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cocomimosas - starting Fetzima, desperate for a change


cocomimosas

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I honestly would appreciate a change of anything. I feel so disconnected from life and my own body, so depressed, high anxiety, insomnia, no longer feel like I have a will to live, and also now dealing with academic and social stress.

 

I've been working through depression for three years now, it started in late 2011 early 2012. Spent two years in psychotherapy, and felt like I needed to start a anti depressant at the beginning of this year because I just wasn't kicking it. I mean, objective at the end of the day, isn't to be happy even, it's just to feel a tiny bit better. I feel like the past three years have been just slipping away and downhill.

 

January - April: Doctor first put me on a small dose of Lexapro - 10mg. So many side effects and it wasn't worth it AT ALL (cotton mouth, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, suicidal ideation, erectile dysfunction, loss of appetite).

Started 10mg Ambien for my insomnia, which has mixed results depending on the night. Sometimes it's great and I sleep, other nights are endless.

 

April - August: In April of this year, I was switched to Pristiq - 50 mg. At first I felt like this was working for me, and things were going uphill, but it was almost a placebo effect from a positive attitude and psychotherapy. By August I realized I was just the same person, feeling desperate, anxious, depressed, and scared.

 

August - November: August saw me change to 225mg of effexor. Started getting stronger side effects - nausea, loss of appetite, exhaustion, increased suicidal ideation, retrograde ejaculation. Most disconcerting for me, and I'm really curious about this, but I've been recently dealing with numbness on the lips, eyes, face, and neck in short spurts. A friend who has been on AD's suggested it was mild seizing from the effexor (though I have no history of seizures whatsoever), doctor ran a cat scan an EEG and there are no neurological symptoms. But I'm really confused as to what this side effect is and am looking for answers. I tried to push through it to just see if there was any benefit but I couldn't put up with going nowhere but downhill. I feel intense disconnection from my body, extreme short term memory loss. My memory is like soup. I have no will to get up in the morning, to eat, to do anything. I push through the motions but I could just sit in a thoughtless stupor forever.

 

Right now (November 7): My doctor just switched met to Fetzima - 120mg. No clue what that's going to be like. As I'm transitioning between the two medications, I'm still dealing with the numbness and have no clue where it's coming from. Any advice would be so appreciated?

 

I'm so desperate, just to feel a little better. Like, I would feel so thrilled to be depressed but feel reconnected to my body, or not have suicidal ideation. I'm desperate. I wish I was at the point where I could taper off of something - but like, I haven't been given the push from meds to even get to a place where I felt even remotely better.

college student having a really tough time here. I've been dealing with depression and anxiety for 3+ years. Started AD's this year, with mixed results.

Jan-April - 10mg Lexapro - no difference

April-August - 50mg Pristiq (Desvenlafaxine) - slightly positive results at first, ended up completely breaking down in August

August-November - 225mg Effexor/Venlafaxine - at first seemed to be just 'okay' ended up with huge anxiety and panic attacks, tons of side effects removed from medication

November 7- just starting 120mg Fetzima (levomilnacipran) JUST starting, will keep updated

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Hey, I'm new to the forum and just posted in the introductions. I'm transitioning off of effexor right now, but experiencing some really strange symptoms. Curious if anyone else had them:

 

-temporary (1-3 seconds tops) numbness spread across eyes, facial region, lips, sometimes arms and legs. Feels like pins and needles for a fleeting second. It's like a phone restarting, I lose whatever I was in the middle of, concentration, information, what I was talking about. It's the strangest and most uncomfortable experience ever. It's like my eyes are suddenly glued at half mast, my vision is slightly greyed out. I feel like I'm caught in this half-awake stupor.

 

-I received neurological testing and was told from that standpoint I was fine. A friend suggested it could be mild seizing, though I don't have a history of seizures whatsoever. I'm not sure if that's accurate, but it's the only lead I've got.

college student having a really tough time here. I've been dealing with depression and anxiety for 3+ years. Started AD's this year, with mixed results.

Jan-April - 10mg Lexapro - no difference

April-August - 50mg Pristiq (Desvenlafaxine) - slightly positive results at first, ended up completely breaking down in August

August-November - 225mg Effexor/Venlafaxine - at first seemed to be just 'okay' ended up with huge anxiety and panic attacks, tons of side effects removed from medication

November 7- just starting 120mg Fetzima (levomilnacipran) JUST starting, will keep updated

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Cocomimosa,

 

Welcome to SA and it looks like you've done a great job of your signature.

 

I'm reasonably new here too so I can't really offer any advice, but someone should be along soon who may be able to make suggestions.

 

Good luck,

CC

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

 

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq    Post 0 updates start here

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 from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

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.  Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you.

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maybe it's just myoclonus and serotonin syndrome? thoughts? just started reading about this.

college student having a really tough time here. I've been dealing with depression and anxiety for 3+ years. Started AD's this year, with mixed results.

Jan-April - 10mg Lexapro - no difference

April-August - 50mg Pristiq (Desvenlafaxine) - slightly positive results at first, ended up completely breaking down in August

August-November - 225mg Effexor/Venlafaxine - at first seemed to be just 'okay' ended up with huge anxiety and panic attacks, tons of side effects removed from medication

November 7- just starting 120mg Fetzima (levomilnacipran) JUST starting, will keep updated

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Hi Cocomimosa,

 

I know people here try to get off meds, not get on them but I will offer my perspective anyway.

When I was 20 and in college, I got really depressed, not out of the blue, something happened. I don't know if you depression was triggered by something. I would look into physical causes of why you are depressed, especially if there is no acute trigger.

In my case I suffered 2.5 - 3 years, it was awful, I barely lived but I lived! In the end its ran its course, no meds. I may have taken something if given choice I don't know.

Now, many years later I resorted to AD, but triggers for me a pretty much the same, nothing out of the blue, in the midst of severe withdrawal, it is MORE awful, MORE CRAZY, and I am not living.

Would I still have taken lexapro to deal with my situation? Maybe. Would I do it now that I have been going through, NEVER!!!

The fact that ADs are not really doing you much good should give you a steer into a different direction, please don't overlook some other factors, deficiencies, etc.

For me,  lexapro worked and worked pretty well but I am badly paying for it now.

As of feeling of numbness, I had that occasionally on Lexapro, mouth, lips, cheeks, almost felt like if the weather is really cold and the face gets numbed a bit by the frost.

10/2012 - Lexapro 10mg

2013/2014 - Started experiencing visual disturbances, like visual processing was slow, feeling drunk all the time

9/2014 - Lexapro 5mg, didn't notice any withdrawal, drunk feeling went away

2015 - Drunk feeling came back

5/2015 - Lexapro 2.5mg - 1.25mg - insomnia started

6/2015 - Lexapro 0.625mg

7/2015 - Severe symptoms started, in desperation on advice of pdoc restarted 5mg Lexapro - total disaster

8/2015 - Lexapro 5mg, disoriented, sleepless zombie

9/2015 - Very reluctantly started transitioning to Zoloft

as of 10/10/2105 - no lexapro, 37.5mg Zoloft

12/14/2015 - 35mg zoloft, 1/16/2016 - 34mg

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Hi Coco sorry you are in this dreadful situation.

Welcome.

Thought for the day: Lets stand up, and let’s speak out , together. G Olsen

We have until the 14th. Feb 2018. 

URGENT REQUEST Please consider submitting  for the petition on Prescribed Drug Dependence and Withdrawal currently awaiting its third consideration at the Scottish Parliament. You don't even have to be from Scotland. By clicking on the link below you can read some of the previous submissions but be warned many of them are quite harrowing.

http://www.parliament.scot/GettingInvolved/Petitions/PE01651   

Please tell them about your problems taking and withdrawing from antidepressants and/or benzos.

Send by email to petitions@parliament.scot and quote PE01651 in the subject heading. Keep to a maximum of 3 sides of A4 and you can't name for legal reasons any doctor you have consulted. Tell them if you wish to remain anonymous. We need the numbers to help convince the committee members we are not isolated cases. You have until mid February. Thank you

Recovering paxil addict

None of the published articles shed light on what ssri's ... actually do or what their hazards might be. Healy 2013. 

This is so true, with anything you get on these drugs, dependance, tapering, withdrawal symptoms, side effects, just silent. And if there is something mentioned then their is a serious disconnect between what is said and reality! 

  "Every time I read of a multi-person shooting, I always presume that person had just started a SSRI or had just stopped."  Dr Mosher. Me too! 

Over two decades later, the number of antidepressant prescriptions a year is slightly more than the number of people in the Western world. Most (nine out of 10) prescriptions are for patients who faced difficulties on stopping, equating to about a tenth of the population. These patients are often advised to continue treatment because their difficulties indicate they need ongoing treatment, just as a person with diabetes needs insulin. Healy 2015

I believe the ssri era will soon stand as one of the most shameful in the history of medicine. Healy 2015

Let people help people ... in a natural, kind, non-addictive (and non-big pharma) way. J Broadley 2017

 

 

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  • Administrator

Welcome, Coco.

 

This is a site for going off drugs. We can't recommend what drug to try next.

 

Many people here have had bad experiences with psychiatric drugs and would never go on them again.

 

It sounds like you have had a series of adverse effects from antidepressants. The adverse effects themselves are wearing on the nervous system, as is going on and off drugs. It could be that what you and your doctor think of as worsening "depression", as well as the odd numbness and fogginess, is the cumulative effect of all those adverse reactions.

 

Some people's bodies do not get along with the chemicals in antidepressants. You may be one of them. Very few doctors recognize the adverse effects. You might find one here Recommended doctors, therapists, or clinics

 

Good luck to you.

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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everyone,

thank you so much for the well wishes and thoughts. As I've navigated around the site, I've learned more about serotonin syndrome and seem to fit a lot of the symptoms, and reached out to my doctor about it. I'm seeing my therapist tomorrow, and will definitely talk about the possibility of weaning off of the use of SNRI's - after what I've read and the research I've done, I feel that my doctor hasn't understood or noticed the problems I've been experiencing. I can't thank you all enough for this resource!

@starcontrol2, though I do have things that trigger higher levels of depression, at onset, there was none :/

college student having a really tough time here. I've been dealing with depression and anxiety for 3+ years. Started AD's this year, with mixed results.

Jan-April - 10mg Lexapro - no difference

April-August - 50mg Pristiq (Desvenlafaxine) - slightly positive results at first, ended up completely breaking down in August

August-November - 225mg Effexor/Venlafaxine - at first seemed to be just 'okay' ended up with huge anxiety and panic attacks, tons of side effects removed from medication

November 7- just starting 120mg Fetzima (levomilnacipran) JUST starting, will keep updated

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi cocomimosas,

 

I'm pleased you've managed to gain insight from information on this site.  Knowledge is power and assists us in making informed decisions (I'm going to put that in my signature!!!).  Don't forget about the 10% taper of CURRENT dose.  From what I have read in peoples threads, it is common for medical people to think that dropping anything from 20-50% over a week or so it slow, or they don't understand withdrawal symptoms.  If you haven't read it there is a topic on Why Taper 10%

 

I recently reinstated after dropping 50% of my dose (my doctor had suggested 100 mg alternating with 50 mg which according to what I have read here is almost as bad as cold turkey) and being on that for 2 weeks and feeling very fuzzy headed most of that time (especially the 2nd week).  I was very fortunate to find this site when I did :D.  I've been reinstated for 1 week and have felt much better.  I'm going to wait until after New Year to start my 10% taper.

 

Good Luck.

 

CC

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

 

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq    Post 0 updates start here

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 from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

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.  Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi coco , you might find this useful

Tips for Tapering off  Effexor               http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/272-tips-for-tapering-off-effexor-and-effexor-xr-venlafaxine/

 

If you're doing the crossover (your doc. has you working up to the highest recommended dose of Fetzima , some people are

prescribed 40mg)    you might consider getting stable again on effexor , and tapering off from there.

 

My gut feeling is that Fetzima won't be any more useful for you than lexapro , prozac and effexor have been.

 

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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Hi coco—

 

I am experiencing the exact same sensations you describe.  It is indeed quite jolting and uncomfortable.  I don't know what causes it other than your body just adjusting to not having that chemical anymore.

Fall 2013: Celexa, Risperdal and Xanax (don't remember dosage)

Spring 2014: Switched to Fetzima, Prozac, Remeron and Ambien (again don't remember dosage)

Winter 2015: Switched to Effexor 150mg, Abilify 30mg and Temazepam 30 mg, Deplin 15mg

Spring 2015: Effexor up to 225mg, Abilify down to 20mg, Temazepam 30mg, Deplin 15mg

 

There was also klonopin somewhere along the way in there, but I don't recall when or how much.

 

3 November 2015: Failed to go off Effexor cold turkey (went down to 75mg), Abilify 20mg, Temazepam 30mg

6 December 2015: prescribed trazodone 50 and Wellbutrin 150mg, did not take and went off Effexor again

 

"You have to laugh at the things that hurt you just to keep yourself in balance."

—Ken Kesey 

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