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BigPharmStinks: Lexapro / escitalopram withdrawal

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Altostrata

What time of day do you take 1mg escilatopram? When do these symptoms occur? How long do they last?

 

Is the brain fog worse at some times than others?

 

Did you ever take fluoxetine or citalopram?

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BigPharmaStinks

I was in Europe for 3 weeks and there I took my lexapro at 4:30 PM because I was 6 hours ahead of Toronto. I returned to Toronto on June 8 and so I took my medication as usual at 10:30AM. I did not have any adverse reactions to lexapro since returning till yesterday when while driving I developed all those symptoms I mentioned 10 minutes after taking my lexaro. The symptoms, especially derealization which I never experinced before, are still affecting me today. 

 

I never tried citalopram nor fluoxetine because I am scared to change meds, even though I know those ssris are weaker than lexapro.

 

I am wondering if I need to change my lexapro dosage?

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BigPharmaStinks
2 minutes ago, BigPharmaStinks said:

I was in Europe for 3 weeks and there I took my lexapro at 4:30 PM because I was 6 hours ahead of Toronto. I returned to Toronto on June 8 and so I took my medication as usual at 10:30AM. I did not have any adverse reactions to lexapro since returning till yesterday when while driving I developed all those symptoms I mentioned 10 minutes after taking my lexaro. The symptoms, especially derealization which I never experinced before, are still affecting me today. 

 

I never tried citalopram nor fluoxetine because I am scared to change meds, even though I know those ssris are weaker than lexapro.

 

I am wondering if I need to change my lexapro dosage?

These similar symptoms occured a month ago when I was also driving and shortly after taking my lexapro. I am always lethargic on withdrawal and so when I was driving I got really sleepy but kept forcing myself to stay awake. I'm not sure if by forcing myself awake, I triggered some changes in my nervous system.

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BigPharmaStinks

I am feeling worse again today after taking the lexapro, but am so confused because I felt better at 10mg before doing too fast of a taper for 2nd time back in November. I also had some improvements in cognition and all symptoms 2.5 months ago, but ever since that I've been feeling bad and non-functional. And now past two days even worse than my 2.5 month-long wave.

 

if I can't write my universit exams in August, I lose all my md-phd acceptances since I was given a one year deferral with the requirement that I graduate by Spring of 2020, and complete all my remaining differed exams with good grades.

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BigPharmaStinks

I am in desperate need to regain some cognitive function in order to keep my future, which I have worked incredibly hard for. Should I start tapering my Lexapro? Or should I updose?

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BigPharmaStinks

Anyone kindly able to help me? I am far from stabilized but I am reacting very negatively to 1mg Lexapro all of a sudden after being on it for 6.5 months. As such, I started tapering off by going down to 0.9mg for now.

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ChessieCat
On 6/14/2019 at 12:53 AM, BigPharmaStinks said:

I was in Europe for 3 weeks and there I took my lexapro at 4:30 PM because I was 6 hours ahead of Toronto. I returned to Toronto on June 8

 

Your symptoms may have increased because of the stress of the holiday and/or the return to your usual routine.  Other members have had this happen.

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BigPharmaStinks
20 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

 

Your symptoms may have increased because of the stress of the holiday and/or the return to your usual routine.  Other members have had this happen.

Thank you! Hope you have been doing well :).

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India
On 2/25/2019 at 6:08 AM, BigPharmaStinks said:

Constantly: severe brain fog (before mads had near-photographic memory, 4

Like being permenantly concussed. That’s how I describe it..

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India
On 6/17/2019 at 11:29 PM, BigPharmaStinks said:

Anyone kindly able to help me? I am far from stabilized but I am reacting very negatively to 1mg Lexapro all of a sudden after being on it for 6.5 months. As such, I started tapering off by going down to 0.9mg for now.

 Feel your dilemma. I have stuck on 5.4mg for some time to stabilise .. at 6mg , not sure whether to updose or taper.

 

@jozeff had a quandary also... He updosed , stabilised and think he might be tapering . 

 

I decided to stay on 5.4mg to stabilise  but considering a taper of 1% micro taper soon..

 

Very personal decision. Hope some other members can help . 

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BigPharmaStinks
On 7/25/2019 at 8:37 PM, India said:

 Feel your dilemma. I have stuck on 5.4mg for some time to stabilise .. at 6mg , not sure whether to updose or taper.

 

@jozeff had a quandary also... He updosed , stabilised and think he might be tapering . 

 

I decided to stay on 5.4mg to stabilise  but considering a taper of 1% micro taper soon..

 

Very personal decision. Hope some other members can help . 

I actually discontinued the Lexapro on June 22, 2019. I felt a little better after discontinuing, and am now veryyyy slowly improving in windows and waves. Best of luck to your taper :)

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phillyfan24

Hey bigpharmastinks,

 

Just checking in to see how everything is going since being off the meds. How’s the brain fog and dissociation?

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BigPharmaStinks
17 hours ago, phillyfan24 said:

Hey bigpharmastinks,

 

Just checking in to see how everything is going since being off the meds. How’s the brain fog and dissociation?

Hi there! I’m officially 2 months off Lexapro after discontinuing from 0.9mg, and am very slowly improving every month. My serious brain fog, amnesia, and dissociation among many other symptoms are all improving every few weeks in the windows and waves pattern. 

 

How are you doing?

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phillyfan24
On 8/20/2019 at 3:09 PM, BigPharmaStinks said:

Hi there! I’m officially 2 months off Lexapro after discontinuing from 0.9mg, and am very slowly improving every month. My serious brain fog, amnesia, and dissociation among many other symptoms are all improving every few weeks in the windows and waves pattern. 

 

How are you doing?

thats great to hear...keep up the good work!

 

I feel about the same but have continued to decrease my dose, so that's a positive. I still have the brain fog and dissociation pretty severely tho which isn't great, but it gives me hope to hear you are improving with time.

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BigPharmaStinks
On 8/21/2019 at 5:40 PM, phillyfan24 said:

thats great to hear...keep up the good work!

 

I feel about the same but have continued to decrease my dose, so that's a positive. I still have the brain fog and dissociation pretty severely tho which isn't great, but it gives me hope to hear you are improving with time.

Yeah I have it severe as well in waves, but I hope it clears in the next year. Do you also have constant head pressure?

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Altostrata
On 8/20/2019 at 12:09 PM, BigPharmaStinks said:

Hi there! I’m officially 2 months off Lexapro after discontinuing from 0.9mg, and am very slowly improving every month. My serious brain fog, amnesia, and dissociation among many other symptoms are all improving every few weeks in the windows and waves pattern. 

 

How are you doing?

 

That's great! How has your symptom pattern changed in the last 2 months?

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phillyfan24
On 8/25/2019 at 4:46 PM, BigPharmaStinks said:

Yeah I have it severe as well in waves, but I hope it clears in the next year. Do you also have constant head pressure?

It's hard for me to describe what i feel...i would describe it as constant brain fog, a feeling like there is something in my head...so you could probably call that head pressure as well

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BigPharmaStinks
On 8/26/2019 at 1:43 AM, Altostrata said:

 

That's great! How has your symptom pattern changed in the last 2 months?

I am experiencing windows and waves, but the symptoms are a little less severe than they were after several months on 1mg.

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Altostrata

Please update your signature with the date you reinstated 1mg escilatopram. When did you go completely off the reinstatement?

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BigPharmaStinks
1 minute ago, Altostrata said:

Please update your signature with the date you reinstated 1mg escilatopram. When did you go completely off the reinstatement?

Sorry for the confusion, but I’ve been off Lexapro for 12 weeks now. I’m not reinstating any psychoactive meds ever again. I forgot how to update my signature, sorry.

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Altostrata

Your signature:

 

Quote

Current: 1mg Escitalopram (for past 4 months), dropped HardyNutritionals Daily Essential Nutrients from 12 to 8 capsules a day 4 weeks ago.

 

Please update it with current info. Instructions: Please put your drug and withdrawal history in your signature You may need to use a computer to do this.

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jozeff

Hi bigpharma,

 

How are you doing on zero mg of medication?? I really would like to know how you are doing lately?

 

 

Cheers

 

Jozeff

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BigPharmaStinks

Hi Jozeff! First, I hope you are slowly improving as you taper your citalopram very slowly. My story is a little complicated as I have been in withdrawal since May 2018 when I started tapering off 40mg of Lexapro too quickly. After that reinstatements and addition of vortioxetine did not help much, instead destabilizing me further. Had I stayed off Lexapro since May 2018, I believe I would be very close to fully healed now. Nonetheless, I am now very slowly healing. My healing has followed the windows and waves nature since discontinuing Lexapro at 0.7mg (stayed for 6 months at 1mg then rushed to 0.7mg in a matter of two weeks, thinking I was reacting adversely to the Lexapro, and finally quit). What I later realized was that it was not an adverse reaction, but instead a severe wave that hit at 6 months on 1mg (due to rapid drop from 5mg of Lexapro and fully discontinuing Vortioxetine). Symptoms which stayed with me ever since destabilizing my nervous system since the rapid taper in summer of 2018: severely degraded working, short-term and long-term memory; difficulty forming thoughts (mainly blank mind); degraded executive functioning; difficulty finding words in written and verbal conversation; 24/7 squeezing head pressure; apathy; anhedonia; dissociation; depersonalization; waves of severe ocd; fatigue and weakness; blurry vision; eye floaters. Please note that in the 1-2 day long windows all these symptoms improved greatly.

 

Journey after discontinuation of Lexapro:

 

First 1.5 months: Much less severe symptoms than when I discontinued from 10mg back in summer of 2018. All the symptoms above with added heart palpitations and burning skin.

Months 1.5-5: Burning skin and heart palpitations gone. Started experiencing windows ranging from few hours to 1 day in length. In waves 95% of the time. Anxiety and ocd became progressively more severe between months 1-4, but by month 5 was drastically improving. Able to exercise more aggressively in windows, albeit with symptom exacerbation afterwards.

Months 5.5-8.5: At 5.5 months off got hit with severe wave (what seems to be the 4-6 month wave people talk about). In this wave, I developed burning brain and all the above symptoms were significantly exacerbated. This wave lasted 2 months, then brief window, and back to wave with slightly different symptoms. Overall though, the last 3 months have been characterized by greatly diminished anxiety and ocd, which was however replaced with anhedonia. 

 

The healing is very confusing, symptoms morphing, windows appearing out of nowhere, and waves of excruciating misery striking by surprise. However, please know that I am slowly improving in all domains, with the slowest improvements coming in the cognitive domain along with head pressure and dissociation. 

 

I believe that after the 1 year mark, significant improvements in cognitive symptoms and head pressure will appear.

 

How are you doing in your taper?

 

 

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