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 Cymbalta causing panic? Help!
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bl846
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Posted - 01/21/2008 :  17:38:23  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Reply to Topic
I have been on Cymbalta for one week, 30 mg per day, for major depressive disorder. Today was the 7th day I took it. I've had anxiety attacks today, and I never usually get them. I would actually describe it as really bad fear. I've also experienced worsening of depression and agitation/anger. I'm scheduled to bump up the dosage to 60 mg next, but I'm terrified. Has anyone else experienced anxiety with Cymbalta? Again, I have had panic attacks in the past, but not in a very long time. I don't know if I'm worse off being depressed or being medicated!!
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jms45
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Posted - 02/13/2009 :  08:37:28  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Reply to Topic
Hi -
I am experiencing the same symptoms! I took Cymbalta for 6 days and on the last day I had a severe panic attack. 5 days have gone by and I still am having panic and fear. I keep thinking I am losing my mind but now that I've read your reaction I am feeling better and thinking maybe it is the Cymbalta in my system still. I used to get panic attacks but hadn't had one in 5 years or more. Hope you are doing better since you posted that message. I'm curious how you are feeling...
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bl846
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Posted - 02/14/2009 :  08:08:46  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Reply to Topic
quote:
Originally posted by jms45

Hi -
I am experiencing the same symptoms! I took Cymbalta for 6 days and on the last day I had a severe panic attack. 5 days have gone by and I still am having panic and fear. I keep thinking I am losing my mind but now that I've read your reaction I am feeling better and thinking maybe it is the Cymbalta in my system still. I used to get panic attacks but hadn't had one in 5 years or more. Hope you are doing better since you posted that message. I'm curious how you are feeling...



Wow, I wrote that post over a year ago! Well, let me tell you what my experience with Cymbalta was like, because I wound up staying on it for nearly a year!.
After about a week of unpleasant feelings, things got better. For a while, I thought the Cymbalta really helped me feel better, think more positively, and examine the stuff in my life that was bothering me (but I was also in group and one-on-one therapy at this time). So, I think Cymbalta probably worked for a few months. It got to the point that I didn't really even notice it, and I couldn't sort out what was the drug and what was me (in terms of my mood). Over the summer I suffered from some depression, and I began to question whether or not the Cymbalta was working.
I had been gradually noticing something out of character that I never really did before: I was starting to nap during the day. I mean, I was overcome with sleepiness. At first, I didn't really care and just attributed it to my general laziness. But then as the months passed, I realized I had little control over it. I would turn the heat down in my house and leave my shoes on, and I would STILL fall asleep on the couch, fully dressed with shoes on, without being able to help it. An afternoon nap became a daily routine for me, and sometimes I slept for two or three hours!
I began to realize that this was not normal. Coworkers remarked that I was always yawning. I gained ten pounds, although I'm not really sure if it was because of Cymbalta or my generally poor diet (too much take-out and pizza) at the time.
So, in November, I began to wean myself off, without my doctor's knowledge. I did it VERY GRADUALLY, opening up and counting the beads inside. I reduced my dosage by 1/8 per week, so that it took me a full two months to get off. The last two weeks were hell. I was sad, weepy, and most disturbing, incredibly dizzy! Like, drunk dizzy. I almost fell down at work one day while carrying something heavy and had to steady myself. It was like being in a detached fog. Your brain feels like it's wiggling or shivering--I guess those are the brain zaps.
Then, after about ten days without taking any Cymbalta at all, (and often feeling like I should go back on to stop the withdrawal symptoms) my horrible dizziness and brain shivers disappeared. Luckily, the worst of the symptoms had been over Christmas, and so I wasn't at work but was home visiting my family, and they understood. I wouldn't recommend driving when you're like that (I take public transit most places).
So, in conclusion, I will say this: yes, I think Cymbalta helped me in the short run. But you know what helped me more? Therapy. Having a really good therapist. For me, Cymbalta was not worth the side effects, and getting off is easier said than done. Good luck to you!
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Gardenia0
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3 Posts

Posted - 02/16/2009 :  09:02:53  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Reply to Topic
Yeah, that's what Zoloft is doing to me now. And what Paxil did. You feel like hell at the beginning, at first you're hopeful, it will help, but it doesn't. Therapy and healthy life-style. Though I'm feeling awful anxiety right now and already had a panic attack, I'm trying to cheer myself up. Bought a yoga DVD with some breathing exersizes. Another thing that I'm doing - going up and down the stairs, untill I get out of breath. I've noticed that when your body gets physically exausted, you start to feel a bit better.
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jms45
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Posted - 02/22/2009 :  08:21:32  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Reply to Topic
Thank you for you response. I am finally coming out of the constant panic situation. Hopefully it will get better. Best of luck to you and thanks again!!
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