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Cheekycherryuk: withdrawal cold turkey


cheekycherryuk

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Hi All,

 

8 years ago my husband was transferred to England and within a year here, I was put on Citalopram for depression and anxiety.  This makes a lot of sense having come from a very close knit family with quite a bit of support.  I found it extremely difficult to make friends in London and stayed on the anti-depressants, changing  and changing until I found one that ‘worked’ for me until I got pregnant 3 years ago.  I went cold turkey from Fluoxitine at that point and the only reason I can think that I didn’t notice withdrawal symptoms was because I was pregnant and felt like hell anyway.

 

Just before I got pregnant I was diagnosed by a doc in my home country with adrenal fatigue syndrome.  Something I could hardly treat through my difficult pregnancy.

 

My daughter was a colic and reflux baby and every day was an absolute nightmare for the first months after her birth.  My family, for various reasons, could not come to help me.  It’s not surprise that I was diagnosed with postnatal depression.  Little did I know at the time that the PND had everything to do with very little sleep and adrenal fatigue that had worsened causing depression.

 

I went back on anti-depression medication and went through 4 different types of drugs until Venlafaxine and Propanalol, and high dosages of it, finally made me numb and I could function if I had a list telling me what needed to be done.  Up until 11 days ago, I had been trying to reduce the medication by 1 pill a couple of days a week.

 

I went cold turkey from the AD meds by accident. 

 

I ran out of my meds and thought I’d get my prescription (repeat prescription) filled the next day.  To cut a long story short, I was only able to get my prescription the following Wednesday by which time I was as sick as a dog and realised that I had been going through withdrawal. Since I wanted to wean off the drugs anyway and I’d already been through 6 days I decided not to refill my prescription.

 

I had the typical symptoms which others who have had withdrawal from Effexors have reported.  I stupidly thought that a few days without my medication (as I couldn’t get the prescription) would just leave me feeling down.  I had no idea I would be so sick. 

 

My husband is NEVER off work for any reason but he had to stay home with me as I could hardly walk.  I was so dizzy I was vomiting; my muscles ached; I was weak and my head felt like my brain was being shaken inside my head like an egg in a yolk.  I suffered headaches, cold sweats and muscle tenseness.  All I wanted to do was sleep but when I did I had horrific nightmares.

 

I still have a bit of lingering dizziness but it is getting better every day. It took 9 days for most of the symptoms to ease.  The physical symptoms I mean.

 

I am struggling horribly with tearful episodes and lack of patience. I’m having angry outbursts that are uncharacteristic.  On the meds, I was numb and couldn’t seem to feel anything, let alone anger. Off them I feel like a nervous breakdown waiting to happen BUT for the first time in 3 years I am able to feel.  

 

On the anti-depressants I felt numb, unmotivated, exhausted, my memory was shot, my quality of sleep was really low and when I did sleep I had nightmares or very busy dreams. My weight sky-rocketed and I also found that while I was mostly numb to emotions; good and bad; I was a prime candidate for anxiety attacks which I had to take propanalol (beta blockers) for.

 

I naively thought that I’d go off the meds and would suddenly feel better.  I did not realise that my adrenal glands have still not recovered and that the lingering effects of the drugs would make me feel so exhausted and lacklustre. I have since started taking adrenal fatigue supplements in the hope the hopes that they help.

 

I guess I still have a lot of work to day in getting my health back on track.  The biggest areas in which I would hope to see improvements in is my energy levels, sleep quality and memory. I’d also like to see my weight reduced.

 

I know that I’m going to have good days and bad days and I guess that’s what I’m doing here.  I’m hoping to find drug free ways to cope and lead a normal life.

 

 

Recovering from Effexor withdrawal 300mg Effexor.

2006 Citalopram (don't remember dosage)

2006-2007 Prozac 20-40mg

end 2007 - 50mg Lustral

2008-2009 Fluoxitine 20mg

Pregnant November 2009 - August 2010 - drug free

from Jan 2011 - November 2011 20 - 60 mg Fluoxitine

November 2011 - August 2013 Venlafaxine 75-300mg

 

 

 

‘A good life is when you smile a lot, dream big, laugh a lot and realise how blessed you are for what you have.’ Anon

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I am so sorry to read that you are so sick. Effexor is a very nasty drug to withdraw from. I've tried it myself and know

how it feels. The first thing you will be advised is to get a prescription as soon as possible and reinstate. Then, when

you have stabilised and withdrawal has stopped you can start to taper slowly. You can get off it safely and with little

disruption but it needs to be slowly. I know that is probably not what you want to hear but it really is the best way to

get it out of your system without too much discomfort. I don't know anything about propranolol so can't comment on

that one.Staff will be along to help soon, they are the best . 

Heres a link to the venlafaxine taper thread. 

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/272-tips-for-tapering-off-effexor-and-effexor-xr-venlafaxine/

**I am not a medical professional, if in doubt please consult a doctor with withdrawal knowledge.

 

 

Different drugs occasionally (mostly benzos) 1976 - 1981 (no problem)

1993 - 2002 in and out of hospital. every type of drug + ECT. Staring with seroxat

2002  effexor. 

Tapered  March 2012 to March 2013, ending with 5 beads.

Withdrawal April 2013 . Reinstated 5 beads reduced to 4 beads May 2013

Restarted taper  Nov 2013  

OFF EFFEXOR Feb 2015    :D 

Tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

Tapering tramadol, Feb 2015 100mg , March 2015 50mg  

 July 2017 30mg.  May 15 2018 25mg

Taking fish oil, magnesium, B12, folic acid, bilberry eyebright for eye pressure. 

 

My story http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4199-hello-mammap-checking-in/page-33

 

Lesson learned, slow down taper at lower doses. Taper no more than 10% of CURRENT dose if possible

 

 

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Hello, Cheeky -

 

First of all, please enter your drug history in your signature when you have time.  Here are directions:

 

How To Enter Your Drug History In Your Signature

 

How long have you been off the Effexor?  If it's been less than a month, reinstating the drug is the best thing you can possibly do for yourself.  You likely won't need to reinstate the full amount you were taking, but I'm not sure what to advise because I don't know how much you were on.

 

I know this is probably the last thing you want to hear, but believe me, going back on the drug, stabilizing, and  tapering off slowly and gradually is a far better choice than very likely going through cold turkey and suffering for months to years with withdrawal symptoms.  I did a very fast taper off Lexapro in December of 2011 and I'm not completely over withdrawal yet.  I'm a lot better than I was then, but it's been a hellish nineteen months.

 

There are no supplements that will help you prepare for cold turkey withdrawal or any kind of withdrawal, for that matter.

 

Welcome to the forum.  You'll find lots of solid information and friendly support here.

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor


Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/

 

Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.

 

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Welcome Cheeky,

 

I agree with Jemima - if you can reinstate a small dose of Effexor it may save you from a world of pain in the long-run.

 

regarding supplements - they can do more harm than good when you're dealing with a compromised central nervous system. In fact they can have the opposite effect sometimes. Personally I don't take any supplements because I'm hypersensitive to all of them.

 

I wish you all the best:)

July 2001 prescribed 20mg citalopram for depression;
On and off meds from 2003-2006.
February 2006 back on 20mg citalopram and stayed on it until my last attempt at tapering in September 2011.
By far the worst withdrawal symptoms ever. Reinstated to 20mg citalopram
October 2012 - found this forum!
Nov 2012 to Feb 2013 did 10% taper, got doen to 11mg - was going great until stressful situation. Cortisol levels hit the roof, hideous insomnia forced me to updose to 20mg.
March 2016 - close to 100% back to normal!



****** I am not a medical practitioner, any advice I give comes from my own experience or reading and is only my perspective ******

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Hi all,

 

Thanks for your replies.  I was on 300mg of Venlafaxine. My dosage was doubled last summer so basically I was on 300mg from one year and was on 75mg for 6 months then 150mg for 6 months.

 

I'm confused.  I had assumed that now that the major symptoms (besides a little dizziness) has worn off I would be okay and that was it fror the withdrawal.  What is in store for me in terms of withdrawal?

Recovering from Effexor withdrawal 300mg Effexor.

2006 Citalopram (don't remember dosage)

2006-2007 Prozac 20-40mg

end 2007 - 50mg Lustral

2008-2009 Fluoxitine 20mg

Pregnant November 2009 - August 2010 - drug free

from Jan 2011 - November 2011 20 - 60 mg Fluoxitine

November 2011 - August 2013 Venlafaxine 75-300mg

 

 

 

‘A good life is when you smile a lot, dream big, laugh a lot and realise how blessed you are for what you have.’ Anon

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I would be very surprised Cherry if that was it with withdrawal. Typically people end up back on them 

when it seems that the original illness has returned when it is in fact withdrawal. Some people have been fine

for a few months then withdrawal has started again. When that happens it can be too late to reinstate and 

there are people here who have been in withdrawal for years, this is called protracted withdrawal

. That is the worst case scenario and I am not trying to alarm you.

Of course there are some who quit and are just fine, that is the case for around 28%

of peope. A long history of different drugs makes it more likely for problems because the nervous system is

compromised.

 I got down to just 5 beads from a capsule when I gave up, I thought I was fine but 4 weeks later

withdrawal started and it was terrible.  My history is very complicated with many meds over the years and that 

probably made it so bad for me. I was absolutely fine tapering just a few beads at a time and felt better and better

with each drop.  As I was down to cutting just one bead then waiting a month before the next, I should have stuck at it 

bead by bead for the next 5 months. 

 

That sounds like an awful long time and I was over a year tapering from 37.5, but I was doing great and feeling

better mentally  than I had for years.  This is just my story, you may be able to get down faster, and could be fine

if you stay off now but it is a gamble. Please browse the forums and read some experiences, especially the 

symptoms board. There are some sticky posts at the top which explain some symptoms. 

 

Staff have advised that it can be a small dose., I would suggest breaking a 75mg capsule and taking just 25% 

of the beads  to start  to see how it goes. Or you could ask your doctor for the liquid which is now available in the uk.

It is 5ml per 37.5mg . I now have liquid to finish my taper..  It is entirely your decision and whatever you decide

there will be support for you here. I can't remember if it's been said already but it isn't just a problem while this drug

is leaving the body as is the case with many drugs, these drugs make changes in the brain and central nervous system .

These changes are reversible but take time, and tapering slowly means they can adjust and heal better with small reductions. 

 

Hope that helps you to understand and I haven't confused you. If I am wrong then someone will put me right, this is based on 

my own experience. 

**I am not a medical professional, if in doubt please consult a doctor with withdrawal knowledge.

 

 

Different drugs occasionally (mostly benzos) 1976 - 1981 (no problem)

1993 - 2002 in and out of hospital. every type of drug + ECT. Staring with seroxat

2002  effexor. 

Tapered  March 2012 to March 2013, ending with 5 beads.

Withdrawal April 2013 . Reinstated 5 beads reduced to 4 beads May 2013

Restarted taper  Nov 2013  

OFF EFFEXOR Feb 2015    :D 

Tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

Tapering tramadol, Feb 2015 100mg , March 2015 50mg  

 July 2017 30mg.  May 15 2018 25mg

Taking fish oil, magnesium, B12, folic acid, bilberry eyebright for eye pressure. 

 

My story http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4199-hello-mammap-checking-in/page-33

 

Lesson learned, slow down taper at lower doses. Taper no more than 10% of CURRENT dose if possible

 

 

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Thanks silver star.  The venlafaxine I was on was a solid pill and not a capsule from which I can reduce beads. 

Recovering from Effexor withdrawal 300mg Effexor.

2006 Citalopram (don't remember dosage)

2006-2007 Prozac 20-40mg

end 2007 - 50mg Lustral

2008-2009 Fluoxitine 20mg

Pregnant November 2009 - August 2010 - drug free

from Jan 2011 - November 2011 20 - 60 mg Fluoxitine

November 2011 - August 2013 Venlafaxine 75-300mg

 

 

 

‘A good life is when you smile a lot, dream big, laugh a lot and realise how blessed you are for what you have.’ Anon

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  • Moderator Emeritus

The pills can be split with a pill cutter, they can be bought quite cheaply, but liquid is best, much easier to reduce and more accurate.

Unfortunately doctors can be a bit reluctant to prescribe the liquid but it's worth asking for.  And doctors usually don't advise slow tapering

but tell you to take a dose every other day for a while then stop. People then have to go back on when the doctor says it's a return of

depression! I didn't tell mine that I was tapering slowly until I asked for the liquid. He didn't understand why I wanted to do it that way

but gave me it anyway which was great. 

**I am not a medical professional, if in doubt please consult a doctor with withdrawal knowledge.

 

 

Different drugs occasionally (mostly benzos) 1976 - 1981 (no problem)

1993 - 2002 in and out of hospital. every type of drug + ECT. Staring with seroxat

2002  effexor. 

Tapered  March 2012 to March 2013, ending with 5 beads.

Withdrawal April 2013 . Reinstated 5 beads reduced to 4 beads May 2013

Restarted taper  Nov 2013  

OFF EFFEXOR Feb 2015    :D 

Tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

Tapering tramadol, Feb 2015 100mg , March 2015 50mg  

 July 2017 30mg.  May 15 2018 25mg

Taking fish oil, magnesium, B12, folic acid, bilberry eyebright for eye pressure. 

 

My story http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4199-hello-mammap-checking-in/page-33

 

Lesson learned, slow down taper at lower doses. Taper no more than 10% of CURRENT dose if possible

 

 

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