Psycho-Babble Medication Thread 5505

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Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds

Posted by Kimmm on October 2, 2001, at 19:21:25

In reply to Re: Prozac - Withdrawl Symptoms, posted by roo on October 17, 2000, at 9:05:41

I've been on 20mg Prozac for about 2 years now. I've started researching the potential withdrawal symptoms, and I can't believe the severity of the symptoms. I've never been addicted to anything my entire life. It almost sounds like you go through hell before you go on Prozac, and then you go through hell again just to get off of it. I am generally a health conscious person, and I looked into all the side effects of taking the medication PRIOR to taking it, but I had no idea this was an addictive drug and would have to deal with withdrawal symptoms when I decided to go off of it. It amazes me that my doctor never told me.

Overall, I'm happy with the results of taking Prozac - I was diagnosed with clinical depression, and EVERYONE noticed a difference in me once I started taking it. The only major side effect is not having a sex drive. But now I'm ready to give it a try on my own without the meds. I don't see medication as a permanent solution to depression. But who am I to say?

So my question is - do I try quitting cold turkey? Depending on the side effects (I still want to be able to function), I'd prefer to quit cold turkey rather than going through a long drawn out process. Any advice? I'm not nervous about getting depressed again, I'm more nervous about all the withdrawal symptoms I've been reading about. Facial tics, muscle spasms, fatigue...it sounds worse than my pre-Prozac days. How do you function in the real world if you are going through all these symptoms?? Any advice on how to cope is appreciated.

Kim

 

Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds

Posted by Mitch on October 2, 2001, at 23:26:04

In reply to Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds, posted by Kimmm on October 2, 2001, at 19:21:25

> I've been on 20mg Prozac for about 2 years now. I've started researching the potential withdrawal symptoms, and I can't believe the severity of the symptoms. I've never been addicted to anything my entire life. It almost sounds like you go through hell before you go on Prozac, and then you go through hell again just to get off of it. I am generally a health conscious person, and I looked into all the side effects of taking the medication PRIOR to taking it, but I had no idea this was an addictive drug and would have to deal with withdrawal symptoms when I decided to go off of it. It amazes me that my doctor never told me.
>
> Overall, I'm happy with the results of taking Prozac - I was diagnosed with clinical depression, and EVERYONE noticed a difference in me once I started taking it. The only major side effect is not having a sex drive. But now I'm ready to give it a try on my own without the meds. I don't see medication as a permanent solution to depression. But who am I to say?
>
> So my question is - do I try quitting cold turkey? Depending on the side effects (I still want to be able to function), I'd prefer to quit cold turkey rather than going through a long drawn out process. Any advice? I'm not nervous about getting depressed again, I'm more nervous about all the withdrawal symptoms I've been reading about. Facial tics, muscle spasms, fatigue...it sounds worse than my pre-Prozac days. How do you function in the real world if you are going through all these symptoms?? Any advice on how to cope is appreciated.
>
> Kim

Kim, Don't quit cold turkey! You may need to take a small dose of a med like Prozac for months before you should consider stopping the medication. Something to consider: 5mg/day is as effective as 20mg/day for preventing relapse of depression in most patients. Please try a much lower dose as a maintenance treatment for a considerable period of time before you make the decision to stop altogether.

 

Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds Kimmm

Posted by Marie1 on October 3, 2001, at 6:39:25

In reply to Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds, posted by Kimmm on October 2, 2001, at 19:21:25

Kimmm,
It's entirely possible you won't experience *any* withdrawal symptoms, even if you do go cold turkey. I've quit Prozac after long term use several times, and never experienced withdrawal symptoms. In my case, though, the depression always returned.
Good luck.
Marie

> I've been on 20mg Prozac for about 2 years now. I've started researching the potential withdrawal symptoms, and I can't believe the severity of the symptoms. I've never been addicted to anything my entire life. It almost sounds like you go through hell before you go on Prozac, and then you go through hell again just to get off of it. I am generally a health conscious person, and I looked into all the side effects of taking the medication PRIOR to taking it, but I had no idea this was an addictive drug and would have to deal with withdrawal symptoms when I decided to go off of it. It amazes me that my doctor never told me.
>
> Overall, I'm happy with the results of taking Prozac - I was diagnosed with clinical depression, and EVERYONE noticed a difference in me once I started taking it. The only major side effect is not having a sex drive. But now I'm ready to give it a try on my own without the meds. I don't see medication as a permanent solution to depression. But who am I to say?
>
> So my question is - do I try quitting cold turkey? Depending on the side effects (I still want to be able to function), I'd prefer to quit cold turkey rather than going through a long drawn out process. Any advice? I'm not nervous about getting depressed again, I'm more nervous about all the withdrawal symptoms I've been reading about. Facial tics, muscle spasms, fatigue...it sounds worse than my pre-Prozac days. How do you function in the real world if you are going through all these symptoms?? Any advice on how to cope is appreciated.
>
> Kim

 

Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds

Posted by Cindylou on October 3, 2001, at 14:56:24

In reply to Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds Kimmm, posted by Marie1 on October 3, 2001, at 6:39:25

Hi Kim,
I have been able to taper off Prozac without any withdrawal effects as well -- I would take it every other day for a week, then every two days for another week, and eventually I just stopped and had no trouble. (Effexor is another story however!)

However, Like Marie, my depression always returns. I do need medication permanently; I accept that now -- just like a diabetic needs insulin. I hope that's not the case for you, but don't get discouraged if the depression comes back -- thankfully the Prozac works for you.

Good luck,
Cindy

> Kimmm,
> It's entirely possible you won't experience *any* withdrawal symptoms, even if you do go cold turkey. I've quit Prozac after long term use several times, and never experienced withdrawal symptoms. In my case, though, the depression always returned.
> Good luck.
> Marie
>
>
>
> > I've been on 20mg Prozac for about 2 years now. I've started researching the potential withdrawal symptoms, and I can't believe the severity of the symptoms. I've never been addicted to anything my entire life. It almost sounds like you go through hell before you go on Prozac, and then you go through hell again just to get off of it. I am generally a health conscious person, and I looked into all the side effects of taking the medication PRIOR to taking it, but I had no idea this was an addictive drug and would have to deal with withdrawal symptoms when I decided to go off of it. It amazes me that my doctor never told me.
> >
> > Overall, I'm happy with the results of taking Prozac - I was diagnosed with clinical depression, and EVERYONE noticed a difference in me once I started taking it. The only major side effect is not having a sex drive. But now I'm ready to give it a try on my own without the meds. I don't see medication as a permanent solution to depression. But who am I to say?
> >
> > So my question is - do I try quitting cold turkey? Depending on the side effects (I still want to be able to function), I'd prefer to quit cold turkey rather than going through a long drawn out process. Any advice? I'm not nervous about getting depressed again, I'm more nervous about all the withdrawal symptoms I've been reading about. Facial tics, muscle spasms, fatigue...it sounds worse than my pre-Prozac days. How do you function in the real world if you are going through all these symptoms?? Any advice on how to cope is appreciated.
> >
> > Kim

 

Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds

Posted by Kaysey on October 4, 2001, at 5:38:44

In reply to Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds, posted by Cindylou on October 3, 2001, at 14:56:24

> Hi Kim,
> I have been able to taper off Prozac without any withdrawal effects as well -- I would take it every other day for a week, then every two days for another week, and eventually I just stopped and had no trouble. (Effexor is another story however!)
>
> However, Like Marie, my depression always returns. I do need medication permanently; I accept that now -- just like a diabetic needs insulin. I hope that's not the case for you, but don't get discouraged if the depression comes back -- thankfully the Prozac works for you.
>
> Good luck,
> Cindy
>
> > Kimmm,
> > It's entirely possible you won't experience *any* withdrawal symptoms, even if you do go cold turkey. I've quit Prozac after long term use several times, and never experienced withdrawal symptoms. In my case, though, the depression always returned.
> > Good luck.
> > Marie
> >
> >
> >
> > > I've been on 20mg Prozac for about 2 years now. I've started researching the potential withdrawal symptoms, and I can't believe the severity of the symptoms. I've never been addicted to anything my entire life. It almost sounds like you go through hell before you go on Prozac, and then you go through hell again just to get off of it. I am generally a health conscious person, and I looked into all the side effects of taking the medication PRIOR to taking it, but I had no idea this was an addictive drug and would have to deal with withdrawal symptoms when I decided to go off of it. It amazes me that my doctor never told me.
> > >
> > > Overall, I'm happy with the results of taking Prozac - I was diagnosed with clinical depression, and EVERYONE noticed a difference in me once I started taking it. The only major side effect is not having a sex drive. But now I'm ready to give it a try on my own without the meds. I don't see medication as a permanent solution to depression. But who am I to say?
> > >
> > > So my question is - do I try quitting cold turkey? Depending on the side effects (I still want to be able to function), I'd prefer to quit cold turkey rather than going through a long drawn out process. Any advice? I'm not nervous about getting depressed again, I'm more nervous about all the withdrawal symptoms I've been reading about. Facial tics, muscle spasms, fatigue...it sounds worse than my pre-Prozac days. How do you function in the real world if you are going through all these symptoms?? Any advice on how to cope is appreciated.
> > >
> > > Kim

I took Prozac for many years with great success. After a period of time I felt that it was really doing nothing, and decided to take myself off to see if I could 'get by' with nothing. To avoid any withdrawl, I also slowly decreased dose--not taking it one or two days a week, then every other day, then taking it only one or two days a week, then only a couple of days during PMS time, etc. I suffered no complications whatsoever; however, like most everyone else, the depression and anxiety prevailed. I began Effexor 6 months ago and when/if I ever have to discontinue this med, I plan to decrease VERY slowly.

 

Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds Kimmm

Posted by LyndaK on October 6, 2001, at 0:47:31

In reply to Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds, posted by Kimmm on October 2, 2001, at 19:21:25

I agree with what everyone else here has said. Decrease gradually. I also advocate staying on a very low dose. That's what I'm doing now (though I'm on Zoloft, not Prozac) and I still feel very good emotionally -- actually... better... because reducing the dose has also decreased the side effects -- including the sexual ones. :)
Good luck.
Lynda


> I've been on 20mg Prozac for about 2 years now. I've started researching the potential withdrawal symptoms, and I can't believe the severity of the symptoms. I've never been addicted to anything my entire life. It almost sounds like you go through hell before you go on Prozac, and then you go through hell again just to get off of it. I am generally a health conscious person, and I looked into all the side effects of taking the medication PRIOR to taking it, but I had no idea this was an addictive drug and would have to deal with withdrawal symptoms when I decided to go off of it. It amazes me that my doctor never told me.
>
> Overall, I'm happy with the results of taking Prozac - I was diagnosed with clinical depression, and EVERYONE noticed a difference in me once I started taking it. The only major side effect is not having a sex drive. But now I'm ready to give it a try on my own without the meds. I don't see medication as a permanent solution to depression. But who am I to say?
>
> So my question is - do I try quitting cold turkey? Depending on the side effects (I still want to be able to function), I'd prefer to quit cold turkey rather than going through a long drawn out process. Any advice? I'm not nervous about getting depressed again, I'm more nervous about all the withdrawal symptoms I've been reading about. Facial tics, muscle spasms, fatigue...it sounds worse than my pre-Prozac days. How do you function in the real world if you are going through all these symptoms?? Any advice on how to cope is appreciated.
>
> Kim

 

Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds

Posted by petey on October 6, 2001, at 7:15:51

In reply to Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds Kimmm, posted by LyndaK on October 6, 2001, at 0:47:31

> I agree with what everyone else here has said. Decrease gradually. I also advocate staying on a very low dose. That's what I'm doing now (though I'm on Zoloft, not Prozac) and I still feel very good emotionally -- actually... better... because reducing the dose has also decreased the side effects -- including the sexual ones. :)
> Good luck.
> Lynda
>
>
> > I've been on 20mg Prozac for about 2 years now. I've started researching the potential withdrawal symptoms, and I can't believe the severity of the symptoms. I've never been addicted to anything my entire life. It almost sounds like you go through hell before you go on Prozac, and then you go through hell again just to get off of it. I am generally a health conscious person, and I looked into all the side effects of taking the medication PRIOR to taking it, but I had no idea this was an addictive drug and would have to deal with withdrawal symptoms when I decided to go off of it. It amazes me that my doctor never told me.
> >
> > Overall, I'm happy with the results of taking Prozac - I was diagnosed with clinical depression, and EVERYONE noticed a difference in me once I started taking it. The only major side effect is not having a sex drive. But now I'm ready to give it a try on my own without the meds. I don't see medication as a permanent solution to depression. But who am I to say?
> >
> > So my question is - do I try quitting cold turkey? Depending on the side effects (I still want to be able to function), I'd prefer to quit cold turkey rather than going through a long drawn out process. Any advice? I'm not nervous about getting depressed again, I'm more nervous about all the withdrawal symptoms I've been reading about. Facial tics, muscle spasms, fatigue...it sounds worse than my pre-Prozac days. How do you function in the real world if you are going through all these symptoms?? Any advice on how to cope is appreciated.
> >
> > Kim


Lynda,

I am also taking Zoloft. I have had quite a few side-effects from it, so I've decided to cut the dose,also. Could you please tell me what side-effects went away when you cut the dose and how long did it take for them to subside? Thanx!
Petey

 

Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds

Posted by sharkgirl on December 12, 2001, at 13:28:35

In reply to Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds Kimmm, posted by LyndaK on October 6, 2001, at 0:47:31

I have been coming off prozac for a couple months now. I have been taking it since it came on the market. So far so good. Just getting that electrical shock feeling recently. I've completely stopped taking it. I was slowly taken off over a period of about 2 months. I have also most recently be getting nightmares within the first hour of sleep at night. My sleeping has been effected poorly during the past 2 weeks. I've been told in 80 days it should be out of my system completely.

I am not going to be taking anymore antidepressants. I have resorted to multi-vitamins along with an exercise program and proper eating habits. I have also removed any unnecessary stress factors in my life until I can cope completely.

I must say that the side effects were awful over the years...especially sexually. Well now it is like a revolution. I can not tell you how much better intimate relations are.

I know it is going to be a struggle but I am up for the challenge. It has to be your decision to change or come off drugs completely.

I can even concentrate better now (I also have ADD) and cry. I never realized how unemotional I was becoming on Prozac.

I feel like I have been reborn. Hopefully this high keeps on going.

 

Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds petey

Posted by LyndaK on December 13, 2001, at 1:46:07

In reply to Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds, posted by petey on October 6, 2001, at 7:15:51

> > I agree with what everyone else here has said. Decrease gradually. I also advocate staying on a very low dose. That's what I'm doing now (though I'm on Zoloft, not Prozac) and I still feel very good emotionally -- actually... better... because reducing the dose has also decreased the side effects -- including the sexual ones. :)
> > Good luck.
> > Lynda
> >
> >
> > > I've been on 20mg Prozac for about 2 years now. I've started researching the potential withdrawal symptoms, and I can't believe the severity of the symptoms. I've never been addicted to anything my entire life. It almost sounds like you go through hell before you go on Prozac, and then you go through hell again just to get off of it. I am generally a health conscious person, and I looked into all the side effects of taking the medication PRIOR to taking it, but I had no idea this was an addictive drug and would have to deal with withdrawal symptoms when I decided to go off of it. It amazes me that my doctor never told me.
> > >
> > > Overall, I'm happy with the results of taking Prozac - I was diagnosed with clinical depression, and EVERYONE noticed a difference in me once I started taking it. The only major side effect is not having a sex drive. But now I'm ready to give it a try on my own without the meds. I don't see medication as a permanent solution to depression. But who am I to say?
> > >
> > > So my question is - do I try quitting cold turkey? Depending on the side effects (I still want to be able to function), I'd prefer to quit cold turkey rather than going through a long drawn out process. Any advice? I'm not nervous about getting depressed again, I'm more nervous about all the withdrawal symptoms I've been reading about. Facial tics, muscle spasms, fatigue...it sounds worse than my pre-Prozac days. How do you function in the real world if you are going through all these symptoms?? Any advice on how to cope is appreciated.
> > >
> > > Kim
>
>
> Lynda,
>
> I am also taking Zoloft. I have had quite a few side-effects from it, so I've decided to cut the dose,also. Could you please tell me what side-effects went away when you cut the dose and how long did it take for them to subside? Thanx!
> Petey

Petey,

Sorry for the delay. I somehow missed your response to my post.

I too have a list of side-effects including shakiness, drowsiness, hyperactive reflexes (i.e. knee-jerk), anosmia (loss of smell), impaired memory and concentration, decreased sexual drive and impaired ability to climax, decreased appetite, . . . I'm probably forgetting something, but you get the picture. Some side effects are just annoying -- some much more problematic. Zoloft is a fairly quick-acting drug. Because of that I have to take it very slowly both with increasing the dose AND with decreasing it. The subsiding of the side-effects when decreasing the dose happens fairly quickly - probably within a week or two. I usually stay at the same dose an additional two weeks before decreasing again. This helps me maintain the remission of my depressive symptoms while minimizing withdrawal symptoms.

Best Wishes,
Lynda

 

Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds

Posted by caroline h. on December 13, 2001, at 20:59:57

In reply to Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds petey, posted by LyndaK on December 13, 2001, at 1:46:07

hi- i haven't posted here in ages, since going off 80 mgs/day of prozac about 7 months ago. i disagree with what most are saying in that i see no problem in going off prozac cold turkey. the withdrawal symptoms will be the same--i think you just string out the agony. at least, that's what my doc told me, and based on my experience, what you've said, and the time periods for getting it out of your system, i agree.

specifically, prozac, unlike many meds--even other ssri's--stays in your body for a long, long time--at least 45 days. if you go off a high dosage such as 80 mgs a day, cold turkey the withdrawal will be, and was, for me, gradual anyway because you/i have so much stored up in our bodies. i don't remember exactly, but it took longer than 45 days before i felt like i was really off it. the first couple of weeks were the worst, as my anxiety level became pretty high (withdrawal side effect), but i also became less depressed the more i was off it. it was much easier than going off klonopin gradually, which i had done before that.

so the only thing about going off prozac slowly is that, depending on how gradually you do it, it would take a buncha months before you're off, and i would think you'd feel the side effects for longer but not less acutely.just because it takes a certain amount of time necessary to deprive your body enough to generate the side effects.also, as i got more off it and started to like the non-drugged feeling, i couldn't wait for the rest of it to leave me.

i, like some of you, started with the feeling that i was going to try to manage on my own, even though it might be tough. but i found out was, that for a long time, it wasn't a question of learning how to manage; i liked it. people noticed the difference--only my close friends and shrink knew it was because i was prozac-free.

about a month or so ago, i started to get really depressed and anxious again. my shrink put me on 20 mgs/day of paxil, in part, because paxil clears your body after a day. i tried going up to 30, but there was no benefit, and it was too sedating. so 20 mgs is fine.

one thing withdrawers should be aware of that docs may not keep top of mind--your med experience, whether psychotropic or not, may be different once you clear your system thoroughly of that much prozac. i couldn't tolerate paxil before and now i can. ultram for pain never used to give me side effects; now a little bit makes me nauseous as hell; a teeny amount of klonopin will zonk me as not before. so once rid of a lot of a strong med, my tolerances of other meds changed. you should keep in mind and mention to docs as appropriate that your body may be a new playing field for any med.

hope you guys enjoy life without prozac.

caroline h.

 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness

Posted by LizzySN on January 24, 2002, at 16:58:05

In reply to Re: Prozac Withdrawal - need advice - going off meds, posted by sharkgirl on December 12, 2001, at 13:28:35

Hi everyone!
I never posted to a message board before but I felt compelled after reading all of them. I am experiencing alot of the side effects that everyone has mentioned. I have been on prozac for over a year. I cut down my doses slowly and my last prozac pill was 4 weeks ago. I am so exhausted and yet not sleeping alot!

The worse side effect for me is the achy joints which makes it hard to exercise. I have dance background and have never had my joints feel like this. I thought my weight gain was from not dancing for a year but after reading the message board I think its from prozac too!

I used to take Xanax a few times a week and I stopped four weeks ago also. I bought some high quality Kava Kava from the health store and that helped with my anxiety . I am also taking milk thistle pills to help get the toxins of the meds out of my liver. I have heard that some side effects take six months or longer to go away...I hope that is not true...I want to return to dance to help with my anxiety and depression but with my joints feeling like this I feel very unmotivated besides its painful feeling like this. Prozac did help me through a very difficult time but now coming off of it I wonder if I made a hasty decision, maybe I should have used natural remedies and tried harder. I just assumed prozac has been around for 30 years and lots are on it for years I thought it was safe. I had no idea of the results after taking it. Anyone out there have achy joints or muscle stiffness??

Sleepless in NYC

 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness

Posted by BLPBart on January 24, 2002, at 21:36:15

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness, posted by LizzySN on January 24, 2002, at 16:58:05

I can relate. I've been on prozac for about a year and a half. I noticed no side effects from it initially except weight gain unfortunately. A couple of months ago I started feeling joint and muscle pain especially in my hands, as well as extreme fatigue, no libido, etc. I didn't associate it with the prozac or wellbutrin which I'm also on now, since I had been on them for so long. I went to a dr who ran hundreds of dollars worth of blood tests and even did an MRI of my brain to rule out MS and then told me everything looked fine and there was nothing wrong with me. I did some research and found out that all of my symptoms can be side effects from prozac. My pdoc took me off of it about three weeks and I'm already seeing some improvement, especially in my hands. They don't feel like I have arthritis any more.

> Hi everyone!
> I never posted to a message board before but I felt compelled after reading all of them. I am experiencing alot of the side effects that everyone has mentioned. I have been on prozac for over a year. I cut down my doses slowly and my last prozac pill was 4 weeks ago. I am so exhausted and yet not sleeping alot!
>
> The worse side effect for me is the achy joints which makes it hard to exercise. I have dance background and have never had my joints feel like this. I thought my weight gain was from not dancing for a year but after reading the message board I think its from prozac too!
>
> I used to take Xanax a few times a week and I stopped four weeks ago also. I bought some high quality Kava Kava from the health store and that helped with my anxiety . I am also taking milk thistle pills to help get the toxins of the meds out of my liver. I have heard that some side effects take six months or longer to go away...I hope that is not true...I want to return to dance to help with my anxiety and depression but with my joints feeling like this I feel very unmotivated besides its painful feeling like this. Prozac did help me through a very difficult time but now coming off of it I wonder if I made a hasty decision, maybe I should have used natural remedies and tried harder. I just assumed prozac has been around for 30 years and lots are on it for years I thought it was safe. I had no idea of the results after taking it. Anyone out there have achy joints or muscle stiffness??
>
> Sleepless in NYC

 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness LizzySN

Posted by BarbaraCat on January 25, 2002, at 14:34:19

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness, posted by BLPBart on January 24, 2002, at 21:36:15

Yes, I have serious pain and fatigue so much so that I've been diagnosed with fibromyalgia. I'm not on prozac now, but was on zoloft for 6 years (until 1999) and am now on Remeron. My bad depressive episodes are always accompanied by severe pain and fatigue that put me to bed for about 2 weeks. I've been wondering how common these physical complaints are for folks who have clinical depression. Low thyroid can also cause joint and muscle pain as well as depression and there's alot of evidence that treating it with the standard synthroid (T4 only) is not effective. T3 also has to be included, especially for depression symptoms.

> I can relate. I've been on prozac for about a year and a half. I noticed no side effects from it initially except weight gain unfortunately. A couple of months ago I started feeling joint and muscle pain especially in my hands, as well as extreme fatigue, no libido, etc. I didn't associate it with the prozac or wellbutrin which I'm also on now, since I had been on them for so long. I went to a dr who ran hundreds of dollars worth of blood tests and even did an MRI of my brain to rule out MS and then told me everything looked fine and there was nothing wrong with me. I did some research and found out that all of my symptoms can be side effects from prozac. My pdoc took me off of it about three weeks and I'm already seeing some improvement, especially in my hands. They don't feel like I have arthritis any more.
>
> > Hi everyone!
> > I never posted to a message board before but I felt compelled after reading all of them. I am experiencing alot of the side effects that everyone has mentioned. I have been on prozac for over a year. I cut down my doses slowly and my last prozac pill was 4 weeks ago. I am so exhausted and yet not sleeping alot!
> >
> > The worse side effect for me is the achy joints which makes it hard to exercise. I have dance background and have never had my joints feel like this. I thought my weight gain was from not dancing for a year but after reading the message board I think its from prozac too!
> >
> > I used to take Xanax a few times a week and I stopped four weeks ago also. I bought some high quality Kava Kava from the health store and that helped with my anxiety . I am also taking milk thistle pills to help get the toxins of the meds out of my liver. I have heard that some side effects take six months or longer to go away...I hope that is not true...I want to return to dance to help with my anxiety and depression but with my joints feeling like this I feel very unmotivated besides its painful feeling like this. Prozac did help me through a very difficult time but now coming off of it I wonder if I made a hasty decision, maybe I should have used natural remedies and tried harder. I just assumed prozac has been around for 30 years and lots are on it for years I thought it was safe. I had no idea of the results after taking it. Anyone out there have achy joints or muscle stiffness??
> >
> > Sleepless in NYC

 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness LizzySN BarbaraCat

Posted by LyndaK on January 26, 2002, at 13:39:35

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness LizzySN, posted by BarbaraCat on January 25, 2002, at 14:34:19

Hmmmmmm. I'm currently undergoing some blood tests due to arthritic symptoms I'm having in my hands, wrists, and ankles. The initial tests came back showing elevated antinuclear antibodies (ANA). They are running more specific blood tests now. I've been on Zoloft (off and on, but more on than off) for over 6 years now. So, there could possibly be a connection between my antidepressant and these symptoms?
Lynda


> Yes, I have serious pain and fatigue so much so that I've been diagnosed with fibromyalgia. I'm not on prozac now, but was on zoloft for 6 years (until 1999) and am now on Remeron. My bad depressive episodes are always accompanied by severe pain and fatigue that put me to bed for about 2 weeks. I've been wondering how common these physical complaints are for folks who have clinical depression. Low thyroid can also cause joint and muscle pain as well as depression and there's alot of evidence that treating it with the standard synthroid (T4 only) is not effective. T3 also has to be included, especially for depression symptoms.
>
> > I can relate. I've been on prozac for about a year and a half. I noticed no side effects from it initially except weight gain unfortunately. A couple of months ago I started feeling joint and muscle pain especially in my hands, as well as extreme fatigue, no libido, etc. I didn't associate it with the prozac or wellbutrin which I'm also on now, since I had been on them for so long. I went to a dr who ran hundreds of dollars worth of blood tests and even did an MRI of my brain to rule out MS and then told me everything looked fine and there was nothing wrong with me. I did some research and found out that all of my symptoms can be side effects from prozac. My pdoc took me off of it about three weeks and I'm already seeing some improvement, especially in my hands. They don't feel like I have arthritis any more.
> >
> > > Hi everyone!
> > > I never posted to a message board before but I felt compelled after reading all of them. I am experiencing alot of the side effects that everyone has mentioned. I have been on prozac for over a year. I cut down my doses slowly and my last prozac pill was 4 weeks ago. I am so exhausted and yet not sleeping alot!
> > >
> > > The worse side effect for me is the achy joints which makes it hard to exercise. I have dance background and have never had my joints feel like this. I thought my weight gain was from not dancing for a year but after reading the message board I think its from prozac too!
> > >
> > > I used to take Xanax a few times a week and I stopped four weeks ago also. I bought some high quality Kava Kava from the health store and that helped with my anxiety . I am also taking milk thistle pills to help get the toxins of the meds out of my liver. I have heard that some side effects take six months or longer to go away...I hope that is not true...I want to return to dance to help with my anxiety and depression but with my joints feeling like this I feel very unmotivated besides its painful feeling like this. Prozac did help me through a very difficult time but now coming off of it I wonder if I made a hasty decision, maybe I should have used natural remedies and tried harder. I just assumed prozac has been around for 30 years and lots are on it for years I thought it was safe. I had no idea of the results after taking it. Anyone out there have achy joints or muscle stiffness??
> > >
> > > Sleepless in NYC

 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness LyndaK

Posted by BarbaraCat on January 26, 2002, at 14:16:53

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness LizzySN BarbaraCat, posted by LyndaK on January 26, 2002, at 13:39:35

It seems like they're looking for rheumatoid arthritis or other connective tissue autoimmune conditions. There is alot of bad press about prozac and other SSRI's and one of the most outspoken is Dr. Anne Tracey "Prozac or Panacea?". You can do a search on the web for her site where you can email your question to her. She takes a very radical and extreme anti view, however, so I'd be concerned with going whole hog on her views and try to counter them with other opinions. But definitely worth a look.

> Hmmmmmm. I'm currently undergoing some blood tests due to arthritic symptoms I'm having in my hands, wrists, and ankles. The initial tests came back showing elevated antinuclear antibodies (ANA). They are running more specific blood tests now. I've been on Zoloft (off and on, but more on than off) for over 6 years now. So, there could possibly be a connection between my antidepressant and these symptoms?
> Lynda
>
>
> > Yes, I have serious pain and fatigue so much so that I've been diagnosed with fibromyalgia. I'm not on prozac now, but was on zoloft for 6 years (until 1999) and am now on Remeron. My bad depressive episodes are always accompanied by severe pain and fatigue that put me to bed for about 2 weeks. I've been wondering how common these physical complaints are for folks who have clinical depression. Low thyroid can also cause joint and muscle pain as well as depression and there's alot of evidence that treating it with the standard synthroid (T4 only) is not effective. T3 also has to be included, especially for depression symptoms.
> >
> > > I can relate. I've been on prozac for about a year and a half. I noticed no side effects from it initially except weight gain unfortunately. A couple of months ago I started feeling joint and muscle pain especially in my hands, as well as extreme fatigue, no libido, etc. I didn't associate it with the prozac or wellbutrin which I'm also on now, since I had been on them for so long. I went to a dr who ran hundreds of dollars worth of blood tests and even did an MRI of my brain to rule out MS and then told me everything looked fine and there was nothing wrong with me. I did some research and found out that all of my symptoms can be side effects from prozac. My pdoc took me off of it about three weeks and I'm already seeing some improvement, especially in my hands. They don't feel like I have arthritis any more.
> > >
> > > > Hi everyone!
> > > > I never posted to a message board before but I felt compelled after reading all of them. I am experiencing alot of the side effects that everyone has mentioned. I have been on prozac for over a year. I cut down my doses slowly and my last prozac pill was 4 weeks ago. I am so exhausted and yet not sleeping alot!
> > > >
> > > > The worse side effect for me is the achy joints which makes it hard to exercise. I have dance background and have never had my joints feel like this. I thought my weight gain was from not dancing for a year but after reading the message board I think its from prozac too!
> > > >
> > > > I used to take Xanax a few times a week and I stopped four weeks ago also. I bought some high quality Kava Kava from the health store and that helped with my anxiety . I am also taking milk thistle pills to help get the toxins of the meds out of my liver. I have heard that some side effects take six months or longer to go away...I hope that is not true...I want to return to dance to help with my anxiety and depression but with my joints feeling like this I feel very unmotivated besides its painful feeling like this. Prozac did help me through a very difficult time but now coming off of it I wonder if I made a hasty decision, maybe I should have used natural remedies and tried harder. I just assumed prozac has been around for 30 years and lots are on it for years I thought it was safe. I had no idea of the results after taking it. Anyone out there have achy joints or muscle stiffness??
> > > >
> > > > Sleepless in NYC

 

Re: Achy Joints... Thanks. I'll look it up. (nm) BarbaraCat

Posted by LyndaK on January 27, 2002, at 15:52:16

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness LyndaK, posted by BarbaraCat on January 26, 2002, at 14:16:53

 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness LizzySN

Posted by Krazy Kat on January 27, 2002, at 18:43:32

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness, posted by LizzySN on January 24, 2002, at 16:58:05

Interesting post - thanks! I've taken Prozac for about 6 months and recently have noticed my joints "swelling" and hurting. I didn't connect it, but that does make sense. My right elbow, which was broken when I was 2, is particularly uncomfortable.

- KK

 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness Krazy Kat

Posted by BarbaraCat on January 27, 2002, at 20:43:40

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness LizzySN, posted by Krazy Kat on January 27, 2002, at 18:43:32

Yes, there are quite a few 'Prozac Survivor' websites out there and a number of lawsuits. One of the typical complaints is muscle and joint aching. Who knows? I sometimes wonder about my fibromyalgia - it wouldn't surprise me if it were related to my 10+ years of SSRI use. Good luck with your health.

> Interesting post - thanks! I've taken Prozac for about 6 months and recently have noticed my joints "swelling" and hurting. I didn't connect it, but that does make sense. My right elbow, which was broken when I was 2, is particularly uncomfortable.
>
> - KK

 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness

Posted by kayjay on January 27, 2002, at 23:23:55

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness, posted by LizzySN on January 24, 2002, at 16:58:05

Hello, I took prozac with a stimulant for 6 years, and then developed joint pain and swelling. I eventually tested positive for lupus. Funny thing is, when I stop taking the meds for several months, the joint pain gets much better. Also, the positive lupus tests have only occured while on the meds, or within a few months of taking them.
kayjay

 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness kayjay

Posted by BarbaraCat on January 28, 2002, at 12:00:17

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness, posted by kayjay on January 27, 2002, at 23:23:55

Wow! That is a big piece of news! Have you done any further research on this to figure out what's happening when you're on the prozac? What tests show positive then negative? Have you visited any of the antidepressant survivor websites - there seem to be alot of muscle complaint stories. Also, if you don't mind, can you give me details of your symptoms. The reason I ask is that I've suspected lupus in my own illness. -- Barbara

> Hello, I took prozac with a stimulant for 6 years, and then developed joint pain and swelling. I eventually tested positive for lupus. Funny thing is, when I stop taking the meds for several months, the joint pain gets much better. Also, the positive lupus tests have only occured while on the meds, or within a few months of taking them.
> kayjay

 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness

Posted by L on January 28, 2002, at 12:22:27

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness, posted by LizzySN on January 24, 2002, at 16:58:05

> Hi everyone!
> I never posted to a message board before but I felt compelled after reading all of them. I am experiencing alot of the side effects that everyone has mentioned. I have been on prozac for over a year. I cut down my doses slowly and my last prozac pill was 4 weeks ago. I am so exhausted and yet not sleeping alot!
>
> The worse side effect for me is the achy joints which makes it hard to exercise. I have dance background and have never had my joints feel like this. I thought my weight gain was from not dancing for a year but after reading the message board I think its from prozac too!
>
> I used to take Xanax a few times a week and I stopped four weeks ago also. I bought some high quality Kava Kava from the health store and that helped with my anxiety . I am also taking milk thistle pills to help get the toxins of the meds out of my liver. I have heard that some side effects take six months or longer to go away...I hope that is not true...I want to return to dance to help with my anxiety and depression but with my joints feeling like this I feel very unmotivated besides its painful feeling like this. Prozac did help me through a very difficult time but now coming off of it I wonder if I made a hasty decision, maybe I should have used natural remedies and tried harder. I just assumed prozac has been around for 30 years and lots are on it for years I thought it was safe. I had no idea of the results after taking it. Anyone out there have achy joints or muscle stiffness??
>
> Sleepless in NYC


I have been withdrawing from Prozac for almost a month and have had
mostly mild withdrawl side effects. The past week I had nausea, fatigue, irritablity and nightmares.
So far still sleeping good at night.

I just wanted to respond to your comments that your also on Xanax.
I suspect most of your withdrawl symptoms are from that.I was put on
xanax 10 years ago and was only on it a month and when I got off I
went thru a hellish 10 days of troubled semi-sleep, muscle jerks,
fatigue and felt like living hell. After those ten days I slowly
went back to normal after I got over the fatigue all the withdrawl
caused. Prozac generally does not have as bad withdrawl symtoms as
othe similar drugs because of that long half-life.

Be nice to yourself and give in to your urges
to take care of yourself during these trying times. Rent a
favorite video, read a comforting book, go out or stay in-whichever
nurtures you. This is not the time for status-quo,
business as usual. Sounds goofy-but pamper yourself. Call a friend and share
what's going on in your life-this is a great tension reliever.

I wish everyone who is withdrawing from anything-strength to get
thru it and well wishes.


 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness Barbaracat

Posted by kayjay on January 28, 2002, at 17:41:27

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness kayjay, posted by BarbaraCat on January 28, 2002, at 12:00:17

Hi Barbara,

I researched as much as I could on the web and at our local nursing library. There isn't much info out there regarding SSRIs and lupus-like symptoms.
AS far as the prozac survivor sites go, all I ever come up with is stuff about suicides and violence on SSRIs. I have seen several doctors, and they don't seem to know much about this either. One theory is that I have lupus, and the meds cause it to flare. Strange though that I had absolutely no physical symptoms until the SSRIs.

Anyway, my ANA has been mildly positive off and on(1:80, 1:160). Anti-dsDNA has been as high as 79.

The symptoms I had were joint pain, sometimes with redness and swelling. stiff neck, mild skin rashes that itch, sore gums, asthma, numbness and tingling in arms, hands and feet, fingers turn white and numb in cold weather, thinning hair, sinus problems and fatigue. Some of these may be "side effects" from the meds, it's hard to tell.
The joint pain and swelling would come and go, lasting from several hours to a week, then it might just go away for 7 days or so. Joints affected were, fingers, wrists, elbows, knees and feet. The pain would migrate from one joint to another(knees might hurt one day, the next day trouble with fingers, etc.) Symptoms usually got worse right before, and 8 to 10 days after my periods.

When I have been off the meds for several months, all physical symptoms improve gradually. But unfortunately, I have remained depressed.

kayjay

 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness Barbaracat kayjay

Posted by BarbaraCat on January 28, 2002, at 20:09:16

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness Barbaracat, posted by kayjay on January 28, 2002, at 17:41:27

Dear KayJay,

Certainly sounds like classic lupus, however, there is such a thing as drug-induced lupus and from some of the threads (not many) I've found, Prozac can be one of the culprits. Perhaps switching to a TCA would help some of the depression rather than an SSRI.

So sorry you're feeling this rotten. Having depression and brain hurt is bad enough, but having severe body miseries one top of it is way too much. I know this one all too well. I'm following some pretty radical nutritional research applying to fibromyalgia, CFS and to some extent lupus. So many theories. Let me know if you want the info, otherwise I can just keep in touch re what seems to be promising and/or is helping me. Even though fibro and lupus are not the same beast, there seems to be a definite metabolic dysfunction relation. I'll keep you in my prayers. -- Barbara

> Hi Barbara,
>
> I researched as much as I could on the web and at our local nursing library. There isn't much info out there regarding SSRIs and lupus-like symptoms.
> AS far as the prozac survivor sites go, all I ever come up with is stuff about suicides and violence on SSRIs. I have seen several doctors, and they don't seem to know much about this either. One theory is that I have lupus, and the meds cause it to flare. Strange though that I had absolutely no physical symptoms until the SSRIs.
>
> Anyway, my ANA has been mildly positive off and on(1:80, 1:160). Anti-dsDNA has been as high as 79.
>
> The symptoms I had were joint pain, sometimes with redness and swelling. stiff neck, mild skin rashes that itch, sore gums, asthma, numbness and tingling in arms, hands and feet, fingers turn white and numb in cold weather, thinning hair, sinus problems and fatigue. Some of these may be "side effects" from the meds, it's hard to tell.
> The joint pain and swelling would come and go, lasting from several hours to a week, then it might just go away for 7 days or so. Joints affected were, fingers, wrists, elbows, knees and feet. The pain would migrate from one joint to another(knees might hurt one day, the next day trouble with fingers, etc.) Symptoms usually got worse right before, and 8 to 10 days after my periods.
>
> When I have been off the meds for several months, all physical symptoms improve gradually. But unfortunately, I have remained depressed.
>
> kayjay

 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness Barbaracat

Posted by kayjay on January 28, 2002, at 21:51:36

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness Barbaracat kayjay, posted by BarbaraCat on January 28, 2002, at 20:09:16

Thanks Barbara

I hear fibro isn't so great to have either.

Drug induced lupus hasn't been ruled out completely, but my rheumatologist thinks that is unlikely. I have already tried TCAs years ago. I've been on about 40 different meds over a 20 year span for depression, and the SSRIs with a stimulant was the only thing that helped.

Are you having success with the Remeron? I had thought of trying it, but am worried about the weight gain and sedation.

kayjay

 

Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness

Posted by Joy on January 29, 2002, at 18:43:07

In reply to Re: Achy Joints and Muscle Stiffness, posted by LizzySN on January 24, 2002, at 16:58:05

I too have aching joints in my fingers on both hands; mostly the left hand. I could not even wear my ring on my middle finger. I had been on 60 mgs of Prozac; I am now going down to 30 mgs and hope to go to 10, 15 or 20 mgs. I take Xanax as needed [not too often, mostly at night for insomnia [with a little Trazodone]

> Hi everyone!
> I never posted to a message board before but I felt compelled after reading all of them. I am experiencing alot of the side effects that everyone has mentioned. I have been on prozac for over a year. I cut down my doses slowly and my last prozac pill was 4 weeks ago. I am so exhausted and yet not sleeping alot!
>
> The worse side effect for me is the achy joints which makes it hard to exercise. I have dance background and have never had my joints feel like this. I thought my weight gain was from not dancing for a year but after reading the message board I think its from prozac too!
>
> I used to take Xanax a few times a week and I stopped four weeks ago also. I bought some high quality Kava Kava from the health store and that helped with my anxiety . I am also taking milk thistle pills to help get the toxins of the meds out of my liver. I have heard that some side effects take six months or longer to go away...I hope that is not true...I want to return to dance to help with my anxiety and depression but with my joints feeling like this I feel very unmotivated besides its painful feeling like this. Prozac did help me through a very difficult time but now coming off of it I wonder if I made a hasty decision, maybe I should have used natural remedies and tried harder. I just assumed prozac has been around for 30 years and lots are on it for years I thought it was safe. I had no idea of the results after taking it. Anyone out there have achy joints or muscle stiffness??
>
> Sleepless in NYC


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