Psycho-Babble Medication Thread 247549

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Changing from Paxil to Zoloft

Posted by Sleepy Susan on August 2, 2003, at 8:32:31

My daughter went on Paxil a year ago for social anxiety issues and it worked well, when I talked to my gynocologist about some problems she was having, she said she also had PMDD and suggested Zoloft and when I said she was on Paxil, she recomended just upping her dosage to 25 mg. That has worked well, but the FDA recently said that those under 18 shouldn't take Paxil, so we are changing her over to Zoloft.

Her primary Dr wants her to go from the 25mg Paxil to the 12.5's for a week and then a couple of days off and then start with the starter pack on the Zoloft. It is a week at 25mg and then up to 50 mg.

I would love to hear how this has gone for anyone else and any problems you may have had with it. I am hoping we avoid the discontinuation issues-I still wonder why they aren't admitting it is a 'withdrawl' issue.

Susan

 

Re: Changing from Paxil to Zoloft Sleepy Susan

Posted by Janelle on August 2, 2003, at 14:38:36

In reply to Changing from Paxil to Zoloft, posted by Sleepy Susan on August 2, 2003, at 8:32:31

Hi,

First I'd just *warn* you that just because the Paxil was working for your daughter does NOT mean Zoloft will. It's always a crap shoot with these a-d's and sometimes a person has to try several of them before hitting on the one that works! I hope Zoloft works for your daughter.

That said, I was on Paxil (30 mg, increasing to 40 mg occasionally if I felt like I was heading downhill) for many years before it started inducing hypomania then pooped out.

At the time it stopped working for me, the news had just come out about Paxil's withdrawal problems, my pdoc at the time was uninformed and she took me off very quickly, basically a 4-day or so *taper* from 30 mg to nothing! I got SOOOOOO sick - more nauseous than I've ever felt (but could not actually barf), plus hot and cold sweats, and other flu-like symptoms that persisted for days.

My suggestion (and it's only my humble idea) wuold be for your daughter to go from the 25mg Paxil to the 12.5's for TWO weeks and then a couple of days off and then start with the starter pack on the Zoloft. The Zoloft starter pack is fine; dosing on Zoloft can ultimately go into the hundreds (I tried that one too; didn't work).

I think if you have your daughter taper off the Paxil over 2 weeks at 12.5, then stopping it, that would be safer in terms of avoiding the discontinuation issues.

You said that you still wonder why they aren't admitting it is a 'withdrawl' issue -- what do you mean by this? I have read statements from the Paxil manufacturer and seen ads on TV where it is stated that one must go off that med gradually to avoid withdrawal. I think the FDA has made them put a warning on the package insert.

Good luck!

 

Re: Changing from Paxil to Zoloft

Posted by Sleepy Susan on August 2, 2003, at 17:38:43

In reply to Re: Changing from Paxil to Zoloft Sleepy Susan, posted by Janelle on August 2, 2003, at 14:38:36

Janelle wrote,
> First I'd just *warn* you that just because the Paxil was working for your daughter does NOT mean Zoloft will. It's always a crap shoot with these a-d's and sometimes a person has to try several of them before hitting on the one that works! I hope Zoloft works for your daughter.

I hope so too, from the various things I've read-it looked like the best posibility.

> That said, I was on Paxil (30 mg, increasing to 40 mg occasionally if I felt like I was heading downhill) for many years before it started inducing hypomania then pooped out.

Those sound like dosages for the regular Paxil, she is on the time release one, not sure how much of a difference that will make.

> My suggestion (and it's only my humble idea) wuold be for your daughter to go from the 25mg Paxil to the 12.5's for TWO weeks and then a couple of days off and then start with the starter pack on the Zoloft. The Zoloft starter pack is fine; dosing on Zoloft can ultimately go into the hundreds (I tried that one too; didn't work).

Ok, he suggested the 2 weeks first and then thought that 1 week should be fine. With what you have written, is there an AD that has worked for you?

> You said that you still wonder why they aren't admitting it is a 'withdrawl' issue -- what do you mean by this? I have read statements from the Paxil manufacturer and seen ads on TV where it is stated that one must go off that med gradually to avoid withdrawal. I think the FDA has made them put a warning on the package insert.
>
> Good luck!

Thanks, I hadn't seen that. Most things I have read on the SSRI's still say they don't cause addiction and there is no withdrawl, though they mention the discontinuation syndrome more often now.

Thanks for the information,Janelle,
Susan

 

Re: Changing from Paxil to Zoloft Sleepy Susan

Posted by Janelle on August 2, 2003, at 17:59:00

In reply to Re: Changing from Paxil to Zoloft, posted by Sleepy Susan on August 2, 2003, at 17:38:43

Hello again,

Now that you've told me your daughter is on the time release version of Paxil (I forgot all about that one!), this could *lessen* withdrawal symptoms, so the pdoc saying that 1 week at 12.5, then stopping could very well be fine!

You asked about me and a-d's, well I'm on Celexa and it SEEMS to be working, but I recently had to increase the dose. I'm hoping this doesn't become a pattern (every few weeks having to increase the dose; if so, then it apparently is NOT working).

You are right that most info on the SSRI's still says they don't cause addiction - in fact, there's a TV commercial for ZOLOFT(!) that is on very frequently (at least where I live in the US) and it actually states that Zoloft is "NON-HABIT FORMING".

This could very well be true, if Zoloft has a long half-life like Prozac does. As I understand it, the longer the half-life, the less likely there will be severe discontinuation syndrome.


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