Bluesjunky76

Bluesjunky76: Withdrawing from fluvoxamine

9 posts in this topic

Happy Holidays! My name's Mike and I'm 40 and I've been taking SSRI's for OCD/anxiety/depression most of my adult life, save for between 2003 to 2009.

 

Since 2009, after years of doing quite well, I crashed and ended up back on fluvoxamine. The drug seemed to help more in the beginning, but as time went on I've increasingly lamented my loss of libido and what I feel are very dampened emotions. Even on 25mg., my current dose, I'm still missing my full range of emotions and feelings. I've been tapering for about  9 months now: Under the care of a psychiatric nurse, I've slowly reduced my dose from 100mg. to my current dose. I went from 100 to 87.5, 87.5 to 75, 75 to 62.5, 62.5 to 50, 50 to 37.5, 37.5 to about 31, 31 to 25. Each time I reduced I would stay on the new dose for at least 2-4 weeks. I've been on 25 mg. for about 4 months now. After what was a very depressing and upsetting election cycle for me, I decided to put the brakes on the taper, but I plan to resume again after the holidays and new year. My next appt. is in mid Jan. 

 

So, all in all, the taper's gone pretty smoothly. After each reduction I would usually experience a little dizziness, sometimes digestive issues, lack of focus, etc. etc., but nothing truly debilitating. My psych. nurse made it sound like my dose is so low that I could just about get off, but I've heard all the horror stories and I want to take it really slowly. The question is how slow? Since the taper's gone relatively smoothly, can I continue reducing from 25 to 18.75, 18.75 to 12.5 etc. etc? Or should I slow it down even more to keep it within the standard 10 to 25% reduction rate, since the dose is lower now? I know these are issues I need to discuss with the nurse, but I always feel so rushed during the session, only having 15 minutes and all to discuss the state of my brain! Seems like it should be a little bit longer :(

 

Anyway, sorry If I'm rambling, but I came here because I'm long overdue to meet some new brothers and sisters who understand how frustrating and upsetting it can be being on medication. I feel like I'm walking a tight rope here: there's a part of me that wants to be off the medication YESTERDAY and then there's the more rational side of myself that's trying to divvy up the patience to take it slowly and thereby improve my chances of successfully getting off this stuff. 

 

So, that's my little intro. Hope everybody is enjoying the holidays and is good spirits and health. I look forward to hearing any thoughts you may have on my situation or from anybody else who is on fluvoxamine or just anybody who wants to chat. Be well and take care! 

 

Mike 

 

BTW, I should also mention I take Klonopin .25mg., as needed, but very sparingly. Sometimes I take a couple doses a week and other times I'll go weeks without taking it. I treat benzos as a last resort when meditation, breathing, jogging, writing, etc. don't work. Thought I should mention all the psych. drugs I currently take. Take care!

Edited by ChessieCat
Added paragraphs & some white space

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Welcome to sa Mike

You have done well compared to most who find this site to still be stable having tapered a tad faster than is recommended here.

I think you have been wise  to take a long hold for a few months at 25mg

 

It would be very wise to follow the sa taper of 10% per month from here in. You might like to read this

Tips for tapering off Luvox (fluvoxamine)

 

Your psych nurse is misinformed if she thinks 25mg is a low dose and you should jump off.

Many here are walking this down to below 1mg.

To taper slowly also allows you to travel with minimal wdl symptoms and therefore allow you to do it without the dangers of adding a benzo.

 

Glad you found sa there is heaps of informative stuff here which is well worth reading.

Oh yeah when people join they are asked to complete a drug signature.

 

nz11

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Hi Mike and welcome from me too,

 

It's good to hear that you have been tapering and holding, but as NZ has already said, SA recommends tapering by no more than 10% of the previous dose followed by at least a 3-4 weeks hold to allow your brain to adapt to not getting as much of the drug.  Many members find that as their dose gets lower then need to slow down.  There is a link below which you may find interesting and helpful.  And there's a topic discussing when to end taper.

 

We ask all members to Please put your Withdrawal History in Signature.  Please include details for the last 12-18 months of  all drugs, dates, doses and discontinuations & reinstatements.  If you can't remember dates, please write it as "early March" or "mid-August".  Please provide a summary of any drugs prior to that which can just be listed with start and stop years. Please include all prescription, non-prescription drugs and supplements you are currently taking.  Please update as you make changes so it remains current and can be seen at a glance whenever you post.  Thank you.

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

Why taper paper: dose-occupancy curves

 

When to end the taper and jump to zero?

 

These helped me to understand SA recommendations:

 

Brain Remodelling


Video:  Healing From Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery

 

You might find these topic helpful for talking to medical professionals:

 

What should I expect from my doctor about withdrawal symptoms?


How do you talk to a doctor about tapering and withdrawal?

 

There is a lot of useful information on this site.  To search the site I use google and type in survivingantidepressants.org + topic.

 

You can ask questions here in your Intro/Update topic and journal your progress.  Click "Follow" top right and you will be notified when someone responds.

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Hi Mike and welcome from me too,

 

It's good to hear that you have been tapering and holding, but as NZ has already said, SA recommends tapering by no more than 10% of the previous dose followed by at least a 3-4 weeks hold to allow your brain to adapt to not getting as much of the drug.  Many members find that as their dose gets lower then need to slow down.  There is a link below which you may find interesting and helpful.  And there's a topic discussing when to end taper.

 

We ask all members to Please put your Withdrawal History in Signature.  Please include details for the last 12-18 months of  all drugs, dates, doses and discontinuations & reinstatements.  If you can't remember dates, please write it as "early March" or "mid-August".  Please provide a summary of any drugs prior to that which can just be listed with start and stop years. Please include all prescription, non-prescription drugs and supplements you are currently taking.  Please update as you make changes so it remains current and can be seen at a glance whenever you post.  Thank you.

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

Why taper paper: dose-occupancy curves

 

When to end the taper and jump to zero?

 

These helped me to understand SA recommendations:

 

Brain Remodelling

Video:  Healing From Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery

 

You might find these topic helpful for talking to medical professionals:

 

What should I expect from my doctor about withdrawal symptoms?

How do you talk to a doctor about tapering and withdrawal?

 

There is a lot of useful information on this site.  To search the site I use google and type in survivingantidepressants.org + topic.

 

You can ask questions here in your Intro/Update topic and journal your progress.  Click "Follow" top right and you will be notified when someone responds.

 nz11 and ChessieCat: thank-you so much for the welcome and the very useful info contained in your posts. I'll have a lot to check out. BTW, nz11: to be clear, my nurse didn't say I could just stop taking the Luvox at 25mg., but she did imply I was close to being off, as in maybe dropping down to half the dose and getting off from there. Next appt., I intend to discuss my commitment to taking it slowly, at the 10% reduction rate. Man, I sure wish they made the fluvoxamine in doses lower than 25mg :( I can get it fairly accurate with a pill cutter, but not quite all the way. Perhaps I will talk to her about having a compound pharmacy filling my next script, but I heard it can be kind of pricey. Oh well, cross that bridge when I get to it. Be well :) 

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Bluesjunky: many of us make our own taper doses using a scale or making a liquid. You can read more about that in these topics:

 

Using a digital scale to measure doses

Making a liquid from a tablet or capsules

and to dose the liquid, Using an oral syringe and other tapering techniques]

Thanks so much! Everybody's been so very helpful--wish I had discovered this place sooner. Happy Holidays :) 

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Posted (edited)

Hi, over the last eight or so months, as I've tapered down from 100mg. of fluvoxamine to 25mg., I've been reminded that withdrawal symptoms often take a while to manifest, which led me to taper too quickly. It wasn't until about 2 months on 25mg. that I noticed increased brain fogginess and apathy and sometimes agitation and dizziness; only to occasionally be replaced by a more clear headed, focused point of view. I've been bouncing back and forth quite a lot, but more and more I'm experiencing less and less of a tendency for a low mood. My next appt. is in about two weeks and my nurse and I had tentatively agreed I would reattempt the taper at that time. Do you think 5 months on 25mg. is enough? I've decided I'll do the 10% reduction from here on out to limit any more issues, but I worry the initial rush to taper could still catch up to me. All of my symptoms have been manageable so far and I imagine people still taper even when they have minor symptoms. I mean, if I wait until I'm top of the world to continue the taper it may take the rest of my life to get off this stuff!

Edited by scallywag
merged from new topic started in Symptoms forum

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It's best to use your symptoms, not the calendar, as the guide. We suggest delaying a decrease until your symptoms have been stable for AT LEAST 2 weeks (longer is better).

 

If you've had no symptoms or symptoms that don't change wildly within a day or from day-to-day, starting a 10% taper in 2 weeks should be workable.

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It's best to use your symptoms, not the calendar, as the guide. We suggest delaying a decrease until your symptoms have been stable for AT LEAST 2 weeks (longer is better).

 

If you've had no symptoms or symptoms that don't change wildly within a day or from day-to-day, starting a 10% taper in 2 weeks should be workable.

The symptoms have been pretty stable. My gut is telling me it's okay, but after reading through some of the other members' stories I've become a lot more cautious (A good thing, I'd say). Thanks for the input! Cool bulldog, btw. 

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