chantix - problems after quitting or ...

chantix - problems after quitting or weaning

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Auburn, CA

#2 Jun 2, 2007
Hi, My name is Viki and I've had severe problems when I went off of Chantix. I quit cold turkey, and I went through what I thought was a heart attack, anxiety attack or just a huge case of the crazies!! I was put back on the Chantix by my doctor for 2 weeks and then did a LONG, SLOW, WEAN!!!! It took me a little over a month, but I became Chantix free. I do feel that Chantix was somewhat addicting too, but it did get me off cigarettes and I am thankful for that!!





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Auburn, CA

#3 Jun 2, 2007
Hi Trish, I just posted and hour ago, saw it post onto the forum, now check back in and it is gone!!!


San Jose, CA

#4 Jun 2, 2007
I had to stop taking chantix. The side effects I was experiencing were miserable. I am not a "sensitive" person when it comes to medications. But it seems I experienced all the "common" side effects plus some other obscure ones too. I started taking Chantix with two other co-workers SIX months ago. Both are STILL on it but both still cheat every now and then--so I don't view them as "success" plus --- and I am not trying to see into their behavior --- but everyone thinks they are both now a little off. Some even joke that they need to start smoking. All of us experienced altered sense of smell and taste. And all of us experienced a sense of anxiety too.
For me the side effects were worse than anything I experienced with withdrawal from nicotine cold-turkey. The worse side effect for me was that after my first three weeks of taking chantix, I got period. I haven't gotten a period in years---my uterus was totally surgically ablated. I got it again the following month and then I quit the chantix. Though I can't prove it, I am convinced that the Chantix caused it. Off chantix thing are normal now.
For me, the side of effects of chantix arn't worth it. AND it never really stopped or curbed my desire to just made my senses feel miserable .... even eating was gross...any scent--even pleasant smells like flowers, cooking, etc became uggy.
Even according to the Pfizer web site it states, "Smoking cessation, with or without treatment, is associated with nicotine withdrawal symptoms." So with that said, I'd rather suffer from JUST good ol' fashion nicotine withdrawl than nicotine withdrawal WITH chantix side effects.

“Smoke free since April 22 2007”

Since: May 07

Youngstown, OH

#5 Jun 3, 2007
I think this thread is more for people who went off chantix ~ not chantix side effects.

Any drug has side effects. I don't want to scare people off from trying the drug and finally stopping smoking.

I smoked for 30 yrs and chantix stopped me dead in my tracks.

Since: May 07

Auburn, CA

#9 Jun 3, 2007
Miss Molly wrote:
<quoted text>
OMG, You guys are hard to keep up with. I had a short lived problem going off Chantix. I had already started a small wean as I was suffering from insomnia. I was taking 1 full pill in the am and 1/2 pill in the pm. Went to see Dr. about hand problem and he said just go off of them. No need to wean. So I did and within a short peroid of time, I became so short tempered and angry about every little thing. I was screaming at the dog, irratated with my neighbor because he was smoking on his porch and I could see him! I was just miserable for about 3 days. I said, screw this, and I went back on 1/2 pill in the am for about another 4 or 5 days and then off all together. Other than a 3 day rough spot with a bout of major cravings, I am doing fine. Today! Tommorrow is another day.
Hello Molly,

I've been away again for a while which is not good because there are so many new people!! Molly I saw that you decided to go off the Chantix , I know you will be able to do it. The more I've been reading, the more I am wondering if the shorter period on Chantix is not better if we can do it. If we think about it logically, we should be able to do it if your resolve is strong, because Chantix got us through the nicotine withdrawal with the minimum of discomfort, and now it will be dealing with the behavioral addiction that can be handled with STRONG will power. But anyway my best to you and I'm so glad you have done sooo well!!! I hope you will still check in with the forum to let us know how you are doing!


United States

#11 Jun 4, 2007
I am glad I found this Site. I was on Chantix for 3 months, and am smoke free. But when I stopped the cravings came back big time. So I got another month of Chantix and slowly weaned myself off. 3/4 pill in am and pm. for about 10 days. Then 1/2 pill am and pm. Then 1/2 pill am. Then 1/4 pill. It worked. No cravings. I think Chantix is great and works, but I wish I would have known about the side effects when I started. I could have saved a lot of money in Doctor bills. I don't mean to complain, but if I would have known ahead of time what to expect it sure would have made it easier.
I do have a question though. Chantix has been out for a year now. How come there has not been any advertising for it? No TV, no magazines, nothing. The only way I found out was my Doctor.

United States

#15 Jun 5, 2007
Trish, you are so right! Pfizer is not meeting their patient care responsibilities by not addressing them. I had called Pfizer also, and was told I was an "isolated case". So then I had someone else call and say the same thing. They were told they were an isolated case also. I think they have stock answers they are supposed to tell everyone.
Trish, Can I ask, why are you going to do 6 months? Are you having a tough time of it? Are we supposed to be doing the 6 months?

Auburn, CA

#17 Jun 5, 2007
Trish, I'm glad you started this thread, it needed to be done long ago. I hope Pfizer will take what I know they are reading on these posts to heart. Kudos to you for calling them and getting a little out of them. That surprise me, because I felt that they never would admit to anything that could be taped and used against them. But leave it to our Trish to get them to talk!!! Like someone else just said, I wish Pfizer would disclosed a lot more about weaning, dosage etc., because it would have save me huge amounts of $$$$$ in doctor bills.

Thanks Trish!

United States

#19 Jun 5, 2007
My 3 months were over last month. That's when I got the bad cravings, so got another month of Chantix, and started weaning off. Life is good, but kind of scarey that I will get the bad cravings again. I'm like you, I would stay on it indefinitely if i could!

United States

#20 Jun 5, 2007
I gained a lot of weight over the past months of no smoking. Does anyone know of a good diet pill? Wouldn't it be nice if there was a diet pill that was as good as Chantix???

“Quit Smoking: February 6, 2007”

Since: May 07

Glendale, AZ

#22 Jun 6, 2007
Is this thread for *only* people who actually *did* have side effects? I was just coming back to the board to post that today was 4 months smoke free and have been off the Chantix for more than a month and no issues whatsoever. Dunno if I should post this info here or on one of the "main" threads.

Also, when I spoke to my doctor yesterday to update him, he told me that I was the 24th of his patients to have completed the three month program, all of them had quit smoking (and were still smoke free) and none of them reported (in follow ups) any substantial problem in coming off the drug. So, I'm starting to see in actual life that Pfizer's numbers of 3% having issues is probably very accurate and it's not that the people having issues are more common it's just that they are, as we've already discussed wrt these boards, more vocal.

But, I'm four months smoke free and feeling fine. Hanging out with smokers doesn't bother me nor induce me to want to smoke again. Have no lingering affects from the quit nor the drug and feel perfectly normal. As I said in a post a few weeks after coming off the drug, finally feel *completely* like me again. It feels great.

Started Chantix 01/30/07
Quit Smoking 2/06//07
Last Chantix 4/23/07

Since: Jun 07

Saint Paul, MN

#24 Jun 10, 2007
I am so glad I found this site! I quit smoking on May 12. I started having major problems with water retention, so I talked to the doctor. The doctor thought it was probably because of the chantix, and I decided to go off Chantix with my doctor's ok. I wondered why there wasn't a taper off if there was a taper on, but the doctor and the pharmacist said it was ok to just quit. I have been miserable. It is like I am going through nicotine withdrawal now, I feel truly depressed and I want to smoke. I still have plenty of Chantix left (I had just filled a prescription for my next month). I will talk to my doctor about going back on with a ween off period. I will deal with swollen ankles for another week or two if I can be happy again!

Sacramento, CA

#25 Jun 10, 2007
Leslie In Minnesota wrote:
I am so glad I found this site!!
Hello Leslie,

Better go to our other site and read as much as you can. I think the folks on Chantix know more than the doctors do sometimes. I had a horrible time when I quit cold turkey, and my doctor but me on a very long wean...

1 week 1/2 mg 2x daily
1 week 1/2 mg only daily for a week
1 week 1/4 mg only for a week
1 week 1/4 every other day for a week
Then off Chantix

I didn't have too many side effect though.

Go to this other site and you will get a lot of opinions....

The swollen ankles are a concern!


Started Chantix December 7, 2006
Quit Smoking 1/1//07
Last Chantix 5/4/07

Since: Jun 07

Saint Paul, MN

#26 Jun 11, 2007
Thanks Viki- I have to admit, I took a Chantix pill last night before I went to bed. Emotionally, I feel wonderful. I am awake at 4:30, but at least I don't want to cry. I will call the doctor today and find out what they suggest. They weren't very concerned about the water retention, my blood pressure has dropped to normal since I quit (yes!) and I don't have any other symptoms like chest pain or breathing problems, so they wanted me to stay on. My ankles were so swollen that I was embarrassed to wear skirts, capris or sandals, not to mention it was very uncomfortable. Having said all that, even with this problem going off the medication, I would do it again, and recommend it to someone who wants to quit. I just wish I had a better idea of what to expect before I started. Being Smoke free for over 4 weeks, it definitely worth it!!

Indianapolis, IN

#27 Jun 11, 2007
Yes! I agree!

I've only taken Chantix for a week and a half, but I've been smoke-free for three days. I'm looking ahead, remembering what my doctor told me when he handed me the scrip:

"A lot of people take it for 6 months, but I think if you can stay off the smokes for three months, that ought to be enough."

This, from a man who has never (by his own admission) taken a single puff off of a single cigarette in his life? I wasn't surprised to hear it, and I won't be afraid to tell him he has no idea what he's talking about *IF* I feel in three months that I need to take it for one, two or three MORE months!

United States

#28 Jun 11, 2007
I have the really bad swollen ankles also. I'm used to biking and walking every day, but haven't been able to for a while. What ever your Doctor says, I think most everyone should wean off the Chantix. I had the worst cravings ever when I first quit Chantix. Weaning off helps a lot. And I don't think your Pharmacist or Doctor would know. I don't even think Pfizer knows. Sometimes I think we are Guinea Pigs for Pfizer. But if I had to do it again, I would.

Since: Jun 07

Saint Paul, MN

#32 Jun 11, 2007
Trish in Virginia wrote:
Hi Leslie: Are you - or were you - really pushing fluids...water and/or fruit juice? I had some edema in the very beginning, but drinking a LOT of liquids helped a great deal.
I did try a lot of water for a couple of days before I talked to the doctor (it hadn't helped at that point). The advice I got from several medical people was NOT to drink extra water since I was retaining water, but really to watch the salt intake (i already quit smoking and drinking coffee, you can't take away my salt too!). I don't know... It seems whatever you do, there is someone telling you to do the opposite. My gut instinct was to push the fluids, and since it worked for you, I will give it a try again.

My doctor gave me a prescription for Wellbutrin to help with maintenance. I am going to try a 10 day wean, but if the symptoms come back, I will extend it. Since I was off for 5 days,.5 mg 2X per day is working already. When I am off, I will start the wellbutrin and be vigilant. I don't want to smoke again!

Alexandria, VA

#37 Jun 13, 2007
Trish in Virginia wrote:
Hey Linda: I'm doing great! I'll be 4 months quit tomorrow. It really seems like I've never smoked! Still on Chantix and will be on it for several more months.
Congratualtions on your 100 days!! That's wonderful. Do you experience many/any cravings or urges or thoughts?
My hands/fingers still remain I have a new set :) Thank God for shots!! I'm sorry you're still having difficulties.
Stay in touch!
Hey Trish,
I am so bummed. I posted you awhile ago and don't know where it went.
Anyway, CONGRATS ON YOUR 4 MONTHS!!! I know you are feeling real good about now. I am proud of you and want to thank you for helping me on my journey. As they say, "You've come a long way baby". Looking back 4 months to where you are today must feel great. You are healthier, happier and richer, in every since of the word. Keep on keepin on.
Miss Molly

Alexandria, VA

#38 Jun 13, 2007
That Daisy is me. Hello, don't know where that came from. Miss Molly
Cindy and Darin

United States

#39 Jun 13, 2007
Hey, how about a Chantix die hard thread? People only on the full dose club? hehehe

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