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Rico

Rico: Zyprexa tapering

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bhasski
9 minutes ago, Miko789 said:

 

 

I have flu-like symptoms , I can function but I have difficulty. I have seen some improvement but not much while doing mindfullness meditation, I have no idea how to get to grips with that? I'm thinking of going to a neuroligist to get a opinion/ view about it. Or CT?

In conversation I sometimes find it difficult to say the right word. I currently facing an ongoing issue.What about u ?

 

You were on olanzapine for 6 months, on signature.How were you when you quit Ct? Did you have any sleep problems insomnia , any concetration problems. What dose were you on?

 

I changed the doctor and he stopped the olanzapine and made it fluoxetine and others.  No one told me about the wdl and I didn't know about CT.

 

I seem to have sleep issues,memory issues or  image issues also due to olanzapine. 

 

Still having issues and don't know how will they get resolved.

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Plshelp

Bhasski, Miko and Rico. 

 

You all sound like you're enduring this battle for wellness quite well. Keep fighting and trying to find ways to overcome your struggles! 

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Miko789

Hi all Rico, bhasski Pshelp

 

So the visit to the neurologist wasn't too bad

The neurologist prescribed a homeopath medicine.I read some reviews, has some side effects but not too bad. I'm not taking it for now because I don't want agitation, flare-up symptoms .I want to be OK before during and after the trip to the U.K.. My last cut to olanzapine was 4 weeks before, should I do a ¼ cut of pill or wait because I have that trip to the UK. The visit to t neurologist wasn't too bad. He asked personal queries and I avoided them by triple.

The fact that worries me has to do with his curiosity why I visited him 9 months after the last visit. He has contacts in public healthcare system. . good or bad....future will tell.

 

 

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Rico

Hi All,

 

I haven't written in a while and thought I would give you all an update.

 

I did PM JanCarol recently with a long message, but it is more appropriate for me to write to the group as a whole.

 

I spent 6 weeks in hospital earlier this year and discharged on 19/02. They gave me all sorts of drugs that don't work for me and eventually listened to me and discharged me on just lithium (again).

 

They discharged me on 4 tables (4 * 450mg = 1800mg), but i reduced that down to two tablets over a few weeks.

 

I started working again (very lucky opportunity, I definitely wasn't mentally ready) on the 7th March. 

 

A week or so into work and I was having major relationship issues and also stressed out from work. All the stress combined caused me to have a 'mini-breakdown" where I couldn't sleep and my nervous system was so exhausted that I was experiencing sharp pain running down the left of my head and arm. It was horrible. Only recently, weeks later, has the pain subsided, but I am terribly depressed.

 

When I go to sleep tonight, I just pass out and I am constantly tired. I have managed to hang on to my job, but it looks like the relationship is going to have to take a back seat for a while. I was really overloaded by all the stress and my nervous system was completely stressed out.

 

I am currently taking 1125mg of Lithium and my doctor is happy for me to taper as long as I let him know. 

 

I often feel that I have permanently damaged my brain, because I feel very different than before and my memory issues are worse. 

 

I wish I didn't have that fight with my girlfriend and stress out so much :(

 

Rico

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Rico

Hi all,

 

Since I didn’t have any replies to my last message, I figured that maybe no one is interested anymore. I do need some help though.

 

Since my last message I tapered lithium a little bit more but then ran in to trouble at 675mg. My psychiatrist insisted that I return to a therapeutic dose of 1350mg, which I did a couple of days ago.

 

Since returning to the “therapeutic” dose, I have been suffering immensely with headaches and severe depression.

 

i haven’t gone to work and I am struggling to even write this message. Life is so hard.

 

I met a new psychiatrist / psychotherapist who believe he can help me with therapy and to get off lithium over a long period of time. My current psychiatrists though, maintains I have a disorder that will need indefinite drug treatment.

 

I’m confused, I can’t seem to get on with my life as I am constantly sick.

 

I hope someone responds.

Rico

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Altostrata
On 5/2/2018 at 12:50 AM, Rico said:

but then ran in to trouble at 675mg.

 

What kind of trouble, Rico?

 

What is your current drug schedule?

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Rico

Hi Alto, thanks for the reply. 

 

When I got down to 675mg, I had trouble sleeping, migraines and really depressed. Everyone around me was saying "it's because you reduced" blah blah blah. 

 

My psychiatrist told me to go back up to 1350mg  of lithium because that was the therapeutic dose. After doing so, I got worse, and was off work for a week due to side effects.

 

I have been experiencing a lot of dry eyes at night and migraines. For some reason, I seem to be waking up at 2am every night with dry eyes and migraines and it's hard to get back to sleep.

 

My current lithium dose is 1125mg and since yesterday, I have been taking it all in the morning, in the hope that I can get a better sleep. I would say I am feeling maybe 5% better, but still tired, lethargic, depressed, head barely working and just dragging myself around in a zombie state.

 

I am trying my best to keep my job, but I feel soooo worn out. I have not smiled or felt anything positive for quite a while now. I feel like my body has just shut down or something. I don't know. 

 

When I close my eyes, I feel pain and don't feel that wave of relaxation anymore. Have I busted my CNS here or what??/

 

Thanks,
Rico

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Miko789
On Mon Apr 09 2018 at 3:45 AM, Rico said:

weeks.

 

I started working again (very lucky opportunity, I definitely wasn't mentally ready) on the 7th March. 

 

A week or so into work and I was having major relationship issues and also stressed out from work. All the stres.

 

How long you stayed on the job Rico?

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Rico

Hi all,

 

Thought I would write a quick update. I will update my signature soon (running out of room so have to shuffle things around).

 

I have been working since March 7 this year (sorry Miko for the late reply) - and in summary, I am still struggling with Lithium tapering and withdrawals. 

 

Since my last post, my pdoc agreed to let me reduce the lithium . On 25th of May, I reduced to 900mg, and didn't really experience any new issues. I was taking 450mg in the morning and 450mg at night.

 

I moved out of home and I started eating healthier. I was finding the lithium side effects more and more unbearable. 

 

On 8th of June, I reduced the lithium to 675mg - and decided to take it all in the morning because I didn't want to feel the side effects at night, as I believe they were causing me issues like dry eyes.

 

Since 8th of June - or this week- I have had pretty severe withdrawal symptoms. I have still managed to go to  work, but I am miserable, depressed, head pain, feeling sick, and trouble sleeping. My memory is really bad. 

 

I know the cuts should be smaller than this, and again, I had the best intentions of doing a 10% taper. However, the side effects were becoming too unbearable and I don't tolerate this drug anymore

 

I will go back to taking the lithium all in the evening and hold on this dose. I spoke to my pdoc and his immediate response was "you need to be on a therapeutic level" and he no longer supports me coming off lithium. He didn't believe what i was going through was withdrawal and even suggested that I take an antipsychotic drug instead of lithium. This made me more depressed. The first sign of withdrawal, and he reverts back to this crap. 

 

I would love to hear from someone. I am bordering on rock-bottom at the moment...

 

Thanks,
Rico

 

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lucyinthesky

Hey Rico,

 

I read a lot of your thread. You have been through so much and for so long - my heart goes out to you. 

 

It is discouraging when doctors aren't supportive but as we know, it is rare that they understand the true impact of withdrawing from antipsychotic medications. We should come to expect the worst from them and stay strong in our choices...

 

I can't really offer advice at this point, but please just hold on to that hope in your heart that you'll get to the other side. You managed to taper from Zyprexa and that is a horrible one...

 

Keep strong.

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Altostrata
16 hours ago, Rico said:

I was taking 450mg in the morning and 450mg at night.

 

I moved out of home and I started eating healthier. I was finding the lithium side effects more and more unbearable. 

 

On 8th of June, I reduced the lithium to 675mg - and decided to take it all in the morning because I didn't want to feel the side effects at night, as I believe they were causing me issues like dry eyes. 

 

Rico, you reduced the dosage AND you changed your lithium schedule at the same time. Only one change at a time, remember?

 

Why did you decide to take your lithium dosage all at one time of day? I think this is your mistake.

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frasier23
On 4/9/2018 at 2:45 AM, Rico said:

Hi All,

 

I haven't written in a while and thought I would give you all an update.

 

I did PM JanCarol recently with a long message, but it is more appropriate for me to write to the group as a whole.

 

I spent 6 weeks in hospital earlier this year and discharged on 19/02. They gave me all sorts of drugs that don't work for me and eventually listened to me and discharged me on just lithium (again).

 

They discharged me on 4 tables (4 * 450mg = 1800mg), but i reduced that down to two tablets over a few weeks.

 

I started working again (very lucky opportunity, I definitely wasn't mentally ready) on the 7th March. 

 

A week or so into work and I was having major relationship issues and also stressed out from work. All the stress combined caused me to have a 'mini-breakdown" where I couldn't sleep and my nervous system was so exhausted that I was experiencing sharp pain running down the left of my head and arm. It was horrible. Only recently, weeks later, has the pain subsided, but I am terribly depressed.

 

When I go to sleep tonight, I just pass out and I am constantly tired. I have managed to hang on to my job, but it looks like the relationship is going to have to take a back seat for a while. I was really overloaded by all the stress and my nervous system was completely stressed out.

 

I am currently taking 1125mg of Lithium and my doctor is happy for me to taper as long as I let him know. 

 

I often feel that I have permanently damaged my brain, because I feel very different than before and my memory issues are worse. 

 

I wish I didn't have that fight with my girlfriend and stress out so much :(

 

Rico

Rico , your health is most important now. Be kind with your body and soul. They don't want to work now.

 

Avoid all pressure from society that you need a job, girlfriend etc. (ofc you need money but maybe there is a welfare system in your country?). If you have problems with you girlfriend, tell her you need a pause since you can't handle the stress. Socialise ONLY with people that you trust and want your best. You will be able to have girls in the future if you fix your health first (maybe you can restart with same girl again if you believe she is/was special). 

 

Start build up a big trust in yourself and that you're most important. Your body want to heal as well as your brain and soul. They don't wanna work. Only positive stuff from now so you can get off whatever medicine left. Exercising HIT, weight lifting, sunlight, healthy food and funny things is where your focus gonna be.  Be kind to yourself.

 

 

 

 

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Rico

Thank you Lucyinthesky, Alto and Frasier for your reply. I will provide a more detailed update of what has been happening shortly, and i hope that you can offer me some support going forward. Life has been quite rough lately but I am still hanging on. I really value all your comments. I am a bit overwhelmed at the moment, so I will come back and write a proper update. Thank you and I hope you are all doing well. 

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Rico

Hi all,

 

Things are going too well at the moment.

 

A few weeks' ago I switched from taking the slow release lithium (Quilonium SR) to the Lithicarb. I did this because my research revealed that you shouldn't split the slow release lithium tablets and that they are not really slow release per say, but rather, the lithium is concentrated in the tablet alongside other chemicals. I figured that it would be easier to taper using the standard lithium tablets, so I switch over from taking 900mg of Quilonium to 875mg of Lihicarb (this dosage was convenient as it meant I could take 1.5 tables in the morning and 2 at night = each tablet bing 250mg of lithium).

 

My memory isn't 100% right now, but things did seem to go ok for a number of weeks. I have been having ongoing relationship issues which have caused me a lot of stress. I have been able to hold down a full time job, but I would say my mood has been generally low. I have been dealing with my feelings at times in destructive ways like gambling etc, and I have started going to  a 12 step program for help, which does offer a lot of support.

 

A week ago, I reduced the dosage by 125mg, a 14% reduction (again, and probably wrong of me, I chose this reduction because it was convenient). I have been taking ever since 1.5 tablets in the morning and 1.5 tablets at night - a total dose of 750mg.

 

The main thing I noticed after the reduction was I could feel more and I think I started feeling more depressed. I also gave up smoking because it was making me sick, and on Tuesday of last week, I had another stressful conflict with my partner. We have been trying to take a break from the relationship, but we ended up fighting again. I was worn out and didn't go to work on Wednesday. I managed to go to work on Thursday, but didn't feel well. I started having problems sleeping with lots of headaches and head pain, so I didn't go to work on Friday.

 

Since then, I have been suffering with a lot of anxiety and depression and feeling lots of pain in my body. It's hard for me to identify what caused what, because a fair bit has happened this week. I just recently started smoking again, and I feel calmer - so maybe quitting smoking cold turkey isn't a good idea either!

 

I am feeling lost right now. I don't know if I should reinstate back to the 875mg dose or higher. I really miss my partner, and I am quite distressed by the physical 'male' issues that I have had ever since that injection of an antipsychotic back in December 2014. 

 

I am really depressed and tired and am in desperate need of some direction. Coming off lithium is hard because I have been on it for so long and dealing with these emotions can be very difficult for me. At the same time, I do find that I feel sick after I take it and this is the reason I want to come off it.

 

Thanks

Rico

 

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Ather

Rico, never forget that you are a Fighter, keep Fighting ! Discuss all the side effects in detail with your doc even then if he continues then you should be taking it as prescribed.

Spend sometime of your day and at night in Prayers, Prayers do work !

 

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Altostrata
2 hours ago, Rico said:

A week ago, I reduced the dosage by 125mg, a 14% reduction (again, and probably wrong of me, I chose this reduction because it was convenient). I have been taking ever since 1.5 tablets in the morning and 1.5 tablets at night - a total dose of 750mg.

 

If you reduced your liithium dosage by 125mg and you found it was too much, why not add 62.5mg back? That's a quarter of a tablet, correct?

 

Please do not make more than one drug change at a time.

 

What times of day do you current take your drugs, and their dosages? What is your daily symptom pattern? Please keep daily notes on paper about your symptoms, when you take your drugs, and their dosages. Use a simple list format with time of day on the left and notation (symptom, drug and dosage) on the right.

 

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Plshelp

Rico, 

I think it's great that you're starting to feel more emotions! 

 

I'm sorry that things are kinda rough and out of sorts at this point. Just know, that as a human being, you're doing the best you can and know how with the tools you have learned. 

 

You can't control these emotional upheavals, so you need to just try to figure out how to cope, until things normalize (and hopefully they do!). I once talked with a DBT therapist and she said, emotions are like waves. You need to just ride them out. If you don't, the wave keeps getting bigger with more intensity, then plateaus and then starts small again and gets high, bcus of you don't let the emotions run their course, you get stuck in a hyper sensitive state. 

 

Like everyone recommends, keep point form notes, on your phone, or someplace that's easy to record it. Keep track of your medication, emotions, any changes and what you did to cope. You'll eventually see patterns and hopefully more positive changes and they should diminish over time. (I'm not talking from experience, but from what others have informed me about and what I have read). 

 

Listen to your body and go slow. Even though you feel sick from taking the medication, this ain't a race worth risking your recovery. 

 

All the best to you! 

Praise be! Xo

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Rico

Thanks Alto and Pslhelp.

 

The key symptoms I have been experiencing since al the stress of last week are:

 

- head pain, especially when I close my eyes at night

- I sleep about 4-5 hours and wake up with my brain in pain

 

I've just woken up now and I don't know if I can go to work today because of this head pain. 

 

When I was going to sleep last night, and closing my eyes, I couldn't think or have any thoughts - just lots of pain in my head. 

 

I somehow got to sleep. I must be really stressed out or is my brain damaged?

 

I am really not sure what to do. I haven't made any changes to the lithium medication or put the dosage back up yet.

 

Your help is greatly appreciated.

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Altostrata

Rico, on July 15, you increased the lithium dramatically from 450mg to 1500mg. I strongly recommend you speak to your doctor about your current pattern of adverse reactions.

 

We could suggest you reduce the lithium -- you know how to do that -- but if you keep on going to the hospital and getting huge doses, we can't do anything about that.

 

I recommend you bookmark this page https://www.drugs.com/sfx/lithium-side-effects.html

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Rico

Hi Alto,

 

The July 15 reference in my signature refers to last year.

 

I am sorry if my signature is not clear. I have been meaning to update it, but I just haven't thought of a way to do it without losing previous information.

 

Here is a brief recent history of my lithium dosages and changes:

 

February 19 - discharged from hospital on 1350mg of lihium

 

March 7 - started full time work

 

A couple of weeks later - reduced lithium to 1125

 

Later reduced to 900mg......experienced problems, psychiatrist said I have to be on 'therapeutic' dose - so rapidly increased to 1350 - became really sick

 

Gradually went down back to 900mg (all using Quiloinium SR) so far.

 

Switched over to Lithicarb - 875mg

 

13 July - reduced lithicarb by 14% or 125mg..

 

Week after 13 July had stressful conflict and work pressure....

 

Symptoms since then have been headaches and being in a lot pain mentally and physically; depressed and feeling really stressed.

 

Thanks and sorry for the confusion.

 

 

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Rico

Hi all,

 

I am doing ok again after a week of pretty intense withdrawal and drama in my personal life.

 

I have stabilised again on 750mg of lithium, and for the first time I can really see that my symptoms were withdrawal related.

 

I will stay on this dose for at least a month before considering another taper - which will definitely be a lot smaller than the previous one of 14%!

 

I am experiencing quite a lot of side effects shortly after taking the lithium, but there's not much I can do other than look forward to getting off it slowly.

 

Thank you all for your support.

 

Rico

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Rico

Hi all,

 

I have had a really rough week. I recently broke up with my girlfriend because there was too much stress in the relationship and we were both suffering from it.

 

I've had some unhealthy behaviours for a long time that I have used to cope with stress and emotional pain, so I've started doing a 12 step program for sex and love addiction which has been very confronting, yet very helpful.

 

I am starting more and more now to find ways of coping with my emotions without running back to doctors in a panic. It is very hard to start living "normally" and find ways of coping without turning to doctors for more drugs or calling an ambulance etc. I was extremely stressed yesterday so I went to the sauna and spa with a friend and just lay there. 

 

My mind doesn't stop. It's hard sleeping at the moment too. When I close my eyes, I can feel my nervous system really struggling and very shaky. I've always had issues with anxiety since I was young. The support of the 12 step program is helping me to not run from my emotions and to try and sit with them.

 

I crave for the day that I can look forward to sleeping and wake up refreshed. It's been a long time since I have felt that. 

 

My psychiatrist is very supportive too at the moment and he is happy for me to continue on the 750mg lithium that I am on. I am not tapering it down any further until I stabilise a bit more and start exercising and quitting smoking.

 

I am very confident that if I can fix up my life and behaviour that I can one day be medication free and live as a whole person. The lithium does dull me down a bit, but it's the least of my problems. I smoke too much, have a poor diet and I don't do any exercise.

 

I am pleased to say that this has been the longest stretch of time (~6 months) where I have not been in hospital. I am working full time, and although it is difficult, I am managing ok. I am nowhere near 100% but I continue to pray that one day I will get there. The last relationship I was in was in many ways unhealthy and I often blame myself for it not working. So, now I am on my own trying to do life, and boy - it is not easy.

 

Thanks everyone here for your kind words and support over last couple of years.

Rico

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