It’s been nine days since I took my last dose of Viibryd. This post is a detailed account of what led me to this decision (it’s the side effects, stupid), how I stopped taking the drug, and my withdrawal experience. Because my posts about antidepressants are the most searched-for topic that leads to my blog (that, and variations of “I’m in love with a pedophile,” which I find most disturbing), this will be fairly detailed. As always, if depression, antidepressants, and recovery therefrom aren’t your thing, you might skip this and wait for my next post. I think I’ll call it: Bad Daughter.
******LEGAL DISCLAIMER–TERMS AND CONDITIONS: This writing consists of my Viibryd experience and personal decision and methodology for quitting the drug. I AM NOT A DOCTOR. I could be wrong in attributing some of these side effects to Viibryd. I could be an idiot for stopping the drug without conferring with my doctor. I could be an idiot in not tapering off the drug more slowly. But this is my idiocy. I IN NO WAY RECOMMEND THAT ANYONE ELSE FOLLOW MY PLAN OR MY IDIOCY. YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR OWN IDIOCY, AND WHETHER YOU DECIDE TO CONSULT WITH YOUR DOCTOR IS UP TO YOU. I BEAR NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR STUPIDITY. ONLY MY OWN. IF YOU DON’T AGREE TO THESE TERMS, STOP READING NOW, IDIOT.*********
In preparing to write my latest farewell to an antidepressant, I looked over my previous posts on Viibryd. I’m surprised to see I’ve been on the drug (40 mg) for a full year. I started this current round of antidepressants (along with Wellbutrin 300 mg and Deplin 30 mg) in January 2012, in the aftermath of ending a soul-killing relationship with a narcissistic parasite. My psych doctor, Dr. McEnroe (not his real name, but he looks kind of like John and has that same whiny voice), initially augmented the Wellbutrin with Abilify. I was on Abilify for several months, but dropped that (cold turkey) as I found it to be nasty shit, causing my hair to fall out by the handful (it’s growing back, thank god), as well as various and sundry other intolerable side effects. In the interim, in April ’12, my oldest brother died at age 56. Six months later, in October, my father died at age 83. Despite these events, I was doing well. So in January 2013, I asked the doctor when I could quit taking the drugs. I’d been taking good care of myself. I’d dropped 40 pounds. I was eating well. Getting plenty of outdoor exercise. Being fairly social. Dr. McEnroe said I’m not one of those people who needs to be on antidepressants for life; but he wanted me to have one good, stress-free year under my belt before stopping. I said 2013 was going to be that year, and joked that hopefully no one would die. Little did I know that two months later, I would hit the trifecta. My remaining brother would die suddenly of leukemia at age 52. Three deaths (brother/April ’12, father/October ’12, brother/March ’13) in eleven months. I call it the Death Sandwich. Or 3/11.
Despite 3/11, I wanted off the drugs. The Viibryd for starters. I’d been experiencing a number of side effects. Some tolerable. Some not so much. Here’s a list of what I had jotted down in the days leading up to my decision to quit:
- Major bladder irritation/overactive bladder/urge incontinence (previously under control).
- Losing words. Lots and lots of words. For example, a couple of weeks ago, I couldn’t think of the word for laundry basket. I’ve been silently hysterical, thinking I’m having early-onset Alzheimer’s. I’m not a hypochondriac; my father was in late-stage Alzheimer’s when he died.
- Light, often fitful, sleep.
- Intense, bizarre, disturbing, and at times terrifying dreams, particularly when I missed a dose or was late taking one. These dreams seem very real, and often are difficult to awaken from. Yes, I know, Sleestaks aren’t real. But the dreams suggested they are.
- Yawning repeatedly mid to late-afternoon, often for hours at a time. I’d yawn through conference calls with clients. Through Pilates sessions and weight training. Okay, I can sort of understand yawning during a conference call, but in the middle of workouts? How is that even possible?
- Joint pain. I’d noticed pain in my right hip and left knee. I turned 50 in May, so I figured it was normal aging. Then I recalled reading that joint pain is a documented Viibryd side effect. This was, in fact, the symptom that spurred me to action after months of contemplation.
- Myoclonic jerks. I experienced those little jerks you often have just as you enter that twilight state between wakefulness and sleep. Only I experienced them while I was fully awake. At my desk. Sitting on the sofa watching television. Reading. Sitting at my desk doing research on Westlaw. Any time I was somewhat relaxed, I’d have these little twitches in my legs. The thought that my brain was causing my body to spasm when it didn’t normally do so, freaked me out.
- No libido. Zero. Zip. Nada. Zilch. When you have no libido, and no partner, it’s easy to dismiss this as an irrelevant side effect. But then it occurred to me: If I have no libido, I’m hardly motivated to connect with men and get a new boyfriend. I’m perfectly content to stay in and blow through all seven seasons of Dexter with my neighbor. (Okay, now you know why I’ve been remiss in my posting and blog-following. We’ve got only four episodes of Season 7 remaining. We’ll watch three tonight, and one tomorrow; just in time to watch the Season 8 opener tomorrow night. After tomorrow night, I am markedly reducing my television consumption.) Viibryd was touted by the manufacturer as being an SSRI without the sexual side effects. Because of this, it was going to be the next big thing. Bullshit has been called. I too call bullshit.
- Deteriorating Diet and Exercise Routine. Food cravings, particularly sugar and carbs. Weight gain. Lack of exercise motivation. Lack of energy. This category is very important, but it falls into a grayer area. Historically I’ve had these issues without being on drugs. But I’d been doing so well. Even following the first two deaths. Are my current difficulties “just me,” or is the drug a contributing factor?
Now you’ve got my explanation as to why I decided to ditch the Viibryd. Once I had decided upon the ditching, I immediately moved forward. In keeping with prior methodology, I ditched the drug without conferring with my doctor. Yes, I’m impetuous. It’s one of my finer attributes.
Rather than going totally cold turkey (as I did with the Abilify, with no issues whatsoever), I decided to titrate down. For the first six days (Saturday through Thursday), I took 20 mg–a 50% cut. I had lots of vivid dreams, but none of them particularly disturbing. No Sleestaks. No mass murderers stalking me. Some of the dreams were even kind of fun and I found myself disappointed when I awakened from them. Others were extremely sexual in nature. Has my libido switch been thrown?
After six days on 20 mg and no terrifying dreams, I stopped taking the drug completely. While my experience hasn’t been too bad, there have been ill-effects. During the first few days of being totally off the drug, I was very tired. I had difficulty staying awake at my desk. I was incredibly sleepy. I simply wanted to lie my head down and close my eyes. It took Herculean efforts to not succumb to that pull. Instead, I sat there and yawned, Zombielike. My brain felt like it was immersed in water. I slogged through the days. At night, I slept great. Hard. My bladder was the only thing that awakened me, and then, once a night, at most. My bladder, in fact, had settled down significantly. It was as if the switch had been thrown, and I was back in control. No more urgency. No more peeing dozens of times a day. No need to cave and buy a box of adult diapers at 50. (This is only okay if you are an astronaut stalking your lover.)
My knee and hip pain may have eased. I’m just finishing up Week 4 of the Couch to 5K program and seem to be feeling less pain, rather than more. I’m actually getting up in the morning to do Days 1 & 2 of each week of the program before work. (I do Day 3 in the morning on Sunday.) Early-morning exercise. It’s been years since I had the motivation to do morning exercise. Of course, it’s hotter than a mother trucker here in Central Texas, so there’s that motivation to do morning exercise, as well. I’m looking forward to starting Week 5 of the program, and ultimately being able to run a 5K again. Hopefully, joint-pain free.
Here’s another good one: the carb cravings have disappeared. My appetite seems to have lessened. My preoccupation with food (and wine) is decreasing. Hopefully this is not just a temporary withdrawal effect. Even if it is, I hope to use it as a springboard back to my healthier eating habits.
Some negative withdrawal effects: In addition to the sleepiness and brain fog, I’ve felt nausea. It’s not been nearly as bad as when I was amping up on the drug, however. Now, 9 days off the drug, it seems to have dissipated. The brain fog is easing as well. Toward the end of the week this week, I seemed to be regaining focus at work. In between crying spells, that is. Yes, I’ve been more emotional the past two weeks. I’ve been very emotional. I thought I’d picked a fairly stable time to stop taking the Viibryd, but as it turns out, my mother has gone off the rails and things with her (and my sister) have been difficult. (The subject of my next post, Bad Daughter.) But still, I have managed the mother/sister issues fairly well. Even in the midst of withdrawal.
In the midst of the early days of this decision, I feel I’ve made the right call. The two biggest early benefits of stopping the Viibryd: my bladder has settled down significantly and sugar cravings have eased.
Open questions: Will word-recall improve? Will brain fog clear completely? Will afternoon yawning continue to ease? Will joint pain in fact dissipate? Will libido, and my interest in men, return? Am I better off without a libido? Without a man? Okay, those last two questions aren’t Viibryd-related, but they are good ones. Then again, I’ve written about them before.
Do you see what happens when you take a couple of weeks off from writing? You get off topic and are desirous of packing way too much content into one post, feeling a pull to include everything that’s been rattling around in your head since last you wrote. Or maybe that’s another withdrawal symptom.
Until the next update, I am Ella, Unconfirmed Bachelorette, and Viibryd-free.
I’ve never taken anti-depressants and I still have a lot of those side effects you mentioned (excepting the bad dreams and the libido issue), so what is MY problem? 😉
Ha! Glad your libido works. I think some of this stuff may just be me, and not the drugs. It will be interesting to see how it shakes out. I eventually want to see who I am without any of the drugs. Hopefully a bitch on wheels. 😉
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Yeah, no problems in that arena thankfully. But the joint pain, short-term memory issues, lack of motivation to exercise, and desire to eat stuff I shouldn’t are all there.
Come now, we don’t want you to be a bitch on wheels… unless it’s a nice set of wheels like a ’78 Trans Am. 😉 (oddly enough, I couldn’t reply to your reply on my blog… I had to start a new reply to respond)
I thought Viibryd was good too. But first time in my whole life, I felt myoclonic jerks. Kinda scary. I’ve tried so many drugs but never had this happen.
I have been taking Viibryd for 3 months now with a six month plan. The anxiety has greatly decreased. While I don’t have all the side effects you mention, I do have those awful nightmares with the constant need to force myself awake. Thanks for sharing this information. Especially the withdrawal parts. At my next doctor appointment in August, we will began weening me off of it. Seriously great info for me, much appreciated.
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You’re most welcome. There’s not a whole lot out there on Viibryd withdrawal. So far, other than the days of extreme sleepiness and the nausea, it’s not been too bad. I neglected to mention the headaches. And the incredibly itchy scalp. I thought I needed a better conditioner, but then ran across several posts on message boards talking about it. These drugs cause the oddest things.
Viibryd nightmares are the worst! I’d be falling off to sleep some nights, and right away, they’d start. Unlike normal nightmares, they wouldn’t stop after I woke up. I’d fall back asleep, and they’d start right back up again. Over and over, seemingly all night.
Good luck weaning off of it. I hope it goes easy on you.
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I have to get up and walk around to have the current nightmare stop. It’s the only thing that worked for me.
I am itchy all over at least once a week. That kind of itch that starts from the inside out. It’s crazy.
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Did you eventually wean off?
Any persisting side effects?
Though I am very careful, when it comes to not taking prescribed drugs anymore – it feels as if you have done the right thing. So many bad side effects – that cannot have been healthy! And since you feel better now (and you know where to go for advice if that should ever change again to really bad) – yes, I think, you have done the right thing. Not, that it is of any importance what I think!
I always value your opinion! You often cause me to stop and think. I really do not want to be on any antidepressants any more. After a few months, I want to get off the Wellbutrin, too. In their p,ace, plenty of sleep (but not too much), exercise outdoors in the fresh air where I can soak up vitamin D, and good nutrition (most of the time). I honestly think those three things can cure a lot of what ails us. Along with furry kitties.
Kitties should be paid by health care:
“News headlines over the past few years have linked cat ownership to everything from cancer to craziness, but new studies suggest that cats are actually beneficial to human health, and may even reduce our risk for cancer and other diseases.”
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But the kitties would cut into big pharma’s profits. Can’t have that. Sigh.
You are the only one who knows how you feel. Joint pain is horrid – I stopped a drug because of that – I’m sure I’ll be yelled at shortly, but all these pills affect other things besides the “target” issue.
It sure looks like too many are being prescribed pills because it’s easier – not self control or will needed or determination to gut out difficult times.(Granted some have chemical imbalances)
Sun, exercise, and pets go a long way
Keep going kid!
How did I miss this comment, Mouse? One year later and the joint pain is gone, gone, gone! As is the word loss. I hope you are doing well in that regard (in all regards, actually), too. 🙂
I have been on viibyrd for 6 months. I decided to stop cold turkey. It worked well for me except the 20 pounds I gained. This is day two off and the side effects are horrible. Dizziness emotional violently angry and that horrible itch. I’m going to keep on going forward. Pray for me
I hope you’ve gotten through the withdrawals and are feeling better! I’d forgotten about the itching. And then there was the afternoon yawning and sleepiness. And word loss. Wish I could blame the 20 pounds on the Viibryd. Working on those.
Thank you for this! I essentially have all the side effects you listed, except for joint pain. At first the Viibryd really helped me out of my darkest place, but now it seems as if the side effects outweigh the good its doing. My biggest issues with the viibryd are the word loss, and the lack of motivation to do anything. I will get out of bed after sleeping for 9+ hours, sit on the couch and watch tv all day! Its maddening. I want to change but I have no motivation to do so! The word loss is probably my biggest gripe with this med, I feel so dumb when I can’t come up for the word that goes with something simple, like vacuum. I’m looking at the vacuum but can’t think of the word for it. Crazy stuff. I’ll be talking to my doctor next week about changing meds because I don’t feel I am yet ready to be med-free. I know this post is over a year old, but I wanted to thank you for it. You really perfectly put in to words exactly what is going on with me. Thank you!
Megan, I’m so glad this post helped. I was talking to my neighbor just last night about how much better I am now, off the meds. It’s been over a year, and the word loss and brain fog are gone. My brain seemingly is back to normal. I can think logically and find all the words I need. Including laundry basket. Getting off the Viibryd was a little rough, as I described. But well worth it. Best of luck to you!
Also regain your libido. The right man can charge it up.
I’m sure this is true, but I’ve not run across the “right” man in quite some time. 😉
I’m so glad you posted all of this b/c I have been thinking I was getting early onset dementia and arthritis and so many of the other side effects you listed. After being on Viibryd for nearly a year, I’m down to 20mg from 40 (I dropped to 30 1st) and about to go down to 10mg. I tried talking to my GP about the excessive weight gain and extreme craving for sweets and all of the physical pain I’m having and he just says it’s “depression.” But I’m not depressed! I feel like crap but I KNOW what depression feels like and this ain’t it! I told him it felt like I was on steroids b/c the cravings were so strong! He sent me to PT for my back pain which didn’t do much to help. My toes & finger joints hurt so much I can hardly stand it! I can hardly pick up a cup of coffee or open a bottle of water anymore. I toss & turn all night from discomfort but it takes all of my strength just to turn over in the bed b/c I hurt so much. I’m 47 and this week I jumped from 155 to 160 in a matter of 2 day even though I’m hardly eating much and walking at least once a day for an hour. I was 135 lbs when I started the Viibryd. I started a new job a few months back and was let go b/c they said I wasn’t retaining things and kept asking questions to things I had already been told. I really felt stupid even though I have a college degree and have worked in the same field for over 10 years. My short term memory sucks! And like you said, I have difficulty recalling simple words or friends names. I KNOW that I know it but I can’t come up with it! So frustrating! After the first few months (that were great on the med) I started having the really vivid dreams which would ruin my day at times b/c they were so real and my emotions didn’t know they weren’t. Btw, I was put on Viibryd for severe anxiety and depression after we had 5 deaths in the family in just over a year and problems w/my grown daughter. Anyway, I decided to get off of the Viibryd b/c I fig’d I couldn’t possibly feel any worse off of it than I was taking it. I missed a few consecutive doses once when I went out of state and left my meds at home accidentally, so I fear the side effects of stooping it. It made me REALLY sick to the point of not being able to stand or function!! That’s why I’m titrating down very slowly. I hope the joint pain goes away and I don’t get too nauseated & dizzy. Wish me luck!
I apologize for the late reply. It’s amazing how similar our experiences were. I probably would have gotten worse had I stayed on it. Five deaths in just over a year? I am so sorry. I thought three was nearly unbearable. I wonder how you’re doing now that two months have passed. I hope you’ve managed to stop the drug entirely and that you’re doing well. If you’re still out there, please let me know.
I submitted a complaint to the FDA, this drug should not be on the market. It has been hell for the last 3 months and have been surfing the net for hours trying to find out what the timeline is for this episode to end. It looks like I have more than just weeks but months. I regret taking this drug, it has brought more harm than good. It seems almost impossible to function off it no matter what and I am afraid I am going to lose my job. No doctor is familiar enough with this drug to provide proper assistance on how to taper off successfully without experiencing such prolonged pain. I even went as far as calling the manufacturing and they too had no answer, just some nonsense of tapering off for 2 weeks and you should be “good to go”. I told them I took longer than that just to be prudent and I am in a torture chamber! And the had nothing to say to me, so I then contacted the FDA immediately.
Jay, I hope your report does some good. In my opinion, the prescribing of these medications is out of control. No one knows what the hell they really do, and what their long-term effects are. For me, it was only when I’d been off the drug for some time, that things returned to normal, and I could see the ill-effects. My word recall is fine now. No more bad dreams. No more brain fog. Best wishes for your stopping them completely and feeling better.
I have been on Viibryd (40mg) daily for 10 months now. If it weren’t for this drug I would have lost my current job. I have a great job. I have a family that depends on me. I have lost many jobs in the past due to being late or tardiness. Employers can only put up with excuses for so long before they start looking for an individual that, well can be on time. This has been an ongoing issue and not only with work. Friends and family used to joke and give me a hard time about it. Not so much anymore. Anyways, for me as well as both of my sisters have benefited from this drug. We all have varying side effects. At the 24 hour mark(half life) I and one of my sisters become itchy. At first we don’t notice and that’s usually the que to take it. Two of us take it at night right before bed. Both of us wake up refreshed as if we had a great night sleep. Side note. I have severe sleep apnea and was diagnosed in late 2010 and am using a CPAP machine. Apparently I was waking up every 40 seconds. Moving on.. My side effects include joint pain(I do have gout as well), frequent but normal urination(sugar increases this), normal BM(real reactions to foods), occasional headaches, vivid dreams(fun or colorful/weird) I attribute the joint pain and this drug due to diet and hydration. Yes, my feet get massaged and its magical. But I am not a heavy water drinker. My job requires me to do a lot of walking. Usually 3.5 to 7 miles a day. I also drive anywhere from 2 to 6 hours a day. I have found that I can get too much sleep. 6-7 hours seems to be the sweet spot. But at the 12-14 hour mark I am ready to go to bed. That usually doesn’t happen though. My weight has not gone up or down. But I do know that it takes a little bit of will power to control cravings. I will say that when I first started taking Viibryd that I had to be aware of my food intake. One second I would have a plate of food and the next a clean plate. I started to get embarrassing. Like, crap I just had a conversation and ate all of my food without paying attention. Before I started taking Viibryd I was on Zoloft which was no longer effective. I didn’t make sense, my depression and worse my anxiety was getting out of control. I work from home and do not see the people I work with. Therefore I do not always hear from people in the office or know what is going on. That is a recipe for disaster. Now I go through out the day with more rational thoughts. I keep my mind on what is more important. Not worrying about the unknown or being fired for whatever reason my mind will come up with. I used to ramble a lot more than I am now…Now my thoughts are more organized and compartmentalized. My temper stays under control. I can sit next to my wife and daughter without yelling at them for eating too loud. I can stay focused and be productive. Yes, I do have periods of no motivation but that is due to running around non-stop and racking up 70+ hours a week. If I slow down too much it is difficult to get going again. I’m sure I have missed something. I can think clearly and can be concise in thought. I have gained a considerable amount of confidence and certainty with this drug. I have gained respect from family, friends and coworkers as well. And that means a lot. Now, in saying all of that I do understand that everyone’s body is different. It is not for everyone. Should this be a long term solution? Probably not. Do those that want to get off of Viibryd need to? Maybe. I have found( as well as my sister) that there is a point that we think it isn’t working. We both stopped taking it and greatly regretted it. We think it isn’t working but it has actually put us in a more “normal” state where we think it has lost its effect. It is doing its job and damn well. We can function as normal adults. We can socialize without being paranoid. We DO actually have motivation. There is no miracle drug. But this has been the best for myself and my sisters so far. They all have side effects. When there is a chemical imbalance we do need it altered whether it be through meditating or through medication or both. Side note.
List of medications that were less effective with more or less side effects:
Effexor- I don’t remember
Prozac- memory loss and constant confusion ^^^
Concerta- Speech impediment and a lot of duh moments. accident prone
Welbutrin- Inability to control emotions
Nardil- non related PTSD at that time. I can’t remember the side effects. But there are a lot of limitations.
Welbutrin XR- Mild, not enough for depression, quit smoking, hallucinations
Zoloft- helped keep me focused but lost its effectiveness
Klonapin and Zoloft- daily..bad idea. sense of always being high. I would fall asleep during conversations.
*Now I do not need to take Klonapin at all while on Viibryd.
I took my Viibryd at midnight when I started to itch. Itching stopped at 12:30ish. Its is now 3:30am and need sleep.
Thank you for sharing you personal and private experiences. It is much appreciated.
Please feel free to ask me any questions.
Ryan, thanks for your thoughtful post and adding your voice to the issue. The side effects (or effects, really) were too much for me. But it seems you find benefits outweighing the costs. Best wishes to you!
Anyone having persistent sexual side effects after stopping viibryd?
I’m still suffering from pssd, 3 months after another ssri.
I came across your blog while trying to research memory loss caused by Viibryd. I stopped taking it about 4 weeks ago because I could not stand the side affects after taking it and Wellbutrin for a year and a half. I still cannot remember anything. I get confused and it is awful. I am 46 years old. My intelligence was always something that was fear to me. Now I forget how to spell things, forget where I parked and forget certain words from time to time. Are you still experiencing this? I am just wondering how long after you quit that it goes away. I am starting to get worried that it has permanently damaged my brain.
Hi, there! Oh my, can I relate. These effects were disconcerting. I can say they all went away after stopping the antidepressant. Along with the crazy nightmares. I can’t recall how long it took, but I would guess it was not more than a couple of months until I was back to “normal.” Maybe a bit longer. But I do not believe I suffered any permanent damage. Good luck and best wishes!
Did your Sexuality recover eventually?
Alex, pssd sufferer
I don’t know! 😉
Thanks! That’s very helpful.
I am so appreciative of the internet and blogging for times like these. I have been on Viibryd for 3 years now. I was put on the medication to control my panic attacks stemming from a gastro health issue ( I had awful complications from gallbladder surgery). We had to control the panic attacks to allow my stomach to heal to a point where we could pinpoint my illnesses. Anyways after 3 years on this medication, I have been able to get my IBS-D and other gastro problems within my control 90% of the time, my doctor agrees with me that I should try to get off of this medication. During the time I’ve been taking it, I’ve lost my sexual desire, I have nausea frequently and all day long at that. My short term memory lacks, and I have other symptoms that I didn’t realize were related until I started to research more. I have been tapering down from 40 mgs over the past 2 weeks now. It was suggested that I drop from 40 to 20 mgs for 2 weeks and then drop again to 10. I didn’t do that. I dropped to 30mg for 2 weeks and then just the past weekend dropped to the 20 mg. Let me pause to say this.. going from 40 to 30 was annoying, the first day I felt just a little edgy.. from 30 to 20 is much more drastic. If you are thinking about coming off of Viibryd, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE do not do it cold turkey, especially if you are at the 40mg dose for as long as I have been. The withdrawal symptoms are physical and mental. I am having brain zaps, I’m constantly on the verge of having a migraine. I have awful anxiety, and when I don’t, I feel like I am so antsy I could jump out of my skin.
The dizziness and fogginess is enough to make anyone feel crazy, but someone with anxiety it just heightens it. I am continuing to push through this. I should feel better in a few days, but then what happens when I drop to 10mgs again?
I’m so looking forward to the day where I feel “normal” again. How has everyone else done with this since their posts years ago?? I would love to hear.
Thank you so much for your comment. It adds a lot of good information for anyone getting off the drug (or trying to). I hope you have made it through, and are feeling “normal”! I can tell you that my cognition these days is much better. A couple of years after I dropped the Viibryd, I feel back into the depression pit. I’m currently on 20 mg of Trintellix (f/k/a Brintellix), along with Deplin, and have been since February (six months, now). I feel much better these days, and have no noticeable side effects, which is something of a miracle.
I am so grateful to read this tonight. I have been experiencing the same stuff. Your eloquence and scense of humor are making me feel validated. This is great! ❤😂
Thank you, Mel! I’m thrilled this has helped. 🙂
I am so glad I found your blog, It is 3:00 am and I am wide awake after about about 5 hours of sleep which may not have been possible but for the 25 mg of Trazadone that I now take before bed. I had been taking 300 mg Wellbutrin XL with 0.50 mg Klonopin daily for about 15 years; my doctor added Trazadone, 15 mg Methylfolate, and Viibryd about three months ago. I was feeling great on 20 mg Viibryd so I never titrated up to 40 mg. It made me so relaxed that I was able to stop taking Klonopin and have less of an urge to smoke. Along with these good effects are many of the bad effects listed by others. Due to lack of motivation, no libido, hair loss, urge incontinence, and craving for sweets I want to stop the Viibryd. My biggest fear is the length and intensity of the withdrawal symptoms. Is there anything that helps?
Thank you for listening,
Just to add to the info, I was on Viibryd and it was a nightmare after about 3 months. In my past I couldn’t take Zoloft, it made me hyper and tense, I had the brain zaps with Effexor and auditory hallucinations with them, like someone was pounding a hammer down the hall. Figured out that was when my eyes moved from side to side, cranial nerve 6. Anyway that was years ago, and this time I had an undiagnosed concussion and post concussion syndrome which included depression. My PCP threw a sample pack of Viibryd at me and although I only took 5mg. daily for the first week I saw vivid bright colors and felt amazing. Should’ve seen that as the first sign. I continued to titrate up to 20 mg. daily and felt good until about the 4th month when I noticed I was being a bit overly assertive, at times aggressive. I was getting angry more quickly and over-reacting with anger at the littlest things. I told my PCP and he dismissed it. I had brain zaps down my face, arms, and hands, my head jerked to one side randomly at night but I didn’t think anything of it. In fact, I didn’t care about anything. I would awaken and have a sudden surge of all kinds of negative thoughts pour into my brain and I couldn’t control it, change it or shut it off. Word loss got so bad that when i felt like my mind was being taken over by satan I couldn’t even think of the words Lord, God, or any of my prayer for strength. Eventually the anger got so bad, I had road rage (never before) and was driving in and out of traffic, semis, screaming and going 95 MPH. One of the warnings was impulsive, dangerous acts. I called my PCP who was out of town and I screamed at the nurse “Get this poison out of my brain!!!!!!!!”. My own mother even hung up on me because I kept screaming “Help me! I want to kill myself” mixed in with allot of fu@$ words. She didn’t know what to do. The covering PCP told me to just stop taking it. I knew I had to wean but I only dropped to 10 mg. every other day for about 4 days. I couldn’t make myself put that pill in my mouth again. I went through emotional withdrawals, and itching all over and scratching until I bled. I swear they put opioids in it. I quit taking it in late 2014. To this day I still have brain zaps, not as severe, but I think I have permanent nerve damage. I went to a neurologist about the possibility of a concussion earlier that year which she confirmed, but when I told her about the zaps and auditory hallucinations, she shouted without hesitation, “Oh, that’s classic! You don’t have the CYP450 enzyme to metabolize SSRIs. You were having serotonin syndrome!!” SSRIs are now on my allergy list. It now makes sense why I had the reaction to Zoloft 25 years ago and Effexor 10 years ago.
There are so many pathways necessary for metabolizing different meds and so many people who don’t have all those needed enzymes to metabolize meds, causing toxic levels to build up. I too, think doctors are all too hasty to put patients on whatever the latest trendy drug is. And make it worse by not monitoring for side effects or even listen to the patient’s concerns, even when she is a nurse, reads the labels, and is very in tune to her body.
I now only use essential oils, diet, exercise, and an occasional Xanax.