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Effexor Depression withdrawal

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#1 IMay

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Posted 01 January 2017 - 01:23 AM

I have been on a few medications, but never tapered off any before (or not any that took this long). I have quit and that was that. This time I am tapering off Effexor XR, and while I wouldn't call it hell, it has at times been quite uncomfortable. I have a very good and patient psychiatrist in my corner, and she has put the brake on a few times, when I wanted to "get on with it".

 

I have been on Effexor XR 375 mg since October 2009, with a diagnosis of Chronic Major Depression. Currently I Am also on Lithicarb 250 x 2, Valproate 500 mg x5, Dothep 100 mg, Aleoam 30 mg PRN, Stilnox 10 mg PRN - also various pain killers.

 

I started tapering down about 7 months ago and I am down to 37.5. This last jump was probably a bit premature, but I want to get it over with. The plan is to get me on Valdoxin (a Melatonin derivate), to see if it will make me sleep long term. And I cannot wait, so I am pushing as much as I dare, but I have also read a lot about how hard it can be to take the last step.

 

My most uncomfortable withdrawal symptom I'll call "the shakes" - it is an involuntary body shake, almost like a wet dog shaking itself, it comes in a series of about 5-7, and I often end up, unwittingly, moaning as well, because it presses the air out of the lungs. It scares the living daylight out of my dog, and is very uncomfortable.

 

The shakes starts about 2 weeks into the new, lowered dosis and continues for a couple of weeks. Alepam seems to help, but nothing else, and I have made sure, not to lower the dosis, until they are well out of the way. I am not keen on the Alepam as support, as that will be another drug to get off.

 

I have had vertigo, with light sensitivity and the feeling something was crawling on me. I have had serious mood dips, but not as bad as I expected, given my history with depression. Suicidal thoughts have been under control, something I had feared. The Dothep seems to be doing a great job. I am short of breath, and sweating (but it is also summer here).

 

My other symptoms cannot clearly be associated with the reduction of Effexor, as I suffer from them regularly :

Diarrhoea, Insomnia, Fatigue, Lack of motivation

 

For 2017 : I am going to try the fish oil suggested on this site, and I am going to see a naturopath, to find out if some of my stomach problems are food related. And I going to get off Effexor !


50 year old. Diagnosed with Asperger Autism, Chronic major depression, PTSD, Anxiety, Insomnia, Ehler Danlos, OA, IBS, Obesity, Reflux

 

Previous medication : Citalopram, Lamotrigine, Prozac, Valdoxin, Lexapro, Dexamphetamine. Electro shock ruled out due to Ehler Danlos Syndrom.

 

Current medication : Effexor (a little while still), Valproate 500mg x 2, Lithicarb 250 mg x 2,  Dothiepine 100 mg. Pain : Panadol Osteo 665 mg x2 x3, Meloxicam (NSAID) 4 weekly (due to interaction with Lithium). Sleep : Ambien 10 mg PRN. Anxiety : Oxazepam 30 mg. Reflux : Somac 40 mg

 

The goal is to get off Effexor and start Valdoxin, and hopefully sleep again !! YAY


#2 nz11

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Posted 01 January 2017 - 02:06 AM

Welcome IMay.

So glad you have found sa.

 

Well imo your pdoc might have put the brakes on but she has also certainly pushed the dump button in respect of unloading a truck load of chemicals on you. I am so sorry you are in this situation. Im not surprised you are having stomach problems.

Im amazed you can even get out of bed in the morning being drugged to the gills like this.

 

Well done on doing the drug sig...what about the ambien? alepam ? and pain killers? if any.

 

Also can you put ALL the drugs you are taking through the drugs interaction checker and copy and paste the results here in your intro thread.

 

My other symptoms cannot clearly be associated with the reduction of Effexor, as I suffer from them regularly :

Diarrhoea, Insomnia, Fatigue, Lack of motivation

You might be surprised to learn all these things are associated with withdrawal. and side effects.

And with such a huge amount of drug -drug interactions going on it would come as no surprise that this is one of many outcomes.

 

This what i think you are meaning

dothep - do you mean dothiepin? = a TCA

stilnox = ambien

aleoam -do you mean alepam? =oxazepam = a benzo

 

So you are saying you have tapered from 375mg to 37.5 venlafaxine in 9 months. That is certainly faster than this site would rec.

 

Well you are off to a great start in 2017 ....you found sa. Good for you.

There are heaps of aussies here by the way.

One question ; Did all those diagnosis's (not sure what the plural of diagnosis is) occur before you were put on any drugs?

nz11


2000 amitryptaline, nortriptaline venlafaxine clonazepam for  arm pain from keyboard use, told I had a chemical imbalance it would fix my arm was just a matter of finding the right med for me not informed of the nature of these drugs assured safe and not addictive, CT off Effexor after being told to double the dose on reporting adverse effects...later ..uncharacteristic psych panic tearful presented to doctor to get answers. Given paroxetine no questions asked 'safe and not addictive' next please.2001-2010 paroxetine (paxil) 2 failed attempts to quit, a learned helplessness set in. Feb 10 - Sept 10,  8 month clueless taper, hell. Doc said I had underlying depression .. I said that's not right' then found online support group and the truth!...overcome with inconceivable humiliation and outrage. 28 Sept 10 drug free ...  daily psych and emotional torture beginning in the waking hours of the morning receding somewhat in the evening only to start up again the next day. 28 Sept 12 (24 months) Stabilizing  (What an indescribable unimaginable non-functional nightmare). sleep issues start up at 3 yrs  waking daily at 2am -4.30am), April 2016 return to sport for the first time since drug free, Sept 16 return to work on casual basis.  28 Sept 16 (6yrs drug free), still cant sleep with any regularity, pssd continues no sign of improvement, still feel Rip van Winkle-ish, brain fog still improving, psoriasis concerns.

 

"It is unsafe for people who suffer from something that could be treated with an ssri to consult a psychiatrist." Gotzshe 2015. [ I think Gotzsche could have easily meant to say 'to consult anyone with prescribing privileges']. "Going to a psychiatrist is one of the most dangerous actions a person can take." Breggin

 

“Paroxetine is not safe, it is not effective and it meets every known definition of addictive.” McLaren, N, (2016) 'Psychiatry as bullsh*t’ p55..."Psychiatry is stuffed full of 'deep nonsense' better known as bullsh*t." McLaren 2016

 

"Within the first week of when you go on an antidepressant you may have a sexual dysfunction, it can go on forever, often only appearing when you go off the drug ...its extraordinarily common" Healy 2015

 

See  my intro post #451 for the xanax back story and for a CV -GSKs.  Come on guys get taperwise see a TaperMe Schedule

 For a staggeringly shocking 'prozac back story' see the truth post #523

 

"If I were an enemy combatant and the NZ army did this to me someone would be dragged to the Hague and jailed!"  nz11


#3 IMay

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Posted 01 January 2017 - 05:07 AM

"This what i think you are meaning

dothep - do you mean dothiepin? = a TCA

stilnox = ambien

aleoam -do you mean alepam? =oxazepam = a benzo"

 

Yes that is correct - but I am used to the Oz-names - I will make sure to change it in my signature

 

"Im amazed you can even get out of bed in the morning being drugged to the gills like this."

 

Well my psychiatrist is not happy about it, I can tell you, LOL, but it has been hard to find a mixture that even helped. Biggest issue was suicidal thoughts, long-term and such a black mood, that I begged her for help. Dothiepine seems to do it for me. I suggested ECT, and she referred me, but due to the Ehler Danlos I have soft blood vessels, and the psychiatrist at the hospital was afraid I would get a stroke. So my psychiatrist and I had to come up with a new plan.

 

I am hoping we can work on the mood stabilisers, but missing just one dose of Valproate, sends me right into hell. so I am very hesitant.

 

"So you are saying you have tapered from 375mg to 37.5 venlafaxine in 9 months. That is certainly faster than this site would rec."

 

More likely over 7 months - but I am not a patient woman - and I WANT TO SLEEP !!! (sry) I am so tired of, well ... being tired.

 

" Did all those diagnosis's (not sure what the plural of diagnosis is) occur before you were put on any drugs?"

 

No I did not get the diagnoses, apart from the Chronic major depression, but I mentioned the possibility of Asperger (my son has Asperger) and PTSD to the psychiatrist, who put me on Effexor. He just shook his head.

 

But I had the symptoms before the Effexor and the other medications were added over time :

 

Effexor 2009, Valproate 2011, Lithium 2013, Dothiapine 2016.

 

My PTSD symptoms started in 1999, and were exacerbated by traumatic incidents in 2009 and 11.

 

I stopped both citalopram and lamotrigine cold turkey, I was not under any doctor's control. My mental illness history would probably have been better, but I don't think I could have avoided the "big crash" in 2009.


50 year old. Diagnosed with Asperger Autism, Chronic major depression, PTSD, Anxiety, Insomnia, Ehler Danlos, OA, IBS, Obesity, Reflux

 

Previous medication : Citalopram, Lamotrigine, Prozac, Valdoxin, Lexapro, Dexamphetamine. Electro shock ruled out due to Ehler Danlos Syndrom.

 

Current medication : Effexor (a little while still), Valproate 500mg x 2, Lithicarb 250 mg x 2,  Dothiepine 100 mg. Pain : Panadol Osteo 665 mg x2 x3, Meloxicam (NSAID) 4 weekly (due to interaction with Lithium). Sleep : Ambien 10 mg PRN. Anxiety : Oxazepam 30 mg. Reflux : Somac 40 mg

 

The goal is to get off Effexor and start Valdoxin, and hopefully sleep again !! YAY


#4 IMay

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Posted 01 January 2017 - 05:25 AM

This is the complete list of medications (IIRC) :

 

Current medication : Effexor (a little while still) down from 375 mg, Valproate 500mg x 2, Lithicarb 250 mg x 2,  Dothiepine 100 mg. Pain : Panadol Osteo 665 mg x2 x3, Meloxicam (NSAID) 4 weekly (due to interaction with Lithium).

Sleep : Ambien 10 mg PRN.

Anxiety : Oxazepam 30 mg PRN.

Reflux : Somac 40 mg

 

I will start working on a "proper" signature tomorrow


50 year old. Diagnosed with Asperger Autism, Chronic major depression, PTSD, Anxiety, Insomnia, Ehler Danlos, OA, IBS, Obesity, Reflux

 

Previous medication : Citalopram, Lamotrigine, Prozac, Valdoxin, Lexapro, Dexamphetamine. Electro shock ruled out due to Ehler Danlos Syndrom.

 

Current medication : Effexor (a little while still), Valproate 500mg x 2, Lithicarb 250 mg x 2,  Dothiepine 100 mg. Pain : Panadol Osteo 665 mg x2 x3, Meloxicam (NSAID) 4 weekly (due to interaction with Lithium). Sleep : Ambien 10 mg PRN. Anxiety : Oxazepam 30 mg. Reflux : Somac 40 mg

 

The goal is to get off Effexor and start Valdoxin, and hopefully sleep again !! YAY


#5 nz11

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Posted 01 January 2017 - 03:50 PM

 but I mentioned the possibility of Asperger (my son has Asperger) and PTSD to the psychiatrist, who put me on effexor...

 

So what you are saying is you said the words asperger and the letters PTSD to a pdoc and they immediately without a thought gave you that label and a most potent drug.

These people know no shame.

I would like to tell you that i went to a pdoc to make a complaint regarding these drugs and the horrific wdl i had to suffer which by all deftns was a serious adverse event. He made some sick joke regarding the cause of the SAE and i didnt smile or laugh.

 

Later due to my suspicions i requested a copy of the notes in it i read that he had covertly diagnosed me with autism /aspergers due to the fact i didnt smile at his stupid joke and so he concluded i was unable to respond to social cues ..what  a load of bovine excrement. I wrote back and asked for my notes to be corrected and they refused and would not delete this  nonsense.

These people are extremely dangerous. Breggin said that in 1991 and Gotzsche said that in 2015.

 

Personally imo i  wouldnt make any more changes for the mean time.Withdrawal symptoms can be delayed and you went from 375 to 37 in 9 or less months following sa's advice it would take about 22 months to do that. 

 

You didnt mention the dosage of meloxicam

It could be helpful to put start dates in your drug sig also.

What do you think about running all these drugs through the drugs interaction checker?

 

nz11


2000 amitryptaline, nortriptaline venlafaxine clonazepam for  arm pain from keyboard use, told I had a chemical imbalance it would fix my arm was just a matter of finding the right med for me not informed of the nature of these drugs assured safe and not addictive, CT off Effexor after being told to double the dose on reporting adverse effects...later ..uncharacteristic psych panic tearful presented to doctor to get answers. Given paroxetine no questions asked 'safe and not addictive' next please.2001-2010 paroxetine (paxil) 2 failed attempts to quit, a learned helplessness set in. Feb 10 - Sept 10,  8 month clueless taper, hell. Doc said I had underlying depression .. I said that's not right' then found online support group and the truth!...overcome with inconceivable humiliation and outrage. 28 Sept 10 drug free ...  daily psych and emotional torture beginning in the waking hours of the morning receding somewhat in the evening only to start up again the next day. 28 Sept 12 (24 months) Stabilizing  (What an indescribable unimaginable non-functional nightmare). sleep issues start up at 3 yrs  waking daily at 2am -4.30am), April 2016 return to sport for the first time since drug free, Sept 16 return to work on casual basis.  28 Sept 16 (6yrs drug free), still cant sleep with any regularity, pssd continues no sign of improvement, still feel Rip van Winkle-ish, brain fog still improving, psoriasis concerns.

 

"It is unsafe for people who suffer from something that could be treated with an ssri to consult a psychiatrist." Gotzshe 2015. [ I think Gotzsche could have easily meant to say 'to consult anyone with prescribing privileges']. "Going to a psychiatrist is one of the most dangerous actions a person can take." Breggin

 

“Paroxetine is not safe, it is not effective and it meets every known definition of addictive.” McLaren, N, (2016) 'Psychiatry as bullsh*t’ p55..."Psychiatry is stuffed full of 'deep nonsense' better known as bullsh*t." McLaren 2016

 

"Within the first week of when you go on an antidepressant you may have a sexual dysfunction, it can go on forever, often only appearing when you go off the drug ...its extraordinarily common" Healy 2015

 

See  my intro post #451 for the xanax back story and for a CV -GSKs.  Come on guys get taperwise see a TaperMe Schedule

 For a staggeringly shocking 'prozac back story' see the truth post #523

 

"If I were an enemy combatant and the NZ army did this to me someone would be dragged to the Hague and jailed!"  nz11


#6 JanCarol

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Posted 11 January 2017 - 06:46 PM

Hey Imay - sorry I missed this - you and I are in the same town (unless your Brisbane is the California one!)

 

Thank you NZ for catching the ball here.

 

Imay - how much Effexor are you on?  Are you reducing by beads?  That's how we do it here.  Or did I see that you jumped off at 37.5?  When was that? (please put approximate date in signature) - but then I see from your post, that you hope to get off Effexor in 2017?

 

Tips for tapering off Effexor (venlafaxine)

 

We only recommend 10% of prior dose per month, as NZ noted - you have gone much faster than that.  We also slow or stop tapering when there are symptoms - and you've been wise to wait until your symptoms settle before making your next cut.  But the big cuts might be catching up to you.

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

I think the best thing I can give you is a drug report.  Dothep is not used in the US (where the drug interaction site is), so it is missing from this list.  I wanted to put the Valdoxan (your p-doc's future plan) on the list, but it is not there for the same reason:

 

Interactions between your selected drugs

Major lithium  venlafaxine

Applies to: Lithium Carbonate ER (lithium), Effexor (venlafaxine)

Talk to your doctor before using lithium together with venlafaxine. Combining these medications 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 contact your doctor immediately if you experience these symptoms while taking the medications. 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

Moderate venlafaxine  meloxicam

Applies to: Effexor (venlafaxine), meloxicam

Using venlafaxine together with meloxicam may increase the risk of bleeding. The interaction may be more likely if you are elderly or have kidney or liver disease. 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. You should seek immediate medical attention if you experience any unusual bleeding or bruising, or have other signs and symptoms of bleeding such as dizziness; lightheadedness; red or black, tarry stools; coughing up or vomiting fresh or dried blood that looks like coffee grounds; severe headache; and weakness. 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

Moderate lithium  meloxicam

Applies to: Lithium Carbonate ER (lithium), meloxicam

Meloxicam may occasionally increase the blood levels and effects of lithium. You may need a dose adjustment or more frequent monitoring by your doctor to safely use both medications. Let your doctor know if you experience drowsiness, dizziness, diarrhea, vomiting, muscle weakness, muscle incoordination, tremor, blurred vision, ringing in the ear, excessive thirst, and/or increased urination, as these may be symptoms of excessive meloxicam levels. 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

Moderate zolpidem  venlafaxine

Applies to: Ambien (zolpidem), Effexor (venlafaxine)

Using zolpidem together with venlafaxine may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, and difficulty concentrating. Some people, especially the elderly, may also experience impairment in thinking, judgment, and motor coordination. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Also avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. 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

Moderate oxazepam  venlafaxine

Applies to: oxazepam, Effexor (venlafaxine)

Using oxazepam together with venlafaxine may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, and difficulty concentrating. Some people, especially the elderly, may also experience impairment in thinking, judgment, and motor coordination. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Also avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. 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

Moderate valproic acid  venlafaxine

Applies to: Valproate Sodium (valproic acid), Effexor (venlafaxine)

Using valproic acid together with venlafaxine may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, and difficulty concentrating. Some people, especially the elderly, may also experience impairment in thinking, judgment, and motor coordination. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Also avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. 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

Moderate oxazepam  zolpidem

Applies to: oxazepam, Ambien (zolpidem)

Using oxazepam together with zolpidem may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, and difficulty concentrating. Some people, especially the elderly, may also experience impairment in thinking, judgment, and motor coordination. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Also avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. 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

Moderate valproic acid  zolpidem

Applies to: Valproate Sodium (valproic acid), Ambien (zolpidem)

Using valproic acid together with zolpidem may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, and difficulty concentrating. Some people, especially the elderly, may also experience impairment in thinking, judgment, and motor coordination. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Also avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. 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

Moderate lithium  zolpidem

Applies to: Lithium Carbonate ER (lithium), Ambien (zolpidem)

Using lithium together with zolpidem may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, and difficulty concentrating. Some people, especially the elderly, may also experience impairment in thinking, judgment, and motor coordination. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Also avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. 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

Moderate oxazepam  valproic acid

Applies to: oxazepam, Valproate Sodium (valproic acid)

If you are a woman of childbearing age, talk to your doctor before using valproic acid together with oxazepam. Combining these medications may increase the risk of harmful effects to a fetus. 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

Moderate lithium  valproic acid

Applies to: Lithium Carbonate ER (lithium), Valproate Sodium (valproic acid)

Using lithium together with valproic acid may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, and difficulty concentrating. Some people, especially the elderly, may also experience impairment in thinking, judgment, and motor coordination. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with these medications. Also avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medications affect you. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. 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

Minor oxazepam  lithium

Applies to: oxazepam, Lithium Carbonate ER (lithium)

Consumer information for this minor interaction is not currently available. Some minor drug interactions may not be clinically relevant in all patients. Minor drug interactions do not usually cause harm or require a change in therapy. However, your healthcare provider can determine if adjustments to your medications are needed. 

For clinical details see professional interaction data.

Minor oxazepam  acetaminophen

Applies to: oxazepam, Paracetamol (acetaminophen)

Consumer information for this minor interaction is not currently available. Some minor drug interactions may not be clinically relevant in all patients. Minor drug interactions do not usually cause harm or require a change in therapy. However, your healthcare provider can determine if adjustments to your medications are needed. 

For clinical details see professional interaction data.

Interactions between your selected drugs and food

Moderate valproic acid  food

Applies to: Valproate Sodium (valproic acid)

Alcohol can increase the nervous system side effects of valproic acid such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience impairment in thinking and judgment. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with valproic acid. Do not use more than the recommended dose of valproic acid, and avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medication affects you. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions or concerns.

Switch to professional interaction data

Moderate zolpidem  food

Applies to: Ambien (zolpidem)

You should avoid the use of alcohol while being treated with zolpidem. Alcohol can increase the nervous system side effects of zolpidem such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience impairment in thinking and judgment. Taking zolpidem with food may delay the onset of sleep. For faster sleep onset, zolpidem should not be taken with or immediately after a meal. This will make it easier for your body to absorb the medication. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions or concerns.

Switch to professional interaction data

Moderate oxazepam  food

Applies to: oxazepam

Alcohol can increase the nervous system side effects of oxazepam such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience impairment in thinking and judgment. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with oxazepam. Do not use more than the recommended dose of oxazepam, and avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medication affects you. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions or concerns.

Switch to professional interaction data

Moderate lithium  food

Applies to: Lithium Carbonate ER (lithium)

Alcohol can increase the nervous system side effects of lithium such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience impairment in thinking and judgment. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with lithium. Do not use more than the recommended dose of lithium, and avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medication affects you. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions or concerns.

Switch to professional interaction data

Moderate venlafaxine  food

Applies to: Effexor (venlafaxine)

Alcohol can increase the nervous system side effects of venlafaxine such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating. Some people may also experience impairment in thinking and judgment. You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with venlafaxine. Do not use more than the recommended dose of venlafaxine, and avoid activities requiring mental alertness such as driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how the medication affects you. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions or concerns.

Switch to professional interaction data

Therapeutic duplication warnings

Therapeutic duplication is the use of more than one medicine from the same drug category or therapeutic class to treat the same condition. This can be intentional in cases where drugs with similar actions are used together for demonstrated therapeutic benefit. It can also be unintentional in cases where a patient has been treated by more than one doctor, or had prescriptions filled at more than one pharmacy, and can have potentially adverse consequences.

Duplication CNS drugs

Therapeutic duplication

The recommended maximum number of medicines in the 'CNS drugs' category to be taken concurrently is usually three. Your list includes four medicines belonging to the 'CNS drugs' category:

  • oxazepam
  • zolpidem (active ingredient in Ambien (zolpidem))
  • venlafaxine (active ingredient in Effexor (venlafaxine))
  • valproic acid (active ingredient in Valproate Sodium (valproic acid))

Note: The benefits of taking this combination of medicines may outweigh any risks associated with therapeutic duplication. This information does not take the place of talking to your doctor. Always check with your healthcare provider to determine if any adjustments to your medications are needed.

 

 

I was surprised to see that meloxicam and lithium were only a "moderate" cause of warning, since the lithium nearly did my kidneys in.  I still struggle with diabetes insipidus (a type of kidney failure).  My doctor didn't recognize it as a side effect of lithium, she said that my blood tests were all okay, but when I got to an orthomolecular doctor, she tracked markers that said otherwise.   My chemist wouldn't even give me an NSAID when I was on lithium.  EVER.  

 

I'm also pretty stunned that the Panadol and Valproate are not listed, since that combination is a strain on the liver.  In fact, daily use of paracetamol is one of the most dangerous "common practices."  That OTC drug is not as safe as it is touted.  It is the #2 reported overdose/poisoning in Australia.

 

What is the nature of your pain?  I live with a lot of pain, and still take pain medications, but I track them like our Queensland police count bullets.  I can't afford any more damage to my kidneys or liver, so I now take turmeric/curcumin and tart cherry for pain.  I only recommend the turmeric/curcumin for others.  It's good for IBS, too, a general anti-inflammatory.

 

How long have you been on lithium?  Do you get regular blood tests for lithium and valproate?

 

I am going to see a naturopath, to find out if some of my stomach problems are food related. And I going to get off Effexor !

 

A naturopath may be helpful, or may be harmful - most naturopaths do not understand the nature of these drugs, and how they restructure your brain.  If your naturopath says anything about "detoxing from the drugs," please run away as fast as your feet will carry you!

 

Yes, some of your stomach problems may be food related - but it is more likely that it is side effect and withdrawal related.  90% of your body's serotonin receptors are in your gut.  So any time you experiment with a serotonin based drug, chances are, it will affect your gut.

 

Having diarrhea on lithium is a dangerous sign that you are dehydrating.  It is vitally important for you to take in electrolytes and drink plenty of water.  

 

I know you trust your doctor, but it sounds like you could use one who is not so chemistry dependant.

 

The view that just getting the right chemicals/drugs in will "fix" your PTSD or Asperger's - is an outdated model.

 

There is a therapy-based practitioenr in Brisbane, and he accepts Medicare:  Dr. Rob Purssey (yes, he is a psychiatrist and does prescribe!), who reduces people's drugs, and undiagoses them from the system.  I know of "bipolars" and "schizophrenics" who - after having been through his care - are just people with issues and a toolkit for dealing with them.  The toolkit is called ACT - Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.

 

Here's Dr. Rob's site:

http://www.brisbanea...r-rob-purrsey/ 

 

You sound like you are young.  This is a complex cocktail you are on.  It's admirable that you are trying to get off the Effexor - but I am frightened that you & your doc just want to replace it with another neurotransmitter-fiddler (I have yet to hear anyone who has had good results from Valdoxan, and I have a few horror stories about it).  The older you get, the harder these drugs will be on your overall health.  Already, it sounds like they are taking a toll.

 

Your benzo use (stillnox & oxazepam) is dancing with the devil, too.  Benzos are great - until they are not anymore.  Then they turn on you like a feral dog and you will wish you'd never tried to interact with it.  You do not know at what point you will be addicted.  You do not know at what point that addiction becomes chronic, and you do not know when you will experience "poop out," or need to increase dosages in order to get relief.  Taking them more than 1x a week, is an indicator that you are already hooked.

 

If that is the case, and you are already hooked, it is better to take a small amount daily.  Additionally, oxazepam is a short-acting benzo, which means it can wear off several times a day - and cause interdose anxiety.  This enhances the addiction, by driving you to take another pill.  Interdose anxiety is often 3-5x greater than your own natural anxiety.  How long have you been using oxazepam? How often do you really take it?

How many nights a week do you use Stillnox?

 

Please  Keep notes on paper - when you take your drug, and what your symptoms are before & after to see if you are getting interdose anxiety, or if you can tie specific symptoms to certain drugs.  On your complex cocktail, this will be a challenge - so the more detailed your notes are, the better.

 

I will stop here - I have asked a number of questions - I will put them in bold so that you can answer them easily.

 

It does get better, people can walk away from their drugs, and their diagnosis, but it is hard work.  Are you in therapy, too?  Learning some skills to help you deal with your crippling symptoms?

 

There are a number of people who have freed themselves from these self-perpetuating drug traps, and you can, too.

 

Lastly, here is a short 4 min video that talks about how these drugs work by restructuring your brain:

Healing from Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery (by Toxic Antidepressants)

 

I hope you see the sun today.


"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Effexor, Depression, withdrawal