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I have been taking Cymbalta for 8 months as well. I have always enjoyed wine and an occasional cocktail, but always new when enough was enough. Around the holidays I started to notice "how much fun" I was having when drinking with friends. My consumption increased greatly and my husband said I was acting very uncharacterisitcally. I even started having black-outs. When I called my doctor and informed him of my concern, he responded by saying, "perhaps this is just the really fun person in you who has always wanted to come out." He did say I shouldn't drink too much when taking Cymbalta, but only because alcohol is a depressant and will reduce the efficacy of the Cymbalta.



So time goes on and I'm really drinking a lot. Everyday and sometimes starting at lunch. I have had terrible black outs and sometimes my husband didn't even know I was drunk - -which is really scarry. After a day of drinking with girlfriends, came home and thought I went to bed. I got up in the morning and saw the kitchen was kind of a mess. When I asked my husband what he made for dinner last night he couldn't believe it. I made dinner and I had absoultely no recollection.



As of late, I have decreased my dosage from 60mg to 30mg and am going down to 20mg. I tried to cold turkey the Cymbalta, but the side affects were too much to take When I had my blood work done last week I found out my liver enzymes are 3-4 times higher than they should be. This is a very, very risky "cocktail" and I think more people need to know about this.



I'm so glad I found this forum because I have been questioning the link between Cymbalta and alcohol. Lastly, I'm working very hard to get my liver back to a healthy one. Good luck to all of you.
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I too am experiencing this issue. I've been taking cymbalta for 10 months. I didn't really drink at all for the first several months. However, I have been drinking for the last several months. When I do drink, I'm often finding myself unable to stop and end up passing out. I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one experiencing this. Now I just have to decide whether to give up drinking or cymbalta. Drinking excessively on a regular basis is not something I've ever battled with until taking cymbalta.
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Cymbalta is affecting me as well. I asked for a short-term anti-depressant to get through a few tough months and now I'm having tremors and cold sweats after an evening when I intended to drink a glass of wine and ended up with an empty bottle. My prescription bottle says "DO NOT USE ALCOHOL," but the warning above it says not to drive when drinking alcohol and taking cymbalta. I am so glad I found this forum. I can lay off alcohol for a few months, I think. If not, then I guess it's AA for me.
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Cymbalta has really helped my depression, but I've found that it also induces hypomania. It especially does that when I drink alcohol. I have so much fun and the next day, I'm filled with shame at all the inappropriate ways I acted. I decide to limit my drinking but find that once I have one drink, I crave more. I've found that it's all or nothing with the drinking, so I just decided to swear off alcohol.

I think the craving for alcohol comes from my enjoying the hypomanic stage so much that I just want it to continue, so I keep drinking. Instead of dampening the effect of alcohol, which some people have mentioned, for me, it definitely makes it more enjoyable to drink. I was really sensitive to Cymbalta when I first started it -- lost weight, was ridiculously sleepy for a few days but then didn't sleep for about 3 months, yawned all the time (but not cuz I was sleepy), had tons of energy all the time, etc, so maybe how I react to it when drinking has something to do with how it's working with my body, so maybe those who had these "activating" reactions to Cymbalta will have similar reactions when they drink?

For me, my alcohol cravings are controllable enough that it's a fair trade-off -- I'm willing to give up alcohol and stay on Cymbalta. And I'm trying to use the negative experiences I've had with being "high on Cymbalta and alcohol" to teach me more about myself -- do I like being hypomanic because it lowers my inhibition threshold and so I say and do things that I want to do but normally don't let myself? I go overboard when hypomanic, but it's making me realize that maybe I should try and loosen up a little more when sober.
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I was on Cymbalta for almost 3 years. I have never been a drinker, but I began craving beer. I would wake up and drink a beer rather than eat. I did not get "drunk" when I drank and I was drinking close to 2 six packs a day.

I experienced horrible vivid dreams that haunted me during the day. I began to question when I was awake and when I was asleep.. it was all the same to me.

So I took myself OFF of Cymbalta-- very very very slowly because sudden interruptions in dosage can be EXTREMELY DANGEROUS
. As soon as my intake was down around 25mg (I had been at 60mg) the alcohol cravings disappeared--poof!-- in fact, beer regained it's "normal taste" and I was not at all attracted to it. I realized how serious this drug is and continued reducing my intake until I finally was able to walk away from it-- with my life and liver intact.

I will NEVER AGAIN allow a "doctor" to prescribe psychoactive drugs for me.. in fact, I stay far far away from doctors now and am far more healthy.

Never again.
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I'm relieved to read that others are having the same problems. I have been on Cymbalta for about four months now and my drinking has become a real problem. Oddly, my reactions to the alcohol varies. Sometimes I can drink quite a bit and I don't feel bad the next day, other times I'll end up vomiting and passing out after relatively little to drink. I have thoroughly embarrassed myself on a few occasions. I to will often wake up the next day not remembering a single thing that happened the night before. Recently I've been horrible to my husband and I don't remember it the next day. I have two children and at times have not remembered putting them in bed the night before., and this may only be after two drinks. None of it makes any sense. I am not addicted to alcohol and I can easily not have a drink, but I do enjoy the taste, so giving that up would be a disappointment. I'm now weaning off of the Cymbalta for several reasons, but my behavior when drinking has really scared me. Best wishes to everyone.
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Doctors just love prescribing anti-depressants anyways. Big Pharma makes a killing off people that thing there's something wrong with them. Sorry to tell you, but it's mostly the system we've become, what society has become, that is making us ill.

It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. - Jiddu Krishnamurti


If anyone else is interested in facts about the harmful affects of medicine and even why they are happening
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Actually, that is funny that you say that. I have been on it for a while now too, and I dont hardly EVER drink. I have noticed lately I have been oddly wanting to drink more.
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I never drank alcohol or had a desire to do so until I started taking Cymbalta. Now I find myself craving a drink. I typically have one to two glasses of wine or a cocktail or two almost every night. And only two glasses of wine will give me a bad hangover in the mornng.

It makes more since for me to give up drinking than changing my medication. As one person said, continuing to drink is just dodging a bullet.
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I feel like shouting out loud. My husband has been on cymbalta for 2 years and he is an alcoholic and no matter how hard he trys he's been unsucessful in quiting. Infact it's gotten worse and he's been in an alcoholic coma twice. Why don't the researchers figure this out before they allow Docs to dish the meds out?! I've wathced his health go from bad to worse and now ..... :'( I thought the meds might be exagerating his problem but ..."I'm not a Doctor!" Thanks to all who shared in here. Now I don't think it's just me being paranoid.
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Wow, now isn't this a wake up call. First, from my perpespective Cymbalta made my life 1000000 times BETTER!!! However, after going off cold turkey about two weeks ago - my symptoms for drinking alchohol are GONE. I was the same as many of you, a social drinker but always knew when to stop. I felt like I had to most fun drinking I had ever had for almost the past two years - I was like a alcohol energizer battery - I would drink and drink, never stop, never puke and most of the time wake up and be fine the next day. I am the mother to two young children and my husband was continious on his quest to tell me my consumption was over the top. We also made a giant move from one state to another which devastated me and in turn I was also drowning in alchohol nightly.

By the 3rd day of no cymbalta I finally experienced what I would call MANIC feelings of restlessness, anger and the inability to move off the sofa. By day 6, I had some energy and was feeling better. NOW, I have NO energy, feel like a TON of bricks is weighing my body down - I can barely drive without falling asleep, depressed, teary, angry, increased temper with no patience, hopeless and no ability to do anything I need to get done.

The kicker is, I felt like the entire world told me to go off Cymbalta and I fought to prove that it helped me. Basically, I went off as a giant F you to all - now the only thing I can see they were right about is the alcohol consumption. Everything else, they were all wrong about. I NEED something and I fearful to try something new, why fix it if it isn't broke and on the other hand the alcohol thing is also a problem.
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I too am SO GLAD that I saw all of these posts! I have been on Cymbalta for sometime now and have noticed a change in my drinking alcohol. I have always enjoyed having a beer or two with friends but now crave wine and can easily polish off 2 bottles by myself! In addition, I am unable to stop until I can no longer function-it just hits me! It is like Jeckell and Hyde! I am going off the medication and pursuing other treatment options! Thank you all for sharing your experiences! I thought I was going nuts!
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Same here, I can tolerate huge amount of alcohol while on the drug. I always drank socially and I am still doing so but i noticed that i can drink way more beers before i get drunk and I am more outgoing and very hyper at parties while on Cymbalta. I think it's due to the poten norepinephrine reuptake inhibition.

Best regards,
M4
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Same here, I can tolerate huge amount of alcohol while on the drug. I always drank socially and I am still doing so but i noticed that i can drink way more beers before i get drunk and I am more outgoing and very hyper at parties while on Cymbalta. I think it's due to the potent norepinephrine reuptake inhibition.

Best regards,
M4
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Forgot to add that indeed the withdrawals are much worse due to the more alcohol intake and more dehydration. Just drink a lot of water while drinking beer on cymbalta to avoid the terrible hangovers. Light beer is always better while being on an antidepressant too...
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