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MoodyBlues78's friend: Help for my friend


moodyblues78

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I have a friend who`s doc seems to be killing him. He is experiencing all the classic WD symptoms but they are very severe (including seizures). My friend does not speak english so that`s why I`m asking. 

 

These are the drugs he is using right now:

 

Cymbalta 60mg every other morning

Mirtazapin 30mg every night

Xanor 0,5mg when needed

Diazepam 5mg when needed

Temgesic 0,4mg when needed

DUROGESIC 12x2 every third day

NEXIUM 20MG when needed

 

Please help. He is in a very bad shape mentally and physically. He has chronic back pain that bushed him into this drug hell. He want`s out but doctor just comes up with more and more drugs.

08 Cipralex 10mg for about 6 months. 11-12 Cipralex 20mg. Unsuccesful WD. 12-13 Zoloft 100mg with Diazepam 10-20mg as needed for anxiety.
Fall 13 Tapering Zoloft 100->50->25->12,5->0 in 2,5 months and CT Diazepam. 12/24/13 RI Zoloft 12,5mg
.

1/21/14 11mg

3/18/14 9,9mg

2/18/14 8mg

4/22/14 7,6mg

5/5/14 7,2mg

5/12/14 -> cutting 0,5mg per week, holding when necessary.

8/18/14 -> cutting 0,25mg per week holding when necessary.

10/20/2014 -> cutting 0,1mg per week, holding when necessary.
12/28/2014 Jump!

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Well, to begin with, it's a bad idea to take any psychiatric drug just every other day. Why is he taking the Cymbalta every other day? That alone can cause withdrawal symptoms.

 

Also, if he's taking the Xanor more than two or three times a week, he's getting some withdrawal from that in between doses. Diazepam is also tricky in this regard.

 

Also, the sig line is confusing, it doesn't mention Cymbalta at all, it doesn't tell us when he started the Xanax and mirtazapine, and exactly when he quit the Zoloft. If we're going to help we need to know which medications were started when, when they were stopped, when they were changed, et cetera.

 

If your friend himself can come on here, with you perhaps translating for him, we can ask him questions directly. His situation does sound like a lot of people who end up on this forum and over time (lots of time with lots of patience) things can probably be helped and improved. But he will need to be directly involved in that process.

 

I would recommend if you can find a translation of Anatomy of an Epidemic by Robert Whitaker in your language, that would be helpful to him to understand what is happening to him.

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

Oct 2022       4.5 mg Lamictal    (off Celexa, off Xanax)   0.95 Valium    Ambien, 1/4 to 1/2 of a 5 mg tablet 

 

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

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Hi Rhi and thank you for replying.

 

The sig line is mine not his. 

 

He is taking cymbalta every other day because his doctor told him to. He has been doing this since 10th of January. Doctor`s plan is to take him off Cymbalta by the end of this month. Unfortunately I don`t know when he started taking cymbalta. Before that he took Zoloft for months/year(s).

 

He has been taking Mirtazapin since last summer and while it helps him to sleep, other symptoms have gone much worse since. 

 

He is taking xanor ja diazepam only occasionally and lowest effective dose. 

 

He lives in another city here but I will do my best translate questions and answers back and forth. 

 

I`ll try to find that book. He has been desperate for a long time and I want to help.

 

Thank you.

08 Cipralex 10mg for about 6 months. 11-12 Cipralex 20mg. Unsuccesful WD. 12-13 Zoloft 100mg with Diazepam 10-20mg as needed for anxiety.
Fall 13 Tapering Zoloft 100->50->25->12,5->0 in 2,5 months and CT Diazepam. 12/24/13 RI Zoloft 12,5mg
.

1/21/14 11mg

3/18/14 9,9mg

2/18/14 8mg

4/22/14 7,6mg

5/5/14 7,2mg

5/12/14 -> cutting 0,5mg per week, holding when necessary.

8/18/14 -> cutting 0,25mg per week holding when necessary.

10/20/2014 -> cutting 0,1mg per week, holding when necessary.
12/28/2014 Jump!

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  • Administrator

Your friend needs to find another doctor who will work on minimizing drugs.

 

Taking Cymbalta every other day is a terrible idea. He needs to stop doing this immediately. He might take half a capsule every day for several weeks.

 

See http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/283-tips-for-tapering-off-cymbalta-duloxetine/

 

Please ask your friend to sign up here, as Rhi suggested. It's very difficult to support someone second-hand.

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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Your friend needs to find another doctor who will work on minimizing drugs.

 

Taking Cymbalta every other day is a terrible idea. He needs to stop doing this immediately. He might take half a capsule every day for several weeks.

 

See http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/283-tips-for-tapering-off-cymbalta-duloxetine/

 

Please ask your friend to sign up here, as Rhi suggested. It's very difficult to support someone second-hand.

 

I told him to take it every day and explained why. I translated the cymbalta tapering instructions from this site and gave it to him. Also I found out from drugs.com that taking cymbalta and mirtazapin may have very serious consequences. I`m very worried.

 

He would join here but he does not speak any english so I`m stuck in the middle anyway. I could make him his own user account and use that for him if that helps?

08 Cipralex 10mg for about 6 months. 11-12 Cipralex 20mg. Unsuccesful WD. 12-13 Zoloft 100mg with Diazepam 10-20mg as needed for anxiety.
Fall 13 Tapering Zoloft 100->50->25->12,5->0 in 2,5 months and CT Diazepam. 12/24/13 RI Zoloft 12,5mg
.

1/21/14 11mg

3/18/14 9,9mg

2/18/14 8mg

4/22/14 7,6mg

5/5/14 7,2mg

5/12/14 -> cutting 0,5mg per week, holding when necessary.

8/18/14 -> cutting 0,25mg per week holding when necessary.

10/20/2014 -> cutting 0,1mg per week, holding when necessary.
12/28/2014 Jump!

Link to comment
  • Administrator

I guess we could try your posting for him in this topic. Please make sure the questions are clear.

 

It may take some weeks for consistent Cymbalta dosing to calm his withdrawal symptoms.

 

Also, please research his drug combination in the Drug Interactions Checker here http://www.drugs.com/drug_interactions.html

(you may need to find the English equivalent of the drugs) or a similar tool in your own language.

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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I guess we could try your posting for him in this topic. Please make sure the questions are clear.

 

It may take some weeks for consistent Cymbalta dosing to calm his withdrawal symptoms.

 

Also, please research his drug combination in the Drug Interactions Checker here http://www.drugs.com/drug_interactions.html

(you may need to find the English equivalent of the drugs) or a similar tool in your own language.

 

Thank you.

 

I`ll try to be as clear as possible. I already told him about counting the beads and putting correct amount into capsules or taking it with apple juice and taking consistent amount every day. Also I told him to wait until his symptoms go away. Unfortunately he is very eager to get off the drugs. Hopefully he will listen.

 

Should he taper first cymbalta or mirtazapine? I told him not to taper multiple drugs at the same time.

08 Cipralex 10mg for about 6 months. 11-12 Cipralex 20mg. Unsuccesful WD. 12-13 Zoloft 100mg with Diazepam 10-20mg as needed for anxiety.
Fall 13 Tapering Zoloft 100->50->25->12,5->0 in 2,5 months and CT Diazepam. 12/24/13 RI Zoloft 12,5mg
.

1/21/14 11mg

3/18/14 9,9mg

2/18/14 8mg

4/22/14 7,6mg

5/5/14 7,2mg

5/12/14 -> cutting 0,5mg per week, holding when necessary.

8/18/14 -> cutting 0,25mg per week holding when necessary.

10/20/2014 -> cutting 0,1mg per week, holding when necessary.
12/28/2014 Jump!

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

He needs to understand that faster is not better when it comes to getting off psych medications. He is already suffering, and getting off the meds is not going to make that stop. Getting off of them fast will make him feel worse, not better. Some people take years to recover from quitting meds too fast.

 

The thing that will help (and even this not quickly) is to stabilize, stop changing meds for a while until he is feeling stable and fairly well, and then to taper slowly and safely.

 

If there were any faster way, we would all be very delighted to share that with him.

 

Unfortunately most people need to spend many hours reading this website, hearing peoples' stories and following their threads, to see for themselves how these things work. If he's determined to go fast he's not likely to take our advice. 

 

I have to say in all honesty that I am not sure how much we can help him. You seem very dedicated, a very caring friend, but he has to be deeply involved himself.  I would encourage him to try to find a doctor he can work with who is willing to help him do a slower taper. The doctor he is working with now appears to be quite ignorant about getting people off psych meds safely and successfully.

 

He should probably start with the Cymbalta, because if my understanding is correct it is more activating than mirtazapine, and it generally works best to taper the more activating drug first.

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

Oct 2022       4.5 mg Lamictal    (off Celexa, off Xanax)   0.95 Valium    Ambien, 1/4 to 1/2 of a 5 mg tablet 

 

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

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  • 2 weeks later...

Is the back pain caused by an accident or disease? Back pain i know things about and meds are rarely good for that.

2010: Mirtazapine 30mg followed by Zopiclone 7.5 mg for sleep post surgery due to pain.
2012-> Tapering Mirtazapine and Zopiclone at different rates unsuccessfully.
2013: Hospitalized 10 days due to complete Insomnia. Forced back up to 45mg Mirtazapine, 7.5 mg Zopiclone and also Theralene 1 ml.
2013-03: Lab showed Vitamin D deficient. Found the vitamin d and insomnia connection. Supplementing vitamin d. Sleep improved by 1-2 hours
2013-04: Dropped mirtazapine to 30 due to severe side effects. Quit Theralene. Zopiclone 7.5.
2013-05 - 2013-11: Mirtazapine taper monthly 25 20 15 11 8 4 2.5 mg
2013-12 Holding M at 2.5. Need to taper Zopiclone due to daytime nausea and vomiting. Taper zopiclone 1/4 red every 5 d. Last Z 2013-12-19
2013-12-31 M:2.5. Reinstated Zopiclone 3.75 due to Insomnia
2014-01-06 M:2.5. Taper Z 1.9 ... 2014-01-14 M:2.5. Z 1 mg.
Jumped of Zopiclone 01-20. Jumped mirtazapine 02-16.

Theralene: 10mg 02-09. 8mg 03-09. 5mg 03-15. 4mg 03-24. 3mg 04-08. Jumped 04-21.
Zopiclone free for 251 days. Mirtazapine free for 224 days.

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I`m not sure what he has got but at least he has got bad disks and erosion in joints. 

 

Right now he is taking 30mg cymbalta every day and he is feeling better. Apart from the back pain.

08 Cipralex 10mg for about 6 months. 11-12 Cipralex 20mg. Unsuccesful WD. 12-13 Zoloft 100mg with Diazepam 10-20mg as needed for anxiety.
Fall 13 Tapering Zoloft 100->50->25->12,5->0 in 2,5 months and CT Diazepam. 12/24/13 RI Zoloft 12,5mg
.

1/21/14 11mg

3/18/14 9,9mg

2/18/14 8mg

4/22/14 7,6mg

5/5/14 7,2mg

5/12/14 -> cutting 0,5mg per week, holding when necessary.

8/18/14 -> cutting 0,25mg per week holding when necessary.

10/20/2014 -> cutting 0,1mg per week, holding when necessary.
12/28/2014 Jump!

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