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Cheryl123: SSRI nightmare


Cheryl123

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Hi. I had been on cymbalta 30mg for the last 10-12 years.

 

I have been diagnosed with GAD for the past 20 years and have been on an antidepressant since then.

 

In October, I started feeling some anxiety creeping in and had a few anxiety attacks at work. I panicked and decided the Cymbalta was pooping out on me. Went to the doc she decided to raise my dose to 60mg. This gave me tremors and increased heart rate. Tried backing it down to 40, still tremors.

 

This time she decided to switch me to Zoloft. I weaned back down to 10 mg in about 2 weeks then switched to 25mg of Zoloft. After 2 weeks went up to 50mg. Each week, I kept feeling more and more ramped up. After about 5 weeks on Zoloft I became extremely agitated and started having panic attacks.

 

I ended up in the ER. Ended up with akathisia. Doc told me to stop the Zoloft and put me immediately on Remeron 7.5mg. Did this for 2 weeks and felt depressed and like a zombie.

 

Doc then said to take a drug holiday for 4 weeks. I stopped the Remeron that day. The next four weeks were hell. My moods were either depressed or anxiety through the roof. Looking back could this have been withdrawal from all the meds?

 

Doc decided it was because I needed to be on something.

 

She then started me on Buspar. Each day I took it, it felt like more and more like my arms were on fire. The agitation started to come back. I stopped it after a week.

 

Next day she started me on Lexapro 5 mg. This about did me in. My anxiety shot through the room. The agitation was unreal and unrelenting. I was ready to try and go inpatient because the agitation was so bad.

 

Doc said I needed to ride out the side effects for two weeks. It was unbearable. She then told me I needed to do an intensive outpatient program to learn how to deal with my anxiety. She didn't believe my agitation could be so bad from the Lexapro.

 

I started the program and the doc there told me to stop the Lexapro. She believed me. So I did.

 

It's been a week and a half and I'm still so agitated. Could this all be from the effects of all these meds and never really withdrawaling correctly over the past 6 months? I feel like I'm going crazy. I now have insomnia. I believe is caused from the Lexapro. This new doc thinks I may have too much serotonin still floating around and that is why I'm still so agitated. Other doc thinks it's just my anxiety disorder. This is crazy.

 

New doc prescribed me 200 mg Gabapentin for now to try and help me sleep, but I'm afraid of all these drugs now!

 

Edited by ChessieCat
coloured important details

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to Cheryl123: SSRI nightmare
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Cheryl and welcome to SA,

 

I'm so sorry that you have been chopped and changed around on psychiatric drugs by the medical profession.  The only word I can think of is:  despicable.

 

Thank you for giving a clear and ordered account of your drugs.  I highlighted some of your post so that it easier for the mods to see.  I'll ask the other mods to assess your situation.

 

We ask all members to create a drug signature.  Please keep it simple and use the following format:

 

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.

  

This is your own Intro topic where you can ask questions and journal your progress.  We suggest that members visit other members' Intro topics so they can support and encourage each other.

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

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

  MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

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 from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Cheryl,  I am so very sorry to see that you have been treated this way. The huge problem is that doctors are not taught enough about these drugs and especially withdrawal which is torture! 

 

When you started to feel anxiety after years on cymbalta, it is often because the body is starting to react to the drug, which is why you were so bad when it was doubled. It would have been better to start to taper off very very slowly. Side effects are dose related and you may have felt better as the dose lowered.  Then it was stopped and replaced  by a different drug that would not have helped the withdrawal. Now your nervous system is struggling to regain balance and you are most likely still suffering withdrawal from cymbalta.  Have you still got some capsules left? It can help to reinstate a very very small dose. Cymbalta comes in many forms, some capsules contain tablets, others have beads inside, some have a more than others depending on brand. If you can get the cymbalta brand they have the highest number of beads (around 250),  you could take 4 beads, that would be around 0.5 mg. 

This seems like a ridiculously low number but it will test whether you are going to tolerate it.   I reinstated just 4 beads of effexor and felt better in a few days, some people feel better within hours. By better I mean reduced symptoms, it takes time to stabilise and we have all had to learn coping skills while stabilising.   At 4 months off it could help.  If it doesn't help but you do not feel any worse you could increase bead by bead.  

 

You would then need to keep careful notes of symptoms each day, hour by hour if possible, or at least 4 times a day so that we can see if you are having any reaction.  You are right to be wary of gabapentin, your nervous system has been rocked by so many drugs.  Cymbalta is what you are withdrawaing from, so hopefully a tiny dose might ease the symptoms. The only way to stop withdrawal is the drug that was stopped. I will get some links for you to help you understand the process. You will find that you have windows and waves as you stabilise, this will happen whether you reinstate or not, as your nervous system heals. Reinstaing just gives you a head start. When you are stable you can start to taper off that tiny dose. 

 

What is withdrawal (Read this first) 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/603-what-is-withdrawal-syndrome/

 

About reinstating  (Then this) 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/7562-about-reinstating-and-stabilizing-to-reduce-withdrawal-symptoms/

 

This is an excellent post on how the drugs remodel your brain

http://survivingantidepressants.org/topic/1160-how-psychiatric-drugs-remodel-your-brain/

 

About tapering cymbalta

http://survivingantidepressants.org/topic/283-tips-for-tapering-off-cymbalta-duloxetine/

 

Windows and waves pattern of stabilisation

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/82-the-windows-and-waves-pattern-of-stabilization/

 

You will need a good toolbox of tools to cope with anxiety and emotional symptoms while you are going through this. 

We have lots of topics that have been shared and are tried and tested. 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/topic/82-the-windows-and-waves-pattern-of-stabilization/

http://survivingantidepressants.org/topic/1112-non-drug-techniques-to-cope-with-emotional-symptoms/

 

 

It looks like a lot of reading but it is good to have all the links right here so you can find them easily when you need them. 

You are not alone, every single one of came here are either tapering or struggling with withdrawal and we all understand what you are going through. 

 

 

Edited by ChessieCat
corrected link

**I am not a medical professional, if in doubt please consult a doctor with withdrawal knowledge.

 

 

Different drugs occasionally (mostly benzos) 1976 - 1981 (no problem)

1993 - 2002 in and out of hospital. every type of drug + ECT. Staring with seroxat

2002  effexor. 

Tapered  March 2012 to March 2013, ending with 5 beads.

Withdrawal April 2013 . Reinstated 5 beads reduced to 4 beads May 2013

Restarted taper  Nov 2013  

OFF EFFEXOR Feb 2015    :D 

Tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

Tapering tramadol, Feb 2015 100mg , March 2015 50mg  

 July 2017 30mg.  May 15 2018 25mg

Taking fish oil, magnesium, B12, folic acid, bilberry eyebright for eye pressure. 

 

My story http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4199-hello-mammap-checking-in/page-33

 

Lesson learned, slow down taper at lower doses. Taper no more than 10% of CURRENT dose if possible

 

 

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Thank you for the advice. I decided not to take the Gabapentin. I don't need to add more fuel to the fire right now. I did go to a functional medicine doctor about a month ago. She suggested some supplements to heal my gut. Wonder if I should start on these as I currently have zero appetite. My biggest symptoms are agitation, no appetite and insomnia. Think it's Cymbalta withdrawal or from the Lexapro I stopped a week and a half ago? Now I'm not sure which drug it's coming from? All I know is my CNS is a wreck.

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Loss of appetite can be a withdrawal symptom.  Dr Joseph Glenmullen's WD Symptoms Checklist

 

Psychiatric drugs create a physiological dependence, not physical like caffeine or nicotine.

 

I will tell you my own experience with reducing my drug.

 

October 2015 I reduced my dose from 100mg to 50mg Pristiq.  I experienced extreme cog/brain fog for 3 weeks and everything I did required my undivided attention, even walking.  I began researching antidepressant withdrawal.  That was when I discovered the website survivingantidepressants.org.  Several days later  I was unable to type.  Being a professional typist since the age of 16 I knew that something wasn’t right.  It had been suggested by the website moderators that I increase my dose of Pristiq.  When I couldn’t type I took extra Pristiq and after about 4 hours I was able to type again.  Because I had a benchmark I knew that it was because I had reduced my Pristiq too quickly. 

 

This is what mammaP said:

 

On 26/02/2018 at 10:22 PM, mammaP said:

you are most likely still suffering withdrawal from cymbalta.  Have you still got some capsules left? It can help to reinstate a very very small dose. Cymbalta comes in many forms, some capsules contain tablets, others have beads inside, some have a more than others depending on brand. If you can get the cymbalta brand they have the highest number of beads (around 250),  you could take 4 beads, that would be around 0.5 mg. 

 

This seems like a ridiculously low number but it will test whether you are going to tolerate it.   I reinstated just 4 beads of effexor and felt better in a few days, some people feel better within hours. By better I mean reduced symptoms, it takes time to stabilise and we have all had to learn coping skills while stabilising.   At 4 months off it could help.  If it doesn't help but you do not feel any worse you could increase bead by bead.  

 

You would then need to keep careful notes of symptoms each day, hour by hour if possible, or at least 4 times a day so that we can see if you are having any reaction.  You are right to be wary of gabapentin, your nervous system has been rocked by so many drugs.  Cymbalta is what you are withdrawaing from, so hopefully a tiny dose might ease the symptoms. The only way to stop withdrawal is the drug that was stopped. I will get some links for you to help you understand the process. You will find that you have windows and waves as you stabilise, this will happen whether you reinstate or not, as your nervous system heals. Reinstaing just gives you a head start. When you are stable you can start to taper off that tiny dose. 

 

 

I just wanted to make sure that you see the information about reinstating.  The sooner reinstatement is made the more chance there is of it being successful.

 

Please read Post #1 of this topic About reinstating and stabilizing to reduce withdrawal symptoms

 

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

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

  MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

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 from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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So you think this is from cymbalta not the Lexapro (or Zoloft, or Remeron)... Ugh... So many in the last 5 months.

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Cymbalta is possibly/probably the one which your brain had adapted most to, although you were on Zoloft for 5 weeks.  The other drugs you probably weren't on long enough for too many changes to have been made.  We can't know for sure which drug would be the best one to reinstate.  That is why we suggest a very low dose to test how you respond to it.  Post #1 in the reinstatement topic explains this.

 

Could you please add additional information to your signature.  I've put a red question mark where we need the date or,if you don't know the date, early, mid, late will be helpful.  Please also add five weeks where indicated.  Thank you.

 

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped ? Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- five weeks ? Oct 2017 to ? December 2017 

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks ? to ? December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks ? to ? February 2018

 

Edited by ChessieCat

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

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

  MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

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 from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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Thanks again everyone. I think I'm beginning to see some light at the end of the tunnel. I feel like my mood is stabilizing some. Mornings are still the worst. I keep waking up at 2 and 4 am with that vibrating feeling and anxiety. I think it's still withdrawal. This new doc yesterday actually agreed that I could still be in withdrawal from the Cymbalta since I was on it so long. She said it should subside after 3 months (I'm past 3 months though). Anyone else experience the weird vibrating feeling in the morning? I hate it! I'm really thankful for this site as it helped me figure out it wasn't my anxiety returning as these doctors have tried to tell me, but it really was withdrawal this whole time! No wonder none of these other meds they tried to put me on would work! 

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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Hello

 

Just to say in the past I have been where you are, a total mix of withdrawal/new meds and worsening health.  I only got out of it by stabilising on 20 mg citalopram, which I now struggle to withdraw from, but I have discontinued a whole load of psychiatric meds and reclaimed a lot of my life. 

 

I will follow your posts if that is OK, and I wish you well on this very worthwhile journey.  If I could start my initial withdrawal attempts from citalopram again I would do it much more slowly and much more carefully, but I gained my knowledge a little late. 

 

I am older now at 59, and some say it is harder to withdraw when you are older, but people do still manage it.

 

I wish you all the best, and this site is very supportive and full of information. 

 

Joy

 

 

 

Back to 20 mg at some point

22/3/18 down to 19.8 mg and feeling well

31/3/18 down to 19.6 mg and feeling well

14/4/18 down to 19.4 mg

05/5/18 down to 19.2 mg and feeling well

14/5/18 kicked out of my marital home/marriage/family unexpectedly when son took over farm

During many hospitalisations for shock/stress put on

1mg lorazepam prn

50mg quetiapine night for sleep

40 mg citalopram

10/01/2021  stopped taking quetiapine totally after a slow taper

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3 hours ago, Cheryl123 said:

She said it should subside after 3 months (I'm past 3 months though).

 

On 2/26/2018 at 9:22 PM, mammaP said:

Now your nervous system is struggling to regain balance and you are most likely still suffering withdrawal from cymbalta.  Have you still got some capsules left? It can help to reinstate a very very small dose. Cymbalta comes in many forms, some capsules contain tablets, others have beads inside, some have a more than others depending on brand. If you can get the cymbalta brand they have the highest number of beads (around 250),  you could take 4 beads, that would be around 0.5 mg

 

Unfortunately, this is what the doctors say  ~ It is not true. ( 3 months?) I wish...

 

I would think about reinstating ... how do you feel about that ?

Many SSRI's and SSNRI's over 20 years. Zoloft for 7 years followed by Effexor, Lexapro, Prozac, Cymbalta, Celexa, Pristiq, Valdoxan, Mianserin and more - on and off. No tapering. Cold turkey off Valdoxan - end of May 2014

 

                                                  Psych Drug - free since May 2014
.
         

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Hello Cheryl,

 

I am new to this site as of yesterday (and not even sure if I am allowed to respond yet ;)), but I just wanted to share my experience of the vibrating feel so you may not feel like you are imagining any of it in any way.  I am by no means an expert on any of this and definitely don't feel as though I can offer any advice.  Plus, I am having a smidge of brain fog/fuzz in my head today (none yesterday, it does what it wants still), ha!  So I apolgize in advance if I have not 'proofed" this very well before sending.

 

I was only on zoloft (25 mg ) for 2.5 months total and only the first 2 weeks was the full 25 mg.  I am 8 months off and still have WD symptoms.  I am not extreme, but they are, obviously, less than favorable and not normal.  I still get the weird vibrating feeling at times (usually at night in bed), like every cell in my body is "super awake and tingly".  I know, it's an odd feeling  I've had that and neuropathy, paresthesia, brain fog, some mild, mild akathisia (which I think the vibrating feeling may even be part of that, but it depends how you "define" some of these feelings).  But I had the crazy vibrating, paresthesia and jaw clenching and crack-head feel after 2 weeks on the zoloft, which is why I went off (not slowly enough, but everyone keep saying I was on such a low dose that once I cut it down to 6.25 mg over the last 4 weeks of taking it, that I should be fine.  I stopped the next day after I got tinnitus).  I could have cleaned a house with a toothbrush!  I got some stuff done, but the agitation and amped feel was too much.  Paradoxical to what my doctor hoped it would do for sleep and anxiety after my mom passed and I had a bad relationship breakup.  And it never really helped my anxiety, which runs in my family.

 

At any rate, my doctor didn't think I could possibly be having any of this after it being "out of my system" either.  But another doctor of mine was not the least bit surprised and a psychologist (I went to her just to get her opinion on if she has "Seen this kind of thing...") told me it will probably take longer than I think it will or want it to. Yay!  Fun times :P  So don't feel too discouraged if you are still having a lot at 3 months.  Doctors just don't get it.

 

And I have had the early morning anxiety, which has been better lately, so I totally understand that as well.  So, yes, after 8 months, I still have many symptoms, brain fog, paresthesia, tinnitus, mild akathisia (inner tension and/or vibrating - mostly at night), neuropathy/muscle weakness at times.  BUT all things considered, relatively mild in comparison to other people and not 24/7 and they all like to mix it up a bit and come and go at different times.  Never a true window, but better with some things some days and not with others.  Things have gotten better though, even if some of the symptoms seem to ramp up at times.  So, I'm not done by a long shot, but I have many "normal" overall feeling days even if mild symptoms.

 

Sorry for the rambling.  But I just wanted to comment that you're not crazy, of course, feeling any of the weird things you may be feeling and especially, regarding that vibrating feeling.  Ugh, yes, it is weird and disturbing, but you are not imagining it, if that helps.  And I would say in isn't any "one" drug in particular in your case.  I think they all have similar "fall-out" as it were.  And I see you were on the zoloft for a short time as I was, and boy oh boy.  It did NOT like me one bit. And vice versa;)

 

Best of luck with it all.  I like to think of each day (good or bad) as one day closer to the other side.  It seems to be a lot of patience and time and staying as positive as possible are the key elements.  I still take certain supplements and I have played around with them and it all seems so random (for me anyway) that I just take what I want for the most part and the WD does what it wants, when it wants and I just tell it to piss off as best I can and carry on, because I just couldn't find a pattern with it.  

 

My only other input, if at all helpful, is I know how poopy the morning anxiety and jingly feeling feel.  I know it sucks, but I have had spells without it.  So it does get better.  I also realize I was on a lot less drugs for less time, so I may not be the best comparison.  But on the flip side, I was on a lot less drugs, for a lot less time and still ended up with all this, so yes, doctors have no idea.  Maybe one day more will get the picture.  We can only hope.

 

Hope you and everyone else on this site have good days soon!  And thanks to this site and all the wonderful people here.  

Kim

SSRI HISTORY:  I am currently 49 years old (2017)

  • 1992-1998 20 mg Prozac CT
  • 2001-2002 10 mg Prozac CT
  • 2017 April 27  -  25 mg Zoloft/sertraline
  • 2017 May 15  -  15-20 mg Zoloft
  • 2017 May 26  -  12.5 mg Zoloft
  • 2017 June 30  -  6.25 mg Zoloft
  • 2017 July 10  -  Stop Zoloft completely
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5 hours ago, Cheryl123 said:

Mornings are still the worst.

Hi Cheryl!

I'm in my 8th month of withdrawal. Mornings have always been more difficult for me. I try not to schedule anything before 11:00a. Since I'm retired, that's a little bit easier, but my church starts at 9:30a and I didn't make it there for months. I usually feel better in the evenings.

I've finally reached a longer window where my symptoms are milder. Wishing you luck!

Dalalea's Introduction

Off All SSRI Medications: Effexor 2010 one month
Sertraline 50 mg. but only took 25 mg. daily because of dizziness. 2010 to July 2017

Tapered over 2 months beginning the 1st of June 2017 -- Off Sertraline by July 30, 2017

Current Medication: Losartan (blood pressure), Albuterol (for asthma- only as needed)
Current Symptoms: tinnitus, hearing loss in one ear, allergies

My Plan: Prayer, Scripture, Walk, Yoga, Encourage Others, Healthy Eating
Generic SSRI Withdrawal Symptom and Plan Checklists and Graph.xlsx

Current Supplements: Magnesium Threonate, Fish Oil, probiotic, B-12, C, D-3

Current Essential Oils: Frankincense, Bergamot, Orange, Lemon, Lavender, Peppermint, Clove
Current Essential Oil Blends: Brain Power, Clarity, Stress Away

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi everyone. I am still battling. A lot of the morning buzzing has subsided, but I think I'm dealing with rebound anxiety?? Could this all be my body adjusting? I feel so anxious ALL day long!! Other physical symptoms are subsiding. Do you think this still means progress? I made an appointment with an integrative psychiatrist and to get accupunture. Don't know how long I can stand this all day anxiety!! It's horrible :(

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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On 3/3/2018 at 11:05 AM, AliG said:

 

Unfortunately, this is what the doctors say  ~ It is not true. ( 3 months?) I wish...

 

I would think about reinstating ... how do you feel about that ?

I don't think I can reinstate. Right now I think I have the rebound anxiety I can't stand to think about starting on it again. Afraid it will be worse!

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

Link to comment

Hi Cheryl,

Your not alone hun, this has happened to all of us the moderators are excellent and will give you good advice.

I reinstated after 3 months and I stabilize, I personally would go back to the drug Cymbalta you were on for a long time and once you stabilize do a long slow tapper.

I wish you all the best x

1995 started Paxil 20mg slowly increasing to 50mg until 2014

-2014 I decided to tapper myself not knowing how too and crashed , DR added 50mg Seraquel

-2015 tried tapering again and crashed

Seroquel Taper

2/11/16 43mg  1/09/17  37.5mg  10/03/10 36.25mg. 17/3/19 35mg 26/3/19 33.75mg  4/4/19 32.5mg  21/4/19 30mg

16/7/19 28.75mg  5/8/19 27.5mg. 19/8/19 25mg   4/8/20 23mg 18/8/20 22.5mg  12/10/20 18.25mg  10/1/21 15mg  3/8/21 UPDOSE 16mg

Paxil Taper

2/11/16 40mg 12/10/17 37mg  28/10/17 36mg  10/1/18. 35mg  24/05/18 33mg  28/8/18 31mg 16/12/18 30mg 20/10/19 29mg  17/11/19 28mg 7/1/20  27mg 12/2/20  26mg 7/3 /20 25mg  11/4/20 24mg 4/5/20 23mg  5/6/20 22mg 23/6/20 21mg 15/7/20 20mg

Untitled.rtf

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On 3/3/2018 at 11:05 AM, AliG said:

 

Unfortunately, this is what the doctors say  ~ It is not true. ( 3 months?) I wish...

 

I would think about reinstating ... how do you feel about that ?

I don't think I can reinstate. Right now I think I have the rebound anxiety I can't stand to think about starting on it again. Afraid it will be worse!

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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Thank you Cheeky. I change my mind about every hour about getting back on it and slowly tapering. Honestly it scares me to death that I will try to go back on and won't be able to tolerate the drug again and then have to start all over with withdrawal anyway... Every drug I've tried since coming off the Cymbalta has been a nightmare. I just want to be able to sit and relax for more than 5 minutes :(

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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I think I'm going to try reinstating cymbalta. I'm getting desparate. It's been 5 months

 Think it's too late?

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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Do you think 10mg is too much to reinstate?

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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I think I'm going to try and re stabilize. I can still barely function with these waves of extreme anxiety. The only thing that helped the other day was .25 Xanax which is something I don't want to start, but I couldn't take it anymore. I know it's been 5 months, but you think .5 cymbalta would be my best bet,? I'm back to work now and trying to function. I need help! Please respond.

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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  • Moderator Emeritus
On 26/02/2018 at 10:22 PM, mammaP said:

If you can get the cymbalta brand they have the highest number of beads (around 250),  you could take 4 beads, that would be around 0.5 mg. 

This seems like a ridiculously low number but it will test whether you are going to tolerate it. 

 

This was nearly 1 month ago that mammP suggested approximately 0.5mg Cymbalta (4 beads).  If it were me I'd be trying 2 beads just to test to see how you react.  If you don't have a bad reaction in the first few days you could then increase by another bead if needed.

 

It is better to start with a low dose and increase if needed rather than start with too high a dose.  Keep daily notes so that you can keep track of your symptoms (worsening/improving).  Also Keep it Simple, Slow and Stable

 

Keep notes on paper about your drug dosages and daily symptom pattern

 

A symptom pattern that occurs regularly over several days could mean the symptoms are from withdrawal, other adverse effects of drugs, or something else you do on a daily schedule.

 

In the course of discussion in your Introductions forum topic, you may be asked to keep notes on paper of your daily symptom pattern, including when you take your drugs, their dosages, and any symptoms.

 

What we need to see for every individual day over several days is:

- Time and dosage for drugs taken in morning
- Time and description of any symptoms in the morning
 
- Time and dosage for drugs taken in afternoon
- Time and description of any symptoms in the afternoon
 
- Time and dosage for drugs taken in evening
- Time and description of any symptoms in the evening
 
- Time and dosage for drugs taken in middle of the night
- Time and description of any symptoms in the middle of the night (such as waking)
 
And so forth. A diary, in chronological order, such as:
 
6 a.m. Woke and vomited
8 a.m. Took 2.5mg Lexapro
10 a.m. Had diarrhea
10:30 a.m. Ate breakfast
11:35 a.m. Got a headache, lasted one hour
12:35 p.m. Ate lunch
4 p.m. Stomachache
5 p.m. Took 2.5mg Lexapro
6 p.m. Ate dinner
9:20 p.m. Headache
10:00 p.m. Took 50mg Seroquel
10:20 p.m. Headache got worse
10:30 p.m. Fell asleep
2:30 a.m. Woke, took 3mg Ambien (NOT "took 1/2 tablet Ambien")
2:45 a.m. Fell asleep
4:30 a.m. Woke with headache

 

An appointments diary is perfect for this and can be bought at stationery stores. 

They have a page for each day with times for appointments which can be filled in with doses, symptoms etc as shown by Alto.

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

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

  MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

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 from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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I only have the generic because that is what I was on for so long. Should I still try the 4 beads? My main symptoms are just the brain jello feeling and extreme anxiety

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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  • Moderator Emeritus

What strength are the capsules and how many beads or discs do they contain each?

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

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

  MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

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 from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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20 mg. I will have to double check but around 130 or so beads

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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3 hours ago, ChessieCat said:
On 2/26/2018 at 9:22 PM, mammaP said:

If you can get the cymbalta brand they have the highest number of beads (around 250),  you could take 4 beads, that would be around 0.5 mg. 

This seems like a ridiculously low number but it will test whether you are going to tolerate it. 

 

This was nearly 1 month ago that mammP suggested approximately 0.5mg Cymbalta (4 beads).  If it were me I'd be trying 2 beads just to test to see how you react.  If you don't have a bad reaction in the first few days you could then increase by another bead if needed.

 

I agree with CC : perhaps start with (2 beads) and see how you feel. Please keep notes over the next week, if this is what you decide to do.It's always best to start low and work your way up -  only, if needed. It takes at least 4 days to become steady state, in the blood but often longer to stabilize and feel the effects , so be patient.

Many SSRI's and SSNRI's over 20 years. Zoloft for 7 years followed by Effexor, Lexapro, Prozac, Cymbalta, Celexa, Pristiq, Valdoxan, Mianserin and more - on and off. No tapering. Cold turkey off Valdoxan - end of May 2014

 

                                                  Psych Drug - free since May 2014
.
         

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Doctor suggested going on low dose of Remeron since I tolerated that back in December and it seemed to stop the anxiety when withdrawal was the worst. Would it be better to do something like that or try the few beads of cymbalta? The Cymbalta scares the crap out of me now since it's stolen my life since October. Is it easier to stop the Remeron? Sorry for all the questions. I don't want to take anything but I don't want to lose my job either. I have two months until summer break from teaching and hoping to be about to function these next couple of months.

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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Cymbalta is the drug you were on for the longest time and that you are most likely, majorly adapted to. Would this be the same doctor that got you to this questionable point? :rolleyes:

22 minutes ago, Cheryl123 said:

Is it easier to stop the Remeron?

 Have you stopped the Remeron?  According to your signature, you have already stopped.

 

The few beads of Cymbalta is probably your and our best conclusion, at this particular point in time.

Let's know your thoughts ~

Many SSRI's and SSNRI's over 20 years. Zoloft for 7 years followed by Effexor, Lexapro, Prozac, Cymbalta, Celexa, Pristiq, Valdoxan, Mianserin and more - on and off. No tapering. Cold turkey off Valdoxan - end of May 2014

 

                                                  Psych Drug - free since May 2014
.
         

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This is a different doctor. Yes I stopped the Remeron in December. I am on no meds now. Although I've had to take .25 Xanax on bad days. I don't like to take it, always afraid of addiction

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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I would try 2 beads to start with and we can work from there. These drugs are very powerful and while it sounds perhaps, ineffective - it's not. If you reinstate , please keep notes. It takes about 4 days to become active in the blood. if you have a bad reaction at this low dose ~ you can stop.

Many SSRI's and SSNRI's over 20 years. Zoloft for 7 years followed by Effexor, Lexapro, Prozac, Cymbalta, Celexa, Pristiq, Valdoxan, Mianserin and more - on and off. No tapering. Cold turkey off Valdoxan - end of May 2014

 

                                                  Psych Drug - free since May 2014
.
         

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I got this reply from my new psychiatrist today as I am so reluctant to reinstate:

 Cheryl,

I hear your fear and concern and worry about restarting the antidepressant because it seems like the symptoms you are having are related to having been on Cymbalta for so long.
 
I believe that the reason you are having these symptoms is because you were not tapered off slowly enough for your brain to adjust after having been on the medication for many years.  Having said that, I also believe that if you want to try supplements to manage your symptoms, I would first restart the Cymbalta to stabilize the withdraw symptoms you are having and very gradually taper off the medication.  I know you are scared about feeling worse than you do.  Please, please trust me in taking this step.  You cannot really trust your thinking right now because the low serotonin state causes so much doubt and worry that it is paralyzing and keeps you stuck.  Start with half of the 20mg of Cymbalta for at least a few days and let me know how you feel.  As we discussed, the Cymbalta kept you stable for many years.  The panic attack in October was related to situational stressors which required therapy not a change in medication.  Right now, your brain is not coping without the medication it was used to for so long.  Please ignore the doubt and take 10mg.

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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Also. I don't think I ever had a bad reaction to the Cymbalta..I just thought it stopped working... That is when all the switching began by my other psychiatrist.

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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Think I should try the 2 or 4 beads first?

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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Anyone???? Getting so desparate.

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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I need some positive stories. My doc messed me up in October trying to switch my from Cymbalta to Zoloft.. Ended up pretty much cold turkeyed from both. Anyway 5 months later I'm still in withdrawal from Cymbalta and new doc had me reinstate 5 mg cymbalta and thinks I may need to go up more to stabilize and then ween off correctly. Please tell me someone has gotten off this!

Cymbalta 30mg for 10 years - stopped Oct 2017

Zoloft 50mg.- Oct 2017 to December 2017

Remeron 7.5mg for two weeks December 2017

Lexapro 5 mg for two weeks February 2018

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Cheryl, you may want to check the zoloft should be illegal website. I think that the administrator, Holly Noble Myers, has gotten off cymbalta after 20 years. If I am wrong about this, then there may be others who have withdrawn.

 

Good luck and let me know how you make out.

 

Best,

KayM

2002-2016: 20 mg paxil - tapered over a 9-month period with prozac bridge.

 

Continued with prozac, tapering 10 mg over a 3-month period until quitting in December 2016. Severe depression 3 months later. 

 

300 mg wellbutrin, 7.5 mg remeron and 100 mg zoloft at end of 2017 to present.

 

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  • Mentor

Hi Cheryl

I am sorry you are going thru this

I believe your dr is very misinformed but this is not unusual, most of them are

 

you may wish to take a look at this website, esp the info on ADs

https://www.theinnercompass.org/learn-unlearn

 

it is very misleading to say that the cymbalta "kept you stable"

 

the link I gave you has a LOT of information that may be difficult to read, but if you go slow, you can probably understand what they are saying

 

the quickest way to say it is that, #1 there's no such thing as "low serotonin" being a cause of anything, that's a MYTH spread far and wide by the drug companies to sell pills.

 

nothing  has EVER been proven about ANY kind of imbalance in our brains.

These drugs actually CAUSE an imbalance that our brains try very hard to adjust to.

 

when we stop taking them, our brains need to RE adjust to them not being there, and this takes a long time.

Changes in the brain dont' happen quickly.

 

therefore it's best to withdraw VERY Slowly

 

I can't answer your question about how to taper or how much to take, I'd follow the advice you were given. IN this case the LEAST amount is best. As Ali Mentioned, you need to wait 4 days to know if it's going to work, it takes time for things to stabilize.

 

  while i can't give you dosing advice, I can tell you that your doctor is clueless, and it's not really his fault, he got his info from the drug companies,

and they are quite frankly, liars. they have misrepresented the supposed benefits of these drugs in order to make mega millions of dollars off them.

 

how are you doing today?

 

 

Edit, sorry I see that I never got to #2, sorry I've got to run out but I'll try to get back to my second point later. it's really covered in the link I gave you, though so if you read that, you'll get much better info than me trying to summarize it ok

  • pysch med history: 1974 @ age 18 to Oct 2017 (approx 43 yrs total)
  •  Drug list: stelazine, haldol, elavil, lithium, zoloft, celexa, lexapro(doses as high as 40mgs), klonopin, ambien, seroquel(high doses), depakote, zyprexa, lamictal- plus brief trials of dozens of other psych meds over the years
  • started lexapro 2002, dose varied from 20mgs to 40mgs. I tried to get off it several times. WD symptoms were mistaken for "relapse". 
  •  2013 too fast taper down to 5mg but WD forced me back to 20mgs
  •  June of 2105, tapered again too rapidly to 2.5mgs by Dec 2015. Found SA, held at 2.5 mgs til May 2016 when I foolishly "jumped off". Crashed in Sept, reinstated at 0.3mgs in Oct. 2106
  • Tapered off to zero by  Oct. 2017 Doing very well
  • Nov. 2018 feel 95% healed, current age 63 
  • Jan. 2020 feel 100% healed, peaceful and content 
  • Aug  2022 ❤️ loving life ❤️ 
 
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