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Mart: New to this site


Mart

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Good afternoon! I finally found this after searching FB for an antidepressant forum there.  I am a senior citizen (!), T1diabetic on an insulin pump, very well controlled. My journey with Prozac then the generic Fluoxitine began 15 years ago when my husband was diagnosed with Stage IV Mantle Cell Lymphoma (probably from Agent Orange in Vietnam).  After he went into remission in 2000, I tried to go off and became very agitated and hard to live with, so I went back on it.  Now, 15 years later having been unable to cry or feel any emotions for 10 years, it is time to get my life back!

I am in a good place in my life, happy and content, but not being able to feel anything when one of my best girlfriends since kindergarten (there are eight of us YaYa's) has decided to discontinue her chemo for lung cancer, makes me realize that this medication has got to go!

Today is Day 15 of tapering too fast, and I'm paying for it with uncomfortable physical difficulties, no emotional ones yet.  

My original dosage was 10 mg/night, then 20 mg/night for past three years, and then 20 + 10 mg every other night to equal 100 mg/week in tablet form.  I began my withdrawal 15 days ago with 10 mg every other night but realize that was the wrong thing to do. Now am back to the 10mg (half the tablet) every night and still experiencing the nausea and bad diarrhea that started over a week ago.

I am hoping to get some feedback from those of you who have or are going through the early withdrawal from an SSRI.  Thank you.

 

Mart

9/11/2015 15 mg Fluoxetine/night 1 month into taper from 20 mg

11/28/2015 5 mg Fluoxetine/night, slicing tablet, measuring & placing into empty capsule to easily swallow.

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Hello Mart,

Someone a little more helpful should be comming along to answer your questions.

I just wanted to welcome you,

Tgirl

April 2014 remeron 45mg.

June 2014 abilify 2.5 remeron wasn't working so abilify was then added

September 2014 woke up with anxiety x 100!!!!

Pdoc then took me from 45 to 7.5 within a month and took abilify from 2.5 to 0

Currently

Remeron 7.5

Vitamin d 5,000 iu taking for about 3 years

October 2014 added fish oil/omega 3 1000 mg per day

Levothyroxitine 100 10 years or so

Dec 2014 started tapering 10% every 10 days-no problems.

August 2015 down to 0.1 mg

Woke up with severe anxiety-sleep issues-racing thoughts-depression. 9/9/15 up dose 1 mg.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Mart , welcome to the site.  You're in good company here - pretty much ALL of us have experienced withdrawal symptoms from ssri's.

 

Tapering by taking meds on alternate days is not recommended at all here , and your central nervous system has been shaken up a lot from

the recent changes.

 

How many days have you been back the 10mg regularly?

 

Try reading http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1024-why-taper-by-10-of-my-dosage/

 

If you can sit it out , your best bet might be to continue 10mg and (hopefully) stabilize there for a good long while before beginning to taper in

the suggested manner.

 

Best wishes ,  Fresh

1987-1997 pertofran , prothiaden , Prozac 1997-2002 Zoloft 2002-2004 effexor 2004-2010 Lexapro 40mg

2010-2012Cymbalta 120mg

Sept. 2012 -decreased 90mg in 6months. Care taken over by Dr Lucire in March 2013 , decreased last 30mg at 2mg per week over 3 months. July 21 , 2013- last dose of Cymbalta

Protracted withdrawal syndrome kicked in badly Jan.2014 Unrelenting akathisia until May 2014. Voluntary hosp. admission. Cocktail of Seroquel, Ativan and mirtazapine and I was well enough to go home after 14 days. Stopped all hosp. meds in next few months.

July 2014 felt v.depressed - couldn't stop crying. Started pristiq 50mg. Felt improvement within days and continued to improve, so stayed on 50mg for 8 months.

Began taper 28 Feb. 2015. Pristiq 50mg down to 45mg. Had one month of w/d symptoms. Started CES therapy in March. No w/d symptoms down to 30mg.

October 2015 , taking 25mg Pristiq. Capsules compounded with slow-release additive.

March 2016 , 21mg

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Welcome Mart,

 

How long since you have been back on the 10mg daily? Are your symptoms improving at all?

 

Please read through the link Fresh posted for you and these:

 

Tips for tapering off Prozac (fluoxetine)

 

The rule of 3KIS: Keep it simple. Keep it slow. Keep it stable.

 

It may take a while for you to stabilize back on 10mg, please wait until your symptoms settle down before you start tapering again.  Please stay in touch and let us know how you are doing.

 

Petunia.

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

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

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

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

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

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

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

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

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

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

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

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

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

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

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

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



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

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

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Thank you for replying. My plan now is to take 15mg Fluoxetine each night instead of 10 mg every other night. I began last night and today was able to cry watching a Netflix movie and my gut is normal now☺️. I'll be satisfied to stay on this dose every night for as long as it takes and have ordered a mg scale since it's difficult to cut a 20mg tablet into fourths! I'll have to review dissolving it in water when the scale arrives. Thanks again for all your support!

9/11/2015 15 mg Fluoxetine/night 1 month into taper from 20 mg

11/28/2015 5 mg Fluoxetine/night, slicing tablet, measuring & placing into empty capsule to easily swallow.

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Oops, still having gut problem, feeling yucky & not a lot of energy till late afternoon. I re figured how much Fluoxetine I had been taking prior to Sept 11 and now, and my taper is about 50% instead of 10%. However, I can deal with the gut issues if I can manage to stay away from the feeling of anxiety and irritability. I am a T1 diabetic (42 years) and glucose has been higher than usual. Wonder if it's part of withdrawal. Thank you for being here. Mart

9/11/2015 15 mg Fluoxetine/night 1 month into taper from 20 mg

11/28/2015 5 mg Fluoxetine/night, slicing tablet, measuring & placing into empty capsule to easily swallow.

Link to post

I don't see an edit for my last comment. I'm terrible at math....still on a 10% taper.

9/11/2015 15 mg Fluoxetine/night 1 month into taper from 20 mg

11/28/2015 5 mg Fluoxetine/night, slicing tablet, measuring & placing into empty capsule to easily swallow.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello Mart,

 

I'm relatively new to tapering too (about 4 months) and I've definately found that nausea and other symptoms go away once you settle at a new dosage.  One day you'll realise you've felt okay all morning, or something like that.  It's a really welcome surprise - makes you enjoy being able to do stuff and just feel, well, normal :)

 

With nausea, I found sipping cold water through the day was nice - it didn't remove the nausea, just made me feel I could tolerate it better.  Was refreshing, and therefore a very welcome contrasting feeling.

 

What really kept me going through the tougher days was finding out what healing/nurturing stuff I could be doing - have you checked out the topics in the 'Symptoms and Self Care' section?  

 

Take care of you,

Karen

PS, made me laugh to see your Ya-Ya comment - great book.

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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Thank you for your response to my intro to this group. It's good to hear from others to know what I'm going through is all part of the taper/withdrawal process. Tomorrow marks 1 month (!) since I started, and I see where others have been at this for years but are still at it. You give me hope!!

Take care yourself,

Mart

9/11/2015 15 mg Fluoxetine/night 1 month into taper from 20 mg

11/28/2015 5 mg Fluoxetine/night, slicing tablet, measuring & placing into empty capsule to easily swallow.

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  • 1 month later...

I've been on AD for 15 years. It's been almost 3 months since I began tapering down from 20 mg Fluoxetine, using 10 percent reduction. I am now taking 10 mg each night. I am having no symptoms now...no more shaky hands, vision blurs or other symptoms. I was able to shed a few tears (first time in 12 years), but I still don't feel the emotions I should. My question is where do I go from here? Should I get a script for the liquid form and taper down with that? Or, could I start taking the 10 mg every other night. I've cut the pills into pieces until I got down to 10 mg, but the taste is awful!! If I am not feeling WD symptoms any more, I wonder if I can just quit!!!???

9/11/2015 15 mg Fluoxetine/night 1 month into taper from 20 mg

11/28/2015 5 mg Fluoxetine/night, slicing tablet, measuring & placing into empty capsule to easily swallow.

Link to post
primekittycat

Hi Mart, don't take the medicine every other night, it is like playing ping pong with your brain. Also, don't just quit cold turkey at this point or it will make your 3 months of tapering go to waste and you could have dramatic withdrawal symptoms. You aren't having withdrawal symptoms now because of your taper so far. Continue the 10% decrease per month taper that you've been doing. Please read this topic - http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/759-tips-for-tapering-off-prozac-fluoxetine

 

See if your doctor can prescribe you the Prozac liquid, or you can make your own - the info is in the link I provided.

Began suffering from panic attacks when my father passed away in 2005. Been on and off SSRIs (Celexa, Lexapro, Effexor XR), and therapy since then.

2009 - Started Effexor XR 75mg. Consistent therapy starting Oct 2013

Feb 2014 - Therapist and I felt I was ready to come off Effexor - went to half dose (37.5mg) for a week and then off completely by advice of psychiatrist - bad w/d for a week then gone

May 2014 - bad protracted w/d came out of nowhere.. constant dizziness, agoraphobia(never had before), intense headaches, fatigue for 3 months, all tests (brain MRI, inner ear tests, blood tests, etc.) normal. could not drive, grocery shop, or live life.

Aug 2014 - back on Effexor XR 75mg as neurologist thought these symptoms were my anxiety coming back, all w/d symptoms disappear within 2 weeks. I should have went back on at a lower dose, but I hadn't discovered this site yet.

 

Tapering Effexor XR.. let's do this! Slow & steady:

Started tapering from 75mg in July 2015. 5% cuts every 3 weeks. From July 2015 - March 2016, reduced to 37.5mg (half dose). In March 2017, down to 18.3mg (quarter dose). April 2020 -  0.38mg. Finally med free as of Oct 31, 2020.

 

Supplements: meditation, daily exercise, clean diet, working from home (more sleep!)

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Mart.. I merged your latest question into your inro topic because it relates to your personal journey and it's better if those posts are kept in one place so we can keep better track of you... the intro section also gets more traffic.  One way many of us keep track of our intro threads is by putting a link to in in our sig lines...

As always, LISTEN TO YOUR BODY! A proud supporter of the 10% (or slower) rule.

 

Requip - 3/16 ZERO  Total time on 25 years.

 

Lyrica: 8/15 ZERO Total time on 7 or 8 yrs.

BENZO FREE 10/13 (started tapering 7/10)  Total time on 25 years.

 

Read my intro thread here, and check the about me section.  "No matter how cynical you get, it's almost impossible to keep up." Lily Tomlin

 

 

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  • Moderator

My question is where do I go from here? Should I get a script for the liquid form and taper down with that? Or, could I start taking the 10 mg every other night. I've cut the pills into pieces until I got down to 10 mg, but the taste is awful!! If I am not feeling WD symptoms any more, I wonder if I can just quit!!!???

 

Mart,

 

As primekittycat already said, please don't do the "alternate day" approach to tapering.  The constant up and down is very harsh on the CNS and not conducive to a smooth taper.  I would strongly urge you to get the script for the liquid form of the drug as that is the best way to make the small incremental reductions that go along with the 10% (or less) taper method that we advocate here.  The fact that you are stable and not symptomatic is GREAT but is NOT an indication that you should just quit.  The downside risks are too great to make that a strategy that we here at SA would advise.

 

Keep up the great work.

 

Best,

 

Andy

Sertraline 50mg and Clonazapam .375mg from 2000 -- symptoms of dizziness Spring 2012

increased to .5 Clonazapam and 100mg Sertraline -- no improvement

Benzo microtaper from November 2012 to November 2014 (followed benzo sites "taper benzo first")

Started Sertraline taper in December 2014 cut by 25mg to 75mg; 62.5mg 1/1/15 and 50mg on 2/1/15

Held at 50mg through April 5 to use liquid 
Reduced dosage in 10% or less drops from 50mg to 25mg -- at single tablet of 25mg on 10/5/15

Transitioned to all liquid for accuracy while tapering -- Horrible insomnia -- back to 25mg liquid and held until October 1, 2016

10/16 -- 11/18 tapered very slowly to 10.6mg.  No real improvement and never really stable so updosed to 12.5mg (1/2 a pill) for convenience and long hold.

After 8+ months of holding with no noticeable improvement decided to add .4ml of liquid Prozac (about 1.5mg) to see if that improves the situation

Supplements, Magnesium, D3, Omega 3, curcumin, Valerian, 81mg Aspirin, L-Theanine, Vit. C,

 

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  • Administrator

Welcome, Mart.

 

The liquid makes it a lot easier to taper fluoxetine. Please read Tips for tapering off Prozac (fluoxetine) ; if you have questions, please put them in this, your Intro, topic.

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

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

All postings © copyrighted.

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Thanks so much everyone who responded. I have so any of the 20 mg tablets, so after reading all the posts, I rush-ordered gelatin capsules and will begin slicing the tablets into pieces, weigh them for the amount I need, beginning with 9mg and tapering down every month or 3 weeks to 8, 7, etc. till the liquid seems a better solution.

I was especially grateful to read the reason I'm not experiencing WD problems is my slow taper and not to stop at this point. Patience is not one of my best qualities!!

9/11/2015 15 mg Fluoxetine/night 1 month into taper from 20 mg

11/28/2015 5 mg Fluoxetine/night, slicing tablet, measuring & placing into empty capsule to easily swallow.

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