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Has anyone tried The Road Back for help with the withdrawal symptoms of Effexor. I just discovered their website and wanted to know if anyone has tried the supplemental route while weaning off of Effexor.
This is my second go around trying to get off this nightmare drug..

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I have heard about the road back, not sure how it works but I have weaned faster. It was/is hell, but worth it to get the drug out of your system. Here is a post I put on another site:



I am so sorry you are feeling this way! I have been completely off Effexor for a week and a half now, and the first 8 days were HORRIBLE. I am still getting dizzy but the zaps have been gone since day 7. I am currently a 4th year medical student, so I was very trusting in taking the advice of a psychiatrist, but now I truly think these drugs can do a great amount of harm. This is not to say they do not benefit some, but my experience (any many others!) has been nothing short of hellish!



I was on Effexor for 6 months. Before I took this evil thing, I was fit and very busy....I had frequent anxiety and panic, and had not been successful on Wellbutrin. I was TOLD I must be depressed too, although I knew deep down I was only depressed because I was anxious all the time! I went from being a fitness model to a couch potato who gained 25lbs in 2 months! Not only this, but I was experiencing urges to cut myself during the first month of the pill (I never did). When I tried to workout, I would lose my breath and turn bright red. It progressed so far that on four occasions I experienced 1-2hrs of tachycardia where my heart beat out of control despite lying in bed and taking sedatives. I went from being the healthiest person I knew to being a patient worked up for heart problems! In addition, I discovered that my blood pressure had become borderline hypertensive! I also experienced such severe constipation that I had to use enemas to go at all, and had a belly so swollen it looked like I was 8 months pregnant. Finally, after 6 months of being MORE DEPRESSED than ever in my life, unable to fit any clothes, workout, poop, desire sex, or have any sort of a life, my doctor FINALLY decided maybe it actually was the drug causing these problems.



Just to let you all know, it CAN be done to get off of this pills. I am feeling like a new person already after only a week and a half. I still need to take Dramamine at times, or a small dose of Klonipin for anxiety, but overall my mood has been so much BETTER after getting the drug out of my system. My boyfriend says I am a new person again! To any of you who are considering quitting, but have read the terrible reports of withdrawal, you can do it, trust me! If I can help just one person get off of this drug (and they feel ready to do so!) I will be very happy. There are many natural alternatives and over the counter medications that can help ease the experience and help you lead a better life off of the pills!



These forums are so important, at my worst last week I was lying in bed being zapped and dizzy, but hearing other peoples experiences kept me going!
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I have been off effexor for about two weeks...The worse part of my withdrawal has been back pain-It's like every muscle in my back gets tight...the pain is a dull pain...but it is almost unbearable...My husband would say my snappy replies are the worse part of stopping effexor-I just found the website the road back...I have ordered some of the meds. haven't received them yet..I quit effexor cold turkey which I know you should not do...The Dr. that put me on it does not believe in hormone treatment so I can't talk to him about it....Taking effexor counter acted on my hormone treatment thats why I stopped....It's been two weeks of hell some days and some days have been not so bad-But the pain my body has experienced makes me want to push even harder to stay off this drug......
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I followed the road back program and have been off effexor xr completely now for 6 months.  I tried to go off the antidepressant twice before without success.  If you follow the road back( i even extended my tapering to about 6 months), you will be off effexor too!  
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I was on Effexor XR 37.5 mg for 6 weeks as prescribed by my doctor, as I have suffered severe panic/anxiety disorder since before I was ten years old (was officially diagnosed when I was 20). I am now 40 years old and had been getting horrible PMS symptoms that made me feel like I was going crazy. I turn into a highly emotional (which I am normally but this was way beyond normal), super cranky woman and I would go to bed feeling horrible every night from yelling at my poor children :( . My doctor went through the same thing she said in the ten years before menopause, and thought that the Effexor XR would help. It did seem to, and I also had no PMS for the first time in I can't even remember!

The only problems were the lack of libido and inability to have an orgasm and that was NEVER a problem, before. This started the DAY I started taking the drug. My fiance and I have such an amazing sex life and I couldn't bear the thought of losing that. I also gained 6 pounds in only those 6 short weeks, and I am very fit and active. I used to hard core train for fitness competitions (my fiance is my trainer) so when I say I am fit, I really am! :)

Those side effects I could not deal with having, so I decided to stop taking the drug, and my doctor told me to taper off it. She said it wasn't worth losing your sex life, and I totally agree! I quit cold turkey instead. (I had read that tapering and stopping cold turkey didn’t make a difference on how bad the withdrawl symptoms were going to be, so I thought I would just stop all together, and if I got bad symptoms I would either try to deal with them or take another pill and start weaning.)

I have been off it now for 6 days, and I have virtually no side effects! Only on the third day for about 3 times during the day for about half an hour each I had pretty bad dizziness, but nothing that was outrageous. A bit of dizziness is nothing! Especially considering since I have already gotten my sex drive back full force, and no problem with orgasm either! And would you believe that I lost the 6 pounds in TWO DAYS??!! I couldn't believe it, but now I KNOW it was terrible WATER RETENTION! I couldn’t even get my engagement ring off!  I had to urinate that third day every half hour at one point about 6 times! And I hadn't had anything to drink yet. I had a dental appointment and I had to pee before I left for the appt, as soon as I got there, then had to interrupt while I was in the chair to go and urinate, and then when she was finished, and as soon as I got home. It was crazy but it dawned on me the next day once I got on the scale and lost 3 lbs, then the next day lost another 3 lbs and that is the only explanation. 

Anyway for anyone that is on this drug at the lower dose for only a short while, if you are scared to stop cold turkey (trust me I was scared after reading all the horror stories on the internet!) it doesn’t mean that you ARE going to get all the terrible withdrawl symptoms people are posting about. I am sure they are real and it happens, but people who have those horror stories are more apt to tell their tale on the internet, then those of us who didn’t have the terrible withdrawl symptoms.  I have been waiting for them and they are just not happening. I am thankful for that!

The low libido (basically non- I was on Effexor XR 37.5 mg for 6 weeks as prescribed by my doctor, as I have suffered severe panic/anxiety disorder since before I was ten years old. Was officially diagnosed when I was 20. I also am now 40 years old and had been getting horrible PMS symptoms that made me feel like I was going crazy. I turn into a highly emotional, super cranky woman and I would go to be feeling horrible every night from yelling at my poor children :( My doctor went through the same thing she said in the ten years before menopause, and thought that the Effexor XR would help. It did seem to, and I also had no PMS for the first time in I can't even remember!

The only problems were the lack of libido and inability to have an orgasm and that was NEVER a problem, before. My fiance and I have such an amazing sex life and I couldn't bear the thought of losing that. I also gained 6 pounds in only those 6 short weeks, and I am very fit and active. I used to hard core train for fitness competitions (my fiance is my trainer) so when I say I am fit, I really am! :)

So since of those side effects that I couldn't deal with having, I decided to stop taking the drug, and my doctor told me to taper off it. She said it wasn't worth losing your sex life, and I totally agree! I quit cold turkey instead. I have been off it now for 6 days, and I have no side effects! Only on the third day for about 3 times during the day for about half an hour each I had pretty bad dizziness, but nothing that was outrageous. A bit of dizziness is nothing! Especially considering since I have already gotten my sex drive back full force, and no problem with orgasm either! And would you believe that I lost the 6 pounds in TWO DAYS??!! I couldn't believe it, but now I KNOW it was terrible WATER RETENTION! I had to urinate that third day every half hour at one point about 6 times! And I hadn't had anything to drink yet. I had a dental appointment and I had to pee before I left for the apt, as soon as I got there, then had to interupt while I was in the chair to go and urinate, and then when she was finished, and as soon as I got home, It was crazy but it dawned on me the next day once I got on the scale and lost 3 lbs, then the next day lost another 3 lbs and that is the only explanation.

Even though I was only on this drug for a short time and a low dose, I want others who might be in the same situation as I was to know that even though you read all the horror stories on the internet about terrible withdrawl symptoms, they do not always happen. What was very real to me was the lack of libido (basically non-existant!), the inability to orgasm (totally numbs you), and the unexplained weight gain (that I now know was terrible water retention).

Good luck for anyone going off this drug. I believe it really does help a lot of people, and if you can handle no sex life and being bloated all the time (I was constipated as well) then great. It was just not for me! J 

 

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How can you possibly read a nonfiction book in this condition?
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I've also had terrible back pain after stopping effexor. Like you, all the muscles feel clenched. It's awful. Has anyone been able to explain to you why or how to make it better?
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I’m reading bout it now. It was curious if you tried it?
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