Hello to all, I haven't posted any updates in awhile as things were really crazy and I temporarily suspended my goal to reduce my duloxetine until I was completely off the medication. Around the time I was reducing from 60mg to 30mg, I started having some pretty bad health issues, this past March, and wasn't sure if it was part of discontinuing the evil that is duloxetine, or something else. I had multiple visits to the ER, have referrals to a ton of specialists, and some days cannot even move. The cardiologist put me on a beta-blocker, which has kept my heart rate and blood pressure stable (it was jumping from really low to really high rapidly, no apparent cause). He found nothing cardiovascularly responsible for these problems, but they are stable on the medication he prescribed and I am still searching for answers. After holding at 30mg and having things get worse, I decided a couple weeks ago with my doctor to continue reducing the drug and am at 20mg currently.
It has been a battle, and I have had multiple healthcare providers tell me I am just having anxiety, or stressed, and one even wrote " ? hypochondria" in my medical record. I persisted though, and ironically, the doctor that referred me to a psychologist for hypochondria (on my first visit no less, with no exam or complete health history) also ordered some bloodwork and a nerve conduction test. My initial bloodwork came back with abnormal results and I wish I could have seen the look on his face when he reviewed the labs. So you know I am going to make the doctor basically eat his words, for suggesting I was a hypochondriac and needed to see a psychologist. Pretty much once all the tests are done and results reported to my primary doctor, I will be sending of a complaint and grievance about this jerk.
Long-story short, I have the antibodies and markers for an autoimmune disease, plus an acute Epstein Barr viral infection, which I never had before because I have no antibodies to it, just the early antigen testing and presence of the virus came back positive. Initial labs were pretty generic, so I need to follow up with a rheumatologist to figure out which disease it is and what treatment to begin. I can't believe how hard I had to fight these last 5 months, and this is the first positive outcome (well, at least I have been vindicated...not exactly thrilled about learning my body is attacking itself). But at least I have evidence now to support that I am truly in crippling pain and physically exhausted, and that I am not just being lazy.
All of this is recently discovered, so I will be calling my psychiatrist soon to see if continuing to decrease the duloxetine is going to have an adverse (well...MORE adverse or dangerous) effect on an autoimmune disease.
This is truly a situation where being right about something sucks more than being wrong.