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Toni: Cymbalta / duloxetine withdrawal


Toni

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Has anyone else managed to survive withdrawal from duloxetine?

 

  duloxetine march 2017- 60 mg 😳  reduced to 40, reducing by 10%or less over the last year introduced effexor in may this year 37.5 mg, beginning of October this year 2018 stopped duloxetine 

and increased effexor to 60 mg

2019 75 mg effexor 

reduced over last two years to approx 45mg

lorazepam prn and  zopiclone prn

2021 Dec 37.5 Effexor 

zopiclone 1/2 a3.75 tablet approx once a fortnight 

no lorazepam

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to Toni: Cymbalta / duloxetine withdrawal
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello Toni and welcome to SA.

 

Yes--for every SSRI, there are people who have survived it. 

 

Please tell us a little more about yourself. How long had you taken it, and for how long? 

When did you stop taking it? What are your current symptoms?

 

Please create a brief drug signature using these instructions: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/18343-please-put-your-withdrawal-history-in-your-signature/

 

Current: 2019: 0.04 mg Paxil!! This is real. Soon, after taking Paxil my entire adult life, I will be free.

Long story short: After 18 years on Paxil, "tapered" almost completely off over a month, at doctor's advice in July 2015.

Self-care includes magnesium, reasonable exercise, mindfulness, this forum and nutrition/eating enough food.

Also on 100 mg Zoloft unfortunately!! (which I now will have the knowledge to taper properly)

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Longer version: On Paxil since 1996--anxiety & depression caused by (undiagnosed) under-eating / eating disorder.

Doctor kept increasing dose, up to 60 mg; it never really helped but said it really was the best "med" for me.

Rapid doctor-led "taper" July 2015, down to 5 mg, with Zoloft as a "cross-taper" = Essentially a cold turkey. 

Severe withdrawal but didn't know it; believed it was my "underlying condition," and kept tapering, 5mg to 4 to 3  to 2 to 1.  

Feb 2016: Found SA! As of June 2016, tapering from 1mg at rate of 5-10% per month, Brassmonkey Slide! 

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I have been taking duloxetine for 18 months with 17 of those trying to come off this terrible drug.

when taking it I felt like I was taking ecstasy or LSD ( not that I have ever taken either of those!)

I was told end.ess.y that it was y anxiety causing the symptoms, but after reading so much about this awful medication realised

itwasnt me but the medication.

i have since found a very supportive psychiatrist who has helped me wean off this awful drug.

i am now 8 days duloxetine free and suffering the most awful withdrawal effects, namely depersonalisation, agitation, tightness

around my throat, teeth clenching ( I have broken 3 teeth) anxiety, severe confusion , memory loss and dark depression.

is thereanyone out there further along this journey that can offer some words of support?

ps I did a very slow reduction over 17 months.

  duloxetine march 2017- 60 mg 😳  reduced to 40, reducing by 10%or less over the last year introduced effexor in may this year 37.5 mg, beginning of October this year 2018 stopped duloxetine 

and increased effexor to 60 mg

2019 75 mg effexor 

reduced over last two years to approx 45mg

lorazepam prn and  zopiclone prn

2021 Dec 37.5 Effexor 

zopiclone 1/2 a3.75 tablet approx once a fortnight 

no lorazepam

Link to comment
  • Moderator

You said you tapered the  duloxetine over a 17 month period.  What dosage were you on when you began and how fast did you taper?  Unfortunately, what many people think of as a very slow taper isn't slow enough, leading to the withdrawal symptoms you are experiencing.  We recommend a taper of no more that 10% of current dose every four weeks.  Some people have to taper more slowly because their systems are very sensitized.  Please describe more fully the symptoms you experienced while on the drug.  Did you continue to have the LSD-like symptoms when you got down to a low dose?  If so, it's possible that a reinstatement of a VERY small dose of duloxetine might be in order.  Reinstatement is the only known way to reduce withdrawal symptoms.  Please read:

 
About reinstating and stabilizing to reduce withdrawal symptoms. -- at least the first page of the topic
 
Two supplements that we  recommend are magnesium and omega 3 (fish oil). Many people find these to be calming to the nervous system. 

 

 

 

Research all supplements first and only add in one at a time and at a low dose in case you do experience problems.

Please don't forget to complete your drug signature, which is very helpful to the moderators.  
 

 

Edited by Gridley

Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg since 2004.  Begin Brassmonkey Slide Taper Jan. 2017.   

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

Oct. 30, 2020  Jump to zero from 0.025mg.  Current dose: 0.000mg

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.

 

Ativan 1 mg to 1.875mg 1986-2020, two CT's and reinstatements

Nov. 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover to 18.75mg Valium

Feb. 2021, begin 10%/4 week taper.  Current Valium dose as of Feb 22, 2022: 4.8mg 

March 22, 2022: hold at 4.8 and shift to Imipramine taper

Taper is 74% complete.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan-Sept 2016 tapered to 16mg.  

Held until Aug 2021, tapered for 4 weeks to 14.4mg

March 22, 2022: Begin 10%/4 week taper.  Current dose as of May 17: 10.5mg 

Taper is 86% complete.  

  

Supplements: omega-3, vitamins C, E and D3, magnesium glycinate, probiotic, zinc, melatonin .3mg


I am not a medical professional and this is not medical advice, but simply information based on my own experience, as well as other members who have survived these drugs.

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I'm at week 2.5 off of duloxotine.  It was hell and is still bad.

 

I found someone posted to use Prozac to help once you stop.  My doctor prescribed it.  I feel better, but not sure what is withdrawing from Duloxatine and what is symptoms of prozac.

 

I took a genetic test.  I have a moderate drug interaction to prozac, and severe to Duloxatine.

 

May be why duloxatine felt like I was taking poision.

 

I'm going to try to start tappering off Prozac and see how it goes.  I am better, but it's been a struggle.  MOD NOTE:  please see this post regarding this suggestion:   Maybe talk to your doctor about Prozac, I'm only taking 5 mg but I'm sensitive to it so I cant take a high does.  

 

Best of luck, I too am trying.  I've seen other posts on here where people have been successful.  They mentioned using omega 3 oils as well.

 

Stay strong.

 

Edited by ChessieCat
mod note
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  • Moderator Emeritus
17 hours ago, Zavo said:

 Maybe talk to your doctor about Prozac

 

This is called a Prozac bridge or switch and it does not work for everybody.  Please see this topic:  

 

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

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

My full 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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Hello,

unfortunately prozac doesn't agree with me 🙄 Am trying omega 3 and a general multivitamin 

having to take a sleeping tab too as insomnia!!

good luck to all suffering this terrible withdrawal.....

  duloxetine march 2017- 60 mg 😳  reduced to 40, reducing by 10%or less over the last year introduced effexor in may this year 37.5 mg, beginning of October this year 2018 stopped duloxetine 

and increased effexor to 60 mg

2019 75 mg effexor 

reduced over last two years to approx 45mg

lorazepam prn and  zopiclone prn

2021 Dec 37.5 Effexor 

zopiclone 1/2 a3.75 tablet approx once a fortnight 

no lorazepam

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Please create your drug signature so we can see your drug history at a glance.  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

 

 

Sleep problems - that awful withdrawal insomnia

 

Sleep Hypnosis, Guided Meditations, Calming Videos

 

Melatonin

Non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

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

My full 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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  • 3 years later...

Not sure if this post is in the right place? I’m back now trying to get off effexor.. completely non functional current symptoms include head crushing pain, feeling of suffocating, can’t get enough air, eyes very blurred, depersonalisation and de realisation,very angry. Can’t remember anything about anything, feel like an empty shell... any advice about how to move forward would be greatly appreciated 

  duloxetine march 2017- 60 mg 😳  reduced to 40, reducing by 10%or less over the last year introduced effexor in may this year 37.5 mg, beginning of October this year 2018 stopped duloxetine 

and increased effexor to 60 mg

2019 75 mg effexor 

reduced over last two years to approx 45mg

lorazepam prn and  zopiclone prn

2021 Dec 37.5 Effexor 

zopiclone 1/2 a3.75 tablet approx once a fortnight 

no lorazepam

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

Yes, you have posted in the correct place.  Thank you.

 

Before we can offer any suggestions we need you to provide the information about your drugs since you were here 3 years ago please.

 

The more information you can provide, the better we will be able to assist you.  We are making suggestions about psychiatric drugs so it is important that we have the details.  I realised it can be difficult, but you helping us, helps us to help you.  Thank you.

 

My suggestion would be to start from the current drugs.  Tell us what you are currently taking and the doses.  If any of the doses have been increased, please tell us when that happened.

 

And they work backwards.  What drugs have you stopped, how did you go off and when?

 

What drugs have you added, dose and when?

 

And some other questions:

 

Q:  Are you still taking lorazepam PRN and zopiclone PRN?  If yes, how often?

 

Q:  Have you been sick and/or taken antibiotics (if yes, what type)?

 

Q:  Have you had any major life stressors?

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

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

My full 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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  • 3 months later...

Hello sorry for delay in replying Chessiecat....

been reducing effexor over last two years now ar 37.5 since Dec 2021

occasional small dose of zopiclone 1/2 a 3.75 tab approx once a fortnight

no lorazepam since Dec

 

  duloxetine march 2017- 60 mg 😳  reduced to 40, reducing by 10%or less over the last year introduced effexor in may this year 37.5 mg, beginning of October this year 2018 stopped duloxetine 

and increased effexor to 60 mg

2019 75 mg effexor 

reduced over last two years to approx 45mg

lorazepam prn and  zopiclone prn

2021 Dec 37.5 Effexor 

zopiclone 1/2 a3.75 tablet approx once a fortnight 

no lorazepam

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Current problem severe agitation, sleep problems, major life stresses, depersonalisation, feeling unable to breathe, issues with sight and hearing, fear and depression symptoms, I desperately need some relief as feels like living hell.

psych is leaving on Friday & will not acknowledge that it’s the. Meds causing the problem.

  duloxetine march 2017- 60 mg 😳  reduced to 40, reducing by 10%or less over the last year introduced effexor in may this year 37.5 mg, beginning of October this year 2018 stopped duloxetine 

and increased effexor to 60 mg

2019 75 mg effexor 

reduced over last two years to approx 45mg

lorazepam prn and  zopiclone prn

2021 Dec 37.5 Effexor 

zopiclone 1/2 a3.75 tablet approx once a fortnight 

no lorazepam

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus
2 hours ago, Toni said:

been reducing effexor over last two years now ar 37.5 since Dec 2021

 

Q:  Have you missed any doses? 

 

Q:  Do you take your dose at about the same time every day?

 

Q:  Have you changed brand or form (changed from tablet to liquid) of your drug?

 

We need to know what reductions you have made and when.  It could be that you have been reducing too quickly.

 

Q:  During your taper have you continued to make reductions of Effexor when you have not been stable?

 

Q: Have you in the past or do you currently drink alcohol?

 

You also did not answer these questions:

 

On 11/23/2021 at 9:07 AM, ChessieCat said:

Q:  Have you been sick and/or taken antibiotics (if yes, what type)?

 

Q:  Have you had any major life stressors?

 

Non-drug techniques to cope

 

It is important to listen to your body/symptoms and hold for longer if you are not stable.

 

Dr Joseph Glenmullen's WD Symptoms Checklist

 

Stability

 

WDnormal

 

And Brassmonkey talks more about it here:

 

tao-of-the-brassmonkey

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

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

My full 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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Hello 

thankyou for your swift response, 

no no sickness or antibiotics 

yes to major life stresses ( husband lost job, had to. move home)

Haven’t missed any doses

yes, take dose at 7.30 pm everyday

Always take Effexor brand

have reduced from 75 mg to 37.5 over two years waiting approx 6 weeks between tapers( sometimes longer)

i don’t drink  alcohol 

its the akathesia.. causing me the most distress, my questions are should I increase a tiny amount? Stay where I am and hope? Swap to an easier to reduce antidepressant? 

Dr is no help at all....

many many thanks for your support 

  duloxetine march 2017- 60 mg 😳  reduced to 40, reducing by 10%or less over the last year introduced effexor in may this year 37.5 mg, beginning of October this year 2018 stopped duloxetine 

and increased effexor to 60 mg

2019 75 mg effexor 

reduced over last two years to approx 45mg

lorazepam prn and  zopiclone prn

2021 Dec 37.5 Effexor 

zopiclone 1/2 a3.75 tablet approx once a fortnight 

no lorazepam

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thank you for your answers.

 

1 hour ago, Toni said:

yes to major life stresses ( husband lost job, had to. move home)

 

Both of these are major life stressors.  It is generally suggested not to make any reductions during periods of stress.

 

Please answer this question:

 

2 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

Q:  During your taper have you continued to make reductions of Effexor when you have not been stable?

 

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

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

My full 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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Hello again 

no I haven’t made reductions unless I’ve been stable, we moved house last year in September and things have got. Much worse in. Last few. Weeks

xx

  duloxetine march 2017- 60 mg 😳  reduced to 40, reducing by 10%or less over the last year introduced effexor in may this year 37.5 mg, beginning of October this year 2018 stopped duloxetine 

and increased effexor to 60 mg

2019 75 mg effexor 

reduced over last two years to approx 45mg

lorazepam prn and  zopiclone prn

2021 Dec 37.5 Effexor 

zopiclone 1/2 a3.75 tablet approx once a fortnight 

no lorazepam

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  • Moderator Emeritus

It could be that the stress has slowly built up and is now "showing itself".

 

The world has also been dealing with covid for just over 2 years, and things are now sort of returning to "normal" but of course it is different and there is still an underlying stress about things.

 

Q:  When (what date) did you make your last reduction?

 

Q:  What size reduction was it?  That is, what dose were you taking and what was the new dose?

 

Q:  Are you calculating on the starting dose or the current dose?

 

Q:  Are you taking tablet or liquid Effexor?

 

Q:  Are your symptoms worse at any particular time of the day?  Does this pattern happen every day?

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

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

My full 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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Hello 

sorry for delay, 14 th Dec was last reduction 

from 210 micrgrams to 200 MICROGRAMES not milligrams...

reducing from current dose, not original dose

im taking capsules ( weighing them)

wotse symptoms in the morning..

many thanks x

  duloxetine march 2017- 60 mg 😳  reduced to 40, reducing by 10%or less over the last year introduced effexor in may this year 37.5 mg, beginning of October this year 2018 stopped duloxetine 

and increased effexor to 60 mg

2019 75 mg effexor 

reduced over last two years to approx 45mg

lorazepam prn and  zopiclone prn

2021 Dec 37.5 Effexor 

zopiclone 1/2 a3.75 tablet approx once a fortnight 

no lorazepam

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

Q:  Have you missed any doses in the last 2 months?

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

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

My full 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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No, have not missed any doses x

  duloxetine march 2017- 60 mg 😳  reduced to 40, reducing by 10%or less over the last year introduced effexor in may this year 37.5 mg, beginning of October this year 2018 stopped duloxetine 

and increased effexor to 60 mg

2019 75 mg effexor 

reduced over last two years to approx 45mg

lorazepam prn and  zopiclone prn

2021 Dec 37.5 Effexor 

zopiclone 1/2 a3.75 tablet approx once a fortnight 

no lorazepam

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

If you are taking your dose in the morning then the symptoms that you get in the morning and you feel better later in the day once the drug has built back up in your system then it might be because of interdose withdrawal.

 

You might consider splitting your dose and taking it twice a day.

 

splitting-for-interdose-withdrawal-from-short-half-life-drugs

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

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

My full 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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I take it in the evening & it’s the slow release capsule 💊 I used to take the immediate release but had terrible interdose problems 🤔

  duloxetine march 2017- 60 mg 😳  reduced to 40, reducing by 10%or less over the last year introduced effexor in may this year 37.5 mg, beginning of October this year 2018 stopped duloxetine 

and increased effexor to 60 mg

2019 75 mg effexor 

reduced over last two years to approx 45mg

lorazepam prn and  zopiclone prn

2021 Dec 37.5 Effexor 

zopiclone 1/2 a3.75 tablet approx once a fortnight 

no lorazepam

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus
Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, Toni said:

wotse symptoms in the morning..

 

early-morning-waking-managing-the-morning-cortisol-spike

 

 

Edited by ChessieCat

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

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

My full 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.  Please DO NOT TAG me -thank you.

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