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#1 Cabo

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Posted 27 August 2018 - 12:39 PM

Hello Community-

 

I'm glad I found this site as I will be getting off Cymbalta as soon as I possibly can.  I've been on Cymbalta for about 4 years at 60mg because the doctor said it would/could help with nerve pain I was having from herniated discs in my back and neck. I've also suffered with anxiety and she thought this might be the perfect thing for both ailments.  I was grasping for help so I decided to try it out. 

 

I can't say for sure if it truly helped with my nerve pain because I was always on some form of narcotic pain medicine until I finally had surgery on my back.  I continued to take 60 mg for a couple years even after surgery and in hind sight should have started to get off it then but did not.  I have been able to decrease the dosage pretty easily down to 30mg over two or 3 weeks by taking 60 one day then 30 the next and repeating that until moving to 30mg.  I've stayed at 30 mg now for the past year or so.  My plan has always been to go to zero and now I am in a position work wise to make the jump and start tapering off given my work life balance is calm and I have moved into a new area that is less stressful.

 

The interesting thing that I have discovered is that I believe Cymbalta is now causing me problems while taking it and am wondering if anyone else has experienced problems while taking this poison after having been on the drug for an extended period of time?  I've been racking my brain for the past year about why I'm having anxiety, feelings of not being good enough/depression concentration issues, blurry vision and a feeling like I am stuck inside my head analyzing things to death.  I was even considering Buspar because I was at my whits end with these feelings and did not want to up my dosage of the poison under no uncertain terms.  

 

Then it hit me yesterday morning like a ton of bricks.  I started feeling all of the feelings/symptoms I mentioned above exactly one hour after taking Cymbalta and I thought it has to be this poison that is doing this.  For the past year I have been blaming it on stress from work, general anxiety, coffee, diet, just about anything I could try and think of.  All along I believe it has been this stupid drug and it's kept me trapped in my head trying to analyze what the problem is.  I've been grasping at solutions and its been this stupid pill made of pellets.  MY GOSH!!

 

 

I know this poison is the problem because I tried a test this morning and did not take my medicine and I have NONE of the feeling I speak of above.  I do know however, that at some point today I am going to start feeling funny because I have not taken the poison because I have forgotten to take it some days and know the weird feeling I get from not taking it.  I am seeing my doctor tomorrow and will be immediately getting off this thru a taper program and honestly I don't see how the feelings associated with discontinuation could compare to what I feel when I take this crap.  

 

I don't know why some people have chosen to stop this drug but I am curious if anyone out there knows about or has felt terrible symptoms like I mention above and that is why they have decided to stop?

 

Best, Jesse


#2 Cabo

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Posted 27 August 2018 - 12:45 PM

Hello Again- I should have also mentioned that in the past 1.5 years I have significantly changed the physiology of my body so this might also be playing a factor and maybe my body is rejecting it for that reason.  I've lowered my body fat % by 18% and added a significant amount of muscle from exercising 6-7 days a week.  Maybe I'm getting all of the dopamine and positive endorphins naturally now and there is some sort of reaction.  I'm speculating here obviously but I wouldn't put it past our bodies to reject something it knows is causing harm or not needed.  Best, Jesse


#3 fishinghat

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Posted 27 August 2018 - 01:01 PM

Welcome Jesse

 

Well you are not going to believe my response but that sounds like mild withdrawal symptoms. However, your experiment is compelling. Many get a funny feeling when they take there dose each day, especially about an hour or two after taking it. This is mostly dizziness, spinning, brain zaps. The symptoms you mention do sound like Cymbalta withdrawal but after that length of time it should have mostly faded.

 

I would advise bead counting as a way to wean. It is very slow and this last 30 mg may take you 6 months to a year to come off of it. Having said that there are those who improved a lot faster but they are the exception not the rule.

 

Cymbalta effects serotonin and norepinephrine, two of the most common neurotransmitters in the human body. As such the possible affects from withdrawal or even taking it are extremely variable and hard to predict.

 

I wish I could be more specific.


#4 Cabo

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Posted 27 August 2018 - 01:28 PM

Hi Fishing Hat-  thanks for the welcome and taking time to respond.  :)  Are you potentially thinking that the anxiety, concentration issues, feelings of being stuck in my head analyzing things to death are similar to typical withdrawal symptoms from tapering from 60 down to 30?  I specifically have begun to notice these symptoms about one hour after taking the medicine so if they were withdrawals from the dose drop wouldn't they likely be there before taking and then go away after taking it?  The symptoms described above are happening after I take the medicine and last sometimes for hours.  What is perplexing is that I have been on 30 mg for quite some time and have only noticed the symptoms having come on over the past 2-3 months.  I would think that my body would have stabilized from the drop to 30 so it's super perplexing as to why this is happening all of a sudden. What's also perplexing is that I have not felt those same feelings today yet and it's been over 24 hours since my last 30 mg dose.


#5 fishinghat

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Posted 27 August 2018 - 01:44 PM

"I specifically have begun to notice these symptoms about one hour after taking the medicine so if they were withdrawals from the dose drop wouldn't they likely be there before taking and then go away after taking it?"

You are correct but it really sounds like withdrawal symptoms. Not sure what is going on. One thing I have learned about Cymbalta, it is never certain how it is going to effect you.

#6 Cabo

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Posted 27 August 2018 - 01:56 PM

Yea, it's looking that way I suppose re: how variable the impacts are.  Based on your extensive interaction with the forum here do you believe tapering is the best approach vs adding a new medication for a short time to allow you to get off Cymbalta?  I'm asking because I have read that some doctors have prescribed a medication like Prozac for a period of time like 2-3 weeks because of the longer half life and that has allowed some people to come off Cymbalta while Prozac slowly leaves your system.


#7 fishinghat

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Posted 27 August 2018 - 03:25 PM

You know that is a good question Jesse. Both ways have their successes and failures. The slow wean can still cause a lot of problems for most but not all. A great many wean the Cymbalta down until they get significant withdrawal and then change over to either Zoloft, Prozac or Lexapro. BUT in some cases people have to try 2 or 3 antidepressants before finding one that works and doesn't have severe side effects. During my withdrawal I was totally off Cymbalta for 3 months before I got to the point I just couldn't handle it anymore. My dr tried 2 benzos and 3 or 4 antidepressants before they finally found one that worked. I was in withdrawal 9 months before it fully kicked in. My case is unusual though. I guess what I am trying to say is that there is no sure fire way that is easier and more successful. Heck my sister in law went cold turkey off Cymbalta twice and never had a symptom. Go figure.

#8 lady2882Nancy

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Posted 27 August 2018 - 10:34 PM

Well Jesse, glad you found us.

 

One of the things you said caught my attention. The symptoms were happening after I took my dose which is what happened to me. I did the bead counting to taper off but you may have been dropping the Cymbalta already by losing weight. Cymbalta is stored in the fat so if you have been exercising and losing fat then your body has been releasing the stored Cymbalta into the blood. I would recommend that you stay at whatever dose you are currently at until you feel stable then dropping.

I recommend the bead counting as I was doing okay until I hit 15mg at which point the suicidal thoughts got too much for me and I just quit. I paid for it with all the lovely withdrawal symptoms that my doctor did not believe that I was experiencing. At 12 weeks off I finally got to see a Psychiatrist who put me on Zoloft short turn and that turned me around to a more normal me. I have had incredibly bad luck with SSRIs and SNRIs and my Psychiatrist said they are not for me, at least not long term.

I cannot say that I completely back to myself but I am better than what I was when I started Cymbalta


#9 fishinghat

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Posted 28 August 2018 - 07:33 AM

That is a good point on the effect of weight loss. So true.

#10 Cabo

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Posted 28 August 2018 - 01:38 PM

Really insightful feedback fishinghat and ladynancy :)  Thanks so much for your time!  Especially intrigued by the thought about Cymbalta being stored in fat cells.  I've recently done a before and after DEXA scan (body imaging equipment that measures bone density, lean muscle mass and fat tissue in the body) and I've lost over 30 pounds of fat tissue ad added 15 lbs of lean muscle mass so I know the physiology of my body is different + I'm much healthier :)

 

The thing that is so confusing is I've been on 30mg for over so I don't think I need to stabilize at this level and going up is not an option.

 

I honestly think my body is rejecting the drug not asking for more of it - at least I hope that is the case since I just started feeling these troubling symptoms since March 2018 and they have gotten worse recently.  But nobody really knows for sure including me or my doctor so I will have to go through a trial and error and check and adjust process. 

 

It's alarming to me that I'm feeling all of these crazy feelings like depression, trapped in my head, anxiety, depression, feelings of self worth and trapped in my head over analyzing now all of a sudden.  I don't know if its the drug making me over analyze and get stuck or if its my analytical mind trying to figure out why I feel so bad.  When I got these feelings on Sunday 1 hour after taking Cymbalta I finally put two and two together.  I guess I had not ever thought it could be a drug that I've been taking regularly for quite some time all of a sudden causing issues.  Just so I'm not losing my mind, you've heard of other people that have been on the drug for quite some time and then all of a sudden get these feelings.  Specifically over analyzing, trapped in head, depression, anxiety?  thanks for your time :)  Best, Jesse


#11 Cabo

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Posted 28 August 2018 - 01:43 PM

Well Jesse, glad you found us.

 

One of the things you said caught my attention. The symptoms were happening after I took my dose which is what happened to me. I did the bead counting to taper off but you may have been dropping the Cymbalta already by losing weight. Cymbalta is stored in the fat so if you have been exercising and losing fat then your body has been releasing the stored Cymbalta into the blood. I would recommend that you stay at whatever dose you are currently at until you feel stable then dropping.

I recommend the bead counting as I was doing okay until I hit 15mg at which point the suicidal thoughts got too much for me and I just quit. I paid for it with all the lovely withdrawal symptoms that my doctor did not believe that I was experiencing. At 12 weeks off I finally got to see a Psychiatrist who put me on Zoloft short turn and that turned me around to a more normal me. I have had incredibly bad luck with SSRIs and SNRIs and my Psychiatrist said they are not for me, at least not long term.

I cannot say that I completely back to myself but I am better than what I was when I started Cymbalta

Hello- could you shed a little more light on this comment?  One of the things you said caught my attention. The symptoms were happening after I took my dose which is what happened to me. I did the bead counting to taper off but you may have been dropping the Cymbalta already by losing weight. Cymbalta is stored in the fat so if you have been exercising and losing fat then your body has been releasing the stored Cymbalta into the blood.  Maybe this helps support my theory of my body not liking the drug because too much is now getting released into my blood stream hence the terrible feelings upon taking it or maybe I am having a reaction to something my body doesn't want kind of like sometimes when you first start and AD and you know pretty soon if it's going to work or not given the side effects in the first month or two.  sound logical?


#12 fishinghat

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Posted 28 August 2018 - 04:37 PM

In the other cases of members who lost weight they did not have withdrawal symptoms until their weight started to stabilize. As long as you are losing weight you are releasing extra Cymbalta into the blood stream and your body gets use to that extra dose. Once the weight loss slows the "extra" Cymbalta from fat tissues starts to decrease in the blood stream and your body begins to feel the withdrawal effects.





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