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CrustyDuh: advice on using Diazepam to help Buspirone cold turkey


Crustyduh

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Going through various tests for bodily ill health. Had an endoscopy which caused MORE physical symptoms, plus anxiety. After standard blood tests all clear, told new symptoms down to Panic Disorder, after the endoscopy, (I personally dont agree, but gave it a shot).

 

Given Mirtazapine 15mg one at night 10th Feb. (plus x15 5mg tabs of Diazepam for emergencies). Took for 2weeks, no change at all. I stopped it by taking 1/2 tab for a few nights.

 

Was in A&E 29th March, tests done for physical symptoms, told its probably anxiety. Prescribed Buspirone 5mg x3 times a day, from 29th March evening to last night 1st April.

 

I've had the most awful side effects which really are causing me to be anxious. The short half life makes it very difficult to get the timing right & the symptoms are horrendous; not able to concentrate, confusion & irrational reactions to stimuli, like sounds, visual stuff etc & unwanted thoughts. I'm not sleeping properly either & I'm having random muscle spasms. I do not want this drug in my system. This morning, I've not taken it. I feel like I'm going crazy when it happens & it makes me panic.

 

Is it safe to take 2.5mg Diazepam to help cope with the withdrawal symptoms? Not constant use, just when it becomes too much. I dont want a protracted tapering withdrawl if I can avoid it.Last time I took a Diazepam (5mg) was a week ago I think.

 

I've posted this in the Benzo forum aswell.

Going through various tests for bodily ill health. Had an endoscopy which caused MORE physical symptoms, plus anxiety. After standard blood tests all clear, told new symptoms down to Panic Disorder, after the endoscopy, (I personally dont agree, but gave it a shot). Given Mirtazapine 15mg one at night 10th Feb. (plus x15 5mg tabs of Diazepam for emergencies). Took for 2weeks, no change at all. I stopped it by taking 1/2 tab for a few nights. Was in A&E 29th March, tests done for physical symptoms, told its probably anxiety. Prescribed Buspirone 5mg x3 times a day, from 29th March evening to last night 1st April. I've had the most awful side effects which really are causing me to be anxious. The short half life makes it very difficult to get the timing right & the symptoms are horrendous; not able to concentrate, confusion & irrational reactions to stimuli, like sounds, visual stuff etc & unwanted thoughts. I'm not sleeping properly either & I'm having random muscle spasms. I do not want this drug in my system. This morning, I've not taken it. 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

CrustyDuh -- Welcome to Surviving Antidepressants (SA)

 

It sounds as if you had an incident of anxiety or panic and that incident has been viewed as a full-fledged disorder.  That is only one possible way of looking at that situation. You might choose to follow what the doctors have told you or to interpret the events in a way that is empowering.

 

Medical interventions, even diagnostic procedures, can be distressing -- even when only thinking about them! 

 

Here's what you're saying the doctors are suggesting: diazepam to treat anxiety symptoms from busipirone that was prescribed to treat anxiety from an endoscopy.

 

As you know diazepam is a benzodiazepine. Did you know that many people have a HELL of a time coming off benzodiazepine drugs?  I urge you to read member topics in the Benzo Forum to inform yourself the risks you'd be taking by starting to take diazepam.

 

To deal with your anxiety, please consider developing non-drug techniques:

Non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms.

The Dr. Claire Weekes Method of Recovering from a Sensitized Nervous System

 

I hope you'll find the information in the SA forums helpful for your situation. I'm sorry that you are in the position that you need the information, but am glad that you found us.

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

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Thanks for replying. I was given a supply of diazepam (15 tabs to use very sparingly when absolutely necessary) when I first went to GP, along with Mirtazapine. The Mirt did zilch. so I stopped them. Later was at A&E after I almost passed out, doc prescribed Buspirone. I hate it, and as he said I could just stop it if I didnt get on with it, I really didnt, so I did. Today. I still have 4 Diazepam left & not likely to get any more.

 

I really want to know if they're safe to use as one off doses, if the panicky withdrawal from Buspirone is too much to handle, not regular usage. I've only been on Buspirone 5 days.

Going through various tests for bodily ill health. Had an endoscopy which caused MORE physical symptoms, plus anxiety. After standard blood tests all clear, told new symptoms down to Panic Disorder, after the endoscopy, (I personally dont agree, but gave it a shot). Given Mirtazapine 15mg one at night 10th Feb. (plus x15 5mg tabs of Diazepam for emergencies). Took for 2weeks, no change at all. I stopped it by taking 1/2 tab for a few nights. Was in A&E 29th March, tests done for physical symptoms, told its probably anxiety. Prescribed Buspirone 5mg x3 times a day, from 29th March evening to last night 1st April. I've had the most awful side effects which really are causing me to be anxious. The short half life makes it very difficult to get the timing right & the symptoms are horrendous; not able to concentrate, confusion & irrational reactions to stimuli, like sounds, visual stuff etc & unwanted thoughts. I'm not sleeping properly either & I'm having random muscle spasms. I do not want this drug in my system. This morning, I've not taken it. 

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  • Administrator

Welcome, Crusty.

 

Please do not take diazepam except very, very occasionally in an emergency.

 

As you've taken buspirone only a few days, you may decrease it rapidly; risk of withdrawal symptoms is low.

 

It sounds like you stopped it today, how do you feel?

 

What is the daily symptom pattern of "anxiety" your doctors are trying to treat? When did it start?

 

When you had endoscopy, were you sedated? With what drug?

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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Hi Altostrata

 

Thanks so much for replying. The morning was horrible, was jittery, shaky & really lightheaded. Sweating & heart pounding on waking. I've been ok-ish in the middle of the day, mainly I think due to doing things to distract me. (I spent the afternoon in the garden weeding & pruning. I still felt peculiar, but I think the fact I was doing some mild physical exercise got my blood pumping & seemed to lessen the lightheadedness) This evening I hope will be ok. I've not taken any Diazepam or Buspirone all day & so far I havent had the awful symptoms I wrote of earlier.

 

The symptoms I had within days of the endo (which was Jan 18th), were all physical. A couple of days after, I had what felt like really thick mucus at the back of my throat, which refused to clear. I drank water, coughed & tried to clear it, but it wouldn't budge. It was annoying, but it wasn't making me panic. I was in the back of a car going home at the time & suddenly whilst trying to clear it, I went really hot, dizzy, my heart was beating so fast & I felt claustrophobic, like I couldn't breathe, i had to get out of the car ASAP. I imagine this was a panic attack, but there was no mental panic aspect to it, so its hard to rationalise. I've been told it was 'body memory' causing it, but I confess I'm finding it hard to understand.

 

Then, for the next few days, on the evening car ride home, I kept getting sudden rushes of burning up really hot in my upper body & head. I had two more episodes like the car one in early Feb (once just out of the blue, another after talking about the endo). Then I started waking in the night sweating & heart pounding & it started happening on waking too. I found it hard to get enough air in my lungs sensation too & I sometimes had chest pain. At the same time, I had the same reaction if I tried to eat anything and this is when I started to get seriously worried. I spent 2 days unable to eat as any smallest amount would set me off & my stomach ached if I tried. I lost my apetite completely & 1 stone in weight from mid Jan to end of Feb & I'm still eating small amounts of food now, (very unlike me). Also, maybe a minor thing, but after anything, food or drink, since the endo, I burp. I didn't before. It may be benign, but to me it sounds like a physical rather than a mental issue, but came at the same time. (off topic sorry)

 

Things got worse and I found I couldn't do anything without setting off this cascade of symptoms. Getting out of bed, eating, even being upright. I spent the next few weeks either in bed or laying flat on the sofa, not able to do a damn thing. Anytime I was upright, I felt dizzy & my heart pounded. The only way I could exist was by laying flat, even then, I had this hard to get enough air sensation. I was dizzy most of the time, shaky & feeling the cold. Now at this point I'm thinking, is this to do with whatever health issue I'm being investigated for, or is this because of the endo? We went to the GP & he said it was anxiety & panic. For weeks after, I kept going really hot, dizzy & heart pounding, not able to get enough air sensation. I managed to get a cardio appointment, as the chest pain etc was a serious worry. (Had ultrasound, seen consultant had holter monitor & heart memo & due CT scan).

 

When I had the endoscopy, I had no warnings of potential problems pointed out to me, just that it was unpleasant. I chose the throat spray anaesthetic. (If I'd known just how bad, I would've chosen the injection). I did panic at one point as the tube was pressing on my throat & really hurting & I couldn't tell them. But I was calmed down by the nurse & he tilted my head (amazingly) forward so it wasnt pressing anymore. I calmed myself & just got on with it. When it was over, I was not in a sheer state of panic, but utterly relieved. I wasnt chewing it over & over in my mind either. When I went to tell my father about it though, I did get a peak of anxiety just speaking about it, which surprised me.

 

I'm aware this is potentially off topic, but I think it's necessary background for you. I've been going back & forth with various physical symptoms, which are finally being investigated, (I was fobbed off for a long while). Bloods tests & an ultrasound haven't shown anything, good news of course, but frustrating too. Not knowing whether my symptoms are anything serious or not is giving me a fair bit of stress, but whilst we've been investigating, (still are), I've had hope that either I'll find out whats wrong, or be more or less reassured that there isnt anything seriously wrong. I've been irritated & frustrated, but not ridden with anxiety. Since the endo, I dont know whether my new symptoms are due to my existing health issue or the endo causing physical harm or a panic response. There certainly is an anxiety element now for sure.

 

I dont know if this is relevant, but I think it may be, I have to say that I do not have blind faith in Doctors & have unfortunately had some woefully inadequate, or even neglectful GPs in my time. Coupled with the fact that, since a child, I've heard my disabled father's tales of his multiple medical encounters, many of which severely lacking. So its fair to say, I do have more than the average person's healthy scepticism when it comes to the medical professions ability to diagnose & treat. I admit that this has made me wary. I write this, as doubtless it's had an effect on my general outlook.

 

I apologise if this is too long and if Ive given way too much off topic stuff, but I felt each was necessary. I just wanted to give you the full picture. I hope I've answered your questions? Any input welcome.

Going through various tests for bodily ill health. Had an endoscopy which caused MORE physical symptoms, plus anxiety. After standard blood tests all clear, told new symptoms down to Panic Disorder, after the endoscopy, (I personally dont agree, but gave it a shot). Given Mirtazapine 15mg one at night 10th Feb. (plus x15 5mg tabs of Diazepam for emergencies). Took for 2weeks, no change at all. I stopped it by taking 1/2 tab for a few nights. Was in A&E 29th March, tests done for physical symptoms, told its probably anxiety. Prescribed Buspirone 5mg x3 times a day, from 29th March evening to last night 1st April. I've had the most awful side effects which really are causing me to be anxious. The short half life makes it very difficult to get the timing right & the symptoms are horrendous; not able to concentrate, confusion & irrational reactions to stimuli, like sounds, visual stuff etc & unwanted thoughts. I'm not sleeping properly either & I'm having random muscle spasms. I do not want this drug in my system. This morning, I've not taken it. 

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Thanks Scallywag for your advice, I've started to go through your links, but its bed time here now. Will spend some more time tomorrow goi g through them.

 

Much appreciated

Going through various tests for bodily ill health. Had an endoscopy which caused MORE physical symptoms, plus anxiety. After standard blood tests all clear, told new symptoms down to Panic Disorder, after the endoscopy, (I personally dont agree, but gave it a shot). Given Mirtazapine 15mg one at night 10th Feb. (plus x15 5mg tabs of Diazepam for emergencies). Took for 2weeks, no change at all. I stopped it by taking 1/2 tab for a few nights. Was in A&E 29th March, tests done for physical symptoms, told its probably anxiety. Prescribed Buspirone 5mg x3 times a day, from 29th March evening to last night 1st April. I've had the most awful side effects which really are causing me to be anxious. The short half life makes it very difficult to get the timing right & the symptoms are horrendous; not able to concentrate, confusion & irrational reactions to stimuli, like sounds, visual stuff etc & unwanted thoughts. I'm not sleeping properly either & I'm having random muscle spasms. I do not want this drug in my system. This morning, I've not taken it. 

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Day 2. I managed to distract myself for most of the day. My mind is a bit clearer than yesterday & I've not been as lightheaded. I've not been totally great today, but these could be physical symptoms not anxiety. I plan to go back to my GP, to try to get something sorted. I was on Prozac a few years ago & I had no unmanageable side effects other than appetite suppressant at the beginning, & sadly libido etc went out of the window. I could handle prozac, I know what to expect, so perhaps it'll help. Hopefully it'll work for me, (if my symptoms are caused by anxiety, then they should go away, if not...)

Going through various tests for bodily ill health. Had an endoscopy which caused MORE physical symptoms, plus anxiety. After standard blood tests all clear, told new symptoms down to Panic Disorder, after the endoscopy, (I personally dont agree, but gave it a shot). Given Mirtazapine 15mg one at night 10th Feb. (plus x15 5mg tabs of Diazepam for emergencies). Took for 2weeks, no change at all. I stopped it by taking 1/2 tab for a few nights. Was in A&E 29th March, tests done for physical symptoms, told its probably anxiety. Prescribed Buspirone 5mg x3 times a day, from 29th March evening to last night 1st April. I've had the most awful side effects which really are causing me to be anxious. The short half life makes it very difficult to get the timing right & the symptoms are horrendous; not able to concentrate, confusion & irrational reactions to stimuli, like sounds, visual stuff etc & unwanted thoughts. I'm not sleeping properly either & I'm having random muscle spasms. I do not want this drug in my system. This morning, I've not taken it. 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Crustyduh,

I'm sorry about everything you've been through. Its understandable why you would be feeling anxiety and panic lately.

 

Poor health, unexplained symptoms, a very uncomfortable, diagnostic medical procedure, and all this, combined with your childhood experiences leading to a lack of trust in medicine, would make anyone anxious. The stress of this over time could easily cause panic attacks and a downward spiral leading to more fear, confusion, stress and ongoing symptoms, both physical and psychological.

 

High levels of stress cause just as many physical symptoms as emotional and psychological ones.

 

I was on Prozac a few years ago & I had no unmanageable side effects other than appetite suppressant at the beginning, & sadly libido etc went out of the window. I could handle prozac, I know what to expect, so perhaps it'll help. Hopefully it'll work for me, (if my symptoms are caused by anxiety, then they should go away, if not...)

 

Actually, there's no guarantee prozac will work the second time around. I'd highly recommend reading Anatomy of an Epidemic by Robert Whitaker. Psychiatric drugs can cause harmful side effects and long term, they can worsen health, increasing the risk of other illnesses. They don't cure anything, but work by creating a chemical imbalance in the brain, which alters natural brain function. For some people, these changes may seem helpful. But evidence is starting to show that long term, they cause more harm than good.

 

There are healthier ways to manage stress and anxiety.

 

Of course you need to find out if your symptoms are being caused by something more serious. But if tests come back clear, I think its safe to assume that stress and anxiety are causing your symptoms. But psychiatric medication is not a safe or healthy solution. Not long term.

 

Finding ways to relax and reduce stress would be better. Perhaps some therapy or counseling to help you discover how your thoughts and beliefs might be causing unnecessary anxiety.

 

While reading through your thread, it occurred to me that the work of Dr. Claire Weekes would be ideal for you... yes, I see Scallywag thought exactly the same thing. :)

I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

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