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Need Help - 17.5 Weeks Off Rapid Taper


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#31 invalidusername

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Posted 26 November 2019 - 06:31 PM

Not to be confused with Lithium carbonate, which has FDA approval - I might have been thinking of that myself, but again, nothing really showing up research wise. FYI, the use within bipolar can be found here;

 

https://www.ncbi.nlm...les/PMC2248201/

 

"Another form of lithium called lithium orotate, is preferred because the orotate ion crosses the blood-brain barrier more easily than the carbonate ion of lithium carbonate. Therefore, lithium orotate can be used in much lower doses (e.g. 5 mg) with remarkable results and no side effects [49,50]. Clinical trials involving 150 mg daily doses of lithium orotate administered 4 to 5 times a week, showed a reduction of manic and depressive symptoms in bipolar patients"

 

Granted it does sound promising, but bipolar is NOT the same as unipolar. What works for one DOES NOT always work for another, hence the reason why we have SSRI and tricylics... 


#32 Bongchaaa

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 10:57 AM

Although it's the main treatment for bipolar it has been shown to have advantages in unipolar patients too.  I believe lithium is the only thing that actually prevents suicide.  They did a study in places that have lithium in the water and the suicide and homicide rates were significantly lower.  I will try to find the info on that.  I was thinking that if it can prevent suicidal thoughts and extreme anxiety as well as increase serotonin it could be helpful with cymbalta withdrawal.  

 

My mom is doing ok so far but if she begins having major withdrawal I think I will try it.  I'll post any results here.   :)


#33 invalidusername

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 05:27 PM

If you can find the sources for any of these, we (Hat and myself at least) would be very grateful. Lithium in its raw form is very dangerous and was only ever used a few years ago as one of the last resorts, but there are more advances that can prevent suicide as well - Ketamine immediately springs to mind. But much like lithium, it isn't the same for all. 


#34 Driven

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 05:50 PM

Guys,

 

I’m disappointed to say that I’m still in really bad shape.  Every day has been a struggle since my last post.  I’ve had too many doctor appointments with lack of answers.  I am 20.5 weeks off and probably the worst shape I’ve been thus far.  I’ve broken down crying in several appointment about the major cognitive issues, vision issues, anxiety, and depression and everyone discounts that this could be Cymbalta w/d.

 

Here are some updates since my last post:

 

1. I took the Klonopin and for 7 days straight then stopped and took it 2-3 more times over the course of last two weeks.  Haven’t taken it for 3 days and trying not to take it.  I really don’t want to rely on this for sleep….Thus the Zyprexa below.

 

2. Things got so bad that I’ve met with my new psychology/psychiatry team and discussed options. I needed immediate help and agreed for me to voluntarily admit to local to behavioral health hospital in which I stayed for 24 hours but was not severe enough to stay in the inpatient program.  I was discharged last night and I’ve been prescribed 5mg of Zyprexa (antipsychotic) to help with the anxiety and sleep (to take at bedtime).  I’ve taken the Zyprexa two nights now and sleep has been fine.  However, my cognitive thinking is worse than what It has been which feels like has been on a constant decline in the last month in particular.  The brain fog was getting worse before the Zyprexa so I can’t really point it to that.  I’m fearful what you may say about Zyprexa and my family is concerned about me researching that so much that I increase my anxiety even more. I just need help slowing my anxiety and they are telling me this is a decent option given that nothing else will touch it (hydroxyzine, clonidine, Benadryl, etc)

 

3. My brain just feels completely off.  I’ve been working at my job pretty much full time up to this point and barely managing to keep things afloat.  That said, I’m so frustrated that things have gotten worse in the last 3-4 weeks.  I can obviously keep it together enough to type out this post but tasks that are typically very simple at work have become more and more difficult.  I am in an IMMENSE amount of stress as I am the sole provider for my family, I work for my father-in-law, and things are just stressful.  He and entire family is VERY supportive but they don’t know how to help, other than to provide support where they can.     

 

4. I’m having difficulty actually deciphering if the vision issues I’m experiencing are 100% vision related or part of some major derealization or new PTSD type thing.  Everything is feeling very strange to me.  All the lighting in rooms and my house looks weird.  Walking around my own house, my office, my shop, it all feels eerie and I keep telling my wife that I don’t really feel like I’m totally present in the moment.  I’m not sure if anyone knows what I mean but if you have felt it…I’m sure you can relate.  It is very odd.  There are definite vision issues (everything processing a bit slowly and 2-dimensional and the excessive amount of floaters) but maybe some derealization that is adding to it.  Maybe even constant stress for month on end too.

 

5. I did withdraw completely from the low dose of 200mg of SAM-e about 3 weeks ago (I tapered off about 1 week). I was on that during the entire w/d plus on month so about 6 months.  Maybe this has caused the symptoms to get worse?  I know nobody has answers to that but I am praying that it is partially the cause.

 

6. The psychiatrist at the behavioral health hospital was at least compassionate and had the following (3) options for me:

  a. Stick with the Zyprexa only and see if symptoms improve over time.

  b. Go on low dose of Prozac to ease symptoms and taper slow enough as symptom continue to improve.

  c. Go on another SSRI.  Maybe Lexapro (only suggested due to my takes 20mg and has had good success in the 5 years she’s been on it) and get stable and HOLD for at least 6 months….maybe a year and then decide if I want to come off VERY SLOWLY. 

 

7.  I have read where folks have had some pretty ugly protracted waves but being 20.5 weeks off and in a complete tidal wave feels hopeless.  My friends and family just don’t know what to even say as they hear the doctors state over and over that they’ve never seen this sort of protracted w/d. 

 

Thanks for reading this and if you have any input, I’m all ears.  I’m praying and working to stay positive each day but this the struggle of a lifetime for me right now. 


#35 fishinghat

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 06:06 PM

Typical reaction to the Zyprexa.

"I did withdraw completely from the low dose of 200mg of SAM-e about 3 weeks ago (I tapered off about 1 week). I was on that during the entire w/d plus on month so about 6 months. Maybe this has caused the symptoms to get worse? "

A definite possibility but I must also add that the symptoms you are mentioning are fairly typical for Cymbalta withdrawal and may last another 2 to 4 months. Sorry. 20.5 weeks off is nothing. Most suffer for at least 6 to 8 months and some a year or more. People have lost their jobs, friends and divorced over these protracted withdrawal. There is just nothing good to say about this kind of experience.

The recommendations by the dr are fairly standard and shows that he/she is experienced as the dr chose the most appropriate other antidepressants to try. Unluckily no guarantees they will work though and will take weeks to fully kick in.

I am going to check something out and wioll be right back.

#36 fishinghat

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 06:12 PM

I was put on Olanzapine (Zyprexa) for 3 weeks in an effort to help my withdrawal and it did nothing but this compound has been often used to help with antidepressant withdrawals. Like other antidepressants, sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't.

#37 fishinghat

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 06:14 PM

By the way, it has a withdrawal similar to Cymbalta but not as severe.

#38 Driven

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Posted 27 November 2019 - 07:49 PM

FH,

 

Thank you.  But, do you see it odd that w/d feels like it is getting worse for me at this point as opposed to staying the same?  

I hear you about the reality of several months to a year or more.  I'm just in utter fear about that.  I know that a window might be right around the corner.  I did a lot of physical activity around the house last weekend so that may be playing into it too.

 

Did you taper of the Zyprexa when you stopped it after 3 weeks?  

 

Thanks,

Driven


#39 Bongchaaa

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Posted 28 November 2019 - 12:35 AM

If you can find the sources for any of these, we (Hat and myself at least) would be very grateful. Lithium in its raw form is very dangerous and was only ever used a few years ago as one of the last resorts, but there are more advances that can prevent suicide as well - Ketamine immediately springs to mind. But much like lithium, it isn't the same for all. 

https://www.pulsus.c...Lithium pdf.pdf

 

https://www.grc.com/...in_Nutrient.pdf

 

https://www.jpands.o...o4/marshall.pdf

 

These are a few articles I found with references about Lithium Orotate.  


#40 fishinghat

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Posted 28 November 2019 - 09:21 AM

Normally 2 to 4 months is the height of the withdrawal so it doesn't surprise me any. Even the next 3 or 4 months after that are about the same.

I did a cross taper to Lexapro over a 3 week period and after that didn't work a 4 week cross taper to Prozac then when that didn't work..... Well you get the idea. lol

#41 fishinghat

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Posted 28 November 2019 - 09:25 AM

Good articles Bongchaa, especially the first one.

The last two are written by the same person and contain similar information.

Thank you for the info. It will be added to our ebook in the future.

#42 invalidusername

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Posted 28 November 2019 - 12:28 PM

Bongchaaa - thanks very much for your findings, and as Hat said, this will take its place in the eBook and help many more people to come. Fantastic work.

 

Driven - Woh... I don't know what to say. But I am in a bit of state myself (not like yourself), but I will be honest in telling you that I had to read your post in two sittings. I had to stop first time. I'm glad Hat came to your aid as it caught me at a bad time with stress etc. Your point 4 sure sounds like derealisation - there are so many parts to it, and stress does some very nasty things to you. Last friday I woke up with my left pupil twice the size of the right, then a migraine hit - my anxiety went through the roof!! A week later, pupils are almost back, about 1mm in it, but the headaches are still there and worrying me still.

 

I really think you need to take some time off - surely you must have some form of statutory sick pay? My wife also doesn't work, so I am the sole earner, and being self-employed, I don't see anything if I am sick. This scares me a fair bit, and we all need to learn how to deal with these things before they get out of control. Fortunately today only sees me out and about for 4 hours. I am having a break between clients now, but trying to calm down my anxiety about my headaches. But I need the rest to reduce the stress - it is a viscous cycle for sure.

 

I don't know much regarding Zyprexa, but looks like Hat has you covered on that. I do hope things improve for you, but if there is ANY way you can take some time out - do it. This will help immensely. 


#43 Driven

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Posted 04 December 2019 - 06:01 PM

All,

Thank you for the continued support and input.

IUN,
I'm sorry about your recent stress and lingering headaches.  I hear you completely on the time off work, however being at work does help a bit.  I am able to get my mind off things to some degree.  I can also work from my home or in my office with a ton of flexibility.  The alternative is "short-term disability" which pays 60% of my salary which isn't an option.

All,

Well, the Zyprexa seems to be helping with some of the anxiety and definitely helping with the sleep.  However, the rest of the issues are still in full effect (which I expected).  The headaches, impaired cognitive thinking, vision issues, de-realization, and pretty major depression.  These must be Seritonin related so that would make sense.  I managed to have a couple better days over Thanksgiving which was a nice surprise.  Most symptoms faded with the exception of light head fog was present.  For a few hours, the vision stuff seemed to be at it's best point through these entire 5.5 months as well which was encouraging.  

That said, I am back in a pretty nasty wave now.  Major depression, cognitive issues, vision issues, major headaches, and what I'd call derealization. 

 

It is almost comical to read through my last several posts asking about what approach to take if I decide to go on a new SSRI/SNRI medication.  I keep asking you guys the same thing...(I'm sorry).  I am obviously very nervous about any new drug and I'm trying to push through this W/D without medication which is proving nearly impossible.  I'm trying to figure out the best approach to at least ease some of these symptoms while I continue pushing through this withdrawal.  I have my 1st appointment with a new psychiatrist on 12/10. I've met with the psychologist on his team but not him yet.  

 

 Here are the options on the table in preparation for my appt next Tues.  These were discussed in my last appt with psychologist with exception of #4):

1. Stay on the 5mg of Zyprexa to help the anxiety and sleep and hope the other physical symptoms improve over time.  I've been on Zyprexa for 1 week now...

2. Go on a low dose of Prozac to help ease some of the symptoms.  Then taper slowly as symptoms ease.  

3. Go on a low dose of Lexapro to help ease the symptoms and stay on Lexapro for quite awhile before considering SLOWLY tapering off.  Lexapro is being recommended since my mom takes it and has had good success.  

4. I have not brought this up to doctors...but I need help understanding whether reinstating a few beads of Cymbalta is a good idea?  It sounds terrible to me but I've read that the same drug is the only option to try and combat the W/D symptoms.  At 5.5 months completely off, is this even a viable option and could it complicate things even more?

Another thing, the Surviving Antidepressants website states that the ONLY thing that will get you out of protracted withdrawal is reinstating the SAME drug.  What do you guys think about that?  I realize that no other drug will relieve all of the symptoms but I'm really struggling with that statement and the thought of Prozac or Lexapro.  I'd honestly much rather go on either one of those over a tiny updose of Cymbalta.  I really think the heavy depression is a byproduct of feeling as crappy as i do.  I have never had depression before in my life and I think if I could get a bit of relief from the brain fog and headaches that I could get some momentum and ride this through.

All said, I wish I had a crystal ball on which option would help the most.   


Thanks,
Driven


#44 fishinghat

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Posted 04 December 2019 - 06:07 PM

"Another thing, the Surviving Antidepressants website states that the ONLY thing that will get you out of protracted withdrawal is reinstating the SAME drug. What do you guys think about that?"

I can unequivocally state that is bull. We have had any number of members go on another antidepressant with full relief of the Cymbalta withdrawal symptoms. A common technique that their psychiatrist recommended. I will note that around 10 to 15% of those that try a new antidepressant for help does not succeed on the first try. Sometimes they have to try 2 or 3 before they are successful.

"All said, I wish I had a crystal ball on which option would help the most."

Ahh, if you could figure that out it would be wonderful. It is just a guessing game. Unluckily.

#45 invalidusername

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 10:56 AM

"Another thing, the Surviving Antidepressants website states that the ONLY thing that will get you out of protracted withdrawal is reinstating the SAME drug. What do you guys think about that?"

I can unequivocally state that is bull. 

 

Absolutely! Nothing could be further from the truth!! 

 

What would be the purpose of reinstating a drug that did not work in the first place to reduce symptoms of the withdrawal? 

 

Foolish words and are to be ignored.


#46 Driven

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 05:31 PM

Guys,

 

Well...Another update.  22.5 weeks off Cymbalta.

I had my much anticipated appointment w/ new psychiatrist yesterday.  I sure wish I had found him back at the beginning of all of this crap!  He was caring and very much acknowledged that this could very well be Cymbalta w/d and he has had patients that have struggled pretty severely from various SSRI/SNRI tapers.  He talked about post acute withdrawal and it being more common w/ benzos but definitely acknowledged SSRI/SNRI can be a root cause.  That was refreshing to hear...and for my wife to hear.

 

1. We decided that a low dose of Prozac is the best place to start to see if it will ease my various w/d symptoms.  Long half-life and easier than the others to come off when that time comes.  I started 10mg of the Prozac today and will move to 20mg after 2 weeks.  Thoughts on this?

2. The low dose of 5mg Zyprexa has caused a lot of weight gain even for being on it only 15 days.  He does not want me to stay on it.  I am weaning off but cutting pills in half over next couple days.  Hoping like hell i don't need a long taper on this Zyprexa given short duration of taking it?  Thinking I'm best to get off now and rather quickly.

3. I have such mixed feelings about starting up Prozac.  I'm so fear based that I'm going to get "kindled" or cause more issues based on my brain being out of homeostatis?  

4. I'm also concerned about the Prozac just delaying any further healing will happen based on confusing my brain even more.  Is it fair to think my brain will still slowly heal with a low dose?

 

I'm praying the Prozac will ease my intense brain fog and maybe even improve my vision processing as well.  He asked me a very good question yesterday.  "What would my anxiety and depression be if my head fog and vision was improved?"  I can honestly say it would be very minimal.  So much of it is based on the FEAR associated with these physical symptoms and their duration.  Especially the vision processing but I do see a correlation between when the head fog is really intense, so is the vision impairment.  Direct correlation and I'm just praying it is one of those weird effects that will subside over time.  

Wish me luck...and please tell me I didn't make a mistake with the low dose of Prozac! :)

 

Driven


#47 fishinghat

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 05:44 PM

Sounds like a pretty good doctor.

1. Not an unusual approach. The only down side is 8 to 10 weeks for Prozac to kick in.

2. Probably not an issue. You might have to fight some withdrawal for a few days but you were not on it very long so that is a good thing.

3. Probably not an issue with such a low dose. The only real risk is that it may not work. Like all psych meds it has worked for some and not others.

4. Now that is a good question. Yes the Cymbalta altered synapses will continue to heal but the synapses effected by the Prozac will need to be dealt with alter. Like the dr said, it is the lesser of two evils. Easier to come off Prozac.

Most ssri/snri can have brain fog as a side effect but if it works it should significantly help the other symptoms including vision. The fear you mentioned is due to the Cymbalta withdrawal. It effects the nerve cells in the hippocampus and amygdala which are the parts of the brain responsible for fear and paranoia.

If the Prozac works you will come out of this on an easier path. Not a bad move at all.

#48 invalidusername

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 05:57 PM

Glad you opted for the prozac in the end over the Lexapro. I know I am biased, but I honestly think it is a better route for you.

 

1. Therapeutic dose is ~20mg so starting at 10mg and moving up to 20mg in a couple of weeks sounds about right, but I certainly wouldn't move further from that until it has been tried and tested at the 8/10 week level as Hat says above.

 

2. Much longer half life than Cymbalta so you should find it a lot easier. 

 

3. Can't say any more than Hat on this. Time will tell.

 

4. Absolutely - lesser of two evils. You made the decision based on the situation you are presently in. It is a low dose and provided you don't go much beyond this I can't foresee anything like what you have already endured. It was a touch decision to call, and I had to do the same this time last year with regards to Lexapro and Celexa. As it turned out the Lex didn't work, but at least I knew. 

 

All rooting for you this end friend. Stiff upper lip and march forward. We're here for you...


#49 Driven

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Posted 16 December 2019 - 06:57 PM

Guys,

 

Thanks for all the support.  I re-read your posts often in times of needing support.  I hope that one day I can give support and strength to folks in the trenches of bad w/d as well.

 

23.5 weeks off Cymbalta as of this week.  I suppose a summary statement since last post would be as follows: VERY subtle improvement in some areas but the vision issues continue to scare the HECK out of me.  I'm struggling to shake the fear relating to the vision.

  1. I started the 10mg of Prozac 5 days ago.  Appears that the cognitive functioning and overall headaches have subsided a bit.  Headaches are still there but less noticeable.  I have dealt with some fairly intense morning anxiety a few mornings due to the vision stuff. P-doc did state this may happen and it is a sign that the Prozac should work as it builds up in my system.  Anxiety has been fairly high yesterday and today.  However, I re-read through my journal and posts on here and realize that I am much improved on the anxiety front compared to several weeks back.
  2. I have weaned off the Zyprexa over 5-6 days and stopped completely 2 days ago.  Unfortunately, I'm pretty confident it was helping the anxiety and definitely with sleep.  Doctor had me stop due to the weight gain in the 2 weeks I took it but I am strongly reconsidering going back on it at least until the Prozac builds up.  I don't know if it is the stopping Zyprexa or taking a first dose of 50mg of Trazadone last night for sleep but I woke up with worsening vision issues from the weekend (which I'd refer to as slightly worse than my withdrawal baseline....i.e. there is a baseline level with my vision that I am getting used to and can operate with (although i hate it as it is pretty uncomfortable).

Now for the vision issues.  I have spoke often about them in my posts and it has me so on edge since vision issues lasting this long seem pretty rare on this forum and through other research I've done. I keep thinking about the comments from FH and IUN about fear and paranoia being so exacerbated while going through w/d and that my feelings are in overdrive and/or w/d induced.  That does make me feel at ease....However, my fear about my vision issues being long term or potentially permanent have me really struggling with pretty much all aspects of life.  I'm in trouble from my family for trying to research online in hopes of finding those vision success stories.  Instead, I find a few of those isolated stories where people have long-term vision issues after SSRI use that sound brutal and very debilitating.  I wish i didn't read them but I am just trying to find those stories where the issues dissipated over months and went away.  I guess a vast majority will not return to tell their story if that is the case.  This leaves all the horrific stories for guys like me to read and obsess about.  It is not a good rabbit hole to dive into when the vision issues are hot and heavy in my current wave.  

 

My vision summary from the beginning (I've been 20/20 vision w/ contacts for several years):
- started when I made my first 30mg drop when tapering off Cym.  it lasted 23 days (coupled with dizziness) then cleared up completely.  I was fine for about the next month as I continued to taper and then it started again 3 days after I came off Cym completely.  The dizziness accompanied the vision issues which had me referring to it often as vertigo related earlier in w/d but i am no longer dizzy with a few exceptions here and there.

- There were a few hours during the first 2 weeks off where the vision cleared up completely. 

- It has since been about 99% constant for over 5 months.  A few moments where I feel like it has improved but definitely not gone completely.  I had 2-3 "waves" that lasted a couple hours where I could not read my computer screen or phone screen.  Very scary.  

 

Vision symptoms

- My main symptom is hard to explain.  I keep saying that everything looks two-dimensional but I do see depth perception relatively okay.  It is just not crisp.  It is like everything looks a bit off (although still in focus) almost sort of dream-like.  When moving my head or walking (or any movement) it is a bit harder to focus after I stop.  Any movement feels a bit more clumsy than I am historically used to and I find myself being tentative with my movements due to this vision issue. I am a fit, athletic guy who historically had no issues such as this w/ vision/balance/movement issues.  Driving has not been a major issue but I admit I pay more closely attention to my actions.

- I do experience some slightly blurred vision at times but that is not often so that is less concerning.  

- LOTS of new vitreal floaters in my field of view.  This is not that bothersome to me.  I tend to notice it more when really tired or working on laptop or phone. 
- Tunnel vision happens at times.

- flourescent lights bug me a bit more than in past.

- Vision in darkness is not as crisp as in past.

- Eyes get sore WAY easier than in the past. Usually after more computer or reading than normal.

- I will say that there is still a lot of light head fog / headaches that feel tied to the vision and are more severe when the vision is more severe.  Hoping that is a good sign that maybe i am just an unlucky one that has had vision be a bigger symptom than others (since I know headaches/fog after several months is still a very normal symptom).

- No perceived issues from opthamalogist with exception of more floaters which is minimal.  He believes this whole thing is a brain processing issue in terms of how the brain is processing what the eyes are telling it. which I do agree.

 

All of this said, I feel like I see light at the end of the tunnel in terms of Cymbalta w/d recovery with most everything except the vision issues.  There is no question that I am obsessing about my vision but it is so dang uncomfortable I don't know what else to do. I know 100% that if i could get some relief from it, then life could slowly start to piece back together.  I have never had fear and anxiety about a specific issue or (medical symptom) like this in my life.  I must admit that stress is still VERY HIGH in my life and I sometimes wonder how much my chronic stress and anxiety over the last several months w/d is playing into this vision issue.  I have been living in or close to that "chronic adregenic state" for a few months now. Moments of uncontrollable crying, sadness, and extreme fear.  Could the vision have slowly turned into being stress/anxiety related?  It seems so tied to Cymbalta based on the timeline but there are moments where I have to ask myself the question. 

 

I'm praying for healing every day.  I see two paths to recovery.

 

1.  The vision issue is all Cymbalta related and i'm suffering from "visual processing" issues due to brain still being out of homeostatis (even after 5.5 months).  Even with hardly any windows, it will find it's balance and my vision will slowly return back to normal or at least a much better state.  I'm struggling with this since the last 23 weeks has felt like a year.  How could the brain not find recovery at this point?  Maybe the SAM-e and 5-HTP w/d has slowed healing just a bit as well.  My brain still feels way out of whack so it is certainly possible that the synapses just need more time to repair and not to panic even with basically no improvement.

 

or

 

2. The vision issue is stress/anxiety related and will not see relief until I can get both under control (via time and Prozac).  I know how much stress can wreak havoc on the central nervous system.  I haven't shared much but I'm used to running a fast past life in work and at home and this has knocked me to my knees.  I'm keeping up but stress has been at an all-time high in my life.  My wife and I are slowly removing stressors from our life until i can get further along with recovery.

 

Thanks again for allowing me to post my journey on here.  I appreciate the input so much.  I'll take any positive insight you can on the vision stuff.  

 

Driven


#50 fishinghat

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Posted 17 December 2019 - 08:29 AM

Well Driven, that is a detailed post and that clarifies a lot.

1) "I'm struggling with this since the last 23 weeks..."

Just a quick note. You start off the post by saying "23.5 months off Cymbalta as of this week." You might want to edit that.

2) "Maybe the SAM-e and 5-HTP w/d has slowed healing just a bit as well. "

Interesting thought. Unluckily no way to be sure. I will poke around in the medical journals and see what I can find.

3) "My brain still feels way out of whack so it is certainly possible that the synapses just need more time to repair and not to panic even with basically no improvement."

You have had slight improvements in dizziness, anxiety and such and that is all I would expect at 5.5 months. In the next month or so improvements should come a little quicker though.

I will see what else I can find on the vision issue. Be back.

#51 fishinghat

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Posted 17 December 2019 - 09:17 AM

I found that people taking Sam-e and 5 htp had blurred vision as a side effect at the rate of 2% and 2.5% respectively. One would expect similar events when stopping those supplements.

More to follow.

#52 fishinghat

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Posted 17 December 2019 - 10:33 AM

Posted by ForLyla on 08 December 2019 - 08:18 PM in Weaning Off Cymbalta
My night vision is terrible tonight.

Posted by Chaos on 27 November 2019 - 03:00 AM in What are you feeling?
See shadows

Posted by fishinghat on 14 November 2019 - 10:24 AM in ARE YOU NEW HERE? Words from the wise about Cymbalta
I found a couple research articles that mention vision problems as a symptom of ssri withdrawal but not mentioned how long they lasted.
Worth repeating;

I also found these....

https://www.ncbi.nlm.../pubmed/8490068
Color vision deficiencies in the course of acute alcohol withdrawal.
Within the course of withdrawal, a marked improvement of these disturbances could be proved.

https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/25772076
Reversible splenial lesion and complex visual disturbances due to carbamazepine withdrawal.

https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/11339588
Heroin withdrawal as a possible cause of acute concomitant esotropia in adults.
(esotropia - Only one eye looks directly at the object of regard, the other being turned inwards. )
One case resolved on ots own, total of two cases.


https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/26074969
A Case Report of Acute Esotropia in a Young Woman following Heroin Withdrawal.
Resolved with treatment.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.../pubmed/9023790
Impaired binocular depth inversion in patients with alcohol withdrawal.
No notes on recovery

https://www.ncbi.nlm.../pubmed/9283503
Impaired color vision in cocaine-withdrawn patients.
No notes on recovery.

https://www.ncbi.nlm...pubmed/26483678
A Case Report of Nystagmus with Acute Comitant Esotropia Secondary to Heroin Withdrawal: A Novel Presentation.
After 76 days, her esotropia resolved,

Posted by fishinghat on 14 November 2019 - 08:36 AM in ARE YOU NEW HERE? Words from the wise about Cymbalta
Just in the last 3 years (2017 - 2019) 25 members have noted "vision problems".

Most common :
Blurry vision
Tunnel vision
Optic nerve pain

Most resolved in two months or less except the following...
Navywife - Some Vision problems remain (undefined) since around 2014 and to current point (5 years).
Cjmansf - Vision problems lasted 4 months.
Howtostopproperly - lasted 5 months.
Michgirl - Tunnel vision 4 months.
All of the other members had their issues to clear up in 2 months or less.

3 years (2014 - 2016) 32 members have noted "vision problems".
Posted by Howtostoppropperly on 03 November 2016 - 01:39 PM in Weaning Off Cymbalta
I think that the 5 htp supplements are causing the blurred vision. I think I have to stop taking it.

Posted by fishinghat on 08 August 2016 - 09:47 AM in Medical Support
Commonly reported side effects of trazodone include: blurred vision,...

Posted by Dman2900 on 11 May 2016 - 01:33 PM in ARE YOU NEW HERE? Words from the wise about Cymbalta
My neck is really stiff and is contributing to my headaches. It seams that my vision is a little more out of focus than normal, I do use cheater glasses so who knows on that one.

Posted by Michgirl on 03 March 2016 - 05:58 PM in ARE YOU NEW HERE? Words from the wise about Cymbalta
It was truly scary to feel the anxiety, high pitch tinnitus, tunnel vision, altered cognition, hazy vision etc.

Posted by lady2882Nancy on 09 February 2016 - 11:50 PM in ARE YOU NEW HERE? Words from the wise about Cymbalta
It does go away in time just like the short term memory lose and the cloudy or tunnel vision does so hang in there.

Michgirl, on 27 Dec 2015 - 09:11 AM,
Fog brain/Tunnel vision
Focus is diminished
Light sensitivity - I wear sunglasses even on overcast days

Posted by FiveNotions on 22 August 2015 - 03:45 PM in What are you feeling?
...and my field of vision would sort of turn into a mush ... colors and images would seem like they ran together for an instant ...

Posted by FiveNotions on 18 July 2015 - 11:11 AM in ARE YOU NEW HERE? Words from the wise about Cymbalta
Here are links to the forum discussions about optic neuritis / vision problems:
Cymbalta withdrawal, eye problems related to serotonin
https://www.cymbalta...onin-deficiency

Blurred Vision
https://www.cymbalta...blurred-vision/

Brain Zaps, Optic Neuritis and Gello [ignore what I said about eating gello ... it's the glycine supplement that helped me ... gello doesn't have enuf glycine in it (but it sure tasted good when I was so sick!)
https://www.cymbalta...optic+neuritis

Cymbalta and eye health
https://www.cymbalta...itis#entry44155


Posted by Tgen75 on 06 May 2015 - 10:01 PM in ARE YOU NEW HERE? Words from the wise about Cymbalta
Things seemed ok the first few days then I had a moment of tunnel vision and dizziness.

Posted by albergo11 on 16 April 2015 - 10:35 PM in ARE YOU NEW HERE? Words from the wise about Cymbalta
I discovered to my horror that I was not much improved after 2 months. My symptoms included, but are not limited to: severe memory loss, burning sensations, problems with my eyes (blurry vision, floaters, etc)

Posted by thismoment on 05 April 2015 - 05:28 PM in What are you feeling?
Eyesight-- I had bright flashes at the peripheral range of my vision. My vision prescription changed. I sensed physical movement toward the sides (robe swishes; a female human form in a robe). I thought I had a torn retina but the doc said no. After 2 years off C, I went back to my old prescription. My eyes are okay now.

Posted by getsetgo on 20 January 2015 - 04:31 AM in What are you feeling?
Minor blackouts/ loss of vision

Posted by FiveNotions on 30 December 2014 - 12:46 PM in ARE YOU NEW HERE? Words from the wise about Cymbalta
The fish oil seems to help with what we call "brain zaps" ... also the vision issues that some of us get ...

Posted by MissAnnThropic on 13 August 2014 - 11:18 AM in What are you feeling?
Yesterday I lost complete vision in my right eye. It came back after what seemed like an eternity. Throughout the day it dimmed and brightened sporadically.

Posted by Cinders on 17 July 2014 - 05:11 PM in ARE YOU NEW HERE? Words from the wise about Cymbalta
...problems with vision or moving my eyes or head, along with "hallucinations" at times may fit the bill.

Posted by thismoment on 14 July 2014 - 02:29 PM in What are you feeling?
Pupil Dilation- either pupil or both, light sensitivity, shaky peripheral vision.
Blurred Vision- light sensitivity, altered peripheral vision.


Posted by FiveNotions on 03 July 2014 - 11:59 AM in Question and comments for Me
And as if by magic, my vision clarity returned.....in fact, my eyeglasses worked better than they had even before withdrawal.....I was able to read signs at quite a bit longer distance than I ever remember before, I was seeing things like individual leaves on trees......flower petals, you name it....I went from horrid horrid vision to better than I've had in years.....

Posted by thismoment on 24 June 2014 - 07:47 PM in Question and comments for Me
Your eye troubles are most likely withdrawal. They thought I had a torn retina for a day or two. I got black floaters and aberrant light flashes at the edge of my vision. I also had robe swishes (the sensing that somebody in a long robe just swished past at the edge of your vision).

Posted by Amybc7 on 16 June 2014 - 03:22 PM in Question and comments for Me
I was concerned because I keep having "clouds" in my vision or losing partial vision for periods of time.

Posted by Amybc7 on 12 June 2014 - 06:37 PM in What are you feeling?
The headaches are awful and I lost partial vision for hours today.

Posted by FiveNotions on 09 June 2014 - 05:24 PM in ARE YOU NEW HERE? Words from the wise about Cymbalta
I'd also wait a bit longer before getting new contacts and eyeglasses.....my vision has changed several time over the previous six months since I quit....

Posted by alexasta on 07 June 2014 - 08:08 PM in How to Find Support
& my vision goes dim around the edges constantly.

Posted by ittybittysmitty on 04 June 2014 - 12:08 PM in Weaning Off Cymbalta
I've noticed more floaters affecting my vision...What seemed to be a milky spot in my field of vision turns out to be part of a floater...

Posted by TryinginFL on 01 June 2014 - 02:35 PM in Cymbalta in the News
I had one of those black "floaters" too.... I think it was only for around 7-10 days and then it went away. I also had the weird peripheral vision of someone (in a robe, perhaps) having just swished past me...
Some of these are really strange, but my Dr. knew about them and told me they were part of the withdrawal. I also had very sore eyes

Posted by FiveNotions on 01 June 2014 - 01:42 PM in Cymbalta in the News
I lost the lower left quadrant of vision in my right eye....it was bad for about a week....then slowly faded....rather, lightened....hang in there....be careful if you drive!

#53 Bongchaaa

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Posted 17 December 2019 - 11:16 AM

Hi guys!  Just an update.  My mom did a 2 week taper off cymbalta and she had been on it for a few years.  It has been 7 days off cymbalta and we started LIthium Orotate three days ago.  So far, minimal withdrawal.  Only some itching and one or two dizzy spells.  She is also on Lamictal and Namenda.  I can start a new thread on this if you like. 

 

Just wanted to let you know the Lithium Orotate seems to be helping and she was actually in a good mood yesterday.  My dad and brother said that's the best mood they've seen her in a while.  If nothing else it seems to be preventing mood swings.  May still be too soon to tell.  I'm curious how she does the next few weeks.  


#54 fishinghat

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Posted 17 December 2019 - 12:29 PM

Your mother has been very fortunate and I hope all continues to go well. We really appreciate the update. Let us know how she does down the road.

#55 Bongchaaa

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Posted 17 December 2019 - 05:08 PM

Your mother has been very fortunate and I hope all continues to go well. We really appreciate the update. Let us know how she does down the road.

will her withdrawal get worse since its only been a week? Im hoping the lithium orotate is increasing serotonin to offset withdrawal. Not sure if it is failsafe but seems to be working so far. Glad you are finding some comfort and relief as well Driven, hang in there. Sorry everyone has to go through this but grateful for people like you who bring people together so we can learn from experiences. Ive learned so much on this forum.

#56 Driven

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Posted 17 December 2019 - 07:12 PM

FH,

 

Thank you for the information on all of the vision related items that you posted.  It sure seems that folks can experience a range of different symptoms and no two cases are alike.  I also edited my post to 23.5 weeks instead of months.  Thanks for the catch.

Yes, with yesterday being a pretty tough day vision wise, today is a bit better and refreshing for sure.  Some moments where the vision was quite a bit better than the last several days.  Praying daily that time will continue to heal my symptoms and my vision will slowly recalibrate.  The times that I notice it being improved are so very subtle...but it is a bit comforting as I feel that the slow subtle improvement makes sense in terms of the brains ability to process what I am looking at.  It's like everything is a bit dream-like and slightly slow motion and there are moments where that dissipates and things almost look normal.  Hoping for continued improvement on this front.

As of now, it feels like the 10mg of Prozac in am and 5mg of Zyprexa at bedtime will be the cocktail that we're forging ahead with to ease the Cymbalta w/d.  I am not excited about taking both of these but I needed some relief for my families sake as well as my own.  

 

Thanks,

Driven


#57 invalidusername

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Posted 18 December 2019 - 04:13 PM

Hi Driven,

 

Its tough, but you are right that it is for your own sake, and of course your family. It is such a strange phenomenon for the visual cortex to get caught up in all this withdrawal stuff.

 

I have had a quick Google for you and found that 5HT Serotonin receptors have a very specific role in the forming of the plasticity of the visual cortex - specifically when that signal is from non-visual sources... which could easily be of a medicinal origin. 

 

Whilst it doesn't address the issue in exactness, the following might be of interest to you which explains the above in more detail. If there is any part that you would like further explanation of, please shout. As my area is largely the language circuits, Hat might be more suited to the non-frontal cortex regions, but I am sure between us we can help!

 

https://link.springe...0-387-72256-6_7

 

IUN 


#58 invalidusername

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Posted 18 December 2019 - 04:17 PM

Sorry - I forget most people don't have academic access to these journals - so have downloaded it and put it on a host site for you here;

 

https://pdfhost.io/v...d_TOC_eddoc.pdf


#59 Driven

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Posted 18 December 2019 - 04:41 PM

Guys,

 

So frustrated.  After a somewhat decent day yesterday, last night was rough and today is not much better.  Just need a bit of insight.

 

1.  Today marks 1 week since starting the 10mg of Prozac.  Last night I woke up in the middle of the night with a pretty good burning headache and tingling/slight numbing sensation in my lower legs, feet, and hands.  More of a heavy tingling than numbing.  I have not experienced this at all with the Cymbalta w/d.  It was more intense than just simply a light nuisance.  I was able to fall back asleep and it wasn't there when I woke in the am but certainly scared me.  Probably related to the Prozac but I'm so confused on what is maybe a normal start-up symptom vs. my body telling me "NO...don't add more drugs".   I did a quick google and the first thing that popped up was Prozac and Zyprexa combined can cause that.  Ugh…I took the Zyprexa right before bed so it must have something to do with levels in blood being the highest a few hours after dosage.

 

2.  I am really disorientated today since waking up.  Not the same headfog feeling like my normal Cymbalta w/d feeling.  More of a dizziness and completely "out of it" feeling.  Again, a different sensation from what I'd call my normal Cym w/d baseline.  My head is spinning quite a bit.  Pretty much all I can handle is driving to work and toughing through the day at my desk and not interact with folks too much.

 

3.  I'm so scared of doing more harm to my brain's healing with the Prozac and/or Zyprexa.  I am suffering pretty badly and battling the feeling of whether I just extended my suffering by starting the Prozac and Zyprexa.  Praying to god daily (sometimes many times per day) to give me signs of relief and healing.  There are moments but they are so brief.  I keep the thoughts about not even being 6 months into this and many start to turn the corner around that time.  It does help but, man, I can’t believe this ordeal.

 

Again, I am taking the 10mg of Prozac and 5mg of Zyprexa daily (in addition to my supplements of Magnesium and Fish Oil).  I am only two days back on the Zyprexa after stopping it for two days after about a 15 day usage.  I appeared to be working for the anxiety and sleep so I've elected to go back on it since the two days off were rough with anxiety.  I only stopped because of weight gain after discussing w/ p-doc.

 

I just don't know what to do and I don't want to be leapfrogging on any more drugs.  The vision crap takes a back seat when I get these other overwhelming symptoms. 

 

Driven


#60 Driven

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Posted 18 December 2019 - 04:44 PM

IUN,

Sorry, I posted this right after your good input on the plasticity and visual cortex.  I will dive into this for sure.  Thank you!

 

Driven





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