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Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby Squeakykin » May 22, 2011 2:11 am

How difficult or easy is withdrawing from Risperdal for you? What is your experience and how long have you been on the drug?

What types of physical, mental, spiritual problems have you experienced being on the drug and were you successful in healing these same problems getting off the drug? Did the problems eventually subside? In what amount of time?

How long did it take to taper and what was critical in your success or failure?

I have been on this and various other drugs for 27 years. The highest enforced dosage was 6 mg of Risperidone. After 10 months, I am now down to 2.625 mg and it is getting harder bouncing back the lower the dose. I have had 3 failed withdrawals and disastrous hospital traumas so I have a lot of fear about reducing. I am now not working and spending all my time cooking healthy foods, reading everything I can find about holistic health and the psychiatric survivor movement, meditating, and attending to my failed health waiting to get approval for Federal Disability.

Physically I feel pressure in my head and nasal cavities which feel hollow and I have constant sniffles and sore throat and ear aches. Chewing and swallowing is difficult and I often bite my tongue or mouth by accident. My eyes are sensitive to light and hearing sensitive to loud noises with ringing often. I'm having difficulty sleeping and I anger easily. I don't like socializing and prefer staying home in quiet. I am hoping with each day I will feel a little bit better..

What is your experience?
Many thanks--
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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby Capricious » May 22, 2011 10:11 am

I am being told to increase my dosage of Risperdal to counter the side effects of an SSRI. Risperdal feels like seriously scary business. Thanks for posting and reminding me that solving toxicity with more toxicity is more crazy than anything I do when drug free.
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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby Squeakykin » May 22, 2011 12:34 pm

With all due respect to your misguided prescriber and his/her ignorance, it is sooo much easier to start taking a drug than it is to get off of it. A mixed cocktail of SSRI anti-depressant and a neuroleptic are a recipe for disaster and informed doctors just don't combine the two. I recommend reading the book "Your Drug May Be your Problem" by Peter Breggin regarding these drugs and why doctors prescribe more drugs and higher doses when they see "negative" symptoms (usually drug toxcity!) and should in fact be trying to reduce your drug. See if your prescriber is able or willing to help you reduce! I bet he hasn't the slightest idea on the dangers of these drugs and how to taper off them safely. I estimated a taper for myself of the remaining dosage of 2.625 mg of respiradone to take me another 2 years or longer to withdraw safely and I may try to switch to a liquid form of the drug to make tapering a little more exact than pill cutting. Withdrawing from Risperidone has become the mission of my life to save my life. At age 52, I have lost most of my adult years to this drug. I don't want to become a statistic before I have had a chance to do anything worthwhile in my life. Risperdal can do damage to your heart upon starting it so I recommend you see a naturapath or compassionate doctor to look after your health. Also Diabetes and obesity go hand in hand with taking this drug.
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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby Squeakykin » May 23, 2011 12:40 am

Dr. Breggin aptly states in his book:

The use of [antipsychotic and other classes of psychiatric drugs] should be viewed not as '"therapy" but as chemical restraint. Commonly and more accurately called "chemical lobotomy" or "pharmacological straightjacket" these drugs in fact harm the brain by disrupting the brain's normal chemistry and thus causing and not correcting biochemical imbalances.The theory that the mental problems of people with such labels of mental illness, is caused by a chemical imbalance has never been proven and is pure speculation.

And further, "When a person's emotions are altered by drugs, the effect is not limited to the emotion-regulating centers of the brain. Indeed, since the brain is a highly integrated organ, and since the drugs cause widespread disruptions within it, emotional suffering can not be dulled without harming other functions such as concentration,alertness,sensitivity, and self-awareness."

"no psychiatric drugs have consistently demonstrated effectiveness in studies lasting more than a few weeks or months."

Concerning antidepressants, like Prozac, at least 75% of the antidepressant effect is placebo.

and finally, " there is no convincing evidence that any psychiatric drugs- including neuroleptics, antidepressants, stimulants, and minor tranquilizers can "save a life" from suicide or violence or help in an emotional crisis. Rather these drugs can cause or exacerbate depression, suicide, paranoia, and violence."

Pretty heavy stuff!
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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby Squeakykin » May 23, 2011 7:53 am

When talking with your prescribing Doctor about all the negative side effects of the drugs you are taking and your desire to stop taking them, did your Doctor ever say to you "BUT YOU NEED IT" to keep you compliant?

Mine did over and over for 18 years. In those days the drugs of choice were Thorizine and Melleril. How cleaver that he prided himself on being so avunclular:

avuncular |əˈvə ng kyələr|
adjective
1 of or relating to an uncle.
• kind and friendly toward a younger or less experienced person : an avuncular manner.
2 Anthropology of or relating to the relationship between men and their siblings' children.
ORIGIN mid 19th cent.: from Latin avunculus ‘maternal uncle,’ diminutive of avus ‘grandfather.’

First of all, he was not my uncle nor relative and had no right making decisions for me without my consent or understanding. Less experienced? Yes I was seeking help and didn't know where to turn!
Secondly, in his kind and friendly manner he subliminally coerced me into staying on a drug that he believed I needed which was a completely subjective decision. There is no Science or objective fact that my brain needed to be hijacked by a drug that never could heal my pain.
Thirdly, How could he ever know what I need? I certainly never told him that I needed the drug. I intuitively knew then, even though I was young, inexperienced and vulnerable that the drug was changing me for the worse and that it was not in any way curing me of anything. That it was in fact turning me into a lifeless zombie.
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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby jaklumen » May 24, 2011 2:45 am

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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby Squeakykin » May 24, 2011 9:51 am

Are you taking any drugs now? It seems that you were able to get off Topomax despite the pressures of your case worker/prescriber because of a fluke with Medicare. Medicare did not pay for these drugs? Why?

When I go on Disability and get Medicare (in 2 years!) will they give me problems about taking drugs? By then, I hope to be completely free of Riperidone!

I really like Breggin's books and I consulted with him privately for a short time, but unfortunately it was by phone and he didn't think he could really be of help to me by phone since he lives upstate NY and I am in NYC.

PS. Thanks for the tip about Madness Radio. Will listen to it regularly from now on.
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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby jaklumen » May 24, 2011 6:23 pm

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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby Squeakykin » May 24, 2011 7:40 pm

that's right, the pharmaceutical that manufactures Topamax was fined by the FDA *for* promoting these off-label uses. Too bad I couldn't get a slice... but then I didn't get a slice on Neurotin, either (Parke-Davis was exposed for doing the same for Neurotin, basically). May 21, 2010 was much, much later than the incident I described to you, I should point out-- but then, isn't usually a case of too little, too late?


You're right about it being a case of too little, too late with the FDA fining off label promotions. I just wonder when Abilify, manufactured by Bristol-Myers Squibb Company is going to get fined for their commercials selling for Depression and never mentioning manic depression in their commercials. Abilify is a antipsychotic medication launched by Bristol-Myers Squibb Company in 2002. Abilify has been approved by the FDA for treatment of psychotic conditions such as schizophrenia and manic depression. The people who are depressed alone and see the commercial may think Abilify is for them. The commercial never states that Abilify is an antipsychotic.

the really influential people are just out of reach sometimes

Yup, when I was spiraling down and out having a really "mad" reaction to drug withdrawal last summer, Breggin ended our patient/Dr. relationship saying I should have told him I was reducing more, etc. He lost faith in me because I din't tell him I made one more taper against his better judgement. Because it was long distance I guess he felt pretty helpless. I hugely regret that incident. There were a lot of factors involved with my decision to taper then, work stress, and feeling really really sick from the drug. So I learned the hard way that withdrawal is very dangerous serious stuff and to be patient with getting off the drug. I've been on drugs for 27 years, It certainly will take a long time to detox and withdraw without a toxic psychotic reaction in my case.
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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby kimbriel » May 24, 2011 7:53 pm

All companies are doing that now. I reported it to the FDA and never heard a peep. I'm really resentful, in general, of the way it's assumed neuroleptics are so toxic and harmful for depressed people, but those of us with Bipolarz and Skitsy-phrenia should just grin and bear it. Neuroleptics have an even higher rate of suicide than antidepressants, but you never hear anyone carrying that flag.
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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby Squeakykin » May 24, 2011 8:09 pm

I reported it to the FDA and never heard a peep


The FDA is a joke of an oversight organization. Their website says "protecting and promoting your health", Ha! It's all who you know and how much power and influence you have to get a drug easily approved by them. It's not until there's a class action suit or the news catches wind of a bad drug that it get's taken off the market, sadly, usually too late after many injuries and deaths from the drug.

Neuroleptic drugs are very dangerous and even my psychiatrist doesn't admit how dangerous they really are. Psychiatrists are advertised to and wined and dined by big pharma. They still believe that Neuroleptics correct psychosis and neurotransmitter imbalances, which is purely fictional indeed. they believe that depression and suicide are part of the illness rearing it's ugly head, but these problems are actually caused by a toxic reaction to the drugs themselves.
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Postby jaklumen » May 24, 2011 9:56 pm

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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby Squeakykin » May 25, 2011 5:26 pm

Another news item that digs a grave for all suffering people with Schizophrenia. How often do you hear hype about violence done by suffering schizophrenics? What are the real odds of people with schizophrenia being violent! what is Longhner's real story?


Breaking News Alert
The New York Times
Wednesday, May 25, 2011 -- 3:32 PM EDT
-----

Judge Finds Jared L. Loughner, Accused in Tucson Shooting, Unfit to Stand Trial

Jared L. Loughner, accused in the Jan. 8 shooting spree that seriously injured Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and left six others dead, was ruled incompetent to stand trial by Federal Judge Larry A. Burns on Wednesday.

Before the ruling, Mr. Loughner was dragged screaming from the courtroom in Tucson after disrupting the hearing; he watched the rest of the proceedings on a monitor in a holding cell. The court heard testimony from two expert witnesses that Mr. Loughner suffered from schizophrenia.
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Postby jaklumen » May 25, 2011 6:03 pm

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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby Squeakykin » May 25, 2011 9:13 pm

I agree. Well said!
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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby Squeakykin » May 27, 2011 4:44 pm

Just received a notice from SSA. I am approved for disability! Dr. Breggin was quoited in the decision and his argument carried a lot of weight in it's approval stating that I am trying to withdraw from the medication due to early signs of tarditive dysconesia (sp?). Thanks, Dr. Breggin for your support.

Now I must wait 60 days to hear again from SSD. It certainly is a strange bureaucracy. First they deny me saying it's not "severe" enough. Then they review it again with my lawyer's updates and although nothing's changed, without a hearing, I get approved for "severe" symptoms.

Using positive affirmations such as: " I am benefiting from receiving SSD" helped. The law of attraction really works.
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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby yellowrose » May 27, 2011 5:54 pm

This thread is really interesting to me as I am on 4mg of Risperidone per night (aswell as 800mg of Lithium).

I am really starting to seriously think about reducing Risperidone. I have read one of Dr Breggin's books but I forgot all about tapering and the infitessimally small amounts you need to taper by.

(Incidentally can you taper lithium by cutting it up if it is a time-release tablet? - sorry derail)

Last time I went straight from 4 to 3 mg of risperidone and started getting religious type thoughts, i.e. obsession with religion or maybe religous thoughts and feelings just emerging,,, 'pre-occupying' that is the correct word.

But yes the Risperidone is making me obese, tardive diskinesia, parkinsonian symptoms, probably heading towards diabetes. I can't see a future being on this drug. Thank god I have found the Ann Lee Centre.

I did try to contact the alternative psychiatrist Joanna Moncrief (who has also been on madness radio) but she never replied to my email. Maybe she felt she couldn't reply to me because it was too personal.

In my build up to reducing the Risperidone I am

1) sorting out my practical arrangements e.g. where I live, money etc..
2) Getting support from the Ann Lee Centre
3) Exploring creativity more
4) Getting healthier through exercise (although this is hard to fit in and hard to do)

I also might request from my psychiatrist that I have a psychologist to support me (maybe/maybe not)

L

L
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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby Squeakykin » May 27, 2011 6:23 pm

I was on Lithium and Depakote several years ago and it made me so thirsty and dehydrated all the time. I told my Dr. that the side effects of these drugs were too dangerous to my health and I told him I wanted off of it and back on the Risperdal. I don't remember it taking too long to get off of them. I was also working at the time and felt general sickness and fatigue for months.

Now that I am reducing the Risperidone, the toxins are being released into my system more frequently and I am eating cilantro and chorella tablets to chellate or eliminate the toxins out of my body. I am not telling anyone I know except my doctor that I am reducing the med because some friends think I need the medicine to function normally and I don't want to get into any arguments with them. I am not even telling my family. I live 3.000 miles away from them anyway.

I believe we need all the support we need from all the right people--those who are helping us. I will be seeing a Naturapath next week to see if I have any underlying medical problems that may deter my withdrawal.

Obesity is such a big problem with these drugs and no matter how much good diet and exercise I have done over the years I have kept a spare tire at the waistline. It was not until I was off Risperdal cold turkey last year (not recommended!!!) that the weight came right off. Back on maintenance meds brought my weght right back up. It's the drug!
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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby yellowrose » May 27, 2011 6:38 pm

Hi Squeakykin

Interesting post. I like what you say about having the right people. Sometime I think its maybe that I have a beuatiful loving partner that I am so stable - not the meds.

One of the issues I have with reducing Risperidone is that I am doing quite well at the moment

1) I am making progress in my career of PR/radio production and journalism. If I stick at it for another year or two I will have all the skills to earn my own living - which I can't now. This seems to be a learning period and I don't want to complicate it by coming off meds

2) Similarly I am learning Japanese at the moment. Continuing my lessons with my extremely polite Japanese sensei might not be possible If I was having a bad withdrawal.

L
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Re: Risperdal (Risperidone) withdrawal

Postby Squeakykin » May 27, 2011 10:20 pm

Yes, I agree that a lot of good is happening for you right now and you wouldn't want to jeopardize these good things with a difficult withdrawal. Independence is something I fought for my entire career. I purchased my own studio with my own earnings. I don't think everyone should be off drugs if they help them survive and be self sufficient. But it helps tremendously that you have a loving partner and that says so much! Love is a powerful healer.

I am at a different stage in my life now and I have found that years of Risperidone is no longer helping me and made me physically ill. I already had a 25 year career working with creative writers and artists and their computers, but it was never something I really enjoyed doing and the pressure got to great. This kind of fast paced job required one to be fast on her toes and the drug just slowed my reflexes, my judgement and my intuition. I fell behind the curve, as it were, and I realized that being around so much stress, electromagnetism, and bad food over years of putting the job before me had to stop.

My idea of a good time is being alone, being in nature, and cooking and attending classes. I left the rat race because I just couldn't keep up and I didn't want to keep fighting this uphill battle anymore. It became meaningless to me. I realized that my health comes first now.
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