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CaffeineMan going off Buspar and Cymbalta


CaffeineMan

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Hello, I'm new here.

 

I am at the beginning of the process of getting off of Buspar.  Currently, I am taking this, along with a high dose of Cymbalta (120Mg daily), and a half tablet of Abilify (2.5 mgs, I think).  I currently take 1 30mg buspar tablet daily.

 

I will meet with the doctor next week to get his approval, which shouldn't be a problem, as we've discussed reducing my medication before, and he suggested that if I do that I eliminate buspar, as it is the most benign of the three.  After that, I'll take some time to see how I'm handling things without Buspar, after which, if successful, I will consider talking to the doctor about reducing the Cymbalta.

 

Anyways, I'd like to hang out here during this reduction phase, and hopefully get some good ideas and support. My thoughts are that it is up to me to handle the anxiety better, through cognitive therapy, since the drugs don't seem to have any real effect that I can see.  I'm still nervous at work even with the full range of medicines that I'm on.  The most success I've had is with the Mindfulness & Acceptance therapy.  Simply accepting these negative feelings is giving me more relief than fighting them, and real discernible progress.

 

I am ready to get on with my life, and if I can't defeat anxiety, then live a meaningful life in spite of it. 

 

 

~August 2000 started taking Paxil, had a *very* bad reaction to it and went cold turkey after about 2 months

~December 2002 started taking 30mg Celexa

Buspar 30 mg added sometime after this

Dosage for celexa increased over the next couple of years to 90mg dialy, remained on this dosage for about 3 years or so

Switched to Cymbalta 60mg sometime in 2011, remained on the Buspar

~2012 Cymbalta dosage increased to 90mg daily, and 2.5 mg Abilify added

in 2013, Cymbalta dosage increased to 120mg daily

--current daily meds: Cymbalta 120mg, Buspar 30mg, Abilify 2.5mg

--UPDATE 4/9/2014 no longer taking Buspar

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Welcome, CaffeineMan. You have found a supportive, knowledgeable community. Love your comment about accepting some negative feelings instead of fighting them....this approach helps me, too. And cheers to you for determination to live a meaningful, full life even with anxiety not currently defeatable...you sound like a person of courage. 

 

I don't have experience tapering off Buspar, Cymbalta, or Abilify, but wanted to say glad you're here.

Prozac 20 mg/daily since 1995

July 19, 2013, initial cut to 15 mg; Aug. 2 updosed to 18 mg; Aug. 19, to 16.2 mg
Held at 2.52 ml/day Jan. 11-April 16, 2014
April 16, 2014, cut to 2.40 ml/day
Dec. 29, 2014, 1.84 ml/day, and held there almost six months
June 23, 2015, 1.75ml/day; July 21, 2015, 1.70 ml/day
Aug. 13, 2015, 1.60 ml/day

Feb. 7, 2016, .7 ml/day; April 26, 2016, .6 ml/day

 

Taking anastrozole (estrogen blocker)
 
Successfully completed long, slow Klonopin taper November 2011. :ph34r:

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Thank you MissSerene!  Hope all is well with you.

~August 2000 started taking Paxil, had a *very* bad reaction to it and went cold turkey after about 2 months

~December 2002 started taking 30mg Celexa

Buspar 30 mg added sometime after this

Dosage for celexa increased over the next couple of years to 90mg dialy, remained on this dosage for about 3 years or so

Switched to Cymbalta 60mg sometime in 2011, remained on the Buspar

~2012 Cymbalta dosage increased to 90mg daily, and 2.5 mg Abilify added

in 2013, Cymbalta dosage increased to 120mg daily

--current daily meds: Cymbalta 120mg, Buspar 30mg, Abilify 2.5mg

--UPDATE 4/9/2014 no longer taking Buspar

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  • Moderator Emeritus

CM, in the Tapering section there's a thread on Buspar withdrawal which Alto has put together with lots of tips and info. I'd start there.

 

A lot of us (me included) have found mindfulness therapy and mindfulness meditations to be helpful in withdrawal and in life in general. Please feel free to share your experiences with that, with withdrawal, and anything else in your journey, here in your thread. We all learn so much from each other.

 

Good luck to you! AND--primarily--GO SLOW. Whatever your doctor suggests is likely to be more aggressive than is really safe, unless you have an extremely remarkable doctor. Better to start slow and then speed up to tolerance, than to start too fast and then crash and burn and struggle and suffer and spend months getting stable again. Which is unfortunately what most commonly happens, because people don't want to start slow.

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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Rhi,

I'm not 100% certain that the buspar is doing anything for me at all, but I will talk to the doctor on Monday and go by his advice.

~August 2000 started taking Paxil, had a *very* bad reaction to it and went cold turkey after about 2 months

~December 2002 started taking 30mg Celexa

Buspar 30 mg added sometime after this

Dosage for celexa increased over the next couple of years to 90mg dialy, remained on this dosage for about 3 years or so

Switched to Cymbalta 60mg sometime in 2011, remained on the Buspar

~2012 Cymbalta dosage increased to 90mg daily, and 2.5 mg Abilify added

in 2013, Cymbalta dosage increased to 120mg daily

--current daily meds: Cymbalta 120mg, Buspar 30mg, Abilify 2.5mg

--UPDATE 4/9/2014 no longer taking Buspar

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  • Moderator Emeritus

CM, a lot of folks find Buspar to be ineffective.

As always, LISTEN TO YOUR BODY! A proud supporter of the 10% (or slower) rule.

 

Requip - 3/16 ZERO  Total time on 25 years.

 

Lyrica: 8/15 ZERO Total time on 7 or 8 yrs.

BENZO FREE 10/13 (started tapering 7/10)  Total time on 25 years.

 

Read my intro thread here, and check the about me section.  "No matter how cynical you get, it's almost impossible to keep up." Lily Tomlin

 

 

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  • Administrator

Welcome, CaffeineMan.

 

Please read http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/3210-tips-for-tapering-off-busipirone-buspar/

 

What are each of the drugs you're taking supposed to be doing for you?

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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Altostrata,

 

All of the drugs I'm currently taking are intended to take the edge off anxiety.  My anxiety tends to be situational, and right now I'm working through some issues I have with work, such as fear of failure, meeting expectations, confidence, dreading work, etc.  

 

I don't like the idea of being on so much medication, and since buspar doesn't seem to be vital to my treatment, I'm hoping to be able to go off it.

~August 2000 started taking Paxil, had a *very* bad reaction to it and went cold turkey after about 2 months

~December 2002 started taking 30mg Celexa

Buspar 30 mg added sometime after this

Dosage for celexa increased over the next couple of years to 90mg dialy, remained on this dosage for about 3 years or so

Switched to Cymbalta 60mg sometime in 2011, remained on the Buspar

~2012 Cymbalta dosage increased to 90mg daily, and 2.5 mg Abilify added

in 2013, Cymbalta dosage increased to 120mg daily

--current daily meds: Cymbalta 120mg, Buspar 30mg, Abilify 2.5mg

--UPDATE 4/9/2014 no longer taking Buspar

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  • Administrator

That's a very odd basket of drugs for situational anxiety. That Cymbalta dosage is extremely high.

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 know that the cymbalta is high, and will likely discuss that with the doctor after I get off the buspar.

 

I started off taking Celexa, and remained on that for a few years, gradually getting the dosage increased to the point where I couldn't take it anymore, and was switched to Cymbalta.

 

The dosage for Cymbalta was increased over time, as the doctor tried to give me a dosage which helped me deal with the anxiety better.  I believe I'm at the max now.

~August 2000 started taking Paxil, had a *very* bad reaction to it and went cold turkey after about 2 months

~December 2002 started taking 30mg Celexa

Buspar 30 mg added sometime after this

Dosage for celexa increased over the next couple of years to 90mg dialy, remained on this dosage for about 3 years or so

Switched to Cymbalta 60mg sometime in 2011, remained on the Buspar

~2012 Cymbalta dosage increased to 90mg daily, and 2.5 mg Abilify added

in 2013, Cymbalta dosage increased to 120mg daily

--current daily meds: Cymbalta 120mg, Buspar 30mg, Abilify 2.5mg

--UPDATE 4/9/2014 no longer taking Buspar

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Hi CaffeineMan and welcome!

 

When you get a chance, you can put your meds and dosage history in your signature so we can see the evolution!

 

So weird how we all react differently to medication... When I took Cymbalta, I slept 2-3 hours /night for 4 months!! That wasn't helping anxiety at all...

 

You took a good decision and as Rhi said, always best to go slow in tapering. It's a good thing you got informed bEFORE starting.

 

Meditation helps for me too!

 

All the best,

 

Athena

2000-2001: Effexor              2005-2012: Celexa, Zoloft, Effexor, desipramin, Wellbutrin, mirtazepin, Lamictal, Remeron, Abilify, nortriptylin, Cipralex, Cymbalta, and others I don't remember. Really bad side effects to all.
Sept-Nov 2012: Paxil 20mg, Wellbutrin 100mg, Imovane 5mg      Nov 2012: Paxil 20mg --> 10mg
Dec 2012: Paxil 10mg-->0; 1 week later: HUGE WD symptoms. Started to get informed on the internet and back to 10mg Paxil.
Dec 2012-Jan 2013: Paxil 10mg, Wellbutrin 100mg, Imovane 2.5mg        End Jan 2013: P 9mg, W 100mg, I 2.0mg
Feb 2013: P 8mg, W 100mg, I 1.5mg      April 2013: P 7mg, W 100mg, I 1.25mg       May 2013: P 7mg, W 90mg, I 1mg    

June 2013: P 7mg, W 80mg, I 0mg       July 1/2013: P 7, W 70     July 22/2013: P 7, W 60             Aug 2013: P 7, W 50       Sept 2013: P 6.1, W 50     Oct 2013: P up to 6.3, W 50     Nov 2013: P 6.2 to 5.9, W 50      Dec 2013: P 5.9, W 40      Jan 2014: P 5.3, W40        Feb 2014: P 5.3, W 30      March-April 2014: P 5.3, W 26    May 2014: P 5.3, W 20        June 2014: P 5.3 W 15     July 2014:  P 5.3, W 14       Aug 2014: P 5.3, W up to 15     Sept 2014: P 5.3, W 14    Oct 2014: P 4.8, W 14      Nov 2014: P 4.3, W 14     Dec 2014-Jan 2015: P 3.9, W 14     Feb 2015: P 3.9, W 12    March 2015: P 3.6, W 12   April-May 2015: P 3.3, W 12    June 2015: P 3.3, W 10    July 2015: P 3.3, W 8   Aug-Sept 2015: P 3.3, W 6   Oct 2015: P 3.0, W 6   Nov 2015: P 2.7, W 6   Dec 2015: P 2.4, W 6   Jan-Feb 2016: P 2.4, W 5  March 2016: P 2.2, W 5   April 2016: P 2.2, W 4   May-June 2016: P 2.2, W 3  July 2016: P 2.2, W 2  Aug 2016: P 2.2, W 1  Sept 2016: P 2.2, W 0!!  Oct 2016: P 2.0   Nov 2016-Jan 2017: P 1.8  Feb-Mar 2017: P 1.9  April-May 2017: P 1.8   June 2017: P 1.6 July-Dec 2017: P 1.5  Jan-April 2018: P 1.6

Others: Cytomel 25mcg (thyroid), vit. C, vit D, Omega-3 fish oil, Magnesium bisglycinate , Melatonin 1mg, 81mg Aspirin, Milk peptides, L-theanine, Valericalm tincture mix, scullcap tincture, Suan Zao Ren (jujube seeds)

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Athena,

Thanks for the response.  I haven't been keeping track of the drug changes nearly as well as you all seem to have.  Basically, it's something that has evolved over the last 10+ years.   It hasn't always been bad, there was a stretch of a few years where, while I kept on taking the Celexa that I was taking at the time, I did not see a counselor, because I did not feel the need.

 

I've been on this combination and dosage (120 mg Cymbalta, 30 mg Buspar, 2.5 mg Abilify) for about the last 6-8 months.  Certainly within the last year.

 

By the way, I took Paxil for a while  around 2000 and had a very bad reaction to it.  I was lucky if I got 1 hour of sleep a night, so I just went cold turkey and got off of it.  Probably not a smart move, but at least I got some sleep finally. Not sure what the dosage was.

 

Anyways, I will update my signature when I get a few minutes.

 

CM

~August 2000 started taking Paxil, had a *very* bad reaction to it and went cold turkey after about 2 months

~December 2002 started taking 30mg Celexa

Buspar 30 mg added sometime after this

Dosage for celexa increased over the next couple of years to 90mg dialy, remained on this dosage for about 3 years or so

Switched to Cymbalta 60mg sometime in 2011, remained on the Buspar

~2012 Cymbalta dosage increased to 90mg daily, and 2.5 mg Abilify added

in 2013, Cymbalta dosage increased to 120mg daily

--current daily meds: Cymbalta 120mg, Buspar 30mg, Abilify 2.5mg

--UPDATE 4/9/2014 no longer taking Buspar

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I just realized I haven't adequately explained for what the medications were diagnosed.

 

Around 2002, I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder, and major depression.  Since then, the symptoms have diminished somewhat, and usually only appear when I'm in a 'crisis', ie. it appears to be situational.  My problem is that I will dwell on the problem and make the anxiety and depression linger.  This is in large part why I opted to purse Mindfulness and Acceptance as a therapy for my condition.  By learning to say 'So what?!', I'm learning to let go of the anxiety, and it helps so much.

~August 2000 started taking Paxil, had a *very* bad reaction to it and went cold turkey after about 2 months

~December 2002 started taking 30mg Celexa

Buspar 30 mg added sometime after this

Dosage for celexa increased over the next couple of years to 90mg dialy, remained on this dosage for about 3 years or so

Switched to Cymbalta 60mg sometime in 2011, remained on the Buspar

~2012 Cymbalta dosage increased to 90mg daily, and 2.5 mg Abilify added

in 2013, Cymbalta dosage increased to 120mg daily

--current daily meds: Cymbalta 120mg, Buspar 30mg, Abilify 2.5mg

--UPDATE 4/9/2014 no longer taking Buspar

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  • Administrator

Please post about your experiences with Mindfulness and Acceptance in the Symptoms and Self-care forum, lots of people will be very interested!

 

You may be what's called a rapid metabolizer. Doctors load excessive amounts of drugs on rapid metabolizers because lower doses don't seem to do anything. This is very dangerous because the higher doses are harder on the liver, kidneys, and rest of the body.

 

Doctors are supposed to be aware of this danger.

 

Personally, I really don't like the variety and dosages of the drugs your doctor has prescribed for you. I would be very, very wary of taking any further advice about psychiatric drugs from that doctor. Is he or she a psychiatrist? (Not that they're any better.)

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 have begun the tapering process for Buspar.  For the next two weeks, I will take a half tablet daily (15 mg), then the third week I will take the half tablet every other day.

 

The fourth week I will stop completely.

 

A little nervous about this, but hopeful.  Part of the Mindfulness & Acceptance therapy is chosing to move in the direction you want your life to go.  One of the key things for me is to reduce the meds that I take.

 

Here's hoping for success!

~August 2000 started taking Paxil, had a *very* bad reaction to it and went cold turkey after about 2 months

~December 2002 started taking 30mg Celexa

Buspar 30 mg added sometime after this

Dosage for celexa increased over the next couple of years to 90mg dialy, remained on this dosage for about 3 years or so

Switched to Cymbalta 60mg sometime in 2011, remained on the Buspar

~2012 Cymbalta dosage increased to 90mg daily, and 2.5 mg Abilify added

in 2013, Cymbalta dosage increased to 120mg daily

--current daily meds: Cymbalta 120mg, Buspar 30mg, Abilify 2.5mg

--UPDATE 4/9/2014 no longer taking Buspar

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  • Member

You may want to do some more reading on the site about not tapering too fast. A drug which you may think is ineffective has already been impacting your brain chemistry. Such a rapid decrease might not have withdrawal symptoms right away but could cause destabilization, which you really don't want. Rhi (above) gives good advice. Many here are still trying to stabilize after doctor managed tapers and are having severe problems.

What happened and how I arrived here: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4243-cymbaltawithdrawal5600-introduction/#entry50878

 

July 2016 I have decided to leave my story here at SA unfinished. I have left my contact information in my profile for anyone who wishes to talk to me. I have a posting history spanning nearly 4 years and 3000+ posts all over the site.

 

Thank you to all who participated in my recovery. I'll miss talking to you but know that I'll be cheering you on from the sidelines, suffering and rejoicing with you in spirit, as you go on in your journey.

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  • Administrator

Please do not EVER skip doses to taper a psychiatric drug.

 

See http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/3210-tips-for-tapering-off-busipirone-buspar/

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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  • 1 month later...

Well to give an update, I have been off Buspar completely now for a few days, and so far no problems.

 

I visited the doctor yesterday to check in with him, so far so good.  One thing that I thought was interesting though was that he recommended that I take fish oil tablets (3 a day, or 1 triple strength).  He says fish oil can help the brain, and consequently the anxiety symptoms I still deal with.  What do you guys know about fish oil in relation to anxiety treatment?

~August 2000 started taking Paxil, had a *very* bad reaction to it and went cold turkey after about 2 months

~December 2002 started taking 30mg Celexa

Buspar 30 mg added sometime after this

Dosage for celexa increased over the next couple of years to 90mg dialy, remained on this dosage for about 3 years or so

Switched to Cymbalta 60mg sometime in 2011, remained on the Buspar

~2012 Cymbalta dosage increased to 90mg daily, and 2.5 mg Abilify added

in 2013, Cymbalta dosage increased to 120mg daily

--current daily meds: Cymbalta 120mg, Buspar 30mg, Abilify 2.5mg

--UPDATE 4/9/2014 no longer taking Buspar

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  • Administrator

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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  • 1 month later...

An update: I'm still doing pretty well without the Buspar.  In general, I don't feel as restless as I used to.  I'm confident that moving off Buspar was the right thing for me to do.  I have not yet taken any fish oil supplements, and do not plan on it in the future.  So far so good :)

 

Not sure about when to ask the doctor about tapering Cymbalta.  I don't want to move too fast.  I'm just happy to be off one medication at this point.

~August 2000 started taking Paxil, had a *very* bad reaction to it and went cold turkey after about 2 months

~December 2002 started taking 30mg Celexa

Buspar 30 mg added sometime after this

Dosage for celexa increased over the next couple of years to 90mg dialy, remained on this dosage for about 3 years or so

Switched to Cymbalta 60mg sometime in 2011, remained on the Buspar

~2012 Cymbalta dosage increased to 90mg daily, and 2.5 mg Abilify added

in 2013, Cymbalta dosage increased to 120mg daily

--current daily meds: Cymbalta 120mg, Buspar 30mg, Abilify 2.5mg

--UPDATE 4/9/2014 no longer taking Buspar

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Glad you are doing well Caffeineman,  thanks for updating us.  :)

**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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  • 1 year later...

Hi,  I have just found this website and I'm particularly interested in your posts regarding eliminating Buspar and Cymbalta.  I want to do the same.  I have had so many symptoms from both drugs.  How are you doing now, and are you taking any anti-depressants?  After 30+ yrs of them, I want to just put my depression in God's hands. 

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  • Administrator

Hello, Dixie, please start an Introductions forum topic for yourself and we'll discuss your tapering situation.

 

CaffeineMan, see Tips for tapering off Cymbalta (duloxetine)

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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