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Alternative to Meds Center in Sedona, Arizona?


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Has anyone ever heard of this center?

 

It sounds too good to be true to me.

 

Does anyone know of any centers that provide good care while coming off meds?

One that doesn't prescribe meds to get off meds?

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I have personal experience with that center. I do not recommend it.

 

GiaK also went there. She does not recommend it.

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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  • 2 weeks later...

What was everyone's experience like.  It seems like it isn't what the website portrays it to be.

 

I guess there is really no easy way out of this mess.

Klonopin 2mg 2000-2005 Tapered off without bad symptoms

Ativan 1mg 2007-2010 Tapered with moderate problems

 

Klonopin 16 total mgs in Jan and Feb 2014 - got dependent and foolishly updosed by bad doctor to 1.25mg for 4 weeks.  Then horrific detox and placed on Neurontin 100mg, bid, Propanolol 40mg prn, Seroquel 100mg qhs and Remeron 15mg qhs.  Quickly dropped Neurontin and Propanolol.   Stuck on other two meds and still having strong symptoms from klonopin cold turkey.  Want someday to be med free and healed again

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  • 1 year later...
DevastatedWife

I don't know if this is the right place on this forum but I'm curious it anyone has heard of or attended Alternatives to Meds in Arizona?  I was recently made aware of this facility and their website claims to understand antidepressant withdrawal syndrome.  My husband attended a facility but he was unfortunately misdiagnosed as bi-polar and given different medication upon leaving that place.  We had another 6 months of hell after he was discharged because of that!  If only I knew then what I know now, I would have looked into this place rather than the others that were presented.

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Hi DevastatedWife--  I just took a look at their website, very slick and professional, must have cost them a bundle.  The first thing you see is a big note "Financing Available". For the entire 8 week program they want $46,000, and the $7000 a month for follow up until your get better. Anyone fast tapering like that will have a rough time that will be alleviated somewhat by pampering and diet.  At the end of which they will probably feel wonderful.  This is the honeymoon period that most CTs feel before they hit the wall at three months off.  We see it here all the time and the results aren't pretty. 

 

They base their entire ADWD program on the "chemical imbalance theory" which was disproved years ago.

The testing they do has nothing to do with ADs. Which BTW can not be tested for with urine tests.

Their programs lasts 4 or 8 weeks which is essentially a CT that will require you to return for many months of follow up care because your one of the "tough cases".

The rest is teaching you self care and healthy eating.

 

My personal belief is they have a good success rate because people can't afford to return for follow up and they are in such a bad place from the CT that they don't have the mental strength to fight back.

20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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It's a beautifully designed website ticking all the right boxes for the desperate consumer who is after a quick fix.

 

My personal belief is they have a good success rate because people can't afford to return for follow up and they are in such a bad place from the CT that they don't have the mental strength to fight back.

 

I agree with this but it could also be that they think their original problems have returned or that they have a new condition.

 

Thankfully we can get a lot of what we need here and it's FREE!!!

NEW!!!     INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder    NEW!!! 

 

Plodding along inch by inch:  12" = 1',  3' =  36 " or 1 yard,  1760 yards  = 63,360" or 1 mile

Current from 17 Apr 2021:  Pristiq 0.2665mg  now holding each dose for 3 weeks

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering Oct 2015 

My tapering program   My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)  My website

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.

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  • 8 months later...
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This facility operated in San Francisco, California for a while, before moving to Arizona. I have personal experience there as a peer counselor. I do not recommend it.
 
http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Alternative-to-Meds-Center-to-close-3165798.php
 

Alternative to Meds Center to close
April 10, 2009
 
An unlicensed and nontraditional residential drug-treatment center in San Francisco's Mission District will be forced to close following a city Planning Commission vote Thursday.

The Alternative to Meds Center had been operating its residential facility in a large Victorian house at 827 Guerrero St. since August without the required city permits for group housing situations.

Representatives of several neighborhood groups filled the commission's hearing room to speak out against the center, which had between six and 10 residents at any given time.

Neighbors said the center's leaders had lied about contributing $5,000 to a neighborhood greening effort, failed to enforce rules that forbid residents from leaving the property alone and had repeatedly changed their story about what services were offered at the house.

The state Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs issued the center a violation notice last Friday for offering services such as counseling, education and detoxification programs without a license.

Neighbors said that other unlicensed services had been provided at the house and that ambulances had been frequently called over the past several months.
 
"Their program schedule had acupuncture and they have no license for that. They had medication on-site, and they have no license for that. They made alterations to their Web site from what had been 'drug rehabilitation' to 'health education,' " said Gillian Gillett, who lives nearby.

Lyle Murphy, the center's founder and director, is a trained chiropractor. On Thursday, he described the center's treatment as "orthomolecular medicine" and said it relates to establishing the neurotransmitter balance in a person's body.

Murphy told the commission that he was in discussions with state regulators to have the violations rescinded and said that they were based on a misunderstanding about the center's services.

But his testimony was not enough to sway the commissioners who voted unanimously against issuing the permit for group housing.


I had many, many conversations with Lyle regarding the lack of validity of the "chemical imbalance" theory and particularly how it doesn't apply to withdrawal symptoms.

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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We had a member visit, and here is the report from her parent, from her thread:

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/12493-lex1992-4-months-off-of-lexapro-extreme-anxietyruminating-cant-function-properly/page-1#entry244891

 

Summary:  a beautiful place. 

Lex1992 was already fully off her antidepressant, and suffering intense neuro-emotion, and probably akathisia.

It seemed that her distress was too much for the clinic to handle, so when Lex walked out, she was not re-admitted.

 

They do not understand withdrawal, and are not prepared to handle spiritual emergency.

"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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  • 1 month later...
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manymoretodays

That's awful Drugfree Prof, 

 

I wound up in the psych hospital 2 years ago when I inadvertently(should have known better too) went from 5mg. Lexapro(1/2 of a 10mg. tablet) to 3 mg. of a liquid preparation.  Then they took me off it completely.  Whooosh.........good times.......sorry, what can I do but laugh.  However, my hospital experience was better than what you describe above.  There was an immediate withdrawal that was pretty shaky........though I wasn't out of touch with reality............my best description of me at that time was pretty disorganized cognition and autonomic nervous system gone haywire...........and then the aftermath W/D.  I think it took 9 days to work my way out of the hospital.......and like I said.......it was one of the better ones around my area.

 

Thanks for alerting us all again.

 

mmt

Started with psycho meds/psychiatric care circa 1988.  In retrospect, and on contemplation, situational overwhelm.

Rounding up to 30 years of medications(30 medication trials, poly-pharmacy maximum was 3 at one time).

5/28/2015-off Adderal salts 2.5mg. (I had been on that since hospital 10/2014)

12/2015---just holding, holding, holding, with trileptal/oxcarb at 75 mg. 1/2 tab at hs.  My last psycho med ever!  Tapered @ 10% every 4 weeks, sometimes 2 weeks to

2016 Dec 16 medication free!!

Longer signature post here, with current supplements.

Herb and alcohol free since 5/15/2016. 

None of my posts are intended as medical advice.  Please discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical provider. manymoretodays

 

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  • 1 year later...
On 01/09/2016 at 6:32 AM, Altostrata said:

This facility operated in San Francisco, California for a while, before moving to Arizona. I have personal experience there as a peer counselor. I do not recommend it.
 
http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Alternative-to-Meds-Center-to-close-3165798.php
 

 

I had many, many conversations with Lyle regarding the lack of validity of the "chemical imbalance" theory and particularly how it doesn't apply to withdrawal symptoms.

 

i just spoke to someone at Meds Center in Sedona, Arizona tonight about using their service... after reading the link you provided i guess i will not take out that loan to attend the center. i will keep looking for help elsewhere. glad i read that.

 

Edited by ChessieCat
changed font

JOINED THIS BOARD AUGUST 27, 2017

 

 

250mg trazodone

250mg   Aug 21, 2017  tapering before I found SA

200mg -  Aug 21, 2017 to Aug 25, 2017 tapering before found SA

225mg -  Aug 26, 2017  updose holding

November 26, 2017. I reinstated my original dose of 250mg  trazodone..planning on holding for a very long time. No more withdrawal

June 14, 2020  at 10% 507  My first start of my trazodone 250mg  taper

6/16/20  90 mgai    7/26/20   81 mgai    9/6/20  72 mg ai 10/17/20- updose to 77 mgai  11/11/20- updose to 81 mgai  

 

 

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  • 1 year later...
  • 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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  • 2 weeks later...
DrugfreeProf

I would love Alto and others to weigh in at Mad in America in response to the praise heaped upon Alternative to Meds Center in Sedona, AZ, where my daughter (and others) have had very bad experiences.  The author did a follow up survey of people who went through the center and claims positive results. I continue to have my doubts. Have a look, Alto and others who have a good sense of seeing past the flaws in the research design. See the comments, especially.

https://www.madinamerica.com/2019/02/evidence-based-holistic-drug-treatment-document-effective/#comment-150118

 

Drugfree Prof

Psychologist and Psychotherapist

Prozac 20 mg for approx 3 months during 2000, withdrew, no w/d sx

Prozac 10 - 30 mg Jan. 2008 - Dec. 2014

Ritalin 30-40 mg Jan. 2008 - Mar. 2015

W/d sx from Prozac started around 3 months after cessation--crying spells, depressed mood, lethargy; resolved in 8 - 12 mos. post cessation

Used and continue to use a TON of alternative methods--meditation, mindfulness, nutrition. supplements, exercise, etc.

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Here are my two posts awaiting moderator approval:
 

Quote

 

I have personal experience with Alternative to Meds Center and in no way would call their approach evidence-based.

 

Over months of volunteering there, I found absolute ignorance of withdrawal symptoms and a great deal of overpromising in regards to their supplement regimens, which are based on orthomolecular principles of “balancing neurotransmitters.”

 

There certainly is no evidence base for those orthomolecular regimens: The “neurotransmitter imbalance” theory has been thoroughly debunked in the rest of the world.

Because of the supplements, clients are supposed to be able to go off multiple psychiatric drugs with minimal withdrawal issues within a very short stay. On my Web site, SurvivingAntidepressants.org, where we urge a gradual taper based on individual tolerance to dosage reductions — which can take many months — we have gotten reports of very bad outcomes at Alternative to Meds Center.

 

Quick recovery from a fast taper is a tribute to individual nervous system resiliency, not a function of overpriced supplements.

 

In addition, Alternative to Meds Center follows an addiction rehab model, which holds you have to suffer through withdrawal syndrome to break your dependency habit. This is inappropriate applied to psychiatric drugs (and, in my opinion, is counter-productive in going off addictive drugs).

 

Essentially, ATMC is a basic addiction detox center with alternative medicine garnishes. If they addressed psychiatric drug tapering, your local drug detox program would provide the same services at lower cost (usually covered by health insurance) with about the same quality of care.

 

There is a lot of gas-lighting, manipulation, and woo-waving at ATMC, which is a common pitfall in alternative treatments. I would not trust any of their internal data, much less testimonials or Yelp reviews.

 

On paper, ATMC offers a very appealing model. If I could recommend it for psychiatric drug withdrawal, I would be happy to send everyone there, despite the high cost. Rather, on SurvivingAntidepressants.org, we make it clear that we do not recommend Alternative to Meds Center in Sedona, Arizona.

 


 

Quote

 

Dr. Corrigan, please supply a full statement of your conflicts of interest regarding Alternative to Meds Center.

 

Here is the report you provided https://www.alternativetomeds.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/ATMC_OutcomeStudy2018.pdf as Vice President, Multi-Dimensional Education Inc.

 

More about your company here http://www.mdedinc.com/httpdocs/about_us

 

Did ATMC commission you to do this study? Thank 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

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DrugfreeProf

What a great couple of rejoinders, Alto. They hit the nail right on the head.  Thanks so much for weighing in.

It's troublesome to consider the possibility that people suffering from severe protracted WD might be persuaded to enroll at the ATMC, given the conclusions drawn from that article.

The researcher emphasizes how "scientific" his report is. Where is the evidence that high doses of supplements, exercise, and group psychotherapy, which ATMC uses (along with healthy eating) are effective in combatting WD symptoms?

My take is that the survey data mentioned in the article reflects the reports from the proportion of people (perhaps half?) who do NOT suffer severely from WD symptoms upon discontinuing ADs. These people would have recovered with or without ATMC, and maybe faster without it. For people in protracted WD their program could prove disastrous--as I pointed out in my comments to the article (written under the handle Happytobefree).

 

Drugfree Prof

Psychologist and Psychotherapist

Prozac 20 mg for approx 3 months during 2000, withdrew, no w/d sx

Prozac 10 - 30 mg Jan. 2008 - Dec. 2014

Ritalin 30-40 mg Jan. 2008 - Mar. 2015

W/d sx from Prozac started around 3 months after cessation--crying spells, depressed mood, lethargy; resolved in 8 - 12 mos. post cessation

Used and continue to use a TON of alternative methods--meditation, mindfulness, nutrition. supplements, exercise, etc.

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