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Dr. Chip
Dr. Chip, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 30674
Experience:  Over 20 yrs of Family Practice
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08 I was down to only on 12.5 mg and stayed on 12.5 until the June

Resolved Question:

"I was on 200mg of Sertraline at one point then by April of '08 I was down to only on 12.5 mg and stayed on 12.5 until the June of this year while only taking it a 3-4 times a week.

Then I went about a week without it and felt pretty good since I ran out of my prescription and didn't have insurance. I started to panic then and tried Sam-E (didn't like it), and have been on/off Sertraline since late June while currently being on it for the last two months at 25mg. I honestly don't like how I feel on it. It seems harder to come back off of it to where I was when I was only on 12.5 a few times a week and for 3 years! I always liked how I felt when I didn't take the medication.

Is it possible I no longer need the medication at all? Is depression a withdrawal symptom of Sertraline? If so, how long would the side-effects last to come off of it completely?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr. Chip replied 5 years ago.
Hi--what was the diagnosis that started the Sertraline in the first place?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Hi Dr. Chip.

Honestly, a diagnosis was never really detailed. I was just having unrealistic, paranoid, fearful thoughts. When I started taking back in 2006, I felt immediately relief. I'm just not sure if I need it at all or not. I have no problem taking something if needed. I just ultimately don't feel Sertraline is right for me.
Expert:  Dr. Chip replied 5 years ago.
OK--so now you're back on it and don't like the way you feel?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Yes. I even tried doing 37.5mg the last 3 days and I feel it's having a definite reverese effect.
Expert:  Dr. Chip replied 5 years ago.
What's going on?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I feel the way I used to feel before I even started to take Sertraline at all in 2006
Expert:  Dr. Chip replied 5 years ago.
OK--so now it's more as though the Sertraline isn't working?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Yes. Although I don't feel depressed on 25mg, I do feel almost robotic lacking the natural human emotions. Back when I was on 12.5mg a few times a week, I did feel better.
Expert:  Dr. Chip replied 5 years ago.
OK. So you're thinking about going back to the lower dose?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Yes. Is it possible that if I do decrese my dose that depression could be one of the side effects/withdrawal symptoms?
Expert:  Dr. Chip replied 5 years ago.
Well, since you didn't seem to be suffering from depression in the first place, I don't think that would occur with your decreasing the dose. There can be withdrawal symptoms like confusion, flu like symptoms, headaches, etc., but that's with suddenly discontinuation. I think you show be fine with dropping down to the lower dose.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you. Now, if I wanted to eventually drop from 12.5mg to eventually nothing, how would that be best? Do 12.5mg for a month then stop? Or possibly even go as low as 6.75mg after a month? Any suggestions?
Expert:  Dr. Chip replied 5 years ago.
I's suggest 12.5 for a month, then go from daily to every other day for two weeks, then every third day for two weeks and then stop.
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