October 2, 2017

Because of the length of time I have been having withdrawals with so many symptoms I did more research into anti depressants.  Celexa is a short acting anti depressant that causes withdrawals only after missing one dose.  I saw my doctor on Friday and I have started Prozac  which is a long-acting anti depressant.  It takes one month before withdrawals can occur.  It will therefore be easier to come off the Prozac than the Celexa.  She has me on 10mg. Prozac with the 10 mg. Celexa for a week, then Prozac 10mg. and 5 mg. Celexa until I am stable, then begin to taper off the Prozac as slowly as needed.

One symptom which has started happening which I thought was withdrawals turns out not to be.  I looked back in my diaries of December 2006 ( since my memory is toast), and discovered I was diagnosed with Temoral Arteritis ( Inflammation of the blood vessels of the brain from the heart leading to the eyes).  If left untreated a person can go blind.

I informed my doctor and she examined me and put me on Prednisone 50mg. for three weeks before tapering off of that.  It is suspected that the withdrawals have caused the Temporal arteritis to recur.  My headache in the temple region has gone after three days of treatment.  It becomes painful for a short time if I accidentally touch my temple region.

I am also tapering off the Hydromorphone .  It was cut in half last week.  I was due to have hip replacement surgery on 23 October 2017, but because I am now on Prednisone ( which compromises your immune system), my surgery was postponed until 7 December, 2017.   That’s ok with me.  I want to feel better before surgery than I do now.

I see my doctor tomorrow morning to discuss the other symptoms I am still having:

Head:  Cold/Hot burning sensations, dizziness, tension headaches

Eyes:  Sore burning, watery, blurred vision, sensitive to light, dry

Ears:  Ringing, burning, sensitive to sound, pain around outside of ear on bone.

Emotional/Mental:  Mood swings, irritability/anger, cognitive difficulties,

Anxiety, Insomnia, Chorea Movements, back pain, muscle pain, sinus pain, memory problems, hot and cold sweats.

Treatments:  Hot or cold packs on my head and neck; Deep breathing relaxation, acupressure self-administered.  http://www.acupressure.org   has some good exercises I have tried which releases the tension in my neck and around my ear.  Distraction using computer games, preparing records for family search indexers; prayer;  and hugs from hubby. 🙂

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Over one month after taper

It has been over one month since my last taper and I’m NOT feeling any relief!  Some days it is even worse than week two of the taper.  Tonight is especially wicked.  The cold burning sensation on my skin covering my entire body is almost unbearable.  Chorea movements are still bad as is insomnia, anxiety, mood swings, pseudo emotions.  I felt like my husband was deliberately being mean to me by saying things to hurt me when it wasn’t really true.  I was brought to tears several times today thinking he hated me.  I have been fixing meals for the first time in a number of years and am VERY sensitive to any remarks contrary to my method of cooking or other choices.  It has not been a pleasant experience.  These feelings come in waves throughout the day.  I can feel them coming sometimes.  My thinking becomes very warped, muddled, confused etc.

 

I miss being me!

Another couple of bad days. :(

It has been very difficult today coping with the variety of withdrawal symptoms, especially when they hit all at once.  Today, has been one of the worst I’ve had in a long while.   The smoke in the area is already affecting my sinuses and eyes.  The withdrawals affect them as well, making them sore, watery, sensitive to light.  On top of that I had the intense burning sensation ( Parathesia) on every part of my body and inside my mouth, anxiety surges, very sensitive to sound, ringing  in the ears, muscle and joint pain, many episodes of involuntary muscle movements ( Chorea type Dyskensia).  If that wasn’t enough my emotions went haywire.. anger, depression, crying spell, confusion, memory problems.   I was at the end of my rope trying to think of what I could do for myself to lessen the suffering I was going through and said a prayer.  It wasn’t too long after that Doral asked me what it would do if I put  a cold compact on my head.  At first I poo pooed the suggestion thinking it would cause a larger headache, but then remembered putting cold compress on my eyes in the past which helped take pain away.  I therefore put a cold gel pack over my eyes and almost immediately the Parathesia abated and the pain in my sinuses and eyes lessened.   I am so thankful to Heavenly Father for answering my prayer.

Now, for the good news… I received the phone call for my hip replacement pre surgical screening for my right hip.  I have been looking forward to having my total mobility back, so this is a welcome appointment.  I don’t know yet when my surgery will be.  I had my left hip replaced in January of this year and haven’t fully recovered from that surgery.  It takes a long time for the muscles to recover; up to one year.   I found from last surgery, that the withdrawals abated with all the pain medications.

 

Severe Withdrawal

September 1, 2017

It is the middle of the night and I am awake because I am experiencing once again severe withdrawals.  It is going on three weeks since I tapered down to 10 mg. Celexa.  I was hoping the withdrawals would ease off by now, but such is not the case for me.  I am having severe paresthesia ( burning sensations all over my body), severe anxiety, severe Chorea movements, ringing in the ears, dizziness, hot sweats, muscle weakness and pain, insomnia, flu-like sensations, difficulty breathing, mood swings.

I recently purchased new dentures, but I cannot wear them without my gums hurting and in fact my whole mouth has been feeling very sensitive and burning sensations have started happening in my mouth and tongue.  I have rinsed my mouth out, used anesthetic liquid, and kept my mouth moist to no avail.

I have also been experiencing swollen legs and feet which I attribute to the withdrawals.  I now take Naproxen for pain which does help.

I am keeping busy with my family history work and right now we are visiting with my mother and brother and sisters which has been a good thing.

About the mood swings… the mood I hate the most is when I feel angry followed by the feeling I am going to cry….. back to angry/irritable.  I have had some low moods, but they do not last long.  Thankfully, I am mostly in a happy mood until the bad withdrawals hit.

One Pill Left

Today, another taper leaves me with only one 10mg. pill left.  I used to take four of those little white devils.  I had a difficult time last week before this taper and I was considering stopping the tapers for awhile, but since I was taking 1 1/2 pills, and we are visiting family in Lethbridge the end of the month, taking only one pill seemed like a reasonable thing to do, then I will hold off tapering for awhile, until I stabalize a bit better.  I hope I made the right decision.

The worst symptoms I have to endure/ work through are anxiety, burning sensations throughout my body, but especially in my head.  Horrible headaches, difficulty breathing, Chorea movements, insomnia, sweating/chills, cognitive/memory problems, weight loss difficulty due to the stress of all these symptoms.

So, how do I cope.  I have recently become a service missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints, working in the Records Collection Department  for Family Search.  Doing this work has given me a purpose that has enriched my life more than I ever imagined possible.  I work at home on my computer at my own hours which gives me the freedom to travel and bring my computer with me and still carry on with the work.  When I know I am providing the records for people to find their ancestors , this is special to me.  Even though I may not feel well as I am doing the work, the symptoms are the last thing on my mind and don’t seem as daunting.  I am well suited for this type of work as well making it fun to do!  I even purchased a larger second screen for me to work on!

My goal is to be off the Celexa well before Christmas.

 

 

 

 

Another Taper

Today I taper down to 15mg. of Celexa from 20 mg.  I originally was on 40mg. so I feel I a doing well.  My doctor prescribed Naproxen for the increased pain in my muscles and joints I a experiencing with the withdrawals.  Because I have severe osteoarthritis in many joints, plus fibromyalgia I felt it would be alright to try if the Naproxen helps.

I have been experiencing withdrawals for six years all together.  I discontinued Trazodone, Clonazapam, Lamotrigine and Seroquel since March of 2011.  I forget what it feels like not to have them.

My personality is coming out more and more as the amount of drugs in my system decreases.  I am more spontaneous, laugh , feel joy.  I feel my emotions greater which has been wonderful!  The drugs do mask a lot of emotions, not just depression.  They also mask the good feelings.  In the end it will be worth the suffering I am going through to experience life as it really is meant to be.

Night time chills

I went through the most horrendous coldest/chills all night last night due to withdrawals.  Although we had a fan on in front of an open window, it was not cold inside the house.  When I felt my legs, they were warm on the outside, but inside I was freezing!  I felt so cold I was in pain.  I covered up with a warm sweater, a quilt and another blanket and I was still cold.  I usually sleep in a recliner due to back and hip problems, but I couldn’t stand being in the living room with the cold, so I tried getting into bed with my husband under the covers.  BIG MISTAKE!  I thought my hip would hurt, but it wasn’t just that, my neck, back, legs, shoulders and arms hurt so bad I had to get out of bed and face the cold. The withdrawals cause muscle/joint pain to increase and boy did they ever!

By then it was 6 a.m. and  I hadn’t slept yet-I was cold, tired and in pain.  Not a good night.  Doral shut all the windows, and fixed me a hot drink.  I covered up again in my blankets and tried to sleep, but was unable to sleep longer than two hours.  My bladder is affected by the withdrawals too, so I had to visit the bathroom every hour, sometimes every half hour.  Tonight we are not putting the fan in the window, but I’m still wearing a sweater.  I took lots of pain medication at 10 p.m. so hopefully after all the chorea movements are over I can get to sleep.