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CasuallyMagical: Prozac stopped cold turkey


CasuallyMagical

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CasuallyMagical

Hello wonderful people. I’m going through withdrawals from 18 months on SSRIs, recently 9 months on 10 mg fluoxetine, after stopping cold turkey. I understand trying several drugs has increased my CNS sensitivity and made cessation worse then previous drugs. I had tried fluoxetine thirteen or so years ago briefly after a “friend” gave me their fluoxetine the loss of another companion. I stopped after a few weeks when I broke out into panic sweets I never had before and some random brain zaps. Fast forwarding to 2021, I completely stopped fluoxetine after ten days or two weeks of skipping a day of ‘meds’ on June 1st went cold turkey. It took three weeks before experiencing the withdrawals symptoms. I first felt the urge to answer the door but knowing I hadn’t actually heard anything but kept thinking that I had. That passed in two days then a day or two of extreme irritability. Then flu like symptoms kicked in on the 22nd of June. Followed by a 36 hour straight anxiety attack. I was very pale and mild fever, but mostly weak. I started sweating mildew smelling sweat from my neck and back only at night. This continued in waves and windows etc. As flu like symptoms diminished, they exchanged for fear and anxiety, excessive worry and depression like I have never experienced. …“This is not my depression.” On the drug I had paradoxical effects as well as off of. I experienced mania, racing thoughts, and a complete switch from patience and thoughtfulness  to a being a complete @-hole. The entire time on/off until recently I have had severe acid reflux,  occasional hyperarousal, and strange sexual side effects. I can’t touch caffeine anymore after being a three cups a day drinker. Did I forget the daily crying spells, nausea, dizziness, ‘flash’ rashes and often a strong inability to focus? I actually don’t mind the crying spells since I am indeed actually going through hard times despite the withdrawals. 
 

I started feeling better until about a week ago, august 20th began a new low point. I think  I entered a new phase of withdrawal. I started getting tingling and numbness in my hands mostly. The flu symptoms are less but anxiety has new caveats such as waking up abruptly, not being able to sleep at night then sleeping in the daylight hours. The weird sweating is mostly gone. I get a strange  metallic taste sometimes  and jaw clenching is almost daily. The depression is not as bad, so hopefully my brain is adjusting. What is getting unbearable is the fatigue and tinnitus. The tinnitus started a few days into August and has slowly gotten worse. I thought I could go back to work but two days of work exhausted me so that I basically went into another low point.
 

I am forever done with antidepressants. I would rather eat glass then take another antidepressant ever again. The way I see it is yes I stopped too quickly, but it was having a dangerous paradoxical effect, all antidepressants I have taken have in some form or another, especially fluoxetine. These days of my life are wasted on the withdrawals symptoms, and I often consider if I could trade making symptoms worse if it would speed up this process so that I could be within a range of starting normal life again. 
 


I stopped a stronger dose of duloxetine after a year in 2019 with much less consequences than now. I think I do have a higher sensitivity to fluoxetine as well as the Lexapro and paroxetine I had taken starting late 2020 to probably July 2021(I can’t recall exact details atm). Anybody else report sensitivity to one drug in particular? How likely/often is this change permanent? Does the ototoxicity and tinnitus symptoms ever stop? 

This is hell, I feel so bad for the others who experiences are far worse than my own. 

2011 bupropion 

2011-2013 Ritalin then mostly adderall 

March 2017 - August 2017 sertraline 50mg

September 2017 - January 2019 Duloxetine 20mg

February 2020 - July 2020 Lexapro 10mg

August 2020 - mid September 2020 paroxetine 

mid September 2020 - mid May 2021 10mg fluoxetine 

Mid May - June 1st 10mg fluoxetine every other day

June 1st cold turkey 

 

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  • Moderator

Welcome to this support site. Before we can answer your questions, please give us more information first. Good that you came here. There is a lot of knowledge to be found and shared here. Also the members can support each other here.

 

Can you please give us specific information about your drug history for all drugs you are on and have been on?  It would be especially helpful to have the details of your drugs in a concise list (no symptoms), only drug names, specific dates (as best you can say for example early March if you don't recall the day) and dosages of each medication decrease or increase.  Please read the link below for instructions.  This will allow us to give you the best guidance.  

 

Be very specific about the dosage and meds changes over the last 12-24 months please! After having this info, we can react more in detail.

 

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/18343-please-summarize-your-withdrawal-history-in-your-signature/

 

So sorry to read what you are going through. All symptoms you describe are typical withdrawal symptoms from anti depressants. We see very often that the more often people start and stop AD's the more sensitive they get to changes...

 

Here is already some important info:

 

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/82-the-windows-and-waves-pattern-of-stabilization/

 

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/759-tips-for-tapering-off-prozac-fluoxetine/

 

 

 

1993    Anafranil (Clomipramine) for a few months. Later in 1993 Paxil for a few months 1993- 2006      No medication

2006   Effexor, Cymbalta, some Benzo’s. All for short periods. Later in 2006 Lexapro (escitalopram) 10 mg and shortly after Wellbutrin XR 150mg, against side effects Lexapro 

Since 2006 until end of 2015: Several times on and off Lexapro and Wellbutrin and several slight dosage changes. Mostly taken dosages: 5mg Lexapro and 150mg Wellbutrin

2016  Dosage change Lexapro from 5mg to 2,5 mg. Wellbutrin stayed om 150mg

November 2016 – April 2017 Down from 2,5mg to 0,6mg Lexapro (in steps) without much problems. Wellbutrin down from 150mg to 66mg. Also without much problems.

April 2017 – March 2019       Lexapro 0,6 mg        April 2017 - August 2018       Wellbutrin in small steps down from 66mg in to 37,5 mg . Quite heavy WD after each step.

March 2019 – May 2019 Lexapro down from 0,6 to 0,3mg then Prozac to 0,6 mg switch because severe discontinuation effects (may also have been from Wellbutrin..)    

Wellbutrin down from 37,5mg to 35,3mg 

October 2019        Seroquel 12,5 mg for 4 weeks because of extreme sleeping problems, then weaning off in 2 weeks       Prozac up dosage to 1,2 mg

March 2020     Wellbutrin in 2 steps down from 35,3mg to 33,3mg   Extreme withdrawal affects during 8 months. Stopped tapering Wellbutrin  until total off Prozac. February 2020 – November 2020   Prozac down in steps from 1,2mg to 0,57mg. 

Jan 2021 Prozac down to:  0,55> 0,53>0,51mg,   Feb 0,47mg ,  Mar 0,42mg,   Apr 0,37, longer hold because of WD symptoms July 0,36 and hold again

 

Supplements: Fish Oil (3000mg), Magnesium 100 mg, 2 drops of Lavender Oil when feeling anxiety. 50mg of L-Theanine when severe discontinuation effects caused by Wellbutrin

 

Please note this is NOT a medical advice. Discuss all your medical issues with a doctor who understands psychical drugs and really knows how to withdraw from them. I wish that you will find one.

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  • Go2zero changed the title to CasuallyMagical: Prozac stopped cold turkey
  • 3 weeks later...
CasuallyMagical

At 100 days from my last 10mg dose, why are some symptoms going away and gastrointestinal symptoms and tinnitus worsening? Is this common? 

2011 bupropion 

2011-2013 Ritalin then mostly adderall 

March 2017 - August 2017 sertraline 50mg

September 2017 - January 2019 Duloxetine 20mg

February 2020 - July 2020 Lexapro 10mg

August 2020 - mid September 2020 paroxetine 

mid September 2020 - mid May 2021 10mg fluoxetine 

Mid May - June 1st 10mg fluoxetine every other day

June 1st cold turkey 

 

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  • Moderator

Thank you for making your signature. This gives us important information.

 

The fact that you experience more withdrawal symptoms now compared to other times you stopped, has probably to do with the fact that you have been using, switching and stopping many AD's in history.

 

The more often we do this, the more sensitized our nervous system may get. So it does not have to do with the prozac itself, but more with all the changes in history.

 

2 hours ago, CasuallyMagical said:

At 100 days from my last 10mg dose, why are some symptoms going away and gastrointestinal symptoms and tinnitus worsening? Is this common? 

 

Symptoms come and go. That is common... This happens in the pattern of waves and windows (see my first post). It can never be said what symptoms will come or go next or how long they last. In the end they will go as part of the healing. 

 

No one can say how long this will take. We all react different.

 

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/23081-are-we-there-yet-how-long-is-withdrawal-going-to-take/?tab=comments#comment-492493

 

When one tapered too fast or went CT there is a possibility to TRY and decrease withdrawal symptom by reinstating a very low dose of the med. Normally we advice this when one stopped not more than 1 month ago. After this month the success rate becomes less. But prozac has a very long half life and it takes up to 3 months to wash out from the body. So if you want you could try. 

 

It is not without risk, but maybe worthwhile trying when WD symptoms are heavy. Please read this first:

 

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/7562-about-reinstating-and-stabilizing-to-reduce-withdrawal-symptoms/?tab=comments#comment-33809

 

If you want to do this, I would advise to start with 1 mg prozac and see if that helps. Give it at least on week to see what it does.

 

The easiest way it to ask you doctor for liquid prozac. That works easiest for taking such low dosages. Alternative is making your own liquid from prozac pills.

 

 

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/2693-how-to-make-a-liquid-from-tablets-or-capsules/

 

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/1596-using-a-scale-to-weigh-and-measure-doses/

 

1993    Anafranil (Clomipramine) for a few months. Later in 1993 Paxil for a few months 1993- 2006      No medication

2006   Effexor, Cymbalta, some Benzo’s. All for short periods. Later in 2006 Lexapro (escitalopram) 10 mg and shortly after Wellbutrin XR 150mg, against side effects Lexapro 

Since 2006 until end of 2015: Several times on and off Lexapro and Wellbutrin and several slight dosage changes. Mostly taken dosages: 5mg Lexapro and 150mg Wellbutrin

2016  Dosage change Lexapro from 5mg to 2,5 mg. Wellbutrin stayed om 150mg

November 2016 – April 2017 Down from 2,5mg to 0,6mg Lexapro (in steps) without much problems. Wellbutrin down from 150mg to 66mg. Also without much problems.

April 2017 – March 2019       Lexapro 0,6 mg        April 2017 - August 2018       Wellbutrin in small steps down from 66mg in to 37,5 mg . Quite heavy WD after each step.

March 2019 – May 2019 Lexapro down from 0,6 to 0,3mg then Prozac to 0,6 mg switch because severe discontinuation effects (may also have been from Wellbutrin..)    

Wellbutrin down from 37,5mg to 35,3mg 

October 2019        Seroquel 12,5 mg for 4 weeks because of extreme sleeping problems, then weaning off in 2 weeks       Prozac up dosage to 1,2 mg

March 2020     Wellbutrin in 2 steps down from 35,3mg to 33,3mg   Extreme withdrawal affects during 8 months. Stopped tapering Wellbutrin  until total off Prozac. February 2020 – November 2020   Prozac down in steps from 1,2mg to 0,57mg. 

Jan 2021 Prozac down to:  0,55> 0,53>0,51mg,   Feb 0,47mg ,  Mar 0,42mg,   Apr 0,37, longer hold because of WD symptoms July 0,36 and hold again

 

Supplements: Fish Oil (3000mg), Magnesium 100 mg, 2 drops of Lavender Oil when feeling anxiety. 50mg of L-Theanine when severe discontinuation effects caused by Wellbutrin

 

Please note this is NOT a medical advice. Discuss all your medical issues with a doctor who understands psychical drugs and really knows how to withdraw from them. I wish that you will find one.

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CasuallyMagical

I was on Lexapro  for a 8 months before fluoxetine. I understand it purely effects Serotonin receptors unlike fluoxetine can also alter norepinephrine. Would a .5-1mg (or equivalent strength) dose of lexapro help ease the transition? Fluoxetine had some frightening side effects to my personality. Lexapro had too many strange bodily side effects so I thought I’d give fluoxetine a chance. 
 

I might need to tough it out but I frequently and without warning have very low to no energy.  I have been water fasting four days now and oddly have more energy(not by much but fasting is helping). 

2011 bupropion 

2011-2013 Ritalin then mostly adderall 

March 2017 - August 2017 sertraline 50mg

September 2017 - January 2019 Duloxetine 20mg

February 2020 - July 2020 Lexapro 10mg

August 2020 - mid September 2020 paroxetine 

mid September 2020 - mid May 2021 10mg fluoxetine 

Mid May - June 1st 10mg fluoxetine every other day

June 1st cold turkey 

 

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  • Moderator
6 hours ago, CasuallyMagical said:

I was on Lexapro  for a 8 months before fluoxetine.

Your signature shows that you were on paroxetine as well before fluoxetine. And 5 months before that on lexapro?  Please tell in detail with dosage and dates what you have used before. Please also put it in your signature.

 

On 8/27/2021 at 8:02 PM, CasuallyMagical said:

I think I do have a higher sensitivity to fluoxetine as well as the Lexapro and paroxetine I had taken starting late 2020 to probably July 2021(I can’t recall exact details atm).

 

I understand you had sensitivity to lexapro as well. 

 

What is you plan and where do you want help with?

 

Do you want to stop these meds? Are you looking for an alternative med? Do you want to reinstate a very low dose to try and stop withdrawal symptoms? 

 

Reintatement with a very low dose might be tricky. You are quite late for reinstatement. Normally we say within 1 month after stopping. If you would reinstate, I would say with Prozac. Since that was the med you have been using in the last year. Reinstating with an other med would be more tricky and unlogic. Furthermore you say that most meds (also lexapro) gave you negative reactions.

 

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/7562-about-reinstating-and-stabilizing-to-reduce-withdrawal-symptoms/?tab=comments#comment-33809

 

If you would choose to reinstate, I think it would be best to start with 1 mg prozac and see what that does. You would need to give it at least 1 - 2 weeks.

 

A good way would be to do that with liquid prozac since that is much more accurate to dose then weighing small dosages of pills or capsules.

 

If you cannot get liquid prozac you could make your own from pills or capsules. If you need advise with that, please let us know.

 

1993    Anafranil (Clomipramine) for a few months. Later in 1993 Paxil for a few months 1993- 2006      No medication

2006   Effexor, Cymbalta, some Benzo’s. All for short periods. Later in 2006 Lexapro (escitalopram) 10 mg and shortly after Wellbutrin XR 150mg, against side effects Lexapro 

Since 2006 until end of 2015: Several times on and off Lexapro and Wellbutrin and several slight dosage changes. Mostly taken dosages: 5mg Lexapro and 150mg Wellbutrin

2016  Dosage change Lexapro from 5mg to 2,5 mg. Wellbutrin stayed om 150mg

November 2016 – April 2017 Down from 2,5mg to 0,6mg Lexapro (in steps) without much problems. Wellbutrin down from 150mg to 66mg. Also without much problems.

April 2017 – March 2019       Lexapro 0,6 mg        April 2017 - August 2018       Wellbutrin in small steps down from 66mg in to 37,5 mg . Quite heavy WD after each step.

March 2019 – May 2019 Lexapro down from 0,6 to 0,3mg then Prozac to 0,6 mg switch because severe discontinuation effects (may also have been from Wellbutrin..)    

Wellbutrin down from 37,5mg to 35,3mg 

October 2019        Seroquel 12,5 mg for 4 weeks because of extreme sleeping problems, then weaning off in 2 weeks       Prozac up dosage to 1,2 mg

March 2020     Wellbutrin in 2 steps down from 35,3mg to 33,3mg   Extreme withdrawal affects during 8 months. Stopped tapering Wellbutrin  until total off Prozac. February 2020 – November 2020   Prozac down in steps from 1,2mg to 0,57mg. 

Jan 2021 Prozac down to:  0,55> 0,53>0,51mg,   Feb 0,47mg ,  Mar 0,42mg,   Apr 0,37, longer hold because of WD symptoms July 0,36 and hold again

 

Supplements: Fish Oil (3000mg), Magnesium 100 mg, 2 drops of Lavender Oil when feeling anxiety. 50mg of L-Theanine when severe discontinuation effects caused by Wellbutrin

 

Please note this is NOT a medical advice. Discuss all your medical issues with a doctor who understands psychical drugs and really knows how to withdraw from them. I wish that you will find one.

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CasuallyMagical

Good I guess, because Im not interested in more drugs. My fear is towards my tingling and numbness in my hands, tinnitus, severe acid reflux, but mostly the exhaustion. I’m starting to get my mood and some energy back and things showing slight signs that my body is healing. I got a job a few weeks ago and two days of work exhausted me to my core and I was in bed for three days. Is this the rest of my life, the damage is done? Isn’t 110 day long enough to recover from 10mg Prozac? 

2011 bupropion 

2011-2013 Ritalin then mostly adderall 

March 2017 - August 2017 sertraline 50mg

September 2017 - January 2019 Duloxetine 20mg

February 2020 - July 2020 Lexapro 10mg

August 2020 - mid September 2020 paroxetine 

mid September 2020 - mid May 2021 10mg fluoxetine 

Mid May - June 1st 10mg fluoxetine every other day

June 1st cold turkey 

 

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On 9/15/2021 at 6:17 AM, Go2zero said:

Your signature shows that you were on paroxetine as well before fluoxetine. And 5 months before that on lexapro?  Please tell in detail with dosage and dates what you have used before. Please also put it in your signature.

 

6 almost 7 months on lexapro before a 5-6 week period with paroxetine, then fluoxetine 10mg for almost nine months. 

2011 bupropion 

2011-2013 Ritalin then mostly adderall 

March 2017 - August 2017 sertraline 50mg

September 2017 - January 2019 Duloxetine 20mg

February 2020 - July 2020 Lexapro 10mg

August 2020 - mid September 2020 paroxetine 

mid September 2020 - mid May 2021 10mg fluoxetine 

Mid May - June 1st 10mg fluoxetine every other day

June 1st cold turkey 

 

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