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Weesie50 Weaning from Pristiq


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Hi everyone, I am new here. I joined because I am looking for support & guidance to wean off Pristiq. I have been on this med for 4 years & simply don't feel I need it anymore. The problem is, I take the lowest dosage available & was advised to not split them in half because they are time release tablets. My doc suggested that I start by taking one every other day but I experienced terrible dizziness when I tried that. I seriously hate the control this med has over me! Anyone have any tips/advise for me? Thanks!!

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  • Moderator

Hi Weesie-- welcome to the group. I'm so glad you found us.  There is a lot of information in the Tapering Forum I've added a link here to the thread about tapering pristiq.  There are several other threads that would be a good idea to look at too such as "why taper at 10%".  We have found over the years that alternating days or doses is not a good way to taper.  Every time a person changes dose it throws the brain into chaos and it can take several weeks for it to settle down, so if you change doses every other day your poor old brain can get really confused and cause all kinds of trouble. As you read around the forum please remember that everyone's WD experience is going to be different and not take peoples rough times to heart, not every person has a tough time of it.


Tips for tapering off Pristiq (desvenlafaxine)

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

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

Final Dose 0.016mg.     Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017


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

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Welcome from me too Weesie,

I agree with brassmonkey that tapering by alternating days is not a good idea and its good that you now have the link to our safe tapering method.


You can use this thread as your ongoing journal to track progress, write about symptoms, ask questions and communicate with the community, add to it whenever you want. Please stay in touch and let us know how you are doing.



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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