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  1. 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
  2. I was on a daily 40 mg dose of citalopram for like 15 years. Last spring I started tapering it off by 5 mg/month. The very last dose was two weeks ago. During the past months I can’t say I had any noted sympotoms. But after the last dose I started having less sleeping hours while I used to sleep too much in the past years. In the past couple of nights it’s complete insomnia in addtion to digestive distubances, nausea and chills in my body. Insomnia is the worst for me. Will these last, improve or worsen? Shall I go back to a low dose, a single dose Prozac.. Is there something that can make me sleep? It is strange, I feel tired but not sleepy! I would have stayed on Citalopram for ever, but on different occasions the drug prevented me from taking other medications that with aging become very much needed like NSAIDs because of drug interactions. I have not been particularly active but today I started fast walking for 30 minutes. Can this be the answer for what I have or is it just a helping factor?
  3. I note that there are 338 pages in the list of members. I had to send my AWS scale back to the company as it broke. I have had two conversations and a few emails back and forth with Jermel, who handles returns. He had mentioned that many people speak to him about how to use the scales for medication reduction. He said that he speaks with at least two people a week about how to use the scale. I am just wondering, how big is the problem of serotonin drug withdrawal? Are we talking thousands? Tens of thousands? Hundreds of thousands? Millions? And even if it is in the 10s of thousands, why isn't there an organized lawsuit? Or an FDA process to issue something like a black box warning? I don't know if this is the correct forum to post this, so admins, feel free to move it if need be.
  4. faultandfracture

    faultandfracture: Greetings!

    Just wanted to say "Hello!" Want to come off 10mg fluoxetine hcl.
  5. If the theory of up-regulated serotonin receptor sites is true as an explanation for depression, this could be a compensatory measure taken by the brain as a result of anxiety, acute stress responses, environmental factors, and even other medications. Seems to me that only non-pharmacological interventions would have any real long-term therapeutic value. Ie. cognitive behavioral therapy, altered thinking process, etc. Any thoughts?
  6. David Healy's recent editorial, "Serotonin and Depression: the Marketing of a Myth," in the British Medical Journal, has been picked up and commented upon by lots and lots of media outlets, many of them quite respectable (i.e. mainstream) and most of them quite respectful of his critique of SSRI hegemony. One thing he says in the editorial that I wasn't aware of is that theories of depression which included the role of cortisol were swept aside by the SSRI sales blitz. Also, in the mainstream media coverage, the defensiveness of some of his critics from within psychiatry was quite satisfying.
  7. Science behind commonly used anti-depressants appears to be backwards, researchers say The science behind many anti-depressant medications appears to be backwards, say the authors of a paper that challenges the prevailing ideas about the nature of depression and some of the world's most commonly prescribed medications. The authors of the paper, posted by the journal Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, combed existing research for evidence to support the theory that has dominated nearly 50 years of depression research: that depression is related to low levels of serotonin in the gaps between cells in the brain. The low-serotonin theory is the basis for commonly prescribed anti-depressant medications called selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors, or SSRIs, which keep the neurotransmitter's levels high by blocking its re-absorption into the cells that release it. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/02/150217114119.htm?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+sciencedaily+%28Latest+Science+News+--+ScienceDaily%29
  8. Interesting new study. Serotonin not found to be a major player in depressionNew evidence puts into doubt the long-standing belief that a deficiency in serotonin - a chemical messenger in the brain - plays a central role in depression. In the journal ACS Chemical Neuroscience, scientists report that mice lacking the ability to make serotonin in their brains (and thus should have been "depressed" by conventional wisdom) did not show depression-like symptoms. Donald Kuhn and colleagues at the John D. Dingell VA Medical Center and Wayne State University School of Medicine note that depression poses a major public health problem. More than 350 million people suffer from it, according to the World Health Organization, and it is the leading cause of disability across the globe. In the late 1980s, the now well-known antidepressant Prozac was introduced. The drug works mainly by increasing the amounts of one substance in the brain - serotonin. So scientists came to believe that boosting levels of the signaling molecule was the key to solving depression. Based on this idea, many other drugs to treat the condition entered the picture. But now researchers know that 60 to 70 percent of these patients continue to feel depressed, even while taking the drugs. Kuhn's team set out to study what role, if any, serotonin played in the condition. To do this, they developed "knockout" mice that lacked the ability to produce serotonin in their brains. The scientists ran a battery of behavioral tests. Interestingly, the mice were compulsive and extremely aggressive, but didn't show signs of depression-like symptoms. Another surprising finding is that when put under stress, the knockout mice behaved in the same way most of the normal mice did. Also, a subset of the knockout mice responded therapeutically to antidepressant medications in a similar manner to the normal mice. These findings further suggest that serotonin is not a major player in the condition, and different factors must be involved. These results could dramatically alter how the search for new antidepressants moves forward in the future, the researchers conclude. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/281645.php
  9. Hello, I have been searching the internet for a while looking for people who had a hospitalization from serotonin syndrome. I am so glad I found your site! Most search results do not indicate the horrible nightmare she lived through so I'd like to tell her story. She lived with fibromyalgia for 20 years and maintained a good quality of life taking paxil for pain management.It never stopped her from being very active in life. Suddenly paxil quit workingl and Mom was in constant pain 24/7. She started the merry go round of different drugs looking for relief during which she began having depression along with the fibro. Two years of struggling and she ended up on cymbalta and Tramadol .Strange things started happening with our Mom including- started having tremendous abdominal pain, hand tremors, and some mental confusion which us kids noticed, but wondered if it was age related dementia. Numerous trips to ER from stomach pain spanned several months. Mom would state it was worse than birthing 3 kids. At 73 years of age Mom had never been to ER nor stayed in the hospital except for childbirth. Yet the docs starting acting strange- like she was psycho or seeking pain meds. Finally last August a gastro doc admitted her to the hospital after seeing her in ER. A few days before, a doc said it was a colon problem although nothing showed on scan in the gut once admitted. Hospital gave Tramadol and other meds. Mom entered the hospital walking,talking and oriented. Within 48 hours, she was delirious, She didn't speak much, she did not close her eyes to sleep for 6 days.!! About two days into the stay, a psychiatrist was consulted by phone and he immediately knew she had SS and said to pull the meds. They cold turkey all her meds and didn't not give anything to help the SS like. She had to use a catheter/bed pan, when she began to speak it was in crazy riddles and she could not feed herself. Nobody wanted to discuss it was due to meds from her docs. Her GP even wanted to discharge to go home when she was totally out of it - like she had a stroke- could not even got to the toilet she was so weak. The family panicked at the thought of taking her home and made an appeal.She stayed two more days and transferred to a nursing home/rehab. The night she got transferred to a facility she had been in visiting other folks dozens of times she had to ask me where she was! Four days later she had a seizure and cardiac arrest even though she never showed in problems in the cardio testing the week before or prior physicals. They had to hit her with the paddles 3X and she was out for 11 minutes. Long story, short- she stayed in hosp 2 wks, then rehab a month and recovered remarkably well thru lots of PT. 6 months later she has foot pain which began with numbness in toes and now feels like her feet are on fire 24/7 and she also has a strange vertigo issue which she has been dealing with thru PT. Basically no quality of life between feet on fire and head dizziness/fuzziness. Most meds either make her loopy or bring on first symptoms of SS again. Finally found some relief from the neuro and head from ativan ..But just enough she can survive it. We believe all this is result of damage done to her last fall from SS. Has anyone had this severe reaction- delirium, having to learn how to walk, talk , hold a utensil? We'd be grateful to hear from anyone surviving a disaster like Moms. Thanks, Florencesdaughter
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