried to go back up to 15mgs and then 20 mg, but it did not really work. I still did not not really understand withdrawal from these drugs and thought it just crapped out. In the past I did well on cymbalta but i could not afford it with my insurance. I have new insurance now and decided to try this drug again. My Dr. started me at the lowest dose on Cymballta of 20 mg. I felt fine after a few weeks except for a little agitation and decided to stay on this dosage instead of increasing as initially discussed with my Dr. My Dr. agreed since i was feeling okay. After about a month the withdrawal symptoms hit me. I thought i needed to increase the dose because I was having relapse symptoms of anxiety and depression. This is when I found this site and learned a lot about tapering and the withdrawal symptoms and process. I realized all of my symptoms were withdrawal and not relapse. I basically went from a high dose of effexor/ lexapro to the lowest dose of Cymbalta, without counting beads ect. I have managed to stay at this dosage of 20mg on Cymbalta for the last 5 months although it has been hell. My plan is to stabilize on this dosage and then make small reductions (10% or less) by counting beads until finished. The biggest symtoms I have by far are akathesia, agitation and adehonia and a fibromyalgia type feeling in hands. My symptoms were slowly improving with small windows and long waves until the last week or so. The akathesia has really spiked and been bothering me, feeling almost unbearable at times. I think being stuck at home due to COVID-19 has a little to do with it. It has been 5 months since I have been taking the 20mg of Cymbalta. The only supplement I take is a magnesium spay, which does give some relief. I have tried other supplements but they all make with the withdrawal symptoms worse. I guess I don't know what to do at this point. I think the best course of action is probably to just stay the course until I stabilize at this dosage. I understand they may take along time. I'm just curious if any of the other members had any feedback? I have thought about trying to start tapering the rest of the Cymbalta I'm on, but fear that might make matters worse. At one point I thought about upping the dosage of the Cymbalta to stabilize, although it's probably too late for that. I also really do not want to increase the dosage. These last 5 months have been hell and I don't want that to be for nothing and lose any progress I've made. After reading some of the other members posts and seeing that these symptoms can last for years is a bit discouraging. I am grateful this site exists because the medical community has no clue when it comes to this. I have read some success stories on here and do have hope that I can one day get through this. I would appreciate it if anyone has any feedback. Thank you,
  5. Hello, I was put on Cymbalta about a year ago for PVC's along with a beta blocker. (no history of depression or anxiety diagnosis) The PVC's went away, but moderate, continuous, and unsettling dizziness seemed to take over. All diagnostic tests negative. We tried various different Beta blockers, but none took care of constant dizziness. About 2 months ago, my doctor told me to quit taking Cymbalta and gave me Lyrica instead "to see". After about a day or so, my dizziness was alittle better, but I got these wierd little "strikies" at the base of my skull with increased tinnitus..almost audible to me. ...especially later in day when I move my eyes or head. They got worse the next day so I took a Cymbalta 60mg if by chance it would help. They went away in about 6 hours and dizziness returned. I asked my doctor about the "brain zaps" (found out later that is what they were called) and he acted like I was crazy... "never heard of them" So, he has now referred me to a neurologist for "atypical migraines" which takes like 4 months to get into. In the mean time I have tried to get off of Cymbalta on my own. I have decreased dose (by removing beads) and spread doses out over a couple days for about the last month. Now it takes 2 to 3 days before these terrible brain zaps return. As far as I can tell I do not have any other symptoms of WD other than maybe difficulty to sleep. My questions are: 1. Can I expect to have more WD symptoms after the zaps go away? 2. When a person goes sorta fast or cold turkey, (Haven't taken a pill since Sunday) will the zaps get less soon....or are they with me for months? Thanks for any advice. I have found this site quite informative and really feel for the issues that these antidepressants have caused.
  6. 🙂 I'm new to the site. Couple of questions. Had a couple of bouts with GAD 18 years ago. Lexapro fixed the problem both times and stopped both times with no problems after a few months. June 2018 felt depressed. Doctor prescribed Lexapro for six months (Dec. 2018). Then quit over 11 days by skipping doses as he suggested. Some symptoms returned and we tried Zoloft the end of March 2019. Worked up to 100 mgs. by June 21 but having very loose stools. Quick 6 day taper August 22 with plans to begin Cymbalta. Just quit instead and contacted Doctor to advise her. It's now been 6 months off AD's and the first couple were ok. Began having some problems third month. Experiencing bad mornings (anxiety) and waking early. Also stomach ache and kind of dizzy sometimes. 1. Is anyone experiencing the same symptoms? 2. Can this be withdrawal after 6 months with no AD's 3. Could this be a relapse?
  7. I have come off Strattera successfully and am now in the process of tapering off Latuda. I am down to 20mg from 60. It's taken a month and half. I know that's not super long. I have to taper off Cymbalta next which I am planning on doing alot more slowly. I've gone off it before and the withdrawal is quite intense. After the Cymbalta its LIthium and then I'm done. I'm nervous but determined. I'm taking supplements for my mind to help out.
  8. Hello, I am a caregiver. My patient is dealing with signs of a very serious neurological condition. He has no interest in doing any online research about his condition, which I think is wise, because we believe a positive attitude is a key to his recovery. It is not easy to maintain a positive attitude in the face of general information about his condition. So the online research is up to me. I notice that virtually all of the members here are the individuals tapering from meds themselves, rather than caregivers. However, I hope that I can be accepted as a participant here, under the circumstances. I'll leave off the medical details except what seems relevant to this website. He was given opioids last January (2019), for pain, and they didn't do much to help. So the opioids were increased gradually over some months, up to 120 mg. Embeda (time-release morphine) by (I think) last May/June. In (I think) May, he was also given 60 mg. duloxetine by our PCP, intended to help pain. He didn't notice any effects on the pain, but continued taking them. At the time, we were desperate for anything that might help with pain. I regret not doing more research at the time. Since then, he has also been given 50 mg. pregabalin/lyrica 2x/day, and we brought that down to 1x/day a few months ago. He has tapered his opioids from 120 down to 80 mg. over a couple of months. He is also taking many, many supplements. I know that some people don't advise doing supplements at the same time as a taper. However, we credit the supplements (among other things) for a very unexpected partial recovery with the neurological condition, so they are non-negotiable. Anyway, now, having reduced opioids while keeping duloxetin steady, instead of dealing with constipation (a common side effect of opioids), he's dealing with diarrhea (apparently a common side effect of duloxetin??). This makes me wonder if the two had been somewhat balancing each other out, and now that opioids are decreasing, the duloxetin is able to exert its influence on the gut, causing diarrhea. So we have pretty much decided to alternate reducing the Embeda (morphine, opioid) and reducing the duloxetin, in hopes that this will help with a certain sort of homeostasis. I have read on some website (sorry, I don't remember where) that while most people taper one drug at a time, sometimes reducing one drug can amplify the effects of another drug, so some people choose to alternate tapering one drug and then the other, back and forth, and have done this successfully. Anyway, we are also influenced by the information that apparently, tapering duloxetin has a better prognosis if started earlier rather than later, so we hate to put that off. I'm wondering if anyone else here has experience with tapering from both duloxetin and from opioids, and also if anyone here has experience with alternating a taper of two drugs. It seems that opioids act quite differently than SNRIs, although they both act on serotonin. My patient has no history with depression, but from what I've read, that doesn't mean he won't experience depression as a side effect of withdrawal. Anyway, I really appreciate this forum. I've already gotten a lot of great information. Thank you for your efforts. And my heart goes out to the many patients who are dealing with effects of withdrawing from these nasty drugs. FYI I've never been all that impressed with the pharmaceutical industry, but after doing online research, plus reading Anatomy of an Epidemic, I've concluded that the pharma industry is nearly identical to the mafia, except that they don't go around with machine guns. That's about the only difference I see. Things are much worse than I previously thought. Best wishes.
  9. Hello, I am 41 years old. In 2011 I got Cymbalta because of a severe depressive episode. I started weaning in 2013 in a four weeks rhythm. I always reduced between 5 and 10% of the last dose. The last steps were a lot smaller. One bead every four weeks. (120mg to zero 2013 - 2018) Because of the slow weaning I was able to get my life well regulated. Sometimes there were bad withdrawal symptoms and sometimes a little less, there were windows and waves. I've been at zero for 16 months now.The first year after zero was mixed with windows and waves, but now I have only one wave to the next wave since eight month after zero. Nausea, Back pain, anxiety, itching, muscle pain, dizziness and many other things. I always read the story from Pug here. It is my anchor in this difficult time.
  10. I'm currently taking 20 mg of Abilify, 40 mg of Paxil, 30 mg of Cymbalta. I am diagnosed with either Major Depression/Psychosis or Schizoaffective (depressive type). I have been on similar ones over the last 20+ years, always an antidepressant and antipsychotic. I have been reading about how they are obesogenic and would like to come off them cause of that, and also to see how I do now without them and try natural diet and treatments. I am thinking of starting by eliminating one antidepressant, maybe Paxil and see how I do with just Cymbalta and Abilify, before tapering slowly off those two together. I've tried to go off cold turkey and by tapering off all of them too quick before, and get suicidal depression and racing thoughts.Once I take the meds it goes right away.
  11. I’m actively slowly tapering off nasty cymbalta. I’m currently counting beads, taking 17.7mg / 93 beads. I also take 10mg of latuda. I haven’t had any problems dropping latuda from 20 to 15 or 15 to 10, but I’m wondering if staying on it for another two years before I’m off cymbalta completely is really a good idea. It’s also expensive which is a constant risk if insurance stops covering it. I know it’s a brake to the cymbalta and probably helps ease the cymbalta withdrawal... thoughts would be greatly appreciated! Not bipolar, if that matters - taking this cocktail for mostly situational depression that I’ve made life decisions to alleviate. Really don’t think I need these meds, and think the anxiety is a side effect from the AD. THANKS!
  12. Hi! I read Robert Whitaker's anatomy of an epidemic in June 2019 which started me on my tapering journey. I originally assumed that the rate psychiatrists used to cross taper using the existing doses available was okay. As a result I did a fairly fast taper partly psychiatrist supervised from 160 mg of my ziprasidone to 120 to 80 to 60 mg. I also not at the same time of course, tapered off attarax 25 mg 3x daily to 25mg 25 mg and 20 mg. Than 25 20 20 mg, 20 20 20 mg and than 10 10 10 mg and than 0, 10 mg 10 mg and so on with minimal rebound anxiety which I waited for it to pass before tapering more, tapered off 100 mg of trazodone going from 100 to 75 to 50 to 25 to 0, and tapered down my cymbalta from 90 to 60 to 30 mg. This took me from June 2019 to the end of september 2019 which i understand is fast and im luckily i experienced little to no withdrawal symptoms. At the end of september I came across the withdrawal project, Links on Robert Whitakers website, and this site and realized I'd been going fast. Oct 8th I started a liquid titration of my ziprasidone going down to 50 mg. No problems yet. I am currently at 50 mg ziprasidone, 30 mg Cymbalta and 2 mg of Xanax which I take twice a day but am slowly shifting to spreading the dose to three and than four times a day (half a mg each). The plan if all goes well is to taper off my ziprasidone, wait 2 weeks, start tapering my cymbalta, wait two weeks and start tapering Xanax last. From my research the Lay tapering community reccomends 5 to 10% of the month's previous dose once a month if you are doing cut and hold and psychiatrists who specialize in tapering reccomend 10% of the original dose every 2 to 4 weeks doing cut and hold. I decided to go closer to 10 percent of the original dose for now every two weeks and if I run into any problems I will slow it down and do a smaller taper. So that's my introduction for now! Thank you for being here.
  13. Hello all, Apologies in advance for the length of this post – it’s essentially a combination of an introduction and a success story – I know that members can only post success stories after a full year off all meds – I’m seven months now off all meds and am feeling far better now than when I was taking pills so I reckon it’s only a matter of five months before I post an actual success story. I was given a diagnosis of bi-polar by a consultant psychiatrist in the autumn of 2011 after years of volatility in my mental health and began taking meds six months later. I started with Lamictal (Lamotrigine) – after a few weeks on a low dose, the dose was increased – the next day I noticed a rash all over my body and stopped taking it. I was then given Abilify – I was on this over for a month or two but stopped taking it since it caused me insomnia and really intense pain in my wrists. Next, it was Olanzapine/Zyprexa (5mg) to deal with my elation – the 5mg worked well but when the dosage was increased to 10mg and 15mg, it caused nothing but depression so I went back to 5mg. I was then given Prozac to deal with the depression side of things – this however, caused me the worst depression I ever experienced. I was on it for a bit over a month until I could take no more and stopped taking it. My psychiatrist then prescribed me Venlafaxin/Effexor in September 2012 – I started at 75mg and eventually made my way up to 300mg. As the dosage increased, my depression did get better but the side affects most certainly got worse – constipation and intense sweating in bed at night. Also, I always felt the medication was causing me brain fog, despite what my psychiatrist was telling me – ‘all these meds do is treat depression’, I was told and basically, how limited intellectually I felt was in fact an actual reflection of the abilities I was born with. I was really getting fed up the side affects and decided to do what a lot of people in my situation do – come of the meds without telling my doctor. I slowly tapered down the anti-depressant but came off the Olanazpine quite abruptly – result, disaster. The depression came back in a big way. Around this time, I remember one sleepless night lying in bed just saying to myself over and over – ‘I just want to die – I wish I had the courage to kill myself’. Went crawling back to the psychiatrist in July 2015 and told him the truth – needless to say, he was quite annoyed but prescribed me Cymbalta/Duloxetine (60mg) and agreed to reduce my dosage of Olanazpine to 2.5mg. The Cymbalta no doubt stabilized my mood at that time – I was pretty down low, as you can imagine. Once again, I felt it was limiting me but after the volatility I had experienced, I was happy for a bit of stability. In the summer of 2017, I began to learn a lot about the affect diet and exercise can have on mental health. Up until that time, I thought I ate and exercised healthily – how wrong I was. Over the course of around a year, I completely changed my diet and exercise regime – I experimented a lot and ended up with my current diet which is essentially a Mediterranean diet – meat, dairy and eggs a few times a week but primarily plant based food – all unprocessed and organic. A lot of my free time now is spent cooking and preparing food. After I started with Cymbalta and before I changed my diet and lifestyle, I felt that my depression/elation cycle was going on in the background but the medication was keeping it in check. As my dietary and lifestyle changes kicked in, I began to feel that the cycle was longer there – I was essentially stable. I got married in July 2018 to the woman who stuck with me through the diagnosis and all the mental volatility over the years. Immediately, we started trying to conceive – I really wasn’t mad about the idea of trying to conceive while I was on medication – I know that women are advised to come off meds before becoming pregnant and I wondered if my own meds could have an affect on any potential child I conceived. Did a bit of research – heard a bit about meds possibly causing fertility problems but nothing about meds causing birth defects etc. For a number of months after the wedding, we tried hard to conceive with no success. Consequently, I made the decision to start tapering. Not surprisingly, my wife was initially reluctant given what happened previously when I tried to come off meds – this shook my confidence a bit but I really believed that I could cope this time round, given the dietary and lifestyle changes I had made. Unlike the previous time, I told my psychiatrist who to my big surprise, did not object in the slightest. He initially suggested that I stop taking the 2.5mg of Olanazpine altogether – he told me that according to the research, 2.5mg has no real anti-elation effect – it only really aids moderate anxiety and sleeping. I genuinely believed that the olanzapine was indeed helping my sleep so I decided to continue taking it and instead drop the Cymbalta from 60mg to 30mg at the beginning of November, 2018. I was on the lower dosage for three months – I didn’t notice any major withdrawal affects during that period. Consequently, when I saw my psychiatrist three months later, I suggested to him that I stop taking the Cymbalta altogether – once again, to my big surprise he was very supportive. I continued to take the Olanzapine for another month – I had planned to stay on the Olanzapine for three months but given what the psychiatrist told me previously about 2.5mg not really having any anti-elation affect and given how I hadn’t experienced any major withdrawal affects up until that point, I decided to come off completely at the end of February 2019. A part of me was worried that my sleep would go to hell without the Olanzpine but once again, I really believed as long as I stuck to my diet and lifestyle, I would eventually enter into a natural, healthy sleeping pattern – this transpired. Also, around four or five weeks after I ceased the meds completely, I started having definite withdrawal effects – my nervous system seemed to react and consequently, I felt very edgy and jittery and my concentration levels went down significantly – obviously, work was quite difficult during this period. This was quite severe for around five weeks and then gradually started to diminish. I fully expected some withdrawal affects so they did not surprise me one bit when they came. Once again to stress the point, self-belief was hugely important at this stage – I just knew that as long as I stuck to my diet and lifestyle – essentially, the way I was designed by nature to eat and exercise – the withdrawal affects would pass and I would reach stability. I am now off all meds for seven months and I’m feeling good – still not one hundred percent but a lot better than when I was on medication. The Cymbalta didn’t cause me major side affects but I realised when I completely came off it that it contributed to some minor side affects which I wasn’t really aware of – my skin improved (I’ve always had problems with acne), my gums stopped bleeding when I brushed my teeth and my hands didn’t dry up so easily the way they used to, for example. I still have a bit of brain fog which is a bit frustrating but not unexpected – I started taking meds in mid 2012 and ever since, I haven’t felt as if my brain has been operating at its optimal level. I do believe this will come back with time – I just have to patient and allow my brain to adjust fully to the meds being completely out of my system. I should also mention that for most of my life, my brain has not being operating at its optimal level - for the most part, since my early adolescents I’ve been miserable and it wasn’t because of some chemical balance in my brain which would have been triggered no matter what – I had to deal with some personal problems which were really inhibiting me. Like my medication, those problems have been put to bed – I’ve been married for over a year and if everything goes according to plan, I’ll be a father at the end of November. As I mentioned above, I stopped taking the Cymbalta at the end of January 2019. In mid-April, my wife found out that she was eight weeks pregnant, meaning she conceived around mid-February, two and a half weeks after I stopped taking Cymbalta. Maybe ceasing the Cymbalta didn’t have any effect on my fertility whatsoever – in any event, I’m delighted I don’t have to go down the IVF route! I have no problem saying that I have the bi-polar gene. I experienced all the symptoms and those closest to me can verify that. However, I don’t consider myself mentally ill and do not believe that I was born with a chemical imbalance in my brain. As long as I live the way I was designed to live, my bi-polar gene will be completely suppressed – it simply won’t be an issue. For the most part, I believe that the symptoms I experienced were in part simply a reaction to all the things I was doing wrong – my diet, my exercise routine, my work environment, my past relationships etc. I plan to keep my bi-polar gene suppressed for the rest of my life and in order to do that, my life is going to be quite mundane – no substance abuse, regular moderate exercise, healthy sleeping patterns and I’m going to have to continue to spend a hell of a lot of time cooking and preparing healthy food. However, I will take ‘mundaneness’ any day of the week over mental volatility and side affects from psychiatric medication I’ve had to endure over the years. Having come through all that, the stability and contentedness I’ve found are all the sweeter – ‘spring would not be so welcome, if we didn’t have to go through winter’. Once again, apologies for the length of this post – I promise my subsequent ones won’t be as long! As I mentioned above, I feel my brain still isn’t operating at one hundred percent after seven months of all the meds so if anyone can provide me with some advice in relation to this issue, it would be greatly appreciated. Many Thanks Francisco
  14. Hey, I've been taking cymbalta for 5 years, I dropped from 120mg to 60mg without issue but when trying to drop to 30mg things went badly. My doctor is great and offered me 50mg (20 + 30) of generic, but I've had bad experiences with generic brands so I thought I would taper. I am just having difficulty understanding all the measurements, I am really terrible at maths. I have some questions? Do I remove 10% of the weight from each capsules? Are all the beads the medication or are some "filler" Thank you, - lleksam
  15. Hello. I am wanting some advice on withdrawing from the drugs I am currently on. I am taking 60 mg cymbalta, 5 mg zyprexa and 7.5 mg mirtazapine. I would like to withdraw from all 3 at the same time. Is this possible
  16. scarletknight3

    scarletknight3: 20 plus years

    Hello. I have been a prescribed patient on Lorazepam, Wellbutrin & Cymbalta for the better part of 20 years. Lorazepam 4 mg Wellbutrin 150 mg XL Cymbalta 60 mg I was diagnosed in 1996 with depression and generalized anxiety. I believe graduating from college and all the stressors of new jobs etc. caused a situational anxiety for me. Early morning wakenings, dread, muscle tightness in chest, etc. I have only experienced withdrawal, or interdose withdrawal when accidentally running out of mail orderpharmacy scrips. Akathasia, denationalization tremors, and on. In approximately 2015 I had started to increase my evening dose by 2 or 3 pills for a couple of months, thinking it would help me sleep better, as getting to sleep is EXTREMELY difficult for me. It has led to nighttime eating and probably 30-40 pounds. After downdosing back to my regular amount I began to feel parasthesia and burning and tingling in my right ear which has been pretty much daily but intermittent and differing in how strong. My Dr. says it is an affect of the screwing around with doses and may last for a long time (which it has already). That, and I am probably at tolerance as well. Add in some severe hypochondria as well, but this may be an effect of hitting a milestone age, and losing some firneds and my father, although Ive heard hypochondria is a symptom of the med and withdrawal obviously. After discussing tapering with my Dr. off of the benzo, she seems to think that since I am functioning at a high level at work and with family, that maybe I should continue on them and taper at a time in my life where raising a family and holding down my job aren't my daily functions, like later when the kids are grown (I have a teenager and soon to be teen) and a wife. Besides my parashtesia, I am wondering what next steps I should take.
  17. DavidfromTexas

    DavidfromTexas

    Hi, everybody. My name is David. I just discovered these forums a couple days ago as I was searching the internet for answers and hope. I'm in pretty bad shape right now, even as I am typing these first lines I am starting to cry. I feel better about asking other people who have been through the same issues as me, as opposed to a psychiatrist that just wants to put me on medication. Warning: this is going to be a long post, I apologize and thank you in advance for reading. LONG-TERM MEDS HISTORY: I am now 30 years old, and have been on Anti-Depressant medication for 20 years. I was diagnosed with pretty severe OCD/Anxiety around age 10 or 11, and immediately started on Anti-Depressant medication. (It was warranted, I was in such despair and largely unable to function even in everyday activities like school and doing normal kid things, and was never going to be able to get through any kind of Behavioral Therapy at that point in my life). SO we started with Zoloft (Sertraline), and it made a HUGE difference pretty immediately. I was able to be much more of a "normal" kid, though I did have setbacks here and there. After the better part of a decade, when the Zoloft seemed to not be working as well anymore, we switched to Cymbalta (Duloxetine), which I have been on for approximately the last decade. Which brings me to... SHORT-TERM MEDS HISTORY: Sometime in 2017 (I think), I decided I finally wanted to try going without my medication. I began a tapering with my prescribing psychiatrist that lasted 6+ months UNTIL the beginning of 2018 when I dropped COMPLETELY off of the medication. The tapering process was 90mg down to 60mg, then down to 30mg, then eventually down to nothing. I had NO physical withdrawal symptoms when I did this, and I remained off of the Medication for maybe around 3 months. The only REAL reason I decided to go back on the medication after those 3 months was because I had been feeling much more down/sad since being off of them, BUT I was unsure how much of that was normal (my 4-year first-love relationship finally died at the end of 2017) and how much of that was possibly a side-effect of being without the medication. SO, by April of 2018 I had decided to go back on Cymbalta, and I pretty quickly went all the way back up to 90mg. The plan was to be on it for a little while longer to give myself time to heal from the loss of this relationship. By the end of Oct. 2018 I had made it back down to 30mg, where I would stay for the next 5-6 months. (I think I tried dropping off the medication once during this period but went back on pretty quickly because I started feeling some physical withdrawal symptoms that I hadn't before. At this point, my memory is kinda blending it all together.) I tried dropping off again this April and felt the withdrawal effects worse than I did the previous time. So once again, I went right back on it. THEN I started seeing a different Dr (a nurse practitioner) who has experience helping people wean off of meds. Following her suggestions, THIS TIME I weaned from 30mg down to 20mg daily for 2 weeks, then started taking the 20mg ever other day for 2 weeks, then down to half of the 20mg pill every other day for 2 weeks (opening capsule and pouring out approximately half of the beads), and then finally taking half a 20mg pill every 4 days for a couple weeks. Doing it THIS way prevented the physical withdrawal symptoms I had experienced the couple times before. BUT now it's the emotional despair that I am worried about... WHERE I AM NOW: I have now been completely off of the medication since July 2nd. If I can just get through this depression and sadness, I just KNOW that I will be able to handle the issues that originally plagued me 20 years ago. I have lived through it all, and with the experience and memories and knowledge that I have now, I should be able to cope with it much better. I am just worried that it's the worst timing ever. Here we are, over a year and a half since my relationship was fully dead, and I am struggling with it worse than I have at any point since its death. I have only recently decided I need to do whatever I can to get past it because it is CERTAINLY not coming back (talked with her a few days ago). BUT what is now troubling me, is that I'm not sure if my current depression is due to the loss of the relationship OR if it's due to me being completely off of medication now and my brain having to re-wire itself and recover. OR if it's a really bad combination of both. I've never been through heartbreak like this before, but it seems to be getting progressively worse, where in normal circumstances it should be getting progressively better as time wears on. How can I tell the difference between true, natural depression and depression that's an effect of withdrawal? I assumed (maybe naively) that if I didn't have any physical withdrawal symptoms then I probably wouldn't have any emotional symptoms either. Just looking for some thoughts/insight from people with similar experiences. I am scared that I will have to remain on Anti-Depressants for the rest of my life, and who knows how THAT might even damage my health. I have been researching alternate, more natural forms of therapy for someone like me with Serotonin issues, the use of things like magnesium supplementation and whatnot. MY MAIN CONCERN IS BEING ABLE TO BE HAPPIER AGAIN, and I'm just hoping I can do that without Anti-Depressants. (I'm also dealing with other smaller physical issues like PE, which began as soon as I started weaning and gradually got worse the less amount of meds I took. But again, at this point, the more important thing to me is my mental health and mood. I don't want to feel heartbroken and hurt anymore.) Thanks for reading. I appreciate your time. David
  18. Giulietta

    Giulietta

    Hello all, I am new to the forum after reviewing some of the posts intermittently since December 2018. I have posted my intro as a PDF (note: pasted below). When I tried to post it - the fonts and spacing were inconsistent and I couldn't edit it. This is my first online forum on any subject so please bear with me on the technical goofs I will make. 😉 Fortunately I did find the emoji and finally get the introduction written. Thank you! PDF information pasted below (CC manually reformatted as best as possible): Hello all, I am a new member and trying to liberate myself from duloxetine/Cymbalta 20 mg (compounded in a LIQUID). My goal is mood management without medication – and being able to cope positively with unwelcome (or sometimes welcome) events. I have been viewing information on the web site off and on since last December. My thanks and empathy to all of you on this site who are ridding themselves of Cymbalta and other ADs, benzos, etc. I remain optimistic that the light at the end of the tunnel is not that of an oncoming locomotive. J I am grateful for having found SurvivingAD and to the subject matter experts and people who administer it. I have been tapering duloxetine 20 mg (compounded) since December 15, 2018 under the care of an MD. I am at 10 mg (3.3 ml) as of July 20, 2019. I am decreasing by about 10% a month. I am also taking clonazepam 2 mg (my next taper goal) as well as meds for a childhood neurological illness (lamotrigine XR 600 mg and gabapentin 1000 mg). I have taken many medications since age 9 due to the latter. Because of my medical history and the many meds tried or used over the years to manage it, their efficacy, safety and side effects – I am anxious about medications. Anxiety exacerbates the neurological health issue. I was prescribed ADs about 15 years ago (and the clonazepam) to manage moods amid traumatic life events. I took Duloxetine for about the last 4 or 5 years; the highest dose was 60 mg. About my taper: The taper started in December 2018. However – before I knew better – I stopped cold turkey (per prescriber’s advice) in August 2018. I endured subsequent bouts of panic, elevated anxiety, auras and some agoraphobia - so I restarted the duloxetine and the symptoms went away. I figured out that cutting the medication maybe caused the symptoms. I found a new MD who reluctantly agreed to the taper. After learning I lack the fine motor skills to count beads, I found a compounding pharmacy and get the duloxetine in an oil-suspension. I decreased by 2 MG (10%) per his direction and I experienced 3 weeks of bad symptoms. Thereafter I tried a ‘micro-taper’ approach – a series of mini-cuts - per this website. This approach seems to have moderated many of the side effects– but the symptoms are still a problem a good proportion of the time. My process for the micro-taper is to reduce by about .5 mg a week (about 2 mg a month total) – with mini decrements across the week (in ml). I have symptoms for a few days, then a few days where I am feeling mostly OK, and then I make another mini-cut. This is fatiguing and difficult to manage. Some side effects I experience(d) on this medication at 20 mg– and they continue: • Hot flushing over head and torso and perspiration (in 70 F) and not attributable to endocrine function. • Blurry vision • Short-term memory impact • Focus and concentration and recall • Insomnia – awakening 2-3x night many nights…. • SSRI/SNRI sexual side –effects • And many more… Withdrawal effects Generally - the most consistent and prevalent withdrawal effects (thus far) have been: • Anxiety - which may often be markedly worse in mid to late afternoon and into the evening (about 7-8 hours after my dose). • Jitteriness/tremors/shakiness • Auras and other sensations (related to the neurological illness) which may be extremely uncomfortable • Tinnitus (hearing loss was ruled out as a cause) • Insomnia • Lower GI (one extreme or the other) • Appetite issues (one extreme or the other) • Maybe more sensitive to cloudy days – particulary when they cluster Less consistent: • Dizziness when quickly turning my head • Postural hypotension • Sinus headaches • Lightheadedness • Panic • Dysphoria • Short-term memory impact – worse at times during this taper than on the full dose • Focus and concentration and recall– worse at times during this taper than on the full dose June – July Withdrawal Symptoms Out of the blue in June I experienced additional and horrendous symptoms for 2-3 weeks (see ‘less consistent’ above). They were so acute I asked myself if this is worth it, whether I will ever get off this drug and so on with the nefarious what if’s. I have no idea what caused it but I made it through and I am now doing much better. Looking for another MD or NP The psych MD (started in December 2018) does not have my full confidence to taper me successfully off Duloxetine. I am looking for an MD or NP who sincerely wants to taper me off and take a holistic approach to mood management moving forward. Spending much time online and looking things up (like about ADs, tapering, etc.) elevates my anxiety to unhealthy levels. It’s therefore important to have an MD or NP on whom I may depend for this information. If it had not been for information I found on Surviving AD and other web sites – he would have tapered me to Viibryd or off duloxetine in 4 weeks. What I am doing to help myself • Joining Surviving AD and searching for an in person support group • Helping others through this and letting everyone I know about Cymbalta and AD withdrawal • (Re-) learning Cognitive Behavioral Therapy • Meditate (10 – 15 minutes a day I practice this – but 5 minutes are better than no minutes) – this may take me a while to learn…. • Exercise daily ( 45 minutes on the treadmill in the morning (and it would be good to do some walking in the afternoon). • Physical therapy and hand weight exercises most nights. • Eating plenty of protein, healthy (whole grain) carbohydrates, salad a day, nuts, and could do better with vegetables • Searching for a faith that aligns (mostly) with mine • Looking for a group to volunteer with • Write down (most days) what I am grateful for – even if I need to repeat things from one day to another J A few things I have learned – and wish I had known earlier – about exercise and diet and spending too much time online Maybe this may help someone out… 1. You may not want to start a ketogenic (or low carb) diet (depending on your medical circumstances). My personal experience with this: I was advised/told to restrict carbs (40%) to lower my a1c. I did 50% - and I suffered more anxiety, panic, etc. Ended up in ER with panic. No one told me about this and my MD wasn’t aware. Learn more about keto diets and psych meds: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/diagnosis-diet/201803/ketogenic-diets-andpsychiatric- medications. 2. Activate dopamine receptors and generate serotonin by EXERCISE (aerobic and/or weight lifting) and PROTEIN. Exercise releases endorphins and helps with dopamine receptor activation. Activating dopamine receptors is ‘critical’ to this process. A diet rich in protein helps with this. (this from the neuro RN) 3. A good snack in the mid to late afternoon – whole grains and protein - may help me with anxiety. It helps with blood glucose management –and a low BG will cause anxiety and a number of the symptoms that are also caused by AD withdrawal 4. To help cope with anxiety – I have found that doing something anything physical or with your hand (and focusing on it) can help (for example, clean the bathroom, knit, weed, etc.). I have a few questions, which I will post separately – and I would really appreciate your comments. Thank you Surviving AD Intro.pdf
  19. I need some advice. I was on cymbalta for 7 years and very functioning on it. I was reduced from 120 to 60 mg from my doctor and slowly started to mentally decline. Physically too, not able to eat. My doctor thought I was just depressed, which I know now I was in withdrawal from a dosage reduction. He tapered me off in 2 weeks and placed me on lithium and abilify. I hated being so sedated and shouldn’t have been switched to anything at the time, I know now. I was then taken off those in 2 weeks and placed on Zoloft. That had my heart racing so fast I couldn’t take it. I was on that for 5 weeks and felt like I was dying. Tapered off in 1 week. Now I have been on Effexor for 10 weeks. I know now that my brain has been kindled. It’s in no shape of getting any good effects from any medicine because none of them help, especially if I am in Protracted withdrawals all along from reducing the cymbalta dosage. I hate the Effexor. It has no positives and I know I cannot slowly taper until my brain starts to stabilize. I just have been on Effexor for 10 weeks, in Protracted withdrawal, and don’t know how my brain will stabilize while still on Effexor. I know this is going to require a lot of time to heal. I just wish I could slowly taper Effexor and then I would feel as if I am healing. I know now that I should not have allowed myself to take another antidepressant after cymbalta. I should have re-instated the 120 and slowly weaned off. Too late. Now i I feel like I have brain damage and cannot find any joy in life at all. I’m scared because I am barely functioning and I will never allow my doctor to give me another medicine. Which he is trying to. Please help!
  20. I was prescribed cymbalta a year ago. Tried to withdrawal from Cymbalta many times. Last time it ended in a severe heart cramp but nothing major came of it. I decided to reinstate at 30mg and taper over 3 months removing beads. Tapering went well these last three weeks I went from 50beads to 30 to 20 to 15 then I quit 5 days ago because my medication ran out. I’m not having any terrible withdrawal symptoms like I had before BUT now I am experiencing asthma attack like panic attacks a few times a day and feel like I can’t breathe. This hasn’t happened before during previous withdrawal. My chest hurts and my Kardia device keeps saying “unclassified” heart rhythms. Before now I always had normal readings, maybe palpitations are normal for withdrawal? I’m concerned that I need to reinstate back to 20 beads and taper slower? I wish I could do the 10% reduction method but my glucose levels are dropping and my hair started falling out😬
  21. hey, my new heroes... I am feeling afraid and lost. This started for me in February 2018 when my retired psychiatrist's replacement said that I had to come off the klonopin or I would end up with dementia like my mom. (I will be 60 in August). With no suggestions as to how to taper, I found myself on Dr. Goggle and cut 1/4. Horrible withdrawals while maintaining a stressful position at work. Adding to my stress was a new partner who had moved from another state to move in with me. We never had time to stabilize our situation before my taper began and mom was diagnosed with advanced dementia. I had a maddening search for a doctor to help me through this process and found an internist who upped the cymbalta to 90 mg and then later to 120 mg late summer after I tapered the klonopin to .25 mg and back down to 90 mg in the fall. (I had been on cymbalta 60 mg and .5 klonopin since 2006. I started out with 75mg effexor and the .5 mg klonopin but I had withdrawals from the effoxor after missing 4 days of meds when out of town. Psychiatrist started me on the 60 mg Cymbalta. I remember the transition being a smooth one). In an attempt to continue with my Klonopin taper and to deal with the debilitating withdrawlas from what I now were Cymbalta-related, a different psychiatrist (still searching for competency at this point) was trying to cross me over back to the effexor and off of cymbalta. BIG issues with this process. In February she dropped me to 60 Cymbalta and added 37.5 Effoxor. I did this for 2 weeks then dropped the Cymbalta to 40 mg and continued with the 37.5 mg effexor. I did this for 2 weeks but ended up in the ER with what I think was akastaisis. Was discharged with both a script for a beta blocker and an antihistamine. I finally was able, in my fear-induced panic, to take the antihistimine and sleep in the ER. To date, I have used neither. I've white-knuckled and CBTed my way through the last couple of months. I saw the psychiatrist in a few days after my ER visit and she dropped the cymbalta to 20 mg and stopped the effexor. I opted at this point to take my Family Medical Leave option and entered a 2-month long out patient CBT program which started on March 18th. During this time I was working with a psychiatrist for meds. The psychiatrist affiliated with the outpatient program was a young man whose name I recognized and it turned out that he had developed a name for himself as a benzo withdrawal expert (Mad In America continues to ask him to blog). The entire two months in the program I did nothing but cry and I had my first full blown panic attack in 20 years. Meds at this point were 20 mg Cymbalta and .25 mg klonopin. I was being told that I needed to make another klonopin cut so I chose the date of April 19th, Good Friday, as I thought that fitting for my need for symbolism and to make a spiritual connection. I started by cutting that little pill into pieces but have ended up using a compounding pharmacy and have been taking 7.5 ml (.1875 mg) daily. He kept telling me that I was on such a low dose of the klonopin that I could jump if I wished. We never discussed the issues related to what I think are cymbalta withdrawal symptoms. I told me that I could be med free soon and regaining my new life. The program ended on May 18th and I left with no med changes. Life got worse. I've had some good days but mostly they have been filled with crying and dread; a lack of meaning and a huge sense of loss. (I was having to make decisions about the future of my professional career which ends on July 24th. I've had no income now for 2 months and became eligible to apply for our agency's Disability plan on June 19th. I have applied and am waiting, hopeful, but waiting. My new relationship is suffering and I feel very misunderstood.) Within the past 2 weeks I finally found doctors in town that have successfully tapered others off of benzos and Antidepressants. Three different opinions on med changes but they all share the thought that I need to stabilize before finishing the benzo WD. Yet, I question the plan. I need your wisdom. SOOOOOOO, they all wanted to try new meds while finishing the cymbalta taper which wasn't even registering in my mind as a cause perhaps for my current state of being. One wanted Lamictal, one suggested Lexapro and another zoloft because I have family members living mostly stable lives on this drug. (multiple SSRIs from 1986 - 1998 were tried, nothing worked for me until we found the cocktail with klonopin). Diagnosed as GAD. The plan that was written up is this: Start .25 zoloft on 6/24/19 and take this for a week with the 7.5 ml klonopin and 20 mg Cymbalta. So far, I have been less anxious but the foggy head and fear are still fairly high. I hate this spacey feeling. I've spent a lot of time alone in my room, afraid and tired but not able to sleep. My night time sleep has been affected a bit since starting the zoloft. I have trouble getting to sleep.) tomorrow she wants me to start 50 mg zoloft and drop the cymbalta while maintaining the klonopin. OR, take the cymbalta every other day. She wants me to stay at 50 mg to see how I am doing. We will up it if needed. (I felt an almost immediate shift in attitude the first two days on the .25 Zoloft but this has since gone downhill. I am triggered by the thought of putting new meds into my body.) How long will it take me to get off of the cymbalta and is switching over to zoloft a good idea? I AM SO FREAKING AFRAID!!!!!! Please share your support and wisdom. HOPE, is there hope for me. The compounding pharmacy will fill cymbalta capsales but I need a plan as I fear that dropping another 20 mg is too much, too soon. How long can I take the cymbalta and zoloft together without SS? Looking forward to hearing back soon. Trying to make today a good day but I am feeling victimized and adrift. With much appreciation. fearbegone
  22. Hi, Read an article in the New Yorker called The Challenge of Going off Psychiatric Drugs. The story of tons of medication combos with hospitalizations and withdrawal over years resonated with me. This forum was mentioned and honestly a relief because there hasn't been a ton of help with withdrawal. With insurance/doctor issues ive stopped cold turkey off Cymbalta multiple times throughout the past year but recently tapered off with help of my doctor. (lowering by 35 mg a week). In the month of coming off I've had severe tremors, crying spells, hypersensitivity, and bizarre vivid dreams (with the history of no dreams at all). I'm not unfamiliar with these flu-like symptoms from past cold turkey withdrawal but it frankly makes me wonder if I'm just too weak to adjust lol. Also having been on many high doses of various medicines since puberty I dont have a baseline for myself or my disposition. Is my true nature extremely agitated or is it withdrawal? But given my young age I wanted to possibly experience life not on drugs - also being on Seroquel really messed up weight gain and hope for some metabolism bounceback. Medication history is currently vague due to memory loss, high stress, and young age at the time of many changes. Trying to piece it back together.
  23. So this whole disaster started when I was in high school. I had been recently diagnosed with ADD, and was prescribed Retalin (a form of Adderall [for you Americans], and a sh*tty one at that). Before long I started having tachycardia, lack of appetite , I was jumpy and irritated and and was not fun at all. Now, the same neurologist, (as I believe he was) who prescribed me the drug, didn't not prepare me for all of this; the bastard didn't even scheduled a follow-up appointment or something, and didn't inform that there are other drugs at this family of drugs and if I develop any of the symptoms above to an unbearable extent I should just stop and switch to another drug. But as behooves an unprofessional and cynical bastard, he didn't bother. And so, in the midst of a Math test, junior high, I had my first panic attack🤙🤙 I, of course didn't have clue of what happened to me, I seriously thought I was going to faint and thought it was just a one time thing. But of course, life had more devious plans for me than that--next test I had another one. My mother, who suffers as well, understood what was unfolding immediately, but was reluctant to say and diagnose in fear of scaring me or just misdiagnosing. I decided to to get off Retalin, (I have been taking it for almost a month), but what a surprised--the panic attacks persisted. Not only that it persisted, it expanded--it now harried me in class and other places. Then, I was told, diagnosed and referred to specialist. I started CBT with an amazing young therapist and prescribed Citolpram with the starting safe-net of some Benzos. It worked wonders! But I was now another person, much more confident, too much confident to the point of insolent and aloof even. Nothing could distress me. Panic attacks were rare, and when they visited I have managed to reduce and level them out. I finished high school, and decided to fly to Berlin before my induction to the army, (a mandatory 3 years of service in Israel). And then, it's when I remember (it may have started before), that I started sleeping 3 hours a day every early afternoon. Plus waking up was a real pain in the ass. But nontheless, I thought it was normal, that I could stop sleeping everytime I command myself to it, and that everybody's morning looked like that. It took me 2 and a half years to realize that maybe I was wrong. Now the real whirlpool of disasters began. My psychiatrist, a new one, my second one, suggested that I try Milnacipran, I don't remember her thinking about it too much, her decision was very arbitrary. No gradual weaning off the Citolpram, just "take straight away after the old one". I was beset with hellish migraines! I then tried Prozac, Cypralex and fluvoxil, every one for 3 months or so. They all were the same as the other--the fatigue persisted, and they didn't cover the anxiety to a satisfying extent. The fatigue was worsening and I decided that first time in 5 years to wean off them. I stopped Flufoxil CT, of course I didn't know what it mean "Cold Turkey" at that time, because the new Psychiatrist I was seeing didn't believe it exists. The fatigue did go away, which was reassuring, but I was mentally unstable, and suffered from debilitating acute anxiety at night before sleep. This lasted for months without end. One profound anxiety attack of a different order of magnitude made me go back to a different psychiatrist. He prescribed me with Cymbalta. Now, ladies and gentlemen, the real orchestra of diabolic dissonance is about to play! This pill, I kid you not, upon the first day of taking it has killed my libido flat! Sugar was too much to bare and life was a big numb. After two weeks it got worse, I started having crippling migraines that last for 3 hours each and made me puke my soul on each one's end. On my 22th birthday, we went to the local lake, and I suffered such a extensive migraine that I remembered the thought that I wanted to be put to sleep, comatose, for at least a year. I was seriously considering it. I came off it as well, also with no gradual tapering off, and waited until I felt clean. Although I didn't, and it was worse than the cleanse. My mental state deteriorated and I was put on Brintellix, and was promised it was a new ground breaking drug that will solve all of my problems! Even take care of my ADD. I ended taking it for 4 months or so, upping the dosage this time, thinking maybe that some of the symptoms are from the previous pill, and they will pass either way. It ruined my stomach, and made acidic as hell. They didn't. This time, I was determined to cleanse off gradually as I have seen in some forums like this. I have started reading more on the internet and trusting less the institutionalized system of Pharmacology. I am now 4 months after my last pill of Brintellix, and there is no light in the end of the tunnel. I am experiencing a plethora of symptoms that doesn't seem to go away or even abate: my stomach acidic, my brain is foggy, I suffer from light migraines through out the day. I can't concentrate, and I have horrible fatigue attacks that can't be beaten by any amount of caffeine. I am not sharp as I used to be, I suffer from panic attacks and back pain. AND IT ALL GOES AWAY ONLY BY TAKING Lorazepam, but that makes a bit disoriented and tired as well. But only on benzos , my symptoms seriously abate and I am free to live. What should I do? I CAN'T WAIT YEARS ON END LIKE THIS, I need to earn a living and continue my life which has been on hold for 5 months or so. Should I come back on the pills? will it make the symptoms go away? I don't trust any pharmacological solution to get me out of the mud. I have lost hope, and I want to get my life on track. what should I do?
  24. Hello everyone My name is Eva, 20 years ago I gave my power to someone in lab coat and believed them that I have serotonin deficiency and need to take antidepressants. I was on one at the time on regular doses but don’t remember now. Over the years they would poop out and that’s when I would be changed to a different one always did really well with transition had no side effects either so I kept on taking them. Always was told by doctors that antidepressants are not addictive, never was advice to get off them even for years I did not have any symptoms of depression which was the reason I was put on them. I came to USA from Poland at age 23 in poursuit of American Dream ,was very home sick did not have friends, was working nights at dive bar, and studying in the morning, for two years I slept only 4 h at night and ate very poor diets that’s why I got depressed. In past 10 years I tried to get off twice with doctors help was tapered down too fast as doctors do, and as soon as I was on 0mg I would “relapse” now I know it was withdrawal. Second time it was the same story. For past 4 years I was in the best shape of my life i did yoga and other fitness at least 5 times a week I was very happy mother to my daughter and wife my husband is awesome and I love him dearly. I was in great shape mentally and physically. I kept asking myself this question why am I taking antidepressants I’m not depressed, I want to know who am I without this drug because I started to believe that I never should take them in first place. In February 2018 my cousin gave me medical marijuana ( i only smoke couple times in my life, never was attracted to it) i started to smoke and all the sudden i had that idea that I didn’t need to take antidepressants anymore so I stopped cold turkey in February 2018 from 60mg Cymbalta to nothing. Almost instantly i went into mania state, was euphoric and nothing was bothering me, i slept only couple of hours at night, i could not eat food that i ate my whole life, my tast became very sensitive, I lost appetite and had diarrhea for over month. Nothing was alarming me because I was in mania. That went on for 6 month it was starting to loose its high towards the end. And in the end of August I started to notice that I was crushing my memory was becoming very impaired, my cognitions too and I had anxiety that was scaring me because I had never had anxiety in my life. I was sure I’m relapsing and was very scared because my symptoms were much was then ever before. I started to take 60mg Cymbalta because I still had it in my house, that was August 2018, I called my doctor and she said I was relapsing , gave me Benzodiazapine for my anxiety 0.5 mg. My condition became worse I was not improving but getting worse. I could not sleep I couldn’t not eat, I could not think my cognitions was gone, I started to have sucidle ideation ( never in my life I had them before) I became dead a zombie. I had insomnia and sleeping pills were not helping ( never before in my life I had issues with sleeping) Between September 2018 and February 2019 I was switched to new antidepressant every two months. After Cymbalta it was , Effexor, then Remeron. I was in hell and totally in the hands of people who where making my condition worse but at that moment I didn’t know it I was sure I’m going crazy. In the January 2019 I did ketamine therapy but that made me worse. I was in hospital 5 times between September 2018 and February 2019. After ketamine I went to hospital again and agreed to have ECT at that time I did not care anymore I was devastated from smallest atom in my body I was broken chemically broken. After 4 session of ECT I felt better first time in 7 months I went home and was able to function some what. I got back my cognition to the point where I started to look back at what has happened to me and looking for answers, deep down inside of me I knew that it was not my body making me sick I knew that something was happening to me that was outside of my body control. That’s when I found this site SA which explained everything I was searching for, I was crying I was so relieved but also became so angry at doctors at whole system. I understood that after I started to take Cymbalta in August 2018 my body rejected it and it made me lot worse. After ECT my doctor put me on Zoloft first 25 mg and then up to 100 mg. It was March 2019 end i was saying to my husband I’m so scared i don’t know why because i know I’m safe but I’m scared. After I found S.A. I understood that the only way to heal for me is to be drug fee I understood that what has happened to me was severe withdrawal symptoms from Cymbalta. I realize that I will never trust doctor again I know that I have to heal my body and no doctor will help me to do this. I wean myself of Zoloft and have been drug free for 1 month, I also stopped taking Benzodiazapine I was only on 0,5 mg as needed but was very reluctant on taking them because deep inside I knew that this is not right. And it was not it was very wrong everything that has happened and the way we are being lied to about devastating withdrawal and addictives nature of antidepressants . So now I’m one month drug free. I have anxiety about doing basic things like grocery shopping and cooking it’s extremely difficult, my short term memory is very bad, my cognitions is better then between August 2018 and February 2019 but still not as normal, my appetite is still gone I have to force myself to eat I’m 16 Ib underweight, my sleep is broken but much better then it was before. I have tormenting thoughts like I cannot stop my brain from thinking, it’s usually related to what has happened in past year, I have depression very hopeless like a child very helpless like a child, I’m ashamed of myself for being in this condition even though i know it’s not my fault, I cannot enjoy enjoy anything that I loved in the past, I feel very disconnected from outside world and every human being. My daughter is my main reason I decided to get through it, but I feel so guilty for not being able to take care of her the way I would before withdrawal. My husband is been my biggest support and I’m worried that he will get tired of me being like this it’s must be so hard on him. I am totally different person now , I was highly functional and happy very social with everything organized. Now I’m like a child helpless hopeless afraid of my own shadow. Emotional suffering is beyond anything I have ever experienced, I cry every day for no reason other that the pain inside of me. Physically I only have problem eating and extreme blotting after I do eat. I know I’m very lucky compared to people who went through physical hell too. I’m not myself and I’m so scared that I will never be who I was before. I’m scared I not going to feel happiness and joy. I don’t even remember how it is to be happy. Please help me to get through it I feel so lost most of my friends think I’m crazy because I decided to take charge of my life and not to trust doctors but they don’t understand that trusting doctors are the main reason I’m suffering now. I feel so lonely Please help me to get through this hell Thank you Ps. This website gave me hope and probably saved my life, I do want to thank the man who created it , thank you from all my heart even though I cannot feel my heart Its still there because I’m alive.
  25. I was glad to see this topic as it describes me and how I have functioned my entire life. I have been on 90 mg cymbalta and 159 mg Wellbutrin for more than 4 years now and about one month ago I tapered off Wellbutrin with an every other day dose for two weeks. I am feeling a bit spacey... very tired, a bit nauseous and anxious. After reading some posts I now can give myself permission without judgement to rest and relax my brain. That is what it feels like. If anyone has suggestions from experience I would appreciate it.
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