venlafaxine withdrawal- please help!!

Posted , 168 users are following.

Hi there, ive just joined on here to get some advice and support... i was prescribed venlafaxine xl (modified release) 10 yrs ago for severe depression after my daughter was born, over the years this has been increased to 225mg a day. My partner and i want to have another baby and was aware of the effects venlafaxine has or could have on a unborn child so i went to my psychiatrist to ask for there help to come off it, they drew up a plan where i would gradually reduce my amount by 37.5mg each week. This was 6 wks or so ago and am now on day two of no venlafaxine what so ever.... but im suffering really bad withdrawal symptoms.... excruciating headaches, shaking and shivering, nausa. This evening i had a major breakdown and couldnt stop crying. I had to be prescribed diazepam! I feel worse as each day goes by, dont think i can do this for much longer if this carries on.... i really want to get off this drug but i dont know how long the withdrawal will last and when ill start to feel better, does anyone have any ideas??

I feel like im in living hell at the moment...i have been feeling so bad that ive been house bound now since i started this regeime, i just need to know when its goin to end.

13 likes, 508 replies

Report / Delete

508 Replies

Next
  • Posted

    hiya tg,

    sorry to hear your having such a bad time tg, but youve come a long way, did you have much of a problem when you were reducing the dosage or has major withdrawl just started?? you can extend the reduction further by cutting the 37.5 mg tabs in half if you really cant stand the complete cessation of venlafaxine, however that only prolongs the whole process, all be it with lesser nasty effects, if you can hang on in there :O)

    were all different but the really bad effects should dissapear within a week or two, after ten years of use minor effects MAY occur from time to time for several weeks, but nothing like you are experiencing now, but the good news is you should notice POSITIVE changes in your personality over the weeks, wooooooohoooooooo, oh and obviously only take the diazepam when necessary as it is very addictive, only take it continuously for a few days max :O)

    ive put up another post with a very usefull guide to venlafaxine, ive kept it separate in case the mods need to approve it, goood luck hang on in there, keep us poasted,

    Ken ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ :O)

    Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Hi 2jaye smile how are u feeling today? I want to come off this, but when I've missed a dose, I get horrible judders kinda feels like when ur half asleep in bed and ur body jerks and it wakes u.... That's what I have , even before I started to take the tabs or missing a dose i get judders through my body. I'm scared that I actually need these tabs to keep them "judders" at bay. 
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      I'm on 225mg of Effexor XR and have been for probably 12 years. I've gone off it before but then the depression returned and I restarted it. When I went off it I got the 'brain zaps'. Now I'm experiencing the brain zaps again for the last week or so even though I haven't changed my dose or missed any doses. I'm concerned as to why. Could there be something wrong with my Gi tract that I'm not absorping them any more? With my liver that I'm not metabolizing it properly?
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      More info (after doing a little research)... I've been drinking more alcohol recently which could be the culprit. I also pooped this morning and noticed the little tiny beads that are found within the capsule I take are in my stool, undigested.
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Sorry, Ken, but this is simply not true that the worst of it is over and it should get better.  I went through protracted withdrawal for 10 months after coming off ven too fast last year, had been on it for 12 years.  I ended up reinstating 37.5 mg which pulled me out of it within an hour!  Ven is one of the worst to get off of, and the worst of my symptoms didn't start until 6 months out!  I didn't know that I was in WD because I am at the beginning of menopause and thought the physical symptoms at the beginning were due to that.

      I have learned a lot about psych drug withdrawal since then. Jaye's response is yet another example of how rapid cessation of ven can last longer than "a few weeks."

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Sorry to say you have hit tolerance withdrawal, Nicole.  That is where your body acts as though you are withdrawing even though you are on the same amount of drug.  Unfortunately, all you can do is very slowly taper off of ven.  You may actually begin to feel better as you taper off.  However, you can't do this by taking half tablets and quarter tablets.  You may get away with reducing by 37.5 mg or even 75 mg initially, but you should hold at that dose for at least a few weeks and only do the next drop when you feel stable.  Going faster can lead to much worse withdrawal symptoms.  See my post here about safe tapering:

      https://patient.info/forums/discuss/withdrawing-from-antidepressants-and-benzos-safely-485891?page=0#1809368

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Oops, I replied before reading your next post.  It is odd that your beads are not being digested.  You could try backing off the alcohol and seeing if that improves things.  Was there a change in the brand of ven recently?
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      I am was on 225mg an was having the same problem when I discussed this with my provider he states it looks like it's the not

      epinephrine in the effexor that has me on a high an my anxiety is playing a part in it all . He is tapering me off while adding paxal an Xanax short term to help with the anxiety an withdrawals .

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Hi Betsy,

      I know you responded to this 10 months ago so not sure if you are still part of this discussion. But I'll try anyway.

      I started my 37.5 mg effexor taper from 7/2015 through 6/2016 and came all the way down to 3 mg untill nerve conditions of numbness, buzzing, tingling, burning sensation in limbs started. didn't know what was happening and thought I had some other illness such as MS, fibromyalgia etc. Did numerous tests with no diagnosis. Anxiety and insomnia was at an all time high so Doctor reinstated full 37.5 mg dose again on 6/30 and currently at 45 mg.  Only through the course of my own research did I come to the conclusion in the beginning of August that I found that I was suffering from SNRI withdrawal symptoms. In the mean time doc gave me clonazepam for sleep and calm the nerve conditions that were keeping me from sleeping.  August seemed better as far as the initial nerve symptoms being resolved. So then I figured the effexor was helping with that...Great! but....As soon as I was done with the clonazepam, 5 days ago the same initial nerve symptoms I experienced in June have returned. Not sure if the clonazepam was masking it. So now my issue is that I'm at a higher dose of the effexor than when I started and not sure if I'm in withdrawal intolerance even though I'm currently on effexor. I don't know if I should wait it out for a couple of more months to see if improvements or does it even matter at this point to be on this drug?

      fyi..I'm taking 3.25 mg mirtazapine for sleep and it helped me during my clonazepam tapper.

      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Hi Jaye - I am 2 months off ven and and feeling horrible, totally withdrawn, anxious, and at the verge of a panic attack at all times ... can you tell me how did it go for you?
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Hi. Been off venlafaxine for 2 weeks. Stopped cold turkey. The worst was over in about 5 days but I am still experiencing headaches daily. Have you experienced this or heard of anyone experiencing headaches?
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Hi, I stopped my Venlafaxine 2 weeks ago and at the moment I would say all of the most horrible side effects have stopped. I think that everyone is very different and so if anyone reading this is considering stopping Venlafaxine, read lots of different things to get different perspectives x
      Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Go slow. I wouldn't recommend cold turkey, I know everyone is different but I couldn't stand the withdrawal symptoms. I am taking a quarter of a 37.5mg daily and then in the next few weeks I'm going to reduce again. I have started taking vitamin B complex too. Good luck x

      Report / Delete Reply

Report or request deletion

Thanks for your help!

We want the forums to be a useful resource for our users but it is important to remember that the forums are not moderated or reviewed by doctors and so you should not rely on opinions or advice given by other users in respect of any healthcare matters. Always speak to your doctor before acting and in cases of emergency seek appropriate medical assistance immediately. Use of the forums is subject to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and steps will be taken to remove posts identified as being in breach of those terms.

newnav-down newnav-up