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Thread: Awful Fluoxetine side effects

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2005
    , , United Kingdom.

    Awful Fluoxetine side effects

    Hi all,

    I’m a GAD soldier, with around 25 years hard-won experience, really serious in past 15 years. I’ve had one period on SSRI meds before (Citalopram, 40mg, for 6 months in 2005/2006), which was very effective for me.

    I’m back on an SSRI for the first time in 13 years, this time Prozac to help me cope with work pressure and the creep up of GAD that has been coming for a while now and which I notice is turning into depression as it starts to wear me down.

    I always found this board very helpful back in 2005/2006 so I was wondering if anyone had any thoughts on the symptoms I am getting with Fluoxetine, which is nothing like I remember Citalopram being 13 years ago.

    The doc told me that Fluox was quite gentle side-effects-wise so I should be spared anything really horrible when coming up on this medication.

    I am on day 15 of 20mg of Fluoxetine. Jeeeeeeeez do I feel ill… sicker than I ever thought possible from a med like this.

    I can only describe it as feeling like I’ve been heavily poisoned.

    I’m going to list symptoms in the order in which they are interfering with me / concerning me.

    Can anyone share experiences that might reassure that this can happen with this med and I just need to wait it out a couple more weeks?

    • Fatigue/tiredness (total systemic fatigue/exhaustion. I am just dragging myself around on pure willpower alone)
    • Weakness (mostly arms but over whole body)
    • Headaches (can be quite severe)
    • Inability to concentrate (it’s so hard to work)
    • Muscle pain, especially neck and shoulders
    • Aching feeling all over
    • Hot flashes and night sweats
    • Feeling of being very cold and shivery
    • Raised glands in neck (sore spots on either side of my neck)
    • Sore throat (not hugely painful or swollen or anything, more relentlessly uncomfortable)
    • Zero motivation/avoiding work/avoiding anything physically or mentally challenging
    • Nausea (especially in morning)
    • Insomnia (this one comes and goes)
    • Random stabbing pain in joints (wrists, knees in particular)
    • Weak voice (weird one, feeling of weakness when trying to speak)
    • Some confusion (but only when very tired at night)

    Thank you friends,

    Last edited by Gareth; 18-03-19 at 12:33.
    *** I think, therefore I\'m anxious ***

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2011

    Re: Awful Fluoxetine side effects

    Everyone is different to what side effects each med will cause.... just because the side effects are easier for one person it doesn't mean it will be for another

    Personally, I did try prozac but it really didn't suit me at all. The side effects were awful for me... so I went on to citalopram, which I was on for about a year and a half and I thought they were working well but my anxiety kept coming back... so in a severe bout of anxiety I changed to Sertraline which has been brilliant for me and I am realising that sertraline is working better than any other med did.

    unfortunately anti-depressants are all a bit of trial and error untill you find the one that works the best for you... but it is important to give each of them a good try to see which works for you. just remember that everyone is different with meds.
    Emmz xx

    nolite te basstardes carborundorum

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    Re: Awful Fluoxetine side effects


    Reading your symptoms was literally like reading a Fluoxetine "PIL" (patient information leaflet) in that basically everything you've written can be attributed to the medication.
    You should try and persevere through these side effects until you're at around 4 weeks. If the side effects persist, or get worse or you get new ones, it may be wise to ask about switching back to Citalopram.

    The insomnia can be very disruptive to some people taking SSRIs - in this case you can try taking the dose as soon as you waken up, but even then people find that the insomnia may still be present for a period of time.

    Good luck
    Healthcare Professional with Health Anxiety

    Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    , , United Kingdom.

    Re: Awful Fluoxetine side effects


    This is just a courtesy reply to let you know that your post was moved from its original place to a sub-forum that is more relevant to your issue.

    This is nothing personal - it just enables us to keep posts about the same problems in the relevant forums so other members with any experience with the issues can find them more easily.

    Please also read this post:

    “Don't be afraid of death; be afraid of an unlived life. You don't have to live forever, you just have to live.” - Natalie Babbitt

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  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2005
    , , United Kingdom.

    Re: Awful Fluoxetine side effects

    I can't take the headaches and the insomnia in particular anymore. I've had a headache for 48 hours that has me on my back just wanting to die, never experienced pain like it. This can't be right.

    I am never taking another one of these pills.

    Does anyone know what kind of withdrawal I can expect having been on these for 2 weeks at 20mg? I've read it can take 90 days for fluoxetine to leave the body.
    *** I think, therefore I\'m anxious ***

  6. #6

    Re: Awful Fluoxetine side effects

    Hi i have been on 10mg fluoxetine for 6 weeks 2 days now and it has been a very bumpy ride. I have been suffering from headaches on and off since i started sometimes lasting few days at a time. They do however seem to come and go. I had a bad week on week 4 with extreme anxiety and panic then i thought i had turned the corner by week 5 as everything settled down and no more headaches. However i am so far having a rough start to week 6 my headaches are back complete with added in feelings of being spaced out and dizzy spells :-( I have read it can take anywhere from 6 - 12 weeks to see the full benefits so im hoping this is just a blip and i will start to pick up again soon. I thought i was the only one with these horrific headaches as not many people mention it on here so its nice to know someone else is going through headache hell on these tablets.

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