A bottle of generic delayed-release Duloxetine (Cymbalta) 30 mg

We have received so many complaints about duloxetine side effects that we have lost count. Far more disturbing are the number of people who tell us how hard it is to discontinue this drug.

Decades ago doctors might have told patients taking a drug like Cymbalta that if they experienced anxiety, irritability or strange sensations after stopping the drug, it was probably their underlying psychological problem returning. Now we know it is withdrawal from the medicine.

The History of Cymbalta:

Cymbalta was originally approved by the FDA in 2004 for the treatment of major depression. It is officially an SNRI-type antidepressant. In doctorspeak that means it is a serotonin-norepinehprine reuptake inhibitor and is somewhat similar to other antidepressants such as Effexor (venlafaxine) and Pristiq (desvenlafaxine).

The FDA also approved Cymbalta to treat nerve pain associated with diabetes in 2004. In 2007 the drug got a green light for anxiety and in 2008 the FDA agreed that it could ease the discomfort associated with fibromyalgia. It was also approved to treat musculoskeletal pain associated with arthritis and lower back pain in 2010.

In other words, here was a drug that could relieve your blues and your aches and pains. And the drug company that makes Cymbalta (Lilly) has been aggressively marketing it as a good way to deal with chronic low back pain and osteoarthritis. Perhaps you have seen the commercials on TV promoting the pain relieving power of the drug with the slogan “Cymbalta can help.” It sounds almost too good to be true.

Ah…and there is the rub. Although there is a long list of serious side effects mentioned during the commercial, the video images seem quite reassuring and trump the scary message the FDA requires for this medication. So, let’s set the record straight. Here, without visual interference, are a list of potential complications associated with this medication.

Cymbalta (Duloxetine) Side Effects

  • Nausea, stomach pain, constipation, diarrhea, decreased appetite, vomiting
  • Dry mouth
  • Insomnia, anxiety, tremor
  • Dizziness, fatigue, sleepiness
  • Sweating, hot flashes
  • Blurred vision
  • Headache
  • Sexual dysfunction, lowered libido, erection difficulties, lack of orgasm
  • Liver damage
  • Serious skin reactions, rash, hives (requires immediate MD assistance!)
  • Glaucoma
  • Irregular heart rhythms
  • Bleeding problems
  • Blood pressure problems
  • Interaction with other drugs (leading to serotonin syndrome among other reactions)
  • Pneumonia
  • Seizures
  • Depressed mood, suicidal thoughts and behavior, suicide

Such a long list of side effects makes your eyes glaze over after the top 3 or 4. That is why we have included stories from real people so you can better understand what these complications feel like.

Stopping Cymbalta:

Even though such side effects are scary, there is another problem with Cymbalta. When people try to stop taking this drug they frequently report unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. An organization (QuarterWatch) that monitors the FDA’s database of serious adverse drug events has noted that:

“We observed a signal for serious drug withdrawal symptoms associated with duloxetine (CYMBALTA), a widely used antidepressant that is also approved to treat arthritis and back pain, anxiety, and fibromyalgia. In the first quarter of 2012 the FDA received 48 case reports of drug withdrawal identifying duloxetine as the suspect drug. They described a wide spectrum of withdrawal effects that began when the patients stopped the drug, including blackouts, suicidal thoughts, tremor, and nausea. Several cases involved hospitalization.

Probing deeper into the scientific record for duloxetine we found that withdrawal symptoms were reported in 44-50% of patients abruptly discontinuing duloxetine at the end of clinical studies for depression, and more than half of this total did not resolve within a week or two. In addition, we identified a serious breakdown at both the FDA and the manufacturer, Eli Lilly and Company, in providing adequate warnings and instructions about how to manage this common adverse effect.”

Doctors have taken to calling this “discontinuation syndrome.” These clinical words do not do justice to what it is like to stop antidepressants like Cymbalta, Effexor (venlafaxine), Paxil (paroxetine), Pristiq (desvenlafaxine) or Zoloft (sertraline) suddenly.

Sudden Withdrawal Symptoms

  • Brain “Zaps” (electric shock-like senstations in the brain)
  • Dizziness, light-headedness, vertigo, feeling faint
  • Headaches
  • Anxiety, irritability, hostility
  • Nausea, diarrhea, digestive upset
  • Tremor, hands shaking, nerve tingles, strange sensations
  • Fatigue, tiredness, lack of energy
  • Visual disturbances

Again, a list of symptoms does not do this problem justice. Below you will read some stories from people who have posted their comments to this website. We would love to hear your story, positive or negative. Share your experience with Cymbalta or any other antidepressant below.

Should you wish to learn more about dealing with depression through some other strategies, we offer our Guide to Dealing with Depression. You will also find a whole chapter on prescribing mistakes doctors make when treating depression and fibromyalgia in our book, Top Screwups Doctors Make and How to Avoid Them.

Cymbalta Withdrawal Stories from Readers

– D.G. shares a tragic story:

“My lovely, young daughter-in law, who was about to celebrate her 29th birthday, was prescribed Cymbalta, Klonopin, and Ambien and has committed suicide.

“She told her physician and her therapist that she’d had thoughts of suicide but no one took her seriously. She suffered from depression, as well as an eating disorder, and had very low body weight. She also used alcohol.

“Please remind your readers of the potentially disastrous effects these chemicals can cause when taken carelessly or in combination with alcohol.”

This from – P.J.:

“I have been on Prozac over the last 20 years off and on and it finally stopped working. The last time I took it about 2 years ago I was taking the generic from Barr – the blue and white capsule. I was feeling as if I were in the deepest dark hole there ever was.

“My doctor put me on Cymbalta from which I had a lot of side effects such as palpitations, feeling constant dread, panic attacks, sweats, lightheadedness and general feeling of not being well.

“She added Abilify which put me over the edge. I was in the worst depression I have ever been in. Finally after living like this for several months, I asked to be put back on Prozac. I was taking the generic from Sandoz. When the prescription ran out I ended up on the big blue and white capsules from Barr.

“Over the last couple of weeks it has been constant crying spells, arguing with everyone and feeling pretty low. I talked to my doctor and she wrote the prescription for Sandoz only generic. The blue and white capsules are like taking a placebo. My doctor said she had had other patients who complained of the same thing and she had to write prescriptions for a certain generic or name brand.”

– R.P. says:

“I took Cymbalta for 3 days and thought I’d go nuts. I’m off it now and refuse to try any other drug like this. My main complaint was extreme hot flashes that estrogen wouldn’t help. I thought I’d be given Prozac, but was given Cymbalta instead. It was a rough 3 days and I stopped it last night. I am extremely tired yet cannot sleep at night. I think I was sweating even worse and my legs started feeling like I had Lyme disease again. And to be honest, within those 3 days of taking it, I didn’t contemplate suicide, but I had this crappy attitude of “who would care?”

– Nancy relates how hard it was to get off Cymbalta:

“It took me 18 months to get off Cymbalta, with no doctor’s help. I can hardly believe that doctors have no exit strategy for this dangerous drug. I had to find this out on my own from reading and as soon as I weaned off that – about a month, the tinnitus that had occurred decreased almost completely. No doctor told me this.”

— J.K. shares a parent perspective:

“My daughter experienced severe side effects when trying to come off Cymbalta – she had nausea, vomiting, lost peripheral vision for 24-48 hours, had shaking, etc. This was while she was doing a clinical in a hospital for college. Had she known she would have stayed on it until after clinical. I called the manufacturer and they acted like there were no such side effects from withdrawal.

“She too took apart the capsules and it took awhile, but finally she is free from that drug. I think it is a crime that the manufacturers don’t publish more detailed information concerning withdrawal. They could even make money selling a one month or two month step down prescription so individuals aren’t taking the capsules apart themselves.”

– P.C. Tells what it is like to switch around from one drug to another:

“I just turned 52 today. I went on a very low dose of Zoloft about 8 years ago to treat generalized anxiety disorder. It really did help for a long time. I recently have been pretty depressed (however I can cover it up really well) and my psychiatrist switched me to Effexor which was terrible for me. Now I’m trying Cymbalta which has not done anything either except make me feel more anxious and headachy and weird.”

“I am a registered nurse and I do not understand what the long term effects of these meds are and I am concerned. I really want to get off and see what I can do naturally for myself.”

– K.T. tells what it is like to try to stop Cymbalta:

“Getting off Cymbalta is challenging but not impossible. I, too, experienced the light-headedness, dizziness, and “brain zaps.” I described it as being able to “hear my eyes move.” It sounded like the light sabers on Star Wars. Very strange and disconcerting.

“The key is to do it very very slowly. Take the capsules apart and begin by removing 5 or 10 of the tiny balls inside. Do this for a week or so, then slowly increase the amount you remove each week or two as you can tolerate it.

“Your doctor will probably be no help at all. Mine wasn’t. He instructed me to wean off over a two to three week period and I almost lost my mind. I did it myself over about a YEAR or more. Be patient. I am completely off now and feeling GOOD.”

– Karen’s story:

“I was prescribed Cymbalta ‘off-label’ to manage fibromyalgia pain When I stopped taking it because it wasn’t delivering on the promised effect of reducing my pain, I became so horribly depressed that I required hospitalization as I had become SUICIDAL!

“I will NEVER take another anti-depressant for an off-label purpose….such as Elavil/amitriptyline as a “sleep aid” which is very commonly prescribed.

“I believe it should be criminal to prescribe ANY drug for a purpose other than the one it was approved to treat.”

– R.H. and Erectile Dysfunction:

“I’m a 76 year old man, my libido was very low. Taking Cymbalta for peripheral neuropathy added ED as a side affect of the drug. I had a testosterone blood test; it was 1/3 what the minimum should be. So I’m taking Androgel to raise testosterone levels and it is magic. I have great libido now and am working on minimizing the Cymbalta pills. In the meantime I have been prescribed Cialis for the ED. Each pill solves the sex problem for a couple of days.”

– M.O. on stopping Cymbalta:

“I have the exact symptoms as everyone else and it’s been a week. I only took Cymbalta for 2 months, but the side effects from stopping it are horrible. My doctor didn’t, nor did anyone else tell me, about any side effects and I did read the insert. Most of the time the listed side effects of meds don’t bother me, so I figured no problem.

“From reading other posts on this website and on other sites, the drug seems to affect every person the same way. I would never have taken it for my neck pain if I had known about the likelihood of side effects. The worst part for me is the dizziness, the brain zings and the sudden burst of tears for no reason. I would never take this drug again. I think the FDA needs to do longer studies on all drugs and be honest with their findings and that doctors should be honest and tell their patients what really happens when you take Cymbalta.”

Please add your own experience below in the comment section.

Revised 1/28/16

Join Over 100,000 Subscribers at The People's Pharmacy

Each week we send two free email newsletters with breaking health news, prescription drug information, home remedies and a preview of our award-winning radio show. Join our mailing list and get the information you need to make confident choices about your health.

  1. Ted

    I am currently tapering off cymbalta. For two years I was taking 60 mg of cymbalta, 300 mg. of lyrica, and 15 mcg butrans patch for chronic hip pain. I have dropped the dosage by 10 mg. each month and am currently taking 10 mg. Each time I lowered the dose I went through all the classic side effects. Magnesium supplements have helped with the brain zaps and memory loss. I also am drinking organic cranberry concentrate mixed with water to help flush the drug out of my system (when I can remember).
    For the last eight months I have been off of the morphine. All the drugs I had been taking helped for about a year and then quit working. Rather than being sedated and in pain I decided to just be in pain.
    I have been concerned about stopping the cymbalta too soon. I planned on waiting a year before completely discontinuing the cymbalta to give my brain more time to get over the morphine, but the side effects were too much to deal with. When I finally made it to 20 mg. of cymbalta I was able to think clearer .

    Before I started taking the cymbalta I was working with doctors trying to fix my pain. After taking the cymbalta I stopped caring as much. I am now starting to care about my situation again.

  2. Heather

    I have been on Cymbalta for 2 years for peripheral neuropathy. It hasn’t done anything to improve the symptoms so I told my GP I want to stop it. Instructions to take it every other day. I stopped my first one last night and today I have felt drugged light headed nauseous and the worse I have felt for years. Why aren’t we told about these dreadful symptoms when being given the drug. How do you actually get off it.

  3. Roscoe

    I had been taking Cymbalta for almost six months but had used Wellbutrin before starting the Cymbalta. I was told by my doctor that stopping Cymbalta would be “no problem” and there would be “no tapering down needed.” I truly trusted my doctor, he has never given me any reason not to trust him.

    Well, I stopped the Cymbalta cold turkey and it has been 8 days of pure hell dealing with vertigo, lightheadedness, and diarrhea! There has not been any progress made towards the symptoms ending!

    I work as a PTA, I deal with patients who are in pain, I am not feeling well at all, so it sucks withdrawing from the use of Cymbalta.

    I need some help or answers…


  4. Mayrn
    Uk- Cardiff

    I have been told to come off duloxetine over a period of 2 weeks. Im feeling so ill- feel so sick, headaches and pain all over. Finding it really difficult.

  5. Laurenm79
    Larchmont, NY

    Cymbalta has ruined my life! I started taking 60 mg May 2014, my dr didn’t explain anything except here take this!!! Meanwhile I’m hysterical from a trauma in my life so I just trusted this dr.

    I felt like a zombie, no depression, couldn’t cry if I tried. But I had the worst ear pressure and told my dr, he said no worries that subsides. I had blood coming out of my left ear, went to an Ent and he says probably just an ear infection…

    October 2014 my dr forgets to refill my cymbalta, I called daily for about 8 days, thought nothing until day 10 BOOM I felt spinning eye pain and was rushed to ER, the dr there said this is Vertigo, asked me if there were any changes in my life I said the only thing changed was cymbalta was out of my system and she says that prob didn’t cause it but let’s get you back on it and here’s some antivert.

    Soon as I got back on the cymbalta w antivert I started feeling a little better but then my depression worsened and my dr raised up to 120mg.

    The vertigo came back after the antivert stopped working. I told my dr and finally he says ok let’s go down to 60mg and give you Xanax….

    Within a week I hit a huge nervous breakdown out of no where and was admitted to ER, again dr’s all refuse to admit Cymbalta is a dangerous drug….now I’m not even on cymbalta. I’m on Paxil, Lamictal, klonopin, Xanax and and ambien which doesn’t seem to work.

    This Dr ruined my life. I told him I prefer therapy and he pushed pills on me and I wish I would have stuck to my guns but now I am permanently damaged…..I can’t drive, I lost jobs, I’m so depressed and feel like I’ll never be able to have kids or a life.
    All my symptoms:
    Numbing, Tingling in my body and lips
    Ear and vision problems
    I hear swishing sounds when I move my eyes.
    Slurred speech
    Not saying words I mean to say (like if I mean red I say yellow)
    Memory loss
    Mood swings
    Slower motor skills
    Weak, tired and way more depressed!


  6. lou

    OMG i have been wondering what was wrong with me. I thought I was having a heart attack and I have been so dizzy that I have not been driving. I’m also having nausea and throwing up.

    I stopped taking duloxetine. I still have the brain zapps, dizzy and hard to sleep. The drug makers and F D A should not be allowed to do this. Not only do we have the effects but it disrupts our family life. thanks to all the people who have written about this subject you have a huge impact on a lot of people. thanks again

  7. Maryann

    I have been trying to get off the Cymbalta for a while. I am now just omitting the night dose of 60mg. I am having horrible stomach cramps, gas, bloating and pain in the late afternoon. I thought it was a side effect from the Azilect I began taking about a month ago but now I’m not sure what is causing the gastrointestinal pain. Any thoughts?

  8. Judy
    New Hampshire

    I have been on Cymbalta for I think 6 years 60mg twice a day and have weaned off in three weeks per the way my physician ordered. Was wondering why I feel like I am at a carnival ride. I am reading and reading here on line all of the side effects of coming off of this drug . No brain zap..but crying alot; also taking some Topiramate . I think more time should have been taken to come off of this; I feel exhausted up all night I can do this but not sure if I can for months. Some people here are saying they were on much smaller doses than I was. No wonder my insurance company would not pay anymore.

  9. debbie

    I loved cymbalta at first allmy pains went away felt great after 2months on it my legs went to hurting and had muscle spasms severe had to go to Er Dr gave me morfhine for pain l lost 15pounds or weight I liked that side affects to horrible

  10. Kathy

    Well if you think about it. It takes two or more weeks for a anti depression to get into your system, so I’m sure once it’s in there and you stop it, it’s. Going to take awhile for it to get out of your body

  11. K.
    Seattle, WA

    1.20.16-1.31/16: 20mg of Duloxetine for depression. 20mg is the lowest dose. Doctor said I can stop anytime. No side effects while on it. Discovered that depression was caused by hyperparathyroidism. Just needed to increase calcium intake.

    2.1.16: Crying spells(3 hrs), nonstop diarrhea, gastric upset, and nausea. Fecal incontinence @ night.

    2.2.16-2.7.16: Immodium AD ineffective: nonstop diarrhea, gastric upset, and nausea, plus fecal incontinence @ night. Zofran helpful with nausea.

    2.6.16: Rx’ed Lomotil. Decreased frequency of diarrhea to 4x/day.
    Only 2 solid BMs in first 3 weeks.

    2.15.16: Suicidal thoughts for 3 hours, it was unreal.

    2.16.16-5.24.16: Joint pain, muscle tightness, extreme dizziness, panic attacks, palpitations, weight gain, and shaking. Symptoms were very frequent in the beginning, but now becoming less frequent, but still as disabling.

    Am a recovering alcoholic, 4.5 years sober. The withdrawals from Duloxetine is MUCH worse than getting off benzodiazepines and opiates. The withdrawals are extremely hard to endure. Extremely hard to stay sane during this time. Have to work harder on my program. I’m okay, spiritually, but the physical and mental symptoms: I would not wish this on my worst enemy. To anyone who is experiencing the withdrawals: don’t keep any secrets, be honest with your doctor, therapist, and psychiatrist. One day at a time.

  12. Cory
    Edmonton, Ab.

    I was prescribed Cymbalta 2 months ago. I suffer from severe depression, Insomnia, and fibromyalgia. The first week I was nauseous, loss of appetite. I was 185 lbs, now,I am 170.

    The drug began to work wonders after the first week. My depression went away. I felt like a different person who was optimistic happy and able to deal with life. However, I noticed a severe rash 3 days ago on my lower legs. This is very uncomfortable, itchy. On the invoice inside the package it states if this happens to seek medical assistance right away.

    However being the long weekend in Canada, I have decided not to do so. After reading the awful side effects from stopping this drug, I cannot to so on my own, without a physician’s medical advice.

    I was worse before I began Cymbalta. What would occur if I had to be taken off this medication? If the rash is from the medication. I will have no choice but to quit. I sure hope I can manage.

  13. Mike
    Colorado Springs, CO

    I took Cymbalta for about 2 years. I’ve been off it for about 5 months. On Prozac hoping it would help with the brain zaps. They are so bad I can hardly function on some days. I have to grit my teeth and may feel like I’m going to faint. I’ve never fainted in my life, so that’s just a guess. If anyone has any help for the brain zaps please respond. Thank you

  14. Rita

    Well I had a pain dr put me on 30 mg 3 times taken all at once at bedtime along with flexeril 2 of them at bedtime, due to knee replacement very very painful surgery, I had to have done twice due to so much problem with my knee, I was a avid runner so this was extremely difficult for me.

    These pills just start to diminish your life over time, I will say they did help me at first then as time went on I was getting better stronger feeling pretty good. One day went to get refill my pharmasist told me taking cymbals a and flexeril together can cause siesures!!! So long with no sex drive for my husband I thought enough of this, came home quit the flexeril right away, then slowly starting minice 1 pill for 2 weeks then 2 pills for two weeks then 1 for almost 2 weeks, Wow”””” Zaps to the brain ( electric )Really Really bad sweats, almost like you have the flu!!!

    I am not turning back will never let a Dr put me on this drug again just taking one day at a time, the sweats are rough iam 52 year old women, I will get through this iam figuring maybe a month to feel complete back to myself. With all that said iam sleeping better everyday gets a little better. I hope this was help to someone out there.

  15. Susan

    I was on 120 mgs of Cymbalta for over a decade for fibromyalgia & the associated depression. My doctor set up a three-week weaning program. I had no idea there would be any side effects until I happened to be talking to my veterinarian’s assistant. I don’t know how it came up but I thought she must be exaggerating when she said it was the worst experience you ever had. She was right. I have been light-headed, completely weak in the knees, unable to leave the house, heart pounding like I’m having a heart attack & worst of all, total insomnia despite exhaustion. I can’t seem to be able to get any regular sleep schedule back. I had no idea that this drug involved these kind of withdrawal symptoms. I had no symptoms when I was on the drug and thought it was helpful to my condition. I am still in the throes of getting off this drug & seeing this site was helpful to me. I also feel like no one cares about me & want to cry. Yes, there are many things in my life that would leave me to feel this way but it feels so much worse.

  16. Rebecca

    I was prescribed Cymbalta for fibromyalgia of many years. 12 days on it and I felt like ‘The Walking Dead!’ one of worst meds I have been on! Heart arrhythmias, elevated BP, headaches, dizziness, eye disturbances, so fatigued I didn’t want to breath (believe me I didn’t think my fatigue could get worse). I am through with these meds! We are all just an experiment for big powerful drug companies! Day 5 being off 30 mg and its not been good! Just talked to my Doc’s nurse and her attitude….no big deal…laugh…laugh! Ugh!

  17. Chelsea
    Victoria BC Canada

    I was on “IT” for2 years and I am getting the here but not here sensations. I have to get my life back and am willing to suffer through.

    The biggest challenges are everyday things my memory is awful and my job needs it I am always tired and my sex drive is null and void and I was very sexual. Been off it for a week worst of it is dizziness, memory loss, stomach troubles, crying spells out of no where and irritation. But that being said I was never a push over before taking the drug now I won’t take it anymore. So slowly but surely I plan to get back to normal sorry back to myself.

    Being on this drug and getting off it is worse than my anxiety and depression. I choose to think positive and I know this will make me stronger. I too agree that this drug is very dangerous and there is not enough education about it. Mental health needs huge changes I think these so called anti d drugs aren’t always the answer but in Canada our choices for solutions for mental health issues are nonexistent really. I was having anxiety and went to the doctor and well he really didn’t want know.

    it gradually got worse and I tried to take my life that finally got me what they consider help. Really incredible that this is how you get help I’m a 44 year what about younger people in the same situation. Life is not easy and there is lots of pressure and it is at time very overwhelming I don’t care who you sometimes we all need help. So where is it? And why is it finally given poorly I might add when we are at or over our breaking point? And with no proper education on what the long term effect clearly could and can be.

    I am tired of Mental health being shoved to one side this also an epidemic and will not be going away anytime soon. So it is time for me to come out of the ” haze”. Wish me luck and knowing I’m not alone well…. Shoot here comes that crying spell ;) Thanks for all the great comments good and bad they are super helpful all the best to you all in the same situation. And I will keep you all posted. Remember you are not alone.

  18. Leslie

    I took 30mg’s for about 3 years prescribed for arthritis in my wrists and back. I have to honestly say I don’t know for sure if it helped all these years because of different activities. I actually make yard art with concrete which obviously isn’t hand or back friendly. lol But even though I would feel more pain after a project, I felt worse if I went without the activity.

    Long story short, I was afraid to quit taking Cymbalta because I didn’t know if it was keeping my pain level better than without. I decided to quit taking it because I needed to find out if I was putting a drug in my body that might or might not be helping. I did the every other day weaning then every few days for 2 weeks then stopped.

    My doctor had told me to wait until our long winters were over so if I had emotional effects it would be better with spring and summer coming. (She knows I am an outdoor person) Well the emotional aspect has been nothing compared to the physical. I feel like I am on the verge of getting full fledged stomach flu all the time. It is worse in the evening for some reason. My hands tingle, my back hurts so bad, mostly when I’m sitting, that it generates through my chest and arms. I get dizzy almost every time I’m on my feet. The sudden hot flashes are terrible. I am constantly second guessing my self not knowing if it is the Cymbalta withdrawal or I have something else is going on.

    It’s been a month since I have stopped taking them all together. Every day I am hopeful that the terrible feelings will go away but they aren’t yet. I so DO NOT want to start taking them again but I am so tempted to start again to see if I will feel better. I wish someone had given me a stern warning about what would happen if I ever wanted to quit taking this terrible drug. I don’t know, I might have done it anyway when I was in so much pain from the arthritis. Even though the doctor who prescribed it would never commit to if it was really arthritis, I just wanted the pain to go away. Now I would do almost anything to make the side effects from stopping it go away. No I’m not suicidal, thank God.

  19. Candace
    Richmond IN

    I have been in cymbalta for almost a year. I am having problems which I now have to take meds for. I just spent the night in the hospital because my stomach pain was so bad they thought I was having a heart attack. I am thinking this med could be the problem I also have huge sores in my head that come up like festered hairs that unless they are pulled out they won’t go away I have to wear a scarf or hats now to cover the bald spots. Has anyone else had this problem ? I am thinking about stopping the drug but after reading this I won’t be going cold turkey Any comments on the sores?

    • Rebecca

      The sores are a side effect I read about. Dermatology issues.

      • Terry Graedon

        Such a serious skin reaction must be reported to the physician and may necessitate discontinuation of the drug. Don’t do that on your own, though!

        Here is the info from the official prescribing information:
        5.6 Severe Skin Reactions
        Severe skin reactions, including erythema multiforme and Stevens-Johnson Syndrome (SJS), can occur with CYMBALTA. The reporting rate of SJS associated with CYMBALTA use exceeds the general population background incidence rate for this serious skin reaction (1 to 2 cases per million person years). The reporting rate is generally accepted to be an underestimate due to underreporting.

        CYMBALTA should be discontinued at the first appearance of blisters, peeling rash, mucosal erosions, or any other sign of hypersensitivity if no other etiology can be identified.

    • Terry Graedon

      Candace, please make sure your doctor takes a look at those sores. It could be the beginning of a serious adverse reaction. Here is the information from the doctor’s prescribing information for this drug:

      5.6 Severe Skin Reactions
      Severe skin reactions, including erythema multiforme and Stevens-Johnson Syndrome (SJS), can occur with CYMBALTA. The reporting rate of SJS associated with CYMBALTA use exceeds the general population background incidence rate for this serious skin reaction (1 to 2 cases per million person years). The reporting rate is generally accepted to be an underestimate due to underreporting.

      CYMBALTA should be discontinued at the first appearance of blisters, peeling rash, mucosal erosions, or any other sign of hypersensitivity if no other etiology can be identified.

  20. Carol
    Albany NY

    I had brain surgery 16 months ago I was an emotional wreck. So my doctor put me on several different meds to get me some control over the whole thing. He changed me over to cymbalta last week. I am text book material; libido out the door, tremors, sleepless nights. nausea, moody, crying then angry, dizzy, stomach pain.

    So I contacted my doctor and he said just stop taking it. I said what?… no weening he said no, just stop and if there are problems let me know. Then we can talk about weening. But with everything said here I am having anxiety with just that whole idea.

    • Terry Graedon

      If you have only been taking Cymbalta for one week, you might not need to wean off it. But you are right to have asked.

  21. Lisa

    I was taken into hospital unexpectedly 2 weeks ago and didn’t have the time to sort meds etc. I wanted off cymbalta anyway so I figured this cld be a good way to start. I don’t understand what is going on atm. I’m dizzy, my head is alive and scattering thoughts all of the time and I can’t sleep for more than 4hrs at a time. Oddly enough I clean hear myself blink? As in really loudly. I am not going back on them I’d rather keep ploughing ahead

    • Terri

      I have been on Cymbalta 3 weeks, and the side effects are horrible!! Can I just stop or have I been on it too long?

      • Terry Graedon

        You may need to drop the dose a bit gradually rather than stop suddenly. People are different, and your timing is in a gray zone.

What Do You Think?

We invite you to share your thoughts with others, but remember that our comment section is a public forum. Please do not use your full first and last name if you want to keep details of your medical history anonymous. A first name and last initial or a pseudonym is acceptable. Advice from other commenters on this website is not a substitute for medical attention. Do not stop any medicine without checking with the prescriber. Stopping medication suddenly could result in serious harm. We expect comments to be civil in tone and language. By commenting, you agree to abide by our commenting policy and website terms & conditions. Comments that do not follow these policies will not be posted.