I've been off Venlafaxine for a month now.

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The first week after stopping 37.5mg (after 1 year @75mg daily - I tapered in the last 4 weeks to 37.5mg pd then alternate days) I can honestly say that I've had none of the withdrawal symptoms that others have described here: no dizziness, no brain zaps, no depression. What I have noticed is that I'm not groggy during the day ( but especially in the morning). Effexor didn't reduce the back and hip pain level which is still about 3/10. Dr reckons the best thing is to exercise and live with it. Better that than being dopey.

If you are coming off, take it s-l-o-w-l-y: be patient 

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  • Posted

    HI Ian

    I'm currenty about to start tappering off to 37.5mg, I was going to alternate taking 75mg on day then 37.5mg for a few weeks, see how that goes, then try 37.5mg every day for a few weeks, then nreak the 37.5mg in half and again alternate the doseage.

    Is this what you did?

    I want to come off them and work wise I can't afford to take any time off and don't have time for the horrid crippling side effects, I'm just scared that even slowly tapperig off the medication I'm just prolonging the enevitable witharawal brain zaps etc.!

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    • Posted

      Your best bet is going to 37.5mg and seeing how you do. Spend as much time as you can there and stay there until you're ready to come off it. Talk to your doctor if you experience bad symptoms as they may be able to help you with getting off it by prescribing something else to ease the symptoms. Though sometimes simple things like water/hot cup of tea, good meal or a couple of paracetamol can really help get you out of feeling like absolute poop both physiologically and mentally.

      Whatever you do; *do not* break an extended release capsule. It will do you more harm than good. With the XR version it is supposed to 'trickle' into your body over a 24 hour period and if you compromise the tablet shell then you'll likely get all of the dose it at once.

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    • Posted

      Hi Katy, I basically used two principles when coming off Venlaflaxine. The first was to take time and don't rush. The second principle was to listen to your body. If that meant staying on one level for a bit longer, then that was OK.

      This one proved to be correct right at the end. Instead of taking tabs every second day for a fortnight, I decided to go cold turkey.When I did that, I did have a couple of wobbly days: tears, feeling crappy etc. and, on reflection, maybe I should have listened ... but I didn't.

      The good news was that after 3 days of going cold, I started to feel better - less sleepy etc. I think chris40927 (below) is on the money. 

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  • Posted

    I got the same response from my doc when I said I had issues with Effexor making me tired or as you say 'dopey' :P. TBH I usually just slept through the morning grogginess but then again I reclused a lot whilst I was at 150mg.

    You could try buprenorphine for back/hip pain but I imagine they'll make you jump through some hoops to get on it. The best part is that it is being investigated as a potential treatment for depression/anxiety and showing really, really good results. So if you weren't just taking venlafaxine for pain but for pain and depression/anxiety it could be a really good option.

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