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Yeroc9586: Finally tapering off Paxil and switching to Clomipramine


Yeroc9586

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Hello everyone,

 

 

My name is Corey and I'm currently fighting the battle of getting off Paxil completely.  I never knew how hard this was going to be but its starting to rear its ugly head.  Heres my summed up history: 

  • started Paxil 15 years ago after experiencing (what i now know as) DP/DR after smoking Weed/thought i was permanently damaged from smoking,
  • gradually started off at 10mg and went to 40mg
  • never changed dose until about 5 years ago when i thought id try to get off of it
  • started weening by myself;  got down to maybe 20mg and had severe anxiety attack;  went back on 40mg with .25mg of Xanax (as needed)
  • Woke up one morning after a party,  just drank alcohol,  with the feeling of DP/DR again;  never thought id experience that hell again.
  • Tried to switch meds from Paxil but never gave it a full go;  stayed at 40mg Paxil
  • Recently wanted to try different medicine to help with anxiety and to get off Paxil
  • Doc started by reducing Paxil to 20mg for 2 weeks and then 10mg for 2 weeks;  also id introduce 25mg of Clomipramine for a week, 50mg for a week, then 75mg for a week.
  • Now im at 100mg Clomipramine and on the last week of 10mg of Paxil

 

During these transitions, i could remember i felt somewhat ok when dropping down to 20mg and introducing the 25mg of the new medicine but with each transition after, i could feel myself slipping deeper into a fog, which i guess is the DR.  Ive now had to take sick leave from work because of the full-blown DR side effects.  I guess what im really looking for is hope that after i stop the Paxil completely,  the DR will not get worse and will start to fade away.  I'm honestly scared that I'm going to lose my mind or something with the next wave.  Will this ever go away?

 

Thank you everyone in advance.

Edited by Shep
added username to title, added tags, changed font
  • 15 Years Paxil 40mg
  • Started taper 11/2016 with few reinstatements/other med trials
  • Reinstated Paxil to a max of 20mg
  • Started new taper 12/2017
  • Currently at 5mg
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  • Administrator

Hi, Yeroc9586.

 

Welcome to Surviving Antidepressants (SA).

 

It appears your doctor has you coming off Paxil way too fast.  We recommend not coming off faster than 10%. Please see these threads for more information:

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

Tips for tapering off Paxil (paroxetine)

 

Dp/dr is unfortunately a common result of coming off too fast. Also, you may be feeling a MAJOR drug interaction between Paxil and clomipramine - please see this report off the drug interaction checker - https://www.drugs.com/interactions-check.php?drug_list=702-355,1800-1156,133-54

 

Question - This site is set up to help you come off antidepressants, not to switch to another antidepressant. If you are switching to another antidepressant and wish to stay on it, please work with your doctor.

 

However, if you're coming off them, we can give you the information you need. Otherwise, we will provide the names of other internet sites that work with people who are on antidepressants and wish to stay on them. 

 

Please let us know what you wish to do so we can give you the appropriate information. Also, I will caution you against using Xanax to help with withdrawal, as a severe dependency can arise in less than two weeks, even with "as needed" use. 

 

I'm glad you found us for information and support, but please let us know your goal. 

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


I am not a medical professional and this is not medical advice, but simply information based on my own experience, as well as other members who have survived these drugs.

 

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Thank you so much for your reply.

 

Honestly, I'd love to get off ADs all together but mainly just focused on getting off Paxil to begin with.  Like i said, I dont have any other experience except being on that for 15 years and probably in the last 5, it just hasnt worked like it probably should.  Do you think i am in danger bridging these two?  Will these symptoms go away?  Can you experience DP/DR upping the dose too much too quickly?  I understand that this might not be the exact place for me to be asking this but I'm just kind of stuck between a rock and a hard place so any information that you could give I'd greatly appreciate. 

 

With the Xanax,  I've honestly never had a problem.  This might be the first time since I've had the perscription that I've used them more than one dose in a day.  Any other time, the 30 pills in the perscription would last me close to a year.

 

Thank you so much for all your help already.

Edited by Shep
changed font
  • 15 Years Paxil 40mg
  • Started taper 11/2016 with few reinstatements/other med trials
  • Reinstated Paxil to a max of 20mg
  • Started new taper 12/2017
  • Currently at 5mg
Link to post
  • Administrator

Hi, Yeroc.

 

I'm having trouble reading your posts that are in Comic Sans, so I changed the font to Arial for ease of reading.

 

Can you verify how long you've been on Clomipramine? Has it been less than a month?

 

Since you're interested in getting off everything, it may be best to get off the Clomipramine before you develop a dependency on it, but I've asked other moderators to weigh in about that. 

 

I'm glad you haven't been using Xanax much. Please note that Xanax and other benzos are prescribed a lot to help people get off antidepressants, but then many of them develop a severe benzo dependency, which is just as bad as antidepressant withdrawal for many people. So I hope you don't need them and can get off your other meds using non-drug coping techniques.

 

While you're waiting for other mods to weigh in, I'll link you to some other helpful threads to read:

 

Before you begin tapering - what you need to know

 

 

Taking multiple psych drugs? Which drug to taper first?

 

What is withdrawal syndrome? 

 

The Windows and Waves Pattern of Stabilization

 

Brain Remodelling

 

 

 

And this thread contains a lot of links for handling symptoms without drugs. My advice would be to look into ones that interest you that you can use instead of resorting to Xanax. I found mindfulness to be helpful and I'm sure you'll find ones that you find helpful. 

 

Non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms

 

 

 

 

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


I am not a medical professional and this is not medical advice, but simply information based on my own experience, as well as other members who have survived these drugs.

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Yeroc/Corey -- Welcome to Surviving Antidepressants (SA)

 

3 questions for you

  1. On what date did you start the Paxil to Clomipramine switch?
  2. When (the date) did you take your last paxil dose?
  3. Was your last paxil dose 10 mg?

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.
1997-1999 Effexor; 2002-2005 Effexor XR 37.5 mg linear taper, dropping same #beads/week with bad results

Cymbalta 60 mg 2012 - 2015; 2016: 20 mg to 7 mg exact doses and dates in this post; 2017: 6.3 mg to  0.0 mg  Aug. 12; details here


scallywag's Introduction
Online spreadsheet for dose taper calculations and nz11's THE WORKS spreadsheet

Link to post

 

Yeroc/Corey -- Welcome to Surviving Antidepressants (SA)

 

3 questions for you

  1. On what date did you start the Paxil to Clomipramine switch?
  2. When (the date) did you take your last paxil dose?
  3. Was your last paxil dose 10 mg?

 

 

 

Absolutely.  Right now im on day 25 of the tapering of Paxil and start of Clomipramine.  I haven't yet taken my last Paxil dose.  I have just upped my Clomipramine dose to 100mg from 75mg.  I believe my next step will be breaking the 10 in half to 5mg for another two weeks.  I have 3 more days on the 10mg of Paxil until next step.

  • 15 Years Paxil 40mg
  • Started taper 11/2016 with few reinstatements/other med trials
  • Reinstated Paxil to a max of 20mg
  • Started new taper 12/2017
  • Currently at 5mg
Link to post
  • Moderator

Hey yeroc - 

Please Put Your WIthdrawal History Into your Signature

 

This helps us immensely, especially after we get past the first few posts.  Please include dates, because "25 days ago" won't mean much in a few months time.

 

I'm assuming that this switch from Paxil to Clomipramine is doctor supervised?  I'm confused by his thinking on this one, that the clomipramine is going to "cover" Paxil withdrawal?

 

Paxil is one of the dangerous beasties.  It's true that clomipramine might be less dangerous - but there are people who struggle coming off of it, too.  And this is the first time I've heard someone trying to transition to a tricyclic to get off the Paxil beast.

 

The danger here is Delayed Onset of Withdrawal Symptoms

 

Changes you make now (and you are making a lot of fast changes) may not be felt for another month, 3 months, 6 months or even a year.  Or you might feel fine for a year, and then when something is stressful, your system struggles to handle it.

 

I'm concerned that you might get off the Paxil quickly, and then a few months down the line struggle with withdrawal, and the clomipramine is unlikely to "cover" it.

 

I am waiting for more moderators before I recommend a course of action.  I think I like where Shep is heading - to come back down off the Clomipramine, and plan on a slow, gradual 10% taper off the Paxil.  SImple is usually better:

 

3 KIS's Keep It Simple, Slow, Stable

 

And yes, I have to confirm what Shep has said - the xanax can be destabilising, can cause you to have more symptoms than you would have if you weren't using it.  Additionally, if you do get hooked on it (it sounds like you are heading that way if you are using more than one tablet per day - addiction can kick in as low as 2 tablets per week!), it is a real difficult road to get off of it again. Especially if you are destablized from a Paxil taper.

 

What do you think?  Have you had a chance to look at all the links Shep gave you?

 

If I were to pick just one, I recommend this one:

Healing from Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery (by Toxic Antidepressants)

 

It's a short video, and explains things really well.

 

I hope you see the sun today.

"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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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm sorry I'm so late getting back to you.  Since my last post, i can honestly say, this is miserable.  The sickness and physical effects i can deal with but the anxiety is intense.  Just the amount all day consistently has been brutal.  From experiencing the Depersonalization to the Derealization all over again.  That's honestly been hell.  Today was somewhat of a more productive day, though.  I've been off on Sick-Leave from work for the last probably 10 days and it feels like months...

Today though, i managed to drive and do a couple things i needed to get done, fighting through the Derealization Fog and constant anxiety.  When i got home though, after i had built myself up some for being able to do what i had done, i sort of crashed.  I'm experiencing feelings all over again and i guess it was easier to deal with them when i was on Paxil because they all just feel so extreme.  Anxiety is worst I've ever experienced.  If i was going through a panic attack, i could usually get myself out of it and never went to the extreme it does now.  I'm able to cry almost at the drop of a hat, which is honestly pretty nice but in the evening, i got scared.  A thought slipped into my mind about not being around anymore.  It wasn't really a suicidal idea or anything, but then i started to panic.  I thought about how much it would hurt the people i love if something ever happened to me.  I completely broke down in tears and wanted to change medicine or go back on Paxil.    As i type this right now though, for some reason, i feel completely normal.  Like all my feelings are back to the way they were before Paxil.  My concentration and clarity are dead on.  I honestly can say that i feel great for the first time since I've started all this and i now feel hope and excitement.  Do you think  this is still withdrawal and if these emotions are normal?  This is now my 8th day completely off of Paxil...

  • 15 Years Paxil 40mg
  • Started taper 11/2016 with few reinstatements/other med trials
  • Reinstated Paxil to a max of 20mg
  • Started new taper 12/2017
  • Currently at 5mg
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