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drugged: multiple drugs

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drugged

It's coming up on 7 years since I was given the fibromyalgia diagnosis.  It has been 7 years of varying degrees of elevated pain levels 24/7/365.  7 years of not being able to work in my garden, not being able to hike or work out, not being able to do much of anything.  

 

In a way it was easier to deal with when I believed in the fibromyalgia-as-an-incurable-chronic disease because I taught myself to accept that this was going to be my life until I died and there was little I could do about it other than the standard gentle exercise and eat healthy.  I told myself over and over, like a mantra, what can't be cured must be endured.  

 

Now I view the diagnosis of fibromyalgia as an iatrogenic dis-ease that has a possibility of going away or, at the very least, lessening it's strangle hold on my life when I reduce/get off my psych drugs.  It's harder to find that acceptance.  For the most part I did not seek out any of the drugs I'm taking.  The antidepressant was the first and I had to be convinced to give it a try.  Every other drug other than the tramadol came about during routine medication reviews with my psychiatrist.  4 times every year I went to see my psychiatrist and answered questions about sleep, anxiety, depression, filled out a depression questionnaire, and had additional drugs added depending on my answers.  It never occurred to me to lie to my doctor during these reviews and I failed to question his prescribing practices until much too late.    

 

The tramadol was different.  The literally overnight onset of disabling whole body pain that kept me bed-ridden for several months eventually sent me to see my PCP seeking a diagnosis and some kind of treatment that would end the torture.  I came away with the tramadol first (NSAIDs not being an option for me).  Pregabalin came later but it's side effects; problems with speech, movement disorders, muscle twitching, etc., not to mention its ineffectiveness in lessening pain, made it the second drug I tapered.  (I had already tried to taper off the venlafaxine and ended up taking 75 mg instead of the previous 300 mg).  

 

So here I am today. Assuming I persist in my tapering I will be in my mid-to-late 60s when I'm finished with a shortened life span due to drug use.  I most likely already have permanent irreversible brain and nervous system damage.  I try to look at it dispassionately; it is what it is, I can't change the past.  I'd be lying though if I said that I don't struggle with self-recrimination, guilt, shame, grief, and, of course, fear.    


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged

Woke up this morning at 1:30 am to go to the bathroom.  I felt pretty awake and realized 1) no headache and 2) no significant muscle pain so I decided to stay up and enjoy a few hours of not hurting.  I didn't have much energy but it was nice while it lasted.  At 11 am I meditated then decided to take a nap.   

 

12 hours later; virtually no muscle pain just minor twinges, some ice pick headaches and mild brain zaps.  Eyes are a bit sore, probably not enough sleep and too much screen time.  Cognitive functions are no doubt just as impaired as usual but that foggy feeling isn't there.  Keeping my fingers crossed because I want to do some baking this weekend.  


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged

Probably shouldn't have kept my fingers crossed yesterday.  Now my hands hurt.  

 

The window, if that's what it was, lasted until the middle of the night.  I could feel the muscles in my upper body starting to tighten up when I turned the lights off last night.  Woke up about 2:30 am and the muscle pain was a 7.  Couldn't get back to sleep so got up.  At least there's no headache today.  

 

 


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged

I'm trying to work out a semi-long term withdrawal plan involving alternating which drugs are being tapered.  My current thinking is to continue tapering venlafaxine by 10% each month until I reach 37.5 mg/day.  Then, after holding the venlafaxine for a month at least, I think I would like to taper off the trazodone.  In looking at its adverse reactions I see quite a number which I have had or am having (especially those that effect the eyes) - I understand that the drug interactions in my cocktail complicates this but I don't think any other of my drugs has a reaction list that covers so many of the adverse effects I've struggled with.  In addition, the trazodone seems an unnecessary addition to my bedtime drugs of 100 mg tramadol and 10 mg diazepam.  Truthfully, I can't say that it's ever done anything to improve my sleep.

 

My other thought was to keep the pregabalin at 25 mg till later.  The side effects that began when I was taking 300 mg; ataxia, dysarthria, and aphasia which prompted me to slowly taper that drug all disappeared as I dropped the dose.  I was fortunate that I've never had any significant weight gain from either the pregabalin or any of the other drugs. 

 

Aside from doing a drug taper, 2020 looks to have at least one major life stress - moving back to the Tucson area.  Using the 10%/month rule I can get an approximate idea of when will I'll be at a convenient hold in my taper schedule, keeping in mind all the vagaries of the process.  

 

@Moderators Thoughts?


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged

Another potential complication;  my BIL health has taken a bad turn.  The treatment of an ordinary boil (he's basically bed-bound now) has become a deep-seated infection around his spinal cord at neck level.  A few years ago my spouse lost another brother due to sepsis from bed sores.  


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged
On 12/15/2019 at 7:45 AM, drugged said:

I'm trying to work out a semi-long term withdrawal plan involving alternating which drugs are being tapered.  My current thinking is to continue tapering venlafaxine by 10% each month until I reach 37.5 mg/day.  Then, after holding the venlafaxine for a month at least, I think I would like to taper off the trazodone.  In looking at its adverse reactions I see quite a number which I have had or am having (especially those that effect the eyes) - I understand that the drug interactions in my cocktail complicates this but I don't think any other of my drugs has a reaction list that covers so many of the adverse effects I've struggled with.  In addition, the trazodone seems an unnecessary addition to my bedtime drugs of 100 mg tramadol and 10 mg diazepam.  Truthfully, I can't say that it's ever done anything to improve my sleep.

 

My other thought was to keep the pregabalin at 25 mg till later.  The side effects that began when I was taking 300 mg; ataxia, dysarthria, and aphasia which prompted me to slowly taper that drug all disappeared as I dropped the dose.  I was fortunate that I've never had any significant weight gain from either the pregabalin or any of the other drugs. 

 

Aside from doing a drug taper, 2020 looks to have at least one major life stress - moving back to the Tucson area.  Using the 10%/month rule I can get an approximate idea of when I will be at a convenient hold in my taper schedule, keeping in mind all the vagaries of the process.  @Gridley @Sassenach @manymoretodays @Rhiannon

 

 


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged

Currently at 90 mg venlafaxine/day which leaves me with a decrease of 15 mg to get back to taking one 75 mg capsule/day.  I have another cut coming up on January 8, 2020 and I'm going to reduce the dose by 9 mg.  On February 8th I'll cut 6 mg from my dose which brings me to 75 mg.  My current plan is to hold at that dose and on March 8th start tapering the trazodone.  

 

I have 100 mg tablets of trazodone as that was the prescribed dose but I have always cut them in half and taken just 50 mg.  It's going to be impossible to cut that half-tablet into pieces that approximate a 10% cut so I'll have to crush the tablets and make a solution or suspension.  The other option is to crush a 50 mg half-tab, weigh out 45 mg, and take it dry. 

Not too concerned about the taste - I'm taking the pregabalin by opening the capsule, removing half the powder, taking half (25 mg) in the capsule one day, the next day I take the remaining 25 mg of powder dry.  It's not haute cuisine but, compared to all the other miseries of withdrawal, it's inconsequential. 


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged

The last 4 - 5 nights I've woken up sweating, not soaked, just very uncomfortable and usually unable to get back to sleep.  


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged

@Altostrata

 

You may have already seen my post about starting a trazodone taper after I've gotten the venlafaxine down to 75 mg which should happen in early February 2020.  

 

My reasoning is the number of ocular side effects listed for the drug that coincide with some of my more troublesome symptoms.  I realize that the totality of my cocktail is the biggest problem but the beginning of my eye problems (and skin), aside from just dryness, date to the approximate time when I began taking the trazodone (as best as I can remember).  

 

I'm particularly anxious to get some relief from the almost constant eye discomfort.  

 

Your thoughts would be appreciated.


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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Altostrata

You're still taking so many drugs, I have no idea what's causing what. As I said before, gradual reduction of anything might bring improvement.

 

Four of your psychoactive drugs might induce sleep. Trazodone is one of them. You might as well taper it. Tips for tapering off trazodone (Desyrel)


This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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drugged
19 hours ago, Altostrata said:

You're still taking so many drugs, I have no idea what's causing what. As I said before, gradual reduction of anything might bring improvement.

 

Four of your psychoactive drugs might induce sleep. Trazodone is one of them. You might as well taper it. Tips for tapering off trazodone (Desyrel)

Thank you Altostrata


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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Rhiannon

I concur. I think it's hard to say what drug is doing what, since they all have interactions. So whichever one you feel most motivated to work on, go for it. Any reductions of any meds will be good for you, as long as you don't push it too hard by going too fast and throw yourself out of whack. 

 

As far as figuring out the 10% taper and Tucson, I have never done well by planning my taper ahead of time and trying to follow a calendar. That usually just gets me into trouble, because I will push a taper in spite of symptoms telling me I need to take a break. However, that's just me, with my body and my life situation. You have to figure out what is going to work for you with your body and your resources and the demands of your life. I think scheduling a taper can be a useful sort of rule of thumb thing, but it's more important to listen to your body.

 

When you're feeling discouraged about the future, remember that even just reducing drug dosages makes a big difference. You can really get back a lot of quality of life just by getting the doses down. You don't have to wait until you're all the way off; in fact, people who have been on many drugs over a long period of time, and who are older, realistically I think need to accept that they may be doing themselves more harm than good if they do an aggressive taper and push for the most extreme goal. Give yourself a break. Enjoy the reductions you've already made, pat yourself on the back, take breaks so you can stabilize and enjoy life. Then just keep moving forward with an eye to enjoying the journey NOW as much as you can, rather than focusing solely on a distant destination.

 

Oh, and happy solstice! 


Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

 

I'm not a doctor. Any advice I give is just my civilian opinion.

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drugged
19 hours ago, Rhiannon said:

I think it's hard to say what drug is doing what, since they all have interactions. So whichever one you feel most motivated to work on, go for it.

I know what you mean.  I was inspired to start tapering the trazodone after reading Altostrata's comments and links about it and its metabolite.  That and the fact that it more or less duplicates the venlafaxine.  

 

Which drug is doing what now is a conundrum but when I can remember certain symptoms popping up shortly after a drug was started or, like the Lyrica, certain symptoms began while increasing the dose and then went away when I decreased the dose, it's probably a fair call to associate those symptoms with the drug.  The symptoms with pregabalin, movement disorders and speech problems, were unique to the higher doses of that drug.  The jerkiness of the muscles in my left leg when I walked was extremely disturbing. I'd never experienced anything like it. Once I had dropped my dose down from 300 mg/day to 150 mg/day that completely disappeared.  

 

How to coordinate moving and tapering is just something I'll have to play by ear.  It's helpful to be able to have some idea of approximately where my taper might be at any given time so I can decide to hold when I am doing well.  All the years of running taught me the value of listening to my body.  Meditating everyday helps with that.  


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged

Another substance to taper off of early in the new year;  sugar. 

 

Living here in Iowa hasn't been good for a healthy diet or being active.  My body acclimated, more or less, to days of sun and warm temperatures.  The little town we lived in was quiet and peaceful.  There were dozens of different types of birds including at least a half dozen varieties of hummingbirds, all the native plants flowered at some point during the year, even the trees.  The nights were dark and I used to go for walks a good while before sunrise so I could see the meteor showers and listen to the coyotes sing (such a joyous sound).  We were a 20 minute drive into the mountains across the valley and a world renowned bird-watching area.  We both loved living there.

 

What I now realize are side effects of the drugs I'm on, in this case my extremely dry and painful eyes, the inability of any doctors to offer any advice except humidifiers for inside and move to someplace more humid, my fear of losing my sight (my mother did go blind from a different problem) pushed us to make decisions we now deeply regret.  Aside from what I've already described we lost a priceless asset - an incredible family doctor.  

 

Our family doctor opted not to practice corporate medicine.  He practices by himself, with one nurse and his longtime receptionist.  He always returns phone calls the same day.  If a patient is ill he always has time to see them the day they call in.  His idea of a wellness exam is an old-fashioned physical; eye, ears, throat, palpating the abdomen, checking the reflexes, checking the pulse in the ankles, a thorough examination of the skin especially around the face including freezing any anomalous patches of skin, an EKG for us older folks, etc.  He spends time with you, at least 30 minutes for an exam.  He listens to you.  He prefers that his patients avoid invasive procedures/tests and was very supportive of me when I discussed my problem with polypharmacy.  I felt like he had my back even though he didn't challenge my psych concerning the constant addition of more meds.  When I brought it up he was behind me 100%.  

 

A couple of weeks ago I called his office and spoke to his receptionist about our moving back and wondering if the doctor would be able to fit us back in.  The answer was affirmative,  they'd love to see us both again.  So that was my holiday present.  


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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ShiningLight
On 12/12/2019 at 6:07 AM, drugged said:

It's coming up on 7 years since I was given the fibromyalgia diagnosis.  It has been 7 years of varying degrees of elevated pain levels 24/7/365.  7 years of not being able to work in my garden, not being able to hike or work out, not being able to do much of anything.  

 

In a way it was easier to deal with when I believed in the fibromyalgia-as-an-incurable-chronic disease because I taught myself to accept that this was going to be my life until I died and there was little I could do about it other than the standard gentle exercise and eat healthy.  I told myself over and over, like a mantra, what can't be cured must be endured.  

 

Now I view the diagnosis of fibromyalgia as an iatrogenic dis-ease that has a possibility of going away or, at the very least, lessening it's strangle hold on my life when I reduce/get off my psych drugs.  It's harder to find that acceptance.  For the most part I did not seek out any of the drugs I'm taking.  The antidepressant was the first and I had to be convinced to give it a try.  Every other drug other than the tramadol came about during routine medication reviews with my psychiatrist.  4 times every year I went to see my psychiatrist and answered questions about sleep, anxiety, depression, filled out a depression questionnaire, and had additional drugs added depending on my answers.  It never occurred to me to lie to my doctor during these reviews and I failed to question his prescribing practices until much too late.    

 

So here I am today. Assuming I persist in my tapering I will be in my mid-to-late 60s when I'm finished with a shortened life span due to drug use. 

 

I really relate to this entire post, including your feelings about the iatrogenic fibro problem. I haven't been diagnosed with fibro, but I wouldn't be surprised. I have friends who have it and are on drugs and I wish I could convince them to taper

 

I will be of similar age when I finish tapering. It can be discouraging but I just try to do the best I can. When I feel really bad about that, I sometimes put my hopes in a better afterlife. I don't believe in heaven, but I make stuff up. 😂That thought gives me some comfort sometimes.

 

One of the things that can help with this kind of deep existential pain is trying to find meaning in it, give to others, etc. Trying to do that has its own challenges when I'm so exhausted. I'm reminded of the ME/CFS activism campaign "Millions Missing."


Now: Gabapentin 31 mg 4x/day =124 mg, 150 mg Zoloft am since 2004, 50 mg Trazodone bedtime.  Daily drug burden decreased from 2050 mg to 324 mg 🐢🐢

2020, Gabapentin each dose 4x/day: Aug 20 31 mg, Aug 18, 33 mg, July 29, 35 mg, July 23 38 mg, July 22 40 mg Jun 24 42 mg, Jun 15 44 mg, Jun 9 48 mg, May 22 50 mg, May 14 54 mg, May 7 56 mg, Apr 16 58 mg, Mar 28 60 mg, Mar 18 62 mg. Feb 26 64 mg. Feb 19, 66 mg. Jan 23, 70 mg.

2019 Dec 19, 72 mg. Nov 14 ,76 mg. Aug 8, 80 mg. Aug 6, 85 mg. Jul 26, 90 mg. Jul 11, 95 mg.

Jul 16 trazodone from 100 to 50 mg.

Jun 17-July 10 Slowly changed gab fr pill to liquid at same dose 100 mg 4x/d.

Apr 24 Stopped klon!!! 🌞 Apr 4  Decreased gaba to 400 mg (100 mg 4x/day)-Apr 4, 2019   0.25 klon

March 11  Klonopin .5 mg twice daily, varied dose til Apr 15. Started Klon fast taper 25%, short use

Mar 16, 450 mg gaba 3x/day cut 600 mg--not exact!--updose after learning w/d

Feb 20, 1800 mg gabapentin; MD taper; off 3 days=mvt disorder & autonomic instability. July 2018 temazepam 15 mg 1-2; prn several x/wk til Jan/Feb 2019 when cold turkey, flu illness for months

July 2018 started gabapentin 100 3x/day; titrated up to 1800 mg (600 3x/day)

Buspar, I forget how much, 2 pills a day Jan 2017-July 2018 cold turkey

*I speak from my experience. Nothing I say is medical advice. I'm not a doctor.

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drugged

Hi @ShiningLight

I did volunteer work that I really enjoyed when I lived in Arizona.  It gave me the opportunity to use my Spanish in addition to helping others.  Once we move back there I'm planning on hooking up with my group again.  I had other activities there that I really enjoyed, bird-watching or nature-watching actually being one.  I don't have to feel great to do that and watching nature makes me feel better. 

 

As Rhiannon has pointed out to me, I don't have to be completely off my drug cocktail to feel a lot better so that's what I'm focusing on.  Since finding this forum and sorting out my tapering I am feeling better.  I don't feel healthy and energetic but I feel so much better than I did after the venlafaxine updose and fast taper last June.  

 

I see you're tapering from gabapentin.  Wow, you were on a massive daily dose for awhile.  How did you feel on that?  I was on 300 mg/day of pregabalin, the "new and improved" gabapentin and I developed speech and movement problems.  That and it didn't help the pain at all.  I feel bad for people with chronic pain these last 3 or 4 years being put on ADs and antiepileptics instead just being given an opioid.  At least with an opioid, assuming you actually become truly addicted, there are programs that will help you get off them.  With the ADs, the neuroleptics, the benzos, and gabapentinoids the medical system won't even admit people become dependent and suffer withdrawal.  


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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ShiningLight

Hi Drugged, that's great re your volunteer work! I would need to find a very flexible volunteer program if I was to do that. I hope you can get hooked up again.

 

Yes, Rhiannon's reminder that you can feel better on just a lower dose is one of my absolute favorite pieces of info I have read here ever! I remind myself of that a lot. That is one of the ways I am holding on to hope regarding my zoloft dose, when I start to taper that. Because that's going to take me a looong time to get off.

 

Yeah, I was on 1800, prescribed off label for "anxiety." Horrible decision. The MD kept saying it was ok to increase, but I noticed that when I increased it, I felt NO effects from the increase. That was totally eerie and creeped me out, and that's when I knew something was wrong. I specifically remembering deciding not to tell her anymore about my anxiety, and deciding not to go any higher on the drug.

 

I want to say the maximum gaba dose is maybe 2400-3600 mgs a day, but don't quote me on that. Every once in awhile someone pops into my gaba w/d facebook group abusing a dose of 6,000 mg+ per day. How did I feel? I felt very sleepy sometimes. I also started dropping things, not quite feeling what I had in my hand if I had multiple things. For example, I'd put one thing in the crook of my arm and have a few other things in my hand. I would put the things in my hand down, and the thing in the crook of my arm would fall because I didn't feel it there. I also had movement problems. It became difficult to go up stairs. And my heart started reacting weirdly when I go up a flight of stairs... the rapid beating will increase after I'm at the top for a bit, not stay the same and then level off. I also started having weird neurological things that were most likely interdose withdrawal since I was being dumb and skipping doses at the time.

 

The rest, as they say, is history. The most troublesome withdrawal symptom I have right now is leg spasticity and fatigue. 😩


Now: Gabapentin 31 mg 4x/day =124 mg, 150 mg Zoloft am since 2004, 50 mg Trazodone bedtime.  Daily drug burden decreased from 2050 mg to 324 mg 🐢🐢

2020, Gabapentin each dose 4x/day: Aug 20 31 mg, Aug 18, 33 mg, July 29, 35 mg, July 23 38 mg, July 22 40 mg Jun 24 42 mg, Jun 15 44 mg, Jun 9 48 mg, May 22 50 mg, May 14 54 mg, May 7 56 mg, Apr 16 58 mg, Mar 28 60 mg, Mar 18 62 mg. Feb 26 64 mg. Feb 19, 66 mg. Jan 23, 70 mg.

2019 Dec 19, 72 mg. Nov 14 ,76 mg. Aug 8, 80 mg. Aug 6, 85 mg. Jul 26, 90 mg. Jul 11, 95 mg.

Jul 16 trazodone from 100 to 50 mg.

Jun 17-July 10 Slowly changed gab fr pill to liquid at same dose 100 mg 4x/d.

Apr 24 Stopped klon!!! 🌞 Apr 4  Decreased gaba to 400 mg (100 mg 4x/day)-Apr 4, 2019   0.25 klon

March 11  Klonopin .5 mg twice daily, varied dose til Apr 15. Started Klon fast taper 25%, short use

Mar 16, 450 mg gaba 3x/day cut 600 mg--not exact!--updose after learning w/d

Feb 20, 1800 mg gabapentin; MD taper; off 3 days=mvt disorder & autonomic instability. July 2018 temazepam 15 mg 1-2; prn several x/wk til Jan/Feb 2019 when cold turkey, flu illness for months

July 2018 started gabapentin 100 3x/day; titrated up to 1800 mg (600 3x/day)

Buspar, I forget how much, 2 pills a day Jan 2017-July 2018 cold turkey

*I speak from my experience. Nothing I say is medical advice. I'm not a doctor.

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drugged
18 hours ago, ShiningLight said:

I want to say the maximum gaba dose is maybe 2400-3600 mgs a day, but don't quote me on that. Every once in awhile someone pops into my gaba w/d facebook group abusing a dose of 6,000 mg+ per day. How did I feel? I felt very sleepy sometimes. I also started dropping things, not quite feeling what I had in my hand if I had multiple things. For example, I'd put one thing in the crook of my arm and have a few other things in my hand. I would put the things in my hand down, and the thing in the crook of my arm would fall because I didn't feel it there. I also had movement problems. It became difficult to go up stairs. And my heart started reacting weirdly when I go up a flight of stairs... the rapid beating will increase after I'm at the top for a bit, not stay the same and then level off. I also started having weird neurological things that were most likely interdose withdrawal since I was being dumb and skipping doses at the time.

 

The rest, as they say, is history. The most troublesome withdrawal symptom I have right now is leg spasticity and fatigue. 😩

I had some of the same problems on 300 mg of pregabalin; I dropped things, my left leg would jerk when I walked - not constantly but unexpectedly, I had muscle spasms basically anywhere there are muscles (just during my waking hours), and the speech problems ...  I couldn't coordinate my muscles to pronounce words that I used a lot.  Times I must of sounded like I was drunk but I don't drink.  It was as if my speech was dyslexic but I knew what I was trying to say.  As you say, lots of weird neurological things but I don't think mine were interdose withdrawal.  As I tapered the pregabalin all these side effects went away.  I don't remember at exactly what doses but by the time I was below 100 mgs/day they were all gone for the most part.  I never noticed any impact on my pain level.  

 

I asked because my doctor, while not doubting what I was telling him, said that he hadn't heard of anyone having those kinds of side effects.  He was fine with me getting off it but he cautioned me to taper very slowly, as in months, not weeks.  The withdrawal effects I've had from this drug are a lot of the weird brain sensations.  At this time, since it's off patent now and much cheaper, I might leave this last 25 mg alone until I'm off the AD and the trazodone.   


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged

Since the sugary treats are almost gone and I'm not making a big meal for New Year's Day, I decided to get a 2 day head start on some of the things I need to work on.  First off was to do a tiny bit of easy yoga and see how it went.  My shoulders and arms were sore yesterday afternoon but that was gone this morning so okay there.  What's kind of mind-blowing about that tiny bit of activity is that I couldn't stay awake last night and I slept like the dead.  Much heavier sleep than the usual drug-induced sleep and I struggled to wake up.  This morning I did a 15 minute walk early.  We'll see how that works.  

 

7 years ago I was running 30 - 36 miles/week, doing an hour of yoga 6 days a week, an hour a day of a pilates/strength training routine plus all my own yard work which was a significant job then.  I was studying two languages and keeping my Spanish current.  All that and I was on almost the whole cocktail of drugs.  Now 20 minutes of easy yoga and it knocks me out.  Sheesh.


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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ShiningLight

Wow, I don't know how you did all that while on all the drugs! Maybe you titrated up slowly, and 7 years ago we were all younger!

 

It's heartening to know that your lyrica side effects went away, thanks.


Now: Gabapentin 31 mg 4x/day =124 mg, 150 mg Zoloft am since 2004, 50 mg Trazodone bedtime.  Daily drug burden decreased from 2050 mg to 324 mg 🐢🐢

2020, Gabapentin each dose 4x/day: Aug 20 31 mg, Aug 18, 33 mg, July 29, 35 mg, July 23 38 mg, July 22 40 mg Jun 24 42 mg, Jun 15 44 mg, Jun 9 48 mg, May 22 50 mg, May 14 54 mg, May 7 56 mg, Apr 16 58 mg, Mar 28 60 mg, Mar 18 62 mg. Feb 26 64 mg. Feb 19, 66 mg. Jan 23, 70 mg.

2019 Dec 19, 72 mg. Nov 14 ,76 mg. Aug 8, 80 mg. Aug 6, 85 mg. Jul 26, 90 mg. Jul 11, 95 mg.

Jul 16 trazodone from 100 to 50 mg.

Jun 17-July 10 Slowly changed gab fr pill to liquid at same dose 100 mg 4x/d.

Apr 24 Stopped klon!!! 🌞 Apr 4  Decreased gaba to 400 mg (100 mg 4x/day)-Apr 4, 2019   0.25 klon

March 11  Klonopin .5 mg twice daily, varied dose til Apr 15. Started Klon fast taper 25%, short use

Mar 16, 450 mg gaba 3x/day cut 600 mg--not exact!--updose after learning w/d

Feb 20, 1800 mg gabapentin; MD taper; off 3 days=mvt disorder & autonomic instability. July 2018 temazepam 15 mg 1-2; prn several x/wk til Jan/Feb 2019 when cold turkey, flu illness for months

July 2018 started gabapentin 100 3x/day; titrated up to 1800 mg (600 3x/day)

Buspar, I forget how much, 2 pills a day Jan 2017-July 2018 cold turkey

*I speak from my experience. Nothing I say is medical advice. I'm not a doctor.

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drugged
10 hours ago, ShiningLight said:

Wow, I don't know how you did all that while on all the drugs!

Well, I wasn't on the Lyrica or the tramadol and I'd gotten the AD dose down from 300 mg/day to 75.  The onset of chronic pain put an end to all of it.  That and the eye problems; dryness, pain, and blurred vision.  My signature is lacking some detail.  I've tried changing it but I keep getting the message I have too many lines even though I only counted 12.   


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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Erell

Wanted to stop by to wish you a new year of healing ❤️


2006 : 20mg Paroxetine + Bromazepam(no specific dose) 

2008 : cold turkey of both

2010 : 20mg Deroxat + Bromazepam(no specific dose) 

2013: Switch from Bromazepam To Prazepam (long half-life)

2014-June2017 : Prazepam taper, 3% drops. 

2018 to August 2019 : weaning Paroxetine 20mg. 3% every 15 days.

- 22nd August updosed To 10mg (was at 8.4mg) because of a big wave. 

25th Sept 2019 To April 2020 : found SA, holding at 10mg Paroxetine. 

 

April 2020-August 2020 : Paxil to Prozac bridge. Details https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/21457-erell-struggling-with-paroxetine/?do=findComment&comment=499847

 

Current Supplements : magnesium citrate/ fish oil/ evening primrose oil 

Current medication : 7mg Fluoxetine + 1mg Diazepam + toothpick Paroxetine 

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drugged

Bonne anneé et bonne santé to you, Erell.  I hope you are doing well and having good holiday times.  ❤️


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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Shep
On 12/31/2019 at 10:21 AM, drugged said:

My signature is lacking some detail.  I've tried changing it but I keep getting the message I have too many lines even though I only counted 12.   

 

Drugged, please make a post with what you need in your signature and I'll try to put it there. Not sure why you're getting that message. 


Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


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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drugged

@Shep - I made some changes to my signature yesterday without any problems.  Thanks.  

 

I provided more detail about the first unsuccessful venlafaxine taper and the subsequent reinstatement, long hold, and the disastrous updose of this past summer.  Maybe someone could look at that revised timeline?


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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Shep
52 minutes ago, drugged said:

I provided more detail about the first unsuccessful venlafaxine taper and the subsequent reinstatement, long hold, and the disastrous updose of this past summer.  Maybe someone could look at that revised timeline?

 

What symptoms are you having that you think may be attributable to changes made over the summer? Are you able to narrow the symptoms down to any specific drug or is it overall nervous system destabilization? 

 


Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


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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drugged

Within 24 hours of doubling the AD dose I began to feel nauseous, I had diarrhea, I completely lost my appetite,  I woke up in the mornings with akathisia, I felt very anxious - frantic almost, I could feel my heart racing and pounding, I had a constant headache and just generally felt very ill, much more so than has been usual for me.  I tried waiting it out for three, maybe four days, but I knew I needed to stop the extra venlafaxine.  I tapered from the 150 mg at the end of June to 112.5 mg by August 12th.  In the meantime, I found this site and got myself registered.  

 

I feel like I did finally stabilize somewhat before I started to taper again at a much slower pace.  The June scare and my awakening upon finding this site convinced me I needed to either get completely off my drug cocktail or at least reduce the dosages of them as much as possible.  


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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Shep
2 hours ago, drugged said:

I feel like I did finally stabilize somewhat before I started to taper again at a much slower pace.  The June scare and my awakening upon finding this site convinced me I needed to either get completely off my drug cocktail or at least reduce the dosages of them as much as possible.  

 

Very glad you were able to make the connections and are stabilizing. 

 

Since the venlafaxine changes were from the summer (so at least 6 months ago), there's not much you can do to help stabilize any more besides holding. But it also looks like you made more changes since this summer (coming off the z-drug and buspirone), so you may be feeling better not only because of the reduced venlafaxine but also, because your overall drug burden is lower. 

 

So that speaks to being over-drugged as much as it does to withdrawal. Some of your earlier symptoms may have been paradoxical reactions from being on so many brakes. 

 

Don't know if that answers your question -  "Maybe someone could look at that revised timeline?" - but my impression is that you're on the right path now. 


Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


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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drugged

@Shep

Prior to June of this year my symptoms were the same everyday since about 2013, other than the level of muscle pain, which varies.  Since I thought that was fibromyalgia, I just coped with it as best I could.  Even with all the brakes, I didn't feel nearly as bad before as I did after that June doubling of the venlafaxine.  I felt so awful so suddenly ... my mind keeps circling back to that moment like it does with the literally overnight appearance of constant, intense, muscle pain that earned the diagnosis of fibro.  Moments like that stick in the brain and I have this recurrent need to understand what happened at those times.  Not that understanding it would change anything.  I'm just curious by nature.  

 

Anyway, it led to a good outcome in that I found this site and you all are helping me taper and become less drugged.  

Thanks, Shep

 

P.S.  I like the Szasz quote.

 

 


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged

Coming up on my next AD cut and feeling a little nervous.  Just this cut and the one in Feb. and I'll have the AD dose back to where it was at the beginning of June 2019, before the increase.  After that I'm thinking I'll alternate cutting the venlafaxine and the trazodone.  I'm still not sure what to do about that remaining 25 mg of pregabalin.  I don't know if leaving it will offer any benefit as I taper the serotonergic drugs or not.  


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged

I bought a Mg/MSM butter and have been experimenting with it to see if it reduces muscle pain/tightness.  I've been getting a bit more physical activity into my routine; short walks, yoga and/or strength training for my core.  When I've had bilateral muscle pain I rub a bit of the butter into one side but not the other.  It seems to help both the pain and the tightness.  Since I do take pain relievers I started out only using the Mg/MSM butter several hours out (>8 hrs) from taking tramadol.  More interesting than decreasing the pain is that the treated muscles feel less knotty and hard.  I'm going to try it in a muscle that has actual trigger points next.  The main problem I have is figuring out how to apply the butter to the region between the spine and the inside edge of the scapula.  

 

My skin has been touchy since the early years of taking the AD so I was a little nervous about using this cream.  I'm happy to report that it hasn't caused any issues so far and it smells only faintly of lemongrass.  

 

I cut my venlafaxine by 9 mg (10%) yesterday so waiting to see if I get any withdrawal.  


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged

5 days since my last venlafaxine cut and I've not experienced anything I could identify as a symptom of the cut.  The only thing I've noticed since the cut is a return of this constant unpleasant taste in my mouth.  

 

I've been getting more consistent exercise since the week before the new year; a combo of short walks, strength training - mostly core, and a bit of yoga.  My current goal is to do this every other day for now to keep muscle pain at a reasonable level.  We've had snow and I'm enjoying getting out and walking in it though some mornings have been pretty cold.  I like that too, it makes for a contrast.

 

Meditating everyday for at least a month now.  Actually, I switch around a bit doing mindfulness meditation, guided relaxation, and a couple of self-hypnosis downloads.  I do a meditation followed by either the muscle relaxation or a self-hypnosis track.   

 

I've been eating vegetables more consistently also.  I'm focusing on getting more green vegetables in my diet.  I love all kinds of vegetables and fruits but between the apathy, lack of appetite, and bad taste in my mouth I'd gotten out of the habit of cooking healthy meals.  

 

The magnesium/MSM butter I bought really does help with muscle pain.  Yesterday I suddenly developed some nasty pain (~7) in my left deltoid muscle for no apparent reason.  I tried self-massage with limited results so I rubbed some of the Mg salve into the muscle and the pain calmed down to about a 4.  Later on I worked on some trigger points that refer pain to the deltoid and that helped too.  

 

All tiny steps but I guess tiny consistent steps are the way to go for now.  At least my body isn't in rebellion with the program.  


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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drugged

Experiencing a small rebellion this morning - woke up with all the symptoms of a UTI.  Given my extensive history with this I'll be taking an antibiotic for a few days, most likely generic Macrobid.  

 

Other than the symptoms from the infection, still feeling fairly decent, what I'm calling WD normal.  


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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ShiningLight

Re your previous post...great start to the new year!!!


Now: Gabapentin 31 mg 4x/day =124 mg, 150 mg Zoloft am since 2004, 50 mg Trazodone bedtime.  Daily drug burden decreased from 2050 mg to 324 mg 🐢🐢

2020, Gabapentin each dose 4x/day: Aug 20 31 mg, Aug 18, 33 mg, July 29, 35 mg, July 23 38 mg, July 22 40 mg Jun 24 42 mg, Jun 15 44 mg, Jun 9 48 mg, May 22 50 mg, May 14 54 mg, May 7 56 mg, Apr 16 58 mg, Mar 28 60 mg, Mar 18 62 mg. Feb 26 64 mg. Feb 19, 66 mg. Jan 23, 70 mg.

2019 Dec 19, 72 mg. Nov 14 ,76 mg. Aug 8, 80 mg. Aug 6, 85 mg. Jul 26, 90 mg. Jul 11, 95 mg.

Jul 16 trazodone from 100 to 50 mg.

Jun 17-July 10 Slowly changed gab fr pill to liquid at same dose 100 mg 4x/d.

Apr 24 Stopped klon!!! 🌞 Apr 4  Decreased gaba to 400 mg (100 mg 4x/day)-Apr 4, 2019   0.25 klon

March 11  Klonopin .5 mg twice daily, varied dose til Apr 15. Started Klon fast taper 25%, short use

Mar 16, 450 mg gaba 3x/day cut 600 mg--not exact!--updose after learning w/d

Feb 20, 1800 mg gabapentin; MD taper; off 3 days=mvt disorder & autonomic instability. July 2018 temazepam 15 mg 1-2; prn several x/wk til Jan/Feb 2019 when cold turkey, flu illness for months

July 2018 started gabapentin 100 3x/day; titrated up to 1800 mg (600 3x/day)

Buspar, I forget how much, 2 pills a day Jan 2017-July 2018 cold turkey

*I speak from my experience. Nothing I say is medical advice. I'm not a doctor.

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drugged
4 hours ago, ShiningLight said:

Re your previous post...great start to the new year!!!

Thank you ShiningLight.  I've been pretty content with how things have been going.  Some days I can almost imagine myself being sort of like my old self with a few years added on.  


1994  Venlafaxine XR 300mg, 2003 tapered, 2004 off briefly back to 37.5 then 75mg, held, June 2019 up to  150mg, Aug.12 tapered down to 112.5mgs, Oct. 21, 2019 96mg;  Dec. 8, 2019  90mg, Jan. 8 2020 81mg, Feb. 4, 75mg;

2003/2004? Diazepam 10mg/bedtime

2013 Lyrica 300mg to 25mg; April 6, 2020 17mg; April 28, <5mg; May 7, 2020 Lyrica 0 mg!

2013 Tramadol 50mg tablets, 200mg/day divided

2005? Trazodone 50mg bedtime, Feb. 12, 2020 40mg, March 7, 25mg

2009? Zolpidem 5mg at bedtime. Nov. 9, 2019 Zolpidem 0 mg! 

1990? Omeprazole 20mg in morning.

2010? Levothyroxine 75mcg morning

2011? Liothyronine 5mcg morning

1999? Buspirone 30mg twice a day  August 2019 15mg once a day,  Oct.21, 2019 2.5mg evening  Oct. 25, 2019 Buspirone 0 mg!

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Rhiannon
On 1/13/2020 at 5:24 AM, drugged said:

 

All tiny steps but I guess tiny consistent steps are the way to go for now.  At least my body isn't in rebellion with the program.  

 

All those tiny steps add up over time!

 


Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

 

I'm not a doctor. Any advice I give is just my civilian opinion.

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