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steveOZ

Gastro Side Effects From Cymbalta

19 posts in this topic

Posted

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Hello. I'm new here and looking for a bit of help

I've just started Cymbalta as my psychiatrist told me it would help my fibro, IBS, OCD, anxiety and major depression but I appear to be getting some gastro side effects from it, namely diarrhea. I've managed to get it under control by using heaps of probiotics and basically eating zero fat which appears to trigger it but I think I'm reaching my threshold for putting up with this.

I was on 30mg for a week and went up to 60 mg last Wednesday. I don't really know what to do. I felt some positive effects 3-4 hours after I took my first capsule so I'm hopeful it will work for me and there is nothing I would like more than some relief from my problems but as I said I'm sick of the side effects and I'm worried about the health effects of eating 100% fat free. I rely on a bit of coconut oil each day for my IBS so this dilemma is really unhelpful!

Can anyone give me some advice? My next appointment with the psychiatrist is next week.

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Posted

Hi steveOZ,

I'm sorry to hear that you're experiencing an unpleasant side effect. I've been taking Cymbalta for about 16 months, and I had similar issues when I first started 30mg, and then again when I increased to 60mg. After a few weeks, the symptom subsided; I no longer notice any side effects from Cymbalta. It is possible that, given your prior IBS, that the Cymbalta is exacerbating it; on the other hand, it could just be due to Cymbalta's activation phase as you adjust to the new dose. I would give it a few more weeks before drawing any conclusions. If you continue to experience GI problems, discuss them with your doctor.

I hope this helps. Good luck!

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Posted (edited)

Hi steveOZ,

I am not a doctor but maybe you can discuss decreasing the dosage since you went from 30mgs to 60mgs after a week. Maybe your body needs a little more time adjusting with a lower dosage if that is the cause of the gastro issues. Call your doctor tell him the symptoms are too bothersome and causing you great discomfort if you can't wait to see before the scheduled time.

Then there is the possibility he may decide to try you on something else if you can't deal with the side effects. There are other meds and it takes time finding what will work for you. Wish you the best and hope maybe cymbalta will work for you.

Lindahurt

Edited by lindahurt

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Posted

thanks for the replies

the symptoms appeared when I was on 30mg so I doubt going back to that dose would do much to reduce the side effects. I think I'm just going to tough it out a bit longer and hope I see some improvement. Fingers and toes crossed.

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Posted

Hey Steve,

I was on cymbalta a few years ago. I almost stopped taking it SO many times during the first few weeks. I had just about every horrible side effect you can imagine. Also, the withdrawl symptoms you get when going off it are AWFUL. But I think you experience that with most drugs.

I would say you should definitely try to tough it out for now. The side effects will most likely start to minimize in time, and the benefits of the drug really are great. I can't remember exactly how long I had issues when I started taking it but it was at least 2 or 3 weeks, maybe a little longer. But after that I felt so much better, no more issues with the side effects and the drug itself really improved my life.

I hope everything works out for you, and like Linda said, you can always try going on something else. I now take wellbutrin and it doesn't seem to help my problems as much as cymbalta, but I have almost no side effects other than decreased appetite. I'm sure you will figure something out :)

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Posted

thanks kitten. I really feel like giving up today though it's all getting a bit much. I think I'll ring my psychiatrist and see what he says.

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Posted

thanks kitten. I really feel like giving up today though it's all getting a bit much. I think I'll ring my psychiatrist and see what he says.

I understand. I lost THIRTY pounds in less than two months on Cym. I felt like I was floating around in a hazy cloud for weeks. It was definitely "a bit much", but for me personally it was worth it once the side effects wore off. I also did have the stomach problems you are speaking of (probably cause for the weight loss). Also, my fiancee went on 2 different meds and had the same stomach issue on both, so I think a lot of these meds are just going to be hard to start. I hope you don't give up hope too soon.

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Posted

It is me, sad kitten :) I just remembered my old account name when I typed that last post. If you search for posts from this name there is a post about Cymbalta that I participated in that may be helpful to you. I think it was like "my journey with cymbalta or something similar.

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Posted

thanks for the encouragement kitten.

I couldn't seem to find the topic you were talking about it's not showing up

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Posted

try this?

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Posted (edited)

I'm three weeks in and the side effects are still there. This is getting annoying!

The doc wants me to go up to 90mg now. I don't know what to do. Just so over everything.

Edited by steveOZ

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Posted

Just came to check and see how you're doing. I'm not a Dr, but I would think if your side effects aren't improving after 3 weeks your Dr would at the very least keep you at the same dose. If I were you I would set a date (like Christmas, or Jan 1, or whatever sounds good to you) that you are willing to try staying on the meds until that date, but if it doesn't get better you should talk to the Dr about switching. Like I said, I do remember that I had issues for a little while after I started and they were AWFUL and I'm glad i toughed it out. So it's really hard to say what to do. I believe I did set a date for myself and I got to it and felt better, but it was really hard getting to that date :( I hope you start feeling better soon!

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Posted

Hi SteveOZ,

I too had some pretty intense side effects when I started Cymbalta, but I very slowly increased my dosage. I stayed on 30 for about 6 months before I increased my dosage to 60 and eventually 90. At about four weeks, my side effects subsided and everyday got a little better. I've been happy with this medication for four years, but can relate to what you are going through. My biggest problem was loss of appetite, insomnia and increased anxiety.

I do hope things start to look up for you!

Sincerely,

MaddieLouise

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Posted

thanks for talking to me ladies, I'm isolated at the moment so it's a big help.

I decided I've reached my threshold for putting up with the side effects today. I rang my psychiatrist and said I wanted off the Cymbalta, he wasn't keen on the idea but I insisted so we've agreed to end it and maybe we'll try something else. It's a shame because I was starting to feel a little a bit of energy coming through but the gastro stuff was just ruining that for me, it just didn't look like it was going to go away.

Oh well!

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Posted

I have IBS and have been on Cymbalta, hopefully just for another few days. One problem with Cymbalta is its time release, if you have IBS D, basically you could end up not getting your dose into your body. It has happened for me, and need to augment it with more klonopin.

If you have IBS D, ask your dr, or preferrably a gastro about Rifaximin, it is an antibiotic that focuses on the GI track, used for travellers diarrhea. Good stuff, in the US it is brand name only so it is expensive to get, but I had my dr write a script to Canada.

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Posted

thanks for the tip about Rifaximin :)

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Posted

Aw, I'm sorry to hear you decided to stop taking it, but I completely understand. I really hope you can work with your dr to find something that helps you. Don't give up! And if you ever need to talk, I'm here. I know what it's like to be completely isolated! If I didn't live with my fiance I would probably never speak to anyone! It's a sucky place to be, but it's hard to want to talk to people when you are so miserable, especially people who don't understand how you are feeling! So please don't ever hesitate to send me a message if you need a friend. :hugs:

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Posted

Aw, I'm sorry to hear you decided to stop taking it, but I completely understand. I really hope you can work with your dr to find something that helps you. Don't give up! And if you ever need to talk, I'm here. I know what it's like to be completely isolated! If I didn't live with my fiance I would probably never speak to anyone! It's a sucky place to be, but it's hard to want to talk to people when you are so miserable, especially people who don't understand how you are feeling! So please don't ever hesitate to send me a message if you need a friend. :hugs:

thanks kat, you're a kind soul :smile:

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Posted

thanks for talking to me ladies, I'm isolated at the moment so it's a big help.

I decided I've reached my threshold for putting up with the side effects today. I rang my psychiatrist and said I wanted off the Cymbalta, he wasn't keen on the idea but I insisted so we've agreed to end it and maybe we'll try something else. It's a shame because I was starting to feel a little a bit of energy coming through but the gastro stuff was just ruining that for me, it just didn't look like it was going to go away.

Oh well!

So sorry about such terrible gastro problems, yet I think you've gotten some good advice about potential IBS meds. Maybe the two would allow you to continue the Cymbalta.

Anyway, keep in touch with whichever med. you change to and post to let us know how you are doing.

Sincerely,

MaddieLouise

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