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Below are the 24 most recent journal entries.

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  2010.08.10  15.51

Hi everyone,

I hope this isn't against the rules, and i'm not even sure anyone looks at this community anymore, but I thought asking here would be worth a shot; Does anyone know of a legitimate site that you can purchase Effexor without a prescription?


  2010.03.31  01.55

I began withdrawaling from 300 mgs of Effexor XR in the middle of December, and stopped at the beginning of February. I went from 75 mgs to zero. I had pretty extreme withdrawal symptoms for approximately 10 days, and then I started feeling better.

That is, with the exception of headaches. It's been about two months since I've had any Effexor, and I'm still getting headaches. I figured withdrawals would last a few weeks, but not two months.

I'm wondering, for those who have - how long did your withdrawals last? I'm hoping it IS withdrawals because before December, I RARELY got headaches. I would occasionally get them if I cried uncontrollably or was under stress trying to finish a paper by a certain time, but other than that, I have never been one to get headaches.

I just hope it's not something else.



  2010.02.19  08.55

Hello everyone.
First off I want to say that this is a great community and helps me to feel like less of a freak!
So thankyou to those who post about their problems with this drug, and an even bigger thankyou to those who answer people's questions.

And on that subject, I have a few questions.
I sweat excessively due to Effexor (I am on 150mg daily, taking it for major depressive disorder and general anxiety disorder, both of which are well under control now). Even on cold days, if I walk quickly, I will sweat a lot, mostly on my face, chest and back. Most normal people wouldn't sweat at all in a situation like that. Summer is hell- living in Australia, it can get extremely hot sometimes. But even if the weather is just warm, I will literally be dripping with sweat, which is not only unattractive, but really icky too. I also sweat immensely during the night. Like, soaked pyjamas, wet hair, the whole lot. Its horrid. Does anybody else experience this?

I'm also about to start weaning off of it (hooray!), as I have been mostly fine for over 12 months now. My doctor plans to have me start taking a 37.5mg capsule and a 75mg capsule for two months, then after that have me take 75mg for another two months before trying to wean off of it any further. My question is, does anybody know if the sweating will become less of a problem if my dosage is lowered? Or will I have to wait until I am totally off of it before I notice any change?

One more question- with the plan I have of tapering off of Effexor, has anybody done something similar? If so, are the chances of side effects and withdrawal symptoms high? I can deal with headaches and nausea and tiredness, the thing I am most afraid of are brain zaps, as I came off Effexor too quickly a few years ago and suffered from these pesky little things for about three months afterwards. Not impressed.

Sorry for the tl;dr, and thanks in advance!

Mood: curious

  2010.02.09  12.57
Benadryl & Effexor XR

Meh, I might have already asked this, but to be honest my head is all over place from the random spurts of sudden dizzyness and the brain zaps making me feel like my brain just collapsed in my skull.. I don't know what's going on anymore.

With that being said.

I've heard a lot of people use Benadryl to ween off of effexor.
Does it help with the brain zaps?
Or what exactly does it help with?
I'm seriously the devil coming off this,
I yell at everyone and tear them down out of nowhere.

I would like to try it, but would like to know what all it helps with, if you could let me know please =)


  2010.01.27  12.41

An update on my journey getting off of Effexor! I'm still getting brain shocks, but they're few and far between now. It's been around 3 weeks since I stopped taking it, and the headaches and other problems are now gone! =D


  2010.01.27  22.43
I could use some help

I've been on Effexor 150mg for the past 6 years now. In that time I have missed my pill maybe a handful of times.

I missed it the other day because I got distracted on my way to get my medicine at work, and ended up not taking it and not realizing I'd missed it until 17 hours after I generally take it (at 4pm).

The withdrawal symptoms completely kicked my ass today, and are so much worse than usual that it's freaking me out.

The brain zaps, the extreme nausea, lightheadedness, dizziness, diarrhea. All at once, all day long. It's all I can do just to stand up and walk around.

I did take my pill as soon as I figured out I missed it, and then again at my regularly scheduled time. But the nausea and stomach pain are still present and very bad. The brain zaps have subsided but I have never felt queasy or had an upset stomach for this long after taking a pill after having missed one.

Can anyone offer any advice at all for reducing nausea, helping my stomach feel better, or making the dizziness stop or at least decrease a little?

Any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance.


  2010.01.07  23.32

Has anyone ever found anything that helps with brain shocks? This comes up a lot but I don't remember anything being mentioned to stop/lessen them. There's got to be something.... right??


  2010.01.06  16.42

A lot of people who quit Effexor (or any SSRI, really) get symptoms of depression when they stop. That's common. But what about months after you quit? This is called protracted withdrawal. Most of you guys probably know about it, but some of you don't, and it really helps you stay off medications when you know that depression isn't coming back, it's actually just the medication leaving your system.


Bascially in simple terms, leaving out a lot of detail, what this article says is:

- When a drug is first taken, most of it is absorbed by the body’s tissues (cells), or by proteins in the bloodstream. Some drugs bind more to cells, some more to plasma protein. The amount absorbed varies, depending on lots of different factors. (For simplicity, I am going to leave out discussion about pmed absorption by blood plasma protein.)

- The absorbed portion of a pmed binds to cells, so it IS NOT available for use (by the brain or other part of body where it is needed).

- As you continue to take the medicine daily, body tissue (cells) continue to absorb, until all the tissues are full (saturated) and can no longer hold any more drug. At the saturation point, any additional drug ingested is no longer absorbed and will float freely (unbound) and be available to the brain.

What This Means For Us:
Note that when you are first given a pmed (psychiatric med), the doctor tells you it will take approx 3 weeks for it to work. Ask him why and he will say, it takes time to build up in the blood. I never questioned that explanation, but the 3 bullet points above, explain it.

For most pmeds, they spend (approx) the first 3 weeks busily BINDING to body tissue. Therefore, a portion of ingested drug IS NOT floating in the blood, and IS NOT available to the brain. Once saturation of cells occurs (at approx 3 weeks), newly ingested drug floats freely in the blood - the full therapeutic dose is then available to the brain.

Next point in article:
- When a person stops taking a drug, the amount of drug in blood declines. The bound drug stored in tissues then starts to release back into the body.

What This Means for Us:
The above bullet point is the crux of PW. It explains why (at least for me and others I’ve seen on this board), that around the time we finally become drug-free, we can have about 2 weeks of unprecedented, fabulous mental health, -- then begins a backwards decline.

Mental Decline due to PW
While a normal dose of pmeds might be helpful, too much pmeds can be harmful. Pmed given to a healthy brain can be harmful – often causing the very symptoms it would normally prevent.

Look at side effects listed for any of your pmeds that you (or your children) are taking. Example: at www.healthsquare.com, for Zoloft, it lists possible “mental” side effects such as: rapid mood shifts, suicidal thoughts, worsened depression – the exact things it is supposed to prevent. Example: at www.nami.org, one side effect listed for Lithium is “mental depression”. Example: at healthsquare, side effects listed for Depakote (among others): emotional changeability and depression. Example: Abilify – possible side effects listed include depression and suicidal thoughts (at healthsquare).

I looked up Zoloft overdose at zoloft.com, and it listed agitation, confusion, and anxiety as some of the possible symptoms – not just side effects, but symptoms of overdose.

According to Merck, drugs bound to tissue are slowly and constantly being released from cells. No one I have asked knows how long this can last. Some have suggested it can take YEARS for all the drugs to drop from tissue. Weight loss and exercise can cause larger pockets of drug to be released – it is not a uniform thing.

Once again, I encourage anyone who is sick of the side effects of psychiatric medication to give True Hope a try since that's the only thing that's worked for my depression without making me feel like a zombie. :)


  2010.01.06  19.02

Is double vision a common symptom of Effexor withdrawal? This is a new one for me...


  2010.01.06  15.53
Getting off Effexor

I thought I was at the lowest I could go at 25mg, but my mom got me a pill cutter so I was able to do a week at 12.5mg. And today is my first day with zero! Wish me luck =X


  2009.12.13  21.46
Mood swings blow

So being the brilliant person that I am, I somehow decided to go off Effexor cold turkey. Mainly, because I keep forgetting to take them every day. I'm/was on 187.5mg/day and since going off of them, i've been experience bits of rage and anger along with crying about every 1.5 days. I probably should go back on them before I go completely crazy and wind up in a psych ward. But has anyone else gone through the moodieness/bouts of crying while off of them? It's been about two weeks since I remembered to take my last dose.

Mood: irratable

  2009.10.20  21.29
Stopping Effexor XR: the *aftermath*

Who here has stopped taking Effexor, following it up with no medication at all?

After taking Effexor XR for nearly 2 years, I stopped it over the summer. (Very slowly--it took me a little over 7 weeks in total, and that really helped keep the mood swings in check.) I had many physical effects from coming off it, but that was all.

Now it's been 2 months since I last took a pill of Effexor and I feel TERRIBLE. I am depressed and anxious to the point that I can barely function. And it's only getting worse.

Has this happened to anyone else? Did it get better afterward?
I'm currently waiting to hear back from my doctor.
I'm trying to figure out if my body is still (yeah, 2 months later) adapting to no longer having Effexor in it, or if this was a giant mistake, and that I NEED some kind of medication to function after all. :/

Mood: depressed

  2009.10.05  21.39

I made the really-very bad mistake of forgetting to take my Effexor XR for an entire 24 hours (I usually remember later in the day). I didn't realize until I felt absolutely horrible this morning: brain-shock-like stuff, dizziness, nausea and vomiting, anxiety, crying every five minutes, yadda yadda yadda. Awful.

Is this what stopping Effexor XR is going to be like? This morning, once I was actually able to think straight and wasn't nearly walking into walls or worshipping the porcelain, I thought, "WHY did I even start taking these?!"

I have to admit that the medication is helping (with a combination of other things) and that I am doing better than I probably ever have before, but the stopping part worries me. It's almost like I'd rather take the pills until I die than stop. That's how much this morning sucked. =\


  2009.09.12  11.04
question and random boughts of appreciation

  Hey guys, 

I'm having this weird sleeping habit where i'll go to sleep, feel completely rested, wake up periodically throughout the night, but not really be sleeping. I'll wake up fine and not groggy, like this morning i felt like i had napped for like 30 mins instead of gone to bed for the night.  Does any one else get that? Like they have not completely fallen asleep but still waking up fine the next day? The only reason why I'm concerned about this is because I'm not really sure if i slept last night haha... is that normal? This is day two at the lowest dosage with effexor. 

This stuff makes me feel wired, like I've downed 10 cups of coffee. I get slight jitters. I feel like if i step out the door I'm going to jump out of my skin. I'm alot more alert than usual... 

Ive just got to say communities like these are a god send. I feel so much more secure now that i can talk about my concerns and relate to other peoples experiences. This is amazing guys, thanks for developing this community...


  2009.09.05  00.44

Has anyone ever experienced symptoms of "anorexia" while taking effexor? I started it again a week ago and haven't been able to eat anything. I have no appetite and could care less about eating. It's actually made me quite happy with the way my body is looking. But wondering if this effect goes away?


  2009.08.31  00.00

Hi folks.  I am currently on 300 mgs of Effexor XR for social anxiety disorder.

Ever since I started Effexor, I've had moderate to severe chronic heartburn.  Occaisionally I would research side effects of this drug but never really saw heartburn as one of them.  But I can't ignore the fact that I hardly ever got heartburn before and now I wake up nightly to pop a few rolaids.  It also gets pretty bad if I'm involved in moderate activity.  Like today I was painting my room and my heartburn got really bad.. when usually it only gets bad at night.

Has anyone else experienced this or heard of it?  I am really getting tired of it but I don't want to get off Effexor.


  2009.08.20  21.02

Hi, I was just prescribed Venlafaxine-XR (generic Effexor) today for mild depression, binge eating disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, and social anxiety. I'm suppose to take 37 mg (1/2 of a 75 mg) for the first two weeks and then bump it up to 75 mg and stay on that for a while. What I want to know is, how common is weight gain on this medication?? I'm most worried about that as a lot of my issues revolve around my weight (I get anxious, no motivation, and panicky to leave the house when I gain), I am currently trying to lose some weight that I have gained from recent stress binging and I do not want to gain any extra weight. I also have a low T3 production in my thyroid that I am currently on cytomel for.  Oh! I am also on 125mg of Topamax for the binging too...sorry for the rambling I just want to have an idea of the risk of weight gain before I got take my prescription to the pharmacy. Oh and also, does anyone know if there's a significant difference between the generic and brand?? My insurance will only cover the generic...thank you.


  2009.07.09  11.28
Going off Effexor XR; 7 weeks VS 14 weeks?

I recently spoke to my doctor about stopping Effexor XR. Even though I am on the lowest dosage (37.5 mg) the dizziness and nausea I feel when I miss a dosage is more than enough to knock me off my feet.
He suggested I ween myself off slowly over the course of 7 weeks; on the first week, miss 1 day. On the second week, miss 2 days (spaced apart). On the third week, miss 3 days (also spaced apart), and so forth until I am not taking any pills for 7 days.
When I expressed my fears of withdrawal and mentioned the horrendous living nightmare withdrawal was the last time I went off Effexor, he suggested stopping the Effexor over 14 weeks instead of 7; skip pills for 1 day for TWO weeks, then skip for 2 days for the following two weeks, and so forth.
I thought it was a good idea, and I only just begun the cessation of Effexor (missed my first dosage on Monday and BOY did I feel it), but now I'm starting to wonder if 7 weeks is the better option. The reason being I start my first year as a teacher at the end of August. It's going to be extremely stressful and it's my first year of my career!
If I take the route of 14 weeks, this means I will still be skipping pills as late as October. This worries me a lot, because that's already deep into the first term. If I take the route of 7 weeks, I'll be off Effexor completely by the first week of the school year. Of course, the withdrawal will likely be more intense if I'm weening myself off it that much quicker.

I'm waiting for my doctor's response on all this, but in the meantime I'm curious to hear what other people think.
What is YOUR opinion? What do you think would be the better option?
If you've gone through the process of stopping Effexor, how did you do it and how long did it take?

I don't want to be skipping pills as late as October, yet I don't want to speed up the cessation process any more than necessary. Right now I'm unemployed so I don't have to worry about any responsibilities, but I'm worried for the fall.

Thanks to anyone who bothered to read all this rambling!


  2009.07.08  11.44
New here..with questions

Just started effexor xr at 37.5 . Now 75 mg 1x day for the last 15 days or so.  Nausea adn stomach yuckiness is now gone. I feel like jittery on the inside, but don't feel like doing anything. Does that make sense? I feel like I have this internal energy just racing , but my body feels lazy. I also take 1 mg of klonopin at night to help me sleep. I have 4 kids ages 17, 14, 11, and 16 months that I need to keep up with. My sister yesterday , who is a nurse, gave me some of her Provigil. I took only 1/2 (100 mg) due to the fact that I worry about side effects, interactions, etc. It was great! I felt energetic and happy all day long. Anyone else taken provigil and effexor together? Also anyone else feel that weird racy feeling? Thanks in advance!! :)


  2009.05.27  22.53

Okay, so, I've been on Effexor XR (my 2nd time) for about a year and a half now. This is the longest I've ever been on any kind of SNRI. I'm on the lowest dosage (37.5mg) and I almost NEVER miss a pill. For some reason, this past week I've been getting the brain shivers for no reason I can fathom. Today it seems to have reached some kind of plateau. I feel totally and beyond spaced out, dizzy and sweaty, with random bursts of rage and extreme irritability (which luckily I've been able to keep to myself). This is awfully similar to how I felt when I went off Effexor the first time I took it, which was a complete and utter hell I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy.

So what's causing this? Does anyone know? Has anyone who's been on Effexor suddenly felt withdrawl symptoms when you're actually still taking the pill regularly?


  2009.05.24  10.45

I don't know if any of you have the same dislike for your pills as I do, but I finally figured out an easy way to hide the incredibly bitter taste. (I take 225mg a day of Effexor XR in tablet form - the capsules were better because they didn't have such a bad taste). I try to take my pills with something that has a tart taste. Cranberry juice works well, as does lemonade. Just thought I'd share that with you guys, 'cause if you're like me, I'm better off without the nasty taste.


  2009.05.19  20.16
Missing a dose

I'm currently on 150mg Effexor XR, and it appears that when I miss a dose or two, I begin to loose my perception. Has this happened to anyone else?


  2009.05.03  19.52

I posted a while back about how the lymph nodes on my neck are slightly swollen. I've also noticed for at least a month now, my tonsils (on one side) are swollen but it doesn't cause pain all the time. Anyone else have this side effect? (I also take Cytomel for low thyroid. I don't know if that could be the cause or not...)


  2009.04.30  20.05
Lymph Nodes

I've been on Effexor for a few years now...300mg.  I decided that I needed to get off it.  I reduced my dose to 150mg and I'm doing ok but my lympnodes are more pronounced and sometimes I get a throbbing pain in them.  I do feel like a have the flu but I'm worried about the lymph nodes.  Does anyone have this problem?


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