The hell of Seroxat withdrawal

This article is from the Northern Echo in 2003. Thanks to Truthman30 for finding it.

Wonder Drug Made My life Hell

Seroxat is one of the world’s biggest selling anti-depressant drugs and is marketed as being non-addictive.
But thousands of people have reported disturbing claims of dependency and withdrawal effects, as Lindsay Jennings reports.

Phil Jones says he doesn’t have an addictive personality. He has never smoked and doesn’t drink. It is partly for this reason, that, at the age of 49, he is struggling to comprehend how he has become dependent on the anti-depressant drug, Seroxat.

“I’m not even an avid tablet taker,” he says. “Even with painkillers for my neck and back, I’d rather have acupuncture and try and overcome the pain myself. But you don’t realise how addictive Seroxat is until you try to come off it. The effects are horrendous. If I’d known it was addictive I would never have taken it.”

Phil is sitting in The Northern Echo’s canteen, bravely sharing his experiences of Seroxat in the hope that others with similar experiences will come forward and join the North-East anti-depressant support group he has formed. He is also one of 4,000 people who have registered with Cardiff-based solicitors Hugh James with a view to possible joint legal action against the manufacturers of the drug, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). Like those 4,000 people, Phil is keen to challenge GSK’s belief that Seroxat is non-addictive and for better research into its effects to be carried out.

Seroxat is one of a class of drugs known as selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs) which boost the brain’s levels of mood-improving serotonin. It is commonly prescribed for mild depression, anxiety and phobias and is the nation’s second most popular anti-depressant after Prozac. In 2001, there were 340,000 prescriptions written in Britain alone and the drug is taken by tens of millions of people across the world.

Phil was first prescribed Seroxat in February 1999, after struggling to cope with the aftermath of a road accident, two years previously. He suffered nightmares and flashbacks from the accident and eventually took voluntary redundancy from his job as a machine operator at Rothmans in Spennymoor, County Durham.

‘I would say Seroxat worked to start with,” says Phil, of Bishop Auckland. “I found my mood improved and I didn’t get as many panic attacks. I suffered from agoraphobia so it helped me deal with that. The only drawback was that I had a lot of reality dreams, which seem particularly vivid.”

But his feelings towards the drug began to change when he forgot to take one of his 30mg tablets. He noticed he would start shaking and become very short tempered. Several months later, he says he also began displaying some side effects, including muscle spasms and a tendency to become depressed easily. He decided to go “cold turkey” and stop taking the drug altogether, but he says this was the worst move he could have made.

The symptoms were similar to forgetting to take a tablet, but brought with it memory lapses and headaches. His worst symptom was the heart palpitations and a feeling that he just had to get back on the drug.

His lowest point came when he went “walkabout” and found himself sitting outside Bishop Auckland hospital one night. “I kept thinking ‘should I go inside and get some more drugs or should I go home’,” he says. “I just couldn’t make a decision so I sat out in the open air all night. No one knew where I was. My wife was so concerned she called the police. It’s difficult, I can talk about it logically now, but at the time… I just needed a bit of space by myself. I took the drug again but I felt I had lost my battle to give up the drug forever.”

A similar story is told by Simon, not his real name, who started taking Seroxat to combat work-related stress. When he stopped taking the drug four years later he developed severe mood swings, feelings of violence and suicidal tendencies.

“I was totally devoid of all human emotions. It was so frightening. I felt like a wild animal,” says the 35-year-old, who lives in Durham.
After his initial “cold turkey” spell, Simon developed his own withdrawal programme, and has gradually reduced his intake of the drug over the past year. He believes it may take another two to three months to be completely free of it.

“I’ve taken it as slowly as possible and I’ve felt a lot better in myself for reducing. I feel more motivated, more energetic and a lot sharper in my mind. Basically, more like a human being again.”

Pam Armstrong, a consultant and advisor with CITA, (Council for Involuntary Tranquilliser Addiction) says although she understands that the drug is successful, it is equally important for people to be able to get off it.

“There are ways of withdrawing, but the trouble is doctors are saying to people that it’s them (the patient) and that it’s not addictive, because that is what the drug companies say,” she says. “Many of the symptoms are physical. People get quite nauseated and some get electric shock symptoms, in the head especially.”

CITA has developed a number of withdrawal programmes with Dr David Healy, director of the North Wales Department of Psychological Medicine at the University of Wales. These include reducing Seroxat intake very slowly and using it in liquid form, which is considered gentler to the system during withdrawal. In tablet form, once down to 20mg, it can take at least another three and a half months to come off. The charity has found that switching from Seroxat to Prozac, once down to a 20mg dosage, is one of the most successful withdrawal methods.

According to Pam, a qualified nurse and counsellor, there are more problems coming off Seroxat than other anti-depressant drugs because it is short acting, working for just a few hours, compared with the longest acting anti-depressant, Prozac.

A working party with the Department of Health’s executive body, the Medicine’s Control Agency (MCA), is carrying out an intensive review into all SSRIs, in particular Seroxat. It comes after more than 1,200 complaints from doctors to the MCA about some of the drug’s effects.

Seroxat is heavily marketed and, in Britain, GlaxoSmithKline has been found to be in breach of the industry’s code of marketing practice by playing down the side effects of the drug. The complaint was brought by the consumer group Social Audit and the case, in front of the industry’s self-regulatory body, the Prescription Medicines Code of Practice Authority, was won on appeal.

In America, where the drug is manufactured under the name Paxil, a court recently banned television advertisements of the drug which claimed it was non-habit forming. But, following a review of additional scientific evidence, the same district court overturned the decision. The class action was brought against GSK by patients seeking damages linked to withdrawal reactions from the drug.

GlaxoSmithKline maintains that the majority of the patients who use the drug are happy with it and that there is no reliable, scientific evidence that the drug is addictive. A spokesman for the company says: “Addiction involves an inappropriate pattern of drug use – typically including compulsive drug-craving and drug-seeking behaviour, and sometimes the need for markedly increased doses of the drug – that persists despite negative consequences. There is no evidence that patients experience these symptoms while on Seroxat.

“We take the reporting of adverse effects very seriously, as we do with all our medications. Fortunately, with Seroxat, we have a wealth of positive experience involving thousands of physicians and millions of patients – over ten years of experience worldwide.”

But the company does admit that “discontinuation symptoms” can occur in some people. It describes these as “generally short lived” and “mild to moderate in intensity”.

Phil, who retrained at college and works in IT for the Department for Education and Skills in Darlington, had managed to reduce his dosage slowly to 5mg a day, after almost a year. Despite recently having to increase his intake after suffering muscle spasms in his stomach and panic attacks, he says he has started withdrawing again and feels positive.

But he admits: “I don’t know if I’ll ever be free of Seroxat. To me, it was put forward as a wonder drug, but it’s not.”

* CITA can be contacted on 0151 932 0102.


118 Responses to “The hell of Seroxat withdrawal”

  1. truthman30 Says:

    This is one of a multitude of dozens of stories about Seroxat withdrawal hell which has made it into the mainstream media since 2002 , but there are many tens of thousands more documented on Web. So, one could safely say that there are hundreds of thousands (or possibly millions) of undocumented seroxat tragedies.

    The first panorama documentary expose on Seroxat reported a response of 64,000 phone calls about Seroxat withdrawal from the public (in the UK alone) – Unprecedented in the entire history of the programme.

    Since then there has been 4 BBC documentaries on the Seroxat subject, including an expose of GSK and the MHRA. (The Secrets Of Seroxat) (E-mails from the Edge_ (Taken On Trust) (Seroxat :Secrets of teh Drug Trials)

    Now, 6 years later( to the amazement of patients, doctors and health care workers alike) this defective and dangerous drug is still being prescibed….

    One more Seroxat induced suicide is one too many…
    How many more Seroxat casualties does it take before this nasty poison will be pulled from the market?…

    • Vikki Says:

      I was put on Seroxat as an adolescent. It helped me get back on my feet after anxiety attacks and depression. Now, i’m nearly thirty years old, and this is my third attempt at trying to withdraw. I literally sob morning and night, and can’t physically stop. The anxiety comes back, i’ve had stomach cramps, sweating, stomach cramps, and nausea. The anixety is the worst feeling in the world, combined with an awful buzzing sensation in my head, with my eyes going from side to side. I’ve had to go back on it again, and i’m quite prepared to take them for the rest of my life, to feel my best again, because the nightmare of the withdrawal symptoms is too hard to cope with. I don’t blame my GP’s, i’m sure they did the best thing they thought for me at the time, because I couldn’t take Prozac, but I believe once you’re on it, you’re on it for life.

      • Claire Reed Says:

        PLEASE dont stop. As I write you this message I am sat looking at the only thing left I have of my twin brother…a photo. Stuart had been taking seroxat sinse he was 18 for anxiety and depression and hated having to be reliant on it to just exist in some kind of accepted normality. He tried many different ways to come off them and visited his doctor only 6 months ago to discuss again the possibility of withdrawal. The doctor commended him for holding down a job and for recognising the unnatural thoughts he was experiecing. He reminded him that he had not self harmed for the past 7 years and that seroxat was the reason for this. Stuart lost his much loved dog last october, which came as a huge shock. He was with him when they put him down and he never got over it.
        Stuart hung himself with his dogs lead 3 weeks ago. I found his last prescription of seroxat unopened. He had stopped taking them. He would have been 30 in September.
        I know its hard to be reliant on a drug to overcome the problems our minds produce, but please be careful, these things can be deadly and your life is worth so much more. Depression is the most missunderstood illness and whilst meds like seroxat can help, I agree with you that it looks like once your on them, your on them for life.
        Good luck and please take care of yourself Vikki

      • Liz Says:

        Hi Vikki. Like I say in my comment. I’ve been, quite successfully on Seroxat for 17 years – in a “block out the world” kind of way. Unfortunately I have reached the maximum recommended amount 60mgs and this is no longer working for me – it just isn’t enough and in order to stop the “electric shocks” I am having to overdose more and more and more and its all becoming very uncomfortable. Overheating, burning in the sun, insomnia, fuzzy brain, headaches, nausea. I get the feeling that you are younger than me so staying on it for life is not an option either it would seem

    • Brendan Says:

      Greetings oh mighty anxiety revellers,

      I was on Seroxat for 3 years (I know, I know – In retrospect my Egyptian physciatrist just wanted my revenue). The drug changed my life for the better – delt with all my anxietys and helped me no end in business.

      I was illegally imprisoned for 6 weeks in the Middle East and was not allowed access to the drug. Other then some tunnell vision and concentration loss I felt no major withdrawel symtoms. Ive now been off it 4 months and feel great – much better then I felt before going on the drug and my anxietys have not come back to haunt me. Not sure what everyone is fussing about. Comming of cigarettes was 100 times more difficult.

      It did reduce my labido. I also put on alot of weight (but that could also be giving up the smokes at around the same time I started taking the drug. Seroxat gave me happiness and release from stress that I can not quantify

      • admin Says:

        Good Brendan – I’m glad for you.

        Not my experience though.

      • Yvette Coetzee Says:

        I must warn you, at this moment i am going thru HELL
        and only came upon this post looking for help.
        I was on seroxat ,paxil for about 2 years and decided about
        2months ago to start wening myself of it so finally stopped taking it on June 5 2010 on June 11 2010 i started feeling sick
        dizzines.vertigo, nausea vomiting headaches,flushes,swollen glands that hurt. I went to my docter who gave me SERC and urbanol but now realised that i only feel better from pill to pill!!!!! I am at this moment very desprate is there anything that can make this stop???
        If there is any1 please send me advice ???
        It is today 18 june 2010 and only been a week sick but i am flat on my back and need some help.

      • karen Says:

        because you have felt no withdrawal from these tablets has made you a sinic. Trust me the withdrawals are real. I have been experiencing withdrawals for the past 3 weeks and everytime I try to stop taking seroxat I have decided the only way to get of this demon drug is to fight it every step of the way, I can cope with the electric shocks, the sweating, the crying even the horrible vivid dreams, the only thing that really scares me is the sleep paralysis a feeling that you are not awake yet not asleep and fight and fight to wake yourself up its a horrid sensation. But I know I have to be strong and I have been given seroxat suspension to reduce the medicine gradually which I have been doing day by day starting at 4ml which equates to 8mg seroxat I have been reducing this 1 mark each day now I am on 2.2 ml which I think equates to 4.4mg seroxat correct me If I am wrong anyway I am in control of reducing my doctor says up it If you feel the withdrawals But no I will not I cannot I am really determind to get of this drug I hate it with a passion so here goes. The worst is the morning electric shocks in the head, weeping this morning especially. At night horrible dreams and for the first time last night for a long while sleep paralysis, I believe now my body is withdrawing and no matter what I do I have to fight this, I guess like a heroin addict. All I know is that If I dont put up with some of these withdrawals I will never get of it so Im going to be strong and I am not going to let these drugs take over my life I want rid of them no matter what it takes! karen

      • Pam Says:

        I don’t believe you and suspect you are a paid GSK blogger. I could be wrong in which case I apologise. If I’m right then shame on you.

    • tiger22007 Says:

      Just tried cutting down from 30mg to 20mg lasted a week a week of hell have tried on numerous occasions and failed not going through that hell again looks like I will be stuck on this poison.What I cannot understand is how it is still being prescribed with all these side effects surely GP’s should realise by now and stop prescribing it.

  2. lorraine Says:

    I am a seroxat user,since 1999, for the last two years i have been dropping doseage with liquid seroxat,down to 2.5 ml . not able to drop any lower, ive tried, and ive, cried and cried, pushing the ugly overpowering thoughts of death once again, maybe for the 100th time , away from my weak self, the thoughts come from nowhere , they are just all of a sudden there, and so real, so overpowering, so easy to act upon, i know this only through experiance. I feel i am not the person i used to be and dont know if i will ever find my old self again. i long to be me again, i need to be me again you see i have a four year old son who is not living a full life and missing out on so so much because i am his full time parent and caregiver, and there is so much i cant give him , because ive lost too much of myself, physicly, emotionally, and mentally, cant think straight, cant remember things, cant make decisions, cant go out, cant wake up, dont like bright lights, loud noise, too many people talking around me sends my head into a twirll, cant have a conversation without forgeting what i am talking about, need to think about, what i shoul d be thinking about, i could go on, and on, and on. But im done in now, writing this was hard going, please excuse any mistakes with spelling. Maybe GSK’s top dogs could put a family member each on seroxat , even for a short period of time, to prove to everyone how safe it is to take, and how safe and problem free it is to STOP. Would they be happy to let a family member play russian roulette, because thats what taking seroxat is like, it might just kill you. Honestly. Or is that what they are trying to do ? goodbye for now.

  3. Panagiotis L Says:

    Hello out there,

    I ‘ve just began a search, because of my father’s annoying nagging that why god dosen’t takes his life already, that he can’t swallow his saliva & general complaints that he’s not feeling well etc. etc. accompanied by the “excuse” that I’ve recently quit on seroxat (the last 2 weeks) & that he heard that it is addictive.

    I just wasn’t believing him until tonight… that I ‘ve decided to search on the net although I wasn’t very optimistic about my search results, because i know that such things are gagged. My search started from the world largest on-line & user updated encyclopedia and led me to your blog-site. (but i won’t bother you ppl with my internet adventures)

    I’ll get to the point immediately by only stating that I’m socked from all these things I ‘ve found, that I’m deeply concerned & very sad about my father’s situation & all the innocent ppl suffering withdrawal symptoms all around the world or wherever around the world such drugs are prescribed & continue to be prescribed.

    Coming back to my father I would like to give you a brief bio of his life.

    He’s now 60 years old, he was an athlete till 38 (soccer player). He never smoked, he drinks alcohol only on Name days & very small amounts each time.
    He’s generally a barking dog that never bites. (concerning his up to date attitude)
    He worked for thirty five years on a post office, the central here in our home town, Athens.
    He’s the person that helps everyone except himself & he’s so good to others that you would say he’s a fool.
    Due to money issues ( I believe) he started feeling lightly depressed & went to the doctor 6 years ago who prescribed him with the godforsaken seroxat drug. He continued to take the drug after the main months of the treatment, with the advice of the doctor to use it when he feels to.
    Now after almost 6.5 years the docs told him that he shouldn’t do so cause he didn’t need to & that it is possibly addictive. I would like to note that the doctor who told him so isn’t a psychiatrist but a doctor he visited for some tests concerning his large intestine. I forgot to mention that my father generally is the kind of person that searches his health thoroughly, cause i believe he’s afraid of death!

    Knowing all these and more (cause come on, he is my father & live with him 28 years now…) I cannot excuse my father’s late behavior on any way except from that which he is complaining about & blames. Seroxat addiction.

    I don’t know how to help him & I don’t know where to point him to for a solution. I’m very saddened from the whole situation & I don’t know how this situation will end… I was horrified when I read above for suicides or suicidal tendencies.

    Please anyone inform me on anything i could do to help him & also contribute on any way that could help other ppl suffering from withdrawal symptoms of the certain godforsaken drug.

    I really sympathize

    • Annie Says:

      This may help. I was prescribed 20mg Seroxat in 1999 and continued to use it for three years to 2002. The doctor saw me for repeat prescriptions for a short time in the beginning but after a while he allowed me to repeat the prescriptions without a consultation. I decided it was time to take myself off the drug when I was unable to handle social situations; it was hard to even remember the point I was trying to make and I ended up looking a fool on more than one occasion. I was also interpreting situations wrongly and getting quite angry inappropriately and getting incredibly shaky when talking to people. For what it’s worth I came off the drug without seeing my doctor by taking it every other day for 3 months then I found I was able to go without it for 2 days until I got used to that and then reducing it over the next few months to nothing – yey! I had the electric shock symptoms and I now get migranes and a sensation of fullness in my head but I don’t feel the need to go back on it – in fact I shall never use that sort of drug again. On a positive note I work full time and have a family although I earn half of what I used to. I also study at honours degree level so even though Seroxat did impact on thinking skills in face to face situations it has not affected my brain as such. It is disgusting that the drug is still being prescribed but what is even more disgusting is the way the medics hide their heads in the sand; shame on them. I wish anyone coming off this drug the best of luck, it isn’t easy but if your father takes it one very small step at a time he will find it easier than . And remember to go easy on yourselves!

    • Pam Says:

      In my experience Doctors are very quick to prescribe these drugs and yet know very little about the effects. All their knowledge is based on Big Pharm sound bites. Is that not a breach of their code of ethics? They are destroying peoples lives with this stuff. What really really truly annoys me is there are so many natural alternatives that do actually work. Before prescribing paroxetine shouldn’t Doctors as a bare minimum prescribe a course of Fish Oil and B vitamins. And what about cases when you should be depressed! Loss of job, death of a loved one. It’s normal to be depressed in these circumstances. These require philosophical thinking not drugs. Shame on the medical (quack) profession.


    Paxil Progress is a good point of call. It’s a forum where Seroxat users share their experiences. Paxil is the USA name for Seroxat.

    Hope this helps


  5. lesley ross Says:

    Hello, I am sitting herewith tars streaming down my face. It has been 11 days since my last Seroxat Tablet. My dosage was 50mg and I have been taking this for two years. My reason for stopping?? I have had severe reactions, prob 10 occasions, when drinking alcohol. I have been told that one minute I am fine and the next it is like a switch going off and I effectively go mad, becoming aggressive and generally not a nice person to be around. I took the time to look up this drug on the internet and was amazed to read all the horror stories, particularly those relating to seroxat mixed with alcohol. So here I am trying to go cold turkey.
    Today has been hell, I feel as if I am detached from my own body,haveservere pinsand needles and zap like feelings in my head. I have cried all day and feel like I want to do something to myself. Can anyone else relate.
    My background is as follows,

    Age 38 and now a retired Senior Bank Manager, yes retired.
    Prescribed this horrific drug two years ago for stress and depression. Used to be a success story, highly motivated and driven.
    Am now a wreck with a husband who cant stand me and life is just so hard.

    • karen Says:

      please dont just stop this medicine Its not a good idea, slowly reduce it the withdrawals will not be as powerfull as cold turkey withdrawals but you will still feel some as I do I have been trying to get of this drug for years now I know I have to go through some withdrawal even with reducing dose please go back to your doc ask for seroxat susspension which is what I am currently taking you can be in control and reduce it a mg at a time your body will adjust to the lowering dose but I am sure you will still feel some withdrawals but you have to be strong and fight them but not in cold turkey

  6. Lynn Says:

    I’m so sorry you are suffering so much. Please get to a doctor. If yours won’t listen to you, just walk into any clinic. Please ask the doctor to get a copy of The Anti-Depressant Solution. It is by a doctor who has worked on helping people get off antidepressants for years. Please don’t try to do this alone. Please write back if you can. Don’t let the drug destroy you. Fight it!

  7. sajid Says:

    i hav bn taking 40mg seroxt fr 6 years i want to go off it withdrawal symptoms r terrible dont knw wat to do

  8. truthman30 Says:

    sajid Says:
    February 5, 2008 at 10:59 pm
    i hav bn taking 40mg seroxt fr 6 years i want to go off it withdrawal symptoms r terrible dont knw wat to do

    Read up on this site Sajid..
    Do not go cold turkey off Seroxat!
    It is very dangerous…
    Talk to your doctor about a taper regime…
    get all the support you need..
    you can do it..
    best of luck 🙂

  9. Fiona Says:

    This ghastly drug ruined my life. Today my best friend has been prescribed it. I think I have may have come across as slightly hysterical when I phoned him and begged him not to take it. If your GP prescribes this to you then find another GP. I lost 12 years of my life and my marriage to this drug. DO NOT TAKE THIS DRUG

  10. anonymous Says:

    Oh my god, are they still prescribing this CRAP!!!
    What are they trying to do harm as many people as possible?

  11. Another Fiona Says:

    I have been on seroxat for 14 years. My doctor has not listened to me when I said my heart was beating the wrong way when I try to cut down. I am no longer depressed. I am scared that I am heading for heart failure. I cant believe what I have just seen on the websites about this drug and I know that in time it will be stopped. But in the meantime we are the casualties of pharmaceutical greed. I hope that these people can sleep at night because they dont deserve too. If I get off this poisen I will use my energy to fight with everyone else to stop this evil.

  12. Andrew P Says:

    I’m a user of 10 yrs…… this drug has ruled my life after being prescribed it like smarties when i was 19. Great at first. Solved all my problems. Now!!!….. the moment i miss a dose, my mood changes. The longer i leave it. SWEATS. SHORT TEMPER. ELECTRIC SHOCKS, in my head and tongue. FEEL SICK. TIRED. FEEL LIKE IM NOT REALLY HERE> like a computer game. ANGER at anything. doesn’t matter. just small stuff. NIGHTMARES. I live with it cause i’ve decided i’ll never come off it, but so long as i take my 40mg dose every 2 days. I’m OK. A fucking slave to GSK. I’ve recently self harmed. THats a new step. 10 yrs now, nearly 11. I’m 30. It scares me what i might do one day. I try control it best i can, and do a pretty good job, but now and then, i slip. Thank you GSK. Thank you doctors. for all your fucking help in making me BETTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • jayney Says:

      Blimey,,am sori to hear this,,am new to this site,am Jayney and am strugglin to get off it,am avin irregular heart rythem and electric shock sensation on tongue,tearful and got to get through this,,av listed everything thats appened to me,,but this is in space of 1 year,this was last year,,l believe if i can get through all that i can beat seroxat withdrawel..i got diazepam to help,but doc says u will end up addicted to them…a steppin stone i guess but stopped diazepam before it appened,,hope to hear how u are…Jayney in West Yorkshire…

  13. Nia williams Says:

    Hi i am 32 year old and been on seroxat for the last 2 years, and ive been cutting the dosage down on the liquid seroxat which makes it easier to come off, or so the doctors say.. i stopped it after 2 bottles, i feel like death, constant crying, shouting at my husband and two children that i love so much. my kids have seen me beeting my self with what ever ive got in my hand at the time, i hate the way i feel, i am so bloody scared. I dont want to loose my family. I feel so sorry for the ppl that have been on it much longer than me. Its so bloody cruel for me and my family 2 go through this.

  14. Gerry Says:

    I started on Seroxat about seven or eight years ago for depression and OCD, they worked fine to a certain degree, My OCD symtoms had subsided somewhat and I found them easier to control due to the effects of the drug but as far as the depression was concerned some symptoms were easier to control than some others. I decided to quit last year because of the nasty unwanted side effects of the drug, sweating, weight gain, loss of libido, drowsiness and lack of empathy, but the whole weight gain was the main issue as to why I quit in the first place.

    In August 2007 I started to withdraw from Seroxat and within a week I started to lose weight!!! Naturally I was thrilled and oddly enough I felt my happiness was returning after so many years, and whenever I had a conversation with someone I didn’t trip up over my speech, although I did have the brain zaps I actually felt great, but later on in the year I decided to stop consuming the drug altogethter, what I didn’t realise was the horrible withdrawal effects that followed and so decided to return to taking the drug for a week, on and off since July this year. Each time I got certain aspects of the withdrawal, moodiness, short temper, hot flashes, and I came to the conclusion that I came off them far too quickly, so I started to withdraw from them from 10mg to 5mg over three weeks or so, after that I didn’t experience any withdrawal effects but after I had a bad OCD thought in August this year, I found my OCD episodes were more severe than what they were when I was on the drug full time. Eventually a month later I started to get odd feelings of confusion, not really knowing where I was or what I was doing, whereas the other times I withdraw I actually felt buzzing, full of beans and really on the ball. But now I just get moments where I get slightly anxious when I ask for assistance I start to feel hesitant in my speech which is more to do with the the bad thoughts of OCD and thinking about them non stop which is affecting my ability to think straight.

    I have been seeing various psychiatrists over the past nigh on ten years for my problems, and the one that I’m currently seeing has suggested that I should go out and look for a job but I keep telling her until I’m blue in the face that I’m just not ready to enter an environment that I would very probably feel uncomfortable in. My sister is currently in a job which she despises as most of her employees are just generally nasty and/or don’t speak to her so a situation like that would just tip me over the edge.

    I just can’t believe GSK’s refusal to accept any blame for what this bastard of a drug has done to people all over the world and why they are STILL being allowed to manufacture it to deeply psychologically crushed people!!

    I don’t believe in antidepressants as a long term solution to my problems anymore as they just give you all those side effects that you never asked for, they just gave me an excuse to run away from my problems rather than tackling them head-on.

    But I do believe in changing my outlook on my problems by thinking positively and constructively, but I might have been able to do that if I hadn’t gone on the blasted drugs in the first place!!!!!!

  15. anonymous Says:

    I just can’t believe GSK’s refusal to accept any blame for what this bastard of a drug has done to people all over the world and why they are STILL being allowed to manufacture it to deeply psychologically crushed people!!

    Yes it is so difficult to believe ..

    • Pam Says:

      Drugs are about money. Not curing people. People are about to learn this with the rise of the superbug. Ain’t capitalism great!

  16. Gerry Says:

    Part of me is now thinking if I should go back on the tablets and wean myself off them very slowly, but another part is wondering if that will solve anything at all. After reading the direction leaflet that came with the pills it said that “MOST PEOPLE FIND THAT ANY SYMPTOMS ON STOPPING SEROXAT ARE MILD AND GO AWAY ON THEIR OWN WITHIN TWO WEEKS. FOR SOME PEOPLE, THESE SYMPTOMS MAY BE MORE SEVERE,OR GO ON FOR LONGER” so basically it’s a Russian Roulette situation, you just cannot tell whether or not you will get the best or worst of the symptoms that come during withdrawal of the drug!!

  17. anon Says:

    I have been taking seroxat for 10years now. starting off on 20mg a day i managed to cut dwn to 5mg over the years, but having recently gone through a bad patch im up to 10mg a day. like the rest of u i too have experienced the awful withdrawal effects of seroxat having tried on many occasions to cut down even further in the hope to be one day seroxat free! these symptoms include nausea, weakness, head shocks, depressed mood. Dont get me wrong i do not have as much anomosity towards GSK as some of you as 10 years ago seroxat was my lifeline and fear i wouldnt be here without it. however in no uncertain terms should GSK be allowed to claim that seroxat has no withdrawl side effects because as we all know that is total bull!
    anyway the main reason that i am writing is that i am hoping to start a family soon and having read a number of articles stating that seroxat can cause harm to an unborn foetus, i am very concerned. so i was hoping somebody could shed some light on this for me paticularly someone who may have given birth while on seroxat?
    Best of luck to everyone on their undertaking to come off seroxat. the important thing to remember is that your not alone x

    • Annaliese Says:

      Hi. Did you get any answers to this? I had the drug throughout 3 of my pregancies (told the benefit outweighted the risk) and my youngest has bilateral talipies which has been seen to be as a result of taking it throughout preg. This was unknown and not recognised in the uk

  18. Emma Says:

    I’m soooooooo angry! I swear my doctor should be struck off! Harsh words? No, she not only put me on Xanax but also this Seroxat, so not only am I struggling the most horrendous withdrawal from Xanax, if I do eventually manage to come off it, then I now have to go through the whole same thing again with Seroxat! aaaaaaaaaaah, I can’t take it!

    • Nesrine Says:

      In my experience…I got off xanax much easier then seroxat..i thought i was having a heart problem laat week and it freaked me out…im off it now for 2 months and i feel horrible…extremely nausiatic and hopeless…

  19. Urosh Says:

    I am on paxil for 13-14 days,10 mg.I dont want do go trough all this.I can just quit?but my depresion its bad too.what to do,please?

    • Cat Says:

      I never thought my advice would be…just quit…however, it’s the best thing you can do. I’m in the US, we have batting ranges, you know, the machine throws you a baseball and you hit it… sounds silly, however, when you are depressed, angry, tired… hit a few balls….you will be amazed at how much better you feel…i lost more than a decade of my life taking Zoloft same as Seroxat… i just realized, after stumbling on to this blog, that it IS the medication that has fucked me up… pardon my language… I’m short on cash right now so I didn’t fill my script… I haven’t had any Z for almost a week…my head is zipping with electricity…. my thought process has a stutter, and I can cry at the drop of a hat…. I’m reflecting on the last 14 years (that’s how long I’ve been taking Zoloft) I wish I would have just increased my exercise all those years ago, instead of taking the drugs… i left my husband, alienated myself from my children and family, moved from job to job and house to house… have been just DULL and afraid …. for over a decade.. prior, I loved, laughed and worked hard and had a very sharp mind… since, i’ve reduced my world to the dog and myself, i can’t think straight, i don’t want to leave my house, i can’t find work, simply because, i don’t interview very good…… it’s odd, that I never realized, til now, after reading everyone’s stories, it’s this drug that has helped me fuck up my world…I have decided to live the rest of my life… being quirky… it must be better than taking the drug and passing through without emotion, even if it is occasional anger, and some weeping… i also experience a good laugh, empathy, creative rushes

  20. noble Says:

    If it is any consolation, I have found all your words – and other forum discussions about Paxil/Seroxat – very helpful.

    I have only been prescribed 4 months. Told my GP the meds were worse than anything I had ever experienced before. “Keep on taking them”, he said. I did. And even after raised serious questions. “Keep on taking them”, he said, again.

    Was prescribed Seroxat for Anxiety – tbh, I was just knackered!

    In the 4 months since I have endangered my marriage, my work, everything.

    I’m going cold turkey now, after coming down from only 20mg, to doing 10mg.

    My new GP recommended “something that might work more”, but I now realise that brain-altering drugs are no long-term fix.

    In my experience, this is horrible medication. I’m sure it works for some, but for all you good people who have suffered, keep talking and keep strong.

    I never thought I’d be on a meds forum, but here I am.

    I do hope all here can see there is a life without Paxil/Seroxat.

    I wish you all the best.

  21. Simon Says:

    Was only on 20mg seroxat for 2 months following a wrong diagnosis by my doctor. It transpired after taking matters into my own hands because it wasn’t working, that i needed a couple of teeth taking out and then my problem headaches and fuzzy thick feeling in my head went away. So i thought i would come off Seroxat straight away. What a mistake, my head spun and I had what others describe as mini electric shocks in the head ( i can relate to that). So i went back onto it and started to reduce, first down to 10mg for a couple of weeks then 5mg for a couple of weeks then 2.5mg for a couple of weeks then off (by the end of the day on 2.5mg i was feeling the withdrawl symptoms. One day after stopping completely the withdrawl symptoms came again, only now i’m an awful person toward my family, i just can’t converse with them without getting angry, my children are having a hellish time with me ordering them around and shouting if they so much as step out of line which they do often because of their age. I hate myself.
    10 days off now, and only the slightest improvement in the withdrawl symptoms. Will give it another two weeks before i drive a tank through my Doctors surgery, i even pointed out to one of the Doctors that this medication is ‘wicked evil’ he just said that i must be sensitive to it.
    I drive to work in the mornings and if i see someone on their mobile phone i feel like jumping out and beating them senseless for being so irresponsible, so instead i pull up alongside and just lean on my horn until they hang up (quite cathartic).
    I for one will be joing any campaign to remove this evil drug from being prescribed. Doctors should be made to go on it for a couple of months and then come off it and see how they feel before prescribing it again.
    Good luck to all and you really do have my sincerest sympathies.

  22. anita Says:

    has anyone anything good to report on seroxat

    • sarah Says:

      ive been off the evil seroxat for just over a week now and o my god my poor 10month old baby (who is really good) has had me screechin at him for havin a little whinge i feel so guilty after and end up in tears. my husband thinks i hate him which i dont but he doesnt understand when i say i think it must be the withdrawl effects h thinks its just an exscuse. my head is every where i actualy feel worse now then i did before i started taking the horrid things.
      i was originaly on fluxotine 20mg then thought i was readyto come off my tablets al together and had just found out i was pregnant. i was fine last time i took them and took my self off gradually via liquid form and whey hey me again.
      not long after havin my baby, ihad the implant put in my arm. WELL THAT WAS THAT! my anxiety started up realy bad again i couldnt eat inpublic places (which really gets on my husbands nerves and other fam members as they think its all in my head) i wish it was! i put it down to the hormones in it that started it up again as always felt worse when it was the time of the month. ANY way..
      back to the point when i went to the doc to come of the fluoxtine i thoght it woul be same proceedure liquid form weanin off. but instead he gave me the evil tablet seroxat!
      i get them horrid shock things in my head feel like cryin all the time and just want to sleep cant get motivated, feel dizzy sick just awful! sorry but there is no good reports on this poison. i just want to be me again and live a normal life! xx

    • karen Says:

      Sorry no dont take it

    • cathy Gonzales Says:

      I have been taking seroxat 30mg for 12 years,and it changed my life for the BETTER….i used to suffer panic attacks,anxiety,depresion,..all of these syptoms dissapeared when i took seroxat,i love getting up every morning,i now have a life,so i must be a lucky one , i have no intention of coming off them,because i feel so good. I was so shocked when i read all these horror stories,and so sad for these people,but its a completely different story for me.

  23. truthman30 Says:

    anita Says:
    July 25, 2009 at 12:10 am
    has anyone anything good to report on seroxat


  24. Lords of Sacrifice Says:

    I took an SSNI which I thought was safe. it made me happy
    and blocked out my dad’s dying of cancer. But it started to change me real slow. i started falling asleep at dinner and
    driving. Then I had a huge headache and wife took me to emergency room. Thought I was having a stroke. Then I went through the WITHDRAWAL. Holy Jesus. My liver
    was almost wrecked I think. These drugs have not been properly tested. Now I feal better without anything my ankles feel better and I have more energy. It seams these drugs create the need for more drugs because they are wrecking you liver. My liver still hurts its been 3 Months.
    The 5 Doctors I dealt with said nothing. One of the Doctors is connected to one of Americas BEST Hospitals. Not one thing was mentioned about SSRI or SSNI withdrawal and how dangerous. This is MAL PRACTICE. Not once was what happened to me mentioned to me. My Old man was a Chemist so I started studying this stuff. I would suggest
    everyone to get their livers checked.

  25. stuart Says:

    Hi All, I’ve just had the exact same experience with venlafaxine as is being described here with seroxat and it has completely ruined my life, ended up loosing the best job I ever had in my life because of it, been of it now for 13 months and still not right, anybobody know of a similar site for the victims of venlafaxine? Lots of issues in my case with the prescribing doctor such as ignoring the recommendations of a psychiatrist to get me off it at first sign of a problem and being told by psychiatirst that I should never have been put on it to begin with. He first prescribed citalopram which I tried telling the doc was already in my records that I was not to be prescribed again, but he ignored me and I had a predictable bad reaction to that, suicidal thoughts(only time in my life I’ve had these) then massive mood swings after I came of it, which is what he referred to psychiatrist for. The guy didnt seem to know that citalopram was the cause of these things in me. Then stuck me on the venlafaxine crap and there goes your life; reminds me of a famous poem from world war one, ‘I died in hell, the doctors called it venlafaxine/seroxat/whatever other poison the drug companies have succeeded in telling them is safe’ Different drug same shit

  26. Tamara Says:

    I have been taking seroxate for the past 6 months. I am 20. The doctor said i need it. It helped me a lot at first. I forgot to take it for 3 days. It was a nightmare. I felt that my heart is going to explode, i started to halucinate. It was a terrible experience. I always harm myself. I become someone else when i drink. I scare myself. I scare the people i love. This drug has ruined me. I don’t think i have a chance anymore. I am desperate. i know the doctors wont listen to me. They said im suicidal and i need it. I am harming myself more and more. It was a terrible nightmare when i stopped it. No one should take this drug. No one. And the worst part is, nobody can understand that i became someone else. No one can understand. This is going to end very badly for me. for us.

  27. truthman30 Says:

    Tamara …

    Many people who were prescribed Seroxat do understand your suffering , don’t ever think that you are or were alone, there are literally hundreds of thousands of us who have experienced the horrors of Paxil/Seroxat. It’s an awful, horrible poisonous drug that should never have been licensed…

    Check out Paxil Progress, it’s a web site with tons of information about this drug and also there are some very helpful and understanding people there who have also experienced the side effects and withdrawals ..

    I wish you the best…

  28. seamus o malley Says:

    very worried now about giving up my 40mg daily dose of seroxit. Im afraid of severe withdrawl problems

  29. seamus o malley Says:

    after reading above horrific accounts re withdrawl symptoms from seroxat, I wonder should I try going off the drug at all…….?

  30. daniel Says:

    Have been taking 20mg Seroxat for 2-3 months, twice or three times last 2 years (1 tablet) per day due to lots of stress and little depression during quite hard time with our long awaited baby (passed 4 IVFS during last 4 years and finally it happened we got a beautiful baby!!!). But the depression and stress effects were very hard to stand off, I was insmoniac, tired, lost 14kg weight, and felt like shit most of the time. Went to all possible doctors and made all possible blood tests including CT brain scan (due to extreme hypohondria and anxiety of something very bad and wrong is happenning to me), they said I’m absolutely physically fine, and suggested meeting a good phsyciatrist.
    The phsyciatrist suggested a cognitive approach at first, and it started to help, but very soon I lost control and started to deterioate, and very soon started to take the pills. To tell you the truth, it helped a lot! I mean it was wonderful, started to fell better, gained weight, started to make some sports, and decided, now it’s time to take control of myself and quit these pills, but then again, the depression, anxiety and extreme panic (more severe) attacks before sleep and at night were so frightenning twice ending in ER at our local hospital, I thought to myself, I’m not ready, and again, back to the pills. The loop continued.
    Lately I’ve achieved level 1 Reiki, which helped me controlling and healing myself and others, I felt very energetic and again, decided to quit these pills again. First 2 days last week were fine, I felt in control and beautiful, past 3 days I feel like shit again, insomnia, very vivid dreams, tired and motion sickness, dizziness that comes and goes I even afraid to drive a car. I called my phsyciatrist, asked him about the withdrawal side effects, she said I’ve nothing to worry about, I simply feel anxious and it will pass. But the question in hand stands, are these pills are as addictive as you describe here? To tell you the truth I prefer doing lots of sex and having panic attacks during this, but not feeling helpless and dizzy most of the time and unable to satisfy my wife if I take Seroxat…

    • Daniel Says:

      I’m off Seroxat for almost 3 months now, I feel good +/-. I still have some little depression, extreme fatigue at weekends some panic attacks, mostly before going to sleep, but good “head work” and breath exercise helps alot. I no longer feel withdrawal side effects like dizziness and nausea. My libido improved. It’s almost like quitting smoking, if you can quit smoking you can quit seroxat easily. I did, for now 🙂 Good luck to all!

  31. Gillian Says:

    I am afraid for every poor soul in the deepest grips of this life destroying drug. These drugs are meant to help people through difficult times, help them feel normal again.
    (some might say what is normal? I agree.
    My father has been taking seroxat for over ten years he has tried a couple of times to withdraw with no sucess, although this time he withdrew over months reducing his dose untill he come off entirely. He has been free of this mind bending drug for roughly one week with awful withdrawal symptoms. while i type this he lies in his bed shaking, freezing cold, body feels almost at breaking point, head about to explode unable to stand on his feet and the list goes on….. sheer hell!!!
    My dad is a pensioner with lots of other illnesses, life should not be like this? Surely?
    What can be done for Gsk TO STOP Marketing this drug.
    Drugs are illegal why is Seroxat not classed as a dangerous drug because quite frankly it is!!!!!
    Good luck to everyone seeking the help and care they deserve and god bless!!!

  32. Seroxat Says:


    Court sets deadline for compensation claims.

    Have you had difficulties withdrawing from the anti-depressant drug Seroxat?
    Have you found it impossible to withdraw from it? Are you having difficulties in withdrawing from Seroxat now?
    The High Court made a Group Litigation Order in relation to the Group Action brought by around 500 individuals alleging harm from problems withdrawing from Seroxat.
    On 19 May 2009 the High Court ordered that any individual who wishes to pursue a compensation claim must join the Group Action before 15 January 2010.
    All individuals must have their claim investigated before they can join the action and so they need to come forward ASAP.
    Register your interest now, call the Seroxat team at Hugh James, designated as lead solicitors for the purposes of the Group Litigation Order, on 02920 785 971 or go to

    The Group Register will close on 15 January 2010 and any individuals who have not joined at that date may lose their opportunity to be part of the litigation.

    You should not stop taking any medication without consulting your doctor

  33. peter andrew Says:

    i have not read all these posts but i was addicted for 8 years… alll you need to do is switch from seroxat to lustral (u’ll feel no change) then coming of lustral is easy… in under ten days… just be careful….. doc’s don’t like their authority questioned so just say u really want to go on lustral for a while… don’t say its to come off seroxat… unless u kno him/her really well… it worked for me. 8 yrs of addiction ended in a week easy…if only i knew… adn it was a psychiatrist who recommended this…

  34. sandra Says:

    I’ve been on 10 mg a day Seroxat since 2002 after a post natal depression.I stopped taking it when I was pregnant with my second child, slowly, it took me about 2 months, from 5ml going down 0.5 ml per week, during that time I experienced vivid dreams, insomnia, nausea, felt lethargic all the time, couldn’t control my anger busts. I resumed taking it after the baby was born as I was feeling down and tired, and I was scared to fall into the awful post natal depression again. Now after 2 years I managed to come off it once more.. This time I’ve done it quicker, in about a month. At start I couldn’t sleep, I had very vivid dreams, uncontrollable violent impulses, feeling lethatgic and a terrible uncontrollable anger over the silliest issue. Still now I find myself yelling at the children and husbang for nothing, I curse a lot, wake up in the night, I feel depressed at times. It’s winter so the weather is not helping.
    Hopefully I will go through this period and will feel better soon.

    • Cat Says:

      the one thing that REALLY helps me is vigorous exercise….even if it’s turning on music and dancing by myself, walking, riding a bike…don’t expect to like the exercise, just know, once the Adrenalin kicks in, you will feel better … i wish i would have never ever ever started taking the darn drug… i like me, a lot more prior to the medication….

  35. Kate Says:

    I hope this may help some people with their withdrawal attempts:

    After two years on Seroxat (I won’t go into the details of the hellish withdrawal symptoms other than to say that this medication completely ruined my life at the time – I’m still recovering from it many ways too) I was able to find a consultant at The Priory who helped me withdraw by replacing Seroxat with a variety of other, more mainstream medications during a two weeks stay (to help with the convulsions, panic attacks etc). I have suffered post-traumatic stress from my time on Seroxat so my difficulties with this awful situation continued after my time at The Priory – but they did at least get me off it, properly.

    I appreciate that the Priory is very expensive, but many healthcare insurance policies will cover a stay at the Priory so it’s worth checking out. My total two week stay came to just over £12,000 – a huge amount of money, but when I look back I would agree that having my life at all is worth that amount.

    Love and best wishes to everyone trying to get back the person they were before Seroxat – I hope this possibility provides some hope for the future.

  36. Adham El Shami Says:

    I’ve been on Seroxat for three years now, it helped me feel much better after three weeks of taking it, and until one month after i came off of it. but after about a month or a month and a half…omg all hell had broke loose. I started having Anxiety attacks and crying for no reason…and my depression had returned only 100 times what it used to be. THE WITHDRAWAL EFFECTS OF THIS MEDICATION COULD BE FATAL. I’m not kidding or joking or even making a fuss out of nothing…this drug sucks and is really dangerous…it would be great if it came without all the side effects.BUT PLEASE IF YOU ARE DEPRESSED TRY OUT EVERY OTHER NATURAL WAY FOR HEALING DEPRESSION BEFORE YOU GO ON ANY ANTI-DEPRESSANT ( TRY RUNNING, WEIGHT LIFTING, SWIMMING, READING, GET A G/F ) IF YOU WANNA KN OW ABOUT ANYTHING PLZ CONTACT ME AT EGYPTIANBOY123@MSN.COM good luck everybody !!

  37. nerys morgan Says:

    ive been on 30 mg of seroxat for 5 years for treatment of aniexty attacks . I got married 3 years ago and forgot to take them on honeymoon with me . my first week was fine but the second week abroad i thought i was going to die , insomnia , shakes , panic attacks …… horrendus ….. went straight back on them on returning home and not thought much about until now…. i m 7 weeks pregnant ( very happy ) but told to cut down to 15 mg , then nothing in the last ten days and now ??? well now im back to square one … panic attacks , vivid nightmares , shakes , feeling of not being in control and thinking im going to lose the baby because im worrying so much . if i can eventually get through this and have a healthy baby in 7 months , i will never touch this terrible drug again .

  38. emma lynch Says:

    I have been on this crap since I was 15, now 25 so ten years of it. I was prescribed it for PND after the birth of my son, the docter assured me it wasn’t addictive but hew lied. Every time I try to stop I feel worse than before i started it, my eyes roll, I get headaches, i can’t sleep, feel like crying, feel sick, shake, urg, I’m on 10mg at the moment but any lower than that and i feel like shit, i’m sick of being dependant on this vile crap and I wish I could just stop without feeling like a bloody heroin addict

  39. Rose Sciberras Says:

    Thank you everyone for explaining it all. You have armed me to tackle this better.

    I’ve been on Seroxat since November 2009. Since then I have seen my weight balloon up, my libido is just about zilch and like some of you said I feel cut off from the world and couldn’t give a damn about anything. I spend my days playing stupid, repetitive games at my computer and dread having to leave the house. Also I have frequently found myself falling off to sleep sitting in my chair.

    In the past weeks I decided to phase out the Seroxat, taking my 20mg every other day. Then I went to missing out for two days and yesterday I had just the kind of shocky symptoms most of you have described. I was nauseated and my heart didn’t feel right. This was scary for me since I had a bypass four years ago and I was thinking I was going back to square one.

    So thank you for showing up these symptoms for what they really are – withdrawal symptoms from phasing out the Seroxat.

    I still intend to go off the drug come hell or high water – I feel better equipped now after all that I’ve read.

    Wish me luck and thank you all once again.

  40. Steph Says:

    Ive been on 20 mg of seroxine for a month to eradicate my menopausal night sweats and its just started to make me feel ill now. I feel sick and my head is splitting. The doc has told me not to quit but to reduce to taking 10mg. I think i would rather have the sweats. How long will i feel this shit? Am i doing the right thing by stopping completely?

    • pkydeek Says:

      I originally asked for HRT when I got seroxat, so be careful, my hotties came back as soon as I started reducing my dose but have all but stopped now. Look into other things for menopause, or just try mind over matter, its a laugh at home when I have a hottie, because I just strip off and put overhead fan on till it goes, fight it don’t give in, I say don’t let the B…..d grind u down .. take care.

  41. pkydeek Says:

    Hi well I’m into week 8 of withdrawing and I’m doing ok. But it took me 3 doctors to get a good result for withdrawing. I’ve had the buzzing, whizzing and electric shock (zap) in my head, but thanks to everyones comments it really helped me because I knew the side effects were no just me, it was really scarey, the temper is calming a little, I am now on 10mg 1day then 5mg for 2 days, but u must have the liquid for the 5mg (2.5mls) with a syringe, only had 1 zap so far, but will stay on this level until I feel ok, then reduce more. BUT I WILL STICK TO IT. good luck everyone.

    • admin Says:

      You stick to it, Paula – good luck.

      I didn’t do the alternate day thing – just reduced slooooowly using the liquid – no more than a 10% reduction at any time.

      You’ll get off it in the end, don’t worry how long it takes.

  42. Karen Says:

    Had a major panic attack 17 yrs ago – little threads of me being a worry wart from childhood. Fully blew up in ltae 20’/30’s. No one could tell me why my head felt like it was full of helium and had the urge to run – I heard screaming coming from my mouth and a depersonalization that causes me to shudder just remembering how foreign it felt.

    Panic attacks started out as a little weird glimmer and would erode back behind the shadows. Then I noticed I coudnt stop crying and kept telling my family I didnt feel right. They said I needed a vacation but I didnt want to go on one.

    One night the mother of all panic attacks entered my life and stayed in one continued, sustained evil drop kick – causing my husband and I to arrive at several diff ERs in the US – none of which had an explanation. I felt like I was dying inside – surreal – major depressive episode. No sleep – sustained panic attacks – anorexic weight drop due to inabilty to eat. No one knew what to do. Finally found a Dr who put me on Paxil. Stated it helped with panic but would take 6-8 wks to kick in. We sent my kids to my parents while we tried to work on this major eff up in my life. I begged my husband to leave me because I thought something was wrong and could not be fixed.

    He took all the time he could from work to stabilize me. The day he was to go back I asked him to take me to hospital.

    It was hell on damned earth. No sleep. No food and I had been on paxil around 2 weeks. At first I found relief and a snap back into reality from panic from Atavan. I looked at my husband when I took it and said, ” I don’t know what the fuck happened to me. I am so very sorry. it is as foreign to me as it is to you.” He was relieved thinking he had me back. WRONG. The panic ensued with a ferocity. Escalating by the fact that by the time I found a Dr to prescribe and manage my case – i was pretty deep into the depression I developed from panic.

    i spent a wk in the psych ward and it was a shitty place to be but needed it to prevent me from becoming a danger to myself.

    One morning I woke up and was SNAPPED out of it. Took a shower finally and joined the group mtg. People did not recognize me. I shrugged as baffled as they were. Almost felt like someone had given me a funny stamp to lick and I had the worst trip of my fucking life.

    My husband and I continued therapy and we had the best yr of our lives together. Until I relapsed with a panic attack one yr post hospital. That is when he had the look on his face of OH SHIT.

    I felt as though I failed him.

    At the time I had been taking regular paxil and later got switched to paxil CR. I feel the paxil may have helped me through as I got attuned to it but I also feel I was dangerously ill because of the effect it was having getting into my body to what they call therapeutic levels.

    Since then – my husband of 20 yrs left me. My behavior became more depressive and despondent punctuated with panic and suicidal ideations I had not had prior to Paxil. My smiling funny comical self was never to be seen or heard from again once I took this medication.

    Let me say that at the time I would have drank gasoline if it would put a stop to the serious panic attacks and complete pain of not knowing what the hell a panic attack was to begin with. Not knowing made it worse. I even had one ER dr scream at me and told me I had housewife syndrome and to go take a un until i was so worn out that I would pass out from tired (upon my crying and explaining I could not sleep and it was tortuous). This was an ER DR in Tampa FL and my attending Psych doc later addressed him with his dangerous callous and damaging response to my ER visit at the height of my illness before getting someone to help me.
    My daughter had a slight sore throat at the time and he was literally slamming me for being there – that my daughter is the one he should be seeing – not some WHITE SUBURBIA mother who was unhappy with motherhood. (incidentally he was black, Nice reverse discrimination there)

    I am alone, Kids gone. Son leaving soon as he is graduated HS. Daughter wont speak to me. Ex husband getting remarried. Me without insurance, a job or family emotional support.

    But my old pal PAXIL still here and messing me up. I have vision problems from it. Blood pressure drops from it. I have tried five times to come off this with Dr help to no avail. None of them agreed with paxil discontinuation and said it was bullshit. The one who said this the most told me to come off it over three days. On my next visit I told him I could not and he told me to find another Dr because I did not follow his advice. I actually stood up to him and he apologized and mumbled some BULLSHIT about oh I misunderstood.

    what I have noticed is that if I miss a dose – on the day I dont take it – I feel happier, more energetic and generally in good spirits.

    So I started to take paxil one day on one day off. The days on it I feel like SHIT and very suicidal. The days off I feel fabulous HOWEVER the discontinuation symptoms hit as I head into the 24th hou of not being on it: extreme horrible vertigo. Brain zaps when trying to sleep. Preventing me from sleeping. nausea.

    On the days ON IT: anger. Rage. Horrid depression. Hopeless. Did I mention anger? Can be sunny out and all i see is gray. Heart palpatations OFF THE CHART. intense coughing.

    I cannot trust my dr to get me off this shit as he has been so uncaring and rude about it before. I cannot afford to go elsewhere because he is treating me on a sliding scale., I have no insurance.

    I also went to have my script refilled and the pharmacy showed me it would be 100 per month for paxil. I began to cry because I dont have a job and the pharmacist then gave me some BULLSHIT about looking into local programs and came up with a much diff price. REALLY? So how does it feel, SKB, to know that your addicted patient stood in front of a gaggle of people sobbing because she has no means to pay for the medication she was supposed to be on SHORT TERM. The meds that supposedly cost $100 for a lousy one month supply – which suddenly became less expensive when she cried?

    REALLY? I hate you bastards for destroying my life

    I have to get off this shit.

  43. PKYDEEK Says:

    Hi everyone, well into week 10 and doing ok, sort of ?? I’m still on 10mg 1 day and 5mg for 2 days, its a weird feeling at the end of day 2 on 5mg but its getting easier, until i’m totally ok with these doses I don’t intend to lower yet. Lifes not that great at the moment regarding arsehole neighbours, but I can’t let them get me down to much, Holiday coming up so chin up I say and f..k them all.

  44. Christopher Says:

    Hi Everyone,
    I am afraid that I have a story to tell that is just so familiar here. I have been on different varients of anti-depressents for 10 years. I was given seroxat for panic disorder and clinical depression after higher doses of fluoxtine and venlafaxine left me suicidal. The problem was I ws also a street drug addict. So maybe if I had been truthful at the time I would never have encountered this truly horrific substance. I have found withdrawal and pyschosis off street narcotics easier to deal with than this. I have been “clean” for 10 months with only Seroxat left. I used to take 40mg but I am now taking 10mg. I have reduced under GP guidance over 6 weeks and I am living in hell. I suffer nausea, dizziness, cramp, muscle and joint pain, yawning, dry mouth, sweating, weight gain, electric jolts in my brain, visual disturbance, vertigo, motion sickness etc etc etc. The worst though is the mental anguish, stress, panic and intrusive thoughts. I am awake at 3am every morning hearing voices and thinking something is talking to me. I had an impulse to cut off my left hand during the night and was in the kitchen with the cleaver before I pulled myself back. I then cried for about 12 hours. I don’t know if I can do this anymore. It is by far the most horrific thing I have done and makes rehab and a street drug “rattle” seem like a picnic.

    • nicola Says:

      Hi christopher i totally identify with your story, i too spent from the age of 14, using something to change the way i feel, in 2007 i spent 1 year in a day rehab, got clean off street drugs alcohol, im now 3 years clean off all substances and was left with the seroxat, im now 10 days off the hell drug and feel it is the hardest thing i have EVER done experiencing all of the above symptoms you have descirbed but you know what, you have come this far you can do this too, just hang in there, one day at a time babe xxxxxxxx

  45. Lee Says:

    This is my fourth and hopefully final attempt to come off this poison. I am just in the process of transferring to Prozac for the final stage and then trying to withdraw from that. Could anyone who’s had success with this method please let me know how they’ve got on? Cheers, Lee

    • karen Says:

      Hi Lee about 3 years ago I was transferred straight onto prozac from seroxat I had terrible anxiety and had to be put straight back on to seroxat which took away the anxiety. The doctors wont do that this time they say I have to stop takingserxat fully before putting me back onto prozac, strange they did it 3 years ago and not now I never got the withdrawals on prozac but they wont switch they obviously have found something out in the last 3 years or maybe my withdrawals was the horrific anxiety unsure, what was your situation karen

  46. Adrian Says:

    Horrible to read so many similar stories to my own after the effects of this evil drug.I went from placid and easy going to Seroxat after a breakdown due to personal probs,later diagnosed Bi-polar.Bad enough on the stuff-Hell to come off! Aggressive,violent,hallucinations,voices psychosis and (shrink)elements of schizophrenia! This was 13yrs ago,it changed my life for the worse.I thank God he brought me through it,without causing serious injury or death to anyone.Getting better now-there but for the grace of God…

  47. Hassan Says:

    I am taking Seroxate 20 mg for two years now, and I am going on it and never tried to stop taking it.. but, I am feeling severe withdrawal feelings inspite am takng it regularly.. I asked my doc. and told me, the Batch may be without effect, try another batch or switch the brand.. I began taking Paxxil 20 mg and feeling awful.. I feel as I am losing my self and there is another power controlling my body and my thoughts… what can I do? raise the dose or what to do… All what i can do now is smoking like the hell.
    please help and share experience..

  48. joanne Says:

    hi all i;m on seroxat and have been for 14 years 3 months ago i started to withdraw cutting down by 10 mg from 20 mg. although i get very panicky my main concern is a rapid weight loss .can any others tell me if they have the same it;s really worrying me. replys please asap thanks

    • pkydeek Says:

      weightloss !!! yr lucky, its had the opposite effect on me, but dont drop dose to quick, because its awful, once the panic disappears and yr on a level, then do 10mg one day and 5mg next level out and then use liquid to lower even more. good luck.

  49. Moath Says:

    I’ve been on seroxat for more than a year . I’ve been taking it for social anxiety . It really helped me and I did my first presentation in school without any fear  or problems while before seroxat it was a nightmare for me . After I year from using it my doctor decided to take this drug from me by dropping the dose from 20mg to 10mg for 2 weeks , then 10mg a day after another for 2 weeks too , then take off the drug completely . I went through his advise by taking 10mg for 2 weeks but I decided to quit this drug completely after using 10mg for a day after another for a week only ( while his advice was 10mg a day after another for 2 weeks )
    . Now I’m on day 6 without taking the drug . The first 5 days  were really hell for me . I got a terrible insomnia , a very strong headache , aggressiveness witch i’ve never been through I was getting mad and angry for all over the day and shouting on my family members and friends for everything even if it was not deserve that ! I had a foggy & electric shocks on my head , I got Itchy legs specially during sleeping time witch was a cause of the insomnia & i’ve been sensitive to light & noise since day 1 . As I told u I’m now on day 6 my sleep is partially improved and my mood is starting to get better . I still have a headache even it’s not as strong as it was before but it still a headache ^_^ also the electric feeling on my head is still not gone 😦
    My advice to those whom were prescribed this drug is to think 1000 times before deciding taking it cuz the withdrawal symptoms are really awful !
    And my advice to those whom attending to quit this drug is to listen to their doctor advices by quitting this drug very slowly , take a penalty of water & juices , try to do some sports activity but for sure without putting your self on a strong pressure or stress and try to put for yourself a time to relax everyday , hopefully we all get better & better and always remember that ” after the storm comes sunshine ” .

    • Moath Says:

      Vertigo , dizziness , sweating and nausea are symptoms that I forgot to mention Witch I’m still suffering from them 😦

  50. Seroxat and Babies « GSK : Licence To (K) ill Says:

    […] Much has been written about GSK’s denials about Seroxat over the years. They denied it caused withdrawal, they denied it was addictive, they denied it caused dependence, they denied it caused suicide and […]

  51. pkydeek Says:

    Hi everyone well its 6 months since I decided to withdraw, and i’m now on 5mg every other day and doing fine, I have done it very slowly and the side effects haven’t been that bad, apart from when I first started and tried to come off them to quick. I’m just going to let the head settle down a bit because at the mo on the 2nd day when due 5mg I know I didn’t have 1 the day before, so when this levels out, then I go a step further, but hey ho i’m getting there. lol.

  52. pkydeek Says:

    Just to let anyone who has been keeping a watch on this blog that i’m down to 1& half mls a day of the liquid and so far so good. I have done it very slowly but its better to reduce the dose slowly, we have a new doctor keeping a eye on my progress and I think she has learned a thing or two. At this rate I will be off completely for 2011. hip hip hooray.

  53. Mel Neilan Says:

    The worst experience of my life is when I try to stop taking Seroxat (this time a week). I think this time was the worst, feeling useless, worthless, nauseous, having vivid upsetting dreams. When I startedin 1999 it did give me a new lease of life. However, now I am counting the minutes when I can to to my chemist at lunchtime today and get another prescription. I shall not be doing this again for a long long time.

  54. helen Says:

    mm not sure whether to be scared or supported by the comments. Originally prescribed it 3 years ago for post natal anxiety. Have been dropping the dose but have come off completely 5 days a go (from 10mg every other day) and the zapping in my head is starting to become debilitating (though no shouting at the kids – as yet!). Would love to know when it reaches its peak and how long it goes on, but it seems like it is so variable. If you know the size of it its easier to deal with it. Even so I do feel like I am finding my old self again so am motivated to persevere……

  55. jojo Says:

    hi there
    i am from the uk, i have been taking seroxat for 6 years on and off i am now on 40 mg and i am dreading the side effects my mental health doctor is filling me full of dread with expected withdrawal, yet the nurse thinks i will be fine.
    im a single mum of 3 kids and im scared i’ll go back to self harming.
    any uk support groups not on line but a place to meet up and talk i am not good with modern technology

    thanks for your time jo x

  56. Annelies Says:

    Dear Jojo,

    You must realize, that these are withdrawl symptoms. I’ve been there: nearly 4 month’s of suicidle thoughts and every day sick is part of the withdrawl. I promise you, it’ll get better. I’m off Paxil for nearly 7 month’s now and I’m getting better. If you want to get of Paxil, you have to go trough hell , there’s no other way. Thank you’re MD for putting you on this very addictive poison. and his ignorance.

    You’ll get there and you’ll feel human again , when you keep it up.The only reason I’m still alive is, because I learned by my own research, that this is the most difficult part of withdrewing anti-depressants.

    • karen Says:

      I must agree I am withdrawing by reducing with seroxat suspenssion I am getting withdrawal but feel I have to fight It otherwise I will just give in and go back up to 3omg a day which I do not want to do I have to fight this drug and put up with whatever it throws at me. I neede to get of it after being on it for 8 years I have had enough I want free of antidepressants and have started a healthy diet including amino acids omega 3 and foods containing selenium I am hoping that a healthy diet and talking to a councillor will replace the need for drugs but only time will tell. I want to feel human agian and not the mess I have been for the last 20 years

  57. nicola Says:

    Hi all, i was perscribed seroxat by my gp in 1999 after having my first son, i have tried numerous of times to come off this drug and have only made it to 20mg, i recently saw a phychiatrist who made the decision that i come off seroxat and replace it with 15mg of mirtazipine which to me was not the answer, as to be honest i feel i have been on one drug or another all through my life, the plan they had for me was 2 weeks 20mg then 2 weeks 10mg then nothing, obviously they have NO idea of the withdrawals first hand, day 1 of no seroxat was hell but bareable, well then onwards i experienced head shock suicidal thoughts, flu symptons, ulcers, my body was in complete shock and spent the next 8 days crying, i have never self harmed but found myself doing it just to take away the thoughts and rage that i could not cope with, i took myself back to my doc thurs and voiced my opinion on coming off seroxat and just to be put on another just so i then have to withdraw all over again, well no thanks im not gonna take another one and with the docs support we made the decision i CAN beat this i have been perscribed 2mg of diazepans that i take soon as i wake and it does help me, and today has been a better day, im not saying it will work for everyone but with regular exercise, eating healthy and trying to just get up and do something positive to give me my self esteem even when i dont want too JUST DO IT, seems to be helping me, i have got through 10 days now the rage still comes out but ffs ive had 12 years of my feelings being suppressed what do i exspect,i have a husband and 3 children who i have sat down and explained to whats going on and do spend most of my time saying sorry but soon as the rage comes up i have to get out of the house and give myself some time to calm down, i got councelling that was offered to me through my gp and hopefully that will help, i have a lot of anger for the medical proffession but what do i exspect, i entered the surgery 12 years ago in tears all they did was try to make me feel better and they did, but if i knew what i would be going through now i probably would have tried to opt for councelling then but i was young and wanted something to make me feel better immediatley. please anyone who is reading this, yes it will be hard and you can do this as i said today is a good day, just take one day at a time and hang in there it has to get better xxxxxxxxxxxxx

  58. nicola Says:

    dont give up x

  59. angie Says:

    I was prescribed 30mg seroxat in 1997 for GRIEF, my body developed a tolerance to it in 2005, and my doctor ct me off, i was non functional. After 4/5 months i was reinstated paxil at 20mg and took this dose up until Nov 2007, where i very slowly started to decrease again. Slowly means filing the tablet.
    I have spent the last 56months tapering down off this drug, having symptoms because of the tolerance issues, that ive never experienced in my life before, akathesia/anxiety were the main beasts, very unpleasant indeed.

    I have managed to reach day 10 seroxat free, since day 3 i have been in bed with paxil flu and nausea, then brain zaps kicked in, tingling, intense crying jags, and just feel like my central nervous system is in a state of shock from the lack of the drug.

    No human being should ever have to suffer in this way, its inhumane and beyond cruel.
    If anyone out there has any idea what can help, please!!!! let me know – i am just desperate for some relief and a chance to get my life back.

    If anyonecan help my email is;-
    Its been such A long time since i had a life.
    Good luck to all, you can get off this, but my GOD what a ride. GSK how the hell you sleep at night is beyond me, you deserve to rot in hell for the misery and pain you have caused with your non addictive prescription drug seroxat.
    G – Global
    S – Serial
    K – Killers

  60. Jill A Says:

    After 10 years and 75 pound weight gain, I decided I wanted to wean off this drug. I took months to look into the side effects from weaning and to put my plan in place with work and such. I can ditto what all the other folks are saying here that it is pure hell. I went to my dr today to get some suggestions and ideas on how to reduce some of the uncomfortable side effects and was told that what I was experiencing was not paxil withdrawal but is anxiety returning and to cherry on top was she tried to tell me that I now suffer from depression. I told her that I do not suffer from depression and she said that she had never seen anyone have problems with weaning and that she weans people all the time off with zero problems. I am beyond frustrated, but am determined to get off this drug come hell or high water!

    • admin Says:

      What can I say? – your doctor needs to listen to what you’re saying.

      Just keep her in the loop with what you’re doing and go slowly. Good luck – just take it slow and don’t set any target dates, hat’ll only put more pressure on you.

  61. Liz Says:

    I have been on Seroxat for 17 years and take 60mgs per day. Up until recently I have not had any discernible side effects. 60mgs is no longer enough as I am starting to get the “electric shocks” in my brain which I know to be signs of withdrawal even though I would have taken my regular daily dose less than 24hrs ago. I am someone that finds life on this planet particularly difficult. Seroxat blocks out reality for me and makes life more bearable and stops my “escape” attempts. I really do feel as though I am stuck between a “rock” and a “hard place” as 60mgs is the absolute that SGK recommend.

  62. lets say dave Says:

    Hi everyone,
    as i sit here now its 11.27 am on a tueday. i feel realy strabge today, i stopped taking seroxat last thursday as i need to be the old dave again. i used to be realy well motivated and strong im a 6″ 1 bloke and i used to train as a weight lifter until i had my “crisis”. ive never let anything beat me, work, compititions, anything. i built a business up from me in a van to employing 60 staff and turning over well over a million pounds a year. about 18 months ago my largest client whent into administration owing me £125,000.00 needless to say my business could not continue. to cut a long story short me and my wife had to file for personal bankrupcy due to debts left over from the business. we had been left with nothing! we watched in tears as our assets were taken away, our car repossesed. we managed to keep our house only because of the credit crash and the fact that we now owed more than it was worth. i worked my way up in five years from a site opperative to a designer of mechanical systems. i have kept our house hold afloat by working self employed for some customers doing their design work and cad drawings. i have been on seroxat for about 8 month 20mg a day. the first batches of the tablets were purchased with a perscription from our local (small) chemest but i realised that these were not seroxat but another brand name for the same tablet. i found that if by mistake i forgot to take he tablet i would get what i can only describe as brain flashes. i didnt feel dissy but every time i moved my eyes or someone said something to me it was as if a camera had just flashed in my head?? SO i went to my doctors again (different doctor this time). he said no no no you shouldnt be on these tablets you need counciling not drugs. start taking them alternate days. i siad ive tried that by mistake and i can handle the falshes for 6 months whilst im withdrawing from the drug. he said you have to ween yourself off them.
    needless to say i tried but i cant do it. i dont crave the feelings of seroxat and i wouldnt say im depressed or axious i just want to get rid of these dam flashes and the woolyness i feel.
    ive been off the drug now solid for 5 days and i want to know how long before these flashes go away? i need to get back to being the driven person i was my family and my home depend on it. i need to earn money to get us out of this and i cant do it when i feel like someone keeps jump starting my brain!!! can anyone offer any advice.
    many thanks

    • Tony Says:

      I once stopped seroxat cold by mistake – forgot to take them for five days when at a conference out in Japan. The vertigo/dizziness you experience, Dave, is a common withdrawal symptom. When I did stop cold, I became more and more obnoxious to my family and had to resume the pills. I’m just now at the end of a phased withdrawal – 20mg alternating with 10mg, then 10mg days alternating with 0mg days then with more and more 0mg days. I took my last 10mg on Monday. I’m still getting the vertigo and dizziness (what you describe as the camera flash – good analogy, I like it) but can live with that for a while. I’ve not (as far as I can tell) been ranty or shouty this time around. In fact, I feel so much more alive since beginning the withdrawal. I’m hoping that this time I’m off them for good but, like recovering alcoholics, will take it one day at a time.

      I feel for those who go through hell to get off seroxat and am so glad it is not my case. I was only ever on 20mg pills so never had to withdraw from anything like the maximum dose some people here describe. I think it is true, however, that the dreadful side effects described here are a minority condition. That does not minimise the need for doctors and big pharma to be open about this possibility but people coming to this site who want information about seroxat withdrawal should know that they are very unlikely to experience the horror that is herein described.

      Seroxat did help me. I took it for 10 years, tried to withdraw twice and had to resume them, not because of the side effects of withdrawal but because I still needed the drug to overcome depression. I no longer work in a stressful job so am hoping that I can withdraw permanently. If I cannot, I will go back on seroxat without qualms. Now that I know what it is like to be not taking the drug, I much prefer feeling like this than in the cotton wool, disaffected state I am in when on seroxat. But I prefer that state to the one in which I am at least a trial and at worst a danger to myself and my family if my depression comes back.

      We are all individuals with very different chemistries. Your reaction to the drug will be different to mine (eg, I was unable to take the supposedly milder prozac as it induced constant shaking almost immediately) and your reaction to withdrawal will be different to mine and to everyone elses. Work with your doctor – if you are not getting the support you need in withdrawing, get another doctor. If you are having problems and they dismiss them, it is their fault, not yours so dump them. Any side effect you feel is real – believe that. A good doctor WILL help you and you do deserve a good doctor.

      Good luck.

  63. Lauren Simmonds Says:

    I have been on seroxat for panic attacks and Emetophobia (servere fear of vomiting) since the age of 11, I am now 22 and have tried a number of times to come off the drug always failing as it causes withdrawal symtoms including nausea, panic, muscle spasms and makes me very emotional! I would love to come off it because of the side effects I get whilst on it including excessive sweating and lack of sex drive.
    I am extreamly angry with the people who put me on the medicine at age 11 as it has ruined my life! I would love to sue the manufactuors of the drug as it has ruined my life!
    I have swapped the drug with another SSRI 7 days ago and the past 4 days have been in bed crying, shaking, feeling sick and in pure panic! Its awful!

    • Anastacia Kostoula Says:

      Hi Lauren,
      I have been on Seroxat for 3 years now, I tried to quit 2 times so far and it has been horrible! I cant believe they gave you this awful pill at the age of 11! And I cant believe I was SO stupid and in such a bad shape when I started taking it that I didnt even research a little about it first. The past week I cut down from 10mg a day to 5mg and Im going through hell….I feel extremely dizzy all the time, nauseous, sweating palms and feet, trembling…and of course even though everything else in my life is going great….feeling like this all week makes me more and more angry, depressed and panicky.. I would love to sue them too but right now I cant even take my dog for a walk without feeling like Im gonna faint, throw up and have a panic attack at the same time!
      Hope you feel better by the time you read this…

  64. Mazes Says:

    Hi everyone,

    Have anyone of you tried to go for alternative medicine to over come the withdrawels of seroxat, that might help, I have been on seroxat for 3 years and tried to quite many times but always I had to go back, now I’m cutting down seroxat and starting alternative one called Wellbutrin, have any one tried this method?

  65. seham Says:

    I’ve gradually stopped seroxat since 3 days. I feel the withdrawal symptoms mentioned above.

  66. derek marsh Says:

    i am really pissed off reading all the posts i am a sufferer too my email is i need help and can help others please contact me , derek

    • Rikki Says:

      I successfully came off Seroxat after 9 years with help from a Cognitive Behavioral Therapist. I had started feeling more enthusiastic about life, a lot of this was due to the CBT which has a reputation for being more successful in treating depression than antidepressants .

      My CBT therapist encouraged me to reduce the dose by 1 or 2ml of liquid at a time, by reducing the dose about once a fortnight or even waiting longer than that to reduce the dose. I ended up shaving a tiny bit off the side of each tablet instead of using the liquid (as the liquid ran out quicker than the tablets). At one point in the withdrawal I went to stay with a very close friend and spent some of that time in bed feeling ill with my friend looking after me. I think having someone to look after me made a big difference. I went to see his doctor who reassured me that diarrhoea & feeling very ill & tired were normal symptoms for coming off seroxat.

      I think it was my sheer determination to come off this drug that made this withdrawal successful, along with good professional support along the way and help from friends. I think it is very important to feel that there are people looking out for your wellbeing every step of the way. I also feel that I was mentally ready to do this as I knew from other times that I had tried to come off Seroxat that it would be a rough journey and not necessarily successful. I did almost go back on the tablets during the withdrawal as the emotional symptoms were too much is but my counsellor encouraged me to perservere as in her opinion I was ready.

      I am really hoping that my story may help someone. Always discuss coming off these tablets with a professional you respect and trust, come off them extremely gradually and have counselling while you are coming off them. Your counsellor will hopefully let you ring them in a crisis or there will be a counsellor on call to advise you during withdrawal at the end of a phone line. There are 24 hour helplines for you and if you are really concerned about how bad you feel there is help available at the hospital.

      Feelings are transitory – they always change. The feeling will pass. Sharing how you feel with another human is a healing experience. Another thing I have found helpful is Mindfulness meditation this is a helpful tool in letting you accept the way you feel in the here and now and allows feelings to pass. Mindfullness is becoming more respected in the treatment of mental illnesses and you can get it prescribed either from your doctor or other mental health organisation.

      I wish you all the best -all of you.


      • playabossa Says:

        Rikki, Thanks for your positive reply. I have come off them in the past and know it can be done, however I am struggling now. In terms of coming off them only. I am on 20mg and will stay on that until I again feel ready enough to try. I appreciate hearing the positive side of coming off them, so thank you.
        All the best.

  67. Bex Says:

    After being prescribed Seroxat 2 years ago (30mg) I worked through a course of CBT to learn about why I was the way I was and, vitally, how to train my brain to think differently when there were trigger moments. 10 days ago I decided to stop taking the tablets, knowing absolutely nothing about the medication I was taking, nor its withdrawal effects. I was putting on weight, found my libido had gone but felt like I was able to stop and use my CBT techniques to ‘keep me working properly’ because I felt genuinely happy and really had started to like myself at the age of 42.

    Since stopping the medication, I’ve been having some vertigo type dizziness and weird little electric shocks through my body and head which, though odd, haven’t as yet affected my day to day life. I guessed these were withdrawal symptoms from something I had physically become reliant on, so just Googled withdrawal from Seroxat and found this page.

    I guess I have been very lucky. The combined effects of the medication and CBT repaired me, and made me a genuinely happy person. As a result, I found the job I had always wanted but never felt worthy to apply for in the past, moved to Wales to start the new job, and realised I was in a good place mentally and metaphorically. (And geographically!) Hence my cold turkey ‘rip the plaster off’ approach to stopping the meds.

    I haven’t started to feel down yet and am actually feeling very positive, but I’m now concerned I’ve done the wrong thing. The dizzy stuff I can deal with, the lack of appetite is possibly good because I could do with losing some weight, I feel able to get through it even if it takes a few months…but have I been foolish? Or is it possible to get off something like this with minimal side effects? Has anyone else been through a similar experience?

    • playabossa Says:

      Hi Bex, I too have had CBT and am doing okay now. I have come off them myself in the past, however, I would advise you to slowly decrease the dose and not just come off. The side effects you are experiencing sound normal. I am having trouble coming off them now but know it can be done. Just slowly, slowly. Good luck x

      • Bex Ferriday Says:

        Thank you!

        The side effects are going, and I feel cautiously optimistic!

      • jayney Says:

        Just readin yor message,i feel happy findin this site,,am not alone and hope i get a reply off anyone who has managed to get off this drug,,hope life is treatin you well.Be appi…..Jayney in West Yorkshire

  68. jayney Says:

    Am new on this site,had to share my experience,10 years on this drug after panic attacks ruled my life.I became a single parent,lost mum,went through partner break up..then had to end my job cos boyfriend took care of my 7 year old son last year,weekend work was involved you see,then went through a debt relief order and car went to scrapyard,am determined to fight the withdrawel as i eat all time and am never full,tension headaches,muscle pain,no libido,,but may i say it did help panic attacks,,But their worse than what they were to start on 30mg per day but missin days until i need one..This is every 2 days i need one,maybe 2nd week i could go 3 days without one,,Wish me luck everyone…i will fight this..Jayney

  69. Seroxat_is_evil Says:

    Thank you for your article, given me some hope. I have been cold turkey for 3 weeks now as I found out I was having a baby and SSRI’s result in birth defects – doctor gave me a different brand but have decided to just stop. Oh my goodness, I feel like I am in a dream world. Not completley with it, being violently sick feeling awful. I am going to live with these effects, even if they take another four months – IT WILL NOT BEAT ME. I am not going to break but looking after a toddler with them is a challenge. Thanks for your great article. Seroxat is pure evil. They have put something in them that is addictive. Feel like I will die but I have to get through it.

  70. GSK are ‘very decent’ according to UK Prime Minister David Cameron | GSK : Licence To (K) ill Says:

    […] say is that from all my dealings with GSK I know that they are a very important, very decent and strong British business that is a long-term investor in China and it’s a business that very much […]

    • John Says:

      Yes, the same David Cameron who insisted we invade Iraq because of non existent WMDs. The guy is a grade A scumbag.

  71. Lent - weird and important Says:

    […] want to survive it, coming of diet coke is going to have to be a long process. Like coming off the Seroxat; but that’s a different […]

  72. mel Says:

    I have been taking rhis drug for eight years i am a recovering alcoholic and i have been sober for 12 years .
    I am very angry that i was left on this drug for so long !!!! And it is marked as non addictive i have been withdrawing anx i have got from 20mg to 10 mg it has been hell worst thing is that i have felt at the end of the road but this drug is ot beating me .
    its discusting how people suffer coming off it i think we should all be com.pensated

  73. John Says:

    Everyone is blaming GSK and co and they have a point. But what about the Doctors. That have a duty of care. Doesn’t that extend to understanding exactly what you are prescribing to patients. I was prescribed Paroxetine (paxtine) in Australia within 5 minutes of seeing two different Doctors. I suffer from mild depression and anxiety. At no point did we discuss my diet or health or any other options. Just take these pills. I didn’t thanks to the people on this blog to whom I will forever owe a debt of gratitude. But back to the point. Both these Doctors recited verbatim the standard GSK sales pitch complete with the classic GSK hand drawings of the nerve endings. If it wasn’t so serious it would be laughable. It suggests right off the bat that they actually have no clue about the drug other than what the snake oil merchants have told them. How can you prescribe drugs that you know nothing about and that have never been subjected to unbiased review and testing. Some legal firm out there should launch a class action, not just against GSK but every single A hole Doctor out there that rx’s this poison! They have breached there duty of care.
    Thankfully I sorted myself out with lots of fish oil, magnesium, zinc, B vits and the miracle herb Ashwagandha but I will never forgive these quacks for almost destroying my life.

  74. John Says:

    The movie “Letters from Generation Rx” should be compulsory viewing.

  75. Mehran Says:

    GSK keep saying that addiction is where you need to take more of the drug to get the same effect. Well this just explains that it is addictive because Seroxat stops working well over time and doctors increase the dosage 10mg at a time.

    This is the same issue with using Diazepam to treat Anxiety long term, 2mg soon turned into 10mg and now there are thousands of people hooked on Diazepam because Valium was marketed as a safe,effective and non-habit forming medication. Roche the orginal people who developed and patented Valium have now abandoned it completely. No doubt Diazepam is very effective and safe for treating anxiety, it just cannot be used as a long term solution and this error has left many people in trouble.

    This is the same pattern as Codeine. When its used longer than 3 days the OTC dose at 12.5mg per tablet mixed with Ibuprofen stops working and you have end up taking more tablets. The same with the prescribed 30mg Co-codamol tablets and most people are on them for months and when you stop taking them you suffer severe withdrawal symptoms.

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