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Thread: changing meds- need help

  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    changing meds- need help

    I am about to be changed over from 2700mg of Gabapentin a day to another drug called Cymbalta. (can't remember the pharmaceutical name), it's an anti-depressant.
    Like so many other similar drugs that are prescribed for 'neuropathic pain', (this one says it's good for diabetic neuropathy) it's debatable if they are any good for central pain. My pain is central and has been getting worse lately, just reaching the unbearable category these days.
    I have seen a new doctor, a chronic pain specialist, he is going to monitor me in hospital for 7 to 10 days during the first stage of the changeover, but I am nervous about it nevertheless.
    I would really appreciate some feedback from Dr Wise, the nurses, anyone experienced in this matter.
    I am also on Baclofen, Nifedipine, Esomeprazole and Meloxicam.

  2. #2
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    I have had success with Cymbalta and I have central pain too. I take Topamax also and I am slowly increasing the dose of that. I find that Cymbalta combined with 200mg Ultram ER works really well for my neuro/central pain.

    Some people have not had success with it here on this forum. It seems to be dependent on the individual person as to whether it works or not.

    I tried to go off all my medicine a few months ago and found that cannot live a quality life without them.

    My pain is worsening with age also.

    Good luck and I hope you have success.
    T12-L2; Burst fracture L1: Incomplete walking with AFO's and cane since 1989

    My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am. ~Author Unknown

  3. #3
    Hi I am on Topamax

    I think my Mother is on Cymbalta I'll ask her tomorrow because for fibromyalga .

    This all is interesting to me as I am trying to find something to help me with my neuropathic pain . It is hard . My pain makes me literally Grind my teeth / jaw kills me all the time .
    I havent seen my Physician in a good year because I am just trying to deal with thing's and I am at a standstill with meds currently . He is there if I need him.

    Basically I am a tough ol cookie as my momma calls me .. Someone just slap me into logic lol

    partygirl I hope you find relief . Pain Sucks

    Sincerely ;
    GL

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    Thanks Dd and GL for your replies, I am also keen to know how people weaned off gabapentin. like over what period, and what are the withdrawals like? It's hard to contemplate being in more or worse of this pain whilst I wean off one drug and onto the other.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    May 2010
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    Chesapeake, VA
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    Ryan used to take high doses of Gabapentin (3200 mg per day). He now takes 60 mg of Cymbalta and 1200 mg of gabapentin a day. He has been down to 600 mg a day and that was too little. We are tweaking now to get to 800 mg per day.

    This has taken months to get to. We tried many other drugs that were supposed to work for neorupathic pain. The reduction in the gabapentin was done slowly. Ryan's doctor worked with us to get us a selection of doses than could be cut in half to make the desired dose. It works not so much by the dose you took this morning but how much is flowing through your blood over time so splitting the pills has never been an issue. Our doctor gave us a schedule of how many mg per day, on what schedule (went from 4 x a day to 2 x a day) to get to where we are. The steps were small but the side effects were none.

    We started at 800 mg four times per day. First, we adjusted the timing to three times a day while slightly reducing the mg per day. We went from 800 4 x to 600 4 x to 800 3 x to 600 3 x to 800 2 x to 400 2 x to 600 2 x where we are now. I think Ryan went too fast with the last drop. He did not experience any withdrawal symptoms but had breakthrough burning butt. With a collection of 400 and 600 pills (they are scored for breaking in half), we were able to make our own combo on a week by week basis.

    The key is going to be working with your doctor. Gabapentin is so hard on the system in high doses that anything you can do is worth it. There are many drugs on the market for neuro pain ( I have a cupboard full of them that we tried) that you have hope for a better combo than the Gabapentin you are using now. Not everything you try will work. The fact that they work for some makes it worth your effort to try it. Everyone is different and everyone's neuro pain is very different and every injury is unique and everyone responds to drugs differently. This will take time and a good relationship with your doctor to get the meds titrated until the right mix is found for you.--eak
    Elizabeth A. Kephart, PHR
    mom/caregiver to Ryan-age 21
    Incomplete C-2 with TBI since 3/09

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