Success Story: Stopped Olanzapine (Zyprexa) Cold Turkey

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First off thank you for this wonderful forum.  I looked long and hard for success stories of people who came off Zyprexa cold Turkey successfully and was unable to.  I took zyprexa for 2 months (started at high dose foolishly by psych doctors @ 30 mg) and then self lowered to 10 mg once I got out of there 1.5 weeks later.  Abruptly switched to abilify (10 mg).

The withdrawal was hell on earth.  I thought it would not get better.  After about 3 - 4 months off zyprexa and 1.5 months off abilify, I am much better and feel much like normal self again.  My sleep still needs some work, sleeping 5 hours now, from zero sleep once I stopped taking zyprexa.

So I wanted to start this thread to let anyone stopped zyprexa cold turkey or plans to stop cold turkey, that it can be done. Most people on the forums warn against it however due to difficulty of withdrawal I think.

I will post more details on how I did it soon.

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  • Edited

    Hi Kate good to hear from you and yes just shows you do not have to be a prisoner to this dangerous drug. I was on 20 mg for over 21 years so it really hit me came of august 17 but due to complecations with diebeties 2 witch olanzapine gave me. I am still unable to walk have been in since boxing day but my mind is pin sharp never been better. I have my emotions back and actually get tears in my eyes with everyday matters like sad films or people with amazing uplifting story's. I am so glad that I came of olanzapine and would do it all again I am never listening to a cyciatrist that doesn't listen to me first. I had a berievment in the family all those years ago and went of the rails a bit so they misdiagnosed me and I paid the price I was never phitsofrenic or harmful to anyone and fell gutted I lost my life on that s**t. The worst thing is no one wants to know about this stuff so keep this knowledge going and if you can help one person who doesn't want to be on this you have done something worthwhile and you can know that.

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    • Edited

      It's remarkably easy to get labelled as nuts. Once you're taking this stuff there's no doubt: you ARE nuts!!

      This is  simply a chemical cosh that keeps a human "down". 

      I am still on it and still looking for the exit door. Help me.

      A life on drugs is just an existence.

      i want more than that.

      My choice was Olanzapine or lock up ( no doubt with Olanzapine).

      Freedom is all I cherish.

      One day I will be free.

      our bodies look after themselves - given nourishment and nurture.

      Are you missing one of these?

      If no, you don't need anything.

      Good luck to all

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    • Edited

      I hope my experience with my 20 yr old non verbal autistic son could give some clue how to start.

      It's been over 3 months since he is off Zyprexa after several (badly) failed tries in the past so, its doable. Should I mention that over 2.5 years he put extra 15kg, cholesterol, misery and so on with little help to what was the reason, panic attack followed by aggressive behaviour. I spent countless hours on forums like this looking for a single clue to help me/him since I was desperate. Long story short sometimes in April 2020 I decided to put him on the lowest dose of 1.5mg purely to slow down his weight gain. Suddenly after over 2 years we went through a 8 day incident free period, miracle. I knew that Zyprexa is not the cause but reduction of Zyprexa coincided! After that we had 3-4 incident free periods lasting between 5 and 10 days, it was like a holiday for the family and wanted to know what is that we are doing new/better suddenly, I was really puzzled. I started a journal backdated to early April 2020. All these years the only thing that I was sure is that what ever was the trigger for his explosions was set in the past... 1, 2, 6, 12 hours ... I could't say but I was sure that we have a delayed switch. Two months in our new improved life situation I decided to go back to my journal hoping to find a clue and for start I went to the incident after first 8 days of incident free time. The only thing that wasn't part of his regular daily life was a small chips and a burger in McDonald's around 3pm followed by a massive incident around 9pm. I thought that a single small meal could be a trigger for such a massive meltdown but it was noted. Moved to the next one, 1pm vegan burger and small fries from Burger King and you can guess by now 7pm full on BANG! At that moment suddenly the whole puzzle was solved, food poisoning, chemicals. I was able to match each incident with food intake 3 years back. Sadly my son was treated with two antipsychotics (Zyprexa and Abilify) and one antidepressant incorrectly by his "very reputable psychiatrist" who later didn't have a single question how did I CURE illness that he established. Within 3 week we stopped everything except Zyprexa but we started reduction down to 2mg for 4 weeks, 1.5mg for 4 more weeks and so on. Sometimes since early October my son is medication free and it went without a problem. All of this was possible because we managed to see a big picture and remove chemicals from his diet what was the real reason to start with. You need to see a big picture, perspective! Give yourself a 4 weeks no chemical, organic mostly plant based diet and I am sure you will be at much better place. There is a simple way to do. Read labels and if its not flower, salt, sugar, water or anything that would your grand/grand mother put in the meal skip it or simply buy ORGANIC. If you can't by organic make it fresh but avoid crap of the shelve designed to look good and last!

      Our previous failed tries to stop Zyprexz each ended up with increased dose after 😦 Sucks big time. I can tell you that even 1 meal counts since that was enough to trigger Hulk in my son. The best thing is that my son since October 2020 has lost 12.5KG without dieting, he is not miserable nor aggressive. He eat only food that we choose or prepare and he is happy autistic young man.

      I met some medical professionals and scientist after and they all confirmed that I did a great job ... those are rare but sadly they came in our life after.

      I hope that our story may help you or anyone else look a big picture and find a way to stop using those poisons that are nothing but perpetual $$$ making machine for ... you know who.

      I am sure you'll have a few laughs reading my post because of my Tarzan english and I am OK if that is going to put a smile on your face. If you try a clean diet ... that would put a smile on my face.

      Cheers

      Al

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    • Edited

      You are absolutely right about organic food; its makes such a massive difference. Do we know - long-term - what pesticides present in our food do? No.

      I have also heard stories about parents stopping their ADHD kids being on sugar-free drinks; the ADHD disappears afterwards. Man-made illness? Maybe.

      Glad your son is off this drug, it nearly destroyed me until I got off it. Hope you can all stay drug free for life 😃 Best wishes Al!

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  • Posted

    Well done Kate. You're the proof that it can be done. Thanks on behalf of everyone trying to get clean of this wretched misery drug. 👏

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your kind words and encouragement Melvin.  As more time passes I want to assure you it does get better.  My recommendation is to try to eat healthy, exercise if possible, and do things that will help you positively.  For me, my faith and family have been very key parts to helping me beat this drug.

      I also have to say that neuro night supplement helped me a lot for the sleep portion..  it may be a bit early for me tell you how good it's been for me, but being able to sleep again has been a true God send.  I have been taking the supplements for almost 2 months now and my sleep has gradually improved.

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  • Posted

    Thank you for sharing your experience. I was on it for 3 months for about 15mg a day and have decided to try going cold turkey. I am on Day 5. I have had difficulty sleeping coming off which is slowly getting better.

    Your experience is motivating thank you for sharing. 

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    • Posted

      Cashew what is the problem to do slow gradual taper with monthly intervals?You don't have any idea going cold turkey from15 mg . It may cause serious and permanent alterations in your brain, which happened to me .

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    • Posted

      The sooner you are off this drug the greater chance you have of a full recovery. Believe me. Any change in brain activity caused by olanzapine is much more control able once off this shocking drug. They just don't tell everyone this. My brain has reset itself in 6 months be patient. Noted improvement after 3 months unbelievable you just feel so alive again. Get anything you can for sleep though even cbd oil which I used saved my life. Take protein drinks water. Avoid caffeine. Alcohol. And sugar. Until appetite returns. Don't give up I nearly did. Stay somewhere where you are not hassled. Avoid stress as much as possible. You will experience haloisinations. Night mares. Sweating. Weight loss and frustration this is normal I found for me. Please note that I am not a doctor or pharmacist or have any conection with medical awareness. I am telling you how I dealt with coming off 20mg of olanzapine. Witch I took for a staggering 21 years. If I made it so can you.

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    • Posted

      I agree with you Marty. The sooner you are off this drug the better chance you have to a full recovery.  You are so right.

      There need to be more success stories shared to help the many desperate people trying to get off this terrible drug!  I have read and believe that zyprexa is harder to come off of then heroin!  It was the hardest thing I have ever done but it is possible.  

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    • Posted

      You're welcome Cashew.  How are you holding up these days?  For me up until 3 months the withdrawal was very hard.  After the 1st month to about the 2nd month it got really hard for me and there were many times I wanted to give up. I did not want to back on the drug though so I powered through it.

      If you can make it to 3 months of being off all the psychiatric drugs (esp. zyprexa) you should start feeling a lot better.  I have written a few posts on how I did it, but the key was exercise, eating healthy, detox as much as possible, good supplements and vitamins, try to find reasons to feel emotions (good music, sleep, pray, read, love, know you are loved, and take it day by day).

      For sleep here are a few tips: try getting chamomile tea, or a detox tea that you can drink at night before bed, magnesium, vitamin b complex, fish oil, calcium, multi vitamin, among others.  i tried trazadone, and melatonin and my pdoc kept trying to prescribe more psych meds to assist me to sleep but I felt like that would just create more problems, so I declined.  The trazadone and melatonin didn't help me much I think, so I tried sleep vitamins from amazon (5 stars) which didn't help me much either.  Finally I found a company the road back and the supplement called neuro night and neuro day and jnk capsules seemed to do the trick.  They have mixed reviews though, but they seem to have worked very well for me so far.  I have taken them for about 2 months now and they sell them in 2 months supply.  A bit pricy but cheaper than a visit to a psychiatrist.  

      Best wishes, hope and love to you

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    • Posted

      Hi marty..your story is very encouraging..i was about to give up today..i wonder if u tappered gradualy or cold turckey..i m at 2.5 mg for 2 month (i was on 10 mg for 7 years)nd what is frightining are the psyhotic thoughts and mania..how did u get through this..you said that you had halucinations,are they going away by itself ?
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    • Posted

      @Hi Kate I've been on olanzapine for a year and half tapered down 2.5 for 6 months been off it now 5 months got plumenary hypertension and a murmor started to go swimming but still nausea in mornings with no appetite I got drug for a xiety I feel very depressed I'm 68 help @

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