Withdrawal first day after cutting back by 1/4

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I've been on amit for 20+ years - 25mg.  I started one summer with absolutely terrible disassociation, almost non-functional.  Psych started me on elavil 25 mg.  About a week later, gyn tested my hormone level and said it was terrible, so stated me on hormones - but never mentioned coming off amit.  So I continued both for years - finally tapering and going off hormones, but just kept on with the elavil because I had no side effects and did not want to take a chance on how I felt when first starting.  It also really helped my ibs although that is not why it was prescribed.  Fast forward to now, and i decided I needed to go off amit.  Read all these forums which really scared me, but went down about 5 mg.  (cut in half,  then cut one of the halves in half).  That was a week ago, and the next morning I woke up with a terrible headache and nausea.  Felt bad all day.  Thas has continued on and off for a week with my intestinal problems getting worse - very bloated and loose bowels.  I've also lost about 3 lbs (don't want to lose anymore as I am on the thin side) and don't have the craving appetite.  It just seems from reading on this forum, that this was awfully quick to experience these symptoms - don't know how I'll ever get down much further.  Also have started having trouble falling asleep and waking early.  I do take a very small dose of ambien which I have done on and off for a long time.  This helps.  All this to ask, is it unusual to have these symptoms this early in the tapering, and will it just get worse and worse as I try to go down further.  Since I had no side effects when on it, wondering if I should just stay on it indefinitely (I'm 73 yrs. old).  

 

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  • Posted

    I understand you wishing to get off such a long term treatment but if tapering slowly down is causing you such withdrawals I can only advise that you do it even more slowly waiting 3/4 weeks to stabilise between drops and see how that goes. You know your body best and if it is telling you to stay on this drug perhaps it is best to listen. Have you discussed this with your GP? You could ask your GP to give you capsules rather than tablets as then you would be able to use the water titration method of dissolving the contents into warm water and mixing carefully - then using a syringe (Amazon sell these at 5, 10, 25 ml) extract say 10% out at a time until your central nervous system settles to the new amount. You could just drop 5% a time using this method. So if your capsule is 25mg, dissolve into 25ml warm water and take 5 out, hence you then take 20mg for as long as you wish to before tapering down again. You may need to ask your GP if Amitrip is water soluble first though. Ultimately these are your choices Dee and if you want to stay on them to avoid all the hassle do so, especially as they help you and you suffer no side effects taking them. I wish you well
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  • Posted

    High there

    At the moment I am experiencing the same problem. My plan was to switch to Trazodone when I see my doctor next time. I am on 50 mg.I this morning I am thinking that I will wait till I see my doc. But I think psych will know better regarding what to do with the these meds. I think I have to stick to one or the other. Best wishes

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  • Posted

    That is a small dose. Are you fallowing a doctors help. If you are taking ambian for sleep, that could complicate things. Amit. Is usually all you need for sleep. You need to have a doctor give you the step down.  
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  • Posted

    Thanks, all.  I felt really good yesterday and slept well w/o any ambien.  Not quite as good today, but bearable - mainly some nausea and tiredness.  I just worry that I'm going to have to go through this everytime I cut back just a little!  I will stay where I am for at least 4 weeks.  Appreciate all the info on this forum.

     

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    • Posted

      Hi dee, my withdrawal symptoms kicked in on day 3 going from 10mg to 5mg, awful nausea , headache, abdominal bloating , wind, cramps and all over aches. i am currently on my 3rd attempt to get off ami. Presently i am down to 5mg again but i take  it in liquid form. Liquid ami is expensive and my gp only agreed to it because my symptoms were so severe and i have to take tablets when i can, so currently i am on half a 10mg tab but when i start to reduce again in the next 2 to 3 weeks i will go back on liquid and take 4mg. x 
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    • Posted

      Thanks, Amanda,

      I have followed your history through your posts on here.  I admire that you are sticking with getting off of it.  If I have the withdrawl sypmtoms each step down, don't know if I cand get completely off.  Right now my goal is to cut it in half.  Then I'll go from there.  At least I will know what to expect each little step of the way.  

       

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    • Posted

      Unless there is a medical reason for stopping the amit., you do not have to hurry. You are taking such a small amount it is not a crisis to get "get off" of it. Amit. Is used for pain relief and is still a very good antidepressent, the withdrawal is mild compared to the newer ssri and snri. They just about kill you with brain zaps, blackouts, memory gone , hard to talk and say words, plus the dizzyness, naseua and other horrible things.

      Sometimes people have to take medicines their whole life to stay alive. There should not be a stigma still attached to antidepressents. Would you stop taking medicine for your heart or diabetes?  

      Just put a date on your calender for next month and address it then. 

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    • Posted

      Thanks for your reply - and confirmation that it is okay if i do end up having to stay on it.  My concerns are I developed ringing in my ears a couple years ago - could be age, and also have hoarseness - I think due to dry mouth - could be allergies.  And, of course, the dementia report scare.  I will cut back as much as possible, but if it gets too tough to keep cutting back, I'll just stay with what is comfortable.  I have been better the

      last couple days, so hopefully I can stay at this dose and then cut down a little more in a few weeks. 

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    • Posted

      I also have memory problem exacerbated. With other new issues every one else irks.. i am trying to cut 5mg off from my 50mg. Not easy at all! It could take months I think. Then I think I should try welbutrin.
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    • Posted

      I have not seen the information about Amit., that has scared many people who have been taking it. In my 26 years on the medicine i look back and see it has been very positive in my life. I have several medical problems that leave me in pain with no medical solution and i am allergic to opiod and nerve pain releivers. 

      Amit. has a very good pain reliever effect that has given me pain free nights. I have taken a different antidepressent in the morning. I found prozac to be very negative for me and went to citolapram for many years. My medicine doctor thought i should try cymbalta for its pain releiving componant. Cymbalta did nothing but horrible and negative things for me. I did not know they were side effects from the drug and then trying to go off of it i saw what it was doing to my brain. It has caused huge lawsuits with settlements over 20 billion dollars. I am now going to use Amit. in the morning as well for pain relief. Other than  cymbalta i have not had withdrawl when going to a different pill.  From my experience with pain and its depressing effects i would recommend for any one to stay on a pill that gives them relief. 

      Amit. has been used for about 30 years and is a tri-cyclic as apposed to the new seratonin types. It has a good reputation and is not known for the side effects the new ssri types do. Just because someone reports a nagative experience should not scare people from using it. 

      After doing huge amounts of research i will avoid any of the new antidepressents because they seem to have many more negatives than any positives. The drug companies will keep making new ones so they can keep getting more users for their reported miracle drugs. These new drugs contain more and more chemicals that are reported to be better than the older types. 

      My medicine doctor is a psychiatrist who is a specialist in the drugs effects on your brain. Hopefully he knows more about the brains reaction to different chemicals than other MD's.  

      If you are not having major negative  life altering effects from the pill you are on don't be scared away to another. I do not want my brain to have to keep changing its chemical responses to different psychotropic drugs. 

      I will keep using Amit., for the rest of my life as long as it does not interfere with my life.

      The dry mouth is a common effect of Amit., you can carry fluids to drink or there are some meds to keep your mouth moist. That is a very manageable side effect. I have only had the memory, blackouts  and concentration and skin problems with  Cymbalta. They were very scary not knowing the pill was causing it. I am back to be able to think now. There are hundreds of side effects from that pill and more withdrawl effects. 

       

       

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    • Posted

      I totally agree - and will probably stay on Amit - just trying to see if I can lower the dose a little and still get the benefits.  So far, the  withdrawall side effects have not been horrible - and I really think some are in my mind after reading so much about them.  If I stay active and social, they bother me very little.  It's when I dwell on them that they seem to occur at their worst.  Truly a mind over matter, I think.  

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