After 15yrs of 175mg amitriptyline nightly I had to stop 3 weeks ago, no sleep since

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I had a seizure 3 weeks ago and my neurologist stopped me taking 175mg immediately. I haven't slept since, feel constantly nauseas and dizzy. She snapped that I'd be "over it in 6 weeks". I've been taking that dose for 15 years. Has anyone else been forced to go cold turkey after such a high dose for so long? How long did it take to feel better?

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8 Replies

  • Posted

    You cannot stop such a dosage as high as what you are on cold turkey. That is dangerous. Speak to your dr again or get a 2nd opinion.
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    • Posted

      Thank you for replying Stephen, I've left a post answering Elizabeth below, basically two medical practitioners want me off amitriptyline for two different reasons. I will keep posting with my symptoms/experience and if I find any supplements or dietary info that help in case it helps anyone else going through something similar.
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  • Posted

    I agree with Stephen, your brain has been used to a very dose for 15 years and you are bound to have a severe withdrawal from this. I assume your neurologist thinks the Amitriptyline caused your seizure yet it appears from what you say she hasn't explained things properly to you or taken into account that after having the shock of a seizure, followed by sudden withdrawal of this drug it may have been wiser to talk you through this and the effects you should expect, sleeplessness being only one. Do talk to your GP and get as much information as you can followed by full support and/or a changeover to another medication that could help you. I wish you all the best and do let us know how you get on
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    • Posted

      Thank you for replying. Unfortunately my GP is no use either because I suffered a mild heart attack and amitriptyline also affects the heart so he is keen to stop me taking it as well. Mostly my symptoms seem to be insomnia and nausea. I've had no amitriptyline for 16 days now and slept for 4 hours last night, a record for me at the moment. I keep wondering if things will get worse. I'll keep you posted.
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    • Posted

      Im still surprised by the dr's advice by just suddenly stopping it, especially such a high dosage as you are on. It would have been better had he/she gradually reduced your dosage before coming off it altogether.
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  • Posted

    I'm also surprised that despite the heart risk that you have not been allowed to come off gradually. My friend has heart problems for years and yet her GP allows Amitriptyline on a smaller dose. I know we shouldn't draw parallells because all cases are different yet it is a small risk to allow you to taper off. You are obviously suffering and I guess 16 days cold turkey has already passed but I doubt you will find anyone out there or on here who has gone through the same thing. My feeling is that you should get a second opinion even at this late stage. There must be something you can be given to help you through this awful stage because lack of sleep and anxiety are just as harmful. 
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  • Posted

    Obviously your doctor is an arrogant idiot that never has to suffer in her life. I've been off the taper for 4 months now and still can only sleep maybe 4 hours at most. For the first 2 months I were not able to sleep at all.
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    • Posted

      Hi Saoirse

      Sorry you're having a bad time with it. It is awful. I'm taking a homeopathic sleep remedy and although I still have sleepless nights I can manage 6 hours a few days a week. It's been over a month now. The doctors refuse to use the word withdrawal and call it "discontinuation syndrome" which lasts at most, "a few weeks". Ha! What do they know?

      Thanks for your reply.

      Take care

      Diane

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