Cymbalta Withdrawal Only Exists On Message Boards

May 27, 2010 — 268 Comments

Earlier I had written a post titled Cymbalta Withdrawal Symptoms Suck where I had gone on a rant of all the shitty Cymbalta withdrawal symptoms I was feeling. To my surprise, that post became very popular and a lot of people have weighed in about their experience while weening off Cymbalta.

I am now completely off of Cymbalta and haven’t had any Cymbalta withdrawal symptoms for a couple of months. I do however, relive my experience every time I read a new comment posted on my Cymbalta withdrawal symptoms article. Sometimes people have questions about certain withdrawal side effects which I don’t have answers to so I’ll try to look something up on line…that’s not easy.

Where Is All The Info?

It seems that Cymbalta withdrawal symptoms only exist on message boards and blogs. Other than that the only cautionary warning is to not stop taking Cymbalta without consulting your physician. If you enter the term Cymbalta withdrawal in a search engine you will see that the top results are message boards.

Just try and find some site actually associated with the pharmaceutical company listed…you won’t. That is completely shocking to me. It is a fact that Cymbalta is causing moderate to severe withdrawal symptoms in people yet the company doesn’t feel that it’s necessary to address this?

Take A Closer Look

Even scarier than the number of message boards and comments being left by people suffering Cymbalta withdrawal is what is actually being said in these comments. There people who have been going through Cymbalta withdrawal for up to 3 weeks just crying out for help from anyone.

A common theme in these messages about Cymbalta withdrawal is that the people suffering are not getting the help they need. They are either going to there doctor and being told that they are being “extra sensitive” about what they are going through which is magnifying the intensity of the withdrawal symptoms. Or they are being told that Cymbalta does not cause withdrawal symptoms.

I have over 80 comments on my Cymbalta Withdrawal Symptoms Suck post and out of those 80 there are about 2 people that were taken seriously by their doctor about the withdrawal symptoms they were experiencing. In those cases the doctors either changed the rate of the tapering schedule the patient was following or got them on a supplement routine that would replace what their body was now lacking due to the withdrawal.

It just seems like Cymbalta is being prescribed more and more for not only depression and anxiety but now also for diabetes nerve pain. People find, after taking this drug for sometimes only a few months, that it is no longer serving the purpose it was intended for. Instead of being able to quickly taper down they are now stuck taking Cymbalta for months and months after it is needed just to avoid severe withdrawal symptoms.

I Gotta Do SOMETHING

I read this stuff and it makes me crazy. But then I say “what can I do?”. Not much actually. Along with keeping this topic in the spotlight on my site I decided to create and online petition which I will be sending to Eli Lilly at the end of 6 months. I strongly urge (and beg you) to please sign my Cymbalta Withdrawal Symptoms online petition. As of writing this article I have one signature and it is my own. Come on…be a pal!

268 responses to Cymbalta Withdrawal Only Exists On Message Boards

  1. Thank you! I have gone through the suffering of coming off of Cymbalta and I have been trying to think of a way to get people together to do something about this drug! I’m not all that great with computers- is there a way for me to put a link to your petition on my myspace page? I would love to do that. Thank you so much for what you have done!!!

    • I TOO AM SO GREATFUL TO HAVE FOUND OUT THAT I AM NOT CRAZY…I WAS ON 60 MG OF CYMBALTA FOR YEARS. OCT 2ND WAS MY FIRST DAY WITHOUT ANY CYMBALTA. I WEANED OFF IT SLOWLY. WHILE ON CYMBALTA I HAD STOMACH ISSUES AND PROFUSE SWEATING EPISODES. BUT IT DID HELP MY SITUATIONAL DEPRESSION. I AM NOW GOING THROUGH HELL. I AM NOT DEPRESSED BUT PHYSICALLY THIS WITHDRAWAL IS BRUTAL…I HAVE DIZZY SPELLS 3/4 OF THE DAY-I TAKE BENADRYL WHICH HELPS SOME WITH THAT. I AM NAUSEATED, HAVE THE CHILLS, WHEN I TURN MY HEAD FROM SIDE TO SIDE THE ROOM SPINS…I GET THE BRAIN ZAPS-AWFUL…I GET WEIRD SENSATIONS IN MY BODY-TINGLING IN MY HANDS-LIKE THEY ARE GOING TO SLEEP….WHEN I DO SLEEP I HAVE BIZARRE DREAMS…I MEAN BIZARRE. IT IS SO HARD TO FUNCTION -ITS SCARING ME BECAUSE I’M AFRAID THAT THESE SYMPTOMS WILL NEVER GO AWAY. I FELT CRAZY AND ALONE UNTIL I GOT ON THIS SITE. I SIGNED THE PETITION AND I HAVE CONTACTED THE FDA. NO ONE TOLD ME THAT CYMBALTA WOULD DO THIS TO YOU. I WOULD HAVE NEVER TAKEN IT. ITS UNSAFE..

      • It’s a new drug. It works fast and in a society spoiled with “now!” tantrums, tell me: had you been offered a safe wellknown drug like Prozac-a drug that’s worked for years and has had long term tests to study for years, or Cymbalta, which is new, works faster (which is so important when u feel depressed) and has no studiEs on LT affects? I am not critiquing u for taming the drug–I’ve had issues myself. I am suggesting you study any drug prescribed before taking it. If you would have looked, u would have seen effects…and assumed u fell in98% who didn’t experience them. Think long and hard… Antidepressant may truly be the scariest drug around. All drugs mess with your brain activity but how many make your brain chemicals their daily playground. Of course, if our doctors weren’t being fed by the Drug Reps of, oh, makers of pristique, we never would have tried this drug and prolly wouldn’t be in this forum. Probably we would be sleeping seeing as how I tried that one too and was lucky to be awake more than 12 hrs/day. I agree these drugs are ugly but we take them because the pros outweight the cons. Even if it’s prescribed, you can say no–in the same way you’d say nontoxic any other dealer because, face it… When it comes down to it, our docs aren’t much more than highly s hooked legalized dealers. They make suggestions but take responsibility before eating drugs that completely screw your head and do your homework before you pop the next pill.

        • I agree with much of your opinion. Responsibility should be taken for discarding a medication with a longer history of research, for something that works fast (i.e. some thing like Prozac or Zoloft vs. Cymbalta). However, not everyone has been prescribed Cymbalta solely for depression. In my case, I have been taking Zoloft (now in a smaller dosage), for a couple of years now, and past the first few months things haven’t been difficult in taking it and now tapering off of it. However, as someone who after years had finally been diagnosed with fibromyalgia–the front-runner medication, and medical posterchild pill is unfortunately Cymbalta. Because it is one of the ONLY medications currently approved by the FDA to ease the pain of Fibromyalgia, I thought I couldn’t do much worse by starting a low dose of Cymbalta in terms of pain. Three weeks in and I was considerably worse than I was before. I decided to nip it in the butt to avoid withdrawals, and began tapering. Two years of Zoloft, and I can skip a few days without much notice. Three weeks on Cymbalta, despite my doctor’s reassurance that I shouldn’t have withdrawals only after three weeks, and nearly two months later and I can barely miss a couple of days without taking my tapered pill, now only down to about 20mg. Without that miserable pill, I can barely travel, let alone do my work. The room spins, I get dizzy spells, muscle tremors,nausea, and increased pain among a multitude of other issues. While I should have researched this medication deeper before starting it, description of the severity of this “medication” and its withdrawal/side effects is NOT accurate. And these withdrawal symptoms should be seriously addressed, so that other people will know the risks they’re taking by even taking Cymbalta for a blip of time.

        • You say the pros outweigh the cons… do they?

  2. Just checking up on you- come by and say hi!

  3. I signed the petition and left a brief message about my withdrawel traumas. Thanks for steeping out and helping to do something. I hope to get the message around somehow to make more sufferers aware of this site and the petition. I dont know how to yet, but I hope to think of a way. There arent very many people that have signe the petition yet.

  4. Erin,
    I signed it as well. I hope things are okay with you. Haven’t seen any new postings in a while.

  5. Hi Erin,

    I have been taking Cymbalta for 2 years. I am taking 60mgs. daily for nerve pain. I want to go off. After reading your post, I am scared to death. I don’t think the Cymbalta is working now. I really, really appreciate your posts and the other people who posted after you. I have had the brain shocks, when I have ran out of Cymbalta for a time. They are real. I forgot what you called them, but they can be so severe they can knock you down. I have told 2 doctors about these shocks to no avail. They think I am dreaming this up. I will try to go off slowly when I do. What scares me most is the nausea. After a stomach surgery, I can not throw up. I don’t know what to do. Thanks again for your posts. Please let me know of anymore findings, or if you need help getting Eli-Lilly to face up to the problems with going off of this nightmare of a medication. Joyce Germer

  6. It’s 4am and I’m on my 3rd day off cymbalta. I’m really glad that I found this sight. I knew I was going to have some kind of problems getting off cymbalta but had no idea what I was in for. I hated the side effects while I was on it and I’m hoping I’ll live threw the withdrawals. Reading all the comments has helped me realize what is going on. It’s been a weird day just trying to keep my head from falling off and rolling around on the ground. It seems like there are some things that will help like Dramamine and I may end up trying it. That may help one problem but just having some insight to what to expect helps me alot. I’m sorry to say but sometimes we need drugs like cymbalta to help us. I ended up on cymbalta and welbutrin only after trying everything else that didn’t work. I’m still on welbutrin and I’m hoping as the Dr. said would help prevent some of the withdrawal problems of cymbalta. I have one more month on welbutrin and then I’m hoping I’ll have my life back. I’m looking forward to that day. Good luck to you all.

  7. I signed the petition as well.. Thank you for your help and support with this trauma to our body and lives..

  8. I have been on Cymbalta for about 4 months and am up to 60 mg twice a day. I was in an accident a year and a half ago and had trouble walking and I also have nerve pain from diabetes. So far it has helped a lot, but I am worried about it if it stops working and I have to go off of it. My doctor did not tell me of any adverse side effects when she put me on it. I don’t know if she is even aware of them. I had an episode two weeks ago that scares me even worse. My prescription needed filled so I called it in and had taken my last one Saturday morning. When I called it in I thought I heard that they were open until 7 pm so I went to pick it up after work. They unfortunately closed at 6 pm. I did not have my meds for Saturday night, Sunday, and Monday, since it was labor day weekend. Sunday I got sick at work with diahrreha (sp?), faintness, cold sweats, couldn’t think, and had trouble walking. I seemed to be fine on Monday, but Tuesday morning I got a severe headache and my right hand started to shake. They thought I was having a stroke so I went to the emergency room. The headaches and the shaking got more and more severe until my whole right side started to shake. They gave me adavant and sent me to a larger hospital. The doctor there told me that the combination of the cymabalta and my suppose sleep apnea I had damaged my frontal lobe and was having mini strokes. I am not sure if I agree with him because I haven’t had a problem with sleep apnea for a long time. I think now that the cymbalta alone is what cause the damage and the mini strokes. I am still having trouble with the headache and yesterday I forgot how to write twice. When I was in the hospital I had forgotten how to walk for about three seconds and then remembered. Everything I have read and experienced now has me very worried.

  9. I’m 18 Years old almost 19 and, I have cerebral Palsy. I had been on Cymbalta for All most Two years it is the third anti Depressant since I was, 16 when, I was first Given Zoloft. I stayed on that for a few Months or so, Before being transferred to Effexor XR. I stayed on that for a year and a half until it stopped working for me. Then I was transferred to Cymbalta,it worked like I said for close to two years. Before I said enough is enough I was sick of the “anti Depressant shuffle” that is the only way to describe it . I asked my doctor to help me get off it. I was taking 60 Mg once daily My doctor had me take 30 Mg’s for two weeks, and then stop period. That appointment, with my Doctor was two and a half weeks ago. Since I started to taper down my dose symptoms I have Gone trough are, Severe Mood swings, intense Muscle and joint pain, Incressed Muscle Spasms somewhat due to my cerebral Palsy but incressed by this withdrawal, dizziness, and what fells like motion sickness when I stand, intense Insomnia, very Emotional, Edgy, Severe Headaches. Things that seem to help Valium, benadryl, and headaches medications. That seems to be about it. and I Have had at home advice from my parents who are Nurses, But not much helps the withdrawal symptoms.

  10. I am sitting here in tears (probably because I’m extra-sensitive in withdrawal..LOL) reading because I am so glad to hear that I am not crazy. I am so glad I had the hunch after 10 months that I had to get off. I am in so much pain..so much..but I am going to tough it out. God Bless.

  11. I have been off of Cymbalta now for 9 days. I feel like I have a bad case of the flu. The worst part is the constant nausuea and the dry throat. i can barely swallow and I feel like I constantly need to force myself to eat, to get rid of the nasuea feelings. I know it will be a bad road ahead, but I keep thinking to myself, if this is what happens when you try to get off of this medicine it frightens me to think what it is exactly doing to my body. I just hope this ends soon! I might take the 30 mg tablets every other day for a while, but I’ve already been cold-turkey for 9 days, and hope thow rost is over.

  12. I took myself off Cymbalta (cold turkey) about 2 months ago. I went through a job loss and was finding the co-pay too expensive with insurance and impossible without it. I have had severe insomnia which is finally getting a little better as well as night sweats and anxiety. The stress of looking for a job hasn’t helped either. After visiting this website, I thought I would try taking the benadryl to see if it helps. I am feeling better but it has been a very uncomfortable 3 months.

  13. I also took myself off Cymbalta cold turkey 2 weeks ago; told my dr what I was doing, but refused to go on any other meds. I did start taking 100 mg of 5-HTP & extra B6 & folic acid plus my normal multivitamin, which I believe helped.I had flu-like symptoms & extreme fatigue for a week, & now have muscle & joint pain that I hope will go away soon. 1-2 Benadryl at night helps insomnia (which was MUCH worse while on Cymbalta). I’m so happy to be off this med. Best of luck to everyone in their withdrawal recovery!

  14. I have gone from 60 mg. of Cymbalta down to 20. I have been on 20 for one week. I have a weird feeling in my head like a hangover. Any help for this. I eventually want to get entirely off. My M.D. stated it was unusual for have symptoms. I was on Effexor once and withdrawal from that was horrendous. Does Cymbalta have the same symptoms. I am trying to study for an exam an I cannot seem to concentrate. Is this typical?

  15. I was on 30 mg of cymbalta for 3 months,then went to 60 for about 2 weeks, butI stopped taking it altogether on sunday, and have gone through brain zaps, naseau and a little insomnia. Iam actually really scared! Has anyone else done this?

  16. i am in a new relationship with a man who is currently on cymbalta. He was w/o his Rx for 4 days and he suffered greatly. I was not very understanding of it all and had no clue about the withdrawl side effect. I know that I hurt him by not being understanding and now I’m at a loss for what to do next. What would you want a person to tell you after such an incident?

  17. Hi: Well it has been 5 weeks since I have been off Cymbalta. I still have periods of lightheadedness and nausea. But it is getting better. Amber, just tell him you’re sorry and that you didn’t understand. It is an awful drug. If he is a nice guy, he will forgive you.
    Lisa, Hang in there. I took Benydrl to sleep and Dramaine for the nausea and dizzyness. That should help. Good luck. My prayers are with you.

  18. I took Cymbalta for about 18 months, and recently came off of it. Like many others, I found that it’s effectiveness seemed to decrease over time, especially the last few months. The most important thing to avoid withdrawal effects is to taper, taper, taper.. DO NOT STOP THIS DRUG COLD TURKEY!, unless your doctor gives you a very good reason for doing so (there’s a life threatening drug interaction with something else you’re taking etc..) “you shouldn’t have these kinds of symptoms” isn’t a reason. The drug does come in 20mg capsules so make sure when you are getting off of it you ask your doctor to write the script for the 20mg pill.. I used the following schedule over 8 weeks and other than some mild dizziness and headache had little other problems:

    Week 1 alternate every other day 60 mg and 40 mg dose
    Week 2 40 mg daily dose
    Week 3 alternate 40 and 20 mg dose
    Week 4 20 mg daily dose
    Week 5 alternate 20 mg and no pill
    Week 6/7 20 mg dose every third day
    Week 8 off

    • I have been on the Cymbalta for 7 days 60mg and cannot afford the $70 copayment can i stop this cold turkey since i’ve only been on it for 7 days? Thankyou for your help

    • Good advice to taper, but i would taper even moreso. Instead of alternating days, once down to 20 mg, continue to take EVERY DAY, opening the capsules and pouring out more of the little dots each day (VERY GRADUALLY over several weeks) . I know they say never to open the capsules, but “they” don’t admit to a withdrawal problem at all.

    • Hi Mark, I know this was written 3 years ago, but wanted to reply in case someone else reads this. You are so luck to have had little problems when going off Cymbalta. I am on 60 mg twice a day for severe pain. When I first started taking it I could barely walk or sit without being in a recliner. I read all of the scary side affects and decided to get off of it. I went to my doctor and we decided to wean me off slowly. I can’t remember how we did it only that it was slow. When I finally got off of it completely, I really started having problems. After the 3rd day of being off of it I started having severe seizures. I have seizures anyway and take meds for it, but being off the Cymbalta caused them to be so bad I could hardly walk. I had to put myself back on it. I guess I will never be able to get off it. So count yourself very lucky and I hope you were successful in getting off and staying off.

  19. I took Cymbalta for 2 and 1/2 months. I was on 60 mg for mild depression! I had imsomnia and felt numb most days. I decided to quit cold turkey and after the fourth day I felt like I wanted to die! I was extremely emotional so I took one every 4th day after getting scared from the brain zaps. I have been off the drug for 6 wks and am still experiencing these scary brain buzzes(thats the only way I know how to describe it) Does anyone have any advice for me? Godbless

  20. Hang in there Julie. I have been off the stuff for approximately 90 days. Every now and then I still get a “wave” that runs through my head. Brain zaps are common, but do eventually go away. You should start to notice the symptoms decreasing with each passing week. Usually, by day 70 you will notice a big change. Everything will be all right… God Bless you too.

  21. My husband has been on Cymbalta for his clinical depression for over two years. He has an addictive personality, and it seems like the Cymbalta has relieved his depression, but has made his “addiction to credit cards” a lot worse. Has anyone ever heard of this happening before? Could Cymbalta and the escalation of addictive behaviors be connected? Thank you for this website.

    • I stopeed taking cymbalta for 2 reasons. I wanted to be medication free. I have been clean in recovery for 12 years and have been on anti-depressants the whole time. I want to think and feel more clearly. The second reason was that I believed the cymbalta kept me from feeling the pain of my acting out behavior in gambling, kept me from coming to terms w/the consquences, I mean, you feel like things are okay even when they are not. I like the “flu like” desription, that is accurate for me, of one week of this med (40/day before) as well as the irratibility and some muscle spasms, sensitivity to noises, some headache, innability to focus, but they are slowly decreasing. It is very tough. Cold Turkey works for me only because I am an addict, tapering off is no doubt the smarter way to go.

  22. I was on cybalta for 7 months and quit cold turkey. I don’t know what I would have done if I hadn’t read these blogs. I am on week two of cold turkey and brain zaps are almost gone. The muscle fatigue is no picnic. I was lucky to take a few weeks off work to go through my own detox. I also took benadryl and advil for withdrawal and it helps. I also drank a ton of water and did a few recommended detox treatments. I can say to Beckie that I had a huge issue with credit cards during my Cymbalta run………Also, I should never have been prescribed this drug as I never considered myself severely depressed. Good luck to all and I thank you for helping me through this…….

  23. Holly hang in there. You will be ok. The muscle pain is awful. Keep on doing what you are doing. Let me know how you are doing.

    How is every one else doing since going off the stuff? Believe it or not I did not have any symptoms for two weeks and last week I had a “brain wave”. I was very labile and thought I may be depressed again. However, I got through it and am feeling pretty good. So everyone hang in there, it does get better. Stay Strong!!

  24. Cheryl

    I’m still hanging in there but I feel like I function like a old lady. The muscle and joint pain is still really tough and I’m getting tired of feeling bad. I did decide to make appt. with my m.d… we’ll see what he says but I thought I need outside help to document in case I see a T.V. commercial for 1-800-Get Cymbalta. I’ll post what the good Dr. says….

  25. Holly,
    I am so sorry you have to experience this. It is truly a horrible drug. Physician’s either don’t understand or don’t care. I do know, through research, that M.D.’s get a kickback from drug companies to prescribe this stuff. An M.D. wanted to put my 16-yer-old daughter on an antidepressant since she was experiencing peer pressue. I adamantly said “no, we will try psychotherapy first”. He was so angry with me, and told me I didn’t know what I was talking about when I started telling him about withdrawal symptoms and told me psychotherapy doesn’t work. Any way that was two months ago. I took my child to a therapist and she was discharged last week, without the drugs.

    The only reason for these “uneducated” doctors to keep prescribing the stuff is kickbacks from the drug companies. I am a medical professional working in nursing homes and MRDD facilities and I have seen first hand when a doctor just stops these drugs and the patient can’t speak up. It is truly horrible.

    Sorry, I can rant and rave about these idiot docs when it comes to antidepressants. Also, during my research, I read that some people have been given one (1) pill of Prozac which is supposed to stay in your system for a longer period of time, to alleviate the symptoms. I did not try that route, because I was afraid to put anything else into my body, but apparently it does work. There is no solid research on this though. If you can stay home, take Benedryl and Dramamine with the Advil, they do alleviate the symptoms temporarily, but they do rear their ugly head again.

    I will be thinking about you and praying. It is a very slow and long journey. Take care. Let me know how you are doing.
    Cheryl

  26. Cheryl,

    Thank goodness again for this forum!! My M.D. acted and said verbatim what most M.D’s say about this rotten excuse for a drug. Said he never heard of such a thing. Thinks I need to look in to treatment for Fibromyalgia….or something more serious. We ended up arguing as I explained that he should go on the internet because I refuse to believe that everyone of us is crazy. He wanted to put me back on the drug ( I actually chuckled). I let him say what he needed to say and walked out of there with 4 prescriptions and I don’t know how many different slips for lab and urine test’s. Well guess what………..that’s not happening! I really hate the muscle fatigue but I’m going to bear with it.

    I also point blank asked him how long this would take to get out of my system……he seemed nervous and said it could take a year. What are these quacks hiding?? I understand the drug company politics as I have seen it firsthand before. I used to sell pharmaceuticals

  27. Been taking Cymbalta in conjunction with Lyrica since June 2008. Severe and worse Diabetes pain only, not as anti-depressant.

    Insurance wouldn’t pay for 60mgx2, so doc put me on Amatriptalyn (sp) instead. Very trippy drug.

    The Amatriptalyn was wacky, and the doctor fought to get me back on Cymbalta, and insurance finally agreed.

    Taking 120mg (2×60), in conjuction with morphine and methadone.

    I can handle the pain with only the Cymbalta and Lyrica, but not with only morphine and methadone. The Cymbalta heightens the effectiveness of the Lyrica.

    When I switched to Amitriptalyn, I didn’t notice withdrawals, but my doctor warned that I could have moderate to severe.

    Recommendations on sticking with Cymbalta or trying to switch? It sounds like the Cymnbalta might cause as much problems as it solves, over time.

  28. Holly,

    I am not surprised your doc tried to diagnose you with something else. Amazingly, he did admit it may take a year to get Cymbalta out of your system. Gee!!! He obviously knows something. It is to easy for them to take out a script pad and write instead of spending honest quality time with their patients. Unfortunately there are too many people who think doctors are gods and can do no wrong. Please, don’t go back to taking the Cymbalta again. I am praying for you and all the others hooked on this crap. Please keep me posted.

  29. Hey- so glad to finally find a current site on Cymbalta- for some reason the only ones I could find were a couple of yrs. old. I’ve been on multiple antidepressants as well as Lyrica over the past 8 years for PCS, Fibromyalgia, and back pain/radiculopathy. 80 pounds later and now with HBP % God know what else, I’ve been able to stop all pain meds but 1. I realized that the weight was simply resistant to coming off due to medications and that losing the weight was necessary in order to lower BP, decrease back, joint,muscle and generalized pain. My doctor goes with “whatever” I want as far as switching up meds as I used to be an ICU RN n’ know what I’m talking about- I do, but nurses need doctors to do their health thinking for them (I had to have a picc line placed for antibiotic therapy last Christmas. I was told I didn’t need Home Health RN since I am an RN, that I could take care of me myself!) I get this everywhere and while the confidence in me is complimentary, it is no longer wanted. I had a bad concussion from MVA in ’01- led to FM- “work-related injury led to back surgery in ’07- a LOT of crap has happened to me and now I am the one needing a professional. Ok, sorry, got that out- I feel certain that in addition to Diabetic Neuropathy, they will soon approve Cymbalta as a treatment for FM. Without the proper warnings, education etc. this is NOT A SAFE drug for general public to be on! I had severe bruising on Cymbalta- was also on Motrin 800 for back pain- check a bleeding time on me and could’ve been really scary. Cut back Motrin once I realized what was up- but had I been in an accident, or hit my head when I fell down out cement stairs- I could’ve dies from bleeding in my brain, caused by the combination and no one would’ve caught it! I forgot to pick up Cymbalta refill on a Sat. and by Monday, I was in full blown withdrawel- vomiting, horrid vertigo, brain-zaps (never knew this term before reading these, but this is what it feels like!!!) once back on the med, symptoms resolved (should’ve been a huge red flag!)But it helped my nerve pain, simple as that. Now I weigh more than I’ve ever weighed, on disability because of my back, have high BP, daily headaches/migraines (still 2nd to MVA/concussion) and terrible blood sugar swings. I decided to wean and stop the Cymbalta. Talked to my doctor….guess what I got?- ok, “whatever you want to do” UGGGHHH! Now, after 3 days of 1/2 dose from 60 mg and off (I really didn’t realize that this took way more weaning than other meds!!) I’ve been off of Cymbalta for 9 days. Brain zaps are easing, but still come and go at their own pace. So does vision. My ears ring so loud I could scream. I can’t turn my head abruptly or everything spins. I’ve tried to be extra patient with my family- even prewarned them of what I was going to be doing- they’ve been sick of me since about day 4. Couldn’t eat for 4 days but I haven’t had the vomiting- plus. 2 nights ago I started to have palpitations and they continue today and are somewhat worse along with very shaky hands and unstable feeling in my head and gut. Oh, and I spoke with my doc Monday- he has NO conceptual CLUE about what is happening- they just didn’t even have time to listen to what I was trying to tell them was happening to me?!? I told my mom if I drop dead and someone finds me- the Cymbalta killed me. Sorry for the rant- just desperate for someone who understands what I’m going through and do not want to see anyone, let alone scores of people, go through what I’m going through, or anyone who’s posted here. Gotta go. Thanks for listening.- oh, & if you start a new petition- I’m in!!

  30. I was given cymbalta (30mg) by my doctor for nerve pain. After being on it for 2 months I realized it wasn’t that helpful with the pain. I decided to go off of it last week. To my complete surprise within 24 hours I got completely ill. I felt like I was getting the flu but worse. Beside the overall body pain, my head feels like it’s not attached to my body. Every couple of minutes i have waves of feeling like I’m going to faint. Certain ways I move my head make it definitely worse. I have been vomiting on and off and feel basically like this is the worst motion sickness ever. The most insulting part of this experience is that my doctor had the audacity to tell me that there are no withdrawl symptoms. It’s unbelieveable that these arrogant doctors are handing out meds like candy when they dont even know what the effects are. This drug is a VERY serious drug that obviously takes a huge toll on your body. After calling and complaining again to my doctor (after 3 days of feeling like this) he finally prescribed topamax. I am hesitant to take it for fear of what might happen now. If anyone has any good suggestions, I would happily listen. This really is difficult. I can’t function normally and carry on typical day to day tasks. Please feel free to suggest things that have worked

  31. I will reiterate what I said back in September. This is a horrible drug. I took Dramamine for the light-headedness, Advil for aches and Benedry to sleep. It took a good two months before I started feeling better. I haven’t had a “brain wave” in about 2 weeks (they come and go, but get less and less intense). I thought Topomax was for migraines?? It’s a tough road, and sadly, the docs are in denial. If they admit there is a problem with this drug, they won’t get their “perks” from the drug companies.

  32. Been taking Cymbalta (2×60) in conjunction with Lyrica (3×150) for diabetic neuropathy.

    Doctor started me on Morphine (1×30) and Methadone 1×10) in December 2008. These didn’t appear to do any good AT ALL; still taking Lyrica + Cymbalta.

    While the Lyrica + Cymbalta killed 1/4-1/2 of pain, even 3 different types of nerve block did NOTHING.

    2 weeks ago the doctor upped the Morphine and Methadone dosage to 3 doses/day. WOW what a difference! The Methadone scared the bejesus out of me, but after explanation I accepted it. Last week (5 days ago) doctor upped me to 5 x the original dosage in 3 dosings.

    STILL not 100% relief, but I can sleep all the way through the night now, at least half the time.

    Why am I writing? Because I’m still worried about the Cymbalta, and the withdrawals I read about here. I seem to be getting some of the symptoms even though I’m not quitting it. Brain ‘zaps’ (Hadn’t heard that term; maybe that’ll help me explain it to the doctor – thanx), and several of the other more severe posted about here (full body pain, LOUD tinnitus (60%+ of day), loss of balance, ‘skippy’ eyes).

    Maybe someone else could benefit where I haven’t – NAMENDA. It is for Alzheimer’s but is being used for diabetic and other pain much as with Cymbalta+Lyrica. IT TRIPS ME OUT (very strong @ 10MG x1), but maybe one of you could benefit if you ask your doctor about it.

    Good luck to everyone! And PLEASE keep posting: thoughts, experiences, questions and ideas.

    I feel better just knowing there are people here who trully understand what I am dealing with on a daily basis.

    • Oh Tony, I am so sorry for you! I have diabetic neuropathy too. It is so painful. I don’t see any other choice either than to take Cymbalta and lyrica. I haven’t notice that anyother type of pain reliever helps with this kind of pain. I have been on Morphine, for back pain, never noticed it helping the nerve pain. I too get brain zaps or shocks when I turn my head too fast. I don’t think you need an MRI, I just think the Cymbalta is causing your skippy eyes, and zaps. I get that too.
      Like you I must stay on the ‘Cymbalta because of the Neuropathy. It is such a painful disease. Please take care, and hang in there. Joyce

  33. Hi Tony:

    I just read your post, and I must say I am so sorry you are experiencing so much pain. I wish I had an answer for you regarding the Cymbalta. The brain zaps were common while I was on Cymbalta, and I have read where other people have symptoms while on the drug. I also had nights where I would wake up screaming because it felt like my head came off my body. Being on the drug or coming off it, there are many symptoms. My heart goes out to you with all you are going through. You are in my prayers this morning.

  34. annie iacobellis February 9, 2009 at 7:56 pm

    stopped taking cymbalta (cold turkey) about a week ago. i would have tapered off gradually, but i was on 20mg capsules, so could’nt cut them in half. i know that
    this is risky, but cymbalta was making me feel worse, (suiciadal thoughts worse, weight gain,extreme exhaustion,depression worse, ) i have beenon almot every anti-depression med there is over a 10-year period,. most do not work, some seem to at first, then abruptly stop. i feel like i have ben poisoning myself forever. i just woke up one day and said “that’s it. no more of this”. anyway, i feel sooooooo bad. flu-like symptoms, skin feels sore, brain zaps back ache.thoughts are very scattered, and iam sicker than i thought i would be, as i was on low dose for 2.5 months. this stuff is awful. i’d rather be depressed and suicidal without this evil poison they call medication.

    my family is upset because i did not tell them that i was doing thi. i have not told my shrink because i was afraid that she would convince me to keep taking it, ot convince me to up my dose. i was afrais she would put me on something else,i was afraid to tell her that i wanted to hurt myslf because she might be duty-bound to stick me in the hospital. anyway, i will be glad when these bastard side-effects subside. this is worse than i thought it would be. no wonde people want to throw themselves in front of buses, etc.

  35. Went back to primary doctor yesterday, after trip to pain clinic and another neurologist, as well.
    Neuro: Nothing I can do for you (which is what the first one said).
    Pain Clinic: Waiting to hear back on new appointment.

    In the meantime, vommitting often in the wee hours. Now with blood. Was diagnosed with ulcer when 14, so I figured what it was.
    I also suffer from sweating. Suddenly floods my shirt, then gone. No apparent reason, just starts.

    Family physician NOW LISTENING!
    Told about vommitting: sending me to gastroent…
    Told about brain ‘zaps’. SENDING ME FOR BRAIN MRI!

    Still taking the 2x60mg of CYMBALTA. But I don’t seem to have any choice. It is the only thing that works to knock down the main level of pain, and then the Methadone w/Morphine takes over and kills more.

    Running into walls and stuff more often. And get brain ‘zaps’ quite often. I thought of them as brain ‘STUTTERS’ before I came here. Would that be a good description as well, from those out there who experience it?

    The MRI is scheduled for March 18, 2009, I believe. I’ll post the results as quickly as I can after that.

    Hang in there!

  36. Hey All…….

    Haven’t checked in lately. Just an update…. I went off Cymbalta “cold turkey” after 60mg. Took two weeks off work and really suffered. I have been off since 12/13 and it really took about 6 weeks for all symptoms to go away. Get a few bouts with temper but boy what a life changing experience!! I don’t think I will ever mess with an anti-depressent again after that whold ordeal.

    Hang in there everyone as life will greatly improve once it is out of your system. Be patient as much as you can.

  37. Been on my share of anti depressants. Been on Cymbalta for over 4 years. Weaning off it is absolute horror!!! I tried once to go cold turkey and literally almost ended up in a closet sucking my thumb by the 3rd day. Rage,moodswings all over and brain zaps that could have powered LA for a week. I’m weaning off now per a new Dr. On the 3rd week now and I’m just now starting to feel somewhat normal. The 2 weeks into it were horrible though. Besides the regular withdrawl symptoms….I welcomed death on a daily basis. I even prayed to God for it. I know Cymbalta works for alot of people but in the long run it is an killer in so many different ways. Cuase eventually it will stop working and when it does you are in a fight for your sanity. I am suposed to start Celexa tomorrow….wish me luck. Thousands have suffered and still no one is getting it at all. Something must be done.

  38. Well, I’m not being encouraged.

    I take Cymbalta 60mg x2 daily in conjunction with Lyrica for pain from neuropathy, and Methadone and Morphine as well.

    I have what I am guessing are the brain ‘zaps’ I have seen mentioned. Like a restart button pushed on a computer, it feels like my brain is being restarted but no pain. Loss of equilibrium as well; run into things and fallen over a few times. Eyes go wonky at times, where vision is very mixed up.

    But I don’t know what drug to attribute these things to, or if it actually IS a drug.

    From your descriptions, I don’t think I ever want to go off of Cymbalta just so I don’t ever have to deal with more intense symptoms.

    As with the others, though, I wish you the best as these medications reach out and grab us and shake sense out of us.

  39. Well, I got started on Gabitril by my PM. It is an ‘anti-convulsant’. But it is also known to help with pain from neuropathy.

    The real story is that it appears to have reduced the ‘brain zaps’ by about 70%-80%. In fact, my PM prescribed it as a possible solution to the zaps.

  40. I posted back in September 2007. I had just started Cymbalta for pain after my accident. I have now been on it for about 1 1/2 years and wish I could get off. All the side effects scare me. I tried about 8 months ago with the help of my doctor. I gradually tapered off just like I was supposed to until I was totally off. I was fine for about 3 days and then the trouble started. On the 3rd day I started having real bad seizures. I could not walk or talk. I had to put myself back on the Cymbalta. After it got into my system the bad seizures stopped. But now I have seizures all the time and I am still on it. I have to now take seizure meds, which help most of the time. No one believes that the Cymbalta is what caused the problem or else going off of it triggered something in my brain and now I have no way of stopping them. I wish someone would listen too me, but no I apparently do not know what I am talking about. Has anyone else had this problem?

  41. Kim:

    I am so sorry to hear about your experience. I have not heard of anyone experiencing seizures; but then again not everyone on Cymbalta writes about side effects. If you google the question “can cymbalta cause seizures, there is information. Have you had a complete neurological workup to make sure nothing else is going on? I wish you the best and will be praying for you.

    Cheryl

  42. I was just sitting here wondering what would happen if I tried to quit taking Cymbalta, and my Google search led me here. Unbelievable what I’m reading. I thought I was crazy. I have the brain zaps if I’m a half day late taking my 60 mg tab! I’m going to stop taking this medicine for sure now. I just hope my withdrawal doesn’t take too long . . .

  43. Oh, my God! I am in my 2nd week of getting off Cymbalta, and it has been absolutely terrible. I have lost my job, going through withdrawl, and then I read these terrible symptoms. Been on 60mg.Cymbalta for over 3 years. Is there light at the end of the tunnel? I am convinced this is why I lost my job. My boss kept asking me, “what drug I was on”??? They need to do something to ban this drug…

  44. I was taking Cymbalta for anxiety for one month only. Having read some things about it. I did not want to take this long term. So, Upon my next doctor appointment I asked for something else. So, Immediately I stopped taking the Cymbalta. Now even after only a month of taking it. i VERY CLEARLY what it is there was to be concerned of. I am in my 3rd day of severe headache. It is like a Migrain that wont go away. I have never had headaches likes this before eor especially for 3 days. My head is throbbing even now and I only wonder when it will stop. I had hoped when i got up this morning it would be gone as to now suffer through another whole day long of it. Thanks Cymbalta.. NOT !

  45. R. Lowe, I am glad that you didn’t take Cymbalta any longer than you did. I am just now feeling better and I am my 3rd week of gradually getting off of this nasty drug. Try drinking plenty of water. Hope you are feeling better.

  46. I’m so happy I found this site and that I’m not completely insane or imagining my withdrawal. I was on Wellbutrin and Zoloft since 2005 for depression/post partum after my oldest son was born, and that combination worked out really great. Last summer (2008) I didn’t feel like things were working, so my dr. changed my Zoloft to Prozac. I felt like it was working for a while but all of the sudden – boom I was up 10lbs. Man! In the midst of all this I had spinal surgery in August of 2007 and was dealing with lingering cervical pain that seemed to be getting worse. I went to a physiatrist for my pain, and after all sorts of nerve blocks, injections, and spinal epidurals, he suggested I take Cymbalta for my pain. And of course the bonus would be the depression application, so he figured sure why not go off the Prozac and substitute it with Cymbalta.

    SO I switched to the Cymbalta in September of 2008. I started at 30mg, then went up to 60mg. It still wasn’t making things a lot better, so he told me to double it to 120mg, and the pain was alleviated almost 100% immediately. Unfortunately, BOOM another 10 lbs came on no matter how hard I worked out or watched what I ate πŸ™ πŸ™

    SO about two months ago I finally decided I couldn’t deal with the weight gain, the brain zaps, etc. I slowly weaned down – spent about 2 weeks on 60mg – until this past Wednesday to 30mg and then stopped. I felt good when I stopped, and then the next day it started to go downhill πŸ™

    Thursday I felt OK but not great, and was definitely out of it and the zaps were back. Friday I felt WAY worse, but still managed a normal workout and day with my kids. BUUUUT I haven’t left the house since Friday afternoon πŸ™ I am dizzy and nauseous and feel like I’m going to die. My mood swings are PSYCHOTIC and I burst into tears over the smallest things. My husband cooked a steak tonight and I almost threw up just from smelling it (I don’t eat steak but never almost vomit from it!)

    ANYWAY sorry for the long story leading up to this but basically HOW LONG WILL THIS LAST??? I will absolutely 100% never ever take this again, but ugh!! I will try some Dramamine after reading this. I see my psychiatrist – the one who originally prescribed the Zoloft/Wellbutrin combination and still prescribes me the Wellbutrin – to see if there is anything I can do.

    Thanks for reading my rambling, and I hope you all feel better and get past this soon too.
    Kristin

  47. Kristin,

    I have the same exact withdraw symptons. I called the dr. on Friday, and I am on prozac for 10 days. Feeling better, have you had this experience yet? Hope you feel better soon. Not sure what to do next. Hope I get over this soon.

    Sandy

  48. Hi Sandy,
    I’m feeling much better thank you!! I spent the week after I posted this taking Dramamine and felt a bit better… I saw my dr. and she said let’s try Wellbutrin 300 XL instead of giving me a Zoloft or Xanax or something. i lasted less than a week and was even MORE – if you can believe it – psycho than I was before. I was SCREAMING at my children (it was so awful) and crying over ANYTHING. I called her and she gave me lorazepan (does nothing for me really) and then I got in to see her just this past Thurs and we decided to try a higher dose of Zoloft (I was only on 50mg when she took me off)… I’m gradually going up – am on 25mg right now – to 50mg and then will see her next week to see how I feel and then I think she’ll up it to 75-100mg. She also told me to take the lorazepam 2x/day until the zoloft kicks in, and I’m still on the wellbutrin 150xl.

    I feel MUCH MUCH better already, and I’m only on day 3 of the 25mg Zoloft. I was just a messsss. I never want to even hear the word Cymbalta again!! πŸ™ Sandy I hope you feel better soon!!!

  49. I am getting off Cymbalta and am using a supplement that gets rid of the withdrawals ( totally) ..go to Truehope.com and buy thier amino solutions supplement. They have a free helpline that will tell you how to taper off and how much of the supplement to take every day…I love the fact that I found these people. I also use the Empower Plus…try it you won’t be sorry.

  50. omg i am on cymbalta only 30mg and i am getting brain zaps!!! i wanna go off but i dont know how,,,,i am scared!!!!

  51. Trish, I am sorry for your experience. Start by decreasing to 20 mgs. for a couple of weeks. I even went so far to open the capsules and count out the tiny beads within the capsule to decrease weekly. Someone wrote about their doc prescribing Prozac which helped. I took dramamine and benydryl which help with nausea, vomiting and lightheadedness. I got most of my brain zaps in my sleep some during the day. It is truly a dangerous drug. I wish you the best, and I will keep you in my prayers.

  52. Heads up people! I am getting off Cymbalta and feel wonderful thanks to supplements that are designed to help you wean off antidepressants…..go to

    Truehopeempower.com

  53. Hi! As far as the benedryl…is it the over the counter capsules? and how much do you take a day? Thank you!

  54. My doctor just perscribed Cymbalta to me for anxiety and I am afraid to take it. I was also perscribed Effexor and couldnt tolerate it. Are there any SNRI’s out there that dont cause horrible withdrawls?

  55. Hi Carrie:
    My psychiatrist wanted to put me on Zoloft for anxiety. After my withdrawal from Cymbalta, I had to say no. I was adamant about it. I said I am NOT depressed I am anxious. He put me on a small dose of Zanax Extended Release .05 mg. I am feeling so much better. If it is just anxiety and not depression than you must tell him that. There are no antidepressants without withdrawals.

  56. After trying all kinds of different medications, I have finally tried cymbalta(which I am told there is no generic of, so it sucks having to pay 25 dollars a month or almost 1 dollar a pill)….but anyways, I just did not like what it did to me. The first time I went off of it was an accident. I forgot the medication at home when I went on a trip. I had a TERRIFIC weekend actually, medicine free…but then the drive home from Ohio, ended up not being so great. Every time I turned by head, I felt wierd…(you all who have quit know what I am talking about), and all I had with me was bupropion, so I took some of that, but it did not help too much. So I went back on the cymbalta, but in the past week have decided to stop. I don’t like it. It has taken away my passion (including my anger which is good, but not worth it), and the sexual side effects are horrendous…(but so is any antidepressant I have used), I feel like I am just passing by…day by day…but I have been off of cymbalta for two days now….it is amazing how quickly the withdrawl symptoms appear. Right now, I am incredibally dizzy! Let’s hope I can get off of meds for good. I want to do this naturally…(not that meds are the wrong answer), I just hope they are not for me….

  57. wow brain shocks and dizzy with some gut ache thats me came home from work today was on 60 mg for about 10 months. I decided to get off and took 30 mg for 1 week now take 30 mg every other day 4 pills left the last 3 days been getting brain zaps this morning it was a little more than a zap every move i make feels like i need to pass out anyone know how long this will last ?
    didnt know about this just thought i would search it ……surprize im not alone

  58. I was on Cymbalta for ONLY 8 DAYS (30mg for 7 days, then 60mg for 1 day). before I stopped due to adverse side effects. About a week later I started with the nausea, headaches, fatigue, and nightmares. If anyone can let me know how long I can expect to suffer after such a brief exposure, I would sure appreciate it. It’s been 5 days already. Or, has anyone found a good remedy to combat the nausea? I am trying to get back to my life. Very grateful at least to have found this info, so at least I know what is going on with me and that it should be self-limiting πŸ˜›

  59. I have been on Cymbalta for about 8 months and I was getting severe migraine headaches while on it. I have also gained 17 pounds while on the medication. Since I can’t take any medication for my migraines because the cautionary label clearly states not to take migraine medication because it could cause a stroke when interacting with the Cymbalta, I live with the debilitating pain for fear of a stroke. I was up to 90mg and asked the doctor to wean me to 60mg. I have since then been weaning myself off completely and have horrible brain zaps and a form of vertigo. Literally, (without knowing quite how to explain it) I can’t move my eyes without feeling a sort of dizzy, sluggish feeling inside my head. I wouldn’t even know how to explain it to the doctor. If I close my eyes and move them from left to right I can hear the movement in my ears. I know this sounds crazy and maybe it’s part of the brain zaps. I would like to know if anyone else has ever felt this. It feels like my eye movements are exaggerated and in somewhat of a slow-motion. I’m not sure if it is the withdrawal or vertigo. When I turn my head I get the weirdest feeling. When I move my eyes, I get a numb feeling in my face and lips. I feel like I’m going crazy. Will this ever go away? I feel like I can’t function. I need to take care of my family and all I want to do is lay down so I don’t move my head or eyes.

    • Lisa, I have been on cymbalta 60 mg for over 2 years. Got to this site quite by accident. The other night I felt the room spinning (vertigo), and had what I now know to be “brain zaps”, and the weird “skippy” eyes. I thought maybe I had an inner ear infection. Now I see that I was having withdrawal symptoms from Cymbalta. I remembered I hadn’t taken it in 3 days. Apparently there are auditory and visual changes that go along with it too. I have read losts of posts tonight, want to stop taking it. Seems going very slowly with weaning is the way to go. God bless!

  60. Maggie Peterson November 6, 2009 at 2:51 pm

    I had great success when I stopped taking Cymbalta. My doc prescribed 20 mg. of Prozac to “replace” the Cymbalta. I stopped when I was @ 60 mg. of Cymbalta. I took the Prozac for 4 days (heard you can do it in 1 or 2) and had virtually no withdrawal symptoms. I had some random aches, but nothing major at all. It may not work for all, but if it doesn’t work completely…I’ve heard it at least helps most. Someone on another message board posted how they took Prozac and didn’t withdraw from Cymbalta and I thank god that I read that message!

  61. My Dr. prescribed 30 mg Cymbalta (told me to open a 60 mg pill and take half of it) for serotonin deficiency and inner ear pain. I opened the pill and took 1/3 of it instead of half (thankfully!). Within two hours I heard whooshing in my head and was nauseous. I had to take a dramamine to go to sleep. I woke up and hour and a half later wired! Was in a panic and had to take a couple tabs of Lorazepam to go back to sleep. I didn’t take a second dose, thankfully. However, three days later I’m still having withdrawal from that one dose! I’ve been anxious ever since the dose and now today I have a headache and am dizzy, fluish, but no fever. I rarely have had a headache in my life. Good luck everyone. I would try to Prosac some have recommended or the truehopeempower.com had I been on it longer. I am going to pray for everyone who gets on this, as God reminds me!

  62. I stopped taking cymbalta 5 days ago and I’m so glad I found this site. I asked the pharmacist if waves of dizziness were normal for going off it and she said “yes, you will probably feel light-headed also. It will take a few days to get out of your system and if you still have the symptoms, call your doctor”. Well, my doctor took an extended weekend for Thanksgiving apparently.

    After reading all these posts, I realize that my brain zaps (great word for it), dizziness, weird dreams, ringing in my ears, even my eyes going back and forth real fast must be from this too. I was even in a REALLY BAD MOOD yesterday. I never had that before. I had to leave just to save my husband from me.

    I was just recently diagnosed with high blood pressure and on Thanksgiving my mom kept making use her blood pressure apparatus to check it. She was getting nervous and told me I had to call the doctor because these feelings were probably from high blood pressure. I don’t know what the numbers mean but she kept telling me it’s high. 137/95? I don’t know. But HBP is known as the silent killer because there are no symptoms. But now I’m sure that all this is from withdrawals.

    My daughter takes 90mg and when the time comes for her to go off, at least I know what to tell her to do so hopefully she doesn’t experience the same.

    Thank you for all your comments. They were very helpful. I wish everyone a lot of luck with what they are going thru. Hopefully it won’t last long. Hang in there and hang tough. Remember it’s only a temporary thing that we have to go thru but we will get thru it.

  63. Is good to find this on the Internet . I had those symptoms before when I didn’t have my medicine. It is horrible. I’m on 120mg per day and now I’m taking one 60 mg pill every other day. I am feeling weird but I am also getting off risperdal, I’ve been taking this for 8 years and I’m tired of meds. I know is going to be difficult but I’m ready for it. It was good to read all this. Good luck everyone and God bless you.

  64. I am wondering how long this brain fog/zap will continue…I have been off Cymbalta for 1.5 week now? Does sleep get better the longer you are off it?

    • I’ve been off of Cymbalta for 21 days and still feel foggy and dizzy! I’m having terrible joint pain now! Good luck!

      • I am going on 6 weks off and am still sooo angry, or cry, or talking 100 miles per hours, cant sleep, severe mood swings. cant get a clear answer on how long all this takes. The physical symptoms took a couple of weeks, but these emotional and mental ones are still hanging around.

  65. wow. saw this after i started weening myself. i took 20 mg for years and realized i was feeling ‘numb’. I’m now taking 20 mg every 3 or 4 days. I noticed that i’ve been crying more but it felt GOOD TO FEEL AGAIN. I’ve got chest pain and sore arms and weakness and tiredness and wierd dreams. don’t know if that’s normal? I’m ready to stop completely since i’m down to every 3 or 4 days.
    wish me luck. Bless all of you for sharing. Diane

    • I’ve had chest pain as well! I was afraid I was getting sick! I’ve been off for 21 days and the bad dreams have stopped! Thanks for the info ! Good luck!

  66. I’m on my 21st day of withdrawal from Cymbalta! I went cold turkey, because I couldn’t deal with the side effects! I had terrible dreams of my kids being killed every night! The other side effects are too many to list! Can someone tell me when withdrawal ends ! It seems like it’s lasting forever! I’ll have a day of feeling somewhat normal and the next day I’m in he’ll! Today I’m having shooting pains in my knees and elbows! Is this normal! I’m sick of feeling sick! Last night I couldn’t sleep because my muscles won’t stop twitching! Please help me with any info ! Thanks!

    • I too would like a light at the end of the tunnel. This website is full of folks describing the same physical withdrawals. But no one has mentioned much to help ease the issues or how long it lasts. I am so thankful I stumbed upon this last night because I was sooooo ready to make an appointment to get abck on something. I have changed my mind since I can see that it isnt me and that I am not alone in this.

  67. Here’s a new wierd ?side effect” I’ve been getting kind of a fuzzy feeling in my brain – hard to describe and also COLD spots e.g., yesterday it felt like someone spilled cold water on my leg. I even felt for wetness then the feeling was gone.. This is crazy. I’m a week ‘clean’ and looking forward to a cymbalta free 2010. Happy New Year everyone…. So happy that I have my own internet business as I don’t know how I would handle having to go into an office!

    • I been weaning for a year now…I’ve had the cold wet feeling spots…on my legs mostly. Thot I was crazy reached down to wipe too. Wow I’m so sickkkk of weaning.dunno what I’d do without God and all of you….

  68. Lawyer/Survivor/Stong Woman at the Fair said…
    I got up this morning so excited! I am not dizzy today and no part of me felt like I was going to not make it through Cymbalta withdrawal. This is notable because for 25 days, I have woke up feeling like hell. I was going through “environmental stress” (aka a “rough spot in life”) and was put on Cymbalta as a band-aid. Well, that band-aid was increased to 120 mg, I gained 20 lbs., the Dr. added in Vyvanase, Xanax, Amphetamine Salt and Ambien and the next thing you know I couldn’t think clearly enough to get myself out of the box. I about Elvis’d out with my red and black envelopes. I am a motivated, entreprenuerial individual who employs hundreds of people and suffers the stress of being successful. With the beginning of the pharmaceutical cycle, I became cold, unemotional and unstable. A glass of wine every once in awhile is a MUCH better option. Please, please, please… if you are told to go on psychological drugs to “help you get through something” really, really think through it. It’s easier at the time but the changes it makes can alter the rest of your life. Thank goodness, I had a lot of great people around me who told me that I was getting hard to be around with the drugs. I was angry and depressed and quite frankly I felt like I had an excuse because I was “defective” after all. I wasn’t defective. I never was. I was stressed. Life is stressful sometimes. $150 in meds a month, 2 counseling visits a month ($300) and a year and a half and 20 lbs later, I can tell you…. stress goes away, the addiction that the pharmaceutical companies create with this stuff doesn’t. The doctors aren’t aware of what it really does to individuals. They can’t measure it, they can’t monitor it and not strangely, psychologicially impaired people aren’t really great at perception of their own mental health status. If you are taking Cymbalta or any of the related psychotropic drugs, get with someone who cares about you and ask for their HONEST opinion. My withdrawal (cold turkey – not recommended but it worked) was a 25 day journey of slogging through the muck and mire of getting out from under it. It was one of the hardest things I have ever done. I have ran marathons, I have done endurance sports where I thought I would die but NONE of them were as bad as getting off of this medicine.

    January 2, 2010 11:02 AM

  69. I think everyones withdrawl time frame seems to be a little different. Some peoples last months and some peoples last a few weeks. I went off the cymbalta cold turkey (due to an allergic reaction) after taking 60mg for 8 weeks. Its now been 10 days and I can actually get out of bed. Having still alittle bit of blurry vision while typing this. But today I can actually stand without the room spinning around me, and it seems that someone has removed the axe that ive had in my brain for the last 10 days. and, I dont need to wear my sunglasses in the house. Im still covered with the worst rash and extreme itching ive ever had but that to should go away when all of this poision is out of my system completely. Vomiting seems to be over, and ive been up for a few hours and I havent cried about anything. So, I think today will be a good day!!!! I think the doctors that keep prescribing cymbalta shoud be made to take it themselves first, lets say for about 6 weeks then, go off it so they can actually see what this drug does to the human body oh, and while thier going thru the horrible withdrawls come to see me so that I can tell them that cymbalta doesnt have these kind of withdrawls. That there are no known withdrawl side-effects from cymbalta and the whole time they are suffering from the withdrawls tell them they cant miss work, they must take care of thier families, and this is all in your head. Then maybe they will stop pushing this drug.

  70. I have been off of Cymbalta now for a month. It was absolute unadulterated hell for the first 2 weeks. Here’s the good part though, now that I am off and truly functioning again I realize that I really just needed to accept some of the issues that I had with my life and not turn to something that would obscure them. I have began to have normal and passionate relations with my husband and I am so lucky to have him. Although my work life is difficult… I get paid for that and at the end of the day, I have my children and my husband and life is good. No more ups and downs, no more feeling flat, emotion that is real is much better than questioning whether it is real or just the pharmaceuticals. Real is in. For some people who truly have depression and can’t pull themselves out or have such dire circumstances that they can’t make the reach then maybe, the drugs are worth it for a vacation and getting everything in perspective BUT under the theory of you don’t know what you had until its gone…. I say REAL wins. Recovery time from Cymbalta withdrawals = 3 weeks for me.

  71. I was on 60 mg of Cymbalta a day for six years. I am now three days of NO Cymbalta. I weaned down like I was suppose to and I feel like I am going nuts. I have what I call “brain shivers”, chills, shakes, confusion, slurred speech at times, sweats, teeth tingling, headache, severe panick attacks, anxiety, irrability, and I am very tired. I found out today that this could last for two more weeks. I have no idea how I will make it two more weeks like this. I have also found out that there is nothing I can do but suffer until it goes away. I just want to crawl into bed and not wake up until its gone. I have a few moments were I feel ok and just when I think yeah I must be getting through this I get slapped in the face with a “brain shiver” some so bad that I can’t see. This makes me think twice about putting my son on something for his OCD. If he has to go through this I would feel horrible. I can not wait for these two weeks to go by.

  72. I keep reading the symptoms everyone has or is going through and some clicks and some don’t. I have been taking 90mg of cymbalta for 3-4 years for leg pain related to a back injury. It helped somewhat but now does nothing. I took myself off about one and a half months ago. My sysmtoms come and go. most days I would do pretty good and the evenings would be pretty ruff. Some of the days it seems like I have this licked and then I have a day like yesterday where right at suppertime I became very dizzy and sick to my stomach. I needed to lay down right away! How can I feel good one day and so crappy 2 days later? is this normal protacal or is it possible something else can be going on? How long can I expect this to go on? I can handle any answer you might have. Please reply.

  73. Help me help my husband.
    He was never on any anti depressants. They put him on Cymbalta because he was having anxiety attacks from a terrible surgery. Was on Celexa for 3 days, then took off because of tremors. Then put on 30 Cymbalta for 5 days…and had TERRIBLE FATIGUE, so upped to 60mg for 2 days…got worse, so back down to 30mg then off now for 2 days. CRASHING as we speak. First day not too bad…tired, but today feels WORSE THAN EVER. Dr.’s said he would have no side effect…but he would just experience the depression he really has. This is nuts. We are afraid to call his Psychiatrist…because we feel he will just say, “See he is depressed, and needs meds.” He is also taking .25 of xanax about every 3 to 4 hrs…but today, it doesn’t help at all…so has tried taking more.
    Not helping. Tried 1/4 tab of a 25 mg seroquel…not helping.
    I have dramamine…50mg. ANy suggestions. One person said they asked the doctor for Prozac and it helped.

  74. Chris Mattiko May 21, 2010 at 4:47 pm

    My mother was on 60mg of cymbalta for a little over a month. She went of the medicine cold turkey. It has been a week now since she has been off and her speech is getting bad. She has slurred speech where we can not understand a word she is saying. Does getting off this medicine cause this kind of problems.

    Thank you
    Chris

    • Cheryl Hoover May 21, 2010 at 5:39 pm

      I don’t know if this is a cause of Cymbalta. However, she should get to a doctor immediately. She could have had a stroke. Good Luck.

    • I hope your mother has improved by now. I have been on Cymbalta twice. The first time I quit cold turkey. That was the worst 2 or 3 weeks of my life. When my doc suggested I try it again, I voiced my concerns and he told me that he would taper the dosage and I wouldn’t have those problems again. Not true. I’ve noticed that I have trouble speaking sometimes (the longer I talk, the worse it gets). It’s like my jaw doesn’t work right. I have no doubt that this is another manifestation of Cymbalta withdrawals.
      I hope this is helpful.

  75. I have been on Cymbalta for 4 months. This drug basically gave me my life back. I was having panic attacks every morning upon awakening…before I even had time to think a thought I was in fight and flight mode…very scary. Since the first pill, I have not had one panic attack. I still can hardly believe how well it worked. Now, however I believe I have my life in control a bit better, and would like to get off the pill, as I am tired of being tired all day long, and starting to gain weight, having insane carb cravings, and intense nightmares. I took a month to taper off….finally opening the pill and dumping half out before swallowing. The only withdrawl symptom so far is “feeling” again… so I have been crying alot, and actually caring about things again. All of these types of pills do a lot of the same things…I have tried Seroquil, EFfexor, which were much worse for me in regards to side effects than Cymbalta. We are all do different. The only way to really know which chemical we need is to get some cerebral spinal fluid.. and no insurance company will pay for spinal taps to find out if you are missing serotonin or any other chemical… so we are stuck with trying drugs that take a month to know if they work or not. Be very careful. I had one friend on Cymbalta that made her want to commit suicide.. like it turns off a mechanism in her brain for self preservation. Yikes. Sometimes we need a pill, and frankly I would rather become diabetic than have panic attacks all day…they are the absolute worst thing I have ever experienced….you would eventually have to go into a psychiatric hospital. Choices are tough in keeping your emotional and mental health. Get out there and find help. One of the best things I did was just start going to church. 6 months later I am in a wonderful group of women that support and pray for each other. Find the things that used to make you laugh, and do them again. Blessings to all of you.

  76. Has anyone experinced a severe increase in blood pressure? I am down to 26 mg. and having uncontrolled hypertension. Even meds arent working, doc says not heart., must be anxiety. It isnt, Id have to fell something to be anxious, which is why I am going off it. I was on 60 mg for 5 years, kept telling the doc I felt terrible, but he said wasnt cymbalta and even wanted to put me on two others with cymbalta. I am not depressed, I just dont feel much of anything. Will this go away? I am sacred about this bp thing, its so high, and stays that way, that I am afraid of stroke or heart attack. Stomach has been such a mess for sao long, I dont know if its the cmbalta or not. I have had dehydration that landed me in the hospital. Yet I am told except for the bp I am ok. I am not! There should be some ethical standing about docs giving meds they know nothing about! How can this be considered good care? I have lost trust in doccs since this horrific experience! Wish you all well and my heart goes out to each and everyone of you. Please respond about hypertension! Thanks Hugs to all! Donna

  77. omg thank you for this site I ran out of cymbalta for like 10 days I just got it filled today..my lower back is in agony I thought it was from work I now know it’s from the withdrawal..I also had to pee a lot which was driving me crazy but I read that’s also a side effect this shit is crazy I am seriously considering going off of it..not sure if it even helps me anyway

  78. A family member was prescribed Cymbalta for a back ache and six weeks later he killed himself. This person was not suicidal unless prescribed a pscyhotropic drug and this by a quack who probably made a lot of money. My family member was on 11 prescriptions all prescribed by the family practice quack. Before my family member died they were really suffering all kinds of painful and awful side effects such as severe diarrhea, doubling over stomach pains and of course thoughts of suicide which did finally get them. Cymbalta is a poison and for all the people who say it saved their lives they are lucky because there are many people who lost their lives because of it.

  79. I have been on the Cymbalta for 7 days 60mg and cannot afford the $70 copayment can i stop this cold turkey since i”ve only been on it for 7 days? Thankyou for your help

  80. I haven’t really seen anyone else on here say this, but I highly suggest tapering off once you can get down to 20mg capsules — not with the alternating days method — but by opening the capsules and dividing them into 3/4s, then 1/2, then 1/4, then 1/8, over a few weeks, by pouring out the little dots. (You have to eyeball this, so it’s not going to be an exact science.)

    I know this is NOT suggested by the medical community (I am in no way providing any medically-based advice here), but it has made it FAR easier than the alternating day method which basically puts your brain through a horrible rollercoaster.

  81. i found this website i read the horror stories i feel for you all any i pray for you all to. i was on it for two weeks and the blood pressure went up i had no control of it i was a severe panic attack its been 3 weeks off and i am sicker then i ever been panic attacks and fear of driving to the point of melt down on the side of the road i regret taking this drug i take a low dose of gaba and i still not better. i am afraid i might be commited if i can take get a hold of this

  82. I’m now very gradually eliminating Cymbalta and avoiding the horrific withdrawal symptoms that I previously experienced by reducing it too quickly using the alternating day method. I now have NO withdrawal symptoms by opening my 60mg. capsules and removing an additional 10 little dots every 2 weeks (10 dots, then 20 dots, then 30 dots, etc.).

    When prescribed, I questioned my need for an antidepressant following a near fatal auto accident 3 years ago. Perhaps I did need it then, but I now feel I don’t. And should I need an antidepressant ever again, Cymbalta will NOT be it. I offer this information simply because it’s what works well for me. I hope this slow process works for others too. Good luck!

  83. As im sitting here reading these posts, i wish i never would have said yes to cymbalta.. i wasnt home for 3 days so i forgot my rx at home…i had to leave work today because of the horrible brain zaps..i will never skip 3 days of taking this medication again!! what a horror… its been an hr since ive taken my 60mg pill.. and the brain zaps are fading away…

  84. I have not had cymbalta 60 mg for 5 days now. I forgot to take it for two days, then decided I would just not take it anymore… I have had stomach problems, dizziness, weakness, sweating…I feel aweful, but I dont want to take a pill. I thought since I already have 5 days behind me, I will try to live through this..
    Was on it for 2 years for help with RA pain…I know know it was a mistake to get on it.
    Any advise welcome, thanks

  85. Cymbalta has been a horrible experience for me, but feel much better reading all these stories. Thank you for sharing. I have been on cymbalta for over four years. I am attempting my third try to forever be done with this awful drug. First time did cold turkey and went through hell, had to go back on. Second time weened to fast and ended up in the ER, thought I was having a stoke and scared my mother to death. This time, I am doing as much research as possible. I am on my fifth day of taking dots out of my 30mg pills. Taking a lot of supplements, exercising and trying to win this battle! I feel tired and am having a slight headache. I would Peter not to go on something else to get off, but I guess at this point I will try anything. Anyone that has has success with taking dots out, share how they did it? I have an appointment to see someone for help to ween, but I do not have high hopes for the MD’s advice. I hate to say that, but they really have no clue how awful this drug truly is. Good luck to everyone fighting this battle and thanks so much for sharing your stories πŸ™‚

  86. I too was on Cymbalta for about a year and a half when I decided to go off. I was put on Cymbalta for back pain and fatigue. I tapered off as the doctor recommended for 2 weeks. Huge mistake!!!! I thought my life was over and I became suicidal. Not to mention the nausea from the brain zaps. After a week and a half my doctor put me back on the medicine, which was Dec 2010. For the next 5 months I tapered off of the drug. When I finally went off of the meds in May I still had horrible withdrawal. The gi issues were unbearable. My doctor actually gave me a Colonoscopy because of the gi issues. I couldn”t keep anything down.
    After about 3 weeks I started to feel better and great by a month and a half. I will never forget that time in my life. I feel like I lost part of myself to Cymbalta. Also, having to hear my kids ask me why I was crying all of the time. I also couldn”t get out of bed.
    It does get better though. Coming from someone that wasn”t depressed to begin with, it will get better.
    I have to admit that I still go through spurts of depression, but I refuse to take an anti depressant again. I try to take vitamins and pray. I always believed in god, but I really started to pray more through this ordeal.
    Talk to someone because you are not alone.

  87. I have had severe major depressive disorder for years and have tried all the drugs and every combination. I was hopsitalized (again) in March of this year and they put me on Cymbalta for the first time. After about 2 months, there was no huge change so we decided to stop. I’m not a pill taker and I don’t trust what these things do to us long-term so if there’s not much change, I’m not taking it. After trying to split those darn little 30mg caps in half for a week, I was done my so-called “weening”. My depression, crying, anxiety, etc., worsened so back on it I went (per doc’s orders) and we increased the dose to 60mg. Felt a bit better at first and then, as always, the drug stopped having much, if any effect. Once again I weened off. My doc said the wash-out is quick so after taking 60mg for a month, I went down to 30 for a week, then 15 for a few days. I stopped just this past weekend and its been pure hell. My mouth is full of cankers and my PSYCHOLOGIST (NOT my drug guy) told me to google Cymbalta and cankers and here I am. I’ve been getting the brain zaps all the time (I thought my brain had started to rust as a result of that slight audible sound some of us here when we’re in the middle of a zap). I’ve been crying uncontrollably, extreme anger over relatively minor things, extreme panic attacks, violent suicidal ideation. I was at the emergency yesterday but my psychiatrist said there was nothing they could do – we’d tried everything and sent me home. It is such a relief to read your experiences and to know I’m not alone and to know that, hopefully, I’m going through withdrawals and am not having a major decompensation. I think I’ll just go to bed for the next few days until the storm passes. Its been almost a week now and unfortunately, Ativan has become my best friend.

    I’ve gone on longer than planned, but thank you everyone for confirming that I’m not alone and there is a viable reason why I feel so crappy.

  88. I can’t tell you how reassuring (sadly & ironically) all of the comments I’ve read here are.
    Thank god for the technoligical genius of the 21st century that allows us to share in our “pain” this way. I truly thought I was loosing my mind. I was prescribed Cymbalta by my Physiatrist over 2 years ago for chronic lower pack pain (L4-L5/L5-S1)~ something I’ve been battling for a little over 10 years (and have been taking Ultram for about 7 years). Most recently have tried lower back epidural injections which worked at 1st but no longer appear to. I can’t begin to imagine enduring the withdrawal symptoms I have been enduring (and we all know about) had the medicine been prescribed for depression. Utter frustration and disappointment, with my original prescribing Physiatrist of Cymbalta (recently started seeing a Physiatry specialist, at the recommendation of my original) and perhaps the Healthcare industry as well, is another “symptom” as well. Here’s why (perhaps others have experienced the same): I moved the Ultram script over to my new MD (at the request of my “original” MD who I havn’t seen recently) several months ago but had not yet got around to moving the Cymbalta. The request BTW, which I totally understand, came about when my Ultram was up for refill and he said it would be the last time he could fill it & that I needed to have the MD (who knew I was on both it and Cymbalta) take it over. Cymbalta move? no such luck. No proactive “request” ~ nothing. My original MD had always filled the script with a 5month refill so 2 mths into it I figured I had time. Went to call in 3rd refill in early August & noticed the original was only for 2 months. I know ~ shame on me for not checking the label, etc. but I’d been taking it for 2+ years ~always refillable 5 times. I immediately called my original MD for a refill (or at the very least enough to tide me over until my new MD could see me and take fill the script). The information on Cymbalta’s TV ADs about how one “should not change or stop prescribed dosage without consulting with your MD”. I also had heard & read stories to the same. A live person @ my former MD’s office finally got back to me 5 DAYS LATER!! (after persistent calling on my part and 5 days off CYMBALTA). Said they were sorry for any inconvenience but MD would not fill it ~ I need to have new MD do it. I can’t even begin to describe how I was feeling at that pt, physically, emotionally, etc. That a doctor would knowingly put their (former) patient in that position. I immediately called my new MD (who I had seen bout 1 month prior) and Surprise surprise no apptmts available for 2-3 weeks.
    (Even though his records confirm my being on CYMBALTA for years, new MD won’t fill a script without an office visit ~ I imagine this is an insurance/Healthcare industry requirement (which is where frustration with them comes into place)). I called original MD expressing my situation and concern with how I was feeling nearly in tears (which very much troubled me). Friends had shared with me horror stories about stopping any type of medication cold turkey ~ especially psychotropic ones like Cymbalta. I do admit I was a sceptic of such things. Not any more. Living through it is truly a life altering experience. And what was my original MD’s office response? Still no. No communication or concern on his part whatsoever. While he did think I should still be on it, there was nothing he could do :(. My quality of work & life is suffering and there is nothing he can do. Days of work lost, social, personal & professional responsibilities suffering. Going on 4 weeks of “cold turkey” withdrawl. I think I’ve seen the worse ~ have a really good day ~ and then ZAP ~ the symptoms are back the next …NAUSEA, mood swings, brain zaps, itching all over, constant headache, flu-like body aches, vivid troubling dreams, inability to focus, unrelenting fatigue, etc. If there is a positive to be pulled from this (something I always strive to do ~ pull the positives (thought not feeling to positive right now πŸ™‚ ) is that ‘ve learned I don’t ever want to be on this medication ever again. In light of all the withdrawal symptoms we’ve been experiencing (and sharing), just imagine what this drug was doing to our system in the first place

  89. I’m so sorry, Cheryl, you are going through this as well. Just goes to show that “the more the merrier” isn’t true all the time!

    As I mentioned in my first post above, I’ve been going through the withdrawals now for just about 2 weeks. Yesterday was extremely bad. I saw my psychiatrist last Thursday when he could physcially see how I was feeling, plus I told him about the brain zaps and everything else and how scared I was that this was who I was and how I was going to be as no drugs worked. I had NO idea this was cymbalta withdrawal. He didn’t say a word about withdrawal either. He said it could be a result of all the stuff my new psychologist and I were “stirring up”. It was my psychologist that suggested it was withdrawal and led me to this site.

    I emailed my psychiatrist yesterday when I was so bad and so scared and told him about this and the other sites I’d found where it was the patients, NOT the medical or drug professions, that supported each other and agreed it was the drug causing all this. This is his response, EVEN THOUGH HE SAW HOW I WAS LAST WEEK AND SUGGESTED IT WAS CAUSED BY MY SESSIONS WITH MY SHRINK: “Barb

  90. I’m so sorry, Cheryl, you are going through this as well. Just goes to show that “the more the merrier” isn’t true all the time!

    As I mentioned in my first post above, I’ve been going through the withdrawals now for just about 2 weeks. Yesterday was extremely bad. I saw my psychiatrist last Thursday when he could physcially see how I was feeling, plus I told him about the brain zaps and everything else and how scared I was that this was who I was and how I was going to be as no drugs worked. I had NO idea this was cymbalta withdrawal. He didn’t say a word about withdrawal either. He said it could be a result of all the stuff my new psychologist and I were “stirring up”. It was my psychologist that suggested it was withdrawal and led me to this site.

    I emailed my psychiatrist yesterday when I was so bad and so scared and told him about this and the other sites I’d found where it was the patients, NOT the medical or drug professions, that supported each other and agreed it was the drug causing all this. This is his response, EVEN THOUGH HE SAW HOW I WAS LAST WEEK AND SUGGESTED IT WAS CAUSED BY MY SESSIONS WITH MY SHRINK: “Barb

  91. I also am on Cymbalta, have been for about 4 yrs. for a horrible depression. Have weaned myself from 60 to 30 mg a day for about a yr and a half. I can’t go off of it all the way yet, due to a new job in the horizon.
    I tried 30mg every other day, which worked for a while, but a silly thing to due to because of short half life. At that time I was becoming angry, and hateful in my head, which isn’t me at all.
    I think when I stop, I will take Prozac 10mg. It’s a small dose, and it has the long half life factor. I’ve taken it before, 20mg, didn’t seem to help but didn’t make me worse either. I’m a weakling-get really scared when my mind is reeling with don’t know if I’ll ever feel right again.
    I’m glad, Barb, that you aren’t relying on your Ativan. That was a terribly nasty drug for me. I loved the way it made me calm, but it
    made the depression worse. (was dealing with my 46 yr old sister’s death.). It took 9 months to get off Ativan by lowering dose and taking Klonopin. Then weaned off Klonopin in short order.
    Yes, your psychiatrist definitely should have told you in person what he E-mailed you. That was very mean-spirited of him. I am surprised that he fessed up. Guess he does have some redemptive qualities!
    Will say prayers for you Cheryl and Barb. Please write updates! Allison

  92. One of the things I’m going to do when I’m on the other side of this nightmare is radically change my eating habits. I believe that reactions to the processed, packaged foods we eat play a HUGE part in what happens in our brain. Dr. Stephen Gislason (http://nutramed.com/Stephen_Gislason_MD/index.htm) was an MD here in Vancouver and I saw him back in the ’80s. I followed his “core diet” for almost a year and had never felt so clear-headed, happy, energetic and balanced. I went off it because it was a tough way of life to follow when you’re in your ’20s and there was not much support from family and friends. Dr. Gislason has updated his program and I am committed to follow his advice when my strength returns. My favourite quote of his is: “When a fish in an aquarium displays psychotic behaviour, you do not call a fish psychiatrist; you check the oxygen concentration, temperature, and pH of the water. You have to clean the tank and change the fish diet.” One would think so, right??

    Hang in there y’all and I hope to “see” you on the other side.

    Barb xo

  93. Day 4 of no pills after a decent tapering I think. Today I found this site because I was wondering if my joint and muscle pain, headache and dizziness were from Cymbalta. Oh and did I mention fatigue? My mind is much more clear now that I am off, which was the main reason I decided to try once again. Also, I have not struggled to remain awake behind the wheel as I was awhile back. The withdrawal is not good and I hope it can remain at this level of intesity and not worsen!

    I had a rough morning, allowing myself to get overexcited about something, which then led me to being hyperstimulated – something for which I was inexperienced and unprepared. Luckily I took a low dose valium and tried to calm down until it took affect.

    I have no regrets for taking Cymbalta – it helped me through PTSD symptoms I had from a family health experience. I guess I am glad it is not easy to quit as I might be tempted otherwise to jump back on as I have in the past. I figure I have made it this far from 80 to 70 to 50, 30, 20 and now 0 at least for the past four days.

    Thanks for sharing your stories. I feel better at the moment for being able to share with someone who knows!

    Mike

  94. It really helps me to see all of you, going through what i am.
    I have been on cymbalta for four years, started on 60mg and went down to 30
    without a problem. The trouble came when I dropped from 30 to 20 and ended up
    in the ER.
    One of the scariest experiences of my life. I have now decided that this drug will
    no longer control me. Did a lot of research and July 14 started to taper and begin the bead
    count. It has been a lot of lows, but i keep fighting. I only have about 30 beads to go, and
    against what I really wanted to do, I went on a 10mg of prozac in the last two weeks, it has helped so much! I still am feeling muscle aches and spasm… this is very hard, because i am a massage therapist. My energy level goes from so low, to super high now, and the headaches have almost been the death of me!!! Today, was a really good day! Everyday excerise and supplements and eating a very clean diet have all helped the process. I can’t wait to post, that i no longer have this drug my system! Hang in there all!!!

  95. Hello, my syptoms are still haunting me but I had a “decent” sleep last night – only vivid dreams that weren’t too disturbing and only woke up about 5 times. That always helps. I’ve been taking double doses of ibuprofen which I know is not great, but I tolerate it well (took “vitamin I a lot when running) and its the only thing that helps the pain. Yesterday, I thought someone had shoved a red-hot rod down my spine and could barely move. Yesterday afternoon, even though it was in the 80s, I was in my fleece and under a blanket freezing cold, coughing and swearing I was coming down with something. The realized when I went to bed I didn’t feel so bad. This morning, my back is a dull roar and I’m warm and not coughing.

    And on it goes.

  96. I have been on cymbalta for seven months, the first three at 60 mg, the next three at 30 mg, and weaning for the past month. When I drastically dropped from 60 to 30 i felt flu-like for several weeks – very uncomfortable. Weaning from 30mg has also been a challenge – I was opening the capsules and slowly decreasing, finally going from 7.5 mg to stopping three days ago. Worst side effect is the ‘motion sickness’, but read on another website to increase the fish oil supplements (now taking 10 caps/day). I tried Cymbalta for a calf radiculopathy re: to sciatic nerve pain. Let’s all take some responsibility though; just do your homework before starting any antidepressant. For me it was weighing the risks vs the benefits, and knowing it was going to be difficult when it’s time to eventually discontinue.

  97. Chris, I hope your side effects clear up soon. I notice you were on Cymbalta for pain, rather than depression, unless I’m missing something. I do take offense to your comment “…take some responsibility though; just do your homework…”. I was taking Cymbalta for severe depression. It has been one of many, many antidepressants and other medication I’ve been taking for well over 10 years for severe major depression and I know the risks vs. benefits. NO ONE prepared me for the side effects of weaning off Cymbalta, and they were the worst of all the medications I’ve been on. I always read about medications before I go on, and yes, they say there are side effects when coming off, but to consult your doctor (which I did), blahblahblah. NO WHERE did I read about the “brain zaps”, extreme mood swings, horrific suicidal thoughts, anger so severe I was lashing out to strangers (which is completely new to me). Luckily they have subsided – it has been almost 2 months. I’m still getting “brain zaps” but less frequently.

    Could it be that, because you are not depressed, your ability to cope with the side effects is stronger. Or maybe you’re one of the lucky ones that, for some reason, didn’t have such severe side effects? I did my homework, went to my doctor out of fear of what I was feeling and neither prepared me for what I went through. And that’s the point I was trying to make. Someone, somewhere, should have warned me/told me that that was what I was going through and not let me continue believing that this was just who I was.

    I’m just sayin…

  98. That’s the sad thing: when you first go on antidepressants, they make it sound like its really not that bad. I went to my psychiatrist before I started taking a new one, expressing my concerns about withdrawal symptoms and even side effects while being on them, and he would always give me a weird look like I was being silly and assure me that they’re not supposed to do any of those things. I really feel like these people in the medical field are disillusioned about the drugs or else they’re trying to mask the truth about them.
    In the future I am going to tell people who are considering going on pills to NOT. I really don’t think they truly help and they’ve put me through such a crappy year, feeling very physically ill all the time and mentally.

  99. I was so depressed when I started Cymbalta, that I didn’t even think to ask about withdrawal symptoms. Farthest thing from my mind!!! Trusted the doctor. Learned that they don’t know everything.
    Here we are, sharing EXPERIENCES- things we understand because we are going through them. I think most doctors are blasΓ© about the medicines they prescribe. And just are in a hurry. And I’ve worked in health care for 40 yrs.
    I’m not being mean-spirited, but It would be beneficial to the cause if the doctor would have a case of depression, or the withdrawal symptoms for a week or so. Empathy is missing too much of the time these days.
    I think it was Barb who was talking about anger. I noticed hateful thinking when I tried to go off before. Did that go away for you?

  100. Started this horrible withdrawl on June 14th, have offically been Cymbalta free for 3 weeks tomorrow!!!!!!! I would not wish this on my worst enemy!!! I had to go on a very low dose of prozac to wean totally off. I have not taken that in 3 days and had a very good day today! There is hope, I am proof and never thought I would make it to the end!!! Good luck to all of you still suffering!

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