Clonazepam withdrawal

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maddielouise1
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Clonazepam withdrawal

Postby maddielouise1 » Wed Jun 25, 2008 2:26 am

For those of you who have taken Clonazepam with another medication for RLS and had to come off the Clonazepam or reduce the dosage, can you tell me what you experienced as far as withdrawal symptoms? I'm not asking to scare anyone, but would rather be prepared. My MD wants me to increase my Mirapex (adding some in the morning), but decrease the Clonazepam from 1 mg. to .5 mg. at night. I'm doing it slowly and have been on .75 Clonazepam this week. After about four days, I noticed a throbbing headache all day today, and thus am wondering if this is a withdrawal symptom or if I'm just having a "headache" day (which I get infrequently). I know we all experience withdrawal differently, but thought I'd get some ideas.

Thanks!

Maddie

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Postby ViewsAskew » Wed Jun 25, 2008 3:23 am

How long have you been on it, Maddie?

I think it absolutely "could" be....but it could just be a headache. 4 or 5 days is consistent with when you'd start feeling it because of the very long half life of the drug. Jan and others here have stopped it without any difficulties at all.

My doctor was shocked at how severely I experienced withdrawal when I wasn't taking much and hadn't taken it all that long...so, we're each different.

I had to cut off little pieces of the drug because I couldn't step down by .25 mg at a time. I had to literally shave off pieces - it took me many months to do it. The whole time I was sick.

So, not to scare anyone either, but it can be anywhere on a very long continuum, if you know what I mean.
Ann - Take what you need, leave the rest

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ctravel12
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Postby ctravel12 » Wed Jun 25, 2008 3:58 am

Hi Maddie I am on clonazapem and mirapex (.125mg of mirapex). I just seen my neurologist thiis past week. I was on 1mg of clonazapem and he wanted me to lowser the dosage to .75mg and so far am doing fine with it. I have not experience any headaches or withdrawals.

I know about a year ago I went off clonazapem "cold turkey" and was only take .5mg and believe me I paid dearly for it. I was in withdrawals for one week and was not sleeping and my legs went into overdrive.

I hope that this helps you. I know everyone reacts differently to medications.
Charlene
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maddielouise1
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Postby maddielouise1 » Wed Jun 25, 2008 11:59 am

Thank you ViewsAskew and Ctravel. In answer to your question, I've been on it since October. I started on .5 and moved up to 1 mg. when it, in combination with the Mirapex, wasn't stopping my movement at night. Because my leg movements during the day has come back (not too badly, but noticeably), she wanted to add .5 Mirapex during the day and lower the Clonazepam. So far, my sleep has been fine. She wants me to go down to .5 on the Clonazepam, but I'm really hesitant to do so.

I am congested, so now I'm theorizing that it's a sinus headache and of course there isn't much we can take for that. Guess I'll look at the list (ha!).

Thank you for your responses. Somehow it helps to know that others have or have not experienced similar effects.

Sincerely,

Maddie

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ctravel12
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Postby ctravel12 » Wed Jun 25, 2008 1:56 pm

Hi Maddie this is just my opinion in regards to lowering the dosage of the clonazapem. You said that you were on 1mg and the dr wants to lower the dosage to .5mg. IMHO I feel you should just lower it right now to .75mg. I am not a dr but know how my dr feels about going down too quick on this med.

Like I said I was on 1mg and my neurologist had me lower it to .75mg. I had suggested to go to .5mg and he was against that as he said this is one med that you do not lower the dosage that quick.

Please keep us posted on how you are doing.
Charlene

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maddielouise1
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Postby maddielouise1 » Wed Jun 25, 2008 3:03 pm

Hi Ctravel,

Your idea is exactly what I've been doing. I've lowered it to .75 instead of .5 because like you, I feel that is too big of a jump down. I guess in about a week, I'll lower it to .5 and if I get back into a really restless state at night, I'll see if I can go back up.

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Postby Sojourner » Wed Jun 25, 2008 5:16 pm

M, Was a bit jittery and/or anxious during coming of klonopin. No headaches. Relatedly, after taking Sinement for several years I began to experience headaches (much like a sinus headache). In any event, that and augmentation led to my not taking Sinemet on any regular basis. Best wishes.

M.
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Postby ViewsAskew » Wed Jun 25, 2008 6:05 pm

Maddie - one thing to think about is that since your RLS is worse during the day AND you are taking a dopamine agonist....that this is augmentation, not worsening of the RLS.

When the worsening is an hour earlier or it's just a bit worse, the specialists agree that a higher dose can be used. But when it comes many hours earlier or is much more severe, they say that stopping the agonist is the best option.

Many docs are not familiar with this concept. And some are, but still increase the meds. It works for awhile, but always it gets worse again and the med has to be stopped. And sometimes the increase in RLS is permanent (as with me and a few others here).

Please be careful. Listen to yourself. Know yourself...and as much else as you can about RLS. I would hate for anyone to have what happened to me happen to them.
Ann - Take what you need, leave the rest



Managing Your RLS



Opinions presented by Discussion Board Moderators are personal in nature and do not, in any way, represent the opinion of the RLS Foundation, and are not medical advice.

maddielouise1
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Postby maddielouise1 » Wed Jun 25, 2008 9:17 pm

Thank you ViewsAskew,

I have been considering the idea of augmentation, but I may have misstated this earlier. After starting Mirapex, the movement during the day was significantly better. After a couple of months, the movement returned, but I wouldn't say it is anywhere near the severity it originally was.

I agree that we must listen to ourselves and our bodies on these issues, because there isn't enough understood about this condition.

Sincerely,

Maddie

maddielouise1
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Postby maddielouise1 » Wed Jun 25, 2008 9:19 pm

Interesting Mark. What medication do you take instead of Sinement (sp?) (if you don't mind my asking).

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Aiken
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Postby Aiken » Thu Jun 26, 2008 6:06 am

Maddie--

Clonazepam is actually one of a few benzos that are used to help people taper off of the more difficult ones. It has a nice, long half-life, so it's partially self-tapering. I used it for just that purpose myself when I was done taking lorazepam.

As long as you take it easy, dropping by no more than 1/4 or 1/5 or so, once every week or two, the side effects should be minimal. If you take a step down and you feel lousy, just don't take another step down until you feel better. However, my doctor told me that even if you feel lousy, it's a bad idea to go back up. That's why you want to go down in small, tolerable increments.

Good luck...
Disclaimer: I often talk about what I do and what works for me, but these are specific to me and you should always consult a healthcare professional before trying these things yourself, lest you endanger your health or life.

maddielouise1
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Postby maddielouise1 » Thu Jun 26, 2008 8:27 am

Thank you Aiken. One of my biggest fears is that it will disrupt my sleep (to go off Klonopin). Ambien, Lunesta, etc. do not work well for me. As you can see, it's doing that as I write-ha! There have been some positives. I notice as I decrease, my daytime energy level is higher and I'm more motivated. I think the Klonapin may have been counteracting my Cymbalta, as I was feeling more depressed. My psychiatrist wants me off of it; my neurologist doesn't, although my neurologist is now encouraging the decreased dosage.

jumpy
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Postby jumpy » Sat Jun 28, 2008 3:23 pm

At one time, several years ago, I was on 2 mg klonopan. And also at one time Zanax. I can't remember if it was the same time. I was able to stop both cold turkey with no side effects that I can remember. The body is a strange machine, isn't it?

I currently take .5 klonopan at night with 1 mg Requip and a 10 mg Lortab at night and am sleeping fairly well. Sometimes during the day I have leg pain (deep muscle pain) that only Lortab will fix. I have a script for 2/ 10's a day. I usually cut in half and that works.

Off the subject, but I have been wondering lately if the constant need to move just wears the muscles out. Then the pain begins. My calf muscles are always sore. Oh well, just speculating.. always speculating...Pat

maddielouise1
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Postby maddielouise1 » Sat Jun 28, 2008 4:48 pm

Jumpy,

Interesting speculation and a good theory at that. I wish it would cause the fat to come off my thighs (while I'm moving so much)-ha! In sincerity, I'm sure your muscles do tire, as they would in any prolonged movement, which in turn causes soreness.

Sincerely,

Maddie

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ctravel12
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Postby ctravel12 » Sat Jun 28, 2008 5:55 pm

Hi Jumpy I was on clonazapem (at that time just took .5mg) and still am. However about two years I decided to stop the clonazapem cold turkey as I was told it was habit forming. OMG did I ever pay dearly for that. I was up for seven (7) nights straight and was lucky to get a half-hour sleep a night, if that much and my legs went bonkers.

I was recently on 1mg of clonazapem and my dr had me go down to .75mg and so far doing fine with it. I am also on .125mg of mirapex which for the past two months I have not been too lucky with as I have been having symptoms every night around 7 pm and would last up to 1-3 hrs whether I took the meds or not.

It was usually in my left leg; however last night it started around 6pm and was in both legs and lasted until around 10 pm. I have the painful rls.

Yes, the body is a strange machine.
Charlene

Taking one day at a time


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