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Oh, just reread your post and should say I didn't get through with minimal symptoms.

There's no such thing as going through this without a lot of suffering

I think I had less than others because I went slowly for the most part

But make no mistake I went through hell-especially for a couple of months in 2012!

It's all doable though. And very worth it.

Sept 12th 1992-began taking Imipramine (50mgs) for panic attacks.

Stopped Imipramine after 4 months (cold turkey).

7 months later experienced "mysterious" bad flu-like symptoms, although, without upper respiratory problems or fever. Because of this and a day of panic attacks, was put on Prozac (20mgs?) for 2 months and then, when that didn't work-was put back on  Imipramine,  plus Xanax 1 mg (4Xdaily)-October 1993.

March 1999-switched from Imipramine (50mgs) to Celexa.

2008-switched to Pristiq for 3 months, then back to Effexor XR (after bad reaction to the Pristiq).

Sept 1st 2010-Switched from Effexor XR (75mgs) to Effexor Generic (solid form) in preparation for taper.

Nov 15th 2010-Began tapering from 75mgs Effexor Generic.

January 13th 2014-.06mgs

April 17th 2014-      .03mgs

May 11th 2014-       .02mgs

Ended taper October 31st 2014

Oct 4th 2015-11 months post taper and completely back to normal!

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Kitchy, I usually waited about a month and a half between drops, but you have to be careful not to automatically go by a particular calendar date, and instead go by how you feel. It's important to giv

reachingforthestars

Hudgens, did you take Celexa as long as eight or nine years before Effexor? If so did you have any withdrawal symptoms from Celexa after you switched to Effexor?

 

Your journey has given a lot of hope!

 

 Thank you! :)

Citalopram 40mg from 2003-2015

Jan 2015 started tapering first dropped to 35mgFeb 30mg, March 25mgApril 20mg, May 17,5mg, June 15mgJuly 12,5mg, Aug 12,5mg,

Sep 0mg for 5 days because of stomac flu and after I raised to 7,5mg. All the symptoms of acute WD shaking, diarrhea, vomiting, barely could walk ect. Still didn't realize that it wasn't only stomac flu but I was also going through WD.

Oct 2,5mg and crashed again badly and quickly raised to 4mg. It was then when I knew my symptoms were due to WD.

Then in November after a month holding on 4mg raised to 5mg due to muscle weakness and had a VERY BAD reaction to reinstatement: akathisia(lasted for one or two weeks), insomnia, anhedonia... Drop quicly back to 4mg, Dec 3mg

Jan 2016 2,6mg( in the middle of Jan after I had been on 2,6mg for a week I tried to updose to 2,8mg and immediately had bad reaction to it: akathisia for a day, andehonia got worse. The next day dropped back to 2,6mg), Feb 2,4mg( a new symptom PGAD lasted 24/7 for 2 months after that on and off), March 2,4mg, April 2,3mg, May 2,2mg, June 2,1mg, July 2,0mg( Pgad almost nonexisting, sleeping pretty good, still some anhedonia but there has been a lot of gradual progress), Aug 1,97mg-1,89mg, Sep 1,88mg-1,49mg, Oct 1,48mg- 1,70mg,

Nov 0,65mg- current dose 0,5mg

 

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I took Celexa for 1-2 months before beginning Effexor, and it was a smooth transition.

Sept 12th 1992-began taking Imipramine (50mgs) for panic attacks.

Stopped Imipramine after 4 months (cold turkey).

7 months later experienced "mysterious" bad flu-like symptoms, although, without upper respiratory problems or fever. Because of this and a day of panic attacks, was put on Prozac (20mgs?) for 2 months and then, when that didn't work-was put back on  Imipramine,  plus Xanax 1 mg (4Xdaily)-October 1993.

March 1999-switched from Imipramine (50mgs) to Celexa.

2008-switched to Pristiq for 3 months, then back to Effexor XR (after bad reaction to the Pristiq).

Sept 1st 2010-Switched from Effexor XR (75mgs) to Effexor Generic (solid form) in preparation for taper.

Nov 15th 2010-Began tapering from 75mgs Effexor Generic.

January 13th 2014-.06mgs

April 17th 2014-      .03mgs

May 11th 2014-       .02mgs

Ended taper October 31st 2014

Oct 4th 2015-11 months post taper and completely back to normal!

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  • 2 weeks later...
Hopeinahpwr

Hudgens,

Thank you, thank you for posting! I have been so concerned about how I'm going to get my Dr to agree to give me enough pills each month so that I can split them down in an effort to really slow taper the correct way! Then I started thinking about doing exactly what you have done, but thought to myself...that would never work as I could never assure that the dose is the same!...but you did it! You have given me and I'm sure many others hope! God bless you and please stay in touch, you are an inspiration and your story is truly needed!

Ben

On zoloft since 2000 for OCD/anxiety. Tapered off from 150mg to 100, 50, 25 over Dec/Jan 2015. After month n half off, began depression. Being terrified, as I never had depression before, after a few days, went back to 50mg, then five days later to 100mg. Now stable. I will stop this medication, with time and perseverance...my current taper level and timing are as follows, which includes No other Rx's, No alcohol, NEVER any illicit drugs:

84mg from October 2016

82mg from February 2017

79mg from April 2017

77mg from June 2017

75mg from July 2017

"Yesterday is History, Tomorrow a Mystery, Today is a Gift." - Eleanor Roosevelt

"Forces beyond your control can take away everything you possess except one thing, your freedom to choose how you will respond to the situation." - Viktor Frankl

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You don't need any more pills-you just reduce each one you take each day using whatever method works best for you. If you using solid pills (generic) you just take off a little bit from the place where the pill divides and then break it in half and take an AM and a PM dose-the trick is to take off the same amount each day.

I didn't have to resort to the eyeball measuring method until I was down to 1 or 2 mgs-the doses just became too brittle to measure with the gizmo I used up until then. small amounts of powder aren't that hard to judge-I used a single edge razor blade to move the piles around and did it on colored printer paper. I may just be good at judging symmetry.

 

I think the scales you can buy are accurate until you get down to below a mg-so you can go pretty far that way.

Sept 12th 1992-began taking Imipramine (50mgs) for panic attacks.

Stopped Imipramine after 4 months (cold turkey).

7 months later experienced "mysterious" bad flu-like symptoms, although, without upper respiratory problems or fever. Because of this and a day of panic attacks, was put on Prozac (20mgs?) for 2 months and then, when that didn't work-was put back on  Imipramine,  plus Xanax 1 mg (4Xdaily)-October 1993.

March 1999-switched from Imipramine (50mgs) to Celexa.

2008-switched to Pristiq for 3 months, then back to Effexor XR (after bad reaction to the Pristiq).

Sept 1st 2010-Switched from Effexor XR (75mgs) to Effexor Generic (solid form) in preparation for taper.

Nov 15th 2010-Began tapering from 75mgs Effexor Generic.

January 13th 2014-.06mgs

April 17th 2014-      .03mgs

May 11th 2014-       .02mgs

Ended taper October 31st 2014

Oct 4th 2015-11 months post taper and completely back to normal!

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thank you so much for posting. I'm on the SSRI originally for panic attacks too starting in 1990 (so about 25 years). I was able to get off the ssri and benzo the summer of 2014, but then the panic attacks came back full force. I'm guessing that was in large part to cutting things down much too quickly. Amazingly, as I was going through the process I had some extra anxiety (to the degree that I quit drinking coffee) but not really any other symptoms. It was just that the damn panic attacks came back and were relentless. I'm going to do this again, but go much more slowly. I already dropped some too quickly (I now know) but I'll just give myself some extra time before I start dropping again, and go slow from here on out. Your story is inspirational :)

My suggestions are not medical advice. They are my opinions based on my own experience, strength and hope.

You are in charge of your own medical / healing / recovery choices.

My success story |  My introduction thread

 

ZOLOFT FREE - COMPLETELY DRUG FREE 4/28/2019! - total time on 28+ years

BENZO FREE! 4/7/2018 - total time on 27+ years

REMERON FREE! 12/11/2016 - total time on 15 months

Caffeine & Nicotine Free 2014 / 2015 - smoked for 28 years

Alcohol Free 4/1/2014 - drank for 30 years

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Hopeinahpwr

Elbee,

We can do this. I see you've been on ADs yourself for some time. I'M praying for you man.

On zoloft since 2000 for OCD/anxiety. Tapered off from 150mg to 100, 50, 25 over Dec/Jan 2015. After month n half off, began depression. Being terrified, as I never had depression before, after a few days, went back to 50mg, then five days later to 100mg. Now stable. I will stop this medication, with time and perseverance...my current taper level and timing are as follows, which includes No other Rx's, No alcohol, NEVER any illicit drugs:

84mg from October 2016

82mg from February 2017

79mg from April 2017

77mg from June 2017

75mg from July 2017

"Yesterday is History, Tomorrow a Mystery, Today is a Gift." - Eleanor Roosevelt

"Forces beyond your control can take away everything you possess except one thing, your freedom to choose how you will respond to the situation." - Viktor Frankl

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It's interesting to me that you're not experiencing any of the 100 other withdrawal symptoms.

-just a return of your original panic attacks-

If the panic attacks are just that, then you would've gottin off the antidepressant with no

withdrawal and therefore maybe should just go into therapy to learn to deal with the attacks-it Can be done without drugs. I was started on an antidepressant around the same time as you and for the same reason. I do get attacks still-once in a great while-but I've learn in therapy what to do about them and so it just doesn't bother me much anymore.

 

Of course the other possibility is that you just hadn't gottin to the withdrawal yet-sometimes it takes months. Still, some people can stop antidepressants fairly quickly with no withdrawal-at least that's what I've heard.

Sept 12th 1992-began taking Imipramine (50mgs) for panic attacks.

Stopped Imipramine after 4 months (cold turkey).

7 months later experienced "mysterious" bad flu-like symptoms, although, without upper respiratory problems or fever. Because of this and a day of panic attacks, was put on Prozac (20mgs?) for 2 months and then, when that didn't work-was put back on  Imipramine,  plus Xanax 1 mg (4Xdaily)-October 1993.

March 1999-switched from Imipramine (50mgs) to Celexa.

2008-switched to Pristiq for 3 months, then back to Effexor XR (after bad reaction to the Pristiq).

Sept 1st 2010-Switched from Effexor XR (75mgs) to Effexor Generic (solid form) in preparation for taper.

Nov 15th 2010-Began tapering from 75mgs Effexor Generic.

January 13th 2014-.06mgs

April 17th 2014-      .03mgs

May 11th 2014-       .02mgs

Ended taper October 31st 2014

Oct 4th 2015-11 months post taper and completely back to normal!

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  • 1 month later...
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cymbaltawithdrawal5600

I am so glad to see you continuing to visit the site and offer your experience, strength and hope to people here. Many recovered members get caught up in rebuilding their lives and really don't have time to come back and help out and we really need that. People need to see and hear from someone who punched through to the other side, even if just to say: "I had that, it was terrible, but it went away".

What happened and how I arrived here: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4243-cymbaltawithdrawal5600-introduction/#entry50878

 

July 2016 I have decided to leave my story here at SA unfinished. I have left my contact information in my profile for anyone who wishes to talk to me. I have a posting history spanning nearly 4 years and 3000+ posts all over the site.

 

Thank you to all who participated in my recovery. I'll miss talking to you but know that I'll be cheering you on from the sidelines, suffering and rejoicing with you in spirit, as you go on in your journey.

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Hopeinahpwr

Thank you Hudgens, your journey gives great hope!

Ben

On zoloft since 2000 for OCD/anxiety. Tapered off from 150mg to 100, 50, 25 over Dec/Jan 2015. After month n half off, began depression. Being terrified, as I never had depression before, after a few days, went back to 50mg, then five days later to 100mg. Now stable. I will stop this medication, with time and perseverance...my current taper level and timing are as follows, which includes No other Rx's, No alcohol, NEVER any illicit drugs:

84mg from October 2016

82mg from February 2017

79mg from April 2017

77mg from June 2017

75mg from July 2017

"Yesterday is History, Tomorrow a Mystery, Today is a Gift." - Eleanor Roosevelt

"Forces beyond your control can take away everything you possess except one thing, your freedom to choose how you will respond to the situation." - Viktor Frankl

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Welcome!

Sept 12th 1992-began taking Imipramine (50mgs) for panic attacks.

Stopped Imipramine after 4 months (cold turkey).

7 months later experienced "mysterious" bad flu-like symptoms, although, without upper respiratory problems or fever. Because of this and a day of panic attacks, was put on Prozac (20mgs?) for 2 months and then, when that didn't work-was put back on  Imipramine,  plus Xanax 1 mg (4Xdaily)-October 1993.

March 1999-switched from Imipramine (50mgs) to Celexa.

2008-switched to Pristiq for 3 months, then back to Effexor XR (after bad reaction to the Pristiq).

Sept 1st 2010-Switched from Effexor XR (75mgs) to Effexor Generic (solid form) in preparation for taper.

Nov 15th 2010-Began tapering from 75mgs Effexor Generic.

January 13th 2014-.06mgs

April 17th 2014-      .03mgs

May 11th 2014-       .02mgs

Ended taper October 31st 2014

Oct 4th 2015-11 months post taper and completely back to normal!

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  • 1 month later...
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hmm, I'm following this thread but never got an email that there were replies. Strange.

 

Ya the first time I got off the meds in 2014 I had very few WD symptoms in the 4 month process, mostly increased anxiety. Then 2 months later the panic attacks hit again full force. But why I've been recognizing since my last post is that things were going downhill for some time before 2014 (which now I recall is why I got off the meds) and since the "reinstatement" I have been experiencing more difficulties that I guess I was just in denial about or not wanting to see? Regardless, again, thank you for documenting your courageous story!

My suggestions are not medical advice. They are my opinions based on my own experience, strength and hope.

You are in charge of your own medical / healing / recovery choices.

My success story |  My introduction thread

 

ZOLOFT FREE - COMPLETELY DRUG FREE 4/28/2019! - total time on 28+ years

BENZO FREE! 4/7/2018 - total time on 27+ years

REMERON FREE! 12/11/2016 - total time on 15 months

Caffeine & Nicotine Free 2014 / 2015 - smoked for 28 years

Alcohol Free 4/1/2014 - drank for 30 years

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  • 3 weeks later...
cakesgimmecakes

This story gives me so much hope regarding insomnia. And just an overall sense of well being I'm looking for. THANK YOU for coming back and sharing. Please continue to update us.

September 2001 - 10 mg Sarafem (fluoxetine) for mild case of PMS that could have been helped by exercise and diet modification! I was NOT depressed prior to taking this drug. July 2002 - CT, no issues except stomach distention (honestly, I think daily running helped, but I didn't know a thing about WD or that it even existed)

August 2003 - reinstated to resolve severe stomach bloating (a WD symptom from year before; didn't realize it was a WD symptom)

2003-2009 - on and off 10-20 mg, CT at several points with no issues! Literally no issues except stomach distention.

March 2009 - CT, no issues except estrogen/progesterone imbalances and stomach distention 

March 2010 - reinstated 10 mg for one month, CT, no issues except estrogen/progesterone imbalances and stomach distention 

November 2010 - reinstated 10 mg for one month, CT, insomnia began one month later.

January 2011-January 2015 - went on 10 mg fluoxetine every six months for one month, always CTing.

March 2015-November 2015 - Finally learned to taper! 

September 2019 - fully recovered from WD; gut issues remain

 

"The only way out is through." 

 

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  • 8 months later...

Hi Hudgens - I am inspired by your recovery story!  how are you doing these days?? I would like to know if you are still med free and enjoying life? I am struggling with Effexor withdrawal following a change of dose from 187.5mg per day down to 150mg per day several months ago now. Maybe it takes a bit longer to level out again after a 20% reduction of Venlafaxine (or should I just call it hell!) 

 

be great to hear from you

 

Geoff

Been on various SSRI's since early 1990's. Prozac, mirtazapine, citalopram, Effexor to name a few.

Cymbalta 60mg for last 5 years.

Over 20 years of medication without breaks.

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  • 5 months later...

Just went through your story Hudgens and wanted to say you are a shining light. One of a very few who would  taking the time to give back. Not sure if i'll use your little wrench you used to WD but I might buy some sandpaper right away. Hopefully it won't get too sandy when I give it a try.

 

Dave.

 Cymbalta, Zyprexa, Seroquil, Rispiridone, Valium, Zoloft, Clonazepam,. + 1 other Benzo. Total 11 yrs.

·           April 9th 2018 Hospital. 50mg Zoloft > 0 discontinued. 6mg Clonazepam > 2.5mg over 8 weeks stay.

           October 25th 2019: Hospital:  Clonazepam Bridged 1mg > to 20mg Diazepam.

           

           Anafranil: 90mg. 85mg 04/21 80mg 10/21 

      
  Diazepam (V): 25th October 2019, 20mg. 22 Dec 2019 19mg. 4 April 20: 18mg,  30 September: 17.5mg , 13 November 20: 17mg 01 January 2021: 16mg, 13/08: 15mg.

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  • 3 months later...

Dear Hudgens how are you?A little update will be appreciated.Thank you.

Cold turkeyed risperidone (1m.g)and trihexyphenidyl combination drug out of ignorance,In August 2016 after one month use.

Withdrawal symptoms settled at dreamful,disturbing sleep.

Thus introduced to olanzapine for sleep.Started using olanzapine out of ignorance.

Tapering olanzapine 10 m.g from February 2017.

May 2018 :Still suffering dreams,Still tapering olanzapine at 0.625.100ml water+2.5 mg olanzapine. June 2018 22.5ml=0.57mg.July 2018 20ml,August 2018-17.5ml,September 2018-15ml,October 2018 10 ml,December 2018 7 ml, BrassMonkey slide method so far at lower doses.2 nd December cold turkeyed , only to reach minure doses as reinstatement to cutshort endless tapering process.4rth December started 1ml.

Almost no symptoms and sleep is better,So started 0.5 ml from 17-12-2018.

"0"from31-12-18.Re birth happened from 10- 2020,as rejuvenation took whole2019.Completely recovered now.

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  • 8 months later...
On 9/16/2015 at 5:08 AM, LexAnger said:

Thanks so very much Hudgens for sharing your successful tapering! Each of us who is still on the way needs it so much to continue this most terrifying, painful and long battle! It's just beyond unbelievable even for the micro tapers.

 

Can you share more insights about how did it feel during the slow taper, what you were able and unable to do etc. did all symptoms go away without other complications to your general health?

 

Again, your great success can save many lives. One of members I befriended here on the forum just took her life last week losing hope no being terrified by the non- out of the hell thinking.

 

Please update us when you can as you heal further.

 

Best wishes to you. So happy for you!

LexA

 

On 9/16/2015 at 5:08 AM, LexAnger said:

Thanks so very much Hudgens for sharing your successful tapering! Each of us who is still on the way needs it so much to continue this most terrifying, painful and long battle! It's just beyond unbelievable even for the micro tapers.

 

Can you share more insights about how did it feel during the slow taper, what you were able and unable to do etc. did all symptoms go away without other complications to your general health?

 

Again, your great success can save many lives. One of members I befriended here on the forum just took her life last week losing hope no being terrified by the non- out of the hell thinking.

 

Please update us when you can as you heal further.

 

Best wishes to you. So happy for you!

LexA

 

1)On Seroxat (Paxil) 14 years

Stopped working.

2) September 2017 cross tapered to Mitrazipine 15mg over 4 week period.

3)Six weeks after cross taper tried to reinstate to Seroxat at low dosage. Lasted 10 days. Failed.

4)  Remained on just Mirtazapine 15mg for 8 months.

5)  in May 2018 attempted cold turkey from Mitrazipine. Lasted 4 days. Failed.

6) reinstated 15mg for 9 days

7)  reduced dose of Mirtazapine

to 7.5mg. Been on  this dose for  six weeks to the present day and I’m now totally unstable.

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On 9/16/2015 at 5:08 AM, LexAnger said:

Thanks so very much Hudgens for sharing your successful tapering! Each of us who is still on the way needs it so much to continue this most terrifying, painful and long battle! It's just beyond unbelievable even for the micro tapers.

 

Can you share more insights about how did it feel during the slow taper, what you were able and unable to do etc. did all symptoms go away without other complications to your general health?

 

Again, your great success can save many lives. One of members I befriended here on the forum just took her life last week losing hope no being terrified by the non- out of the hell thinking.

 

Please update us when you can as you heal further.

 

Best wishes to you. So happy for you!

LexA

 

On 9/16/2015 at 5:08 AM, LexAnger said:

Thanks so very much Hudgens for sharing your successful tapering! Each of us who is still on the way needs it so much to continue this most terrifying, painful and long battle! It's just beyond unbelievable even for the micro tapers.

 

Can you share more insights about how did it feel during the slow taper, what you were able and unable to do etc. did all symptoms go away without other complications to your general health?

 

Again, your great success can save many lives. One of members I befriended here on the forum just took her life last week losing hope no being terrified by the non- out of the hell thinking.

 

Please update us when you can as you heal further.

 

Best wishes to you. So happy for you!

LexA

It’s unbelievable.  Someone writes a story about success and healing which lifts the spirits, And then immediately under it,  someone makes a very triggering comment about someone else taking their life. 

 A quick reminder you have to be so careful on perusing this site, the carpet can be pulled out from under your feet in an instant. 

1)On Seroxat (Paxil) 14 years

Stopped working.

2) September 2017 cross tapered to Mitrazipine 15mg over 4 week period.

3)Six weeks after cross taper tried to reinstate to Seroxat at low dosage. Lasted 10 days. Failed.

4)  Remained on just Mirtazapine 15mg for 8 months.

5)  in May 2018 attempted cold turkey from Mitrazipine. Lasted 4 days. Failed.

6) reinstated 15mg for 9 days

7)  reduced dose of Mirtazapine

to 7.5mg. Been on  this dose for  six weeks to the present day and I’m now totally unstable.

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  • 2 months later...
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi there,

 

The staff at SA are wondering how you are.  We'd love to hear how you are doing now.   Would you mind dropping by and giving an update?

 

Thanks.

CC

So close to the end!!!

🏁

Current from 16 October 2021:  Pristiq 0.005mg

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering Oct 2015 

My full tapering program     My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)    My website

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.

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