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Recommended doctors, therapists, or clinics


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#73 Altostrata

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 08:29 AM

Recommended to me by Dr. Sally Satel, author and Yale faculty member http://psychiatry.ya... .profile the following "are all in the DC area and are very savvy."

 

Julia Frank MD

http://www.gwupsychi...ank-julia.shtml

http://juliafrank.md.com/

 

George Washington University

2150 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC 20037

(202) 741-2888

 

David Pickar MD

http://www.davidpickar.com/

 

6500 Seven Locks Rd Ste 220 Cabin John, MD 20818 (301) 263-1313

 

Removed from list, see http://survivinganti...linics/?p=81615

 

Eric Taswell MD

1350 Connecticut Ave NW Suite 603 Washington, DC 20036

202) 452-9002 (Office)

(703) 847-5791 (Fax)


Edited by Altostrata, 23 March 2014 - 10:00 AM.
updated

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

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#74 Altostrata

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 08:49 AM

As Iggy suggested up above:

 

Peter Haddad, MD

http://www.psychiatr...ddad/index.html

http://www.bap.org.u....php?memberID=5

 

Author of Haddad, 2001 Antidepressant discontinuation syndromes.

 

Cromwell House Community Mental Health team Hope Hospital Stott Lane Salford Greater Manchester M6 8HD

 

Hope Hospital catchment.


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#75 PMD

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Posted 15 August 2013 - 02:53 PM

Dr. Michelle Barwell, Pittsburgh PA   She's  a little tough to get an appt with ~ 3 month wait, but for me she was worth it.   Immediately recognized my symptoms as withdrawal or discontinuation syndrome and provided options for coping.   She did caution me that without the Effexor onboard I was very likely to have a recurrence of depression given my history, but did not push me to commit to staying on the med.  What she offered as a taper schedule is a little more aggressive than what is advocated here but I had the firm impression that should I want to move more slowly she would be supportive of that.

 

Admin note: I've added Dr. Barwell's contact information below from http://www.vitals.co...ffice-locations

 

Cranberry Psychological Center

1378 Freeport Rd Ste 2A Pittsburgh, PA 15238

(412) 406-8080 Cranberry Psychological Center

 

Western Psychiatric Institute Clinic

3811 O Hara Street Pittsburgh, PA

15213 (412) 624-1000

 

Also see http://survivinganti...inics/?p=174451


Edited by Altostrata, 10 August 2015 - 01:22 PM.
updated

On Effexor XR 450mg & Geodon 200mg since 2004

Tapered Geodon to 60mg in 2012

Began first Effexor XR taper in May 2013

Initial taper to 375mg - held for 3 weeks

Second taper to 300mg - held for 3 weeks

Third taper to 225mg - withdrawal symptoms began 5 days later.

Tried for 10 days to ride out withdrawal but after finding this site increased back to 300mg on 7/16/2013

 


#76 Altostrata

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Posted 07 September 2013 - 03:23 PM

Dr. Sandy Steingard, who runs a clinic in Vermont, recommends:

 

Alice H. Silverman, MD

179 North St Montpelier, VT 05602

(802) 224-1144 (Office)

 

Dr. Silverman speaks in favor of single payer health care in the US in this video

 

More from Vermont Public Radio here http://www.vpr.net/n...t-single-payer/


Edited by Altostrata, 15 February 2014 - 10:34 AM.
fixed text

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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#77 Altostrata

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 10:27 AM

Hope, please see the list in the first post in this topic.

 

Andrew Pundy, MD is a doctor who offers benzo tapering http://drpundy.com/benzo-addiction/

 

His office is also accepting patients for tapering of antidepressants and antipsychotics as well as benzos.

 

Andrew Pundy, MD

http://drpundy.com/

1875 Dempster Street

Suite 490

Park Side Center Park Ridge, IL 60068

Phone: 847-518-8490

Fax: 847-518-8492


Edited by Altostrata, 15 February 2014 - 10:34 AM.
fixed text

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

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#78 Altostrata

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 10:39 AM

Windhorse Integrative Mental Health offers inpatient and home care services (not outpatient services) in Massachusetts and California locations. From Jeff Bliss, MSW, Director, Northampton, MA:

We do, at times, work with clients to reduce and in some cases eliminate medications and yes, I agree, it is a very slow process in most cases with a variety of qualitative twists and turns in the “client’s” experience of their mind state. We are very slow with this process in general.

 

Windhorse Integrative Mental Health

http://www.windhorseimh.org/

 

211 North Street, Suite #1 Northampton, Massachusetts 01060

Jeff Bliss, MSW, Director, Admissions & Marketing:   413.586.0207 extension 103

Eric Friedland-Kays, MA,  Admissions Manager:   413.586.0207 extension 333 or 106

 

1411 Marsh Street, Suite #103 San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

Lisa Teague, Director, Admissions & Marketing: 805-548-8942

 

For outpatient services, contact to see if they can recommend anyone in your area.


Edited by Altostrata, 15 February 2014 - 10:36 AM.
updated

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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#79 Altostrata

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 01:33 PM

Recommended by Jeff Bliss of Windhorse:

 

Bruce I. Goderez, MD

8 River Dr
Hadley, MA 01035
(413) 582-1839

Edited by Altostrata, 15 February 2014 - 10:36 AM.
fixed text

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

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#80 Altostrata

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Posted 29 October 2013 - 02:49 PM

Suggested by Dr. Dan Siegel http://drdansiegel.com/  

 

Allen T. Pack, MD

11633 San Vicente Blvd Ste 202

Los Angeles, CA 90049

310-820-9123

 

Linda D Moghtader, MD

153 S Lasky Dr Ste 8 Beverly Hills, CA 90212

310-286-7204

 

Brett D Shurman, MD

12401 Wilshire Blvd Ste 303

Los Angeles, CA 90025

310-979-7335


Edited by Altostrata, 15 February 2014 - 10:38 AM.
fixed text

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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#81 Altostrata

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 10:09 AM

In the Netherlands, 22 psychiatrists have been studying the feasibility of adhesive strips in graduated doses for tapering paroxetine and venlafaxine. Their names and locations are listed at the end of this post: http://survivinganti...faxine/?p=66738


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

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#82 stan60

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 02:50 PM

Does anyone know a GOOD tapering doctor in Honolulu?

#83 Altostrata

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Posted 27 January 2014 - 11:45 AM

ADMIN NOTE Members have had difficulty with Dr. Ahmad. He is not recommended for tapering anymore.

 

 

 

Dr. Samoon Ahmad
http://www.samoonmd.com/
Integrative Center for Wellness
800 5th Ave, New York, NY 10065
Phone: (212) 207-4500
 
Dr. Ahmad was quoted in this Al Jazeera article http://america.aljaz...epressants.html
 
Dr. Ahmad's education and publications: http://www.med.nyu.e...sketch/ahmads01
 
Videos: http://www.youtube.c...ser/SamoonAhmad
 
I've corresponded with Dr. Ahmad, who seems very interested in gradual tapering techniques. He knows about our Tapering forum. If you see him, you can discuss the tapering methods you find there.


Edited by Altostrata, 13 January 2016 - 12:15 PM.
updated

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

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#84 JanCarol

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Posted 04 February 2014 - 05:51 AM

Cooper Riis was just discussed on Mad In America (discussion on Whitaker's blog) as drugging against will and using restraints.  They have many positive features, but when questioned, will state that if circumstances call for it, they will drug against patients will, and they will use restraints, if situation calls for it.

 

That, coupled with their high monthly fee, should give anyone pause.


"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!


#85 btdt

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Posted 14 February 2014 - 12:26 AM

Maybe before you contact doctors any doctors you should check them on Dollars for Docs

http://projects.prop...org/docdollars/

only in the USA


WARNING THIS WILL BE LONG
Had a car accident in 85
Codeine was the pain med when I was release from hosp continuous use till 89
Given PROZAC by a specialist to help with nerve pain in my leg 89-90 not sure which year
Was not told a thing about it being a psych med thought it was a pain killer no info about psych side effects I went nuts had hallucinations. As I had a head injury and was diagnosed with a concussion in 85 I was sent to a head injury clinic in 1990 five years after the accident. I don't think they knew I had been on prozac I did not think it a big deal and never did finish the bottle of pills. I had tests of course lots of them. Was put into a pain clinic and given amitriptyline which stopped the withdrawal but had many side effects. But I could sleep something I had not done in a very long time the pain lessened. My mother got cancer in 94 they switched my meds to Zoloft to help deal with this pressure as I was her main care giver she died in 96. I stopped zoloft in 96 had withdrawal was put on paxil went nutty quit it ct put on resperidol quit it ct had withdrawal was put on Effexor... 2years later celexa was added 20mg then increased to 40mg huge personality change went wild. Did too fast taper off Celexa 05 as I felt unwell for a long time prior... quit Effexor 150mg ct 07 found ****** 8 months into withdrawal learned some things was banned from there in 08 have kept learning since. there is really not enough room here to put my history but I have a lot of opinions about a lot of things especially any of the drugs mentioned above.
One thing I would like to add here is this tidbit ALL OPIATES INCREASE SEROTONIN it is not a huge jump to being in chronic pain to being put on an ssri/snri and opiates will affect your antidepressants and your thinking.

As I do not update much I will put my quit date Nov. 17 2007 I quit Effexor cold turkey. 

http://survivinganti...ng-myself-btdt/

There is a crack in everything ..That's how the light gets in :)


#86 Altostrata

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Posted 14 February 2014 - 09:21 AM

If a doctor understands how to taper and is open to working with patients, that's all that's needed for this list. We cannot require ideological purity as well.


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

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#87 btdt

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Posted 14 February 2014 - 08:41 PM

ok just thought the chance of being redrugged would be less if there was less pharma money in the doctors hand... I could be wrong of course was just what I was thinking at the time of posting may well be wrong for myself I would check not saying you should check to put their names here saying I would check before I went to see one on the list. A personal choice. 


WARNING THIS WILL BE LONG
Had a car accident in 85
Codeine was the pain med when I was release from hosp continuous use till 89
Given PROZAC by a specialist to help with nerve pain in my leg 89-90 not sure which year
Was not told a thing about it being a psych med thought it was a pain killer no info about psych side effects I went nuts had hallucinations. As I had a head injury and was diagnosed with a concussion in 85 I was sent to a head injury clinic in 1990 five years after the accident. I don't think they knew I had been on prozac I did not think it a big deal and never did finish the bottle of pills. I had tests of course lots of them. Was put into a pain clinic and given amitriptyline which stopped the withdrawal but had many side effects. But I could sleep something I had not done in a very long time the pain lessened. My mother got cancer in 94 they switched my meds to Zoloft to help deal with this pressure as I was her main care giver she died in 96. I stopped zoloft in 96 had withdrawal was put on paxil went nutty quit it ct put on resperidol quit it ct had withdrawal was put on Effexor... 2years later celexa was added 20mg then increased to 40mg huge personality change went wild. Did too fast taper off Celexa 05 as I felt unwell for a long time prior... quit Effexor 150mg ct 07 found ****** 8 months into withdrawal learned some things was banned from there in 08 have kept learning since. there is really not enough room here to put my history but I have a lot of opinions about a lot of things especially any of the drugs mentioned above.
One thing I would like to add here is this tidbit ALL OPIATES INCREASE SEROTONIN it is not a huge jump to being in chronic pain to being put on an ssri/snri and opiates will affect your antidepressants and your thinking.

As I do not update much I will put my quit date Nov. 17 2007 I quit Effexor cold turkey. 

http://survivinganti...ng-myself-btdt/

There is a crack in everything ..That's how the light gets in :)


#88 Altostrata

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Posted 15 February 2014 - 11:06 AM

Pat Bracken, MD

West Cork Mental Health Service

Department of Psychiatry, Bantry General Hospita

Bantry, Co. Cork, Ireland

Pat.Bracken (at) hse.ie

 

Dr. Bracken frequently publishes articles calling for reform of psychiatry and is a member of the UK Critical Psychiatry Network. He writes to me:

Thank you for your kind words and your support. I'm afraid that I can
only provide a service to people who are living in the catchment area I
serve so I'm really not open to referrals from elsewhere. I agree
entirely that some people require very, very gradual tapering of psych
drugs.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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#89 Altostrata

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Posted 04 March 2014 - 10:07 AM

See the excellent news about Dr. Rob Purssey -- he will support tapering via Skype anywhere in Australia http://survivinganti...linics/?p=47108
 

Australia Medicare will pay for part of his fee.

 

Dr. Purssey has also organized a group of doctors to assist with tapering off psychiatric drugs. More to come about that.


Edited by Altostrata, 11 March 2014 - 08:03 AM.
updated

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

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#90 Marissa

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Posted 22 March 2014 - 07:18 PM

I emailed David Pickar in Cabin John, MD. He said he didn't know how he got on the forum and that he wasn't able to help me. Also noted that ssri withdrawal is a "nuisance."

Have been on SSRI's for 21 years.  Was on Welbutrin for 10.  Leaving out many details, but this is the summary: 

-March 2013 started taper from 20 mgs of Lexapro, down 5 mgs a month, then 5 mgs every other day

-Added trazodone and increased over time to 150 mgs

-August 2013 tapered off 150 mgs of Wellbutrin

-October 2013 cross tapered from 5 mgs every other day of Lexapro to 10 mgs every other day of Prozac

-November/December 2013 added 1200 mgs of gabapentin and 1200 mgs Horizant

-December 2013 increased Prozac to 20 mgs

-November 2013-January 2014 tried a much of other psych meds

-March-April 2014 got down to 600 mgs of Horizant and no more gabapentin.  Also tapering down on trazodone-12.5 to 25 mgs a month

-Had to add a ton of meds to survive the akathisia.  Later the gabapentin/Horizant appeared to be triggering the restless.  Have been trying to get off the trazodone on the chance it's causing the development of my interstitial cystitis.  Horrible SSRI post-acute withdrawal symptoms.  Also terrible gabapentin/Horizant enduring withdrawal effects.Can't go up on the gabapentin/Horizant now because it triggers burning now in multiple regions of my body.

-Current meds are: 20 mgs Prozac, 75 mgs Trazodone, 600 mgs Horizant


#91 Altostrata

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 09:57 AM

He was recommended by Dr. Sally Satel. Oh well, struck off the list.


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#92 Altostrata

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 10:07 AM

Sami Timimi, MD

http://oocamhs.com/i....php/who-are-we

 

Consultant child and Adolescent Psychiatrist
Director of Medical Education
Lincolnshire Partnership Foundation NHS Trust
Visiting Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry http://www.lincoln.a...tingprofessors/
Faculty of Health and Social Sciences
Lincoln University

International Critical Psychiatry Network
See my Author’s page on the ICPN website
Join the ‘No More Psychiatric Labels’ International campaign
Project Leader for Heart and Soul of Change Project
Co-Founder of Outcome Orientated CAMHS (OO-CAMHS)
and Outcome Orientated Approaches (OO-AMHS)

 

 

Dr. Timimi is a prolific writer about reforming psychiatry and founder of the International Critical Psychiatry Network.

 

He wrote me

I don't currently see adult patients, but I could do and it may be possible to persuade my employers to run a discontinuation clinic under my supervision if there was sufficient demand. Best wishes,
Sami

 


This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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#93 Altostrata

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 01:30 PM

Daniel Z. Lieberman, M.D.
http://www.vitals.co...l#ixzz2wuyNT1Lj

Professor and Vice Chair for Clinical Affairs
George Washington University
Medical Faculty Associates
2150 Pennsylvania Ave NW
Washington, DC 20037
202-741-2888

 

Dr. Lieberman responded to my e-mail right away. With a subspecialty in addiction medicine, he is very interested in helping people get off drugs safely and comfortably. He seems like a very considerate doctor.

 

He does not take insurance.

 


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

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#94 Muddles

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Posted 26 March 2014 - 03:46 AM

The telephone number here is in-correct.
Dr Healy - 01492860926
2008 - Doctors appointment with stress induced anxiety led to Citalopram prescription.
Severe adverse reaction
Mirtazapine prescribed - adverse reaction but told to stay on.
Poop out - December 2013
15mg
Currently on 13.5mg,
April 12mg
May 10th - 11mg
June 10th - 10mg
July 8th - 9mg
September - 0mg

#95 Altostrata

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Posted 04 April 2014 - 03:10 PM

Holly Major, RN, MSN,ANP-BC,QTTT

 

Adult Nurse Practitioner
Griffin Faculty Practice
Integrative Medicine Center http://www.imc-griffin.org/
Patient Safety/Evidence Based Care Manager
Therapeutic Touch Coordinator
Griffin Hospital, Derby, CT
203-732-7104

 

From e-mail:

Hello,

At the Integrative Medicine Center, we have helped a few people taper off psychiatric medications using slow tapers along with Integrative support. Modalities such as acupuncture and Therapeutic Touch will help and we usually work with a holistic psychotherapist to support the patient during the taper to support the person during this difficult process.

As you discussed, withdrawal symptoms can last for years .... In these situations, support via an Integrative approach is very useful as it will help a person to manage these symptoms and can often help to improve them.

I am not aware of any specialists in the area that specialize in tapering although I am familiar with other NPs that will work with patients through this long and difficult process. As you know, this is hard work for the person coming off the medication and providers need to remain very supportive and willing to make very small changes over a long period of time, based on the person's response.

 


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

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#96 Altostrata

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 11:34 AM

From a member, who recommends this doctor for tapering benzos ONLY. He does not believe the other drugs have withdrawal issues.

 

Kent E Rogerson, MD

2522 Grand Canal Blvd, #1

Stockton, CA 95207-8213

209-951-4666

 

Hours for Dr. Rogerson are  Monday through Thursday. 8-6pm

Staffing answering phones begins at 9 am until 12 noon, then 2pm until 5pm.

 

Staff is limited during other times.

 

This doctor also returns his own calls, if he is available, within 24hrs if not sooner.

 

Call to see if he accepts your insurance plan.


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#97 Altostrata

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 10:52 AM

For holistic support and psychotherapy:
 

Jonathan Keyes
Hearthside Healing
25 SE 75th Ave.
Portland, OR 97215

503-890-3138
 
http://www.hearthsid...vidual-therapy/
Jon is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC),  a Nationally Certified Counselor (NCC), and a certified Health Coach. He is also knowledgeable about herbal therapies and works with an acupuncturist.

 

He wrote an article about the difficulties of psychiatric drug withdrawal on MadinAmerica.com https://www.madiname...nvisible-pain/‎


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#98 Rhiannon

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Posted 19 May 2014 - 11:20 AM

Thanks for the reminder about Dr. Garodia, Rhi. I'll add her to our list.

Her bio is here http://qcinstitute.org/garodia.html

Contact info from http://www.ucompareh...ia/offices.html :
Dr. Prachi Garodia
551 Lone Pine Blvd
The Dalles, OR 97058
(541) 506-6920

Please let me know if you get any recommendations from Will Hall.

 

Dr. Garodia has moved to Medford, Oregon, so this contact information is now out of date.


Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease" as I was told. Long and tragic story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything.

 

Now tapering, ironically (but not surprisingly) healthier and more functional than I ever was during the years on the "meds," even with withdrawal (usually fairly mild at this slow pace).

 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 14 2011:   86 mg Neurontin   144 Lamictal,    5.5 Celexa   0.42 Xanax      1.9 mg Valium

Feb 16 2012:   10 mg Neurontin   115 Lamictal     3.7 Celexa   0.285 Xanax     2.0 Valium

Feb 22 2013:   86 Lamictal    2.05 Celexa       0.23 Xanax      1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

Now:                43                    0.625                 0.0775            1.3

 

I'm not a doctor. Any advice I give is just my civilian opinion.


#99 Altostrata

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Posted 19 May 2014 - 11:36 AM

Do you have new contact info for her?


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#100 chicken

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Posted 07 June 2014 - 09:36 AM

Daniel Johnson, MD
100 Central Ave.
Asheville, NC 28801

Office phone: (828) 708-7001

 

Please check him out at http://danieljohnsonmd.com/ if you live in the NC/TN area.

 

Check out this news article about him

http://mountainx.com...t_mainstream_t/

here is an excerpt from the article, very encouraging.

 

Asheville psychiatrist Daniel Johnson didn’t set out to transform his profession. But he’s now part of a growing movement, both locally and nationally, that’s challenging the most fundamental assumptions about mental illness.

WELLNESS_DJohnsonmc.jpg

Dr. Johnson launched a private practice here in 2010 and, like most psychiatrists, he prescribed medications for his patients. But a controversial article he read nearly a year and a half ago got him thinking and eventually led to a profound shift in the nature of his work (see sidebar, “By the Book(s)”).

By the book(s)

In 2011, The New York Review of Books published a two-part essay by Dr. Marcia Angell that would have a profound impact on Asheville psychiatrist Daniel Johnson and others who are championing new approaches to treating mental illness. Angell, a harsh critic of the pharmaceutical industry who’s now a lecturer in Harvard Medical School’s Division of Medical Ethics, reviewed three books deploring the use of psychiatric drugs.

Two of those books proved particularly influential for Johnson. Both Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness by journalist Robert Whitaker and The Emperor’s New Drugs: Exploding the Antidepressant Myth by psychologist Irving Kirsch reject the theory that chemical imbalances in the brain cause mental illness, challenging the usefulness of the drugs routinely prescribed to treat such problems.

Kirsch, noted Angell, merely “concludes that antidepressants are probably no more effective than placebos.” Whitaker, on the other hand, “concludes that they and most of the other psychoactive drugs are not only ineffective but harmful.”

“Unfortunately, and sadly, more often than not, medications do more harm than good,” Johnson now maintains. “And of course I had contributed to all that in my own practice. I had a lot of soul searching and reckoning to do on a personal level.”

Nonetheless, Johnson — a graduate of the UNC School of Medicine who spent several years working in Mission Hospital’s inpatient psychiatric unit — says he did “a lot of apologizing” to clients, including those who later experienced a difficult withdrawal from a particular antidepressant he’d prescribed: “They put a lot of trust in me, and I feel like I led them astray.”

Many in the field would disagree with that position. And while Johnson says he’s gotten some support from colleagues, psychiatrists who help patients safely withdraw from psychiatric drugs are few and far between.

Asheville resident Faith Rhyne, a former patient of Johnson’s, says, “There’s something very reductionist about the conventional approach to mental health, which … really is that you have a chemical imbalance, and it’s a disease, and you have to take medication in order to fix that.”

With Johnson’s help, she’s been off psychiatric meds for more than a year. “I feel so much better,” she reports.

Rhyne belongs to the Asheville Radical Mental Health Collective, one of several local alternative support networks (see sidebar, “Helping Hands”). “You are more than your diagnosis,” she declares. “You are more than whatever quick answer might have been handed to you.”

What started Johnson on his revisionist journey was an essay by Dr. Marcia Angell, a former editor at The New England Journal of Medicine, that reviewed three books condemning the use of drugs to treat mental illness.

Although the essay sparked push-back from the medical establishment in the form of letters to the editor, for Johnson, those books’ conclusions “opened my mind to a line of thought which challenged a lot of my convictions but also made a lot of sense, and presented a very compelling argument for re-examining the work I do.”

Around the same time, Johnson decided he was tired of fighting with insurance companies, so he stopped accepting insurance altogether. That, he says, forced him to listen more closely to what his patients were actually saying rather than trying to align what they told him with the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders so he could get reimbursed for services rendered.

Johnson’s quest to learn more about the subtleties of medication withdrawal led him to the work of Dr. Peter Breggin, a Harvard-trained psychiatrist basaed in Ithaca, N.Y., who’s written extensively about the dangers of psychiatric drugs and electroconvulsive therapy. Breggin’s website (breggin.com) warns that psychiatric drugs are dangerous both to start and to stop, and the latter should be “done carefully under experienced clinical supervision” to avoid “life-threatening emotional and physical withdrawal problems.”

To safely taper patients off their medications, Johnson works with two compounding pharmacies in town, which create successively smaller doses of the drugs, rather than the standard dosages available from pharmaceutical companies. Depending on the number of meds involved, the process may take a couple of years. In addition, individual and group therapy help patients process what they’re feeling.

Once they’re weaned from the drugs, says Johnson, they can get a clear view of their inner self and are better able to do grounded bodywork with some of the many alternative and complementary medicine practitioners in town.

“When people start believing that there’s hope that they can live off of meds, that sense of self-empowerment … can be transformational,” he reports.--------------------------

 

I will be seeing this doctor in July of 2014. I will keep you informed in my introduction thread. God Bless you all on your journey.


Prozac 1999-2009 quit semi cold turkey.

 

2012 Placed on Seroquel 25 mg, Tranxene (Clorezepate) 3.75 mg 3x a day, Remeron 30 mg for anxiety/akathesia.

 

Weaned off Seroquel and Tranxene .to Remeron 15 Mg.

In May 2014 tried quitting Remeron at its lowest dose. Had severe withdrawals.Reinstated Remeron at 30 mg by doctor. August 5 2014 entered hospital. Doctor pulled the Remeron and bridged it to Pamelor (Nortriptyline) 40mg and Zyprexa 2.5mg.After removing the Remeron all my bad symptoms went away and I am stable.

 

9/11/14 - 7.5 mg tranxene, 40mg Pamelor, Zyprexa 2.5mg

12/29/14 -  20mg Pamelor, 1/6/15,  7/31/15 3.5mg, 8/10/15 3.2 mg, 9/15/15 2.2mg, 10/15/15 1.8mg

(Feb 2016 - 1.4mg Pamelor only -  OFF OF TRANXENE AND ZYPREXA SINCE DEC 2014 BENZO FREE Since 2014. Nortrityline (Pamelor) .8mg Aug 2016

March 2017 DRUG FREE


#101 Altostrata

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Posted 07 June 2014 - 12:36 PM

Added to our list in #1.


This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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#102 Hexal

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Posted 17 June 2014 - 09:52 AM

Danish psychiatrist Lisbeth Kortegaard is opening a clinic September 1st, aimed at helping children and youths taper off psychoactive medicine. She confirmed this via email.

 

ADMIN NOTE: Dr. Kortegaard is currently practicing in Hoejbjerg, Denmark.


Edited by Altostrata, 29 June 2014 - 10:35 AM.
updated

Took Sertraline/Zoloft (50 mg) for 9 months. Tapered over 2 additional months and was drug-free by the end of March 2013.

Consulting with my doctor, I tapered by alternating doses, as I did not know any better. I experienced a delayed withdrawal reaction and symptoms began in earnest by mid-June 2013 and have been present ever since.

Symptoms include dizziness, headaches, numb arms/legs, parestesia, palpitations, weird swooshing/tingling/burning sensations in my head, "brain shivers", constant tremor in my body, hypersensitivity (particularly to coffee, alcohol, exercise), a feeling of hyperactive nerves/muscles, particularly in my legs and feet. Not much progress by end of 2016.


#103 Barbarannamated

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Posted 25 June 2014 - 05:02 PM

cross debra London off the list for PA, she's moving to CA!!!


Do you know what part of CA?
Pristiq tapered over 8 months ending Spring 2011 after 18 years of polydrugging that began w/Zoloft for fatigue/general malaise (not mood). CURRENT: 1mg Klonopin qhs (SSRI bruxism), 75mg trazodone qhs, various hormonesLitigation for 11 years for Work-related injury, settled 2004. Involuntary medical retirement in 2001 (age 39). 2012 - brain MRI showing diffuse, chronic cerebrovascular damage/demyelination possibly vasculitis/cerebritis. Dx w/autoimmune polyendocrine failure.<p>2013 - Dx w/CNS Sjogren's Lupus (FANA antibodies first appeared in 1997 but missed by doc).

#104 Abriton

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Posted 27 June 2014 - 04:39 PM

I can recommend Dr Paul Conti in Portland, Oregon. He is a great psychiatrist , (Harvard and Stanford), and a wonderful human being. He founded Hazelden, for rehab, and just sold it to the Betty Ford Clinic, and has his own new practice, Pacific Premier Group, in Portland, on SW Maine. Call his assistant, Amber, on 503 720 4359, for an appointment. He may negotiate a fee if you have no insurance.

#105 Altostrata

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Posted 29 June 2014 - 10:16 AM

Thank you very much, Hexal and Abriton.

 

Too bad Debra London is moving from Pennsylvania, ANH. I hope we don't lose track of her.

 

moodyblues78 got these recommendations for tapering from Aku Kopakkala, a psychologist in Finland:

 

Dr. Jeremy Wallace in Vantaa, Finland

Dr. Hasse Karlsson in Turku, Finland


This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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#106 Jen

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Posted 07 August 2014 - 01:48 PM

Hi All,
I'm a new member and wanted to share a doctor that I'd recommend. His name is Henry Emmons. He wrote the books Chemistry of Calm and Chemistry of Joy. He is based out of MN but sees patients for phone/Skype appointments. He's helping me with my taper & natural ways to deal with anxiety. He also works with a dietician, Carolyn Denton, who helped me with GI issues and an elimination diet. Their practice is called Partners in Resilience.
 
Admin note:
 
Henry Emmons, MD
http://www.partnersi...e/henry-emmons/
Partners in Resilience
1409 Willow Street #305
Minneapolis, MN  55403
612.874.8608


Edited by Altostrata, 06 September 2014 - 12:06 PM.
added contact info

2004 Started Celexa (20 mg)

2007-2008 Off Meds

2008 Zoloft (50 mg)

2011 Off Meds for 6 months

2011 Celexa (20 mg)

2012 Celexa (40 mg)

2014 Zoloft (25 mg)

7/2014 Zoloft (12.5 mg)


#107 BlueMonster

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Posted 06 September 2014 - 09:56 AM

Just to update folks on the contact info for Prachi Garodia, my Google-foo found her here: http://www.medfordmd...achi-garodia-md

The shadow proves the sunshine.


#108 crazykatie

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Posted 30 September 2014 - 04:46 PM

I just came across this site for STL, MO. I'm not sure if they have providers but it is the only type of website for people in this area. http://www.cchrstl.org/
I just changed shrinks. My new one is part of a so called alternative medicine psych care group. However, the guy I see just wants me to go back on my medication or take another instead of the panic induced by the ct discontinuing.
I made it clear to him when I first saw him that I wanted off these meds. I had been on invega for three weeks then n had cut my wellbutrin dosage by 2/3. I know I'm not a md but when you want to be free of these meds, at least I am willing to deal with the w/d. I am going to look for another doc.
I wish you all the best. Everyone have a good evening whatever time of day you are in!! Hugs
Was on antidepressants on and off from 2000-2007 dx with MDD n anxiety.
2009- had like a physical breakdown. Was exhausted n not functioning properly. Still have depression n had become suicidal. Shrink dx bipolar while I never had a single manic episode. I got at least 8-9 hours of sleep every night. I required that to function since a child. I was admitted to the psych ward immediately. Was then put on a cocktail.
Lithium, lamotrigine, wellbutrin, prozac, depakote, Xanax, trazadone and ritalin.
Went through over 50 shock treatments n put on Invega in addition
Spring 2014, made the decision to try to get off some meds.
11 weeks ago I qt quit invega
10/6 reinstated 150 mg of Wellbutrin
I currently take 40 mg of prozac, 300 mg of lamotrigine, 1 mg of Xanax, 150 mg of trazadone
I am down from three medications. The forementioned others that I was initially put on I stopped prior to 2014.
I am hoping to be med free one day. I do not have any intention of stopping the current ones right now. I'm going to give my body a little more time to adjust.
Progress not perfection!!