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Withdrawal Symptoms Or Something Else?


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#1 AndreiNC

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Posted 08 November 2017 - 04:49 PM

First of I want to greet everyone here. I am Andrei from Romania and I've just discovered this forum which has been such a blessing. First of all I would like to mention that the drug I have been on was not called Cymbalta, but Dulsevia, but they are both basically different names for duloxetine, so I really hope I'm in the right place.
As a treatment, this drug was a life saviour for me in my battle with anxiety. After a bad try with sertraline (which made everything worse) i was put on the right path. I vave been taking a 40mg daily dose for a year and my doctor decided we should gradually end the treatment. That meant cutting it down to 20mg dose daily for a month and then stop taking it.
The problem is that she said I shouldn't feel any changes, but it's been 5 days without it and i feel so bad. I am always dizzy, my stomach os giving me hell and i have an annoying buzzing and stumping in my ears.
I really hope to get some answers here because i am quite an hypochondriac and I fear the worst. Also what scares me is that i don't really have (yet at least) any psychological symptoms like anxiety or depression. Does tthis make sense to anyone? I really hope i cam make some sense of all this. I am worried and scared of a different disease than just withdrawal.

#2 AndreiNC

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Posted 08 November 2017 - 05:00 PM

I have to correct myself regarding the dosage i was on. It was 60mg every day for a year than 30mg daily for a month.
Any opinion or advice would be more than appreciated.
P. S. Sorry for my expression not being the best, but I don't feel all that well to begin with, not to mention having to translate every thought into English.

#3 fishinghat

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Posted 08 November 2017 - 05:47 PM

Welcome Andrei

 

You are definitely in the right place. Those are the classic beginning symptoms with Cymbalta withdrawal. The digestive issues last for 4 to 6 weeks more or less. As they fade the emotional issues build. Some people get by with 1 or 2 months symptoms and others take 2 to 4 years to totally recover. For most it is an agonizing 6 to 8 month journey.

 

I might suggest that you read the thread 'and the answer to your question is...' in the Medical Support section. It will tell you a lot about what people of tried, what worked and what didn't. You might get some good out of that. I always recommend around 2000 mg of omega 3, some vitamin C, stay hydrated and be very patient. Try to avoid stressful situations if you can.

 

We are here for you and don't be afraid to ask questions or just complain. We know what it is like.

 

By the way, your English is very good and your typing is better than mine.  lol


#4 AndreiNC

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Posted 09 November 2017 - 01:56 AM

@fishinghat

First I'd like to thank you for taking the time to give me some advice. I will check out the topic you recommended. To be homest I did nort expected the withdrawal to take ao long (the time you mentioned) especially after my doctor told me I should expect no symptoms, but I also really appreciate your support. Probably, like you said, the most important thing is to arm myself with a looooot of patience and power through this thing.

#5 fishinghat

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Posted 09 November 2017 - 09:48 AM

The reason for the difference in duration is that when Cymbalta first came out Eli Lilley (original manufacturer) claimed little to no withdrawal and even if withdrawal occurred it would only be cold like symptoms lasting no longer than 2 or 3 weeks. That is how the drs were originally trained. After a few years on the market it became obvious that many people were having great difficulties. A couple of court hearings and Eli Lilley claimed it was only the reoccurrence of the patients own anxiety/depression, Eli Lilley won and that is how the drs handled the situation when a patient would complain. Later Cymbalta was approved for pain, arthritis, urinary incontinence and other non-psychological conditions. It soon (per court order) warning of the seriousness of the withdrawal.. However the court did NOT order for physicians to be retrained or even notified. So most physicians simply treat the withdrawal as a return of symptoms and put the patient on an other antidepressant.


#6 gail

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    5 months on cymbalta, scary side effects, never felt good.
    Needed understanding and support, and a place where I was not alone. To read others stories and realizing that I was not the only one going through all that crap.
    In hope that one day, I can return the favors in some kind of way.

Posted 09 November 2017 - 02:06 PM

Hello Andre,

I see three options here, you did the cold turkey way. This can be real rough. Never recommended here.

1- tough it up, not knowing in advance what will happen. I, personnaly, would not do this. But you could be the lucky one to not go through hell. And I mean hell.

2- reinstate at 30mg, stabilize, then bead count. By the way, your doctor's way is Unorthodox. This is not advised here at all.

3- while on 30 and stabilized, you may cross taper with Zoloft or Prozac. These two have have a big half life and are more easier to get off. Example, while you slowly get down on Cymbalta, you start one of these to ease the Cymbalta withdrawal.

All this said, it's up to you to decide which way you'll do it. We are always here for you, even if you think it's a silly question, post anytime. Welcome home Andre! And your English is real good.

#7 AndreiNC

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Posted 09 November 2017 - 04:05 PM

@gail

Thank you very much for your answer and advice. It really means a lot knowing there are people who understand and support you.
If I'm to be honest, going on Prozac or other drugs scare me at this point more than what might come my way with this withdrawal. There is a chance i have no ideea what I am talking about and my perspective will change once I will start to experience that hell you mentioned. But with that being said, please, please do not take my thoughts as a sign of me not appreciating your advice or support. I am just trying to be as honest as I can about this. I can be nothing but grateful for anybody who can take the time to write me a few words and give me a boost.
I know that going cold turkey is a huge mistake, but I thought that going on a half dose treatment for a month will be enough of a gradual interruption. Of course this opinion of mine was based on little to no scientific bases.
So far what is strange to me is that i feel the same after almost 6 days. Things did not get worse and did not get better. They just keep toying with my perseverance. Maybe I should appreciate this state before it gets worse...

#8 fishinghat

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Posted 09 November 2017 - 04:47 PM

Honesty is always appreciated here Andrei. 6days? That is a good sign.


#9 gail

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    5 months on cymbalta, scary side effects, never felt good.
    Needed understanding and support, and a place where I was not alone. To read others stories and realizing that I was not the only one going through all that crap.
    In hope that one day, I can return the favors in some kind of way.

Posted 09 November 2017 - 05:06 PM

Andre,

Fishinghat is right, honesty is always the best. We know that you are suffering and we would so like for it to disappear. To take the fear away, to reassure you, as we so hate for anyone to suffer!

If hell should happen, we will help you in any way. Thank you Andre!

#10 ozenfant

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    My doctor says there will be no side effects to stop 30 mg all at once. He says it's out of your brain in 4 days. I'm freakin' out because I don't believe him!!!

Posted 14 November 2017 - 04:14 PM

3 days ago I posted I felt pretty good considering I'd gone off C (tapered using bead count), and Well butrin in the past 6 weeks.

Now I see "hell" and the last 2 days have been hell: sinus congestion (annoying), dizziness and zaps(expected) but burning tongue and mouth???  HELL!

 

I felt so hopeless about it today.  I know it's a slog.  I've gone off SSRI' before, but this one is something else.

 

I feel so angry at my psychiatrist and the literature.  I didn't know that about Eli Lilly.  I just heard that the owner/CEO(?) of that company is being given a position in the National Govt related to health!

 

Talk about the devil taking the reins.

 

Having trouble typing, gotta go rest.  Best to all of you!


#11 fishinghat

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Posted 14 November 2017 - 04:52 PM

Ozenfant
 
You should look over the information below but now that you are off the Cymbalta I would recommend either the Mucinex D or Sudafed PE. Members are turning to one of these more regularly and it seems to really help the withdrawal symptoms. Give one a try and let us know how they work.

Pseudoephedrine/Phenylephrine containing meds

Caution - Pseudoephedrine can raise blood pressure and cause nervousness in some people.

Tylenol Cold and Flu
Active ingredients
Dextromethorphan HBr 10 mg in each caplet
Guaifenesin 200 mg in each caplet
Phenylephrine HCl 5 mg in each caplet

Not to be taken with Cymbalta

gail - Tylenol flu is good for the brain zaps.

hailsmarie - Tylenol Cold and Flu completely took away my brain zaps,

dstanek - My husband said try some Nyquil I didn't have any but tried tylenol cold nighttime. In 20 min symptoms disappeared. I slept great no soaking night sweats. No nightmares. Zaps gone, I even had to shake my head to be sure. Woke up this morning feeling normal. I am going to get non drowsy version today and see if this truly is the miracle helper.

Caution - tylenol cold nighttime contains
Acetaminophen 325 mg in each 15 mL
Dextromethorphan HBr 10 mg in each 15 mL
Doxylamine succinate 6.25 mg in 15 mL
Phenylephrine HCl 5 mg in each 15 mL

As such it should not be taken with Cymbalta (because of the Dextromethorphan) or diphenhydramine (because of Doxylamine).

Mucinex D

Active Ingredients: Guaifenesin (600 mg), Pseudoephedrine HCl (60 mg).

Coastgirl - Just wanna say I ran out of Mucinex D and got Advil Cold And Flu (behind the counter with pseudophedrine) and it also works to combat the brain zaps for me. My vertigo and zaps are 98% gone.


Sudafed PE

Dextromethorphan HBr 10 mg
Guaifenesin 100 mg
Phenylephrine HCl 5 mg

Caution -As such it should not be taken with Cymbalta (because of the Dextromethorphan)

Coastgirl - Tried to not take sudafed this morning and I feel so messed up! Just dizzy and can't think straight. I feel so out out of it.
(I mentioned in another post the Sudafed helps with the brain zaps....unfortunately it doesn't help too much with the mild nausea feeling).

Houdi - some days I had to take sudafed, the REAL sudafed and only 1/2 the dose cuz it reves me up.

Johnnyz - earlier today I read a topic in here about pseudoephedrine and its supposed effectiveness to alleviate SSRI withdrawal symptoms. I take 12-hour sudafed (the real, behind the counter sudafed) 1-2x daily as I have persistent nasal congestion. Yesterday evening, soon after the morning sudafed tab had worn off, I had a very stressful situation which caused an emotional low that had me sitting for 10 minutes feeling very depressed. I was able to talk myself out of that stupor and continue on in a neutrally emotional state until bedtime. I took a 12-hr sudafed around 11pm and woke up at 6am this morning feeling very good physically and emotionally, like I had a decent sleep. My point here is that, looking back at the previous 5 days of my Cymbalta/ Trintillex withdrawal plan and its relative low and tolerable symptoms, I wonder how much my daily use of sudafed has been a factor in my light symptoms.

Claritin-D 24 hour extended release tablets

10 mg loratadine for immediate release
240 mg pseudoephedrine sulfate is released slowly allowing for once-daily administration.

ittybittysmitty - WHAM, today I got blasted with three times as much dizziness and zapping...I feel zombie-like. Thinking it was part allergy symptoms I took a Claritin...that helped somewhat...less dizziness while seated.

irritableme - I started taking a Claritin-D and that seems to help. When I don't take the Claritin-D the brain swooshes and zaps return.

Advil Cold & Sinus

Ibuprofen 200 mg
Pseudoephedrine Hydrochloride 30 mg
Chlorpheniramine Maleate 2 mg

Chlorpheniramine (over the counter) is an antihistamine {H(1)R antagonist} used to treat allergy symptoms. It does cause sleepiness like other antihistamines and has significant anxiolytic effects. Caution - It has also been shown to function as an ssri and snri. As such it should never be taken in combination with those medications as it can cause seratonin syndrome. Due to its anticholenergic effects it frequently causes constipation. As with diphenhydramine do not take with other medicines that can cause sleepiness. Recommended dose is 4 mg every 4 to 6 hrs not to exceed 32 mg/day. Widely sold as an allergy treatment.
Begins working in 30 minutes to an hour

Peak levels - 2 to 4 hrs
Half Life – 12 to 43 hrs

https://www.ncbi.nlm...les/PMC3854398/
(8mg dose)
https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/16876927
https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/16156843
https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/12951198
https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/10541737

Coastgirl - Just wanna say I ran out of Mucinex D and got Advil Cold And Flu (behind the counter with pseudophedrine) and it also works to combat the brain zaps for me. My vertigo and zaps are 98% gone.

Carleeta - Have been taking advil cold and sinus daily..Seems to work.

Heartfeatherss - Try taking 4 ( yes 4) Advil LIQUID BLUE GELCAPs with a Coke. It has to be the blue gel caps and it cannot be a diet Coke. My neurologist told me to do this and I was so miffed, thinking he was just not understanding how bad it hurt... but dang! It works!! Hope this gives you relief.

Contains ibuprofen and dihydramine. Should not be taken with other amines like benadryl.

Medical information on ingredients of above meds

Dextromethorophan

FiveNotions - I didn't check, but my bet is that Tylenol Cold contains DMX -- "dextromethorphan" .... it's a serotonin agonist (enhancer - reuptake inhibitor) ...
Nyquil contains a lot of it, which is why someone taking Cymbalta (duloxetine) or any other SSRI shouldn't use Nyquil ... there are case studies about the combo causing severe serotonin syndrome ...

Loratadine

https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/10444229
Loratadine, No effect on 'mood'.

While this is the only research I found it is interesting to note that around 4% of people taking loratadine report anxiety as a side effect. This is about the same number of diphenhydramine (Benadryl) users that report depression as a side effect. (FDA)

From Drugs.com
Cardiovascular side effects have included hypertension, hypotension, palpitation, supraventricular tachyarrhythmias, syncope and tachycardia.

Wiki
As a "nonsedating" antihistamine, loratadine causes less (but still significant, in some cases) sedation and psychomotor retardation than the older antihistamines because it penetrates the blood/brain barrier to a smaller extent.

Note - inability to significantly penetrate the blood brain barrier would make it an unlikely anxiolytic medicine.

Do not take with Tagamet or other antihistamines.
Half life - 8 hours.

Metabolism

Loratadine is an H1 receptor antagonist (blocks the action of histamine on the H1 histamine receptor). Does NOT cross the blood brain barrier.

Diphenhydramine is an potent H1 receptor inverse agonist (blocks the action of histamine on the H1 receptors but crosses the blood brain barrier readily. Has been shown to reduce anxiety.

Hydroxyzine is a potent H1 receptor inverse agonist as well and has been shown to have substantial effect on anxiety and readily crosses the blood brain barrier.

Pseudoephedrine

Wiki
Patients who are prone to anxiety or panic attacks should use pseudoephedrine with caution, as anxiety and restlessness are common side effects, mostly due to the drug's stimulant properties.
http://www.sciencedi...080552323624882
Can cause anxiety as a side effect.

http://research.omic...Pseudoephedrine
Adverse effects
Common adverse drug reactions (ADRs) associated with pseudoephedrine therapy include: CNS stimulation, insomnia, nervousness, excitability, dizziness and anxiety. Infrequent ADRs include: tachycardia or palpitations.

https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/10999495
"...the drug tended to increase anxiety scores (p=0.092). Depth resulted in a significant increase in anxiety scores (p=0.021) and a significant decrease in verbal fluency test scores (p=0.041)"

https://www.ncbi.nlm...les/PMC4518702/
Over-the-counter cold preparations contain phenylpropylamine and pseudoephedrine, obvious stimulants. Yet patients with unexplained dyspnea may believe they have allergies and take these medications frequently in order to treat their anxiety symptom, further exacerbating their dyspnea and anxiety symptoms. The use of energy drinks with combinations of both caffeine and stimulants is another important example.
And many more research articles....

http://www.ehealthme...loride/anxiety/
(FDA website)
140 people reported to have side effects when taking Pseudoephedrine Hydrochloride.
Among them, 12 people (8.57%) had Anxiety as a side effect.

Pseudoephedrine: Pseudoephedrine is an agonist at both alpha- and, to a lesser degree, beta-adrenergic receptors. Like ephedrine, pseudoephedrine also has an indirect effect by releasing norepinephrine from its storage sites. By stimulating alpha-adrenergic receptors in the mucosa of the respiratory tract, pseudoephedrine shrinks swollen nasal mucous membranes; reduces tissue hyperemia, edema, and nasal congestion; and increases nasal airway patency. Also, drainage of sinus secretions is increased, and obstructed eustachian ostia may be opened. Oral administration of pseudoephedrine usually produces negligible effects on blood pressure. In some patients, especially those with preexisting cardiac disease receiving higher doses, pseudoephedrine may increase blood pressure or irritability of the heart muscle and may affect ventricular conduction. Wiki
Phenylephrine is a selective alpha1-adrenergic receptor agonist (stimulates adrenaline receptors) used primarily as a decongestant, as an agent to dilate pupils, and to increase blood pressure. Wiki

Medical research emphasizing that phenylephrine can cause anxiety.
https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/20937329
https://pubchem.ncbi...d/phenylephrine
https://everipedia.o.../Phenylephrine/
People with a history of anxiety or panic disorders, or on anticonvulsant medication for epilepsy should not take this substance.


#12 ozenfant

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    My doctor says there will be no side effects to stop 30 mg all at once. He says it's out of your brain in 4 days. I'm freakin' out because I don't believe him!!!

Posted 15 November 2017 - 12:27 PM

WOW!

 

Thank you, thank you , for all of the time taken to compile the "sinus congestion" files.  Having validation that these symptoms are part of the w/drawal is healing in itself!  Yesterday a friend came over who has faced so many health challenges herself (right now; terminal cancer).  She said, TELL ME....  It astounded me how talking about all of this with someone who'd been through it and could relate, helped my symptoms.  Especially because of how rough yesterday felt.

 

I have done this in a small way instinctively with allergy and cold meds.

 

Feeling improvement, at an early hour today.  Will roam around here and see how other members are feeling.  fishinghat, I like that you wrote "members'!  It's like we've come back from a war and determined not to have PTSD!





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