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weaning off klonopin?


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#1 Susan Lake

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Posted 11 February 2005 - 03:25 PM

I just wondered if any of you have tried to wean off klonopin before? There are several reason why I want to get off this drug but most importantly I would like to try and get pregnant and I know this is a dangerous drug to be on. I called the Cleveland Clinic and they gave me an ok to wean off my beta blocker, florinef and Klonopin. This is day three and I think what my body is missing is the klonopin. I have taken .5 mgs for 4 years and the weaning recommendation is to go to half tab once a day for a week then quarter tab for a week. Finally the last two weeks quarter tab every other.
The decision to try and get pregnant was an easy one but I knew for health reasons I needed to taper off all meds. I feel horrible right now, like I could cry. I am so tired and weak I can barely get this out!! When I asked my cardiologist if she thought I was crazy to stop the meds in hopes of a pregnancy she said ultimately it is my decision but to take it slow. My health is obviously most important right now. My husband is afraid of this weaning process already since I could tell the difference by day two. I have healthy twin 5 year olds as a result of in-vitro fertilization. WE have 7 frozen embroys that we want to thaw and transfer back at least one if possible. My chance of success is only 20 percent. Am I crazy to go thru all of this weaning with such low odds of acheiving a pregnancy?
I feel like I have to at least try.
In the meantime I am hoping these symptoms will lessen as I get further into the tapering process. As of now I am dizzy, fatigued and my heart is racing. I am scared that this will never go away. Usually I would take my pills and be lightheaded but not to the point where I feel like I could drop at any second. That is how I feel now.
If anyone has gone thru this tapering before please let me know what I can expect. I hope you all do not think I am crazy to stop treatment for this condition I have had that has changed my life for the past 5 years. I love my boys and want to have other children but wonder if this is fair to them. I have been able to go about my days with daily lightheadedness and some chest discomfort. They already know mommy is dizzy alot is it fair feel worse all at the sake of trying to have another child?
Sorry this is long and rambling. I appreciate you reading this to the end.

#2 Miriam Poorman-Knox

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Posted 11 February 2005 - 04:06 PM

I just wondered if any of you have tried to wean off klonopin before?  There are several reason why I want to get off this drug but most importantly I would like to try and get pregnant and I know this is a dangerous drug to be on.  I called the Cleveland Clinic and they gave me an ok to wean off my beta blocker, florinef and Klonopin.  This is day three and I think what my body is missing is the klonopin.  I have taken .5 mgs for 4 years and the weaning recommendation is to go to half tab once a day for a week then quarter tab for a week.  Finally the last two weeks quarter tab every other.
The decision to try and get pregnant was an easy one but I knew for health reasons I needed to taper off all meds.  I feel horrible right now, like I could cry.  I am so tired and weak I can barely get this out!!  When I asked my cardiologist if she thought I was crazy to stop the meds in hopes of a pregnancy she said ultimately it is my decision but to take it slow.  My health is obviously most important right now.  My husband is afraid of this weaning process already since I could tell the difference by day two.  I have healthy twin 5 year olds as a result of in-vitro fertilization.  WE have 7 frozen embroys that we want to thaw and transfer back at least one if possible.  My chance of success is only 20 percent.  Am I crazy to go thru all of this weaning with such low odds of acheiving a pregnancy?
I feel like I have to at least try.
In the meantime I am hoping these symptoms will lessen as I get further into the tapering process.  As of now I am dizzy, fatigued and my heart is racing.  I am scared that this will never go away.  Usually I would take my pills and be lightheaded but not to the point where I feel like I could drop at any second.  That is how I feel now.
If anyone has gone thru this tapering before please  let me know what I can expect.  I hope you all do not think I am crazy to stop treatment for this condition I have had that has changed my life for the past 5 years.  I love my boys and want to have other children but wonder if this is fair to them.  I have been able to go about my days with daily lightheadedness and some chest discomfort.  They already know mommy is dizzy alot is it fair feel worse all at the sake of trying to have another child?
Sorry this is long and rambling.  I appreciate you reading this to the end.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

As long as your cardiologist is on board, and you keep track of your b/p etc. My cardio said I couldn't ever go off my beta blocker. Blessings Miriam

#3 Laura

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Posted 11 February 2005 - 04:46 PM

Hi Susan. When you are weaning off medication, the first week or two is usually pretty awful. You should have a better idea of how you are actually going to feel without the meds after that. You've been on the clonidine for four years, it is going to take a bit of time for your body to adjust to being without it, and then hopefully things will level out for you. This is a big decision for you and it's not going to be easy for the first bit especially. Give it time, take things slow, and make sure you have good access to your doctor for any concerns. I hope things improve for you over the next bit. Laura

#4 Gena

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Posted 12 February 2005 - 03:13 AM

I know you're struggling with a big decision right now. You may want to let some more time pass as you taper off the meds to see if your body adjusts. Try to make sure you increase your salt, fluids and electrolytes...you may also want to try compression hose if you aren't doing that...in other words, any other natural means of helping your body deal with the POTS symptoms. Hopefully it will. If not, then you can always re-evaluate your decision.

I have been taking half of a .25mg wafer of Klonopin once each night at bed time for about 2.5 months now. It's the only med I take, but I would some day like to get off of this too. However, it has helped me tremendously with the nocturnal attacks, (although sometimes I still awaken in the middle of the night with my heart racing, like it did tonight.) Klonopin doesn't help me with BP issues, but it does help calm me down so I don't add to my tachycardia by panicking!

It sounds like it may be the other meds, and not the Klonopin, that your body is having a hard time dealing without??

#5 calypso

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Posted 12 February 2005 - 11:35 AM

Susan,

I was on Klonopin before I had POTS. I wanted to stop it also for a pregnancy. But then I got pregnant before I had completely tapered. I was taking .5 originally but when I got pregnant was taking .25 in the morning. I didn't get completely off it until I was 4 months pregnant or so.

I went slower than the suggested method. I went to a quarter pill every other day before stopping. I also had some withdrawal effects, like feeling keyed up. But I was on it for eight years.

Try to choose a time when you are not having excess stress in your life. Try to adopt some good stress relaxation techniques, such as meditation or yoga.

Also know that I researched the birth defects link with Klonopin, and what I found is that the risk of cleft palate goes up from 1 in 1,000 to 1.7 in 1,000. This risk is higher if your dosage is higher. My child has absolutely no birth defects. I am not at all endorsing this drug or saying you should keep taking it; just know the facts before deciding to stop. There are also risks to having anxiety and stress in a pregnancy; many links to preeclampsia and low birth weight have been found.

SSRIs are a better choice for anxiety during pregnancy. They haven't been studied long term, but there is some good info out there, if you are still having palpitations and such.

And if you want a child, I certainly think it is your choice how you reach that goal.

Best of luck to you.

#6 Susan Lake

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Posted 12 February 2005 - 02:07 PM

Thank all of you for your helpful suggestions and kind words. I pray that my body will soon adapt to living without the drugs I have been on for so long. I will take it slow and keep close contact with my doctors. I will keep you posted! Blessings to all.
Susan

#7 Guest_tearose_*

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Posted 12 February 2005 - 02:47 PM

Hi Susan, I too hope you will achieve your goal to come off the medication.
I'm glad you can take this slowly and be gently with your body as it adjusts.
best regards, tearose

#8 Guest_Mary from OH_*

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Posted 12 February 2005 - 08:07 PM

Perhaps if you didn't try to wean off of all of them at once it may not be as great of a shock to your body. Also, as someone recommended. There are some "safer" drugs you can take like SSRI's during the pregnancy to help your POTS rather than going without anything. I had 3 miscarriages, so I understand you wanting to be as cautious as possible. But it is important to also take care of yourself too. Wean slowly. Increase salt and fluids and talk with your drs and OB/GYN about the alternatives available during your pregnancy.

And most of all. It will get better and GOOD LUCK!!!