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Phenibut


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#1 jamjam2

Posted 01 March 2008 - 06:34 PM


Hi,

I've gone though Phenibut withdrawals three times now. My use of Phenibut has been reckless. I have taken it in high doses, often unmeasured, typically between 2.8G and 5G a day, although on one unfortunate occaission, up to 10G.

The withdrawal syndrome is an unpleasant if not interesting experience: the first time I withdrew was from 7 or 8 days use, between 2 and 3 grams a day administered in a singe dose. There were no immediate effects but symptoms manifested perhaps twenty four hours after my last dose, perhaps closer to thirty-six hours.

The first indication was feeling physically tired and trying to sleep, yet not being able to do so. However unlike the symptoms of opioid withdrawals that I have experienced, I was content to lie in my bed and indeed drifted in and out of semi-delusional mentality, similar to the dream experience but still being aware of my external environment (i.e cars driving by, etc.).

Other symptoms included the 'shakes', shaking unontrollably, but not wildly, when exposed to even mildly cold weather. Anyone looking at me might have thought I was just shivvering.

Also, strange visual symptoms would occur, where my eyes would focus in a strange (and hard to describe) manner, especially upon large fields of similar colour and texture, for example a grass backyard or a white wall. I would look contemplatively at the grass, for example, and then my focus would become slightly blurred, though it felt as though my focus was in fact becoming more sharp - so it didn't look as though my field of vision was clearer, only, in a strange way, 'felt' like it.

I suppose this is correlated with the severe nystagmus I used to experience when taking phenibut. I believe in the United States, one particular means of testing for intoxicated drivers is the 'horizontal eye' nystagmus test, where the officer asks the driver to follow an object and continue to focus on it as he moves it slowly around. Anyway that's probably entirely irrelevant, but I saw it on an episode of COPS once and I thought it was quite strange, but it makes some sense now, with Phenibut and alcohol both acting in some capacity on GABA(B) neurotransmission.

These visual symptoms are most worrying as they could potentially, though I certainly hope do not, indicate non reactive pupils, in turn indicating head trauma or brain lesions. Non reactive pupils are a symptom of severe baclofen underdose/withdrawal.

I went a week or 8 days without any real REM sleep, only that semi-delusional dozing, but as I've seen described on the boards here before, I was much less tired during the day than I ought to have been. I was of course still tired, but not as tired as had I gone three or four days without sleep in a 'normal' capacity.

The second withdrawal syndrome was protracted by several more days. I took an approximate 4 gram dose of Phenibut six days ago, after having used between 4 and 5 grams daily in single doses for a period of two weeks. I took the Phenibut at approximately 4PM, this being a Thursday evening. Then about twelve hours later I consumed 30mg of d-amphetamine in a single dose, and perhaps another 50mg in divided doses over an eight hour period. I fell asleep at about 7 or 8 o'clock on a Friday evening, after having consumed 1mg of clonazepam to assist with my sleep.

I slept soundly that night, but upon waking could quite acutely feel the Phenibut withdrawal symptom. I endured the weekend until Sunday night, when I took a smaller dose of Phenibut, unmeasured but no more than 1 gram. Again, about twelve hours later I consumed 30mg of d-amphetamine, and continued to consume another 30mg over a four or five hour period. Withdrawal symptoms were immediately evident (as opposed to the thirty-six hour delay I experienced in the first instance of the withdrawal syndrome).

I have not experienced any of the negative effects attributed here and elsewhere to combination of phenibut and amphetamine. I consume the amphetamine orally, and I feel that the pleasurable rush is much stronger initially due I suppose to a flood of dopamine. I don't know if the euphoria has been exaggerated by the phenibut, because I'm not aware of the exact nature of phenibut's actions on dopamine neurotransmission. However I also notice that the euphoria subsides much more quickly than usual, and that the pleasurable effects of the amphetamines are much more quickly overtaken by peripheral side effects, than when amphetamine is taken on it's own in similar dosing capacity.

Interestingly enough, some effects of the phenibut withdrawal syndrome I actually find pleasurable. This is not to say that I would induce withdrawals just to pry some euphoria from them. But again as has been mentioned, in some moments there seems to be a subtle dopaminergic pleasure and mental stimulation, similar to the phenibut 'hangover' although not nearly as potent. Of course this is tempered with shivering/shaking, anxiety, lack of sleep, strange feelings around the eyes (possibly due to lack of sleep), and also a strange feeling in the skin and the muscles.

These last two symptoms seem to correlate with 'baclofen underdose' or withdrawal from intrathecally administered baclofen. In the case of baclofen underdose they appear to be regarded as mild symptoms, but in some cases can lead to more severe ones, including multiple organ failure. Another symptom I experience during phenibut withdrawal is itching: this too is mentioned as a symptom of baclofen underdose.

Given the similarity of these two chemicals in property and effect, I wonder if it might not be prudent to investigate or collect subjective experiences of phenibut withdrawal, in case there might be a danger associated with it, as there indeed is with baclofen underdose? Obviously severe symptoms of baclofen underdose occur due to the nature of the intrathecal administration in conjunction with long term therapy (in excess of twelve months). However again, given the similar nature of these two compounds, I wonder if anyone else has experienced such symptoms when withdrawing from phenibut?

Having access to a great variety of medicinal journals, I've investigated phenibut thoroughly, and the majority of information, in fact, the vast majority of information, comes from relatively low dose animal testing in Russia, and there seems to be sparse information available regarding pharmacokinetics. Indeed it is hard to find a great deal of information on short and long term effects of phenibut use in humans, or even on such basic and important issues as toxicity. The most detailed journal article I could find simply re-iterated and summarised the information found in the Russian journal articles, with no real reference to human effect.

I find this particularly concerning given (my perception of) it's popularity and sales increasing - or at the least given that it is being sold for human consumption.

The most comprehensive information on subjective phenibut experience I could find, on Google, on all the journal databases (PubMed, Medline, ScienceDirect, AccessMed, etc - with the majority of these databases covering the same journals), on usenet, in fact anywhere outside of a library (and I suspect inside too), was this very website.

I suppose it is hypocritical of me to have consumed phenibut so carelessly and in combination with other drugs. However my experiences lead me to be all the more concerned about the potential for phenibut withdrawal to be as severe as baclofen underdose.

This is taken from a journal article on ProQuest published in 'Psychosomatics' - it is also available as a link from the Wikipedia page on 'Baclofen', at this address:

Delirium Associated With Baclofen Withdrawal: A Review of Common Presentations and Management Strategies
Raphael J Leo, Daniel Baer. Psychosomatics. Washington: Nov/Dec 2005. Vol. 46, Iss. 6; pg. 503, 5 pgs


...The literature includes several case reports of abrupt-onset psychosis, mood disturbances, and behavioral disturbances arising from abrupt cessation of baclofen use. We suggest that these symptoms can be better conceptualized in the context of delirium. The cause of delirium in these cases can be elusive, but if the delirium is not addressed properly, it may be life-threatening....

...Similarly, neuropsychiatric effects of abrupt baclofen withdrawal are thought to invoke the GABA system as well. Baclofen, like GABA, inhibits CNS pathways involving monoamine neurotransmitter systems. Some researchers have suggested that this inhibition is indirect and that substance P is involved as an intermediary neurotransmitter.15,29 With continued use of baclofen, continuous inhibition of monamine neurotransmitter systems leads to emergence of supersensitive dopamine and noradrenergic receptors. Sudden withdrawal of baclofen would cause a disinhibition of previously suppressed monoamine pathways, that is, a release of norepinephrine and dopamine onto supersensitized receptors, leading to autonomic arousal (e.g., tachycardia, hypertension, agitation, restlessness) and delusions, hallucinations, and delirium....


This might also apply to phenibut, and may be one explanation of phenibut's 'rebound dopaminagenic' effects - and may also be a reason for concern during phenibut withdrawal.

An article entitled "Cyproheptadine for intrathecal baclofen withdrawal." authored by Meythaler, Jay M. Roper, James F. Brunner, Robert C and published Archives of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation. 84(5):638-42, 2003 May, has some more information (this is available by Ovid only so unfortunately I can't post a link, but since I'm just using the abstract, it might well be available at Google scholar):

Clinical signs and symptoms of ITB (acute intrathecal baclofen) withdrawal of varying severity were assessed by vital signs (temperature, heart rate), physical examination (reflexes, tone, clonus), and patient report of symptoms (itching, nausea, headache, malaise).


More journals indicate more symptoms, generally the more mild such as itching, anxiety, etc., that nonetheless correlate with symptoms induced by phenibut withdrawal.

I only wish more information were available on phenibut toxicity and withdrawal and more specific information were available on it's method of action.

However considering it is often suggested to be very similar in method of action to baclofen, the very concerning and sometimes life-threatening symptoms of baclofen withdrawal may also be manifest in phenibut withdrawal.

I wonder if people might compile their own experiences with regard to phenibut withdrawal, as I'd be interested to look into this further. Again, I hypocritically urge caution when using this substance, especially in high doses, for long periods, or both.

As an addendum: I took phenibut recently, in high doses over the period of three days (5 grams or thereabouts, per day). Two days after the last dose I experienced withdrawal symptoms, though they were much more mild than when taking phenibut over extended periods. For example I had great difficulty sleeping and would be shaken awake by the slightest of sounds. High potency benzodiazepines such as clonazepam, to which I have no tolerance, would have no effect on sleep in high doses (10mg for example did little to facilitate sleep, as strange as that may sound), in the condition I was in. I furthermore experienced anxiety and body temperature irregularities.

Furthermore in relation to my most recent phenibut experiences:

I've experienced cataplexy, automatic movement and narcoleptic symptoms after taking high doses of phenibut. These were generally experienced after staying up for longer than usual periods of time (for example, if my usual bed time was 10PM, these effects would occur at about 4 or 5 am). I slept in my car after a wake one night and the girl I was with told me that in the morning, about two or three hours after we'd gone to sleep, I'd woken her up with violent movements, for example, kicking, arms shaking and head twitches.

Furthermore I've experienced similar symptoms on phenibut when sleep deprived. The next day after the wake, I arrived at home still tired but determined to do some work - and, by the way, still affected by the phenibut taken the day before. I sat and the 'narcoleptic' feeling would overwhelm me (when generally I can stay up for two or three days without drugs and without falling asleep involuntarily), and it would take immense force of will to shake myself out of going to sleep. Even when someone was taking to me, or with me, I'd fall asleep, or nearly fall asleep.

When I fell asleep standing on my feet in a bookshop, it was quite strange as I may have lost consciousness for five or ten minutes but I did not fall forwards or backwards and was not leaning on anything. In this instance I had a strange feeling of being 'overwhelmed' and would also experience cataplexy and shaking and shuddering movements - or a feeling such as that I was able to perceive myself falling asleep but could not move or do anything physically to prevent myself falling asleep, I could only keep myself awake by sensory experience, that is, focusing on a particular noise or sight, i.e through force of will.

I have also experienced an epileptic seizure a month or so after stopping taking phenibut. It would be wild conjecture to say that the phenibut caused the seizure. However, being a GABA agonist it may have contributed to the seizure - though it may not have. The EEG came back clear as did the MRI.

I am not narcoleptic, and have only experienced these effects with high doses of phenibut, in combination with sleep deprivation - or in the case of the withdrawal symptoms, after taking phenibut for some period.

Now I'm not trying to 'rag' on phenibut here. I've been unwise enough to use the compound in high doses for long periods of time. However I think it is important to document different experiences in order that people might be careful when using this drug, because it is a serious and potent drug in terms of it's effects. I would like to investigate further the correlation between phenibut and baclofen withdrawal, so as to determine whether phenibut can possibly damage the brain physically, as baclofen can in the withdrawal phase (after considerably many years of consistent dosing, mind.

Regards,

Roddy

Second addendum: I would like to know about people's experiences with horizontal eye nystagmus when taking phenibut. I have a 'lazy' left eye and I notice that it is impossible to focus this eye when I take phenibut. I may go for twenty four hours with one eye drifting to the left and the other focused straight ahead - double vision. It is irritating, but I wonder if others experience the same. Thanks very much.
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#2 lyosha Re: Phenibut

Posted 03 March 2008 - 12:52 AM

in russia the standard dose is 0.5g, 3 times a day. this is for treating neurosis, stuttering and all sorts of brain injuries. the treatment lasts 1-3 weeks. it's suggested to take it again only after 6 months. i wouldn't call what you were going through as phenibut withdrawal. this is not a withdrawal, this is a logical consequence of stupidity.
also, in clinical studies first couple of days a person feels relaxed and somewhat tired. after about 3-4 days of taking phenibut a person starts being more active, it may also cause insomnia in a lot of people. this is because your gaba system starts readjusting and normalizing itself. insomnia usually lasts 1-3 days and then goes away. after that phenibut helps to support and strengthen your nervous system. after 1-3 weeks the treatment stops without any withdrawal or consequences.
phenibut has fairly pronounces anticonvulsant properties (it can be used to prevent seizures). i also really doubt that after 1 month there was any phenibut in your system at all. your seizure is most likely caused by the amphetamine that you're taking (don't take amphetamines). from what i've read phenibut can be used to cure amphetamine overdose just like benzos, meaning that most likely than not they it will counteract any stimulant effects of amphetamines. taking both phenibut and amphetamines seems rather pointless to me personally. in fact, taking amphetamines seems rather pointless to me in particular.

Edited by lyosha, 03 March 2008 - 01:11 AM.

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#3 Rags847 Re: Phenibut

Posted 03 March 2008 - 02:25 AM

Roddyjojo,
Stop taking Phenibut. You are much too smart (judging from the quality of your writing) to keep destroying yourself with the stuff.

Bluelight is another site where Phenibut users and abusers discuss their withdrawl miseries.
http://www.bluelight.ru/vb/home.php
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#4 dopamine Re: Phenibut

Posted 03 March 2008 - 09:41 PM

Very interesting report. Phenibut, as a GABA-B agonist, does increase dopamine release, a property that could relate to those who have reported an addiction or dependence on the drug. You are right about the lack of research, as most articles are in Russian with only abstracts available online. I have certainly experienced the "phenibut hangover" phenomenon, but do not feel any of the positive effects reported by others. I would describe the after effects (of about 1.5-2 g) as similar to those that occur in both narcolepsy and inattentive (non-hyperactive) ADD. I may be especially sensitive to this effect for some unknown reason, but because of the "afterglow" effect I generally tend not to take more than 500 mg at a time. Obviously, any substance, especially medicinal, will cause deleterious effects on the human body in excess quantities, especially when administered on a chronic basis.

Phenibut also seems to antagonize the effects of phenethylamine - a trace amine described by some researchers as an "endogenous amphetamine" which could have hitherto unknown effects on (for example) the visual cortex. The anti-PEA effect could cause, in excess and over extended periods of time, substantial neuronal changes commensurate with the kinds of visual distortions and other abnormalities being described. Some kind of neurotoxicity is certainly possible in the latter context, but would likely be associated with an inhibitory mechanism, though phenibut has been characterized as "neuroprotective."

I encourage an investigation into the affinities between baclofen and phenibut in terms of side effects, but would caution against over-reaction to anecdotal reports.
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#5 yoyo Re: Phenibut

Posted 04 March 2008 - 12:38 AM

Has anyone tried stacking phenebut and PEA to avoid that?
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#6 syconot421 Re: Phenibut

Posted 03 May 2008 - 02:27 PM

Hello!  I am writing this on Phenibut as I speak.  I have been taking it for almost 2 years now.  At first I noted a tolerance and I have just now recently upped the dosage to 2800mg almost daily.  I take it at night usually 2-4 hours before bed along with GABA powder an hour before bed.  I feel great, I sleep like a rock and man is it a pain to wake up.  I sit up in my bed first and definitely do not want to go to work.  I am over in Iraq so, I definitely have to go to work ~80)  Once I wake up everything is just great.  I am a little out of it for a while b
ut, that soon subsides.  I take glutamine first thing in the morning on an empty
 
stomach to boost
my growth hormone secretion as I am always training my body.  Afterwards I take 
2g acetyl-carnitine, 300mg alpha lipoic acid, 2g taurine, 3g chocamine, 200mg Coleus Forsk
ohlii, 2g Cissus Quadrangularis, 1.5g Choline Bitartrate, sometimes 800mg Oxirac
e
tam, 2g Omega 3's, and a
multivitamin.  I feel great.  Life is so much better.  I can't imagine my life without phenibut.  I am not a very social person with people I do not know but, with phenibut I talk to everyone.  Nothign bothers me one bit and I am in Iraq.  All these civilians on these onli
ne forums talk about their problems and the stress they have to deal with but, t
h
ey don't have the risk of possibly getting mortared
any second.  Someone always in your personal life.  The stress and anxiety doesn't even get into my mind while on phenibut.  I might be in a stressul situation or one that would
 make me anxious but, it doesn't get to me.  My mindset is still on the positive and happy side.
The other night I only had 1 hour of sleep and had to go back on a 6 hour guard shift but, I did it with no proble
m and was happy the whole time.  I also have very deep conversations while on phenibut

Some of the side effects I experience could be considered to be on the negative side.  I am very honest to people and have a lack of most of my inhibitions.  I do not recognize rank more than normal which can cause problems while in the military.  Sometimes I sleep so deep I almost pee in my pants after waking up.  Almost nothing will wake you up on this stuff especially when combined with alcohol or pure GABA)  I get along with everyone though.  Several have asked what I am on.  I just lau
gh and say eat right, exercise and get enough sleep hehe.
It is definitely addicting though because you don't want to go a day without it because it is not as interesting.  There is not much to do over here but, on phenibut everything is great!  I don't know how much of an effect taking nightly GABA has on the effects of phenibut.  I take about 2-3 g.  I have gotten in trouble a few times because my alarm goes off right next to my ear and I don't wake up.  I also take ZMA (Zinc + Magnesium Aspartate) nightly so my sleep is nothing short of great.  Be careful when you drink on this stuff.  Talk about a hangover.  Make sure you take the phenibut well before you go out to drink so it can be in full effect.  If not you can end up being way more drunk than you want to be.  A little bit of oxycodone, one to two drinks and 1-2g of phenibut and life is great.  I would really like to combine it with some shrooms, 2C-I or mescaline let alone some X.  This stuff will make you very intense at the club when combined with alcohol and pretty much have no inhibitions ~80)

This substance has almost weaned me off of most of my caffiene intake too.  I only use the Chocamine (80mg caffiene per 1g for a total of 240mg daily instead of 4-500mg daliy)  I have read several posts around the internet about people not recommending it be taken more than a few times a week.  I do 5-6 days a week and I haven't experienced any major side effects other than I want to take it everyday ~80)  I just ordered some deprenyl and pea so maybe I can switch them up every once in a while.  5-10mg deprenyl several times a week.  Maybe one of those days a low (30-50mg) dose of PEA maybe even snorting it (can't burn much more than phenibut which, I have done up to 200mg in one nostril all at once).  I know a good bit about this substance and have read all the articles in russian for my friend speaks it and translated for me.  If you have any questions feel free to ask.  I hope I have provided some with some good information.  I am only 22 and have no degrees or qualifications in this area but, mind exploration is a passion of mine.  Hope I didn't talk too much!  Phenibut is doing its job ~;0)  Take care all.

Bryan
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#7 Irradiance Re: Phenibut

  • Location:Brisbane

Posted 11 June 2008 - 06:00 AM

Thanks for that, Bryan. It's interesting to hear that you've been taking a relatively low dose on a daily basis for an extended period of time. I have been using phenibut on a weekly basis for some time now - usually, I'll take ~3g (I am 80kg/180lb) on a Saturday afternoon and enjoy the effects for the next 36 hours. I never increased this frequency because I wanted to avoid any build-up of tolerance or mitigation of the pleasant effects, which I love deeply.

I'd really like to know how the effects change as one takes it every day without increasing the dosage. What have you found changes with regard to the sedative / euphoriant / anxiolytic properties? At this dosage have you noticed any unusual side-effects?

From what you have written, it seems that you consistently experience the same pleasant effect every day.

If anyone else has any experience as to what is the most frequent basis on they can take phenibut without experiencing a build up of tolerance or an alteration of the effects, I'd love to know!

In my opinion, while phenibut is not exactly everything that GHB used to be, it has benefits, such as its very long duration of action and lack of a tendency to make one pass out, that make it the superior drug, and this goes a long way toward easing my anguish over the outlawing of one of the greatest 'supplements' ever.. :p
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#8 HeyHeyHey Re: Phenibut

Posted 15 July 2008 - 04:50 PM

I have taken phenibut for some time now and have some input.

I started off taking it every single day - extremely bad idea. I got the terrible withdrawal effects you all have heard about, that was likely the worst days of my life.

Currently me and some friends use it solely for partying in the weekends. Combined with a little bit of alcohol most get in a very easygoing social state. This decreases my alcohol intake to 30-40% of what it usually is, so I save both money and the extra calories - not to mention the health effects from binge drinking.

There are some problems however. While I have found the perfect dosage to be about two teaspoon (which I would think is 4-5 grams) it has happened on several occasions that people have taken more - alot more. This is sometimes tempting because of the time delay from the time phenibut is ingested to the effects are felt.

I have thus experienced most of what roddyjojo describes - trouble focusing with my eyes, slipping objects I hold in my hand, narcolepsy and the other weird stuff you mention. However, this is usually only a problem when taking too much. Another problem when overdosing, especially if one does it two days in a row, is that one experience a small withdrawal phase - far shorter and less severe than after prolonged use, but one still usually as a night or two with very little sleep and the edgy feeling during the day. Another friends overdosed so much that he lay sick in bed for nearly two days - it has to be said that his intake that time was absolutely insane.

So all in all with moderate intake I think phenibut is a fantastic drug/supplement - with use it with care. Do not take too much and do not use it several days in a row.
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