Any good stories about successfully getting off Effexor??

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Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 46
   Posted 10/5/2006 8:23 AM (GMT -6)   
I've been on Effexor (just 37.5mg) for a few years now and would like to quit taking it eventually.  My doctor swears up and down (and did before I got on it too) that if you do it very slowly you can get off of it with very few withdrawal symptoms.  It seems that everywhere I look there are horror stories about Effexor withdrawal and it's really starting to scare me.
So....does anybody have any good stories about successfully getting off Effexor?  I'd really love to feel more optimistic about this than I currently do.  Please?  I don't want the horror stories - I just want to know that it's not such a horrible experience for everyone.  It doesn't help that I'm extremely succeptible to the placebo effect, so I'm sure if I expect it to be bad, it will be bad.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 2500
   Posted 10/5/2006 9:40 AM (GMT -6)   
I dont have med stories but I am sure someone will be by soon to help you out.

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When everythings made to be broken, I just want you to know who I am..."
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Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 46
   Posted 10/5/2006 9:45 AM (GMT -6)   

Thanks Michelle,

I really hope you're right.  This has me really freaked out.  My anxiety is primarily caused by feeling "off".  Feeling sick, dizzy, nauseous.....even really tired.....all of them can set me off.  90% of my anxiety attacks are caused by this.  (Incidentally, going off caffeine made a huge difference.  Cut my anxiety attack frequency way down.)  So I'm really scared that all the withdrawal symptoms are going to make me a complete wreck.  The last thing I need is to feel like I can't do it.

By the way, I've been reading a bunch of posts, and you guys all seem so wonderful and encouraging on here.  What a great environment.



Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 1449
   Posted 10/5/2006 3:13 PM (GMT -6)   
the smallest effective effexor dose for anxiety or panic attacks is 75, so I would be asking for an explanation, are you taking another antidepressant as well?

recovered former longtime anxiety and panic attack sufferer and helper of other sufferers  but no training or  qualifications in medicine or psychology, any remarks that may be taken as advice must be confirmed with doctor or other health professional

Elite Member

Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 10/5/2006 3:24 PM (GMT -6)   
I am sure your doc has his reasons for that dose but by al means ask away
Personally I have heard some good things about the effexor w/d as long as it is done slowly andmonitered by your doc.........Are you taking anything for short term like ativan or clonozapam??
Theres always a good chance your doc may put you on something simuliar to these to help with the w/d
Keep us posted and
Glad you enjoy and see the great support here
God Bless
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Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 46
   Posted 10/5/2006 8:14 PM (GMT -6)   
My doctor refers to 37.5mg as a "baby dose".
What you're saying, Harry, is interesting, though.....I've really found it to make a big difference.  I had no anxiety attacks at all for a number of months after starting on Effexor.  I still have them now from time to time, but much less frequently than before.  It's also helped me sleep a lot better.  As well, I had interesting side effects when I started on it - trouble concentrating, drowsiness, and the sensation that my brain was "cold".  But, you've got me thinking.....I'm so susceptible to the placebo effect, and so prone to self-fulfilling prophecies when it comes to my anxiety....I wonder how much of all this was just me thinking "I'm on a drug for my anxiety, so here's how I should feel."  I think just knowing I was on meds was making a difference.  Hmmm.....interesting.  Also, this could mean that getting off of it could be a lot easier than I think, as long as I convince myself .  Something to think about anyway.
Lyn, I'm not on anything else and never have been.  My anxiety's generally pretty mild.  It's bad when I have a bad episode, but those don't happen very often (less than once a month), as long as I stay away from anxiety triggers - e.g. caffeine and alcohol.  I've read that it's sometimes good to take a dose of Prozac when you go off Effexor, though.  I guess I'll just see what my doctor says.
I'm toying with the idea of Cognitive behavioural Therapy (suggested to me in another thread and also by a friend of mine).  I think it could really help me.
By the way, can someone tell me how to post a personal message to someone (if that's possible)?
Thanks guys.  I love this forum already.  I think my husband's already getting tired of me raving about you.  :-)
Sorry for the long post.
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