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Nelis: My medication history


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Hey guys,


I found this forum a while ago and it got me interested. I am a 24 year old male from the Netherlands who has been suffering from depression and anxiety since 2014. I have had many bouts of depression and/or anxiety and they're still there.

Since late 2016 I have tried a number of different medications. After started tapering down my escitalopram in the summer of 2019. I tapered from 10mg to 7,5mg (stayed on that dose for like a month), then tapered to 5mg (stayed on that dose for about a month again),

then tapered to 2,5mg (stayed on that dose for a month again) and then quit. I quit my Wellbutrin 150mg XR at the same time. After I went from 2,5mg to 0mg in early August 2019 I had some very severe withdrawal symptoms. I had never experienced something like that, even though I quit other drugs before (Wellbutrin and dexamphetamine). My (early) withdrawal looked something like this: I had very severe anxiety for about 2 weeks after quitting, also had weird nightmarish dreams, felt dizzy at times and had a weird sensation when turning my head (a sort of vertigo/dizziness). After 2 weeks the more ''physical'' symptoms (the vertigo/dizziness) was mostly gone. I didn't feel as on edge anymore and had a sense of stabilization. However, from that point in time up until now I have been quite anxious on a daily basis and also depressed.


The anxiety I have experienced for over a year is a strange kind of anxiety. I was anxious before starting escitalopram, hence is why I started it in the first place. However, the anxiety I experience now feels quite different. It's like a continuous stream of light panic attacks. Like the feeling you get when someone scares you (like the feeling you get when you drop a glass). Also my thinking is very negative and I feel like I will never get out of this place. Over the past year I have tried to reinstate escitalopram twice and have also tried to reinstate Wellbutrin 3 or 4 times. I am currently on Wellbutrin and have been for 9 days. I also take pregabaline 75mg twice daily. The positive thing is that I haven't quit Wellbutrin yet this time and probably won't. I plan on trying it for at least a few months to see if my mood improves. I have been on twice before. The first time I was on it for a month, the second time I was on it for 2-3 months. The second time I was also on escitalopram. In hindsight I was actually quite stable back then, but my emotions felt dulled at times. I decided to quit both medications at the same time. As said before, I had been tapering off the escitalopram from 10mg to 2,5mg. The Wellbutrin I didn't taper, because it's not really possible in my country. We don't have to 50mg - 100mg IR dosing, just the 150mg XR dosing. In hindsight I think I shouldn't have quit both medications at the same time, but I thought it was safe as I couldn't really taper them any lower. Anyways, Wellbutrin lifts my mood and gets rid of my depression almost completely. I have fair hope that a reduction in my depression will also reduce my anxiety, but I am not sure.


I have been reading about prolonged SSRI withdrawal on this website, and about the waves and windows pattern. I do recognize some of the things that are often said on this forum, but I have 0 physical symptoms. Physically I am completely healthy. It's all in my head. I do feel however that the anxiety I have now been experiencing for over a year might be because of prolonged SSRI withdrawal. I am not sure however. I have always been anxious. At the moment my depression and anxiety are so debilitating that my life is not really worth living. However, I hope that the Wellbutrin will make a change. 


That is my story. Thanks for reading.


PS. this is an overview of my medication history:


November 2016 - February 2017: methylphenidate 2x10mg daily
February 2017 - September 2018: dexamphetamine 2x7,5mg daily
October 2018 - November 2018: Wellbutrin 150mg xr daily + quetiapine occasionally for sleep
December 2018 - August 2019: escitalopram 10mg daily (5mg daily for the first months)
May 2019 - August 2019: Wellbutrin 150mg xr daily
September/October 2019: dexamphetamine occasionally 
November 2019 - December 2019: tried to reinstate with escitalopram, didn't work
January 2020: tried to reinstate with Wellbutrin, didn't work
March 2020: tried to reinstate with sertraline, didn't work.
Late March/Early April 2020: September 2020: escitalopram 10mg/15mg

July 2020: Vyvanse 30mg daily for a week, then quit

August 2020: methylphenidate 10mg occasionally
October 2020: Wellbutrin 150mg xr + pregabaline 2x75mg daily

Okt 2018 - Nov 2018: Wellbutrin 150mg XR

Dec 2018 - August 2019: Lexapro 10mg (from about May 2019 I was decreasing my dose in steps of 2,5mg at a time)

May 2019 - August 2019: Wellbutrin 150mg XR

I quit Lexapro 2,5mg cold turkey in August 2019. At the same time I quit Wellbutrin 150mg XR cold turkey

November 2019: reinstated Lexapro at 5mg (tapered down after reinstating didn't work)

January 2020: reinstated Wellbutrin 150mg XR (quit after 2 weeks because of increased anxiety, didn't taper)

March 2020: sertraline 25mg for 3 weeks

April 2020 - July 2020: reinstated Lexapro 10mg (tapered down after reinstating didn't work)

August 2020: amitriptyline 25mg for 6 days

November 2020 - reinstates Wellbutrin 150mg XR (quit after a month because of increased anxiety, didn't taper)

December 2020 - present: right now I only use pregabalin 75mg twice daily (occasionally I take Lorazepam 1mg)

In between these events I have taken a number of different ADHD-meds (methylphenidate, dexamphetamine, vyvanse) for differing timeframes

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  • manymoretodays changed the title to Nelis: My medication history
  • Moderator

Welcome to SA, Nelis.


To give members the best information, we ask them to summarize their medication history in a signature -- drugs, doses, dates, and discontinuations & reinstatements, in the last 12-24 months particularly.  You can is ply pick up the medication history in your post, click on the link, paste it and press "save."  It will then appear at the bottom of all your posts.


Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature.


As you've figured out, you're experiencing withdrawal from your fast taper of Escitalopram or Wellbutrin or both.  Withdrawal symptoms can be physical, mental or emotional or all three.  It varies according to the person. (I've had physical and emotional.) The symptoms you describe are typical of withdrawal.  Anxiety and depression are very common withdrawal symptoms, and what you said about the anxiety you're now experiencing being different from your previous anxiety points clearly to withdrawal.  You may already be familiar with some of this information, but I want to provide you with some links on withdrawal and the healing process.


What is withdrawal syndrome.


Daily Checklist of Antidepressant Withdrawal Symptoms (PDF) 


The Windows and Waves Pattern of Stabilization


When we take psychiatric medications, the CNS (central nervous system) responds by making changes over the months and years we take the drug(s). When the medication is discontinued, the CNS has to undo all the changes it made. Rebuilding the neurotransmitter production and reactivating the receptor and transporter cells takes time -- during that rebuilding process symptoms occur.  


These explain the healing process really well.


Brain Remodelling 


Video:  Healing From Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery


We're a site for helping members to taper off psychiatric drugs and to deal with withdrawal.  Should the time come when you want to taper the Wellbutrin and/or the Pregabalin, we'll be happy to help you.  For future reference, we recommend tapering by no more than 10% of current dose every four weeks and that you taper only only drug at a time.  There are ways to taper WellbutrinXR.


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. 


Magnesium, nature's calcium channel blocker 


Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil) 


Add in one at a time and at a low dose in case you do experience problems.


We also recommend non-drug techniques to cope with withdrawal.


Non-drug techniques to cope


This is your Introduction topic, where you complete your drug signature, ask questions and connect with other members.  We're glad you found your way here.










Edited by Gridley

Gridley Introduction


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

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

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

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.


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

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

Feb. 2021, begin 10%/4 week taper of 18.75mg Valium  

End 2021  year 1 of taper at 6mg

End 2022 year 2 of taper at 2.75mg 

Current dose as of Feb. 25, 2023 2mg

Taper is 89% complete.


Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan-Sept 2016 tapered to 14.4mg  

March 22, 2022: Begin 10%/4 week taper

Aug. 5, 2022: hold at 9.5mg and shift to Valium taper

Taper is 87% 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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Welcome to this forum Nelis! Nice to see a fellow Dutchie here.


It seems like you have tapered several medications quite drastically. For example the Lexapro, when dropping 2,5 mg in one go and staying there for only one month. That's a pretty steep decrease of over 10%, something that isn't particularly good for your nervous system. Compounded by the fact that Lexapro/escitalopram is quite a potent SSRI in and of itself. 

Your nervous system might already have been shaky at that point.


Perhaps your nervous system is still reeling. 

Good that you're here though. Now is a good time to try to gain stability and take your time to plot the best way forward.a

Antidepressant history

2001 - 2018: Paxil / seroxat (20 mgs), several failed c/t and taper attempts.

2018-September: last failed c/t attempt.

2018-October: reinstated Paxil (30 mgs)

2018-October thru 2019-January: Short-term Oxazepam & Diazepam use. Tapered off very slowly. Jumped 10Jan2019.

Brassmonkey Slide Method stats

Currently on hold on 0,1 mgpw after an updose due to becoming increasingly unstable.

Supplements: C, D, Magnesium

Miscellaneous: low on alcohol (1/2 times/year). No substance abuse. Lower carb diet with cheat days. Wim Hof Method. Buteyko. Calisthenics. Hiking.

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