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☼ Karma: Tapering Effexor, Gabapentin and Xanax


Karma

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Hi all

 

Diagnosed in 1990 with major depression and put on Prozac with a side of Xanax for the anxiety. Prozac quit working switched to Zoloft - Zoloft quit working switched to Paxil - Paxil quit working ... etc. Over the years I've been on Xanax, Klonopin, and Buspar. In 1999 put on 225 mg Effexor with 400 mg Gabapentin to "stabilize" the Effexor. Later bumped to 375 mg Effexor because of stress at work and anxiety. Used Xanax between .5 -1 mg to help with insomnia - didn't use it all the time until the last 5 years or so.

 

In 2005 diagnosed with Celiac disease, Hashimoto's thyroiditis, yeast overgrowth syndrome and adrenal fatigue. Treated thyroid with natural desiccated thyroid; went strict gluten free and healed my leaky gut; balanced yeast and flora - eat gluten free, soy free, low dairy, low sugar and worked on supporting adrenals. Healed my anemia, raised my B12 to a good supportive level and raised D3 to the 90s.

 

By 2006 or 2007 began tapering Effexor by 18.75 mg until that reduction resulted in anxiety that was unacceptable - this anxiety was resolved by going back up on the dose. Then started tapering by 6.25 mg every 4 weeks. The only symptoms were slight depression that would pass in a few days, minor anxiety in the form of tense shoulders, and night sweats the first day or so on a reduction - it all passed.

 

When the 6.25 mg reduction didn't result in any discernible symptoms, I started to drop every 2 weeks. At a total dose of 18.75 mg I thought I was almost done - got cocky and dropped 100 mg Gabapentin in one day - slept fine that night the next day fell into a severe depression. Resumed 200 mg Gabapentin and it was as if I only missed a dose - which has happened before.

 

It was suggested that my rate of Effexor taper was too aggressive and to up-dose to relieve the depression - had to up-dose 12.5 mg to get relief on the depression. Reviewing my logs it was clear that the symptoms had slowly been creeping back up on me since early August and slowing down the taper would have been more appropriate.

 

The weird thing was that six days after I stabilized the depression I had an extreme overreaction to an error I made at work and caused myself extreme anxiety and irrational thoughts - this followed a course of Cipro antibiotics ... perhaps a contributing factor. I was also under lots of stress at work. Suffered with anxiety that caused tense back muscles, internal vibration and irrational thoughts for three weeks - up-dosed Effexor by another 6.25 mg today, but coincidentally I woke up feeling better today anyway - I've been supplementing Krill Oil to help with the anxiety and it has helped.

 

My plan now is to get comfortable and stable at this dose of Effexor, but I don't know what to work on next. On the Benzo Board they recommend staying the course with Effexor and using it to offset the benzo taper. On the other hand I like having the Xanax to save me if the anxiety gets to be too much while weaning Effexor. Then I need to determine where the Gabapentin taper fits in.

 

One patient advocate board suggests that the anxiety was a Gabapentin backlash. My pdoc thinks it was coming down off of Effexor too rapidly. I don't believe I ever needed psych meds ... I believe that Celiac disease and hypothyroidism caused my symptoms and now that I have nutritionally healed my system I should be able to come off of the meds.

 

I welcome advise about what to do next and how to help avoid unacceptable withdrawal symptoms going forward.

 

Thanks Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Karma, and welcome! Your situation and history are pretty much classic. Did you know that when the studies were done that got Prozac approved, the drug companies had to give the study participants Xanax along with the Prozac, because Prozac alone caused too much anxiety and agitation? Yep. I also started my psych drug adventures on the combination of Prozac and Xanax, a couple years after you did.

 

But anyway.

 

I agree with your plan to get comfortable and stable on your current doses of everything before changing anything. I'm glad you recognize the importance of that. Every time we change any part of the chemistry in our brains, there's a period of biological adaptation that's unpredictable, and it seems that when people try to change too much too fast things just spiral out of control.

 

As far as which drug to taper first, I'm not the one to advise you about that, really. I'd say maybe whichever one has the most troublesome effects on your life and psyche. On the benzo boards they will say to stay on your SSRI and taper the benzo first; on the AD boards they will say to stay on your benzo and taper your AD first.

 

No matter what your doctor says, a lot of people, me included, have found dropping gabapentin to be problematic. Your anxiety could easily have been triggered by dropping 100 mg of it at once. I do find it relatively easy to taper compared to the other drugs I'm tapering, however. If you take it slow the symptoms are manageable and they pass fairly quickly and don't seem to come back again. It's water soluble so it can be easily liquid tapered by as little as 1 mg at a time if you want.

 

It does sound to me like you may have been a bit too aggressive in your Effexor taper. The thing that people don't realize is that a taper has a "lag time." You may be feeling pretty good as you go, and cut too much, and then it will catch up with you and bite you. It takes our brains time to regrow and do the physical, chemical and genetic adaptations that are required when you screw around with their biochemistry. Sometimes you just have to slow down and give your brain and endocrine system time to catch up. In my observations of peoples' descriptions of their experiences, this seems to be particularly true with ADs, which often manifest new withdrawal symptoms months out from a taper or reduction.

 

As far as Xanax and anxiety, studies show that after the first four to six weeks Xanax isn't actually helping with anxiety any more; it's only preventing the anxiety caused when you stop taking Xanax. Benzos cause a tolerance effect fairly quickly. After about six weeks, in studies, placebos are more effective, actually. This doesn't mean you should quit! I just thought you might find it helpful to know that you're probably actually handling your anxiety pretty well without the help you thought you were getting.

 

Okay, I hope this helps. Other folks will be chiming in here soon. Good luck to you! I think you're going to succeed. You seem to have a positive and sensible approach. Just let go of any expectation of getting it done quickly. Even if it takes you years to get off all your meds, that's better than staying on them the rest of your life because of failed and destabilizing tapers.

Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                1

Feb 2022            6                      0!!!                     0.00167               0.98                2.5 mg Ambien

Oct 2022       4.5 mg Lamictal    (off Celexa, off Xanax)   0.95 Valium    Ambien, 1/4 to 1/2 of a 5 mg tablet 

 

I'm not a doctor. Any advice I give is just my civilian opinion.

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  • Administrator

....

 

My plan now is to get comfortable and stable at this dose of Effexor, but I don't know what to work on next. On the Benzo Board they recommend staying the course with Effexor and using it to offset the benzo taper. On the other hand I like having the Xanax to save me if the anxiety gets to be too much while weaning Effexor. Then I need to determine where the Gabapentin taper fits in. One patient advocate board suggests that the anxiety was a Gabapentin backlash. My pdoc thinks it was coming down off of Effexor too rapidly.

 

I don't believe I ever needed psych meds ... I believe that Celiac disease and hypothyroidism caused my symptoms and now that I have nutritionally healed my system I should be able to come off of the meds.

 

....

 

Welcome, Karma.

 

The benzo boards say stay on Effexor to offset the benzo taper?? I wonder how it's supposed to do that.

 

I think it's significant that when you dropped the gabapentin, you got some withdrawal symptoms.

 

My take on it is that walking the Effexor withdrawal tightrope was working, but your nervous system balance was still fragile. Precipitously dropping the gabapentin destabilized you, which is why you got that anxiety over-reaction from work.

 

(When we're making these changes, our nervous systems are dynamic. They move on to accommodate to the changes. You can't reverse time, you can't step in the same river twice. Dosages and decrements that worked before may not work again.)

 

So -- what to do next? If I were you, I would sit at this dose of Effexor and the others for a while. Let the tightrope wobbling stop.

 

According to advice I got from a knowledgeable doctor who unravels polypharmacy, in situations like these, you taper the more "activating" drugs first. Of your stew, Effexor is the most activating. (In fact, it sounds like it's so activating for you, you're taking the other drugs to de-activate it. I won't go into what I think of that.)

 

Then, I would sneak off the Effexor in even smaller decrements. You might want to get an electronic jeweler's scale http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/235-tapering-techniques/ to weigh the pill pieces. (You're taking regular Effexor, not Effexor XR, right?)

 

I agree, your initial "mood disorder" probably was because of the underlying medical conditions. Subclinical B12 deficiency alone could account for the symptoms. Lack of omega-3 fatty acids could contribute. And I won't go into what I think about that, either!

 

It sounds like your psychiatrist is somewhat sympathetic? Does he or she know anything about gradual tapering?

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

"The weird thing was that six days after I stabilized the depression I had an extreme overreaction to an error I made at work and caused myself extreme anxiety and irrational thoughts - this followed a course of Cipro antibiotics ... perhaps a contributing factor."

 

Good observation! Cipro blocks GABA receptors and can noticeably screw with your head, especially if you're taking benzos or going through benzo withdrawal.

 

And all antibiotics screw with your enteric nervous system, because they mess up your healthy normal gut flora. I don't have a lot of clear info about the interaction between enteric nervous system and CNS, but they do interact, and I personally really notice an effect on my thinking and emotions.

Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                1

Feb 2022            6                      0!!!                     0.00167               0.98                2.5 mg Ambien

Oct 2022       4.5 mg Lamictal    (off Celexa, off Xanax)   0.95 Valium    Ambien, 1/4 to 1/2 of a 5 mg tablet 

 

I'm not a doctor. Any advice I give is just my civilian opinion.

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  • Administrator

Thanks Rhi and Altostrata.

 

I appreciate the validation of my plan to stabilize on my current dose of Effexor.

 

My pdoc (she is really a PA to a pdoc) is sympathetic, but I don't think she is that knowledgeable about tapering - I seem to bring all of the new ideas to the table, but she is supportive. I had to take my thyroid treatment into my own hands and she has been supportive about that (don't get me started on TSH values).

 

I take regular Effexor, not XR. I have no idea how I could get my cuts smaller than 6.25 mg, but I guess I'm going to need to figure that out :rolleyes:.

 

Rhi, I guess you said what I was really afraid of ... that I need to let go of the notion that I can do this quickly. I thought I'd already paid my "patience dues," but evidently not.

 

Altostrata, thanks for the suggestion to taper the Effexor first. My gut has always told me that I need to get off of that one first. Missing doses used to result in headaches and head zaps, but I'm so low now that I don't really experience those symptoms when I miss a dose ... and I have missed doses. But then every body jumps in the pool with experiences heard or experienced on gabapentin or benzos and says I should do those first.

 

One thing about the Xanax ... I only take it at night. I have missed those doses before and I end up with my body clenched in anxiety with racing thoughts and I can't sleep. I've taken Sonata to sleep on those nights only later to find I did it to myself. I rarely use Sonata. My sleep and wake patterns seem to be very good since I got my adrenals supported.

 

I'm glad to have found you - I find it very helpful to have patient advocates to bounce things off of.

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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  • Administrator

Today I felt normal :) No anxiety and a good mood all day.

 

I am currently at 43.75 mg Effexor immediate release - if all goes well through the holidays I will start tapering again in January. I have 25 mg tablets that I had been quartering so that I could taper down by 6.25 mg. It would be very difficult to cut the quarters down further - they will basically crumble. What recommendations do you have for me when I start my taper up again?

 

Can I use a water titration with Effexor?

 

Thanks

Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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  • Administrator

Good to hear you felt well today, stabilization may be on its way.

 

It's not clear whether you can make your own solution of Effexor with water. It will dissolve, but we don't know how stable it is.

 

You might want to buy a digital scale to weigh pill fragments.

 

See tapering tips for Effexor here http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/272-tips-for-tapering-off-effexor-and-effexor-xr-venlafaxine/#entry2985

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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  • Administrator

Thanks Alto/Sur

 

I ordered it this morning - it was on sale for 20.99 so with shipping I got it for less than $30.

 

I had been tapering off at 6.25 mg and I think my error was that I was dropping every 2 weeks and although I was logging symptoms ... and there were symptoms ... I didn't realize they were withdrawal symptoms. Could I resume at dropping 6.25 mg and simply hold it for 4 weeks (watching symptoms)?

 

I looked at my Krill Oil and it is a blend of Krill and Fish Oil ... 1085 mg per two gel caps and I am taking 4 gel caps right now. I suppose I could bump that up if the anxiety symptoms come back.

 

Thank you for your support.

 

Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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  • Administrator

Good for you. Amazon must think a digital scale is a great Christmas gift!

 

6.25mg Effexor per month may work for you.

 

Why not try half that to begin, and see if it's even easier? Monitor how long it takes for you to feel okay. Sometimes you can make tinier decreases more often, e.g. 3.125mg every 2 weeks.

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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Still holding at 43.75 mg Effexor for 8 days so far - last week the anxiety and irrational thoughts were pretty much completely gone. But we are looking at refinancing our house and just reviewing the numbers causes these irrational fears about not being able to keep my job as I go through the AD withdrawal and then the benzo withdrawal. I am the bread winner and I am very blessed with a well-paying job that I plan to keep until I retire. But my fears say, "what if you can't?"

 

Of course, whenever there are lay-off rumors we all go through this kind of concern, but right now I have no reason to believe that I would lose my job unless I get so sick I cannot perform ... and so far even when I was dragging from fatigue and low thyroid, running on adrenaline, I managed to do my job well. The three weeks of anxiety and irrational thoughts really scared me. I managed to come to work each day and do my job, but the irrational fears make it very uncomfortable.

 

Does anybody have any encouraging words for me?

 

Thanks

Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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All right - here are my encouraging words ... the Spirit of the Universe provides my supply and always has - abundance comes to me not through the external but through the Great Spirit within.

 

I am not a religious person, but I am a spiritual person and although these withdrawals seem to separate me from my spiritual core - I have to believe that the Universe takes care of me ... it always has. I have lost jobs before and we made it. I believe that I am in my divine right position and the no matter what happens the Universe will take care of us.

 

I can manage this taper off of these drugs so that it does not affect my ability to perform on the job. I have done my job when I was dragging from such bad fatigue and brain fog that I didn't think I could make it through a week. The Universe provides a divine path - I am open to the Divine right guidance on how to proceed. This forum is part of my path forward and I thank you all for your support and hope that my strength can help some of you.

 

Light and love, Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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Karma, that was beautiful.

 

Yes, you can heal, and your taking care of yourself is the key. You can do this.

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

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All right - here are my encouraging words ... the Spirit of the Universe provides my supply and always has - abundance comes to me not through the external but through the Great Spirit within.

 

I am not a religious person, but I am a spiritual person and although these withdrawals seem to separate me from my spiritual core - I have to believe that the Universe takes care of me ... it always has. I have lost jobs before and we made it. I believe that I am in my divine right position and the no matter what happens the Universe will take care of us.

 

I can manage this taper off of these drugs so that it does not affect my ability to perform on the job. I have done my job when I was dragging from such bad fatigue and brain fog that I didn't think I could make it through a week. The Universe provides a divine path - I am open to the Divine right guidance on how to proceed. This forum is part of my path forward and I thank you all for your support and hope that my strength can help some of you.

 

Light and love, Karma

 

I am glad that you are willing to have Spirit be the voice of your own support. For me, this has been a spritual crisis too, and I study A Course In Miracles daily (will put any more on the thread for spiritual stuff). I just really am thrilled that you are accessing that part of you that gives you strength. Crocus

xxxx

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I saw my pdoc today. I am still on the edge with my anxiety - most of the time I do pretty good, but if I hit a trigger (like money - refinancing the house) I start having irrational fears. Evidently my pdoc has not seen this as part of a withdrawal syndrome before. She usually sees people with nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, vertigo, or headaches as withdrawal symptoms and since she didn't put me on Effexor she doesn't know what my baseline is.

 

Sounds like she is suggesting that tapering the Effexor has left me with unaddressed anxiety issues.

 

We agreed to leave my Effexor dose where it is for now. I will see her again in January. I believe that if we let it be for long enough my brain should adapt. The other thing I think I need to focus on is how to manage my anxiety.

 

We talked about cross-tapering and she is suggesting Celexa as an option to help me down off of Effexor - anyone have any thoughts on that? She said the problem with Prozac is that it takes so long to get into the system and then if you are wrong you basically have to live with the results for two weeks until it gets out of your system. That sounds valid.

 

I've been at this dose of Effexor for 14 days. The first week I felt good. No depression and very mild if any anxiety. That Sunday I reviewed paperwork for the refinance and it pushed me over the edge to feeling anxious and being assailed by irrational fears. It's like the irrational fears just sit off to my right and if they see vulnerability they jump into action. Is this still withdrawal symptoms?

 

Thanks for any thoughts or guidance on this.

 

Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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Don't change your meds when you're going through especially stressful times. Wait for when the big decisions are settled.

 

It's very, very common that doctors will misdiagnose the anxiety and melancholia of withdrawal syndrome as relapse or emergence of a psychiatric ailment. If your doctor doesn't believe they are also withdrawal symptoms, she may wish to read any of the papers describing withdrawal syndrome in our collection of journal articles.

 

The reason Prozac is often used to "bridge" withdrawal from difficult drugs like Effexor is because it "takes so long" to get out of your system. Its long half-life is an ADVANTAGE in tapering. If withdrawal is your goal, your doctor's reasoning is exactly wrong.

 

Doctors are accustomed to switching patients from one antidepressant to another in order to keep them on an antidepressant. It sounds like this is what your doctor wants to do.

 

If you want to get off antidepressants, you may wish to consider Prozac, because it will be easier to taper than Effexor.

 

Switching to Celexa may work smoothly for you, but because it has a short half-life, it is more likely to have withdrawal symptoms than Prozac.

 

It's up to you whether you want to just switch antidepressants or get off them completely. It sounds like your doctor, like most, knows little about 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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Don't change your meds when you're going through especially stressful times. Wait for when the big decisions are settled.

 

It's very, very common that doctors will misdiagnose the anxiety and melancholia of withdrawal syndrome as relapse or emergence of a psychiatric ailment. If your doctor doesn't believe they are also withdrawal symptoms, she may wish to read any of the papers describing withdrawal syndrome in our collection of journal articles.

 

The reason Prozac is often used to "bridge" withdrawal from difficult drugs like Effexor is because it "takes so long" to get out of your system. Its long half-life is an ADVANTAGE in tapering. If withdrawal is your goal, your doctor's reasoning is exactly wrong.

 

Thanks Alto

 

I was actually hoping to hear that although my pdoc didn't recognized these as withdrawal symptoms that they indeed are. I will keep my dose the same through the holidays and the re-evaluate where I am. I do want to get off of antidepressants, benzos and the gabapentin. She is always willing to learn so I will look through the journals and find what is applicable to share with her.

 

My pdoc seemed to think that Celexa was slightly longer acting that Effexor and that I might be able to use it to taper off - she reports success with it before, but with those on XR. I don't really want to trade the devil I know for the devil I don't know.

 

So here is another issue - when I woke up this morning I realized that I missed both my Effexor and my gabapentin doses from last night - I slept great and just had slight night sweats (a common withdrawal symptom for me when I reduce Effexor). Of course, I took my morning dose of Effexor because it was due. But since we believe that the previous attempt at gabapentin reduction probably fueled anxiety, I decided to take the forgotten gabapentin dose this morning ... I don't usually take it in the morning, only at night. So far, I feel fine and since last night the irrational thoughts and anxiety have been at bay. I figure the worst thing that will happen is it might make me a little tired or drowsy, but the result I'm hoping for is that I feel nothing different at all.

 

Thank you so much for your support.

Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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Cross fingers your adjustment goes well! Anything is possible.

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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All of my senses and emotions seem heightened as the serotonin 'mask' is removed

Pristiq tapered over 8 months ending Spring 2011 after 18 years of polydrugging that began w/Zoloft for fatigue/general malaise (not mood). CURRENT: 1mg Klonopin qhs (SSRI bruxism), 75mg trazodone qhs, various hormonesLitigation for 11 years for Work-related injury, settled 2004. Involuntary medical retirement in 2001 (age 39). 2012 - brain MRI showing diffuse, chronic cerebrovascular damage/demyelination possibly vasculitis/cerebritis. Dx w/autoimmune polyendocrine failure.<p>2013 - Dx w/CNS Sjogren's Lupus (FANA antibodies first appeared in 1997 but missed by doc).

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The gabapentin gave me a slight headache, but no adverse side effects from missing that evening dose and taking it the next morning. The anxiety appears to have lifted and the irrational fears appear to be gone (fingers-crossed I can maintain this state). That is at 16 days at the up-dose on Effexor. I'm going to look into books on managing anxiety because I think that I'll need that as a life skill as I come off of all three drugs.

 

But for now, I'm feeling very "normal." :)

 

Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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Excellent news and great idea, Karma. Withdrawal challenges all our coping abilities. It never hurts to learn more, and it will serve you well when you are drug-free.

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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  • 3 weeks later...
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I got the jewelers scale and calibrated it then measured one of my 25 mg Effexor tablets and it weighs 0.102 grams another one weighs 0.099 grams. Then I checked the halves where I had split the pill in half and one was 0.055 grams and the other was 0.044 grams (granted it didn't split evenly down the score). Then I measured where I had quartered the tablet and it was 0.021 grams. Finally I measured the eighthed tablet and it was only 0.011.

 

If I assume that 0.100 is equivalent to 25 mg then 12.5 mg should be equivalent to 0.050 and 6.25 mg should be equivalent to 0.025 and 3.25 mg should be 0.0125 - is this how I should use these measures or have I missed a calculation somewhere? I was expecting to see 0.025 for 25 milligrams.

 

I've been pill splitting the whole time I've been weaning down and I imagine that the 0.055 versus 0.044 has happened quite a bit ... should I try to get these measures more exact when I start weaning again at the end of next week?

 

Thanks

Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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The tablets have filler in them, that's why the weight's off.

 

25mg means there's 25mg of active ingredient in the tablet, it's not the weight of the tablet.

 

I haven't checked your math but your reasoning is correct.

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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  • 4 weeks later...
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I've been at 43.75 mg Effexor for 61 days ... just two days short of 9 weeks. I've been sleeping well, feeling joyful and feeling energetic for a good solid 4 weeks. No unnecessary anxiety and no irrational fears. I have two financial triggers behind me - I opened a Roth IRA and I refinanced my mortgage down to a 15-year mortgage. My job has been stressful and I get tired by the end of the week, which sometimes brings some irritability with it, but I actually think that is normal. I've been working 45-50 hour weeks since the beginning of January. By Monday I'm rested and ready to execute ... so that is a good sign ... but I do need to cut back on my hours and be good to myself.

 

Tonight I pulled out my jewelry scale and measured out my week's worth of Effexor. The AM dose will be cut by 3.125 mg to 21.875 mg and the evening dose will remain the same at 18.75 mg. I was really surprised at how accurate I was able to get the doses by using different bits of cut up pills to combine to the right measurement.

 

I saw my pdoc last Monday and she totally believes that what I experienced was withdrawal symptoms. She likes my plan to re-start the taper at 3.125 mg which is less than 10% of my current overall dose. I promised to maintain my daily logs and to pay attention if I start to see depression showing up - before I would blame it on my thyroid, but I'm optimized on thyroid now, so if depression shows up it is an early warning of withdrawals and I will hold my dose or up-dose accordingly to allow the systems to pass.

 

One thing I learned through this is that there is no harm in holding long enough to see sustained return of joy and complete cessation of anxiety and irrational fears.

 

Here we go!

 

Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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Karma,

 

You are doing an amazing job. I went through withdrawal of many of the same Drugs and know many of these symptoms. My mistakes were largely in rushing, in cutting too fast and in not listening to my symptoms.

 

Your idea to take it slowly is a good one, IMO. I've suffered several setbacks in my jounrey, so far none from taking things more gradually.

 

I've come to accept that my withdrawal will be slower than I want. There may be a few things I can do to speed up my recovery but it seems there are a lot more things I can do to undermine myself.

 

One of my main symptoms is hypersensitivty. Loading up on supplements or stimulants is unwise for me. Also, stress is a self-perpetuating drain on my system. I prefer to manage stress and anxiety by using CBT techniques. Others like meditation. I post here. I may distract myself with TV. In fact there are many ways to distract oneself from anxiety, and distraction is the first step.

 

The more I play the loop on my fear -- health fear, financial fear, relationship fear, fear of exposure or embarassment -- the stronger my anxiety becomes. It's a big challenge in the midst of withdrawal for sure. But when I realize that my anxiety is a neuro-reaction and try to feel differently about it, I am able to weaken its potency. It's hard to get excited about my fears or feel happy about them, but doing so -- saying so -- is how I remind myself that I am retraining my brain away from old fears and fears based on neurochemelectical machinations and that one day I'll be free from this horrible anxiety. That excites me, makes me happy, makes me determined to get there. I will get there and you will too.

 

It's clear that you're smart, capable and doing a great job under very trying circumstances. Maybe since you're all these things, people don't think you ever need affirmation or reinforcement. Maybe you don't. But if you're like the rest of the us then you probably like a bit of reassurance now and again. In that spirit, I'm giving you a hug with a hearty back pat because you are doing wonderful in uncharted waters and deserve the hugs, the pats and more. And there may be yet more worries that "feel real" as you make this next reduction so remember the hugs and pats. You can and will make it through... like you always have before.

 

Also, I thank you for all the warm words and pieces of wisdom you've shared on others' threads, including mine. This is good for your Karma, wouldn't ya say?

 

Alex

"Well my ship's been split to splinters and it's sinking fast
I'm drowning in the poison, got no future, got no past
But my heart is not weary, it's light and it's free
I've got nothing but affection for all those who sailed with me.

Everybody's moving, if they ain't already there
Everybody's got to move somewhere
Stick with me baby, stick with me anyhow
Things should start to get interesting right about now."

- Zimmerman

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Karma, you are very wise and patient - patience is NOT one of my virtues

 

I also think you are doing an amazing job to keep everything together and still be able to experience joy!

Started in 2000 - On 150mg most of the time, (but up to 225mg at highest dose for 6 months in the beginning)
Reduced off easily first time - but got depressed (not too much anxiety) 6 months later
Back on effexor for another 9 months.
Reduced off again with no immediate w/d - suddenly got depressed and anxious ++ again 3 or 4 months later.
Back on effexor - this time for 3 years
Reduced off over a month - 6 weeks later terrible anxiety - back on.
Rinse and repeat 4 more times - each time the period before the anxiety comes back got shorter and shorter
Jan - July 2012 75mg down to 37.5mg;, 8/3/12 - 35mg. 8/25/12 - 32mg. 9/11- 28mg, 10/2 - 25mg, 10/29 - 22mg, 11/19 - 19.8mg; 12/11 - 17m,
1/1- 15.5mg; 1/22 -14mg, 2/7 14.9mg, 2/18 - 17.8mg - crashed big time: back to 75mg where i sat for 2 years....

4th  March 2015 - 67.5mg;   31st March - 60mg;  24th April - 53mg; 13th May - 48mg; 26th May - 45mg;  9th June - 41mg; 1 July- 37.5mg; 20 July - 34mg; 11 August - 31mg; 1st Sept - 28mg;  1st Dec - 25.8mg;  28th Dec - 23.2mg; 23rd Jan-21.9mg; Feb 7th- 21mg; March 1st - 20.1mg, March 30th - 18mg

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Thanks, Alex (I tried to quote from your post, but my skills aren't quite good enough and it didn't work)

 

I credit my success so far to healing my gut before I started to wean off of the pmeds and maintaining daily logs on what supplements or meds I take along with rating my symptoms. If I pay attention to the symptoms it gives me early warning and a root cause so I can avoid spiraling down further.

 

I agree, if I can realize that what I'm feeling is a neuro-reaction then I can name it and deal with it better. Since I have these times when I feel good, I know that I can ultimately get there when I am off these drugs.

 

Thank you for the kind words. I do need the affirmation or reinforcement just like everybody else. When I'm feeling good it is reinforcement, but when I'm dealing with withdrawals it is a lifeline. I love a good hug or pat on the back. Thanks!

 

I'd say yes! If I can offer some reassuring words, comfort, information or a suggestion on how I dealt with the same issues and it helps someone else it really gives me a good feeling in return. I think that is what it is all about. I'm really happy I found this forum; it is such a valuable resource to those of us on this journey.

 

Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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Karma, you are very wise and patient - patience is NOT one of my virtues

 

I also think you are doing an amazing job to keep everything together and still be able to experience joy!

 

 

Thanks, Peggy - Joy is a key barometer for me. I live in a really beautiful place and if I can't feel joy at the beauty that surrounds me it is a queue to me that something is not quite right. I guess I'm lucky in that I've ever felt joy while on pmeds. Since I've felt it before, I know that I can feel it again. A friend once taught me to be present in the moment and avoid worry over the future or the past. If you catch yourself experiencing joy in a moment, you need to acknowledge it - don't try to hold on to it, just acknowledge it in the moment.

 

I wouldn't say that I'm really a patient person, but I learn from my experiences. I forced myself to wait out the up-dose of Effexor and when I got back to joy I acknowledged it. It was such a relief after how awful I felt at the end of last year. Then I was reluctant to do anything that would ruin how well I felt. But I also knew I had some trigger events coming up and it was just common sense to wait until I was beyond those. Then I looked at my situation and I realized that there was nothing preventing me from re-starting my taper schedule.

 

I have had a good ride coming off of my pmeds for the most part and what I realize is that being patient and giving my body time to find its balance has always resulted in a good outcome for me. There is no prize for getting off of pmeds the quickest - the only prize is getting off of pmeds safely ... and now I understand that means a longer timeline that I originally planned.

 

Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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Karma, very happy to see you've got a good plan and are doing well.

 

Also, very happy to see you've got a supportive doctor. Would she assist a slow taper? If you feel you can recommend her, please add her to our list Recommended doctors, therapists, or clinics.

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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Ut-oh! I decreased my Effexor of 43.75 by 3.125 mg on Sunday down to 40.625 mg. I was fine on Sunday, but today I was really depressed (on my scale of 1 to 10, I'd put it at a 5 to 6 for most of the day, but this evening it is better.) It is really a stark contrast to the joy I felt last week. I really didn't expect to feel any withdrawal symptoms with this reduction.

 

I recall a while ago that when I would make a reduction I would feel blue for a day or so and then it would pass. Should I just give this some more time or is this an early warning sign that I'm not ready to make a reduction?

 

I'm also going to see my nutritionist on Wednesday and I will have to skip my supplements (including krill oil) ... I'm thinking maybe I should reschedule my appointment with my nutritionist and give myself some time to level out with this reduction.

 

I'd appreciate some suggestions on this. I really wasn't expecting to feel this way today.

 

Thanks

Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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  • Administrator

Give it a little more time. This may be a sign to reduce the amount of the decrements again.

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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Karma ~

You are so giving and helpful to others that I often forget you are also going through withdrawal ~

I don't have anything of substance to add except to say THANK YOU again and may all of the good you do for others come back to you 100x

B

Pristiq tapered over 8 months ending Spring 2011 after 18 years of polydrugging that began w/Zoloft for fatigue/general malaise (not mood). CURRENT: 1mg Klonopin qhs (SSRI bruxism), 75mg trazodone qhs, various hormonesLitigation for 11 years for Work-related injury, settled 2004. Involuntary medical retirement in 2001 (age 39). 2012 - brain MRI showing diffuse, chronic cerebrovascular damage/demyelination possibly vasculitis/cerebritis. Dx w/autoimmune polyendocrine failure.<p>2013 - Dx w/CNS Sjogren's Lupus (FANA antibodies first appeared in 1997 but missed by doc).

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Thanks Barb and Alto - I am better today.

 

I seem to feel crappy in the morning - moody, blue, tending toward thoughts of doom, wondering if it is all worth it ... but then in the afternoon and evening I am better. Today, I was actually able to smile and laugh by the afternoon and I feel fine right now. I had a pretty stressful day, but I held up fine under the load. I did take an extra krill oil capsule this morning - that might have helped.

 

Alto, you may be right about smaller decrements. This was the first reduction of 3.125 mg, previously, I had been decrementing at 6.25 mg. I have no idea how I would cut the pill chunks smaller ... I guess I could use an exacto knife or turn the pill chunks on their sides and use the pill cutter. At the end of the day I guess it is just about adding up the milligrams to the right amount to achieve the reduction. My pdoc did offer the option of having the Effexor compounded in a liquid ... that may be necessary as I continue.

 

I'm thinking I need to hold for at least two weeks once I am certain that I am balanced ... so maybe that looks more like holding for three weeks.

 

Barb, thanks for your support. I hope that the fact that it is easy to forget that Karma is also going through withdrawal shows up as hope for others who wonder if you will ever feel well and happy again ... you will and you can, but you have to slog through the rough parts to get there.

 

Thanks all - Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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  • Administrator

Right, you may wish to use the compounded liquid or measure your dosages with a digital scale.

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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Thanks Alto - I have the digital scale :) It's actually kind of fun to measure out the bits of pills to get to the right measure.

 

I'd like to give any one who reads my entry a little courage to push back on your doctors. Here are two examples:

 

Dr.'s nurse calls and says the doctor wants me to have a total body bone scan. (This procedure uses a radioactive isotope and I don't like the idea of radiation no matter how safe they say it is). I say "no, I don't." The nurse says, "the doctor says you need a total body bone scan," and I again say, "no, I don't." The nurse says, "are you refusing the doctor's order?" And I say, "Yes, I am." The nurse says, "I'm going to tell the doctor." I say, "You do that." A week later I get a call from the nurse that they want me to have labs run again and then the doctor wants me to make an appointment - no harm, no foul. It is my insurance and I have the right to refuse a diagnostic test that I have reasons for not doing - the insurance company is glad they don't have to pay for the procedure.

 

Dr. requests all the tests to determine whether I have sarcoidosis because I have elevated calcium and ACE is also elevated. I have the blood drawn. Dr. gets the lab results and they all point toward a diagnosis of sarcoidosis. I ask, "what are the systems?" The symptoms are trouble breathing, shortness of breath, a cough that won't go away, skin rashes or inflammation of the eyes. I don't have any of those symptoms - in fact, I don't even take asthma medicine any more and have zero problems breathing. Dr. says, we could do a chest x-ray and that would tell us for sure. I ask what the treatment is if I have sarcoidosis - he says well, we only treat the symptoms. I say since I don't have any symptoms there is nothing to treat so why would we do a chest x-ray? Dr. says I have a point.

 

Neither of these doctors have kicked me out of their practices ... you are the patient either paying the bills or your insurance pays the bills - participate in your own health care - ask questions and tell them what you want and need.

 

Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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  • Administrator

You go, grrrrl!

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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  • Administrator

I broke my "only change one thing at a time" rule and I'm still not passed it. I saw my nutritionist on February 1 and we did a Biomeridian. Usually whatever "balances" my system in the biomeridian I usually go with. A couple of the supplements I had been taking didn't balance so I stopped those.

 

Turns out my yeast population is over grown again, probably because of stress and antibiotics last fall. My nutritionist wanted to put me on Acetyl Glutathione and IgG 2000 DF. I started both of them on Thursday (only 5 days after decrementing my Effexor dose) ... I had bad agitation and insomnia from the Acetyl Glutathione even though I only took 1/4 of a tablet - stopped that the very next day. The nutritionist warned me that insomnia was an indication that it was too much for my system.

 

I kept taking the IgG 2000 DF because it was supposed to help my small intestine (which is where leaky gut starts) and the nutritionist didn't indicate any symptoms I might look for. But I just kept feeling depressed and became fatigued - fatigued like I haven't felt in years. Then my sleep became challenged. After 5 days on the IgG, I stopped taking it and then started to feel somewhat better.

 

I managed to get my sleep back in line. But then Thursday and Friday were stressful at work and I was really tired when I got home last night. I am feeling disturbed by changes occurring around me that really don't directly effect me, but they are changes I didn't expect. I had to talk myself through the day. I was tending toward doom-thinking and had to keep pulling myself back. I've been putting in a lot of hours at work and I don't think that is helping the situation.

 

Once I get to a balanced state I'm going to wait two weeks before making any more changes. My nutritionist wants me to try the IgG in smaller doses and work my way up, but I'd like to get to an even amount of Effexor (i.e. 37.5 mg). She also wants me to try the Acetyl Glutathione again at smaller doses, but I can only try one thing at a time and then I have to wait a minimum of two weeks before the next change.

 

Not sure what comes next, but I'm looking forward to feeling "normal" again - whenever that happens.

 

Karma

2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & .625 mg Xanax

200 mg Gabapentin 2/27/21 - 194.5 mg, 5/28/21 - 183 mg, 8/2/21 - 170 mg, 11/28/21 - 150 mg, 4/19/22 - 122 mg; 8//7/22 - 100 mg; 12/17 - 75mg
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg; at some point 0.625 mg
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor


I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to ☼ Karma: tapering Effexor, Gabapentin and Xanax
  • Karma changed the title to ☼ Karma: Tapering Effexor, Gabapentin and Xanax

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