Tina: Medication Changes and Antidepressant Withdrawal


This week, Tina talks about her experience with depression, her use of antidepressant drugs and how a change in her medication led to her withdrawal problems. She also tells how her doctors failed to advise her about antidepressant withdrawal in advance or recognise it when it arose.

In this episode we discuss:

  • How work pressures led to Tina feeling under intense pressure
  • How Tina’s doctor diagnosed her with ‘flat battery syndrome’ and prescribed antidepressants
  • How Tina was told that there were no issues with dependance or withdrawal
  • That Tina wasn’t worried about side effects and was confident that the medication would help her
  • How Tina only saw her GP twice over the next six years with no review of her medications
  • How additional pressures with work led to Tina then getting a diagnosis of anxiety in addition to depression
  • How her Doctor advised changing from Fluoxetine to Paroxetine
  • That Tina felt a little better after the changeover
  • How losing her ex husband led to Tina experiencing a deep depression and suicidal thoughts and that she sought help from counselling
  • This time the GP changed Tina to Citalopram, describing it as a “kinder’ antidepressant asking Tina to change over in 2 weeks
  • How, within a few days, Tina started to feel very unwell experiencing vivid dreams, nausea, dizziness, tinnitus
  • When she came to make her reductions in the second week of the changeover she felt like she was being poisoned
  • That she experienced severe electric shock sensations which led her to research online and discovered that what she was experiencing was Paroxetine withdrawal
  • How Tina was just advised to changeover even more quickly and ended up feeling that she needed to go into hospital
  • How she feels that if she were taking illegal drugs she would have got more support
  • How, once changed onto Citalopram, the symptoms started to ease
  • That Tina is still on Citalopram but that she got virtually no support from her GP which making the changes to her medication
  • How counselling helped in allowing Tina to express how she felt
  • How Tina feels that there should be more awareness, more information and more support for people that end up in antidepressant withdrawal