What was your experience with duloxetine (US Brand Name; Cymbalta)?

Posted by d13 @d13, Jan 11 2:06pm

I was prescribed by my oncologist for the neuropathy in feet and hands. The chemotherapy treatments did this. This drug also states that it is used to treat depression and anxiety. As with any prescription medication, there could be side effects. And a huge list of what not to take with this drug. He also prescribed hydrocodone 5 mg, but to take half of pill four times daily for cancer pain. We’ll, when I got home and read about the Duloxetine use; one of the medications on the list was hydrocodone. I’m now waiting for a call from the oncologist office to see if I can take the Duloxetine with the hydrocodone. Can anyone at least tell me if they have ever taken this medication; Duloxetine? And any side effects?

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Depression & Anxiety group.

@hopeful33250

@d13

I am interested in knowing how this resolves. Will you post again after your next appointment?

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Right now, I don’t think there will be any resolution for my discomfort, since he says he doesn’t know what is causing my discomfort in my abdomen and head. Or he just doesn’t know how to treat what this chemotherapy did to me; other than the neuropathy. I’m also on blood pressure medication and cholesterol medication, which is a whole other topic. I had taken myself off of the cholesterol medication back in August; but after my last appointment, I’m back taking it because he said that the supplements for it don’t do any good; only the prescribed cholesterol medication will help. I will post after my oncologist nurse appointment any developments.

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i have been taking duloxetine while taking oxycodone 10mg. 1-2x day as needed and have had no ill side effects that i know of.

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I have been taking duloxetine 20mg a day now for neuropathic/ muscular upper back pain that I have had for 4 years and it really seems to be helping. I have tried gabapentin and Prozac on the past as well as cbd and the duloxetine has helped the most. I wish I had tried it sooner. Side effects have been insomnia and constipation which I hope will eventually go away. Hope this helps.

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@crlwks269

I have been taking duloxetine 20mg a day now for neuropathic/ muscular upper back pain that I have had for 4 years and it really seems to be helping. I have tried gabapentin and Prozac on the past as well as cbd and the duloxetine has helped the most. I wish I had tried it sooner. Side effects have been insomnia and constipation which I hope will eventually go away. Hope this helps.

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Hello @crlwks269 and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. I'm so glad that you joined this discussion about Duloxetine. It is so good to find something that works, isn't it?

Side effects are very common with most meds. I suppose we all need to weigh the side effects versus the positive impact that they have on our feeling of health and discomfort.

I look forward to getting to know you better. As this is your first post on Connect, would be comfortable sharing a bit more about your neuropathic/ muscular upper back pain?

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@hopeful33250

Hello @crlwks269 and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. I'm so glad that you joined this discussion about Duloxetine. It is so good to find something that works, isn't it?

Side effects are very common with most meds. I suppose we all need to weigh the side effects versus the positive impact that they have on our feeling of health and discomfort.

I look forward to getting to know you better. As this is your first post on Connect, would be comfortable sharing a bit more about your neuropathic/ muscular upper back pain?

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Yes I will share more later as it’s a long story .

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@luv2hike

Hello- I do love to hike year around! In the winter, often on snow shoes. I have been physically active my entire life as I have always liked to be outside and moving! As early as my 20's I noticed how good I felt when I was outside( vs. being at the gym) There's something about fresh air and sunshine that I can't seem to get in any pill.

Of course, It is harder in the winter to bundle up and get out, especially when its been so icy this year. I eventually HAVE to go outside or I feel crabby and more anxious than usual.

One of my daughters was a fitness professional in corporate fitness and created over 100 videos when Covid 1st began and they have been instrumental in keeping me fit and sane over the past 2 plus years.

I truly need to be outside, especially when the sun is out! I tell my husband that the feeling is hard to describe when I am out in the nature reserve we live a mile from . Wherever we go we find hiking trails. We went to CO for the 1st time and hiked in the mountains there, so exhilarating and exhausting and beautiful!

Last summer , I bought a paddleboard and learned to paddle ( a big feat for someone who can't swim and is very afraid of deep water- of course I wear a Lifejacket) I find it's very peaceful on the lake too! I enjoy bicycling and yoga as well!

I am fortunate to have a very active and supportive family, as depression and anxiety can ebb and flow for most of us, I think. My adult daughters especially encourage me and call me for walks, hikes, etc. My husband is the only one who is aware of my depression and anxiety. My mom would worry herself sick. I think our adult children are aware of my anxiety, but depression is so hard to explain and I don't want to worry them.

When I was initially diagnosed about 20 years ago, I tried to confide in one of my sister's and she threw it back at me during an argument saying " at least I don't need pills to make me happy", and another time saying " why can't you just be happy". These words stay with me still. I realize that is just ignorance talking , but it still hurts. Those of us who suffer know it isn't as easy as saying " be happy" . That it's really something you can't control like flipping a switch on and off.

I've had some pretty tough days again lately and am going back to therapy after a year hiatus. Unfortunately, the need is great out there and I can't see someone until the end of June! I am seeing a temporary therapist virtually this week, so we'll see how this goes. Not sure if I need something in addition to the Cymbalta, but if anyone has had something work for them , I'd love to hear their experience. While I realize we are all different and respond differently to meds , it's always good to hear from others!

Thank You!

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Hi @luv2hike, I thought I'd check in with you. How did the virtual therapist appointment go? How are things today?

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@colleenyoung

Hi @luv2hike, I thought I'd check in with you. How did the virtual therapist appointment go? How are things today?

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Thank you so much for checking in with me. It makes me feel good that a perfect stranger cares enough to do that.

My 1st virtual appointment went really well, better than I expected as It's hard to start with someone new. We made what she called a "safety plan " together so if I feel so much despair that I think I need to drive to a hospital, ( Which I almost did a few weeks ago) that I have a plan and resources. I hate talking about this as it's so scary when you have thoughts like this. I spoke with my husband about it as he is the only one who knows about my depression and anxiety and has been an amazing , support for me over the years. He gave me a big hug and said " no one should have to live with this", as I was as low as I can remember in a long time and uncontrollably crying.

The therapist and I talked about things to do to make me feel better on a regular basis, which for me is lots of physical activity outdoors, if possible. Hiking, walking, SUP/summer, snowshoe/winter and yoga ,always. Breathing through anxiety, which I learned when I first began practicing yoga .

She also wrote a note to my Dr. requesting I see a female psychiatrist to review my meds. I had a very uncomfortable experience with a male that I saw for quite awhile and I stopped seeing him as I was worried about his mannerisms and behavior. I liked the idea of just an assessment of my meds.

I have a hard copy that I keep in my purse of the plan, just in case.

Today we had our 2nd appointment , we talked about self- worth and self-esteem and she is sending me resources to speak to a "guidance counselor for adults" that a co-worker used and thought was very beneficial. As, I have esteem issues about what I currently due and what I feel I am capable of doing and needing to feel more worthwhile in this area. We also talked about having something "just for me" outside of exercising, work, helping my mom ( My siblings all live out of state) and hanging out with family. Possibly volunteering, ( which I did a lot of when our kids were younger at school, sports and church) or furthering my education: whether it be a program or some classes online or in person. This person also does some testing to help you figure out what you are or may be good at.

Sorry I am so verbose, but I think it helps me to go over it. I am feeling better than last week today. I have an appointment next week with my temporary therapist as well. I fell more in control knowing I have her to help me. Had some off the charts anxiety over the weekend due to an ongoing negative situation with my husband's family involving him and our entire family.
But our adult kids were with us as were many other positive people. I made it! 🙂

Thank You for your concern! I really appreciate it!

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@luv2hike

Thank you so much for checking in with me. It makes me feel good that a perfect stranger cares enough to do that.

My 1st virtual appointment went really well, better than I expected as It's hard to start with someone new. We made what she called a "safety plan " together so if I feel so much despair that I think I need to drive to a hospital, ( Which I almost did a few weeks ago) that I have a plan and resources. I hate talking about this as it's so scary when you have thoughts like this. I spoke with my husband about it as he is the only one who knows about my depression and anxiety and has been an amazing , support for me over the years. He gave me a big hug and said " no one should have to live with this", as I was as low as I can remember in a long time and uncontrollably crying.

The therapist and I talked about things to do to make me feel better on a regular basis, which for me is lots of physical activity outdoors, if possible. Hiking, walking, SUP/summer, snowshoe/winter and yoga ,always. Breathing through anxiety, which I learned when I first began practicing yoga .

She also wrote a note to my Dr. requesting I see a female psychiatrist to review my meds. I had a very uncomfortable experience with a male that I saw for quite awhile and I stopped seeing him as I was worried about his mannerisms and behavior. I liked the idea of just an assessment of my meds.

I have a hard copy that I keep in my purse of the plan, just in case.

Today we had our 2nd appointment , we talked about self- worth and self-esteem and she is sending me resources to speak to a "guidance counselor for adults" that a co-worker used and thought was very beneficial. As, I have esteem issues about what I currently due and what I feel I am capable of doing and needing to feel more worthwhile in this area. We also talked about having something "just for me" outside of exercising, work, helping my mom ( My siblings all live out of state) and hanging out with family. Possibly volunteering, ( which I did a lot of when our kids were younger at school, sports and church) or furthering my education: whether it be a program or some classes online or in person. This person also does some testing to help you figure out what you are or may be good at.

Sorry I am so verbose, but I think it helps me to go over it. I am feeling better than last week today. I have an appointment next week with my temporary therapist as well. I fell more in control knowing I have her to help me. Had some off the charts anxiety over the weekend due to an ongoing negative situation with my husband's family involving him and our entire family.
But our adult kids were with us as were many other positive people. I made it! 🙂

Thank You for your concern! I really appreciate it!

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Let me add one thing for your positive esteem bucket. You're a good writer.

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@crlwks269

I have been taking duloxetine 20mg a day now for neuropathic/ muscular upper back pain that I have had for 4 years and it really seems to be helping. I have tried gabapentin and Prozac on the past as well as cbd and the duloxetine has helped the most. I wish I had tried it sooner. Side effects have been insomnia and constipation which I hope will eventually go away. Hope this helps.

Jump to this post

You did not mention if you are also taking hydrocodone but that class of drug can cause constipation.

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@rckleinsmith

You did not mention if you are also taking hydrocodone but that class of drug can cause constipation.

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No I am not taking any drugs besides duloxetine. Thanks

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@hopeful33250

Hello @crlwks269 and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. I'm so glad that you joined this discussion about Duloxetine. It is so good to find something that works, isn't it?

Side effects are very common with most meds. I suppose we all need to weigh the side effects versus the positive impact that they have on our feeling of health and discomfort.

I look forward to getting to know you better. As this is your first post on Connect, would be comfortable sharing a bit more about your neuropathic/ muscular upper back pain?

Jump to this post

Teresa,
Hi, I will try to make my story as brief as I can.
I am 67 years old and until 4 years ago I was active running, biking , hiking, cross country skiing etc. I was healthy and happy.
In June of 2018 I had an electrocardiogram done and experienced some burning in my rib cage where the technician was pressing with the probe.
Two days later while lifting a table I got electrical shocks all through my thoracic region. This went on for three days and I was afraid to move, if I used my arm I would set off a shock. I went to the emergency room and they could not find a cause. I had an MRI of my spine but it was fine. My upper back thoracic region was very painful when I walked or used my arm, I could not rotate my trunk. I developed chest wall pain.
My Dr. tried prednisone but it didn’t help. I then took gabapentine for a while but it really wasn’t helping. I tried CBD tincture and lotion but it didn’t help. Tried Prozac , that helped a little.I saw numerous specialist , did massage, acupuncture etc nothing helped.
I was unable to run, swim, hike cook etc
This has been going on for 4 years, has interfered with my and my husbands retirement dreams. He has been a saint.
Recently a friend of mine who has neck pain told me she just started taking duloxetine after trying various other things and that it was really helpful. She had no side effects.
It convinced me to give it a try. It is helping, I’m not 100% but feel a lot better pain wise. I started swimming and will try biking once it warms up. I live in Maine.
First time in 4 years that I am hopeful that things will get better.
I am also starting a meditation class through the Benson Henry institute in Boston at the end of the month.
Hope this info helps.
Carol

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