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Thesearepowerfuldrugs: Getting off Effexor permanently


Thesearepowerfuldrugs

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Thesearepowerfuldrugs

On day 5 only of using 10mg of Prozac with 75mg of Effexor for first week, then 20mg of Prozac and 37.5mg of Effexor for week 2, then no more Effexor. Could it work? Who the hell knows?

 

Been on antidepressants for 20 years and have had enough of withdrawal/activation syndromes/poop out. These are powerful analgesic drugs that should never be prescribed. Psychosocial support(cbt, exposure/desensitization therapy works and is much safer).

Edited by baroquep
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Thesearepowerfuldrugs

Why don't the drug companies and the drug proponents and the docs tell you about the withdrawal symptoms and how powerful these drugs are? I heard they are prescribed for just about any reason or mild problems. Are you kidding me? Is this a joke or do these people really have this much sway and power? Where was the warning on the label. No one told me about drug withdrawal and activation syndrome and no insurance company offered to pay for safer treatments like cbt. The whole system is broken. We are a nation awash in drugs. It's a messed up country. Schizophrenics in India have a 80 percent recovery rate because they are not all prescribed drugs. Antidepressants cause depression symptoms, irritability, violence when and suicide when going off of them.  How messed up is that?

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Thesearepowerfuldrugs

I run a lot and talk to as many people as possible about antidepressant withdrawal. It helps. They don't  tell you about this in school. Supposedly, these drugs are safe. Not quite.  I've had life threatening reactions every time I tried to withdrawal. Mental illness is not a life sentence and the drugs should not have to be taken for life.  

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Thesearepowerfuldrugs,

 

Welcome to Surviving Antidepressants (SA).  I am glad you found the site.  You will find some of the most informative and well-researched information that you can find anywhere on the internet that is currently known about withdrawing from antidepressants.  I have to agree that these are very powerful analgesic drugs and should only be prescribed, in my opinion, in a hospital setting in the most severe cases. Unfortunately they are being prescribed off-label for the most minor of ailments and most people are not aware of the long-term consequences of taking these medications or how difficult they can be for some people to discontinue them.

 

While you haven't given us a lot of information on your history, it is clear from your post that you are attempting to do the Prozac Bridge in order to get off of Effexor.  Are you working closely with your doctor to do this?  Does your doctor have experience with this method and been successful in the past?  The reason I ask is that doctor's appear to be woefully inexperienced in guiding their patients safely off of these medications and I'd like you to be aware that the Prozac Bridge is not always successful.  If you have a reaction to Prozac or if you experience withdrawal from discontinuing Effexor, you won't know which drug is causing the problems, and in our experience, it often doesn't work and makes things a lot worse.   I am going to include a link so that you can inform yourself about the benefits and risks of using this method:

 

The Prozac Switch or Bridging with Prozac

 

At Surviving Antidepressants, it is recommended that a person taper by no more than 10% of their current dose with at least a four week hold in-between decreases.  The 10% taper recommendation is a harm reduction approach to going off psychiatric drugs.  Some people may have to taper at a more conservative rate as they are sensitive to even the smallest drops, especially when they have been taking these drugs long-term.  As you have been on antidepressants for 20 years, you may find that you need to be more cautious.  

 

To get you started, and familiarized with the protocols followed by SA, I am linking a few topics so that you have a better understanding of what is recommended here. 

 

Before you begin tapering what you need to know

What is Withdrawal Syndrome?

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?
Tips for Tapering off Effexor/Effexor XR/Venlafaxine

 

Without having more information with respect to your drug/tapering history it will be difficult to make any specific recommendations. We ask all of our members to fill out a signature so that all of your information can be read at a glance.  This helps moderators determine you current situation and we would ask that you follow the instructions 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.

 

I realize that I have given you a lot of information to review, so if you have any questions or need clarification, please post all of your questions back here in your introduction topic (you may have noticed that I've merged all of your posts back into your introduction topic as we need to keep all of your information together) and one of the moderators will get back to you.  Please feel free to connect with other members of the Surviving Antidepressants Community by posting in their introduction topics.  

Edited by baroquep

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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My reply to the person wanting to go off the SSRI’S is I have heard of this use of Prozac as a slow release anti depressant to gently help people to go off Effexor and drugs like that but the schedule of withdrawal needs to be slow and  gradual guided by a Doctor who has had  clinical experience in a  careful withdrawal procedure treatment program .....

 

When I had an environmentally reactivation of my years ago post withdrawal symptoms to paxel or it was Effexor I remember the Alpha STIM device at no higher than 100 Electrical strength got rid of certain post paxel withdrawal symptoms but this was long after I was off paxel From  so many years ago . I don’t know how this device would help you on a carefully monitored withdrawal program like an synergic effect .....

 

Because my depression to a mild moderate degree is returning and the Alpha STIM helped only partially for my depression I am looking into aTMS treatment program for my depression and in England they have a brand that is similar to the American brand called NeuroStar .......

 

I hope one this is of help,

 

Bejay 

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Thesearepowerfuldrugs

I'm using the Prozac bridge to get off Effexor. I am still alive but have had some close calls.  Lucky not to be killed yet. I'm on 20mg of Prozac and 37.5 of Effexor for 5 more days until I run out of Effexor. I may not survive this with my life.

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Thesearepowerfuldrugs

Has anyone on  here survived the Prozac bridge to get off Effexor? I probably will end up dead. I don't have a lot of hope for a bright future. Haven't been shot yet which is unbelievable.

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Thesearepowerfuldrugs

How does one control the impulsive temper and anger. I wasn't full of rage prior to antidepressants.

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Thesearepowerfuldrugs

I can't understand the 10 percent per month rule of tapering. It would take years to get off Effexor if I did that plus the stupid drug doesn't come in such small increments. 

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  • Moderator Emeritus
On 04/10/2017 at 8:44 AM, baroquep said:

Without having more information with respect to your drug/tapering history it will be difficult to make any specific recommendations. 

 

Please complete your drug history as requested above.  Please follow these instructions:

 

 A request: Would you summarize your history in a signature - ALL drugs, doses, dates, and discontinuations & reinstatements, in the last 12-24 months particularly?

  • 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.
  • Link to Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature.
Edited by ChessieCat

NEW!!!     INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder    NEW!!! 

 

Plodding along inch by inch:  12" = 1',  3' =  36 " or 1 yard,  1760 yards  = 63,360" or 1 mile

Current from 17 Apr 2021:  Pristiq 0.2665mg  now holding each dose for 3 weeks

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering Oct 2015 

My tapering program   My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)  My website

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

When we take psychiatric drugs our brains adapt to the presence of the drug and we become physiologically dependent on the drug, not physically dependent like caffeine or nicotine.  Tapering by 10% of the previous dose followed by a hold of about 4 weeks allows the brain to adapt to not getting as much of the drug.

 

I will relate my own experience.  I was taking 100mg Pristiq and tried to reduce to 50mg.  I experienced extreme brain fog for 3 weeks and at the end of that time I was unable to type.  Being a professional typist for 40+ years I knew that something was very wrong.  Thankfully I had joined SA a few days before this happened and they had suggested increasing my dose.  When I couldn't type I took extra Pristiq and about 4 hours later I was able to type again and my foggy head was clearing.  Since then, end of October 2015, I have been tapering no more than 10% of my previous dose as recommended by SA.  A couple of times I have done longer holds, once for 3 months at 50mg and then 7 weeks at 20mg to allow my brain the chance to catch up if it needed it.   As my dose gets lower I have started feeling like I did prior to ever starting ADs (continuously for 25+ years).  Even though I am tapering slowly I still experience withdrawal symptoms but they are very mild and don't last long.  Recently I felt real excitement (at 19mg) for the first time in a very long time.  Back in May (25mg) I bought a new car and even though I was excited, compared to recently it was a dulled excitement.  I am now down to 18mg and it will take me until about the middle of 2020 to be off Pristiq.  Even though it is frustrating still being on the drug, and I had been hoping to be off by my 60th birthday next month, I don't want to experience any more withdrawal symptoms than necessary and feel that getting off the drug comfortably is more important that the length of time it is going to take.

 

The pharmacist who compounds my Pristiq recently told me that one of his customers had trouble getting off the last 1mg of escitalopram and it took her 18 months.

 

These helped me to understand SA's harm reduction method:

 

Brain Remodelling


Video:  Healing From Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery

 

This topic discussions methods of getting smaller doses:

 

Tips for Tapering off Effexor/Effexor XR/Venlafaxine

NEW!!!     INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder    NEW!!! 

 

Plodding along inch by inch:  12" = 1',  3' =  36 " or 1 yard,  1760 yards  = 63,360" or 1 mile

Current from 17 Apr 2021:  Pristiq 0.2665mg  now holding each dose for 3 weeks

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering Oct 2015 

My tapering program   My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)  My website

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.

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  • Moderator Emeritus
1 hour ago, Thesearepowerfuldrugs said:

I am still alive but have had some close calls.  Lucky not to be killed yet. ...  I may not survive this with my life

 

You are being unnecessarily dramatic with statements like these.

 

Please refrain from making comments like these as it can be very triggering for some of the members of SA.  Thank you.

 

Edited by ChessieCat

NEW!!!     INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder    NEW!!! 

 

Plodding along inch by inch:  12" = 1',  3' =  36 " or 1 yard,  1760 yards  = 63,360" or 1 mile

Current from 17 Apr 2021:  Pristiq 0.2665mg  now holding each dose for 3 weeks

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering Oct 2015 

My tapering program   My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)  My website

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.

Link to post
4 hours ago, Thesearepowerfuldrugs said:

How does one control the impulsive temper and anger. I wasn't full of rage prior to antidepressants.

HI TAPD ,welcome ,you got that correct .they are very powerful drugs ,I'm tapering venlafaxine [Effexor].

you have to find a healthy way to release this anger and rage ,I totally relate to what you say ,do yourself a favour and read up on everything the moderators say .impulsivity and rage are totally controllable I've been controlling it a long time ,recently in my taper I had a rage/anger  attack ,I rolled up a towel and I was banging it off the floor .rage released .

never under any circumstances do we have the right to harm others or anything else because of the meds and how they make us feel ,learn all the coping techniques you can ,in todays society the smallest temper could get you in trouble and then you've got serious trouble .if your impulsivity is very strong be mindful and get yourself out of the situation fast ,your running will come In handy here :).

you mite have to be careful watching anything violent ,there was a time I loved it but I realised I was feeding a med induced  demon inside me so these days I'm very mindful of what I watch .

good luck with your bridge ,I never went with that myself ,I'm doing a micro taper [really slow ] but loads of symptoms anyway .

PB

 

Alcohol free since February 2015 

1MG diazepam

4.5MG PROZAC.

 

 

 

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  • Administrator

Welcome, Theseare. We recommend a slow taper to minimize withdrawal symptoms, including those that might be mistaken for "relapse." You might have been caught in this revolving door many times. Yes, these are powerful drugs and may take years to quit properly. That's just the way it is. The drug companies want you to believe they're much more safe and convenient than they are.

 

On 10/4/2017 at 10:27 PM, Bejay said:

My reply to the person wanting to go off the SSRI’S is I have heard of this use of Prozac as a slow release anti depressant to gently help people to go off Effexor and drugs like that but the schedule of withdrawal needs to be slow and  gradual guided by a Doctor who has had  clinical experience in a  careful withdrawal procedure treatment program .....

 

When I had an environmentally reactivation of my years ago post withdrawal symptoms to paxel or it was Effexor I remember the Alpha STIM device at no higher than 100 Electrical strength got rid of certain post paxel withdrawal symptoms but this was long after I was off paxel From  so many years ago . I don’t know how this device would help you on a carefully monitored withdrawal program like an synergic effect .....

 

Because my depression to a mild moderate degree is returning and the Alpha STIM helped only partially for my depression I am looking into aTMS treatment program for my depression and in England they have a brand that is similar to the American brand called NeuroStar .......

 

I hope one this is of help,

 

Bejay 

 

Bejay, please start an Introductions topic for yourself so we can get to know you.

 

This is a site for going off psychiatric drugs. We don't take on treating depression or any other psychiatric condition. We have an active topic in the Symptoms and Self-Care forum about Alpha STIM and other devices, some people find them helpful and some don't. We can't recommend it for assisting withdrawal from drugs, try it at your own risk.

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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To The Administration and Staff,

 

i wanted To to emphasize that I would never never advocate for a person actively withdrawing from SRRI or Valium type drugs to go off rapidly for a very slow withdrawal process is required and the Alpha STIM device was only seen to be used tried  along the slow and tedious drug withdrawal process in an attempt to the improve quality of life ...... Also I saw the Alpha STIM device to be used tried out  for people who for months or years were already off the SRRI and Valium type drugs but who had bizarre neurological symptoms like feeling that they were going to faint etc to try out the Alpha STIM Therapy approach .....

 

Sincerely,

 

Bejay

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  • Administrator

Bejay, I moved your most recent post to the Alpha STIM topic

 

Let's return this topic to Thesearepowerfuldrugs's concerns.

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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  • 2 years later...
  • Administrator

Hello, @Thesearepowerfuldrugs, how are you doing?

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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