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KFairweather: My Pdoc Took Me off klonopin, ambien and methylphenidate w.o Tapering


KFairweather

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After two years of taking 10 mg of Ambien, 4 mg klonopin for sleep, and 40 mg. ritalin, I became addicted and ended up a zombie. I went to my doc and told her about this and she told me to go home and throw out my meds. I followed her advice and ended up not sleeping for six days. I begged her for klonopin on the 6th day for sleep and she relented. I wish she had done a taper for me, and don't know why she didn't. Feel like she was ignorant about ambien and benzo withdrawal. Not only did I not sleep for six days, but I had sucidal ideations the first two days I came off those drugs. Still don't feel right and don't know what to do. Do I go back on them and taper? It has been almost two weeks since I went cold turkey. It was hell. Still is. I take lamictal 400 mg, for depression, and saphris 10 mg for mania. I'm bipolar. I also take 100 mg topamax and want to quit that. And she just added 300 mg neurontin for sleep instead of the klonopin which makes me shuffle around and slur my speech in the morning. I've come this far cold turkey. Still experiencing withdrawal symptoms, mainly agitation and insomnia. Is it too late to taper? Or do I just continue w/ the cold turkey hell?

Lamictal 400 mg., Saphris 10mg, Topamax 100 mg, Gabapentin 300 mg (was on 4mg klonopin, 10 mg ambien, 40mg ritialin -but doctor made me stop two weeks ago (november 15, 2013) w/out tapering. I've had horrible withdrawal symptoms starting w/ six nights of insomnia only relieved by going back on 4 mgs of klonopin. Wish she had tapered me.

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Get a new doctor and dart your taper. Unbelievable. Someone will come along to help you with the details.

1st round Prozac 1989/90, clear depression symptoms. 2nd round Prozac started 1999 when admitted to dr. I was tired. Prozac pooped out, switch to Cymbalta 3/2006. Diagnosed with bipolar disorder due to mania 6/2006--then I was taken abruptly off Cymbalta and didn't know I had SSRI withdrawal. Lots of meds for my intractable "bipolar" symptoms.

Zyprexa started about 9/06, mostly 5mg. Tapered 4/12 through12/29/12

Wellbutrin. XL 300 mg started 1/07, tapered 1/18/13 through 7/8/13

Oxazepam mostly continuously since 6/06, 30mg since 12/12, tapered 1.17.14 through 8.26.15

11/06 Lithium 600mg twice daily, 2.2.14 400mg TID DIY liquid, 2.12.14 1150mg, 3.2.14 1100mg, 3.18.14 1075mg, 4/14 updose to 1100mg, 6.1.14 900 mg capsules 7.8.14 810mg, 8.17.14 725mg, 8.24.24 700mg...10.22.14 487.5mg, 3.9.15 475mg, 4.1.15 462.5mg 4.21.15 450mg 8.11.15 375mg, 11.28.15 362.5mg, back to 375mg four days later, 3.4.16 updose to 475 (too much going on to risk trouble)

9/4/13 Toprol-XL 25mg daily for sudden hypertension, tapered 11.12.13 through 5.3.14, last 10 days or so switched to atenolol

7.4.14 Started Walsh Protocol

56 years old

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi K, welcome to SA. I agree with Meimei, find a new doctor ASAP, the one you have is reckless! 

It's shocking that a doctor in this day and age will tell someone to throw away meds, just like that! 

 

It would help us if you could list your meds in your signature line, with details of what doses and when

they started and stopped plus what you are still taking. We need that info to offer the best advice for you. I am shaking my head

in disbelief at a doctor who can do this! Here is how to create a signature.

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/893-please-put-your-withdrawal-history-in-your-signature/

 

I am so sorry you have been given this advice by a doctor, who obviously knows nothing of withdrawal.

Will you be able to get more meds? 

You have come to the right place, SA is the best on the net for anti depressant tapering and withdrawal advice. 

**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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  • Moderator Emeritus

Going back on your drugs and stabilizing for a bit, then tapering slowly is probably your best bet. There's a window of about a month when it's generally safe to go back on a drug that's been abruptly stopped.  But as MammaP says above, we need to know your drug history to give specific advice, especially since it's usually best to start back on a lower dose.  I'm not at all clear on what you were taking when you went cold turkey and what you're taking now.

 

Unfortunately, your doctor seems to be among the the clueless when it comes to antidepressant withdrawal.  If necessary, get the drugs you need from her and then find another, better doctor.

 

And don't assume that you're bipolar.  You've been taking a combination of a strong stimulant (Ritalin) along with two CNS depressants (Ambien and Klonopin) so your bipolar "symptoms" may be nothing more than side effects from the drugs. You may find that shocking, but it wouldn't be the first time such misdiagnosing has happened.

 

I'm sorry you're going through this, but I'm glad you found us.  You'll find lots of good 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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Thanks for answering my friend KF's post. I spoke with yer yesterday and she was in bad shape so I told her about this forum. Thank you so much for being here! Bless this forum, and you real human beings that are here for us. I have found real support here.

Gratitude.

14 years on Paxil 5mg (prescribed as an antidote for CFS symptoms (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome)

It worked great for bringing me back to life, and I got over the CFS.

Never could quit Paxil.

Tried it in 30 days, too abrupt, unsupervised.

Had One Bad Year on nothing at all,  (figured I needed to tough it out)

couldn't stand it any longer after a year.

Got back on Lexapro this time, 2.5mg 

That's worked for the last 3 years,

Would like to be free of it,

so am planning a taper. 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thank you for the kind words.  Believe me, the forum staff appreciates the encouragement!

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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Thanks everyone for your replies. I'm so glad I found this site and am grateful for the support. I now  know my doctor sucks and have been with her and trusted her for five years. I made the mistake of listening to her and throwing out my drugs without doing research on my own. I'm usually more careful about that. But the idea of lessening my drug cocktail had some appeal. I had no idea I was addicted to benzos and ambien and that going cold turkey  would put me into heavy withdrawal and give me insomnia for six nights. And this all happened over Thanksgiving weekend when no one was available. I was ready to check myself into the hospital just to get some sleep meds! I hope I can find a new doc soon. They're usually all booked up. Especially around the holidays. Again, thanks for your responses. I added my signature, but I don't see it in this post. Hopefully it will show up when I post it "live".

Lamictal 400 mg., Saphris 10mg, Topamax 100 mg, Gabapentin 300 mg (was on 4mg klonopin, 10 mg ambien, 40mg ritialin -but doctor made me stop two weeks ago (november 15, 2013) w/out tapering. I've had horrible withdrawal symptoms starting w/ six nights of insomnia only relieved by going back on 4 mgs of klonopin. Wish she had tapered me.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thank you for posting the details KF, I can see them ok. It helps a lot to know drug details.

Unfortunately I am not experienced with those types of drugs personally so can't offer advice

but another staff member will be along soon who can help. 

 

Thanks you CFS, it means a lot to us that we are appreciated  :)

**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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Wow.  Stopping 4mg of Klonopin abruptly can cause a seizure, even death.  Appalling.  Doctor shop if you have to, at least to get most of the Klonopin back.  Slowly tapering is safe, but stopping abruptly isn't.  I'm praying for your protection, even the aid of angels in the meantime.  I don't want to scare you.  Just know that as soon as another doctor hears this happened to you, you'll at least be given your Klonopin back.  They won't want the liability of you possibly going into a seizure.  This is so serious that you have legal grounds to file for revoking that first doctor's license.  I'm so sorry you were given that horrible advice.  You'll be OK.  Just find another doctor without delay. 

Ellen

___________________________________________________

insomnia, anxiety, depression- since childhood

lyme disease, dysautonomia, chiari malformation- dx 4/1997

 

nortriptyline- 75mg since childhood

clonazepam- 3mg since 4/1997

trazodone-100mg since 4/2013, now tapering

 

rotating antibiotics and antimalarials for lyme disease

midodrine- 10mg for dysautonomia

repeated skull surgeries for chiari malformation

 

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Thanks, Ellen. I did get her to put me back on the four mg. Am trying 3.5 tonight. And will slowly titrate from here. Yes I agree, there are grounds for revoking, but I have no clue how to go about doing that or if it will be a my word against her word sort of thing. After all, I'm the one who took them for two years (ignorantly). Quite frankly, at this point, I don't know if I have the energy to take her on. I just want to get well. I had no idea about seizures or even death. Six nights of insomnia made me feel like I was going to die as I had stopped eating as well and lost six pounds. Was very scary.

Lamictal 400 mg., Saphris 10mg, Topamax 100 mg, Gabapentin 300 mg (was on 4mg klonopin, 10 mg ambien, 40mg ritialin -but doctor made me stop two weeks ago (november 15, 2013) w/out tapering. I've had horrible withdrawal symptoms starting w/ six nights of insomnia only relieved by going back on 4 mgs of klonopin. Wish she had tapered me.

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  • Administrator

The state medical board is the place to register a complaint against a doctor.

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

KF, most of us find that we have to taper off gabapentin too, and it's quite difficult for some people. Since you haven't been taking it for long, and you're reinstating on your Klonopin, you might be able to do a fairly quick taper off of it now.

 

I think it might be better to take some time to stabilize before beginning to taper the Klonopin.

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 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                1

Feb 2022            6                      0!!!                     0.00167               0.98                2.5 mg Ambien

 

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

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My pdoc just took me from 4mg klonopin to 3.5 for one week ( I take it for sleep), then 3.0 for one week, 2.5 for one week, 2.0 for one week, 1.5 for one week, 1.0 for one week then .5 for one week than nothing. is this too fast? Will I go back to insomnia?

 

Thanks,

Kathleen

 

Sometimes I feel like I'll never be rid of this monkey on my back.

Lamictal 400 mg., Saphris 10mg, Topamax 100 mg, Gabapentin 300 mg (was on 4mg klonopin, 10 mg ambien, 40mg ritialin -but doctor made me stop two weeks ago (november 15, 2013) w/out tapering. I've had horrible withdrawal symptoms starting w/ six nights of insomnia only relieved by going back on 4 mgs of klonopin. Wish she had tapered me.

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Since I take Klonopin for sleep, should I switch over to Ambien once I complete my taper if I'm still not sleeping or will this just add another problem?

 

Thanks,

Kathleen

Lamictal 400 mg., Saphris 10mg, Topamax 100 mg, Gabapentin 300 mg (was on 4mg klonopin, 10 mg ambien, 40mg ritialin -but doctor made me stop two weeks ago (november 15, 2013) w/out tapering. I've had horrible withdrawal symptoms starting w/ six nights of insomnia only relieved by going back on 4 mgs of klonopin. Wish she had tapered me.

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Sadly, Ambien is a benzo too. But there is lots of info in the symptoms forum on managing insomnia. At least 90% of us have a lot of experience in that area!

1st round Prozac 1989/90, clear depression symptoms. 2nd round Prozac started 1999 when admitted to dr. I was tired. Prozac pooped out, switch to Cymbalta 3/2006. Diagnosed with bipolar disorder due to mania 6/2006--then I was taken abruptly off Cymbalta and didn't know I had SSRI withdrawal. Lots of meds for my intractable "bipolar" symptoms.

Zyprexa started about 9/06, mostly 5mg. Tapered 4/12 through12/29/12

Wellbutrin. XL 300 mg started 1/07, tapered 1/18/13 through 7/8/13

Oxazepam mostly continuously since 6/06, 30mg since 12/12, tapered 1.17.14 through 8.26.15

11/06 Lithium 600mg twice daily, 2.2.14 400mg TID DIY liquid, 2.12.14 1150mg, 3.2.14 1100mg, 3.18.14 1075mg, 4/14 updose to 1100mg, 6.1.14 900 mg capsules 7.8.14 810mg, 8.17.14 725mg, 8.24.24 700mg...10.22.14 487.5mg, 3.9.15 475mg, 4.1.15 462.5mg 4.21.15 450mg 8.11.15 375mg, 11.28.15 362.5mg, back to 375mg four days later, 3.4.16 updose to 475 (too much going on to risk trouble)

9/4/13 Toprol-XL 25mg daily for sudden hypertension, tapered 11.12.13 through 5.3.14, last 10 days or so switched to atenolol

7.4.14 Started Walsh Protocol

56 years old

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  • Administrator

My pdoc just took me from 4mg klonopin to 3.5 for one week ( I take it for sleep), then 3.0 for one week, 2.5 for one week, 2.0 for one week, 1.5 for one week, 1.0 for one week then .5 for one week than nothing. is this too fast? Will I go back to insomnia?

 

Thanks,

Kathleen

 

Sometimes I feel like I'll never be rid of this monkey on my back.

Some people might find this is too fast of a taper. Again, we suggest 10% reduction per month. Please tell your doctor you think her schedule is too fast.

 

Weren't you going to find a new doctor?

 

See http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/forum/29-members-only-benzo-tapering-discussion/

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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If I thought I could taper at that rate I'd come off my Klonopin too. This is just me- one person- but I did try that rate once and I literally lost my mind. I started having auditory hallucinations. Called my doc and he put me right back up to my full 3mg. Still on this dose now, as it doesn't give me side effects and eases my life long anxiety. Sure, being off it might prove better, but right now I'm tapering another drug. I don't know when withdrawal symptoms peak, as I was only off mine for about ten days, and even on day ten the withdrawal was getting worse, not better. I have a history of tapering off drugs too quickly, sometimes successfully and sometimes not. Hope you do well with this taper! Just thought I add my tuppence worth.

Ellen

___________________________________________________

insomnia, anxiety, depression- since childhood

lyme disease, dysautonomia, chiari malformation- dx 4/1997

 

nortriptyline- 75mg since childhood

clonazepam- 3mg since 4/1997

trazodone-100mg since 4/2013, now tapering

 

rotating antibiotics and antimalarials for lyme disease

midodrine- 10mg for dysautonomia

repeated skull surgeries for chiari malformation

 

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Thanks, Ellen. I guess there's no shame in going slow. I've read that some people take years to taper.

Lamictal 400 mg., Saphris 10mg, Topamax 100 mg, Gabapentin 300 mg (was on 4mg klonopin, 10 mg ambien, 40mg ritialin -but doctor made me stop two weeks ago (november 15, 2013) w/out tapering. I've had horrible withdrawal symptoms starting w/ six nights of insomnia only relieved by going back on 4 mgs of klonopin. Wish she had tapered me.

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I can't find the forum on insomnia. Am I not looking in the right place? Can somebody guide me to it. Still stuck on 3.5.K Every time I go down to 3, I wake up at 5 am and have to take another 1/2. Should I just tough it out? I go to be at 11pm. Also should I drop my klonopin dose and add 10mgs of ambien to help me sleep? Which is worse? the klonopin or ambien, or both? Been off ambien for one month, now.

Lamictal 400 mg., Saphris 10mg, Topamax 100 mg, Gabapentin 300 mg (was on 4mg klonopin, 10 mg ambien, 40mg ritialin -but doctor made me stop two weeks ago (november 15, 2013) w/out tapering. I've had horrible withdrawal symptoms starting w/ six nights of insomnia only relieved by going back on 4 mgs of klonopin. Wish she had tapered me.

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  • Administrator

See the Symptoms and Self-care forum.

 

For benzo discussion, see http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/forum/29-members-only-benzo-tapering-discussion/

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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My pdoc just took me from 4mg klonopin to 3.5 for one week ( I take it for sleep), then 3.0 for one week, 2.5 for one week, 2.0 for one week, 1.5 for one week, 1.0 for one week then .5 for one week than nothing. is this too fast? Will I go back to insomnia?

 

Thanks,

Kathleen

 

Sometimes I feel like I'll never be rid of this monkey on my back.

Agree with Alto that that is way too fast. Can you tell her that?

 

CS

Drug cocktail 1995 - 2010
Started taper of Adderall, Wellbutrin XL, Remeron, and Doxepin in 2006
Finished taper on June 10, 2010

Temazepam on a PRN basis approximately twice a month - 2014 to 2016

Beginning in 2017 - Consumption increased to about two times per week

April 2017 - Increased to taking it full time for insomnia

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • Moderator

Kathleen, I just saw this as a "headline," I'm usually not around the forums much.

 

I just want to let you know I'm SHOCKED at how overmedicated you are, and I'm equally shocked at how abruptly your pdoc took you off of Benzos.

 

Please read the tapering guides.  The tapering guide you were given is conservative FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF A PDOC, but has no clue about what it's really like.

 

Sometimes, I just feel like saying to the PDOC: Now YOU take this drug for 4 years and now YOU go on cold turkey and see what it feels like!  Feel crazy?  Yes?  No wonder!

 

Sympathy and empathy from my quarter, and you have found the right place.  Regardless of what you choose to believe or do.

"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna

 

Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.

 

My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.

 

A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.


The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/

 

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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