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Echo Switched from 100mg Pristiq to 30mg Cymbalta-Want to go back on Pristiq


Echo

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Hello,

 

I have been following this forum since I (regretibly) stopped taking Pristiq because I was trying to lower my costs and started taking Cymbalta.

 

I recently (June 23rd) went to my Primary Dr who out me on Pristiq, and discussed options with him. We talked about Cymbalta, he made it sound like a good alternative to Pristiq and again, I was looking to save money and find a generic SNRI.

 

 

The last 4 days have been miserable, he told me to stop taking Pristiq (even when I suggested lowering from 100 to 50mg first) and start Cymbalta, 30mg.

 

 

I am at the point where I just want to go back on Pristiq, saving some money is not worth this feeling. I called Dr and was told I would have to set appt to see him again to go back on Pristiq, which I do have prescription for and refills. I just moved to another state and flying back there is not an option. And considering the way I was taken off one and put on the other, he will simply tell me the same thing. 

 

Has anyone had experience with starting an AD then switching back to your initial AD without any issues?

 

Any advice would be appreciated, considering my Dr. wont even discus this with a simple phone call! 

 

 

Thank you in advance!!
 

Echo

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Welcome, Echo.
 
At this point, you might go on Pristiq's close relative Effexor XR instead. Have you ever had a bad reaction to Effexor?
 
See Tips for tapering off Pristiq (desvenlafaxine)

 

Once your nervous system settles down, which can take a month or so, you would taper Effexor by taking out beads, see Tips for tapering off Effexor (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

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Thank you for your response, and that advice would have been perfect, except, I have tried Effexor ER, in fact, my insurance company wanted my to try this first, before Pristiq (due to Effexor having a generic available) I had about 10 days of excessive sweating and other side effects. Then I was put on Pristiq (PR), I have 2 brothers on Pristiq and I am not sure if genetics have anything to do with how an individual will tolerate an AD but I had no side effects on PR The only complaint I had with it, it seemed to start to wear off, I was not super depressed, I just didn't seem to have that 'I can handle anything' effect for the past 3 months and I started 9 mos ago. 

 

At this point in my life, I do not have the time to introduce other ADs, I simply want to go back on Pristiq again from 4 days of being on Cymbalta. he side effects from the switch were, horrible dreams, anxiety, loss of appetite, upset stomach, bad headaches,and dizzyness. I am assuming most of this could be withdrawal from the PR.

 

My Dr. told me when I did this switch to stop PR 100mgs and start Cymbalta 30mgs, that was it, he made it sound like I would feel nothing. That is what I  get for seeing a PCP over a specialist. 

 

I decided today that I would not take Cymbalta and start back on my PR again. It has been 8 hrs and I haven't felt anything out of the ordinary, no side effects and quite normal in contrast to the last 4 days.

 

I am hoping that I am not surprised by some odd side effects from the 4 days that I was on Cymbalta!

 

So, I am just looking to see if anyone has had a similar experience with these 2 meds and if I should have any concerns about just staying on PR 100mgs or raise it to 150mgs considering it has lost its initial effects or just stay on 100mg and taper at a more stable time in my life, not when I am interviewing for jobs.

 

Any advice would be helpful:)

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That sounds like the dosage of Effexor XR you took before was too high for you. How much did you take?

 

Pristiq 100mg is a very high dose. Please do not even consider taking 150mg Pristiq, that is truly excessive. More is not necessarily better when it comes to psychiatric drugs.

 

Please read Tips for tapering off Pristiq (desvenlafaxine)

 

Use search in the Introductions forum to find others' experiences with Pristiq.

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 again,

 

I was on a low dosage of Effexor before I was put on Pristiq, this occurred in Sept of 2014. I have been taking Pristiq since then, but recently was switched to Cymbalta. Now, I just switched back to 100mg of Pristiq in order to stop the side effects of the recent switch.

I skipped the Cymbalta (30mg) yesterday and took the Pristiq (100mg) that I still had in my medicine cabinet. Since switching back yesterday, I feel normal again, assuming that the side effects were mostly attributed to stopping the Pristiq and starting the Cymbalta per my Drs advice.

 

The initial reason for my post was to ask if any one has switched back to Pristiq after taking another AD for 4 days and if they had any issues in doing so. But since I have not felt anything but relief from the initial side effects of switching back to Pristiq then I guess I answered my own question, in a sense.

 

I will take your advice an never increase my dosage of Pristiq, but when the time is right, I will slowly taper of of this medication as you advised and also follow the taper to to T from the link you sent me.

 

I am just not able to do it now while interviewing for jobs.

 

Thank you for your feedback and I will continue to post as I continue to take the Pristiq, hoping nothing negative arises, in a sense, I am not tapering but going back to the point prior to my dr giving me Cymbalta.

 

Thank you again for your insight on Pristiq! It will be extremely helpful when I do decide to taper.

 

Echo

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Good to hear. To answer your question: Yes, sometimes a drug switch does not work and you get withdrawal syndrome from the first drug even though you're taking the second.

 

This has been documented in the journal literature and we have many people here who have, unfortunately, experienced it.

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

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

All postings © copyrighted.

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Once upon a time I switched from effexor to prozac, and then went off of prozac about a year later.  I didn't get very many withdrawal symptoms from that experience, but got about 1-2 weeks of withdrawal from effexor when I switched to prozac.

 

Pristiq is next to impossible to taper, and will be a nightmare for you to get off of.  Cymbalta is one of the WORST of the new SNRIs to get off of - it's currently the subject of a huge lawsuit.  I'd avoid cymbalta like the plague.  It's EXTREMELY activating, and can trigger massive manic episodes and do all sorts of miserable things to your brain that you hadn't intended to have happen.   If you must be on an SNRI, you might as well stick with effexor - it's the easiest one to taper.  Pristiq and cymbalta are next to impossible to taper (pristiq is specifically designed to be difficult to taper, and only comes in 50mg tabs).  Because Pristiq and effexor are basically the exact same mollecule, you will have no problems interchanging the two.  Pristiq is just a way for the company to make money because effexors patent expired.

 

You can ultimately do whatever you want to do, but remember that pristiq, effexor, and cymbalta are probably the most difficult drugs to taper and ultimately recover from (paxil is the exception to this rule, as the most miserable of all the SSRIS).  If you CAN successfully switch to prozac without any issues, I'd encourage the switch.  Prozac is the most forgiving of all the SSRIS, because it has such a long half life.  You can still get some nasty symptoms from it, but if you MUST be on a pill, you might as well be on one that has a long long long half life.

 

Just my thoughts - there's a lot of wisdom on this thread.

 

The most common advice is to stick to the original type of SSRI or SNRI and then taper 10% of current dose.   In your case, I'd switch to effexor, because cutting up the time released pill of pristiq might be very difficult and make tapering at small doses extraordinarily complicated.  Effexor comes in 37.5 mg tabs, which can be cut in half and half without too much difficulty.  IT's also generic and won't cost you very much.

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Well, I would say Pristiq is very difficult to taper, rather than impossible. We do have people tapering from it by cutting up the tablet. It can be a rocky ride.

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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Hey Silver Star,

 

My doctor actually told me that when he tapers people off of Pristiq, he would prescribe Prozac first then ween off of Prozac...he is so bizarre in the way he describes psych meds, he literally said "Cymbalta is a very robust AD that effects dopamine levels as well as serotonin and nor epinephrine" he sounded like one of those fanatic weed connoisseurs, it was so strange. So, I am glad to hear this from someone else other than him, I think he enjoys playing with people or he would have not pushed Cymbalta down my throat, making it sound like it was a delicious cup of coffee, robust, WT??, He should have switched me over the Prozac. I recently moved and will be getting another PCP when I do taper off of Pristiq, I assume the longer you are on it, the worse the withdrawal?? I started taking it 10 months ago and need to focus on getting off of it when I get my job situation together. 

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"fanatic weed connoisseurs" -- very funny. He's a PCP? Then he's just a psychiatric drug hobbyist.

 

Switching to Prozac to go off Pristiq is a legitimate method but can be tricky even for experts.

 

You've taken Pristiq long enough that you're already at risk for withdrawal syndrome when you go off. More time on it won't make much difference.

 

Please read the links I gave you 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 had a similar experience with my doc asking me to start alternating the days I take pristiq, and it sucked, sounds like the same experience you had when you switched to cymbalta. From my perspective you were experiencing the withdrawals. I lasted less than a day of it. and took the pills again like normal. only took a few days to feel normal again. 

 

I'm wanting to taper also, but hope to schedule it for a good time too. I'm not sure what the right way to decide when the right time is, but I definitely relate to what you mean. Hope you do find a good time for it and good luck with it! 

at age 20 began AD medication:

       started Viibryd, took for about 3 months, during 3rd month got crazy side effects

       switched to pristiq, had very few side effects! happy with how I feel on it. 

       after 9 months since starting AD meds doc asked me to take pristiq every other day. only lasted one day off before i started taking it again. 

       doc and i decided I could keep taking meds till i had healed from past and found some stability in life. 

now 23. not having probs with meds. but excited about possibly getting off meds. Feel much more stable and happy. 

 

But scared to begin the withdrawals! just started researching it. feeling even more scared now.... 

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