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Sweetness - My story-still fighting the effects of effexor-sorry it's long


sweetness

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 I am a 34 year old female and I feel l like my body is failing me and I have wasted so much money on Drs and supplements and all I have gotten is worse.  Everything I take, even antibiotics causes anxiety. 

My symptoms : hair has been falling out for over a year  and has become so thin, it is dry and brittle, dandruff, my nails are brittle, my skin dry and dehydrated, vision has gotten worse, fatigue, no libido, muscle cramps, get dizzy when standing up or bending over, cold all the time, dry scaling lips, sinus infections at least 2x a year, very depressed, emotionally and physically drained, I can’t stay awake at night but am never rested.  I also developed interstitial cystitis. (Very upsetting).  I’m miserable every day of my life and am just going through the motions everyday and not really living.

 

I was on anti depressants for over 10 years for depression and anxiety. The only one that ever worked and I was on the longest was effexor. I tapered off them about two years  ago. I tapered off while seeing a naturopath. After me awhile I felt worse so I tried seeing a different naturopath for amino acid therapy. This made me worse, both NDs gave me supplements at high doses causing me to have severe side effects:  anxiety, crying, blah feeling, more depressed and fatigue.  The second  Nd had me do a neurotransmitter urine test that showed serotonin was extremely low and my dopamine was on the low side. My appetite increased so much that I gained weight and also caused me to start having panic attacks and severe anxiety where I would not be able to fall asleep and would wake up at 5 am in a panic without being able to go back to sleep.

This was so bad I went to an integrative psychiatrist to get help and he prescribed me xanax which I took at least three times a day and the lowest dose. He sent me for some blood tests that showed I was positive for the MTHFR gene mutation and he started m eon a medication and what he called a low dose that caused me sever fatigue emotional distress and panic attacks. I researched it myself and started on b12 and methyl folate the lowest pills I could find, but could only take a quarter of these pills, if I went any higher I would get anxiety.   Eventually I got frustrated because all these Drs told me to just go back on anti depressants until my health issues were resolved and that isn’t what I wanted to do. During this time I stopped eating and drinking much. I would have maybe 2 bell vitas cookies in the morning and maybe 2 cups of water a day. I wasn’t hungry or thirsty. Due to this I lost a lot of weight.

Right after this my brother had a massive stroke and was in the hospital for over month. Very stressful for me, my mom and sister, that’s all the family I have.  I started taking something called 10 htp, which is a 10 mg 5 htp pill; I can only take a pinch out of it. I can’t increase it, which would cause anxiety, or decrease it which causes extreme fatigue where I can’t function. This I am stuck on now.

Right around this time my ND told me I needed to start eating meat again (I was vegetarian for a year). I didn’t want to do this but I was desperate to get better. This is around the time my hair then started falling out, my nails became brittle, and my skin dry and dehydrated.

I sought out another ND and she sent me for some blood and urine tests and tried me on inositol powder, which caused anxiety. During this time I developed what I thought was kidney pain.   It went to an urologist and she thinks I have interstitial cystitis and went for bladder instillation treatments.  This helped some, but I have since stopped and wanted a natural treatment for this. 

 

I’m under so much stress and these health issues are making it so much worse. No one has been able to help me and I just seem to be deteriorating. I work full time as an advocate for victims of domestic violence, attend grad school for my masters in counseling, am completing an internship with seniors with substance abuse issues, take care of my mother, care for my pets, visit with my brother in the nursing home, and moved to my first home. I do the bare minimum of everything just to get by.

I started following a ND from Florida who prescribes raw diet, herbs, and glandulars. I cannot eat a lot of raw foods because of my bladder and all the herbs and glandulars are too strong for my body. I have gone the opposite way no and don;t stop eating. I have gained so much weight. I can't control it. My body just craves these bad food so much, and I'm so tried it is hard to have willpower. 

I decided to have my adrenals checked and started seeing a  aprn that likes to treat naturally as well. She said  my adrenals  are a little off, and would like me to start something called pregnenolone. My vitamin D was extremely low as well. Again what she gave me was too high a dose for me, 1000ui, so i have to find something lower. I'm at  my ropes end. I know all of this has to do with being on the AD's so long then going off. It's like my body doesn't know to to work without them. I'm not sure where to go from here o get better. It's been so long I have been off them, but all I have been doing is suffering. I don;t know what else to do but go back on and hope it fixes everything. :(

Thank you for taking the time to read this. I  very much appreciate it. 

~sweetness~

 

 
I have taken numerous ad's over the last ten years. The most recent and last one, the only one that helped, was effexor xr-75mg dose. I tapered off over a year time by using regular effexor to taper slowly. I haven't been on any other Ad's since. I take xanax(  .25mg pill) ever once in a great while when my anxiety is really bad. I take freeze dried aloe for my bladder condition. I do not take anything else right now.
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Hi sweetness

I just wanted to say welcome.I'm pretty new here so I can't offer you any medication advice but I can say I have been on many meds over the last 20 years and am still on a lot so I know what the medication roundabout can feel like. I am amazed with what you have been through that you are holding down a full time job, I couldn't do that. Anyway, I'm sure someone else will be along shortly that can point you in the right direction.

Cali

All medications::

Xanax (1995-96), Aropax (1995-96), Mellaril (1997-2000), Efexor (1997-2002), Seroquel (2000-now), Lithium Carbonate (2000-now), Avanza (2002-05), Epilim (2005), Seroquel-XR (2000-now), Zyprexa (2002-14), Raberprazole (2000-now prn), Crestor (2009-15), Gabapentin (2009-12), Lamictal (2010-now), Abilify (2011-now) Lyrica (2012-now), Diazepam (2010-now prn), Saphris (2014), Respiridone (2014), Chlorpromazine (2014) Neulatil (07/2016)

 

Current medications:

Lithium Carbonate 750mg; Seroquel-XR 600mg800mg 04/16, 600mg 04/16, 400mg 04/16, 200mg 04/16, 400mg 04/16, 500mg 04/16; Lamictal 250mg 200mg150mg 04/16; Lyrica 300mg; Abilify 20mg 30mg 11/15 Zoloft 25mg 04/16 ceased after a week due to severe suicidal thoughts; Seroquel 25mg prn; Diazepam 40mg CT Jan 2013, 5mg occasionally, (massive med changes in April 2016 due to a hospital admission).

 

SupplementsFish oil 4000mgMagnesium 100mg Niacinamide 1000mgSlippery Elm 800mg , B12 1000mcg, Zinc 50mg, B6 100mg, Vitamin D 2000IU, Calcium 1200mgP5P 100mg, Vitamin C 2000mg, Vitamin E 400IU

 

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Hi sweetness

I just wanted to say welcome.I'm pretty new here so I can't offer you any medication advice but I can say I have been on many meds over the last 20 years and am still on a lot so I know what the medication roundabout can feel like. I am amazed with what you have been through that you are holding down a full time job, I couldn't do that. Anyway, I'm sure someone else will be along shortly that can point you in the right direction.

Cali

 

Thank you for your kind words Cali! They are very much appreciated. 

~sweetness~

 

 
I have taken numerous ad's over the last ten years. The most recent and last one, the only one that helped, was effexor xr-75mg dose. I tapered off over a year time by using regular effexor to taper slowly. I haven't been on any other Ad's since. I take xanax(  .25mg pill) ever once in a great while when my anxiety is really bad. I take freeze dried aloe for my bladder condition. I do not take anything else right now.
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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi sweetness--

 

I'm so sorry for your suffering. Unfortunately many of us here know what it's like. That doesn't make it any better, but you're not alone.

I'm not sure if you're asking a question, or if you want advice, or if you're just sharing your situation for some support.

 

If you want advice about getting off meds or coping with withdrawal, please give us more specific information. Things like: which meds you have taken, when and for how long, and in particular what you have taken in the past three or four years. What doses, when you quit, how fast you quit or tapered, what was your final dose. Are you still taking Xanax? Any supplements other than a low dose of 10-htp?

 

Here's how to put your history in your sig line, which helps us help you:

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

 

We generally find that naturopathic doctors don't know any more about psych med withdrawal than conventional docs do, and your experience (tons of supplements, lots of money probably, nothing that helps) is pretty typical with that.

 

I highly recommend the books Anatomy of an Epidemic by Robert Whitaker and Your Drug May Be Your Problem by Peter Breggin and David Cohen.

 

Welcome to the forum. Again, I'm sorry for everything you're going through.

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

 

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

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Hi sweetness--

 

I'm so sorry for your suffering. Unfortunately many of us here know what it's like. That doesn't make it any better, but you're not alone.

I'm not sure if you're asking a question, or if you want advice, or if you're just sharing your situation for some support.

 

If you want advice about getting off meds or coping with withdrawal, please give us more specific information. Things like: which meds you have taken, when and for how long, and in particular what you have taken in the past three or four years. What doses, when you quit, how fast you quit or tapered, what was your final dose. Are you still taking Xanax? Any supplements other than a low dose of 10-htp?

 

Here's how to put your history in your sig line, which helps us help you:

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

 

We generally find that naturopathic doctors don't know any more about psych med withdrawal than conventional docs do, and your experience (tons of supplements, lots of money probably, nothing that helps) is pretty typical with that.

 

I highly recommend the books Anatomy of an Epidemic by Robert Whitaker and Your Drug May Be Your Problem by Peter Breggin and David Cohen.

 

Welcome to the forum. Again, I'm sorry for everything you're going through.

 

Thank you for you kind thoughts and input. I think I was more of introducing myself. However, any advice is welcome as I am at the end of my rope with this. 

~sweetness~

 

 
I have taken numerous ad's over the last ten years. The most recent and last one, the only one that helped, was effexor xr-75mg dose. I tapered off over a year time by using regular effexor to taper slowly. I haven't been on any other Ad's since. I take xanax(  .25mg pill) ever once in a great while when my anxiety is really bad. I take freeze dried aloe for my bladder condition. I do not take anything else right now.
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  • Moderator Emeritus

HI Sweetness,

 

Was it two years ago that you finished your taper off effexor and if so, have you had your symptoms the whole time since?

 

Dalsaan

Please note - I am not a medical practitioner and I do not give medical advice. I offer an opinion based on my own experiences, reading and discussion with others.On Effexor for 2 months at the start of 2005. Had extreme insomnia as an adverse reaction. Changed to mirtazapine. Have been trying to get off since mid 2008 with numerous failures including CTs and slow (but not slow enough tapers)Have slow tapered at 10 per cent or less for years. I have liquid mirtazapine made at a compounding chemist.

Was on 1.6 ml as at 19 March 2014.

Dropped to 1.5 ml 7 June 2014. Dropped to 1.4 in about September.

Dropped to 1.3 on 20 December 2014. Dropped to 1.2 in mid Jan 2015.

Dropped to 1 ml in late Feb 2015. I think my old medication had run out of puff so I tried 1ml when I got the new stuff and it seems to be going ok. Sleep has been good over the last week (as of 13/3/15).

Dropped to 1/2 ml 14/11/15 Fatigue still there as are memory and cognition problems. Sleep is patchy but liveable compared to what it has been in the past.

 

DRUG FREE - as at 1st May 2017

 

>My intro post is here - http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/2250-dalsaan

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Yes it was two years ago I finished my taper. I haven't had all of them the whole time. They just developed over the time period and gotten worse.

I've had all kinds of tests and drs don't knoww hats wrong with me. I know it's from the ads.

~sweetness~

 

 
I have taken numerous ad's over the last ten years. The most recent and last one, the only one that helped, was effexor xr-75mg dose. I tapered off over a year time by using regular effexor to taper slowly. I haven't been on any other Ad's since. I take xanax(  .25mg pill) ever once in a great while when my anxiety is really bad. I take freeze dried aloe for my bladder condition. I do not take anything else right now.
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  • Administrator

Welcome, sweetness.

 

Have you had a full endocrinological checkup? You should go to the best endocrinologist you can find, do not leave this to an PCP or an ND.

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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HI.  I am new to this forum but wanted to welcome you anyway.  I too have hair that has been falling out in droves.  it is very obvious now that I am balding.  I also have the very dry skin and diziness when I stand or bend over.    I have had tests on my heart etc and noone knows what is up with me either.  Add to that the protracted withdrawls from coming off the Paxil and I am a real mess.  I understand your frustration all too well.  I hope you eventually find the answers you are looking for.  Big hugs.

2002-put on amitryptiline for fibromyalgia. 10mg.2004-stopped abruptly. Didn't think it helped.2006 approx.-put on Paxil for mild anxiety 20 mg.2007 upped to 40 mg. not sure why.2011- tapered from 40 to 10. went nuts and went back to 20mg2014- tapered from 20mg to 0 from April to The end of June.current meds- Metformin(type 2 diabetic) and low dose aspirin.Take multi vitamin and vit b12, vit. D and magnesium. 5 months off Paxil. Still suffering.recently added 1.2mg of Paxil to alleviate withdrawals.(Nov 30)Dropped to .9mg because having symptoms from reinstatement.(dec 23)<p>taper to .76mg-.8mg (Feb 3) approx. weight .010 to about .008-.009 on scale.
.6mg (march 19th.) .5mg(April 19th)
.4mg(April 27th)
.2 (June 27th)

0mg.  done taper at beginning of August.

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Thanks frustrated! I hope you find a answer soon as well. I seem to be getting worse everyday. I just want to sit on the couch and not leave the house all day. No energy and I'm embarrassed how I look. Lately I'm thinking of going back to the ads. I know they aren't good for me, but I'm just suffering so much. I'm thinking I'm depressed again because of all this health stuff. I wish I could go back in time and not ever take these meds, I always wonder where my life would have ended up. I feel broken and irreparable :(

~sweetness~

 

 
I have taken numerous ad's over the last ten years. The most recent and last one, the only one that helped, was effexor xr-75mg dose. I tapered off over a year time by using regular effexor to taper slowly. I haven't been on any other Ad's since. I take xanax(  .25mg pill) ever once in a great while when my anxiety is really bad. I take freeze dried aloe for my bladder condition. I do not take anything else right now.
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  • Moderator Emeritus

I'm sorry to hear that you are suffering so badly Sweetness. Alto is our expert here and she suggested seeing an

endocrinologist so I would do that if it is at all possible. There may be an underlying condition that is making the

withdrawal even worse. A general practitioner won't have the expertise to do the testing needed and neither would

a naturopath. Trying more ADs could make things even worse for you when you are so sensitive. 

 

I wish I could make it better for you, for all of 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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Thank you

~sweetness~

 

 
I have taken numerous ad's over the last ten years. The most recent and last one, the only one that helped, was effexor xr-75mg dose. I tapered off over a year time by using regular effexor to taper slowly. I haven't been on any other Ad's since. I take xanax(  .25mg pill) ever once in a great while when my anxiety is really bad. I take freeze dried aloe for my bladder condition. I do not take anything else right now.
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  • 3 weeks later...

I know it seems awful, but I believe you will heal. I am sorry you are suffering. But, you are able to work, sleep, and interact with others. These are all things to be very very happy about, reasons for hope. There are so many here who can't even leave their homes. :(

 

I think an endocrinologist would be a good idea. Also, with the understanding you are sensitized from WD, and they need to know this, before messing with anything, such as your thyroid.

 

I wish you speedy recovery. Peace. :)

2005-Zoloft bad reaction.....2006-Lexepro......2012-Upped Lexepro.......2013-Upped Lexepro......2/2014- Attempted Taper Lexepro...2/2014- Updosed Lexepro.......3/2014-Ativan.....5/2014- CT switch from Lexpro to Effexor.....

5/2014-7/2014-Tapered Ativan from 1mg to .25mg.....6/2014-Bad reaction to Effexor........7/2014- Rapid taper Effexor every other day......7/5/2014- Off Effexor.......7/2014-12/2014 - Ativan .25mg.......12/25/2014 -Taper Ativan by 4% due to paradoxical reaction .24mg...11/18/2015-Taper Ativan 1% CURRENTLY ON: .2376mg Ativan taken in 6 .0396mg doses.

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