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.

July 2017- Tapering Continues

I tapered to 20mg. of Celexa on July 6 and the withdrawals continue without much change.  I have episodes where I have difficulty with my breathing; sometimes labored breathing and other times fast breathing, probably due to a panic attack.  Those don’t last long, but the labored breathing does.  I still have Chorea movements made worse with stress, loud noises,  sensory changes of any kind.

I tried driving today again and I won’t do that again.  Cars moving beside me and even houses going past me made me feel dizzy, disoriented and scared that I was not going to make it down the road in a straight line.  After we got into Trail I let Doral drive to the other places we were going to.  I want so badly to be normal again and do things I used to do.  But I must have patience with the process of healing and endure the withdrawals a bit longer and have faith that everything will turn out well in the end.

I still have insomnia, chorea movements, sweating/chills, dizziness, headaches, burning sensations in various parts of my body, but always in my head, blurred vision, sensitive to light and sound, flu-like symptoms such as achy joints and muscles, low-grade fever, ringing in the ears.  My brain seems to be slow to respond to changes.  Like from doing one thing after another quickly.  If I am given a decision to make while I am thinking of another thing, I can’t make the transition, but become confused and overwhelmed.  I find this very distressing, and frustrating.  I have difficulty with concentration, memory, mood changes.

Another two months and I will be finished with the drug, but not the withdrawals as it will still take time to get all the medication out of the fat cells.  I am trying to lose weight, and I am finding it difficult .  I am very impulsive sometimes and eat something I shouldn’t before I stop and think what I a doing.   I try not to be hard on myself and try again the next day to do better.

I have been exercising still for my hip replacement, but forget to do it as much as I should.  I have become busy with my cosmetic business and serving a service mission with Family Search through The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saint.  Both of these things are helping me endure the withdrawals.

Fast Taper Necessary

Today I taper the Celexa down to 20mg.  Because of the side effects I’m experiencing from the Celexa and the fact that I’ve been on it for over 10 years my doctor and myself believe it is in my best interest to taper off the Celexa faster than I have been doing in the past.  I am decreasing the medication by 5 mg. every two weeks instead of by 10% every four weeks.  I have not noticed a difference in the intensity of withdrawal from doing it fast or slow.

I am very sensitive to withdrawal, so my doctor is using Dilaudid to help me come off the Celexa.  Dilaudid or Hydromorphine has a seditive effect on the nervous system which helps a little.  I am only taking a small amount. : .5mg. every four hours and 1 mg. twice a day for more severe withdrawal times which is usually in the evening.

Symptoms I am still experiencing:  insomnia, burning sensations in the head, arms, legs and torso, chest, difficulty breathing, anxiety, choreatic movements, chills, sweats, achy joints and muscles, sensitive hearing and sensitivity to light, mood swings, irritability. dizziness, skin rashes, sore eyes, blurred vision, forgetfulness, difficulty concentrating.

I will be totally off the Celexa by the end of August.

Starting Over

Because there was a mistake made in filling out my medication for three weeks I was forced to go back to 40mg. of Celexa.  The consequences of this has been horrific to my Central Nervous System.  I was taking 50mg. Celexa instead of 30mg. so I had to go quickly down to 40mg.   For a month I experienced terrible withdrawals such as: sweating and chills, mostly chills and feeling cold all the time, ringing in the ears, sensitive to light and sound, choreatic movements which resemble grand mal seizures, cognitive difficulties, memory problems, forgetfulness, skin rashes, over active bladder. insomnia

 

As time went on, because the symptoms have not gotten less, it was determined by my doctor and myself, that I need to come off the Celexa faster than normal.  The Celexa is hurting my Central Nervous System.  Because I am on Dilaudid for hip pain and it has a seditive effect, I am using an increased dosage at night when symptoms are at the worst and a lesser amount during the day to lessen the intensity of the withdrawals.  I will be decreasing the dosage every two weeks instead of once a month.

 

It still is not easy and I take one day at a time.  I sleep when I can even if it is during the day.

A Major Setback

On January 26th, 2017 , I had major surgery receiving a total hip replacement of my left hip.  At that time I was on 30mg of Celexa.  I was still experiencing withdrawals, but after surgery and the addition of hydromorphone for pain control, the withdrawals stopped.  What a blessing i t was!  They had difficulty controlling the pain, but after coming home an adequate  dosage was found.

Now for the bad news.  The doctor prescribed  the wrong dosage of Celexa so I was left with 40mg tablets and 10 mg tablets.  We were to cut the 40’s in half and take half and one 10 to. equal the 30mg.  This was February 24th.  Sometime between then and the end of March, my husband forgot to cut the tablet in half first and was giving me 50mg of Celexa.

I began filling out my meds the second week of March., so I was giving myself 30mg.  Sometimes my husband would fill them , still at 50mg.  I began having symptoms of withdrawal again and couldn’t figure out why, until the mistake was discovered about two weeks ago.  Since then my doctor put my dosage back down to 40mg .

I now am at square one in tapering the Celexa and experiencing all of the classic withdrawal symptoms.  Severe anxiety accompanied with choreatic movements, burning sensation in my head, legs and arms, blurred vision, ringing in the ears., insomnia, painful muscles and joints.  , sensitive hearing.

 

Right now I am staying at 40mg. of Celexa and 20mg  hydromorphone until I become more stable.    I am scheduled to have my right hip replaced in July, so I need to stay stable.  I won’t be tapering again until after that surgery.

 

 

 

 

New Development

Because I believed the Lyrica and Celexa were causing an interaction I tapered again on my Celexa.  I am now down to 30mg. but will remain there for at least six months until my hip surgeries are complete and I am healed from them.  That could be a year from now.

I continue to struggle with insomnia, sweats and chills, ringing in the ears, sensitive to light and sound, painful burning headaches, muscle and joint pain, intrusive thoughts, anxiety.

Because this has been going on for so long I became discouraged and in need of some relief of some kind.  The supplements I have tried did not seem to be helping much anymore and because of lack of sleep my quality of life was down.  Not able to be mobile makes it even harder to cope, but getting out of the house to the show once in a while or to church or even just going to Walmart for a change of scenery helps.

I felt inspired to try acupuncture as I heard it could help relieve withdrawal for some people.  Last week was my first appointment and the night after I slept 8 hours in total minus bathroom trips of course, but I went right back to sleep.  The treatments are for anxiety, pain and insomnia.  I noticed an improvement immediately the day of treatment and some of the next day.  Of course the effects do not last long-term at first and repeat appointments were set up.  My second appointment, the same thing occurred, this time I was able to sleep 9 hours.  My anxiety is down and the headaches have improved.  Again, I have another appointment on Thursday.  Over time the symptoms will gradually decrease.  Healing seems to be that way doesn’t it?

What I am learning from this is listen to your heart and try new things, have patience in the process and trust in the Lord that everything will be o.k. in the end.