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Found 9 results

  1. Hello, my name is Danielle. I am new to this site, but have been reading it for quite some time now. My parents put me on effexor xr when I was 6 years old for severe anxiety and childhood phobias. It worked great for years. I had very little side effects and life was hunky dory. I am now 24 years old and the medication is no longer working. I stupidly tried to come off of the Effexor over the coarse of 3 months under directions from my psychiatrist. Obviously, I crashed and I have been desperately trying to get my life back for the last 10 months. During those months, I was under the impression that I was ‘very ill’ and a ‘special case’ based on the severity of my symptoms, but now I am realizing what has happened to me is not my original illness resurfacing, but the effects of the discontinuation of the medication. I’m an RN and have been out of work for the last 6 months. I have read stories on here of people eventually recovering from ssri and snri withdrawl, but was wondering if anyone has any experience or knows of anyone who was prescribed one of these drugs as a child. Is there hope for me or will I have to live with the consequences of my parents decision for the rest of my life? Will these dehabilitating symptoms ever go away or are my receptors f***ed for life?
  2. Am J Psychiatry. 2017 May 1;174(5):485. doi: 10.1176/appi.ajp.2017.16101158. Citalopram Discontinuation More Harmful Than Gradual Dosage Reduction? Krijnsen PJC1, van Os TWDP1, Wunderink L1. Abstract at https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28457157 KEYWORDS: Antidepressants; Cardiology; Citalopram; Long QT Syndrome; QT/QTc Prolongation; Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors; Torsades de Pointes Comment in Clarifying Methods in a Study of Outcomes of Citalopram Dosage Risk Mitigation in a Veteran Population: Response to Krijnsen et al. [Am J Psychiatry. 2017] Comment on Outcomes of Citalopram Dosage Risk Mitigation in a Veteran Population. [Am J Psychiatry. 2016] This is a comment on Rector, 2016 Outcomes of Citalopram Dosage Risk Mitigation in a Veteran Population. (full text) Article requested from Dr. Wunderink.
  3. I joined this site a couple of weeks ago. After finding that paxilprogress was no more. I was devastated. That site may have truly saved my life in some of my darkest moments. What is one to do? When essentially you've self-destructed in front of everyone you love; because of a nasty little "non-habit-forming" pill that's been shoved down your throat for decades. So here I am. Time (weeks really) has eluded me. I meant to reach out sooner. I'm just hoping I'm not reaching out too late. I feel like such a horrible failure. I know better than that at some level, know that maybe I failed but that I just have to pick up the broken pieces and keep moving forward. But I'm so I'll. I'm so weak. I'm so alone. And I feel so helpless. My life may not have been a picnic before the introduction of SSRIs. But this is one situation in which the grass was truly greener on the side of which I was already standing. Before popping that first "innocent" little pink pill, prescribed by a doctor who had seen me only once and only spent 10 minutes "getting to know me". I couldn't tell you who that doctor was, I never saw him again. Nevertheless he was the first in probably nearly a hundred who have insisted upon continuing the saga. And what better did I know? I was unhappy before the meds. I was often unstable on them. And I was clueless as to why I was saying and doing psychotic things (that I often didn't remember, or just have "snippets" of memory after the fact) and so violently ill when I decided I simply no longer wanted to take the pills. Or was even 12 hours late on a dose. (More about that and my travels down genetic testing road and CYP450 mutations later.) All that being said; Hello to all in these forums. I'm the antisocial one. The antisocial one that sometimes doesn't know when it's appropriate to shut up. Or how to appropriately ask for help. But if you've been through it (psych med-wise), I probably have too. And vice versa.
  4. Hey there. This is my first post, but I have a success story that I’d like to share. I’d like to preface by saying I had been on 75mg of sertraline (Zoloft) for approximately 7 months. I quit last year and have successfully made it through the withdrawals! I see more horror stories than success stories on SSRI discontinuation. My hypothesis for this discrepancy is that people who successfully quit the drug don’t really have that much of an incentive to post their stories, while people dealing with the terrible side effects are more likely to seek out information. I knew there were millions of people on SSRIs, and I refused to believe that my discontinuation symptoms would be permanent. Of course, there are always exceptions, but I found out quickly how unhealthy it was to hold this mentality of permanence. I tapered off a too quickly (~2 weeks). I believed that since I had only been on the medication for a few months, I could get away with tapering off at that rate. Consequently, I ended up having over 6 weeks of hellish withdrawals. The first 2 weeks had the most powerful physical symptoms: brain zaps, fatigue, nausea, etc. These symptoms seemed to go away around week 3, but then came another wave of symptoms: anxiety, paranoia, depression, and a lot of overthinking. I didn’t realize it till week 5, but these feelings were more powerful than when I had them before starting sertraline. Week 5 was the worst; all these terrible feelings went into overdrive. I remember a few specific days of this week were particularly dreadful. I had been reading up on SSRI discontinuation online and freaking myself out reading people’s horror stories. I was afraid that I permanently removed what it was to be human. I was terrified I’d never feel joy, sexual desire, or ambition in my life ever again. I was angry at myself that my choice to try anti-depressants fucked up the rest of my life. I was broken, and I just wanted to be normal again. These are unhealthy thoughts, and I was wrong. My life did start coming back. I slowly felt what it was like to be “me” again. Small steps every day reminded me. One day something would make me laugh. Another day I’d notice a cute girl. I appreciated and cherished every step throughout the way. And slowly but surely, old joys started coming back to me: I started feeling ambition, I was looking forward to future plans, I was dreaming again (I could sleep well again!), and I was feeling love again, both for myself and others. I believe there is a strong psychosomatic component during these withdrawals. It’s difficult because your brain doesn’t allow you get past these negative thoughts while its readjusting, but you have to keep moving. There isn’t a quick solution, but your brain is powerful and adjusts to your current circumstances. That’s why exercise, a healthy diet, a support network, and a positive outlook are so important; you want your brain to re-adjust in an ideal setting. So, don’t blame yourself or hold a grudge for trying SSRIs; you actively did something to confront your inner demons. From one stranger to another, you will survive this. Good luck.
  5. Hello everyone! I am a new user here. I've lurked around this site before but have yet to introduce myself. I was a Prozac user for a year from August 2015 - September 2016. I had taken it for social and general anxiety. I was on 20mg/day. Initially, I was actually doing fine and great emotionally but had side effects like massive fatigue everyday (not even 3 cups of coffee could wake me up!) and constipation every time I went to poop (sorry for TMI). I also felt like a zombie for a brief period in which I was neither happy nor sad. In May 2016, I decided to abruptly stop taking the Prozac by choice without consulting my doctor (bad move!) and had brain zaps and mood swings which I assumed as worsening depression. I then just asked my doctor to simply increase my dose because I thought I was getting worse (bad move again!). I was put on 40mg/day from June - August 2016 in which I was ok at first but then I was hit with a panic attack so severe I had to rush to the ER. For that week, I was having very severe symptoms. So I was instructed to go back down to 20mg/day. From then on, I decided to stop taking it a few months ago in September because I felt better and didn't want to rely on medication anymore to make me happy. I consulted with my psychiatrist who said for me to just take 10mg for one month and then I can stop. I did just that. Over the month of October I was fine and felt completely normal. However, I realized symptoms would come later once the month of November started. I have since felt every type of symptom under the sun including brain zaps, hot flushes, insomnia, irritability, tingling sensation of the skin, anxiety, shortness of breath, sweating, tremors, and slight vertigo. I have never felt these symptoms in my life til now! I've talked to my doctor and he doesn't believe in withdrawals. At this point I feel helpless. I am experiencing waves and windows in which I have waves of really bad flare ups and then windows of good normal days where I feel fine. But they keep cycling back and forth. I now have questions to ask: 1. Do windows of no symptoms mean that my body is getting better? 2. Should I reinstate the Prozac and taper off more gradually? Someone suggested I shouldn't because I've already been clean for 3 months now. But what do you guys think? 3. Will symptoms go away if I keep pushing cold turkey? 4. Should I try medical weed to help ease tthe symptoms? I want to try natural ways of healing
  6. I have been on 40 mg. fluoxetine for past 5 years as treatment for Major Depression and Social Anxiety. June 2016 I began a slow tapering using liquid solution of fluoxetine. Additionally I reduced my nightly dose of Imiprimine and I am successful and holding at 10mg. Dec. 4 2016 I took 16.8mg=4.2ml of the liquid fluoxetine. Dec. 5 I made the decision since I was at such a low dose I could stop. All was well until Dec. 17, at 13 days of no dose, my stomach began having painful cramping, bloating, gas, cold sweats, faint feeling, nausea, fatigue, husband says maybe a stomach bug? Pain and bloating went away on Dec. 21 but nausea and fatigue still with me as of today 12/24. Could this be a virus or very likely discontinuation? I am tempted to try a small dose of Fluoxetine to get some kind of normal back for a few weeks. ​Any help or suggestions greatly appreciated. I would like to get better quickly to enjoy the holidays.
  7. Hey all my story after a long period of stress I kinda started feeling strange so went to gp who prescribed me 20 mg of citalopram after 7 weeks I went back and said I don't think there are for me not knowing much about the whole ssri situation what I were feeling was apparently my brain protecting me , he suggested i tried fluoxetine so I did another 2 months off and another cold turkey ...,, Back to docs not knowing that I was suffering due to the damage the drugs had done so bring story forward after sertraline 50 mg for a few months which absolutely destroyed me I tried Paxil as I genuinely believed I was depressed I didn't know such a thing about withdrawal stayed on them for about 2-3 months I am know 7 months without anything and I genuinely feel like these drugs have destroyed my brain after all the zaps and muscle tension goin I got severe brain fog which lifted then depression which lifted then anger now im stuck with a constant feeling of depersonalisation last few days started really weird dreams and sleep disturbances even though I'm on holiday I am sitting by a pool then boom out of nowhere really bad anxiety I never had these before I tried those stupid drugs I have tried vitamins and supplements but I now can't handle any stimulant I used to go to the pub regularly but know I can't even hold s drink without getting sort of naggy drunk after a very small amount , caffeine is out the question also I'm a builder and need to concentrate as I work up heights my concentration and memory are terrible sorry to go on !!!lol I know each day offers different symptoms but I genuinely believe I won't be what I was before many thanks keep up the fight
  8. My Comment: This is the complete letter. The references can be seen via the link. I was interested in what they say about the mechanism, at the end. AFAIK, atomoxetine is an SNRI. It gave me the most horrendous evil feeling in the muscles of my legs that I went to emergency after a few days and almost got locked up. It wasn't pain per se. It was like "expectancy." These novel drugs give us sensations we can't describe, so the doctors describe us as crazy, you know? Prim Care Companion CNS Disord. 2013; 15(2): PCC.12l01427. Published online 2013 Mar 21. doi: 10.4088/PCC.12l01427 A Case of Amelioration of Venlafaxine-Discontinuation “Brain Shivers” With Atomoxetine Jose A. Cortes, PhD and Rajiv Radhakrishnan, MD Full text at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3733524/ To the Editor: Antidepressant discontinuation syndrome is a common syndrome seen following abrupt termination of treatment with a serotonin reuptake inhibitor.1 It occurs at rates ranging from 17.2% to as high as 78% with venlafaxine.2,3 There is, however, little literature on “brain shivers,”4,5 a common antidepressant-discontinuation symptom described by patients taking venlafaxine, duloxetine, citalopram, and paroxetine. Much of the information comes from Internet blogs and Web sites.6–8 The symptom is described variously as “an electrical shock–like sensation in the brain,” “the sensation of the brain shivering,” “brain zaps,” “brain shocks,” “brain shivers,” “head shocks,” or “cranial zings.” The etiology of the symptom is not known, and there is no known treatment for this distressing symptom. We describe a case in which “brain shivers” occurred as part of venlafaxine discontinuation syndrome and abated with atomoxetine treatment. ["we made this man miserable for nothing"] Case report. Mr A, a 34-year-old man, presented with DSM-IV major depressive disorder (MDD) that responded well to venlafaxine (300 mg/d). He achieved remission except for seasonal exacerbations during autumn during the next 4 years. In view of a family history of bipolar disorder, it was decided to add lamotrigine and taper venlafaxine. [idiots] Mr A maintained remission on venlafaxine (37.5 mg/d) and lamotrigine (200 mg/d) without seasonal exacerbations. Mr A abruptly discontinued venlafaxine 37.5 mg/d. On the second day following discontinuation, he reported feeling an unpleasant sensation of “electricity in the head” that “felt like the brain was shaking inside the skull.” Mr A was also noticed to demonstrate emotional incontinence and complained of anhedonia, anxiety, tinnitus, headache, nausea, and increased sensitivity to noise. Since the “brain shivers” were the most distressing symptom, a trial of atomoxetine 40 mg/d was attempted based on the hypothesis that the symptom was a result of noradrenergic imbalance.9 An immediate improvement in “brain shivers” was reported within 2 or 3 hours of taking the first dose. Over the next 3 days, Mr A reported further improvement in “brain shivers” and anhedonia although emotional incontinence and increased sensitivity to noise persisted. Given the severity of other withdrawal symptoms, venlafaxine (37.5 mg/d) was reinstated and atomoxetine was stopped. All withdrawal symptoms disappeared during the next day. [chalk one up for Effexor!] The case adds to the interesting speculation about the noradrenergic imbalance as the basis of “brain shivers.”9 “Brain shivers,” conceptually related to Lhermitte’s phenomenon,10 have also been reported with the noradrenergic drug 3,4-methylenedioxy-N-methylamphetamine (MDMA). The psychotropic effects of MDMA are mediated via norepinephrine transporter11 and results in an increase in synaptic norepinephrine levels. Venlafaxine’s affinity for norepinephrine transporter (K = 2,984 nM),12 is 103-fold lower than that of atomoxetine (K = 5 nM),13 yet venlafaxine causes an increase (242%)14 in synaptic norepinephrine levels comparable to that by atomoxetine (290% ± 33%).13 Curiously, chronic treatment with venlafaxine does not reduce norepinephrine transporter binding sites.15 These facts point to the possibility that increases in synaptic norepinephrine are due to norepinephrine transporter reversal, akin to dopamine transporter reversal associated with amphetamine.16 Abrupt withdrawal of venlafaxine would hence result in paradoxical increase in synaptic norepinephrine via efflux through norepinephrine transporter channels, which is normalized by atomoxetine’s norepinephrine transporter blockade. This speculation of the noradrenergic basis of “brain shivers” warrants further study.
  9. Hi, I'm a 22yo autistic woman with PTSD and possible bipolar disorder. I was put on Lamotrigine 100mg in 2014 in response to a "hypomanic" episode (unclear whether this was correctly diagnosed) whilst taking Venlafaxine and Mirtazapine (for severe depression). The psychiatrist I saw recently was concerned that Lamotrigine was causing cognitive side effects such as inability to remember words and told me to withdraw it by 50mg per week (i.e. take 50mg for a week, and then reduce to nothing). I reduced to 50mg on one Monday, had symptoms such as nausea, instability, dizziness, vomiting and mood swings which were pretty much as expected. The next Monday those symptoms had pretty much gone so I went ahead with reducing to 0mg as planned. Since then (5 days) I've been having more of the same, plus some escalations in my autism manifestation (shut downs/dissociation and sensory processing difficulties in particular) which is fairly standard when I'm ill or under stress. Basically I've now done online research, which I didn't do initially because reading online tends to be unnecessarily scary re discontinuation symptoms. However I'm feeling pretty grim and having now read stuff I'm thinking this was done way too quickly and I shouldn't have trusted the psychiatrist when he said to reduce by 50% a week (life lesson not to trust doctors I guess..). But now I've been off it for 5 days, I guess there's very little left in my system? So I'm not sure if I should reintroduce 25mg and then come off it more slowly or if at this point I'm better to just "grin and bear it". The discontinuation symptoms are getting better rather than worse, so perhaps the latter is the better option? I don't want to confuse my nervous system even more by coming off it then going back on it and then coming off it again..
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