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Kim: Anhedonia withdrawal symptom from zyprexa


Kim

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i became very ill last fall of 2014. I was separated and had 2 children. No support whatsoever from my ex husband. I had to babysit to earn extra money, I was extremely stressed out and I began to drink Monster caffeine drinks and also a lot of coffee each day to keep me going. I always had trouble sleeping but due to my separation and other factors, I could only sleep a few hours per night. I eventually had a psychotic (manic) episode which landed me in the psychiatrist hospital. I had never been been mentally ill in my life. I was 27 at the time of my hospitalization. I was prescribed lithium 1,200 mg per day and zyprexa 20 mg. per day. The psychiatrist never looked at the cause of the psychosis ( caffeine overload) and told me I was bipolar 1 and I would need medication for the rest of my life. I hated both medications and they made me feel horrible. Once symptom I began to develop while on the zyprexa was I felt no pleasure and was extremely bored. I was released from the hospital after a 1 month and 1/2 stay. Soon after, I quit taking all medications cold turkey. ( I was never told no to do so). I had no clue of the dangers of doing such. I almost lost my mind. So I went back on both medications for about 2 weeks, then I quit taking zyprexa becauseI gained 20 pounds in 3 weeks and felt awful. Three days after I quit the zyprexa, I began to experience terrible withdrawals symptoms. I have been off zyprexa for almost four months now and it's been pure hell. A lot of the physical withdrawal symptoms have gone; howvever, I ended up getting rebound depression from stopping the zyprexa cold turkey and I have anhedonia as a main symptom which is really really difficult for me to cope with. I have lost the pleasure that I once had when I was not sick. I cannot feel and pleasure in life and I feel that the drug has ruined me for ever. Every day is a constant struggle as I wake up in the morning and realize that I am not getting better. I fear that my brain was damaged. I have 2 young children who are being taken care of by my mother because I have lost all motivation as well. I find through my endless searches on the internet that there are not many people who have fully recovered from anhedonia. I do not want to see any doctors concerning this because I know they will just tell me that I am going through depression again because I quit taking the medication and they will tell me to back back on them. I began to experience loss of pleasure and extreme boredom while on zyprexa. I have also tapered my lithium down from 1,200 mg to 300 mg. I am scared to taper more at this point. I hope I can receive some help and support through people on this site that have been through this and hopefully they can offer some hope for me.

I was hospitalized in January of 2015 for a manic episode (my fist ever) and given Lithium 1,200. I was then given a 20mg dose of zyprexa and I have no clue why as I was coming down from my mania quite well from the lithium only. I remained on both for 2 months and was not feeling well at all. I then (I had no idea and was not warned not to quit taking the medications cold turkey) quit both lithium and zyprexa cold turkey. I felt horrible and quickly began taking the zyprexa and lothium full force. I felt terrible again and I quit zyprexa. I felt no pleasure while on the medication and off. I did not try the zyprexa again and tapered down my lithium to 300 mg. I am experienced sever withdrawals symptoms. You name it I had it.

I am still on 300mg. of lithium. Too scared at this point to reduce.

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I really need help? Anyone went through the same as me and how long did the loss of pleasure last?

I was hospitalized in January of 2015 for a manic episode (my fist ever) and given Lithium 1,200. I was then given a 20mg dose of zyprexa and I have no clue why as I was coming down from my mania quite well from the lithium only. I remained on both for 2 months and was not feeling well at all. I then (I had no idea and was not warned not to quit taking the medications cold turkey) quit both lithium and zyprexa cold turkey. I felt horrible and quickly began taking the zyprexa and lothium full force. I felt terrible again and I quit zyprexa. I felt no pleasure while on the medication and off. I did not try the zyprexa again and tapered down my lithium to 300 mg. I am experienced sever withdrawals symptoms. You name it I had it.

I am still on 300mg. of lithium. Too scared at this point to reduce.

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  • Moderator

Hi Kim -- Welcome to the group (I hope this posts at a readable size my computer is playing games with me)  I sorry to hear that you've had such a rough time this past year, but it does get better.  Don't believe the depression DX what you have is a good case of withdrawal.  Going on and off the drugs in the manner you talk about is a sure receipt for WD problems. Here is some good information as to what WD is all about;

 

What is withdrawal syndrome?

 

Are you getting maintenance checkups for the Lithium? It really needs to be monitored by a doctor. 

 

Tips for tapering off lithium

 

Taper more than one drug at a time?

 

Most of what you are feeling is from going on and off of the zyprexa.  Having been off for four months a full reinstatement is probably not a good idea.  However, if the symptoms are intolerable taking a very small amount, say 2mg many times will take the edge off and make you more comfortable.

 

Thanks for adding a signature block, it really helps us to see at a glance what is happening.

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.

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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  • Administrator

Welcome, Kim.

 

Yes, emotional anesthesia is a common side effect of psychiatric drugs. As a withdrawal symptom, it will very gradually go away over some months. Be patient.

 

As Brassmonkey implied, the lithium may be contributing. Please consider very gradually reducing it. Your nervous system is somewhat fragile from the Zyprexa withdrawal.

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 the replies. I feel as though I will be brain damaged for life. I wake up every day and it is the same thing over and over. It is difficult to see and end to this in the future. I really hope that it is a bad withdrawal that I am having. It was mentioned that it may be the lithium that is making me not feel pleasure or motivated?

I was hospitalized in January of 2015 for a manic episode (my fist ever) and given Lithium 1,200. I was then given a 20mg dose of zyprexa and I have no clue why as I was coming down from my mania quite well from the lithium only. I remained on both for 2 months and was not feeling well at all. I then (I had no idea and was not warned not to quit taking the medications cold turkey) quit both lithium and zyprexa cold turkey. I felt horrible and quickly began taking the zyprexa and lothium full force. I felt terrible again and I quit zyprexa. I felt no pleasure while on the medication and off. I did not try the zyprexa again and tapered down my lithium to 300 mg. I am experienced sever withdrawals symptoms. You name it I had it.

I am still on 300mg. of lithium. Too scared at this point to reduce.

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  • Administrator

The purpose of the lithium is to slow you down. Please see Tips for tapering off lithium

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 depression I am experiencing I truly unbearable. I cry excessively. I am considering maybe taking an antidepressant. I am desperate for relief. I had no clue about psychiatric medications until my episode last fall. I am very upset that I was put on zyprexa without my knowledge. I had accepted to take lithium but not zyprexa. Now I am suffering because of it. I thing every psychiatrist should get a good round of these medications while in their training, as they would know what it's like to be on these horrible medications and the withdrawals symptoms that go along when coming off them.

I was hospitalized in January of 2015 for a manic episode (my fist ever) and given Lithium 1,200. I was then given a 20mg dose of zyprexa and I have no clue why as I was coming down from my mania quite well from the lithium only. I remained on both for 2 months and was not feeling well at all. I then (I had no idea and was not warned not to quit taking the medications cold turkey) quit both lithium and zyprexa cold turkey. I felt horrible and quickly began taking the zyprexa and lothium full force. I felt terrible again and I quit zyprexa. I felt no pleasure while on the medication and off. I did not try the zyprexa again and tapered down my lithium to 300 mg. I am experienced sever withdrawals symptoms. You name it I had it.

I am still on 300mg. of lithium. Too scared at this point to reduce.

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I am also experiencing suicidal thoughts caused by the fact that I am very depressed about not feeling any pleasure. I read so many stories of people being destroyed by these drugs and I have only seen a few success stories. Scissor being pretty much the only one. I am convinced I am broken. I told my mother I will not continue to live like this. She is quite upset at me for thinking this. We are grasping at straws to try and figure out something that can help me. I am even considering ketamine. Any emotional anesthesia success stories would be so appreciated.

I was hospitalized in January of 2015 for a manic episode (my fist ever) and given Lithium 1,200. I was then given a 20mg dose of zyprexa and I have no clue why as I was coming down from my mania quite well from the lithium only. I remained on both for 2 months and was not feeling well at all. I then (I had no idea and was not warned not to quit taking the medications cold turkey) quit both lithium and zyprexa cold turkey. I felt horrible and quickly began taking the zyprexa and lothium full force. I felt terrible again and I quit zyprexa. I felt no pleasure while on the medication and off. I did not try the zyprexa again and tapered down my lithium to 300 mg. I am experienced sever withdrawals symptoms. You name it I had it.

I am still on 300mg. of lithium. Too scared at this point to reduce.

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  • Moderator

Before you consider going on an AD, please think about trying the small dose of zyprexa that I mentioned below.  Try a little bit, like 2mg for a week or so and see what happens.  It would be a lot better than just starting something else cold.

 

About reinstating and stabilizing to reduce withdrawal symptoms

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.

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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  • Administrator

Many people find the emotional anesthesia very upsetting. Please keep in mind that it is a side effect of drugs and not permanent damage to your brain.

 

If this is a withdrawal symptom, taking a little bit of Zyprexa now may make you feel a bit better. Then, later on, you can taper off it properly.

 

You may have "accepted" lithium but that doesn't mean you have to stay on it forever. Your initial problem was situational. That is long gone. You are a different person now.

 

Doctors will be happy to add an antidepressant if you wish. All of them also will incur physiological dependency and, if you want to go off, will need to be tapered.

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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Kim I have anhedonia too. its terrible. For me it began on Effexor and has linger throughout a too fast taper off Effexor, and then lingered on while tapering Paxil (much more slow of a taper this time). I have noticed a gradual, very gradual, improvement. Its not as heavy as it once was and i hold out hope for complete return to my pre-anhedonic self (in the sense of my brain functioning nice and clean as it did before drugs).

But there are success stories. Look in the success thread on this site. I know someone called Aeroman here, who had anhedonia for years and it went away and he fell in love with his hobbies again. (he is currently suffering again but this time from an antibiotic reaction). There was an elderly woman on a former wd site who had it for 7 years, and it went away, and she had given up hope. For some it was only a matter of several months. I have clung to these stories, and they are out there. I know Its awful, esp with kids who you are missing out on enjoying. I get it. But have hope. There are some inspiring stories out there! Who knows, when you're ready and start to taper the Lithium slow, it may improve a lot during the taper, as well as after. Even though im close to being finished my taper, I have noticed subtle improvements along the way. I imgaine they will continue once Im off. i find forcing myself to do fun things with my kids, even though i cant feel it, helps make me feel less controlled by this condition. It will provide memories that you will be able to enjoy later on. Its weird but true. In periods of less anhedonia, my memories of times that WERE anhedonia filled, dont feel anhedonic in retrospect if that makes sense. Plus it helps the kids feel like Mommy is still there (even though we feel a million light years away). It'll be ok!

2 Timothy 1-7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

Effexor 75mg to 262.5mg 2005-2010 for post partum depression

Started having poop out mid 2010, also switched generic brands, then crashed in Dec 2010 (anxiety/ "terror", intense DR, anhedonia, suicidal ideation, chills, insomnia, horrible intrusive thoughts, disorientation, ect)
Rapid "tapered" from 262.5mg Effexor in 3 months

Tried Celexa,Cipralex, then Paxil to deal with wd(this switching made things worse and added akathesia)

Found online support and started tapering Paxil 7 months after quitting Effexor (at this point was having small windows).

Paxil taper: dropped 10% every 4-8 weeks

Year 1 October 2011 to Nov 2012 20mg to 10mg

Year 2 March 2013 to Feb 2014 10mg to 4mg

Year 3 April 2014 to May 2015 4mg to 1.1mg

Year 4 June 2015 1.1mg , dropping by 10% until .5mg, after then dropped by 0.1mg every 5 weeks until 0.1mg.

Finished! Official last dose of 0.1mg on June 15/16

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I am so thankful for this site. It is giving me some hope. Thank you all for your good advice.

I do not want to stay on lithium. I was put on 1,200 mg. I could not control my hand tremors, loosing my hair, I had severe kidney cramps and the podcast said don't worry it will go away. Well, it did not. I had originally quit the lithium and the zyprexa cold turkey ( big mistake) then just about lost my mind and went back on everything for about three weeks. I did not feel any better so I quit the zyprexa but stayed on the lithium. Then after 2 months I began to taper my lithium in 300mg. modes every three weeks, because I only have three hundred mg. capsules. Every taper was very difficult and I had severe crying spells as a result. Now I am down to my last lithium pill. I am scared to stop it and am contemplating getting empty capsules and filling them up accordingly to ensure a slower taper. I do fear that once I am off that I may become manic again. The doctors scared me so much saying I will be sick for life. I have changed my diet, I only drink one coffee per day compared to 4 monster drinks, several large coffees and some ice caps, not sleeping etc...

I am sleeping better though at least that has somewhat resolved since the beginning of quitting zyprexa. While I was in the hospital, I was told that I was very low in vitamin B. so I purchased a all natural, organic vitamin B supplement. I am taking the best fish oil there is on the marker and vitamin c, d and a vitamin containing magnesium and zinc. I have begun to take 2 teaspoons of pure lick rice root as well. I think this should all help me too when I do quit the lithium for good. I also suspect now that it was mentioned, that the lithium may be causing me to not feel pleasure. It is hard to believe that in my present frame of mind that I will come out of this ok. It is like my brain keeps telling me that I am damaged. So this site is a true godsend for me. When I was in the hospital, no doctor asked about my diet or health history. They quickly slapped me with a bipolar diagnosis because I was manic. I had never had any mental health issue prior to my admission. I later got a second opinion fro a psychiatrist in a larger city and during my initial meeting with her she was really suspecting that I became toxic with caffeine and she said that she had a patient that had done the same thing as me and had a manic episode cause by too much coffee. She said I had a severe depression with a psychotic break. She asked to read the hospital reports and on my second meeting she dismissed her first diagnosis and said I was manic in the hospital so I am bipolar. I don t really get that, as I know I was manic and told her that. Anyhow, whatever the diagnosis, I really want a second chance to truly see if I will be ok without medication and to see if all my dietary and lifestyle changes will make a difference. I have full custody of my children, my ex has not seem them in 2 years, I have reduced a lot of stress in my environment as well. So I hope all of this will be positive in my recovery.

I was hospitalized in January of 2015 for a manic episode (my fist ever) and given Lithium 1,200. I was then given a 20mg dose of zyprexa and I have no clue why as I was coming down from my mania quite well from the lithium only. I remained on both for 2 months and was not feeling well at all. I then (I had no idea and was not warned not to quit taking the medications cold turkey) quit both lithium and zyprexa cold turkey. I felt horrible and quickly began taking the zyprexa and lothium full force. I felt terrible again and I quit zyprexa. I felt no pleasure while on the medication and off. I did not try the zyprexa again and tapered down my lithium to 300 mg. I am experienced sever withdrawals symptoms. You name it I had it.

I am still on 300mg. of lithium. Too scared at this point to reduce.

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  • Mentor

Hello Kim, and welcome!    You will struggle through it, you will................  one day at a time, yes it feels like Ground Hog day every day?  wake up and repeat, go to bed, wake up and repeat.......... it does not last,   for me I was like that for 6 months plus...................

 

I had no pleasure, no motivation, nothing................   now I have a spark.............. you will regain that spark too.

 

Look after yourself, and ignore the brain farts, and stupid random thoughts............ you want to live, you want to recover, and you will.................... just give it time.

 

Hugs..........

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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Hi silver star thanks for your response and support, yes it does feel like ground hog day.. it is by far the most torture ive had to endure im sorry for anyone to have to go through this too.. did you fully recover though or do you just have some good days and some bad days? Did the excitement joy and reward come back? Hugs to you as well.

I was hospitalized in January of 2015 for a manic episode (my fist ever) and given Lithium 1,200. I was then given a 20mg dose of zyprexa and I have no clue why as I was coming down from my mania quite well from the lithium only. I remained on both for 2 months and was not feeling well at all. I then (I had no idea and was not warned not to quit taking the medications cold turkey) quit both lithium and zyprexa cold turkey. I felt horrible and quickly began taking the zyprexa and lothium full force. I felt terrible again and I quit zyprexa. I felt no pleasure while on the medication and off. I did not try the zyprexa again and tapered down my lithium to 300 mg. I am experienced sever withdrawals symptoms. You name it I had it.

I am still on 300mg. of lithium. Too scared at this point to reduce.

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Sorry i just realised everything is called silverstar at top i thought that was your name on this site.

I was hospitalized in January of 2015 for a manic episode (my fist ever) and given Lithium 1,200. I was then given a 20mg dose of zyprexa and I have no clue why as I was coming down from my mania quite well from the lithium only. I remained on both for 2 months and was not feeling well at all. I then (I had no idea and was not warned not to quit taking the medications cold turkey) quit both lithium and zyprexa cold turkey. I felt horrible and quickly began taking the zyprexa and lothium full force. I felt terrible again and I quit zyprexa. I felt no pleasure while on the medication and off. I did not try the zyprexa again and tapered down my lithium to 300 mg. I am experienced sever withdrawals symptoms. You name it I had it.

I am still on 300mg. of lithium. Too scared at this point to reduce.

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Just so you know, I haven't been able to tolerate any drugs at all since stopping olanzapine. I am off of it now but still on seroquel. If I take anything, it sets me back big time. I really doubt you would be able to tolerate much. The worst things you could take are benzos but everything pretty much makes it worse. Just a heads up. I am about a year in from when I started and I am making improvements. It was a battle until recently. Everyone recovers at their own rate but people usually start feeling better after around a year sometimes less. You should have windows here and there. 

 

It's really hard, I know. Don't worry about brain damage, everyone does that but most people get better. 

2007-2010 - adderall, vyvanse, klonopin, prozac, symbyax, ativan, klonopin, seroquel, gabapentin, lyrica, concerta, lithium, elavil,  

2011-2014 - adderall, vyvanse, gabapentin, celexa, cymbalta, intuiv, tegretol, lamictal, risperdal, zyprexa, trazondone, wellbutrin

May 2014 - Vyvanse - 70 mg, gabapentin 3200 mg, zyprexa - 20 mg

August 2014 - Gabapentin 800 mg, zyprexa 10 mg

October 2014 - Attempted to taper off of zyprexa completely - did not succeed, gabapentin 900 mg

January 2015 - Zyprexa 5 mg, switched to seroquel @ 100 mg, gabapentin 900 mg 

Feburary 2015 - Seroquel - 50 mg, gabapentin 900 mg

March 2015 - Seroquel - 100 mg, zyprexa 5 mg as needed, gabapentin 900 mg

April 2015 - Determined seroquel was useless but remained at 25-50 mg, gabapentin 900 mg

May 2015 - Seroquel 50 mg, gabapentin 900 mg, tenex 2mg

June 2015 - Seroquel 50 mg, gabapentin 900 mg

July 2015 - Seroquel upped to 100 mg to stabilize, gabapentin 900 mg, took olanzapine six times 10 mg, tenex 2mg

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  • Administrator

You may wish to gradually go off the remaining caffeine. It has a very long half life and can be affecting your sleep.

 

How long have you been tapering the lithium? It sounds like maybe you should hold on tapering now and let your nervous system settle down.

 

Cold turkey off the two drugs can affect your nervous system for a long time. That may be the cause of your emotional symptoms. You need to treat it gently now, it's very sensitive.

 

See Neuro-emotion

 

The Windows and Waves Pattern of Stabilization

 

Please consider reinstating perhaps 2mg Zyprexa. Titration instructions here Tips for tapering off olanzapine (Zyprexa)

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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Yes I agree. I am thinking of waiting to taper the last 300 mg of lithium but what if the lithium is the cause for my anhedonia? I am at my breakig point. I see my life pass by in front of fmy eyes and my children. I cannot feel!!! I can feel sadness and cry but no pleasure. Everything is extremely boring. I will see someone do something I used to like for example camping and I wonder, why do they like doing that...how boring is that..or I used to enjoy shopping or even workong and now I ask myself how can anyone like that...how boring...I just don't understand. I would not wish this on my worst enemy. You would think there would be something out there to help all of us and keep us from suffereing from these horrible withdrawals. I feel so hopeless. Thank you again for your advice much appreciated.

I was hospitalized in January of 2015 for a manic episode (my fist ever) and given Lithium 1,200. I was then given a 20mg dose of zyprexa and I have no clue why as I was coming down from my mania quite well from the lithium only. I remained on both for 2 months and was not feeling well at all. I then (I had no idea and was not warned not to quit taking the medications cold turkey) quit both lithium and zyprexa cold turkey. I felt horrible and quickly began taking the zyprexa and lothium full force. I felt terrible again and I quit zyprexa. I felt no pleasure while on the medication and off. I did not try the zyprexa again and tapered down my lithium to 300 mg. I am experienced sever withdrawals symptoms. You name it I had it.

I am still on 300mg. of lithium. Too scared at this point to reduce.

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LoveandLight

Anhedonia is horrible..!

2000 - sertraline for job anxiety low confidence (17 years old) ..which turned the next 16 years into nightmare!

 

On/off sertraline severe withdrawals every time. 2014 - felt better as reduced dose of sertraline no more inner restlessness. Doctor rushed off again. Hit severe withdrawal. Lost the little I had in life. Couldn't get stable again on 12.5mg. Was switched to prozac. Had severe reaction to prozac..came off in November 2015 at 6mg as felt more confused and damaged on it..Even more withdrawal ..rage, depression, dyphoria, near constant suicidal ideation, self harm impulses, doom, concrete block in head, unable to do much of anything with this feeling in head..went back on 6mg of sertraline to see if would alleviate anything. It didn't..reduced from December to June 2016 came off at 2.5mg sertraline as was hospitalised for the severe rage, suicidal impulses, and put on 50mg lofepramine which in 2nd week reduced all symptoms but gave insomnia which still have..psych stopped lofepramine cold turkey..no increased withdrawal symptoms new symptoms from lofepramine except persistant insomnia which has as side effect.

 

Taking Ativan for 8 months for the severe rage self harm impulses 1-3 times a week (mostly 2 times a week) at .5mg. Two months (I'm unsure exactly when the interdose started to happen) ago interdose withdrawal seemed to happen..2 days I think after the Ativan.

 

 

Nightmare that could have been avoided!

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  • Moderator

Anhidonia has been a big part of my journey, from the beginning of poopout until now.  It has really eased up a lot now that I am on the lower doses.  Over the seven or eight years I had to cope with it I have come to the realization that it's my brains way of protecting me from the pain and anguish of the intense anxiety and panic that so frequently happen during WD.  True it is no fun to feel nothing and not be able to express emotions, but the feelings and emotions are there deep inside.  They are just unaccusable at the moment, but will come back when the time is right.  The feelings of horror and frustration at not having emotions are, in reality, an expression of emotions, just not the ones we want to feel.  I found that accepting the anhedonia was much preferable to the alternatives of unrelenting anxiety and panic.

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.

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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I am wondering if anyone has ever tried acupuncture for anhedonia. I have read about 2 people who where treated successfully for anhedonia. I am going to try it.

I was hospitalized in January of 2015 for a manic episode (my fist ever) and given Lithium 1,200. I was then given a 20mg dose of zyprexa and I have no clue why as I was coming down from my mania quite well from the lithium only. I remained on both for 2 months and was not feeling well at all. I then (I had no idea and was not warned not to quit taking the medications cold turkey) quit both lithium and zyprexa cold turkey. I felt horrible and quickly began taking the zyprexa and lothium full force. I felt terrible again and I quit zyprexa. I felt no pleasure while on the medication and off. I did not try the zyprexa again and tapered down my lithium to 300 mg. I am experienced sever withdrawals symptoms. You name it I had it.

I am still on 300mg. of lithium. Too scared at this point to reduce.

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I am not experiencing any more windows. I had 3 small windows about a week and a half ago and nothing since. Very bad every day I wake up. I feel like my brain is going to explode. I have been trying very hard to do as much as I can with my children but still feel zero pleasure. I fear if I taper the last dose of lithium 300mg. That I may end up having another mania as the pdoc scared me into thinking this. I was havinf a teally bad day last thursday and called my psychiatrist. She told me to go on seroquel and take 400 mg... Ok so I dont feel anything already and I am supposed to take a large dose of seroquel? I told her that I am loosing a lot of my hair and told her I feel no pleasure and her answer was that I am depressed. I am depressed because I cannot feel any pleasure. If I felt that I would be the happiest person on the planet. I am so upset. I am devestated that there is nothing out there to speed the process. I am sinking!! I feel so bad for every andhedonic person out there. Why aren't we warbed about these drugs...I was given zyprexa and I do not even remember consenting to this drug as a treatment. As far as I can remember, I was asked if I would take lithium and I agreed but the zyprexa, I am so upset. Loosing so much quality time with my family it makes me sick. I feel hopeless.

I was hospitalized in January of 2015 for a manic episode (my fist ever) and given Lithium 1,200. I was then given a 20mg dose of zyprexa and I have no clue why as I was coming down from my mania quite well from the lithium only. I remained on both for 2 months and was not feeling well at all. I then (I had no idea and was not warned not to quit taking the medications cold turkey) quit both lithium and zyprexa cold turkey. I felt horrible and quickly began taking the zyprexa and lothium full force. I felt terrible again and I quit zyprexa. I felt no pleasure while on the medication and off. I did not try the zyprexa again and tapered down my lithium to 300 mg. I am experienced sever withdrawals symptoms. You name it I had it.

I am still on 300mg. of lithium. Too scared at this point to reduce.

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I am also paranoid to try and re-instate zyprexa even at a low dose. It has been about 4 1/2 months since my quitting cold turkey.

I was hospitalized in January of 2015 for a manic episode (my fist ever) and given Lithium 1,200. I was then given a 20mg dose of zyprexa and I have no clue why as I was coming down from my mania quite well from the lithium only. I remained on both for 2 months and was not feeling well at all. I then (I had no idea and was not warned not to quit taking the medications cold turkey) quit both lithium and zyprexa cold turkey. I felt horrible and quickly began taking the zyprexa and lothium full force. I felt terrible again and I quit zyprexa. I felt no pleasure while on the medication and off. I did not try the zyprexa again and tapered down my lithium to 300 mg. I am experienced sever withdrawals symptoms. You name it I had it.

I am still on 300mg. of lithium. Too scared at this point to reduce.

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I experienced a window last night. I actually felt happy for a short period of time. I hope the windows come visit more often. Felt optimistic for the first time in 4 months. I am keeping my fingers crossed!!!

I was hospitalized in January of 2015 for a manic episode (my fist ever) and given Lithium 1,200. I was then given a 20mg dose of zyprexa and I have no clue why as I was coming down from my mania quite well from the lithium only. I remained on both for 2 months and was not feeling well at all. I then (I had no idea and was not warned not to quit taking the medications cold turkey) quit both lithium and zyprexa cold turkey. I felt horrible and quickly began taking the zyprexa and lothium full force. I felt terrible again and I quit zyprexa. I felt no pleasure while on the medication and off. I did not try the zyprexa again and tapered down my lithium to 300 mg. I am experienced sever withdrawals symptoms. You name it I had it.

I am still on 300mg. of lithium. Too scared at this point to reduce.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Kim thats a start! I still have anhedonia (I pretty much cold turkeyed Effexor from 262.5mg 4 years ago, and then stopped and started 3 other AD's abruptly right after, finally tapering slowly the last one, though the wd monster had already been awakened...anyway very VERY gradually my anhedonia is improving. I am almost done my Paxil taper (one of the ADs I took to alleviate Efexor wd) and hope it will continue to resolve. Its not a sudden overnight switch (for me) but a gradual thing...for example when you said you look at camping and think why would anyone do that...I used to love camping, and went through the same thing, doing it but getting nothing from it but the fatigue from packing and unpacking and the drudgery of it. But this summer I enjoyed it (not with backflips and joyful shouts,lol, but like...ahhh this is kinda nice, Im good, this is much better than being at home kinda feeling, still blunted but much better than years prior!!). i didnt even realize it until i read what you just said. So...I must be improving and so will you. Give it time, and don't panic, it will improve.

2 Timothy 1-7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

Effexor 75mg to 262.5mg 2005-2010 for post partum depression

Started having poop out mid 2010, also switched generic brands, then crashed in Dec 2010 (anxiety/ "terror", intense DR, anhedonia, suicidal ideation, chills, insomnia, horrible intrusive thoughts, disorientation, ect)
Rapid "tapered" from 262.5mg Effexor in 3 months

Tried Celexa,Cipralex, then Paxil to deal with wd(this switching made things worse and added akathesia)

Found online support and started tapering Paxil 7 months after quitting Effexor (at this point was having small windows).

Paxil taper: dropped 10% every 4-8 weeks

Year 1 October 2011 to Nov 2012 20mg to 10mg

Year 2 March 2013 to Feb 2014 10mg to 4mg

Year 3 April 2014 to May 2015 4mg to 1.1mg

Year 4 June 2015 1.1mg , dropping by 10% until .5mg, after then dropped by 0.1mg every 5 weeks until 0.1mg.

Finished! Official last dose of 0.1mg on June 15/16

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  • 1 year later...

Hey guys,

 

How are you all doing now????

 

Just looking up some threads on anhedonia....optimistic but aprupt end here.....I'd curious to know how things are now?

 

I was put on zyprexa 20, seroquel 150, lexapro 20, mirtazapine 30,........for a few months. Immediatele felt nothing, off everything now and feel better but still largely anhedonic

late July...lexapro 10 seroquel 25.....due to mild depression......adverse reaction, suicidal thoughts, hospitalization

August....felt that meds were ripping stomach apart....docs didn't believe me..upped meds to seroquel 125, lexapro 20, mirtazapine 30, olanzapine 20....stayed on these drugs unitl mid november......severe anhedonia all the time...mid novemeber 2016 , began taper.....very small windows of emotion...Christmas....off everything by Christmas day......last six weeks, cried and laughed on a number of occasions for first time since taking initial meds....8 occasions of strong emotion over 6 weeks in ealry 2016.......doubting recovery......

BIG WINDOW IN july 2017, felt incredible, lasted a month or so, felt close to recovered...window left, september to Chrimstas 17 was anhedonic hell.....Turn of the year, January 2018, some very strong days (a window) offering renewed hope

back to hell until late February 2018, strong 10 day window....followed by anhedonic wave for 7 months straight! not a flicker of normalcy

September 2018 ...incredible window...followed by three month wave.January 2019.... a strong window

window subsided, but new baseline was higher.....life since January 2019 ( 9 months and counting) has been far better. Complete anhedonia is gone!! God, I've tears writing that. I am far from recovered, but far from hell...to use a scale, if life is rated out of a hundred, I was about minus 50 for the majority of 2 years..I know feel about 30 per cent of self, experiences intermittent flickers of normal life regularly....My days have more quality and I am optimistic of recovery. 

 

 

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  • 8 months later...

Hi Kim How are you now?

Cold turkeyed risperidone (1m.g)and trihexyphenidyl combination drug out of ignorance,In August 2016 after one month use.

Withdrawal symptoms settled at dreamful,disturbing sleep.

Thus introduced to olanzapine for sleep.Started using olanzapine out of ignorance.

Tapering olanzapine 10 m.g from February 2017.

May 2018 :Still suffering dreams,Still tapering olanzapine at 0.625.100ml water+2.5 mg olanzapine. June 2018 22.5ml=0.57mg.July 2018 20ml,August 2018-17.5ml,September 2018-15ml,October 2018 10 ml,December 2018 7 ml, BrassMonkey slide method so far at lower doses.2 nd December cold turkeyed , only to reach minure doses as reinstatement to cutshort endless tapering process.4rth December started 1ml.

Almost no symptoms and sleep is better,So started 0.5 ml from 17-12-2018.

"0"from31-12-18.Re birth happened from 10- 2020,as rejuvenation took whole2019.Completely recovered now.

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