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Switching Generic Brand During Taper


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#91 Guest_gardenlady_*

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Posted 19 July 2018 - 11:55 AM

Cut to 36 mg today.  


#92 Guest_gardenlady_*

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Posted 21 July 2018 - 03:12 PM

Are there any people on this site who have recovered completely after getting off Cymbalta?  I've been reading old posts and I can't find any where people have.....they all seem to have some kind of permanent damage.  This is really discouraging.  But, I guess perhaps those that do recover don't come back to report it.  Any ideas? 


#93 fishinghat

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Posted 21 July 2018 - 03:43 PM

Sad to say I can only remember 3 or 4 who came out of it OK without going to another AD. I do believe there is a more though. Many post about their issues up to around 4 to 8 months post Cymbalta then we never hear from them again.


#94 gail

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Posted 21 July 2018 - 03:53 PM

I know about the bronxbomber, but then I think she went on welbutrin.

Good question Gardenlady, most went on another antidepressant. Not really edifying, right!

There's one, Thismoment, he is no longed participating. Also Equuswoman, no longer here.
There is BRZ, on mood stabilizer. Dear God, the count is real low. From what I listed, I don't know where they're at for the moment. Except BRZ, doing real good.

Lots cross tapered. GL, you're still on my wall every day.

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Posted 21 July 2018 - 08:48 PM

There is a Facebook site called Cymbalta Hurts Worse.  It has a "Wall of Success" which are success stories.  There are a lot of them, so I guess that's encouraging.  Do you know anything about that group?  I rarely go to it because it's hard to follow any one person's journey due to the site setup.  Also, it's mostly horror stories and scary posts which frighten me, so I don't go there much.  I think Facebook is an awful way to manage a support network just because it's just one post after another from different people.  Way too confusing for me. 


#96 fishinghat

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Posted 22 July 2018 - 07:52 AM

You know GardenLady, the research says that about 20% have little to no withdrawal when they come off of Cymbalta. Myself, I know two people who have come off Cymbalta with no withdrawal.  If I could have been so lucky!!  lol


#97 juli

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Posted 29 July 2018 - 12:27 PM

Hi Garden Lady,

I was a member of Cymbalta Hurts Worse before I found this group.  They did help me get through my 8 weeks of reinstating hell but I found the group to be pretty negative and close minded overall.

They won't even let people discuss a cross-taper or any other anti-depressant for relief.  I think it's good for some people who were on Cymbalta for pain and don't have any mental health issues.  The moderators are very nice but some of the members are pretty cruel.

Every time I went on there I had a panic attack!

So happy to have found a group that is so patient and helpful:)

Juli


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Posted 31 July 2018 - 07:42 PM

I'm down to 35 mg and have so much anger, hate and overall negative feelings and attitude.  I've had this since I got into the benzo mess 4 years ago and it's getting worse now that I'm 6.5 months off of the benzo and tapering Cymbalta.  I'm having horrible spiritual torment, too...as in the fear that I've never really trusted Christ in my heart and that I'm not saved.  All I know to do is confess it all to Jesus and ask Him to help me, so that's what I do.  But the awful feeling never changes. 

 

This horrible, negative feeling is frightening especially when I realize how far I have to go.  I can't imagine feeling like this for the indefinite future.  My siblings and friends no longer want to have anything to do with me because of my negativity and sour outlook....I don't blame them but the isolation just makes it all worse and it's a downward spiral.  I'm really scared.

 

Should I try to cross to another AD?  At the current rate, it could be another 18 months to 2 years of tapering and then another 2 years or more to recover.  I'm already 65 so life is ebbing away and being ruined by psych drugs.  


#99 gail

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Posted 01 August 2018 - 04:54 AM

Hi Gardenlady,

I really think that you ought to try cross tapering. I sure pray that it will help you.

See my pm.

#100 fishinghat

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Posted 01 August 2018 - 08:42 AM

Gail has a point. Most research shows that it takes 2 years to fully recover from most psych med withdrawals and that includes benzos. A couple of choices to add.

1) Go on hydroxyzine and/or clonidine to get some relief.(sorry if I have already mentioned that before)They are not addictive and do not have a withdrawal.

2) Go back up about 10 beads and see if you can get some relief and then taper slower.

#101 juli

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Posted 01 August 2018 - 12:45 PM

Since you are feeling so horrible I would definitely cross taper.  I think you will feel so much better getting off the Cymbalta and onto a new drug.


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Posted 01 August 2018 - 01:08 PM

Thanks to all of you for your kind responses.  

 

I'm already on hydroxyzine but it doesn't help the depression and negativity....only with sleep.  My doctor won't prescribe clonidine because of the side effects...he didn't elaborate beyond that.  I may be wrong, but I doubt it would help with the negativity, anyway.

 

I'm on my own with no doctor to help me with cross tapering so have to figure it all out myself.  How would I know what to cross to and how?  I need someone to help me with the specifics.  


#103 fishinghat

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Posted 01 August 2018 - 01:21 PM

"I'm already on hydroxyzine but it doesn't help the depression and negativity....only with sleep. My doctor won't prescribe clonidine because of the side effects...he didn't elaborate beyond that. I may be wrong, but I doubt it would help with the negativity, anyway."

You are correct and I see we have already discussed that.

Most of the members cross taper to either Prozac, Lexapro or Zoloft. Of course like any other meds it may help some and not others. All you can do is try. Most drs % a week and increase the new ssri/snri by 25% a week give or take a little. I think I remember some research on the standards for cross tapers. I will try to find it.

#104 fishinghat

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Posted 01 August 2018 - 01:26 PM

I think you will find these helpful.

Cross Tapering Details
https://www.ncbi.nlm...les/PMC4919171/
Describes how to switch antidepressants.

https://www.ncbi.nlm...cles/PMC181142/
Has section on switching antiDs.

https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/18494539
http://www.gpnoteboo...m?ID=1637482568
Guidelines from various sources.
https://www2.gov.bc....epress_appd.pdf
Gov guidelines

https://bpac.org.nz/...pages_34-35.pdf
New Zealand Guidelines

https://www.nps.org....antidepressants
Australian Guidelines

#105 juli

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Posted 01 August 2018 - 01:52 PM

I had to figure mine out on my own too.  The doc gave me a 10mg Lexapro script and that was it.  I was so scared but it turned out quite well. It's pretty well detailed on my post.


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Posted 01 August 2018 - 05:01 PM

juli, How do I view your post?  When I go to your profile page and click on Posts, it shows one page only of your 4 or 5 recent posts.  How do I view other/all of your posts and what is the name of the post with the cross tapering detail in it?  Thanks!


#107 juli

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Posted 01 August 2018 - 05:55 PM

The thread name is : 

May I Get Your Opinion On My Cross Taper Strategy?

This is what it looked like for me:

Week 1 drop from 40 to 30 Cymbalta, start 5mg Lexapro

Week 2 drop from 30 to 20 Cymbalta, increase to 10mg Lexapro

Week 3 drop from  20 to 10 Cymbalta, stay at 10mg Lexapro

Week 4 drop from 10 to 5 Cymbalta,  stay at 10mg Lexapro

Week 5: drop from 5 to 2.5 Cymbalta, increase to 15 Lexapro before the drop

Week 6: bead count to zero, stayed at 15 Lexapro

 

It was all based on how I was feeling.  I started with a plan and then adjusted based on my symtoms.


#108 fishinghat

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Posted 01 August 2018 - 05:57 PM

FYI

Go to the right of the search bar and there is a "wheel" there for 'advanced searchs'. Click on that. Go to "Find Author" and type in 'Juli'. Go down to "Display Results" and click on "posts" and then click on "search Now" at the bottom of the page.

#109 Guest_gardenlady_*

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Posted 04 August 2018 - 04:57 PM

Thanks to all of you for your continued responses and support.  I've decided that my CNS may still be too unstable from the benzo withdrawal and  subsequent Cymbalta taper to undertake a cross taper, at least for now.  I've slowed my taper to taking 1 fewer bead every two days.  This is a glacially slow rate, but it's all I can do given my unstable CNS.

 

I reweighed and recounted eight 60 mg Teva duloxetine capsules (they all weigh different amount and have different bead counts).  The beads numbered anywhere from 300 to 314 per capsule and the weights ranged from .501 g to .515 g on my Gemini 20 American Weigh scale from Amazon.  The average bead count is 308 per capsule and the average weight is .509 mg.  There are on average 5.13 beads per mg.  

 

I developed a spreadsheet that tells me what dose I am on depending on bead count and weight.  Yesterday and today, I'll take 179 beads which weighs about .298 g and comes out as 34.9 mg.  As you can tell, I've become obsessed with this taper and the mechanics and arithmetic surrounding it.  I wish I could get interested in something else, but I can't.

 

Does the anhedonia and OCD ever change?  Just wondering as my taper progresses if it will get better, worse, or morph into something else.  The depression is black and I feel nothing but fear and doom.  It's frightening to not feel compassion for people and to not care about anything except getting off this drug.  I have no social life as it's too hard for me to relate to people....my affect is flat.

 

Am I especially "sick," or is this normal withdrawal pathology?  I realize we are all different, but it helps to hear of others' experiences. 


#110 fishinghat

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Posted 04 August 2018 - 05:58 PM

"Does the anhedonia and OCD ever change? Just wondering as my taper progresses if it will get better, worse, or morph into something else. The depression is black and I feel nothing but fear and doom."

Yes, thy do slowly ease up and yes they do morph into other thins. The 1 bead every other day is glacially slow!? Some of our members had to do 1 bead a week at the later stages.



Am I especially "sick," or is this normal withdrawal pathology?

So far your symptoms are almost the same as mine was but slightly less. Not that it matters as miserable is miserable. It is so hard for people to understand how devastating this withdrawal is. Why don't you pause your drop for a while and let your body recover some?


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Posted 15 August 2018 - 02:14 PM

I'm holding the taper as the anhedonia, despair, hopelessness and depression have rendered me non-functional.  It's scary to be having such debilitating symptoms at such a relatively high dose (34 mg).  I can't imagine what it will be like at lower doses, if I can ever get there.  The way it is now, I don't see how I can continue tapering with these kind of symptoms.  The glacial taper pace of 1 bead every two days was too much and I'm terrified of it being so hard at this high dose.  If I have to go this slowly at 34 mg, it may be years getting off of this stuff and being this non-functional.  Honestly, I don't think I can do it.  

 

I'm having terrible feelings that I probably shouldn't write about here.  I'm so afraid and alone.  No one but those here on this site understand. 


#112 fishinghat

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Posted 15 August 2018 - 04:43 PM

Hi Gardenlady

We have members who have had to taper 1 bead every 2 to 5 weeks or more. It takes them a long time but they do get there. I must agree with your assessment of dropping this slow at 34 mg. That is unusual. I know you want this over with but I don't think you need to feel so debilitating for that long of time. If it was me, I would stay at my current dose for about a month and give myself some time to heal and get some strength back. Then start weaning again from a position of strength and very slowly. This is not a race it is a game of endurance. Time and patience.

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Posted 15 August 2018 - 05:01 PM

Thanks for the response, fishing hat.  I realize that some people have to drop 1 bead every 2 to 5 weeks, but that's at very low levels, so it's of little comfort to me where I am at 34 mg..  I seem to the be the exception to the rule for having this tough a time at this level.  Most drop from 60 to 30 without any problem....but not me.  The thing that that frightens me is that I think I would die if something happened and I couldn't get the drug.  I think I would have seizures and/or lose my mind and do myself in.  

 

This is the worst nightmare I could have imagined....nothing compared to benzos.  I feel like demonic spirits have overtaken me and are controlling my brain and distorting my thoughts.  I have so much hatred, fear, despair, anger, etc....unlike anything I've ever experienced.  I don't know what will happen to me as I don't seem able to get off this stuff as others do.  I seem to be way outside the norm, even for this site.  


#114 fishinghat

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Posted 15 August 2018 - 05:04 PM

The problems you are having at this high a dose is unusual but has happened before. If for some reason this medicine became unavailable you would be left no choice but to switch to another AD right away otherwise cold turkey would set in and that could be real ugly.

#115 gail

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Posted 16 August 2018 - 07:21 AM

Hello Gardenlady,

Pardon me for being blunt here, you may hate me for that.

Enough is enough, a cross taper is urgently needed here. You can't go on like that, some meds need to be changed or added. Your mind is in a dangerous place, don't wait, PLEASE.

You have nothing, absolutely nothing to lose by changing meds. This situation has run it's course. With my respect and love to you Gardenlady!

#116 juli

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Posted 16 August 2018 - 12:39 PM

I agree with Gail.  I was in a mess like you are. A horrible horrible mess.  I thought I would never be happy or normal again.  But I am now with the help of Lexapro.  I feel so good and you can too.  Enough with Cymbalta it is time to move on.

My love and prayers go out to you.  


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Posted 16 August 2018 - 04:42 PM

Thanks to all of you, fishinghat, Gail and juli.  I can't tell you how much I appreciate your continued encouragement and candor.  I have an appointment on Monday with my internist to discuss a bridge to Prozac.  However, he doesn't understand or believe in antidepressant withdrawal, so the only part he can play in this is to write the prescription.  I'm on my own as far as implementing the cross taper, so I'd appreciate your advice on how to do this.  I'm trusting that God will work through you and anyone else He chooses to guide me through this.

 

One thing that concerns me is that I'm only 7 months off of my benzo taper, so wonder if perhaps this is all premature.  The prevailing wisdom among benzo veterans is to wait at least 2 years before trying to come off of another psych drug.  Of course, that is an average and we are all different, but I wonder of part of my difficulty tapering Cymbalta is that it's just too soon on the heels of my benzo taper.  

 

However, I'm still a mess, regardless, so am in a dither about what to do. 


#118 fishinghat

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Posted 16 August 2018 - 05:00 PM

These are different guidelines on how to cross taper. They should help.

Cross Tapering
https://www.ncbi.nlm...les/PMC4919171/
Describes how to switch antidepressants.

https://www.ncbi.nlm...cles/PMC181142/
Has section on switching antiDs.

https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/18494539
http://www.gpnoteboo...m?ID=1637482568
Guidelines from various sources.

Haddad, Peter M.; Anderson, Ian M. (October 2007). "Recognising and managing antidepressant discontinuation symptoms". Advances in Psychiatric Treatment. 13 (6): 447–57. doi:10.1192/apt.bp.105.001966  .
Discontinuation syndrome is often prevented by taking medication as directed, and when discontinuing, doing so gradually. When discontinuing an antidepressant with a short half-life, switching to a drug with a longer half-life (e.g. fluoxetine or citalopram) and then discontinuing from that drug can decrease the likelihood and severity of symptoms.[2]

https://www2.gov.bc....epress_appd.pdf
Gov guidelines

https://bpac.org.nz/...pages_34-35.pdf
New Zealand Guidelines

https://www.nps.org....antidepressants
Australian Guidelines

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Posted 16 August 2018 - 07:12 PM

Thanks, fishinghat.  Unfortunately, these links touch on cross tapering only at a very broad level.  What I need is a specific cross tapering schedule, as in: 

 

Week 1: x mg of Prozac & x mg of Cymbalta

Weed 2:  x mg of Prozac & x mg of Cymbalta

 

and so on.  That doesn't exist on the internet, I doubt, as it is patient-specific.  Unfortunately, I don't have a doctor with the psych drug pharmacological expertise to develop this and even then, we are all different and no doctor will know how my body will react to a given protocol.  

 

So, I'm on my own to figure this out.  I doubt there is a link with the specific level of info that I need.  I'll just have to try to figure this out on my own. Any help any cross tapering veteran can offer would be great.  My fear is serotonin syndrome in addition to what happens when I start decreasing the Cymbalta.  Up to now, any decrease has been brutal, despite how small.   I'm afraid of a psychotic episode and being alone in all of this. 


#120 juli

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Posted 16 August 2018 - 07:55 PM

This worked beautifully for me.  I know you are scared.  I was so so so so scared too but I am so glad that I tried it.  As long as you are making drops in Cymbalta along with the increases in the new AD, and keep going you should avoid Seratonin syndrome.  I was very aware to make sure that I was maintaining the same general amount of total AD.

I was so shocked at how well it worked.  I felt like it was a miracle.  I think you will be surprised too.

I did gobs of research and kind of came up with my own strategy with all the info I gathered.  Some people go much faster and some slower, some all at once some over time.  I found my path to be a happy medium.

 

This is what it looked like for me:

Week 1 drop from 40 to 30 Cymbalta, start 5mg Lexapro

Week 2 drop from 30 to 20 Cymbalta, increase to 10mg Lexapro

Week 3 drop from  20 to 10 Cymbalta, stay at 10mg Lexapro

Week 4 drop from 10 to 5 Cymbalta,  stay at 10mg Lexapro

Week 5: drop from 5 to 2.5 Cymbalta, increase to 15 Lexapro before the drop

Week 6: bead count to zero, stayed at 15 Lexapro

 

It was all based on how I was feeling.  I started with a plan and then adjusted based on my symptoms.





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