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Author Topic: Going off of Cymbalta and onto Wellbutrin  (Read 4062 times)

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Offline brewster71

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Going off of Cymbalta and onto Wellbutrin
« on: January 28, 2010, 10:28:45 PM »
Not sure if this is the right place to post, but here goes.

Hi all:I'm a 38 year old male with ADHD, OCD, and strong anxiety. This has been going on since I was 18 and had a few derealization episodes that scared the **** out of me. I've been on Cymbalta 30 mg, Adderall, and .5-1mg of Xanax for about 3 or 4 years. About a week ago, I changed that regimen to Wellbutrin XL (150 mg), 20 mg Cymbalta, and Ambien to sleep (instead of Xanax). I will only be taking the Cymbalta for another week.

 The first few days have been really stressful (prob due to decreased Cymbalta and no Xanax), and I don't know if its in my head (I can be a bit resistant to change) but I wanted to post somewhere to talk about it with people who'd understand. I'm extremely stressed so far, and I'm a bit terrified of the the Cymbalta withdrawal that I'm in store for. In the past, if I've forgetten to take it I get horrible brain zaps and get very very irritable and I snap at people. If something isn't working, I'll get really pissed off and lose my temper almost immediately.

I wake up really early now, and have a terrible time getting to sleep. I finally gave up last night and took a Unisom, .5 mg Xanax, and an Ambien, and I STILL couldn't sleep. Argh. Anyway, sorry to *****. I'm just having a **** of a time, and I need some consolation.

Other misc stuff I'm feeling:

-terror
-clenching of muscles, especially thighs
-uncertainty
-a vague sense of unreality
-i dont want to move, because I feel like I'll slip away into insanity
-hypervigilance
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Offline WiSp

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Re: Going off of Cymbalta and onto Wellbutrin
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2010, 12:37:09 AM »
Adderall is surely for your ADHD and wellbutrin can help for this too. However...adderall is a stimulant, so it sounds a bad thing for your anxiety. And wellbutrin can also boost anxiety as a side effect. Wellbutrin is also used for smoke cessation. My father was on it for this, and he usually sleep everywhere, at anytime. But on it he was not able to sleep. And sleeping is one of your problems right now.

I don't want to demoralize you, I just don't want you to get worse (in my opinion). You don't have a bad doctor. I just think the priority has been too much on your ADHD and now your worse problem seems to be anxiety and sleep. I'm not a doctor. So take my words in consequence. But I think that if you are on meds for ADHD, meds that can cause anxiety, you must also be on meds that can control this anxiety (except if it's not a problem). Or a combo, something that control everything. I don't know how much you get involved in decisions, but I think it's good to know what we are doing especially for several meds used at the same time. xanax was good for anxiety (and sleep, even if it was not working for you) but you stop it unfortunately. Cymbalta was maybe useless against anxiety for you too, or adding difficulty to sleep.

For the withdrawal, done slowly is the best way to avoid problems. For the stuff you feel, there's a lot of anxiety in most of them and for the clenching I don't know for others meds, but cymbalta could do it like zoloft done it to me (both are SSRIs), also at thighs (especially when in bed). I myself named anxiety "horror" often to describe better how much this anxiety was high so I think to know why you use this word. I know also what it is to avoid to move, to not fall into oblivion with this anxiety around. I spent days without moving much, even going at the washroom was doing an anxiety boost. The unreality is also a part of this. You may feel outside of your body sometimes and panicking for a second when you "get back". And also feeling "not there" most of the time. I know the feeling.

I hope you don't take my text too roughly. Like I said I'm not a doctor and consider all of this like an opinion only, and take what make sense for you. I really think you can get better and "hell pits" will not be forever (they are never forever). I think to achieve this you need to find the meds just for you and to ask questions and participate more in meds decisions. I could not imagine myself to just let doctors to decide for me and they need all the data they can have to help you, so it's good to be active in the process. I really wish you the peace you seek.
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Offline Door

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Re: Going off of Cymbalta and onto Wellbutrin
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2010, 08:59:36 AM »
I am going to ask you to get a second opinion.  Here's why:

1.  30 mg/day of Cymbalta is half the minimum therapeutic dose.  Why not raise it to 60 mg instead of switching up meds?

2.  The side effects of Ambien include depression and anxiety.  I take Ambien 10mg.  However, I have other medications (SSRI antidepressant, Xanax) to counteract these effects.

3.  Wellbutrin is not meant for anxiety.  It does not directly affect seratonin levels.  Seratonin concentration in your brain, I believe, is key to consistent relief from anxiety.  The studies for Wellbutrin and ADHD are inconsistent.  I've taken Wellbutrin and it really didn't do much for concentration.  It absolutely did nothing for anxiety, just as my doctor said.  Wellbutrin's side effects include tremor, insomnia, and increased anxiety.  For me, those didn't go away when I took it.  And I was on it for 8 months!

I can't bash Wellbutrin because it is a great antidepressant for many people, one of the best IMHO.  But for anxiety?  No.  Wellbutrin is sometimes used to counteract sexual side effects of SSRIs/SNRIs, and I think that's okay because seratonin levels are still being regulated.

I'm not trying to scare you.  I am just concerned that you may need a seratonin drug (Cymbalta or something else?).  Please get a second opinion.
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Offline WiSp

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Re: Going off of Cymbalta and onto Wellbutrin
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2010, 03:06:51 PM »
Like Door says, cymbalta must be used at a therapeutic dose for some time before to have conclusions, except if you can't tolerate it. It will not do anything if not at the minimal therapeutic dose. For ambien I don't know this med but like Door says, it seems to not be good for your anxiety. Wellbutrin is also known to not help anxiety at all and give some. I think wellbutrin was for your ADHD but adderall was already for this.

I would say to have a second opinion me too.
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Offline spd

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Re: Going off of Cymbalta and onto Wellbutrin
« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2010, 07:47:37 PM »
i am also switching to wellbutrin having been on cymbalta for a year, this past year has been the worst of my life. i beleive the doctors are still not convinced that cymbalta is a terrible drug due to the effect it is still fairly new.
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Offline Caseman

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Re: Going off of Cymbalta and onto Wellbutrin
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2010, 10:11:02 PM »
I've actually had a great deal of success with Wellbutrin SR for my anxiety. It has boosted my mood, "taken the edge off" of my anxiety, and given me energy to do all the things my anxiety stopped me from doing. I also feel that it has helped me substantially in college as far as focusing in class and on assignments. I've heard from many people that it caused them more anxiety, however. Everybody is different in the end, but I feel that Wellbutrin has been very helpful for anxiety and concentration in my experience.

You mentioned your trouble sleeping- when I started Wellbutrin, I had horrendous insomnia as well. I would try for hours to fall asleep, only to wake up a few hours later, feeling wide awake at 3 or 4 am. This gradually went away after the first week, but I've still had a few sleepless nights (mainly if I take it too late in the day.)

Hope this helps and hang in there
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Anxiety makes us focus on surviving when we should be thriving.

Offline spd

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Re: Going off of Cymbalta and onto Wellbutrin
« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2010, 05:32:23 PM »
i am also switching to wellbutrin having been on cymbalta for a year, this past year has been the worst of my life. i beleive the doctors are still not convinced that cymbalta is a terrible drug due to the effect it is still fairly new.I am 46 years old with severe anxiety and mild paranoia, i have now been off 60mg cymbalta for 5 days, no big deal. i beleive the doctors over prescribe  this med because of one of two things. it is actually working for some people. which is great. Howevever , the pharmecutical conglomeration is one of the strongest lobbbiest organization, next to the oil companies. i have been on and off different meds for 30 years, the psychs you talk to are only familar to the current therapy consulted ,with their wednesday golf games. PLEASE SHOP AROUND.
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