Jump to content
altruist

Altruist: First time at tapering at .5% slow taper AND looking for weigh scale

Recommended Posts

altruist

2 weeks ago, after reading about the tapering method of 10% to 5% reduction, I decided to start tapering without any local support.

 

Every night (so far 2 weeks), I have taken out 3 beads from 60mg of Andepra capsule(the generic version of Cymbalta). 

A few nights ago, I got around to counting the number of beads in this capsule. In the first count I counted 556 beads and in the second, I counted 559 beads. The average amount of beads I'm calculating to be 557.5 beads. I also worked out that the 3 beads I was taking out of each capsule worked out to be 0.54% of the total number count of the beads in both counts.

 

I have also been preparing to swap over from Andepra to Cymbalta, because I have heard that Cymbalta is easier to taper off that to taper off a generic version of it.

 

Also, I was told that weighing the tablets helps work out the exact amount of the capsule as there is no fixed weight for each bead as each bead is individual in it's actual weight. So I told to go to a tobacco/smoke shop to buy a weigh scale, so I went to one and there were two scales available. One was $229 and too expensive and the second one was $49. I asked to guy working there to show me how reliable the cheaper scale was, and so he pulled it out from under the display counter. I weighed on of the displayed cigarette lighters and it read a reading for that, but then when I asked if it would weigh something small or miniscule like a tablet, he pulled out a matchbox and tried to weigh it. I failed to show any weight on the scales display. And then he tried to weigh a single match stick from the matchbox and that also, failed to register a reading on the weigh scale.

 

So I am also wondering where I can get a cheap, YET, reliable weigh scale that is accurate enough to weigh individual beads in a Cymbalta capsule.

 

Thanks for reading.

 

Share this post


Link to post
bubble

Hello Altruist and welcome to SA!

 

Thank you for filling in your drug history. I have moved your post here to be your introductory post. You will get more replies here.

 

I don't know that much about scales except that I read about people ordering them online at good price. I hope somebody will add more details on that soon. 

 

This is our topic on tapering Cymbalta. If you haven't read it yet, I believe it will answer some of your questions: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/283-tips-for-tapering-off-cymbalta-duloxetine/

 

Somebody will be here soon to address your other questions. You will find a lot of friendly support on your tapering journey here.

 

welcome once again.

 

bubble

Share this post


Link to post
Rhiannon

I use the Gemini milligram scale, you can buy it from Amazon and other sellers online. Seems to be a range of prices but you ought to be able to get it for less than $50. I think I paid around 30.

 

Basically you need a scale that weighs in milligrams.

 

Sounds like you have the right attitude. You can probably taper by more than a half of a percent at a time, but it's better to start cautious and then speed up than to start too aggressively and crash and burn. At the start of a taper, at higher doses, people can usually manage bigger cuts than towards the end. You'll sort it out as you go. I bet you'll do great.

 

I wish I had more advice for tapering with beads but that's one thing I haven't tried personally. But you'll get lots of good information and support here.

Share this post


Link to post
altruist

Hi all, I ended up going to amazon and ordering the gemini-20 weigh scale (that you're probably reffering to) that weighs in milligrams.

 

I still don't know a single thing about how to use this weigh scale and I don't know whether it is best to either; painstakingly count the beads every single time, or to weigh the beads and I wonder if this option is less accurate in tapering?

 

And finally, Do you know if there is a forum thread here, for a how-to or an instruction list, on how to use a milligram weigh scale to efficiently taper?

Share this post


Link to post
altruist

Hi Bubble and Rhi,

 

I just looked at cymbalta forum after last post above about asking about how-to use scale. Sorry, I didn't realise that my questions are already answered within cymbalta forum thread.

Share this post


Link to post
altruist

BTW, I found out about this site from someone recommending it to me in a post in a secret facebook page called 'Pschiatric Survivors' for people trying to taper off of their benzos,

 

anti depressants and various psych and meds for other health conditions ie epilepsy, bad back etc.

I found that this site (Psychiatric Survivors and Psychiatric Survivors Anonymous -fb secret page) that I had been on was far too religious

 

for my liking [as I am either an Agnostic or an Athiest], plus I heard other people from similar sites complaining that these 2 Christian sites

 

were too dangerous in their methods for tapering meds. For example, it was alleged that they were encouraging people to taper too fast and too taper more than one drug at a time.

I think I also found out about surviving antidepressants .org from a facebook page called 'Cymbalta Hurts Worse' which was a support page for people tapering off the anti-depressant called Cymbalta.

 

I currently tend to bounce back and forth between Cymbalta Hurts Worse fb page and this site because I find them to be more precise and more specific to tapering of anti-depressants.

Share this post


Link to post
Altostrata

Hello, Altruist.

 

We try to be rational here.

Share this post


Link to post
altruist

Hi, for 6-8months I have been tapering Cymbalta brand 60mg capsule. I tapered a bit too fast at first because I was getting panic attacks. I have recently tapered my remaining dose of 2.5% reduction only to suffer insomnia and an inability to get to sleep at night and sleep during the day instead.

 

I was wondering if insomnia is a withdrawal symptom or if it was a sign that I was tapering to much ie 2.5%?

 

As of tonight I am considering reinstating to my previous dose.

 

I am tapering 103 beads total but reinstating back to 91 beads tonight.

 

I don't know what I am doing wrong or if it is impossible for me to properly come of this anti depressant.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
altruist

PS...I have been taking anti depressants for 17 years and anti psychotics for 11 years.

Share this post


Link to post
Fresh

Hi altruist ,   welcome.    

 

There's a section on tapering , with threads specifically about Cymbalta which may help you.    I understand it's a difficult process , but lots of people on here seem to be working with miniscule amounts of beads in a successful way , so it CAN be done.

 

Going back to your previous dose sounds like a  sensible move to me  (91 beads).   Wait for the insomnia to stop for a month , then try again.

 

Best wishes ,   Fresh

Share this post


Link to post
Altostrata
altruist

I reinstated to my previous dose of 91 beads out of 60mg. I had attempted to go from 91 beads to 103 beads (2.5% of remaining dose) , but I had been getting insomnia.

But even though I have reinstated for the last 3 days, I am having major insomnia at night where I fail to get to sleep and I end up sleeping during the day.

 

When do you think that I will ever find the ability to get back to sleep at night again?

Share this post


Link to post
altruist

Hi altruist ,   welcome.    

 

There's a section on tapering , with threads specifically about Cymbalta which may help you.    I understand it's a difficult process , but lots of people on here seem to be working with miniscule amounts of beads in a successful way , so it CAN be done.

 

Going back to your previous dose sounds like a  sensible move to me  (91 beads).   Wait for the insomnia to stop for a month , then try again.

 

Best wishes ,   Fresh

Hi, yeah I went back to my dose of 91 beads only once (sorry about the confusion) but I have had an inability to get to sleep at night and therefore sleeping all of the daylight hours (12-13 hours total) due to 'Hypersomnia' which is, apparently, a combination of sleep apnea and over sedation of pscyhotropic medications:

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypersomnia

Share this post


Link to post
mammaP

Hi Altruist, can you tell us how you tapered to your current dose?  How many beads are in your 60mg capsule

and how many did you take out at a time? It does seem to be withdrawal insomnia which can be very distressing. 

Being able to sleep all day is actually a good sign, just reversed and that can hopefully be rectified.

When we know how you have tapered we will better understand what is happening now. 

Share this post


Link to post
altruist

 My Cymbalta Tapering from my diary:

60mg tablet - minus 3 beads (9/8/2014)

 

560 Beads counted (count 1) (24/8/14)

 

[Average amount of beads assumed from here on to be 570 beads]:

 

570 Beads counted (count 2)

570 beads minus 28 beads (4.4%) Entry Note: -Panic attacks x2. ( one instance occurred whilst volunteering at a busy community restaurant and another whilst getting a doctor to give me a blood thinner injection on an already sore and infected part of my body) (2/10/2014)

 

570 beads minus 29 beads (-0.18%) (3/10/2014)

 

570 beads minus 52 beads (= 3.8% reduction of remaining dose) (12/10/2014)

 

570 minus 52 beads (16/10/14)

 

570 beads minus 72 beads (=3.89% reduction of remaining dose) (11/11/14)

 

Entry Note: -Mentally + Severely paranoid. 

Therefore, reducing taper count from 72 beads to 65 beads

(570 beads minus 65 beads). Friday (18/11/14)

 

570 beads minus 67 beads (8/12/14)

 

570 beads minus 79 beads (2.51%) (27/12/12)

(vaguely 491 beads remaining)

 

Entry Note: – Tonight I miscounted the beads. So instead of taking about 79 beads I took out (77 beads) Tuesday (30/12/14)

 

570 beads minus 79 beads (31/12/14)

 

570 beads minus 91 beads (2.5% of remaining dose) (to the nearest bead) (7/1/2015)

 

Entry Note: - Tonight I miscounted the beads ( I took out 90 beads instead of 91) (14/1/2015)

 

570 minus 91 beads (15/1/2015)

 

570 beads minus 103 beads (to the nearest bead) (2.5% of remaining dose) (27/1/2015)

 

Entry Note: – Reinstating back to 91 beads due to me suffering destabilizing withdrawals, ie severe insomnia where I couldn't sleep at night for 3 to 4 days. I will attempt to stabilize on previous dose (91 beads) (6/2/15)

 

Entry Note: - Whilst having a very sore back today I felt tingling in my right hands fingers (9/2/15)

Share this post


Link to post
mammaP

Thank you for keeping the diary and sharing it Altruist. You haven't gone fast but the cuts you made have not been very consistent, which is understandable because those beads are a nightmare to count and you've done well to do that every day and keep track of the doses. 

I think you would be best to hold now for a while to allow your nervous system to settle down again, until you have been free of withdrawal symptoms for a few weeks. Then restart your taper.  If you taper 5% of the current dose, which is lower than the usual recommended 10% it may work better for you. 

 

Right now you are taking 479 beads from 570, so you would take out an extra 24 beads then hold for at least 4 weeks before the next cut, again 5% of the current dose which should then be 23 beads. The amount of beads removed will get lower as the dose gets lower. It is important to keep things stable

because erratic dosing is destabilising for your nervous system.  You have been doing what seemed to be the best thing but it hasn't been stable which is probably why you are feeling the withdrawal now.  

 

I wonder if the tingling in your hand and fingers could be from your sore back? I have a bad back sometimes and get tingling in my hands and feet with it at times. I don't know if it is, but just wondered if it may be that instead of withdrawal? 

 

Hold your dose for a while to stabilise and hopefully  you will be fine. Try not to be tempted to change anything, we all get that feeling that we have to do something when the best thing to do is nothing but wait! 

Share this post


Link to post
altruist

Hi, I have previously attempted to taper at 5% then 4.4% only to have panic attacks and I think that tells me that I am tapering too fast. I seem to go better with a 2.5% taper.

Share this post


Link to post
Petunia

Are you having panic attacks at the moment, or just the sleep problems?  If you are experiencing significant symptoms after a cut, then it most likely is a sign that your cuts are too big.  If I were you, I would do as MammaP suggests, have a long hold and then when you return to tapering, make a smaller cut and see how you respond.

 

Do keep us updated.

Share this post


Link to post
Fresh

Hi altruist ,     those beads must be driving you batty dude , lol.       I just looked on ebay for electronic jewellers' scales.   They say they can weigh 0.1gram - cost

is $13:95  with free delivery.    Is that the type of scales you were wanting?   

:)

Share this post


Link to post
altruist

Hi Fresh, I have been tediously counting the beads. I am currently tapering around 1.25% of remaining dose. I am taking out about 106 beads. I have the gemini scale that people where recommending on another thread, to weigh in milligrams (but I don't even have any idea how to use the scales when they keep resetting every minute or so.

 

I have been waiting for my medical records to arrive my snail mail so that I can make an appointment with Dr. Yolande Lucire.

Share this post


Link to post
Fresh

Nice to see you altruist  :) .

 

How has the taper been going , how often do you decrease?

Are you finding it easier to be awake during the days yet?

Share this post


Link to post
altruist

Nice to see you too Fresh :)

 

The taper has been going ok, I decrease doses roughly after 2 weeks of new dose.

 

I am still suffering from sleeping all day, not due to depression, but due to a combination of oversedation and severe sleep apnea.

Share this post


Link to post
altruist

btw, I sleep about 12-13 hours a day making it virtually impossible to get up in the morning.

Share this post


Link to post
Fresh

That's a nuisance altruist.   I was too sleepy all day so I tried switching the pristiq from a morning dose to pm. Worth a try?

 

If no one here can help you understand the Gemini scales , I thought you might email the manufacturer for instructions (post 20).

There must be a way to set them so they don't keep changing. Can anyone here advise please?

 

Are you decreasing by 1.25%  or 12.5% ?    

If it's 12.5 you might want to slow down a bit - give yourself 3 or 4 weeks min. at each level.   After this many years on this many

drugs (like I was)  it's not worth rushing the taper and getting delayed protracted withdrawal (like I did , lol).

 

Hugs ,   Fresh

Share this post


Link to post

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Terms of Use Privacy Policy