‘Prescribing Cascades’ and how to reverse them


‘Prescribing cascade’ is a term to describe the problem of using another drug to deal with side effects of a previously prescribed drug. Horror indeed! Getting off the merry-go-round can be difficult if not impossible.
We have had group members who had to shave tablets with a razor blade in order to decrease dosages gradually enough to make getting off a medication possible.
Sometimes, though, it is not even that easy. Going off medications can lead to many, many sleepless nights and other unpleasant symptoms. I can remember trying to get off amitriptyline after 6 years. (It is now only supposed to be prescribed for 6 weeks.) Even though I was only on a low dose of 10 mg (200 mg is often prescribed) and would get down to 5 mg, I could not go without it because there would be no sleep.
Then, I went to an MD specializing in nutritional medicine. With magnesium and B vitamins, after 6 months, I was able to do without the medication. still wasn’t doing terribly well but improving.
Then I discovered the bioavailable form of B6, pyridoxal 5’phosphate. B6 is a key factor in changing tryptophan into serotonin. Apparently, I was not able to change pyridoxine into pyridoxal 5’phosphate as quickly as needed myself. This vitamin made a huge difference. Now when I have a bout of wakefulness, I can take extra P5’P with magnesium and go back to sleep.
This is not to say that B6 is right for anyone else, only that some nutrient — vitamin, mineral, amino acid, etc.– may help someone else reduce or eliminate a medication successfully. Maybe our Nutrient Scent Test would assist in identifying which one.
Below is another New Yorker article link which addresses prescribing cascades but does not take that step further into nutrient protocols. Wish I could reach out to them and tell them there is more help available. 🙂

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2019/04/08/the-challenge-of-going-off-psychiatric-drugs