I thought I might start a taper before I go to the neurologist to start new meds and because it doesn't help the nerve pain. After looking up all the side effects I'm so scared!!! What have other doctors recommended? Has anyone come off without brutal side effects? I've been on about 2 months at 30 mg per day. If I had known how horrible the withdrawal is I don't think I would have started. Any input?
Deb, my doctor mentioned that with cymbalta if you stop taking it you will have immediate withdrawals within 24 hours. The med does not stay in your body like for instance prozac. You can stop prozac and 2 weeks later it is still in your blood stream which is why cymbalta is harder to come off.
Personally, I would not try to do this on your own and I would contact whoever is writing your scripts for it and ask for help discontinuing it.
Hello, deb...I posted about going to my doctor on Wednesday, instead of Friday because of new symptoms, and she asked about my pain levels. I told her that the hydrocodone helps take the edge off of the pain, but that is all that I was experiencing. At the end of my appointment, she gave me a two-month prescription for the hydrocodone but not for the Cymbalta, since I wasn't receiving adequate enough pain relief. I was taking 30 mg for the first week, then 60 mg for the past three weeks. I am also wondering what the withdrawal symptoms will be and if they will be severe. I will continue to keep everyone updated about my symptoms and condition.
Hello, pepper...I am very worried about the withdrawal symptoms! It has been two days, since I have last taken the Cymbalta. Unfortunately, I don't have any capsules left. I had taken the last one the day before my appointment. I didn't get to talk to my doctor about the withdrawal symptoms because after my blood work and x-rays, their computer system had to be re-loaded, and it was chaotic whenever I got ready to leave! I will let everyone know how I am doing daily so that I can have help determining withdrawal symptoms...Thanks, in advance!
Well I only took 1/2 capsule yesterday without consulting the doc Last night I was nauseous, shaky, bad headache, head felt like it was "buzzing", and the weirdest dreams last night. SO...this morning I took the whole capsule and called the PM who prescribed it (should have listened to Pepper in the first place). Well, this is the doc I don't like....he said he would have to talk to my surgeon on Tuesday when he returns. How can a doctor refuse to take me off a med I want to come off of ?????? I'm not sure it is anyone's decision except mine if I want to come OFF a drug. One thing for sure I won't attempt to come off again without having a doc invovled. So I'll continue to take it till Tuesday.
Tam, let me know how you are!! You were on the Cymbalta for 3 weeks? I finally looked back and I have been on since the first week of November, so I guess about 10-11 weeks. Are you having any withdrawal symptoms? Good luck. I was reading online and one woman posted that she was a heroin addict many, many years ago and that coming off Cymbalta was worse than herion withdrawal!! Isn't that just great?
Can you really take half a capsule? So sorry to hear you had nasty side effects, but pleased to hear you will wait until you talk to your doc and get more info on how to safely stop taking it and minimize the side-effects. These drugs work differently for everyone and one person can stop cold while another cannot.
Sometimes you'll want to take the amount of time it took to get up to your recommended dosage and take that same amount of time to get off the drug. Some people aren't affected; you can usually tell within a day or two if you're going to be sensitive. Then you need to take precautions to withdraw very slowly.
When I started the med the doc said to start with half for a week.....just open the capsule, dump half out and close it back! But I definitely will not be weaning without the doc giving specific instructions. Seemed like a good idea at the time.
MM...thanks for the info...makes sense that it takes the same amount of time to wean as it took to work up to full dose. I hadn't really thought of that.
Tam...any withdrawal symptoms yet? I hope you are one of the ones who can just stop without any nasty side effects.
wow deb,this doc actually TOLD you to open the cap and dump out half??now i have heard everything.no patient should ever be told by any doc to actually open any capsule type of med and then dump out and actually take it?that is tampering with an intended delivery system.it doesn't matter what it is.you know what i mean?i am hoping this is the idiot doc you were seeing?i think it was MM who told you the basic rule of thumb with certain types of tapered meds?that is kind of true with certain ones(definitely with any type of real benzo like with say,valium? just very very slow taper there) but with others you can go a bit more quickly BUT it comes down to how YOU do with the tapering schedule realistically.i HAD to do a very rapid taper off that crap only because my legs would not stop spasming on it.the best way to really go with cymbalta would be a definite slow taper by dropping down a dose like once a week til taperd completely off.but that again all depends on how YOU are doing with it.if you drop and the side effects are too much,you can stay at that dose til your body gets more used to that drop,then try it again the next week or something.its all in how you yourself respond and not actually some sort of set in stone type of schedule,you know what i mean?since you cannot actually speak with this doc at this point,just call your pharmacy and ask them for some guidance here on the best way to appraoch this.tell them you just cannot take it anymore due to side effects.they should be bale to give you at least some basic guidelines til you can speak with your doc about this.you may have to actually get another dose amount rxed or something in smaller increments to even do this,but you really do need some guidance here with it.cymbalta can just have some insane side effects while coming off,just like while being on it(this also affects your seritonin too).i had alot of bad side effects coming off but in my case.i HAD to get off asap.you have just been on this for a good length of time so any tapeing will have to be much slower.i would make a call to your pharm here today and see what they have to tell you about it.your pharmacy would just really be able to give you trhe best possible guidance and how long this crap will stay in your body.this is what i would do if i were in your current situation.by the way,i would also ask them just what THEY think about what your doc told you to do with the dumping out of the half of a capsule thing?i just have never actually heard of any real doc telling any patient to do this with any capsule before.thats just crazy.as a patient,you are never ever supposed to open a cap to add or take away anything.i do believe it is actually against the law to really even go there.if your doc is actually telling patients to do this,that pharmacy really does need to know,ya know?it would just really be interseting to hear what they have to say about his 'practice' of telling patients to tamper with a delivery system of a med.you just have no real idea of just how much or how little you are really getting doing this.good luck deb.just call your pharm and do everything slowly according to how your body responds to the taper.any real taper schedule is merely a guideline not something you HAVE to follow.please keep us posted as always.Marcia
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.
Hello, everyone...I am trying to figure out where to start! I really appreciate everyone's concerns, which help with making my situation seem somewhat tolerable. I took Cymbalta for a total of four weeks...and have been off of it for I think 3 or 4 days. I can't really say if it is because of the "withdrawals" or not, but now I am unable to "stomach" my pain medication. It makes me sick to even think about having to take it! My doctor prescribed me two months worth of hydrocodone 5/500, which somewhat took the "edge" off of the pain, and I was very thankful to receive the medication. I am prescribed to take 3 daily. Now, I can't even hardly take one daily. Also, my "pain levels" are through the roof today! I am sitting here at this very moment debating whether or not to go to the emergency room because I am literally in tears...I cannot find any tolerable position to get in and am thoroughly nauseated! I am sorry to dump this on everyone, but I know I can count on everyone here to tell me their thoughts about what I am going through. I can't think straight...I can't function, at the moment...I am also in TEARS! To me, it does sound like "withdrawals", but what do you all think? I am thankful that I don't have to return to the University until Tuesday, due to the college being closed on Monday. I am also thankful to have my first neurosurgeon appointment on Tuesday at 9:30 am. My upper cervical spine is very painful today, and my hands have been numb most of the day. My lower lumbar spine is burning...Again, I am very sorry about my unfortunate major mood swing! By the way, how is everyone else doing? I sure don't want to continue to bring everyone down.
It could very well have something to do with the cymbalta -- especially the nausea. If the pain is that bad, I would call your doctor or head out to the urgent care. Please keep us posted and I pray that you feel better soon.
It has been a couple of hours, since I last posted and wanted to let everyone know how I am currently doing. I am extremely fatigued! Whenever it is time to use the restroom, I just cringe...Again, I want to apologize ahead of time about carrying on about myself because I know that there are others on here that are in a lot more pain than I am in. I also want to say that if this is due to the Cymbalta "withdrawals", then I don't even want to look at another Cymbalta capsule! First of all, my wonderful (and supportive) husband had to go out alone today, due to me being in too much pain. Whenever he arrived home, I broke down! I am very weak from the pain and nausea. I have also been crying non stop for the past few minutes, due to the uncertainty of not knowing what is fully wrong with me. My doctor also believes that I may be suffering from an auto-immune disease, such as Lupus. My husband insists that I need to take my pain medication, but I just can't stand the thought of further nausea...Also, I was wondering if anyone else here ever runs fever, without actually being sick? I often run a fever, without any other symptoms. I really hope that everyone is enjoying their weekend!
Oh dear! I am so sorry to hear how much you are suffering. Cymbalta is also an anti-depressant, so stopping it could cause all that crying/mood swings and then subsequent increase in pain. Like Pep says, it can also cause nausea (when you go on it or come off it). I can see why your hub wants you to take your pain meds because it's hard to watch someone suffer. I do hope you have some relief soon and that you at least call your doc or go to an urgent care center if there's one by you. Warm fuzzy thoughts are coming your way and a big cyber hug. It sounds like your hub has some good shoulders to cry on, so take advantage of them!
I am so sorry that you are suffering so bad. It certainly sounds like withdrawal from the Cymbalta. Certainly doesn't excite me that I have to come off of it soon myself. Your doctor did not do a taper, right? I heard it is bad even with a taper....I can't imagine what you are going through having to come off cold turkey. Oh sweetie, hang in there. I'm sending up a prayer now for you. Please try to take your pain meds....the pain will make your nausea worse. Lay in your hubbys lap and let him gently rub your head. Wrap up snug in a blanket. Decrease all external stimulation, breathe deep and try to relax. If it continues to get worse...go and get help tonight. I'm thinking of you Tam. Don't apologize for telling us what is happening. Vent all you want. Keep posting girl so we don't worry about you.
I agree with Pepper. My advice is to hit things hard. I would go to an ER. Get an IV so you can get meds for nausea and pain and scripts to taper off the Cymbalta (the pain is bad because it is now uncontrolled after missing your normal doses of pain meds). I think the Cymbalta pretty much HAS to be tapered in many cases due to the withdrawal problem associated with it. Don't worry. They will not think you are foolish for seeking help. You still have to get through Sunday before you can get to a doctor's office. Wishing you the best.
Last edited by CaliGirl; 01-19-2008 at 09:20 PM.