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Switching Brands During Taper


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Has anyone switched brands/manufacturers during their taper either because they had no choice or because they felt the brand they were using was not working well?

 

I'm just curious, because I've read a lot of bad things about Accord clonazepam, and I've been having tons of symptoms lately for a couple weeks as I've gotten lower, but it seems like people are doing well using the Teva clonazepam when doing a dry DMT (file and weigh).

 

I know the general rule is to stick with the same brand you started with throughout the entire taper, but I'm just curious if a brand switch helped anyone out.

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Most pharmacies carry Accord due to pricing. I used it in my three tapers so far and seems to be OK. You'll find mixed opinions about this issue. Some even say the actual Klonopin brand give them more reactions. I think the change of brand to accord is not that big of a deal, otherwise, it would have been reported with so many people using it. For me is more psychological than anything else. Most of us are monitoring ourselves so much that we react to anything.

Mice

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micedana: It’s interesting that most of the pharmacies where you live carry Accord.  Where I live, most carry Teva. 

 

hereforhelp: If you haven’t already discovered it, there is a 163-page Support Group thread from 2018 about issues members encountered when Teva stopped manufacturing its original clonazepam formulation and started marketing one from Activas instead. (Teva purchased Activas so my guess is this was a business decision). See link below.

 

Many other individuals sounded the alarm about the negative impact of the change via websites and online communities.  Happily, Teva listened to its customers and returned to its original formulation. 

 

fwiw My experience with Teva is that its quality control is good. Teva is headquartered in Israel but has a US based subsidiary.  It has manufacturing plants worldwide so there’s no way to know where a specific product is manufactured.

 

Link:

Teva Clonazepam Discontinued Group

http://www.benzobuddies.org/forum/index.php?topic=204645.msg2651124#msg2651124

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Yea, I had heard of all that. Also Accord bought Teva in England and Ireland.Heard too that the 1 mg pill is made in Israel and the 0.5 here in the states.

Again accord seems to be ok as far as quality. The only thing I noticed is the it dissolves quite fast thing that may influence in how your stomach fluids may act as far as it surviving the acidic environment creating inter dose withdrawals. 

Mice

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Thank you for your responses, micedana and Libertas.

 

That's what I was thinking, that Teva had brought back the original formulation, and it's pretty good. And yes, the major pharmacies in my area now carry Teva. I have to go to a local pharmacy to get the Accord.

 

Dana, have your tapers been dry, where you're filing and weighing tablets, are you crushing tablets, or are you doing liquid with the Accord tablets? I feel like Accord does not last very long, like you say. I wonder if Teva would do a better job keeping my serum levels more even. And I wonder if the API is spread more evenly throughout the Teva tablets.

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You’re welcome, hereforhelp.

 

Thanks for letting us know that Teva is the brand carried by the major pharmacies in your area as well.  The variation in what brands are available in different areas of the US makes sense given that different pharmacies — including pharmacies within the same chain — use different distributors/suppliers.

 

I personally wouldn’t worry overmuch about the distribution of the API.  Reputable pharmaceutical manufacturers have the necessary equipment and processes in place to ensure products are consistent from batch to batch; this includes consistency in the amount and distribution of the API.  Also, we have had many members over the years who have tapered successfully using pill-splitting, pill-shaving/weighing, and pill powder/weighing.

 

micedana will correct me if I’m wrong but I believe he makes a homebrew clonazepam suspension using a commercial suspending vehicle (either OraPlus or OraBlend).  If memory serves, he uses a formulation similar to this one:

 

0.1mg/mL Clonazepam Oral Suspension

https://www.nationwidechildrens.org/-/media/nch/specialties/pharmacy/compounding-formulas/clonazepam-oral.ashx

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Hi Hereforhelp,

 

I have had brand switches during the last few years and it has really messed everything up.

I was old Teva for many years. It worked great. 2mg at bedtime.

In 2018 Teva discontinued their generic. A lot of us wrote and called to complain. In the meantime I had plenty of the old Teva, so I was ok. In 2019, I decided to try the Brand Roche in case things went south. I did not like it. Too strong and too fast acting. Stayed on old Teva.

2020: I did try the new Teva 2mg and it did not work. Stayed on old. That summer, my Mom had to have emergency abdominal surgery and I took care of her for a month. A lot of stress. I ended up with a UTI and took 2 courses of antibiotics. Had a setback. I had no clue what was going on. After 2 weeks of being on it, my old Teva stopped working. It was not the drug, it was the antibiotic. I was in acute withdrawal and went on the Roche brand. It took months to heal. I also had to up dose. I added in a daytime dose to get stable. I then had to crush the pills to get a certain dose for the morning.

I talked with my Dr and she gave me the Teva .5mg for the daytime because I was sick of trying to crush them. The .5mg seemed to work. I also took the Roche 2mg at night along with a dose of .5mg Teva. I started feeling very bad in April/May of 2021. The Roche brand was too strong and wore off during the night giving me panic feeling. In June I decided to go to the Teva 2mg. It was a major change to my body and it took months to adjust and required another up dose. In the meantime, my Mom died from Covid. It was very stressful, so another up dose to function. The Brand change alone dictated that as Teva is so much weaker, but it stays in the system longer.

In November, I cut by .125mg on morning dose. It was too big and I should have waited awhile.

I did that by cutting the pill.

In March of this year, I started trying to weigh and crush. I dropped my dose by .05mg but went into withdrawal. I am not sure what is going on. I have 2 different scales that are accurate. The pills vary in weight from .165gm to .178gm. I am going to stabilize and cut a smaller dose every 2 weeks to a month. I know how to do the math. I just can't believe how hard it, especially since I am at a fairly high dose of K. I am 68 and it gets harder. I just want to get off of the day doses and get back to my regular night dose. I will then take from there. 

I might try shaving my pills and weighing. I just don't know what is the right thing for me.

I might try the OraPlus suspension. I just don't know at this point. I need to stabilize. Something was way off because the symptoms are wicked. That should not happen with a .05mg cut.

I will say that out of the generics, Teva is the best at this point. I tried accord at 1 point and it did nothing. We are all different.

I hope I have not confused you and hopefully you will find a brand and a method of taper that works.

I will say that micro tapering is the best way to go as not to shock the CNS.

It does not matter how long it takes. I would rather take 5 years or more and function.

I had to function and still do. You need to try to live life while tapering.

 

Take care,

 

Dana

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Thank you for your replies, Libertas and Dana.

 

I just don't know if Accord is as reputable as Teva, and like Dana said, it did nothing for her. I've read some people say they had more symptoms on Accord and switched and some went away. I've just become less functional in recent weeks and don't know why. I've even held and slowed down my taper with seemingly no benefit. I don't know if trying crushing and capsules for five days a few weeks back threw me off, and I'm still recovering from that. I just don't know.

 

Also, what do you think of this: I crushed and encapsulated for five days with stronger symptoms and with a general strange feeling, but after switching back to tablets, I had about four days with some good windows. I attributed this to switching back to filing tablets, but what if the benefit of the capsules wasn't seen until after I was back on tablets due to the half-life... I just wonder that. I hate to try capsules again and find out I was wrong. I really felt weird while I was taking them.

 

I would love to be able to taper completely off my daytime dose and only focus on the nighttime dose, but I don't know that Accord lasts long enough for me to do that. It might be more worthwhile to even up my doses. My morning dose is about half my nighttime dose at this point. Any thoughts on that?

 

Dana, I hope you find a taper method that will work for you and reduce some of your symptoms.

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Hereforhelp,

 

What brand were you on before Accord? So you have had issues with the crushing also?

I don't use capsules although I have them. I was using pharmacy paper which are 4x4 square or maybe smaller. I would tare out the scale but then I weighed them off of the paper and there was a big difference in wt.

 

Do you think filing your tablets was helping you more and was it an easier process?

I am tempted to try that next. I am just not sure about where the active ingredient is?

 

How much were you filing each time?

 

Thanks,

 

Dana

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I've been on Accord the entire length of my clonazepam use. I thought Teva might work better for me as I'm getting down in dose and possibly am experiencing some interdose WD. My symptoms have increased dramatically over the last two weeks.

 

I'm tapering the daily equivalent of 5.5% / 14 days now. I did 6.3% for a long time and then 6.1% for awhile with success, but things have just gotten harder as I've gone along. Filing and weighing is easy; it just takes time. Filling capsules with crushed tablets is quicker, but it didn't seem to work for my body.

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Yes Libertas, I found the same thing on the internet and is mostly used for children and adults that can't swallow the pill. Although some people are affected when switching to liquid I couldn't find any other user friendly method to reduce the doses. For somebody that is still functional, travels or don't want to deal with the mess of jars and milk I would say is the best method.  Also you don't need to throw anything. I use a 4 oz bottle with a pressure cap adapter on the top and a syringe to extract the right amount. You can get the bottle and adapter in some pharmacies or amazon. I only use one of the doses as the reduction dose. Then the rest in pill form. One bottle may last for two months but I do a fresh one every month or so.

Mice

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Thank you for confirming the method you are using, micedana.  Using a professionally developed, stabilty-tested formulation for an oral clonazepam suspension to make your homebrew liquid is a smart move imo.

 

 

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Just out of curiosity, where are the two of you in your tapers? Obviously it's fine if you want to keep it private.
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Regrettably I'm doing my third taper after two reinstatements. My ordeal started 4 years ago when I was prescribed Cipro (antibiotic)and a digestive relaxant that had a benzo (bromazepan) in it. It was due to a digestive pain that probably was IBS. Two weeks after finising the prescriptions I was in HELL. Couldn't sleep for months. I blame the antibiotic and the benzo. I ended later with a psychiatric that put me in the medication bus for 4 months and that included another benzo, Xanax. After everything failed she put me on clonazepan and that's when some kind of normalcy came back. I wasn't exposed to medications for a long time, it was mostly tapering the drug. Both reinstatements were triggered by supplements that I took to try to get better. I reinstated 4 months ago after had been two years off of the drug.

I started my taper with 0.75 mg of clonazepam and its been a month already. I use liquid and pills and the math from this program  https://benzo.alwaysdata.net/. A guy that used to be a member here designed it. So far I already tapered 0.125 mg in about 28 days mixing liquid (reducing dose) and pills. I do three doses a day. I use the morning dose (liquid) as reducing dose.

I have five months to go if everything goes ok. I only used the drug for two months to help me out of the acute situation the supplement put me in. I don't really want to stay taking the drug too long but are the symptoms who will dictate that.

Hopefully this is going to be my last taper. I learn the lesson the bad way of not take anything but healthy food and exercise to take me out of this mess.

I wish people here understand that is mainly time and a healthy life the only things that really help.

Mice

 

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I'm so sorry, micedana. That sounds awful. I hope you can move that quickly on your taper. I sure wish I could. I use that same webapp designed by Jim Hawk to plan my taper and adjust it as needed. It's pretty good. I just wish I didn't have to keep slowing things down. I'm looking at another year and 10 months according to the chart... Surely I'll be able to move faster at some point, because that just seems daunting given that I have symptoms every day.
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