Edited to add: I just took another look at the phenobarbital bottle and it is actually a six-week taper - two weeks on two pills at bedtime, two weeks on one pill, two weeks on a half of a pill.
Hello and welcome. Why aren't you being tapered the florist?
That is the safest way.
Hi there- I suffer from headaches and took large amounts of Fioricet for many years. I haven't touched it for 5 years this month.
I tapered off over several months and used the drug itself to taper with. I know phenobarbital is used and it's kind of an old school treatment but it will eliminate the risk of seizures which is a real threat during detox.
Some symptoms you may experience are: withdrawal headache; insomnia; anxiety; depression; increased appetite; along with shaking and a general unsteady feeling. Or you may experience nothing at all; everyone is different.
Be sure to keep well hydrated and get some exercise. If you feel at all bad just call your doctor. Good luck with this. It can be difficult to go through so reach out for support.
Vicki, thanks so much for the encouragement. I'm on my second night of phenobarbital now, doing okay. Some nausea and headaches, for sure. Headaches have responded well to otc Excedrin Migraine.
Atthebeach, my neurologist is the one who set up the phenobarbital taper, as she felt it would be the safest way to go in avoiding seizures. Phenobarbital has a longer half-life than butalbital, so it's possibly a more gentle taper. I realize that using the fioricet itself can work, too. I did that over the last year to get down to 4 pills a day (rather than the 6-8 I used to take). I think there is a huge push on doctors not to prescribe fioricet at all anymore, at least where I live.
So...so far, so good, or at least bearable. I will keep checking in. Thanks for listening.
Night #2 was rough...day #3 feeling semi-human. Part of the nasty rebound headaches is because of caffeine. Fioricet's got a lot of caffeine, so today I was more aware to add a cup of coffee and increase the Excedrin Migraine tabs. That really helped. Not out of the woods yet but I'm getting there.
How did last night go? If you tell me what's making it so rough, I might be able to suggest something to try.
You were smart to add an extra cup of coffee; you may even need two! The Excedrin Migraine helps that withdrawal as well. Is the headache any better?
Phenobarbital will help. I'm glad this seems to be going smoothly for you. It really is an awful drug to be addicted to.
How are you feeling? I, too, have taken Fioricet most of my life. Worried about you, let us help...
Doing well! Two weeks now with no Fioricet (something I never thought I would say - huge relief just to type the words :-) ) . The first days were bumpy but bearable. I took a couple of days off work and just took care of myself. Tonight was the first step down in the phenobarbital taper. I can't express how relieved I am, although I know the journey's not over till the phenobarb is gone, too. Had some nasty headaches but they were manageable with over the counter meds. Thanks for your kind words, everyone. The info and support was enormously helpful, as was finally finding a communicative doctor. The option to go in-patient was always open, and the ER is just a couple of minutes away. I never got near that point, thankfully (knock wood)
it might get more uncomfortable as you reduce your phenobarb dose...mostly in regards to agitation, etc. keep checking in! glad it is going well :)
Checking in again - doing really well. Still on the taper, but barely. We slowed it down just to make it as smooth as possible (I have other medical conditions that could exacerbate from a too-bumpy drop), but am down to 1/2 a phenobarb tablet from starting at 2 and will actually drop to 1/4 before I am through. I'm fine with that. Occasional headaches but none like at the start. I'm doing my best to eat well, stay hydrated, walk, get fresh air. Thank you all so much for the great suggestions and support. Using fioricet as the tapering agent never worked for me, but this seems to be what I needed. Hang in there everyone!
I'm really happy you posted about this. It sounds like your doctor really did things the best way and too often that isn't the case. Hopefully this will be helpful to others in the future :)