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Can anyone tell me how to withdraw from Geodon? I have tapered down from 160 mg. a day to 80 over a 4 week period. I get incredibly sick in between my morning and evening dose - horrible headache, dizziness - nausea and just sick all over. I want to take the next step of cutting down to once a day at 40 mg. - but am wondering if that's going to be even worse yet. Anyone have any suggestions for getting off this incredibly tough medication? Thanks.
Here's some info for you.....Dave
Geodon is considered a novel antipsychotic medication, one in the newer class of antipsychotics or neuroleptic medications, designed to provide treatment for mental disorders without the negative side effects of many of the older antipsychotic drugs. The FDA approved Geodon to treat symptoms of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, particularly bipolar mania.
Geodon is a powerful medication and should be taken exactly as prescribed. It should not be discontinued without the approval of a physician. Withdrawal symptoms may be present if Geodon is discontinued abruptly.
Withdrawal symptoms usually occur within 24 to 48 hours after stopping the medication. Abrupt symptoms may begin two to three days after the sudden withdrawal from Geodon. These are rare, but often severe, and include: gastritis; nausea; vomiting; dizziness; tremors; feelings of warmth or cold; sweating; tachycardia (rapid heart rate); headache and insomnia.
In addition to withdrawal symptoms, patients who abruptly go off Geodon may also suffer from rebound neurological symptoms including akathisia (inner restlessness and continuous leg movements), dystonia (slow, involuntary, arrhythmic muscle contractions that produce distorted postures), and Parkinson''s disease-like symptoms within the first few days of withdrawal.
Tardive dyskinesia, a non-reversible involuntary movement disorder, which results from dopamine hypersensitivity after long-term treatment with an antipsychotic drug, has also been reported within one to four weeks of withdrawal from Geodon. Tardive dyskinesia most commonly affects the tongue, jaw and facial expressions, causing distorted movements of each.
The most serious withdrawal symptom that may occur after discontinuing treatment with Geodon is a psychotic relapse. While minor symptoms of the disorder may persist in patients who end Geodon treatment, there is also a risk of a major psychotic episode. Doctors must use extreme care in gradually weaning patients off Geodon and other antipsychotic medications to avoid severe withdrawal symptoms and possible psychotic relapses. There is no cure for psychotic disorders. Ongoing treatment is the best way to relieve symptoms and prevent further episodes.
I took my last dose of Geodon yesterday. I am going to quit cold turkey. I don't believe there is such thing as tapering with this drug. When I am one hour late taking it, withdrawal symptoms kick in. Sweating, chills, tight jaw, and all around flu like feeling.
So, I don't believe tapering will work. I am going to ride it out and deal with it. But if anyone has a remedy to ease the intense pain, please let me know. Thanks, t
Hi! I've been there...and I found what worked for me..
Hello! This is my first post, and it's taken awhile because I wanted to read and learn from others. I took Geodon for 2 years; at one point I was up to 180 mg. a day. I hated it. I gained 55 lbs, I felt sluggish all the time, and basically had "numbed" emotions. I talked to my doctor about weaning off it and he said that since I had been taking so much for as long as I had that I should taper. I went down 20 - 40 mg every week which wasn't easy, but after 2 days I got used to it. That process lasted for quite awhile. Finally, all I had left was 40 mg a day. I tried to quit cold turkey from that and just couldn't - the side effects/withdrawal was horrible. I was dizzy, shaky, couldn't think right and felt like I was going to die; or rather, that dying would be preferrable to how I was feeling at that point. I started feeling the withdrawals about 3-4 hours after I was supposed to take my dose. After about 30 hours and several hot baths, I decided (without telling my doctor) to open up the 40 mg capsule and dump out half of it, so that it would be close to 20 mg. Did that for a week, then went down to about 10 mg for a week and viola! It worked! I had tried so many times to get off it. I've been off Geodon now for 11 months, lost all the extra weight and I've never felt better. Okay, that's not true, I felt better when I was in my 20's, but you get the picture. That's what worked for me. I hope you are able to do this safely and as discomfort-free as possible. Hot showers help. Ibuprofin also helped me. Hang in there. You can do this!!!! Keep us posted & take care!
withdrawing cold turkey
I am withdrawing cold turkey. I didn't read geodon was a bad one to go cold turkey on until after I threw my pills down the garbage disposal last night. It gives me such a voracious appetite like a wolf. All I can think about is eating all day. It's disgusting. I was on it 12 days and gained 5 pounds. Last time on it I gained 28 pounds. I have insomnia, but I have had that for days and read geodon can cause that. i also read geodon can make you more anxious and I feel that's true for me.
I am glad not to have anymore geodon because it makes me eat like a savage. I prefer (hypo)mania to this. I just hope to God I can sleep soon. I was on 80 mgs, but took 160 the night before last night then none last night. I wish my husband had never pushed me to be go back on it.
Does anyone know if there's a natural cure for mania? Like intensive meditation/yoga/exercise/talk therapy? They don't quite seem to cut it though. I think those herbal remedies they advertise seem like a scam. I don't want to take any other pills. I don't even get racing thoughts- I just have too much energy in my head that won't calm down and go to sleep. I just wish there were a natural way to work with this illness b/c the pills all SUCK!!
Benadryl helps with withdrawl symptoms of Geodon
I was taking Geodon (and I am supposed to take one 20mg pill per day to get off of it) but I am not going to take any at all. I want off this nasty medication. It has cost me dearly due to the WORST anxiety attack I ever experienced in my life! It was BAD. I was taking 80mg 2x daily, and I suffered anxiety and panic and fear for absolutely no reason what-so-ever. It was so bad that I could only think "hospital," but I had my two beloved 7-year old dachshund dogs with me and there was no one to watch them for me, so in a MAJOR panic I managed to place an ad on the Internet to give my two dachshunds away so I could go to a hospital. Now my dachshunds are gone for good and I can never get them back... and THAT because this stinking Geodon threw me into the worst fit of panic, anxiety and fear that I ever experienced. I want off this ????! So, to help with the symptoms of withdrawl I am taking two Benadryl each day, and two before bedtime. I am just sick over the loss of my two dogs. I am so angry that the makers of Geodon can get away with marketing such an awful drug. I have now suffered a terrible loss because of Geodon and I can never, ever get my dachshunds back. Not ever! I want off of Geodon. I will NEVER take it again for as long as I live. I am off of it cold-turkey. Even if I suffer withdrawl symptoms they can not be any worse than the panic, anxiety and fear that I experienced for two weeks! It was beyond anything I can possibly describe. It was absolute HELL.
Geodon is EVIL
It has made me have violent thoughts that are incredibly hard to continue supressing. It also has made me shake. It's relentless. I just keep shaking and bobbing my legs. I'm now being taken down from 40mg to 20mg due to the shaking so the withdrawal symptoms are just horrific. My legs hurt so bad from moving so much and no amount of pills have been able to counteract it. I hate it. I will forever HATE Geodon. I need to stay on it cuz I need it, but oh how I take that pill with such distain...
Withdrawl from Anti-Psychotic and Anti-Depressant Drugs
About 8 years ago I started on a combination of different drugs for depression, panic attacks, anxiety and PTSD, due to very stressful experiences in my life. One thing led to another in a vicious cycle. While being on the drugs I tried to commit sucide, so more drugs were added and/or changed. These were some of the drugs: Geodon, Cymbalta, Effexor, Klonopin, Abilify. I was taking all the drugs together at very high mgs. that I quite don't remember at this time. I quit cold turkey about 6 yrs. ago.
The 2 years, I was on these drugs, were the most horrible years of my life. When I decided to quit, I didn't know anything on how to weaned off or how to do it. How could I know, if while under the influence of these drugs , I couldn't even think? So, I just started skipping days on my different drugs. I thought, I was going to die! I was in a constant, extreme pain around my stomach area and I started shaking very badly. Even my eyelids would shake. To be able to sleep, I had to hold my eyelids closed. Since, I was unable to reasoned clearly, I tthought I was suffering from an illness. My husband didn't know either, so he was taking me to the ER at least twice a week for my horrible symptoms. The pain in my stomach area was extremely intense and constant for a period of about 10 to 12 days, day and night. I was not nauseas or vomiting. But, I couldn't eat anything and couldn't sleep due to the severe pain. Just took some fluids.
The pain started within the next couple of days after quitting the drugs and the tremors about 5 days after.
After 10 to 12 days the pain started decreasing slowly. It was a gradual process. The tremors stopped altogether, at once. I just stopped shaking one day. For 6 years, I have been drug free. I haven't felt better in my whole life. I believe that anti-depressants and anti-psychotic drugs should be taken only as a treatment for short term. Never quit cold turkey on these drugs. I would not recommend it.
Withdrawl from Anti-Depressants and Anti-Psychotic Drugs
About 8 years ago I started on a gradual combination of different drugs for depression, panic attacks, racing thoughts, anxiety and PTSD, due to very traumatic experiences in my life. One thing led to another in a vicious cycle. While being on the drugs I developed hallucinations and tried to commit sucide several times, so more drugs were added and/or changed. I was non-functional in every sense of the word. All I did was sleep and rest. I didn't want visits or the company of anyone, not even of my family. I couldn't write and couldn't read because I couldn't focus. I suffered from severe constipation. I lost the pushing reflex of the sphincter in the rectum due to weakness in that muscle, therefore I was unable to push for bowel movements. I was like zombie. These were some of the drugs: Geodon, Cymbalta, Effexor, Klonopin, Abilify. I was taking all the drugs together, but I quite don't remember the milligrams, at this time. I quit cold turkey about 6 yrs. ago.
The 2 years, I was on these drugs, were the most horrible years of my life. When I decided to quit, I didn't know anything on how to weaned off or how to do it. How could I know, if while under the influence of these drugs , I couldn't even think? So, I just started skipping days on my different drugs. I became so sick, I thought, I was going to die! I was in a constant and extreme pain around my stomach area and I started shaking very badly. Even my eyelids would shake. To be able to sleep, I had to hold my eyelids shut with my fingers. There were days/nights in a row, that I could not sleep at all. Since, I was unable to reasoned clearly, I tthought I was suffering from a serious illness. My husband didn't know either, so he was taking me to the ER at least every other day for my horrible symptoms. The pain in my stomach area was excrutiating, intense and constant (24/7) for a period of about 10 to 12 days, day and night. I could never get any relief, no matter what medication they gave me at the ER. I did not tell the ER doctors that I was on any type of drugs and that I was trying to quit. I didn't want them to put me back on them, and have to start all over again. I was so confused that I didn't know these could be withdrawl symptoms. The doctors just thought I had a stomach flu. I was not nauseas or vomiting. But, I couldn't eat anything due to the severe pain and the shaking. Just took some fluids.
The pain started within the next couple of days after quitting the drugs and the tremors about 3 or 4 days after.
After 10 to 12 days the pain began to decrease slowly in intensity, . It was a gradual process. The tremors stopped altogether, at once, during this period. I just stopped shaking one day.
For 6 years, I have been drug free. I haven't felt better in my whole life. I do not suffer from depression, panic attacks, anxiety or PTSD anymore. If for any reason I feel sad or depressed, I start thinking positive thoughts and I also pray. It is normal for normal people to feel depressed or sad, at some point, if something emotional is going on in your life. You do not need to run and get on anti-depressants. I think that anti-depressants and anti-psychotic drugs should be taken only as a short term treatment in combination with pyscho- therapy and counseling. Eventually, (within a 6 month to a year period) the patient should be weaned off to see how the patient is able to function and if he/she is already mentally healthy. We can suffer from temporary mental illnesses, just as our body suffers from all kinds of temporary physical illnesses. When the physical illness has improved, we don't need to take meds. anymore. I think, the same should apply for mental illnesses, specially those caused by trauma. If you continue on the drugs and don't get weaned off, how would you know if you are cured from your mental illness? I believe, you can even get worse, which is what happened to me. I started getting better after going through counseling, therapy, attending support groups and becoming more active in my faith.
Never quit cold turkey on one, any or all of these drugs. These drugs are very powerful. Have your doctor's supervision and advise as how to do it. I guess, that no one (not even the doctor) can guarantee that you won't have withdrawl symptoms, but at least, they won't be as severe. I did it, the way I did, because I didn't know any better. During that period of time, I was basically a zombie, unable to function or reasoned clearly about anything. My doctor refused to take me off the drugs (he knows the reason and not judging him) and that's why I did it the way I did.
Unless you're diagnosed with schizophrenia, you do not need to be permantly on anti-depressants and/or anti-psychotic drugs. Seek support groups, counseling and/or therapy and you'll get better. Most of all, become active in your faith and be hopeful! This what I did, Today, I'm a very happy and accomplished person and dealing with the ups and downs of life without drugs.
...this is just my personal testimony and opinion based on my experience.
To be frank with all of those who are asking how to reduce or diminish the severe side effects (insomnia, nausea, headaches, rebound of psychotic episodes, tardive dyskinesia, etc), I can tell you this is not going to be easy and a gradual tampering off the drug is required following this withdrawal program under a qualified physician supervision, and tailored to each patient's particular circumstances. Geodon, as most other neuroleptics, causes a sometimes irreversible changes in the brain chemistry of those who are on it (the longer the use the higher the probability of this to occur). Specifically, they act initially by blocking the D2 Dopamine receptors in the three main Dopamine pathways of the brain (the basal ganglia, the limbic system and the frontal lobes), but it is the counterbalance measures that the brain enacts to neutralize this effect that later will be responsible for the rebound and even aggravation of the symptoms that originally prompted the use of the drug. This counterbalancing adaptation consist mainly in the growing of up to 30% additional D2 receptors at the post synaptic neurons of the mentioned neural pathways as compared to the quantities that were functional before the drug was started. This excess in D2 receptors makes those neurons much more sensitive to the Dopamine neurotransmitter and therefore, when the drug is suddenly retired all of the effects of high Dopamine action will manifest themselves. These biological adaptations were shown to exist with all neuroleptics as early as the 70s by several researchers ( an Italian psychiatrist, Dr. Fava, among them) but most of this evidence have been suppressed by the APA in collusion with the pharmaceutical industry because of the destructive effects it would surely have on the professional image of those organizations and on the psychiatric profession in general. Those interested in finding more information on this view point should read the impressive book "Anatomy of an Epidemics" by the journalist Robert Whitaker, "the most important book on psychiatry in a generation", according to the Huffington Post, or the other excellent book "Medication Madness" by the renowned psychiatrist Dr. Peter Breggin. Good luck to all of those who have fallen victims of "modern" psychiatric drug treatments!.
Withdrawing from geodon
nilremo, please respond to this if you can; you sound very knowledgable and I need help. I see that your post is recent, so hope you're still available...
I am in the process of weaning off geodon under my physician's guidance (not the prescribing practitioner, who would not help me when I asked). I have been on it since mid October, and have been weaning off it since first week of November. The prescribed dose had been 120mg at night and 20 mg in the a.m. I am also concurrently taking klonopin and prozac.The geodon weaning pattern went like this: first eliminated the 20 mg a.m. dose and remained on 120 mg at night, for one week. The next recommended step was to cut the 120 to 60 and see how that went. Within the first day it went badly, with severe leg shaking and generalized anxiety. I consulted my physician and we restored the dosage arrangement to 80 mg at night and 20 in the morning. This went for two weeks, followed by two weeks of 60 mg at night and 20 in the morning. That brings me to this week, where 4 days ago I began 60 mg at night and nothing in the morning. Also, ten days prior to that the prozac was upped from 20 mg to 40. Throughout this multi-week process I have been gradually feeling worse, both in depression and anxiety and the physical, akathisia symptoms. It is now to where I am extremely concerned over proceeding further with weaning off it, and am worried about the possible biological brain changes you spoke of being the case with me, and the cause of my worsening symptoms as I lower the dose. You indicate these changes are sometimes irreversible and that length of time on the drug is a factor in their likelihood. I have now been on this drug for ten weeks, with 5 and a half or so of them being the weaning process. Do you have any concrete data on what length of time on the drug is capable of causing these changes? And what about their reversibility once off the drug? I am concerned I'm in a catch-22 kind of bind where the longer I take to wean off the drug, the longer I am still on the drug, and increasing the risk of brain changes that may be irreversible. Do you have any further insights into this you could share with me?
I appreciate any help you can give.
Why would you quit cold turkey? Are you trying to take a trip to the ER. Your doctor will be more than happy to help you taper.
Originally Posted by tek110372
Artane will make Geodon more tolerable.
Geodon 1 month 60mg [
Last edited by ddcmod; 03-23-2012 at 08:00 PM.
Last edited by ddcmod; 03-23-2012 at 08:00 PM.
This is disgusting...
I hope no one else stumbles onto this like I did. I missed both doses by accident on Friday and because it's the weekend there is no one I can ask about withdrawal symptoms short of going to urgent care or the ER. I started reading this and I am absolutely appalled. Do none of you people have DOCTORS??? And for everyone saying, "I asked, but my doctor wouldn't take me off of it," if that is truly, TRULY the case, your doctor should lose their license. What I am guessing is more likely is, "I meekly asked my doctor if maybe it was possible at all that I could hopefully come off of it at some point but they strongly suggested I didn't and so I just gave up and decided to quit taking it without their guidance and supervision." If you are firm in your resolve to quit taking a medication, NO doctor would say you can't just so you can go home and do THIS without medical supervision. Do none of you realize that it is not only uncomfortable but also dangerous to decide by yourself how to come off of a medication like this?
Like I said, I can only hope that no one comes here looking for help and finds this disgusting ???? you people are passing off as "advice".
I accidentally forgot to take my geodon (I usually take them at dinner) and I was up all night with withdrawal symptoms. Chills, shaking, twitching, racing thoughts, nausea, anxiety feeling. Its horrible. I really want to get off this pill because its scary that I react this way. Plus ive had more anxiety attacks while on this pill that I have ever had in my whole life. But my doctor doesnt really seem to care, I tell her side effects or problems im having and shes like, "oh, thats not your meds doing that" without asking any questions to clarify or anything. But after researching side effects, I know it IS my meds doing those things. I really wish I had insurance and could go to a dr. That actually cares.
Fasting to remediate withdrawal.
I am being taken off ziprasidone and I'm self medicating with Benadryl and a vegetable fast, since the majority of my side effects are digestive.
I am eating only raw vegetables, fresh vegetable juices, and vegetable smoothies. Once a day I'll have a cup of almonds for protein.
Other than anxiety and irregular, unpredictable bowel movements I'm doing great as I'm coming off the meds. I think the majority of the digestive problems with ziprasidone are because of inflammation caused by diet, things like meat, sugar, and dairy.