Cymbalta Withdrawal Symptoms Suck

December 20, 2009 — 3,165 Comments

My Cymbalta dose is now down to zero and the withdrawal symptoms are brutal. I followed my doctors directions for slowly weening off Cymbalta…why are my Cymbalta withdrawal symptoms so severe?

In a previous post I had explained that I was slowly weening off Cymbalta with my doctor’s guidance. This started with me reducing my daily dose in half. I felt the effects of that in the form of Cymbalta withdrawal which included a weird buzzing in my brain that I have named brain shivers.

Within a couple of days my body got used to this lower dose I was feeling back to my self again. That was a little over a month ago. The time was here for me to stop taking Cymbalta all together. Sure, I was a little nervous about the withdrawal symptoms but I decided to go along with the plan that my doctor and I had come up with which meant to stop taking Cymbalta.

Well…this time the Cymbalta withdrawal symptoms are far more severe than the last. Not only am I getting the brain shivers way more frequently throughout the day, I can tell that I am very short tempered and a little emotional. Since being emotional is not something I’m used to after being on antidepressants for over 2 years…it’s pretty upsetting to me. Of course it’s upsetting, everything is upsetting to me right now.

I had been reading a lot online about the withdrawal symptoms of Cymbalta and it seems that all of the symptoms I am having are the normal ones that go along with this drug. I can’t tell you what a bummer it is to be going through withdrawal again. I thought that when I detoxed in rehab
it would absolutely be the last time in my life I ever had withdrawal symptoms from anything. I guess I was wrong.

In my online researching of Cymbalta withdrawal symptoms I saw several different places say that Benadryl helps to alleviate some of the more severe withdrawal symptoms of Cymbalta. I was a little leary of trying this because I usually try to stay away from any over the counter medicine that causes drowsiness. This is due to the fact that I have been known to abuse these in the past. Pretty pathetic I know…but true none the less.

The day before yesterday I gave in and purchased some Benedryl. I can honestly say that I have not been abusing them at all. I have been taking one maybe two per day. Benedryl really did cut down on some of the uncomfortable feelings that I had due to the Cymbalta withdrawal symptoms.

I’m seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. Today I have not taken any Benedryl and I am not too bothered so far by any of the withdrawal symptoms that I have been over the past few days. Sure, I’m still noticing a brain shiver every once in a while but it is no where near the severity of the past few days.

In situations like this one, I start to realize just how far I have come on my road to recovery. This time last year I would have used these uncomfortable feelings as an excuse to abuse drugs. There is no doubt about it. Now? I was leary of even purchasing Benedryl because I know that I have tendencies to abuse drugs like that. It’s times like these that I really start to appreciate all of the hard work I’ve put into staying sober.

3,165 responses to Cymbalta Withdrawal Symptoms Suck

  1. Cutting to the chase: 9 years on 120 mg; cold turkey 7 days ago; i am so tired and all i can do is sleep; i dont even have the energy to cry. please, i am desperate – how much longer will this debilitating fatigue last? i am still on 400 mg of lamictal. i consider it is my life line right now.

    • If you are having terrible fatigue ask your doctor about prescribing Nuvigil. It is a stimulant and it is wonderful. You can get your first prescription of it for free by downloading a coupon from their website.

      • Steve, thanks for the reply. I just do not want to take anymore meds. I take so much as it is and adding Nuvigil is a no go for me. I have a Chiairi Malformation, Psuedo Tumor Cerebri, and ataxia (I have no idea if I spelled all of that right!). I wonder if those two things are complicating this awful withdrawal. Any thoughts?

  2. cold turkey 120 mg, day 10 – went to the doc today. turns out i have lost weight and my blood pressure is lower than my 15 year old’s!! i must of been the only person in the world exclaim, “thank god! there is something i can do about raising my blood pressure!” needless to say, my blood pressure meds were lowered. anyone had their blood pressure drop dramatically as mine has and has lost weight so quickly? if so, will it return to normal any time soon (the weight loss i do not want to return, lol). i actually had a spark of hope regarding my desperation regarding my fatigue.

  3. I think i am over my “cymbalta withdrawls”. I have had worse withdrawls by not taking my clonodine or beta blocker. I just dont understand how anyone can have such severe withdrawls from cymbalta. I remember several years ago i was taking xanax all the time but i just quit that one day and didnt experience any type of withdrawl. I guess i dont have an addictive personality.

    • Steve, I am GREATLY offended by your comment, “I guess I don’t have an addictive personality.” I do NOT have an addictive personality whatsoever. I have more character and strength than 99.999% of people in this world. If you would so choose to read the withdrawal effects of Xanax, then you would be educated that in fact Cymbalta withdrawal is MUCH different from Xanax’s withdrawal. In fact, Xanax is precribed for different benefits than Cymbalta.

      I appreciate your post. However, make no assumptions concerning ANYONE on this website. Your opionion is precisely why most individuals do not reach out for help, compassion, guidance, etc. – for they are afraid of judgement such as yours.

      • Cymbalta is not a narcotic. It is non addictive. The only things that are truely addictive are things like crack cocaine, meth, heroin and maybe barbiturates. There are people on this website who are acting as if they are addicted to those types of things by coming off Cymbalta. It’s just ridiculous. If the “withdrawls” are so bad from cymbalta just stay on the drug. It is not like it is going to hurt you. People screaming about “class action lawsuits” “taking the drug off the market”. It is simply ludicrous.

        • Steve, I am sorry you feel this way. Why are you on this website? Please site your sources and statistics of those effected and not effected by withdrawing. Steve, I cannot speak for anyone but myself, I had to discontinue my Cymbalta because of my liver. I am not an extremist. I am studying to be an English professor, single mother, which happens to also be educating herself on the effects of her Cymbalta withdrawal. I have always been a winner. This is just another finish line I am sprinting to. I will proudly display my trophy of success. Did you educate yourself on Chiari Malformations (cerebellum protrudes through the forum magnum affecting all aspects of coordination including emotions) and Pseudo Tumor Ceribri aka Benign Intracrainial Hypertension? I want you to understand these people’s lives are much bigger puzzles than you realize. Steve, I once took a drug that made me make extreme amounts of spinal fluid, lost part of my eyesight and hearing and now I have a shunt. No, I am not being a martyr. My hopes are that you will not have a skewed view of me and these website chat individuals. I do not know about you, Steve, but ignorance is not bliss. Therefore, knowledge is power

          • sdwright, I have been reading your post and am very impressed! The specific one above intrigues me because, when I was a Teen, I had to have a Shunt due to Excess Fluid on my Brain & Spine. Shortly After My First Surgery, I too lost Vision in my Left Eye. What was the name of the Drug that caused all of this? No Medical Doctor has ever been able to tell me what has caused this.

        • Steve, I am also greatly offended not only by your comments, but by your judgmental ignorance.
          Research a bit more and you may learn many things. Most of the people on this site are truly trying to overcome the symptoms of withdrawal and get their lives back.
          Personally, I was taking cymbalta due to an intolerance of any kind of pain meds after SIX spinal fusions. The cost of was exhorbitant even with good health insurance, as my insurance company did not recognize cymbalta as a therapeutic pain med.
          I am educated, employed, and sadly was so willing to try this drug for the chronic and often acute pain associated with my degenerating spine that I took it without research as to it’s side effects and withdrawal symptoms.
          I have never experienced anything as frightening as the symptoms of coming off of this drug, even with medical supervision. The relief of any pain it provided was not worth what I went through.
          Now I save $300 a month in prescription cost and even though my pain can be excruciating, it is worth feeling my life again.
          Attacking verbally those of us who were simply seeking knowledge and support is pretty dang disgusting in my opinion.

          • I was not “attacking” anyone. Please let me know who i was attacking. I was just expressing my amazement at the withdrawl symptoms people have talked about on here. People dont go to jail, roam the streets, destroy lives, kill people, steal and beg on the street, being homeless by going off of cymbalta. That is true addiction and happens with herion, meth, crack cocaine, alcohol. Sorry…thats my opinion.

          • Thank you, Jeanne, for your sharing. I have a question for you….do you find you are actually more sensitive to pain since you discontinued Cymbalta? I remembered my own spinal and neck pain before the medicine, but I do not remember it being this intense – post Cymbalta. Perhaps, just “feeling” is new again. I am much more sensitive to stimulus of any kind. Some smells even make me gag. I would most certainly appreciate your insight.

          • I am going through withdrawal from Cymbalta also. My pain doctor however did not ween me off correctly. She was in a rush to be gone a week at Thanksgiving. So I tried to do it by just taking it every other day until the pills ran out. I have felt so bad for the 2 past weeks. The nausea has been horrible. Upset stomach everyday. Headaches off and on everyday. I have used nausea meds, ate stuff with ginger, drank ginger ale. Does anyone know how long this last and any suggestions appreciated.

        • Steve… why on earth would you say Cymbalta is non addictive? Have you heard of physical addiction? It has NOTHING to do with mental addiction, which I see the brave people on this site going through. Do you have any idea how insulting it is to say, in so many words, that everyone here is full of crap because they’re having withdrawal symptoms that you don’t believe in? I KNOW addiction. I was a crack addict. I smoked off and on ALL DAY for days and days on end. I detoxed from that with FAR LESS SYMPTOMS than detoxing off of Cymbalta. I quit smoking two packs of cigs a day after having smoked from age 15 to age 29 and had a far easier time than with Cymbalta. is Do some real research on this drug. Find out the reality of it. Please don’t just blindly accept all the false information that Eli Lily and the FDA is spitting out. And never suggest that if someone’s symptoms of withdrawal are so bad they should just stay on it. Why do you think we’re trying to get off of it in the first place? It’s a poison with horrible side effects and SHOULD be taken off the market. Lawsuits? You bet your ass! The information about this drug has been hidden quite well but is now getting out there. Please, go out and educate yourself.

          • Thank you!!! This comment is exactly what I was thinking! I’ve gone through this withdrawal twice, because the first one was so bad I DID start taking it again, what a mistake! But I missed almost a week of work bc I couldn’t stop throwing up or barely get out of bed! The withdrawal is REAL! And I regret every single day that my pain Doctor put me on this disgusting horrible medication! Currently weened down to half, and then a quarter of what I was taking, and still soooo nauseous since I stopped, fatigued, have these brain zaps, overall feeling terrible! And guess what my doctors office said when I told them how bad it was…. “Oh you shouldn’t have any withdrawal symptoms from that medication” well do your research, I wish I never took it EVER!!! Such an awful drug!

          • I started trying to wean myself off Cymbalta eight months ago. It’s impossible to do an accurate description of the pain I have gone through – searing back and neck pain, nausea and sleeplessness. And am still on 20 mg, from the highest dose of 60mg. I’ve powered through the mule pain, but am still experiencing nausea and brain zaps. I want to come off completely but am terrified of what new torture awaits if I try. This med should be banned – taken totally off the market!

        • Steve
          Please go educate yourself before speaking again. You are terribly mistaken cause 1) a person can become addicted to any and all things whether it be chemical or food or hell TV or anything. 2) When you say ” if someone is in cymbalta withdrawal if it is that bad it won’t kill a person just keep taking it” Well I want you to know it was from taking cymbalta I got something called serotonin syndrome. This almost killed me and if I would have taken cymbalta for not more than three days, I would have died. So see Steve, you can die from taking cymbalta so not everyone who is having bad withdrawal can just take it. 3) Not all medicines can be taken together and some combos can be fatal.
          So as I said think and maybe do research before you make a remark on this or any board.

        • You, Steve, are as bad as Lilly and all of the doctors who do not know how to teach proper withdrawal procedures. This drug is horrible. It should be discontinued for new scrips. It should be provided in every dose by 10 mg NOT just 60, 30, 10mg. AND IT SHOULD BE FREE to those weaning. I would definitely join a class action case for PRINCIPLE—not money!

          • If it is so addictive then why didnt i have all these terrible withdrawls people are talking about on here?

        • Steve, You have no clue, my friend. It doesn’t matter that Cymbalta is “non-narcotic.” I have had multiple back surgeries and have gotten off of NORCO and OXYCOTIN after prolonged use, and I did it with very little problem. Recently I have attempted to get off of LYRIC (also non-narcotic) and CYMBALTA. I nearly had to check into a drug treatment facility because the withdrawal was so severe. I am now on my third attempt and pulling out all the stops in order to be successful. Getting off of Lyrica and Cymbalta is more akin to getting off of heroine or crack than ANY narcotic medication I have ever come across. I normally can quit things cold turkey with ease. I quit smoking cold turkey, I quit using dipping tobacco cold turkey, I quit Norco (hydrocodone) cold turkey, I quit Oxycotin cold turkey, and I quit Dilaudid cold turkey. I do not have anything close to an addictive personality. Trying to quit Cymbalta and Lyrica cold turkey kicked my butt, nearly sent me to the hospital, and nearly caused a divorce. These drugs are far more difficult to quit than any drug on the market. Upon the second day without these drugs you will have nearly total loss of sleep, anxiety attacks, breathlessness, restless leg syndrome, constant nausea with extreme waves of nausea regularly, hunger pangs but with an inability to eat, extreme irritability (and I do mean EXTREME), irrational thoughts, severe itching, facial tics, inability to concentrate, and the list goes on. And your suggestion to stay on this very expensive drug — WOW. The reasons to get off of this drug (or any other prescription drug you can stop taking) are numerous. Firstly, the cost of the drug is $400 per month until your deductible and out of pocket maximums are met on insurance. Secondly, it is a young drug — long-term affects of being on this chemical are not yet known. Thirdly, it causes irritability even in normal doses. Fourthly, if you forget to take a few doses or happen to run out of the medication in a situation when you cannot get refill you will experience all of the terrible side effects mentioned above. And by the way, these withdrawal affects can go on for up to two months in many people, which proves that this chemical is very powerful and has a huge affect on the human brain and nervous system. So Steve, walk a mile in my shoes before you so flipantly suggest that getting off of Cymbalta is such an easy task. The makers of Cymbalta and Lyrica should take both drugs off the market and courts should reward those patients currently taking these drugs and/or trying to get off of these drugs financial compensation for attending a drug treatment program and compensate for lost wages and pain and suffering. These are terrible drugs and doctors did NOT warn or prepare patients properly for the negative impact they could potentially have on our lives.


          • I am currently coming off lyrica and cymbalta and having a horrible time as well!!! I am completely off the lyrica, and the cymbalta is so much worse. I ended up missing work for a week last time I tried to come off it bc it’s so bad!! The ignorance pisses me off, and that the doctors put me on it in the first place! Ugh!!!! I just hope to get through it this time, bc these past three days have been awful! The nausea is soooo bad!! ๐Ÿ™

        • I am weening myselfl from cymbals for the second time with my doctors guidance. It is worse than anything I can remember. I have depression, and chronic pain. It is worse the 2nd time than the 1st time. I stopped my Norco a few years ago after being on the medicine for over 10 years with no withdrawal symptoms. I thought I was losing my mind the other day but made it thru. I will never take cymbals again. The main point is I almost started back taking the cymbalta because of the withdrawal symptoms. Any drug or medicine can be addictive Steve! It may not be classified as a narcotic but should be given with much caution and lots of education.


          • Calling these person an idiot does not help the situation. I would much rather call them ignorant because that is indeed what they are. Someone who has not experienced when your body and your brain become accustomed to specific prescribed medication to the point where they need it in order to feel fully functional. Medication can become extremely addictive. You know the vast majority that die of drug overdoses actually die of overdoses to prescription drugs, right?

        • Steve…I am a registered nurse…and am coming off cymbalta cold turkey…..I have never done drugs….but the withdrawals are brutal from cymbalta…..some reasons people stop taking it is because of our famous Obama care….for a 30 day supply of generic cymbalta is 307 dollars….So be a little more compassionate about what you say….

          • Kimberly, I am a LPN. I have been on Cymbalta then Duloxetine for a total of about 8 years. My psychiatrist has titrated me off and two days ago was my last dose of 20mg that I had been on for two weeks. My head is spinning so badly, I’m nauseated, shakey….when I blink my eyes I feel like my whole body, especially my head, seems to vibrate. Even my vision seems to be effected. This is extremely scarey to me. My tongue has a metallic sensation. How long did the withdraws happen for you?

        • I agree with you, Steve needs some education.

        • Oh, Steve, may I mention that benzo’s are also addictive. But let me get to the point, and I don’t know where you got your degree in pharmacology or specialized in addictions, but stopping Cymbalta abruptly does cause withdrawals: diarrhea, fatigue, worsening depression, and pain to name a few! Coming off antidepressants my disrupt the chemical balance that a person had been experiencing while taking the drug to worsening depression and ect. after coming off the drug. Just because something is not a narcotic doesn’t mean that it is not addictive! Look at Xanax whenever it was first on the market; it wasn’t supposed to be addictive. Paxil wasn’t suppose to be addictive either!

        • Hello Steve,
          And everyone who has been frustrated by Steve’s comments. There is one point that you are correct on Steve, it is not technically “withdraws”, but rather Cymbaltha Discontinuation Syndrome. That does not mean that the severity of the discontinuation symptoms are any less severe. I am a Psychaitric Nurse specialist and I have had the unfortunate experience of Cymbalta Discontinuation Syndrome What I am experiencing is a mirror of what my clients experience both in discontinuation syndrome as well as drug withdraw. Cymbalta’s effects on brain chemistry are more dramatic because of the effects on both serotonin and nor-epinephrine.

          To say that you did not experience the discontinuation syndrome is evidence that others experiences are discounted is near sighted and perhaps a little narcissistic. All anyone can do is share their own personal experience.

          My story is that I started taking Cymbalta last year before I returned to school for my Phd. I wanted to get off of Topamax (that I had been taking for nerve pain) because it has an effect on cognition. I reluctantly tried Cymbalta. This was a major mistake in judgement. I knew that it could be rough coming off of the medication. The medication did a good job with the pain for about a month, but then stopped working. I gained 30 pounds without changing my eating habits and found that the medications side effects were not worth the benefit. I titrated off of the medication, but of course I am one of those lucky people that develop the discontinuation syndrome. Not everyone will have the same experiences.

          A good example of the individuality of our biochemistry is the client that I had that was having severe migraines. She had them for over a year, it was almost a daily even. I did some research and found that Paxil can cause severe headaches. We switched her to Zoloft and the migraines were gone. This is the only patient I have had with that particular side effect. We are all uniquely made. That is why some people can smoke like chimneys and never get cancer, while others live a squeaky clean life and develop cancer. It is always easy to measure someones experience against your own.. but easy isn’t always accurate, or appropriate.

          I wish the best for all of us. Cymbalta should not be on the market. Period!

        • I disagree with you on this 100%!!! Benzodiazepines have been proven to be severely addictive. They are over used & over prescribed by the screwed up psychiatric pill pushers that don’t know you are only to prescribe any of these on a PRN ( as needed ) basis & NEVER to be taken for long term use. Doctors are prescribing these medication in high doses for years & years to patients who suffer from anxiety disorder and for panic attacks. They fail to tell you that benzodiazepines are harder to detox from than any street drug such as heroin, cocaine, meth. etc! Read the book “Worse Than Heroin” & talk to someone like me who has been through years of detoxing tying to get off these horrible medications.

        • I had to jump in here as Steve’s leak of experience and understanding about the withdrawal effects of Cymbalta. You are right, it is not a narcotic however the einsteins around the work are trying drugs such a Cymbalta in place of narcotics because it is supposed to be safer and have less withdrawal symptoms which providing pain relief.
          I am someone who absolutely does not have an aditictive personality. I have been on plenty of narcotic medications includin some of the big buys like dilaudud, methadone and fentanyl patch of server spinal osteoarthritis.

          Because of all the folks that above narcotics, doctors do not like to write for those perscriptions any longer and so you get things like Lyrica, gabepentin, diseprimine, and Cymbalta. Of me, none of those drugs have worked to bring my pain to an acceptable level and because of it I have no quality of life. I have been on these mess since November 2015. I deduced I was not getting relief and asked to be weaned off of all of them, when it came time to withdraw from Cymbalta, I started feel absolutely physically and mentally ill. I was on 60mg daily. We took that down to 30 daily and then a week later to nothing.

          I have been in pain, suffering from electrical jolts in my head neck and shoulders for weeks. It has been a week since I stopped and I am sicker than a dog.
          I would take withdrawal from opiates any day over how bad the withdrawals are from this medication. It’s so bad that they named a syndrome after it.

          The aches, pains, severe hot flashes and body chills are really bad but that is nothing compared to those electrical shocks I am getting in my head, down my arms and into my hands. The brain fog and pure exhaustion is ridiculous and yes I followed a taper plan given to me doctor. I would like to find him and kick him in the nuts right now so at least he would feel the nausea thati am feeling right now.
          That jackass did not tell me anything about the medication and the materials I was given did not speak to withdrawal symptoms at all.
          I don’t know what to do about it but I do know that my doctor did not warm me, nor did my pharmacist. I have handled many detoxes over the years from medications, this one I will never again let anyone give me and I will make dam sure they tell me about the crappy withdrawals of other medications.

          I just want to feel better and sleep better. And treat my family better and to not have to worry if I am going to pass out or have a seizure. I feel like i am on the verge of a seizure every moment. Last week my hubby actually took me to the ER for help. They offered Dramamine for the dizzy feeling.

          • Hi Deb,

            I am like you, I do not have an addictive personality. I can go days without a Norco if I am in a good place with my back and knee. I am a psychiatric nurse and find it interesting that individuals are so staunch on their beliefs that their experience is the standard for everyone else. I may have read wrong, but the tapering schedule that the doctor gave you seemed too quick and the dosage drop to drastic each time. I dropped by 25 mg each week until I was off of the drug and still had horrific discontinuation syndrome symptoms.
            What some people do not understand is that drugs like Cymbalta are a type of serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI). SNRI’s boost the amount of norepinephrine and serotonin that bathes the electrons in the brain. Every drug (even in the same class) has a different mechanism or method of action. Cymbalta is very effective in raising these two neurotransmitters that take signals from area of the brain to the other. When Cymbalta is removed the brain reacts as the levels drop, basically sending out emergency signals to the body. If a medication like Cymbalta is withdrawn too quickly it can cause serotonin syndrome, that may result in death. It seems like trifling to argue over terminology. Whether you are withdrawing from heroin or Cymbalta, you body is crisis and it must be dealt with appropriately.

            The best advice I can share from my own personal experience is the following 1- Most doctors are clueless. I vomited for so long I went to Urgent Care and they gave me fluids and sent me home with Ativan, which did absolutely no good. 2. What works for one person doesn’t work for another, so keep trying different things. 3. Family and friends are essential to help you get through this and to keep re-affirming that you are not going crazy and you will get through this! 4. Get outside everyday and keep moving (sunshine and movement raises your serotonin). 5. If you get so down you feel like hurting yourself please reach out to someone (I did).

            Specific things that helped-
            1. Benadryl- it was the ONLY medication that helped some of the symptoms.
            2. Gardening- got me outside, in the sun and moving. It helped me boost my own natural serotonin and norepinephrine.
            3. I drank a lot of fluids to flush my system.
            4. I ate a healthy plant based diet which helped my liver metabolize the medication by not overtaxing it with fats animal proteins and fake foods.
            5. I didn’t drink alcoholic beverages, coffee, or any other stimulants or depressants. The lack of alcohol helped out my liver do it’s job and the lack of stimulants helped my brain heal.
            It took six weeks to get rid of the brain shocks, nausea, vomiting, chills and shakes. Another three months went by before the brain fog began to lift and my energy slowly began to return. This was last year and I am back to “normal” now. I hope the best for you and you have my prayers.


        • I commend you for your bravery. I stopped 6 days ago. But i halso stopped taking Bupropion at the same time. And just taking half of my 10 mg of My ambien. I could tell you im feeli g horrible. Im gonna try the benadryl. I have the brain shocks, it feels like someone put a firecracker in my head. I really dont even know how i got to this point. I just want to be me again, you go to these Drs And all it takes is foryou to tell them you ceel sad and right away they prescribed these pills that turn u in an addjct. I didnt tell my Dr i was gonna stop cold turkey, but in the name of Jesus im gonna continue and hope i never have to rely on pills to stop an emotion that is natufal in human being. We suppose to be sad once in a while and hurt in some situations. I just want to be me av6
          You are so blessed cause im think im going crazy right about now. The worse is the hsllucinations and brainshocks

      • I am with you on that one.

      • I appreciate your post but you just committed the very offense you got upset about, being ignorant on a topic. Please educate yourself about addiction. It is not a flaw of character or personality. Some of the strongest people I know are addicts who suffered immensely and found their way out or keep trying to beat their demons. I have been a counselor for a long time so I know I am educated on the topic or would not comment

      • I agree with you, Steve needs some education.

    • Steve, Get off this site! You are not helping anyone with your judgement. Take Cymbalta for 2 years, go off it then comment on your experience. Otherwise, stop making judgements on something you obviously have no understanding of. Lori


    • Steve you are offensive and have no compassion. WE don’t understand the withdrawals either, but they are not in our heads! I am 7 days out and so sick right now! Wish I wasn’t but I am and I am not “addicted” to anything. You must be ignorant on the subject of anti depressants, because even common sense tells you that if you have been on a med that effects the brain, when you quit, the brain has to learn to work on its own again. That is probably why we are so tired. But every professional in the world acknowledges some sort of “withdrawal” from anti depressants. I am glad it wasn’t hard for you. You are one of the lucky ones. I am sitting here in hell today, hurting, crying, puking and brain fog. I am not making this up! It is real! You may want to google aspergers, as it is a disease where people lack compassion and empathy.

  4. Day 10 going off 60mg/day of Cymbalta, and about 60% of Hydrocodone. My mind has been spinning now for days and still this feeling won’t go away.

    • I am on day 10 also. I went from 120 mg to 60 mg without many problems about 8 months ago. But the side effects of Cymbalta have gotten me to a point where the depression of the side effects was worse than what I had been dealing with. Two weeks ago I was dropped to 30 mg for 7 days while being placed on 300 mg of Wellbutrin. I have constant nausea, more of a brain fog than brain zaps and just feel like (sorry for the melodramatic tone) I wish I were just dead. Shorter temper than usual. I have the flu like symptoms, I would swear I am running a fever, but then have chills. I am keeping food down but it has been hard. It is hard to determine if I am having a bad reaction to the Wellbutrin or if it is mainly the Cymbalta withdrawal. I will never EVER take Cymbalta again.

      Please pray for me, because I am having a very hard time coping with the physical feelings and and struggle at this point. I surely hope that ‘this too shall pass!’



      • I came off cymbalta May 2013 thats one year ago, although the symptoms have eased I still feel it is still in my system, I dont feel well at all, have you got rid of it yet and how long did take. im worried i will never feel well again.

  5. Marsha Phipps May 27, 2013 at 4:28 pm

    I just googled my daughters symptoms, major fatigue, crying uncontrollably due to feeling like crap, nausea ALL the time, etc. She just stopped taking Cymbalta 3 weeks ago. She was on 60mg and went to 30mg for one week. That was her “weaning” period. She has felt like crap ever since. I KNOW it’s Cymbalta withdrawal and advised her to go to the doctor again…she just went today and they can’t find anything wrong with her.

    Steve, you’re an idiot. Cymbalta DOES cause withdrawal symptoms. Go play in the street.

    • I didnt say withdrawing from Cymbalta didnt have withdrawls. I had “withdrawl” symptoms too. Easily aggravated, electrical type body shocks etc. but i’m over them now. I have been through worse “withdrawl” symptoms when i quit taking clonodine and my beta blockers. Just becasue i went through withdrawls didnt mean i was addicted to it. You go through withdrawls on any type of prescription medication you have been taking for an extended period of time. It doesnt mean its an “addiction” though.

      • if u had no withdrawl symptoms then you were very lucky. Until u know what this is like bow out gracefully from the conversation


          • Where is the info for this class action lawsuit? Is it only for withdrawal? This med has turned my life upside down even before I quit taking it. I told my daughter if I killed myself to sue the company AND my Dr. who I asked many times to get me off of it. I was never suicidal ON an anti depressant before. I have come so close several times, but fortunately I could tell myself its the medicine, not you. think of your children and grandchildren! I have been on for about 5 years 60mg. If I missed one day I was so irrational. I have lost so many relationships. ๐Ÿ™ I have complained to my Dr. about it since about the first or second yr. After the withdrawals I will be happy to meet ME again!

      • Steve, You were fortunate and a bit lucky that your body did well while withdrawing from Cymbalta. The bottom line is people withdraw harder from some drugs than others. While beta blockers gave you more trouble, the people on here had their biggest problems with Cymbalta. It is really apples and oranges, everyone is different. Rather than be so critical, I would encourage you to empathize, as you know withdrawals. Your suggestion of basically “sucking it up” is condescending and disheartening.

    • Go to ASAM, The very official American Society of Addiction Medicine, and look up the definition.

      BUT…does it really matter what the definition is? I don’t really think that is the issue here. This board is for people trying to find support for the very real horrible symptoms of withdrawal.

      • Jeanne and others….I too weaned off the drug from hell…Cymbalta. Steve has no business being on this site as it truly is a forum for those looking for help in alleviating some (or all) of the withdrawal symptoms. I’ve never experienced anything quite like this…ever. If any of you know of anything to help with the withdrawal symptoms; i.e., supplements, not other drugs, please let me know.
        Thank you in advance for any ideas you may be able to give me.

    • Hi Marsha
      I know it’s almost Christmas but I’m interested to know how your daughter coped, I hope she was sincerely able to beat the evils of this sinister drug!


    • The doc’s are clueless about the withdrawals,,,i told my doc many times when i had tried to come off cymbalta,,,she looked at me like i was nutz…..

  6. Ask your daughter to consider Prozac. Thats the best anti depressant in my opinion.

  7. There is psychological addiction and physical addition. Narcotics have both. Psychological addiction is more difficult to treat. The physical withdrawal symptoms are what are being described on this post. I found this post because I am dealing with a patient at this moment going through physical withdrawal from Cymbalta. She not so oddly is describing many of these symptoms on this page. She also has severe pain in her shoulder blade and arm that her treating physician said was a severe muscle spasm (she never had that before). I hope everyone can ignore the misinformed statements by Steve. Prozac is good for some, not for others. Human’s have a lot of variability and hence different drugs have widely different effects. If a drug is tested in Africa, the side effects are quite different on Caucasians or Asians in many cases.

    • Thanks, Herb, for your intelligent and informed comment.

    • Thanks Herb, for very good information. Prozac killed the severe, frightening postpartum I went through after my daughter was born, but I also lived in an emotionally dead state for several years until I went off of it. It’s definitely not for everyone.

    • I would like to thank you, too, Herb for your positive comments!!

  8. I’m going cold turkey on Cymbalta right now, and I think this blog is going to be one of my saving graces. NEVER in a million years have I had to detox off of a psych med like this. I stopped eight days ago. Psychologically: I have a fuse that’s about 1/4″ long, I’m bouncing from one emotion to another (mostly angry to crying to frustrated, but I went a little hysterical last night laughing and couldn’t stop), and my brain is SO foggy that I can’t process some thoughts too fast. Physically: Good lord in heaven, this stuff is evil. I hurt all over in my bones, my muscles hurt, my eyes hurt like someone punched me in them, I’m tired, I sweat like mad all night unless I’m having the chills so bad I’m shaking, I have horrible tummy/bowel problems, and I’m kind of itchy all over, but my FEET! My god my FEET itch like crazy mad, burning itching so bad it wakes me up!!! I smoked crack for several months straight in my 20s (I’m in my 40s now) and detox from it was NOTHING like this! So thank you for sharing your journey with this, and I’m so glad I’ve found people who are going through the same thing!


  9. I too have been in withdrawl of this horrific drug. I was on 120 mg and had to ween off slowly to nothing. 2 weeks of pure hell, zapping, anger, panic attacks, dizzy spells , nausea, etc. My senses like smell etc are so strong right now. Certain smells just turn my stomach. My appetite is gone. I can’t even consider having coffee, or chocolate because it really starts the brain zaps going 1000 mph. My doctor also pleads ignorance to cymbalta with drawl. What i would like to know is HOW MUCH LONGER IS THIS TRIP THROUGH HELL GOING TO LAST!!!!! It has been 11 days now. Anyone have any good news for me or have any idea how much longer. Thank you in advance

  10. today was my first day off from cymbalta 60 mg. that I have been on for 5 years, I have been tired and sleepy all day. what other symptoms am I going to experience and when? any body help me please thank you

  11. I have been off of cymbalta for 5.5 weeks now, and the symptoms are just as bad as they were in the beginning (maybe a little better – I do have some moments of clarity from time to time). I’ve withdrawn from benzodiazapines, and this is much worse. I just fired my doctor, and I am going to pursue a class action law suit against Eli Lilly for their lies once I get back from my “vacation” – which is totally ruined by this shit. What a waste, biggest disappointment and frustration of my life.

    My doctor, only after I had gotten off of this poison, told me that some of his patients still experienced withdrawal symptoms 6 months after their last dose. Did he tell me this before I started taking this stuff? Nope. My entire life is awful now, and I’ve never felt more hopeless and emotionally numb. I would like to kill myself to end this pain, how much worse can life get? Seriously, life sucked before Cymbalta, and now it’s about 10X worse. If this ever ends, my life is going to have been extremely affected and at the very least I can say that I’ll never go on an antidepressent ever again. I really would like to kill myself and make this end. I have no power, and can’t do anything and I have lost the power of emotion and thinking. This medication has literally ruined my perception of the world, and I can’t even think without getting severe headaches.

    I cannot possibly express to you how much I would advise ANYONE considering Cymbalta to avoid this drug at all costs!!! It does help temporarily, but now I feel lobotomized at all hours of the day. Take prozac, or something that won’t totally ruin your life. I am writing this message out of sheer desperation, and I don’t care – my life is like hell, it’s like being perpetually sick and hung over. And the worst part is that people say that their lives are never the same after going on this stuff.

    I trusted my doctor, but he’s an evil corrupt person for doing this to me. How can someone call themselves a doctor if they make their patients lives 10X worse????

    Avoid cymbalta, and do not give into the temptation, you WILL regret it, and it’s not worth the risk in hoping that you are one of the few lucky ones who will not experience bad withdrawls. I thought I was going to be fine, and now my entire life is ruined. It’s only a matter of time before I misplace something or drive a little off, and really screw things up. I’m currently on a vacation, and I hope I make it – if I get killed or something, that might at least be a more pleasurable fate than the current hell that I live in.

    • Alex:

      I think you have other issues than just going off of Cymbalta. I think it is silly for you to blame what you are going through on strictly on Cymbalta. You’re acting like you are coming off crystal meth. or something. It sounds like it might be a benefit to you to go inpatient somewhere for a time.

      • Steve – I was on Cymbalta only and totally put my symptoms on that medicine for the withdrawals I had. If you actually know what it’s like to come off crystal meth, perhaps this is not the site you need to be contributing to. As for your suggestion a few posts ago about Prozac being the best in your opinion, that’s what it is, your opinion. The reason there are multiple antidepressants is becase all people are not chemically made up the same. Also, Prozac is an SSRI where Cymbalta is an SNRI. Before you make more suggestions, please read up on the difference.

        • Steve,
          My suggestion is for you to remove yourself from this site since you distract from its purpose and also add to the issues that people here are facing.

          Perhaps you can find what you are “seeking” on a more appropriate site; one on which members can fight about opinions, embrace antagonism, and stay stuck in a place where healing can’t place.

          You are misinformed and your opinions on this site are not solicited or wanted, by me anyway. MY OPINION.

          This is not the first time you have tried to stir things up on this site with your OPINIONS, and not the first time that I have felt obligated to respond to your negativity or toxic appearance.

          I won’t be responding to you anymore, and hope that you find a site where you can achieve whatever it is you are seeking….


    • Hey! I know how you feel, but just hang in there as most everyone here has had to! Know that eventually you will get better. May I suggest you look into more natural supplement to help with you pain and depression. Doctors these days are too quick in writing scripts. I know better now and do research on the medication before seeing a pharmacist. You have support here. I’m sure no one minds if you air your feelings here. ๐Ÿ™‚ I myself will probably try the benadryl. ( don’t like supplementing one drug for another) but it may be just help. There are many helpful suggestions here and we all suffer the Hell you’re not alone and don’t ever feel you are!

      • I too am trying my best to get off Cymbalta. This is a wicked, wicked drug. The symptoms are almost the same as getting off Zoloft but worse. I feel like I have vertigo (dizzy and nauseated) all the time. I tend to lose my balance quite a lot which I already had problems with before. I have crying spells but so far no anger. I think I am too tired to get angry. I was taking 90 mg. and then went to 60 mg. for two weeks and then to 30 mg. for three to four weeks. My psych doctor said to try taking a 30 mg. every other day. Well what good is that going to do for the days I don’t take it? So I made the decision to get off of it all together. It is absolutely horrible. I feel so tired all the time and my muscles and joints ache. I talked to my local pharmacist about the withdrawals (or discontinuation syndrome as Lily likes to call it). She told me to try a motion sickness drug which contains the same drug as is in Adivert (Meclizine). It seems to help somewhat but it’s still going to be rough time for me. I still take 300 mg. of Wellbutrin XL for depression and 1 mg. of Klonopin three times a day for anxiety. Has anyone found out how long the “discontinuation syndrome” lasts?

        • I’ve been off Cymbalta for a year now. I, too, have had vertigo issues and was recently diagnosed with Meniere’s Syndrome. Don’t know if it’s related to discontinuation of the Cymbalta or not. And I also had a lot of muscular and joint pain after stopping the drug. I didn’t realize how much the Cymbalta helped with that type of pain until I stopped taking it. But I’m okay now. Hang in there. It does take awhile to overcome it, but you can do it. Shalom.

        • I never had issues getting off other drugs like getting off this devil drug. Ironically, it was the generic that triggered my withdrawal. For whatever reason my body did not tolerate it and put my body into the same withdrawal that I’ve had when I tried to go cold turkey from 60 mg before. I managed 7 weeks of that hell. Exhaustion, crying jags, extreme irritability and pretty much all the other things everyone on here has experienced. I stopped the generic 3 days ago when I figured it out. I feel better. So, I think there is a light at the end of the tunnel. My advice is to stay strong and push through. You can do it.

        • thats what i want to know HOW LONG to get clear of this poison, Cant get an answer anywhere,I been off for one year now and still dont feel right


  12. wow !…..I quit cymbalta cold turkey a week ago…..since losing my job and insurance…..I couldnt afford the 300 monthly to stay on it…….wasnt able to taper off the dose as I couldnt afford the Dr appt…..and cobra wanted 1100.00 a month to extend my benefits….so…I am having major brain zaps…..which are horrible….was just wondering what supplements anyone can recommend to help with the withdrawal symptoms….
    also…in MY opinion….Steve is just a troll looking for attention……dont reply to him and hopefully he will go away….because it’s obvious he has no idea what he is babbling about…..he has offended a lot of people here who are genuinely in pain and looking for help…..pretty sad to have someone on here stirring up stuff when we have enough to deal with as it is…..
    cymbalta IS addictive and I hope Eli Lilly burns in hell for NOT advising Drs of the horrible withdrawal symptoms
    i was on this awful drug for 6 yrs at 30mg a day

    • Hi Wendy,
      I am so sorry to hear about your pain and loss of a job. I was on cymbalta for 5 years. I believe this drug is made by the devil himself. When I first start taking this drug I loved it and was happy with amazing results. Later on in my life I decided i was in the state where i could do fine without taking this drug. I was not quitting cold turkey like you. I was on 60mg once a day. My doctor put me on 30mg and had me take it for a week, after a week he still kept me on cymbalta, but i was taking the drug every two days. Brain zaps were horrible even though he was trying to take me off gradually. My body was so dependent on this drug that i started to have spasms in my legs arms and stomach . I had no way of dealing with spasms, but there is a trick for brain zaps. Buy yourself some benadryl, vitamin B complex and fish oil, this will slightly reduce the brain zaps. Also avoid sudden movements. Make sure you slowly get up from your chair and slowly get up from your bed. Brain zaps lasted the longest, but I noticed the difference when I took benadryl, someone advised me to take benadryl, but it was not an advice from a professional. If you wish you can try this out, again this is not something advised to me by a professional. This was advised from a person who was trying to get off cymbalta. Wendy, also note, that your mood might decrease for short while and you will feel a little depressed. Wait it out, that will go away. Hope you will find my advice useful. Also there is a petition online that you can sign to stop production on cymbalta. I am short on time, but you can easily find it online. Good luck and trust me things will get better. Hang in there Wendy!!!

      • thank you Ausra….you and others on here have given me hope !

      • Thank you, I do like to hear the success of completing the processes…I just started so I feel the encouragment in these posts and I am thankful to have found it. I was only on for out 9months to 1 year…but I can’t remember…the most a took was 60mg but mostly 30mgs for I would say 5 out of the 10 months. I am praying for all of us…this is horrible and I wish us all health and success with the weaning process. I was out on CYM for fibromyalgia, nothing more…I’m a super happy person, 40 year old mom of 3…I miss myself the most, but I know I will be back to myself again very soon. I am starting to take the pellets out of the capsules…I am on 20 pellets for the next week, right now some short brain zaps and nausea…I am also drinking 8 cups of water with lemon per day, doing to start the Omega 3 and detox epsom salt soaks today. I am wishing you all well.

    • Hi Wendy,
      I would try these supplements and this is my opinion only. Meletonin, velarian root, try taking estrovan which also has meletonin in it plus it helps with the sweats and chills, and also on here people going through the same hell suggest Benadryl or sudafed. Personally I look for a more natural help. But Benadryl is way the better than the evil!
      Best of luck!


  13. Thank you all. I was on Cymbalta and Savella with some relief of my symptoms. I began an extreme anti-inflamatory diet for six weeks. By week three I felt great. So I began to decrease my NSAIDs and was fine. Then went to decreasing my SNRIs. Oh dear I woke up with a cramp in my neck so bad I cried! And it was down hill from there. After finding this post I see all my symptoms before sever sweating and after dizziness relentlously stopping/reducing the medications are from the Cymbaltaa and/or Savella. Halelulia I am not dying although I feel like I am. I never connected many side affects to these drugs nor did my Doc which is a Problem. So many are out there suffering with out knowing. Thank you for opening my eyes.


  14. I have just found this site and all I can say is that I am so grateful to know that I am not the only one!! I think its the best feeling I have had since going off of cymbalta. Sadly, unlike most of you I am only a week off of this poisonous drug so it seems as if I have a long road ahead of me. I am at the lowest point of my life. I started taking cymbalta to help with my depression and its been about two years on 60 mgs. I weened down to 30mg and then came off just recently. WOW.. its all I can say. I’m having Brain Zaps (which by the way are horrible!) being so damn nausea that I can’t even enjoy a cup of coffee or a glass of water anymore because it taste so damn awful, also even when I do get hungry my stomach feels so grossly full even after one bite that I can’t enjoy anything. I have started to get so angry at everyone for no reason sometimes and I have found myself having panic attacks and severe bouts of crying at the drop of a dime. I’m feeling so crazy and alone and I cant figure out why a drug could cause so much harm!!! I have had feelings of suicide and helplessness, and the weird part is that I have no motivation to be alive. I am sorry to everyone else on this website that is going through this. I pray that we all get through this bullshit and that other people dont ever try this drug. Its about midnight and I just got through having a severe panic attack while in the middle of a movie followed by crazy crying that I could not control. Is there anywhere where ppl like us who have gone or are going through these withdrawals can go to get out to the public???? I feel like this is a secret that only few know about and I want to blast the makers of cymbalta and ruin their company so that they cant sell anymore. I am glad I am not alone in this because talking to my friends, family I can’t get anyone to realize how much pain and shit I am going through. My prayers go out to everyone on this site who is suffering.


    • I feel for you Day 4 and nobody in my family can understand..I have explained it to my husband for about the 10th time I don’t think he gets it…the brain zaps I can’t even explain they just come and keep on coming…tired….omg and crying and irritable..I might end up divorced or worse….it’s like dying….

  15. I had been taking 120 mg of Cymbalta as a treatment for depression for the last three years and decided I just could not take it any more. I have never tolerated Sulfa drugs well, as they completely screw up my bodily functions. When I started to have to take either stool softeners or laxatives daily that was enough! Other reactions I had while taking Cymbalta was heavy sweats, disturbing dreams and feelings of being “out of focus”. I stopped taking the 120 mg and took 60 mg for a week before stopping cold turkey.I want to note I did this on my own, not with physician’s assistance.
    The first week after I quit I had a headache, almost full-blown migraine painful, that just would not go away. Along with that I had hot (sweats) flashes and constant itching.
    Since then I have had nausea, chills mixed with the sweating episodes and diarrhea. How my longer do I have to look forward to these side-effects?

    • I forgot to mention the terrible muscle cramps and joint pain. I expected the joint pain, but there are times I can feel huge knots in my calves and shoulder blades — any suggestions on how to treat the pain, I can only take aspirin, as I have just gotten my creatinine and urea levels back to normal from taking Celebrex.

    • my worst symptoms lasted between 6 and 10 weeks…if it was not one particular thing, it was others. just don’t give up hope. i came off 60 mg cold turkey last summer and yes, it was tough but i felt better and better the longer i was off. i will say that when i was first put on cymbalta, it worked SHORT TERM for the need i had and looking back, i wish i had realized it was better suited for me to be SHORT TERM but that famous saying about hindsight being 20/20…. i used dramamine for my dizzy spells as well as sudafed…then started using SAMe and 5-HTP but that was not something i ended up sticking with even tho i had hoped a natural solution would last for me…each one of us are different. all i can say is go back and read as many posts on here as you can, see what folks say they did and then decide what may work best in your current world. even tho it’s been over a year since i went cold turkey, i still check this site regularly…i feel connected. chin up! it WILL get better…

  16. My cousin is in withdrawal from taking Cymbalta for 2 years, 60 mg. She has gone to hospital emergency because she has been throwing up for weeks and is too sick to do anything. She is sick at her stomach all the time and can’t stand the smell of food. She had lost 30 lbs in a month and is stll throwing up. Glad I read all the posts on this site.
    Steve needs to butt out because he does not know what the hell he is talking about. He is just trying to stir up trouble. One day he will have severe withdrawals from something and he will suffer. What goes around comes around. Ignore the airhead.

  17. Just found this site and THANK YOU ALL for posting. I have been on this drug for 3 1/2 yrs. I tried to come off of it a year ago and the symptoms/devastating side effects made me continue. (That alone should have been a Red Flag). I just went crime 60 to 30 and I basically don’t leave my house. I take Benedryl regularly and thank good dad my doctor called me in meclazine for the SEVERE dizziness and “brain zaps”. I TRULY thought I was going insane with all the thoughts of hopelessness and the sudden bouts of anger and or tears that came out of no where. I’m going into my doctor on the 5th armed with the FDA report. You have all (besides the ignorant one) saved me from so much self doubt and given me Hope. THANK YOU and good luck!

    • nichole – sounds like you have what you need for the moment for the brain zaps…please know that i had anger and tears too, who knows where they come from but it happens and it passes too. i found it helpful letting people i was around most often that it was part of coming off cymbalta and not take me too personal for several weeks.

  18. I’ve been off cymbalta completely for three days now and it’s absolutely awful. I’ve been weaning myself off it for about three weeks and feel so extremely dizzy, like the world just randomly shifts in a random diagonal direction. i’m glad i’m not alone in feeling like this and feel inspired by all people here who are doing such a brave thing while dealing with these terrible feelings. I will never be on Cymbalta again and would get my brother and mother off it if they would listen to me. This medication has caused me nothing but hardship since I can remember. I’ve been on it for nearly three years and look forward to when these withdrawal effects stop. I just fear that they won’t be going away anytime soon…

    • mike – when i wend cold turkey off, i found that body did well with walgreens version of drammamine and also sudafed but i know everyone is different. it did get bad enough for me to ask my doctor for vertigo medicine – meclazine or something that sounds similar to this spelling. it does take time but hey, you are already 3 days in and that’s a BIG deal…keep doing it and remember that you can always come back to this site and read posts for encouragement that it will get better and at the end, you will feel better.

  19. i can’t read well, and it’s week 13 of stopping cymbalta… i was too ill to wean off slowly…tho i did try.

    Weeks of hell,,, i would like advice for relief. I will read slowly, or have someone read your generous info shared, asap.

    Now that I’m feeling some measure of improvement, I’m reaching out to others.

    I wish i found you guys weeks ago.

    Thank you.

  20. Cheryl Molennor August 31, 2013 at 9:36 am

    Hi everyone and thanks for being there for those of us who need it. I first want to say that I have been detoxing from anti depressants that I have been taking for 18 years straight. 23 years ago I went through rehab for 15 years of drug addiction to meth, cocain, acid, and marijuana . it wasn’t easy but I got through it managed to stay clean this long. 6 years into my recovery I was prescribed antidepressants and I found myself still taking them 18
    years later. I have been on many including Prozac, zoloft, lexapro, pristiq ,effexor and Cymbalta.
    I myself am extremely surprised at how bad the detox is and how long the affects seem to stay with you.
    To address Steves comments and attitude about this I’m not going to be judgmental but I think what you’re not getting Steve is that people are not saying it’s like an addiction and you have to have it like it is with narcotics. the reason we think we have to have it or want to take another one is so that we don’t feel these crazy physical side effects one more day. I personally will not pick up one more of these pills and put it in my mouth because I don’t want to linger these effects I just wanna get it over with and I decided to just go through it and deal with it. just when I think I’m going to have a normal day I turn my head to quickly and I get dizzy with a major brain zap not to mention the ballots of uncontrollable crying. I forgot to mention that when I’m laying down trying to sleep it feels like someone is standing outside of my head clapping their hands really loud that’s what I’m hearing inside my brain.
    For those of you experiencing the dizzy stuff I learned that the pills over the counter bonine has really helped with this for me
    I plan to continue on this path and become totally drug free if at all possible as this experience has taught me so much the doctors don’t really know everything but if you listen to your body is going to tell you a lot

  21. Hi and thank God there’s this site. I’ve only been without cymbalta for 3 days and 30mg only for the last 2 yrs. and this is only due to an insurance mix up. I have lupus and many other non curable chronic pain. 3 days only I remind you, my body is in excruciating pain. I can not think, I can not process my thoughts or even finish a sentence properlly, mis directed anger, nausea, I’m literally in the bathroom on the toilet holding a garbage pan because I don’t know where it’s gonna come, ( sorry about being graphic) I’ve fallen down and up the stairs, I’m dizzy to the point where I must hold onto the wall just to make it to the bathroom without walking or falling into things. I thought since I have lupus it was just some kind of weird flare, but now I KNOW it’s a side effect from the Cymbalta, and Steve, side effects from any drug street or prescribed is withdrawals it’s just that prescribed medication is termed side effects so we feel better from that terminology. But enough of Stevisms. I feel so lucky to have found this site after looking up Cymbalta. I currently take 11 prescribed medications and have used and was addicted to street drugs as well. I have not gone through anything like I’m going through now. I am in tears as I’m writing this because it’s happening to me at this moment. I don’t understand why health providers would even prescribe this toxic drug, and on top of it feel okay about it knowing you can’t be on this forever and you will go through Hell dealing with the side effects. Honestly, I want to die right now. I don’t know if it’s from the Cymbalta or just my depression, but I think right now and upon reading everyones comment I’m going to chalk this one up to Cymbalta withdrawals. Since its been 3 days I may just stop now and deal with the symptoms. Shame on Eli Lilly! Something needs to be done to take this drug of the market maybe they should put whoever approved it on Cymbalta ( FDA) then stop this medication and see if would have ever see the light of the drug market.
    In ending I would like to thank everyone on this Cymbalta hell and helping others understand the toxicity and the withdrawals with the exclusion of one (Steve). I have never felt so debilitated in my life. But now I know I’m not crazy and I’m not alone in this. I’m going to hang in there and kick this Cymbalta bullshits ass!

    Much love and strength to everyone here even you Steve who I believe needs the most help.

    • Oh I’d like to recommend meletonin and velarian root for anxiety and sleepliness nights and for women, try estrovan or an equivalent even if your not menopausal it helps with the sweats and chills. All these are natural supplements with NO side effects. ๐Ÿ™‚


  22. I could really use some advice.

    I had been on 60mg of duloxetine for about 4 years. Back in April I decided I would like to slowly reduce. I spoke to my GP who supported my decision to slowly reduce and we agreed that I would manage it myself. A friend had struggled with duloxetine withdrawal but I assumed it was because his depression had returned – I didn’t reckon on the hell that is duloxetine withdrawal.

    I gradually reduced to 30mg daily. In July I was struggling with brain zaps, extreme fatigue, brain fog and difficulty processing thoughts and information. Oh, and RAGE!! This was gradually getting worse and I decided to ring the GP who advised increasing my dose back to 60mg. I asked if she’d heard of patients having problems withdrawing from duloxetine – she hadn’t.

    That was over a month ago – after an initial improvement it is now as bad as ever. I have an appointment with GP in a few days but not sure they will even acknowledge that my symptoms are due to duloxetine withdrawal.

    Any advice/similar experiences would be appreciated.

    • Sally – just my person opinion here as a past Cymbalta user….just get off of it cold turkey – symptoms seem to be just as bad regardless of tapering off or jumping off. I went cold turkey and had the same symptoms as anyone who tapered off, just got over it quicker. This is just my opinion…

      • Hi laneebree, thanks for your reply. I think you are probably right but I can’t face the thought of going through it, which is why I went back to my original dose. I have a stressful job which requires me to be ‘on the ball’ so couldn’t manage the brain fog. Think I would be happy to go cold turkey if I could take time out from all responsibilities and work for a few months. I wonder if I’ll be on cymbalta forever ๐Ÿ™


  23. Steve-
    I recommend you speak to a doctor about the differences between addiction and physical dependence.
    I would also ask why medications are increased– (hint- it is because of a thing called tolerance- which while it does exist in addicts chasing a high it exists in most people in any medication- even something like heart or blood pressure medication- which your body can also become dependent on), Anyone who as had to take prednisone can most likely tell you that they were tapered up and down off their dose.
    You seem to have fallen victim of the media’s portrayal of what an “addict” is. I am guessing that you also think that all people on high pain medication are/will become addicts- speak to a a trusted pain management doctor or a scientist and they will tell you otherwise.
    As far as Cymbalta is concerned. While Elli-Lily sure must love you -or employs you ๐Ÿ™‚ – You can’t be more wrong. I have a very serious medical condition which has been labeled by the medical community as one of the most painful conditions that exist in modern medicine. I say this only so that you will understand when I say that I have been on some pretty powerful stuff. I also have never been an addict (in fact my problem w/withdrawal is a bit of the opposite in that I don’t like to take medicine- again research noncompliance as often being as large a problem in the pain management community as addiction). I am however physically dependent on several of the medications that I take. The worst of them being Cymbalta. Compared to the Fentanyl patch, which is touted to be one of the most difficult pain medications to discontinue, Cymbalta’s withdrawal symptoms are actually worse. I will clarify that I am still on both and in my case any times I have gone through withdrawal (for these 2 meds) it has been because of delay in prescription refills or insurance coverage and never longer than a few days. Fentanyl (or really any pain meds) seem to have a stereotypical withdrawal effect – that is one typically associated with what one would consider “drug withdrawal.” There are ways to make it easier to get through, including taking my other breakthrough narcs (which I understand is not an option for addicts-but for them there is sometimes the option of other drugs as well). There are also supplements which have proven helpful- and plenty of information by reputable companies and medical institutions to aid a person through the period of withdrawal or detox. Cymbalta not only as the typical symptoms of sweating, insomnia, stomach issues (of all kinds) -but for me the very worst is the problems in my head/brain. The electric zapping, dizzy/ airhead sensations; impossible to explain sensations that occur even if I am only a couple hours late on my dose. I also experience odd crying, fuzzy lips and vertigo- all escalating to different degrees the longer I am without a dose. With all the sickness, pain, disease, medication/dependence and even depression that I have experienced the past few years the only time I have ever considered or worried about overdose or doing something really stupid was when dealing with these strange and in their own way painful electrical sensations or brain zaps- and that was only to get rid of the sensation when I didn’t have access to the cymbalta I needed.
    So no it’s not a class 2 drug, not so-called addictive and yes it does help people, it has helped me. But should people be forced to stay on a drug forever b/c they can’t physically get off it? Should they be made to suffer b/c nobody wants to admit just what drugs like this (a multi-billion industry) are really doing to our brain chemistry- I don’t have the answers to that- which is why Steve, you should to talk to a professional, because I can tell you this – nobody should be made to listen to ignorant people like you. Somebody that has obviously never taken Cymbalta or experienced the side effects of going through the withdrawal from it. Somebody who obviously has some interesting, but wrong notions regarding addiction.
    So Steve either get some help, some knowledge- or how about you try out some Cymbalta yourself- If it is no big deal, then it shouldn’t be a big deal taking it or coming off of it either!


  24. I can’t believe I found this site! I am so relieved to see I’m not the only one feeling so crappy! I was searching to see if the symptoms I have been having could be due to getting off of Cymbalta……. and sure enough, everyone on this site has confirmed that! Unlike some of the posters who have gone through withdrawals before due to other prescriptions or “recreational” drugs (and I admire each of them for their strength in getting through it!) I have never gone through a withdrawal. Over the past 20 or so years, I have been diagnosed with multiple auto-immune disorders, chronic pain, lupus, fibromyalgia, etc. Not to mention the degenerative discs in my neck and back contributing to the pain. I have seen multiple doctors, had multiple treatments, and prescribed multiple medications. Then , (can we hear the “Aha” chorus??) my doctor prescribed Cymbalta! I was amazed that something finally worked, and I was able to take it without problems, function better, think clearer, and have more patience. Of course I was put on samples for a few months to see how it worked for me and when it came time to pay for the prescription, my insurance wouldn’t cover it. In swoops the doctor to work with the the insurance company to get it covered! Another blessing! (?) Well, fast forward 4-5 years and having the dosage increased to 90 mg a day, and I’m not feeling as good as I did when I first went on it..? :/ So I decided I needed to get back down to a lower dose since I felt better there. Down to 60 mg for several months. No problem. Down to 30 mg for several more months. No problem. Time to quit (and I don’t know if Cymbalta comes in a dose lower than 30 mg). On Friday 9/6/13 I took my last dose. On Saturday 9/7/13, I slept ALL DAY except for maybe 3-4 hours! Sunday I’m feeling better and thought I must have been really exhausted from working so much and not taking the Cymbalta. Then comes Monday….back to work, (and did I mention that I work as an EEG Tech running brain wave studies on patients in hospitals, offices, and homes??) and feeling like my world was dissolving around me and I was to tired to do anything about it! I have been utterly exhausted, constantly dizzy, loss of balance, if I close my eyes I get dizzy, if I look sideways I get dizzy. I feel like my brain is a swelling mass of mush! I was actually thinking of going back on it to see if this would all stop! But after reading everyone’s posts, and seeing the courage, strength, and perseverance, I am going to continue my “detox”. I may try the Benadryl just to see if it helps. I don’t want on this but have to have a clear head when working with patients. I know this was a long rant, but really, who else would understand? God bless each of you in your journey!

  25. The only way I’m getting through this private HELL I’m in coming off of this medication is by coming back to this feed. I went from 30mg for 2 years and asked to come off of it. Instead my doctor doubled it and after 6 months if my med was taken later than usual the side effects of vertigo and brain zaps would start. That opened my eyes wide. If my body can’t deal with not getting this med just hours late, WTH is it doing to my brain??? I haven’t had a dose in 5 days and its hell. Vertigo, tingling in my lips and face, dizzy spells, crying at the drop of a hat and an hour later screaming in rage. I will NEVER use this med or any like it again. I’m basically home bound because there is no way I’m driving a vehicle. Thank God I’m a stay at he Mom with older Children. Hang in there. You’re not alone. God Bless

  26. Well today marks 3 full weeks off of Cymbalta. I had an appointment with my endocrinologist after the first week and told her I had weaned down from 90 mg to 30 mg over the last year and finally stopped. Her response was “good for you”! I told her that I was having a lot of symptoms of withdrawal from stopping the Cymbalta and her suggestion was talking a 20mg or 30mg pill every other day for a while and then stopping. But I didn’t because I already was in the middle of the hell and didn’t want the have to alleviate the symptoms just to have to go through it again. I can say that after week 3, things are getting somewhat better. I’m not completely exhausted all the time, just wind down fast in the evenings. The dizziness is starting to subside. I did try the Benedryl at night and Zyrtec during the day for about 2 weeks. I think it may have helped take the edge off. I read about a lot of people having “brain zaps” but didn’t know what they were talking about until about a week and a half off of Cymbalta and I got them! That was scary! Mostly now in the evenings when I’m tired, I feel like by brain is swelling inside my skull and it sounds like someone is banging glass marbles together inside my head. Clack-Clack, Clack-Clack! Plus my tennitus (which I’ve had for over 10 years) is much worse. On the plus side, I’m not as dizzy and feel much more comfortable driving. I have to admit, I did think about going back on a low-dose every other day! But I’ve made it this far and will continue to persevere! I pray that in time everything goes back to some kind of normal….

    • please don’t give up and go back on…stay strong. you’ve come this far. i’d be lying if i said i didn’t think about going back on also while in the 2nd week…but here i am, over a year off and looking back, glad i kept moving forward.


  27. I salute you in being so brave to address your addiction and then some of the later issues involved with anti-depressants. I haven’t read all of the comments so I don’t know your current status. I’ve been in recovery for a long time and discovered that depression was in my family for generations before I ever erupted into my own. Now I’d like to “Go Clear” as the Leonard Cohen lyric has it. Say prayers for me, they always help.

    • Dont feel ashamed because you take medication for depression. I didnt take it for years and years until it got so bad i had to do something about it. Now that i am on medication i will take handfuls of pills until the day i die if i have to. If someone has cancer, diabetes, or AIDS they would take medicine until they were cured. If they dont get cured then they continue to take medication. I’m not cured and i dont think i ever will be so i dont mind taking medicine.

  28. A friend of a friend of mine, told me that she recently went to see her primary and told her of trying to negotiate her way through the discomfort of the withdrawal. The doc asked how long she had been off of Cymbalta? She responded about two weeks (mostly for financial reasons). The doc replied, Oh you’re fine!
    She still gets a little teary eyed when telling of a sad scene in a movie. (Sadness is not pathological; it’s not depression) and of the lightheaded (zaps), but has decided now to go “clear” as she calls it.
    Another friend was prescribed (it could have been any SSRI) for some serious depression, and it helped her get her footing again. After sometime, she told the doc that she wanted to get off of it now. The doc said you can’t. This person, who is in recovery for many years and who had quit Methadon addiction, said to the doc, “I can’t? Watch me”. She bore the discomfort of the withdrawal symptoms and did not need to resume.
    With the cloud of anecdotal evidence not withstanding, all agree that if depression became a real problem again, if the Black Crow of morbid ideation, roosted in their tree, they would gladly follow the doctor’s prescription and – within reason – take the medicines needed to recover. It is more complex than, especially we who suffer, can imagine. So no one is engaged in the debate of the usefulness of psychotropic medicines, but instead of the indefinite use of such powerful drugs, sometimes, in lieu of exercise, good health and good mental hygiene (prayer, the examine, meditation good friendship and spiritual direction or sponsorship), which current research shows can be just as effective in the long term.

  29. I’m so glad I found this site! I’m on day 4 of stopping cymbalta 60mg cold turkey and I seem to be experiencing heart palpitations consistently all day for the past two days…. I’m wondering if this has been the case for anyone else???
    I’m nervous and don’t understand why else I’m feeling the constant squeeze/flutter in my heart all day!

    • Hi Jane. I am having, what I believe is, withdrawls from Cymbalta. First of all, how are you feeling?
      My symptons seem to be body pain in general, stomach ache, and some vomiting. Do you think this could be due to stopping Cymbalta? I was taking one 60 mg a day for about 5 years. With doctors advice I began taking 1 everyother day for 3 months, then recently I went down to taking 1 time a week. It has been about 10 days since I have take any, and I feel miserable. What do you think? What is your thoughts on my tapering off the way I did to now, 10 days, not taking any. I am considering on taking just one to see if it would make me feel better (which would rule out any question, in my mind, if the pain is due to Cymbalta) Thanks for listening.

  30. I am so glad to have found this site. I was on 120 mg/day for two years and also put on Wellbutrin, long story short I was diagnosed with Serotonin Syndrome and have been weening off Cymbalta. My new doc was soooo disgusted, I was having major High Blood Pressure Crisis, in and out of the ER over a two week period. This has been going on since end of Oct. I am now day 4 without Cymbalta, have been weening off over the last 6-8 weeks. I actually found this site through the FDA, because I was searching to see if what I am currently experiencing is from withdraw. It looks like it is, even though I was down to 30 mg/day I am having some issues that reminded me of what would happen if I forgot a dose.
    This totally does suck, but I have to stick this out I want off. My doctor told me Steve, that it is actually worse than cocaine/heroine addiction withdraws if going cold turkey.
    I wish everyone the best of luck who is experiencing this,

  31. I have been on Cymbalta since 1999 for mild anxiety caused by my divorce, later increased due to the loss of a child, then increased again to manage the pain of my AS. However, because of unexplained blurry vision, weight gain and a general lack of interest in my former passions (art, horses, etc.), I am attributing it to a Cymbalta overload and have made the decision to reduce my dosage to just 20 mg. My Rheumatologist agrees with my plan and I have his support. I will deal with the pain in another fashion. I found one plan for reduction online that did not work for me so I developed another that is working very well. If you are interested in receiving a copy of what I am in the process of doing, please email me privately. Thank you.

    • The only reason I hesitate to post it here is because of possible liability. PLEASE do not ever go ‘cold turkey’ as it can shock your nervous system~! I have not yet read the articles on this site but would imagine this point has been brought up in the past. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Hi kiwi,
      I was wondering how u were doing and if u could email me about the course of treatment u followed to get off cymbalta. Ty ??

  32. Just wondering if anyone has had to come off both Cymbalta and Aropax? I’m trying to reduce both at the same time and so far I’ve gone from 120mg of Cymbalta to 60 mg and 80mg of Aropax to 40 mg. Any help would be great.

  33. First of all, Steve, u don’t have a clue. Remove urself from this thread. Ur doing everyone here who is suffering from something very real, a disservice with ur ignorance. I’m going thru cymbalta hell also. It started when I got tired of still feeling depressed on 60 mg and I too got sick if I missed a dose. After 12 years of being in all types of psychotropic drugs I decided I had had enough and went off cold turkey with my psychiatrist’s approval. He never recommended titrating down and I was not knowledgeable enough at that time. After all, I had quit dozens of meds to start up new ones. I didn’t see what was coming. Even tho I did become sick after missing a dose, I just didn’t grasp what was to come. I thought it would pass quickly. Here I am months later severely ill almost 24/7. Constant nausea, insanely painful headaches, back and neck pain, restless legs, fuzzy weird feeling in my head, etc. I ended up in the ER and begged to b put back on 20 mg just to stabilize myself but it had been too long, it didn’t help. My psych is clueless about discontinuation syndrome so I try to educate myself as much as possible but I’m a mess and I really don’t have a clue. I’m trying a Prozac bridge to get off as the Prozac has a much longer half-life and is easier to withdraw from. I’ll let u know if I have any success. I went on Vistaril two days ago, reluctantly, to combat the round the clock nausea. It does help but makes me drowsy so I sleep all the time when I’m not at work or school. I would b cautious abt using anything that can affect ur CNS. I am not a dr and don’t recommend my course of action to anyone. I just wish to share and say ur not alone. I wish u all well soon. Hugs

    • Just reading where ginger as a tea or medicine has been used for literally thousands of years for the treatment of nausea. It is also used with cancer treatments today that produce nausea and vomiting. Seems to work pretty well.

  34. I’m so glad that I am not the only one having physical withdrawal symptoms, coming off this medication. It has been terrible. My brain feels like I am getting electrical zaps, my eyes feel gittery, I have been severely nauseous, and feel very flu like. I am now doing the counting beads technique, to make the reducing go slower. It is amazing me how much harder this anti depressant is to stop taking. I’ve been on Prozac, Elavil, Celexa, and tried some other meds over the last 20 years, as well, for my fibromyalgia and cronic depression. I did not have these kind of symptoms with the other meds, when the Doctor had me stop taking them. Thank you for sharing your experiences, so I could know I wasn’t alone.

  35. I must say I am slightly terrified after reading all of these comments. I talked to my doc 2 days ago about weening myself off of Cymbalta. Have been on 60 mg for 5 or more years and have awful withdrawal symptoms if I even forget to take one. The plan is to do 30 mg for one month and then to start on Zoloft which worked well in the past. Has anyone switch to another antidepressant and found it helped with the withdrawal symptoms or am I in for pure hell no matter what. Plain scared .

    • Hi,
      I never had a problem going from antidepressant to antidepressant. I only had difficulty when I quit altogether. If ur going to Zoloft hopefully u won’t have a problem. For those tapering, I’m doing a Prozac bridge where u bridge off cymbalta to Prozac which has a long half life and is easier to withdraw from. I have been helped a great deal from going on Vistaril to combat nausea. If nausea is a problem for u, ask ur dr abt it. It’s a godsend for me.

    • I was weened off of Zoloft and then, for financial and personal reasons, came off of the Cymbalta. Take your time and keep following whatever good advice or information that you can get about the process. Good luck and Bon Courage!

  36. Does anyone have advice on how to deal with someone going through Cymbalta withdrawal? I am really trying hard to be supportive of my love as he goes through this torture. I feel so horrible for him. However, I am having a tough time handling his extreme irritability and rage, which I bear the brunt of. I understand that he is going through hell, but so am I!

    • Hi cc and all. I know it has been over month since your postbut my personal experience of getting off cymbalta has been extremely challenging. It has been one weenow and finding i only improve

      • Also, cc, please take care of yourself first. No matter what your friend is going through, no one has the right to be abusive, verbally or Otherwise

  37. I have not had any cymbalto for over a week no more samples at the dr offices and nothing else to take for the depression. I’M FEELING VERY MOODY AND THE FEELING OF WANTING TO CRY IS OVERWELMING. I deal with a lot of stress around me from different things. I have MS, Graves Disease,Glaucoma,High Blood Pressure,a few other things this is naming a few things. Is there any other Anti Depressant that can help? I agree with what everyone saying about the withdrawals they do suck badly.

  38. I really hope they have something else that can work for depression besides cymbalta? Would be really nice if they do

  39. I have been on Cymbalta for 3 years for Fibromyalgia pain and depression. . It no longer helps and why pay so much for no results. I tried cold turkey. I was so sick to my stomach and I had to actually make myself vomit to relieve some of the stomach pain. I was Irritable beyond belief. I did not not want anyone to even speak to me, for fear i would jump down their throats. I told my grandchildren I was sick and they needed to stay away for a few days. other withdrawal symptoms were being light headed , tired and decided the withdrawals were worse than the pain from Fibromylagia. I started taking it again. I made an appt. with my doctor and told her what I did. She said and I quote ” never try to go cold turkey with this drug” . great why didn’t you tell me that before I started taking this drug from hell. She prescribed a lower dose and told me for 2 weeks take a pill , skip a day. then next week take a pill skip 2 days.. day 2 is not too bad, just stomach mildly upset and a bit irritated. I am on the last week of trying as she suggested. Next week i am suppose to start Paxil. I read about that drug. I do not need depression drugs ( well I may after this) I need something for pain. The withdrawals from Paxil appear to be just as bad. I am not going to start Paxil. I will continue the pattern with Cymbalta of off 2 days then will go for 3 days. I know what day 3 will bring and I am not looking forward to it. I am considering a different rheumatologist. I like the one I have , but I believe there may be others who know more about dealing with Fibromyalgia. Good luck to all of you. Thanks for letting me vent.. No one understands here, which doesn’t help the situation.

  40. Clara May Pyles June 26, 2014 at 9:30 am

    I just wanted to share my story as well. I’ve taken cymbalta for both depression & anxiety, and a nerve pain issue. I’ve taken cymbalta at a variety of doses (60, 30, and 20 mg) for 4 to 5 years, with the last 3 being very consistent daily use of the drug. I finally have been diagnosed after many many years with bipolar depression rather than regular depression, and that the symptoms of the bipolar depression were simultaneously masked and made worse by the cymbalta…so in effect, I never had any true relief from my symptoms of depression while taking cymbalta.

    I have known for quite some time that the medication wasn’t really working or helping, so on several occasions over the entirety of my use of cymbalta I’ve tried to stop taking it, only to begin feeling nauseous, dizzy, and unable to function after about 2 days. With the withdrawal symptoms as intense as they were, I have been forced to continue this medication, that was actually making my real disorder worse, for many months and years past what I should have had to. After countless trial and errors, I finally found that the only way for me to discontinue this medication without an enormous amount of suffering was to open up the capsule and take out only 10 of the medication granules at a time, and then take that level of medication for 2 weeks-10 days before titrating down again. So in effect, it has literally taken over a year to be able to stop taking cymbalta. I’m still not quite off of the cymbalta, but am down to 15 granules per capsule per day (using a 20 mg dose), so I hope to be able to be weaned off of this terrible medication in about another month.
    I wouldn’t say it’s ruined my life, but it’s caused me a lot of unnecessary suffering and missing out on life from being unable to do anything but lay in bed from exhaustion and sickness. This process of discontinuation and uncertainty about whether the drug works and how to stop taking it has created many problems in my personal relationships as well as issues with poor job performance.
    I will say it’s been a true nightmare. I hope that at the end of my weaning and titration steps there will not be some sort of long lasting issues, but I’ll have to wait and see.

  41. I also have this feeling when I try to quit cymbalta. Which website is the best one to file a lawsuit?

  42. After having been on cymbalta since 2010 and at 120 mg, I decided to taper off after having a stomach bleed. I’m on several different meds for RSD, tm and fibro and I have to say it’s been easier and harder than I expected. Tapering down to 30 mg took awhile but wasn’t too bad. I’ve gone cold turkey from loratab (post surgery) and I’ve gone cold turkey from other antidepressants. I expected nausea, headache and irritability. I got those minus the irritability, vertigo, more muscle spasms, tingling lips, my heart has been fluttery, skin feeling like it’s stretched too tight and I’m on day 10. Oh, and I feel like my batteries have either been super juiced up or drained. I’ve had RSD flares that have could be a cake walk compared to this. I won’t say this drug is evil because it helped, but the withdrawal symptoms are, and if my doc would have educated me about them, I’m not sure I would have started.

  43. I ran out of Cymbalta 4 days ago. I started the brain zaps and disorientation within 48 hrs.

    The FDA has issued a report on Cymbalta Discontinuation Syndrome.…/UCM172866.pdf

  44. I just wanted to leave a note of encouragement to those of you coming off Cymbalta. It can be done. My story: While on 60mg Cymbalta I became pregnant, unexpectedly, with my first child. Had my husband and I been trying to get pregnant I would have stopped Cymbalta before hand. My doctor switched my dosage to 30mg and suggested I take that amount for a month and then take it every other day. So that is what I did. Going from 60mg to 30mg was fine, not sure if I had any withdrawal symptoms as I had pretty bad pre-emesis (all day morning sickness). When my pre-emesis went away I decided to take 30mg every other day. This did not work for me, the day I took Cymbalta I actually felt worse then the day I didn’t take it. After discussing with my midwife what I was going through she informed me that new research had just come out stating that pregnant women should get off Cymbalta BEFORE their third trimester. I was told I only needed to get off it if I wished to breastfeed. Hearing this new information, I decided that day to go cold-turkey. With the support of my work, husband and family after two weeks of brain-shivers, night sweats, nightmares, mood swings, sore muscles I was a new women! During my 2 weeks of withdrawal my family motivated me to get lots of fresh air and go for lots of walks, eat healthy foods, drink lots of water and talk about how I was feeling. Easier said than done right? But honestly, the walks and fresh air were so beneficial.

    In the moment I thought it was impossible to get over the withdrawal and I let fear take over. Keep your heads up, I felt great after getting off it, my pregnancy went well, baby was healthy and I finally had clarity. My bank account appreciated it as well

    • Thanks for your encouragement. I’m on day 7 of cold turkey withdrawal from Cymbalta. The brain zaps are by far the worst. I came off due to liver problems and have been doing my best to detox with omega 3, lots of water, and leafy greens. I’m hoping that I’m now at the height of my symptoms and they will gradually lessen. Wish me luck!!

  45. I really appreciate being able to read the stories you’ve all shared. it is helpful to hear what has and hasn’t worked for you and to know I’m not alone.
    I’ve taken 6 different depressants over the years looking for the right drug to address depression and chronic nerve pain, and am quite falimiar with the difficulties of starting and stopping these meds. That didn’t appropriately prepare me for Cymbalta. I was only on a full 60mg dose of Cymbalta for 5 weeks before I decided to ramp down as it hadn’t addressed my nerve pain, made me lose weight, and it increased my anxiety. After dropping to 30mg for 5 days, followed by every alternate day for 5 days I was done with it. That’s when the fun really began!
    Hot flashes, migraine headaches, ringing in my ears, insomnia, scatterbrained, irritability, lots of yawning, dizziness, swelling in my feet, etc…

    But here is a rather unique one… About three days after I stopped Cymbalta— I woke up in the middle of the night able to hear my eyeballs moving side-to-side!! This is rather mild, but it is a real thing I kid you not. My doctor told me that if he didn’t know me, he’d think I was crazy (thanks doc!). His other patients apparently have any of these problems.

    I have only been off of Cymbalta for a week… The withdrawal side effects haven’t really dissipated and my doctor wants my to try Zanax.
    Right now I’m extremely hesitant to try another drug… Especially one that I could find myself in a similar situation discontinuing down the road. Uuugh! I’ve missed a week of work (I fortunately have saved up paid time off). I want to take something that will help, but won’t only complicate my situation! Have any of you had difficulty with Xanax? I only ask, because perhaps we who have difficulty with Cymbalty might have at least “more similar” chemistry than the larger population who doesn’t have a problem with Cymbalta.

  46. I check in from time to time. I went off Cymbalta in Sept of 2007 cold turkey, it was the only way I could go off this medication for me and it worked for me, but I went through a lot and I wanted share what I went through, I hope I can help someone know there is an end to withdrawals… Good luck to you all… hang in there, it does get better…

    Here are possible withdrawal symptoms you may run into… these do go away, I posted how long these symptoms lasted for me…

    Emotional Symptoms:
    Agitation, ~ 6 weeks
    Crying Spells, ~ 6 weeks
    Irritability, ~ 7 weeks
    Anxiety, (symptoms of an anxiety attack, heart attach symptoms) ~ 4 weeks
    Aggression, (this showed up later for me, around week 4)
    Thoughts of suicide (this was going on while I was on SNRI antidepressant, I was on 2 different ones in a 3 year span) and this cont. during the first 4 weeks off Cymbalta
    Impulsive Behavior- Depersonalization~ โ€œsomeโ€ impulsive behavior
    Memory Problems, ~ 5 weeks (I may still have this, I canโ€™t remember)
    Confusion, ~ 3 weeks
    Lowered Mood, ~ 7 weeks
    Depression ~ 8 week (on and off for a while after 8 weeks)
    Flu-like Symptoms:
    Fatigue, ~ 7 weeks
    Headache, ~ 4 weeks
    Muscle aches, ~ 3 weeks
    Sweating ~ on Antidepressant Medication (itโ€™s a side effect, lovely isnโ€™t it)
    Nausea and vomiting, ~(nausea only)This showed up in week 3 only
    Abdominal pain or Cramping,
    Loss of or Gain in Appetite,
    Diarrhea ~ 2 weeks (off and on)
    Sleep Disturbance:
    Insomnia, ~ 4 weeks ( you will be sleep deprived)
    Nightmares, ~ 2 weeks
    Vivid Dreams ~ 2 weeks
    Balance: (a reminder- these symptoms will trigger nausea and vomiting, if you have problems with motion sickness)
    Dizziness, ~ 2 to 3 weeks
    Lightheadedness, ~ 2 to 3 weeks
    Vertigo, ~ 2 to 3 weeks
    Clumsiness ~ 3 weeks
    Sensory Disturbances:
    Blurred Vision, ~ 3 weeks
    Tingling Sensation, ~ 5 weeks
    Electric Shock Sensations (ZAPS) ~ 6 to 7 weeks, to date (2014 )I periodically still have these,
    Itching Sensations
    Tremors, ~ showed up in week 2 only & I was driving my vehicle at the time, scary isnโ€™t even the word for it.
    Muscle twitches and jerks,
    Muscle Stiffness,
    Loss of Coordination,
    Inability to sit still~ 2 to 3 weeks

  47. I’ve had an unplanned disruption in my Cymbalta due to a prescription mix up and it is horrible. This is the third time I’ve had an issue refilling my prescription and every time I swear never again. Coming off this drug is hell. I’m dizzy, have a buzzing in my ears, stomach cramps, hot flashes and general malaise. I’m desperately searching my cupboards and the Internet (it is the weekend) for anything that will help me survive until Monday. My family thinks I am crazy. I’ve never had an issue with a medication or substance in my life. This is hell.

  48. I forgot to mention my worst symptom. I am having a panic attack and feel like I can’t breathe. If I do manage to fall asleep I am having horrible disgusting nightmares the like of which I’ve never had before in my life. The dreams are almost like what I imagine drug hallucinations are like.

    • I also had horrible nightmares. After about a week they stopped. I found that benadryl helped. Also , vitamin supplements. U are not alone,

  49. this scares me so bad. the dr put my 17 yr old on cymbalta for EDS pain. he’s been on 20mg for 5 weeks, he got the side effects of a sharp headache, mood swings, stiffness, tiredness, and he’s missing every day of school, plus it only helped the pain the first week. after reading all the horrible withdrawl symptoms, i thought it better to get him off NOW instead of later. so we went to the dr office today and he said since he was on such a low dose he could probably just quit it without cutting down first. has anyone been on this low of a dose for a short period and stopped it without any problem? it’s scaring me to death to be truthful.

  50. So glad to find this forum. I have used Paxil, Wellbutrin some of the older antidepressants too and never had any real issues discontinuing. Since I now have fibromyalgia on top of longstanding dysthymia, I decided to try Cymbalta, altho I was hesitant reading about the side effects. Began about 2 yrs. ago. Thought it was fabulous for the fibro. I lost my insurance beginning this year, and because i had foresight about coverage problems began taking my 30 mg every other day. l live in Boston and this winter weather wise has been Hell. Alone and shoveling snow daily for 2 hours. At first I thought I was having a major fibro flare. Nausea 24 hrs a day. Throwing up with nothing in my stomach. I worked as a clinical microbiologist and the vomit was my insides leeching out. Believe me I know what I am talking about. If I had been employed and undergoing this hell I would have lost my job. I have been off about 3 weeks. I can now eat fairly well but it still feels like I have an industrial size elastic around my mid section. I am weepy at times and the fatigue is terrible. I have also been tapering clonazepam which I had been taking since separation and divorce 4 years ago. I should be off that in about a month. My MD called today to say the duloxitine has been approved by my MASS health but definitely not going back. I just wish this would resolve. For me it is easier dealing with this alone, but during all the storms having some help would have been nice. We are all soldiers in this battle and we will achieve victory over malicious pharma companies and MD’s.

  51. Carol, I am so glad you choose to stop him using this poison. Make sure he is drinking lots of water. If he is not too nauseous he will need to exercise moderately. Put him in a hatha yoga class. Try the benadryl or other OTC’s others on this forum mentioned. In my opinion 17 is too young to even contemplate using this horrid stuff. IMHO his MD is irresponsible for prescribing it to him and yes 20mg is still enough to cause trouble when abruptly stopping. I recommend opening the capsules, removing 10 beads daily for 5 days, then slowly increase the amount of beads you remove and start this ASAP. Good luck.

    • thanks brenda! i do have him drinking alot of water, got him on the magnesium and calcium that i read helps already, and he’s been on melatonin for yrs which is said to help. he cannot exercise at all due to the EDS, i should have done research on it when the dr prescribed it BEFORE giving it to him but i didn’t, i figured he should know what he’s talking about! he’s been off it one day and the only thing so far is dream after dream after dream last night, he said they weren’t really nightmares but that some were sad. i’m so glad i decided to pull the plug on this and told him to never ever ever let a dr put him on antidepressants again for his pain! it’s NOT worth it! i wish you the best of luck getting off this horrible stuff! i’m really glad this forum popped up too during my searches.

  52. Diana Branson April 9, 2015 at 4:18 pm

    I want off this stuff. I tried it before, I am terrified. But now I was placed on a Generic form by VA, and I feel sick, brain zaps. dizzy, nightmares etc! Like when I tried to stop, but just not as bad! Scared!

  53. I have been off Cymbalta for a month. My rhumatologist faxed me 2 pages for the weening
    off of this drug.I was having blackouts, passing out with no precursors(dizzy vertigo etc) altho I have had both those symptoms for the 3 and half years taking this drug.Infact all of the symptoms described on this site I have suffered through.I was so sick and have seen so many Dr.s and not 1 of these professionals suggested the Cymbalta they all knew I was taking. I was blacking out on a regular basis, concussions and ERs. were becoming a regular thing. Cardiologist thought it was a blockage,tests proved it was not. Neurologist
    thought it was seizures. was and they have stopped since withdrawal from this drug.
    I feel like I am becoming myself again but it is a slow process. Truly it was as if I were on a fast tract to death.Good luck and believe it is better feeling the pain and being alive…
    which became

  54. I commend you for your bravery. I stopped 6 days ago. But i halso stopped taking Bupropion at the same time. And just taking half of my 10 mg of My ambien. I could tell you im feeli g horrible. Im gonna try the benadryl. I have the brain shocks, it feels like someone put a firecracker in my head. I really dont even know how i got to this point. I just want to be me again, you go to these Drs And all it takes is foryou to tell them you ceel sad and right away they prescribed these pills that turn u in an addjct. I didnt tell my Dr i was gonna stop cold turkey, but in the name of Jesus im gonna continue and hope i never have to rely on pills to stop an emotion that is natufal in human being. We suppose to be sad once in a while and hurt in some situations. I just want to be me av6

  55. Is this site still active? I have been searching for several months for someone who had (or is still having) an experience similar to mine. The number of lives that this drug has affected is simply staggering, and though I would never wish it on my worst enemy, I’m somehow relieved to know that I am not alone.
    While I could talk for hours about ALL the ways this drug has completely devastated my life, there is one particular side-effect which has caused more damage and hardship than all the others combined. I’m searching for anyone else who also dealt with this disastrous consequence from taking Cymbalta. I will try to be brief in explaining my situation, because time is of the essence.
    Like many others, I experienced a myriad of adverse side-effects from Cymbalta, and I was only on it for a little over two months. I’m not going to go into details about all of the symptoms I suffered from, but complication that cost me my career was the effect (total disruption) the drug had on my sleep-wake cycle. I’ve been off the medication for almost 4 months, and I am STILL experiencing abnormal sleep patterns, although the severity has decreased significantly. The problems started almost 4 weeks after starting the medicine: what began as typical, periodic insomnia, escalated quickly into an absolutely devastating –and there were tragic consequences with my work.

    For the first few weeks of treatment, I did not have any issues at all, and my pain was more controlled than it had EVER been. After nearly 4 weeks of being on the drug, I began having all sorts of adverse symptoms–most of which have been described by other patients at one time or another. Then the sleep problems began. At first, it was nothing more than a nuisance: it started as periodic insomnia, but it escalated quickly–and there were tragic consequences with my work.

    When the first serious incident occurred, I was dog-sitting for a client who lived a few streets down from the veterinary hospital where I was employed (for 11+ years). I woke up one morning (a Tuesday), and did not sleep again for almost 96 hours, 4 DAYS. On the second or third night, I did experience a brief episode of an almost “catatonic” sleep that lasted less than an hour, but otherwise I remained wide awake. Until the fourth day (a Friday). Oddly and contrary to what most other patients have described, I never felt overly TIRED or exhausted. And I don’t SPECIFICALLY recall falling asleep that Friday evening. There was no intentional act of going to bed or attempt to fall asleep: it was as if my body simply “turned off”.

    The following morning, I woke to the sound of my employer pounding on the front door as hard as she could. There were 2 phone alarms going off, and 15 to 20 missed calls and texts; the ringer was at maximum volume and the phone was directly next to my head. The incessant barking and howling of 2 sixty-pound dogs hadn’t interrupted my sleep, either.

    That little incident earned me a written warning and 3-day suspension, as it was considered a no-call/no-show (usually an ‘immediate termination’ offense). Despite it being the first time such a thing had ever happened in my 11+ years of working there, I was a supervisor: I had violated a zero-tolerance policy and the implications of doing NOTHING (or even being lenient with me) would’ve caused difficulties for my employer. They were aware that I’d been having other problems with the Cymbalta, so they used that to justify giving me another chance–a “get out of jail free card”, as they put it.

    Exactly one month later, it happened again. Almost identical circumstances, except I was home in my apartment this time, and the on-site courtesy police officer was the one pounding on my front door. My employer had called the leasing office of the property because, once again, they could not reach me despite repeated calls and texts. Several minutes passed before I was coherent enough realize what was happening, but I was able to confirm with the officer that I was alive and safe. The moment he left, I contacted my employer.

    I knew what was going to happen before I even picked up my phone, and let me tell you: losing that job would’ve been completely devastating NO MATTER WHAT. But experiencing that trauma…at the PEAK of ALL the physical and emotional suffering (and INSTABILITY) caused by the Cymbalta…it nearly killed me. Literally.

    There are countless instances of Cymbalta causing insomnia, but has anyone else experienced this incapacitating, comatose-like sleep after days of insomnia? It wasn’t the typical “deep sleep” you would expect after days of not sleeping at all. I didn’t “crash” or succumb to exhaustion. My body and brain simply stopped responding to outside stimuli, but not because of a willful effort on my part. I can barely even explain it, and I’m searching for someone else who might’ve gone through this…maybe they can more eloquently describe this phenomenon.

    Since losing my job, I have also lost my apartment, drained my retirement and I had to move out of the city which I grew up in…the only home I’d ever known. I’ve been fighting with the unemployment office for over three months because DESPITE being terminated for GOOD REASON (I missed work and didn’t even CALL!!), I am NOT “guilty of misconduct” and I will continue fighting all the way to the top if need be.

    I am desperately searching for another person who has had similar problems with their sleep-wake cycle while taking Cymbalta. I’ve found countless others who have described insomnia, which I also experienced, but does anyone out there recognize the other symptoms which I have described? I do not know how to PROVE this experience, but it DID happen and it WAS because of the CYMBALTA. If I hadn’t lived it, I probably wouldn’t believe it either. And now I have to convince a judge that this ‘catatonic’ sleep was caused by the Cymbalta, and it is why the reason I was unable to contact my employer. Please, if anyone else had this type of problem with this drug, can you share your experience? How do I “prove” this happened to me??

    • Sorry I didn’t finish editing my post before submitting it, so it has some redundant or repetitive paragraphs! My mistake….but I think my general point comes across either way. ๐Ÿ™‚

  56. I have decided to come off after 2 years. Prescribed for aperipheral neuropathy in the pelvis & back. If I missed or was late taking I had side effects. Dr tried to ween me off 2 years ado but severe pain came back. I hate what this med does to me even though it did help the merve pain. I’m trying again with terrible side effects. I am down to splitting 30mg. I HATe this!! Side effects are horrendous! Praying I get better!!!

  57. I quit cold turkey, brain zaps hit me and for days pissed me off. I went to GNC and grabbed a bottle of GABA, the yellow and blue GNC brand. Took it for over a week. Problem solved. People yelling at me you cant quit cold turkey, then why the hell is it in time released capsules? I quit because on the starter dose I was fine, the next dose up I wanted to jump off a friggen bus. It made every little thing 100 times as bad as it was. I was a wreck. F that. SSRI’s should come in smaller incremental doses. Your playing with peoples brains using a wrecking ball instead of a little BB.

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