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KarenB

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Hello everyone,

 

It feels good to discover this site - thank you all for being here.  Right now I've run out of everything, my depression has swamped me, I'm exhausted.  Doc queried increasing meds, I said no.  I realise this would be a silly time to start coming off them, and I'm not thinking of doing that, but the need to stop meds is always in my head. 

 

I want to know everything I can about it, especially how to know when to start decreasing.  

 

My husband, who is beautifully supportive of me in every other way, is sure that the possible upheaval would be too much for our family.  I worry about that too.

 

  

Edited by scallywag
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2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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Hey everyone, long time no see...   I am still slowly reducing effexor. 2/3 of the way there now. Such tiny drops, just one a week for a 2, 3 or 4 weeks (depends on how it's going) then a fe

Aaron is doing reasonably well. Still has the hot/itchy skin if he's not careful to keep cool, but he is actually on steroids to control that:-(  He is able to decrease faster than I can though. He is

  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Karen

 

Welcome to the forum. I'm glad you found us and are researching stuff before you make your decision. If you provide some detail of your medication history we can point you to the key threads to read. You can put your med history in your signature. Instructions are here http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/893-please-put-your-withdrawal-history-in-your-signature/

 

There are a lot of very frightening withdrawal stories here. These are from people who landed here is deep withdrawal having gone cold turkey or tapered way too fast. It doesn't have to be like that. The key strategy is to go slow enough to avoid withdrawal symptoms to a minimal. We can help you with that.

 

 

Have you tried to come off before?

 

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello Dalsaan,

I did write my med history in the signature thing, but can't get it to show up?  I'm not so hot with computers... Will see what happens with this post.

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Ah yes your signature has come up now.  I think quite a number of us have csa and ptsd issues.  I'm sorry you are feeling swamped at the moment.

 

When did you change to Venlafaxine?

 

D

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Karen! I have PTSD from childhood abuse too, isn't it fun?

 

Seriously, I want to assure you that you can actually taper and NOT be miserable. You just have to do it slowly, in very small increments, and take breaks, and listen to your body. We have all the information and tools that you need here.

 

You're in a great position; most of the folks who come here are already suffering because they tried to come off at the speed their doctors told them to, or they quit cold turkey. 

 

If you start from a stable place, gather your tools and information, and go slowly, you can do this. There may be some days that will be a bit bumpy, but overall it will be so much more tolerable than your past attempts that there will be no comparison. I suspect that once your husband understands that a slow, controlled taper is a whole different animal than what you've done in the past, he will be more supportive.

 

And it will be worth it. As your doses come down you will begin to get yourself back. It's so delightful. You'll be delighted, and so will your loved ones.

 

You'll be in control. You'll be able to choose when to cut your dose and when to hold, depending on what's going on in your life and how you're feeling. 

 

You'll do fine.

 

Welcome to the forum.

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 

 

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

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Also, hello you NZ and Aussie people on the other side of the world. It's still last night here. :-)

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 

 

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

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Waving back at you RHI.     Lilly , you say you've run out of everything?     You need to get more venlafaxine ... just stopping almost guarantees you're going to suffer enormously.   Don't go that route , please.

Can you have another script filled at the moment?

 

Fresh

1987-1997 pertofran , prothiaden , Prozac 1997-2002 Zoloft 2002-2004 effexor 2004-2010 Lexapro 40mg

2010-2012Cymbalta 120mg

Sept. 2012 -decreased 90mg in 6months. Care taken over by Dr Lucire in March 2013 , decreased last 30mg at 2mg per week over 3 months. July 21 , 2013- last dose of Cymbalta

Protracted withdrawal syndrome kicked in badly Jan.2014 Unrelenting akathisia until May 2014. Voluntary hosp. admission. Cocktail of Seroquel, Ativan and mirtazapine and I was well enough to go home after 14 days. Stopped all hosp. meds in next few months.

July 2014 felt v.depressed - couldn't stop crying. Started pristiq 50mg. Felt improvement within days and continued to improve, so stayed on 50mg for 8 months.

Began taper 28 Feb. 2015. Pristiq 50mg down to 45mg. Had one month of w/d symptoms. Started CES therapy in March. No w/d symptoms down to 30mg.

October 2015 , taking 25mg Pristiq. Capsules compounded with slow-release additive.

March 2016 , 21mg

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  • Administrator

Hello, Karen.

 

Is your screen name your real name? If so, you may wish to change it for privacy. Please send me a personal message if you want to do this.

 

Here is our topic about tapering venlafaxine Tips for tapering off Effexor and Effexor XR (venlafaxine)

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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Thank you for thinking of me, but I'm very definate about using my real name.  Years ago I decided that I didn't want to hide anything anymore, or feel ashamed of the things I need to deal with, and - for me - that means using my real name.  I understand this is not for everyone though:-)

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Dalsaan,

 

Thanks for your quick replies - this site is amazing.  I started on Venlafaxine 75mg/daily in mid Feb 2014 - almost exactly a year ago.  I continued to struggle on that dose for 7 weeks so increased to 150mg/daily.  Started then to cope much better (with anger/depression etc).  6 months ago I found I was feeling dizzy sometimes during the day or evening.  Doc suggested 75mg in the morning and 75mg in the evening to spread it out.  Has worked fairly well, but lately sometimes I feel rather dizzy still.  

 

Also, am having this major depressive episode currently, and am wondering if pills are doing much for me anymore?  Refusing to increase dosage.  Hot ears are an issue just now too.  And if pills aren't doing their proper job, I'm scared I really wouldn't cope if I came off them.  Could become the angry horrid person I was pre-pills?  How do people know if they are better enough, of if the pills are just masking all those bad old symptoms.  I have done huge amounts of work at counseling, but feel quite scared of discovering I'm still an angry raging person.  Not good for a mother...

 

Have never discontinued Vanlafaxine, but when I discontinued Escitalopram it wasn't nice - flu symptoms, very angry, dizzy, shaky, hot ears. 

So confusing,

Karen.

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello Rhi,

Your post was very inspiring to read - thank you.  I'm almost too scared to let myself believe it could be true - being own self again.  To be honest, I'm scared I'll turn out to still be the same angry mama.  I keep telling myself I've done so much work, and still am seeing my counselor who is lovely and who I trust.  So that's one support in place.  Scary times.  Anyway, got to let this sad time pass first.  Get back on solid(er) ground.

Karen

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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Hi Karen, I'm so glad you're here! I can utterly relate to the scary anger - my husband is reluctant for me to withdraw since cutting down leaves me raging :( I 'hope' thè anger was due to the way I dropped 10 mg of Paxil- using the stoopid alternate day dose method and not cause I'm just mean.. Like you I have children who relay on me to be well. Let's move forward slowly!

 

Drug history

  • 20mg paxil in 2001 - 4 months use  
  • 20mg paxil in 2003 - 2 months use 
  • 20mg paxil in 2008 - 8 years continuous

Withdrawal history:

  • March 2014 - disastrous alternate day taper
  • Jan 2015 - 15mg to 10mg. Disaster
  • Sept 2015 -  10mg to 5mg. Disaster. Reinstated to 6mg. Relief
  • Oct 2015 - started slow 10% taper 
  • Oct 2016 - at 4mg- stop taking paxil (not recommended)

 

I'm not a medical professional. Seek advice from a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Nice to meet you too Molly :)   Yes, slowly slowly.  I think surely we are nice people? :(   If we think back to when we were little babies - we must have some goodness to us underneath all the crap that got piled on.  I'm thinking ahead and imagining the day I can write my successful tapering story... I'm sure you will too.

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Karen , I've sent you a message.    I hope you're finding the support you were looking for.

Best wishes , Fresh 

1987-1997 pertofran , prothiaden , Prozac 1997-2002 Zoloft 2002-2004 effexor 2004-2010 Lexapro 40mg

2010-2012Cymbalta 120mg

Sept. 2012 -decreased 90mg in 6months. Care taken over by Dr Lucire in March 2013 , decreased last 30mg at 2mg per week over 3 months. July 21 , 2013- last dose of Cymbalta

Protracted withdrawal syndrome kicked in badly Jan.2014 Unrelenting akathisia until May 2014. Voluntary hosp. admission. Cocktail of Seroquel, Ativan and mirtazapine and I was well enough to go home after 14 days. Stopped all hosp. meds in next few months.

July 2014 felt v.depressed - couldn't stop crying. Started pristiq 50mg. Felt improvement within days and continued to improve, so stayed on 50mg for 8 months.

Began taper 28 Feb. 2015. Pristiq 50mg down to 45mg. Had one month of w/d symptoms. Started CES therapy in March. No w/d symptoms down to 30mg.

October 2015 , taking 25mg Pristiq. Capsules compounded with slow-release additive.

March 2016 , 21mg

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Karen,

 

I think many of us have had to learn to trust the core of who we are as opposed to our medicated selves. Part of what's difficult, and I think particularly in Australia and NZ is that the orthodoxy of depression is a disease, a disease of the neurotransmitter system, a disease that is effectively addressed/managed by antidepressants, a disease that is lifelong, a disease akin to diabeties or asthma is entrenched in the mind of professionals and the public.

 

This is despite the fact that each of those elements are highly contested if not scientifically debunked! The chemical imbalance theory is dead in the water and yet it is alluded to constantly and it undermines our confidence in ourselves.

 

What if, as some researchers/psychiatrists suspect, antidepressants are actually an agent of depression? That changes everything. That's what I believe. I also believe that the cost/benefit ratio doesn't stack up and basically antidepressants do more harm than good. That's why I decided to come off. It was scary, but much less so when I let go of the thought that I needed antidepressants. What I need to do is lots of non pharmaceutical things to manage my emotional well being.

 

For me counselling is one of those things, as is self education, walks in the sun, eating lots of fish, invest as little as I can in negative emotions, spending time with loved ones doing nice, gentle things etc etc etc

 

Withdrawal does take some management. It can generate negative emotions which we call neurotic emotions because they are not real, they come and go, especially if we don't grab at them and hold on tight. They too will pass.

 

But, the key to it is going slow enough so your brain can adjust. The goal is to avoid withdrawal or minimise them as much as possible. There is lots of info on this site to support you in that and people willing to walk with you.

 

You are courageous. You are strong. Those things are very evident in the discussions on this thread. You can do this.

 

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello Rhi,

Your post was very inspiring to read - thank you.  I'm almost too scared to let myself believe it could be true - being own self again.  To be honest, I'm scared I'll turn out to still be the same angry mama.  I keep telling myself I've done so much work, and still am seeing my counselor who is lovely and who I trust.  So that's one support in place.  Scary times.  Anyway, got to let this sad time pass first.  Get back on solid(er) ground.

Karen

 

This is actually a common fear. But yes, you can get yourself back, and if you're not happy with how that feels, you can find real, sustainable, healthy ways to change. 

 

These drugs can help in the short term, but long term outcomes are not good, they seem to just make things worse over time.

 

There are SO many healing options, so many ways to get support, various types of therapies, all kinds of things you can do for yourself, to get to the root of whatever was making you angry, or maybe just to get the support you needed to take care of yourself so that you wouldn't get stressed out and too drained (I don't really know your story).

 

The main thing is, you can taper off the drugs slowly, or at least reduce to the lowest possible dose of the fewest possible meds. If it goes for you like it has for me and other people I've known here, you will find that as you get down to lower doses you will get your old enthusiasms and zest and your old personality back, well before you're all the way off. Just being on lower doses can make a big difference.

 

And like I said, once you get there, all kinds of help is available to do real, authentic, deep healing. I found that in all my years on psych meds, doing tons of therapy, I got very little improvement in my actual ability to live and enjoy life, but now that I'm on lower doses and tapering off, I'm healing by leaps and bounds and finally getting to experience what all that therapy was for.

Edited by Petunia
name change (privacy)

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 

 

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

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thanks Fresh, it's so easy to write in an ambiguous way - I'll have to watch that in future posts.  And yes - I am finding good care here thank you.  This is the only place in my life where people get why I'd want to stop meds, and then also get how to do it. 

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Those are very real issues you bring up, which deeply concern me.  But, whenever I talk of coming off meds most people don't get this stuff.  My husband insists I am just obsessed, wanting to dinscontinue when it would be too much for our family to handle.  To my mind, obsession would be appropriate when one is taking harmful meds.  I think I am worth more, and deserve better than simply continuing to take my medicine.  

 

Thanks for your list of things you do to manage.  I sat down and made my own list yesterday similar to yours, adding in dance, yoga, time to feel my sad feelings, and being in the garden.

 

You are very encouraging, and I'm so grateful.

Karen

 

What if, as some researchers/psychiatrists suspect, antidepressants are actually an agent of depression? That changes everything. That's what I believe. I also believe that the cost/benefit ratio doesn't stack up and basically antidepressants do more harm than good. That's why I decided to come off. It was scary, but much less so when I let go of the thought that I needed antidepressants. What I need to do is lots of non pharmaceutical things to manage my emotional well being.

For me counselling is one of those things, as is self education, walks in the sun, eating lots of fish, invest as little as I can in negative emotions, spending time with loved ones doing nice, gentle things etc etc etc

Withdrawal does take some management. It can generate negative emotions which we call neurotic emotions because they are not real, they come and go, especially if we don't grab at them and hold on tight. They too will pass.
 

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi,

 

I'm still taking my full dose 150mg/daily of Venlafaxine.  It feels like it's not working properly, as over the last 6 months or so I get dizziness and then there is my current depressive episode which has built up over Dec-Jan to the big crash I had this week. 

 

Obviously I don't want to take meds anyway, but esp if they aren't even working.  Doc suggested increase, I refused.

 

Do the symptoms of dizziness/depression need to go away before I start to taper off?  Or will they just always be there, so I may as well start tapering anyway?  Though obviously I'll wait till out of this very deep depression.

 

Thanks for any ideas you have,

Karen 

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Karen,

I moved the above post from the symptoms section to your introduction thread here because it was related to your own situation specifically.  Please add information and updates about your changing circumstances, and ask questions here.

 

If the dizziness started 6 months ago, and you hadn't made any recent drug changes, it may not be connected with any drugs you are taking.  It could possibly be a side effect of the venlafaxine and might go away as you start to taper, but you wont know until you try. If the venlafaxine isn't working, then there is no point in continuing to take it.

 

From my own experience, I have found that antidepressants cause depression.  I went on Zoloft for anxiety, not depression.  I'd never had depression before in my life.  The normal sadness and periods of feeling bored and unmotivated about life, but nothing which lasted very long.  About 2 - 3 weeks after starting the antidepressant, I was hit with what I now know to be depression, the anxiety had reduced, but so had my enthusiasm, joy and passion for life.  Nothing mattered any more, purpose and meaning were gone, I found myself dragging myself heavily through my days, feeling like I was surrounded by a dark, grey fog.  Not for one second did I think it was anything to do with the new pills I was taking.

I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I used to get a dizziness when I was on Effexor.    I realize now that I wasn't consistent with the time I took it , so usually took it within a four hour window.

I think now that by continually changing the time I took it , I was often in a little bit of withdrawal , which I might have avoided.

1987-1997 pertofran , prothiaden , Prozac 1997-2002 Zoloft 2002-2004 effexor 2004-2010 Lexapro 40mg

2010-2012Cymbalta 120mg

Sept. 2012 -decreased 90mg in 6months. Care taken over by Dr Lucire in March 2013 , decreased last 30mg at 2mg per week over 3 months. July 21 , 2013- last dose of Cymbalta

Protracted withdrawal syndrome kicked in badly Jan.2014 Unrelenting akathisia until May 2014. Voluntary hosp. admission. Cocktail of Seroquel, Ativan and mirtazapine and I was well enough to go home after 14 days. Stopped all hosp. meds in next few months.

July 2014 felt v.depressed - couldn't stop crying. Started pristiq 50mg. Felt improvement within days and continued to improve, so stayed on 50mg for 8 months.

Began taper 28 Feb. 2015. Pristiq 50mg down to 45mg. Had one month of w/d symptoms. Started CES therapy in March. No w/d symptoms down to 30mg.

October 2015 , taking 25mg Pristiq. Capsules compounded with slow-release additive.

March 2016 , 21mg

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Fresh,

I think that might be it.  Yesterday I started making sure I take it at 8pm and 8am, rather than 5pm-ish and 9am-ish.  Will see what happens.

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Petunia, I know that feeling so well.  I feel like I'm trudging, sludging along, and the air is thick.  I went on anti-depressants because of massive anger and general no coping and huge sadness.  The pills did (hide/cover/mask) most of that.  But, trudge, trudge I go...

 

From my own experience, I have found that antidepressants cause depression.  I went on Zoloft for anxiety, not depression.  I'd never had depression before in my life.  The normal sadness and periods of feeling bored and unmotivated about life, but nothing which lasted very long.  About 2 - 3 weeks after starting the antidepressant, I was hit with what I now know to be depression, the anxiety had reduced, but so had my enthusiasm, joy and passion for life.  Nothing mattered any more, purpose and meaning were gone, I found myself dragging myself heavily through my days, feeling like I was surrounded by a dark, grey fog. 

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Update:  I am still in big sadness + exhaustion.  Yesterday had the addition of intense rage over tiny non-problems.  Yelled and swore over and over at husband because he asked me to pick him up from work (it's only a 2min drive and normally I am very happy to do so).  Felt like a world of unfairness was crashing down on me all in that request. 

 

Then at dinner time I felt extremely unloved because the fish was battered not crumbed, and husband didn't think to get me a pinapple fritter, and he got it from the 'wrong' shop.  I cried and cried and could not get past it. 

 

The two occasions felt overwhelming and I felt almost outside of myself, watching them happen, gaining no control over them.

 

I'm still on my full dosage of Venlafaxine.  I made lists, and I've ticked as many symptoms of withdrawal over the last week, as the last time I actually tried to w/d (from escitalopram).  So I'm wondering - possible poop out?  And were those crazy emotions yesterday actually neuro emotions?  Or is it all just part of my big sad.  Or is my big sad actually just another sign of poop out?

 

Confused.  Anyone got any thoughts?

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Karen, I'm not entirely clear about your full medication history. Have you taken any other meds ever besides the escitalopram and the venlafaxine? When exactly did you quite the esc, at what dose did you come off, did you try taking it again, did you change doses, or did you just quit it and go straight to the ven? When was that?

 

This will help me to sort out if you might be having a delayed reaction to previous changes or not. 

 

Also, are you taking any other meds or supplements?

 

I don't know a lot about poop-out. Not something I have much experience with. I tend to assume that when things get worse over time on a drug it's due to how the drug changes our brains, which is a different paradigm than "the drug is not working." So often when people have what is called "poop-out", a higher dose doesn't help (not for long anyway) and changing meds doesn't really help for long either. And so often, it's the beginning of the increased-drugs-mixed-cocktail merry-go-round that so many of us have been on, which just never really goes well over the long term.

 

So I generally tend to assume that these are just manifestations of the problematic effects of long term use of psych meds, not something simple.

 

Those are my thoughts...

 

Also: Do you have a copy of Anatomy of an Epidemic? I'd recommend getting it. Your husband should probably read it, and I think you would find it very helpful too.

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 

 

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

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thanks Rhi,

I've just rung my doctor today to ask for a printout of my anti-depressant history.  I realise so far I haven't been very clear about it, and searching thru diaries has proved a little helpful but not totally.  I'll update my signature in about 3-4 days when I get the info.  Will look up Anatomy too, thanks for the tip.

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Karen ,    I got printouts from my regular pharmacies which showed every script I had had filled , when , and who prescribed it.    This gave me records of asthmas meds and pain meds as well as antidepressants.   

A lot of the medications were contraindicated with severe reactions (as indicated by  www.drugs.com).

I feel this has added another dimension to understanding why I was so sick at times , and may be helpful for you too.

:unsure:

1987-1997 pertofran , prothiaden , Prozac 1997-2002 Zoloft 2002-2004 effexor 2004-2010 Lexapro 40mg

2010-2012Cymbalta 120mg

Sept. 2012 -decreased 90mg in 6months. Care taken over by Dr Lucire in March 2013 , decreased last 30mg at 2mg per week over 3 months. July 21 , 2013- last dose of Cymbalta

Protracted withdrawal syndrome kicked in badly Jan.2014 Unrelenting akathisia until May 2014. Voluntary hosp. admission. Cocktail of Seroquel, Ativan and mirtazapine and I was well enough to go home after 14 days. Stopped all hosp. meds in next few months.

July 2014 felt v.depressed - couldn't stop crying. Started pristiq 50mg. Felt improvement within days and continued to improve, so stayed on 50mg for 8 months.

Began taper 28 Feb. 2015. Pristiq 50mg down to 45mg. Had one month of w/d symptoms. Started CES therapy in March. No w/d symptoms down to 30mg.

October 2015 , taking 25mg Pristiq. Capsules compounded with slow-release additive.

March 2016 , 21mg

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thanks Fresh,  It's intriguing when you can look back over records and see all the things interacting.  The overview can provide a much clearer view of patterns than anything we can work out at the time.  My diary provides me with a lot of this - and when I match up diary entries with a/d prescriptions a lot of things fall in to place. 

 

You've had a rough time yourself - have things improved since Feb 2014 (the last entry on your signature)?   

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thanks Karen , yes , I had a really bad time of it.    

Things continued to get a lot worse before they got better.  The beautiful thing is that I have my life back now , even though I've been taking pristiq 50mg since July 2014.    I'm starting to feel good consistently , so I can socialize (and enjoy it) and manage my day-to day stuff without flinching (well , sometimes a little bit , but I'm getting more confident.   I still have a way to go).

When I do start to taper it will be from a stable place , and I'm planning to go super-slow.  

The ideal of being drug-free is less of a priority for me than maintaining my independence and having some quality of life.

1987-1997 pertofran , prothiaden , Prozac 1997-2002 Zoloft 2002-2004 effexor 2004-2010 Lexapro 40mg

2010-2012Cymbalta 120mg

Sept. 2012 -decreased 90mg in 6months. Care taken over by Dr Lucire in March 2013 , decreased last 30mg at 2mg per week over 3 months. July 21 , 2013- last dose of Cymbalta

Protracted withdrawal syndrome kicked in badly Jan.2014 Unrelenting akathisia until May 2014. Voluntary hosp. admission. Cocktail of Seroquel, Ativan and mirtazapine and I was well enough to go home after 14 days. Stopped all hosp. meds in next few months.

July 2014 felt v.depressed - couldn't stop crying. Started pristiq 50mg. Felt improvement within days and continued to improve, so stayed on 50mg for 8 months.

Began taper 28 Feb. 2015. Pristiq 50mg down to 45mg. Had one month of w/d symptoms. Started CES therapy in March. No w/d symptoms down to 30mg.

October 2015 , taking 25mg Pristiq. Capsules compounded with slow-release additive.

March 2016 , 21mg

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  • Mentor

Hello, just wanted to say that venlaxafine is two drugs at 150mg....  It is an SSRI  at 75mg ish, but with a dose of 150mg, it is 75mg  of SSRI and also becomes and SRNI,. 

I believe effexor should be banned.  It destroyed my marriage, my life, my finances.  It changed my personality, and I am sure that is due to the SRNI bit.

 

Everyone is different.  I wish I had the reference for you.  How long have you been on that dose?   

1992 Dothiepin 375mg 8 weeks, exhaustion/depression.  Serotonin syndrome, oh yes!  seizures . Fell pregnant, 3rd baby, Nitrous Oxide, 3 weeks mental hospital pp psychosis. zoloft tegretol.

Feb 1996 ct tegretol, tapered Zoloft 8 weeks. as (unexpectedly)  pregnant. Steven died after 3 days.(Zolft HLHS baby).  98 had run in with Paxil, 2 tablets, 3 weeks taper, survived.
2005..menopause? exhausted again. Zyprexa, mad in three days, fallout....  Seroquel, Effexor, tegretol,   and 8 years of self destruction. Failed taper.
Damn 1/4 valium... nuts again! .fallout, zoloft 100mg  seroquol 400mg mirtazapine 45 mg  tegretol 400mg.  Mid 14 3 month taper. Nov 14 CRASH.
Mid 15 ....   75mg  seroquel,  3 x 1800mg SJW  2 week window end of December followed by 6 week wave
5/2 68mg seroquel, 2.5 x 1800mg SJW::::20/2 61mg seroquel, 2.5 x  SJW::: 26/2 54mg seroquel, 2 x SJW::::21/3 43mg seroquel, 1 x 2700SJW :::: 23/4 36mg seroquel 1 x 1800 SJW
15/5 33mg seroquel, 1 x SJW::::   28/5 30mg seroquel, 1 x SJW::::;  18/6 25mg seroquel 1/2 SJW::::, 11/7 21mg seroquel 1/2 SJW::, 26/7 18mg seroquel 1/2 SJW:::, 9/8 12mg seroquel :::, 16/8 6mg seroquel ;;;;, 12/9 0 jump.

23/9  3mg.....,  27/9 0mg.  Reinstated, 6mg, then 12mg.............  LIGHTBULB MOMENT,  I have  MTHFR 2x mutations.  CFS and issues with MOULD in my home. So I left home, and working 150km away during week, loving it.

Oh was hard, panic attacks first week, gone now, along with the mould issues.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I've been on this dose for a year now.  Complicated - I started on 75mg, not working enough, went up to 150mg tablet worked fairly well.  Then split dose into two 75mg tablets so could take one in morning and one in evening, as was getting dizzy.  Do they do something different to the 150mg tablet?  Taking two 75mg tablets must still be like taking the plain old SSRI, though I understood it to be an SRNI either way.   

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Have been reading about which Venlafaxine is simpler to taper from.  I am currently on Venlafaxine XL Modified Release (which I presume is the same as Extended Release).  I understand (or think I understand :wacko:) these tablets cannot be cut. 

 

Therefore, is my best option to switch to Effexor XR capsules - so I can weigh the little balls? 

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Administrator

Karen, does Venlafaxine XL Modified Release come as a tablet or a capsule with a few tablets inside?

 

If you had Effexor XR capsules, you could count out the beads as a way to taper; for example, reducing 10 beads a month.

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

It's a little white tablet.  So am thinking switching to Effexor XR would be a good move?  Must be impossible to taper slow enough using un-cuttable tablets. 

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Karen, XR is tiny little beads that can be counted or weighed to taper, at least the ones I have are beads, but some have small tablets inside which can be better at first because counting those beads is a pain!  Regular immediate release tablets can be made into liquid which is much easier than counting beads but they are not always available. Maybe you will get them in NZ. 

**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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  • Moderator Emeritus

For those who had been wanting more info about my a/d history, here it finally is...

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to KarenB: slow Effexor taper

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