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Read this if you or someone you know takes Effexor or another SSRI

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posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 11:48 PM
This was originally posted on this thread, but because of the weak OP (due to my mental state at the time), I was afraid that not enough people would read through to this post, which I believes contains some very important info. I started the original thread because my brother commited suicide in September after beginning Effexor, and my step sister did the same last month after starting the same drug. So here it is....

I had a feeling this wasn't a unique occurrence. I've been up all night looking into this and it's led me down a pretty frightening path so far. Apparently Effexor has a dirty past that doesn't get much attention. According to this site, Wyeth-Ayerst has known effexor to be dangerous since the clinical trials and utilized mostly unreported variables (in this case a mood stabilizer) to cover up the more undesirable effects of the drug...

Nor had proper disclosure been made that benzodiazepines had been co-prescribed during clinical trial in order to minimize the agitation that the manufacturer had recognized this medication could cause.

Another scary thing about Effexor is that it is extremely addictive and nearly impossible to get off of, as is illustrated in this suicide note excerpt from a 16 y/o patient...

"The effexor XR is horrible, but it's impossible to get off of safely. Search google for "verlafaxine withdrawal". But the pain, the pills... there is no other way out. I wanted/hoped that things would improve. Paxil and effexor are evil DRUGS, made and prescribed for the profit of Pharmaceutical companies...with no care taken about the effects they have on a person's brain, body, well-being, and safety."
source page

More information on the dark history of Effexor/SSRIs and the lengths that pharmaceutical companies and the FDA will go to protect their profits can be found here.

But Wyeth-Ayerst is not solely responsible for all these tragedies. According to the Alliance for Human Research Protection...

In August 2003, Wyeth issued a warning to doctors about clinical trial evidence linking its antidepressant Effexor to suicidal thoughts in young patients, and the company added that warning in the drug's label. See Wyeth Aug 22, 2003 letter:

The FDA forced Wyeth to replace this explicit warning with the watered down, equivocating version that the FDA-approved for all SSRI and SNRI antidepressants.
source page

Proof that the FDA had a direct hand in misleading the public. At first thought one might think that Wyeth was doing a good thing by issuing this warning, but the fact that they knew the dangers of this drug leaves them no justification for marketing it. They knew it could cause suicide yet they still pushed it.

But this is not the worst of what I have learned in the past few hours. Wyeth is just one of many drug entities that seek to profit from disinfo and FDA frauds. There's a whole cartel of companies out there doing the same evil deeds. I know a majority of the ATS community probably already knows this, but for any of you who are not familiar with the topic, I would recommend that you check out the links above and the videos below. This is something that effects anyone taking, or knows someone who is taking, Rx drugs...

I hope this is enough evidence to open more eyes to whats going on. If you or someone you know is taking Effexor or any other SSRI and would like to quit, please seek help before attempting to do so. The risks of extreme adverse reactions and/or withdrawals are too high to chance doing it alone. More info on the dangers of quitting solo can be found here, and anyone interested in quitting can start by looking here.

If anyone reading this has had any experience with Effexor/SSRI cessation or side effects, please share your thoughts.

[edit on 20-11-2007 by Icon_xof]

[edit on 20-11-2007 by Icon_xof]

posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 11:54 PM
I posted in your other thread, kudos to you for doing more research

I'm a knucklehead when it comes to meds, I didn't get my rx filled one month, I ran out, and I figured I could go a weekend without it. By Staurday night my head had the strangest feeling. It felt like the 2 lobes of my brain were seperating. It wasn't painful as much as it was bizarre and unsettling.

It was really scary. I called my doc, and he chastised me, telling me going off of it cold turkey can lead to a stroke !

I had to be titrated off of it, it took a whole month.

Anything that can do that is just not safe

[edit on 20-11-2007 by syrinx high priest]

posted on Nov, 21 2007 @ 12:09 AM
ive been on efexor and a long list of others. i find what works best for me are the basics the ones that have been around for ages and ther eis a whole lot less side effects, i now take valum and lithum for ptsd. no noticable sideefects and they seem to work great..

i thought coming off my ativian(lorazapam) would be tough but the valum eased that change. then again i dont really have an addictive personality.

[edit on 15amu122007 by DaleGribble]

posted on Nov, 21 2007 @ 12:09 AM
I know that some people genuinely feel that these drugs help them. I didn't . I went from paxil to lexapro and ended up quitting cold turkey (not reccomended). I just felt that it was more depressing needing these pills to feel "normal". It felt good at first, but as time went on, I felt more like a zombie addicted to pills with no emotions, than anything else.

I won't be going back.

posted on Nov, 21 2007 @ 12:26 AM
I am very sorry to hear about your siblings. It is so very sad when a young person feels so badly that they take such a drastic measure to attempt to feel better as to take their own life. I know you must be feeling very sad and angry.

My mother has been on some form or another of anti depressants most of her adult life. She has suffered from the "Zaps" that sometimes occur when people try to go off of them, but she has them even while taking the SSRI's.

This is a short youtube video about this particular side effect that isn't very well known.

posted on Nov, 21 2007 @ 01:20 AM
As is the case with any drug, there are often side-effects. Some people experience them more severely than others, with some not having any side-effects whatsoever. It's best for you to work with your doctor to figure out which course of treatment is correct for you (if any).

With that said, I've had experience with three different SSRIs. The first I had was Zoloft to treat clinical depression when I was a teenager. At first it evened out my moods, but it made me extremely violent and quick to anger. My doctor switched to Paxil from that, which made me feel 100% better. I was on Paxil for about a year until I decided to try and go off it, which I did, and didn't have any problems with depression after that.

Recently, I was given Lexapro by my doctor to help me with some anxiety issues I was having due to treatment of a number of medical issues that arose. I can't even begin to stress how much better it made things in addition to fixing the anxiety. I've not had a single side-effect with it (that I've noticed, anyway), and have absolutely no problem taking it. However, I know that my experience isn't necessarily the same as the experiences of others.

I've also has friends and family on various medications including Zoloft, Effexor, Wellbutrin, etc., all with mixed results that varied from person to person. It really is hit or miss, and I think the effectiveness is going to be determined by your individual brain chemistry and the mechanism of action for the specific medication.

SSRIs are not "evil". No medication is "evil" or "bad". But, regardless of what the medication is, a good, attentive, considerate physician is an absolute requirement.

posted on Nov, 21 2007 @ 02:05 AM
I spent ten years on different meds for bipolar disorder. The Elavil caused me to go blind for a while. Prozac turned me into a raving nympho and lithium gave me pitting edema (which can be very serious). I have been drug free for nearly seven years now. I would rather fly off the handle periodically and go into seasonal depression than to live with the side effects of the drugs. If the doctor offers you a prescription, just say NO!

posted on Nov, 21 2007 @ 02:30 AM
Been on many different ones. I have tried this one - didn't feel right on it, felt I was slipping so I went to Zoloft which had I felt, the least side affects and could function in everyday life well. Now I'm on Lexapro which apparently has less side affects than Zoloft and I'm doing ok.

I would like to make another thread, perhaps upon how people give anti-depressants such a bad name. Seriously I contribute myself being still alive to these things, plus a lot of cognitive therapy from fantastic psychiatrists.

I am now on a minimal dose and plan to come off them completely. Am I the only one who believe these drugs have a beneficial place in our society?

Take care and peace,
- Naz

posted on Nov, 21 2007 @ 02:39 AM

Originally posted by nazgarn[/i]

I am now on a minimal dose and plan to come off them completely. Am I the only one who believe these drugs have a beneficial place in our society?

Take care and peace,
- Naz

My personal belief and experience is that there can be benefits from short time use to steady yourself and get to a place where you can deal, and maybe get some therapy or such.

As far as long term use I believe that the in most cases it is not necessary and can do at least as much harm as good.

At times many people have been having a really bad time coping with life and even the hope of feeling *better* coming from a medication is better than nothing at all.

I think in all cases anytime a person can exist and live a chemical free life it is best. Our bodies were made to sustain us and the more outside interference with our inner workings disrupt the natural order.

I do believe that some people would have committed suicide if not for antidepressants. It is a double edged sword.

posted on Nov, 22 2007 @ 04:42 AM
i took effexor for a few monthes lower dosage, i felt it left me feeling "meh" nothing mattered i was just in a state of being with no real passion or thought

everything was slowed down and easy going

the only problem i had was when i missed a day then i was sick to my stomach when i took the pills again they made me sick and i couldn't work out at the gym my body was all outta wack after missing that one day

so basically i quit and asked my doctor to see a psychiatrist who told me 15 ounces of liquor twice a month was too much so...didn't see him again and haven't been back to my doctor and basically the problems i had that i needed the drugs for can be overcome without the drugs

BUT lets get ONE THING STRAIGHT about these drugs

they mess with the same chemicals in your brain that MDMA (the drug extacy) messes with...serotonin and i think other chemicals (pretty sure there are some others can't be bothered to wiki or google them)

anyways would your doctor tell you to score some E and take that each day to keep your serotinin levels up? NO

so why would you take another drug/s that does the same thing E does?

posted on Nov, 22 2007 @ 04:50 AM
Here's a book, well, the title says it all for those taking SSRIs and other pharms, that people should be aware of:

Toxic Psychiatry: Why Therapy, Empathy and Love Must Replace the Drugs, Electroshock, and Biochemical Theories of the "New Psychiatry"


A psychiatric reformer takes aim and blasts away with both barrels. Breggin launches a full-scale attack on the popular view that neuroses and psychoses are diseases with biochemical and genetic causes best treated by drugs--even by electroshock and incarceration. He advocates not pills but psychotherapy, which ideally provides a "caring, understanding relationship--made safe by professional ethics and restraint.''

Treating mental disorders as chemical imbalances to be corrected primarily by chemical intervention is, he claims, an outrageous hazard to health, damaging the brains of a high percentage of those subjected to it. Breggin notes that the medical training of today's biopsychiatrists ill-equips them for any other approach: They are taught to make diagnoses and prescribe medical treatments; their communication skills are undeveloped, and they know little about the art of listening to patients' problems. Their penchant for prescribing drugs, according to Breggin, is encouraged by a too-cozy relationship between the medical profession and the pharmaceutical industry, which generously funds research into the biochemical and genetic basis of mental disorders, and whose claims for its products are insufficiently scrutinized by either the FDA or the medical profession. Breggin also has harsh words for health insurers that reimburse for drugs and psychiatric hospitalization but not for psychotherapy and social rehabilitation...

The book is about a dollar before shipping costs.

posted on Nov, 22 2007 @ 04:56 AM
The OP is exactly right, here's the actual drug's page on Wiki, some heads even trying to warn of the toxicity of said drug:

A report in the British Medical Journal in 2002 by Dr. Nicholas Buckley and colleagues at the Department of Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology, Canberra Hospital, Australia studying fatal toxicity index (deaths per million prescriptions) found that venlafaxine's fatal toxicity is higher than that of other serotoninergic antidepressants but it is similar to that of some of the less toxic tricyclic antidepressants. Overall they found serious toxicity could occur following venlafaxine overdose with reports of deaths, arrythmias, and seizures. They did, however, state that this type of data is open to criticism pointing out that mortality data may be influenced by previous literature and that "less toxic" drugs may be preferentially prescribed to patients at higher risk of poisoning and suicide but they are also less likely to be listed as the sole cause of death from overdose. It also assumes that drugs are taken in overdose with similar frequency and in similar amounts. They suggested "clinicians need to consider whether factors in their patients reduce or compensate for this risk before prescribing venlafaxine."[35]

The February 27, 2007 Vancouver Sun reported that the BC Drug and Poison Information Center has alerted doctors that the drug poses a significant risk of death from overdose, saying that venlafaxine "appears more toxic than it was originally hoped".[36] A doctor from the Department of Pharmacy Services College of Pharmacy, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina, reported on the death of a 39-year-old patient with a 30 g overdose.[31] To put this into perspective, a patient would have to take over 66 of the infrequently prescribed 450mg high dosage pills.

posted on Nov, 22 2007 @ 04:57 AM
Good on you, man! Great research!

There needs to be more people like you getting this info out in every way possible so that these frauds can be stopped and the innocent patients can be saved.

Also there's still tons of dirt to be dug up on hundreds of other hugely common perscription drugs which are deliberately destroying nations' futures.

Once again, very well done, mate!

posted on Nov, 22 2007 @ 05:11 AM
Its amazing that I find this thread here! I have been on Effexor xr for many many years and have tried numerous times to come off this drug. All with failed attempts. Until recently.

I was diagnosed bipolar 4 yrs ago after being on depression medications since the age of 18. I was put on Effexor xr 300mg along with Lamictal. Since being diagnosed, I have been put on several combinations of drugs but never taken off the Effexor, instead Lexapro was added to the cocktail which made no sense because it is of the same SSRI family.

I started researching the medication because of the terrible side effects it has if not taken on time(effexor users call this side effect BRAIN SHOCK) which is exactly what it feels like, you feel like someone is taking a cattle prod and shooting you with volts of electricity. After seeing the millions of people that were either very sick trying to come off this medication or just basically addicted, I was extremely WORRIED!

Now my current situation, I recently lost my job and my medical insurance and because Effexor cost over 500 a month I was forced to come off all my medications. I know a lot of you reading this are thinking, You never never never come off medication when diagnosed mentally ill. I do know this but again I did not have a choice. I had no problems coming off my Lexapro or my Lamictal. When coming off the Effexor as before I was severely SICK for weeks. Still as I write this I am going through the horrible withdraws of this addictive medication.

I do not want to make this a huge long drawn out reply and I am missing a lot of major points in writing these reply I'm sure, which I can add at a later point, My main reason for replying to this post, is Effexor is a very addictive medication, I feel like a new person since coming off this drug. I am paying attention to things I have overlooked for years. Also it is not only my experiences that I say its addictive, I have watched my sister, my mother and my best friend all try and come off this medication with the same deadly withdraws that have been compared to heroin or worse.

I do feel it is one of the many drugs prescribed heavily to the population so we are kept under control. Now that I am free of medication(which I have not been since age 18) I have been reading and researching like crazy to try and get the word out, to never ever take this medication. Sure in the beginning it makes you feel wonderful, but give it 3 months and try and stop taking it, you will then understand why there is such a public outcry against this medication. but why would we be believed, we are mentally ill. Shut up and take your medication and ask no questions is basically the response to many Dr's regarding the side effects and withdraws.

I'm so glad to see this thread, I look forward to reading many reactions regarding this highly addictive medication.

posted on Nov, 23 2007 @ 12:22 PM

Originally posted by anhinga

Here's a book, well, the title says it all for those taking SSRIs and other pharms, that people should be aware of:

Toxic Psychiatry: Why Therapy, Empathy and Love Must Replace the Drugs, Electroshock, and Biochemical Theories of the "New Psychiatry"

Excellent contribution to the thread! I will definitely order this book. I would recommend "Natural Cures "They" Don't Want You to Know About" by Kevin Trudeau. It has a surplus of info on the corruption of the FDA and FTC, it's in all actuality more of a conspiracy book than a health book.

As for my research I have found drugs outside of the SSRI class that have been having similar effects on patients;
Bupropion (Antidepressant-brand names Wellbutrin, Zyban, Budeprion and Buproban) which is a norepinephrine and dopamine reuptake inhibitor.
Varenicline (Smoke cessation-brand names Chantix and Champix) which is a nicotinic receptor partial agonist.

I will be posting more information, cases, and testimonials on these drugs in the near future.

What spurred me to look into the Bupropion was my mother;
She was prescribed Welbutrin for depression about a month ago and had been on a steady decline since; she almost immediately developed horrible daily headaches, she was in a constant state of anger, she could not stand to be around anyone, and finally in the past two weeks started having uncontrollable suicidal thoughts and "cravings" for self mutilation. Thankfully she told me all this a few days ago, before it was too late. I recomended she start cutting down to wean herself off of it. That night she skipped her dose and guess what, no headache the next day.

She also informed me that she had been writing her thoughts and feelings during the worst of it. I will be asking her for these writings and her permission to post them as a testimonial. I'm extremely thankful that she told me about this before it was too late. I've already lost enough family to those corrupt bastards.

I would also like to thank everyone for contributing and sharing your thoughts, feelings, and personal experiences. I can promise you this; the information I have found will not go unused. I have made it my personal mission to spread this knowledge. I will prevent the suffering my family has endured at the hands of those evil personifications for as many as I can.


posted on Nov, 23 2007 @ 01:19 PM
Several years ago I had a doctor prescribe Effexor XR to me. I was on it for a year. During that year I was never so happy in my life. I bought a car I couldn't afford, moved into a place I couldn't afford, was dating women I couldn't afford, In fact, I had more sex in that year than I'd ever had in my life. It was great!

Of course a year later I was homeless, broke and still just as happy as could be. I realized that no one should be happy in the condition I was in so I went cold turkey.

For three days I could hear people beating on the walls and trying to get into the room I was in. Sweats, hallucinations and madness were pretty much a constant part of the withdrawals.

I finally got off it though and was able, after awhile, to put my life back together. Sure, I go a bit nuts every now and then and still have bouts of depression, but those are things I can live with. I'd rather be a bit off than on meds such as Effexor, they just aren't worth it.


Edit: As much as I spent for this computer and it can't spell worth a damn.

[edit on 23-11-2007 by mrwupy]

posted on Dec, 3 2007 @ 02:56 PM
My mother is on Effexor for pain management and depression associated with enduring pain. She seems to have a pretty good grip of it though last night she told me she knows she's addicted to it. She has two slipped discs and sciatica and wouldn't be able to work without this drug. It has pretty much saved her life. I'm not intending to discount any of the experiences contained in this thread and I wonder what you did to manage your pain after you left this drug?


posted on Dec, 3 2007 @ 03:03 PM
I just noticed this thread, read the first post, and went right to posting this. I know exactly how dangerous this drug is to people. It took me two months to withdraw from it. During that time I got sensations of electric shocks in my head constantly. I thought I had a brain tumor.

I can understand why some would commit suicide. When you are so bombarded by CNS experiences you start feeling like death is the only way to escape the torture.

I experienced the same problems with Paxil and Cymbalta.

posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 11:47 PM
It's been nearly 2 years since I posted this thread. For a while I thought it would just fade into the ATS databanks and be forgotten. This is the one thread I actually cared about, because it's personal to me. I thought if I could help save at least one person, then the research I put into it would be worth it. In a way, my brother's memory would be honored.
Now, nearly 2 years after I posted it, I have received a U2U from someone who read this thread and was helped because of it:

"Thankyou thankyou thankyou. You may have just saved my life. I have been on cymbalta for 6 yrs and just recently quit cold turkey out of fear of the health care bill. I don't want to be dependent on any medicines if that is passed, but thats besides the point. I couldn't understand what was going with me. The withdrawal effects have caused some big problems in my personal life but I never connected the two. I figured if i quit taking it all that would happen would be that I would feel sad for a while. Thats hasn't been the case. Just thought you would like to know. "

I'm keeping this person anonymous for the sake of their privacy. Not because they asked to remain that way, but as a common courtesy.

I hope this thread reaches more people who are being tormented by the effects of these malignant drugs. If anyone else would like to come forward with their story, this is the place to do it. The more who know about this, the more saved.

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