Mirtazipine withdrawal hell - need some help!

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Hi everyone,

I have been off MZP now for 18 days. I was on 15mg for around a year (just under) for anxiety disorder and depression. My neurologist had brought me off it as he was worried it could be the cause of brain condition I have (iih). I took a tablet every other night for about 2 weeks then broke the tablet in half and went to every three or four days on the 7.5mg for about 14 days more. This was 18 days ago. I am experiencing withdrawal hell and have been so horrendously ill I am getting very depressed again and anxious about working. I have extreme nausea, stomach cramps, headaches, diarrhoea, and the worst most prominent symptom is the travel sickness! I can barely look at my phone/watch TV/socialise, i can't drive and I certainly can't work. This is really getting me down.

Has anyone been through anything similar and know when I may start feeling better? I am in such a hole at the moment and can't function in day to day life. My holiday last week was ruined because of it and my 21St birthday.

The doc has also switched me onto 20mg of propranolol in the mean time. I'm pretty sure I got these withdrawal symptoms before I started my new tablets.

Any help is appreciated!

L

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12 Replies

  • Posted

    HiLj,

    Sounds pretty awful. I think that the rule of thumb is a 10% cut every 2-3 weeks. If there are too many side effects, 10% every 3-4 weeks (very slow).  You may need to talk to a doctor about what to do now.  Good luck.

    I'm starting a downward titration as a yesterday (22.5 mg / 3 weeks & continue until zero for 10-12 weeks) I've been on Mirtazapine for 15 years, now I think it is causing too many side effects to ignore.  The very best to you, Mirtz can be a difficult drug to stop.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for your reply karin,

      I wish we'd been told these before we went on them in the first place! I think I'd have thought twice about going onto it in the first place.

      15 years is a long time - do you mind me asking what you were on them for? I loved them as an antianxiety drug but coming off them is a nightmare

      L

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  • Posted

    I must have been very lucky then, my GP put me on mirt for sleep probs, I didn't realise a major side effect was weight gain, I'd been on the approx 28 months at 30mg a night. I cut them out over about 12-14 days and had no WD symptoms at all. I didn't sleep at all for a few nights, but my sleep is really quite good now, much better than before I was prescribed them, I'm hoping that they had over the time got me into a better sleep pattern. I would never go back on them again, really struggling now to lose the weight I gained whilst on them, after the first 5lbs fell off its now a struggle, but still very very glad I'm no longer on them. They weren't prescribed for anxiety or depression so I wonder if this is the reason it wasn't hard to quit

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    • Posted

      Hi rosie

      Thanks for your reply. Weight gain was definitely something I noticed! I was always underweight and v slim. Only just made it into a size 8 when I went on the tablets now after being on them 10 months I am a size 12 (lost a bit already and back down to in between sizes though) I really didn't realise when they said weight gain how much it would mean. At the time it was a worthwhile trade off for how bad I was and even now it is the least concerning withdrawal symptom for me!

      Good luck to you.

      L x

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  • Posted

    Hi,

    You asked what I prescribed the Mirtazapine for - a sleep disorder, anxiety & depression. I have had changes in the dose over the years but same medication.  I'm a little nervous as I just started my titration - I've been on 22.5 from 30. A long ways to go still.

    How does a person know about the side effects of a medication? Now I check everything on line. I just found out (accidently) that I should not be taking Advil because it can cause serious kidney problems...

    I started my downward titration a couple of weeks ago (30 mg to 22.5 mg) - a long ways to go. I did inform the doctor  that I wanted 3 weeks for each cut, rather than his 2 week time frame. It's really the small cuts that concern me, I've been as low as 7.5 before. If you are in the UK you are fortunate to have the liquid med available, that should help when you get into the low doses.  Good luck.

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    • Posted

      I have heard a lot of people talk about the liquid form of it although it has never been offered to me. I am already 18 days off mirtazipine now and just feeling awful. Feel like I can't go back onto it because I've gone through so much to make it to day 18 being off it but I am not functioning well at all. Id love to hear a story from someone about when the side effects of complete withdrawal go away so I know there's light at the end of the tunnel!

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    • Posted

      If you want to use the liquid form of Mirtazapine for small cuts, ask your doctor specifically for that - also you may want to check the shelf life on liquid.  You need to ask someone in the UK, we don't have it available in Canada. I hope this information is correct. When I want to reduce the Mirtazapine I ask the doctor to write a script for Remeron, it's a soft, easy dissolvable form and I can cut it with an ex-acto knife. Good luck

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  • Posted

    hi ,

    i am really feeling for you . i too was told to stop mrt instantly after taking 45mg for 14yrs no mention of any side effects from doing this , the first 5days after stopping i was fine but then the nausea vomiting upset tummy itching sinus problems and restless legs started it was horrendus i thought i was serouisly ill , when i realised it was the wd from mtz i went to my gp who agreed that all the symptoms fitted and gave me the option of going back on it and titrate off slowly but this was 3 weeks or more in and i didn't want to have gone through all of that to start again so she gave me cyclizine for the nausea and sickness and told me to drink lots of water , another member on this site said that anti histamines would possibly help which they did .

    I have to date 8 weeks in... lost 8kg which i could ill afford to loose as i was only 7and a half stone to start with i feel frail and exshausted but over the last 10 days things have started to improve i am looking for food again sleeping a little better and feel more like myself just need to put some weight back on !!

    I would suggest you speak to your Dr and at least get some anti sickness meds to help with the nausea , if i can be of any help please message but it is important to keep in mind that we all react differently to meds so things may settle down for you much quicker than they did for me .

    take good care x

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    • Posted

      Hi abby, thanks so much for your reply.

      Sorry to hear you went through such a rough patch too. Am i right in reading that you went from 45mg to nothing? They must've been quite some withdrawal symptoms!!

      I am currently trying anything, i have travel sickness tablets (herbal), sea sickness bands etc and chew mints all the time but I have my first shift back at work today and don't want to explain the situation to them as don't want to tell them what I was on and why - just a personal preference. I work in a busy retail chain store and it is hard to disappear when I need to or take time out. My anxiety about my first shift back is through the roof and it is only a 4 hour shift. I feel like such a failure.

      I am currently approaching week 3 off these. I thought as i was on a lower dose for less than a year it wouldn't hit me this hard but i was wrong. I also can't afford to lose more weight the way i am going with all this diarrhoea. I have dropped back down a dress size in the last week alone.

      May i ask what anti histamine do and what they help?

      Thanks!

      L

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    • Posted

      Hi ,

      first of all good luck with work today i can imagine how anxious you must be feeling i take my hat off to you for even trying to go into work, you are most definatly not a failure more like a winner for trying to get back to normal !!

      You could try some immodium for the diarrhoea but don't take them too often or you will end up with constipation instead.

      The anti histamines i bought were pirtizese they helped with the intense itching and runny nose also helped abit with sleep.

      I understand you not wanting to explain things at work it is your right to be private about these things i am much the same, i had not worked for 6 weeks but choose to take unpaid leave rather than having a sick note , when i went back i just said i had personal problems to anyone who asked and left it at that.

      I hope you got through your shift and a big well done .

      take good care and be kind to yourself you will come out the otherside of this x

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    • Posted

      Hi abby,

      Thank you for your lovely message was so nice to get home to! I stocked up on immodium and travella (travel sickness tablets) and paracetamol. Feel like a walking pill box right now.

      I made it through the 4 hour shift but I was so dizzy and exhausted it was awful. I don't know how I'm going to go back there at all.

      Its funny you mention antihistamines and itching, I am so itchy all over and especially my scalp! I feel like I have a sinus infection too.

      Thanks again for your kind words they really put a smile on my face. Hope you are feeling ok today.

      L x

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    • Posted

      Well done for getting through the shift , another day closer to feeling better !!

      The itching is a nightmare ,i cut off my nails to stop the skin damage before i found out about the antihistamines , oh well at least my nails will grow back .

      Hope the morning brings a brighter day and well done again you have shown real strength to go to work while feeling so awful, i for one am very impressed .

      take care

       abby x

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