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Bjeck: quitting bupropion


Bjeck

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Hey all. First I just want to thank everyone for their contributions to this site. The first few weeks of my withdrawl were really scary. I didn't know what I was feeling, or if this was withdrawls at all or some kind of permanent damage I had inflicted on myself. Reading everyone's stories has really put things into context, and given me some labels to put to the symptoms I'm having, which takes some of the anxiety away.

 

I had been on antidepressants and various sleep aides for 10+ years. For the past 6 I've been on bupropion. And during that time, I haven't really felt like myself. I felt less sharp, less social, just generally uncomfortable in my own skin. And that may be completely a coincidence. But back in April, I missed 2 days of taking my dose and was completely thrown out of whack for weeks. And I decided, I don't want to feel out of control anymore. I don't want to be entirely dependent on taking a pill to feel baseline normal. So I decided to quit.

 

My doctor told me bupropion is one of the easier antidepressants to quit, which from reading some of your stories, might be true. But these past few months have been the worst of my life, and a far cry from the few days of minor symptoms I was told to expect. I went to a half dose for a month, 300mg to 150mg. It felt like I had the flu for about 3 days, but after that I was feeling great. And that lasted for about a week. And then it started feeling like the bupropion wasn't "lasting" as long. I'd wake up with this uncomfortable buzzing feeling in my body, which would go away after I took my pill before work. And then I started waking up in the middle of the night with the feeling. And then right before going to bed. Eventually the buzzing would start only 5 hours after taking pill. In hindsight I should have probably reinstated some (I hadn't found this site yet), or at the very least stayed at that dose longer than I did. But in my mind, I was prolonging the suffering and I was very eager to get completely off and get these withdrawls over with.

 

In the end of June, I completely stopped taking bupropion. Once again it felt like I had the flu for a few days, and then I was feeling pretty good. And then the real withdrawls started. It's so strange how they cycle. I'd feel vastly different varieties of awful. I'd have days where I'd have really bad depersonalization, where it felt like I was buried deep inside myself not really in control of what my body was doing. I'd have stretches of days where I was so insanely fatigued it felt like I was weighed down with something. I'd have days where I just completely toxic to anyone around me. 

 

But my one constant symptom started a month into my withdrawl, and it's been hell. I've been referring to it as my "sleep anxiety", even though it feels like no anxiety I've had before. It's always taken me at least an hour laying in bed to get to sleep. And right when my mind starts switching from conscious thoughts to a dream state my body gets flooded with adrenaline. It literally in the most literal sense feels like I'm going to die. Like if I don't get up I'll have a stroke or something. And I feel like I could put up with any and all other symptoms if I could just get a good nights rest. I read the thread about cortisol spikes, which this definitely seems like a variety of. But I was already employing blackout curtains/no blue light before for my general insomnia. And I tried a variety of different supplements, there just doesn't seem to be any relief from it.

 

But anyways, it actually stopped for about 3 weeks. And I was on the whole feeling a lot better. So good I actually decided I'd start tapering off another of my medications (chlorpromazine). I started slowly shaving off a bit of my pill every night, but with barely noticable amount my night time anxiety came back with a vengeance. I immediately started taking my full pill again, which was about 2 weeks ago, but the anxiety is worse than ever. I now realize how important it is to truly give yourself time to stabilize. I just hope it doesn't take me another 2 to 3 months to start feeling better again.

 

Anyways, sorry for the long post. I'd been debating posting here awhile and was just having a particularly bad day, feels like I'm a raw nerve ever since I went to bed last night.

2013- Placed on 300mg buproprion, 100mg chlorpormazine

2019- Tapered to 50mg chlorpromazine 

5/2019- Went down to 150mg bupropion 

6/2019- Stopped taking bupropion 

11/2019- Chlorpormazine reinstated to 100mg

12/2019- Started Lamotrigine 100mg

10/2020- Started daily Ketamine Spray 60mg

3/2020-4/2021- Chlorpormazine taper 100mg-1.25mg

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to Bjeck: quitting bupropion
  • Moderator

Welcome to SA, Bjeck.  Thank you for doing your drug signature.  Could you please add chlorpromazine dates and dosage, plus any other psychiatric drugs you're taking,  using this link:


Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature.

 

While bupropion has the reputation of being easier to get off than other psychiatric drugs, it can definitely cause withdrawal when tapered too fast.  The symptoms you describe are typical withdrawal symptoms, possibly exacerbated by the taper of the chlorpromazine.  

 

 
 
I suggest you hold where you are and not consider any tapering until you have stabilized.  
 
What is your daily symptom pattern now? Do you feel better or worse in the hours after you take chlorpromazine? Please keep daily notes on paper about your symptoms, when you take your drugs, and their dosages. Use a simple list format with time of day on the left and notation (symptom, drug and dosage) on the right.  Keep the list in 24-hour periods and post them here every day.  This is a very important tool to enable us to help you.
 
This is an example:

 

6 a.m. Woke with anxiety
8 a.m. Took 2.5mg Lexapro
10 a.m. Stomach is upset
10:30 a.m. Ate breakfast
11:35 a.m. Got a headache, lasted one hour
12:35 p.m. Ate lunch
4 p.m. Feel a bit better
5 p.m. Took 2.5mg Lexapro
6 p.m. Ate dinner
9:20 p.m. Headache
10:00 p.m. Took 50mg Seroquel
10:20 p.m. Feeling dizzy
10:30 p.m. Fell asleep
2:30 a.m. Woke, took 3mg Ambien (NOT "took 1/2 tablet Ambien")
2:45 a.m. Fell asleep
4:30 a.m. Woke but got back to sleep
 
Try and remain as calm as possible and not to panic.  It's important to learn and use Non-drug techniques to cope

Here are some techniques to help you cope with anxiety. 

 

VIDEO:  Peace from Nervous Suffering - Claire Weekes (1 hour) (http://sendvid.com/vgquc1dg)
 
 
 
We don't recommend a lot of supplements on SA, as many members report being sensitive to them due to our over-reactive nervous systems, but two supplements that we do recommend are magnesium and omega 3 (fish oil). Many people find these to be calming to the nervous system. 

 

 

 

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


This is your Introductory topic, where you can post your daily symptom notes, asks questions and connect with other members.  

We're glad you found your way here.

 
 
 

Gridley Introduction

 

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

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

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

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.

 

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

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

Feb. 2021, begin 10%/4 week taper.  Current dose as of Oct 13: 8.1 mg 

Taper is 56.8% complete.

 

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

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

Taper is 80% complete.  

  

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


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

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Yeah, I'm definently planning on staying where I'm at for the foreseeable future. I'm getting married in April, and I would hate to get any worse. I just got a little overconfident and made a bad judgement call. I'm still on a lot of medication I want to get off, and they're not antidepressants so I wasn't sure what to include in my signature (chlorpromazine, gabapentin, ambien 2 days a week).

 

I definitely notice some differences between the chlorpromazine WD and the bupropion, although it seems to have triggered my old symptoms. The chlorpormazine WD gives me general anxiety which goes away when I take it at night, and the bupropion gives me that adrenaline feeling at night, which remains.

 

I've been taking fish oil since pretty early into my withdrawls. Magnesium supplements make me feel kind of uncomfortable, but I do eat 1 or 2 bananas a day instead.

2013- Placed on 300mg buproprion, 100mg chlorpormazine

2019- Tapered to 50mg chlorpromazine 

5/2019- Went down to 150mg bupropion 

6/2019- Stopped taking bupropion 

11/2019- Chlorpormazine reinstated to 100mg

12/2019- Started Lamotrigine 100mg

10/2020- Started daily Ketamine Spray 60mg

3/2020-4/2021- Chlorpormazine taper 100mg-1.25mg

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I had an extremely bad week and I'm feeling a bit discouraged at the moment. I've completely lost confidence in my ability to sleep, and the quality of whatever sleep I'm getting has been awful. Every night I tell myself I'm so tired it would be impossible for me not to sleep, but somehow I get 3 or 4 hours and then and can't get back asleep. After a couple of days of that I didn't even feel human. And I was having the hardest time performing the simplest of tasks at work or interacting with anyone. It felt like if I had to go through another few days of that I'd end up in the hospital. And it's been hard on my fiance because I was doing so much better, and now I'm not really present and I just want to get that day over with when I get home.

 

I ended up talking to my boss about what's been going on, and he gave me the next few days off and told me a leave of absence is an option (which my doctor said he'd sign off on if I thought it was necessary). But that just brings a whole new set of worries. I would hate to lose my standing at work, and as much as companies say they care about mental health, I can't help but think they'd see it as a sign of weakness.

 

Any advice on how I can get my confidence back in sleeping? And should I be resting these next few days off work, or trying to stay active? I started exercising for the first time in my life about a month ago, but I haven't the past few days because it was a too much with working and no sleep.

2013- Placed on 300mg buproprion, 100mg chlorpormazine

2019- Tapered to 50mg chlorpromazine 

5/2019- Went down to 150mg bupropion 

6/2019- Stopped taking bupropion 

11/2019- Chlorpormazine reinstated to 100mg

12/2019- Started Lamotrigine 100mg

10/2020- Started daily Ketamine Spray 60mg

3/2020-4/2021- Chlorpormazine taper 100mg-1.25mg

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  • Moderator Emeritus

So close to the end!!!

🏁

Current from 16 October 2021:  Pristiq 0.005mg

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering Oct 2015 

My full tapering program     My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)    My website

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

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've missed the past 2 weeks of work, and I've been in hell. I guess it was fatigue, but it felt like severe sleep deprivation at the time, and I physically can't sleep without taking chlorpromazine. I was in tears multiple times a day, my brain just felt like it wasn't working. I felt like I had to do something so my doctor gave me what he said was the lowest dose of bupropion, 100mg SR.

 

Now I'm in a different kind of hell. The fatigue is gone, but these pills are...messing...me...up. I feel like a zombie. I can't hold a conversation with my fiance. Can't drive. Clearly my brain is too sensitive.

 

I read that you can divide a SR pill. What dosage would you recommend? I still want to get off of them, but I've got to be able to work and I'm tired of putting my family through all this. I would like to work my way up to the 100mg SR and stay there until after my wedding April, and then start a proper taper then.

 

Edit: Also, I've taken the 100mg for 5 days if that makes a difference

Edited by Bjeck

2013- Placed on 300mg buproprion, 100mg chlorpormazine

2019- Tapered to 50mg chlorpromazine 

5/2019- Went down to 150mg bupropion 

6/2019- Stopped taking bupropion 

11/2019- Chlorpormazine reinstated to 100mg

12/2019- Started Lamotrigine 100mg

10/2020- Started daily Ketamine Spray 60mg

3/2020-4/2021- Chlorpormazine taper 100mg-1.25mg

Link to post
  • 4 weeks later...

Question:

I was taking some benadryl regularly along with my chlorpromazine 100mg for insomnia. Ever since I cut out the benadryl my total time asleep has dropped, but I was feeling ok.

 

My question is: If I start a slow taper of the chlorpromazine is my time asleep going to get smaller and smaller? Is the drug going to get "used up" faster because there is less of it? Or will the initial sedation be less at a smaller dose and last just as long.

 

Really  noone except my fiance understands how dependent I am on this for sleep. I've been exhausted to the point of delirium but I have to wait till the end of the day to take the chlorpromazine. And then I sleep 5 or 6 hours and if I wake up, I'm up. I've tried all the sleep tips. Met with CBT specialist a few times. Nothing.

2013- Placed on 300mg buproprion, 100mg chlorpormazine

2019- Tapered to 50mg chlorpromazine 

5/2019- Went down to 150mg bupropion 

6/2019- Stopped taking bupropion 

11/2019- Chlorpormazine reinstated to 100mg

12/2019- Started Lamotrigine 100mg

10/2020- Started daily Ketamine Spray 60mg

3/2020-4/2021- Chlorpormazine taper 100mg-1.25mg

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  • 1 month later...

Bjeck, how are you doing?

1991- 1999          Prozac, then Zoloft

1999- present      Celexa 20mg, 6/2019 increased to 40mg

1999- present      Wellbutrin (bupropion SR), reduced from 200mg to 100mg SR 

1/2019-present   Buspar (buspirone) 20mg; 6/2019 increased to 40mg

4/2018-6/2019   Ativan 1mg; 6/2019 switched to Klonopin

6/2019-9/2019   Klonopin 1mg; 5 week taper 

1/2020                 plan slow taper off bupropion; then taper doses of Celexa and buspirone.

 

11/2019 added magnesium and increased fish oil

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  • 2 months later...

Things haven't been great. I've had early morning awakenings for the past 5 months. My psychiatrist kept telling me it was a sign of depression and convinced me to try 4 different antidepressants, which drove me up the walls and were quickly abandoned each time. Finally came to terms that my anxiety about sleep was keeping me from sleeping, and that combined with some benadryl keeps me asleep 5 nights of the week.

 

I recently started a new taper of the chlorpromazine. I've been dissolving a full pill in water. Haven't removed any at all yet, but today Day 4 I'm having full blown withdrawls. Pins and needles, shaky, and like an artificial anxiety that's not directed at anything in particular.

 

What's causing this? I'm not removing any of the medication yet. I haven't let the water sit for more than 3 hours. It almost feels as bad as 3 years ago when I attempted to quit cold turkey. I was really excited to try tapering this way so I could be more precise.

2013- Placed on 300mg buproprion, 100mg chlorpormazine

2019- Tapered to 50mg chlorpromazine 

5/2019- Went down to 150mg bupropion 

6/2019- Stopped taking bupropion 

11/2019- Chlorpormazine reinstated to 100mg

12/2019- Started Lamotrigine 100mg

10/2020- Started daily Ketamine Spray 60mg

3/2020-4/2021- Chlorpormazine taper 100mg-1.25mg

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  • 3 weeks later...

I would be very appreciative to any responses,  I've post a few times over 5 months and no one's ever answered me.

 

My water micro taper of the chlorpromazine didn't work. I have a micro scale, but with the 5 pill grinders/crushers I've tried I lose too much, and I'm too sensitive to even the smallest of cuts for that to work for me. I've tried to just use a file against the pill after weighing, but that doesn't seem to be very accurate either and I'm not making much progress, and having substantial withdrawls all the while.

 

What other options are available to me? Money is tight, I don't think I could afford a compounding pharmacy. I'm really at the end of my rope here, I would be extremely grateful for a response.

2013- Placed on 300mg buproprion, 100mg chlorpormazine

2019- Tapered to 50mg chlorpromazine 

5/2019- Went down to 150mg bupropion 

6/2019- Stopped taking bupropion 

11/2019- Chlorpormazine reinstated to 100mg

12/2019- Started Lamotrigine 100mg

10/2020- Started daily Ketamine Spray 60mg

3/2020-4/2021- Chlorpormazine taper 100mg-1.25mg

Link to post
  • 1 year later...
Bjeck

I'm almost done with my chlorpormazine taper, waiting for my withdrawals to clear then maybe I'll jump off...

 

But I really need some advice about my other medications. I'm taking benadryl nightly to help me sleep, and I've been frequently taking 150mg oxcarbazepine, maybe 3 nights a week the past month. Both brain slowing meds...

 

But the thing I'm worried about is the ketamine nasal spray I'm prescribed. It's been a miracle for my mood dealing with all the stress of this taper, but now I'm concerned about it.

 

The past week I've been having major cognition problems. Problems with word recall, to the point where it's almost just not worth getting in a conversation with someone. It feels like I have holes in my brain. But also, I feel more "***** up" on everything else I take, even when I get a great night of sleep.

 

The two scenarios going through my head are:

 

1) Antipsychotics can end a psychedelic trip, maybe it's dulled the effects of the ketamine and now it's a little too much now that I'm taking 1mg

 

2) I'm doing damage to my brain using ketamine everyday. Telling myself my brain will recover from an antipsychotic I can do, but there's not a lot of research into long term ketamine.

 

I tried taking a half dose of ketamine a week ago and it kicked off a really horrible week of chlorpormazine withdrawals. So I know it's hard to speculate on something with not a lot of info, but what should I do?

 

Should I just ride this out until I'm done and recovered with my taper? And more comfortable making big moves with my other medications?

 

Or is this something I need to worried about and I need work out a way to get off this ketamine spray? I don't even know how I could taper a nasal spray...

 

A response would really be appreciated. Even an "I don't know"

2013- Placed on 300mg buproprion, 100mg chlorpormazine

2019- Tapered to 50mg chlorpromazine 

5/2019- Went down to 150mg bupropion 

6/2019- Stopped taking bupropion 

11/2019- Chlorpormazine reinstated to 100mg

12/2019- Started Lamotrigine 100mg

10/2020- Started daily Ketamine Spray 60mg

3/2020-4/2021- Chlorpormazine taper 100mg-1.25mg

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Bjeck

I don't know why I even bother coming on here, I've literally never gotten a response from anyone... 

 

But on the off chance that someone can be bothered to respond:

 

My original dose of chlorpormazine was 100mg. I've tapered to 1.29mg. The 10mg pill I use is already small, I use a nail file to shave it down and measure with a caliper. I've gotten really good at it.

 

The size of pill I'm taking now is insanely small. I get paranoid I didn't even take it. I don't think I'm going to accurately/precisely be able to get it any lower. 

 

My taper method now really seems to be the only thing that works. Chlorpormazine is not stabile in water for a liquid taper. Measuring with a caliper is way more accurate than a scale, and it can't get a good reading on the amount I take anyways.

 

Is 1.29mg a good place to jump off? 

2013- Placed on 300mg buproprion, 100mg chlorpormazine

2019- Tapered to 50mg chlorpromazine 

5/2019- Went down to 150mg bupropion 

6/2019- Stopped taking bupropion 

11/2019- Chlorpormazine reinstated to 100mg

12/2019- Started Lamotrigine 100mg

10/2020- Started daily Ketamine Spray 60mg

3/2020-4/2021- Chlorpormazine taper 100mg-1.25mg

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Bjeck

This is just hilarious at this point, lol

 

I'll be back here once I'm finished and healed up to post my success story, so at least someone else can get some help.

 

 

 

 

2013- Placed on 300mg buproprion, 100mg chlorpormazine

2019- Tapered to 50mg chlorpromazine 

5/2019- Went down to 150mg bupropion 

6/2019- Stopped taking bupropion 

11/2019- Chlorpormazine reinstated to 100mg

12/2019- Started Lamotrigine 100mg

10/2020- Started daily Ketamine Spray 60mg

3/2020-4/2021- Chlorpormazine taper 100mg-1.25mg

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  • 2 weeks later...
Goosie

How r u now?

May 2018:  1 dropper liquid marajuana

june 2018. Trazadone ambien 10 mg

july 2018 seroquel 37 mg ambien 2.5mg lex 5

October 2018 taper seroquel added hydroxizine 25 mg

nov ambien taper lex taper 

dec 2018 off of lex off of phenibut

 

October 2018- added a lot of supplements.  night: 3mg melatonin Passion flower tincture valerian tincture lavender magnesium glycinate liquid gaba herbal blend Theanine 450 mg tryptophan 1.5 grams 

May 2019. Down to the following at night 

4-6 mg hydroxizine. 250 mg tryptophan (1/2 pill).75 mg melatonin pill .75 herbal blend pill magnesium citrate 

Feb 2020:Off all supplements and pills.

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Jumping off seemed to help with the cognitive issues, but I'm not 100% confident of that. I haven't had a "good day" yet where I can really assess how I'm feeling. Every night I've either not slept great, or taken something to help me sleep, so it's hard to tell.

 

I am feel ALOT less self conscious, so I think it's getting better. And a lot of this sleep stuff has been unrelated, I got the vaccine and I've been waking up shivering from a fever.

2013- Placed on 300mg buproprion, 100mg chlorpormazine

2019- Tapered to 50mg chlorpromazine 

5/2019- Went down to 150mg bupropion 

6/2019- Stopped taking bupropion 

11/2019- Chlorpormazine reinstated to 100mg

12/2019- Started Lamotrigine 100mg

10/2020- Started daily Ketamine Spray 60mg

3/2020-4/2021- Chlorpormazine taper 100mg-1.25mg

Link to post
Goosie

U still taking ketamine? Does it help?

May 2018:  1 dropper liquid marajuana

june 2018. Trazadone ambien 10 mg

july 2018 seroquel 37 mg ambien 2.5mg lex 5

October 2018 taper seroquel added hydroxizine 25 mg

nov ambien taper lex taper 

dec 2018 off of lex off of phenibut

 

October 2018- added a lot of supplements.  night: 3mg melatonin Passion flower tincture valerian tincture lavender magnesium glycinate liquid gaba herbal blend Theanine 450 mg tryptophan 1.5 grams 

May 2019. Down to the following at night 

4-6 mg hydroxizine. 250 mg tryptophan (1/2 pill).75 mg melatonin pill .75 herbal blend pill magnesium citrate 

Feb 2020:Off all supplements and pills.

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