erer

erer CT from Cymbalta and in trouble with Zyprexa, Diazepam and Valdoxan

259 posts in this topic

Hi,

 

So I finally understood that it is strongly recommended to write a little something about my experiences here. I will just copy some parts of my posts I have shared in this forum to sum up.

 

Recent developments:

 

I myself have intolerable withdrawal symptoms even reducing 5% of the drug. They are unbearable, both physically and mentally. They totally incapacitate me for weeks (I sleep up to 15h a day, terrible brain fog and dizziness up to the point where I cannot walk, of course the brain zaps and lots of pains in different parts of the body etc) (I will not mention the mental effects, they are really bad...) and then on it is still bad but keeps stabilizing very slowly.

 

At this point (after tapering for years) I am seriously considering coming off the 8,44 mg altogether because I am just unable to go through the symptoms that come after a reduction so many times any more. Because the withdrawal symptoms are extreme for me I am thinking it would be better to cut off the drug now at 8,44 mg and hope the nervous system will start balancing itself out than to go through this hell for at least another year (which is the very optimistic time frame).

Note: I have decided to go with this idea - I am going from 8,44 to 1 mg in 8 days. (today being the 3rd day: April 3rd 2015 ). Before judging please read the history of my experiences to understand why I personally have decided to take this approach now in the very end of tapering.

 

My experience:

 

I have been tapering at different pace throughout the process. Since the beginning I have made the reductions by 10% or even 5 % when I realised that the symptoms were directly caused by the reductions. I was aware (theoretically) that my symptoms can be caused by the drug, its side effects and withdrawal, but I didn't really believe it for a long time. Or it would be more correct to say I always had doubts whether it was still more me being crazy and ill. 


So for a long time in the beginning (I have been tapering for over 2 years) I kept tapering with intervals that I now realise were not nearly enough for my brain to stabilize, but I was not fully aware that the withdrawal symptoms could be so severe and last for so long that I figured the reason had to be somewhere else. I just tapered according to the planned schedule, keeping aprox. 3 week intervals (and unfortunately, optimistically 2 week intervals). I also tried micro tapering every week, but needless to say that proved to be harsh on my nervous system and was keeping me in a constant state of agony.

 

During the last 9 months or so I have had to keep longer periods between reductions in order to stabilize (I realised more and more that what I was experiencing was due to the reduction of the medication and the link got clearer by the day), but I cannot even estimate the stabilization point. For some of my friends it is perfectly clear - their withdrawal "cycle" is short and simple: they know that their symptoms will come 1-2 days after the reduction and last for about a week (max).

 

 

This is not the case for me. One week for me is the extremely acute period (which would correspond to maybe the 1st 1-2 days of my friends' cycles) and as much as I would like to see a noticeable improvement during week 2, I can only say that it gets slightly better than the extreme, but not nearly enough to function to a standard that would/could be acceptable or tolerable. After recently having a 6 week and a 2 month gap between reductions I can say that during the 2 month gap I guess you cold say that I started to feel like the symptoms were starting to actually stabilize for the fist time for me subjectively. That enabled me to observe how the affects of withdrawal came about abruptly and directly connected to the reduction. 

 

In more detail:

 

I'm having a hard time remembering exactly how long I have been taking certain drugs. Seems like forever. I was first prescribed Fluoxetine when I was 17. I am 30 now and for 13 years I have constantly been on and off different antidepressants - the whole spectrum of them. For a very short while I was even on antipsychotics (a month or so). I have always had awful side effects and have discontinued the drugs after a while, switched from one drug to another etc. It wasn't until a few years ago when I finally became aware and educated myself on the topic of antidepressant withdrawal and the harm they cause. (I would really suggest two books for a real eye-opening: Medication Madness: The Role of Psychiatric Drugs in Cases of Violence, Suicide, and Crime by Peter R. Breggin and Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America by Robert Whitaker).
 
When I think back on the years on these meds and realising now what they have done with me, it makes me indescribably angry and sad. I have had awful side effects for years and discontinuation effects that I only realise in retrospect for what they were. Last drug I discontinued before Cymbalta was Venlafaxine (Effexor) which is another nightmare next to Cymbalta. Unfortunately then I was not aware of the methods of slow tapering and the discontinuation symptoms literally almost killed me (the "brain zaps", disorientation and dizziness were so severe that I almost tumbled in front of a moving car one day). By then I was already google-smart on the discontinuation side effects these meds have but was still unaware how to slowly taper. 
 
I was very reluctant to start taking Cymbalta but was convinced it was necessary by mu doctor. I started with the idea that I would only be taking the drug for a few months. Well, months become a year before I started tapering. I was taking 60 mg of the drug. 
 
When I started tapering it was very difficult for me to distinguish between the effects of withdrawal symptoms and my usual symptoms. A lot of the time I did not believe that the drug could be causing all the mental and physical symptoms and was afraid that it was just me. By know (as I described in my previous post) I have realised that a lot of this has been the drug's effect, but I am still afraid whether these effects can be undone. I have no way of knowing whether the decade of these drugs has caused permanent damage on my nervous system.
 
I have tapered using different strategies. I have never tapered more than 10% of the last dosage, but I did reduce very often for a long time (after making a schedule I tapered every 2-3 weeks). It was because I could not really believe that my symptoms were so severely caused by the withdrawal. Later when I tried longer stabilizing periods I experienced how the withdrawal effects were sudden and obvious and followed a certain pattern (for Cymbalta and for me it is 1st day - no different, 2nd day slightly lowered mood, mild brain zaps etc, 3rd day - hell!). 
 
Withdrawal symptoms: 
The first week, on day 3 I start to have terrible crying spells. Literally for days I keep crying. Well, of course not 24/7 but for most part of the first days I am in tears. I am not sure how long that lasts but at least half a week. At some point the crying is replaced by despair and major depressive feelings. This is the worst symptom and the best I know to describe it is that while having this I feel that I cannot bear living for another minute more. I just want the suffering to stop. And it doesn't. And that can get better for half a day or even an entire day, but still last for... well, an unknown amount of time. I know I could handle any kind of symptoms - all the pain and crying and everything, but this is unbearable. The only thing that helps is numbing the feelings with Xanax. I do not drink alcohol but I can totally understand why people would choose to numb their pain with it. I suppose it is not at all different from taking Xanax - they're both a sort of a poison for the body and the brain.
 
From physical symptoms the strongest ones I have is exhaustion (up to the point where it is ridiculous even), I have strong neurological symptoms (brain fog, brain zaps - they are a sort of a mini seizure, extreme sleepiness - sleeping up to 15h a day, not being able to shake the drowsiness and fogginess for the most part of the day, I have strong neural pain in the left side of my body - in the left arm, shoulder, back of the head, behind the eye, vision problems, extreme sensitivity to sounds (!) and a general sensory oversensitivity, nausea of course. Oh, I remembered for some period during the tapering I sweated extremely. I usually sweat really little. I also sweat a lot during the night. The flu-like symptoms occur. Ohwell... the list is so long it is embarrassing. And these symptoms don't really seem to pass fast. They just last and last so that I get to thinking it is ridiculous. But it still keeps happening. Oh and from time to time comes the agitation and irritability. I can feel how my thinking gets impaired - it slows down, the memory gets really-really bad, I cannot remember words and names (I used to think it was just me or a symptom of depression, but now I have established a clear link between the symptoms and the reduction of the meds). 
Oh, and the restless legs of course. 

 

My method of tapering:

I have developed a method for myself for tapering off Cymbalta that I have not encountered in this forum or any others so I thought I should share it.

 

For the very reason that the beads inside a Cymbalta capsule are not the same size (two capsules might not contain the same amount of beads) and I do not have a scale to measure such small portions, I have come up with an alternative.

 

What I did is I folded a paper in half from the middle, creating a void where I could pour the beads and they would stay in a straight line next to each other. In that way I created a measurable line of the contents of a capsule.

 

Right now I use a 30 mg capsule which creates a 25,5 cm line (fits on a regular A4 paper), but when I was using a 60 mg capsule I had to devide the beads into portions and measure them all and calculate from there on.

 

Now I am not particularly fond of mathematics, but with a few simple calculations and a lot of concentration ( :)) I was able to calculate how many mg of the medicine was in a line of the medicine of a certain lenght. So when 30 mg of Cymbalta is 25,5 cm, that meas for example, that 15 mg of Cymbalta would be 12,75 cm etc. (This is specific to the capsules I use bought from Estonia, yours could be very different so you should always measure your own medication!)

 

I use the same folded paper (with markings on it) every day to pour a certain amount of beads out from the capsule.

So if I am using a 30 mg capsule and I am - let's say - at 20 mg daily dosage I would have to calculate how many (what lenght) beads I would have to extract from the capsule before taking the medicine.

 

So I have established that 30 mg = 25,5 cm.

That means 20 mg = 17 cm.

I know that there is 25,5 cm of beads (30 mg) in the capsule so I have to pour out 10 mg = 8,5 cm. It really makes no difference, if you calculate it in cm or mg after you have established the relation between the two.

So I have a marking on the paper and each day I pour out a 8,5 cm line. And if i reduce the dosage I just make another marking. It is actually very easy to do the reduction just visually, when you have drawn the lines beforehand and calculated what necessary. You also have the history of your reductions right there under your eyes. I always write the date of the reduction next to the specific line every time, so I have a good visual overview of what, when etc.

 

Edited by scallywag
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Wow so sorry you've had so much trouble..I totally sympathise!

 

Maybe people here will be able to chip in with some suggestions. Would it be unacceptable to you to stay at this dose your at indefinitely, seeing as it is much lower than when you started?

 

Best wishes to you with whatever you decide!

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Maybe people here will be able to chip in with some suggestions. Would it be unacceptable to you to stay at this dose your at indefinitely, seeing as it is much lower than when you started?

 

 

Suggestions would be highly appreciated. I really cannot accept the idea of staying on these meds. I want to get off them and start recovering from the damage they have caused my over the years.

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Ok yeah I know the feeling!

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I totally relate to your wds. I've also considered stopping effexor every now and then but I've read so many people's stories of what they have gone through totally stopping and then having to go back on because they could not stabilize. I would rather hold at such a low dose then having to suffer extreme pain and starting over. I wish you would reconsider. May I suggest 3% cut /monthly. Slowly but surely wins the race.

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I totally relate to your wds. I've also considered stopping effexor every now and then but I've read so many people's stories of what they have gone through totally stopping and then having to go back on because they could not stabilize. I would rather hold at such a low dose then having to suffer extreme pain and starting over. I wish you would reconsider. May I suggest 3% cut /monthly. Slowly but surely wins the race.

Thank you for your suggestion - I totally understand where you're coming from and I do realise that this is the reasonable advice and a few weeks ago I would never have suggested otherwise. It is due to my circumstances right now that I have given it a lot of serious thought and have decided to go with the solution that might seem extreme to many people who are aware of the dangers of AD withdrawal. I do realise the risks and have weighed my options very carefully. This is just the option that I can live with right now.

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Many people find they have more difficulty tapering when they get down to a low dose.

 

One alternative would be to reduce by 1 bead at a time, perhaps every 4 days. See Micro-taper instead of 10% or 5% decreases

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So for a long time in the beginning (I have been tapering for over 2 years) I kept tapering with intervals that I now realise were not nearly enough for my brain to stabilize, but I was not fully aware that the withdrawal symptoms could be so severe and last for so long that I figured the reason had to be somewhere else. I just tapered according to the planned schedule, keeping aprox. 3 week intervals (and unfortunately, optimistically 2 week intervals). I also tried micro tapering every week, but needless to say that proved to be harsh on my nervous system and was keeping me in a constant state of agony.

Two years is actually not all that long for a slow taper.  MapleLeafGirl, for example, took four years to taper.  I have been trying to taper off since 2006, but after a few unsuccessful attempts, including a huge crash, I began my latest ultra-slow taper in 2008.  Yes, I have been tapering this time for seven years, and still have a way to go yet, maybe another three years or so.  I have never stuck to an exact schedule, instead listening to my body and waiting to stabilise.  There have been times when I have held on a dose for many months because my system was not stable.  Most people do not need to taper as slowly as I have, but I have been able to function throughout.  Withdrawal effects have varied, but have not been anything like as severe as when I crashed in 2008.  That was absolute hell, and I never want to repeat it, which is why I am going so slowly this time.  Recovery doesn't only happen once you are totally off the drug, it continues in a gradual way throughout a slow taper, so I figure it doesn't really matter how long it takes, as long as I'm going in the right direction.

 

I am concerned that with such a big drop, your symptoms could become much more severe than they have been. I've been on AD forums for many years and seen that dropping dose quickly to try to "get it over with" usually does not go well.

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Hi erer ,    just popping in to say welcome.  

I like the way you describe using folded paper to measure one line of beads.  

   

I'd be very nervous about jumping off if I were you ... when I tapered too fast in 2013 the worst symptoms didn't start till 6

months later -  "protracted withdrawal syndrome".

 

Do you have a lifestyle with someone around to look after you if you get sick for a long time?

 

Fresh

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Do you have a lifestyle with someone around to look after you if you get sick for a long time?

I do. Thank you for your concern! I have already been sick and at home a long time being looked after.

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I was in hell before. But it was nothing compared to what I am going through now. Do not do what I did. I have been through a series of stages off hell, but I seriously did not know it could be this bad.

If you already know you have a bad reaction to tapering meds, do not attempt to just push through a rapid taper.

 

2 years - 60mg Cymbalta - 8,4 mg

 

March 15 - unknowingly reducing to 7,4 mg (a misunderstangin in my measuring system)

Suicidal. Hopeless. Homebound. At the stage where I was barely able got out of bed to eat or wash etc.

Decided to just go off the meds so that the hell that was my life would just get a chance of improving once the meds are not doing all the damage they are doing.

 

April 1 - 6 mg Cymbalta - very calm and detached

April 2 - 6 mg Cymbalta - very calm and detached

April 3 - 4 mg Cymbalta - serious derealisation, really intense

April 4 - 4 mg Cymbalta - serious derealisation, really intense

April 5 - 2 mg Cymbalta - serious derealisation, really intense

April 6 - 2 mg Cymbalta - serious derealisation, really intense, panicky feeling is added

April 7 - 1 mg Cymbalta + 0,5 mg Xanax XR -  serious derealisation, really intense, panicky feeling continues

April 8 - 1 mg Cymbalta - intense panic attack in the evening. Thought I would die. I mean there are panic attacks and there are panic attacks. + 0,5 mg Xanax XR, + 0,5 Xanax

April 9 - back to 6 mg Cymbalta + 0,5 mg Xanax XR (major panic attack + constant panicky state all day)

April 10 - 6mg Cymbalta + 0,5 mg Xanax XR (major panic attack + constant panicky state all day)

April 11 - 6 mg Cymbalta + 0,5 mg Xanax XR (anxious, but a lot calmer day)

April 12 -  6 mg Cymbalta + 0,5 mg Xanax XR + 0,5 Xanax (panic attack + constant panicky state all day, suicidal thoughts, a lot of anxiety and terrible fear)

April 13 - 7,5 mg Cymbalta + 0,5 mg Xanax XR (almost bearable day, a lot of anxiety and fear)

April 14 - 7,5 mg Cymbalta + 0,5 mg Xanax XR (almost bearable day, a lot of anxiety and fear)

April 15 - 7,5 mg Cymbalta + 0,5 mg Xanax XR (terrible fear, went to an accupunture doctor who put a pin in my wrist and gave me some supplements)

April 16 - 7,5 mg Cymbalta + 0,375 mg Xanax XR (1st half of the day - very-very sleepy (I suppose from the buildup of Xanax - I feel that alway when taking more than 3 days in a row), 2nd half of the day - a bad panic attack that lasted for an hour! Then a bit of a break and horror and fear and smaller panic attacks throughout the evening.

April 17 - ...

Barely hangin in there.

 

I do not know what to do. The panic is intense and I cannot bear it. It feels like it is not survivable.

I am taking Xanax XR every day, but I am very-very afraid of getting hooked to it aswell and then I would have to deal with the AD withdrawal, being addicted to sleeping pills (I take at least 2 every evening, I have even needed 3) and Xanax on top of that - I think I could just not survive that. I want to do anything I can to avoid getting addicted to Xanax, but I just don't know how to survive what is going on now. Does anyone have ANY advice or support to offer or any ideas on how I could continue. Please.

 

My dream is to get off the drugs to start stabilizing my life. Me and my partner really would like to have children. But this may never be an option if I am battling with medication withdrawal for years to come...

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Hi Erer, many of us have done what you did, thinking the same things, that it can't be much worse so get off fast!

We found out the hard way that it CAN be worse just as you did.  It's good that you reinstated cymbalta but I suspect that you are having side effects from xanax, it is common to get rebound anxiety, so you take it for anxiety and it causes anxiety, so you take it again and it becomes a vicious circle, it is also addictive as you know.

I think I would try and cut the xanax as you've only been taking it a couple of weeks and see how it goes.  It will take time to stabilise but things will get better. This seems like it will never end but it will, your body will get on with healing itself. When you have stabilised you can start tapering cymbalta again. 

 

I'm sorry that you are in this position now and hope you stabilise soon. 

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erer,

 

When did you reinstate? How much?

 

I just want you to know that even when it feels like you can't take another minute of this, you can. You can do it. Are you getting sunshine? That is one thing that may sound unimportant, but the Vitamin D from the sun can be really critical for relaxation, rest and sleep. Perhaps, if able, force yourself to go lay down outside in the nice sun, exposing especially your arms and other body parts as well, if able.

 

I am praying for you today! DO hang in there!!!

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When did you reinstate? How much?

 

I just want you to know that even when it feels like you can't take another minute of this, you can. You can do it. Are you getting sunshine? That is one thing that may sound unimportant, but the Vitamin D from the sun can be really critical for relaxation, rest and sleep. Perhaps, if able, force yourself to go lay down outside in the nice sun, exposing especially your arms and other body parts as well, if able.

 

I am praying for you today! DO hang in there!!!

 

Thank you so much! Your support means a lot to me as I am trying to literally hang on second by second.

 

My timeline is above. I went from 8,4 mg to 6 mg to 4 to 2 to 1 mg in 8 days. Then I reinstated to 6 mg for 4 days and after that I reinstated to 7,5 mg - it is day 5 now.

 

I do a lot of meditating and everything that seems to help even a tiny little bit (my day mostly consists of breathing excercises and trying to divert my panicky thoughts any way I can. Sometimes just lying down trying to breathe through the feeling that I might die right away, watching the clock to see how long it lasts). I am not getting a lot of sunshine - we really don't have that much of it here this time of the year. On days when I am capable, my partner takes me to long walks outside in the fresh air though. I have been taking vitamin D3 for a long time now, I take 5000 IU and my vitamin D level in blood is now even a bit above the minimum norm.

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Hello Erer, Alto (above) is the wisest of us - her suggestion of a micro taper is what I was thinking too.

 

I would take it even one step further - micro taper a bead then HOLD until you feel better (maybe a month, maybe 2 months!).  To get off this last amount.

 

As Alto said, it seems like the last amount is the trickiest.  It teaches us just how strong these drugs are - when one bead makes a difference, why did they put us on so much to begin with?

 

You are strong, and amazing, to have come so far.  Please don't Cold Turkey (CT) the rest, that could make your overall recovery much longer, and rougher.

 

Here's what our Rhiannon says about tapering:

Rhis's Start Small Listen to Body Taper Plan

 

You have the skills to listen to your body.  Just go down by a bead at a time, then wait.  Wait for the bouncing brain to settle.  Then wait another week before you drop another bead.  It may seem like forever, but as you get more free, your brain gets more free - you've had these drugs in your system for decades! - you will begin to notice more the windows, the bright places where you appreciate your life, and the simple pleasures of a cup of tea, or a sunset, or your pet.

 

Do you do any exercise?  Like physical stuff?  Can you?  I mean gentle stuff, like yoga, or chi gung?

 

I hope you get to feeling better soon.

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Hello Erer, Alto (above) is the wisest of us - her suggestion of a micro taper is what I was thinking too.

 

I would take it even one step further - micro taper a bead then HOLD until you feel better (maybe a month, maybe 2 months!).  To get off this last amount.

 

As Alto said, it seems like the last amount is the trickiest.  It teaches us just how strong these drugs are - when one bead makes a difference, why did they put us on so much to begin with?

 

You are strong, and amazing, to have come so far.  Please don't Cold Turkey (CT) the rest, that could make your overall recovery much longer, and rougher.

 

Here's what our Rhiannon says about tapering:

Rhis's Start Small Listen to Body Taper Plan

 

You have the skills to listen to your body.  Just go down by a bead at a time, then wait.  Wait for the bouncing brain to settle.  Then wait another week before you drop another bead.  It may seem like forever, but as you get more free, your brain gets more free - you've had these drugs in your system for decades! - you will begin to notice more the windows, the bright places where you appreciate your life, and the simple pleasures of a cup of tea, or a sunset, or your pet.

 

Do you do any exercise?  Like physical stuff?  Can you?  I mean gentle stuff, like yoga, or chi gung?

 

I hope you get to feeling better soon.

 

Yes, this is all good advice. The thing is that right now I am the furthest away from anything stable - I am in constant panic after reinstating and my only wish right now is to somehow stabilize before I even start considering tapering again. If that day should come I am certainly going for a microtaper from now on (instead of the 5-10% I had done before). Just how do I get to the point where the panic stops...?

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erer: please stay at one dose for a while. Changing doses causes more uproar in your nervous system.

 

It may take some time for your body to register fully that you are taking 7.5mg now.

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Spent the day in ER today. Fainted, had a seizure and the ambulance took me in.

At home now. 

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er, I'm so sorry to hear how bad it has been for you. I pray you see some improvement soon. You must have been scared out of your mind. Hugs to you. You'll be okay.

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erer: please stay at one dose for a while. Changing doses causes more uproar in your nervous system.

 

It may take some time for your body to register fully that you are taking 7.5mg now.

Any idea how long it might take?

I 'm going through absolute terror today still.

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erer: please stay at one dose for a while. Changing doses causes more uproar in your nervous system.

 

It may take some time for your body to register fully that you are taking 7.5mg now.

Also, as I came down from 8,44 - do you think it would make any difference if I reinstated to that or would it possibly stir things up even more. I have been on 7,4 now for 7 days.

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It's hard to say whether updosing to 8.44 would help or not because individual responses vary so much.  When I crashed going from 5mg to 4.5mg I immediately updosed to 5mg but it didn't help.  Some people do have success with small updoses.  Eventually I did a much bigger updose which worked for me.  But for some others, updosing can create more problems.  There is no one right answer that works for everyone.

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So this is where it has come to.

I have tried to suffer through all the hell, but today I was at a point when (actually I barely survived through yesterday) Akathisia (a new symptom next to panic) just took my mind. The motor restlessness was unimaginably disturbing.  I tried to fight it for hours and hours at home, doing anything I possibly could from trying to meditate (which was impossible), crawling up between the sheets like a baby, to taking many Xanax pills to writheing on the bed, trying just anything (at one point I even started turning somersaults as a last resort hoping it would make my condition even a little bit bearable. It was not bearable.) For hours of this agony I was at a place, where I knew that in no way am I suicidal for mental reasons, but I was googling and trying to find a simple way to end my life because the situation I was in was in no way bearable.

 

Finally I called my spouse to tell him what the situation was, because I really do not (and did not) want to die, but was so scared that the feeling would just not let go and I would have to do something to myself to end the suffering.

 

He came home and we decided we would just crash into my psychiatrist's office (we had called in advance to her nurse who said she was there). I spent the most agonizing 30 minutes behind that door while she had another patient.

I went in shaking and shivering and looking like a total lunatic. She was calm and kind and offered me 2 solutions. (I was begging for her to give me something that would work fast and take the suffering away). She offered that she can have the nurse give me some drugs and we'd see how they work and then I can decide whether I would like to go home and see if I can function on those drugs or stay in the hospital.

 

She gave me Lorans (Lorazepanum) 1mg (also known as Ativan in other countries) for anxiety and for the motor restlessness Cyclodol 2 mg (Trihexyphenidylum) right there at the hospital.

At this point I did not even care what sort of chemistry went down my throat for I was on the very verge of suicide for what I was going through.

The Ativan kicked in slowly but strongly and now I feel it starting to wear off. The Cyclodol kicked in more slowly and is keeping my body more or less content.

I have an appointment with my psychiatrist on Friday to see if I have managed to handle myself on these drugs or not. She also mentioned that if the are working we should then make a plan how to start weaning me off those drugs. (Which surprised me coming from an Estonian Psychiatrist)

For now I am supposed to take the Ativan (I suppose this name is more familiar to people in this forum) 1mg 3 times a day and Cyclodol 2 mg 2 times a day.

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I am sorry you are going through this. I hope the drugs continue to work.

 

Please do heed the advice to taper them. After a bit, you may wish to very, very gradually lower the dosages of each to find the lowest effective dose.

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I was in the same kind of place when I crashed, the akathisia was unbearable.  I hope you get some relief from the new meds.  I agree with Alto, if you can get to a more stable place, gradually taper down the doses.

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Hi erer,

 

I, too, am so very sorry for all that you are going through and am glad that the drugs that were administered to you helped some!

 

How are you doing today?

 

Please keep hanging in there. Please!

 

Please keep posting here when able so that we can get updates on how you are doing!

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I am alive.

 

The drugs are really strong - make me extremely dizzy and woozy, but they don't entirely take away the extensive fear.  (They also wear off very fast and between the doses I get the panic still).

The pills that were supposed to work for the akathisia have worked so far.

 

I have also reinstated to 8,4 mg of Cymbalta (on day 3 now). If that does not help, I really don't have many options any more.

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What does 8,4 mean?

 

Keep hangin in.

 

Thinking of you today!

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What does 8,4 mean?

 

 

It means I am taking 8,4 mg of the medicine (started out 2 years ago taking 60 mg). From that dosage 8,4 mg I cut down to 1 mg in 8 days and then tried reinstating to 6 mg (no help) then 7,5 mg (no help again) and now I am taking the initial dose of 8,4 mg for the 3rd day.

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erer, I'm so sorry this is happening to you!!! :(

I just remembered Addax's story, and how she got into extreme hell due to too fast tapering. She had to reinstate much higher than last dose, in order to come out alive from this hell. I'm not saying it would be the wisest thing to do now, because I don't know. maybe her story will give you some ideas... http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6151-addax-25-years-of-prozac-and-trying-to-quit/

and for sure Alto and other moderators have better knowledge about what to do next. 

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I have been on the heavy meds since Monday now. Starting yesterday (after 3 days on full dosages) we are trying to reduce the Ativan already. The doctor's plan is to do in in about 2 weeks.

 

So I took the full dose of 1 mg 3 times a day for 3 days and now I am supposed to take 1+1+1/2 pills for 2-3 days and then  move to 1+1/2+1/2 for 2-3 days, then 3 times 1/2 pill for 2-3 days and so on. After the Ativan is tapered we are going to taper the Cyclodol (2 mg 2 times a day currently).

 

How does that seem to you? 

 

I am doing a little bit better, but it is still very hard to get a day to an end. I am still very rattled and of course the heavy sedating meds make me feel really strange. But I am grateful for every second that I don't feel the kind of panic or utter fear that I did just recently. I just hope it gets better. It has to.

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Praying for better days for you!

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Yesterday was really hard. I cried and I cried and in between the cryings I was afraid I would die and then I cried again. I was petrified and deeply sad.

 

Today I am keeping myself together so far, but a constant strong fear just flows all over me and won't let go.

I don't know how long I can take it any more. I try to go on day by day, but you have to wonder... how many days like this can one take in the end.

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Just embrace the crying and remember that the fear is chemical induced. Keep reminding yourself of that.

 

Are you drinking lots of water??

 

Keep hanging in friend!! We are all pulling for you!

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Just embrace the crying and remember that the fear is chemical induced. Keep reminding yourself of that.

 

Are you drinking lots of water??

Crying is the easy part. Crying I know and crying is not like the fear or terror or the feeling you are going crazy. If I could I would choose the crying above all.

 

Thank you so much for checking in - your encouraging words did indeed give me a little strength to carry on. Because it is really hard to believe that this can be chemical, I need someone to keep confirming it - I am constantly afraid that I am in fact going crazy or some unchangeable modifications are happening to my mind when I am experiencing such feelings and symptoms. I need this to be over soon.

 

I am drinking a lot of water and after the trip to the ER (the fainting and a seizure) I am meticulously eating as many calories as I can (I have no appetite and I'm nauseous all the time) - also drinking mineral water and also the mineral supplement to balance the minerals in my blood.

 

It is my 9th day back on the amount of Cymbalta I was taking before the withdrawal crash. But I am also weaning off Ativan and taking Cyclodon so this mixes things up pretty nicely... (I was prescribed Ativan for a short term use in the beginning of last week and already by Friday I had to start weaning off.).

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I totally relate to your wds. I've also considered stopping effexor every now and then but I've read so many people's stories of what they have gone through totally stopping and then having to go back on because they could not stabilize. I would rather hold at such a low dose then having to suffer extreme pain and starting over. I wish you would reconsider. May I suggest 3% cut /monthly. Slowly but surely wins the race.

And yes, you were right...

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