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I was on Paxil twice before (for about a year at a time) for panic and for the most part, I thought it was great. Both times I had zero start-up side effects. The first time I went off, I quit cold turkey and somehow didn't even get the withdrawal syndrome. The second time I did, but I just weaned myself off slowly and it was no big deal. It may be worse for someone who is on it more long-term, but they do make a liquid version so you can really taper off very gradualy. I did not gain any weight, either.

I found paxil to be very good for controlling my anxiety, which, at the time, was mainly panic attacks. It didn't eliminate them completely (I guess maybe upping my dosage might have done that - I was on 20 mg), but it definitely got them under control (less frequent and less severe) and made me feel like I could control them, which was really helpful when I did go off of it. It also elevated my mood a bit - I don't think I was really depressed, but I just somehow tended to feel happier.

The only problem that I did have was the sexual side effects (decreased libido and severe difficulty climaxing), and that is why, ultimately, I went off of it both times. From what I've read, this is a pretty common side effect, so I guess things depend upon whether you personally can deal with that or not.

Good luck!

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