I have been taking clonazepam 0.5mg, twice a day for 20 years for panic disorder. It had been working fine and I have never abused it. My MD has indicated that current literature shows a 3-fold increase in premature death for any dose of clonazepam and wants to switch me to citalopram to control the panic disorder. He really doesn't have a good handle on tapering and essentially has me taking my usual dose for another month, initiating citalopram 20 mg/day, then continuing on citalopram and dropping dose of clonazepam to 0.25, twice a day. After 20 years, I feel that I'm headed for major w/d symptoms and I don't know if a new MD would be willing to jump in with a better taper plan. My current MD says this regimen should not be a problem, plus I'm not really discontinuing clonazepam, merely dropping the dose. I've read the study on early mortality and it has the appearance of a good study with over 100k patients studied retrospectively. At 66 years of age, is now the time to fix was isn't broken? If I need to switch MDs, do I look for a neuro or psych?
Thank you.