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Hello everyone,

I was diagnosed with Anxiety disorder, agoraphobia, claustrophobia, and severe depression, few years ago. I was on Nexito (Escitalopram) and Rivotril (Clonazepam) for almost 3 years. I went off the above medications 4 months ago, i.e., in January 2016. 

Withdrawals started after a month. My shrink prescribed me with Stablon (Tianeptine) 12.5mg twice a day, to fight the withdrawals. Three weeks into the new drug, and I started experiencing the following symptoms.

Head ache/stuffy head
Muscle ache
Weakness
Joint pain
Dry mouth
Dizziness
Anxiety
Suicidal Thought
Mood swings
Loss of taste

I immediately contacted my shrink and he put me back to Nexito and Rivotril. Upon asking whether the above symptoms were the side effect of Tianeptine, he simply avoided the question by claiming Tianeptine to a very mild drug.

It has been 4 days now, I'm off Tianeptine, and I am feeling much better. Not completely though. 

My main concern here is the loss of taste. Been 4 days and I cannot taste food at all. Even if I am not eating anything, there is this greasy metallic feel that persists. I went to an ENT yesterday and he concluded it as a reaction to Acidity, and prescribed me with general antacids, lactic acid bacillus capsules, and mouthwash.

Since I do not know why it happened and what exactly it is, I am concerned whether I am on the right line of treatment.

If anyone out here can help me on this, I'd be grateful.

Thank you!

  1. 2012-2014 : Lexapro (Escitalopram) 20 mg   +  Klonopin (Clonazepam) 0.5 mg (initial 3 months)
  2. 2015 – Started tapering Lexapro (Escitalopram)
  3. January 2016 – Stopped Lexapro (Escitalopram)
  4. February 2016 – Severe withdrawals
  5. March 2016 – Started with Stablon (Tianeptine) 12.5 twice a day. (To reduce withdrawals)
  6. Currently – Stopped Tianeptine because of its side effects.
  7. 15 April 2016 :-  Hit back with depression and anxiety. Doctor advised to start Lexapro (Escitalopram) 10mg + 0.5 mg Klonopin (Clonazepam). I’m on it.

Note: looking forward to get rid off medicines

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Hyperbunny, welcome to SA.  It is good that you are feeling somewhat better and the withdrawal has lessened since reinstating. I have never heard of tianeptine and will do some research, we are always learning here! Hopefully the treatment for the acidity reaction will help with the abnormal taste. 

 

 

When you are stable you might want to look at how to taper safely and avoid withdrawal. As you have discovered, the only way to stop withdrawal is reinstating the drug/s or sitting it out, sometimes it is just too much and we have to go back on.  When you are ready, (we would suggest a few months to stabilise) read through the topics on tapering escitalopram here.  

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/7562-about-reinstating-and-stabilizing-to-reduce-withdrawal-symptoms/

 

We have a dedicated benzo forum here, you might want to post there and find the best way to taper clonazepam when you are ready. We recommend tapering the antidepressant first as the clonazepam can help buffer the withdrawal if both have been taken for long periods. 

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/forum/29-members-only-benzo-forum/

 

Tapering escitalopram http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/406-tapering-off-lexapro-escitalopram/

**I am not a medical professional, if in doubt please consult a doctor with withdrawal knowledge.

 

 

Different drugs occasionally (mostly benzos) 1976 - 1981 (no problem)

1993 - 2002 in and out of hospital. every type of drug + ECT. Staring with seroxat

2002  effexor. 

Tapered  March 2012 to March 2013, ending with 5 beads.

Withdrawal April 2013 . Reinstated 5 beads reduced to 4 beads May 2013

Restarted taper  Nov 2013  

OFF EFFEXOR Feb 2015    :D 

Tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

Tapering tramadol, Feb 2015 100mg , March 2015 50mg  

 July 2017 30mg.  May 15 2018 25mg

Taking fish oil, magnesium, B12, folic acid, bilberry eyebright for eye pressure. 

 

My story http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4199-hello-mammap-checking-in/page-33

 

Lesson learned, slow down taper at lower doses. Taper no more than 10% of CURRENT dose if possible

 

 

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  • Moderator

Hi Hyperbunny-- Welcome to the group.  I'm sorry that you're having a rough time with things right now.  I am so glad that you have decided not to take the Tianeptine.  From what research I've done it's a pretty nasty drug.  All the symptoms you exhibited can be attributed to it, including the taste problems.  It's a very good idea not to get mixed up with it.

 

Tianeptine is a TCA of sorts. It has an effect on all the different opioid receptors so it's very addictive. It plays with serotonin levels but it is a toss up as to whether it is an SSRI or SSRE (enhancer) and affects several other neurotransmitters in the same manner as the more popular antipsychotics. It does not play well with MAOIs and MUST be tapered slowly after any extended use.  I don't think that your three weeks of use will be a problem with this, but it is something to keep in mind.  It has a laundry list of all the symptoms we know and loth and they are reported to start with in weeks of starting the drug.  It is prescription only through out Europe and not approved for use it the rest of the world.

20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Final Dose 0.016mg.     Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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Hi Hyperbunny, welcome to SA.  It is good that you are feeling somewhat better and the withdrawal has lessened since reinstating. I have never heard of tianeptine and will do some research, we are always learning here! Hopefully the treatment for the acidity reaction will help with the abnormal taste. 

 

 

When you are stable you might want to look at how to taper safely and avoid withdrawal. As you have discovered, the only way to stop withdrawal is reinstating the drug/s or sitting it out, sometimes it is just too much and we have to go back on.  When you are ready, (we would suggest a few months to stabilise) read through the topics on tapering escitalopram here.  

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/7562-about-reinstating-and-stabilizing-to-reduce-withdrawal-symptoms/

 

We have a dedicated benzo forum here, you might want to post there and find the best way to taper clonazepam when you are ready. We recommend tapering the antidepressant first as the clonazepam can help buffer the withdrawal if both have been taken for long periods. 

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/forum/29-members-only-benzo-forum/

 

Tapering escitalopram http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/406-tapering-off-lexapro-escitalopram/

 

Hi mammaP,

Thank you for the warm welcome. I will definitely go through all the links you’ve shared above.

Thanks again! J

  1. 2012-2014 : Lexapro (Escitalopram) 20 mg   +  Klonopin (Clonazepam) 0.5 mg (initial 3 months)
  2. 2015 – Started tapering Lexapro (Escitalopram)
  3. January 2016 – Stopped Lexapro (Escitalopram)
  4. February 2016 – Severe withdrawals
  5. March 2016 – Started with Stablon (Tianeptine) 12.5 twice a day. (To reduce withdrawals)
  6. Currently – Stopped Tianeptine because of its side effects.
  7. 15 April 2016 :-  Hit back with depression and anxiety. Doctor advised to start Lexapro (Escitalopram) 10mg + 0.5 mg Klonopin (Clonazepam). I’m on it.

Note: looking forward to get rid off medicines

Link to comment

Hi Hyperbunny-- Welcome to the group.  I'm sorry that you're having a rough time with things right now.  I am so glad that you have decided not to take the Tianeptine.  From what research I've done it's a pretty nasty drug.  All the symptoms you exhibited can be attributed to it, including the taste problems.  It's a very good idea not to get mixed up with it.

 

Tianeptine is a TCA of sorts. It has an effect on all the different opioid receptors so it's very addictive. It plays with serotonin levels but it is a toss up as to whether it is an SSRI or SSRE (enhancer) and affects several other neurotransmitters in the same manner as the more popular antipsychotics. It does not play well with MAOIs and MUST be tapered slowly after any extended use.  I don't think that your three weeks of use will be a problem with this, but it is something to keep in mind.  It has a laundry list of all the symptoms we know and loth and they are reported to start with in weeks of starting the drug.  It is prescription only through out Europe and not approved for use it the rest of the world.

 

Hi brassmonkey,

Thank you for the warm welcome.

The withdrawals have stopped completely, since I’ve stopped Stablon (Tianeptine) and reinstated Lexapro (Escitalopram). Today is the 4th day, but I still feel really depressed. I have a heavy head, which is too stressed at the moment and it feels like, any moment it will blow up. There is no energy at all. Don’t feel like going to work. Worried about every single thing around.

 

New update:-

 

Just got my blood reports back – (did B12 and D3 tests for the loss of taste)

25 (OH) Vit. D  – 18.51 ng/ml  (Deficiency less than 21 ng/ml)

Vitamin B12 – 140.8 pg/ml (Reference Range 191-946)

 

My General physician has given me Mecobalamin Injections and other supplements to treat the above deficiency.

 

The tricky part here is that, as per my research, Vitamin B12, or cobalamin, is an essential vitamin for the proper functioning and development of the brain and the nerve cells. Deficiency of B12 can lead to many mental disorders.

(http://brainblogger.com/2014/07/30/vitamin-b12-deficiency-and-its-neurological-consequences/)

 

I am really confused now. Is it depression? Or the symptoms of B12 Deficiency.  Was it always B12 deficiency which mimicked the symptoms of depression, leading doctors to believe that I’m a patient of severe depression? It’s all messed up right now in my head. I can’t even put it in words properly. I’ll try some other day.

 

Thanks & Cheers!

  1. 2012-2014 : Lexapro (Escitalopram) 20 mg   +  Klonopin (Clonazepam) 0.5 mg (initial 3 months)
  2. 2015 – Started tapering Lexapro (Escitalopram)
  3. January 2016 – Stopped Lexapro (Escitalopram)
  4. February 2016 – Severe withdrawals
  5. March 2016 – Started with Stablon (Tianeptine) 12.5 twice a day. (To reduce withdrawals)
  6. Currently – Stopped Tianeptine because of its side effects.
  7. 15 April 2016 :-  Hit back with depression and anxiety. Doctor advised to start Lexapro (Escitalopram) 10mg + 0.5 mg Klonopin (Clonazepam). I’m on it.

Note: looking forward to get rid off medicines

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Hyperbunny, it's good that you had the bloods done and yes B12 deficiency does cause depression. Depression is very real and debilitating but has now been proved NOT to be a chemical imbalance in the brain. Drugs CAUSE the imbalance! Read the topic at the end of my post.  there are links to studies and papers proving it is a myth that was cooked up by the drug companies to sell their drugs.  There are many causes of depression, including B12 deficiency, Vitamin D deficiency caused by lack of sunlight, thyroid disorders, and others. Many drugs have depression as side effects, including anti depressants, then there's withdrawal which causes depression too!  Then there is the stress and anguish of bereavement, PTSD, etc which can be treated with the right therapy and simply time. 

Hopefuly with the injections and reinstatement you will be feeling more like yourself again soon. It will take time and you will probably be up and down a bit while your nervous system stabilises but keep the dose steady  How do you take the klonopin, as needed or regular doses? 

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4291-again-chemical-imbalance-is-a-myth-stop-the-lies-please/

**I am not a medical professional, if in doubt please consult a doctor with withdrawal knowledge.

 

 

Different drugs occasionally (mostly benzos) 1976 - 1981 (no problem)

1993 - 2002 in and out of hospital. every type of drug + ECT. Staring with seroxat

2002  effexor. 

Tapered  March 2012 to March 2013, ending with 5 beads.

Withdrawal April 2013 . Reinstated 5 beads reduced to 4 beads May 2013

Restarted taper  Nov 2013  

OFF EFFEXOR Feb 2015    :D 

Tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

Tapering tramadol, Feb 2015 100mg , March 2015 50mg  

 July 2017 30mg.  May 15 2018 25mg

Taking fish oil, magnesium, B12, folic acid, bilberry eyebright for eye pressure. 

 

My story http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4199-hello-mammap-checking-in/page-33

 

Lesson learned, slow down taper at lower doses. Taper no more than 10% of CURRENT dose if possible

 

 

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Hi mammaP,

 

I have been prescribed klonopin .5mg for 10 days, once at night. After that, SOS.

  1. 2012-2014 : Lexapro (Escitalopram) 20 mg   +  Klonopin (Clonazepam) 0.5 mg (initial 3 months)
  2. 2015 – Started tapering Lexapro (Escitalopram)
  3. January 2016 – Stopped Lexapro (Escitalopram)
  4. February 2016 – Severe withdrawals
  5. March 2016 – Started with Stablon (Tianeptine) 12.5 twice a day. (To reduce withdrawals)
  6. Currently – Stopped Tianeptine because of its side effects.
  7. 15 April 2016 :-  Hit back with depression and anxiety. Doctor advised to start Lexapro (Escitalopram) 10mg + 0.5 mg Klonopin (Clonazepam). I’m on it.

Note: looking forward to get rid off medicines

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Guys,

 

It's been 7 days I'm on Lexapro 10 mg, and the symptoms are still troubling me. It feels like someone is squeezing me brain and it will get crushed any moment. There is a lot of pressure. Apart from this, I get random Suicidal thoughts throughout the day. I try to ignore them, but it keeps building. 

  1. 2012-2014 : Lexapro (Escitalopram) 20 mg   +  Klonopin (Clonazepam) 0.5 mg (initial 3 months)
  2. 2015 – Started tapering Lexapro (Escitalopram)
  3. January 2016 – Stopped Lexapro (Escitalopram)
  4. February 2016 – Severe withdrawals
  5. March 2016 – Started with Stablon (Tianeptine) 12.5 twice a day. (To reduce withdrawals)
  6. Currently – Stopped Tianeptine because of its side effects.
  7. 15 April 2016 :-  Hit back with depression and anxiety. Doctor advised to start Lexapro (Escitalopram) 10mg + 0.5 mg Klonopin (Clonazepam). I’m on it.

Note: looking forward to get rid off medicines

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • Moderator

Hey Hyperbunny - 

 

Your doctor may have added to your symptoms with a B12 shot (and a D3 shot, too?)  These can be very stimulating when someone is in withdrawal, and can make symptoms worse.  Usually when a deficiency is as severe as your, we recommend starting the supplements low, and tapering them in, to see if there are any side effects.  B vitamins can be stimulating, and D3 is actually a hormone, and can also be stimululating.

 

For example, if a doctor wants to give a 50,000 iu D3 shot, it would be better to build up from 1000 IU capsules to 5000 IU capsules, and take those for 10 days to get your 50,000 iu.  That way you are still getting what you need, but more gently.

 

But this is water under the bridge.  If your doctor understood withdrawal, you wouldn't be in this situation!

 

So you may have some symptoms for awhile after the vitamins - and you may need to discontinue them if it gets too bad.  Quite a few people in here haven't been able to tolerate B vitamins, or D3. It's very individual.

 

For your intrusive thoughts, please see Neuro-emotion, and Waves and Windows and consider Non Drug Techniques for Coping with Emotional Symptoms.

 

I hope you are feeling better soon.

"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna

 

Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.

 

My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.

 

A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.


The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/

 

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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