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☼ Kittygiggles: generic Prozac (fluoxetine), stabilization


Kittygiggles

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Thanks Chessiecat,

 

For some reason, I wasn't following that thread and I don't recall it very well. I know I have read it before but it was probably at the start of this journey. Trying for the lowest effective dose seems like what I am doing, I will wait and see if it helps. I just reread Alto's post there and I can see it answers all my questions really. I suppose I was looking for reassurance that I was on the right track. As far as I can tell I am following this advice pretty closely, so I just need patience now. This post sums up the best educated guess one can come up with:- 

 

 

Sorry to everyone and to you Chessiecat if I appeared desperate to get an answer. I realize that no one can calculate an exact plan that has a guaranteed success rate. This is something I knew at the start of this journey but I have forgotten clearly. Re-reading the above post was edifying once more. These palpitations are devastating to me. I have yet to do a Holter monitor, I have another 2 weeks to wait and what is worrying more is why they appeared in the first place. The fact of having them and their frequency can sometimes disturb me but its their cause I'm so impatient to discover because then I can ignore them if I realize they come from a benign origin. 

 

This website is free and great and I appreciate any time anyone spends helping me. When I am rich one day (!) I hope to pay this website a huge amount to keep it open for others (and myself if I still need it then). I remind myself now and again that this website could not exist and there wouldn't necessarily be anything to replace it; it's a scary thought.

 

I hope you are doing well.

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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I composed several versions of this update but I decided to just compose something quickly, so here it is.  In terms of fluoxetine: it is over. It has been 6 months and I've had no issues relatin

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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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Too much thyroid hormone can cause palpitations. Your need for thyroid hormone can change over time. You need to have it checked now and then.

 

Lowering your thyroid hormone carries little risk. It has a half-life of weeks, you probably wouldn't notice the change for a month or two or three.

 

On 12/18/2018 at 3:45 PM, Kittygiggles said:

Hi Altostrata,

I am very grateful for your response. My B12 is in 1000microgram pills but I took 7 of them and I just felt writing 7mg was shorter but I can see how that could cause people to assume I've made some mistake in dosing. I'm comfortable taking 7000micrograms or any amount above that as I was tested as deficient a few years ago and need large amounts to receive any benefit. I am aware there is a small risk of hypokalemia with large dose changes so I added a little potassium to help with that. 

  ....

 

If your liver is functioning correctly, it is storing B12. You only need large doses of B12 initially, to build up reserves You are taking a great deal of B12. If the "benefit" you feel is stimulation, that might also be causing palpitations.

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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Thank you!

Thank you @Altostrata. I am so grateful for your consideration of my case. It sounds pathetic but it brought tears to my eyes, thank you again. This is a testament to how much importance I attach to my thread and how frightened and dysfunctional I've become since the palpitations started. 

 

The importance of being concise!

I am going to try to keep my posts concise, as I can see (thanks to valuable feedback) that they are verbose and difficult to deal with. In addition, I am working harder on my coping strategies for dealing with physical withdrawal symptoms so that I can reduce my emotional dependence and response to posts on my thread. I had it easy in relation to withdrawal in recent months and I really thought I was going to hit 0mg by the end of the month. 

 

The dangers of impatience

The palpitations have devastated me because as much as people state that they are benign, until one has had a stress echo and >=24hour EKG (I've another 10 days before mine), one cannot rule out a heart defect and a cardiomyopathic burden of palpitations. Beyond that, determining the cause of palpitations is essential so that the burden does not increase. Any heart problem terrifies me as I thought that due to my lifestyle and family history, it would be one of the last things I'd need to deal with, or at least not for a while as I am not yet forty!

 

The fear, stress and resulting health anxiety from this period have made me very impatient. With so many possible causes of my palpitations, and such little patience, I made too many changes too fast. I have updosed fluoxetine now for 3 days (from 0.533mg to 0.933mg); am I stuck with that decision? I had planned to stay like that for 7 to 14 days to see if I'd see an improvement but if this is a levothyroxine problem, I'd jump at the chance to resume my tapering regimen. However, as you state and I did earlier (it was buried in my walls of text):

 

On 12/17/2018 at 10:33 AM, Kittygiggles said:

 I think it is too soon for the levothyroxine reduction to have had a beneficial effect yet due to its long half life (~14 days) relative to its dosing frequency (daily).

 

Vitamin B12 via hypokalemia could be an issue. I will ease up on the vitamin B12 to see if that helps as well. 

 

In my defense though, my tapering regimen was marching on throughout this so I was desperate to find a solution as each day was another step, possibly in the wrong direction. I could have held I suppose but there's a small chance that taking fluoxetine is causing this. 

 

I am monitoring my thyroid hormones almost every 6 to 8 weeks. I had a blood test a few days ago and I am awaiting the results. I seek advice on a thyroid forum for that mostly but I have a question for the SA thyroid thread as it happens. 

 

This is mostly for anyone else reading this with a thyroid concern and palpitations: I have in the last 3 to 6 months had a high T3 value, and a fairly high T4 value but also a high TSH, which suggests a T3 pooling and reverse T3 problem. I will post here with my latest results but my hope is that as I increased levothyroxine to treat my elevated TSH, I cause palpitations by an exacerbation of the T3 problem. 

 

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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Well,

The test results demonstrated near top T3 and mid to above mid T4, which doesn't indicate that T3 has a significant, if any role in causing my palpitations. I cannot check reverse T3 to confirm that but I've tolerated these kinds of results with levothyroxine before without palpitations. 

 

It seems to me that fluoxetine withdrawal is the culprit. I am considering another updose in a few days if I get no results from my current updose. Perhaps the damage is done and further increases would just result in destabilization. I would consider going back to October levels and if that resulted in no improvements in palpitations then I'll just have to accept there's nothing I can do about them. 

 

I'll update with my decision and perhaps my Holter monitor results if I don't post until then. I've had a mild improvement in my palpitations but it's not significant enough in my opinion to be attributed to the updose. 

 

Having said all that, it could still be a levothyroxine issue and that has caused a mild improvement. However, this all feels like autonomic dysregulation, from every transition between the parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous systems, resulting in premature contractions (ectopic beats). If it were T3, I'd expect more rate changes, tachycardia-like symptoms but I could be mistaken. 

 

I expect my Holter monitor results to be benign and giving no indication as to the cause. A stress echo would also give peace of mind but again, not reveal any cause. It all stinks of withdrawal frankly. I've had high levothyroxine doses for short periods in the past without palpitations being a significant issue. They seemed to all start in earnest once I took fluoxetine, and I think they were masked through most of my treatment.

 

Merry Christmas anyway!

 

 

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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Perhaps this will be easier to read than the summary above. It has been updated. Since updosing life has been miserable and I can't discern any improvement in symptoms. I now feel destabilized, which is due to updosing of course. Filled only with regret for doing so, I plod on, waiting eagerly for the 14 days of updosing to end so I can return to what was otherwise a relatively nice and comfortable tapering regimen. I have little care of the consequences of this whole thing now. I was doing fine until the palpitations happened and from the data below they appear idiopathic. They are more than likely caused by autonomic dysregulation but regardless, what has been among the lowest points in this journey so far, I am doing what I can to survive and have no energy for anything else. I don't see much point in posting this summary but as the data exists above in a more verbose form, I thought I may as well. 

 

I hope you all had a nice Christmas.

 

December 7th = 0 palps; at 23:59 0.533mg (8ml) fluoxetine, 62.5µg levothyroxine; ~3m exercise; 1mg B12, 1x tbsp. flaxseed, 1x HCl

December 8th = 200 palps; at 23:59 : 0.533mg (8ml) fluoxetine, 62.5µg levothyroxine; 15m exercise; 1mg B12, 1x tbsp. flaxseed, 1x HCl

December 9th = 1400 palps; at 23:59 : 0.533mg (8ml) fluoxetine, 62.5µg levothyroxine; 20m exercise; 1mg B12

December 10th = 23 palps; at 23:59 : 0.533mg (8ml) fluoxetine, 62.5µg levothyroxine; 10m exercise; 1mg B12, 200mg potassium, 1x tbsp. flaxseed

December 11th = 11 palps; at 23:59 : 0.533mg (8ml) fluoxetine, 62.5µg levothyroxine; no exercise; 1mg B12, 1.5x tbsp. flaxseed

December 12th = 13 palps; at 23:59 : 0.533mg (8ml) fluoxetine, 62.5µg levothyroxine; 10m exercise; 1mg B12, 1.5x tbsp. flaxseed

December 13th = 32 palps; at 23:59 : 0.400mg (6ml) fluoxetine, 0µg levothyroxine; ~3m exercise

December 14th = 220 palps; at 23:59 : 0.933mg (14ml) fluoxetine, 0µg levothyroxine; ~3m exercise

December 15th = 133 palps; at 23:59 : 0.400mg (6ml) fluoxetine, 0µg levothyroxine; 35m exercise

December 16th = 13 palps; at 23:59 : 0.400mg (6ml) fluoxetine, 0µg levothyroxine; no exercise; 7mg B12, 1x tbsp. flaxseed

December 17th = 22 palps; at 23:59 : 0.400mg (6ml) fluoxetine, 37.5µg levothyroxine; no exercise; 7mg B12; 200mg potassium

December 18th = 16 palps; at 23:59 : 0.400mg (6ml) fluoxetine, 37.5µg levothyroxine; no exercise; 1x tbsp. flaxseed

December 19th = 40 palps; at 23:59 : 0.266mg (4ml) fluoxetine, 37.5µg levothyroxine; 20m exercise; 3mg B12

December 20th = 34 palps; at 23:59 : 0.933mg (14ml) fluoxetine, 37.5µg levothyroxine; no exercise; 1mg B12

December 21st = 82 palps; at 23:59 : 0.933mg (14ml) fluoxetine, 37.5µg levothyroxine; 35m exercise

December 22nd = 28 palps; at 23:59 : 0.933mg (14ml) fluoxetine, 25µg levothyroxine; 7m exercise

December 23rd = 27 palps; at 23:59 : 0.933mg (14ml) fluoxetine, 25µg levothyroxine; 32m exercise; 200mg potassium

December 24th = 32 palps; at 23:59 : 2.000mg (30ml) fluoxetine, 37.5µg levothyroxine; 3m exercise; 400mg potassium

December 25th = 24 palps; at 23:59 : 1.466mg (22ml) fluoxetine, 37.5µg levothyroxine; 10m exercise

December 26th = 40 palps; at 23:59 : 1.333mg (20ml) fluoxetine, 37.5µg levothyroxine; 10m exercise

December 27th = 26 palps; at 23:59 : 1.333mg (20ml) fluoxetine, 37.5µg levothyroxine; 3m exercise

December 28th = 40 palps; at 23:59 : 1.333mg (20ml) fluoxetine, 37.5µg levothyroxine; 7m exercise

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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  • 2 months later...
Kittygiggles

It's been a while and from the looks of things, it's been a while for anyone else posting here too! 

I've had a terrible time in recent months. I think at this point, I am probably done detailing all the symptoms I've had but not surprisingly, they can be explained by fluoxetine side effects, SSRI withdrawal symptoms, and hypothyroidism.

I held for about 5 weeks and I am now tapering again. I don't think the standard SA period of ~5 years to taper is possible for me. This shouldn't be a surprise as I've tapered much faster, getting the bulk of it done over 1.5 years, after about a year of stabilizing. I reached about a 90% reduction without issue.

I'll probably have a terrible time when I hit zero and on my way there but despite the terrifying observation many of us have made that with SSRI withdrawal, things can always get worse, I just don't think holding and tapering slower than I've done has anything positive to offer me. 

I've endured the worst months of my life and it is clear that fluoxetine is interfering with all aspects of my health, so having it out of my body is the only thing I want to accomplish before I perish. If I hit zero and then drop dead the next day, I'm okay with that because I will have reached my goal.

Life is too short to have an SSRI pumping through my veins. 

I'll update this thread if I manage to make it out alive. 

To anyone else reading: I recommend trying the ~5 year taper if you can manage it. Tapering worked for me to about 5 to 10%, and I did it much faster, so going slower will probably yield much better results at all stages of withdrawal.

I'm off to let the sun warm my skin, the wind bowl me over, the rain drench my clothes, and the fragrance of wild flowers fill my lungs. 

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to Kittygiggles: generic Prozac (fluoxetine), stabilization
  • Moderator Emeritus
1 hour ago, Kittygiggles said:

standard SA period of ~5 years to taper

 

Tapering Calculator - Online

 

Why taper paper: dose-occupancy curves

 

Total tapering time will differ depending on the starting dose

 

10% taper with 4 week holds:

 

20mg is about 3 years

 

100mg is about 5 years

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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  • 2 weeks later...
Kittygiggles

.

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus
On 3/10/2019 at 11:55 PM, ChessieCat said:

Total tapering time will differ depending on the starting dose

 

And also on the tapering method.  Obviously the Brass Monkey Slide would take longer than 10% reduction every 4 weeks.

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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Kittygiggles
On 3/10/2019 at 1:55 PM, ChessieCat said:

 

Tapering Calculator - Online

 

Why taper paper: dose-occupancy curves

 

Total tapering time will differ depending on the starting dose

 

10% taper with 4 week holds:

 

20mg is about 3 years

 

100mg is about 5 years

 

As demonstrated by the calculator you posted, any number, when reduced by 10% increments, will never reach zero, so the SA calculator proves my point.

 

I referenced the serotonin transporter occupancy study in this post earlier in this thread:

 

On 6/7/2018 at 9:05 AM, Kittygiggles said:

For anyone else reading this who is wondering or needs a reminder

The study is: "Serotonin Transporter Occupancy of Five Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors at Different Doses: An [ 11 C] DASB Positron Emission Tomography Study"; Meyer, Wilson, Sagrati et al; Am J Psychiatry 2004; 161:826–835

Here's the thread: Why taper paper demonstrates importance of gradual change...

A link from the thread to the study: AMJ PDF link

 

20mg will always be closer to zero than 100mg but assuming that because the former is closer after 3 years of reduction does not mean it is safer to drop than 5 years. Therefore, 5 years is as valid as 3 years for any amount you start at; it's about how close to zero you want to be before stopping. 

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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  • 4 weeks later...
Kittygiggles

Old signature dump:

 

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but gradually seemed to get better hitting a plateau towards the 8th month until the end, therefore I decided to taper

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a 0.2mg (1%) a week linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

March 2018: At 13.8mg (69%), changed to reducing by 0.132mg (0.66%) three times a week, for a total of 0.4mg (2%) each week, no major withdrawal symptoms

October 2018: At 1.8mg (9%), changed to making a 0.132mg (0.66...%) reduction every 6 days, no major withdrawal symptoms

November 2018: At 1.332mg (6.66%), continuing the 0.132mg (0.66...%) reduction every 6 days, no major withdrawal symptoms

December 2018: Reached 0.533mg (2.66%) and developed palpitations. Decided to updose to 0.933mg (4.66%) and hold for 14 days to see if there is an improvement.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

For anyone reading this, here's a small update. Things are very hard physically; fluoxetine is damaging my body in many ways. My mind is good but my body is deteriorating. I don't experience much I can link to withdrawal and having had every symptom checked by a doctor, most things are idiopathic (i.e. read fluoxetine), or caused by hypothyroidism. I think only one or two are caused by withdrawal at this point, so I'm continuing to reduce. As I've said before, my instinct suggests that fluoxetine must leave my system as soon as I feel it is safe for it to. I am still tapering fairly slowly but I will aim to jump off at 0.06mg in a couple of months. 

 

I'll update the thread after I've done so or if anything major happens before then. 

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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  • 1 month later...
  • Administrator
Altostrata

Hello, Kittygiggles, how are you? Did you get the hypothyroid treatment resolved?

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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Kittygiggles
On 5/24/2019 at 1:17 AM, Altostrata said:

Hello, Kittygiggles, how are you? Did you get the hypothyroid treatment resolved?

 

Thank you for your concern, it is very kind of you. I wish there were fewer people for you to check on but I expect there is a horde of iatrogenically harmed people shambling towards your gates.

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

Link to post
Kittygiggles

Sorry for not answering your question, I had a severe withdrawal episode recently. I have updosed slightly and I am holding now. I have progressed so well to this point but I guess my luck ran out. I am using the symptoms and self-care section with some success and reassurance. My signature does not reflect my current dose, I will update it later. I made it to 0.466mg and held for 3 weeks and everything was fine but within about 2 weeks of progressing from there, I had the worst episode I've experienced on my journey so far. 

 

As for the thyroid. I increased my levothyroxine. I have gone down the rabbit hole of autoimmune disorders and it's a frightening, stressful place. I thought I had Raynaud's and now I'm not so sure because I don't have the symptom pattern. As about 95% of people with hypothyroidism have Hashimoto's, it is something I have been trying to tackle with the autoimmune diet and removing toxins and stress from my life. My Hashimoto's diagnosis is mostly confirmed by ultrasound but I've never tested positive for auto-antibodies, perhaps it's because the attack took place primarily long before my diagnosis.

 

I recall your situation @Altostrata where you seem to be part of a significant number of the general population who test positive but show no tissue damage or symptoms of hypothyroidism. Blood tests are often not conclusive unfortunately! Fluoxetine is one of the many toxins I aim to remove and is the only drug I still take, aside from levothyroxine. I suspect fluoxetine as a major or partial cause of my autoimmunity, hence my desire to remove this from my body as soon as possible. Not only that, it causes chaos and has ruined my life. 

 

Still, I'm trying to be positive and laugh, even though I am terrified and in a crisis. Good times! :D :) 

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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  • Administrator
Altostrata

According to my doctor, who's very adverse to unnecessary drugs, if you don't have symptoms from Hashimoto's, it doesn't make sense to treat it, no matter what tests show.

 

What time of day do you take fluoxetine, and what symptoms do you attribute to withdrawal?

 

 

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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Kittygiggles

If you can see autoimmunity attacking an organ (such as via ultrasound or biopsy), it makes sense to me to make lifestyle changes to see if the attack can be halted or even reversed. I agree completely about drugs. I'm not a doctor but as far as I can tell, drugs offer little to nothing to actually treat autoimmunity and at great cost. Lifestyle seems to hold the most promise if you have verifiable tissue damage or symptoms.

 

I take fluoxetine at around 22:00 (+ or - 1 hour) every night. Using water titration I've been very successful up to this point in measuring accurate doses; as far as I can tell anyway.

 

At around 20:00 on the day of the wave, I felt dizzy but with no loss of balance. This is fairly common for me since this withdrawal journey started and it doesn't bother me much. I went for a walk and it started to ramp up quickly as the walk progressed, I finished it without any issue but my mind was swimming, I could move, see, talk, and behave coherently without issue, it was like a lucid intoxication, if that makes any sense. I tolerate moderate to intense exercise very well usually.

 

By the time I got home and did a few chores, it just kept getting worse. It was time for my medication anyway so I updosed to the start of what was a fast acceleration of my rate of reduction.

 

I was hesitant to write this description because I am going too fast for SA. I get it but it's my choice to do so because fluoxetine is wreaking havoc on my body. 

The dizziness increased to unbearable levels, whether lying down or standing. Then the intense fear and depersonalization crept in, for which I took magnesium. I had some moderate nausea too, for which I took ginger.

 

It took about 5 hours for it to dissipate, and it dropped to a low level thereafter. 

 

I'm holding now until I can retry the reduction in a few weeks, as long as no further incidents happen. 

 

I've looked at blood sugar issues (fasting insulin and blood glucose, as well as postprandial levels are all good) previously, and I don't have hypo nor hypertension from previous measurements. It did feel much like a surge of T3, so I haven't ruled out that it could have come from excess thyroid medication.

 

Anyway, I've looked at the symptoms section here extensively over the 2+ years I've been here, there's plenty of good information that covers all my symptoms. I can't imagine there's anything that isn't already covered on this site. I'm not sure there's anything to add here other than hold for much longer and taper at a maximum of 10% of your last dose. Neither option applies in my situation, so I will keep figuring this out using the information on SA and adjusting things accordingly myself. Despite having the most frightening experiences of my life during withdrawal, I insist on going faster than recommendations. I believe every situation is unique and the health concerns caused by keeping this poison in my body are a greater priority than hopefully, the terrifying yet transient symptoms from withdrawal.

 

I update this thread only because I want those who may read it and are curious, can see how my journey ends and then possibly learn from it.

 

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my post and for your consideration. I hope you are doing well.

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • Administrator

How are you doing, KG? Any return of that wave? Where are you in your taper?

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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Kittygiggles

Hi @Altostrata, thank you for not shunning me (due to my unusual, fast, and risky taper) and checking in. 

 

Things are okay. The initial wave never returned with such severity. I updosed a little that night then held for 3 weeks, before continuing my descent once more but slower again this time. 

The dizziness comes and goes now at greater intensity than before the wave but less than the wave; seemingly towards dosage time, which is at the end of the day. Last night I went for my forest walk, the dizziness was there but it did not affect my coordination or balance, much like discussed on the SA thread about it here. 

 

I've had some other withdrawal symptoms resurface recently that I hadn't faced this year. I'm okay with that as long as they are transient and milder than before.

 

I hope to be done by the end of July. There's not much left in my way now before I hit zero so unless I face a major incident, I'll stick to being free of this poison by August. It's liberating not to be as scared as I used to be. In a way, I am happy to face some withdrawal symptoms now because I think it's a much nastier experience (one I've had) to experience it a couple of weeks after hitting zero. 

 

I suppose the greatest thing I've learned recently is just how much better I am at acceptance, how my self-confidence has improved, and how powerful my commitment is to looking after all aspects of my health. 

 

If anyone reading this thinks I've succumbed to hubris, then I understand that but it isn't the case: in fact I respect the power SSRIs have over us far more than before. I have just reached a point in my recovery where time is no longer on my side, due to health concerns, and out of necessity, I am going faster. I wouldn't recommend this to anyone but it is a lesson in really listening to one's body and evaluating things carefully. I've deliberated every step of the way and it has been exhausting but it means I can look back on this journey so far and not really have any regrets about having acted rashly. 

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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  • Administrator

What do you mean by a linear tapering regimen? What's been your tapering schedule for the last 6 months?

 

What are your health concerns that cause you to taper faster?

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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  • 2 weeks later...
Kittygiggles

My current tapering regimen is linear and in short it means I picked fixed percentage reductions, with a much slower pace over the last 7 months. If I finish as I expect to within a month, it would have taken me about 24 months. That is too fast for SA so I understand the criticism I would receive for doing so.

 

I am doing it primarily because of autoimmunity. I have Hashimoto's and Raynaud's, the latter could be secondary (which in a minority of cases can be fatal). I suspect fluoxetine has triggered my autoimmunity and its continued presence is deleterious to my health. It is my hypothesis that any STO (serotonin transporter occupancy) percentage will adversely affect our nervous and endocrine systems. Although it can be comforting to think that when we are on low doses, like mine (0.12mg), the STO % is too low to harm us, I think that is illogical. If an SSRI can cause a symptom upon withdrawal at tiny doses, it is logical to suspect that its presence can also cause side effects. In my opinion, there is no 'safe' dose of an SSRI if one is vulnerable to their various side effects. 

 

I have had some withdrawal symptoms but they are still tolerable. I do not expect that my drop to zero from 0.06mg will be easy, so I will hold at that dose as long as I can tolerate it. However, I cannot even begin to deal with all my other health issues effectively without fluoxetine being out of my system.

 

To throw further chaos into the mix, I got bitten by a tick just over a week ago. I've spent about 20 hours learning about Lyme disease and I have visited a doctor. I took doxycycline as a prophylactic in one dose but that may have been overkill. If I have Lyme disease, doxycycline treatment could cause side effects and disrupt my withdrawal catastrophically. The timing couldn't be worse. The prophylactic was probably a bad idea due to its effect on antibody detection in later blood tests I may need.

 

Hopefully I'm worrying for nothing. The tick was not engorged, the head was intact, and it was black, suggesting a male but that seems unlikely, so possibly not the right species or a female that hadn't fed for long. However, from all my research on morphological changes during feeding, it could have fed for up to 48 hours maximum by my estimation. I used to check for tick bites daily but I guess in recent months, with everything going on, I just stopped because I haven't been bitten in 3 years. At least I haven't had the rash yet and the bite healed fast, almost completely within 48 hours. Sadly, in recent days I developed some restless legs/muscle aches that don't improve with rest but don't seem to get worse with walking or running. What is causing that? It could be (in no particular order):

 

- early Lyme disease

- a psychosomatic phenomenon

- some reaction to the crazy heatwave here

- fluoxetine withdrawal syndrome

- a fluoxetine side effect

- hypothyroidism

- another autoimmune condition

- hypothyroidism treatment

- supplements

- an activity or exercise that I am not accustomed to

- a reaction to the single 100mg doxycycline prophylactic

 

What a list to work through yet I know some people have lists an order of magnitude larger. I don't envy them but I feel wretched about my situation still. 

Such a list is normal now for every symptom that I have. There is no end to it but if I can remove fluoxetine from that list, it's one less variable. It's one hell of a variable to remove as well because it could be the root cause of almost all my issues since I took that first, cursed pill.

 

So I am not doing well, I have little hope but the energy I have left I devote to getting to 0mg of fluoxetine. If I can achieve that, I can rest much easier before I perish. I have extreme stress and the negative thoughts that go along with living through a difficult period with one's health. I still have a sense of humor though and try to laugh every day. Laugh or cry, right? :D

 

Hope everyone reading this is doing better :)

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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  • 3 weeks later...
Kittygiggles

I have stopped fluoxetine, jumping to zero from 0.066mg a few days ago. I can now focus on enjoying life and getting better from autoimmunity, if I can, without this extra-evolutionary agent confounding everything. The psychological burden that has now lifted was heavy; every waking moment involved a cognitive battle, during which the desire to stop taking this drug was pushed aside, only to rise again the next day. My mind can do without that struggle and I am happier for it. 

 

I've been living as naturally as possible, with natural toiletries, an organic autoimmune paleo diet, fasting protocols, daily exercise, and trying to eliminate stress as much as possible. The only drugs I now take are thyroid hormone replacements. I am taking the best care of my body I can yet in autoimmunity, with the many hypotheses that surround it, we sufferers are left to solve the insoluble and perhaps perish prematurely. 

 

I have scary tests ahead and I will do what I can to get better without medication. Failing that, I can now rest in peace, knowing that however many days left I have, each one will be without the ingestion of the most cruel poison I've yet encountered: SSRIs. 

 

Thank you to all who read this thread or contributed, it was good to discuss my concerns on this relatively short stabilizing and withdrawal journey of almost three years.

 

So far, on day 5 without fluoxetine, I am fine. I had some moderate dizziness during the first 48 hours but it passed. I expect I will encounter some trouble from SSRI withdrawal in about 1 to 3 weeks, then at 4 to 6 months, then at 10 months, then perhaps 24 months. If I am alive to see those landmarks, I'll check in and report how I'm doing. I won't be reinstating though; it would have to be a life or death scenario for me to even consider it.

 

I hope you all find health, peace, and happiness.

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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  • Mentor
FarmGirlWorks

Congratulations!

  • Prozac | late 2004-mid-2005 | CT WD in a couple months, mostly emotional
  • Sertraline 50-100mg | 11/2011-3/2014, 10/2014-3/2017
  • Sertraline fast taper March 2017, 4 weeks, OFF sertraline April 1, 2017
  • Quit alcohol May 20, 2017
  • Lifestyle changes: AA, kundalini yoga

 

"If you've seen a monster, even if it's horrible, that's evidence of divinity." – Damien Echols

 

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  • Moderator
brassmonkey

Congratulations on making the jump to "0".  Well done on the taper.  I wish you all the luck on the coming tribulations.  Please keep us posted.

 

((((((((((((((((((HUGS)))))))))))))))

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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  • 4 weeks later...
Kittygiggles

Thank you so much @FarmGirlWorks and @brassmonkey

 

It's been four weeks

Aside from very slight withdrawal symptoms for about three days, nothing unusual has happened. I was waiting for something bad to happen after about two weeks. My next expected period for withdrawal symptoms is about two or three months after dropping to zero, then after that six months, then a year. I'll update in two months probably. I am optimistic about my withdrawal prognosis because my previous experience with going to zero, many years ago, was that I had brain zaps, with extreme: dizziness, irritability, derealization, and headaches within two weeks of stopping. I've had not had that yet. I would consider my status to be better than my withdrawal normal and no worse, so a net gain in feeling good :)

 

Recently, I've noticed my old mind returning to me but it's even better than before because now, thanks to CBT, I'm free of my former OCD. It's an amazing feeling: colors, sounds, interests, passions, other people, etc - I feel more engaged with stimuli. I feel younger and I find it amazing that I feel and perceive my mind to be much like it was before taking fluoxetine, minus the OCD of course. These drugs are so powerful, even at these very low doses. At 90 days the metabolite, norfluoxetine will be gone from my body and I will then be truly free of SSRIs but already, at four weeks, I may be almost clear of fluoxetine.

 

I contrast this with my apparent worsening autoimmunity. I sometimes fear the worst amidst the broad and benign differential diagnoses that could apply. I can only hope that my future tests reveal that all I'm experiencing is linked to my thyroid and I have a long life ahead of me. I love life and much like everyone else, I do not want to die prematurely. 

 

In terms of lifestyle, I exercise regularly, eat organic natural whole foods (i.e. no processed food), do not drink or smoke, ensure I get plenty of sleep, maintain a healthy weight, and I am much better at managing stress. Of course, autoimmunity often doesn't respond to lifestyle interventions but I hope my focus on doing all that I can in that regard will improve my chances of recovery. 

 

Despite my physical symptoms and concerns, I am focused on making the most of my time, no matter how little or much is left. 

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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  • 1 month later...
Kittygiggles

It's been almost 3 months since reaching zero

Nothing to report in terms of withdrawal. There have been a few diminished echoes of withdrawal symptoms but all milder than during the taper and often lasting a couple of hours at most. Ultimately, I feel much like my old self before taking the drug, as I mentioned above. At this point I no longer think about fluoxetine or my journey, save fleetingly, when I am reminded of how much time was robbed by the drug. I continue to live a healthy life and I am making the most of my freedom from SSRIs. 

 

Anyway, I'll try to update in about 3 months, and then 6 months thereafter. However, there is a chance that I may not return, if so, readers can assume all is well with withdrawal and life has swept me away from caring much more about this thread. I think it has served its purpose and I doubt many people, if any, read it along the journey but it helped me to believe that I had a small audience of peers. 

 

I wish you all the best of luck on your withdrawal journeys and I hope your tapering schedule can be as short as mine, if not shorter! 

 

So long.

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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  • Moderator

Hi Kittygiggles!

 

Wouaw,  it feels really Nice To read you and To know that you're doing ok!!! Bravo !!!

 

Thank you for sharing this  :)

2006 : 20mg Paxil + Bromazepam

2008 : cold turkey of both

2010 : 20mg Paxil + Bromazepam

2014-June2017 : Switch from Bromazepam to Prazepam, taper to 0.

2018 to August 2019 : Paxil 20mg taper (3% every 15 days).

- 22 Aug 2019 updosed To 10mg (was at 8.4mg)

25th Sept 2019 To April 2020 : found SA, holding at 10mg Paxil. 

April 2020 : Paxil 10mg to Prozac 7mg bridge. Details topic/21457-

 

Current Supplements : magnesium citrate/ fish oil/ evening primrose oil 

 

Current medication :

* 1mg Diazepam (since 29 Aug 2020)

* Prozac : 6.8 mg (15 Sept 2021)/ 6.88mg (14 Aug 2021)/ 6.92mg (23 Jun 2021)

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Kittygiggles

Hi Erell,

Thank you very much for visiting and posting here! I am glad that my thread helped you feel better. Withdrawal is a difficult journey primarily because it is so hard to figure out what is causing symptoms: sleep, food, supplements/no supplements, exercise/no exercise, tranquilizers, SSRIs, alcohol, other prescriptions etc. I used a diary every day but now I rarely use it but it helped me see vague patterns and more importantly, it reminded me that windows always came back :) Ultimately, I think I realised that most of the things I was unsure of was purely down to continuation symptoms and discontinuations symptoms, rather than specific supplements and that I just had to be patient and distract myself from them. I was far from being irresponsible as I was hounding doctors all the time about every possible symptom so I was at no risk of missing something important I guess. I am glad that confusing journey is now behind me!

I wish you long and broad windows!

 

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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  • 1 month later...
  • Administrator

Because you're feeling better, I added our cheerful "here comes the sun" symbol ☼ to the title of your Intro topic, to show you're recovering.

 

Please continue to let us know how you're doing. I hope you will add your story to our Recovery Success Stories eventually!

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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  • 2 months later...

I composed several versions of this update but I decided to just compose something quickly, so here it is. 

In terms of fluoxetine: it is over. It has been 6 months and I've had no issues relating to withdrawal. I'd consider my withdrawal a success.

 

In terms of my health: I developed hypothyroidism around 2015, when I was taking fluoxetine. I have considered the hypothesis that fluoxetine is to blame and tried to find evidence to support it. There are many other possible causes. It seems I may have developed more autoimmune issues but it is a troubling and complicated subject. Suffice to say, I am doing everything I can to discover my root causes and I have been undergoing an elimination diet for several months now. I've tried a multitude of things that have some scientific merit but it's hard to wade through the pseudoscience out there to get to the plausible stuff. I continue to maintain a good lifestyle of daily exercise, a paleo-like diet (no modern food), no smoking, and no drinking. I try to manage stress and I'm better at that. My sleep is better but I should still improve my bedtime. 

 

Maybe someone reading this would like to know what life is like on the other side. Well, it's only been 6 months for me and I know some people here warn of withdrawal returning weeks, months, and years after stopping. That kind of thinking can ruin one's hope; I never really cared for it. I now forget about fluoxetine, titrating doses carefully every day is just a memory, and more importantly, the identifiable continuation and discontinuation symptoms are gone. I am very happy I didn't taper more slowly - I found a speed that worked for me and that is important. My guess on how long it takes one to taper is probably longer than you think but perhaps a lot less time than the people who've been here the longest. 

 

I've stayed away from this place more and more because I've had issues with the moderation (I expect this post to be edited by a mod, for example), the attitude of some members, and the lack of interest in my thread. The latter is understandable; this subject and my description of it is far from entertaining. However, it felt, at times, that I was talking to myself and I think many people feel that way because more and more people turn up here trying to escape the SSRI prison. Websites like this can only handle so many people and there are a lot of us!

 

Anyway, good luck to everyone on their journey and I hope you can all find your way to zero without too much difficulty.

 

I'll try to return in the future but I make no promises now. I am 100% confident though that fluoxetine and SSRIs will remain part of my past and never my future. It's good to be free; and even if iatrogenic harm lingers, at least we fought back and won :) 

2012: 2 weeks of paroxetine, I cannot recall the dose. Strong side effects, stopped cold turkey, had intense, horrible withdrawal thereafter

2012 to 2016: Fluoxetine 40mg daily, sometimes 20mg daily, a couple of bad tapers under doctor's advisement, increasingly bad withdrawal symptoms with each major dose change

Oct 2016 to June 2017: 10-month reinstatement of 20mg fluoxetine daily to stabilize. A very difficult period but withdrawal gradually improved

July 2017: At 20mg (100%), started a linear tapering regimen using water titration (20mg fluoxetine into 300ml of water).

June 2019: Currently at 0.200mg (1.00%). I have many symptoms, most I attribute to fluoxetine, some to withdrawal, and the rest to hypothyroidism. Continuing to reduce anyway.

July 2019: Jumped from 0.066mg (0.33%) to 0.000mg (0.00%); I'm now free of the poison.

 

My introduction thread: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/14226-kittygiggles-generic-prozac-fluoxetine-stabilization/

 

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@KittygigglesThis is wonderful news! I hope you'll consider writing a success story for the success story thread (now or later)! It would be a great help to many people. And great to hear that you are thriving.

 

In terms of lack of interest in your thread, I always thought that the only people that really communicated to other people on their threads were because they pm'd eachother and then started looking out for each other. I thought that people really find each other on the site because of a similar drug, symptom, etc etc. I only really seek out input from the mods and will tag them into something if I need an answer. 

The only other people that comment on my thread are people that I've asked questions about their withdrawal, or people that saw I took the same drug for the same length of time,  or someone I've Skyped with after putting out a general request for people to Skype with. And all the non-mod comments are probably less than 7 total. What I'm saying is that it I don't think most threads get comments from casual passerby's or anything. It's usually some other connection that was made and then people start following eachother/commenting on threads. Just my two cents. 

Anyways, take care and thanks for posting this update!

3/21/19 started Bupropion XL 150 mg

3/21/19 started Risperidone 2mg

7/7/19 start Abilify half dose 5 mg. discontinue Risperidone

7/9/19 full dose Abilify 10 mg

7/29/19 discontinued Abilify due to panicky side effects

8/2/19 Began Latuda 20 mg

8/5/19 discontinued Latuda due to similar side effects 

8/10/19 discontinued Bupropion after realizing it was causing the insomnia

From 8/10/19 no drugs whatsoever

Currently taking vitamin D, E, a probiotic and fish oil. 

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  • 1 year later...
normalhuman

Hi @Kittygiggles Just curious how you’re doing these days? Have autoimmune issues gotten any easier the longer you’ve been off now? Thanks for posting your journey!

"You have a chemical imbalance & we can fix it with these"

1995-2004: Varying time on Zoloft / Lexapro / Effexor (minor withdrawals).

2004-2009: Wellbutrin & Prozac, then added Neurontin & Abilify.

2009-2016: Wellbutrin, Prozac, Neurontin, Abilify, & Cytomel. Adderal & Oxazepam as needed. Failed trials of Ritalin / Viibryd / Brintellex / Lamictal (short or cross tapers).

2016-2017: Wellbutrin, Prozac, Cytomel. Dropped Abilify, Neurontin & Cytomel. Oxazepam as needed. Failed trial of Topamax & Enlyte (short or cross tapers). Failed trial on Cymbalta (1 year on, 2 month taper, 3+ months of acute withdrawals. Used Prozac bridge, Hydroxyzine, Benadryl, Quercetin, & Zyrtec). Thought was stabilized.

Nov 2017-Sept 2019: Tapered 2 months off Wellbutrin 75mg & crashed (4-9+ months of acute withdrawals after reinstated Prozac 20mg & Wellbutrin 75mg. Used Propranolol, Hydroxyzine, Lorazepam, Clonazepam, Quercetin).  Successfully tapered Prozac 20mg to 10mg over 3 months (down to 10mg Prozac at 3/25/19, minor withdrawals).  Successfully tapered Wellbutrin over 6 months (OFF Wellbutrin 10/19/19, minor withdrawals). 5 month hold only on Prozac 10mg. 

Mar-July 2020: Tapered Prozac 10mg to 2.5mg over 5 months (minor withdrawals), started LDN 1mg July. 

July-Nov 2020: Tapered Prozac 2.5mg to 0.5mg (minor withdrawals).

Dec 2020- Current: Crashed in Dec.  Reinstated Prozac 2mg, dropped LDN. (Acute withdrawals. Using Hydroxyzine, Quercetin, briefly used Propranolol), . Updose to 3mg Feb. Updose 3.2mg March (added Zyrtec, Celadrin, & Boswellia). Mental symptoms much better after 6 mo, physical symptoms that developed during withdrawal / pain, very slowly improving for the most part with more  good days than bad days now. 

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