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Jasollj: Minimising withdrawals


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Hi I've been on all manner of antidepressants for 29 years now. I started on Prothiaden in 1988 at age 15. I've been on citalopram, fluoxetine, paroxetine, amitriptyline and many more that I cannot recall because it's all one big drug haze. I am currently on venlafaxine.


Fluoxetine made me terribly nauseas and I very nearly vomited on my MD at the time and our top supplier.


Paroxetine was a trip and a half. I was on it for a long time and called it my "legal cocaine". It caused dipsomania where I craved, drank and suffered few side effects of drinking excessive volumes of alcohol.


All the others I didn't last on for long as they caused undesirable side effects.


I've been on venlafaxine for 8 years. I started on effexor capsules, then someone mistakenly prescribed the tablets which I found to be better for me. When they recently switched to a new genetic form off venlafaxine I didn't have a reaction to the change i thought I might and find it the same if not marginally better than the branded tablets. I've had the best results with venlafaxine depression wise but over the last couple years realised it wasn't working as I was severely fatigued, anxious, depressed with the attention span of a gold fish. Worse than this I've packed on 30kgs which has had devastating effect on my life and self esteem. If I wasn't depressed before I certainly am now!


I decided to come of it and my objective  is to get to nil medication. I accept I might not get that far or need to go back on some form of medication.


Due to the horrendous withdrawals I'd experience if I even missed taking a dose by a couple of hours, I was convinced coming of this medication would require 24/7 intensive nursing in some kind of medical facility with a morphine drip or such like.


In January 2017 a random locum GP I saw told me antidepressants won't work without magnesium and vit B6 supplementation. Well that's good to know. Better late than never!?


Since January 2017 I have reduced my dosage off venlafaxine from 300mg per day to 150my per day via 4 x 37.5mg drops. How? VITAMINS.


This is NOT an advertisement.


I started taking BePure's One + Zinc Restore + Superboost C + Three.


On day 2 I felt like a new person. I felt so good I felt confident I could start dropping my dosage as I noticed if I missed or was late with a dose I didn't suffer withdrawals. 


I did suffer some withdrawals over the 8 months but more of doing things which were not really like me than the physical and mental withdrawal pains.


Late August I was feeling so good I got a personal trainer and started working out (gently) twice a week. Because I was so unfit and overweight I think this was overkill because I injured my knees and they're still not right. 


I had developed psoriasis I my back so I stopped all vitamins other than Superboost C to see if that helped. I am going back on all vitamins tomorrow.

Without the vitamins the physical body and joint aches and agitation are unbearable.


I've tried lots of vitamins over the years with no noticeable benefit. The BePure ones are different and so much more efficable.


I swear they are the only answer to dropping/eliminating venlafaxine/antidepressants for me.

So grateful I found them.


Good luck.








Venlafaxine 300mg (2009 - 2017)

Venlafaxine 262.5mg (26 jan 17-15 ape 17)

Venlafaxine 225mg (16 Apr 17-13 Jul 17)

Venlafaxine 187.5 mg (14 Jul 17-9 Sept 17)

Venlafaxine 150mg (10 Sept 17-current)



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  • ChessieCat changed the title to Jasollj: Minimising withdrawals
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Jasollj,


Welcome to Surviving Antidepressants (SA).  I am really glad that you found the site before going any further in your taper.  A big congratulations on decreasing from 300mg to 150mg.  While I am happy to hear that you haven't run into any major difficulties, particularly because you were making very large decreases (37.5mg), please be aware that it is never recommend to make such large decreases all at once.  In order to taper off of Effexor safely it is recommended that you taper by no more than 10% per month of your current dose with at least a four week hold in-between decreases.  I too am tapering Effexor and have first-hand experience on how difficult it can be.  I would suggest you familiarize yourself with the protocols recommended by SA as the lower you go on the dose, the more difficult it can be.  I truly believe that if we take the time to reduce these drugs carefully, it is possible to get off of this medication.  


It is good to hear that you have had success with the supplements that you have been taking, but please be aware that most people here find that supplements interfere with tapering and adding them back into your system all at once tomorrow may prove a little too disruptive to your central nervous system.  It is always recommended to introduce one supplement at a time, in a very small dose and then wait a few days to ensure you are not going to have a  reaction to it.  I had been taking numerous supplements over the years for adrenal fatigue but once I started tapering, I had to discontinue all supplements with the exception of Omega 3 and Magnesium as I found that these once familiar supplements now had an activating effect on my central nervous system and the anxiety was just too much.  


Please have a look at the links below so that you can familiarize yourself with the recommendations made by Surviving Antidepressants so that you can safely taper off of Effexor and have a better chance of successfully of getting off of this drug permanently.


Before you begin tapering what you need to know

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

Tips for Tapering off Effexor and Effexor XR / Venlafaxine


Before being able to provide you with any specific information with respect to your current situation, we would ask that you summarize your withdrawal/drug history in a signature - ALL drugs, doses, dates, and discontinuations & reinstatements, in the last 12-24 months in particular?   We ask all members to provide their drug history as a signature.  This will be a permanent part of your introduction and It helps moderators to be able to see all of your details at a glance.  You can find the information on how to complete your signature at the link below:

Instructions:  Withdrawal History Signature
    •    Please leave out symptoms and diagnoses.
    •    A list is easier to understand than one or multiple paragraphs. 
    •    Any drugs prior to 24 months ago can just be listed with start and stop years.
    •    Please use actual dates or approximate dates (mid-June, Late October) rather than relative time frames (last week, 3 months ago)
    •    Spell out months, e.g. "October" or "Oct."; 9/1/2016 can be interpreted as Jan. 9, 2016 or Sept. 1, 2016.


Feel free to connect with other members of the SA community by posting in their introduction threads and if you have any questions or need clarification of the information provided, please post all questions into your own introduction thread so that the moderators are able to provide you with advice.



Current Prescription Drugs for Hypothyroidism:  Synthroid 100mcg / Cytomel 5mcg (15 years Pristiq/Effexor)

Tapering Schedule
September 15, 2016 - switched from Pristiq 50mg to Effexor XR 75mg; November 10, 2016 - reduced to 67.5 Effexor XR
December 9, 2016 - reduced 60.75
January 5, 2017 - reduced 54.67
January 30, 2017 - reduced to 49.0
February 20, 2017 - reduced to 44.0 
May 20, 2017 - reduced to 40.25 (holding for additional month due to late onset of withdrawal symptoms after this taper)
July 17, 2017 - reduced to 38.24
August 15, 2017 - reduced to 37.5 (50% of my original dose)

October 15, 2017 - reduced to 35.6

November 12, 2017 - reduced to 33.8
December 15, 2017 - up-dose to 35.6
December 28, 2017 - up-dose to 37.5

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Yes, I recently read the recommended 10% drop protocol which I wish I knew before I started. And yes I realise supplements may not be for everyone. I have updated my signature.

Thank you for your advice. I will do some more reading ASAP! Great site and thank you so much for your reply.

Venlafaxine 300mg (2009 - 2017)

Venlafaxine 262.5mg (26 jan 17-15 ape 17)

Venlafaxine 225mg (16 Apr 17-13 Jul 17)

Venlafaxine 187.5 mg (14 Jul 17-9 Sept 17)

Venlafaxine 150mg (10 Sept 17-current)



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