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Tapering Off After 5 Months Of 60Mg


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#1 StrangeTimesPDX

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Posted 09 August 2021 - 04:50 PM

I've been reading through many threads and/but hoping to get some advice on my situation. 

 

I started Cymbalta in Nov 2020 (so not that long ago!). Started at 20mg a day, and increased to 40mg, then 60mg. A few months ago, I started feeling like the Cymbalta was impacting me negatively, specifically my digestion and heightened anxiety. After doing all sorts of tests for digestive disorders and getting a clean bill of health, I got permission to decreases Cymbalta to 40mg about 3 weeks ago.

 

It's been surprisingly rough! Overall, I have been experiencing extreme anxiety, a terrible time focusing (as in impossible to), insomnia, and my mood is absolutely all over the place. Prior to Cymbalta, I had never taken any medications and was prescribed it (along with Gabapentin) to see if it would help with migraines and the resulting depression.

 

Curious if anyone has thoughts and if what I am experiencing can result from tapering down? I was surprised that I am getting symptoms after taking the medicine for such a short while. Also open to suggestions for supplements, etc. 

 

Thanks! 


#2 fishinghat

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Posted 09 August 2021 - 05:11 PM

Welcome STPDX

 

It is normal to experience withdrawal from a down dose even if you have only been on it a few weeks let alone over 8 months. The symptoms you list are common and can last up to 12 months after the last dose. Having said that, it should be noted that there are those folks that come off it with no withdrawal so obviously it varies a lot person to person.

 

As far asa handling the withdrawal I would recommend a review of our free ebook. It is a summary of medical reseaarch, what bmembers have tried and their comments and much more. There is a link to it in the first thread ubnder Medical Support. Feel free to review it and ask any questions that come to mind.


#3 StrangeTimesPDX

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Posted 09 August 2021 - 05:30 PM

Welcome STPDX

 

It is normal to experience withdrawal from a down dose even if you have only been on it a few weeks let alone over 8 months. The symptoms you list are common and can last up to 12 months after the last dose. Having said that, it should be noted that there are those folks that come off it with no withdrawal so obviously it varies a lot person to person.

 

As far asa handling the withdrawal I would recommend a review of our free ebook. It is a summary of medical reseaarch, what bmembers have tried and their comments and much more. There is a link to it in the first thread ubnder Medical Support. Feel free to review it and ask any questions that come to mind.

 

Thanks! I will check out the ebook- appreciate you putting that together ~ 

 

Also, so alarming that people have symptoms for up to 12 months after stopping! I'm sure I am just echoing what others have said when I say...I really wish that this was relayed to me when I decided to start. 


#4 invalidusername

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Posted 09 August 2021 - 05:52 PM

Hi there and welcome to the forum...
 
So you were prescribed Cymbalta AND Gabapentin for migraines and depression? And you say the depression was as a result of the migraines? What is wrong with your doctor?!
 
Tackle the root cause. A mild opiate would have been a miracle for you without going through this hell. 
 
Are you still on the Gabapentin? I ask as the withdrawal can bring a depression of its own. 
 
Regarding the anxiety, if you didn't have it before, taking an SNRI would have increased the norepinephrine - the precursor to adrenaline - and if you weren't suffering bad anxiety, then it will have put it out of balance. Doctors forget that it is an IMBALANCE that causes the symptoms NOT a lack of... serotonin, dopamine, adrenaline....
 
Nothing strange about getting withdrawal symptoms from this length of time. I was only on the damn stuff for 10 weeks and I went through hell. One of our late members, Gail (God rest her soul), was half this time and was worse than me!! Make no mistake, these drugs can be horrific.
 
Look forward to hearing from you - and as Hat said, get yourself a copy of the eBook...
 
IUN

#5 StrangeTimesPDX

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Posted 09 August 2021 - 06:25 PM

 

Hi there and welcome to the forum...
 
So you were prescribed Cymbalta AND Gabapentin for migraines and depression? And you say the depression was as a result of the migraines? What is wrong with your doctor?!
 
Tackle the root cause. A mild opiate would have been a miracle for you without going through this hell. 
 
Are you still on the Gabapentin? I ask as the withdrawal can bring a depression of its own. 
 
Regarding the anxiety, if you didn't have it before, taking an SNRI would have increased the norepinephrine - the precursor to adrenaline - and if you weren't suffering bad anxiety, then it will have put it out of balance. Doctors forget that it is an IMBALANCE that causes the symptoms NOT a lack of... serotonin, dopamine, adrenaline....
 
Nothing strange about getting withdrawal symptoms from this length of time. I was only on the damn stuff for 10 weeks and I went through hell. One of our late members, Gail (God rest her soul), was half this time and was worse than me!! Make no mistake, these drugs can be horrific.
 
Look forward to hearing from you - and as Hat said, get yourself a copy of the eBook...
 
IUN

 

 

Thanks for your reply, invalidusername! 

To clarify the info I gave- I had been diagnosed with migraines for about 20 years, and they were manageable until last year, when they become intolerable + frequent (almost daily). I think a combo of that + the pandemic resulted in a pretty severe depression, so my doc thought trying Cymbalta for a short while would be good, as she said it could help with both migraine and depression. I'll also note that I had already tried all the migraine meds with none of them helping at all. Having never felt that bad (mentally) before, I thought....why not? The gabapentin was added to help with the nerve pain aspect of the migraines- I take what they say is a small dose daily (600mg) of the gabapentin. 

 

After a year of many scans and tests, I have a new diagnosis of "cervicogenical headache" from a neck injury in a car accident ~20 year ago, so am starting a new course of treatment for that (PT). Based on what the specialists and readings have said, this new diagnosis makes a lot more sense to me.

 

I have not yet started tapering off the gabapentin yet, as I thought it best to wait until I was done tapering off the Cymbalta. It sounds like you are saying stopping gabapentin will also be an interesting experience? Gah! 

 

Sorry you experienced terrible symptoms as well, in addition to your late friend Gail. 

 

I'll be reading through the Ebook today + thanks for your thoughts! Sorry for all the details, but wanted to make sure I was getting the story out there straight =) 


#6 invalidusername

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Posted 09 August 2021 - 07:12 PM

Thanks for the extra information...

 

I would say it was foolish to have put you on both meds at the same time. You say you have these symptoms - the focusing, the anxiety - but which drug is it? One might work on its own... or there can be a reaction from taking both together. In a majority of cases, these two paired are not a problem, but brains are very much a subjective organ and anything is possible.

 

I am familiar with cervicogenical headaches - referred back from cerebral/vertebrae issues. Difficult to diagnose. 

 

I would certainly suggest getting rid of the Cymbalta first and seeing how you fair with the Gabapentin. Bear in mind this can take time for neurochemical levels to go back to their "default" levels unaided by meds. 

 

All of our stories are on the forum somewhere, but yes - again - there are occasions where this drugs can be nothing short of your worse nightmare. Enough to want you to punch your last ticket and shift off this mortal coil. Gail's depression was something else and certainly exacerbated by her term with Cymbalta. But she is a testament to just how much a human can go through. Her example to others here was incredible. She was my angel.

 

Do you need advice regarding the withdrawal? If so, we are here to help - and the 600mg Gabapentin is indeed a relative small dose. It is considered a therapeutic dose, so anything less would unlikely do much in terms of relief. A lot of people are given Cymbalta for nerve pain, but it was never made for this purpose. It was only ever meant to be an anti-depressant. It was an accident that founded it as a "cure" for nerve pain, but it is not known how it works - certainly as the pharma, Eli Lilly, do not know themselves!

 

IUN


#7 StrangeTimesPDX

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Posted 09 August 2021 - 09:15 PM

Thanks, IUN! 

 

I don't need advice at the moment; I'm still reading through the e-book. But, thank you + I will post again if I do need anything. I added theanine to my daily supplementation (which I noticed in the ebook as well), and also take Vit C, a multivitamin, and melatonin. I'll add ashwaganda and an herbal muscle relaxer that has passionflower/valerian, since that was suggested in the ebook as well.

 

All good points regarding the medications- This is my only experience with taking medications, so I was not sure of all the things to consider and ask about! Lesson learned....

 

I can say that the Cymbalta helped me get through the depression, but I guess I won't know if it was worth it until I see how long the withdrawal takes. 


#8 invalidusername

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Posted 10 August 2021 - 06:58 PM

The withdrawal can be relatively straightforward if you have the time and patience to go slow. Not easy, but worth it in the long run.

 

I am half way through a withdrawal from 10mg valium which I have given 18 months. Aside from a few days feeling a bit anxious following each drop day, I am hardly noticing any issues - and benzos can be a nightmare to come off. 

 

Might get a bit tougher as it reaches the last couple of mg, but I can always slow down a little if needed. I'm in no rush, although it would be nice to be off them, but I would much rather have an easy taper...





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