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ShadowMan

ShadowMan: don't know what to do!

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ShadowMan

Hello, Im a 28yo male, from Brazil, and Im desperate!
 

- 2005 start taking Paroxetine 40mg, no big deal, worked quite nice.
- 2006 stopped cold turkey, not more than a week with brain zaps and I was fine.
- 2007 anxiety and depression came back, like when I wasnt on Paroxetine.
- 2007 back to Paroxetine. I was "normal" again.
- 2013 depression started again, transitioned to LexaPro 15 + Wellbutrin XL 300 with very few problems, 2 weeks and I was fine.
- 2015 dropped Wellbutrin cold turkey without problems.
- 04/2017 Transition to Pristiq 50, for five days I took half lexapro pill + half pristiq, the problems started, nausea, headaches, muscle stifness, neck pain, after these 5 days, things were the same... starting feeling miserable =(, I talked to my MD, she said to taper off Pristiq, 25mg for 5 days than 12,5 for five more than, stop taking. First drop and the brain zaps started, insomnia kicked in hard.
- 05/12/2017 one week without Pristiq, I cant handle what Im feeling anymore, the zaps are driving me insane, I cant sleep properly, my body and head aches, my concentration is gone.

 

Called my MD and she prescribed me lexotan to help ease the symptons. Still not taking it.

I dont know if what Im experiencing is withdrawal from Lexapro or Pristiq, I DONT KNOW WHAT TO DO!!, should I go back to Lexapro and try tapering it slowly or should I keep going like I am? I just want to get rid of the freaking zaps!

Im quite desperate, sorry for my bad english!

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nz11

Shadowman im so sorry you are in this mess. You are not alone.

Im glad you have found sa

 

When people first join they are asked to put up a drug sig. Are you able to do that. This makes it easy to see your context at a glance.

 

Why did you switch to pristiq in april 17? Was it a move to taper off the lexapro?

Was there an increase in psychological distress so the doctor decided to switch you?

 

You say you are one week without pristiq what happened to the 'half lexapro' pill can i assume that you have stopped taking that too.

 

You have been taking 15 mg of lexapro for what looks like 4 years. (15 mg of lexapro is equivalent to  nearly 30mg of paxil).

My feeling is you need to go back to the lexapro, you are a lexapro addict. And the cutting it in half has triggered ssri wdl symptoms.

Your doctor perhaps is blaming this on the pristiq but it may be simply that the pristiq was not enough to cover/mask the wdl from a 50% cut in lexapro and then a CT.

 

Did you feel stable prior to the introduction of pristiq?

When did you stop taking the lexapro, if in fact you have?

 

My guess is rightly or wrongly that you quit the lexapro 7 days ago. (Please confirm).

 

If my guess is right then i would seriously consider going back to lexapro. Should you decide not to do so then be aware that things could get a lot worse before they get better. Your doctor may suggest ri of another rosey red psychotropic apple. 

Another switch may not cover the lex wdl .

 

should I go back to Lexapro and try tapering it slowly

I am not a moderator but my opinion is yes.

 

Tips for tapering off Lexapro (escitalopram)

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

Your doctor has prescibed lexotan. For a moment there i assumed  it might be another name for lexapro.

However im learning never to assume. I see that it is in fact a benzo with the main ingredient appears to be bromazepam (used as a premedicant prior to surgery). 

Your doctor is trying to cover ssri wdl with a benzo. This is not a good idea.

imo you would be better off ri the lexapro as the wdl symptoms may go on for years and a benzo addiction could be triggered in 1-2 weeks.

 

oh you are doing a great job at English by the way.

nz11

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ShadowMan

When people first join they are asked to put up a drug sig. Are you able to do that. This makes it easy to see your context at a glance.
 

Ok, I will do that.

Why did you switch to pristiq in april 17? Was it a move to taper off the lexapro?

Was there an increase in psychological distress so the doctor decided to switch you?
 

I was getting urticaria for no reason, we came to a conclusion that it could be some allergy to Lexapro

You say you are one week without pristiq what happened to the 'half lexapro' pill can i assume that you have stopped taking that too.

Yes, took 7,5mg lexapro + 25 pristiq for 5 days, than up pritiq to 50 and stopped lexapro.
 

Did you feel stable prior to the introduction of pristiq?

Yes.
 

When did you stop taking the lexapro, if in fact you have?

Yes, a month more or less. But the real problems started when I stopped Pristiq.
 

Your doctor is trying to cover ssri wdl with a benzo. This is not a good idea.

The benzo is in liquid form, even if I try a very low dose just me make me feel a little better?



Thank you very much for the Info, I will try to speak with my MD, or switch to anoher one.
The worst are these Brain Zaps, the muscle pain, head ache and the other ones I can stand!

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nz11

Well done on doing the drug sig.

 

Now you are off lex has the uticaria (i think its a rash right?) improved or do you still have it?

 

Looked up some side effects of lexapro and this is what i found in the drugs checker.

I can see it lists 'uticaria ' [bold large font mine]

Dermatologic

Common (1% to 10%): Increased sweating
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Acne, aggravated psoriasis, alopecia, cellulitis, dry skin, eczema, erythematous rash, fungal dermatitis, furunculosis, hematomas, lichenoid dermatitis, onychomycosis, pruritus, purpura, pustular rash, rash, scar, skin disorder, urticaria, verruca
Frequency not reported: Angioedema, ecchymosis
Postmarketing reports: Epidermal necrolysis, erythema multiforme, Stevens Johnson syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis

Angioedema has been reported with racemic citalopram.

 

Well i am not a doctor so if your doctor thinks you cant go back on lex due to medical reasons or your life is in danger then he will have to come up with a plan B.

Im sorry you are in this difficult situation.

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ShadowMan

Now you are off lex has the uticaria (i think its a rash right?) improved or do you still have it?
Guess what, still have it, every 3 or 4 days I took some cetirizine. I cant think oh anything about whats causing it.

The ADs have been improving my quality of life and fixing a lot of problems. But im afraid of potentially long term permanent damage(if a thing like this could happen).

Quick Update
Strangely, I woke up today feeling better, the zaps seemed to have ceased a little bit, just a moderate head ache.
Being taking 3g of a good Omega 3, B Complex and C Vitamin every day, and Vitamin D since I have a little bit more than nothing of it heheheh
 

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nz11

So glad you are having a good day.

Withdrawal can have good and bad days. The good days are strength gathering days for helping cope with the next not so good day and to remind us that bad days will eventually be followed by a not so bad day.

 

The ADs have been improving my quality of life and fixing a lot of problems

I dont know so much.

Why do you think they are fixing problems.

Their effect is like alcohol to numb. Anything that numbs emotional or psychological distress is bound to be seen as helpful on any kind of rating scale. Pharma have used this to push these dangerous chemicals through the approval hoops.

However they are not helpful but harmful.

 

Is it possible for you to go to your local library and get the award winning book 'Anatomy of an epidemic ' by Whitaker. I invite you to read this. Its not a hard read and once you pick it up if you are like me you will have trouble putting it back down. Each chapter pretty much stand independantly of the others so you could go to amazon books and take a look inside and even reading just one chapter will be very enlightening.

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ShadowMan

Well, since I was 10, 11, I remember my emotions being too intense and changing a lot! 
Very bad intense and MEANINGLESS anxiety attacks, there was a point where Iv on my 11,12 that I developed a horading disorder. 
I had days that I was awesome, nothing could make me sad, other ones making me feel like NOTHING!, very very bad changes... 
Then I started to feeling BAD everyday, no more "mania", only sadness, bad feelings, lack of will, no energy, only wanted to be at home, which evolved to only wanted to be inside my room.
At that point I missed 2 years on school. So i decided to seek help(That time Paroxetine was prescibed to me).

I began to improve on anxiety, no more meaningless attacks, my mood improved a lot, well, my life improved, I was able to socialize more, since my anxiety was controlled... overall, I was more "normal"(I hate using this word like that).

One could argue that, it wasnt a problem, it was what I am, but its hard to accept this when all that you feel made you miserable. 

Like Nietzsche daid  “for when you gaze long into the abyss. The abyss gazes also into you.”

I could only see the abyss, nothing more! At one point, if nothing could be done, Im sure that I would fell into it...


After all these years on ADs, I decided to give myself another chance! Lets see

Sorry, its I little difficult to express myself clearly in a language other than my native on =/

 

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Altostrata

Welcome, Shadowman.

 

It sounds like you are experiencing withdrawal from Lexapro.

 

It's a good sign that the withdrawal symptoms seem to be going away.

 

If they come back, you might consider reinstatement of perhaps 2mg of Lexapro's gentler sibling, Celexa (citalopram). This might bre enough to stop withdrawal symptoms.

 

Try to use Lexotan very infrequently, it can cause dependency and then you have even worse problems with withdrawal symptoms.

 

Please let us know how you're doing.

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ShadowMan

Thank you Altostrata!

Update:

The zaps are now more "gentle" and not that frequent! I still have the head and neck pain, but nothing too intense.
My inner clock is messed up, but now I sleep, and a lot!
Sexual function is still weird, nothing too dramatic though.

Im feeling good, because Im seeing the withdrawal going away =)

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ShadowMan

Update:

After being reasonably well and the symptoms pretty much subsided, another one appeared.

Im feeling a arousal-like sensation down there, dificulty to get and keep an erection(can only do with physical stimulation), when I try to "alleviate" myself, the sensation persists. I had this before while on Lexapro, but a thought its has to do with the fact that Im on Losartan 100mg too. Well im only a month off of lexapro so, maybe its WD.

After reading about PSSD and PGAD, the fear and anxiety kicked in as strong as ever, I dont know how I managed last night... My fear is, if this thing is permanent? Mostly the arrousal-like sensation... I may have succeeded in destrying my life!

just a question, they subside if I start taking lexapro again?

sorry, Im so scared, Im not eating, getting out of bed, Im not functioning! =(

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ShadowMan

Ok I related all that issues and my MD wants to put me back on Lexapro, and bromazepam.

She asked for thyroid, chlorine, sodium, potassium, urea and creatinine tests.

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AliG

Sometimes, there comes a time in this process where you really have to step up and take your health into your own hands. Your Doctor might want more Lexapro but get him to come here and talk to those that have been so damaged by that very drug!

 

Have you considered Alto's suggestion of Celexa as a possible alternative reinstatement choice?

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ShadowMan

I want to be drug free!
But its hard with the things that Im feeling =( mainly this sexual problems that just appeared

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Altostrata

Very typically, withdrawal symptoms change into other withdrawal symptoms.

 

That does sound like PGAD. It may be transitory. Are you still have brain zaps?

 

You may want to try these supplements:

 

King of supplements: Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil)

Magnesium, nature's calcium channel blocker

 

Start with a little bit of each, one at a time, to see how they affect you.

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ShadowMan

The zaps disappeared, had than yesterday when I was trying to sleep after waking up severel times..

I started Omega 3 during the zaps, will try Magnesium!

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nz11

Cant help but feel your doctor is a disappointment.

First you have to get off lexapro (kamakazi style) due to health reasons then you have to go back onto lexapro, withdrawal symptoms can do that to a person.

As AliG says its time to step up and take control.

Regarding the PGAD i agree with alto you may well find its transitory.

In fact i'd go as far as to predict that the pendulum may well swing 180 degrees and you may well be left with no libido and impotence. Have you had your testosterone levels checked?

 

im so sorry you have to go through this.

Have you considered making a complaint against your doctor to the appropriate authorities in Brazil.

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ShadowMan

Tomorrow I will go to another doctor, Im sure that he will wnat me to do A LOT of tests

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ShadowMan

Oh and nz11 Im already with no libido and impotent, since getting and erection is really difficult!

I felt something strange today, when I was trying to sleep, you know when you are between  awake and asleep? I felt my legs relaxed and the muscles twitching a little, I got I a really fast erotic dream, during it I felt the normal sensation of being aroused, and my body tried an erection wich dindt occured properly but that feeling was there! without the need of physical stimulation. I think that my current state of mind has a role on this, during the day, or when I try to sleep Im only thinking abou whats happening with me, and when I was trying to sleep, I could think of other things, the bad thing was that when I was entering in the sleeping zone, I was thrown back to the awaken state.... couldnt sleep... I get the zaps during this too

Lets see what the doctor will say tomorrow...

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ShadowMan

reinstatement was necessary due n factors...

will update when I could

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ShadowMan

Reinstated, than fast tappered Lexapro(4 months):

- Tinnitus
- Hyperacusia
- RLS
- PSSD
- Lost body sensitivity
- Paresthesias/Pain

And now Im 2 days without sleep, like some users, I just cant sleep, I dont even feel sleepy...
Im extremely suicidal right now

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Songbird
2 hours ago, ShadowMan said:

Reinstated, than fast tappered Lexapro(4 months):

- Tinnitus
- Hyperacusia
- RLS
- PSSD
- Lost body sensitivity
- Paresthesias/Pain

And now Im 2 days without sleep, like some users, I just cant sleep, I dont even feel sleepy...
Im extremely suicidal right now

 

Did you manage to get stable after reinstating?  Why did you fast taper?  Can you add your fast taper dates and doses to your signature?  Have you considered Alto's suggestion of trying citalopram - it is almost the same as Lexapro but not as stimulating. 

 

If you really are feeling suicidal you need to get help.  Is there a hotline in Brazil that you can call?

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ShadowMan

Reinstating was the worst thing that I tried, I was stable for 1 week and than all fell apart, I trusted the md... 

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Songbird

It's possible that your reinstatement dose may have been too high for your sensitive system.  Also, when many changes are made in a short time frame, it can be hard to tell what is causing symptoms - sudden med changes can cause problems to show up several weeks later.  It looks like you started Pristiq, stopped Lexapro, stopped Pristiq and restarted Lexapro all in the space of only a month or two.  Your system is likely very confused by all of these changes.

 

Can you provide some dates and doses?  What dose did you reinstate and when?  When did you begin your fast taper and when did you get to zero?  What dose were you on just before stopping?  Were/are there any other meds involved?

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ShadowMan
On 4/29/2018 at 6:43 AM, Songbird said:

It's possible that your reinstatement dose may have been too high for your sensitive system.  Also, when many changes are made in a short time frame, it can be hard to tell what is causing symptoms - sudden med changes can cause problems to show up several weeks later.  It looks like you started Pristiq, stopped Lexapro, stopped Pristiq and restarted Lexapro all in the space of only a month or two.  Your system is likely very confused by all of these changes.

 

Can you provide some dates and doses?  What dose did you reinstate and when?  When did you begin your fast taper and when did you get to zero?  What dose were you on just before stopping?  Were/are there any other meds involved?


Its pretty hard to remember the dates and doses.
I think the reinstating dose was 5mg for 10 days than 10mg.
I started tapering a couple days before I upped to 10mg, I got new symptoms and than the md told me to taper.
I think I reached zero by september 2017, my last dose was 1mg

Wellbutrin but I never had problems with him, and I think that I used 2 or 3 times a low dose of bromazepan.

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ShadowMan

Last sunday 04/29 I had a HUGE setback, I dont think it is a wave

I developed:
- severe insomnia
- lost more sensitivity(whole body)
- my sense of taste became impaired
- my genitals lost more sensitivity
- strange nerve sensations and stifnness
- dread and rumminating thoughts

Some things improved:
- tinnitus and hyperacusis are less intrusive
- RLS is gone
- hives are gone

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ShadowMan

I keep getting worse, Im contemplating suicide a LOT

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Songbird

If you are really feeling suicidal, you need to seek out local help, and speak to someone trained in dealing with this.  Are there any services in Brazil that you can access?  See:  For those who are feeling desperate or suicidal

 

Are you able to update your signature with the changes you've made since May last year?  You mentioned a Lexapro reinstatement and fast taper, but no dates.  Are you currently taking any meds?  You say you are getting worse - what symptoms are you currently experiencing ?

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ShadowMan
1 hour ago, Songbird said:

If you are really feeling suicidal, you need to seek out local help, and speak to someone trained in dealing with this.  Are there any services in Brazil that you can access?  See:  For those who are feeling desperate or suicidal

 

Are you able to update your signature with the changes you've made since May last year?  You mentioned a Lexapro reinstatement and fast taper, but no dates.  Are you currently taking any meds?  You say you are getting worse - what symptoms are you currently experiencing ?


I updated.
No meds.

I will list all of them:
- Anhedonia
- Anxiety/Dread
- Depression
- Ruminations
- Visual disturances(like the perspective of things are wrong and tilted)
- Visual sensitivity and blurry vision
- Tinnitus
- Hyperacusis
- Dizziness
- Pressure in head and sinus
- Pressure in teeth
- TMJ Pain
- Inner vibrations
- Urticaria
- A itchy like feeling in ALL of my nerves, including eyeball nerves(like sand in the eyes)
- Diminished whole body sensitivity, worst in extremities
- Paresthesias all over(cold, heat, electric sensatioins, pins and needles, stabbings)
- PSSD(ED, PE, loss os sensitivity)
- Pain
- Terrible insomnia
- Hypnogonic hallucinations
- Occasional exploding head syndrome like symptoms
- Occasional lost of appetite and worsening of intestine functions

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Altostrata

ShadowMan, how are you?

 

On 4/28/2018 at 11:47 PM, ShadowMan said:

Reinstated, than fast tappered Lexapro(4 months):

- Tinnitus
- Hyperacusia
- RLS
- PSSD
- Lost body sensitivity
- Paresthesias/Pain

And now Im 2 days without sleep, like some users, I just cant sleep, I dont even feel sleepy...
Im extremely suicidal right now

 

On 5/2/2018 at 2:31 AM, ShadowMan said:


Its pretty hard to remember the dates and doses.
I think the reinstating dose was 5mg for 10 days than 10mg.
I started tapering a couple days before I upped to 10mg, I got new symptoms and than the md told me to taper.
I think I reached zero by september 2017, my last dose was 1mg

Wellbutrin but I never had problems with him, and I think that I used 2 or 3 times a low dose of bromazepan.

 

It does sound like that reinstatement of 5mg Lexapro was too much for you.

 

Have your symptoms changed in the last month?

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