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gareth

Link to member's benzo topic

 

Hi people,

I've found this site via google.  I am a 37 year old male trying to come off olanzapine 5mg.  My doctor said to take a quarter less of the tablet to start with.  I'm suffering bad withdrawal symptoms including headaches,pains in neck, arms, legs etc, high anxiety, sweating, loss of appetite  etc. I came down from 10mg to 5mg fine which I find strange.  Anyway I hope to find some help from this site. Thanks for reading this

 

Edited by ChessieCat
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KarenB

Hello Gareth - Welcome to SA,

 

It is fairly common for the first part of the taper to go smoother than the last.  There are some graphs which explain why here:  importance-of-gradual-change-in-plasma. 

 

Please put your withdrawal history in your signature – all drugs/dates/dosages from the last few years (and especially about the last reduction you made) so we can see your situation easily whenever you post, and help you more accurately.  Thanks.  Once we know how much your last reduction was, and by how much, then we can work out what you should do now.

 

Probably you'll need to hold for a while - maybe a few months - to allow yourself to stabilise.  Once you've done that we can look at getting you an appropriate tapering plan.

 

We recommend a gentle taper, reducing by no more than 10% of your current dose each month.  This allows your brain time to adjust as you go, and lessens any withdrawal.  The troublesome thing with psychiatric drugs is that you can't just flush their effects out of your system.  They change the way your brain works, and that takes much longer to heal.  Suddenly stopping the drug puts your brain and Central Nervous System into shock.  It's like yanking a trellis out of a garden instead of gently untangling the plants and slowly removing the wood – it’s too much trauma for the plants/your brain.  (For the source of that simile, plus further discussion, see http://survivinganti...el-your-brain/)

 

Many people find Fish oil and Magnesium useful during withdrawal.   
Non-Drug Techniques to cope with emotional symptoms.

tips-for-tapering-off-zyprexa-olanzapine

 

Have a read of those and then you can come back to this thread to discuss things further.  This can be your journal to record your tapering and healing progress, and to ask questions. With time and good care, you will be able to one day be off this drug. 

 

Welcome to SA,

Karen

Edited by KarenB
added white space cause it keeps disappearing!

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Madeleine

Could you get your doctor to prescribe 2  2.5 pills? You could then make much smaller cuts by quartering those. 

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Madeleine

Ps: also some people make a liquid solution and taper that way as it also allows for smaller cuts. 

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gareth

Hi,

I have just started tapering olanzapine 5mg making 25% cuts so down from 5mg to 3.75mg so far on my doctors advice. Has anyone else tapered this quickly and successfully.  I suffered bad withdrawals for 12 days but seem to have stabalised now.  My doctor said to drop the dose every two weeks.  I know this is fast but I just want off this drug and don't want a long drawn out taper.  I've been on olanzapine for around 3 years.

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gareth

Yes I could get prescribed the 2.5mg tablets.  I've seemed to stabilise now after 12 days of withdrawal so will try to do another quarter and get down to 2.5mg then go slower.

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scallywag

gareth - decreasing dose too rapidly is likely to cause disconcerting, uncomfortable and/or painful symptoms.  Often being in a rush to get off medication simply because we want to GET. OFF. IT. ALREADY. leads to a longer time on the medication.

 

So often, when severe symptoms arise people have to continue taking the same dose for months in order to stabilize their CNS (central nervous system). It can take a very long time for symptoms to settle down after they've arisen.

 

Please look at these topics to get a sense of the symptoms that too-rapid tapering can trigger:

What is withdrawal syndrome.

Important topics about symptoms including sleep problems.

 

1 hour ago, gareth said:

My doctor said to drop the dose every two weeks.  I know this is fast but I just want off this drug and don't want a long drawn out taper.  I've been on olanzapine for around 3 years.

 

The quality of your life as you taper is more important than the time you take to taper. Tapering slowly will allow you to maintain your life as it is now or to take steps to improve your life. Tapering too rapidly risks destroying your current level of functioning and throwing your life into complete disarray. We've seen people in awful suffering many times.

 

Please know that drugs like olanzapine (classified as "anti-psychotics") can cause impulse control problems.  It's entirely possible that your impatience to quit the drug is actually caused by the drug.

 

Let us know how you're doing with getting your doctor to prescribe what you need and any questions you have.

.

Edited by scallywag

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Madeleine
3 hours ago, gareth said:

Yes I could get prescribed the 2.5mg tablets.  I've seemed to stabilise now after 12 days of withdrawal so will try to do another quarter and get down to 2.5mg then go slower.

 

I got off Zyprexa fairly quickly but I was on it much shorter time than you.   I was at a maximum dose of 10 mg, only 1 month, then I started tapering (see my signature.)  I think that getting 2.5 mg would be good if you are able as you can make smaller cuts....   You could have 2  x 2.5s, then quarter those.  

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Madeleine

P.S.   Check out how other people on this forum who tapered zyprexa did it --  you can do a search on "Zyprexa" and their stories come up. Andy is one who has posted a success story in that part of the forum, and he tapered zyprexa.

 

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bubble

Just a few places below you on our front page here there is another Zyprexa taperer.

 

Maybe it would be useful to compare experiences. He also got a lot of great advice and explanations so you might find a lot of your questions explained answered there:

 

 

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scallywag

I've added tags to this topic, gareth.  You'll see them at the top of the page just below the title. When you click on a tag, you'll get a list of other topics with the same tag. Virtually all of the topics you'll see will be introductions started by other people who have taken, are tapering or have discontinued olanzapine.

Edited by scallywag

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gareth

ok thanks for the replys

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gareth

Just an update I successfully come off the olanzapine.  I ended up jumping at 1.25mg and had two weeks off bad withdrawal hell but it was worth it.  I started feeling better after that apart from trouble sleeping which I countered with plenty of exercise.  Luckily I'm not working at the moment otherwise I might not of done it.  Feeling a lot better now without the zombie drug.

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nz11

Hi Gareth when did you start on the venlafaxine and remeron?

You might like to put that date in your sig.

 

 

 

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Altostrata

gareth, how are you doing now?

 

What time of day do you take each of your drugs, and at what dosages? How is your sleep?

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gareth

Hi,

I've successfully come off the olanzapine now trying to taper off cloanzepam which I have now down to 0.125mg.  Going to do a liquid titration off the last bit as its proving the most difficult.  I take the venflaxine in the mornings and mirtazapine before bed.  My sleep got back to normal after roughly two weeks off the olanzapine, exercise helped a lot.  Although now my sleeps messed up again due to the cloanzepam taper.

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Madeleine

Good to hear you are off the olanzapine and that your sleep got better afterwards.  Sleep will no doubt improve this time too.  You didn't mention how long you've been tapering the clonazepam. Try not rush it -- I know the temptation is to do so, but your taper will be smoother if you go slowly. 
Best wishes,
M.

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Altostrata

Gareth, I realize you might have already discussed this, but if I were you, I would hold on tapering clonazepam and concentrate on reducing venlafaxine instead.

 

The venlafaxine-mirtazapine combination can be activating, doctors will prescribe a benzo like clonazepam to counter this. But if you go off clonazepam, you'll be dealing with the adverse effects of the venlafaxine-mirtazapine combination again.

 

Reducing the venlafaxine would reduce the adverse effects of the combination.

 

Your doctor is being very free with psychiatric drug prescriptions. The more drugs you throw into the mix, the more likely you'll get adverse reactions.

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gareth

Thanks. I've been tapering the clonazepam roughly four months.  Yes I am going to to go slower for the last bit.  The psychiatrist prescribed the clonazepam for anxiety on a prn basis but I ended up taking it everyday then become dependant.  I need to get off it to get my driving licence back and can't really see the 0.125mg having any thearaputic value at such a low dose. I've got this far and certainly don't want to reinstate it.

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Shep
On 10/22/2017 at 3:57 PM, gareth said:

I need to get off it to get my driving licence back and can't really see the 0.125mg having any thearaputic value at such a low dose.

 

It's definitely a tough call. 

 

Benzos only work for 2 - 4 weeks and then the only reason we keep taking them is to stave off withdrawal symptoms. You'll have to figure out if the withdrawal symptoms of continuing to taper the benzo are too much for your nervous system to handle right now.

 

If this is the case, then holding makes the most sense. 

 

Also, also you've reduced the benzo, it's possible that some of the more stimulating effects of the venlafaxine may be breaking through. So holding the benzo and making a small reduction of that venlafaxine may help. 

 

I know that getting your license back is very important, but being well enough to drive should also be considered. 

Edited by Shep

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gareth

Hi all,

After successfully coming off the olanzapine & clonzepam I have been tapering off the mirtazapine. I am now down to the last 1.875mg from 30mg. It wasn't to bad until I went under 7.5mg. Now I'm experiencing stomach cramps, sweats, sleep disturbances, feeling on edge & just awful. Are these common symptoms and how long did they last for everyone else?

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ChessieCat

Hi gareth,

 

I moved your new topic to your Introduction topic.  Each member has an Introduction topic in the main forum where they can ask questions about their own situation and journal your progress.  I have put the link to your benzo topic in the first post.

 

Please simplify your drug signature.  I have provided an example at the bottom of my post.  Before updating it please copy and paste the current drug signature and post it here in your Intro topic so that the information will be available if needed.  Because you are now working on tapering the mirtazapine we need details of the doses and dates.  If possible please use the exact date, if you don't know the exact date, please add early, mid, late so that we have an accurate picture of any dose changes you have made.  Thank you.

 

NO diagnoses or symptoms please - thank you:

  • details for last 2 years - dates, ALL drugs, doses
  • summary for older than 2 years - just years and drug/s

Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature

 

 

Example:

 

Zoloft:   2014 to Dec 2016

Venlafaxine:   Dec 2015 to DATE

Olanzapine:   Jan 2015 to DATE

Clonazepam:  Jan 2016 to DATE

 

Mirtazapine: DOSE, Jan 2016; DOSE, DATE; DOSE, DATE; etc

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ChessieCat

Once you update your drug signature as requested above and we have the details of the dates and doses you made the reductions then we will be better able to assess your current situation.

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