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Did I Get Serotonin Syndrome? Started Celexa 20mg, Got Sick And Very Concerned.


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#1 Sean Dempsey

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 11:32 AM

I need some help. I started a new prescription of Celexa 20 mg on Tuesday. My anxiety and depression had flared up terribly bad the last month, and I hadn't been on any drugs for 4-5 months before that. In the past I've been on Prozac, and lexapro. I've had episodes like this before but didn't know what they were.

Well, yesterday I had no appetite and was pretty tired all day, but felt "okay". Then last night, I took my celxea (this is pill 5 since Tuesday). About an hour later, I suddenly break out in a extreme sweat, with sort of a light headed "pass out" feeling and shakey hands.

I went to bed and after a while, the sweating stopped and I just got really cold, and slept a few hours with blankets and a heating pad.

I probably slept from 10pm to 4am and have still just had moderate sweats and chills, and a general unwell feeling.

I've read all about serotonin syndrome and think I had a case of it, but I don't know what to do now. I really need these SSRIs to start working, but I am afraid to take it again tonight after the reaction i had.

It's Sunday so I can't call my psychiatrist. Should I skip tonight and talk to him tomorrow? Just take a half a pill, 10mg, tonight? Go to the on call instacare doctor?

Any suggestions would help, I'm in a bad way here. I don't have health Insurance so an ER visit would be a last resort.

#2 kassiegal

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 12:02 PM

I am not a professional
When I first started Prozac at 20mg....I had a very bad, ..well what I thought was stomach flu..
Still dont know if that is what I had..or if it was a side effect of starting prozac..
I still ..after 5 months...dont have a real big appetite on the prozac..which is OK...

I think maybe, what you experienced is a side effect....but Im not sure..I would discuss with your doctor

and NO..the prozac is not working to its full effect on me...I am thinking of asking to try a different med..so taday I started tapering off the Prozac....

good luck..

#3 shio

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 12:27 PM

I'm not a professional either ... but it sounds like an anxiety attack or withdrawls.
I'm on celexa 40mg and have never had these symptoms.
I've had withdrawls from another ad a long time ago- when i missed a dose or 2 i would get the shakes, sweating, and night chills as if i was coming down with the flu or something.
Remember i am not a doctor but don't skip your meds and diffinitely see your family doc tomorrow.
Hang in ...it's tough - we all react differently to different meds

shio
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#4 kassiegal

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 01:22 PM

I'm not a professional either ... but it sounds like an anxiety attack or withdrawls.
I'm on celexa 40mg and have never had these symptoms.
I've had withdrawls from another ad a long time ago- when i missed a dose or 2 i would get the shakes, sweating, and night chills as if i was coming down with the flu or something.
Remember i am not a doctor but don't skip your meds and diffinitely see your family doc tomorrow.
Hang in ...it's tough - we all react differently to different meds

shio



Hi shio
is celexa..an ssri..like prozac..I am just wondering which one to switch to...as prozac is not working like it should for me
and I wonder If i would have the same mild side effects...

#5 Sean Dempsey

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 06:05 PM

I'm not a professional either ... but it sounds like an anxiety attack or withdrawls.
I'm on celexa 40mg and have never had these symptoms.
I've had withdrawls from another ad a long time ago- when i missed a dose or 2 i would get the shakes, sweating, and night chills as if i was coming down with the flu or something.
Remember i am not a doctor but don't skip your meds and diffinitely see your family doc tomorrow.
Hang in ...it's tough - we all react differently to different meds

shio


I don't think it could be withdrawal, I don't have anything to withdraw from. I've only been taking the celexa for 5 days.

Definitley feel flu like. I'm pretty scared, haven't been able to sleep all day even though I've been trying all day. Tried taking half (.5 mg) of a klonopin but didn't help.

Really I'm just scared of taking the celexa again tonight. Would it be smarter to just take a half of it until I can talk to the psychiatrist?

#6 kassiegal

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 06:20 PM

I'm not a professional either ... but it sounds like an anxiety attack or withdrawls.
I'm on celexa 40mg and have never had these symptoms.
I've had withdrawls from another ad a long time ago- when i missed a dose or 2 i would get the shakes, sweating, and night chills as if i was coming down with the flu or something.
Remember i am not a doctor but don't skip your meds and diffinitely see your family doc tomorrow.
Hang in ...it's tough - we all react differently to different meds

shio


I don't think it could be withdrawal, I don't have anything to withdraw from. I've only been taking the celexa for 5 days.

Definitley feel flu like. I'm pretty scared, haven't been able to sleep all day even though I've been trying all day. Tried taking half (.5 mg) of a klonopin but didn't help.

Really I'm just scared of taking the celexa again tonight. Would it be smarter to just take a half of it until I can talk to the psychiatrist?


I would try half..
when I started paxil...a while ago...Itook a whole pill at first..and got bad flu like symptoms..so my pharmacist said to take only 1\2...and then go up to a whole pill...and it worked..for the side effects anyway..
good luck

#7 Deepster

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 07:49 PM

Can't help but say "Whoaaa!" here. Whatever you are taking, is it XR, CR or any extended release form? If so, just cutting it in half or even 1/4 might not gain the effect you desire, and could even acutally result in "serotonin syndrome".....which is to be avoided!

For now, you should take the med precisesly as prescribed, unless you feel deathly ill, then,call the ER and consult with your doc tomorrow.

It's OK to take "suggestions" from a forum, just don't take them as "fact". All of us are different.

Wishing you the best,

Deepster
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#8 kassiegal

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 08:05 PM

Can't help but say "Whoaaa!" here. Whatever you are taking, is it XR, CR or any extended release form? If so, just cutting it in half or even 1/4 might not gain the effect you desire, and could even acutally result in "serotonin syndrome".....which is to be avoided!

For now, you should take the med precisesly as prescribed, unless you feel deathly ill, then,call the ER and consult with your doc tomorrow.

It's OK to take "suggestions" from a forum, just don't take them as "fact". All of us are different.

Wishing you the best,

Deepster



that is true...and I am no professional..and what works for some..wont work for others...
..when I started prozac...i was sick for a few days...flu like...but with prozac..you can not split in half, or I might of..
I toughed it out, and the flu like symptons did go away....
but I agree....call ER or your Doc first...

#9 americandownunder

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 09:11 PM

I had serotonin syndrome once. I got it from combining two anti-depressants (it was a while ago, but I'm pretty sure one of them was Lexapro, and the other was Luvox - which apparently has a particularly high risk of serotonin syndrome.)

My symptoms were exactly the symptoms you described, along with some really terrible gut issues. They started mild, and got progressively worse and worse, until I knew something was very wrong. I went to my doctor, who took me off the Luvox immediately, cold turkey.

I am not a doctor, so I can't diagnose you! It seems unusual to me that you would get it that quickly when you've been on anti-depressants before; and I've generally only heard of it happening when you combine two drugs, or take an enormous amount of an illegal serotonin boosting drug. But like I said, I'm not a doctor.

What I do know is that it's a serious medical issue, and if you are concerned about it and you can't reach your own doctor, it might be worth going to the ER.
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#10 Razia Sabina

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 12:39 PM

I had serotonin syndrome once. I got it from combining two anti-depressants (it was a while ago, but I'm pretty sure one of them was Lexapro, and the other was Luvox - which apparently has a particularly high risk of serotonin syndrome.)

My symptoms were exactly the symptoms you described, along with some really terrible gut issues. They started mild, and got progressively worse and worse, until I knew something was very wrong. I went to my doctor, who took me off the Luvox immediately, cold turkey.

I am not a doctor, so I can't diagnose you! It seems unusual to me that you would get it that quickly when you've been on anti-depressants before; and I've generally only heard of it happening when you combine two drugs, or take an enormous amount of an illegal serotonin boosting drug. But like I said, I'm not a doctor.

What I do know is that it's a serious medical issue, and if you are concerned about it and you can't reach your own doctor, it might be worth going to the ER.


Hello, I am new to this forum and I have been having the same types of problems. I had been on Prozac for twenty years and it stopped working for me. Now I am on Zoloft. I have been having the symptoms that were described and my doctor, because of my age 44, on Friday, he thinks I am perimenapausal. I feel extremely depressed and I am having difficulty with self care and leaving my home. I went out to meet a freind last night for only a couple hours and i was a nervous wreck! I should be at my treatment program right now, but i couldnt get out of bed this morning. I see the doctor again on Friday, wow what a birthday present, what should I tell him? I have been having problems for about 4 months and I feel like I am losing my mind. Thanks.
Trust in now, believe in dreams.

#11 kassiegal

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 01:26 PM

I had serotonin syndrome once. I got it from combining two anti-depressants (it was a while ago, but I'm pretty sure one of them was Lexapro, and the other was Luvox - which apparently has a particularly high risk of serotonin syndrome.)

My symptoms were exactly the symptoms you described, along with some really terrible gut issues. They started mild, and got progressively worse and worse, until I knew something was very wrong. I went to my doctor, who took me off the Luvox immediately, cold turkey.

I am not a doctor, so I can't diagnose you! It seems unusual to me that you would get it that quickly when you've been on anti-depressants before; and I've generally only heard of it happening when you combine two drugs, or take an enormous amount of an illegal serotonin boosting drug. But like I said, I'm not a doctor.

What I do know is that it's a serious medical issue, and if you are concerned about it and you can't reach your own doctor, it might be worth going to the ER.


Hello, I am new to this forum and I have been having the same types of problems. I had been on Prozac for twenty years and it stopped working for me. Now I am on Zoloft. I have been having the symptoms that were described and my doctor, because of my age 44, on Friday, he thinks I am perimenapausal. I feel extremely depressed and I am having difficulty with self care and leaving my home. I went out to meet a freind last night for only a couple hours and i was a nervous wreck! I should be at my treatment program right now, but i couldnt get out of bed this morning. I see the doctor again on Friday, wow what a birthday present, what should I tell him? I have been having problems for about 4 months and I feel like I am losing my mind. Thanks.


OH..that sounds so like me..I am 46, and have been on prozac for over 4 months now...I never thought of premienapausal..I could very well be too...which probably makes going thru this worse
I hate to leave my house to...and it has been like this since I was laid off....

#12 kirkwuk

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Posted 31 October 2009 - 06:31 AM

This sounds like an anxiety attack rather than Serotonin Syndrome. For I went through the same thing with some SSRI's. The first thing I thought was there's something wrong with my brain chemistry.

But these attacks can simply be start-up issues, they may subside or may not. That's the nature of these meds I'm afraid.

There are meds which work just as good as SSRI's for some people.

Good luck.
Beating depression since 2007




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