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katrinasurvivor

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About katrinasurvivor

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  1. I'm sorry you've been having such a difficult time. I hope you've seen some improvement since you posted this. I really sympathize with what you're going through, even though I have no experience with those particular drugs other than Remeron, which is sedating at low doses. I hope it helps you sleeps and may help with the anxiety. Everyone is different. I, too, have hypothyroidism and have to take Synthroid. Has your doctor checked your Synthroid levels lately? Too much Synthroid can make you anxious and even have tremors. The usual Synthroid lab test is not as good as the Free T-3 test. You can request that. It gives a better picture of how your body is actually processing the Synthroid. When you said how alone and afraid you were, it reminded me of something I said to my husband only last night. I've been on the same generic of bupropion (Wellbutrin) for many years, and suddenly, the manufacturer stopped making it. I've tried 3 other generic versions of bupropion with disastrous results. I couldn't take the side effects. I'm back on the last of my stash of the old stuff, but eventually it will run out. I have to find a replacement, because I have to take this drug. It's the only one that has worked for my depression. Buy grandchildren spent the night this weekend, and I was holding myself together with scotch tape and rubber bands for their sake. We try to remain functional for the sake of our families, but it can be so-o-o difficult. No one understands how hard it is. I hope you will post and let me know how you're doing now.
  2. I was first prescribed Wellbutrin over 20 years ago, and it was the only drug that helped my terrible suicidal depression. This was not my first depressive episode, but it was the worst. They had tried every drug on the market and nothing worked. I even had shock treatments, which didn't work, either. Wellbutrin had just come on the market and when they tried it, it was almost miraculous. The depression dissipated and I've been on it ever since (I suffer from major depressive disorder). When generic Wellbutrin became available, I started taking Mylan bupropion and there was a smooth transition. No problems. Suddenly, last year, the stores of Mylan started to dry up. I found out, to my dismay, that Mylan had decided to stop making all of their bupropion products in June of 2018. I've managed to stockpile some from various sources, but I've been trying other generics to find one that worked for me. I never expected it to be such an ordeal and I'm feeling hopeless. I was first given Solco, which made me nauseated, gave me headaches and drove my blood pressure sky high. My doctor tried to tell me that I was "anticipating" a problem and that it was a "self-fulfilling" prophecy. He was so wrong. I was busy and focused on other things and was confounded by why I was suddenly so nauseated and miserable and didn't even think to check my blood pressure until I began to suspect, after several weeks, that the new generic bupropion might be the problem. I had enough Mylan that I was able to go back on it, but it took a month for my blood pressure to normalize. Then I tried Watson. At first, I thought it would be okay, but quickly discovered that it's sustained release properties were a joke. It would take me up very quickly and drop me like a lead balloon 8 hours later. I couldn't stay awake in the afternoon. But the worst thing was that after about a week, I became extremely depressed again. I went back on Mylan until I stabilized again, then I tried Sandoz. At first I thought I had found the magic bullet. It is genuinely sustained release. I'm on a high dose (400mg SR daily) and I did have some issues with nausea and tinnitus, but figured I could work around those things. I didn't become depressed, but after exactly a month on Sandoz, I became extremely constipated. I was forced to take a lot of laxatives. I didn't want to believe that it was the Sandoz. After several weeks, my husband suggested that it might be the Sandoz, but I was still reluctant to accept it. I didn't want to try another generic bupropion. So I toughed it out for another 2 months on Sandoz, but finally, the combination of nausea, tinnitus, and especially the constipation drove me back on Mylan. I've been on Mylan now for 2 weeks, but I'm still having constipation issues. I hope that it will get better after I've been back on Mylan longer. I've been lucky, my mail-order pharmacy has been able to supply me with Mylan, but I know that will run out eventually. I've been buying the other generics out-of-pocket in order to try them because my insurance company wouldn't pay for both the Mylan and the other generic at the same time. I want to keep getting Mylan as long as they will send it to me, but I have to find another generic that I can tolerate and that will work for me. I'm terrified that I will go back into the awful depression that I've experienced before. I've been reading hundreds of accounts of people's experiences with different generics of bupropion. I know that what works for some won't necessarily work for another. I've read some good things about Anchen, and wondered if I should try it next. My doctor is prepared to go through the authorization process for the brand name, but I know the insurance company will fight it. Can anyone help or advise me?
  3. Brain zaps aren't unusual during withdrawal. The only way I know to lessen the symptoms of withdrawal are to go slowly and drop down in small increments. Anyone going through the misery of withdrawal has my complete sympathy! Good luck!!!!!!!
  4. I'm glad you thought it was worth posting. And congrats on your Paxil taper! It is possible to get off of Aciphex - if you do it slowly enough. The first month I dropped half a pill a week. I kept on with small reductions each month but soon had to cut the pills into quarters. In the end, I was taking 1/4 every three days. I think that's the point at which I stopped. The discomfort I experienced was mild. I hope you will find it encouraging that others have managed to get off of Aciphex. And I was on it for almost 10 years! I hope others will share their experiences and insights about this topic. So many of us are struggling with this issue. We can learn so much from each other and benefit so much from the support of others.
  5. What is your experience in tapering off of psych drugs? I have been working on withdrawal from several drugs for a number of years. I was first able to get off of Risperdal but it took me several tries over several months. I finally learned the 10% rule. My tapering of Risperdal went very well and I was off of it in only a few months - probably because I was on a low dose and hadn't been on it very long. Librium is a different story. I've been taking it for a long time. I knew nothing about withdrawal from benzos and didn't realize that I had become dependent on this drug. I tried to just stop taking it. Very bad idea. Luckily, about 4 days after I stopped, I realized that it was a bad idea so I reinstated. It has taken me many tries over the years to get from 40mg a day to the low dose I'm on now - 5mg over 4 days (I open the capsule and put the contents in applesauce and divide that equally over 4 days). The first time I tried to taper Librium (not the cold turkey time), I tapered too much, too quickly (4 months) and had all sorts of strange and very unpleasant things happening to me that I didn't realize were withdrawal symptoms. My blood pressure became dangerously high - and I'm already taking high doses of blood pressure medications - so I reinstated up to 15mg. That's what it took to manage my blood pressure - along with the anxiety and all the other nasty withdrawal symptoms. When I finally began a successful taper, I learned that if withdrawal was too uncomfortable or I was going though a stressful time, I could just stop tapering for awhile. I've also managed to get off of Aciphex. I tapered by very small amounts and wouldn't taper again for a month. It took me over a year to come off of it completely. But I was able to do it with little discomfort. Now I'm embarking on a new taper: Remeron. Like with all of these types of medications, if you read the posts of people who have cold-turkeyed or tapered too quickly, it can be pretty scary. I have been one of those people who cold turkeyed, so I'm not being critical of those who've done this. I had to inform myself about withdrawal symptoms for each drug (each person is different so we don't all experience the same ones.) Then I had to learn to be patient. We all want to get off of these drugs NOW. I may not be able to taper Remeron right now because I'm still tapering the Librium. It's usually not a good idea to taper two at once - it compounds the withdrawal symptoms and you don't know which is from which drug. If it turns out to be a bad idea, I'll just go back to my regular dose of Remeron until I've completed my Librium withdrawal. But here's what I've learned from successfully tapering several drugs: the more slowly you taper, the less you will suffer. Taper no more than the recommended 10% a month. I have experienced some discomfort, but nothing intolerable. By doing this, each time I taper, I know when to expect the withdrawal symptoms to begin, what they will be and how long they will last. Withdrawal doesn't have to be a nightmare. I know it's always a bit daunting when you start tapering a new one because you don't know what to expect. I don't know quite what to expect with Remeron. I'm being extremely cautious. I'm tapering from 45 mg to 39 (7/8 of a tablet - achieved by splitting and crushing part of a tablet in applesauce) every other day. This is only about a 3% decrease. I'm only putting a pinky toe in to see what will happen. I want to note that while I have my physician's okay to do the applesauce suspension with Librium and Remeron (not together), you should check with your doctor before doing this. Tapers can get tricky as you go lower and the pills no longer come in reduced doses and splitting becomes problematic. Pharmacists tend to tell you that you can't split or crush pills regardless of whether or not it's really contraindicated. You need to understand the medication you are tapering. Is it time release? Does it have a coating that, once broken, may speed up absorption? Some physicians advise that even some of these can be split. But you need to know. Education is your friend when tapering. And it's not just about reading all the scary withdrawal stories. Familiarize yourself with possible withdrawal symptoms. You probably won't experience them all. Everyone is different in what they experience in withdrawal. Don't let anyone tell you that you aren't experiencing what you know you are! Whatever withdrawal symptoms you experience, if you go slowly enough, they won't be too bad. Anytime you feel withdrawal is too uncomfortable, stop tapering. If you realize you've made too big a drop, you may need to go back to your last dose, stabilize, and rethink how you might make the next taper a smaller one. Don't despair. You'll get there. Slow and steady wins the race. And importantly, you are not alone! I know it feels like it sometimes, but there are a lot of us out here going through the same sorts of things. That's part of the reason I wanted to start this thread. To see how others are managing withdrawal from their medications. To share our experiences and help each other.
  6. I hope you had a fantastic day :)

  7. ((((((((Broken)))))))) I hear the pain in what you've written and I know that pain. My circumstances aren't exactly the same as yours, but I've had to cope with depression and anxiety all of my adult life - in addition to which we have to try to cope with the things life throws at us as well. I'm going through a particularly stressful time myself so I know how hopeless it can feel. I think it's important that you mention that you may be perimenopausal. It was at that stage of my life that I experienced the worst depression of my entire life. Had I known I was perimenopausal (I was fairly young), the appropriate treatment probably would've been hormones. I think that could've changed my life. I think it's important that you consult an OB-GYN. Your hormone levels can be checked. Some doctors are ambivalent about giving women hormones now but the studies are equivocal. Given that your depression is so severe, I think it's very possible that hormones (or lack of them) may be playing a large part. Find a doctor who is understanding of your situation. This isn't just about hot flashes. I know what this can do to you in terms of depression. It was only after the fact that I realized that it was my pre-menopausal condition that caused my prolonged, severe depression. No anti-depressants helped me during that time but I feel that hormone therapy would have. I understand how you feel about your son, I have an only son who lives quite far away (he's older and married) and I miss him very much, too. I understand your not wanting to let go of your son but I've always believed that if we cling to our children too hard they will try even more to pull away. Maybe you and he could find a college that isn't right in town, but close enough for him to come home on weekends. Something that isn't as far away as Canada. I know from going through the college search with my son that the kids can get really psyched about one school, then visit another that they find they like even better. It's an exciting time for them. See if you and he can find a compromise that he can be happy with. If he's unhappy with the choice he may come to resent having given in. But that's not what you're asking for right now. I get it. I'm so low right now you could scrape me off the floor. I've been here many, many times. I have health issues, too, and that makes everything even worse. You start to wonder just how much you can take. If I told you the circumstances I'm in right now it would blow your mind. But this isn't about me. I know you've said you've tried therapy before, and I know this sounds like a broken record, but you really, really need someone to talk to about all of this. I've been in therapy off and on most of my life. Some counselors were bad, some okay , some good and some terrific. If you find yourself with one that you don't connect with, then find another. They can provide you with a lifeboat when you feel you're going under for the third time. Just being able to tell someone how much pain you're in is a relief. Our husbands, friends, children and other family know - but they are emotionally involved. There is just so much they can bear to hear. A good counselor can allow you to grieve and hear your pain, offer solace and often - give you good advice. So try again. I could not survive the situation I'm in now if it were not for my therapist. Please try again to find someone with whom you feel comfortable. Suicide, though I understand those feelings, isn't the answer. It's something from which your son would never fully recover. It doesn't matter that he isn't a small child anymore. He still needs you more than you know. And he will continue to need you. Your husband and mother love and need you, too. I'm sure you know that. I hope you find some relief. Please make an appointment with an OB-GYN right away. Then make an appointment with a new therapist and try again. I really do know how you feel and I want you to find relief from the pain you are in. Let us know what happens. ks
  8. I found that the groggy feeling from Remeron went away for me after about 3 weeks. I'd hang in there if I were you and give it a chance because it has proven to be a safe and effective drug for me without the yucky side effects of many of the other AD's. Good Luck!
  9. I'd never recommend the cold turkey approach on any these kinds of meds, though I've had doctors try to tell me to do it that way. Instead I've weaned myself off. Even so, withdrawal symptoms can definitely be unpleasant, and, as noted, it does depend somewhat on how long you have been taking a particular medication. I can only assume that the doctors who tell us to stop "cold turkey" have never tried to do it themselves. But to answer your question ... my experience is that the first week is the worst, the second a bit better and third less unpleasant. By week four you will usually find yourself at least at a level that is tolerable. But it's really that first week to ten days that can be really awful. So after 7 days, you have been through the worst of it and in a few days you should be feeling somewhat better. The worst of the withdrawal is probably over for you. I hope this helps and I hope you start feeling better very soon. ks
  10. Technically, SR's shouldn't be cut, but if you only cut the pill and don't crush it or chew it, it still retains many of its SR qualities. I've had a doctor tell me that it does get into your blood stream a bit faster when I asked the same question. I'd be cautious about cutting SR's and XR's, but do your research (sounds like you have) and talk to your doctor. Different doctors will tell you different things about this and it does depend on the particular drug you are taking. I'm just curious, but since the pill you are taking is sustained release, is there a reason why you don't just take the 150 pill in the morning? Since it is sustained release it should carry you through the day without having to take a second dose if you feel 150 mg is an adequate daily dose. Good luck!
  11. I went through a terrible, year-long episode of depression some years ago - the worst I had ever experienced. They tried every drug available at the time and nothing worked - even those that had helped in the past. Even ECT was tried but didn't work. Wellbutrin was a new drug and shortly after I began taking it I experienced a dramatic improvement. I've never experienced any negative side-effects from it. I've tried other drugs, but none that, for me at least, were as safe and effective as Wellbutrin. I does tend to energize you (not in a bad way), so I take Remeron to help me sleep. The combination of these two drugs has been nothing short of miraculous for me. There have been no sexual side effects from either. These drugs have been around now for some time so the side-effects are well-known. I like that aspect. But if you've been on Lexapro for 7 years, make sure to go off it slowly and at your own pace - sometimes doctors want to rush you. Everyone is different. I, too, have struggled with anxiety, panic attacks and depression all my life and nothing has helped me like Wellbutrin. As I said, I also like the fact that there are no sexual side effects with this drug. Good luck!
  12. Hi! Wow! No sleep in 8 days! That and the other things you describe - sounds as though you may be going through a manic episode. That can happen sometimes on a new anti-depressant. I urge you to call your doctor ASAP and let him or her what's going on - the highs and the not sleeping especially. Please post and let us know how you're doing. ks P.S. I just read your post for last week. Please hang in. There are many of us here who understand that feeling of dispair. Please keep posting. Please keep reaching out.
  13. Hey hun. How are you doing. Long time no hear again! Hope all is well and things are on track for you. Love always, Missy

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