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Carmen's Story: Tapering Paxil


Carmen

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Hello. I'm Carmen and I am 55 years old. I live in Kansas City, MO. I have been married for 32 years. I have a very supportive husband and family. I was so happy to find this group at a time when I need it most. This is a long story but I'm going to condense it as much as I can. As you can see from my signature, this past year has been a whirlwind of medication changes. 

 

I was first prescribed Paxil in 1998 because I was stressed and depressed from dealing with my (then) 13 year old daughter. She was also prescribed Paxil. We both felt better awhile, but after a few months the medication seemed to stop working for both of us. We both did a very rapid taper and suffered some pretty severe withdrawal symptoms, including "brain zaps".  

 

In April, 2014. I had outpatient surgery to have a new pain pump installed. (I already had a pain pump since 2008 but it was time to change it for a new one). After surgery I was fine. I went home and felt pretty good until the next day. I woke up in the morning feeling sick and shaky so I went back to bed. I had a hard time getting out of bed for 3 days. I had most of the symptoms of withdrawal so my husband took me to the pain clinic. At that time, we were thinking my pump was not working right. My pain management doctor tested my pump and told me it was working fine. He was pretty sure that my problem was anxiety so he prescribed Klonopin. We went home and I took a whole pill and slept for 36 hours, almost straight through.  

 

I felt much better after that episode and I felt pretty good until August. Another episode of all the same symptoms left me unable to function for 5 days. It was then that I had to seek out psychiatric care. I had been having these episodes at least once a month and they would last from one to three days. My Paxil taper in November was very rough because I was still having episodes, plus going through withdrawal from tapering too fast.

 

I have not had an episode since March 30 but I am going through withdrawals from the 10mg Paxil I was put on last March. I have been breaking the pills into halves and quarters. The first week after a drop has not been bad. Just a little nausea and dizziness off and on. The second week has been when the symptoms increase and get worse. Last time I was able to make another drop after 3 weeks. That will not be happening this time. It will be 3 weeks this Friday and I'm still not feeling well. I want to feel well for at least a week before attempting another decrease. My psychiatrist (who is new for me) had suggested half pills for 2 or 3 weeks and then skipping every other day. I told her that wasn't working. I need a much slower taper. Luckily, she is not going to rush me. She told me there is no hurry. Buspar has been helping. I have been needing to take Klonopin more often lately because that is the only thing that helps when I get shaky.  I'm trying really hard not to take it much because I don't want to get dependent on it. 

 

 I have been reading in here for weeks so I decided it was time to post my story. Thank you for reading!

 

Carmen

April 2014:  Klonopin  1mg for panic attacks (That was too much so I cut them in half)

August 2014: 10mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin ( I have always been very conservative with this. I only take it once or twice a week. Sometimes I don't take it for several weeks.)

September 2014: 20mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin as needed

October 2014: 25mg Paxil, Klonopin .5mg as needed

November 2014: Fast taper from Paxil. Full-blown withdrawals.

December 2014: 10mg Lexapro, 600mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed.

January 2015: 10mg Lexapro, 900mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed

February 2015: Switched from Lexapro back to Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 15mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron, .5 Klonopin as needed

March and April 2015: Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 30mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron

 May 2015: Started Paxil taper in quarter increments. Increased Buspar to 30mg. Everything else is the same.

June 2015: Tapering Paxil. Right now I'm at 5mg. Increased Buspar to 45 mg. Everything else is the same. 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Carmen , welcome to the site.  Thank you for posting your story.

 

You probably know by now that the safe way to taper that's recommended here is by doing drops of no more than 10% , and

waiting 3 or 4 weeks at each level.  

It's a good idea to wait until symptoms reside and then allow yourself to be stable at each dose , regardless of how long that is.

It's nice to hear you're discovering for yourself to listen to your body rather than the calendar.

 

Try reading the pinned topic at the top of the Tapering section , "Why Taper By 10%".

 

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

Welcome Carmen and thank you for posting an introduction.

 

Also, thank you for filling in your signature, but I'm a little confused. Were you given lexapro, gabapentin, remeron and klonopin in December all at the same time to treat your paxil withdrawal?

 

Then in January your gabapentin dose was raised. Then in February you switched back to paxil and buspar was added?

 

I'm sorry this has happened to you and I'm glad you have a new doctor now who is helping you get off the drugs, rather than adding more. But unfortunately, it sounds like she doesn't have much experience with how to taper people safely. I'm glad you found us.

 

I put all of your drugs into the interactions checker and there are some potential major interactions:

 

http://www.drugs.com/interactions-check.php?drug_list=1147-0,441-206,703-357,1800-1156,1640-1015

 

Interactions between your selected drugs
interaction-3-big.png buspirone ↔ paroxetine

Applies to: BuSpar (buspirone), Paxil (paroxetine)

Using busPIRone together with PARoxetine can increase the risk of a rare but serious condition called the serotonin syndrome, which may include symptoms such as confusion, hallucination, seizure, extreme changes in blood pressure, increased heart rate, fevericon1.png, excessive sweating, shivering or shaking, blurred vision, muscle spasm or stiffness, tremor, incoordination, stomach cramp, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Severe cases may result in coma and even death. You should seek immediate medical attention if you experience these symptoms while taking the medicationsicon1.png. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. Your doctor may already be aware of the risks, but has determined that this is the best course of treatment for you and has taken appropriate precautions and is monitoring you closely for any potential complications. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

Switch to professional interaction data

interaction-3-big.png buspirone ↔ mirtazapine

Applies to: BuSpar (buspirone), Remeron (mirtazapine)

Using busPIRone together with mirtazapine can increase the risk of a rare but serious condition called the serotonin syndrome, which may include symptoms such as confusion, hallucination, seizure, extreme changes in blood pressure, increased heart rate, fever, excessive sweating, shivering or shaking, blurred vision, muscle spasm or stiffness, tremor, incoordination, stomach cramp, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Severe cases may result in coma and even death. You should seek immediate medical attention if you experience these symptoms while taking the medications. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. Your doctor may already be aware of the risks, but has determined that this is the best course of treatmenticon1.png for you and has taken appropriate precautions and is monitoring you closely for any potential complications. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

Switch to professional interaction data

interaction-3-big.png paroxetine ↔ mirtazapine

Applies to: Paxil (paroxetine), Remeron (mirtazapine)

Using PARoxetine together with mirtazapine can increase the risk of a rare but serious condition called the serotonin syndrome, which may include symptoms such as confusion, hallucination, seizure, extreme changes in blood pressure, increased heart rate, fever, excessive sweating, shivering or shaking, blurred vision, muscle spasm or stiffness, tremor, incoordination, stomach cramp, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Severe cases may result in coma and even death. You should seek immediate medical attention if you experience these symptoms while taking the medications. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. Your doctor may already be aware of the risks, but has determined that this is the best course of treatment for you and has taken appropriate precautions and is monitoring you closely for any potential complications. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

Switch to professional interaction data

interaction-2-big.png clonazepam ↔ paroxetine

Applies to: Klonopin (clonazepam), Paxil (paroxetine)

Using clonazePAM together with PARoxetine may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience some impairment in thinking and judgment. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Avoid driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

Switch to professional interaction data

interaction-2-big.png buspirone ↔ gabapentin

Applies to: BuSpar (buspirone), gabapentin

Using busPIRone together with gabapentin may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience some impairment in thinking and judgment. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Avoid driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

Switch to professional interaction data

interaction-2-big.png paroxetine ↔ gabapentin

Applies to: Paxil (paroxetine), gabapentin

Using PARoxetine together with gabapentin may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience some impairment in thinking and judgment. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Avoid driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

Switch to professional interaction data

interaction-2-big.png clonazepam ↔ mirtazapine

Applies to: Klonopin (clonazepam), Remeron (mirtazapine)

Using clonazePAM together with mirtazapine may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience some impairment in thinking and judgment. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Avoid driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

Switch to professional interaction data

interaction-2-big.png gabapentin ↔ mirtazapine

Applies to: gabapentin, Remeron (mirtazapine)

Using gabapentin together with mirtazapine may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience some impairment in thinking and judgment. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Avoid driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. It is important to tell your doctor about all other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. Do not stop using any medications without first talking to your doctor.

Switch to professional interaction data

 

Please see:

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

Tips for tapering off Paxil (paroxetine)

 

Please feel free to write whenever you want, you will find a lot of friendly help and support here.

 

Petunia.

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

Hi Carmen, welcome to SA. I am a bit surprised too at the drugs you have been prescribed in such a short time. Sadly there are several members in similar situations with multiple drugs but it still shocks me when I see others posting similar experiences. As you have had so many changes and been tapering paxil very quickly I would suggest that you hold where you are for several weeks to stabilise. Your nervous system is struggling if you are having withdrawal symptoms and needs stability.  You say you have been taking klonopin more often lately, is that once or twice a week?  

 

When you are stable and ready to start tapering again, I would recommend getting the paxil liquid as it is much easier to get accurate doses for tapering. Petunia has given you the link for tapering paxil. 

 

Many people find that fish oil and magnesium help with symptoms. 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/36-omega-3-fatty-acids-fish-oil/

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1300-magnesium-natures-calcium-channel-blocker/

**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 all so much for responding. 

 

Petunia, I was given all those meds in December because I was having frequent panic episodes. My therapist told me it is unusual for a panic episode to last 3 days or more so we are still not entirely sure what was happening. I know it's confusing. I am still confused by the whole thing too. 

Thank you for the drug interaction info. I have the symptoms of serotonin syndrome printed out and it is on my fridge. I had my husband read it so he knows what to watch for too.  

 

Fresh, I wish I could make smaller cuts. I tried to get liquid Paxil from my pharmacy but they said it is only available in name brand and very expensive. So I'm just doing the best I can by cutting them in halves and quarters. I will not make any more cuts until I'm feeling stable for at least a week. 

 

mamaP, I had only been taking Klonopin 1 or 2 times a week. Now I'm taking it 3 or 4 times. I never take it more than once a day unless I am in an episode. I am so thankful that has not happened since March 30. I'm going to try the fish oil and magnesium. 

 

I love this site. It's like a safe haven :)

 

Carmen

April 2014:  Klonopin  1mg for panic attacks (That was too much so I cut them in half)

August 2014: 10mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin ( I have always been very conservative with this. I only take it once or twice a week. Sometimes I don't take it for several weeks.)

September 2014: 20mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin as needed

October 2014: 25mg Paxil, Klonopin .5mg as needed

November 2014: Fast taper from Paxil. Full-blown withdrawals.

December 2014: 10mg Lexapro, 600mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed.

January 2015: 10mg Lexapro, 900mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed

February 2015: Switched from Lexapro back to Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 15mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron, .5 Klonopin as needed

March and April 2015: Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 30mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron

 May 2015: Started Paxil taper in quarter increments. Increased Buspar to 30mg. Everything else is the same.

June 2015: Tapering Paxil. Right now I'm at 5mg. Increased Buspar to 45 mg. Everything else is the same. 

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  • Administrator

Welcome, Carmen.

 

The tips for tapering Paxil topic explains how to make your own liquid from a tablet with water. Many people have done this and it usually works well.

 

It sounds to me like you have been getting episodic adverse (paradoxical) reactions from your pain drug, or perhaps glitches in the pump itself. The anxiety diagnosis sounds like nonsense to me.

 

What drug is in your pain pump?

 

Petunia very helpfully showed that your drugs probably are interacting in a bad way. Your doctor should know better.

 

Why were you put on mirtazapine?

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 Altostrata. My husband is going to read about making liquid paxil because I can't understand it. My mind is pretty messed up since I started tapering.

 

My pump medications are Dilaudid, Clonopin and Bupivicaine. My therapist is still not convinced that my problem is not withdrawals from those medications. I am undecided because my episodes started becoming less frequent after I started Buspar.  It is a strange coincidence that this all started the day after I got my new pump. My pain management doctor insists it is not the pump and he won't listen to any arguments. 

 

I was put on mirtazapine because I was having trouble sleeping. It helps a lot. 

April 2014:  Klonopin  1mg for panic attacks (That was too much so I cut them in half)

August 2014: 10mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin ( I have always been very conservative with this. I only take it once or twice a week. Sometimes I don't take it for several weeks.)

September 2014: 20mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin as needed

October 2014: 25mg Paxil, Klonopin .5mg as needed

November 2014: Fast taper from Paxil. Full-blown withdrawals.

December 2014: 10mg Lexapro, 600mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed.

January 2015: 10mg Lexapro, 900mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed

February 2015: Switched from Lexapro back to Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 15mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron, .5 Klonopin as needed

March and April 2015: Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 30mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron

 May 2015: Started Paxil taper in quarter increments. Increased Buspar to 30mg. Everything else is the same.

June 2015: Tapering Paxil. Right now I'm at 5mg. Increased Buspar to 45 mg. Everything else is the same. 

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  • Administrator

Please put ALL the drugs you take in the Drug Interactions Checker http://www.drugs.com/drug_interactions.html and post the results in this topic.

 

What is it you'd like to accomplish by participating on this site?

 

Very few doctors or therapists are aware of the adverse effects of these drugs and fewer know anything at all about withdrawal syndrome.

 

Have you never discussed the very large number of neuroactive drugs you're taking with any of your doctors?

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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The drugs in my pump are very minute quantities. I have put them in the Drug Interaction Checker before. They all show up "Major Interactions".  They are much different than taking pills because they don't go through my system. My catheter is in my neck and goes straight into the spinal space so you don't need much. 

 

I have discussed these drugs with all my doctors and none of them seem concerned.  

 

The reason I joined this site is because my new psychiatrist is taking me off Paxil and I know how hard it can be from past experience. I want to learn easier ways and I would also like to share what I learn with others going through the same process.  

 

I might also want to eventually taper down from Gabapentin, as I'm not sure it is helping much either.

 

I just ordered a scale to make liquid.

 

I'm sorry if I'm not very good at explaining things right now. Next week should be better, fingers crossed. 

April 2014:  Klonopin  1mg for panic attacks (That was too much so I cut them in half)

August 2014: 10mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin ( I have always been very conservative with this. I only take it once or twice a week. Sometimes I don't take it for several weeks.)

September 2014: 20mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin as needed

October 2014: 25mg Paxil, Klonopin .5mg as needed

November 2014: Fast taper from Paxil. Full-blown withdrawals.

December 2014: 10mg Lexapro, 600mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed.

January 2015: 10mg Lexapro, 900mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed

February 2015: Switched from Lexapro back to Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 15mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron, .5 Klonopin as needed

March and April 2015: Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 30mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron

 May 2015: Started Paxil taper in quarter increments. Increased Buspar to 30mg. Everything else is the same.

June 2015: Tapering Paxil. Right now I'm at 5mg. Increased Buspar to 45 mg. Everything else is the same. 

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  • Administrator

You do not need a scale to make the liquid. You would use a whole tablet and titrate with an oral syringe.

 

Doctors are irrationally sanguine about adverse reactions from psychiatric drugs.

 

Given all you're taking, if I were you, I'd want to minimize any drugs that are not absolutely necessary. I would also be concerned about the major interactions indicated above.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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I totally agree. I have never taken many pills before. I told my psychiatrist from the beginning that I wanted to keep it as simple as possible. 

 

I'm glad I ordered the scale. It's going to make things so much easier, especially if I don't need to make liquid :P. I'm such a newbie but I will be an expert like you all soon :)

April 2014:  Klonopin  1mg for panic attacks (That was too much so I cut them in half)

August 2014: 10mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin ( I have always been very conservative with this. I only take it once or twice a week. Sometimes I don't take it for several weeks.)

September 2014: 20mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin as needed

October 2014: 25mg Paxil, Klonopin .5mg as needed

November 2014: Fast taper from Paxil. Full-blown withdrawals.

December 2014: 10mg Lexapro, 600mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed.

January 2015: 10mg Lexapro, 900mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed

February 2015: Switched from Lexapro back to Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 15mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron, .5 Klonopin as needed

March and April 2015: Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 30mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron

 May 2015: Started Paxil taper in quarter increments. Increased Buspar to 30mg. Everything else is the same.

June 2015: Tapering Paxil. Right now I'm at 5mg. Increased Buspar to 45 mg. Everything else is the same. 

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  • Administrator

In my opinion, it's much easier to taper with a liquid.

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. Sorry, I was mixed up with another answer which was "You don't need to make liquid if you have a scale".  I get mixed up easily lately, especially when I'm tired.

 

I appreciate you all so much for taking time to help me.

April 2014:  Klonopin  1mg for panic attacks (That was too much so I cut them in half)

August 2014: 10mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin ( I have always been very conservative with this. I only take it once or twice a week. Sometimes I don't take it for several weeks.)

September 2014: 20mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin as needed

October 2014: 25mg Paxil, Klonopin .5mg as needed

November 2014: Fast taper from Paxil. Full-blown withdrawals.

December 2014: 10mg Lexapro, 600mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed.

January 2015: 10mg Lexapro, 900mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed

February 2015: Switched from Lexapro back to Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 15mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron, .5 Klonopin as needed

March and April 2015: Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 30mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron

 May 2015: Started Paxil taper in quarter increments. Increased Buspar to 30mg. Everything else is the same.

June 2015: Tapering Paxil. Right now I'm at 5mg. Increased Buspar to 45 mg. Everything else is the same. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

A little update: I am feeling so much better than I was when I posted.  I took an extra week off to make sure all my symptoms were gone. My head is much clearer. I just started my 10% taper. 

 

I just wanted to thank you all again for your help and advice. I will let you know how it goes.

 

Carmen

April 2014:  Klonopin  1mg for panic attacks (That was too much so I cut them in half)

August 2014: 10mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin ( I have always been very conservative with this. I only take it once or twice a week. Sometimes I don't take it for several weeks.)

September 2014: 20mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin as needed

October 2014: 25mg Paxil, Klonopin .5mg as needed

November 2014: Fast taper from Paxil. Full-blown withdrawals.

December 2014: 10mg Lexapro, 600mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed.

January 2015: 10mg Lexapro, 900mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed

February 2015: Switched from Lexapro back to Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 15mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron, .5 Klonopin as needed

March and April 2015: Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 30mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron

 May 2015: Started Paxil taper in quarter increments. Increased Buspar to 30mg. Everything else is the same.

June 2015: Tapering Paxil. Right now I'm at 5mg. Increased Buspar to 45 mg. Everything else is the same. 

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Hang in there Carmen, it gets better. Paxil helped me too for a short time but I tapered off after it pooped out.

As requested. In the last 3 years to the best of my recollection I first dropped the max dose of Lamictal. Yes I just stopped it was doing absolutely nothing. Then I dropped Lexapro, that was even easier I had been on and off that a dozen times before. There were at least 2 odd off label attempts at anxiety that I won’t be able to remember. Then there was sweet/evil Seroquel. That was the last to go it’s been around 16 months.

Lithium, Prozac, Paxil, Wellbutrin, Effexor, Celexa, Lamictal, Lexapro, Luvox, Viibryd, Brintellix, Pristiq, Zoloft, Seroquel, Zyprexa, Geodon, Abilify, Latuda, Ritalin, Adderall, Valium, Clonazepam, Alprazolam, Propanalol, Spravato

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  • Administrator

That's very good to hear, Carmen.

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 both :)

April 2014:  Klonopin  1mg for panic attacks (That was too much so I cut them in half)

August 2014: 10mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin ( I have always been very conservative with this. I only take it once or twice a week. Sometimes I don't take it for several weeks.)

September 2014: 20mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin as needed

October 2014: 25mg Paxil, Klonopin .5mg as needed

November 2014: Fast taper from Paxil. Full-blown withdrawals.

December 2014: 10mg Lexapro, 600mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed.

January 2015: 10mg Lexapro, 900mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed

February 2015: Switched from Lexapro back to Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 15mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron, .5 Klonopin as needed

March and April 2015: Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 30mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron

 May 2015: Started Paxil taper in quarter increments. Increased Buspar to 30mg. Everything else is the same.

June 2015: Tapering Paxil. Right now I'm at 5mg. Increased Buspar to 45 mg. Everything else is the same. 

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Hey Carmen!  KC,MO!  I lived there in 1972!  (blast from the past!)  I even still remember my address on W 67th street - just a block from the Kansas border!  I remember the year we lived there, a tornado took out 6 houses on the Kansas side of 67th Street.  I remember huddling in the crawl space because the basement opened out into the back yard and wasn't safe for tornadoes.  In fact, I had my birthday party in that crawl space - maybe that was the day that the houses up the road got hit?

 

I spent more time in KC, MO in the 80's and 90's, made a best friend there, and she came to Indiana to live with me.  But enough about me.  I do remember that KC was a beautiful city, lots of fountains, and it had a thriving "alternative" community.  I still wonder about many of the friends I made there in the 80's and 90's.

 

I'm going to chime in with your therapist:  I think you are having "interdose withdrawal" from the klonopin in your pump.  Interdose withdrawal is why you never do "every other day" stuff with psych meds.  NEVER.  Your doc doesn't have a clue on that one - but - don't be alarmed, most of them don't.  

 

It is my guess that you had already built up resistance to these drugs, and when you were given anaesthetic for surgery, it stripped you of some nutrients, and when the pump came back online, you were more sensitive.  I don't know how a pump works, it's supposed to be small, constant doses of the drug, right?  But if one drug is not working - can you change the mix of drugs in the pump?  Or are you stuck with that mix until you replace the pump?

 

(growling under breath:  dear doctor, opoids are not as bad as these drugs are!)

 

You will need liquid taper.  Paxil is a very strong, sensitive drug.  That is, it will knock you for a loop if you are not careful.  You can buy liquid Paxil, you don't need to make it up yourself, if that is too intimidating.

 

Welcome to SA, KC Carmen!

"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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Well hello JanCarol from KC! It's so nice to meet you. Isn't it funny how we can remember addresses and phone numbers from that long ago? KC is a beautiful city. I love it here. Have you tried looking up some of your old friends on Facebook?

 

Thank you for your input about my meds. That makes perfect sense about my surgery. They gave me Ketamine so I was not all the way asleep but I remember having an almost euphoric experience. You are right, my pump meds are small, constant doses. I don't have Klonodine in my pump. It sounds similar but it is Klonopin. It is a strong blood pressure medication. The others are bupivicaine (a numbing agent) and Dilaudid.  This mix of has worked for me very well since I got my first pump in 2008.

 

Although my symptoms mimic withdrawal, I now believe that they were mostly severe anxiety. I am sure some of it was withdrawal though.  I had to wait 8 hours in pre-op before surgery, which was nerve wracking. I have been doing pretty well with my taper using my little scale. I had some symptoms few days after the first 10% taper but they were relatively mild and only lasted 3 or 4 days. I will definitely not be trying the "every other day" my psychiatrist recommended. I don't understand why these doctors think that could work when this is their job.  

 

Thank you so much for your warm welcome JanCarol :)

April 2014:  Klonopin  1mg for panic attacks (That was too much so I cut them in half)

August 2014: 10mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin ( I have always been very conservative with this. I only take it once or twice a week. Sometimes I don't take it for several weeks.)

September 2014: 20mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin as needed

October 2014: 25mg Paxil, Klonopin .5mg as needed

November 2014: Fast taper from Paxil. Full-blown withdrawals.

December 2014: 10mg Lexapro, 600mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed.

January 2015: 10mg Lexapro, 900mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed

February 2015: Switched from Lexapro back to Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 15mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron, .5 Klonopin as needed

March and April 2015: Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 30mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron

 May 2015: Started Paxil taper in quarter increments. Increased Buspar to 30mg. Everything else is the same.

June 2015: Tapering Paxil. Right now I'm at 5mg. Increased Buspar to 45 mg. Everything else is the same. 

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That's excellent news Carmen. Here's to future smooth decrements ;)

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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Thanks Fresh :)

April 2014:  Klonopin  1mg for panic attacks (That was too much so I cut them in half)

August 2014: 10mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin ( I have always been very conservative with this. I only take it once or twice a week. Sometimes I don't take it for several weeks.)

September 2014: 20mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin as needed

October 2014: 25mg Paxil, Klonopin .5mg as needed

November 2014: Fast taper from Paxil. Full-blown withdrawals.

December 2014: 10mg Lexapro, 600mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed.

January 2015: 10mg Lexapro, 900mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed

February 2015: Switched from Lexapro back to Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 15mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron, .5 Klonopin as needed

March and April 2015: Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 30mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron

 May 2015: Started Paxil taper in quarter increments. Increased Buspar to 30mg. Everything else is the same.

June 2015: Tapering Paxil. Right now I'm at 5mg. Increased Buspar to 45 mg. Everything else is the same. 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Carmen ,  I've been wondering how you are this week?    Happy 4th July   :)

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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I'm doing fantastic this week Fresh. Thank you for asking. :) How have you been feeling? Happy 4th of July to you too.

April 2014:  Klonopin  1mg for panic attacks (That was too much so I cut them in half)

August 2014: 10mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin ( I have always been very conservative with this. I only take it once or twice a week. Sometimes I don't take it for several weeks.)

September 2014: 20mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin as needed

October 2014: 25mg Paxil, Klonopin .5mg as needed

November 2014: Fast taper from Paxil. Full-blown withdrawals.

December 2014: 10mg Lexapro, 600mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed.

January 2015: 10mg Lexapro, 900mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed

February 2015: Switched from Lexapro back to Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 15mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron, .5 Klonopin as needed

March and April 2015: Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 30mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron

 May 2015: Started Paxil taper in quarter increments. Increased Buspar to 30mg. Everything else is the same.

June 2015: Tapering Paxil. Right now I'm at 5mg. Increased Buspar to 45 mg. Everything else is the same. 

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  • Administrator

Carmen, please let us know how you're doing as your taper proceeds.

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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Hello

 

Thanks for asking about me Alto. It's been up and down. I dropped down again yesterday and I am already feeling it today. It usually takes a few days to feel the affects but every cut is different.  I'm having insomnia, feeling very dizzy and my head hurts. 

 

The last time I saw my doctor she told me it would get easier as I go down further. I did not believe that and I sure don't believe it now. 

April 2014:  Klonopin  1mg for panic attacks (That was too much so I cut them in half)

August 2014: 10mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin ( I have always been very conservative with this. I only take it once or twice a week. Sometimes I don't take it for several weeks.)

September 2014: 20mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin as needed

October 2014: 25mg Paxil, Klonopin .5mg as needed

November 2014: Fast taper from Paxil. Full-blown withdrawals.

December 2014: 10mg Lexapro, 600mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed.

January 2015: 10mg Lexapro, 900mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed

February 2015: Switched from Lexapro back to Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 15mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron, .5 Klonopin as needed

March and April 2015: Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 30mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron

 May 2015: Started Paxil taper in quarter increments. Increased Buspar to 30mg. Everything else is the same.

June 2015: Tapering Paxil. Right now I'm at 5mg. Increased Buspar to 45 mg. Everything else is the same. 

Link to comment
  • Administrator

No, it gets more difficult at lower dosages, there's less of the drug to affect the receptors.
 
You may wish to taper with smaller decrements at this point, even Micro-taper instead of 10% or 5% decreases

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.

Link to comment

I had not seen that. Thank you so much for the link.

April 2014:  Klonopin  1mg for panic attacks (That was too much so I cut them in half)

August 2014: 10mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin ( I have always been very conservative with this. I only take it once or twice a week. Sometimes I don't take it for several weeks.)

September 2014: 20mg Paxil, .5mg Klonopin as needed

October 2014: 25mg Paxil, Klonopin .5mg as needed

November 2014: Fast taper from Paxil. Full-blown withdrawals.

December 2014: 10mg Lexapro, 600mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed.

January 2015: 10mg Lexapro, 900mg Gabapentin, 15mg Remeron, Klonopin .5mg as needed

February 2015: Switched from Lexapro back to Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 15mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron, .5 Klonopin as needed

March and April 2015: Paxil 10mg, 1200mg Gabapentin, 30mg Buspar, 7.5mg Remeron

 May 2015: Started Paxil taper in quarter increments. Increased Buspar to 30mg. Everything else is the same.

June 2015: Tapering Paxil. Right now I'm at 5mg. Increased Buspar to 45 mg. Everything else is the same. 

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