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Lyrica Side Effects & Withdrawal are Worrisome

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Have you been seeing the ad blitz for Lyrica (pregabalin)? A LOT of money is being spent trying to convince the American public that Lyrica is the answer to diabetic nerve pain. One of the most compelling commercials stars a retired policeman:

"Hi, I'm terry and I have diabetic nerve pain. I worked a patrol unit for 17 years in the city of Baltimore. When I first started experiencing the pain it's hard to describe because you have a numbness but yet you have the pain like thousands of needles sticking in your foot."

Sounds awful and indeed people with diabetic neuropathy suffer terribly. Symptoms can include:

SYMPTOMS OF DIABETIC NEUROPATHY

  • Burning, tingling or a feeling of needles sticking into your skin
  • Numbness in toes and feet; an inability to sense a needle prick; reduced sensitivity to temperature change
  • Difficulty walking either because of numbness, pain or weakness
  • Intense stabbing jolts of pain, especially in the evening
  • Other complications of nerve damage include sexual dysfunction, swallowing difficulties, poor stomach emptying leading to feelings of fullness and bloating, bladder problems and dizziness on standing.

It's hardly any wonder that patients with neuropathy and nerve pain would be looking for help. A commercial like the one with Terry, the retired Baltimore police officer, is very appealing. When Terry says the "pain started subsiding" after taking Lyrica, we imagine that lots of viewers might think that they too might benefit from this drug. Are they paying attention, though, when the voice-over announcer says:

 "Lyrica is not for everyone. It may cause serious allergic reactions or suicidal thoughts or actions. Tell your doctor right away if you have these: new or worsening depression or unusual changes in mood or behavior, or swelling, trouble breathing, rash, hives, blisters, changes in eye sight including blurry vision, muscle pain with fever, tired feeling or skin sores from diabetes. Common side effects are dizziness, sleepiness, weight gain, and swelling of hands, legs and feet. Don't drink alcohol while taking Lyrica. Don't drive or use machinery until you know how Lyrica affects you."

While you listen to the on-air announcer speed through this long list of complications you see Terry working in his backyard planting and watering pretty flowers. Somehow, the scary side effects seem less worrisome in such a bucolic setting.

Here are some real stories from our website to bring the side effects into focus:

This comes from LCB:

"I started taking Lyrica 10 days ago for RLS [restless leg syndrome] and fibromyalgia. I was taking gabapentin but it had stopped working. I gained 14 pounds on the gabapentin, and now I've gained 5 pounds more on the Lyrica. I have edema [fluid retention] as well. I'm sleepy for most of the day and I feel like I'm dragging my body around. I have no energy. My husband tells me I'm irritable with the kids, and that I can't seem to remember things anymore.

"All of this is quite a drastic change from my usual energetic, tireless self. I don't like how I feel, and to make the most important point: Lyrica doesn't seem to help much. I still have tons of pain, and RLS at night. So, I have an appointment with my doctor to ask for a change. I believe that these medicines work very well on some people, but we are all so different. It doesn't work for me."


T.  had a very scary story to share:

 "After almost eight years on Cymbalta, it had lost the effectiveness. My doctor added Lyrica to help with fibro. Soon after, I started to have a deep depression and wanted to end the pain that I have lived with for so long. The stress of life was so great, that I attempted suicide. I was put in the hospital for four days.

"At that point, no more meds! The symptoms are what everyone has described. I feel alone and lost in my own brain fog hell. Not one of my family has a clue what a nightmare this is."


Kathy listed these complicatons:

"I was on the drug eight months for fibromyalgia prescribed by a rheumatologist. I, too, started having problems with eyesight (my eye doctor could NOT update my lenses due to Lyrica causing severe blurriness). I also had memory loss, anxiety, and trouble sleeping. I suffer from chronic constipation due to diverticulitis, and the Lyrica was making this worse. I weaned off over a three-week period. OMG! The withdrawal was/is terrible.

"I am 9 weeks into it, and still have terrible throbbing ongoing headaches, difficulty swallowing, and went from 134 lbs to 118! I feel like I'm dying most of the time. I went to my current neurologist today and was told there were no such symptoms from Lyrica withdrawal!

"Google it, doctor! Please, if anyone reading this is considering taking Lyrica, reconsider! If you have side effects like I did, then decide to go off; you may be looking at a long recovery and NO help from a doctor. They are all denying any problems with this medication. Please read the "Lyrica Withdrawal" posts first!"


Getting off drugs that affect the central nervous system can sometimes be challenging. As we mentioned recently with our post on Abilify, the track record of psychiatry and neurology has been abysmal when it comes to studying sudden withdrawal from commonly prescribed medications. It took years for researchers to discover that when patients suddenly stopped benzodiazepines such as alprazolam (Xanax), diazepam (Valium) or lorazepam (Ativan) they often experienced very unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Ditto for antidepressants like citalopram (Celexa), duloxetine (Cymbalta), escitalopram (Lexapro), sertraline (Zoloft) and venlafaxine (Effexor).

The story of Lyrica (pregabalin) withdrawal is also murky. There is very little in the medical literature on this topic. The prescribing information does mention, though, that some patients report symptoms such as insomnia, nausea, headache, anxiety, sweating or diarrhea if they stop suddenly. The advice: taper the dose over at least a week rather that stopping suddenly. We fear that such information is not always that helpful, especially since there is not much practical information about actual dosage reduction.

LYRICA SIDE EFFECTS:

  • Vertigo, dizziness, unsteadiness, coordination problems, abnormal gait
  • Sleepiness, fatigue
  • Confusion, abnormal thinking, difficulty with attention and concentration, accidental injury
  • Dry mouth
  • Fluid retention in hands or feet, edema
  • Blurred vision, difficulty with eyesight
  • Weight gain,
  • Constipation, gas
  • Pain
  • Skin reaction, rash, dermatitis (requires immediate medical attention!)
  • Depression, suicidal thoughts or actions
  • Muscle breakdown (rhabdomyolysis), tremor
  • Blood disorders
  • Withdrawal symptoms, discontinuation syndrome, seizures

 

We recognize that some people with hard-to-treat neuropathy or fibromyalgia may do quite well on Lyrica and not suffer side effects. That's great. But some patients don't get much benefit and do suffer complications. For them, Lyrica is not a blessing.

To learn about some other approaches to neuropathy, you may want to check these links about benfotiamine (link 1 and link 2) and alpha lipoic acid.

Please share your own story about Lyrica, neuropathy and what has worked or caused problems for you below in the comment section so others can benefit from your experience.

 

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While on Lyrica my Rx for my reading glasses changed from 150 to 225! And brain fog? It was so embarrassing.
I much prefer the pain. Joe, for the knowledge and the service you provide, once again--you're the best!

I've had restless leg for most of my life, and neuropathy for many years. The neuropathy may be from having rotational scoliosis, post-polio or undiagnosed Celiac and autoimmune thyroid disease. I have all of the above, but not diabetes. My mom and brother also had restless leg and neuropathy, but they didn't have diabetes, either.

I decided I can live with the symptoms of the diseases, rather then risk the horrible side effects of those dangerous drugs. There are various natural supplements that do help lessen the symptoms, and that is good enough for me. I can enjoy life, without the adverse reactions that the drugs can cause.

I was getting some benefit from a low dose of Lyrica, then neuro said lets try to go to 150mg 2x a day, side effects sneak up on you.

I finally realized I was feeling like a zombie , when I stopped taking it I rapidly cleared up. I'm sure it helps some people, just take it with utmost caution.

My Mom was prescribed Gabapentin for Diabetic Nerve Pain, neuropathy. She is 85 years old. Apparently, with other diabetic health related issues, the Gabapentin built up in her kidneys, and she had the side effects of extreme dizziness, lack of balance, exhaustion, depression.... She was prescribed to take 100 mg., 3 X's a day. It helped with the neuropathy. So, this was communicated to her doctor and he said reduce it to take as needed. She takes 1 a day. It seems to help, with far less side effects.

While it is fashionable to lambast certain drugs for having unfortunate side effects on people using them, I feel it's more balanced to point out that many questionable drugs can and do help people.

I developed a terrible case of shingles while on a trip two years ago. Unfortunately, when I went to an emergency room after suffering for a couple days, and not knowing what was wrong with me, it was too late for the often effective treatment with an anti-viral drug which generally should be taken within 24 hours of the shingles outbreak. The ER doctor gave it to me anyway, along with a week's course of steroids. This treatment did not noticeably help with the searing pain and sensitivity.

Finally getting home and seeing my personal internist, he noted that I'd moved into a neuropathic complication which effects a small percentage of sufferers even as the rash subsides. He suggested I take a generic type of gabapentin, which might work on my nerve pain. It did not. Then he suggested Lyrica, which while not a named treatment or use, nevertheless has been written up as effective for some patients with lingering nerve pain.

Within 3 days of starting on Lyrica, I felt relief. The extreme skin sensitivity subsided, the pain retreated and I could begin to function. I had no ill side effects, though I'd been warned. My doctor suggested I take the pills as prescribed for 3 weeks, tapering off gradually the last week or so until the expensive pills were gone. By the time I finished the course of medication, I was pain free and felt fine without any withdrawal symptoms.

I don't set my experience as typical... but this drug worked for me and I had no complications from using it as prescribed and supervised by my physician.

People's Pharmacy response: Thank you for sharing your experience. You are quite right that people need to know about the benefits as well as the risks of the medications they are prescribed.

I was put on Lyrica after being taken off high dosages of methadone and morphine that I had been on for nearly 8 years...and done so without being weaned off like I should have! I went thru withdrawals, lost 25+lbs and needed to be taken to the hospital by ambulance 3 x`s in 7 days due to my chronic pain and no meds and withdrawals....Lyrica was a joke! it had me stumbling around like I was drunk, and I was using a cane at the time and I was in great fear of hurting myself worse, or being arrested for being 'drunk' in public....it was of no help at all with pain relief and I believe a huge medical mistake was made by the staff of the Hospital by taking me off high dosages of prescription narcotics, without weaning me from them...what about 'DO NO HARM' ???

On Gabapentin and Lyrica and so miserable and confused, don't know what to say....will have to wait until they wear off a little....what is wrong with just a little codeine for chronic, horrible pain (which I have) I don't even know if I am making sense....will post more later, I am also on Ambien (Zolpidem) which adds to the confusion. I have been sending gibberish emails to family and, finally, to the dr....I hope he will decide to do something (I said something about blue tarantulas and wanting to die) It scares me and my boyfriend (who lives with me, thank god). But everyone is getting tired of it. I also take diltiazem for high blood pressure and generic Lipitor for cholesterol, also Synthroid.....I would get a second opinion, but I am on Medicaid in Ohio and I can just forget it....anybody? Thanks

I have neuropathy from diabetes and fibro. My neurologist could not understand why my neuropathy constantly worsened when my control of the diabetes was very tight. He sent me to a rheumatologist who diagnosed fibro. Gabapentin suddenly stopped working for me and the burning was so intense I thought I would die. Hence the lyrica.

After just reading this article, I wonder if my worsening fibro might be due more to lyrica side effects than fibro. I don't remember when the depression hit, it is a daily struggle to get beyond tears. I also have cognitive decline, no short term memory, except sporadically.

But I am stuck. My neuropathy expresses itself as severe burning all over my body and constant electrical shocks as my nerves misfire. I cannot live with that. No natural supplement has helped; however, I am, once again, considering benfotiamine. Last time, many years ago, it made my pain worse. If I can get off narcotics, I would like to try low dose naltrexone.

My neurologist weaned me off gabapentin very, very slowly and I had no withdrawal. Lyrica could be worse because I have been taking it longer and at max dose. I was upset when I read this article and thought of all the problems that were hidden by big pharma, even the doctors. My first doses were bottles from the doctor, no patient information. Truthfully, as I said above, it is lyrica or a long horrid slow death. But with this knowledge, I would advise people to think long and hard before beginning it. The problem, of course, is that we have so little help for neuropathy.

I have another bit of information I would like to share about edema. I too suffered from edema for many years as a side effect from an antibiotic. Have you heard of lymphedema? It is swelling that can result after surgery and there is help for that. It is a special massage that more and more physical therapy places are offering. Compression stockings will also help. I had the massage for my edema; I went three times, then two times a week for 39 weeks and lost 27 pounds, no change in anything. The usual therapy for lymphedema is three times a week for a week or two. I continued the massage at home, as well as I could, and lost another 5 pounds over a long, hot summer. 32 pounds of fluid, and still some left, but I could live with it.

Two months ago I had knee replacement surgery. After the first week or two, my leg began to swell and swell. I could not get my compression stockings on that leg. I began massaging it tho, at first, I could not pick it up. I also found my biggest stockings, I had four, and began using them on the four days I did not have PT. My husband and I struggled for about five minutes to get them on. Once he got them past my ankles, I could pull them up with his help. Then I began wearing the stockings every day, doing the massage before I put the stocking on, or, if I forgot, all too frequently, with the stocking on. In four weeks I have lost almost five pounds, and the pound or so that is left is livable. Plus I have had a good recovery and get any of my stockings on by myself. Nevertheless, I plan to continue with my treatments.

I hope this information helps those of you who are suffering with edema from meds.

I've been on Neurontin then Gabapentin for years, 300 mg 3 x's a day and cannot do without it. I am not diabetic but have had neuropathy for years and think it might be to hypoglycemia. I tried Lyrica once and my feet were burning up until I cried. I am okay on the other routine and 2 x's a day Ultram generic. The neuropathy will get worse over the years but at age 76, I hope I will go before the wheelchair is next. Good luck to my friend who says she loves the Lyrica!

I created an account with People's Pharmacy just to comment on Lyrica. I, personally, have had a very positive experience with Lyrica overall. I lived for years with neuropathy in my feet and legs due to surgery for Morton's Neuroma on one foot, and severe sciatica on the other side that extended to my foot. I do not have diabetic neuropathy as my blood sugar is normal. Before Lyrica I on was on Neurontin for a few years with no discernible benefit. I actually had my feet in buckets of cool water most days and slept with wet socks and a fan at night. My symptoms progressed to sharp stabbing pain in addition to burning which had also progressed. I started Lyrica the moment it came on the market and was rewarded with immediate relief. I still have burning and pain but with less severity. Yes, I've gained 15 lbs I cant' seem to shed and at one time "stepped down" from Lyrica for that reason only to have my symptoms worsen again. When I resumed my regular dosage (200 mg 3x day) I immediately noticed the burning and pain improve dramatically. While it's no cure, it does allow me to have a life, participate in daily activities off limits before, wear socks and closed shoes once in awhile, do yoga (albeit with double cushioned mats)and be outside in warm weather occasionally. The lessening of pain has dramatically improved my quality of life and for that I am grateful for Lyrica. Mine is only one positive story on this page but I wanted people to know that not all outcomes are negative and that Lyrica has been a life saver for me.

OK, from what I read, Lyrica seems to work fairly well for what, I think, it was "invented for"--diabetic neuropathy, aside from the side effects...so why is Big Pharma pushing it for off label and experimental uses? I went off of codeines, to avoid addiction, and now I have to taper off of this?? We are guinea pigs to them, nothing more...it doesnt help my colo-rectal-pudendal pain, but, I was desperate, so I am on both gabapentin and lyrica and I am suicidal....I am controlling myself, I wouldnt do that, but, why cant they come up with more medications for pain, to cure diseases, etc and fewer for erection problems?

I too am one of the ones that has had positive benefits with Lyrica. Before Lyrica I self medicated with OTC meds. I took so many of whatever I could get that said it was for pain that my liver began to fail. At that time I was seeing a Doctor that didn't put much belief in Fibromyalgia and wouldn't give me anything for pain.

I ended up in the hosp. for nearly three weeks with doctors trying to get me up and able to get around again. I actually had one foot in death's door. After that I found another doctor that started me on a small dose of Lyrica with my Gastroentorologist's (liver dr's) approval. FINALLY relief. The most I had received since the time I spent in the hosp. and was given pain shots for the pain.

Of course with the liver disease I have been kept closely monitored. I may have some of the side effects, but some of the ones that were described in the side effects warning also are fibromyalgia symptoms, so I can't say that the Lyrica is the culprit.

I belong to a couple of fibro support groups and most of the members have basically the same symptoms as I, and some of them use natural remedies for relief, the Lyrica certainly didn't cause their symptoms. If I miss a dose the intense throbbing begins and I know it's time to take the lyrica.

When the doc asked if I wanted to try something else, I declined. I'm getting satisfactory relief and I'm not messing around with that. I'm sharing this in case someone else reads all of the negatives and is afraid to give it a try, that someone has had relative success with Lyrica and it just may help them too.

Many meds that are not opiates cause a wide range of withdrawal symptoms that far exceed 'side-effects". Many people consider withdrawal to be reserved only for opioids. A commonality in withdrawal is the drug's effects on the Hypo-thalamus, Pituatary, Adrenal Axis(HPA) for short. Putting aside the big word-it basically means that your metabolic system is compromised or maybe not working at all.

I w/d from a 9 yr addiction to benzos that included a 80lb weigth gain and pre-diabetes. Basically, you need to have a Basic Metabolic Panel blood work done before beginning a taper program. its also helpful to have a nutritional counselor or do self-study. You may not be on a drug used for psychiatric treatment, but these drugs offer some good examples as to how the HPA becomes compromised and clinically neglected by many prescribers.

Working w a physician who is willing to address the metabolic aspects of a drug is critical. Many physicians are dismissive of the effects drugs have on the HPA-for apparent and some , not so apparent reasons. Brain fog, for example is effected by depleted magnesium(take magnesium aspartate for max. absorption) Neurotnin is well-known to rapidly depleted magnesium. Other drugs may also have similar metabolic dynamics.

Go slow, realize that this is only a temp. time and have some support system in place. Cognitive Behavior Therapy can be helpful, as well as, mindfulness training and practice and while many communitities lack specific support groups, there is one that helps w a program that is well represented and scientifically valid. Its SMART recovery and has meetings in almost all states,as well as, online support.This is based on cognitive behavioral, as well as, rational emotive cognitive therapy. Remember that it takes at least 20 yrs of clinical application for many prescribed drugs effects to be known. Good luck to all! You have the power to regain your health. Perhaps, Joe wlll do a program specifically on the HPA and how many drugs effect this.

For the last twenty years I have neuropathy of both feet, especially at bed time. I am not diabetic. It is a problem that I have resigned to live with. In numerous conversations with other people I have learned that this is a very common problem. Hopefully, the Graedons could dedicate a radio program on this subject. Just maybe there is a genius lurking out there in cyberspace that has an answer. He or she will surely get many Thank Yous.

Last summer I was in the hospital due to osteo myeolitis in vertebrae 6&7, and an inflamed disc, caused by a bacterial infection. The pain was a nightmare. I had been on toradol and morphine, and also percocet while in the hospital, and on percocet for the prior month because the horrible back pain was diagnosed as "arthritis" & "muscle strain".

So as part of my discharge planning, pain management came in, and I took Gabapentin for two nights. The second night, I had bizarre dreams and seemed to wake up every half hour, between 11:00 pm, and 5:00 am. I felt so exhausted from hallucinating all night that I wouldn't take it the 3rd night. The pain management doctors were upset with me.

My neuro surgeon stopped in and reminded me "infection hurts", I remained on the morphine until I went home, and used percocet for another week or so, until the infection responded to the IV antibiotic therapy. Since it's in my chart, the Cleveland Clinic thinks I still use it-- finally after many attempts. a staff member figured out how to delete it from my list of meds. I never want to take it again.

Dear klf, FEM and other members,

It is several years since I started suffering from peripheral neuropathy. It began after having surgeries for Morton's neuromas on both feet and sciatica on the right side. The excruciating sciatic pain started 4 days after the last surgery and lasted for 4 long months.

I was put on large dosage of anti inflammatory medication. I have very little or no pain from the neuropathy but do suffer from much numbness in both feet, especially at night. Once I fall asleep, I usually sleep through the night. I consider this a blessing. ( I have numbness in the toes, soles and heels of both feet and up to the ankle of the left foot. ) I still manage to do a lot of walking everyday but the only kind of shoes I can wear are sneakers.

The neurologist's diagnosis is idiopathic peripheral neuropathy and he prescribed high doses of Lyrica ( gradually going over 1000 mg per day !) which I refused to take after I joined a neuropathy forum. Most people had terrible side effects and rapid weight gain. I am fighting to lose some extra pounds and do not want to add more pounds to my weight.

Some weeks ago I started to take benfotiamine and r +alpha lipoic acid. I will try these for some months then will post a comment. Maybe if I start having pain I will ask my family doctor to put me on a low dose of Lyrica and see what happens.

I have been taking Lyrica for about 4 years following an ulna nerve transposition which left me with chronic nerve pain around the elbow. After trying various medication my consultant suggested Lyrica which was the only drug that has worked. I have suffered side effects especially when I have forgot to take just a single tablet. I suffered upset stomach and a general unwell feeling until I took it again. Once I forgot to take the tablets away with me and by day two of not taking them was shaking uncontrollably, sick, weak etc.

I recently went to see my doctor to get weaned off the tablets and they suggested a reduction from 400mg down to 200 then 100 over a few weeks. I have now been off them for 3 weeks and I am really struggling and looking for help. I have been to the doctor three times, the first told me I had a virus or the flu, the second put me on diazepam to help me rest but when this ended I went back to feeling weak, confused, tired but unable to sleep, lack of appetite etc. So I went back and put back on diazepam for night times only. The problem is I feel so weak that I can't carry on like this. I don't think my doctor understands the extreme change, previously I was very active and now I struggle to do anything and have minimal concentration. I feel like I am going to break down and have done in front of the doctor which is not me at all.

I have had a blood test and they have told me my white cell count is low but not to worry as it is the same as in march when I also felt weak.

I would never have taken this drug knowing how I feel now. I need help to get back to normal, I can't work, drive etc and have no indication to how long this might last. I don't want to go back on these drugs.
Can anyone offer any advice please?

Hi to all currently weaning off lyrica slowly was on for 2yrs stabbing pains in tummy back etc withdrawals awful!!! Can't wait to be off this drug!!! My heart goes out to u all. I was on Valium for muscle spasm in leg tapered off that it's nothing compared to lyrica. Anyone know what I can take for stabbing pains!! Best wishes to everyone :)

I too suffer from needles and pins in my feet, numbness, jerkiness, etc. At night, when it is at its worst and affects my ability to fall asleep, I begin, before bed, to put liquid glycerin on my feet and a pair of socks; when I go to bed, I rub my feet with Vicks. If that does not work, take a hot bath and go to sleep! It works most of the time and I would rather deal with it this way than take a dangerous drug.

I was on Cymbalta, and the withdrawal was horrid! The only way I could successfully get off this drug was to eliminate 2 beads a day from the capsule and weaned myself off that way. Going cold turkey will lead to lots of problems, like lethargy, depression, deep sadness. Get off the drugs! I also take gyemena sylvestrae for diabetes. My glucose went from 142 to 98 in one year! Now I am starting to exercise, line dance and the goal is to lose weight.

Also, Vicks on the feet will cure nail fungus. Just put it on and then a pair of socks. You will feel better and your feet will thank you!! Go Vicks!!!!

I have been on Lyrica for about 6-8 months. I have never been good at remembering to take my pills so sometimes I skip a day or two. I didn't realize that I was so dependent on them...I didn't take for a few days and I have been sick for a week. I have been terribly nauseated, hard time breathing, head and severe neck aches....I didn't think to pick up my pills cause I didn't even think I could get them down my throat. Last night I could not take the pain anymore and I found one of my Lyrica in my overnight bag and took it...almost immediately I started to get relief. I had no idea that all the horrible symptoms I was experiencing were from Lyrica withdrawals until then. I thought I had cancer or something and was even too sick to go to the doctor had zero energy.

I am scared because I get kicked off my insurance Jan. 1st and I have no idea if my new insurance will have good prescription coverage and I know Lyrica is damn expensive. I don't ever want to feel like this again...I felt like I was gonna die. I am really depressed because I don't want to be dependent on a medication like this....I thought it was fairly safe and now I feel like it is completely toxic.

Here are all the symptoms I have been experiencing (have been off of work for 5 days). Started with extreme nausea, then headaches, then severe neck, and shoulder pains. I began getting hot and cold flashes so severe I thought I was going through menopause at 34. Crying, feeling just completely ill...taking pepto, zantac, pepcid etc. trying to get rid of nausea with no relief...throwing up..even water tasted disgusting. I have no idea if this is also a side effect but last few months I have had to go to the ER cause periods have been so bad I was nearly hemorrhaging and had to get IVs...going through a pack of overnight pads a day....

Now that I know it is Lyrica causing this misery I will take it for now, but I feel very upset that I get to look forward to feeling like this again if I choose to get off or can't afford it. People need to be warned of this!!! I am very sensitive to antidepressant/mind altering drugs and I always ask to not be put on them and apparently I was and now I am wondering if this isn't the worst medication in the world for me!!!

Hi Paul
have things improved for you at all? Your story is so similar to mine (including the decreased white blood cell count). I am now five weeks with no Lyrica at all (after weaning) but still have overwhelming nausea. My brain is less foggy but I'm struggling to do day to day activities with the nausea. Docs (and I have also seen three different ones) seem convinced this isn't due to weaning off Lyrica (similar story to yours again). I was very active and healthy before this nightmare began two years ago. Really interested if you have been able to learn more to help you stay off this drug.

Hi,

Can someone give me information about how long their discontinue syndrome lasted once they were off Lyrica? I discontinued Lyrica about a month and a half ago. I didn't know to taper because I didn't realize how hard it would be to discontinue. I was on 25mg, once or twice a day for fibromyalgia. Since I am so sensitive to medication my doctor put me on a low dose to see how I would do. It helped me a lot when I was on it, but gave me terrible food cravings and weight gain so I decided I would rather live with the fibro.

Since discontinuing I have had a dramatic increase in depression and anxiety, so bad that I can't function normally, and start crying all the time. My doctor doesn't seem to think coming off the Lyrica has anything to do with the this, he told me that withdrawal typically lasts 7-10 days. I am positive this is due to discontinuing the Lyrica. I have upped my Cymbalta and Lexepro but that is not cutting it. I take some natural supplements as well, under my doctor's care, which is helping with the fibro but doing nothing for the severe anxiety. I would just like to hear from other people how long this lasted. Thanks.

Hi,
I'm grateful to know others are out there with my withdrawal symptoms and I'm not crazy. Although as stated, doctors seem to think there is no such thing as withdrawal from this medication. To that I say BS!
I took myself off this back in September. I told the doc I wanted to wean myself off to which she told me that with the dosage I was taking (100mg 2x/day) it wasn't necessary. I insisted and she gave me 10/75mg pills to take for 10 days.

First off, the reason I wanted off of it is like others I've read about I'm in pain with or without. Due to the side effects, drowsy ALL day long, brain fog, loss of memory and concentration and weight gain it's not worth it to me any more. I was on Oxycontin prior to that but weaned myself off due to the nature of the social dangers. Who needs it.
At any rate, my withdrawal symptoms include constipation, restless leg syndrome which the Lyrica did help, continuous nausea and depression. I'm on Zoloft with no real help. Is there anyone out there with suggestions? How long will this last? Any information is greatly appreciated.

Hi to all tapering off Lyrica thank u for your great posts am in middle of withdrawal am experiencing same symptoms have been on Lyrica for 2 Yrs for pain following allergic reaction to my liver from antibiotic sick for 4yrs liver fully healed tg. had post viral fatigue few rough yrs!!!! lyrica helped initially but side effects hell. Withdrawal awful trying to keep positive v hard. Cutting by 25mgms twice a day hope to be off this awful drug by March all going ok. That will be 7mnths. affecting muscles big time I try to swim once a week it def helps keep me focused. Night time I dread not sleeping great lying in bed have muscle spasm feel as if my muscle fibres are spinning know sounds mad hissing sound in rt ear nausea etc. only thing keeping me going is knowing I will be off this soon. My heart goes out to all knowing we are not alone in this helps. I take omega36 and magnesium vit B C etc. wish u all well in withdrawal. Xxxxxx

Hi all. I have been on Lyrica for a few months now. I have had two craniotomies in the last two years. My GP started me on Lyrica and I have been on 500mg a day. I have gained 19 lbs, I'm shaky, I have no balance. My headaches at first seemed better but are back to where they were if not worse.

Three days ago, my right arm got really heavy and began to hurt, then it moved into my chest and it was horrific pain.
My mother took me to the emergency room and they could find nothing wrong. Their diagnosis was chest wall pain and told me to see my GP the next morning. I went to her office and while waiting for her I passed out, so back to the ER in an ambulance. Still nothing.

I feel like this is related to the medication. I could cry at the drop of a dime which has JUST begun. I feel angry at moments that I can't explain which has also JUST begun. My body feels stiffer than normal and aches which also has JUST begun. I'm only 32 and I'm scared. I'm just plain miserable. Is any of this familiar to anyone else?
Thank you

Hi
I've been on a fairly high dose (400mg/day) for almost three years. I broke my neck in 1984 and a hip in 1989 (both pretty severe car wrecks) and after running from doctor to doctor to get multiple opinions to avoid spinal surgery, one of them prescribed Lyrica.

For me, it has been wonderful. The severity of the pain decreased over time and I have actually had restored ability on my right side, I.e. eye-hand coordination, fine motor, and most important, arm strength.

The only side effects for me have been weight gain and some blurred vision. I know there are many different reactions to this drug, I would just like to share mine.
thanks

I have been on Lyrica for about a year and I didn't take any for 3 days and the withdrawls were terrible....I finally got them today and OMG I feel SO MUCH better....I never knew I would feel the way I did if I stopped taking it...I will never do that to myself again.

I have been on Lyrica for about six months. I have gained just under 3 stone in weight and have been experiencing great difficulty in concentrating and problem solving. I stopped taking the drug 6 days ago and have never felt so ill. One moment I feel I am going to explode with the heat - the next moment uncontrollable shivering all over. My whole body hurts, I have violent headaches, non-stop skin irritation and now sickness.

Well, my pharmacist (after filling them both for 6 mos) has told me I cannot take Lyrica with Gabapentin---prob never should have been, but, now I have to cold turkey it.

I started coming off Lyrica in early Sep 2013, after 18 months of being on it. It was the worst thing I have ever experienced (after having a major road accident/chronic ongoing pain). Please hang in there, it is worth getting off it. It might take as long as it did for me (three to four months) but things will get better. I am now more or less back to normal, off this drug and with no better or no worse neuropathic pain. The withdrawal is horrible, and for me took months, but so worth it now I am through it. I am putting weight on again (after losing 10 kilos from feeling so sick all the time). I am laughing again. Hang in there, I wish I'd been able to say this one month in, but three months in, it is definitely worth getting off it.

I stopped taking Lyrica in April 2013 after being on the drug for a year. I was taking 600mg a day an couldn't deal with the feeling of being drunk 24/7, memory loss, weight gain etc. After a one week taper from 600mg down to zero, my body went into withdrawal.

I have never experienced something so testing in my entire life. The physical symptoms were endless, nausea, severe joint pain, back pain, insomnia, fatigue, head feeling like its going to explode with pressure, rapid heart beat and more. But this was nothing compared to the mental symptoms which include severe anxiety coupled with severe depression, a constant state of irrational fear, being overwhelmed by the smallest of tasks, suicidal thoughts.

This phase lasted for 3 months without ANY cessation of symptoms. I simple couldn't take it anymore lying in bed for 12 weeks so decided to go back to 300mg a day an taper down. As soon as I took the dose 50% of my symptoms disappeared over night confirming that it was indeed the lyrica at cause. Due to the does being half my usual does I still experienced horrific withdrawal but less severe. After tapering down over 5 months by 25mg increments per week, I finally stopped in December 2013. One month after discontinuation I am still experiencing withdrawal although the intensity is reduced. I still experience many of the physical symptoms like joint pain, insomnia, nausea etc and mentally my outlook has completely changed. I am filled with fear all the time, have severe anxiety particularly in the early morning and a general sense of being uneasy/panicky all the time.

I never suffered from anything like this before the pregabalin and would never have taken it had I have known the nightmare journey that awaited. I have been prescribed an antidepressant and benzodiazepine to easy the symptoms but nothing has helped at all. I am on the verge of losing my job after 12 years and without God in my life would probably not have had the strength to carry on. May God grant you all easy.

Hi, I have been on lyrica for almost three years and I have recently noticed that I am getting very angry and irritable with things. I take them with beta blockers to help with atypical facial pain. It has helped but I don't feel with it, my memory isn't very good, blurry eyes and now I am feeling angry and irritable and sometimes I feel like I'm in a bubble and don't know what direction I need to take in life. Does anyone else feel like this? I am on 125mg Lyrica, 80mg beta blockers.

I've been taking Lyrica since 2008 or 2009. My memory is abysmal, my eyesight unbelievably poor, and every time I try to stop or decrease my dosage, I get these horrible feelings of my skin crawling. I did tell the Lyrica people about it, but I think they ignored it. And it didn't go away. One time I went for about a month or so without it, because of a prescription mixup, and the symptoms didn't go away.

I have been taking Lyrica for roughly 8 months for nerve damage to both feet sustained after an accident two years ago. I am currently at high school an have found it nearly impossible to attend my classes, let alone concentrate in them. I have just taken myself off Cymbalta which also gave me terrible side effects, and am weaning myself off a 400mg dose of Lyrica. I have been suffering from depression and anxiety as well as blurry vision, excessive sweating, a cloudy mind, and terrible confusion. My personal, social and academic lives have been thoroughly disrupted by my injury and the ensuing medical shenanigans.

Although Lyrica has supplied me with noticeable relief from the pain I have decided that I need to find a better way to help my body without loosing my cognitive abilities as well.

Lyrica may work for some people but be prepared to take it til you die because coming off of it is near impossible... people need to read about other people's experiences when trying to come off Lyrica...
And I believe only God can help someone get off Lyrica God Bless anyone who is trying to stop taking Lyrica.

Oh my goodness!. I'm so happy that I have found this site. It totally confirms to me that I'm not going crazy. Though I am totally at a loss to understand how this drug can work so differently for so many people it is either a miracle treatment or a total nightmare. I am suffering from the latter apologies in advance if I am not making sense but this is just one of the side effects I am suffering.

Six weeks ago I was prescribed lyrica 75mg to treat neuropathic pain in my back and shoulder, which I was taking twice daily.after 5 days the doctor doubled my prescription to 150mg twice daily. It has some what helped my pain but I was walking around in a total fog. This coupled with the insomnia made daily tasks near impossible. I felt like a zombie.
I decided that I couldn't cope feeling like this so I stopped taking it. I was not told by the doctor that these meds were so addictive! I suffered the worst withdrawal symptoms. A pounding headache, profuse sweating, aches and pains, vomiting, shaking, anxiety and severe depression and suicidal thoughts not to mention my pounding heart that felt like it was going to explode.

I have sought help from another doctor now as I no longer trust the doctor who put me on this drug. I am now in the process of weaning off lyrica, though reading these stories arent filling me with optimistic thoughts. I'm just praying I am one of the lucky ones that can beat this drug. Wishing all my fellow lyrica suffers all the best in their battle to win their life back!

Oh my goodness. I'm so happy that I have found this website. It totally confirms to me that I'm not going crazy. Though I'm at a total loss to understand how this drug can work so differently for people. It seems its either a miracle treatment or a total nightmare. For me it is the latter.
Apologizes in advance if I'm not making sense but that's one of the side effects I'm suffering (foggy brain).
Six weeks ago I was prescribed Lyrica 75mg to treat neuropathic pain in my shoulder, neck and back. After 3 days I returned to the doctor without any relief so he changed my prescription to 150mg twice a day. It helped with the pain somewhat but I was having blurry vision, memory loss, and foggy brain and generally feeling groggy. This coupled with insomnia made me feel like a zombie making daily tasks near impossible.
I decided that I couldn't go on like this and stopped taking the meds. I thought dealing with the pain was better than existing like this.I had no idea that these drugs were addictive as I was not told by the doctor.
I had the worst withdrawal symptoms .A pounding headache, profuse sweating, sore tummy, vomiting, aches and pains, shaking, depression, suicidal thoughts and my heart was pounding, it felt like it was going to explode.
I have sort help from another doctor as I no longer trust the doctor who put me on this evil drug I am in the process of weaning off this poison but I'm suffering terribly and I have only reduced my intake by 25mg a day.
Reading some of these stories has been a comfort knowing that I'm not alone but at the same time has instilled a lot of fear. I now realise that I am going to have to do a lot of fighting to get my life back. Im just praying that I am one of the lucky ones that can beat this evil drug.
Wishing all my fellow lyrica suffers all the best in their battle to win back their life.
To anyone considering taking lyrica please don't do it.Look for an alternative....

I have been on Lyrica for 2 years for nerve pain in my lower back. I was feeling better and my new doctor is trying to wean me of the Lyrica. I used to take 75mg 3 times a day and now, 1 month later I am taking 50 mg 2x a day.I feel anxious and have a fear of impending doom on and off, which makes me feel lousy and sick to my stomach. I wake up with a headache and go to sleep with a headache. Lyrica helped deal with my pain but I'm starting to wonder at what price.

Amy, I wish you the best and hope you'll feel better soon. You are not alone in this.

Good luck

Suzanne, thank you for your kind words and well wishes.that means a lot.Thank you also for taking time to share your story . Hopefully your words will reach many and make people aware of the dangers of this drug.
wishing you all the very best in your weaning process.

Can anyone please help me figure out how to get off Lyrica and still be able to function? I don't trust the doctor who prescribed this to me. It was unnecessary and it does not help my back pain. it is causing me more and more pain. I took it on and off for years but only recently took it everyday.

For 4 weeks and now I can't even wean off it or I am crying shaking dizzy feeling faint etc. please someone tell me something I can possibly try to get off Lyrica. thank you anyone for your advice. I am praying God will help me stop taking Lyrica for good.

Hi C.C.
Sorry to hear of your struggle in dealing with this drug. Just know you are not alone . I am currently trying to wean off Lyrica, and what a painful process! .I too had a trust issue with the dr who put my onto this medication.The new dr has changed my prescription to 25mg.I now take 100mg a day, Instead of the 300mg I was initially taking.I still feel like a zombie and have symptoms like yourself.Foggy brain, shaking/ seizures, crying, aches and pains, vomiting, headaches, restless legs and the list goes on.
Maybe you could go and see your G.P and ask to be put down to a 25mg prescription and try and decrease your current prescription by 25mg and see how you go...Baby steps are going to be the only way.I am going to seek the advice of a naturopath to see whether they might be able to help in some way.....
Wishing you the best of luck.

thanks for all kind replies...I am now "tapering" (my dr won't help---just says "cut 'em in half"--does he realize how small they are?? but these are generic, anyway) It is very, very difficult, the side effects don't seem to be letting up commensurate w/how much less I am taking....luck to all and to me!

Hang in there and be brave - seven months after weaning off Lyrica (from 300mg a day) my life is back to normal. It was hell, my family and friends were what kept me going. Doctors didn't understand what was happening and it was just through sheer determination to come out the other side for my kids that I was able to get through this - and so many, many times I didn't want to keep going. I'm still in pain now, but I'm fine emotionally, I have my life back and laugh, I can think clearly and I remember people's names and what I did five minutes ago. Lyrica is a curse, it may help some but it nearly killed me and I truly feel for those of you who are going through or went through what I went through. Hopefully one day it will pulled off the shelves, to save the one in two hundred people who go through hell on this medication. Please hang in there - I promise you it will be worth it.

Thank you for your comments. I stopped taking lyrica about a month ago with doctors knowledge. I weaned off of it. I too am feeling more depressed than usual. Also my thoughts are jumbled. It's good to know that I'm not alone, am not crazy, that there's light at the end of the tunnel. Will keep in touch with my doctor. Thank you again for having this website.

Wow, I am so glad I googled weaning off of Lyrica! I have been on 75mg X 2 per day for the last 8 months. When we switched insurance companies at work, the new one would not approve me taking Lyrica. The doc has now put me on Cymbalta, but what bothers me is that he never told me I had to taper off. The pharmacist did! I have enough for about two weeks, and per the pharmacist, I reduced my dosage to 75mg per day. I already have body aches and a headache and am scared to death of feeling worse! Ughhhhh!

I don't understand why Drs. are SO reluctant to prescribe pain meds for pain, but freely prescribe drugs like Lyrica and Cymbalta. I still have the pain and
I'm coming off of Cymbalta and it's pure hell. As soon as I get over the Cymbalta withdrawal hell, I'm going off Lyrica! I'd rather live with the pain than feeling like a zombie that is a spectator to my life instead of a participant! I loose my string of thoughts, forget words when I'm trying to explain myself. I feel like an idiot most of the time when I'm trying to express myself at work, etc. I've NEVER experienced anything like this on small doses of Vicodin. And at least Vicodin does lessen the pain. Something I'm not experiencing from Lyrica. I've only been on it a few months. I'm hoping that helps with the withdrawal. DO NOT go on either of these drugs without first really checking out the withdrawal symptoms!!

I understand exactly how yu feel, VS...I have intractable pudendal nerve pain for about 10 yrs....they want to try everything on me EXCEPT opiates (which DO help--and I don't use much, when I have them) I have been on gaba pentin and lyrica at the same time---they both make me feel like crap---they blur my vision so bad, I need new glasses Rx every time I go.... was on a very low dose) 5 mg) of oxycodone, when I needed it (enough for 2 a day)---now thaty cut that off... what will I do? I withdrew from lyrica, gaba pentin and now oxycodone and have had my colon removed---this should be great....I am afraid I will die....

My husband has been taking lyrica 150 twice day for 6 yrs for a miss fire in a back nerve. The pain would hit unexpectedly and knock him to the floor. The Lyrica stopped the pain after many other things did nothing. He is now without it do to insurance stopping coverage. Just can't afford over 200.00 a month for it any longer. Has anyone had extreme sudden tiredness while coming off lyrica? Thanks.

I have been taking Lyrica for fibro for apx six months, my husband takes it for diabetic nerve pain, we take the same dosage, 400 mg a day. I have gained 20 pounds, he hasn't gained any. I have noticed a small amount of pain reduction, but no more than on gabapintin. I went off the gaba to try Lyrica because my doctor was concerned with my pain level slowly climbing back up with Gaba. I still work full time, my husband is retired.

We ran out of lyrica a couple of days ago, and for financial reasons (it is expensive) we could not refill until today. We had tapered to 200mg's a day knowing we would be out. My husband noticed no difference from going off at all. I however, went through hell. I had nighty sweats, stomach issues, pain increase, insomnia, you name it. I was so sick I could not work today. We filled it today, I have taken the 400 mg's my body is used to, but it will take another day for it to level, my husband took one 200mg, he still hasn't noticed a difference.

Lyrica frightens me, I do not want to be dependent on anything, neither does he, both of us have pain meds, but only use them when absolutely necessary. I am worried about the long term affect of Lyrica due to this withdrawal issue.

I used lyrica for at least 5 yrs. It worked so we'll for me. Had to get off of it because ins. wouldn't pay. The withdrawal are terrible. Can't sleep and have itchy crawly: skin. It's horrible. Wish I could get back on it. I have dropped about 8 lbs. Thought cause I feel so awful. Must have been the lyrica. It's been replaced with Gabapentin but it's not really helping. I was on a very high dose 2x a day. Was on 3x a day but got to sleepy So I cut my lyrica back myself. Also on generic cymbalta now cause of ins.

Has anyone else had itchy skin from withdrawal? Benadryl hasn't touched the itchy crawling skin and made me feel worse.

Hi Sue. My husband also was taken off Lyrica do to insu. Yes he has had crawling itchy skin. It comes and goes. After a month off lyrica it has lessened. The itching seems to only affect him at night. Of course when he tries to sleep. Gabapentin was no help and it made him loopy. Insu. made him use it before getting lyrica. Wish I had an answer to stop the itching. Time should help. Prayers for you.

Hi ch, yes I had extreme tiredness after I stopped Lyrica on Dr's advice due to suspected pregnancy ( was not pregnant, faint positive test was due to my being menopausal.) For six weeks I could do nothing except lay in bed sleeping or awake in extreme pain ,my house fell down around me as I could do nothing except sleep almost all the time. I had a non stop excruciating headache that nothing would relieve so after 6 weeks of this I had to go back on Lyrica as it was the only way to stop the headache, it was like no headache I'd ever had before. This was in January 2013, I am still on Lyrica having been prescribed this by my Dr 5 years ago for neuropathy. I want off as I have gained about 25 pounds and my eyesight is always blurred.

I am actually afraid to face the exhaustion again, I already have Chronic Fatigue so I know what being tired is, but Lyrica is a whole other ball game.

It is extremely helpful to find this web site.

My wife lives with chronic phantom pain due to a back break many years ago. About four years ago she met someone with similar pain who recommended Lyrica. Although expensive her doctor agreed for her to give it a try. She was so grateful for the relief that it gave, although the immediate obvious side effect was a desire to eat all the time. But weight gain seemed a small price to pay for the real reduction in excruciating daily pain spasms.

After about three years using Lyrica, last year, during 2013, I noticed a change in her general behaviour, increased irritability, uncharacteristic irrational thoughts, occasional red face. Starting this year she began to notice that she had increasing unexplained sweats and increasing lethargy. In the last few weeks she has had to stay in bed, feeling completely apathetic, regular sweats, uncontrollable shivering, red face, headaches, aching back. The list is extensive.

We feared a serious problem such as cancer. Over the last two weeks she has had every test possible to be made except hospital admission for more intrusive investigations. A CT scan has been booked. The only noticeable problem is a low white blood cell reading on one of the several white blood cell indicators. Her doctor/s admit defeat.

Now, having read the list of indicators on this website it is completely clear that she has developed an intolerance to Lyrica and will have to endure the severe withfrawal systems, for we will start to reduce her dose as from today.

She says that she will endure anything now she knows what the problem is, and try to get her doctors to prescribe diazepam more frequently instead.

it seems to me that Big Pharma has a lot of responsibility for this problem, i.e. not properly testing for and admitting to the fact that so many 'wonder' drugs in reality affect different people in different ways. This issue is massive when related to anti-psychotic medication. Too many people'live' on these drugs when actually they should be used for very limited and specific interventions, while more long term side effect free support is put in place, such =as re-organising life style, diet, exercise, establishing proper sleep pattterns etc..

Thanks for all the valuable info. provided by your subscribers.

I only just really started Lyrica, before that on Endep for 4 to 5 years. Doc asked would I like to try Lyrica for my PN instead of Endep. First started taking 150 at night and 75 in the morning to slowly get used to taking it. Then the doc bumped me up to 150 at night and 150 in the morning.

Oh boy what a difference, my eyesight has changed, constipation like you wouldn't believe and such horrible pain in my legs, it is agony, had to take Panadeine Forte every few hours to kill the pain and even though I am on depression meds started to feel unhappy and crying at the drop of a hat.

So I cannot stand this, I decided I am going to wean myself off this med and have nothing to see how I go. It was a long time ago when they told me I had PN and I think they misdiagnosed me, as I have severe Osteo Arthritis in my lower back and 2 bulging disks in my spine, this all squeezes the nerves and does not let the signals through as they should anyway it's going to be a bumpy ride, starting now with the 75ml only and try that.!

I just started taking Lyrica this week; 1- 75mg a day. The pain in my lower back and hips has decreased by 85-95%. I hate to give this medicine up but I did send one of those “gibberish emails” to my boss. Yesterday I dosed off around 6pm, woke up a little before 8, thinking it was the next day I got on my work laptop and starting working.

I sent an email to my Boss apologizing for not sending him an email at 7:30am. He replied with a smiley face, getting an early start? That’s when I noticed it was 8PM not 8AM. We are both still laughing at that. I can read the side effects just as well as the next guy so I don’t need that.

What I am looking for is someone who has had a positive outcome and any advice they might give me on how to take Lyrica in a way that will reduce the “high” feeling. For example with food, with a particular food, no food, late night, morning etc. The medicine does wear off so I want to get the most out of the “reduced pain time” during the day but I really need tips on what regiment has worked well for others.

I have been on lyrica for approximately 4 years since being diagnosed with neuro pain 9 months after a bike accident. I was given the impression that I'd only have to take them for a few months, otherwise I'd never have started.

So first of all they seemed helpful, tho did not allow me to function normally. Over time the benefits disappeared (helped me to sleep, gain weight (I was previously underweight)- my memory has been badly affected, my eyesight somewhat too. I had never had rosacea before being on this drug.

Mood wise I do think this drug has affected me adversely over time. I went up to the top dose for a while, then cut down to 300mg per day, but whatever I do I cannot get past this dose. Depressingly a few months ago I went right up to the top dose again, ironically some medication meant to help another issue led to a big increase in my chronic pain. I cut down by 100mg to 500mg around 2 months ago. I note that when I cut down my sleep gets worse, my mood gets worse, my stomach gets upset, and this is with gentle tapering!

After reading all this comments I want to come off this drug more than ever. I'm horrified by the comments of the medical profession - seems to be a consensus amongst them that withdrawal from lyrica is not an issue whereas quite obviously there is a massive problem - with huge amounts of anecdotal evidence to back this up.

I don't know how I'm going to come off this drug after 4 years + on it. I'm sure that the continual headaches I get (very bad weird one this weekend) are due to lyrica. I'm so frustrated that doctors just do not want to know about the experience of real people on this drug.

I have only been on Lyrica for a couple of months for arthritis in my spine. I am 30 years old. Like many of you, I stopped taking it just not thinking about it. All of the sudden my entire body has been on fire, horrible nausea and diarrhea sweating and then extremely cold. Insomnia for about four- five nights in a row. It just dawned on me that it was the freaking Lyrica. This sucks.

Finally back on Lyrica. Never had that high feeling. Mostly sleepy. Glad to be back on it. Withdrawal was horrible itching and grouchy. Lyrica has made me feel like a person again. Less pain and can sleep at night.

I'm back on Lyrica and am having blood disorders, very anemic again. Don't know if the Lyrica is causing it. I drink beer and have no side affects. I sure hope Lyrica isn't causing anemia. It works well for me with cymbals for fibromyalgia.

Hello all,

I was really nice to find this website I've been on lyrica for the past 4 years and until now, and I've weaned of it many times Kindly follow a simple steps below:

1. Try to forget about not to think of it as it will make you feel worse by keeping your self busy by doing activities.

2. Do SPORTS it helps a lot.

The withdrawal of lyrica is 14 days to get out of your system, and think about it, lyrica became a routine so of course it will be hard, and you have to fight it and don't even think of taking it.

and hopefully you will be fine.

I am SO glad I found this site! I have been on Lyrica for 19 months for fibromyalgia. The last 6-8 months have seen a great increase in adverse symptoms liker dry mouth, memory loss, brain fog, weight gain, confusion, more depression than I had before the Lyrica, loss of energy, blurred vision and fatigue. [The official Lyrica website says that none of these symptoms should last longer than a few weeks after beginning it...???] I needed to know if my issues were physiological, psychological or pharmacological So off to the doctor I went, list in hand and husband by my side.

I was told that he had just accessed a website about these effects because that morning another patient had been inquiring. He said that I need to stop taking it, that I should try Tylenol extra-strength and Advil or Naproxen, for which he gave me a prescription ['in case you need it']and to come back in two weeks time. Then he said we should know whether it is the Lyrica causing my difficulties. When I asked how should I go off Lyrica I was told that, "Lyrica is just a pain killer. It's not a narcotic. You can just stop it." So I did - that was two days ago.

I feel awful - restless legs, hot flashes, nausea, no appetite, can't sleep, anxiety like crazy and it feels like every muscle fibre and joint I have is either burning or aching in some way that will not stop! The doctor told me to use Tylenol extra-strength and Advil. He also gave me a prescription for Naproxen, 'in case' I needed it. None of these medications is helping for more than an hour or two.I cannot imagine more of this and it's only been two days!!!

It is clear that he knows nothing about the side effects of this drug - in fact, the very fact there ARE side effects should tell him that stopping it is not as easy as just stopping it!

I have a call into the pharmacist and I will be calling my naturopath who helped me wean off Prozac [ another thing the doctor told me I could just 'stop']. Perhaps between these two people, I can get off this roller-coaster. I'll post when I know more.

In the meantime I'm going back on Lyrica - I'll just take a lower dose. It gave me great pain relief and I could at least function at a higher level than I can right now.

One last thing before I go - I was taking a malic acid supplement, too, but stopped - finances are tight enough with Lyrica - but in hindsight I think it was helping keep the negative aspects of Lyrica at bay.

Thanks for listening.

Hello I have been taking Lyrica for 4 months 75mg in the morning and 150mg at night. It was really helping me reduce the pain of fibromyalgia. I could climb up and down the stairs again and was not in a lot of pain like I used to be. I am only in my 30s! It was a relief after trying Cymbalta and experiencing horrible side effects.

Unfortunately I didn't stay happy for long as I began to add up around 800g to 1kg every week. Then I began to feel confused so much that I could not hold on to a conversation any more. Finally I was having trouble seeing. My vision was so blurred that I had to see an ophthalmologist. He prescribed me drops and advised me that I had to reduce Lyrica until I quit. That was around 10 weeks ago. I still can t get rid of my weight gain but at least I'm not confused any more. What is still worrying me is that I still have blurred vision and its much worse at night time.

I can now confirm that adverse reactions from Lyrica really exist and they are not pretty. I hope my vision will come back but right now I am really worried as I thought side effects will gradually disappear after a couple of weeks :(

It's a bit difficult to keep busy do sports whatever when you have much pain due to not being able to get lyrica anymore. Glad this works for you but not a good fix for most.

My new Dr. Took me off off Lyrica after being on it for years and put me on gabapentin. My skin itched and felt crawly and I couldn't sleep; it was awful. After 6 weeks I got her to put me back on Lyrica and I feel great again. Never have had bad side affects except sleepy. I have been anemic 3 times now and have had to have 2 blood transfusions...3 pints of blood the 1st time and 4 the 2nd time and now need another one.

Has anyone else been severely anemic while on Lyrica? Why am I not suppose to drink while on Lyrica. I drink while on it and don't have any problems.

As soon as I finished my last post, which took me forever to write because I had to continually correct spelling errors and even then I noticed I had the same info in twice - ahhh... the blessings of brain fog, I called the pharmacist, made an appointment with my naturopath, and ordered some magnesium malate/malic acid.

The pharmacist gave me an emphatic "No" when I told him the doctor's advice to me to just stop taking Lyrica. He told me that I would need, at the very least, to wean myself off of it slowly over a week to 10 days. He advised me begin taking Lyrica again and to go from the 150 mg at night and the 75 mg during the day to just 75 mg day and night for three days then start skipping doses until I am off it completely. I took 75 mg immediately and within an hour was feeling the wonderful effects of the pain relief it provides me. After two nights I found that 75 at night leads to interrupted sleep and more pain so I'm back to the 150 mg at night. I also doubled up on a magnesium supplement I was taking [magnesium bisglycinate 150 mg once a day] until I can get my order of magnesium malate/malic acid in.

I'm convinced that the magnesium malate/malic acid was giving my brain what the Lyrica was taking from it and the 'brain fog' [see post by mike | August 3, 2013 4:23 PM]I was experiencing can be reversed and eliminated with the resumption of this supplement. In looking back I can see that, although I was experiencing some side effects from Lyrica, overall I was 80-90% pain free and had a fairly well functioning life. None of the side effects were debilitating but gradually became so when I stopped taking magnesium malate/malic acid.

If the going back on this supplement does the trick, then I'm on the right path and I will stay on Lyrica. If taking the supplement doesn't make a difference, I will seek help from my naturopath rather than my medical doctor. I'll post again letting you know how things are going and what my naturopath advises.

Take care and be kind to yourselves.

Sorry but this is absolute rubbish, I'm not sure where you got your information from.

Try to keep your mind off it? Well of course we do our best, but depends what levels your pain are, and most importantly how they affect your day to day life. Personally there are many things I've had to accept I cannot do any more and this is nothing to do with motivation, but common sense. Certain things cause so much pain and this includes things I used to do before like weight bearing exercise. Any kind of exercise causes pain, even swimming, so please don't quote 'mind over matter' here.

Fact is most poeople with CP HAVE to pace themselves they don't have a choice.

As to 14 days tapering off - your comment is really patronising, have you actually tried comming off Lyrica yourself? The evidence of people who have actually tried coming off this drug is overwhelming, that its a long drawn out process, months not days, unless of course you want to have agonizing side effects.

I understand the crying at the drop of a hat. I was on many anti-depressant's over the years partly due to the pain of the fibro. Anyway, I felt they were a waste of time / money as they did not help. Lyrica was prescribed and has given relief but I went on a quest to find a more natural cure for the depression. I came across something called serotonin deficiency and it described me well. I have begun taking something called 5-HTP, which is over the counter, and has had a tremendous impact on my overall well being. Best of luck to you.

Are you taking the 5-HTP along with Lyrica?

I have been a national medal winning athlete, and now to do a half an hour of exercise leaves me in dreadful pain for a week - sometimes it's worth the emotional relief to be able to do something physical, sometimes I can't bear the thought of the pain that exercise will bring.

So - mind over matter?? I'm sorry but anyone who says that can't possibly understand the the dreadful chronic pain that I (and therefore my family) live with, can't begin to know real pain. Lyrica, in my case, was an evil drug that took me at least six months to wean off, and without the support of wonderful friends and family I couldn't have done it. If it works for you and you can live with the side effects, then I am happy for you, but for me it stole my life for over a year and I would prefer to learn to live with the chronic pain than to want to die from the side effects of Lyrica. I don't think medical practitioners know enough about how debilitating this drug can be emotionally, or they wouldn't continue to prescribe it.

And if you are trying to give this drug up, and think you won't or can't - you can. It took me six months at least, and it was hell, but I'm back to the person I was emotionally and mentally, and I deal with the pain in any way that helps (rest, heat, SCS, analgesics etc) but not Lyrica. Be strong even when you think you can't be, and know that you can get through the dreadful withdrawals and it WILL be worth it.

Has anyone else had blood disorders while on Lyrica, this is my third blood transfusion while on Lyrica. Low blood counts.

Diane,
Yes, I take a 100 mg dose of 5-HTP every night about thirty minutes after I take the Lyrica. It has definitely helped me sleep.

What is SCS? How did you withdraw from Lyrica?

I didn't. After 6 weeks I had to go back on it. The withdrawal was horrible.

To brandy b; how long before 5-HTP started helping you?

Kathy,
Honestly after the first week I noticed a difference in my overall mood and after two weeks I was not having issues with the insomnia that was plaguing me. I also finally convinced a friend who was experiencing anxiety attacks to try 5-HTP and it has helped them tremendously.

I was only on lyrica for a month was getting really dizzy and felt awful so I just stopped. 6 weeks on I have a constant head ache tingly feeling wish I never heard of it. The doc reckons it's not to blame, strange it only started when I stopped taking it.

I've been through hell and back on this drug, a year plus of taking it and becoming an emotional wreck, and then six months of "tapering" and also becoming a physical mess. I've finally got through it, now back to my old self, still with awful nerve pain but I'd rather live with that than the hell I went through with Lyrica. Interestingly, I saw a new PM specialist yesterday, who told me he is being very careful when he prescribes this now as for some people, it produces dreadful side effects (significantly increased depression, suicidal ideations etc).

This is the first time any doctor has admitted this to me. My former GP tried to convince me that I needed to add antidepressants to the mix but keep taking Lyrica (hence, former GP). For some people this drug must work but for me and my family it was hell, it was kind of reassuring to have a specialist confirm that what I went through was real. Good luck with your own journeys on Lyrica but please stay alert to the changes that this drug can bring on.

An update - I visited with my naturopath and together we decided that I would, indeed, need to come off Lyrica.

He devised a reduction schedule for the Lyrica that involves a specific supplement schedule. I will reduce my Lyrica dosage 25mg per week over the course of 7 weeks and I will supplement with 600mg GABA and Magnesium Malate.

These supplements will increase in dosage over three weeks, stay steady until I'm off Lyrica and then I will reduce GABA until I am no longer taking it. [My GP didn't really understand why I couldn't just 'go off it' but agreed to give me prescriptions in the dosages I will need].

I will, then, stay on a yet to be determined level of Magnesium Malate. I will incorporate rest, a good diet, gentle stretching, pacing, analgesics and a HUGE dose of acceptance of the fact that I have FM. It has gone into a 'remission' before - maybe it will again, who knows, but while I have it I need to accept the fact. No DRUG will make it go away. I'd rather be clear headed, have my vision as best as it can be, and acknowledge the health and strength I DO have.

I have to say - I'm more than a little anxious about the next 28 days but I am determined.

All the best to all of you. I will continue to update as things go along.

Hi, Diane...and good luck to you.

I am wondering if this protocol would work with "gaba pentin"? I cannot afford a naturopath (I am on Medicaid, and my PMP is not very cooperative with wanting to try natural approaches, physical therapy, diet, etc. Can I get these supplements online, without a Rx, do you know? BTW, I have had prob w/depression all my life (my family calls it the "melancholy Dane") but now it is much, much worse and I find myuself thinking about suicide....I know I should see a psychiatrist, but, I cannot get my PMP to refer me to one. He will only give me antidepressants which do nothing for me, except cause parkinsonian type movements.....any advice would be SO appreciated...anyone?? I am crying right now and I dont know why....I have never, ever been like this...my partner is terrified to leave me and this clinging only makes it worse.

I can't take any drugs with gabba, thus depakote, Gabbapentin, neurotin, Lyrica, ALL cause my tongue to swell, slurring, throat swelling. I asked to try Cymbalta – because I thought it would help-all I now know is Cymbalta almost cost me my life. One minute I'm sewing on a sewing machine, the next I'm waking in a psych ward with bandages, where I supposedly stabbed myself (I have no memory of doing anything) no one wanted to believe me, yet this behavior was contradictory to me. The cops told my daughter the room was so full of blood, it appeared as though a massacre had happened. I have no recollection of the incident, just that I believe side effects have not been appropriately investigated.
THIS DRUG ALMOST KILLED ME.

Now, because I can't take drugs with gabba, or Tylenol nor N-said, pain Dr won't give anything. I was tested, peripheral neuropathy, hip fx, torn cartilage (severe enough to have total knee replacement) didn't happen/after misdiagnosed with bronchitis, X-Ray showed CHF, so surgery scrapped. Sciatic pain has not gone away after 11 months, now big toe pulls towards floor, pain is horrible yet pain Dr just says fibromyalgia. I know the difference in sciatic pain and generalized pain.

Fibromyalgia has become the catch all diagnosis when either the patient is known for expecting Dr to be held accountable, or Dr doesn't know/care. If I hit you at your pressure points, you'll go to your knee also. I believe patients should be proactive, never just blindly accept Dr opinion as gospel, if there's no change after 10-14days, it's time to seek second opinion.

I'm not a rat/nor a specimen under a Petri dish to be subjected to guess work diagnosis. If your doctor won't listen, refuses second diagnosis, ignoring your-pain- you now must become your own advocate.

First off, I would look in to finding a new PMP. You deserve to be listened to when it comes to your health and he doesn't seem to even care. Second, research a supplement called 5-HTP, it can be found at health food stores or online. It sounds like you suffer from serotonin deficiency like I do. For several years I tried antidepressants which did not yield a positive effect. Third, if you like to read, I suggest a book titled The Mood Cure. I found it to have valuable information and have since seen a tremendous turnaround in my depression which has plagued me since high school. I cannot stress enough how 5-HTP helps and it is natural. I take 100mg at night and after about two weeks my insomnia has resolved itself, which was a huge stress factor for me.

After reading all the complaints about Lyrica, I decided I must add my comments as a grateful person who has fibromyalgia and finds relief from this drug. Many of the complaints I have been reading about can be caused by the fibromyalgia itself. Have you not heard of Fibro Fog? When I have a flare up of fibro, my mind goes blank, I am extremely tired, nauseated, and in pain. At that point I just go to bed until it passes. If I forget a pill, all of these symptoms reappear. I blame the fibromyalgia and not the Lyrica.

I am a patient of one of the best Rheumatologists in a city of over a million people. He is a believer in natural medications as well as pharmaceuticals. I trust him implicitly so when he prescribed Lyrica for me well over 5 years ago I took it with excellent results. Perhaps Lyrica should not be prescribed for back pain, neck pain, etc. but it certainly helps lessen the symptoms of fibromyalgia for me.

Yes, you can get these supplements online or at any health food store without a prescription. If you are feeling that depressed, call a help line or see a professional. Drugs and supplements interfere with the delicate balance of chemicals in our bodies. They can cause us to feel all sorts of things for the better or for the worse. Take care of yourself any way you can. Soothing music, meditation and prayer, singing, napping, reading and talking to my husband are a few of the things I do to lower my stress level and help me get through tough times. Take care.

An update - I'm just starting the third week of my plan to get off Lyrica and I feel good. The brain fog, memory loss and confusion started lifting after just a few days on the supplements. The first week and a half were rough when it came to my pain level but I had determined that I would stick to the plan for at least 2 weeks. I'm glad I did because my pain started lessening at about the 2 week mark.

Today I feel pretty good. I do hurt more than I would like to - which is no hurt at all - but I am functioning, thinking clearly and I am getting things done. I am stretching daily, resting when I need to and so far I haven't needed any pain killers.

I'll update again in a few weeks. Take care everyone.

Any drug that has gabba as active ingredient, causes my throat to swell. Back in the 90's-my neurologist attempted Gabbapentin for migraine headaches, I told him it causes my tongue to swell. He called me a liar, so I went to the hospital, took a pill, at first, he thought a joke, then I showed the bottle, he immediately took me to the emergency room. NO MORE MEDICATION WITH GABBA. Yet, now the wonder drug Lyrica is available, it's almost shoved down my throat. Even a pain psychologist told me, if you don't take it you'll be considered non-compliant.

Because I've CHF, no N-said, nurse overdosed me on Tylenol, can't take gabba medicine so pain Dr refuses to give anything.

I was on medicine regime, I was diagnosed with diabetic peripheral neuropathy. EMG TEST DOCUMENTATION – NOW EVERYTHING A DOCTOR CAN'T OR WON'T DEAL WITH BECOMES FIBROMYALGIA.
DOESN'T ANYONE GET IT, PAIN CHANGES BRAIN CHEMISTRY, THUS, PAIN overwhelms a person to the degree they can't function. Cymbalta literally almost killed me.
I have no medicine. Also a veteran.

I was in such a fog from using this drug for over a yr, I forgot my doctor's instructions and taking 100 mgs 3x's a day. I went cold turkey thinking it couldn't be that bad, 20 lbs lost and still losing, The constant nausea, and vomiting landed me in the er. 2 weeks later and I still get cold sweats, nausea, headaches. I am now being weened off slowly. I would rather be in pain than feel nauseous all the time. I wish I knew then what I know now about this drug, I'd never have taken it.

I appreciate your comments and am glad you are having a good experience with Lyrica.

You mentioned 'fibro fog'- I am very familiar with it and learned to work around it quite well. At about the 12-month mark after beginning Lyrica, I noticed quite a different kind of 'fog.'

The first scary incident happened was when I was driving down a well known road. I 'checked out' and when I checked back in, I had no idea where I was. I remember thinking " I'm not in any danger, no one is around that can be harmed, and my husband, whom I trust, is just a cell phone call away." The elapsed time between 'checking out' and 'checking in' was about 20 seconds judging by the distance I had travelled but that was completely unacceptable to me. From there things got worse.

I was working on a project and about a third of the way into doing some data entry I stopped, looked down at what I was doing and totally forgot how to do what I had just been doing. It was suggested that perhaps I was multi-tasking when I should be mono-tasking. I was told to touch the surfaces around me to bring myself into 'focus'.

These are just two of the incidents that led me to the path I am on - weaning myself off Lyrica. I know everyone will have a different experience and I sincerely hope you have a good one with this drug.

Hello everyone, I have been off this drug for 2 weeks now and I have never felt so ill in my life. Hoping like most of you that this is short lived. I'm sure after this experience I will find it very hard to trust medication again. Good luck to you all.

So glad to find this website! I have been on Lyrica for only a week, and I'm a zombie! :( I walk around feeling like I'm going to lose my balance. Dr prescribed this meds for fibromalygia. I think I'd rather deal with the pain than walking around like I'm drunk... that's another way of describing it, feeling drunk. Funny how you remember something you did so many years ago... haven't had a drink in years! lol

I actually take Lyrica for anxiety, but it has saved my life. For me the side effects - brain fog, can't drink alcohol because it amplifies it 10 fold, terrible short term memory, feeling tired and flatulence is nothing in comparison to how ill the anxiety made me and also how it left me crippled in regards to being able to live a normal life. I tried 2 weeks cold turkey from this med and it was horrific, shakes, sweats, intense paranoia and more, but I was warned about all this beforehand. Lyrica really is dependant on the person taking it and whether they feel the side effects are worth whatever the reduction is for the reason they are taking it. For me it is more than worth it, except for that time when I forget to shut the gas hobs off. Lesson learnt!

I took lyrica 1 time and the next day I felt like I was in a fog, felt weird like a zombie and felt like I was shaking. I stopped taking it immediately. For some reason doctors believe that these medicines should work for everyone and they tend to get a little upset when they don't. I've also found that some doctors don't listen to the patient very well. I'm glad that medicines work well for some but please, doctors, don't get mad at patients that it doesn't work for and listen to your patients. Patients know their bodies better than you do. God Bless the compassionate doctors.

I started taking lyrica two years ago to address problems in the legs resulting from sciatica. The dosage was 75mg twice a day. It worked miraculously well. Without I might have had to use a wheelchair. There have been side-effects, notably lack of balance and the occasional staggering like a drunk when out walking.

Two months ago I began to notice skin irritations and decided to lower the dose to 75mg once a day. This is equally effective as a painkiller but the skin irritations, slight each and general feeling of the flesh creeping are disagreeable. Things are improved only during the 8 hours or so during which the drug appears to have maximum effect, that is from breakfast, when I take it, until after dinner in the evening. Some constipation is also occurring which has never in my life occurred before.

I do not like the drug and am considering lowering the dose further. I would like to know how to treat the itching and creeping flesh problems. Any suggestions?

I do not think that I want to risk giving up the drug altogether. Sure, it may have side-effects but these are not worse than being unable to walk more than 50 metres without sitting down. So I walk normally with the occasional stagger but I feel itchy.

I have been taking Lyrica for 3 weeks now. I take 75mg, 4 times a day. I have a bulging disk in my L5-S1 joint that was causing crippling pain. On the Lyrica, I can function again without hurting 24/7. There was some dizziness the first two days, but that has vanished. The fog left after 3 days and my eyes cleared after 5. I haven't had any other side effects.

Frankly, I am grateful to have the drug. Without it, I would be bed bound. Now, I can move, get to therapy, and hopefully avoid surgery for my back. I am sure people feel they have issues with this drug, but I suspect they have trouble with many drugs. Some people just react poorly to medications and others react well.

I have been on gabapanton for at least 10 years, when it stopped working I was prescribed lyrica. I was on the drug for only 5 or 6 months when I started having terrible side effects. I called the hospital nurse and she said to discontinue it. I did that and for the past 3 weeks I am going through withdrawal that is making me crazy. Lost 15 lbs in that time so far, I have no balance, my whole body hurts. I can't stay awake most of the day, I have no energy and feel like a shell of myself. Can some one please tell me what to do and how long will this last. I feel like I am loosing my life.

I began taking 50mg 2x day in November 2013 for fibro. I moved to 100 mg at night and did not take during day because of the brain fog. After feeling like I have been living outside my body for months, I have decided enough is enough. I am now taking 25 mg in the morning and have been for about a week. I am having some very strange withdrawals. Bottom teeth are very sensitive, headaches (which I normally did not get), dizzy, dry mouth, blurry vision, one day sick to my stomach, the next can't get full.

The worst is the swelling in my fingers and feet. I was tested for lupus but results came back at the bottom of the scale so my doctor said it was a false positive. The only thing I am positive about it that the medicine makes me feel like I am recovering from the flu. Please, someone tell me that I will wake some morning and feel half way normal.

When I am asked to describe fibromyalgia, the only thing I can compare it to is feeling achey like with the flu. Is it possible that due to the reduction in Lyrica that you just feel the fibro more? I would really like to reduce my nightly dosage which is 200 mg but after reading about the trials and tribulations I am reluctant. I started taking the medication to find relief in the first place not create more problems.

Hi I don't take lyrica but my girlfriend does and what a change in her. She is very irritable and snaps at the drop of a dime it is addictive I don't care if it's non narcotic I'm telling you as a recovering addict of 6 1/2 years now thank God.

She will spend her last dime on it doctor shopping and all that stuff that goes along with any addiction. She can take 60 200mgs pills in 2 days. I'm trying to get her off but she has to want to stop on her own. Anyone know of a med to help her get off of it please let me know.

Is there something else to take to help get off this stuff

Not sure if this will help anyone......the side effects from the Lyrica are as everyone described. I had been taking it for over a year for a pinched nerve in the groin. Because of the side effects I wanted to get off this mind numbing drug. I decided to cut my dose in half.

That is when I discovered this website......the headache and alternating between freezing and feeling hot was enough to make me go back on the same dose of Lyrica which was 100 mg in the morning and 150 mg in the evening. Because of my dosage I was taking 50 mg increments of the Lyrica.

To get off it I reduced my dosage by 50 mg a day for 4 days alternating between reducing the morning and evening dose. It took almost a month to get off the Lyrica but I have to say that I no longer have any of the side effects of withdrawal. I hope this helps others in knowing that it is possible to get off this drug unscathed.

I am currently taking 100 mg 3 times A day. My gp wants me to go to 800 x 3 a day. I have never felt so ill before. I'm coming off it, I can't cope with the dizziness, forgetting my words when I'm speaking to anyone. My tummy is swollen, and I'm so down I just want to cry. I know I'm gonna feel awful coming off it, but it can't be worse than this, hopefully.

I have been taking lyrica for almost 10 years... I stop taking it a few days ago and I am feeling like crap.... my body is aching all over .. my pillow feels like a big hard stone... my fever is on and off ... and I am having trouble sleeping... why am i taking it off?? Lyrica doesn't do much to me nowadays... I am just tired of having a fever every time I forget or fail to take it. Today is already my 5th day without any of them and I feel like going crazy. For your info, before, I took 150mg of lyrica 2 times a day.

It's been nearly 6 days since I've been without lyrica, its the worst feeling every. I really cannot sleep .. my heart is beating like I'm walking or something, and I'm aching all over. The pillow feels hard like a stone. I don't know how long I can hold on.. but I am determined to be free from it. I'm tired of all the side effects I have experienced. I hope 1 or 2 days more and I will be better. I just can hope..

I have been on Lyrica for fibromyalgia for almost 6 years. I cannot imagine my life without it, although I may have to go off, as my insurance is requiring "preauthotization" to continue paying their part. Lyrica made my life worth living again. It does not eliminate the symptoms, but diminishes them to the point that they are (usually) bearable.

Initially, I had blurry vision, sleepiness, constipation and brain fog, although brain fog is also a symptom of fibromyalgia, so the degree that Lyrica affected that is difficult to ascertain.

Now, I see 20-20, sleep normally, poop and think, all fairly well. Give it at least a couple of months if you can tolerate it, and see if the side effects diminish.

I'm so glad to know there are many who are dealing with issues coming off of Lyrica. I was prescribed Lyrica for nerve pain after an incompetent nurse missed her IM injection and hit my sciatic nerve. The stabbing pain in the back of my right calf is more worth living with than the lack of functioning on Lyrica. I don't have myself back because I can't sleep, have nightmares, chills, feel like I have the flu, ache, headache, and heavy headed. I can think better than I did on Lyrica, but I'm really concerned I'll never recover from this terrible syndrome of Lyrica withdrawal.

I too am not happy with my doctor for prescribing Lyrica and how he minimized the side effects because he didn't want me to be talked out of taking it. If I knew now what I didn't know, I would NEVER take Lyrica. By the way, I too thought it was a "great drug" because of the pain relief. As it slowly decreased my capacity it was like the scene in Harry Potter when they ate the lotus flowers keeping them in a fog not knowing the reality of time passing or really cognitively functioning. So......I wish us all the best of luck, sincere recovery, and support to endure.

I am currently taking 100 mg 3 times a day. My gp wants me to go to 800 x 3 a day. I have never felt so ill before. I'm coming off it, I can't cope with the dizziness, forgetting my words when I'm speaking to anyone. My tummy is swollen, and I'm so down I just want to cry. I know I'm gonna feel awful when I come off it, but I just can't cope with this fog that I live in.

I have to use fentanyl patches at 100mg, this is the maximum dose, also have to use amitriptyline 75 mg every night, I just want to be me again, not the person I am now.

I have been taking Lyrica for five years due to severe nerve pain due to chemical exposure. Lyrica worked well for me as it lessened the pain. I did gain about 30 pounds, but it did help, so I continued to take Lyrica 75 mg 3x a day. I would still be on Lyrica, but my wonderful insurance company would no longer pay for it. So I have been tapering my intake trying to make the Lyrica last for days. I have reduced my intake to one 50mg pill a day with having only two left. Even with gradually reducing my intake I am having pretty severe withdrawals. I have no appetite, am nauseous, cannot sleep, always tired, have head aches, no desire to do anything, cranky, cry easily (and I am a 58 yr old man, 6-3, 290 lbs) and have the attitude that I would be better off if I would die. After reading all of these comments, maybe being off Lyrica will be a good thing. Only time will tell.

I am SO READY to get off of this Lyrica I am take 100mg 3X daily it doesn't help for the nerve damage I have in my neck but I have gained about 25-30 pounds since I started taking it and my vision is so terrible from the Lyrica I can't wait to be off of this stuff....but I'm doing it!!!

I'm ready to get off this stuff, so many side affects weight gain blurred vision dry mouth....A few months ago I went 1 week with no Lyrica and it was hell I am suppose to take 100mg 3X daily but tomorrow I am only taking 100mg 2X daily I'll do that for a month or so then 100mg once a day then I'll ask the doctor to lower my mg to 75mg or 50mg But one thing for SURE I am getting off this stuff I have gained about 25lbs from this lyrica....I'm done with it SOON.

Hi all - I can't tell you how happy I am to have wandered across this site. I take Lyrica 75mg in the morning and 100mg at night.

I injured my back at work in 2008 initially but in January 2013 one morning I couldn't get out of bed. I had back soreness which I treated with pain killers from time to time but this was a shock to say the least. I already suffered with severe anxiety depression and am wondering why someone would put me on this drug which appears to make depression symptoms worse.

I was diagnosed with Spondylolisthesis L5 S1, Faciitis and severe arthritic change. I wear a 10mcg Norspan patch (morphine) I take two different anti inflammatories, one in the morning and the other at night, Valium if I need it, OXYNORM 10mg when I need it, a tablet to protect my stomach from the drugs, a low dose blood pressure pill, 2x panadol osteo pills 6 hourly, an anti depressant, Pristiq and the Lyrica..

I never take my pills at the right time as I have no night and day. That is, I can't sleep or I fall asleep at whatever time day or night and sleep for approx 14-16 hours. I have dry eyes, mouth, skin, etc., my taste is off, I'm getting fatter and hardly eating cos I'm nauseous, I have no appetite. I live on soda water for my nausea, I'm constipated and now have a prednisolone suppository for my poor bum, I have developed skin pain, etc etc.....

I live in Australia can someone please tell me how to get off the Lyrica successfully. Oh yeah and I have chronic pain syndrome, adjustment syndrome, a new husband and have gone off sex. I am going insane. Please help me help myself. I need me back!

After having been diagnosed with shingles and postherpetic neuralgia 6 months ago, my doctor put me on Lyrica 600mg/day to combat the excruciating pain.

I can honestly say, the drug was wonderful and it allowed me to function almost normally again.

After not having been able to sleep well, due to the extreme pain, I could sleep again. Thanks Lyrica!
Not everyone has bad reactions on this drug!

I am now in the process of Lyrica withdrawal and doing it very slowly. I am having a little bit of trouble sleeping, but otherwise, I am doing fine.
One more week on 75gr/day and all should be well.

I hope this positive comment will help some people. Good luck!

Hello Everyone, I took Lyrica for a fibromyalgia diagnosis in 2010 until 2014. When I stopped taking it I started to experience tingling all over my body. Additionally, I became exhausted. I also was nauseous and gagging and had diarrhea. I also smell something that makes me gag. I also had a couple of anxiety attacks. Never had anxiety. My skin is extremely sensitive. So sensitive that is hard to wear clothes.

I also get hot flashes and not sure my internal temperature is working correctly. I stopped taking Lyrica July 8, 2014. It is now 8/17/2014 and I am less exhausted. All over symptoms remain.

Does anyone know when this will stop? I do not know if there is something wrong with my stomach. I do not feel comfortable seeing a doctor as I find they can be ignorant about discontinuation of Lyrica and the side effects. Any ideas or advice> Thanks

Lyrica has worked wonders for my nerve pain. My only side effect has been weight gain which is very depressing and I can't seem to take the weight off. My question is -- did any of you that had weight gain lose it automatically when you stopped lyrica?

I went through hell coming off this drug (as did my family), if it wasn't for wonderful friends and family I don't know how I would have got through it. I ended up changing GPs because the GP I had kept telling me I had depression and wanted to add antidepressants into the mix. The new GP was fantastic, very sympathetic and helpful. It took me at least six months to feel "normal", but in the interim I lost 10 kilos (and I wasn't overweight to start with), was so ill, almost gave up work, I was a mess. I'm back to my old self completely now (with never ending nerve pain but that is preferable to feeling suicidal, very sick and never sleeping). It has been a year almost to the day that I came off and I am so glad I did. Sure it works for some, but for the five percent of people who have their lives turned upside down by it, it's hell.

The new pain management specialist I see (who is young and open minded) told me on the last visit that he monitors new patients who go on Lyrica every two weeks until he is sure they are not going to be adversely affected. Hopefully over time the older, less open minded doctors will start to do the same thing. Take care, stay strong - it will get better.

Hi CD, You posted back in May that you continued taking Lyrica because you had bad side effects after you tried cutting back. (head ache and tiredness). How are you feeling now? How much Lyrica are you taking? If you were trying to stop your Lyrica, can I ask what else are you taking for your Neuropathic pain. I have small fiber neuropathy-Idiopathic.

I take 350 mgs of Lyrica that is not helping my pain. I also take 75 mgs Tramadol. I cant take higher doses of Tramadol bc of SE. Are you still taking Lyrica and how do you feel? I started 5 days ago cutting back 25 mgs for at least every 10 days. I hope that will be a slow enough taper. Let us know how you are feeling. Thanks. Marie

Hi Kb, Sorry to read about your pain. I understand chronic pain. I suffer with small fiber neuropathy. I also take 350 mgs of Lyrica. The side effects are not too bad. I get dizzy , drunk-like feelings etc. Now my hair is shedding/falling out! :(

I would tolerate it but its not working/helping with my pain. May I ask what the cause of your pain is? I started tapering off the Lyrica. I'm gonna go very slow. 25 mgs at least every 10 days. (I hope that's slow enough.) How slow was your taper? Do you take anything else for your pain,I'm assuming your still taking Lyrica. I hope to hear back from you. Scared, in pain and depressed in NY. Thanks. Marie

Hi Diane, I hope your doing better with your brain-fog and your Lyrica withdrawal. I take 350 mgs of Lyrica for neuropathic pain, dx with Idiopathic - small fiber Neuropathy. It's a Horrible and painful debilitating disease. I am otherwise healthy. I am starting to wean off of lyrica because its not helping with my pain and plus my hair is starting to shed/fall out. Did you have hair shedding? I'm on day 5 of taking 25 mgs less. So far I get some sweating, I believe its the withdrawal.. Did you sweat a lot while withdrawing?

I am scared to death of whats to come with this withdrawal. I will do it very slow. I know it may takes me months. How are you feeling now? Are you still withdrawing from Lyrica? What do you take for your pain. Sorry for all the questions. I'm desperate and in pain. I do not have a good support team like you. I hope you are doing well!! Thanks Marie

Hi Kb
Glad to hear you are doing better. Sorry you went thru so much suffering to get off of the Lyrica. What are you taking now for your nerve pain? Do you have Neuropathy? I'm in the process of getting off of Lyrica. Today is day 6 where I take 25 mgs less, will do this for 7 to 10 days. Then take away another 25 mgs. I hope with a slow taper it wont get too bad. :( I dont know what Im going to take for my nerve pain. My PM Doc wants me to try Triliptal , its another anti seizure med. second line medication to Gabapentin and Lyrica. I tried all the anti-depressants, couldn't take the side effects. I do not have too many side effects from the Lyrica, and no weight gain. I'm only getting off of it because 350 mgs is not helping with my neuropathic pain. I also take 50 mgs Tramadol a day for pain. What do you take to help control your pain? Take care and stay well! Marie

Hi there - most of the pain meds generally make me feel a bit hyper so I try to limit them, I find strong panadol-codeine is good most of the time. I use Tramadol and Targin for bad days, but then have trouble sleeping and keep itching... I take Endep (an old style anti depressant but also useful for nerve pain in some cases) in a low dose each night and that does seem to help a little with the nerve pain with no side effects except a dry mouth constantly - makes me drink a lot of water which is good!

It took me about nine months to get over the side effects once I stopped taking lyrica but I also think I came off it too quickly - the GP I saw at the time said I should be able to taper down from 350 mg a day in a week or two, and it believed her. I should have given myself a couple of months in hindsight.
I use boiling hot heat packs on my butt and feet, which is where the worst pain is. I have a microwave next to my desk and heat packs regularly to sit on or put my feet on - it seems to work! :-) I also have a spinal chord stimulator which works well for leg pain but doesn't really help with butt and feet pain. I try to rest more now, and have cut back on working hours so I can rest with heat packs for a couple of hours at least each day - that seems to really help also. It's just hard to adjust to because it's not the life I had planned for myself! :-)

My nerve pain comes from failed spinal surgery, I've tried most invasive treatments since but while some work, it is very short term and then the scar tissue around the spinal chord comes back stronger than before, ie - increased nerve pain. But I have a great GP now, and a pain specialist that I feel very confident in. Now I just need that one big break through in research that will help all if us get away from this rotten never ending pain!

I wish you all well, be kind to yourself, if you suffered like I did coming off lyrica (it never helped with the nerve pain anyway) then I especially wish you peace very soon.

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