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  1. gardenlady

    gardenlady

    Moderator's note: Link to gardenlady's benzo thread I would like to taper off of 60 mg Cymbalta. However, I am in the middle of a taper off of Valium and am now at 11 mg/day. The horror stories I have heard about Cymbalta withdrawal terrify me. Should I cross over from Cymbalta to another AD and then taper off? And, should I wait until I finish my Valium taper? I cross tapered from 1.75 mg Ativan to 13 mg Valium and am now down to 11 mg. It's going to be a long time until I'm off of it. I am horribly depressed since switching to Valium, but the anxiety from interdose withdrawals on the Ativan were unbearable. I want off of ALL of these psychotropic drugs but realize I have to go slowly. I just want my life back. Any advice would be much appreciated.
  2. Hello everyone. I had been on this forum many times before reading all the posts, usually in the dead of night when feeling so desperate and alone with insomnia but did not sign up until now as hoping I would be feeling a bit better by now. I don't. I came off Duloxetine/Cymbalta, 60mg,in June 2016 cold turkey, probably a huge mistake to do it this way but I had been in touch with my doctor and he suggested to change antidepressant to Citalopram 20mg which I tried for a week and felt strange so ended up ditching both. I went through a terrible time of adjustment for the first 100 days but then seemed to manage slightly better, although it was tough I had hope for a while apart from the no sleep. After another few weeks all kinds of symptoms came at me like an express train and these now remain. I feel generally unwell all the time, depressed, no interest, no zest for life and just not functioning very well. I do have Citalopram tablets, 20mg, here in the house and feel tempted to take them but unsure of what to do. I also have Diazepam which I have taken on and off for 8/9 years 2mg. The Diazepam does not help me sleep at all but does calm me down a little but I feel it is not helpful to my withdrawal off the anti depressents and may be making symptoms worse. Would like to ask advice as to whether or not to reinstate antidepressents for a while as struggling so badly with suicidal thoughts and of little hope in recovering. 8 months of feeling so ill everyday is such hard work and is like living less than half a life. All hope I had in feeling better has gone, I cant believe I can feel this bad and still continue to try and get on with the days activities. I keep thinking that I should be in a hospital being looked after but of course any doctor would just dose me up, seems appealing today. Any suggestions would be appreciated very much.
  3. I've had involuntary pursed lip breathing for over a year and it's maddening. I think it's the body's way of dealing with anxiety, but it makes me more anxious as it never stops. I breathe in normally through the nose and then exhale through the mouth through pursed lips with an audible sound. It's very annoying to others....they wonder what's wrong with me. I've had to isolate because of it since I can't stop it. Sometimes I think I'll go crazy. Does anyone else have this? I've never seen it mentioned so think I must be the only one. I hoped it might stop as I get lower in dose, but it doesn't. I'm afraid it's permanent and that I'll always be this way. I'm so very afraid.
  4. I started on Cymbalta 60 mg 4 years ago, (after 1-2 weeks @ 30 mg); the scrip was from a psychiatrist for major depressive disorder. My depression lifted significantly. After 1 year (+/-) the psychiatrist and I agreed that my family practitioner would handle the prescription and supervision. I was ready to go off the cymbalta and was planning to go of the meds until a couple of deaths close to me occurred. I agreed with my doc that it wasn't the time to make changes in the meds. About 15 years ago I was on Effexor XR and had a helluva time getting off it, even with bead counting. After having read the slow pace recommended here, I probably decreased too quickly. I remember the roller-coaster ride of symptoms (physical, emotional, and cognitive) but forgot about the bead counting. When I started both Effexor & Cymbalta, I had nausea for a couple of days. On my FP's advice, I started going off cymbalta in Feb. by taking 30 mg every other day for a few weeks, then every 3 days, etc. This last week I was starting with 30 mg every 4 days. Fortunately I was using a calendar reminder in my google calendar to keep the schedule. I say fortunately because on Tuesday I had nausea and on Saturday. When I looked at my calendar to mark the reminder as "done," I realized that the nausea was probably related to the cymbalta. Now that I think of it, I started having disrupted sleep and messed-up wake/sleep cycles in March. A web search (DuckDuckGo instead of the big G) led me here and reminded me that slow tapering and counting the granules worked better for me before. My plan now: I have 6 capsules leftover from 60 mg doses. I'll split each into 3 doses, approx. 20 mg, and try 20 mg/day for 18 days (to use them up), making adjustments if necessary. Based on how that goes, I'll either continue at 20 mg or start a 10% taper to 18 mg over 28-30 days.
  5. Until July 2017 I was an active, healthy female (58). I'd been extremely fortunate in that, the only health problem I'd ever encountered had been anxiety/low grade depression. At least that's what the doctors diagnosed 20 years ago. I was put on Effexor 75mg and then, some years later, reduced the dosage to 37.5mg. In January 2017 I started tapering off my medication and by July was off Effexor. I did experience the odd brain zap but could easily go about my daily business. Suddenly at the end of July, I started having what I thought to be panic attacks (but which were, in actual fact, heart arrhythmias) and my then psychiatrist put me back on Effexor albeit 150mg/day. At 2am on August 12th, I had a sudden cardiac arrest. Thankfully one of our dogs wakened my husband and he and my daughter performed CPR until the ambulance arrived. My guardian angel was watching over me and after a week in the hospital, where I was fitted with an ICD and was put on 30mg Cymbalta, I returned home. Fast forward to three weeks later. My ICD fired. Off to hospital. In for observation for a week but no arrhythmias could be detected Returned home and 24 hours later the ICD fired again! In hospital for another 10 days, had a catheter ablation but no structural heart damage was found. What they did find was that one of the ICD leads had moved and pushed itself through one of the heart walls which could have explained the shocks. So another intervention to replace the lead. I was still on Cymbalta and an anti-arrhythmic drug. Just when I was beginning to think I was on the road to recovery, my ICD fired on the 12th of November. Off to hospital. In for ten days where I met a fascinating psychiatrist who thought that my SCA could have been induced by going back on Effexor as it's known to have a potential influence on cardiac rhythms. And since Cymbalta is also a SNRI, it would be advisable to stop taking it. Well since November 17th I'm Cymbalta-free and yes, I went cold turkey which I normally would not have done under other circumstances. Initially I experienced, brain zaps, anxiety and irritability. However, the symptoms were bearable. I’ve been taking vitamin D3, magnesium and Omega 3 supplements and trying to eat all the right foods. I walk my dogs every day so am getting exercise and fresh air on a regular basis and I go for acupressure treatments (suggested by my new psychiatrist). I was progressing quite well until March 2018 when I started experiencing severe anxiety, dizziness, muscle tension and headaches.The situation has improved every so slightly since then. Am I experiencing what is known as protracted withdrawal?
  6. 20mg of Cymbalta for 10 years without problems for neuropathy I read about negative side affects and ignorantly stopped it cold turkey on 11/25/2015. I had mild depression and insomnia for about 4 weeks. Then one month later, it all hit me WAY hard 10/10: anxiety, agitation, insomnia, Tinnitus and dysphoria. After 6 weeks I restarted Cymbalta at my previous 20mg per day dose and although the symptoms have improved down to about 4/10, I am super sensitive to any psych med, alcohol etc. I have been back on the Cymbalta for almost 3 months now and am wondering how long does it usually take to stabilize to back to where one was? Is this even "neural destabilization?" Should I try and ask my doctor to increase my dose to 30mg of Cymbalta per day? Your site is great and I thank you for all you do. I have been taking Valium 25 mg per day for the past 6 weeks to try to help with the anxiety and insomnia, it does help, but I am still super sensitive to all other meds Weird thing - 1 drink of Alcohol makes all my symptoms dissapear, and then my symptoms are all way worse for two or three days.
  7. Hi All, What an informative site. Well done all involved! The first SNRI I was put on was Cymbalta (30 mg since January 2010). Over the years I have made three attempts to withdraw from it. My last attempt to withdraw was in July 2017. My doctor recommended me an every other day tapering from 30mg for two to three months and then to stop. I did what she suggested and this was a big mistake. She then switched me to Lexapro (10 mg). That was two months ago. I have experienced some ups and downs with anxiety since then, but things feel relatively stable now. Here is my question: Do you think it is a good idea to begin a 10%-taper soon (maybe in Mai 2018)? Or would you suggest to wait a couple of weeks/months more before tapering (I still occasionally have nausea and anxiety)? My doc says that I should wait 6 months before considering a new attempt. Thank you very much! Dutch
  8. Hi everyone, I am looking to restart cymbalta and hopefully get myself back to a stable place. I would love input. My doctor (psychiatrist) seems to think I could start with my previous dosage of 20mg, but after a horrendous experience trying to get back on celexa starting with just 5mg, I am VERY hesitant and don't want to go through anything like that again. Here is my history: ~12 years successfully on 20mg generic celexa --> successful switch over to ~2.5 years generic cymbalta --> slow-ish (I thought at the time) taper off over ~1.5 months (stopped 12/17) --> currently 8.5 months off and not doing well at all.7/2018 Tried to go back on generic celexa starting at 5 mg. Stuck it out for ~9 days, never made it up past 5mg. Had a terrible reaction to it. Dr thinks maybe because it was a different brand from the 10 years before. He questioned whether it was just my anxiety in reaction to it, but it was entirely too physical to be just my thinking-- Gripping panic, terror, crazy thoughts, felt possessed, arms and hands suddenly dead and heavy like they stopped working, immediate emotional numbness, genital numbness, inability to cry, appetite zapped gone (had to force every bite I ate for those 10 days, got down to my lowest weight ever, and not in a good way), unable to work or think straight, agitation, thought I would need to be hospitalized.8/2018 Tried Remeron. Wanted something that would not cause sexual side effects, so even though I had never taken it, dr recommended it. 7.5mg. First night bad restless legs. Got up to 15mg for ~2 weeks. Munchies. Slept. But neither in a nice way, more a zombie-ish way. Very tired and fatigued. Continued inability to think straight or work. Anxiety was sedated. Depression was sedated. More emotional numbness. Literally could not think. The depression did feel like it might have been starting to lift, but I needed to be able to think, and didn't want to keep experimenting with whether I could get to a dose that would not be so sedating, so I went down to 7.5mg/day then to 3.5 mg /day and have still been taking this just to try to stabilize. Having severe anxiety and depression though still.Currently experiencing: panic, depersonalization, depression, and for the first time in my life pretty severe anhedonia (pleasurable feelings and other emotions feel offline and physically inaccessible... including 'tools' I would use before: gratitude, feelings of spirituality, humor, warmth of relating).Looking to try reinstating generic cymbalta 9/2018.Doc suggested starting at 20mg, we agreed on 10mg (since I had such a strong reaction to attempt to restart celexa at 5mg). I would love to hear people's thoughts on slowly restarting cymbalta to try to get back to a stable place. I basically cannot go on in the panicked, anxious, depressed state that I am in. I have tried to white knuckle the panic the past months and it has only seemed to lead into a depression with anhedonia and my emotions shutting off in a way I have never experienced before and which is terrifying. Restarting at 10 mg cymbalta seems ok... and I'm looking to make sure it's the same brand as before... but I did have an intense bad reaction to just 5mg of celexa, so I think I might be very sensitive at this point. Also my Dr. recommended I stop the 3.5 mg remeron the same day I restart the cymbalta. Thoughts?
  9. Hi, So I finally understood that it is strongly recommended to write a little something about my experiences here. I will just copy some parts of my posts I have shared in this forum to sum up. Recent developments: I myself have intolerable withdrawal symptoms even reducing 5% of the drug. They are unbearable, both physically and mentally. They totally incapacitate me for weeks (I sleep up to 15h a day, terrible brain fog and dizziness up to the point where I cannot walk, of course the brain zaps and lots of pains in different parts of the body etc) (I will not mention the mental effects, they are really bad...) and then on it is still bad but keeps stabilizing very slowly. At this point (after tapering for years) I am seriously considering coming off the 8,44 mg altogether because I am just unable to go through the symptoms that come after a reduction so many times any more. Because the withdrawal symptoms are extreme for me I am thinking it would be better to cut off the drug now at 8,44 mg and hope the nervous system will start balancing itself out than to go through this hell for at least another year (which is the very optimistic time frame). Note: I have decided to go with this idea - I am going from 8,44 to 1 mg in 8 days. (today being the 3rd day: April 3rd 2015 ). Before judging please read the history of my experiences to understand why I personally have decided to take this approach now in the very end of tapering. My experience: I have been tapering at different pace throughout the process. Since the beginning I have made the reductions by 10% or even 5 % when I realised that the symptoms were directly caused by the reductions. I was aware (theoretically) that my symptoms can be caused by the drug, its side effects and withdrawal, but I didn't really believe it for a long time. Or it would be more correct to say I always had doubts whether it was still more me being crazy and ill. So for a long time in the beginning (I have been tapering for over 2 years) I kept tapering with intervals that I now realise were not nearly enough for my brain to stabilize, but I was not fully aware that the withdrawal symptoms could be so severe and last for so long that I figured the reason had to be somewhere else. I just tapered according to the planned schedule, keeping aprox. 3 week intervals (and unfortunately, optimistically 2 week intervals). I also tried micro tapering every week, but needless to say that proved to be harsh on my nervous system and was keeping me in a constant state of agony. During the last 9 months or so I have had to keep longer periods between reductions in order to stabilize (I realised more and more that what I was experiencing was due to the reduction of the medication and the link got clearer by the day), but I cannot even estimate the stabilization point. For some of my friends it is perfectly clear - their withdrawal "cycle" is short and simple: they know that their symptoms will come 1-2 days after the reduction and last for about a week (max). This is not the case for me. One week for me is the extremely acute period (which would correspond to maybe the 1st 1-2 days of my friends' cycles) and as much as I would like to see a noticeable improvement during week 2, I can only say that it gets slightly better than the extreme, but not nearly enough to function to a standard that would/could be acceptable or tolerable. After recently having a 6 week and a 2 month gap between reductions I can say that during the 2 month gap I guess you cold say that I started to feel like the symptoms were starting to actually stabilize for the fist time for me subjectively. That enabled me to observe how the affects of withdrawal came about abruptly and directly connected to the reduction. In more detail: I'm having a hard time remembering exactly how long I have been taking certain drugs. Seems like forever. I was first prescribed Fluoxetine when I was 17. I am 30 now and for 13 years I have constantly been on and off different antidepressants - the whole spectrum of them. For a very short while I was even on antipsychotics (a month or so). I have always had awful side effects and have discontinued the drugs after a while, switched from one drug to another etc. It wasn't until a few years ago when I finally became aware and educated myself on the topic of antidepressant withdrawal and the harm they cause. (I would really suggest two books for a real eye-opening: Medication Madness: The Role of Psychiatric Drugs in Cases of Violence, Suicide, and Crime by Peter R. Breggin and Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America by Robert Whitaker). When I think back on the years on these meds and realising now what they have done with me, it makes me indescribably angry and sad. I have had awful side effects for years and discontinuation effects that I only realise in retrospect for what they were. Last drug I discontinued before Cymbalta was Venlafaxine (Effexor) which is another nightmare next to Cymbalta. Unfortunately then I was not aware of the methods of slow tapering and the discontinuation symptoms literally almost killed me (the "brain zaps", disorientation and dizziness were so severe that I almost tumbled in front of a moving car one day). By then I was already google-smart on the discontinuation side effects these meds have but was still unaware how to slowly taper. I was very reluctant to start taking Cymbalta but was convinced it was necessary by mu doctor. I started with the idea that I would only be taking the drug for a few months. Well, months become a year before I started tapering. I was taking 60 mg of the drug. When I started tapering it was very difficult for me to distinguish between the effects of withdrawal symptoms and my usual symptoms. A lot of the time I did not believe that the drug could be causing all the mental and physical symptoms and was afraid that it was just me. By know (as I described in my previous post) I have realised that a lot of this has been the drug's effect, but I am still afraid whether these effects can be undone. I have no way of knowing whether the decade of these drugs has caused permanent damage on my nervous system. I have tapered using different strategies. I have never tapered more than 10% of the last dosage, but I did reduce very often for a long time (after making a schedule I tapered every 2-3 weeks). It was because I could not really believe that my symptoms were so severely caused by the withdrawal. Later when I tried longer stabilizing periods I experienced how the withdrawal effects were sudden and obvious and followed a certain pattern (for Cymbalta and for me it is 1st day - no different, 2nd day slightly lowered mood, mild brain zaps etc, 3rd day - hell!). Withdrawal symptoms: The first week, on day 3 I start to have terrible crying spells. Literally for days I keep crying. Well, of course not 24/7 but for most part of the first days I am in tears. I am not sure how long that lasts but at least half a week. At some point the crying is replaced by despair and major depressive feelings. This is the worst symptom and the best I know to describe it is that while having this I feel that I cannot bear living for another minute more. I just want the suffering to stop. And it doesn't. And that can get better for half a day or even an entire day, but still last for... well, an unknown amount of time. I know I could handle any kind of symptoms - all the pain and crying and everything, but this is unbearable. The only thing that helps is numbing the feelings with Xanax. I do not drink alcohol but I can totally understand why people would choose to numb their pain with it. I suppose it is not at all different from taking Xanax - they're both a sort of a poison for the body and the brain. From physical symptoms the strongest ones I have is exhaustion (up to the point where it is ridiculous even), I have strong neurological symptoms (brain fog, brain zaps - they are a sort of a mini seizure, extreme sleepiness - sleeping up to 15h a day, not being able to shake the drowsiness and fogginess for the most part of the day, I have strong neural pain in the left side of my body - in the left arm, shoulder, back of the head, behind the eye, vision problems, extreme sensitivity to sounds (!) and a general sensory oversensitivity, nausea of course. Oh, I remembered for some period during the tapering I sweated extremely. I usually sweat really little. I also sweat a lot during the night. The flu-like symptoms occur. Ohwell... the list is so long it is embarrassing. And these symptoms don't really seem to pass fast. They just last and last so that I get to thinking it is ridiculous. But it still keeps happening. Oh and from time to time comes the agitation and irritability. I can feel how my thinking gets impaired - it slows down, the memory gets really-really bad, I cannot remember words and names (I used to think it was just me or a symptom of depression, but now I have established a clear link between the symptoms and the reduction of the meds). Oh, and the restless legs of course. My method of tapering: I have developed a method for myself for tapering off Cymbalta that I have not encountered in this forum or any others so I thought I should share it. For the very reason that the beads inside a Cymbalta capsule are not the same size (two capsules might not contain the same amount of beads) and I do not have a scale to measure such small portions, I have come up with an alternative. What I did is I folded a paper in half from the middle, creating a void where I could pour the beads and they would stay in a straight line next to each other. In that way I created a measurable line of the contents of a capsule. Right now I use a 30 mg capsule which creates a 25,5 cm line (fits on a regular A4 paper), but when I was using a 60 mg capsule I had to devide the beads into portions and measure them all and calculate from there on. Now I am not particularly fond of mathematics, but with a few simple calculations and a lot of concentration ( ) I was able to calculate how many mg of the medicine was in a line of the medicine of a certain lenght. So when 30 mg of Cymbalta is 25,5 cm, that meas for example, that 15 mg of Cymbalta would be 12,75 cm etc. (This is specific to the capsules I use bought from Estonia, yours could be very different so you should always measure your own medication!) I use the same folded paper (with markings on it) every day to pour a certain amount of beads out from the capsule. So if I am using a 30 mg capsule and I am - let's say - at 20 mg daily dosage I would have to calculate how many (what lenght) beads I would have to extract from the capsule before taking the medicine. So I have established that 30 mg = 25,5 cm. That means 20 mg = 17 cm. I know that there is 25,5 cm of beads (30 mg) in the capsule so I have to pour out 10 mg = 8,5 cm. It really makes no difference, if you calculate it in cm or mg after you have established the relation between the two. So I have a marking on the paper and each day I pour out a 8,5 cm line. And if i reduce the dosage I just make another marking. It is actually very easy to do the reduction just visually, when you have drawn the lines beforehand and calculated what necessary. You also have the history of your reductions right there under your eyes. I always write the date of the reduction next to the specific line every time, so I have a good visual overview of what, when etc.
  10. Zavo

    Zavo

    Hi, I am retired 1st responder with PTSD for over 20 years. Get anxiety and Depression as well. About 2 years ago I was put on mertazapine and gained 50 pounds. Never overweight in my life. Then put on Lamotragine 200mg and duloxatine 120mg. Never felt well on any of them. Decided enough is enough. I want to see who I am without all the meds and misdiagnosis. I'm not BiPolar, dont have seizures but was given bipolar meds and told for depression. Big no, I just keep getting worse. I decided to get off all. I tried tapering Duloxatine with horrible effects..still have them. Body aches, bones ache, flu symptoms, mean and cant get out of bed. After tapering to zero counting beads I found that prozac can help. I took a genetic test and it showed severe drug interaction with Duloxatine. Now I'm on Prozac 5mg but still suffering, maybe from prozac effects, cant get out of bed, aches and pains and very tired and weak. I'm not depressed by very discouraged. I got married not long before all this, cant work, basically ruining my life. I no longer have trust in Psychiatry and find better info online from people going through this. I'm now on week 2.5 off Duloxatine and down to 100mg of Lamictal. How to cope? How there are no real rules, prozac helps bit comes with lots of problems. Anyway, I feel I'm getting there, but I need help, afraid my spouse will divorce me soon and wish I could leave me too. Thank you for all the great info this far. Zavo
  11. Hello, my name is Manny. I was diagnosed 0CD and schizophrenic in 2008, but I been taking benzos and amiptriptiline since 2005. Currently,taking abilify 20mg,risperidone 2mg,cymbalta 60mg,biperiden 4mg. I am tapering klonopin down to 0,27mg from a dose of 1,25mg. I went to see my doctor this week because a blood test that I did. He said my hepatic transaminases are high because of the medication that I take. I am assuming the APs that I take. What can I do to get my liver function well? I know, quitting the APs, but I can t cold turkey. Any advice,please.
  12. I've recently reconnected with a friend from 30+ years ago. We have been spending time together once a week and we are moving foward, seeing each other more frequently. At some point I will want to share my story with them about my psych meds. When and how is the best way to do this? Full disclosure is important to both of us. I want to make sure I'm not premature in bringing it up, but don't want to wait too long risking the perception I've been holding back and not been upfront.
  13. I’ve been taking anti-depressants and a mood stabilizer for 20+ years. I want to wean off duloxetine first. I’ve experienced horrible withdrawal symptoms when I failed to get a refill about 3 years ago. After about 2 days not taking duloxetine I was in full blown withdrawal and it was a flipping nightmare. That experience led me to believe I would never be able to not use the drug. I am to the point of being tired of dry mouth, dry eye, constipation and sweating. This may not be a good time to wean as I’m planning my daughter’s wedding for next fall and going to school part time. I will be 59 in 2018. Finding this forum is a godsend for me and hope I can be active even if I’m unable to start a taper right away. I’m really scared that I will never feel like the self I was before taking these drugs. I’m not even sure if I remember, which is even scarier and causes some anxiety if I focus on it too much. Thanks.
  14. I hope somebody can help me. I was on Zoloft for eight months at a low-dose of 25 mg during my pregnancy. After the pregnancy, it was not working. I had a lot of anxiety. I tried to go up on the dosage and it did not work, so my doctor prescribed Lexapro. She told me just to cut the 25 mg in half for two weeks and introduce Lexapro. Once I introduced Lexapro I had a bad reaction. Now it's been four months later and Im still withdrawing from Zoloft. I'm having terrible dizziness and feeling off balance still. My anxiety has been through the roof. I've been to the ER multiple times for panic attacks. Not my depression is back with a vengeance. However I'm not tolerating meds very well They tried to start me back on a low-dose of Lexapro at 2.5 but it caused a lot of major major anxiety. I'm also having terrible brains zaps that run from really inside my brain to my neck. When I turn my head I had them when I talk I have them when I walk I have them. I think my nervous system has been shot. I should also mention my feelings are everywhere from confusion to worry and fear. I feel like I'm losing my mind. Do you eventually recover from this? Was their permanent damage to my nervous system when I stop Zoloft so quickly. No other medication is working and I'm trying to work with a psychiatrist on this. Do you think my brain will eventually adjust on Lexapro? It's been now three weeks with Lexapro almost 4.Any help would be appreciated I need some reassurance.
  15. Hello, I am currently on a slow taper (2.5% every two weeks) off of cymbalta. I was first diagnosed with SAD in my twenties. I am now 60. I have been on and off many many different ssri’s. My diagnosis changed depending on the psychiatrist treating me. Soon became major depression and most currently Bipolar. Dr has changed my meds many times sometimes including antipsychotics and mood stabilizers. He has also taken $86,000 from big pharma. I am currently on cymbalta (should complete my taper in 6 to 8 months) and Xanax. My hope is to find support and information to help me recover completely from the many years on these toxic drugs. Thanks in advance for any help with my “discontinuation syndrome”. vicki
  16. Hello all! I'm a 61 year old woman who has been on Cymbalta for many years. A few months ago, after routine blood work and then a sonogram showed a very fatty liver, I was sent to a hepatologist. She cautioned me that the Cymbalta is toxic to the liver and I needed to get off of it. OK, so over the next few months under my PCP's "supervision" I tapered from 60 to 30, and then 30 to 20, then 20 every other day, and then did some bead counting down to 10 every other day and finally got completely off. That was a little over 3 weeks ago. It hasn't been too terrible; I had some brain zaps for a while, brain fog, etc., but the worst of it is the tremors. They started a little after I started weaning. Last week I decided to see if the doctor could give me something to calm them; he put me on Primidone, saying the only side effects might be drowsiness and a little dizziness. I took it for 2 nights and felt so horrible I quit. Not only was I dizzy and sick at my stomach, I think the stress from it gave me a couple of small anxiety attacks. And of course, it didn't stop the jitters. But today, after not taking it last night, I feel like a human again, albeit a shakey one with an upset stomach. I'm currently trying to figure out where to go next. My PCP doesn't get the whole idea of the discontinuation syndrome; in his mind, the drug is out of my system so I should be fine. Plus, he will only put stock in the NIH website, and because that doesn't list the tremors as a symptom, I had to argue with him that they are indeed listed on many other reputable websites. I'm trying to figure out what type of practicioner might be more informed on the subject and would welcome your suggestions. Also as to how to deal with the tremors. Where did this all start? All my life I had a Type A personality in overdrive. During a particularly stressful period, I was working on several projects with tight deadlines. I worked long days and nights, my adrenaline driving me. As each project was finished, I expected to feel more relaxed, but I didn't. It was as if my body slowed down but the adrenaline kept pumping at the same rate. I started having panic attacks, and my doctor put me on Zoloft (I think), which I stayed on for a few years before my insurance company decided I should be taking Lexapro, and then after a few years Cymbalta. (suggestions on their part. 🙄) I had found that the drug helped me to be more relaxed and enjoy life more, so I really didn't hate being on it. But at this point, I'm hoping I can get through this and just go it on my own. It looks like it might be more of a fight than I was hoping though. I'm looking forward to y'alls input!
  17. My history is long and I've tried many medications. I'm 29. I was on Zoloft age 16-26. Switched to cymbalta age 27-29. Added wellbutrin. Got stuck on cymbalta. I was at 90mg and managed to get down to 60mg but it was terrible. Needed to plan my wedding so I left it at 60mg. it's been over a year and I'm still at 60mg. My Dr said to switch to trintrellix 5mg cold turkey from cymbalta 60mg because there wouldn't be any issues. Day 1 and I'm having withdrawal symptoms. With research I already think trintrellix sounds like bad withdrawal symptoms. I'm also on gabapentin. I'm also on supplements that have been helping with my anxiety: Ashwaganda, lemon balm, nettle, and b12.
  18. Plshelp

    Plshelp: olanzapine 5mg

    Hello fellow SA members! I am curious to know if anyone has come off antipsychotics and gone onto antidepressants and recovered from antipsychotics? My pdoc says that she's had ppl recover in this situation, but I'm in disbelief. Any comments and info would be greatly appreciated. Thank you! Xo
  19. Been quietly observing and reading other peoples posts and finally decided to post my story. My path with AD started with a full blown panic attack. I had never in my life experienced a panic attack so it was very difficult at the beginning. Everybody's different. My panic attacks were debilitating lasting for several hours. Went to see my doctor and was quickly put on benzos. Started with xanax 0.5 mg and was quickly raised to 2.0 mg. Later it was switched out to klonopin 2.0 mg. It did control my panic attacks and my anxiety attacks. Later on I was told to add an AD to further control my panic attacks. This was the fun part where I became my own guinea pig where I had to "FIND THE RIGHT MED" for myself. Initially started with lexapro and was told that it could take up to 4 months for the drug to kick in. 4 months past by and it did nothing. lexapro had no effect on me. Tried viibryd, celexa, paxil, and prozac. Settled with paxil and klonopin for a long time. Towards the end made the jump to cymbalta and klonopin. If it wasn't for people around me telling me how I've changed, over the time frame that I was on these drugs, I would have probably continued taking these drugs. I've lost all emotions nothing in the world gave me any enjoyment. Started drinking heavily to the point where I was drinking every day. Spent money like money grew on trees. I had no apathy at all towards others. I became completely indifferent towards the entire world. I have so much respect towards people here that are maintaining their strict taper schedule. I tried to slowly taper from my drugs but I could never keep it myself. At the first sign of withdrawal I kept running back to my drugs. I decided to throw all my meds out and go the cold turkey route. I fell into a dark abyss. I didn't bother going to no doctor because I knew it was my fight and my fight alone. Woke up with severe panic and dread. It was as if all my nerves were fired up. Every person was associated with a flash back from the past with a very negative flash back from my past. For example, my dad was asking me how I felt and I had a really bizarre flash back from the past where my dad was not so kind to me when I was a kid. It was a memory from the past that I had forgotten for a very long time. This flash back resulted in me with a rage like emotion towards him. Pretty much everyone I met, that had an unkind past with me, brought up these negative flash backs. Entire body feels numb. Light/noise sensitivity. Blurry vision as if I'm surrounded by fog. All my muscles were sore, aching and shaking. Tingling burning sensation on the skin. Itchy anus. Joint pain like I've never experienced before. Difficulty breathing. Flu like symptoms. Severe headaches. Head felt really heavy as if there was a rock embedded in my brain. Messed up sinus. Weak legs. Weak neck. Difficulty speaking. Difficulty balancing myself. Coordination skills severely impaired. Severe tinnitus. Body feels heavy as if gravity increased. Severe dp/dr. One day I spilled my entire plate while eating and I could see my plate fall down in slow motion in 3-D. One day I was cooking and accidentally burnt my hand and I could feel the pain from my hand travel all the way to my brain. I'm pretty sure there were a lot more symptoms that I really can't remember them all. It's been six months now that I've gone cold turkey. I'm still a long ways from recovery but looking back sure as hell feels like I've made some progress. Going cold turkey put my body in full reboot mode and slowly one by one I get to feel parts of my body come alive one by one.
  20. I have been diagnosed w ptsd, major chronic depression, bipolar2, and chronic pain. I take cymbalta 120mg daily, lamictal 100mg at night and bedtime. I have seroquel 25mg bid as needed. I am experiencing hypomania, irritability, discontent, and sometimes doc thinks its a serotonin syndrome in making. I know what that feels like. I took nucynta once for pain. Got off of it right away. So, i have permission by psychiatrist to play around w my dosage for comfort. I want to taper off cymbalta and lamictal, i have decreased lamictal by 25mg, at night. I have 60mg caps of cymbalta. I took 1 on monday, tues, and wed. Today i felt headachey, and my back pain flared up. I taught my swim lessons, came home and took the other 60mg. I feel better physically. I want to lower potential for hypomania,
  21. Please i need help. I am on cymbalta generic and have tapered down to approx 10 mgs from 90 using bead method. I also take a very low dose of ativan. I had tapered off the ativan in july 2016 and went back on much lower dose 4 months ago. I also take zyprexa at approx. 3.75 mgs. I have been trying to taper all three meds because i have fatty liver disease and need yo get off this junk before it turns into cirrhosis. So i made a cut last week and about 4 days ago i started to get severe anxiety. I was doing fine up until then but it seems like every time i get to a certain point with the zyorexa i get so anxious. I have tried several times to taper zyprexa. I am under alot of stress and i dont know if its me or withdrawal. I was put on these medications 9 years ago for anxiety. It was very bad. But i dont know if that anxiety was from klonopin or celexa. I did not have this kind of anxiety before those two meds. Someone please help me. I had to increase the zyprexa yesterday or i was going to end up in the hospital. I have to find a job because i will soon be homeless if i dont. How will i get off these horrible drugs and function at the same time??
  22. MilaB

    MilaB

    Thanks for adding me. I need encouragement. I have been on ADs for 15 years - Zoloft, Lexapro, Celexa, Effexor and now Cymbalta. Also Trazadone when I couldn’t sleep. I missed a dose of Cymbalta in 2016 and was shocked by how bad I felt and decided to get off the med. I was told the wrong way and ended up using advice from FB site. I was only able to taper about 3% every 2 weeks and I got down to 86 beads that way in a year. But I felt stuck, drops were getting harder. Then I met someone who suggested amino acids. I started using aminos in Oct 16 at 86 beads. I was very eager to get off the med (big mistake). I didn’t know how bad it could get or what I was in for. I got to zero beads by the end of Feb and all withdrawal hell broke loose. Started with physical - hands and feet sweating, anxiety running brought me constantly, no appetite and extreme insomnia. It then became akithisia - restless pacing and severe anxiety. I went on Ativan that calmed the akithisia and I am now sleeping after 2 months of very little to no sleep. I’m taking 1mg Ativan during the day (2 half doses) and 1.5 at night along with some hydroxyzine. The biggest challenge now is my emotional state. I feel like I have to die to escape this pain. I have a constant feeling of doom and anxiety - even with the Ativan - that is so overwhelming and uncomfortable. I have no good feelings at all. I have a family and I can’t die. I have to be here for them. It’s been since March 1 with all of this. It’s all my fault for trying to speed things up. I thought I’d be healthier off the Cymbalta - I hated the side effects. This all seems impossible. I still have 10 beads left and now I’m sure I’m addicted to Ativan and will have to taper that. I don’t want to die, but I am so miserable I can’t see this ever getting better. I have had only a few windows. And even the windows are just a slight improvement over this constant suffering. I never know what to do; I can’t read, can’t work, shop, do art. Nothing feels good. I tried adding in 10 beads of Cymbalta a couple of weeks ago at the advice of Dr Shipko and the anxiety got worse. I also tried a small dose of Prozac for just one day and that made my anxiety awful too. Am I just left to tough this out forever? Please help
  23. This is my first posting here and I apologize in advance if the topic of LDN is well known. LDN is the acronymn for Low Dose Naltrexone. Naltrexone has been used for many years to help treat opiate and alcohol addictions. I was put on Cymbalta in 2010 after the death of my 21 year old son in a car crash. I was in shock (still am) but I also felt like my body weighed 3000 lbs. The Cymbalta DID help relieve me of that unbearable heaviness. I did eventually reach the max dose of 120mg. I had run out of my prescription a couple of times, due to forgetting to pick it up etc. I do recall becoming tearful and the "zaps" in the head. The last couple of years are much a blur anyway. My most recent incident occurred during a trip out of state to see my brother. I ended up staying an additional week to help him with a number of things but had only packed my "pillbox" for a 5 day stay. Needless to say I started to feel terrible pretty quickly. I remembering saying to my brother that I could relate to the heroin addicts that always feel sick until their next fix. I at first thought that I could tuff it out. No I could not! By day 3 I called my PCP for a script to be faxed over to an out of state pharmacy. That was in October 2013. I did discuss this event with the psychiatrist that prescribes my Cymbalta and it seems to be a rare occurrence according to him ? Well I did go from 120mg down to 90mg after that appt without a problem. Fast forward to January 2014, I am doing some research on autoimmune disease as my siblings and I have developed a few. I came across the use of LDN ( low dose naltrexone) in a number of auto immune disorders and requested a prescription from my PCP 2 weeks ago. I read as much as I could find and it made sense to me to try to further reduce my heroin like addiction to Cymbalta to see if the LDN may reduce the awful withdrawal symptoms. I am currently taking LDN 4.5mg at bedtime along with only 30mg of Cymbalta! And I am happy to say not only do I feel a little better from the LDN I have not experienced a single uncomfortable symptom from the reduction in Cymbalta. I am a bit nervous about going from 30 to 0, I may wait a couple weeks. I did want to put this info out here tho. LDN is not very well known, it's cheap, off patent etc. Just google LDN and educate yourself. It may not work for everyone. BTW, my auto immune disorder was/is Transverse Myelitis. My withdrawal symptoms had NOTHING to do with the TM. I had TM in 1977 with a 90% recovery.
  24. Hi, I am 63 years old and have been on psychicatric drugs for 34 years. In the past five years I have discontinued Trazadone, Lamotrigine, klonopin, Seroquel. The most recent one being Seroquel at 600mg. I tapered by 25mg. per month. I had horrible withdrawals and still had symptoms after three months after stopping it. The most troublesome symtoms I still had was the sweating/chills, Chorea involuntary movements, burning sensation in my head, face, legs and arms, anxiety. I have been on Celexa for the past eight to ten years and just recently discovered that Celexa can cause Chorea movements as well, so I have decided to discontinue this drug too. I began on 40mg. and started my taper 12 days ago at 5 mg. per month under the care of my general practitioner. I have not noticed any new withdrawals symptoms that I have already experienced from the above symptoms, , just an increase in intensity from time to time ( especially the Chorea Movements). I am trying to eat healthy, I take amino acids, inositol/choline and vitamins and mineral supplements. I am currently chair ridden due to bone on bone arthritis in my hips; on the waiting list for hip replacement surgery hopefully to be done this fall/winter. It has been a long journey to get this far in my recovery from psychiatric drugs and I hope I can continue to be strong. Genlady.
  25. TL;DR: Took Cymbalta in my teens for a little less than a year. After stopping, gradually an extremely low sex drive and ability to be aroused, as well as an overall feeling of apathy started to develop and I have been trying to adjust since then. Considering supplementation with inositol as my next move to turn things around. Am I on the right track? Thanks for any help. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Hey everyone, looking for some input on my situation. Glad I found this forum while I was looking for some answers. I'll give a brief history here: In 2006, I had some suicidal thoughts and a highly variable mood. At the time I was in junior high. After talking to my parents, they became concerned, and took me to a (apparently the worst psychologist based on following events) psychiatrist. She started me out on Cymbalta at 60mg/day. At the time, my parents and especially I did not know anything about dosing ADs, but from where I stand now, it is extremely odd that she started me out on the highest possible dose that she could. Anyway, I was on Cymbalta for a little less than a year. In February of 2007, I decided that I didn't want to be on Cymbalta anymore (I don't remember why) and I quit cold-turkey. Apparently, my psychiatrist had no problem with this, and I followed through. No more drugs. At the time, I didn't really notice much, but things were probably happening gradually. The first thing I noticed was that my genuine interest in sex had pretty much disappeared. As a boy in his youth, I would say that was pretty abnormal. At the beginning of puberty, I was very interested in the thought of sex. However, all sex drive, any form of erections, any strong interest in the opposite gender severely declined and sometimes was completely absent a few months after stopping my medication, from what I remember. Nothing would arouse me sexually, and at age 18, when I started becoming sexually active, it was an intense struggle to have intimate exchanges with anyone. Now, at age 24, I am seeing some consistencies that have remained since stopping my medication. I continue to have issues becoming sexually aroused and getting an erection is usually very difficult without supplements that promote them. At first I thought it was from watching too much porn, but that hasn't been able to genuinely arouse me for years either, and after abstaining for well over a year and not seeing much of a change, I am starting to very strongly doubt that is my problem. My fiancée has also noticed that I don't really get excited about anything, and that my responses are very muted. I've noticed this too, but it's been so long, I thought that it was just part of my personality. However, I don't think it's normal that I don't usually feel affected or sympathetic about anything. I feel very disconnected from everything, and most things that I do are motivated by a feeling of obligation, like I SHOULD do things because they're good for me or because it will help someone else. I don't really get a ton of satisfaction out of much, which was something I've been chalking up to just a mildly-low self-esteem. However, I'm sick of feeling flat like this all the time. I am seeing the doctor in 10 days, to see if he will run tests and say anything different than any of the other doctors have in the past. I have had numerous blood panels and hormone tests over the past 5 years, as well as dabbling with other ADs for short periods with nothing working. Most recently, my testosterone has been slightly low (around 550) and prolactin levels have been a little high (~20.2), but everything else is pretty normal. I've been reading around about nootropics recently and the one thing I see keep getting mentioned is the use of inositol to re-sensitize every thing. In anyone's opinion, am I on the right track, or am I taking this approach in vain? I'm just looking to find the root of my problem so I can fully enjoy my life.
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