Rapid withdrawal and misprescribing of a benzodiazepine leads to £1.35m settlement for Luke Montagu, CEP co-founder

The UK Times Magazine today publishes a long article describing CEP founder Luke Montagu’s terrible experience with antidepressants and sleeping pills:

When he was first prescribed these drugs at 19, Montagu was not depressed and had never been diagnosed with depression. He was a student at New York University, and had recently undergone a general anaesthetic for a sinus operation that left him with headaches and feeling, as he puts it, “not myself”. Without carrying out any tests, a British GP announced that he had a “chemical imbalance of the limbic system” and prescribed Prozac. Montagu, “impressionable and in awe of doctors”, swallowed them unquestioningly.

However, he didn’t feel any better and over the course of the next five years saw various doctors who, no less than nine times, switched him to different drugs. Montagu was given a variety of different diagnoses, with no two medics seemingly able to agree. “One doctor said it was anxiety, another suggested conversion disorder. None of them seemed to accept what I knew – and would point out quite heatedly – which was this was all a consequence of the sinus operation and the chopping and changing of the various drugs.”

On a couple of occasions, Montagu had tried to quit, but always felt so bad that he quickly resumed the drugs. “I thought it was because I needed the medication; now I understand that it was because I was going into withdrawal each time I tried to come off the drugs. But the doctors never spotted that,” he says.

“When I restarted the drugs, I would feel better, at least initially. At the time, I didn’t realise that I was just like a junkie who needed a fix – my body and brain had become dependent on these chemicals. My life was going well otherwise: I was living in Kensington with a girlfriend, extremely busy with my internet business. Eventually, I decided just to stay on the drugs and only went to the doctor for repeat prescriptions; I kept taking what was prescribed and managed to keep functioning even though I didn’t feel 100 per cent.”

At the end of 2008, however, Montagu, by then 38, resolved that enough was enough. He was on a new antidepressant, Effexor, that made him feel wired. To counteract this, he’d been prescribed sleeping pills, clonazepam, but they made him forgetful. He decided to start the new year clean.

At the time, he was seeing Dr Mark Collins, a psychiatrist at the Priory Hospital in southwest London, whose patients had included Princess Margaret, Ruby Wax and the Marquess of Blandford. “Dr Collins went to Eton; he was from a similar background. He seemed to be somebody I could trust,” Montagu says ruefully.

On Collins’s advice, Montagu checked himself in to the Priory, where his clonazepam was taken away (he stayed on Effexor). “I thought I wouldn’t sleep for two or three nights, then I’d be so tired I’d crash out. Instead, it felt like my brain was torn into pieces.”

Collins, he later learnt, had made a dreadful mistake – long-term users of sleeping pills need to taper off over months, or even years. Over the next few days, Montagu experienced a “tidal wave of horrific symptoms”.

Initially, he couldn’t walk. “I couldn’t coordinate my body or judge distances, I didn’t know how far things were away from me. There was this incredibly loud ringing in my ears. I couldn’t see – everything was blurry and I was having flashback after flashback of distant memories, things dredged up from years gone by. I was crying for no reason, sobbing hysterically.

“It was like the detox hell I’d seen in films like Trainspotting. I thought, I’m just going to have to ride this out and it will get better in the same way heroin withdrawal eventually loses its grip. But I had no idea that withdrawal from long-term use of sleeping pills can take months and sometimes years.”

A few days later, Montagu discharged himself. “I was in a state of absolute terror. I just wanted to get out of the hospital because I knew that something dreadful had been done to me. Somehow I made it home, but there I realised everything was different. I’d left the house as one person, but returned as another. In a quite literal way, I had lost my mind.”

Since then, Montagu has endured seven years of what can only be described as hell. A softly spoken man with a gentle demeanour, he is mainly calm as he describes his ordeal, but occasionally his voice wobbles.

Back home, he found himself unable to focus. “I could barely put a sentence together, remember who I was or what I was supposed to do. It was as if parts of my brain had been erased. For the first couple of years, I had to try to pretend to be the person that I was, while knowing inside that that person had gone.”

[His business] needed him, but he couldn’t function. “I’ve always been very good at getting things done and knowing what to say, but now I’d sit in a meeting without knowing what to do next.” At a board meeting he burst into tears in front of his fellow directors. “I had to say, ‘I just can’t do this. I’m really not well.’”

He realised he could no longer work. For the next three years, Montagu was stuck at home in agonising physical and mental pain. Horrified by the risk of additional drug harm, he decided to wean himself very slowly from the Effexor, leaving him with severe burning nerve pains, like pins and needles, all over his body, that continue to this day.

…As he slowly began to feel better, Montagu poured his energies into fighting back. Knowing his experiences would be dismissed as anecdote, together with various credible medics, he co-founded CEP, the Council for Evidence-based Psychiatry, which gathers evidence of the harm caused by psychiatric drugs in order to lobby politicians and medical bodies. To give others hope, he uploaded short films of recovery stories to the website. They have become a popular resource.

“It’s pretty shocking that there are virtually no NHS resources to help people get though the hell of withdrawal, particularly since the problem has largely been caused by NHS treatment,” says Montagu, still measured in his speech but his passion rising. “It’s getting worse – more than 57 million prescriptions for antidepressants were issued in England last year. That’s 7 per cent more than 2013 and 500 per cent more than 1992.”

CEP’s message upsets many, who retort that such drugs have saved countless people from suicide. Montagu shrugs. “Psychiatry is a corrupt and dishonest business: it treats so-called illnesses that don’t exist with drugs that don’t cure and can cause great harm. And once you have been harmed, it then diagnoses further illness and prescribes yet more drugs. I know they can help some people in the short term, but they’re just psychoactive like alcohol or cocaine – they can make you feel better initially, but over the long term they cause dependence and destroy your physical and mental health.”

Montagu eventually sued Dr Collins for the rapid withdrawal and long-term misprescribing of clonazepam, which led to a £1.35m out of court settlement, including legal fees.

The full article can be viewed at: http://cepuk.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/Times-Magazine-18-July-2015-pdf.pdf


74 Responses to Rapid withdrawal and misprescribing of a benzodiazepine leads to £1.35m settlement for Luke Montagu, CEP co-founder

  1. Laura 18/07/2015 at 12:30 pm #

    I’m very pleased to hear about the settlement! Congratulations! Of course money can never take away the pain of what has happened to Luke. But at least it will ease the financial impact.

    It’s a very important step in the right direction. Hopefully it will wake doctors up to the fact that they have to know what they’re doing before starting to play with people’s lives and health.

    Thanks so much to the CEP for fighting this fight for all of us.

    I wish I could sue my doctor for not warning me about the risks of antidepressants, but I think I’ll not be able to succeed with this in court. Handing out antidepressants to everybody without giving any information is a very common practice unfortunately.

    • Tyler 04/02/2017 at 2:13 am #

      Luke your a walking miracle , I’ve been where you wear , after withdrawal diazapam and Effesor velafelaxine , after 6 suicide attempts and awful self harm – I went back on the benzo . I’ve beaten alcohol 13 years sober that was easy – This was addiction caused by my gp – I’m back on diazampam now and I’m fairly ok , BUT Hell is not a strong enough word for what yourself and I have gone though . I’m only on 10mgs a day diazapam now ,I don’t take any other drugs finally I met a GP that saw all my symptoms where 100% withdrawal benzo – he’s now retiring and I’m planning suicide if I’m cut off again by the new GP … As it’s the only way !! , if this happens. I’m a model have a child and many that love me . Some will say selfish bitch … live one day in benzo w/d then they may see . I’d rather chop off my toes . I totally understand . Well done with the money but w/d from benzo and velafelaxine ( Effesor) is no LIFE I’m off the anti D now SNRI which Was no where near as bad as Valium but still awful ! NO WAYi coming off Valuim ( diazapam ) I’m 35 ,20 years on it … CANT DO IT I so grateful for my life now as when my GP is retiring I have no clue about what he will do ,the just out of med school jumped up kid !
      Well done to you
      And trolls stay under your bridge what Luke and myself have gone though is TOURTURE !!!

      • Rick 17/05/2017 at 1:45 am #

        Hope this finds you still here… I just want to quickly say I was 20 years on various benzo and effexor and 2 other antidepressant and over, 2 years have slowly withdrawn and somewhat healed, it was hell, but now it’s really not that bad… Not great but I am back. I too thought of ending it many times, now I look back and am proud I was so strong and made it as I would have never thought I could do it…. You need to fight too…..

      • Enzo Steward 03/03/2020 at 8:45 pm #

        I sympathise I’ve been prescribed 40mg daily living in newcey for 11year then moved to Gateshead and was taken off one weekly so had to get street valls and they were blue 10s so I ended up with 20 blues a day habit and in the past 9 years I got my doc tabs bak but only 10 wites so was taking 7blues with the whites now I’m being reduced again cos my doctor is retiring this year I’m addicted so think a will have to go back to buying street blues carnt handle the withdrawal need summit to feel normal I’ve been on diazepam for 2long to stop now and its dangerous for me to do so.

    • Marcus 27/10/2017 at 6:50 pm #

      I suffered the exact same symptoms as Luke when coming straight off xanax. Utterly terrifying and one that nhs doctors are simply not prepared for and will not face up to. Mark Collins as an ex addict should have known better. Benzo withdrawal is terrifying- what people don’t realise is that it’s genuinely life threatening unlike something like heroin withdrawal, which is hell on earth but not a patch on benzo. I’ve been prescribed xanax, diazepam, nitrazepam, tempazepam, bromazepam, estazolam and clonazepam (obviously not all at the same time!). Xanax is without doubt the most terrifying to withdraw from whereas diazepam, due to its long half life is slightly easier but you still end up emotionally ruined for weeks on end and Luke’s description of tears in the boardroom is something I can truly identify with and therefore sympathise with. My doctor at the priory, the so called head of the addiction unit, Dr Mike McPhillips took me off a six month course of sertraline and xanax in one go, almost with a menacing grin on his face. The man had no idea what he was doing yet charged huge amounts of money for the privelage of being screwed up by him. I am still prescribed benzos but I now feel like it’s at least under control. 5 MLS of diazepam for back pain and 10ml nitrazepam for sleep. I’m lucky to have found a wonderful doctor with something so many of them seem to be lacking – common sense and genuine concern and sympathy. What poor Luke has been through I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. Perhaps those very expensive doctors at the priory could try it though to see how it feels. Utterly despicable. Luke having won this battle is an amazing achievement and extremely courageous. It gives me hope!!

    • J.Hill 07/12/2018 at 5:48 am #

      Here is a link to a media article that no one should miss.

      John Patrick Walter was arrrested for disruptive conduct, denied his legitimate Clonazepam prescription, and then tortured and killed by this neglect. The article states the facts. This death was not only caused only by the entity just judged responsible. More than 20 other people and entities may become defendants in this atrocity. Walter was tortured in jail-ordered C/T, additionally tortured by Tazer when his symptoms included thrashing and confusion, and left naked in a cell to die over 17 days. AND there is video of the 17 days of hideous benzo C/T withdrawal.

      Heipt, the plaintiff’s attorney, describes the whole thing. He is well versed in benzo-injury with the exeption of his belief that crossing to a different benzo and tapering under medical supervision will result in reversal of the benzo-dependent state.

      We also see that ostensibly benign self help sites also mistake the facts. It is possible that crossing to a different benzo and tapering under medical supervision will reverse the withdrawal syndrome? What medical professional uses a tested withdrawal protocol? Do valid protocols exist? From the last 13 years of looking at the benzo issue, I can say that once a cold turkey state is established, a return to any dosage of the benzo will fail to relieve the withdrawal syndrome.

      Walters was tortured and killed via benzo withdrawal syndrome. A return to the benzo and inclusion of an antiseizure drug may stop death but not the syndrome. Medicine has nothing to reverse the damage. Heipt implied that medical intervention would have stopped the torture. He also claimed that a crossover to another benzo was in order for the purpose of tapering. This may be a restatement of the old an false idea that specific benzo half life determines the onset of symptoms. Well Clonazepam is one of these long half life benzos, and half life of a benzo is not the problem. Symptoms emerge when the working dosage falls as result of the patient’s individual levels of CYP 450 enzymes’ effect. Half life is a function of a drug and not of a patient’s individual drug clearance rate.

      Still Budge and Heipt know far more than is usual. I refered a couple to this law firm. The firm’s response was that it was too busy to take the couple’s case. The case involved more than medicine’s causing benzo injury. It involved hiding this injury by (improperly) committing the victim.

      If you are interested in not only benzo-caused deaths but also forced drugging causing further harm, go to you tube and type in “Death by Medicine” a Gary Null video. The before and after videos are striking. Civil liberties were violated. Who represents the benzo-injured who were unlawfuly committed and so denied any method of tapering their benzos? This happened to the benzo-victim in the video.
      Her rights were violated, and she is now impaired both mentally and physically. She might have ended as another John Patrick Walter. in any case, she has remained injured for over ten years. Her life is gone. Her will vanished. Her heart still beats.

      What lawful remedy exists for the harm induced by uninformed medical providers? Are callously injured citizens without constitutional liberites? Are their lives irrelevant to justice? Is this only a USA problem? Where might we go from here?

    • Jackie 09/02/2019 at 2:44 am #

      I’m on 2mgs of xanax 5x day. Had 12 withdrawal seizures and am lucky to be alive. I am going to die as well. Ill6be on this the rest of my life. It’s so wrong. The Drs keep writing and writing knowing ur addicted. They just wrote more for me.

  2. paul pezzack 18/07/2015 at 1:33 pm #

    congratulations Luke on winning.sorry you had to suffer so much.
    no amount of money can compensate for this hell.
    i too have suffered extremely bad from prozac for 8 years.after being told it was ok to go cold turkey as there was no such thing as prozac withdrawal.
    even after reinstating after 12 weeks of pure hell ive continued to suffer extreme pain and psychological effects.
    its 8 years now and my life has been totally ruined.
    so many of my friends have suffered too.
    its inhumane how people are treated and dismissed as mental.

    • nice 14/09/2018 at 6:20 pm #


      • j.hill 11/09/2020 at 6:12 am #

        Yes, Half-life is not the issue. It is related but not central. Severe withdrawal-states can occur with any psycho-active substance including Prozac.

        The assumption that half-life is the issue misses the whole problem. What is the origin of that idea anyway?

        A clue to managing any taper: the cut rate must not be some standard number. If it exceeds your unique recovery capacity, it will not culminate in reversal of the acquired physiological dependence. This bears no similarity to actual addiction.

  3. Greg 18/07/2015 at 2:47 pm #

    Its only a matter of time before we realise that the philosophy and practice of modern medicine, not unlike conventional psychiatric practice, is to a great extent scientifically redundant, non-relating and controlling; that its continued existence is only sustainable on a basis of a with-holding, legally monopolistic co-dependency between gullible ‘patient’, devious governance and pharmaceutical sleight of hand.

  4. Bobbi Wilkins 18/07/2015 at 4:18 pm #

    I live in the US and I was started on Clonazapam after a back injury, for a jumpy left leg..I could not stop the drug and I was always told it was harmless, just stay on it.
    After 12 years of worsening health (physical, mental, emotional) I tried to get help to stop taking the 1mg at night only..Because of incompetence in everyone I saw, I was eventually CT’ed and forced into a hell I wish on no one. If a lawyer reads this that can help me sue many people in the USA (Including a Medical Board)…Please try to find me. It has been almost 3 years and I am just now able to walk and do simple things again. I have lost almost everything and I am financially ruined. I hope to start over again eventually.
    This is a crime that is so wrong that most people cannot fathom. I cannot get the time and restore my good name..but I am sure money would help me get started on a new beginning.

    • LA. G. 29/12/2015 at 9:10 pm #

      Prescribed Clonazepam following a work-related injury-spinal surgery. I was overdoing my physical therapy after learning that my employer was uninsured. The doctor at the place I was sent to, prescribed ridiculous amounts of various drugs. I refused the drugs. I was told to take the drugs or lose medical treatment, and to trust the doctor’s expertise. I asked every question I could think of about taking Clonazepam. Fifteen years later, the doctor retires, seeing all his patients before leaving. He told me to never stop taking the Clonazepam or I’d be sorry. That’s ALL he said about it. I was left with his replacement MD. When my PCP chose to discontinue my clonazepam on fine day, he did so without thought, care, research, etc. When i was soon in the throws of benzo withdrawal syndrome, he told me I was just having a panic attack….that I’d be fine. I told him EXACTLY what was happening and he still refused to acknowledge anything. His office person spoke very condescendingly to me, saying: Oh, Lori Ann, you won’t get any pills from us…” Pills? I need serious medical help! I was sent to the ER several times. Each visit recorded my BP over 300. When asked who my PCP was, after I answered….they were hands-off. NO TREATMENT GIVEN. This happened 3 times. I gave up on the ER. I fired the PCP (had to). Here it is a year later…..
      ..my ears are ringing to no end. My body is a mess. I need help with food, shopping, everything. I have NO help. ZERO medical attention! The prescribing place (Spectrum Healthcare) I was again referred to, would do NOTHING. They DID offer me PILLS of a different sort!? I have taken ZERO pills or medications since being abruptly withdrawn/dropped on my a** from the clonazepam. The abrupt withdrawing doctor took ALL his patients of ALL addictive meds (per: his front desk). He may look good to Medicare and ‘on paper’ but this man and his staff have destroyed my very life. The negligence of the initial prescribing place refusing to do a taper…..is HIGHESTLY accountable! They are now doing tapers!!!!!!!!!! They refused to give me a taper from THEIR PRESCRIBED MEDS. Every medical professional I know or have seen cannot fathom how I am even alive. And from what I’ve been through, and am going through……I can’t believe it either. I honestly wish this would have killed me…….I have NO quality of life now. All my talents, skills, applied knowledge and work……….gone. I thought I lived in order to tell this horrendous story to warn people about trusting doctors and their practicing hospitals. I have a trail of all of it……it’s in the system. No good lawyer will help me. HEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEELP.

      • M Makela 20/01/2017 at 9:45 pm #

        I know how crazy hard this can be and I titrated for 14 months off clonazepam. Have you tried neurofeedback?

        • j.hill 08/04/2017 at 6:01 am #

          Neurofeedback for physiological damage?

      • j.hill 11/09/2020 at 6:25 am #

        You do need a lawyer. You need one long before the statute of limitations tolls. A bad result is not actionable in itself. Incompetence while claiming expertise is more likely. What’s it worth as a judgement? What is a life worth?

        Now here we could benefit from some good legal thinking. Dollar value for loss of life is determined by the expected life left and by the people who depended on the victim. A grandfather’s life is worth little. However, that grandfather’s pain is equal to a young person’s. Would pain be a better claim?

    • Bill Hutchinson 02/03/2016 at 8:43 pm #

      To both “Bobbi Wilkins”, and “La. G.”, thanks for your stories. I hear you! I went on a multi-year taper from several OTHER psych drugs, with clonazepam – which is also called “Klonopin” here in the U.S. I started tapering off .5mg 3x day, and got to where I rarely needed any, when I was abruptly terminated by a quack Doc., and a crooked, for-profit local hospital. One POSSIBLE answer MIGHT be to try “benedryl”, also known as “diphenhydramine”, which is an allergy/sinus medication. It MIGHT help, at low doses, to get past the worst of benzo withdrawal. Also, visit >madinamericabeyondmeds<, and look for Dr. Kelly Brogans' website. I can recommend all 3 resources myself. I'd like to find a good lawyer here in America, too…. God knows I could use the money from what would be a "slam-dunk" lawsuit win. Good luck!

      • j.hill 07/03/2016 at 8:49 pm #

        I’d like to comment on what poses as resources, but the other issue is accessing legal redress for the damage that you sustained and the medical bullying that you met. What about loss of life?

        In the USA, we have laws that are there to protect people like you. In practice, the laws may as well not be there. A lawsuit requires testimony from people who are recognized as experts. What expert is willing to lose everything in the service of telling the truth?

        • Sandra Villarreal 08/03/2016 at 5:26 am #

          About the only psychiatric drug expert we have in the U.S. is Dr. Peter Breggin who is very expensive, although, the very best. So once again, the poor people lose out because most of us gravely harmed are already living on Disability checks which puts us below poverty level. So there is no help for us.

          My friend in Washington talks of suicide daily, he’s still suffering extreme Protracted Benzo Withdrawal symptoms, who was able to contact Dr. Breggin knowing he can’t afford him. So where do we go from here? No where..

          • j.hill 16/05/2017 at 12:43 am #

            Yes, Peter Breggin knows that there is a “benzo problem”. He is a dedicated and kind man with decades of experience and really shocking stories.

            When I was about to contact him, a benzo-friend linked me to a radio interview between herself and Dr. Breggin. There she explained that she had tried in vain to stop taking Klonopin. Dr. Breggin told her that she needed to identify why she had taken the benzo because managing that reason was her cure for Klonopin dependence. I am not joking. I heard the radio broadcast.

            My friend had made her point. Peter Breggin is a well respected Psychiatrist for good reason, but his knowledge of how to come off benzos was zero.

            Dr. B has suggested tapering all psycho drugs by decreasing dosage by no more than 10% at a time. That suggestion is now distorted to be “Dr Breggin tapers benzos by 10% at a time”. The difference is critical. This kind of misunderstanding has spread over the internet. It may not be possible to be accurately heard.

            In any case, this kind and educated doctor is not yet able to help benzo-victims to taper effectively and cause repair concurrently with the taper. We see this same misinformation almost everywhere. Web site owners say that this is not possible. It is possible and it has been happening for over ten years. Caveat: Self appointed experts will sell a corrupted version of the real thing. It’s unfortunate for all of us.

            Now I shouldn’t use this forum to talk specifics or to ask you for your own input. Do you know how we might compare notes more privately? I am asking for your help, Sandra.There are two immediate goals: provide medically monitored tapers following the often missing good practice and finding real help for the others who seem already to have been persistently damaged.

            There is more to these goals than meets the eye. I’ve talked with MD’s. Not all are opposed to the truth. One actually offered to review my work so far.

        • Sandra Villarreal 11/10/2018 at 8:02 pm #

          J. HILL – for some reason this particular Luke story was put in my email box today. (10-11-18) I’ve divorced myself from further researching psychiatric drugs, Psychiatry Industry & the mental health field due to the countless heartbreaking stories, I just could not cry anymore, it was ripping my heart out reading that another person committed suicide from their withdrawal torture while Doctors stood by doing nothing. Between the anger at the mental health system, outrage at Dr’s deliberately prescribing these neurotoxic drugs that have stole literally every thing from us they could steal, I’d had enough.

          I even donated my 2 yrs worth of research, over 900 printed pages of scientific proof the deadly dangers of our drugs, articles, personal stories to a therapist who claimed she was helping her client who murdered her daughter while psychotic from her medications and never even got a Thank You…leaving me more bitter.

          I would love to correspond with individuals who ‘really’ care. I would love to chat…. My email address: sanderella57@att.net

    • Lilyкуш 03/06/2016 at 3:19 pm #

      Same here, buddy. Medical community’s lack of awareness, knowledge & education regarding the dangers of psychiatric drugs is a travesty. Hang in there.

  5. Jean Baker 18/07/2015 at 9:04 pm #

    Thank you for fighting back! Here in America, it’s very hard to sue when nobody believes you. So many are able to relate with your story. It’s so terribly frightening! How could a pill take over ones mind? I never thought this could happen! I used to think, mind over matter, but from a prescription of ativan, I was thrown into a different dimension and I could no longer snap out of it.
    “Back home, he found himself unable to focus. “I could barely put a sentence together, remember who I was or what I was supposed to do. It was as if parts of my brain had been erased. For the first couple of years, I had to try to pretend to be the person that I was, while knowing inside that that person had gone.”

  6. M. Salima Hitchcock 18/07/2015 at 9:08 pm #

    First of all, you refer to clonazepam (brand name Klonopin in the U.S) as “a sleeping pill”. Never once do you call it a “benzodiazepine tranquillizer). Yes, clonazepam does have sedative hypnotic properties, but it’s also an anxiolytic, muscle relaxant, anti-convulsant/anti-seizure, and amnesiac. It’s highly potent, (more so than Benzo “sleeping pills”(e.g. Dalmane (flurazepam); ProSom (estazolam); or temazepam (Restoril) …and also a highly addictive short-acting tranquilizer (20x more potent than valium; 10x more potent than Lorazepam (Ativan).) These short-acting tranquilizers bind very tightly to the GABA (A) receptors throughout the body and brain…and also profoundly suppress the CNS. So when the drug is stopped abruptly, especially if you’ve reached Tolerence and are iatrogenicaly addicted and (or “physically dependent…same thing) (Doctor has been prescribing irresponsibly), the CNS rebounds strongly, suppressed adrenaline rushes into the system ( a “fight or flight” anxiety attack takes place) and an ACUTE withdrawal begins….it cannot be predicted how severe it will be from person to person. W/drawals are long, four weeks + and much more difficult than heroin w/rawal!! People withdrawing from benzo tranguilizers should NEVER be abandoned by doctors, and forced to go thru a “cold turkey” or rapid detox. This is criminal!! It can be life-threatening….e.g.anaphylactoid/anaphylactoid reaction; possible seizures;; and, in the 1980’s during valium and lorazepam crisis, in the UK, there were 891 recorded suicides from benzo tranq’s (or BZ’s) during use and during w/drawals (can CAUSE depression…pt. should be removed from the BZ, SLOWLY, and PROPERLY.) Xanax is as potent as Klonopin, but can be more quickly addictive (2 to 3 weeks), and far worse w/drawal symptoms are possible (mania, convulsions) Information: the entire benzo.org.uk website, beginning with The Ashton Manual: Benzodiazepines–How They Work, How To Withdraw. Also on the site…Dr. Reg Peart (many papers, and his education organization.. VOT (victims of tranquilizers); CITA (Counsel for Iatrogenic Tranquilizer Addiction or ITA); Vernon Coleman, M.D.; the media archives 1985-2014…UK) or A – Z (alphabetically); Quotations: Dr. Heather Ashton’s main page. much more on site to explore…links. World experts on benzodiazepines… Also Peter Breggin, MD (psychiatrist, clinical psychopharmacologist…Ithaca, New York. One of his most important books: “Brain-Disabling Treatments in Psychiatry: Drugs, Electroshock, and the Psychopharmaceutical Complex”(2008) Peter Breggin .com Facebook/ Peter Breggin,MD Every Psych drug/neuroleptic and info on ALL side effects in detail. he has developed “Empathic Psychotherapy”….will not prescribe psych drugs in his practice. The foremost Reform Psychiatrist. See his book: How To Withdraw From Psychiatric Drugs”. also on benzo.org.uk…the benzodiazepine withdrawal syndrome.
    “Sleeping Pills” are just as dangerous as the tranquillizers..for both, should only take a week or two at most (Ashton, Breggin etc.) See list of all psych drugs and benzos at back of “Brain Disabling Treatments. And do read Robert Whitaker’s “Anatomy of An Epidemic” (2008) All these people are on YouTube. Also Whitaker’s website: MadinAmerica.com….a forum for blogs by well-known psychiatrist, clinical psychologists, many therapists, former patients etc. There’s a paradigm shift taking place…towards Evidence Based Alternatives. The out of control diagnosis and drugging of children, adolescents, and adults for Big Pharma Profit is proving damaging long-term (See Whitaker…”Anatomy of an Epidemic: The Biopsychiatric Paradigm is failing… Parma has lied….patients become more ill on psych drugs taken long-term…and phama wants you on them “for life”. $$$$$$$

    • M, Salima Hitchcock 09/10/2015 at 10:50 pm #

      I just returned to this page to re-read Luke Montagu’s story…..then I scrolled down to the comments and discovered all the completely excessive comments I made. The first one I guess could be forgiven…..but the next three are completely unhinged: completely repetitious, confrontational, and so embarrassing to me. I don’t think I understood at the time exactly what Cepuk represented??… but still no excuse for the run-on last three messages…Nuts….irrational. NOW of course I realize I was preaching (over-preaching) to the choir. God, is this what benzos can do to the mind? I went though a prescribed ordeal and cold-turkey…) Or am I just losing it naturally?? Would it be possible for you to delete at least the last three messages? I’m quite throughly humiliated. I’d really appreciate a response. And…thank you so much for the Sept. 18th London Conference!!

      • Sandra Villarreal 10/10/2015 at 4:38 pm #

        Salima, you don’t have to apologize for your rants & raves. I too, have very significant cognitive impairment from years taking psychiatric drugs, but so much more so from my ‘cold turkey’ benzo withdrawal. We’ve already been shamed to death by psychiatrists, the mental health world and everyone in between – don’t shame yourself any further. Believe me, I understand. Luke’s story was quite amazing! And what he doing is even more amazing.

        So chin up – smile on your face – and carry on my dear…..

        • Marguerite Salima Hitchcock 13/10/2018 at 11:05 pm #

          Sandra: Found my way to re-reading events and comments on Cepuk.org…I haven’t been here since 2014. So, lots of new information and input from patients. i want to thank you for your sweet, supportive comment to me after I went on and on in comment after comment. Your words soothed me, I’m still have severe, bilateral tinnitus problem from the benzo cold turkey withdrawal. it has affected normal sleep for since w/drawal in 2011. I’m wondering if Luke Montague still has the serious tinnitus from his severe withdrawal??? Wish I could ask him. Do any others reading this have a tinnitus problem?? If so, how do ou cope with it? i’ve found that relaxation and acceptance must be the rule….sometimes you get a decent sleep, sometimes not! Sandra…I do hope you’re doing well?? xxoo

    • DEBRA BRYAN 27/12/2015 at 8:18 pm #

      I have been soon 2 mg xanexs for almost 4 years and haven’t gone thru withdrawals but since. 8 couldn’t sleep, I had hallucinations but no pain. I’m also on Wellbrtron 300mg, jtop the Wellbrutron and Syraquil but the xanex iand Syraquil 25mg. I can stop the other 2 but xanexs I’ve only gone a few days without. I’m 60 Yrs a5ing am depressed whete 8 dont go out the house, I watch TV take a half xanex sleep several ho7rs, wake up, watch tv, bedtime take the other half of xanex. Recently for no reasonand i didnt wven know, the doctor doubled the dosage from 30 xanex a month to 60. I refuse to take them the way he wants. 8m going to try to slow detox myself off the 1 bar of xanex a day. Who can tell me the best way since Im nit taking that much but because of my age, oh and I almosr forgot, Ive been on methadone, 1old, not e

    • MeowFace 04/03/2019 at 2:13 am #

      @M. Salima Hitchcock

      “Yes, clonazepam does have sedative hypnotic properties, but it’s also an anxiolytic, muscle relaxant, anti-convulsant/anti-seizure, and amnesiac.”

      It’s also anti-spasmodic.

      “and also a highly addictive short-acting tranquilizer”

      It’s actually not short acting. If you’re talking about onset it’s medium, if you’re talking about duration it’s the second longest lasting Benzo, only valium is longer.

      “Xanax is as potent as Klonopin, but can be more quickly addictive (2 to 3 weeks), and far worse w/drawal symptoms are possible (mania, convulsions)”

      This is actually not true. Clonaz withdrawal can also cause mania and convulsions. And what’s more, all psychiatric medications withdrawals can cause seizures, not just Benzo’s. Clonaz can also addict just as quickly as xanax, though it may be true that Xanax is more likely to addict you quicker. I don’t actually know that one.

      My initial suspicion would simply be that xanax is prescribed more so it gets reported more. But that may not be true, it may in fact addict faster for most people. But I do know that clonaz is capable of addicting someone in as little as three weeks to a month. The odd person in two weeks.

  7. J.Hill 18/07/2015 at 9:50 pm #

    I am so encouraged to read the well-thought and well-written articles and comments. The current drug-taper protocols obviously cause the same damage as the sudden and complete cessation of the drug in question.

    In addition, many physicians have accepted the advertising claims of “detox” businesses operating in many countries. The idea that no more damage or pain is present after the drug is “eliminated from the body” is without any merit at all. It is more correctly called: cold-turkey withdrawal, and the result can be major illness and incapacity for life. Families and spouses of the actual victims are here to tell the whole story.

    Once damaged by herculean taper protocols, who really recovers?
    And media are full of supposedly valid protocols that have been tested not at all.

    We know enough to avoid these enslaving prescriptions. We now know enough to avoid the people who would force drugging via government actions. What can we do for those already lost in a state of lasting medical-harm and who now have no choices? This is loss of life while the heart still beats.

    Bravo to the plaintiff. I wish that I had been so brave.

  8. Bonnie Foz 18/07/2015 at 9:59 pm #

    I cannot begin to express enough sympathy–and empathy—for Luke Montagu and what he has endured! I experienced something somewhat similar due to rapid withdrawal, but nothing like his ordeal. But for 6 months I was very uncomfortable physically and mentally, and incapacitated, and almost committed myself to a psychiatric hospital so I wouldn’t take my life, even though I didn’t feel depressed or anxious—-just a vague, all pervasive intolerable “pain” (tho it didn’t hurt) of staying alive and trying to cope. Horrible. I faked being OK even when feeling suicidal. Eventually, with the help of a different doctor, I was very very slowly weaned off the benzodiazapine and onto Zoloft. A month later I was back to my old self. Too scary for words.

    I wish all the best for Luke, and that he gets relief from his pain. I wish I could wave a magic wand for him. Is it possible that, it being so long since the original event, he could try a low dose of Zoloft for a while? I suggest it Only because it helped me turn the corner.

  9. M, Salima Hitchcock 18/07/2015 at 10:16 pm #

    I just wrote a long comment with many sources (books, websites, etc.)by well-known psychiatrists that are revealing the actual truth about biopsychiatric drug therapy and the risks and harms associated with them…far out-weighing the short-term benefits. The drugs are not working longterm, making patients more ill. And with copious, extensive, international research sources (and longterm clinical experience) the psychiatrists , clinical psychopharmacoligists, and others are revealing the actual drug-induced, iatrogenic physiological and psychological toxicity and harms from antipsychotics, antidepressants, ADHD stimulant drugs…all of them. Peter R. Breggin M.D (U.S.); Joanna Moncrieff, M.D.(London); Peter Gotzsche,M.D.(Copenhagen); Robert Whitaker(U.S) in his book “Anatomy of an Epidemic”(2010); David Healy, M.D. (Cardiff Univ, Wales); Heather Ashton, M.D. (UK) in “The Ashton Manual”…benzo.org.uk (expert on benzodiazepines…and many, many more . Also, clonazepam (Klonopin) is not just a “sleeping pill”…it is a potent, highly addictive short acting Benzodiazepine Tranquilizer with Severe withdrawal affects after the patient reaches Tolerance and becomes addicted. They behave like narcotics….and far more difficult to w/draw from than Heroin….long withdrawals (at least four weeks or longer with protracted symptoms)…..
    After writing and submitting my comment (more detailed than this), it was DELETED with a comment “This has been submitted twice by you.” Not True. I’ve never been on this site before….and it was my first and only comment. Who is truly controlling this website???

  10. M, Salima Hitchcock 18/07/2015 at 11:13 pm #

    Where is the first comment…detailed…that I wrote just prior to the 18/07/2015 10:16 pm comment that I just wrote above asking why my first comment is not here. It came up briefly after I just wrote and submitted the above comment….and then disappeared. Do you TRULY want people educated about the failing efficacy of psychiatric drugs, the “over-diagnosing and over-prescribing….and the disabling illnesses, and iatrogenic addiction(physical dependency…same thing) that they cause (which will discussed further at the September 13 conference in London….the link which you have on this page, above right entitled “More Harm Than Good: Confronting the Psychiatric Medication Epidemic.” Some of the psychiatrists I’ve mentioned above are leading this conference: Peter Breggin (US); Joanna Moncrieff (London); Robert Whitaker(US medical/Science Researcher and Journalist); Prof Peter Kinderman (UK); Prof. Peter Gotzsche,MD (Copenhagen); Prof. Joh Abraham; Dr. James Davies. These psychiatric professionals are a part of the growing paradigm shift, the Reform Movement, towards Evidence-Based Alternatives to highly toxic, damaging chemicals with short efficacy.
    Read Robert Whitaker’s book “Anatomy of an Epidemic”(2010). The research is impeccable…..this is not an epidemic of supposedly defective brains with “Mental illness”; it is an epidemic of drug-induced and manufactured psychiatric and physiological abnormalities. All the “medications”….drugs that are crude chemicals… are incredibly damaging. I’m seeing it al around me… Check out the psychotherapeutic work being done in Gothenberg, Sweden…The Family Service Foundation/Healing Homes; And “Open Dialogue” in Finland; And Peter Breggin’s “Empathic Psychotherapy” in the US. He does not prescribe Psychiatric drugs (45 years in practice). Go to Madinamerica.com Is this Website just a front for the pharma companies?????

  11. M, Salima Hitchcock 18/07/2015 at 11:40 pm #

    And I meant is YOUR website…cepuk.org….a front for pharma companies.? I certainly did not mean MadinAmerica.com This site was set up by Robert Whitaker as a forum for health professionals, former psychiatric patients, researchers etc. to write …..professionals from the UK, Europe, U.S. etc . Invaluable to keep up with what’s happening….along with YouTube, Peter breggin.com, benzo.org.uk…and other sites… and the many informative, revealing books by reformers being written. I have so much respect for the love, compassion, patience, care, long hours, extensive research exposing what I’m calling “The Grand Pharma/Biopsychiatry/biological reductionist Lie” I am a witness to the suffering the drugs have caused/ are causing maong family, friends…
    And as UK Psychologist Stephen Weatherhead wrote on Twitter recently @Ste Weatherhead: “Personal testimonies are not dismissible as unscientific/anecdotal/non-generalized…They are #narrative knowledges. To be respected, I might add.

  12. Susan 19/07/2015 at 1:11 am #

    Congratulations Luke. This is a victory for all of us who have experienced the hell you so eloquently described–and thank you all for the important work you do at CEP.

  13. caroline hammond 19/07/2015 at 11:26 am #

    everyone I know who has taken a settlement has also had a gagging order…..I wonder why that was not the case with you? Perhaps because you sued the Dr and not the drug company?

    • j.hill 23/07/2015 at 9:59 pm #

      I, too would be grateful for a clarification of why there was not a Gag-order. Was there no order because gag orders usually are a requirement of a settlement as opposed to a court order and this was a court order?

      • Caroline Moore 29/09/2015 at 6:47 pm #

        I was Luke’s solicitor. Gagging orders are old-fashioned in my view, but sometimes till requested. Any specialist solicitor worth their salt will refuse such requests outright and insist upon settlement without any such provision.

  14. ang 19/07/2015 at 12:53 pm #

    Well done. Now how do I sue effexor, it has destroyed my life…. How more than that can I bring Merck to account for my zoloft….. my doctor gave it to me, when it wasnt even legal in Australia, damn he had to give me more freebies from his cupboard. Result? I fell pregnant unexpectedly, gave up the drugs, quick as I could, over 8 weeks………. Result a classic zoloft baby, born well, died in agony 3 days later……… I reported it everywhere……… now TGA Australia? cant find the report. I did another, yeah 20 years later.,…. I demanded a copy, it somehow seemed to blame none existant things, not zoloft, I demanded they re write it, then they said I could not have my name on the report, for my privacy? What rot, for the privacy, so they could bin the report again………. And every issue, is a trauma, I will try again, to get a final copy of the the correct report……………… Damn these bastards called Merck et al, damn their lies, damn their power over politicians, damn greed……………… well done UK…………………If only Australia could follow, with the truth.

  15. Millie Kieve 20/07/2015 at 11:11 am #

    Congratulations to Luke and his family for highlighting a problem that affects thousands of people.

    This also affords me an opportunity to publicly thank, on behalf of APRIL charity, Luke Montagu, Barry Haslam and Professor Heather Ashton, CEP and their supporters, for all you have done to help publicise involuntary tranquilliser & psychotropic addiction & withdrawal problems.

    Without your endeavours and those of several small charities, iatrogenesis linked to pharmaceutical drugs would still be ignored as it has been for years. The only conferences addressing adverse drug reactions (ADRs) & iatrogenesis, have been those organised by APRIL, in 2001, 2004 & 2008, CEP’s recent and forthcoming meeting in September 2015 and The Perils of Prescription Medicines which the Royal College of Physicians held in 20013 but failed to publicise or to use the knowledge gained, for the advantage of patients. The Medical Community appears to focus on diagnosis and creation of new disease models while ignoring the cost to society of iatrogenic illness.

    Failure by the NHS, MHRA & NICE to address iatrogenic illness: Failure of medical education to address prevention and recognition of adverse drug reactions or teach students about dependence or how to assist withdrawal from addictive pharmaceutical drugs, is a public health scandal.

    The General Medical Council removed the subject of Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics from their ‘Tomorrow’s Doctors’ guidelines in 1992. No sensible reason for this was forthcoming when I asked a former Chair of the GMC.

    The lack of support or intelligent help from health professionals in the NHS to withdraw or reduce, safely, from benzodiazepine, Z drugs, SSRIs and other psychotropic medicines causes pain, suffering and many deaths. It was only due to CEP that the British National Formulary was recently updated to include some guidance on withdrawal from benzodiazepines.

    I had a private meeting about the issue of BNF and other BMA publications paucity of information about withdrawal advice for benzodiazepines, Z drugs, SSRIs, pain killers and corticosteroids with doctors at the BMA in 2009 and was told by one that the Ashton Manual was too large for him to get his head around! Concerns I expressed only replicated Heather and Barry’s attempts and it was not until Luke and CEP with the backing of Lord Sandwich put pressure on them, that changes were made.

    An appeal to all who read this is please send in a report using the Yellow Card system in UK or whichever system in your country, whether current or however long ago an ADR or withdrawal reactions occurred. If we submit enough reports of iatrogenic illness and withdrawal adverse effects the MHRA or EMA may eventually have to take action. Report to http://www.yellowcard.gov.uk also to http://www.rxisk,org an independent data base backed by Dr David Healy and others.

  16. Debbie 20/07/2015 at 8:19 pm #

    It is with pleasure that I read that you won your lawsuit. Unfortunately these pills are still being handed out as if they were candy and most doctors still do not know how to taper patients off of these drugs. These drugs have ruined so many lives and for those of us who were long term users the struggle to get off is beyond anyone’s imagination. No one but those of us who have gone through this or are going through it can explain the pain associated with this. You have shown us that we can go on with our lives, win this battle and that there is some purpose to our cause – to see that others are helped and do not have to live through what we have lived through.

  17. Leonie 21/07/2015 at 11:53 am #

    Great article, Luke is a brave man to take on the medical system – otherwise inexplicably know as ‘care’. Surely all we’re asking for here is ‘informed consent’ for everyone? Are we not entitled to be fully informed of the compounds that we put in our bodies and that of our children? Considering the vast over-prescribing and polypharmacy that is now the norm in this era, we all deserve to know the full effects that consuming any medication can have.

    I have used Luke’s words in a collection of quotations that I have put together, for the purposes of informed consent. There are an increasing number of experts who are warning of the dangers of these drugs. And Hippocrates wept –


    • tess 10/04/2018 at 2:11 am #

      Leonie..hi if we are already on meds that have hijacked our decission making how can we give consent. i did not realise i was narcotized on clonazapam n gave consent for all kinds of surgeries…thanks for posting

  18. karin Peperstraete 22/07/2015 at 8:35 pm #

    There is one program which helps kicking off psych drugs: The route out.
    Also suggestion: Hook up with CCHR. They really did even get convictions and sending some psychs in prison. Further more: They are relentless in getting justice for patients from rape, to misinforming and frauds.
    In short: I like them

  19. Colin 22/07/2015 at 8:44 pm #


    First of all, well done for coming through the disabling and crippling withdrawal of benzodiazepines. I also had a horrific withdrawal but for me the worst was over in 10 months (but boy were those 10 months bad).I wish you all the very best.

    I must admit though I am disappointment about the way the story was headed because it looks like the withdrawal was caused by anti-depressants and not benzos. It is only as you read the story you discover that your withdrawal was down to benzodiazepines which leaves me feeling sad for all the sufferers who may not have read the full story. I think by editing your story you would give real hope to the thousands who’s lives are crippled by benzodiazepines and fire a desire in them to fight back against the system and challenge this long standing scandal to compensate for their own misery both mental and financial, many of whom have been left broken.

  20. Janette Robb 24/07/2015 at 12:51 am #

    I’m so glad Luc that you have been compensated for the treatment you received – but I’m sure you will agree that no amount of money will give you back the years you lost. Well done for publicising what you have gone through. I hope it will ultimately help many people out there.

    I personally have not experienced the nightmares described here – but my adult son has. He has Asperger syndrome. Aged 16 [1995] he was diagnosed as having clinical depression and prescribed seroxat. He took this unmonitored for 5 years. It made him manic and then he developed an ‘atypical psychosis’. We were living in Spain by this time and he was hospitalised there. The consultant told me he was ‘delirious’ and stopped seroxat overnight. Delirium [drug toxicity] can cause permanent brain damage or even death. We were also told there were signs of autism. In hospital he was given antipsychotics which [we now know] induced Tourettism.

    We came home to Scotland and he went straight to a local psychiatric unit, where they did not take on board the delirium or autism symptoms. He was again prescribed an SSRI – citalopram this time – which he took for another four years. He has been off SSRIs for a decade now. Withdrawal was over 6 months – not nearly long enough. He says he was ‘off his head’ for two years after cessation. What we suspect are withdrawal symptoms, still persist. Over the years he has been given 13 different antipsychotics and because of side effects or non-response, [and drug-induced psychosis] he has been labelled as having treatment-resistant schizophrenia.

    When he was 26 we had him privately assessed and he was diagnosed with Asperger syndrome. Some clinicians queried the schizophrenia label, but with a constant stream of locums in our area, no one took action.
    Our son was also diagnosed as having bipolar, schizoaffective disorder and schizophreniform.

    Misdiagnosis in adults with Asperger syndrome is now well documented. My son is one of thousands trapped in the system, with antipsychotic-induced symptoms, which doctors want to treat with even more drugs.
    He is now on two antipsychotics and has been on diazepam for 2 and 1/2 years.

    But at least he is still alive for the moment – unlike others on the autism spectrum who have lost their lives because psychiatrists don’t have the required knowledge and understanding of metabolism problems existing in those with autism spectrum disorders.
    It’s now 20 years since his psychotropic nightmare began. He is 36 years old and, with support, lives in an independent flat adjoining a care home.
    Another life ruined.
    Thank goodness for CEPUK – we sorely need you!

  21. Pauline Thomas 08/08/2015 at 1:28 pm #

    My son is 43. He was brain damaged at birth. He has cerebral palsy and a learning disability. He walks. He talks. He cannot however explain how he is feeling, his emotions or if anything hurts him. He was happy, friendly and liked by everyone who knew him.

    When he was 17 he had an hip operation which kept him hospitalised for three months. He was flat on his back with a wooden pole keeps his legs apart. He suffered his first seizure while he was there. He was medicated on Carbamazepine and for 5 years was fit free. Just as we were going to wean him off the medication he began to have startle fits (any noise or suddden touch would make him jump and he would lose his balance) Sometimes this made him have a tonic clonic. He was medicated on Lamotrigine. These two drugs stayed with him for 25 years.

    The pyschiatrist who took over his care in our local Learning Disabilty Team was and still is an egoistical, know it all bully. He looks down on parents and makes no allowances for them to question his judgements.

    In 2008 my son stopped having seizures. We asked if his medication could be withdrawn. It was decided that Carbamazepine would be slowly withdrawn. We were pleased and duly began a slow withdrawal (over 18 months). He was taking 1000mg per day. Lamotrigine was left as it was (400mg per day) Guide lines set by Glaxo/Smithe/Kline suggested that as Carbamazepine was an enzyme inducer, any adjuntive drug would become stronger or maybe toxic as Carbamazepine was withdrawn. We informed the pyschiatrist of this but he completely dismissed us.

    Three weeks after he stopped taking Carbamazepine my son began having terrible nightmares. He was hallucinating and looked terrified all the time. He was saying people were telling him to do things. He must not play his music. His friends were dying. He was in an awful state and I feel that if he had the means to do so he would have killed himself.

    The psychaitrist refused to believe that Lamotrigine had become toxic and diagnosed an interical pyschosis because of the withdrawal of CBZ. He did admit he had not come across this before. He put back 600mg of the CBZ and my son got better, but he relapsed again after three weeks and it all came back again but this time he had catatonia type symptoms as well.

    We insisted that we get rid of his medication as we believed he was not benefiting from them. When we had nearly got rid of them he had a breakthrough seizure. When he came round he was was back to normal. No hallucinations, no walking about and freezing like a statue. We were euphoric. However this only lasted for 4 hours before he slipped back into his morbid state again.

    All this has gone on now for 18 months. The psychiatrist has tried clobazam, citalapram olanazepine and Haloperidol. None of them seem to work. We have been given Lorazepam if he gets too noisy.

    He is now in respite care to give us his elderly parents some peace. We have a break from the physical and mental strain of caring for him but it is still making us cry when we think of how our happy son has been ruined by these drugs.

  22. Sheila Shaw 19/09/2015 at 1:17 am #

    My son was so severely affected by psychotropic drugs, he did not know that his father had died until several weeks after coming off a drug. Yet his father had laid on a sofa in the same room as my son before being taken to Hospice. My son sat just feet away from him each day for 3. weeks. My husband had been dead for nearly 3 years when my son asked, where his father was. He broke down when I told him. He was in a terrible state. I can’t describe how bad it was. He began to grieve belatedly. Present psychiatrist scoffed and said he didn’t believe it had anything to do with the drug! There was no compassion at all for my son’s suffering.

  23. Sandra Villarreal 24/09/2015 at 12:01 am #

    I was so moved by Luke Montagu’s story because it mirrors my own almost page for page, although I have not won any money for my suffering. I voluntarily went into a psychiatric hospital from Klonopin, Effexor, Trazodone, & Lithium ‘cold turkey’ withdrawals and I was in a state of severe psychosis from the withdrawals but I learned while in there that because I kept having adverse reactions to the drugs given they said if I complained one more time of side effects they would start injecting. This is when they said I went from voluntary to involutary and was now ‘court ordered’ take their drugs. I now had no choice. So then my house burns to the ground, no insurance while in a Risperdal, Cogentin, Neurontin and Ambien induced drug haze, but that’s not why I’m writing this. Although, Luke and I come from opposite sides of the world, literally, he’s in England, I’m in Michigan (he is privileged, I am on disability) but our true suffering from psychiatric drug withdrawals runs on the same level, through our hearts and souls. I know his pain, he knows mine. Rxisk.org led me to his truly sad and remarkable story this lead me to cepuk.org which lead me to the wonderful ‘More Harm Than Good’ one day Conference which lead me to hope… And I can’t ask for anything more than that. Thank you Luke…

    • j.hill 25/09/2015 at 8:07 pm #

      I am outraged at the hospital’s statement that you became an involuntary psychiatric patient merely because you had adverse reactions to administered drugs.

      I suspect that your having gone from voluntary to involuntary is a clear lie and further abuse. If you reside in the USA, there are clear processes for involuntary commitment in every state. If you had been committed, you would have had the opportunity to summon witnesses, cross-examine the hospital staff, and most of all be represented by an attorney. Now I recognize that these laws frequently are ignored, but the aggressors are on thin ice. A suggestion, never sign anything. Ask for an attorney. And if told that you are committed, get an advocate not affiliated with the mental health industry. Do not antagonize the staff. You can’t protect yourself while you are still incarcerated.

      In the USA, people have the right to refuse treatment unless they are a clear threat to themselves or others. Therefore, the staff will claim that your are just that.
      I am not an attorney. However, I am working within the benzo-damaged community, and I have seen this before and too often.

      Is hospitalization ever appropriate for a withdrawing benzo-patient? Do psychiatrists know how to withdraw benzo-patients? They do now how to make benzo-dependent-patients.

      • Sandra Villarreal 26/09/2015 at 2:28 am #

        Thank you Jill, it’s been quite a journey for me dealing with psychiatric drug withdrawals that I almost didn’t live through. Just one year prior the date I endured a horrific ‘cold turkey’ Klonopin withdrawal that took my mind places I never knew existed. I was heavily involved with InterAct at my community mental healthcare facility taking DBT classes. I had been prescribed Klonopin for the past 10 yrs., knew I was addicted to it, and quite often overdosed on it with copious amounts of alcohol. I was afraid one of my overdoses would finally kill me. Mental Healthcare workers didn’t see this as any concern but I did so I told all 3 workers that I was going to stop taking my Klonopin and my drug & alcohol counselor sat at my kitchen table and told me “It will be fine, your on such a low dose.” and never said another word to me concerning any withdrawal symptoms I may experience. Not then, not during, not after. As I began feeling very, very bizarre I was refused access to my psychiatrist twice via my therapist which is protocol. I was told I would have to wait for my upcoming appt. I told them I wasn’t going to last that long. And I didn’t. I went into a constant state of terror psychosis at home, alone. I ended up in the psych ward & the ER. I filed a Recipients Right’s Case against them for this and it was ‘DENIED’. Then one year later I end up in Forest View forced to take yet more drugs. I can’t seem to win for losin’….

    • a runaway train 16/09/2018 at 10:33 pm #

      Sandra, I too live in Michigan and I have shared some of the same experiences that you and Luke have had. My General Practitioner doctor abruptly stopped my opiate pain medication that I had been taking in high dosages (up to 3 times a day,) for over 20 years…… ” Cold Turkey!” That happened to me in 2015 and, I barely survived the hell it put me through. I already suffered from life-long mental health issues as well so, this was especially hard for me. I had a psychiatrist who was concurrently prescribing me psych meds. One of those drugs was Klonopin which I’ve been taking for about 25 years or so. I’m still not the same person. I don’t trust doctors anymore. The general practitioner doctor that i had had was my physician for over 25 years! She was also the physician who had initially began prescribing my Klonopin. I think that what she did to me has caused me widening symptoms of P.T.S! I want to point out that after this happened to me, I was black balled by the medical community after I fired her in writing and consulted with an attorney about her. I left state for a while. I recently moved back to Michigan and, after years of not residing in the area, I went to see my prior psychiatrist. My first visit back to her office and, she informed me that she is discontinuing my Klonopin. I have been on this medication for over twenty five years. I’m in disbelief. I don’t know if I have it in me to go through this again. I’m already panicking. She prescribed me 30 tablets to wean off the medication. She said she will not prescribe any more. My dosage has been 2 times daily, up to 3mg a day. So, here I am approaching another lifetime of hell. Feel free to contact me if you have any advice.

      • Hawkins 14/10/2018 at 6:02 am #

        run away train,
        go to benzoinfo.com and print out as much medical research from that site and any from this site and take it to your psyc and tell her u need 6 months to taper . Benzos should only be prescribed for 3-4 weeks , if she messed up and prescribed for 10 years or more she needs to fix it. You must advocate for your self. See if benzinfo.com has any doctors listed in your area that know how to taper. There is i believe a list but not all states are represented. I am so sorry and will pray u find help ASAP HUGS from HAWKINS

      • Sandra Villarreal 16/10/2018 at 3:53 am #

        a runaway train – where are you in Michigan? I’m in Kalamazoo and would love nothing more than to visit you personally if there’s any way possible this can be arranged. Your comment left left me speechless & literally in tears. Your Doctor can NOT withdraw you like that, that fast. I don’t feel authorized to give you advice through this website. It’s why I was kicked out of so many Benzo support websites (for giving advice) and looked to others ‘personally’ one-on-one around the world via emails that communicated with me. I couldn’t have endured the after-math of my withdrawals or healed without them. Please email me so we can talk more privately. I’m praying that you live somewhat close to Kalamazoo. I too, filed a grievance against my Mental Healthcare Facility for telling me it was ‘just fine’ to abruptly stop my Klonopin and then left me to endure that c/t withdrawal at my home, alone. I lost the case because they LIED their way all the way through it, but that’s another story for another time. I’m very concerned about you right now.

        I look forward to hearing from you.

        My heart is with you..

        Sandra Villarreal – sanderella57@att.net

        • J. Hill 06/12/2018 at 8:02 pm #

          This is essential news for anyone seeking accountability for harm done to the benzo-dependent. Read the Westword account linked below. A young man. John Patrick Walter, was in a scuffle with another young man. Walter was held in a local jail. His lawfully prescribed Clonazepam prescription was taken from him. He entered withdrawal. He seized and as punishment for “acting out’ he was strapped to a chair and Tazed. Video of this man nakedly seizing in agony over 17 days shows that Walter died in agony caused by his captors.

          Here is the full story:(https://www.bookingbuddy.com/en/partner/hero/?source=56024&mode=air&origin=DEN&destination=GEG&travelers=1&oneway=false&date1=2018-12-18&date2=2019-01-18&flight_class=&tab_limit=6&currency=USD&_={unique})

          The millions of dollars in judgement apparently are the just the beginning. Budge and Heipt of Seattle plan to pursue this by identifying more than 20 more people who were responsible for this horror.

          Walter’s death may offer a gateway to punishing the medical providers and government officials that routinely mischaracterize the dangerous iatrogenic condition, prescribed benzo injury.

          The formerly usual way to dismiss these atrocities is to call the victim an addict. Who cares about addicts? However, the fact is that having been made physically dependent on a medication is not equal to addiction. The “compulsion to use” is absent.

          For a while, the news will put benzo mal-prescribing in the media. Some mistaken ideas will be published, but the horror and pain of enforced C/T will be in plain sight for a while. Might those who were grievously harmed but spared death be heard in light of Mr. Walter’s torture and death? Can we make it happen?

          Of course many mistaken ideas about benzo injury and withdrawal will emerge. The lasting impact of the experience will be minimized. Still the still living benzo injured are the only source of facts concerning the devastating illness.

          The idea that medical monitoring prevents withdrawal pain and persistent withdrawal-damage has no scientific basis. In other words, watching a patient die does not prevent his death. Medicine has nothing curative to offer its victims.
          This has been the case for 50 years. So the idea that timely medical intervention would have saved Walters from permanent harm is without basis. Anti-seizure meds could have prevented death but not the ongoing and painful physical damage brought about by the common prescribing of a benzo.

          We, the still walking benzo-injured, are the only real source of fact surrounding the benzo issue experience . Current medical guesses are promoted in place of
          empirically derived facts. Cases like Walter’s illustrate
          this. At the least, they may light the way toward compensation for the injured.

          How might the struggling benzo-injured unite as a force for truth and movement toward justice? How might we, the injured, send a warning beacon to all potential benzo-victims?

          • Sandra Villarreal 09/12/2018 at 4:23 pm #

            J. Hill,

            greetings my friend! This was the most heartwrenching story I’ve ever read, very difficult to read knowing what that poor man experienced. I was very vocal on a jail house blog sight created by the jail nurse (through ‘Jpay’ I believe), that gave platform for families & friends of the incarcerated a place to vent. Jails & prisons were forcing inmates to go c/t from their psychiatric drugs if families didn’t pad prisoner accounts with enough cash to pay full price for them, some cost $600+ per month or more. Struggling families often couldn’t afford to pay therefore forced to watch loved ones mental & physical health deteriorate before their very eyes while their forced to endure mentally torturous psychiatric withdrawals.

            This was beautifully written, thank you for sharing it. ‘A return to the benzo and inclusion of an antiseizure drug may stop death but not the syndrome’. During my terrifying, psychosis induced c/t Klonopin withdrawal it was my Klonopin, an anti-seizure Medicine, that induced my statis epilepticus seizers & tonic-clonic seizures, (what they’re prescribed to treat) & uncontrollable body shaking, but when the Emergency Room/hospital & Borgess Psychiatric Hospital gave me Ativan to treat my symptoms/condition upon arrival, the symptoms greatly subsided, it put the withdrawals into remission, I was actually back in full contact with reality, only it didn’t last.

            When I got back home and the Ativan wore off my brain was reeling back into that same damn terrifying, psychotic nightmare I had been in for weeks. The last time this happened I was so scared to death I literally fell to the floor and cried, and the tears never stopped flowing. I’d been heavily involved in the Mental Health world for 35 years yet there wasn’t one single person on the face of the Earth who would help me. Yes, medical intervention would have stopped his torture, maybe not 100%, but any relief is needed. A slow taper also helps prevents further brain damage to the brain a cold-turkey produces. ‘He also claimed that a crossover to another benzo was in order for the purpose of tapering. (Dr. Heather Ashton uses this method.) Any method is safer than a cold-turkey withdrawal, big pharma knows this too. It’s in all the literature.

            Re-introducing the drug, or crossover to another benzodiazepine would have helped tremendously. It probably would have saved this man’s life. The jail personnel responsible for this mans’ death needs to be charged with murder. Because that’s exactly what it was.

        • Zivko Mladenovski 06/12/2019 at 8:08 am #

          Hello Sandra my telephone number is

          630 740 2476 I live in St John Indiana Kalamazoo Michigan is not in my backyard but it is not super super far I would love to talk to you on the phone I am on benzos Ativan also one Remeron in Lamictal Polly drugged before I knew what was happening anyways I’m glad I found this website by accident we need to fight we all need the fight it is a travesty and a silent genocide hundreds of thousands and millions of unsuspecting victims of circumstance by big Pharma so anyways love to hear from you I’m glad you were trying to help this lady from Michigan God bless you hope to hear from you thank you again

          • Sandra Villarreal 10/06/2020 at 6:16 pm #

            Dear Zivko, your comment is just now making it to my email box (6/10/20) that was last year! I will charge my phone (I rarely if ever use it.) and will still try to call you. I hope this finds you well. I couldn’t agree more with everything you’ve said here. Sadly, things are only going to get worse with the over-drugging of every man, women, child in this country, and the world right now.

            Google is Now a Pharmaceutical Company – Google today is not only a weapon for promoting the pharmaceutical agenda but now also a drug company itself. During the past six years, Google’s parent company Alphabet has launched two pharmaceutical companies. In 2013, it founded Calico, run by Genentech’s former CEO Arthur Levinson. Calico operates an R&D facility in the San Francisco Bay Area for the discovery of treatments associated with age-related diseases. Two years later, Alphabet founded Verily Life Sciences (previously Google Life Sciences). Both pharma companies are partnering with other drug corporations. Recently, Verily has partnered with the European pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline to form a new drug company, Galvani Bioelectronics for the development of “bioelectronic medicines.” The collaboration is costing the companies $715 million, and the new firm is being chaired by Glaxo’s former chairman of its global vaccines business. – https://www.organicconsumers.org/news/google-now-pharmaceutical-company#gsc.tab=0

            Big pharma/political corruption never ends here in Amerika where the citizens are still their guinea pigs for experimental, no safety testing,fast-tracked DNA changing covid-19 vaccine. ‘Trump’s COVID-19 vaccine czar refuses to sell his stock holdings of major drug company
            GlaxoSmithKline is one of several pharmaceutical companies researching potential vaccines for the coronavirus – https://www.salon.com/2020/05/23/trumps-covid-19-vaccine-czar-refuses-to-sell-his-stock-holdings-of-major-drug-company_partner/

  24. John 28/09/2015 at 8:52 pm #

    I became tired at the age of 21. After a year of the body not working properly i broke down on the phone crying to the GP. He diagnosed depression and i took an anti D tablet every day for about 14 yrs. I was still physically just as ill as when i first became ill, but felt a little better about the situation. In that time i tried many different anti D’s because they weren’t working.

    Because of the net i was able to do a little research when a sperm test came back as low (we were trying for a baby) and i came across the thyroid world as a reason why i was so tired and ill.

    Well i am fully better 8 years later and i have a simple under active thyroid.

    I lost the best years of my life, however, and i know many, many more people are out there suffering with supposed mental conditions. The points i would like to make are:

    1) i don’t believe the vast majority of mental health problems are rooted in faulty brain chemistry. They are in fact hormonal dysfunctions.

    2) Hormones are not patentable and so no money can be made from them. However, brain signalling drugs are a massive business and lots of money can be made from them.

    3) The medical system is a racket. To break the system and have the truth come out is possibly not going to happen. Everyone is making money from the system. I spoke to my MP about some thyroid drug supply issues and he said the pharmaceutical industry in the UK is a big employer and tax payer. No politician is going to want to tackle this issue because it will alienate too many people.

    4) The only way out of this system is self education, with the help of websites like this. I also believe google will one day help us all become proficient doctors and so i am placing my faith in that happening.

    Already every GP in the land googles knowledge in front of our faces when confronted with an issue they don’t readily know. Why can’t we all do that ourselves ? Why pay someone £100k per yr when technology is already helping a GP do his job.

    5) It would be great if someone could do a TED talk on this huge topic.

  25. James 19/11/2015 at 8:07 pm #

    At 32 Clonazepam has ruined my life and robbed me of so much. I’m a husband, father of three and now severely incapacitated. I became suicidal while on Clonazepam “it’s not addictive” I was misinformed by a psychiatrist of all people, the very psychiatrist who prescribed it before having even met with me.

    It was 3 months later! I had my first appointment with this so called “psychiatrist”. He recommended I increase my dose and commence talking therapy for a PHYSICAL AILMENT which was subsequently correctly diagnosed as Pudendal Neuralgia.

    This criminal, sorry psychiatrist will pay for his blatant negligence.

    Stay away from psychotropic drugs, especially benzodiazepines! Your life may very well depend on it.

  26. Misty.W 22/12/2015 at 12:43 pm #

    Luke When I read your story, I felt like I had stepped out of reality and into my own biography. It was scary to read your story though very enlightening.

    I have also been on so many different medications since 1997. It has changed me so bad. My own family will even make comments “she is back to her old self”. This is when I’m not withdrawing and trying to quit certain medications myself. My family didn’t know this but my spouse did.

    The withdraw was so crazy and insane that I became extremely addicted. Klonopin was my drug of choice. I would wake up about 6 a.m and it was nothing to pop 3, 1mg tablets/pills by 9a.m if not before 9. Depends what I had to do that day. I didn’t take Klonopin for sleeping. I took it for the so called “Social Anxiety” disorder I was diagnosed w, along with major depression and OCD.

    I finally had to admit to my Dr that I was majorly misusing Klonopin, otherwise my partner was going to leave me. I went through hell and back again. There was no tapering. I was still sneaking my partners Klonopin but not taking as much. I could take upwards of 12, 1mg tablets a day. I got down to about 6 tablets a day. My partner then switched her anxiety medication and my Dr wouldn’t prescribe me a thing except Vistral (which is a joke for anxiety).

    I’m happy to report after years of Klonopin abuse, I am almost 2 years clean of it. I found a new Dr. Who now prescribes me Ativan. I hvnt even came close it wanted to abuse it. Though I now abuse my ultram for my fracture L5 and 2 herniated discs.

    This cycle of going from one med to the next has been going on for over 10 years. I was so anti drug that I even lost friends whom I didn’t want around if they were using. Then one day I had to be rushed to the ER thinking I was having a brain aneurism as my head was in excruciating pain. Come to find out it was my 1st major migraine. Oh I got relief in the form of a narcotic pain medication and included, over 10 yrs of self medicating, lies to Drs., misdiagnosed, over 15 mental hospital stays with no success.

    The thing is all I want is my anti drug self back. Sorry this is so long, but this felt so good to write. Thanks Misty

  27. Denise 12/01/2016 at 10:52 pm #

    I am going thru withdrawals of Klopin, I have been taking this drug for 7 years 2 mg twice a day for anxiety and restless leg syndrome. My primary care dr switched me to tranzine 7.5 mg twice a day without my knowing until I picked my prescription up, after calling in for a refill, and finding out my dr. couldn’t prescribe klopin anymore. I was told by the pharmacist that my dr couldn’t write klopin but the tranzine would be a easy switch. I adjusted ok to the tranzine, then came time for my regular check up with my dr as he is writing my prescriptions, high blood pressure, hormone replacement ambiem etc….he wrote Buspar, I ask where is my prescription for Tranzine?? he said oh I can’t write benzo’s any longer, I am lucky to be able to keep my licenses????? I am in total shock, because I had a severe seizure just a couple of years ago due to medication crossing, and another one about a year later both resulting in a trip to the hospital and the first one resulting in 12 hours of unconsciousness in ICU and 3 days in the hospital. I had a few Tranzine left so I started to cut back which lasted a few weeks, and not wanting to take the Buspar, in the mean time I got word of a “house dr” that would prescribe me the 2mg Klopin twice a day so I called he called me back and we set up an appointment. He came to my house, took my blood pressure ask me what medication I needed I told him 2 mg Klopin twice a day, he wrote prescription took my $100.00 ( no receipt) off I go to Kroger to fill my prescription happy as can be, got my script, the next month the same thing, except this time I got 3 refills so I go drop my prescription off at Kroger, and the night before I had to go to the ER regarding a sciatic nerve and restless leg, I was given a non narcotic shot and prescribed 20 soma’s and a prescription of ibouprofen I ask just for the soma to be filled and the cashier ask me if I wanted to pick my Klopin up as it was ready, I told her I would just pick it up when I picked the soma up, I came back to pick prescriptions up and the pharmacist told me he couldn’t fill any of my prescriptions because my regular dr was already prescribing me flexaril 10 mg, which I was out of and the soma was a muscle relaxer, so I was “double dipping” and also he called my “house dr” and he said to void my prescription of Klopin..I was one very upset woman, so I called my “house dr” he said and I quote “I can’t write that prescription for you anymore (completely avoiding saying the word Klopin) and I also cant see you anymore……I am in shock wondering what I did wrong???? ALL I did was ask for the ibouprofen not to be filled, so now I am not only going thru horrible withdrawals I am afraid I will go into a seizure. So I decided to take the Buspar, it being a new medicine I text my friend and my daughter telling them I had taken Buspar for the first time just incase anything went wrong. Well about 10 minutes after taking the Buspar my arms started to ingle then my hands and then my whole body. I text my friend and my daughter and said I think I am having allergic reaction to the Buspar I am tingling all over, both said get to the ER, well on my way I started having a tightening in my chest it go worse as I was arriving the ER, then I felt like I couldn’t breath. They took me back and took my vitals, BP was 177/99 and my heart rate was 127, the dr immediately ordered a EKG which only made my chest tighten more, thankfully I was having a panic attack and allergic reaction and not a heart attack, ER dr. prescribed me 15 1 mg Xanax and told me if I didn’t feel better in 3-4 hours to go back to the ER. It eased up after about 3 hours but I chose not to start the Xanax. I have been on 1/4 Tranzine ( I found I had misplaced) the last few days, but I am having horrible withdrawals still, I have been nowhere since Thursday, today is Tuesday, I have barely ventured out of my bedroom to let my dogs out or get something to eat resulting in a quick trip to the bathroom, horrible aches all over, BP high, crying for no reason, not wanting to see anyone at all, restless nights, and just feeling like pure crap. I am seriously thinking about reporting this “house dr” that cold turkey me off of klopin..Just praying I don’t have a seizure.

  28. DS 03/02/2017 at 8:53 am #

    Great news there was a settlement.
    What about for those who can’t afford lawyers, or in the US where no one lawyer will take on the gravity of this issue.
    We need a major class action lawsuit here people.
    My life has been destroyed.
    I had a business that I built for 16 years, I had fragile health to begin with but did yoga and hiked weekly, I have two small children I cannot care for, and of course in the USA being denied of disability after paying $$$$ in taxes and making six figures
    All the hard work GONE because of .5 of ativan 3 times per week
    This is criminal and the denial is insane.
    Get with it american doctors and change your prescribing practices. NOW

  29. Keith 10/02/2017 at 8:28 pm #

    £1.35m and he recovered eventually, lucky him.

    I wasn’t so lucky, I don’t know how to start taking legal action…

    I had terrible health issues from antidepressant prescribed by my doctor…. and ended up accidentally voluntarily going to an NHS hospital in the hope they’d help me with the health issues I was suffering.

    No…I was forced to take extremely strong antipsychotics, antidepressants, and benzos despite previously having a fit from antidepressants!

    Within days i developed serious health issues from taking the drugs and was ignored, threatened with injections, threatened with ECT, I was collapsing and walked over by the nurses.

    Double vision, hearing loss, burning pains, mania, fits,nystagmus, altered mental state. Ended up several Suicide attempts (no previous attempts at all).

    8 months of torture later now I’ve got permanent hearing damage, severe eyesight problems, tinnitus, weakness, my life is absolutely completely and utterly ruined…

    Noone cares, no doctor nothing, just discharged and forgotten about, I would rather have died…

    Now I can’t listen to music, have sight problems preventing me from even watching TV. I can’t enjoy anything visual or audio which writes my life off completely, I can’t even look at a view without it wobbling due to eye movement issues…

    Told it’s all mental health issues, these are physical neurological disorders that are debilitating….my life is absolute torture everyday now and I cannot do anything about it

    It’s legalised murder.

  30. Paul Bowman 20/10/2017 at 5:28 pm #

    Yeah lost 5 months to ativan early 80’s. swallowed them like smarties. quit and ran to the doctor with severe withdrawlshad a good GP who weaned me off gently,. But i will never forgice wyeth for my permanent loss of memory over that period.
    Hell we should all be compensated. bloody drug companies and their greed.
    Paul Bowman

  31. Rasmus Kreutzmann 09/06/2018 at 2:47 am #

    It’s easy for the public to judge people for not going cold Turkey, but I’ve seen people nearly die firsthand from trying.

  32. Steve 16/11/2018 at 10:21 am #

    I was 18 now 36 and addicted to a 100 mcg fentanyl patch two oxycontin40s daily and Zopiclone 1 a night 7.5mg.i lost my life all these years all because the hospital kept giving me intrevenous morphine and midazolam for shoulder dislocation for years before a surgery was done,by then the doctor had me on oxys 120mg 2 times a day and 10 mg oxynorm it 8 times a day and 28 diazepam a week 5mg and Zopiclone 1 at night,I’m on these since I was 21 15 years well switched to fentanyl and oxycodone now and Zopiclone.i ln uk and don’t know if I’ve a case but my life’s ruined.

    • Sandra Villarreal 17/11/2018 at 9:31 pm #

      Steve, it breaks my heart to read another story as yours. Psychiatric/opioids have destroyed most are lives, mine included, but here in the States there isn’t a damn thing we can do about it but do the best we can and try not to allow our anger at the system from destroying us even further. Although America’s at crisis epidemic of opioid deaths FDA just approved another opioid that supposedly 100 times stronger than Fentanyl.’FDA approves powerful new opioid despite criticisms Critics: Could contribute to opioid epidemic November 02, 2018 WASHINGTON – The FDA approved a powerful opioid Friday, despite warnings and criticism from physicians who said the drug will contribute to the opioid addiction epidemic. The drug, Dsuvia, goes under the tongue…https://www.clickondetroit.com FDA Statement: Statement from FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D. Approval of Dsuvia and the FDA’s future consideration of new opioids.’ (Gottleib has extensive ties to big pharma who Trump hired as FDA Director to peel back regulations so they can now fast-track drugs to market, which they’re doing.) How many deaths is this one going to cause by the time it hits the streets or bribed Drs’ to over prescribe it?

      I hope your doing better & feeling better and I hate to tell you the psychiatric drugs can be just as deadly. I hope you have a case in UK, here, we don’t have any hope but survive their withdrawals the best we can without putting a gun to our heads, and never take them again..

  33. Mary s. Doty 24/11/2019 at 5:33 am #

    Please help me. About a year ago my pharmacy Walmart stoped me cold turkey on my benzodiazepines. Even though my doctor prescribe it to me. I had a complete breakdown. I’m not well yet.

  34. Patti A NYGAARD 23/06/2020 at 3:56 pm #

    thank you for sharing your story. I was prescribed Ativan back in 2016 during a health crisis that arose in my life. At that time I was a very healthy person and never took daily medicine only occasionally I would take something for a headache. I was prescribed the Ativan through the ER Dr, for the Anxiety the constant pain was causing at that time. I didn’t take it right away but was encouraged by friends to try it. At first I was amazed at how it worked for the Anxiety and helped me to cope with the pain, until surgery. Four months into the drug I was in my 1st hospital trying to get off it! I developed more Anxiety and started feeling depressed. The Dr at that hospital took me off cold turkey! And then released me 2 days later! I was in such misery! Physically and mentally. My Family Dr put me back on it and it was hell trying to come off it!! I finally was able to get off it, after only being on it 11 months. After being prescribed the Ativan I was diagnosed with GAD, MDD. I was a happy healthy person up until my health crisis and the Ativan! I became afraid of my own mind! Suicidal thoughts! I started to hate myself, because my children watched there healthy mom deteriorating I was past the health crisis 4 months in but the Ativan honestly left me with damage! It took a good year or so before I started feeling good again after coming off in Jan 2017. I did attemp suicide 2 times while coming off the Ativan, but am glad to be here now! Even though I’m left with damaged nerves! I’m able to enjoy life again ❤️ I feel so bad for the ones who can never get off of a benzo! 😢💔


  1. How antidepressants (and benzos) ruined my life: Luke Montagu – Beyond Meds - 18/07/2015

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  3. Don’t Harm Them Twice (Part II): What Can Be Done? - Mad In America - 20/11/2015

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  4. When the Language Surrounding Benzodiazepines Adds Insult to Injury: What Can Be Done? (Part 2) | My Blog - 29/01/2018

    […] depending on where you live) may be in order, as may the pursuit of litigation and exposing any settlements publicly. Avoiding formal complaints and litigation can be a significant motivator for providers […]

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