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Medscape article on Effexor withdrawal


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This is a good article (requires free registration):

Venlafaxine and Serious Withdrawal Symptoms: Warning to Drivers

However, little mention is found of the possibly severe effects of abrupt discontinuation or postponing ingestion of the daily dose for as little as 8 to 12 hours. Although a patient may have established that taking the drug does not noticeably affect the ability to drive a car or operate machinery, taking the drug in the evening if it is usually taken in the morning or forgetting to take the daily dose just once may induce sudden and severe disturbances in physical and mental condition that most definitely can impair normal functioning.

(emphasis as in original article; I didn't add the italics.)

It also discusses the fact that withdrawal symptoms are not dose-dependent and may be as much from the reduction in noradrenaline as from the reduction in serotonin (which would explain why cross-tapering with an SSRI doesn't always help people).  I personally cross-tapered with Wellbutrin but the last step off was still a doozy.  I remember thinking (at the very least) no way could I have held down a job during that week.  I bet driving would have been quite an adventure.

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