ANTIDEPRESSANT WITHDRAWAL: The Most Extreme Dangers of Abrupt Discontinuation

withdrawal can be deadly

Taper vs Abrupt Withdrawal – The Importance of Avoiding Antidepressant Withdrawal via Tapering: Antidepressant withdrawal-induced mania and the REM Sleep Disorder – Dangerous Sleep Disorder Caused by Antidepressants and Long Known as a Drug Withdrawal State


No one has screamed longer or louder about the dangers of abrupt withdrawal from an antidepressant than I have. The warning has run across the top of our websites from the day any of them were created. Everyone else has always recommended a more rapid withdrawal than I have. My CD on safe withdrawal goes for an hour and a half and contains all we have learned over the past 25 years on safe withdrawal with more information on these drugs than you will find in most books out there on these drugs and is available for download at:

After the FDA hearings in 2004 they placed the Black Box Warnings for increased potential of suicide for youth. At that point the FDA warned that any abrupt change in dose of an antidepressant, whether going up or down in the dose, can cause suicide, hostility or psychosis. The following deadly reactions are the main reason I have been so adamant about a very, very slow, very, very gradual withdrawal from antidepressants. Here is one example of a woman going into a manic rage after missing only ONE dose of her Cymbalta….

Now can you imagine, after watching this, what society will be facing if there is ever a reason people cannot get their antidepressants??? This actually happens all the time for various reasons – the profound memory loss the drugs produce, sudden insurance cancellation, paperwork such as in the military where it can take some time for papers to catch up with you or family members in a transfer, going to jail for any reason where they are notorious for abruptly pulling your medications to give you one they make money on, etc.

Although I thought the guy filming her in this video was rather rude and stupid to continue filming her (you NEVER want to treat someone in withdrawal from these meds this way unless you just got a heck of a deal on a coffin!). What I found most shocking is that she seems to be aware how much of a danger she can be in withdrawal as she almost immediately warned the officer that she had skipped her pill that day and could be a serious problem for him even mentioning that she has been known to break arms?! Most patients are aware of this potential manic rage and expect others to understand that. Look at Eric Harris at Columbine. He was threatening to drop off his Luvox in order to “fuel the rage” he felt he needed to accomplish the shooting at Columbine. (There is no indication he did that as his levels of the drug were normal levels in toxicology, but he knew very well the rage withdrawal could produce.

We had a local case a few years ago when I was living in Utah where it was reported that a woman ripped three police officers to shreds. Of course the comments on the article about it were making fun of the officers since three of them could not take a woman down. I called and asked to speak with the officers because I knew exactly what happened – they ran into a woman trying to come off her meds too rapidly. Sure enough…after I explained the super human strength that can come from the adrenalin rushes produced by the abrupt withdrawal the officer did confirm that she was attempting to withdraw from her Paxil. And his almost breathless statement was, “Yeah, she was sure strong!”

ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF MANIC RAGE: Another example of a woman who had been going on and off her medications – a way that FAR TOO MANY doctors seem to think is a safe way to come off antidepressants – on one day, off the next, etc. or using what they call the Prozac Bridge. This is where you drop the one you are on to go on Prozac with the sadly mistaken idea that it is easier to get off of. As a result  you go into abrupt withdrawal from one drug and begin adjusting to yet another which you will have to withdraw from later and go through this all over again – thus creating two traumas for your poor brain to recover from rather than just the one. One other concern about that process is contained in internal company documents most have no access to unless they have filed a lawsuit giving them access which is that apparently serotonin initially goes UP in withdrawal ( may be from the antidepressant beginning to flush from the system) which would give a greater concern for the possibility of Serotonin Syndrome when you are adding yet another antidepressant to the first and including the serotonin increase from the abrupt withdrawal. Obviously that needs to be studied, but do not expect drug companies to pay for that research which will clearly cut their sales!

Girl goes nuts on her antidepressant and makes viral news

Crazy fau girl loses it and gets on news. Goes viral.

Here are full uncut videos of this incident.

Video #1: Show details 3DiYDL2I6Vdi8&v=iYDL2I6Vdi8&gl=US

Video #2:



As I mentioned earlier after the FDA hearings in 2004 they placed the Black Box Warnings for increased potential of suicide for youth. At that point the FDA warned that any abrupt change in dose of an antidepressant, whether going up or down in the dose, can cause suicide, hostility or psychosis. When you switch drugs you are making two abrupt changes in dose coming off one and increasing and adjusting to a new one – very deadly potential reactions in doing that. I wish people understood the damage caused by abrupt withdrawal. Because of the shock to the brain from pulling a substance abruptly from it that it has adjusted all of its chemicals to that drug being in the mix it can trigger seizure activity within the brain. Seizure activity produces brain damage. That is why I have always said patients need to sneak very slowly and carefully away from these drugs thus avoiding withdrawal as much as possible so as to not trigger the REM Sleep Disorder, Antidepressant Withdrawal Rage or Antidepressant Withdrawal Mania. If you have attempted cold turkey withdrawal before you need to consider how many times you have potentially suffered brain damage through cold turkey or abrupt withdrawal.

Keep in mind that abrupt withdrawal is not much different than coming off a tall mountaintop in one jump as opposed to  coming down off that mountain one baby step at a time. It is more than obvious which is preferable. And would you not treat the injuries incurred in that jump if you landed halfway down that mountain before you continue to make your way on down to the bottom? Of course you would! I recommend going to our site to see what others have found over the past 25 years to help them recover from those injuries. You need to work with your body and brain to assist them in this recovery. What I consider the most important alternatives in preventing these serious reactions are first the changing of one’s diet to avoid ANY stimulant, Noni juice, Relaxese, and a Calcium/Magnesium supplement like CALMS along with various essential aromatherapy oils which are apparently so effective that the FDA will no longer allow me to share even personal experiences with you while they have 4000 pages of studies on them on government sites!

Now to give you an idea of what antidepressant withdrawal mania could involve so you can see why you would never ever want to experience it I invite you to visit our Facebook group Antidepressant-induced Bipolar & Schizophrenia at:

And also  listen to me discuss that in three whole minutes (as that is all the time they gave any of us) with the FDA in their 2006 hearing on increasing their warnings of suicide to those under the age of 25:




Eli Lilly, the makers of the antidepressants Prozac and Cymbalta, had a nightmare on their hands right after our first FDA hearing in February of 2004 when they learned for themselves just how deadly the withdrawal from antidepressants can be. Nineteen year old Traci Johnson was a test subject in their laboratory taking their new antidepressant Cymbalta to test the drug on healthy volunteers to learn of its toxic effects. After taking Cymbalta for 20 days Traci was weaned off over only a four day period. She was then found hanging from the shower rod in the laboratory.  A full report of what happened can be found here:

After this death in their own laboratory it was reported that Eli Lilly doubled the length of their withdrawal for patients coming off Cymbalta. So it went to a length of time we have generally found to be safe over the past 25 years as we have warned that one should take about half the amount of time on one of these drugs to wean off and a little over a year for each five years on antidepressants.

Was Traci suffering RBD when she hung herself? Because it has long been known mainly as a drug withdrawal state the chances are high that she did. During normal REM sleep the muscles in the body become paralyzed and only keeps the necessary functions of the body working such as respiration, heart beat, etc. There are a small group of cells in the brain stem that control REM (dreaming sleep). When these cells become injured or diseased, people do not experience the muscle paralysis associated with REM sleep, which can lead to REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD)-a serious condition in which the afflicted violently act out their dreams.
In this sleep state known as RBD, people have been known, not only to drive, but to do things completely uncharacteristic of themselves such as fight like a military person although never serving in the military, become promiscuous, but also even to murder those close to them and to take their own lives in this sleep state. Murder and suicide have long been known to be a symptom of REM sleep disorder. This is an unconscious state without normal inhibitions and full of automatic behavior based on whatever dream you may be having. This link will show you some of the MANY possibilities when you are acting out your dreams or nightmares while experiencing RBD.
At we have many of these types of cases which were induced by the use of antidepressants. Keep in mind that the most common side effect of antidepressants is insomnia, especially in withdrawal, so those in antidepressant withdrawal often have their chances of experiencing RBD increased by being prescribed drugs similar to Ambien.…/…/423/articleID/308999/Default.aspx
Over 80% of those who go into RBD hurt themselves or others. I have one book I have written on RBD and am finishing up an ebook now.

Although rare in the past we are seeing more and more of this deadly disorder. While drugs similar to Zolpidem (Ambien) are found in 3% of these cases what few are aware of is the research by America’s two foremost experts on this disorder showing that 86% of the cases they are diagnosing with RBD are patients currently taking an antidepressant. But because RBD has long been known as a “drug withdrawal state” the risk of RBD in antidepressant withdrawal or Zolpidem and similar drugs could be far greater!
The worst of this disorder is when it is a nightmare you are experiencing when you go into this sleepwalk state. For two decades I have listened to people repeat over and over to me after coming safely off an antidepressant, “I acted out my worst nightmare on this drug!” And, as I testified before the FDA, this previously rare sleep disorder of RBD is exactly what comedian Phil Hartman’s wife experienced when she shot her famous husband under the influence of two serotogenic drugs: Zoloft and Ultram (Tramadol).

Anyone is hing additional information on this most dangerous sleep disorder can find it in our Facebook group Antidepressant-induced REM Sleep Disorder at:

or in Chapter 7 of my book on antidepressants, Prozac: Panacea or Pandora? – Our Serotonin Nightmare, available at:

As we are always searching for faster ways to come off these deadly antidepressants in a safe manner we encourage you to continue to check our page for any new information we have on that. There has to be a safe way to do that but as yet in 25 years of searching there is still no way I have found to come down rapidly. There are some things that can really help to speed things up, but after having someone who attempted to come down twice as fast as what we have found to be safe of half the amount of time on to wean off or in longer term use taking a little over a year for each five years on the drugs (add any use of any antidepressant to determine period of use NOT just the time on the current medication) I do not feel safe in suggesting it. She continued to assure me she was fine and after a year of withdrawing, after ten years on Zoloft, a month or so off the drug she got up early one morning (REM Sleep Disorder) and took a baseball bat to her husband, her childhood sweetheart, and had no recall of what she had done. He gave her two options: jail or a hospital. She spent 30 days in a psychiatric hospital at the cost of $30,000 and came out of there back on Zoloft and five other medications she had to wean down off. Was taking one more year to wean that bad in comparison? I think not!

The only hope I have seen in coming down faster would be in the video testimonies on our Alternatives page at and a documentary movie “May I Be Frank” where a man on antidepressants for 10 years was taken off Effexor and quite a few other medications and suffering from diabetes is brought down rapidly by a group of young men attempting to help him with his health. They put him on an extremely strict raw food Vegan diet, had him medically monitored throughout, gave him massive amounts of wheat grass juice, and did regular colonics, etc. (Watch the movie for all the details.) It was very miraculous, but I do not know many who could feasibly do that and continue their normal routines in life although I think it important for people to know it can possibly be done this way. This man did have a relapse though a year or two later as it was too fast a withdrawal even with all those helps but it was mild enough that he was able to pull out of that and get back on track. He would have been much better off seeing Dr. Gabriel Cousins at the Tree of Life Center for this but obviously they really did not know what they were getting into with antidepressant withdrawal as most do not. His change is absolutely amazing though! These young men clearly saved Frank’s life! See Frank’s story here:

Movie: A Total Transformation From Drugs to Health “May I Be Frank?”

Ann Blake Tracy, Executive Director,

International Coalition for Drug Awareness & SSRIstories.NET

Author: ”Prozac: Panacea or Pandora? – Our Serotonin Nightmare – The Complete Truth of the Full Impact of Antidepressants Upon Us & Our World” & Withdrawal CD “Help! I Can’t Get Off My Antidepressant!”

WITHDRAWAL WARNING: In sharing this information about adverse reactions to antidepressants I always recommend that you also give reference to my CD on safe withdrawal, Help! I Can’t Get Off My Antidepressant!, so that we do not have more people dropping off these drugs too quickly – a move which I have warned from the beginning can be even more dangerous than staying on the drugs!

WITHDRAWAL HELP: You can find the hour and a half long CD on safe and effective withdrawal helps here: And if you need additional consultations with Ann Blake-Tracy, you can book one at or sign up for one of the memberships in the International Coalition for Drug Awareness which includes free consultations as one of the benefits of that particular membership plan. For only a $30 membership for one month you can even get 30 days of access to the withdrawal CD with tips on rebuilding after the meds, all six of my DVDs, hundreds of radio interviews, lectures, TV interviews I have done over the years PLUS access to my book on antidepressants (500 plus pages) with more information than you will find anywhere else (that is only $5 more than the book alone would cost) at (Definitely the best option to save outrageous postage charges for those out of the country!)

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