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planifolia: Lexapro reinstatement

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Superwoman

Planifolia,

 

I think that between TMS and ECT, TMS is definitely the safer of the two options.  ECT is considered a higher risk more invasive procedure.  Are the spasms that you mention seizures?  

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planifolia
9 hours ago, Superwoman said:

Planifolia,

 

I think that between TMS and ECT, TMS is definitely the safer of the two options.  ECT is considered a higher risk more invasive procedure.  Are the spasms that you mention seizures?  

The spasms are not seizures, its something quite odd. It feels like akathisia that has too much energy that the mental and physical pacing is not fast to release the inner energy, and it has to “burst out” in other ways which results in the jerks and spasms. My body would twist and bent violently, my arms and legs flail around like crazy, and it does look like a seizure. But it has a voluntary nature like akathisia and i can surpress it with godlike willpower, and Its easier to hold it in when it is not so horrific. It’s quite odd as I have never seen others have it. But hey-ho this is crazy withdrawal for you :P 

 

Its likely i am getting my first TMS session this saturday, quite nervous. I wish to ask how does the sessions feel like? I’m just scared of the noise as I have quite bad hyperacusis and loud noises can send me into panic attacks, and i heard the tms machine can be incredibly loud. I also know that you felt better after the first session, and did it get even better with every additional session you did?

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Superwoman

Planifolia,

 

The machine was a little loud but not deafening so.  With ear plugs, it was not bad.  I was still able to hear the technicians talking so it was not too loud.  It was about as loud as a lawn mower.  
 

I was nervous as well especially the first time, but it turned out to be a lot less scary then it sounds.  There was always a technician in the room with me.  The technicians would talk with me during the treatment because engagement makes the treatment more effective.  This helped distract me from the anxiety.  I sometimes tried to meditate during the treatment to help with anxiety, but I found it hard to concentrate. 
 
I felt mild scalp discomfort and headache the first week.  It was not bad at all.  This is coming from someone with little pain tolerance.  After the first week it was not painful at all.  I took IBUPROFEN the first week of treatment.  I had some facial twitching during treatment.  This is normal and nothing to worry about. 
 

Yes, I felt better and better after every treatment.  Right away I intuitively felt that the treatment was what my brain needed.  At some point I had what I assume was a dip.  This is not uncommon and I would not worry if it happens to you.  It is actually a good sign because it means that the treatment is working.  I then pulled out of the dip and continued to improve.  I will write more about the dip later.  I have to start work now.  Good luck to you. 
 

SW
 

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planifolia

Thanks superwoman for relaying your experience, very grateful. I am visiting my psychiatrist today to discuss the TMS :) 

The reason why i got interested in TMS is because in 2018, there was a study for the first time attempted to apply TMS for the treatment of drug dependency, whereas before it was depression, anxiety, insomnia etc. They tried tms on a group of men to see if it is effective in elleviating opiate withdrawal symptoms, and it had some success. Although the results are very preliminary, it just gives me some hope as i felt this may indicate that tms may have the potential to help with antidepressant wd symptoms. 

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Superwoman

I read a few studies done on TMS for drug addiction and dependency and yes it does look promising.  Do you know what area of the brain the placement was?  Just curious. I don’t remember.

 

 I hope in the future they will study TMS for antidepressant withdrawal.  I am thinking of contacting Neurostar and suggesting it actually. 
 

I read an account on another site of someone who got TMS for withdrawal from antidepressants.  He had no underlying depression.  He was actually put on the antidepressant for a non-mental  health reason and became depressed when withdrawing from the antidepressant.  He said the TMS really helped with the withdrawal depression.

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Superwoman

Good luck with your treatment today.  

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Superwoman

How did your treatment go Planifolia?

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planifolia

Hello Superwoman, thanks for checking up on me. Unfortunately we couldn't do the TMS because of my akathisia. My psychiatrist says TMS requires me to be absolutely still but because of my akathisia it is impossible for me to not move for 30minutes which will render the treatment ineffective. He says we will review again in a month to assess the severity of the akathisia again, and if it is not as severe we can commence then. Very sad 😢 

 

Have you done anymore sessions since we last spoke? if so how was it?

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Superwoman

Planifolia,

 

That makes sense about the akathisa. You do have to remain still.  No, I have not gotten anymore treatments. 

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Superwoman

Have you found anything that helps the akathisia?

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planifolia

 

On 1/15/2020 at 3:38 AM, Superwoman said:

Have you found anything that helps the akathisia?

Unfortunately so far nothing worked. My doctor tried propranolol but it didn’t do much and caused a lot of adverse effects. 
But the akathisia comes and goes in waves and windows, and we’re hoping to catch it when it’s less intense and get the sessions done then 

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Superwoman
On 6/7/2019 at 9:31 AM, planifolia said:

Had a consultation with David Healy and it was a bit dissapointing in that there really not any new or profound information, but it did reassure me in that he said I'm doing the right thing and just to be very gentle with the taper.

 

Things are still horrific and just hanging on moment by moment, no window for the last 3 weeks. The terror is awful, feeling quite psychotic from it. Impending doom also came back which was gone for several month which is a bit disheartening. I feel like I am about to spontaneously die every moment, it feels so real! like a never ending panic attack 24/7 and just want to run around and scream. Kept reminding myself that this is only a feeling, nothing is going to happen. 

 

keeping hope that things will change soon. 

How do you get a consultation with Dr. Healy?  I would like to talk to him.  How much did it cost?  I saw that members of his team at Risk do consultations but it was super pricey $350 and it might not even be with Dr. Healy

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planifolia

I spoke to Dr Healy through rxisk as well. It was $350 and don't worry you can request for Healy, email him or if i remember correctly theres a note section when you make a booking. 

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planifolia

I haven't updated for a while, and just wanted to record my current situation here

 

Unfortunately things are very horrific at the moment. I am currently tapered to 5mg, from 8.25mg which i last updated here around 6 months ago. 

Current symptoms are

-almost constant suicidal ideation 

-24/7 severe terror, dread, panic, impending doom

-horrific derealisation

-24/7 psychotic feeling, feeling like old the worst acid trip all day everyday

-"nothing feels right" terrifying feeling

-severe agitation and restlessness

-highly irritable

-light and sound sensitivity

-24/7 intense urge to scream and thrash the house. Needing immense control and very terrified that i might lose control

-lethargy and extreme weakness

-spontaneous violent spasms and gutteral noises

-skin peeling, itching and acne. Like i have lizard skin

-hair falling

-weight gain

-horrific toxic nap

-24/7 urge to urinate, like having UTI

-muscle pain and rigidity, all over the body. feels like muscles turned to rock; would snap, pop, crack, crunch when moving. 

-chronic constipation

-bombardment of horrific thoughts and images

-cognitive impairments

 

I would spend all day on my sofa and would just spur myself to try to get through the next 2 minute, the next 2 minute, please just get through the next 2 minute,  from the moment i wake up till bed time. I really hope some stabalisation comes soon. I have been on 5mg for over a month and it's been horrific the entire time, really hoping for things to settle down soon. This torture has been absolute poo

 

I need some encouragement, a hug, a friend just want to cry my eyes out from all this

 

 

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Superwoman

That sounds like a living hell!  So sorry you are going through all of this Planifolia.  Do you feel better or worse since you tapered?  It looks like you reduced your medicine too much.  It is recommended that you not reduce by more than 10% of the last dose. 10% of 8.25mg would have taken you to 7.425mg.

 

Maybe an updose would help?  If I were you I would tag the moderators ASAP and ask them if an updose might be a good idea, and if so how much.  There is a time frame  for updosing and after that it might not be effective.  You don’t want to updose too high because of kindling.  Less is more in this case. 


Hugs, 

 

SW

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planifolia

Opps I think i wrote wrongly! I didn’t jump directly from 8.25mg to 5mg. I tapered around 10% of the current dose every 4-6wks, which landed me on 5mg after 6months. 
 

Thank you for your post SW, it is truly a pooping living hell! Trying not to swear.  My psychiatrist don’t want me to go updose as she is very supportive of me getting off lexapro, and doesn’t want me backtrack especially when I endured so horrifically for a month on this dose, and She didn’t want all my effort to go to waste. She said that a smaller cut may be better next time, possibly 7.5% or 5% instead. Very lucky to have met her, very withdrawal literate. She is the one often telling me not to rush hahaha

 

so i’m just holding on for my dear life trying not to drown in this tsunami wave. Woke up today in absolute terror and impending doom and wondering how on earth am I going to make it another day till bed time. The constant suicidal thoughts is bombarding and every fibre of me wants to give up. I have to keep reminding mysef that things can change at anytime, and you can’t give up you have endured too much cr*p already. I deserve to be reach healing and my life on the other side is worth fighting for. I had an amazing and loved my life before SSRI and benzos threw my life into hell. I can’t let withdrawa win. 

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Kernol
On 1/27/2020 at 4:29 AM, planifolia said:

Opps I think i wrote wrongly! I didn’t jump directly from 8.25mg to 5mg. I tapered around 10% of the current dose every 4-6wks, which landed me on 5mg after 6months. 
 

Thank you for your post SW, it is truly a pooping living hell! Trying not to swear.  My psychiatrist don’t want me to go updose as she is very supportive of me getting off lexapro, and doesn’t want me backtrack especially when I endured so horrifically for a month on this dose, and She didn’t want all my effort to go to waste. She said that a smaller cut may be better next time, possibly 7.5% or 5% instead. Very lucky to have met her, very withdrawal literate. She is the one often telling me not to rush hahaha

 

so i’m just holding on for my dear life trying not to drown in this tsunami wave. Woke up today in absolute terror and impending doom and wondering how on earth am I going to make it another day till bed time. The constant suicidal thoughts is bombarding and every fibre of me wants to give up. I have to keep reminding mysef that things can change at anytime, and you can’t give up you have endured too much cr*p already. I deserve to be reach healing and my life on the other side is worth fighting for. I had an amazing and loved my life before SSRI and benzos threw my life into hell. I can’t let withdrawa win. 

 
hi @planifolia I feel exactly as you do - I wanted To give up today too but I didn’t - I just don’t know how to make it through tomorrow - but somehow I’m sure I will and we will see improvements soon. 

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planifolia

@Superwoman SW, I understand that you did TMS for depression but am also curious if it helped with anxiety as well? Thanks 🙏 

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Superwoman
On 2/8/2020 at 9:58 AM, planifolia said:

@Superwoman SW, I understand that you did TMS for depression but am also curious if it helped with anxiety as well? Thanks 🙏 

Above is the link to the topic about TMS.  I wrote about my experience with TMS.  My account of my experience with TMS is on the last page.  People here have had mixed experiences with TMS.  Some people say it helped.  For others it didn’t work and some people say it made them worse.  I guess I would say it is experimental for antidepressant withdrawal because it has not been studied for this.  There have been some TMS preliminary studies on withdrawal from other drugs.  That said any treatment would be experimental for AD withdrawal because they don’t study it.  

 

The TMS did help with my anxiety quite a bit.  It helped with core anxiety.  It had a bigger effect though with the depression than the anxiety.  
 

The right sided treatment is more effective for anxiety, but equally effective for depression.  I wanted to get the right sided treatment but my insurance does not cover it.  My doctor said that for some people the left sided treatment helps with the core anxiety symptoms.  For other people the left sided treatment can be too stimulating and make anxiety worse.  If this occurs then they can switch to right sided treatment or change the hertz.  
 

Does the doctor think that the TMS will help with the Akathisia?  I would ask if your Akathisia could cause seizure if you are moving around during TMS?  If you are moving around too much the magnet could hit the wrong area of the head which I think could possibly cause a seizure.  Also, you can have what is called a dip.  You would not want to have to stop b/c of Akathisia and be stuck in the dip.  Also, I would avoid tapering or changing your meds and supplements during TMS because this can affect the motor threshold.    

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planifolia

Thanks a bunch for your reply! I’m not doing it now but planning to do so when akathisia dies down, but was just curious of the effects it can have besides helping depression 

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Superwoman

Your welcome 

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planifolia

Hello all, things are very difficult for me at the moment.

 

It has been around 4 months that I have been on 5mg with no ease in the extreme intensity of the symptoms. The terror, akathisia, dp/dr, depression, horrific acid psychotic trip feeling, immense agitation and restlessness have been making me hold on for dear life. I just feel absolutely hopeless. Everyday I wake up i feel there's no way I am going to make it another day, but somehow I do. But i feel those days are going to be limited. I hold on breath by breath, spuring myself to get through another minute then the next. I just feel like I can't do this anymore, this is rock bottom and I am too tired and I don't feel i have to strength to go on. 

 

I'm sorry for such a negative gloomy update. I'm just pouring my heart out as there is nowhere else I can express this. My parents don't know what to say and don't know how to help. I really want to endure this and get recover, I have already endured so much. I am a young man in my 20's and so much life is ahead of me, and I don't want to give up. But i just don't know anymore, I just don't know how to keep going.

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Superwoman

Don’t give up Planifolia.  We are with you.  I hope you feel better soon.  ☀️ 

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planifolia
On 4/22/2020 at 11:34 PM, Superwoman said:

Don’t give up Planifolia.  We are with you.  I hope you feel better soon.  ☀️ 

Thank you superwoman, you have always been supportive and I am so grateful. I hope you are doing well. 

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planifolia

Day 128 on 5mg with no relief. I feel like i’m losing my mind. The 9th circle of hell. The psychotic terror is so, so scary. 
 

it’s 6pm here, just hold on for dear life for a few more hours till bedtime. I know you feel theres no way you can endure for another hour, but you have done this before and you HAVE the strength to hold on.  You never know what tommorow holds. Stabalizing can be so close. Don’t give up don’t give up. 

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Rozon1

Hey @planifolia sorry to hear what you’re going through. I’ll keep you in my thoughts brother! 

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Superwoman
On 4/30/2020 at 5:48 AM, planifolia said:

Thank you superwoman, you have always been supportive and I am so grateful. I hope you are doing well. 

Thanks, planifolia

I am doing alright.  I am still having WD symptoms but some things have actually improved since I reduced the Effexor. 

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planifolia

Hello all, 

 

Things have continued to be horrific. I have tried to stabalize on 5mg for around 7months, but there was no progress. I didn't feel any different, and the symptoms did not ease, from the 1st week on 5mg to 7months later. Instead, some of the symptoms have even intensified. I continue to suffer from extreme terror, akathisia, DP/DR as the most debilitating symptoms. I am terrified beyond belief, i just can't describe it. The terror often makes me feel psychotic, giving feelings that are so demonic and macabre that i feel at the edge of insanity. It's far from the anxiety of day to day theme (like fear of abandonment, fear of losing something, self esteem issues, fear of failing) but it's extremely abstract in nature, like i'm in the most horrific drug trip.  

 

Physical symptoms continue to bother me also. My hair is falling, and my skin is peeling and frail. It looks like lizard skin. When i shower, the skin comes right off, all over my body, like how a snake leaves behind it's entire skin when shedding. It's really an awful and disgusting sight. I have severe constipation that sometimes fluctuates to diarrhea. I am constantly hyperventilating, it's hard to take a normal breath. My muscles are all sore and tight and they continue to crunch, pop, snap sounds when moving.

 

I have also developed an extreme fear of death which i never had before. The concept of nonexistence terrifies me to the core. I didn't have this earlier in the taper. Whenever i sleep i sometimes am convinced i will die.

 

The akathisia, mother of all symptoms, makes every minute feel like an eternity to endure. I feel like I can't do this another moment longer, i have to die. I'm desperately suicidal and everyday is a battle for my life. 

 

My withdrawal psychiatrist has been amazing, she understands everything about withdrawal and is very sympathetic to my situation. We agreed to start tapering again, as we felt 7months was an adequete amount of time given already in an attempt to stabalize, and we don't want to wait forever in limbo. We have tried, and let's move forward now. I can feel she is very determined in my case, and really wants me to help me reach abstinence and heal. I am very grateful for this. I think i would have already taken my life and lost hope if i wasn't under her care. 

 

I am sorry if this scares anyone, and know that everyone  is different and my story is not equals to how yours will unfold. I thought of not posting this but i felt that if i somehow get better later on, it could have a huge impact or moral boost to those having a horrific time stabalizing. 

 

I still come on the site from time to time, mainly hovering around success stories and certain member's story that i resonate with. I am sorry if you have messaged me and i did not respond, things are just so horrific i don't have the resources to engage or converse with anyone. I am prioritising my wellbeing right now and i hope you will understand. Hopefully things will ease soon and i will be able to respond to messages again. 

 

I am not looking for advice, and just wanted to vent also in a way. I hope everyone has been well and i am thankful for the people who encouraged me here before. Keep going , healing is coming, hold on to hope. 

 

 

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ChessieCat

Having tried to stabilise for 7 months, it does seem like a good idea to try a reduction.  My suggestion would be to start with a test reduction and reduce by a tiny amount to see how it affects you.  If after several weeks you don't feel any worse then you could try a larger reduction.

 

30 minutes ago, planifolia said:

I thought of not posting this

 

I'm glad they have posted.  See the section in green:

 

  

On 5/15/2011 at 5:22 AM, Altostrata said:

 

MISSION OF SURVIVINGANTIDEPRESSANTS.ORG

 

Surviving Antidepressants is a site for peer support, documentation, and education of withdrawal symptoms and withdrawal syndrome caused by psychiatric drugs, specifically antidepressants.

The participants on this site have all experienced or are experiencing difficulty in withdrawal from psychiatric medications. We offer peer support to those who are similarly suffering, drawing from our personal experiences.

(No posting on this site should be construed as medical advice. For medical advice, consult a trusted medical caregiver.)

This site is also a research project. The personal stories on this site are documentation of an iatrogenic condition -- suffering caused by medical treatment -- that is almost always ignored, misdiagnosed, or denied by the medical establishment. Given the widespread prescription of antidepressants to tens of millions of people worldwide, withdrawal syndrome probably affects hundreds of thousands if not millions -- including newborns and children.

Antidepressant withdrawal syndrome can last weeks, months, or years. It can be distressing, debilitating, or even disabling. It may be adding to an increase in what is termed disabling mental illness.

With our documentation of antidepressant withdrawal syndrome, we hope to educate the medical establishment about this problem. Case studies are essential; they are evidence understood by doctors, the psychiatric industry, and government regulatory agencies. The have already informed numerous articles in major publications and scientific papers.

Our hope is, eventually, antidepressants and other psychiatric drugs will be prescribed rarely, and only in cases of extremely severe mental illness after less invasive treatments have been tried.

Please join Surviving Antidepressants in its mission to support, document, and educate about psychiatric drug withdrawal syndrome.

 

 

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Altostrata

 

On 1/13/2019 at 1:18 AM, Altostrata said:

You are in a difficult position. It seems you have an adverse reaction to Lexapro and you get withdrawal symptoms from lowering the dose.

 

You might consider a switch to Prozac, please read The Prozac switch or "bridging" with Prozac

 

Does your doctor have any experience with this?

 

 

14 hours ago, planifolia said:

My withdrawal psychiatrist has been amazing, she understands everything about withdrawal and is very sympathetic to my situation. We agreed to start tapering again, as we felt 7months was an adequete amount of time given already in an attempt to stabalize, and we don't want to wait forever in limbo. We have tried, and let's move forward now. I can feel she is very determined in my case, and really wants me to help me reach abstinence and heal. I am very grateful for this. I think i would have already taken my life and lost hope if i wasn't under her care. 

 

Why do you not switch to Prozac as a bridge? The Prozac switch or "bridging" with Prozac

 

It sounds like you have SSRI withdrawal syndrome and maybe an allergy to Lexapro.

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