Manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline, Paxil (paroxetine) is a medication prescribed by physicians to treat major depression and other complications. Paxil is classified as a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), which helps to increase the number of chemicals that stabilize mood in a person. While some people have found that Paxil is a particularly effective drug, other people have experienced a number of adverse effects including birth defects, nausea, suicidal tendencies, weight gain and other complications.
As a result, some people who take Paxil decide to go off the medication. Withdrawal from Paxil, however, can result in very serious complications. Because of this, many people inquire about how long Paxil remains in your system after stopping the medication. In response to these questions, this article will review some of the important information that you should know about withdrawing from Paxil.
Some important information that any person who takes Paxil should know includes the following details:
- Do not discontinue use of Paxil, even if you begin to feel better. If you are interested in discontinuing the medication, you should first speak with a medical professional.
- Try not to miss a dose of Paxil (paroxetine). This can result in an increased risk of relapse of the symptoms that caused you to go on the medication.
- Avoid drinking alcohol or using illegal drugs while taking Paxil (paroxetine) because this can worsen your conditions.
- There are no problems associated with long-term use of the medication, but Paxil (paroxetine) is a very powerful medication that has serious complications in withdrawal cases.
Paroxetine is prescribed for major depressive disorder, anxiety, hot flashes, panic disorder, PTSD and social phobias. Some of the medications besides Paxil that contain paroxetine include Brisdelle and Pexeva.
Paxil (paroxetine) is classified as a Schedule V drug, which means that the drug has a low addictive quality and a largely accepted medical use. Based on the amount of drug that is involved, possession of Paxil without a prescription can result in thousands of dollars of fines and a prison sentence.
To understand how long Paxil (paroxetine) will remain in your system, it is important to understand the half-life of the medication. The half-life of Paxil is documented at 21 to 24 hours, which means that 50% of the drug is eliminated from a person’s system within 21 hours after stopping the medication. For example, if you took a single dose of 10 mg of Paxil (paroxetine), in 21 hours, there would be 5 mg of medication left in your system.
After another 21 hours, this amount would further reduce to 2.5 mg. Due to this half-life, Paxil tends to stay in a person’s system for approximately five days. While Paxil is classified as one of the SSRIs with the shortest half-life, this does not mean that withdrawal from the medication is not without some potentially serious complications.
While further research is needed on the subject, SSRIs like Paxil (paroxetine) are believed to work because the medication blocks serotonin from being reabsorbed by the nerve cells from which they are released. While serotonin that is reabsorbed into the brain and nerves does not help to stabilize mood outside of the brain, these neurons are particularly effective at decreasing depression and other various conditions.
Several factors influence the seriousness of side effects that a person can experience while withdrawing from Paxil (paroxetine), which include the following:
- Stopping Methods. Stopping cold turkey frequently results in more complications than gradually tapering off of the medication.
- Dosage. Paxil (paroxetine) is administered in doses of 10 mg, 20 mg, 40 mg and 60 mg. Controlled versions of the medication also come in 12.5 mg, 25 mg, 37.5 mg and other doses. The difference between controlled release and standard Paxil (paroxetine) is that in the controlled dose, the medication is released more slowly. The larger the dosage that a person takes, the more difficult it is to withdraw from the condition.
- Individual physiology. There are a variety of physiology factors among different people that influence the length and ease with which Paxil (paroxetine) withdrawal occurs.
- The time that a person was on Paxil (paroxetine). The amount of time that you were on Paxil plays a significant role in how your body responds to stopping the medication. Generally, discontinuing the medication if you have taken it for an extended period of time results in more serious complications.
How long Paxil (paroxetine) remains in a person’s blood has already been discussed, but there is also a risk of traces of Paxil (paroxetine) showing up in a urine test. 64% of Paxil (Paroxetine) is excreted from the body within urine primarily in the form metabolites and a smaller unchanged amount of paroxetine. As a result, there is a risk that Paxil (paroxetine) might remain in your system after use.
The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers.