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Tapering from Oxzepam - 15 mg per day


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I've been taking oxazepam, 15 mg per day, at bedtime, for about 11 years.  I want to taper off, but not sure how, since I take it in capsule form.  Does anyone have any exerience in this, especially w/ capsules?  My doctor prescribed 10 mg for my next refill, but I'm afraid it will be too drastic.  Any advice is helpful.  Thanks!
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Hey beachrose! Welcome to the forum!

 

Hmm, that might be a bit drastic of a drop. I'm not that familiar with oxazepam but I'm sure someone will be along who is. At any rate, did your doc give you a taper schedule or can you stay at 10 mg for a while? It's always nice to know how many pills/capsules you have and what their strength is.

 

rufus

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Hi beachrose.

According to Professor Ashton's equivilency table, 20mg Oxzepam is equal to 10mg valium. The most sensible route to go here would be to cross over to valium. 15mg of Oxzepam would be equal to 7.5mg valium. If you could get 2mg valium pills(or larger to start), you could do an easy taper this way.

The only problem is that many doctors won't do this. Especially in the States.

 

Have you read the Ashton manual? It would be good to read that and maybe print it out for your doc. I'll get you the link.

You could also possibly talk to a pharmacist and ask him if the capsules can be opened and the powder split up.

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I'm not familiar with Oxazepam capsules, but is it possible to pull them apart and remove part of the contents? If so, this might work for you. I understand that 10mg is the smallest dose available in Oxazepam. Even if you manage to the drop from 15mg down to 10 (a bigger cut than I would recommend), stopping straight from 10mg is likely to be very tough.

 

Switching to Valium is an option that works well for very many people, but you will need to plan it quite carfully.

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Hi, Beachrose.

 

I've never heard of Oxazepam but I googled it and found out it is available in tablet form.  If you can't get valium for a crossover or simply don't want to use that method, getting it in tablet form would allow you to cut it into smaller doses and taper off that way.  I hope you can convince your doc to let you taper off gradually; if you drop from 15 mg to 10mg all at once, its a 33% cut, way more than the recommended 10% every week or two.

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Hi, Beachrose.

 

I've never heard of Oxazepam but I googled it and found out it is available in tablet form.  If you can't get valium for a crossover or simply don't want to use that method, getting it in tablet form would allow you to cut it into smaller doses and taper off that way.  I hope you can convince your doc to let you taper off gradually; if you drop from 15 mg to 10mg all at once, its a 33% cut, way more than the recommended 10% every week or two.

 

Good job Kathie!  :laugh:

I didn't even think to check that. I know that temazepam only comes in capsules so I assumed this one only did too.

Smart girl. ;)

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Wow, thanks for all the replies.  I really appreciate it.  I'll have to check out where I can get it in tablet form...where I live there is only CVS, and they tell me it's not possible.  Does anyone have any ideas on this? 
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I just checked costco.com online pharmacy and they only have capsules too.

 

The tablets only come in 15mg, and i don't know where you could get them if you only hav CVS and they don't carry it. 

 

 

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If you can't get Oxazepam in tablet form and can't or don't want to crossover to valium, maybe the titration method would be best.  Colin can work up a set of instructions for you.  There's a separate section of the forum devoted to titration tapering that you might want to read through to find out if you would be interested in going that way.
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This is all SO confusing  :D  ...  Would anyone out there be willing to talk with me about this via chat sometime? 
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Chat is good for moral support, but nuts and bolts support is best given on the forum. This way others can benefit from the information, provide alternative suggestions and perspectives, or heaven forbid, provide corrections! With the best will in the world, we all make mistakes.
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OK...so basically my options for a safe and slow withdrawal seem very overwhelming.  My brain fog is a most likely a huge factor in all of this, but I feel SO intimidated by all the methods.  I've been reading about how to do titration, and I don't understand how...what a cylinder even looks like, or where to get one (maybe that had to do with another method).  Bottom line, though, is that I feel overwhelmed.  I can grasp the crossover to valium method, so that may be the best one, if I can talk my doctor into it.  Feeling frustrated...I'm tempted to just stay on this drug sometimes.
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Hi,

 

We provide all the figures with titration. You will have your own schedule to suit your particular needs. We would wlk you through the method and answer your questions.

 

Substitution with Valium might well be a good option for you, especially if you feel comfortable with the method. Tapering off Oxazepam cpasules seems a difficult prospect. Talk to you doctor to see what they think of Valium - some are very against it. Try not to worry though, we will help you off one way or another. ;)

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Wow, thanks for all the replies.  I really appreciate it.  I'll have to check out where I can get it in tablet form...where I live there is only CVS, and they tell me it's not possible.  Does anyone have any ideas on this? 

 

Oxazepan is also known as Serax. Are you in the States? I assume so since you have a CVS, but who knows? Maybe CVS is multi-national. 

 

According to Ashton 15 mg Serax would = 7.5 mg Valium I believe. Don't know of any place in the world where Valium/Diazepam isn't available. I have had Serax in the past, from Poland (LOL), and it was in tablet form. Strange about the capsules. You live and you learn. :)

 

T

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Yep, I'm in the States.  So what's next?  I might try titration.  Do I switch my posts over to another area to get a titration schedule, etc?  Any possibility of a link to a photo of the cylinder that has been referenced? (Sorry, I am in a brain fog for sure).

 

I have to say you all are awesome.  I may be scared about this, but I sense I don't have to do this alone. That's big help. 

 

My doctor gave me a script for atarax and zoloft to help me through the withdrawal.  Has anyone used atarax to help thru the anxiety? Or should I shy away from it?  I'm not planning to take the zoloft - it says insomnia is a side effect and that's the problem that got me in this mess to begin with. ANyway, what are the thoughts on atarax and zoloft for withdrawal assistance? 

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hi beachrose!

 

Atarax is an antihistamine, believe it or not, sort of like a super strong benadryl. I think another name for it is Vistaril. Anyway, it is not a benzo and some folks have had success with it in regards to sleeping at night, at least in the short term.  It may help with the anxiety; my understanding is that it is not addicting.

 

Zoloft is .. well, zoloft. An antidepressant with all the resultant pros and cons.

 

Whatever you decide, good luck!

 

rufus

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Yep, I'm in the States.  So what's next?  I might try titration.  Do I switch my posts over to another area to get a titration schedule, etc?  Any possibility of a link to a photo of the cylinder that has been referenced? (Sorry, I am in a brain fog for sure).

 

I have to say you all are awesome.  I may be scared about this, but I sense I don't have to do this alone. That's big help. 

 

My doctor gave me a script for atarax and zoloft to help me through the withdrawal.  Has anyone used atarax to help thru the anxiety? Or should I shy away from it?  I'm not planning to take the zoloft - it says insomnia is a side effect and that's the problem that got me in this mess to begin with. ANyway, what are the thoughts on atarax and zoloft for withdrawal assistance? 

 

Hopefully Colin will get to you with titration suggestions. Here's something my therapist wrote to me about making withdrawals easier by taking something else, I believe she is correct in her evaluation:

 

"Over and over again I have heard people ask what will

help with withdrawals. There really isn't any pill or herb or anything

you could ingest that would make much of a difference. Tincure of time

seems to be the medicine required. It's hard to be patient when you

don't feel well but that is what you must cultivate..patience. I do

think things that are relaxing help..soothing music, deep breathing,

relaxation and fasciatherapy or massage. Also soothing, reassuring

self-talk. This will pass and you WILL feel better."

 

Tony

 

 

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Yep, I'm in the States.  So what's next?  I might try titration.  Do I switch my posts over to another area to get a titration schedule, etc?  Any possibility of a link to a photo of the cylinder that has been referenced? (Sorry, I am in a brain fog for sure).

 

I have to say you all are awesome.  I may be scared about this, but I sense I don't have to do this alone. That's big help. 

 

My doctor gave me a script for atarax and zoloft to help me through the withdrawal.  Has anyone used atarax to help thru the anxiety? Or should I shy away from it?  I'm not planning to take the zoloft - it says insomnia is a side effect and that's the problem that got me in this mess to begin with. ANyway, what are the thoughts on atarax and zoloft for withdrawal assistance? 

 

It would be best to start a thread on the Titration board if you are going with titration.

 

I took Atarax for short time at the end of last year to get me out of very difficult vicious circle of not sleeping. I was so deathly ill from having so little sleep, I would not sleep. Atarax broke the cycle for me. However, I was only sleeping about 1 hour per night, and I am five years free of Clonazepam. I'm unsure of any possible negative effects when tapering benzos - I just don't know.

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Thanks, Tony & Colin (and others who have reolied, too).  I'm really nervous about this - scared really, but will give this my best shot. 
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No need to be. It is quite easy really - once you have done it once, you will see how easy it is to carry out. The biggest downside of titration is that it tends to tie you to your home, as it cannot be conveniently prepared elsewhere. The table will supply you will all the numbers and dates - there are no calculations for you to make.
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