Psycho-Babble Medication Thread 13781

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Re: Effexor and Effexor XR

Posted by Badger on November 26, 2002, at 10:51:56

In reply to Re: Effexer and Effexer xr, posted by jannbeau on September 13, 2002, at 16:39:23

I understand that Effexor XR is an extended release formulation of Effexor (thanks to Jannbeau's posting of September 13), but I'm curious to know what differences, if any, there are in the effects (and side effects) of the two formulations.

By way of background ...

I've just started on Effexor (regular) about nine days ago - 75mg/day (37.5mg in the morning and in the evening). This medication was prescribed by my family doctor - I'm not sure how much experience she has with it or with other anti-depressants, although she is definitely not a 'pill pusher'. At the end of two weeks, I'm supposed to up my dosage to 75mg (2 tablets) in the morning and 37.5mg in the evening, and we'll evaluate from there whether to increase, maintain or decrease that amount. FWIW, I'm a 47 year old man, weighing approximately 95kg (~210lbs).

This is the first time I've taken an anti-depressant, and I realize that it will take some time for my system to adjust. In retrospect, I knew next to nothing when I was prescribed this drug, and have been reading the posts here with great interest. So far I've had a few side effects - nausea for a day or two, some loss of appetite (a good thing in my case), some muscle tension, and fatigue - but overall, nothing too serious. I've been sleeping better than I have for a while, even though I'm still tired. Actually, it's probably too soon to tell, since my insomnia was back last night (I can fall asleep without any problem, but wake up around 4AM and can't get back to sleep). I think I may sleep better if I take my last pill shortly before bedtime, although I need to test this theory a bit more.

It's hard to say whether the drug is having any effect on my depression. I was quite down last Sunday (day 7 since I started), but have had a few bouts of feeling up since then. I realize that it may well take several weeks before I can really judge its effectiveness, and this will also require finding an optimum dosage.

Although some people specifically mention that they have been taking the XR formulation, I don't know if the others (i.e., those who refer only to Effexor) are taking the 'standard' version or just don't bother to spell it out. I'm wondering if anyone who has experience with both could comment on which they preferred and why. Or, if anyone knows of refernces on this subject, perhaps they could respond with links.

I recognize that not everyone reacts the same way to this drug - it can either make you tired or keep you awake, give you constipation or diarrhea, make you gain or lose weight, etc.... Still, I'd like to be able to discuss alternatives with my doctor the next time I see her (in another couple of weeks), and would feel more confident if I knew some of the pros and cons of the XR option.

Thanks in advance for any information that you can provide.

Badger

 

Re: Complimentary Sioux

Posted by jannbeau on November 26, 2002, at 11:24:21

In reply to Complimentary, posted by Sioux on November 25, 2002, at 22:13:41

> > >Well, Thank you, Maam!! I appreciate that --a lot!

Cheers,
Jannbeau

Ah, Sioux--are you being complimentary or sarcastic?
>
> > Jannbeau, *be* didactic. I love it. Thanks. >
>
> Complimentary, for sure! I don't do sarcasm. Thanks for clarifying.
>
> S
>
>
>
>

 

Effexor Side Effects

Posted by sarah w on November 26, 2002, at 17:11:28

In reply to Re: Anyone had success on Effexor XR?, posted by befree on November 22, 2002, at 22:29:40

I've been on Effexor XR for about 8 months now, started off with 37.5mg and gradually increased to where I am now which is 225mg.
Generally, I think Effexor has helped me with my depression and anxiety. I still have good days and bad days, but most are good. I've just been experiencing a side effect problem lately. It might not sound like much, but I'm having problems getting to sleep, I generally don't fall asleep until around 3-5 am, then once I'm asleep I have problems waking up. This is not good for me because I'm a student and these sleeping problems are causing me to miss classes. Just wondering if anyone else has had this problem and if they found a way to make it better.

 

Re: Effexor Side Effects sarah w

Posted by jannbeau on November 26, 2002, at 17:25:20

In reply to Effexor Side Effects, posted by sarah w on November 26, 2002, at 17:11:28

> Hi, Sarah. The literature on Effexor suggests that problems of this nature may be rectified by changing the time of day when you take your medication.

Cheers,
Jannbeau
I've been on Effexor XR for about 8 months now, started off with 37.5mg and gradually increased to where I am now which is 225mg.
> Generally, I think Effexor has helped me with my depression and anxiety. I still have good days and bad days, but most are good. I've just been experiencing a side effect problem lately. It might not sound like much, but I'm having problems getting to sleep, I generally don't fall asleep until around 3-5 am, then once I'm asleep I have problems waking up. This is not good for me because I'm a student and these sleeping problems are causing me to miss classes. Just wondering if anyone else has had this problem and if they found a way to make it better.

 

Re: Effexor and Effexor XR

Posted by johnlund on November 27, 2002, at 22:16:47

In reply to Re: Effexor and Effexor XR, posted by Badger on November 26, 2002, at 10:51:56

There is no difference between effexor and effexor XR except for the time release aspect. I believe XR uses a time release coating on the little beads of effexor. By the way, I think effexor is a great AD. I've been on it for three years.

 

The switch to Celexa

Posted by Dan L on November 28, 2002, at 1:42:45

In reply to Re: withdrawing from effexor - angel girl-celexa, posted by lolly on March 21, 2002, at 19:25:16

I switched from effexor to celexa a few years ago. Celexa has been completely different from effexor for me (I was on effexor for about 6 months and have now been on Celexa for over 6 months). My social anxiety is pretty much gone, panic attacks are pretty much gone also. Celexa also gives me awesome vivid dreams too.

 

Re: Effexor XR? Successful but very ugly!

Posted by Dan L on November 28, 2002, at 1:51:51

In reply to Effexor XR? Successful but very ugly!, posted by Harry J on November 25, 2002, at 20:48:03

I had the same problem when I was on effexor. The psychosis was probably from the withdrawl syndrome since this medication has a very short half life and leaves the system quickly. If I missed doeses I would get very irritable and paranoid also with electric shock feelings.

 

Re: Effexor and Effexor XR

Posted by Badger on November 28, 2002, at 8:16:08

In reply to Re: Effexor and Effexor XR, posted by johnlund on November 27, 2002, at 22:16:47

> There is no difference between effexor and effexor XR except for the time release aspect. I believe XR uses a time release coating on the little beads of effexor. By the way, I think effexor is a great AD. I've been on it for three years.

--
Thanks for replying. I was wondering if the longer half life of the XR version might mean less sensitivity to taking the drug at exactly the same time each day. I've been having mixed results in terms of sleeping since starting the medication 11 days ago, and have tried varying my evening dose by an hour or two earlier or later. I don't seem to have found the best time yet, but I really don't have enough experience yet to judge accurately (although overall I've been sleeping longer/better than before I started).

I'm glad to hear that Effexor has worked well for you - this seems to be the overall consensus, even among those who have experienced bad side effects or withdrawal problems. I haven't noticed any consistent improvement yet, but I suspect that may just require a bit more time and finding the optimum dosage.

 

Re: Permanently damaged!!!!!!!!!

Posted by emerald may on December 2, 2002, at 3:22:24

In reply to Re: Permanently damaged!!!!!!!!!, posted by Lynn V on February 11, 2001, at 0:19:23

> Has anyone heard of myalgic (fibromyalgia) starting AFTER taking Effexor? Or if you did have fibromyalgia before, did it get worse with Effexor?

my mom has had fibromyalgia for about 3 years, and just recently started taking effexor. I have been taking effexor for about a year, and I have been having some odd symptoms recently, that were not previously there. I am making an appointment with my moms dr (the one in marina del rey) to see if I have it too. I am really nervous about having to ween myself from effexor, whenever that may be!

 

Re: Long-term effects

Posted by begtag on December 2, 2002, at 8:17:44

In reply to Re: Long-term effects, posted by stjames on July 8, 2000, at 23:15:07

Hello,

I am new to this message board. I suffer from anxiety attacks, panic attacks, and depression. I have been on Effexor for almost three years. I started to have health problems for the last year or so. Sorry to be graphic, but rectal bleeding, vomiting blood, chest pains, pelvic pains, breathing problems (like asthma attacks), liver problems, and several other problems. Because I have a history of uterine cancer, my doctor was very concerned. They sent me to specialist after specialist, with every invasive test imaginable. No one could find any cause for my bleeding. I asked my doctor several times, if it could be the medication. Effexor was the only medication I was taking. I then developed ovarian cysts.

Long story condensed here, I was roaming the web and came across this site about Effexor XR Side Effects. Imagine my shock and fear. I printed out all the information, which is also found in the free sample packs that your doctor supplies, and took it to my doctor. He was shocked. I am now, under his supervision, cutting down on my dosages, and hope to be effexor free in two weeks.

I know medications work different for everyone, and my intention is not to scare anyone away from taking the Effexor. It really did help me manage my depression and attacks. The nasty side effects I mentioned that happened to me were very rare. Just my luck. <g>

But after this disaster, I have requested that I try going drug free to see if I can deal with my depression. I am really scared to try another medication after this. Does anyone have any suggestions or ideas?

Thanks for listening,
Bonnie


 

Re: Effexor XR? Successful but very ugly! Dan L

Posted by zinya on December 2, 2002, at 15:15:23

In reply to Re: Effexor XR? Successful but very ugly!, posted by Dan L on November 28, 2002, at 1:51:51

Dan L (or anyone):

When you missed doses, how long was it before these symptoms would show up? What if you were a few hours late on a given day? Would it be like an 'alarm clock' of these electric sensations reminding you to take dose? And then how soon would they subside after resuming dose??

It sounds like Effexor -- which I was prescribed but haven't yet started (i've written a few queries some days ago) -- might be wrong for someone (like me) who's easily distracted as to time of day or remembering to take a pill at a fairly rigid time every day - ??

 

Re: Effexor XR? Successful but very ugly!

Posted by Sioux on December 2, 2002, at 15:31:19

In reply to Re: Effexor XR? Successful but very ugly! Dan L, posted by zinya on December 2, 2002, at 15:15:23


> What if you were a few hours late on a given day?

Zinya, I haven't experienced any such ties to the clock. The medicine's levels in the blood change very slowly (hence the slow build up and the slow taper off) and so the hour is not that critical. I just take mine (37.5 mg for pain) routinely at bedtime because it makes me sleepy.

When I tapered off before, I made slight changes in dose only every 2 weeks.

If I forget a dose, it is about 36 hours before I notice anything (in me, irritability) and then that stops about 45 minutes after taking it.

Hope this helps.
- Sioux

 

Re:Withdrawl jp

Posted by Kenneth Copeland on December 2, 2002, at 15:50:59

In reply to Anyone had success on Effexor XR? , posted by jp on October 24, 1999, at 14:59:14

I Have Been On Effexor Xr now for About 4 months now and I would have never have taken this terrible drug had I known the withdrawls would be like this..What everyone has said is true..There is no desire for sex, I have just been laid off of my job of 7 years and I find that I sleep till 11:00 and the insomnia is terrible..I have only been on it for a short time and I feel like I am in a cloud sometimes..I am currently tapering off from 75mg to 37.5mg and tomorrow is my last pill..I tried to quit cold turkey or try taking one every other day but the vertigo was so bad I had to call in another prescription just to avert the withdrawls.. so hopefully I can kick this thing. I will post back in a few days and hopefully I wont have any withdrawl symptoms LORD WILLING..

 

Re:Withdrawl Kenneth Copeland

Posted by jannbeau on December 2, 2002, at 16:54:47

In reply to Re:Withdrawl jp, posted by Kenneth Copeland on December 2, 2002, at 15:50:59

> Kenneth, you can divide the 37.5 mg caps into two portions, also for a little longer period to discontinue. You can take the little spheres right out of your hand; they don't have to be in a capsule. They are tasteless, odourless and don't burn or sting. Just DON'T chew them and DON'T let them dissolve in your mouth. I've done this and it worked fine for me. There are probably about 100 to 150 of them in a 75 mg cap; there may be fewer in a 37.5 cap; just eyeball them; the exact dosage doesn't seem as important as the slow discontinuation.

Also, it seems that he severity and duration of discontinuation syndrome, as it's called, may depend upon the speed of the dose-reductions and upon the individual, both his/her brain chemistry and his/her psychological profile and/or circumstances, but you CAN make it through! I was ok within a few days and all signs that I could connect to effexor were pretty well gone within three or four weeks.

I wish you luck in this endeavor. You WILL overcome!

Jannbeau

I Have Been On Effexor Xr now for About 4 months now and I would have never have taken this terrible drug had I known the withdrawls would be like this..What everyone has said is true..There is no desire for sex, I have just been laid off of my job of 7 years and I find that I sleep till 11:00 and the insomnia is terrible..I have only been on it for a short time and I feel like I am in a cloud sometimes..I am currently tapering off from 75mg to 37.5mg and tomorrow is my last pill..I tried to quit cold turkey or try taking one every other day but the vertigo was so bad I had to call in another prescription just to avert the withdrawls.. so hopefully I can kick this thing. I will post back in a few days and hopefully I wont have any withdrawl symptoms LORD WILLING..

 

Re: Effexor XR? Successful but very ugly!

Posted by emerald may on December 2, 2002, at 17:16:45

In reply to Re: Effexor XR? Successful but very ugly! Dan L, posted by zinya on December 2, 2002, at 15:15:23

I try to take mine at bedtime, and if I miss one, I start to notice about 12-15 hrs after the missed dose. I get a weird head change, that I have not been able to describe, but have seen it described well here. Its like my vission laggs when I turn my head. It goes away about an hour after i take it. Good luck!

 

Re:Withdrawl Kenneth Copeland

Posted by zinya on December 2, 2002, at 17:39:17

In reply to Re:Withdrawl jp, posted by Kenneth Copeland on December 2, 2002, at 15:50:59

I'm curious, if you don't mind, Kenneth: In retrospect, did you have symptoms in the first week or so of taking the Effexor, or did the downsides of it only emerge for you after being on it for x amount of time?

Meanwhile, thanks to those responding to my earlier query as to timing of pill-taking and how sensitive the body is to being punctual. Any more of you who have relevant comments on your experience will be much appreciated.

 

Re:Withdrawl zinya

Posted by Kenneth Copeland on December 3, 2002, at 11:24:48

In reply to Re:Withdrawl Kenneth Copeland, posted by zinya on December 2, 2002, at 17:39:17

When I first started taking the medicine, I noticed the typical side effects which were feeling tired and maybe the occasional nausea but that lasted about a week. Then I went from the starting dose 37.5 to 75mg. I feel ok when I am on this stuff except for the occasional cloudy feeling, increased heart rate and absolutely no sex drive at all..Man I wonder what the people taking 150,250 mg feel like..I wish the withdrawls wre like the side effects I experienced when I first started because at least it would have been easier stopping..

 

Re: Effexor XR? Successful but very ugly !-zinya

Posted by japonica on December 3, 2002, at 11:58:50

In reply to Re: Effexor XR? Successful but very ugly! Dan L, posted by zinya on December 2, 2002, at 15:15:23

I continue to be somewhat the odd man out in the Effexor arena. I've been on it for 2 months (currently @75mg.). My experience has been positive from the start and continues to be so.

I do occasionally forget a dose. I typically take it mid-morning. When I have taken the forgotten dose at bedtime this does tend to slightly disrupt my sleep. Effexor energizes me; I don't suffer any sleepiness at all.

I have also gone as long as 36 hours without a dose and experience absolutely no symptoms at all.

I continue to lose weight (not a bad thing); I am very focused at work ( I am a technical writer); my depression is virtually non-existent; and my anxiety is well under control.

As I've stated in previous posts, I have tried other anti-depressants with varying degrees of success for many years. Effexor has been the best.

In the interest of fairness, beginning the medication somewhat coincided with the separation from my emotionally unavailable alcoholic husband of 20 years (my decision). That in itself has had a positive impact on my outlook.

My point is I, thus far, have *nothing* negative to say about this medication.

As always, thanks to all who take the time here to be supportive. I find the information here to be invaluable.

Best to all -japonica

 

Will I lose weight?

Posted by TLove on December 4, 2002, at 9:50:15

In reply to Anyone had success on Effexor XR? , posted by jp on October 24, 1999, at 14:59:14

Will I lose any weight, will I lose my appetite? I don't feel sick and I took my first pill about 4 hours ago.

 

About the weight gain

Posted by TLove on December 4, 2002, at 11:09:34

In reply to Re: Permanently damaged!!!!!!!!!, posted by emerald may on December 2, 2002, at 3:22:24

about the weight, I don't mean to sound like that's the only thing good that would come of this medicine, but it would just help things out a little :)

 

Re: Effexor XR? Successful but very ugly !-zinya

Posted by jammin on December 4, 2002, at 12:21:04

In reply to Re: Effexor XR? Successful but very ugly !-zinya, posted by japonica on December 3, 2002, at 11:58:50

Japonica,
Thanks for positive feedback. I just got off of Paxil about a month ago, but I was experiencing very high hostility towards everyone especially when alcohol was involved.

I told my doctor I would like to try something else, and Effexor XR was suggested.

> I continue to be somewhat the odd man out in the Effexor arena. I've been on it for 2 months (currently @75mg.). My experience has been positive from the start and continues to be so.
>
> I do occasionally forget a dose. I typically take it mid-morning. When I have taken the forgotten dose at bedtime this does tend to slightly disrupt my sleep. Effexor energizes me; I don't suffer any sleepiness at all.
>
> I have also gone as long as 36 hours without a dose and experience absolutely no symptoms at all.
>
> I continue to lose weight (not a bad thing); I am very focused at work ( I am a technical writer); my depression is virtually non-existent; and my anxiety is well under control.
>
> As I've stated in previous posts, I have tried other anti-depressants with varying degrees of success for many years. Effexor has been the best.
>
> In the interest of fairness, beginning the medication somewhat coincided with the separation from my emotionally unavailable alcoholic husband of 20 years (my decision). That in itself has had a positive impact on my outlook.
>
> My point is I, thus far, have *nothing* negative to say about this medication.
>
> As always, thanks to all who take the time here to be supportive. I find the information here to be invaluable.
>
> Best to all -japonica

 

Re:Anyone Heard Of Wellbutrin?

Posted by Kenneth Copeland on December 6, 2002, at 10:13:56

In reply to Re: Effexor XR? Successful but very ugly !-zinya, posted by jammin on December 4, 2002, at 12:21:04

I tried to come off of Effexor By Decreaseing my dose as I had written in other posts..Well that did not work because the withdrawl effects came back.I called my doctor and now he wants to put me Wellbutrin for 30 days at 2 doses a day..Does this work? Can I quit this stuff after the 30 Days?..Now what? I need some feedback please..

 

Re:Anyone Heard Of Wellbutrin? Kenneth Copeland

Posted by japonica on December 6, 2002, at 10:44:04

In reply to Re:Anyone Heard Of Wellbutrin?, posted by Kenneth Copeland on December 6, 2002, at 10:13:56

Hi Kenneth. If you go to this page on Dr. Bob's site http://www.dr-bob.org/babble/ you'll find a link for bupropion (Wellbutrin). These threads discuss all aspects of Wellbutrin just like ours discuss Effexor.

Good luck - japonica

 

Re:Anyone Heard Of Wellbutrin?

Posted by freudiangarterbelt on December 7, 2002, at 9:19:18

In reply to Re:Anyone Heard Of Wellbutrin?, posted by Kenneth Copeland on December 6, 2002, at 10:13:56

Welbutrin will help you stop smoking. Tell you Dr. that recent studies have shown the use of ssri's will greatly reduce the excitation of your mental funny bone--bzzzzzzzzzt.

 

Re:Anyone Heard Of Wellbutrin? freudiangarterbelt

Posted by Geezer on December 7, 2002, at 9:44:51

In reply to Re:Anyone Heard Of Wellbutrin?, posted by freudiangarterbelt on December 7, 2002, at 9:19:18

> Welbutrin will help you stop smoking. Tell you Dr. that recent studies have shown the use of ssri's will greatly reduce the excitation of your mental funny bone--bzzzzzzzzzt.

The best two sentence summary of the subject I have ever read! How did you come up with a board name like "freudiangarterbelt"......wish I had thought of it?


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