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Cymbalta Warning: Discontinuing May Result in Severe Withdrawal Symptoms

  [ 235 votes ]   [ 32 Comments ]
By Karen Lee Richards • • March 10, 2014

Cymbalta Warning: Discontinuing May Result in Severe Withdrawal Symptoms
In 2008, Cymbalta became the second drug to receive FDA approval for the treatment of fibromyalgia. It was classified as a serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI) antidepressant. At the time, the FM community was excited to have another medication available that would hopefully reduce pain for at least some FM patients. Little did we suspect the misery that could result when those patients wanted to stop taking Cymbalta.

The medical community has long known that abruptly discontinuing any antidepressant can result in Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome. That's why patients are (or should be) strongly urged not to suddenly quit taking an antidepressant but to talk with their doctor about gradually tapering off the medication.

Cymbalta Discontinuation Syndrome

However, neither physicians nor patients expected the severity of withdrawal from Cymbalta. In fact, it's bad enough to warrant its own diagnosis – Cymbalta Discontinuation Syndrome. An FDA advisory committee report about Cymbalta Discontinuation Syndrome states, “Much anecdotal evidence has accumulated documenting the injury, distress and life management impacts caused by discontinuation of Cymbalta. The effects of discontinuation can be severe and extend for weeks or even months.”

As you read through patient descriptions of their Cymbalta withdrawal experiences, it's not uncommon to see terms like “horrific,” “a nightmare,” and “going through hell.” Some of the withdrawal symptoms described include:

“Brain zaps”
(electric shock sensations)
Extreme mood swings
(“irritability that quickly turns to rage”)
Suicidal thoughts Paranoia
Dizziness Confusion
Nausea and Vomiting Limb pain
Headache Fatigue
Nightmares Insomnia
Diarrhea Anxiety
Excessive sweating Agitation
Involuntary crying or laughing Hypomania
Tinnitus Seizures

The Discontinuation Dilemma

When it comes to discontinuing Cymbalta, the prescribing information says, “A gradual reduction in the dose rather than abrupt cessation is recommended whenever possible. If intolerable symptoms occur following a decrease in the dose or upon discontinuation of treatment, then resuming the previously prescribed dose may be considered. Subsequently, the physician may continue decreasing the dose but at a more gradual rate.”

While gradually reducing the dose sounds like a reasonable approach, there is one very big problem. Cymbalta is only available in three dosages: 20 mg., 30 mg. and 60 mg. To complicate things even further, Cymbalta is a capsule, not a tablet that can be cut in half. Adding insult to injury, patients are warned, “Cymbalta...should not be chewed or crushed, nor should the capsule be opened and its contents sprinkled on food or mixed with liquids.” So although Cymbalta manufacturer, Eli-Lilly, recommends gradually reducing the dose, there is virtually no way to actually do that.

What Can You Do?

If you're currently taking Cymbalta and want to stop, talk with your doctor about developing a discontinuation plan. Make sure your doctor is aware of how severe Cymbalta Discontinuation Syndrome can be and discuss possible options for treating the various symptoms that you may experience. Some doctors have tried switching patients to a different antidepressant that is easier to taper off of and then treating other symptoms with appropriate medications (like antiemetics, antihistamines, etc.) through the withdrawal process.

If you are contemplating whether or not to take Cymbalta, be aware of what you're getting yourself into. Trying to get off of the drug may leave you feeling far worse than the fibromyalgia symptoms you're trying to relieve. Thoroughly discuss the pros and cons with your doctor before making a decision.

Please Discuss This Article:   Post a Comment 

Exact same problem with Pristiq, when are drug companies going to be held accountable?
Posted by: aryiella
Mar 11, 2014
I am on Pristiq 50mg once a day and have been for a few years. I take it for depression and fibro. It is not helping my depression anymore but there is no way to get off of it! And so I am stuck on this stuff and cannot try any other meds until I am off this one! There is no smaller dose than 50mg and the tablet is time-released and cannot be cut or it will not release the medicine in the proper way. I would prefer to not switch to Effexor as a replacement due to the additional side effects I had when on that previously. Pfizer is extremely irresponsible for putting a drug out like this that CANNOT be properly tapered without EXTREME discontinuation symptoms. I have been contacting attorneys, but nobody is interested.
Reply Reply

Phone the FDA 1-800-FDA-1088 Mon–Fri between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. EST
Posted by: Altostrata
Mar 12, 2014
Also make a complaint to Pfizer, Pristiq's manufacturer: (800) 438-1985 in the US. is also collecting complaints about Pristiq.

If you think your doctor has been remiss, file a complaint with your state medical board if you're in the US.


Please heed this article
Posted by: tbrhslp
Mar 11, 2014
I can attest to SEVERE withdrawl symptoms with Cymbalta. Without going into detail, please know that one should absolutely consult their physician before discontinuing and be prepared to have family or friends able and willing to help keep an eye on you during the discontinuation.
Reply Reply

Posted by: catz902001
Mar 12, 2014
I was on 60mg twice a day for 7 yrs along with blood pressure meds and sleeping pills. One day I just decided that I was sick of taking all the meds and I stopped cold turkey. It was hell for a few weeks and my husband and family really suffered with me. But I did it and by adding a few supplements I did really good for about a year. But we had a death in the family and all the stress set off a horrible flare. Now I am back on all of them again. I have been in a bad flare for 2 months but as soon as it breaks, I am going to try again
Reply Reply

Same story, different med
Posted by: Juloo
Mar 13, 2014
I'm in the process of going from Effexor (venlafaxine) to Welbutrin (bupropion). While ramping up with the new med, the doctor had me slowly reducing the Effexor from 150 to 73 to 37.5, then opening the capsules and using half the grains, a quarter, etc.

After a couple of weeks of the last step, I stopped all Effexor. I was relieved to have weathered the switch so smoothly.

Then about a week later, 'discontinuation symptoms' like those listed above set in. Within a few days, I was very emotionally changeable (so not me) running between anger and tears daily. And the brain zaps! It was no different than the weekend I was traveling and had forgotten to bring my meds...from 150 to 0. Awful! Except that this time the jump had been from about 15 mg to 0 - and with support from another med!

Suspecting this might be the case, I counted out a few grains - I figure altogether under 1/10 of the 37.7 capsule, so under 4 mg - and after fits and starts, take this daily until I can see my doctor. I may need to be in this holding pattern a little longer and taper grain by grain. Even several months!

After reading this article, I did more research online and found a study that suggested those tapering off Cymbalta are about 3 times more likely to experience this sitation than Effexor users. My most sincere sympathies to all here undergoing this transition with this reaction. I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy.

Effexor was a god-send
Reply Reply

Posted by: Juloo
Mar 13, 2014
I don't know why that 'Effexor was a god-send was dangling there...although it was true when I began and for the 7 years I took it until it gradually stopped working. But it isn't giving up the ghost quietly!

Edit...150 to -75- to...

I'm posting from an iPad, so entering text is sometomes hit and miss...


Effexor Withdrawal
Posted by: mrswoody
Mar 16, 2014
I took Effexor for years too. I started on it right after it came out when they were still figuring out the dosage. I was on 450mg a day for 4 years when I decided I wanted to stop it. I tried telling my doctors that I had "electric head"(my name for the brain zaps)and horrible anxiety, nausea, etc. but they just didn't believe me. My doctor said to me "you are the only person I know who could get addicted to an antidepressant". After the DSM finally listed the withdrawal symptoms and I showed it to my doc, he started tapering me off. It didn't come in a capsule then so I had to cut up the pills once I got to the lowest dose pill which was 37.5. I got all the way down to a little crumb and I just could not get completely off. It took a full year of reducing it by one a week, then every 5 days, 4 days, etc. before I was finally able to get off it. That was 10 years ago and I still have "electric head".

I recently went on Cymbalta for depression and fibromyalgia but after reading this I am not taking it anymore.
Reply Reply

Lily website
Posted by: Zachary1018
Apr 4, 2014
So I go to the Lily website because I could swear they tout that it isn't a narcotic. If you go to the products page you can click on every product. Except Cymbalta. Try it and tell me whether or not I'm crazy. If it is blocked out, then why?
Reply Reply

Reply to Zachary1018
Posted by: katkar
Apr 4, 2014
You're right. I couldn't click on Cymbalta either. You can still click on the Prescribing Information and the Patient Information but not on the product name. I"m not sure what that's about.

I can tell you, however, that Cymbalta is not a narcotic; it's an antidepressant. Most of us tend to think of withdrawal as only happening when someone stops taking narcotics (opioids). But there are a number of other drugs that result in withdrawal symptoms if you stop taking them abruptly. That's true of most antidepressants. Judging from what many patients and some doctors have said, though, SNRI antidepressants in general and Cymbalta in particular seem to have more severe withdrawal symptoms than some other types of antidepressants. So it's important to taper off of those medications as gradually as possible. – Karen


Oh my gosh
Posted by: Drifter110
Jul 22, 2014
I went to my rheumatologist today to discuss the next steps as in the past 4 months I have weaned off of 100mg Pristiq and was switched to 60 of Cymbalta for my fibromyalgia. After two weeks on Cymbalta I did not like the side effects and she had me wean off by taking every other day then every two days then three days then none. In speaking with her of the terrible side effects, suicidal thoughts, extreme anger and stomach issues etc she told me I needed a psychologist as I have sever mental issues and NEVER had she EVER heard anyone have these symptoms and that I was probably Bi-Polar and should switch from my shitty therapist to a psychologist immediately. She suggested I find a psychologist immediately as must have a sever imbalance in my brain that would cause these side effects and there was no way these drugs caused me to feel that way.
Needless to say, I am not going back there. So happy I found this page as I know I am not bi-polar or insane and think my doctor was way out of line. Thoughts?
Reply Reply

Cymbalta Withdrawal
Posted by: FMeditor
Jul 30, 2014
Drifter110 – Although Cymbalta has been on the market for 10 years, I'm finding many doctors are just beginning to learn that it can have such severe withdrawal symptoms. However, that is no excuse for the way your doctor treated you. All she would have had to do is Google 'Cymbalta withdrawal' to discover your experience is not that unusual. In fact, one of the top links that shows up is a document issued by the FDA because of all the complaints they received. They even gave what you experienced an official name – Cymbalta Discontinuation Syndrome. You can read and download a copy of the FDA document at I hope you're able to find a more understanding doctor.
Reply Reply

What Physicians don't tell you when they prescribe those dangerous drugs.
Posted by: judimld
Aug 8, 2014
Any drug that will interfere with serotonin or norepinephrine activity will cause your body to stop making them naturally. Therefore you will be completely dependent on the drug to regulate those two important elements. Once you stop taking the drug, of course, your body will take awhile to secrete those elements again and you will experience these terrible drug withdrawal symptoms. This is when the so called medical experts, who have created this synthetic chemical imbalance in your body will go a step further and diagnose you with the second most serious psychiatric disorder next to Schizophrenia, BIPOLAR Disorder.. and then God help you to get out of this psychiatric trap and get living on your own energy again. These drugs are dangerous and have ruined many people's lives. I managed to survive this entrapment almost twenty years ago and have written my story in a book called Judging Judi.
Reply Reply

Cymbalta Discontinuation - Misdiagnosed as Bipolar
Posted by: hermeneutic123
Sep 6, 2014

You are absolutely correct. I had severe irritability and suicidal thoughts every time I tried to taper off of Cymbalta and with no history of these symptoms in 35 years my doctor prescribed me Lithium for being bipolar. No one ever informed me about this including my psychiatrist or that this was even a possibility. My side effects were so pronounced when trying to stop the drug that in 2012 the State of South Carolina adjudicated me a mental defective and they ignored the fact that this syndrome existed. Prior to this I was a successful academic and corporate executive with no history of mental illness. I was prescribed Cymbalta for depression I was experiencing while going through a nasty divorce. Though I was discharged by my psychiatrist a year ago and only have the diagnosis of ADD I am now labeled and slandered all over the internet. I continue to excel at work but lose one management position after another when my name is Googled. I lost my home, cars, and filed bankruptcy all because Eli Lilly hid the effects of coming off this drug.

Reply Reply

Answer to withdrawing from Pristiq and effexor
Posted by: lwspeer
Sep 12, 2014
I took pristiq and had to start taking effexor for insurances purposes. I took the extended release for abut two years and soon realized I must get off of this drug. I was losing my hair, having wieght gain, had terrible headaches, asthma symptoms as well as sever dizziness from which I had to go to bed. I went to a new doctor and she tapered me off by adding 1 Prozac plus the 1 Effexor I was taking daily. AT the end of 5 days I was to stop Effexor, and I am doing fine. Neither Pristiq and Effexor helped my depression and the side effects were terrible. When I stopped it I lost 9 pounds in 2 weeks, and everyone in my family has noticed a change in me. I no longer have these dangerous symptoms and feel a great deal better.
Reply Reply

Brain zaps partial seizures
Posted by: eguillot
Sep 22, 2014
I have been on Cymbalta for Fibromyalgia for several years now. I also have epilepsy, and I can tell you that the "brain zaps" are EXACTLY the same feeling that I get right before I have a grand mal seizure. My neurologist calls them partial seizures. So probably those "brain zaps" that everyone is getting from withdrawal are actually partial seizures.
Reply Reply

Cymbalta Withdrawal Lawsuits Now Being Filed
Posted by: roberthilley
Sep 24, 2014
The manufacturer of Cymbalta is facing a number of lawsuits from people who experienced withdrawal symptoms after stopping Cymbalta (duloxetine).

The label states that withdrawal occurs in at least 1% of patients, but studies have found that at least 50% of patients experience withdrawal and 10% of the cases are severe.

If you or somebody you know has taken Cymbalta and suffered from severe withdrawl symptoms, you may be entitled to financial compensation. You can learn more by visiting or you can contact the law firm for a free case review by dialing (866) 920-0753.
Reply Reply

Lawsuits against cures, hmmm
Posted by: LadyConstance
Sep 25, 2014
I don't understand. If someone needs medicine for an affliction and goes to a doctor and gets medication who is to blame? Are you saying we should have been given a disclaimer to sign? Come on, I am in the throws of Cymbalta withdrawal and if I had to point a finger at who put me here...I couldn't. I mean if there is one sure thing to know about any drug is IT'S A DRUG. Some provide real, life saving results and even those can have sketchy side effects. It's about balance and choice, our own choice, no? If we keep suing the drug companies we will NEVER get a cure for cancer! Now I'm not saying these guys are always good guys but if you have ever suffered a disease so horrible that you would take snake venom to feel better you would know that worrying about the backside is not even in the realm of "what if's" because if tomorrow and for a year or 2 your life would include joy, laughter and health you might just take that snake venom, it's up to you.


Who knew? Cymbalta withdrawal ongoing.
Posted by: LadyConstance
Sep 25, 2014

I am a 62 yr old female and this is my experience:
I see others had been on Effexor as was I. I guess it stopped working? I can't quite say but I never had problems with Effexor. New Doctor switched me to Cymbalta a few years ago. I too was on Welbutrin with the Cymbalta. I also, since I have no thyroid, that came out earlier this year with a cancer scare, take Synthroid and Caduet for high blood pressure AND cholesterol. Add to these Adderal for ADHD. Absurd, too much!

Then I developed a disgusting skin thing, they called it nummular eczema/dermatitis. So I was put on Dapsone AND Cyclosporine. Insanity! So all by myself, in an effort to heal my skin, I decided to go gluten free and to get off some of these meds. I was convinced one of them was causing my skin issue which by the way, is the worst itch I have ever, ever, experienced, absolutely no relief, and so have no idea, all over my legs, arms, hands, looks like boils, so I have that going for me!:( Yuk.

For about a week all seemed to be going fine as I got off Welbutrin and reduced Adderal and Cymbalta. I guess they hang out in your body for a good long while because the poop finally hit the fan a few days ago and I was sure I had MS! Nausea, weakness, aches in muscles, esp. legs and glutes. Couldn't walk the dog. Couldn't feed the dog w/o barfing. Sweating, shaking, major brain fog, words escaped me every time I tried to make sense, sounded like an idiot. I was also manic! Crazy talk happened and I was like OMG what did I just say? Shut up! Shut up! I own a vintage furniture store and also a design biz and I can't believe I have gotten this far w/o making a complete fool of myself. It has been about 2 weeks and as I was driving home today from meeting with a design client I said aloud, "here come the tears" because it was 4 PM and they always come at that time. Got home and immediately called my long time family doctor, a female, who has always helped me get right with such kindness and compassion. It was after hours but I got her via her service and she took charge, called in RX for my nausea and instructed me to get into her office in the AM with all my meds and we would figure it out. I feel hopeful. Just bracing for the dreams...
Reply Reply

Cymbalta Withdrawal Symptons
Posted by: kattails
Sep 25, 2014
I stopped my Cymbalta (90mg daily) about 2 months ago cold turkey and I still have excessive sweating. Does anyone know how long this will last. Thank you
Reply Reply

Cymbalta...what if our brain changes are permanent?
Posted by: LadyConstance
Sep 28, 2014

I am in week 2 1/2 of withdrawal. I have been reading so many blogs I can't keep them straight, and my w/d ain't helpin'! But has anyone considered the possibility that some of our neuropathic issues may remain forever? What if our brains are permanently scarred in some way? How will we ever know except to keep talking? I have seen some absurd entries in some blogs like the woman who wrote in (...oh!...there went a brain zap...) and said she quick cold turkey without symptoms. I don't believe her. For one, I don't have time to waste, who does? I run a business, own a home, have children, dogs, you get the picture, I am just like most of you guys writing in. Would I even think to bother to research, find and write in a blog on Cymbalta withdrawal if I had no issues? No, no I would not, so I don't get the point of some of these folks mudding up the waters. Maybe they work for Lilly, who knows. I believe via my reading and personal exp. that everybody is going to have some kind of symptoms withdrawing from this drug, period. My point is, to those of us who are writing for help and TO HELP let's keep going until the fat lady sings; when we find out if any of us are permanently scarred by Cymbalta and I guess, together, we will figure out what to do then.
PS: I don't think the term "brain zap" is a good description of what is happening in my head but it's there whatever it is, a quick ZOOOOM! and gone. Any thoughts?
Reply Reply

Posted by: GratefulDoctor
Sep 29, 2014
I had a friend, an MSW clinical psychotherapist, who seemed the picture of emotional balance and good sense. I had not seen her in a long time, but had heard that she'd found relief from her fibromyalgia by taking Cymbalta. She posted on her website that she'd been enjoying her dog and looking forward to visiting friends in another city. Two days later she was dead at 58 years of age. I heard that it was a suicide. I do not know if she'd stopped her Cymbalta. The possibility that the medication contributed to her death haunts me.
Reply Reply

Cymbalta Withdrawal Help and Support Group
Posted by: roberthilley
Oct 1, 2014
If you are looking for a support group to assist you in coping with the withdrawal symptoms associated with the discontinued use of Cymbalta, you should check out:
Reply Reply

Discontinuing Cymbalta
Posted by: sledford
Oct 10, 2014
I had been taking a 30mg capsule since the beginning of April. Getting on this medicine was absolutely horrifying. I had every side effect listed ...and some! If it weren't for the many blogs I had read online, I wouldn't have pushed through in the beginning. I just thought I had to do it to get to a better place. I was taking it for horrible mood swings and irritability. It worked extremely well for those problems. I felt so much better mentally. My only issue was the constant fatigue I felt. It caused me to gain weight, because of my lack of energy. I decided I should quit taking it. I did the removing of the little balls in the capsule. I started on September 24th and was completely off by October 6th. The first two days of no meds was fine. However, I am now feeling the constant motion sickness, dizziness, nausea. I can't believe that a medication that causes so many people such extreme side effects is even available. I am just going to push through and hope it gets better soon!
Reply Reply

Posted by: LJHM
Oct 14, 2014
I think Lily doesn't list Cymbalta because of all the issues ppl are having with withdrawal symptoms, and that they did not have a plan for tapering ppl off of the med, and they were not upfront with doctors or patients when they came out big time with cymbalta. There are no ads on TV any more like they had been advertising.
I think they're afraid of law suits. I know I went thru a horrible year of withdrawal symptoms and am still having side effects..
Reply Reply

Cymbalta withdrawal side effects
Posted by: LJHM
Oct 14, 2014
Hi! I had a horrendous time getting off cymbalta. I had been taking 60 mg (for nerve pain - did NOTHING for it) for many years. However, when I wanted to try to get off of it, I had the worst depression and weepiness of my life and thought, wow! I must be really depressed. That's what kept me on it for so long - after realizing that 1 1/2 years into taking it, it was not helping for the specific nerve pain it was prescribed for. I had in the past been on an antidepressant for nerve pain - amitryptiline which helped very much. However, it changed so much about me - my taste in food, desire to go out walking like I had been doing daily, made me sluggish and bc of all this actually caused depression but the reason I could not take it any longer was bc by month 12, I realize it was the med that caused me to go from my lowest weight in over 20 years to my highest weight ever, by far - I gained 70 pounds in one year! I am 5' 9" tall, but it was horrible. I had to get off of it. So the pain did come back but I had no withdrawals -a nd I was never the same person.
Found a dr - expert in this type of pain who would answer emails- he recommended cymbalta since amitryptiline had worked.. Cymbalta did nothing as I said. I did not have issues starting it.
A year ago, I tried to quit cold turkey. I was on 60 mg. Bad move. I was SO sick - general malaise, myalgia, internal body tremors, high blood pressure (despite being on BP meds and a diuretic 2 times a day!), strong palpitations, nausea, horrible head aches, severe weepiness and depression - back on cymbalta. Figured I was now too depressed a person, plus the high blood pressure and palpitations were scaring me. Ran out of the meds a month later on a vaca and decided to hold out till home to refill. Not a good choice - felt so horrible again.
Finally consulted with the dr. who had me go from 60 to 30mg. I had no reaction. Stayed on this about 4 months, then she had me down to 20 mg. She told me in a few weeks or a month or so, I could try taking every other day. I decided to give myself time and stayed on it for about 4 months then tried to go every other day. I went right back to daily I started being so sick..After a few months I was determined to get off of this toxin and I just started adding hours between the daily doses. So instead of 24 hours, the next time say it was 28 hours between, I didn't have any specific time schedule. My goal was to make sure I always stayed off of it longer than they time before. I was gradually able to increase the hours between dosages until I was finally taking it every other day, then 2 1/2 days. This was not too long ago. I have about 5 pills left and I am OFF of them! I do not and have not had the zaps ever. Thank God. But I am not the same person either. I feel it permanently changed my disposition and I become agitated very easily and react much more strongly to things than I should be or ever used to. I am hoping and praying in time, this too will subside, or else I will have to go on some type of med - that's not TOXIC like cymbalta and has a long half life, unlike cymbalta which has a short half life.
Lily IMO, has much blame and shame putting out a drug that they have no protocol for terminating use. They should have a dosage smaller than 20 mg. And they should have informed the medical practitioners prescribing it about how difficult it would be to come off of. I think they should be sued, for the pain and suffering so many of us have gone thru. I was given no warnings and when I tell the dr all the withdrawal symptoms she looks at me like I'm half crazy or exaggerating. ..not at all. Horrible, horrible drug. Shame on Lily
Reply Reply

Make it stop.
Posted by: notwinning
Oct 21, 2014
Dear Eli Lilly,

You win! Although crying while writing this concession, I'm not a sore loser. I am a nauseous, disoriented, fatigued, anxious and emotionally distraught loser, but after only 6 days of attempting to discontinue use of Cymbalta (at 30mgs) I'm throwing up, and throwing in the towel. As a consumer that has 2 jobs, a household to run and yet can now barely drive, look at a computer or move my head from side-to-side due to dizziness and nausea, I remain your loyal customer. Your total lack of any manageable discontinuation options and standard of care for someone who would actually like to stop taking your drug, ensures this.

Reply Reply

Cymbalta and other antidepressants/anxiety meds
Posted by: EdG
Nov 14, 2014
I have suffered from major anxiety and depression and have taken every antidepressant out along with Xanax for 15 years.
I started taking GABA supplement and feel better than I have for as long as I can remember, and have cut the meds to a fraction of what I was taking. Believe me try it!
Reply Reply

cymbalta side effects and withdrawal
Posted by: rulupa
Dec 5, 2014
I was started on cymbalta 60 mg while in hospital. I was quite ill after having 14 admissions in 2 years and being told I just had chronic pain syndrome when in fact I had multiple abdominal abscesses that required surgery to fix. At any rate I was never told what I was taking or given any information about cymbalta. I do have a form of myalgia, although not fibromyalgia, but depending on who I asked no one seemed certain if I was started on cymbalta due to pain or the idiot doctors insistence that I must be depressed since they couldn't justify my pain complaints.
Because I was also put on a number of other medications at the same time that have similar side effects it took me 2 years to realize my complaints were actually related to cymbalta. I was going thru both side effects and withdrawal on a daily basis. I have had all of my large intestine removed so these slow release medications don't stay in my system long enough to fully absorb. But I didn't even know cymbalta was a slow release drug until recently. I get everything from extremely excessive sweating to the point where I can't work because I actually drip sweat of patients, muscle fatigue where I don't think I'll make it home from a walk, a feeling that my chest is constricting, have had seizures - one of which resulted in a brain injury because I fell and hit my head. The mood swings and serious suicidal thoughts as well as at times uncontrollable rage. Because of other health problems all medical personnel are so quick to blame it on other things and not one ever suggested cymbalta could be to blame. I've seen endocrinilogists, psychiatrists, internal medicine specialists, neurologists, cardiologists but once I read this site everything fit perfectly. This drug is dangerous!!!!!! If you need it fine but patients should make the choice going in with their eyes open. It has almost cost me my life and the fight is far from over. I was switched over to liquid effexor which my pharmacist told me I would only need to take for a week and would prevent withdrawal symptoms. Wrong! but hopefully they will not be a severe or last a long as when I tried to stop cold turkey. Good luck to others.
Reply Reply

Posted by: washk
Dec 11, 2014
I have been on Cymbalta (currently 60 mg) for almost 10 years now. I was originally prescribed it for depression but it did not work for that at all. Most other anti-depressants I had tried prior made me suffer very severe side effects. What kept me on the Cymbalta was I also had endometriosis and after my 4th surgery was still suffering severe pelvic pain and doctors could not figure out the cause. Surprisingly, I noticed that the Cymbalta completely stopped my daily pelvic pain. So I decided to stay on it. Fast forward a few years, I tried to stop taking it and got all the symptoms of withdrawal I've read about. I couldn't handle it so I stayed on it.

Now for the past two years, my insurance companies refuse to pay for it. It is not prescribed for the FDA approved conditions, therefore they will not cover it as a benefit. Since I can't stop taking it, I've had to apply to Eli Lilly for patient assistance, which luckily I have been approved for because who can pay the $400/month for a medication.

I feel trapped. I'm trying to sign up for insurance for next year right now and again it is not covered by any of the providers. I am thinking I will try to taper off this year with the guidance of my doctor and keep track of my withdrawal symptoms. I will ask if I can get a low dose of prozac added to my daily regimen to see if it helps with the brain zaps.

And I love how there is a generic version of Cymbalta but it is not a preferred drug by most insurance companies and still costs as much as the brand name. This is ridiculous. And if I stop taking it, will my pelvic pain come back?
Reply Reply

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Natural Remedies

Are You Obtaining the Proper Enzymes? Are You Obtaining the Proper Enzymes?
Three-Step Strategy to Reverse Mitochondrial Aging Three-Step Strategy to Reverse Mitochondrial Aging
The Brain Boosting and Fatigue Fighting B-12 The Brain Boosting and Fatigue Fighting B-12
Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Tart Cherry Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Tart Cherry
The Curcumin Revolution: The Curcumin Revolution: "Golden" Ticket to Better Health

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Fibromyalgia Symptoms
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What is CFS?
ME/CFS Diagnosis
ME/CFS Symptoms
ME/CFS Treatments
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