Are there any known withdrawal side effects from being gradually weaned off of Depakote after taking 500 mg 3 times a day for 3 years to treat viral ensephalitis? I have experienced anxiety attacks and am now on 10 mg of Paxil a day. When will the medications stop?
What I know about Depakote you could fit on the head of a pin...........but I do know that you can develope a physical dependency after extended use, which I think three years qualifies you for. I also know that you cannot abruptly stop this medication. But you probably know all that and it wasn't your question. You wanted to know if there were any known w/d side effects from gradually being weaned off this med.
I, personally, don't know the answer to that. But it sounds to me like you are being weaned under the supervision of your doctor, which is the ONLY way you should attempt this, and your doctor would be (or should be) the one who can answer these questions with any authority. If anxiety IS one of the side effects, again it sounds like your doctor is addressing that issue with you. If you feel the anxiety is not being controlled, it is your doctor who needs to be made aware of this. Perhaps a simple dosage change will ease your transition. Your question though was when will the medications stop. I know I'm sounding like a broken record here, but it's you and your doctor who need to have a discussion about that. It sounds like you need a set schedule, a time frame, a goal line..........to set your mind at ease. I don't blame you, I would want that as well. Ask your doctor how he sees your progression and his estimation on how long this taper is going to take. Everyone is different and he may not be able to say "it will be over on June 3rd." He will evaluate how YOU are doing and base his answer on that.
You have done everything by the book, following your taper to the letter, so continue to "stay the course" with another visit to your doc for the answers you need.
Best of luck.......and keep your eyes on the finish line!
Depakote is generally a very bad medicine. Lobbyists, investors, and psychiatrists have personal reasons to keep you on it. Depakote may cause spinal bifida in an embryo or a fetus. I surmise it may therefore destroy disks and cartilage in the user. Coming off of it should be slow. Coming off of it is ultimately your decision, but keep your family physician informed if an emergency happens. The withdrawal may be painful but endure.
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