Flare or Weaning side effects?

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
[ << Previous Thread | Next Thread >> ]

P-Fit
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 419
   Posted 10/21/2008 9:00 PM (GMT -6)   
Ok, I started to wean off my clonazepam (anxiety med) about 10 days ago. I've had terrible stomach aches, loose stools, and cramping for the last 4 days, along with joint pain and tension. I haven't had any blood, but I'm really tired and feel burning sensations at times. I'm only cutting my meds by 10%. The only thing I can eat w/o pain is applesauce and decaf tea.
 
I just saw my GI doctor 2 wks ago and felt good. I've got blood tests scheduled for the 1st week of Nov to check my iron levels and other stuff.
 
Any suggestions for making it thru this stage?


Dee-38yrs old 
Diagnosed with UC in 2004-PTSD/Panic Disorder/Depression in 2007 & Fibromyalgia 2008
750mg colozal 3 pills 3x a day, .5mg clonazepam, 7.5mg Lexapro
1,000mg canasa suppositories (PM),
 Fioricet-Migraines
Prilosec-Not sure(Heartburn/GERD), Fish Oils
GNC Womens Active Formula Multi-vitamin
Colonoscopies-4 


beartooth
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 517
   Posted 10/21/2008 9:39 PM (GMT -6)   

P-Fit,

Is the clonazepam the only thing your are tapering right now?  When you say "only 10%" right now, does that mean 10% less every day?  Every other day?  It sounds like you are going through major withdrawals, which is not typical for clonazepam unless you've been on really high doses for a VERY long time.  I had an extended period of time on clonazepam, .5mg twice a day for close to two years.  1mg a day is not considered high by any meansWhen I stopped taking it, I had no problems.  And this was after my initial UC dx. 

If you are feeling that poorly from cutting back on the clonazepam, I'd bump myself back to my old regular dosage, and then start the taper anew, but do it extremely slow.  I'm not sure what withdrawals should be like, or how long they'd last, but I'm fairly certain they shouldn't be like what you are experiencing.  If you haven't done so, I'd also call your physician and let him know what's going on.  Your current GI problems could also be due to the higher anxiety you're naturally feeling after cutting back on the clonaz, but that doesn't explain the rest of how you feel.

Do you have a plan set for when you are no longer on the clonaz on dealing with your panic/anxiety disorder?  I'm sorry that I don't know you better or have more knowledge of what is and isn't normal for you.  If you are committed to stopping the clonaz, I'd take it easy on yourself until you're feeling better.  If apple sauce and decaf tea are all you can stomache right now, then don't push it.  No need to cause yourself undue stress because you are stopping an anxiety med.  I hope things start getting better for you soon.


Brandon
 
36 y.o. male
Diagnosed w/ moderate UC in May '06
Meds & supplements:  Asacol, Florastor, VSL#3, Wellbutrin XL, Prozac, multi-vitamin, Allegra, Lialda, Colocort enema every other night, Prednisone (down to 5mg), flaxseed oil, L-glutamine.


WishfulMA
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 197
   Posted 10/21/2008 9:58 PM (GMT -6)   
P-Fit,
You are on a very low dose of lexapro. So if you are tapering your clonazepam...does that mean you are feeling better?? I hope so. I taper the clonazapem just before I do an IVF cycle because I obviously cant take it if I get pg. I would say taper slower if possible. But those side effects really dont sound like it has to do with the clonazapam. The "burning" sensations and the tiredness are common side effects. I take it at night for sleep ..or if i was ever having a major panic attack. So my main side effect from tapering and getting off of it was NOT SLEEPING.

I hope you feel better!
ulcerative proctitis - march 05 diagnosed
current status - trying to see what works - still bleeding!!!!!
hospitalized - 3/08 for 6 days of IV steriods
colazal - 9 pills  asacol - 12 pills, canasa 2x per day, nightly hydrocortisone enemas
VSL#3 Primal Defense Ultra Probiotic (2x per day)
fish oil, flaxseed oil, calcium w/ vitamin d 2x a day, prenatal vitamin plus extra vitamin c and b12 complex
 
 


emory
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 327
   Posted 10/21/2008 10:27 PM (GMT -6)   
P-Fit,

Tapering off clonazepam can be so difficult, even if you're only taking a low dose for a short time, as I found out a couple of years ago. But my withdrawal symptoms didn't coincide very well with what you describe -- mostly, like WishfulMA, I couldn't sleep AT ALL. I also had nausea and increased anxiety (worse than before I took it!). And yet, here I am on it again, because it's the only thing that really helps me sleep during bad bouts of insomnia.

Like Brandon, I'm wondering what you mean by only cutting your meds by 10%. If you're on .5 mg a day, that seems pretty hard to do -- you must be much better at splitting pills than I am! I am currently tapering myself (started on Sunday), and am taking it in quarter-pill increments. I'll wait at least a week, probably two, between each reduction, and even longer if I anticipate extra stress or if my period is due. In the past if I've had problems with a taper it's usually shown up on day 3 or 4.

As you work through this process, if at any point you feel like you need to increase your dose again, remember that you can try going just part of the way back, and then work your way down more slowly. You don't necessarily have to lose all the ground you've gained.

Again, like Brandon said, this does seem like a good thing to discuss with your doctor. I sure hope you're feeling better soon!
emory
40, female
Dx ulcerative proctitis, 3-5 cm, June 2008 (after 5 weeks of blood and mucous) and still flaring
Canasa 1000 mg suppositories and 2 tsp smooth texture Metamucil nightly
25 mg hydrocortisone suppositories and 1 Garden of Life Primal Defense Ultra in a.m.
Effexor 37.5, Remeron 30 mg, Clonazepam .5 mg (or more) and Trazodone 75 mg for sleep/anxiety
2.5 mg methimazole for thyroid
Trying acupuncture
Osteopenia and other assorted ailments


P-Fit
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 419
   Posted 10/22/2008 7:18 AM (GMT -6)   
I'e been on it since July 2007.

I was up to .75mg (1-.5mg pill and a 1/2) and then went down to 1 and 1/4 without any problem. Now I've been cutting the 1/4 of a pill in half and taking it in the afternoon while taking the full.5mg pill at bedtime. I've been sleeping pretty good. I plan on staying at this dose for 6 wks. I'm going very slow because I'm sensitive to meds.

I did have a cold a couple weeks ago, and our weather in MO just changed. Maybe I'm having a flare. It's just different from the others. I feel like my stomach is swollen...it hurts to bend over ot if I touch that area. I'm goiing to call the GI doc I guess. UGH...it's frustrating!!!

 



Dee-38yrs old 
Diagnosed with UC in 2004-PTSD/Panic Disorder/Depression in 2007 & Fibromyalgia 2008
750mg colozal 3 pills 3x a day, .5mg clonazepam, 7.5mg Lexapro
1,000mg canasa suppositories (PM),
 Fioricet-Migraines
Prilosec-Not sure(Heartburn/GERD), Fish Oils
GNC Womens Active Formula Multi-vitamin
Colonoscopies-4 

Post Edited (P-Fit) : 10/22/2008 7:22:13 AM (GMT-6)


P-Fit
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 419
   Posted 10/22/2008 8:27 AM (GMT -6)   
beartooth said...

P-Fit,

Do you have a plan set for when you are no longer on the clonaz on dealing with your panic/anxiety disorder?  I'm sorry that I don't know you better or have more knowledge of what is and isn't normal for you.  If you are committed to stopping the clonaz, I'd take it easy on yourself until you're feeling better.  If apple sauce and decaf tea are all you can stomache right now, then don't push it.  No need to cause yourself undue stress because you are stopping an anxiety med.  I hope things start getting better for you soon.

I think my doctor wants to move me up to 10mg of lexapro and take me off the clonazepam all together (or try to anyway). I've been going to therapy to deal with the issues that lead me to the anxiety/panic problem. I am very Type A and stuffed away some painful things for years. It all came back up when my brother died unexpectedly last year. I may not be able to get off of anxiety meds for good, but I feel like I'm coping better and would like to try. Between the UC and the anxiety I feel that I'm over-medicated. Maybe I just haven't come to accept all of this.

Dee-38yrs old 
Diagnosed with UC in 2004-PTSD/Panic Disorder/Depression in 2007 & Fibromyalgia 2008
750mg colozal 3 pills 3x a day, .5mg clonazepam, 7.5mg Lexapro
1,000mg canasa suppositories (PM),
 Fioricet-Migraines
Prilosec-Not sure(Heartburn/GERD), Fish Oils
GNC Womens Active Formula Multi-vitamin
Colonoscopies-4 


Vin
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 312
   Posted 10/22/2008 4:36 PM (GMT -6)   
Check out this place regarding klonopin and all benzo withdrawals:

http://benzowithdrawal.com/forum/

Don't be fooled that 1 mg of klonopin is not alot...it is worth 20 mg of valium. For long term users of klonopin(several months +), there will be withdrawal effects and they could be fairly severe. Cutting the pills are tricky because they are too brittle(learned that the hard way), and also you can only safely cut by .125 mg which might be too much. There are other methods to reduce klonopin such as using water titration(I am currently doing that) and so far my withdrawal has been MUCH MUCH nicer then trying to cut pills, or cut too big of pieces out(major panic attacks, insomnia, high anxiety, flu like symptoms, ringing ears).

Also check out the ashton manual of benzo withdrawal(google).

Vin
UC since age 22, now 27.  Several huge flares since then.
 
Currently tapering prednisone(35 mg from 80 mg).  Also just starting 6mp again and lialda.   I definately am not liking these drugs.  Maybe surgery one day?


P-Fit
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 419
   Posted 10/22/2008 4:41 PM (GMT -6)   
How does water titration work? How many mg's were you on?
Dee-38yrs old 
Diagnosed with UC in 2004-PTSD/Panic Disorder/Depression in 2007 & Fibromyalgia 2008
750mg colozal 3 pills 3x a day, .5mg clonazepam, 7.5mg Lexapro
1,000mg canasa suppositories (PM),
 Fioricet-Migraines
Prilosec-Not sure(Heartburn/GERD), Fish Oils
GNC Womens Active Formula Multi-vitamin
Colonoscopies-4 


emory
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 327
   Posted 10/22/2008 5:51 PM (GMT -6)   
I also am curious about water titration. Please fill us in, Vin!

P-Fit, sounds like you are approaching your taper with caution. Speaking as another who's prone to anxiety, I would suggest avoiding websites about benzo withdrawal if you can (they tend to freak me out, which doesn't help matters); just know that you need to take it really slowly and pay attention to your body -- which you are doing.

I hope you don't turn out to have pancreatitis, and that your current pain can be resolved quickly. Good that you're going to get things checked out --
40, female
Dx ulcerative proctitis, 3-5 cm, June 2008 (after 5 weeks of blood and mucous) and still flaring
Canasa 1000 mg suppositories and 2 tsp smooth texture Metamucil nightly
25 mg hydrocortisone suppositories and 1 Garden of Life Primal Defense Ultra in a.m.
Effexor 37.5, Remeron 30 mg, Clonazepam .5 mg (or more) and Trazodone 75 mg for sleep/anxiety
2.5 mg methimazole for thyroid
Trying acupuncture
Osteopenia and other assorted ailments


Vin
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 312
   Posted 10/22/2008 9:06 PM (GMT -6)   
Its pretty easy. I used this site to order the supplies:

http://benzowithdrawal.com/forum/index.php?topic=11.0

I orderd the blender and the graduated cylinder. I found that the blender already had ML marked off so I didnt need the graduated cylinder. I bought the 10 ml dropper from the pharmacy. I crush the pills using a spoon on a dish. I also make sure I get any little tiny crumbs that get lodged into the spoon or plate off and either lick my fingers :), or drop the rest into the blender.

I found the explanation from the above link to be a little confusing... so I used this site here to understand exactly how much pill per milileter of water there was, so on and so forth. It takes me about 3-5 minutes a night to do this.. and I cut every 2 weeks about .050 mg of klonopin. Times of stress or illness I'll hold. No reason to rush. I listen to my body. I never updose. Once I stabalize where I am not going through any major withdrawal symptoms, i hold there for about a week.. and then cut again. I started at 1 mg, and I am down to .375 mg now. I can go as slow as I want with the water titration.

http://bipolarblast.wordpress.com/2008/05/14/water-titration-for-slow-and-controlled-psychiatric-drug-withdrawal/

Any questions let me know. I am also a sufferer of panic disorder. Paxil has helped me with that, so I don't need klonopin anymore as I am 100% tolerant to it.

Vin
UC since age 22, now 27.  Several huge flares since then.
 
Currently tapering prednisone(35 mg from 80 mg).  Also just starting 6mp again and lialda.   I definately am not liking these drugs.  Maybe surgery one day?


emory
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 327
   Posted 10/22/2008 9:35 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you, Vin -- that's really interesting. I had thought about going to a compounding pharmacy to enable a slower taper; never thought about doing it myself! I will definitely keep this in mind as my dose gets lower (and the percentage cut gets higher). Really appreciate the detailed explanation.

So how does prednisone affect your panic disorder? Has Paxil helped you endure any side effects?
40, female
Dx ulcerative proctitis, 3-5 cm, June 2008 (after 5 weeks of blood and mucous) and still flaring
Canasa 1000 mg suppositories and 2 tsp smooth texture Metamucil nightly
25 mg hydrocortisone suppositories and 1 Garden of Life Primal Defense Ultra in a.m.
Effexor 37.5, Remeron 30 mg, Clonazepam .5 mg (or more) and Trazodone 75 mg for sleep/anxiety
2.5 mg methimazole for thyroid
Trying acupuncture
Osteopenia and other assorted ailments


Vin
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 312
   Posted 10/23/2008 11:56 AM (GMT -6)   
Prednisone creamed me pretty good. I was just diagnosed with panic disorder in June. I had to endure several psych ward stay's as I was pretty out of control. By the end of August, early September I was JUST starting to get stable to where I was cleared to go back to work. My first day back at work, I got sick and started running a fever. Several days later, hospitalized for UC. In the 2 weeks or so where I was kind of back to myself, I was able to develop coping mechanisms for panic and anxiety.. and that greatly helped me with the prednisone. I'd say I wouldn't have been able to do it without the paxil either. Prednisone sent me into some nice panic attacks when I was at the 60 and 50 mg levels. But it wasn't as bad as what I was having over the summer. 40-20 had my body shaking, and my anxiety pretty high, but i was able to cope with it. Now I am at 15 mg of pred and I feel I can breathe a bit more.

I was terrified over the summer that I would get colitis and have to deal with prednisone again... and it happened and so far its really tested me, but I am passing the test :). I should only have a few more weeks of pred left... and my next cut of pred is down to 10 mg on saturday. So far the flare has been responding to the treatment. My next klonopin cut is next Tuesday. Will be going down to .325 mg. I am slowing the cut down due to the colitis/pred issues. I can't wait to get off these drugs!

Vin

P.S.  If you need any help with the math let me know.  Basically, if you use .5 mg of klonopin as your dose, and you put that into 200 ML of water, 10 ML of water equals .025 mg of klonopin.  So every 14 days, i take an extra 20 ML of water out to get my .050 mg cut. 


UC since age 22, now 27.  Several huge flares since then.
 
Currently tapering prednisone(35 mg from 80 mg).  Also just starting 6mp again and lialda.   I definately am not liking these drugs.  Maybe surgery one day?

Post Edited (Vin) : 10/23/2008 11:33:27 AM (GMT-6)


emory
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 327
   Posted 10/23/2008 4:08 PM (GMT -6)   
Man, you've had a brutal time of it this summer! I'm glad you're doing okay now and have gotten this test out of the way. I am terrified of the bouts of insomnia (absolute sleeplessness) that grip me periodically, and wouldn't you know it, a few weeks after I was diagnosed with UC, here came the insomnia and now I'm on more meds than I can stand to think about. I, too, can't wait to get off at least some of these drugs!

Take care, Vin --
emory
40, female
Dx ulcerative proctitis, 3-5 cm, June 2008 (after 5 weeks of blood and mucous) and still flaring
Canasa 1000 mg suppositories and 2 tsp smooth texture Metamucil nightly
25 mg hydrocortisone suppositories and 1 Garden of Life Primal Defense Ultra in a.m.
Effexor 37.5, Remeron 30 mg, Clonazepam .5 mg (or more) and Trazodone 75 mg for sleep/anxiety
2.5 mg methimazole for thyroid
Trying acupuncture
Osteopenia and other assorted ailments

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
Forum Information
Currently it is Sunday, July 22, 2018 11:25 PM (GMT -6)
There are a total of 2,984,437 posts in 327,224 threads.
View Active Threads


Who's Online
This forum has 161998 registered members. Please welcome our newest member, EvaSmith.
318 Guest(s), 6 Registered Member(s) are currently online.  Details
BillyBob@388, Pratoman, Lightlife, EvaSmith, shuensnemx01, Tall Allen