Gaining Weight With Medication

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hi-lo cheerio
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 8/25/2010 7:02 AM (GMT -7)   
turn  Hi!  Just joined recently to talk and learn from some of the people at this site.  Bipolar has been my diagnosis for the last years.  I started out feeling like a guinea pig - being prescribed just about every medicine there was for us hi-lowers!  I am very sensitive to medicine and if there are any side effects to a medicine, I will get them.  My psych. and I soon discovered also that I could not tolerate antipsychotic drugs, so hence, lithium.  Its worked really well for me, leveling me out and keeping me at a good place.  I have, however, continually gained weight since I started the lithium, and am stiil putting on weight as we speak.  I am currently searching for something else.  The lithium was certainly nice as far as price.  At Walmart,.....$4.00 for a 60 day supply!  But I would be willing to spend more for something else that does not make me gain weight like the lithium does.  Not an antipsychotic,.....does anyone have any suggestions?  I'm at the point where I feel at my age, 57, it is not healthy for me to be carrying around all this weight,....there is a history of heart problems in our family anyway.  And it is very uncomfortable plus I do care about the way I look.  I take care of my self as far as hygiene and the way I dress,......I am not superficial person by any means.  However, I like to look nice and I want to be as  healthy as I can be - don't we all want to live as long as we can?  Please respond if u think u can help me.

Carenpolar
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 672
   Posted 8/25/2010 8:06 AM (GMT -7)   
Welcome to the site....
 
hugs, Caren

maggiern
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 223
   Posted 8/26/2010 6:57 PM (GMT -7)   
Have you tried Lamictal?  It has not made me gain wt infact I lost wt.

tortoise11
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 2896
   Posted 8/26/2010 7:39 PM (GMT -7)   
I didn't gain on Lamictal. Starting Seroquel XR soon. Hope it doesn't cause weight gain! But I'm more worried about other side effects...
Bipolar 1
Borderline Personality Disorder
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Panic Disorder

Depakote, Abilify - FAIL; Seroquel - Epic Fail
Lamictal 150mg (up to 200mg soon), Klonopin 0.5mg as needed, starting Seroquel XR 50mg soon

hi-lo cheerio
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 8/26/2010 8:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for the posts and the helpful info. I am going to discuss these with my psych. I am making a great effort to get back to doing that hour of physical working out each day and really trying to eat more healthy in the meantime. This is something that I used to do and kind of just gave up after I started gaining on the lithium. I am also desperatly trying to be more positive, not only about my treatment, but about my life. I think that makes a heckuva difference. Its not always easy, but after seeing some of the patients during some of my past hospitalizations, and how much they were suffering and how their feeling so negative was so destructive for them, I knew some changes needed to be made in my own life. I have also found that keeping myself around positive people and positive things is a good thing for me. Thanks for listening.

hi-lo cheerio
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 8/28/2010 3:04 PM (GMT -7)   
Wow!  Thanks for all the info.  I have cut out caffiene.  I'm eating more vegetables, too.  I'm not a chocolate person, thank God!  I rarely eat alot of grains, or maybe I am and don't know it.  I'll start checking  that more carefully.  You know, I am glad that we have this site to chat.  It appears to me that maybe the reason we don't find out some of this information is maybe they don't want us to know everything or we would possibly not want to take some of these medications.  I remember my dr. telling me that I MIGHT gain weight but I have done nothing but constantly gain some every week.  I know what I was eating before and how I had started working out each day and was loosing weight and becoming more healthy.  Then immediately upon starting lithium, the weight began to pile on.  Any time I mention that I would like to find an alternative to lithium, my psych. says that even if I did change to something else, she would have to keep me on the lithium for a year!  Then, would I be taking 2 medications?  I don't think so!  I am just a firm believer that u shouldn't take a whole bunch of medicine.  I feel less is best.  I'm not a doctor but at times in the hospital or at home when they had me on 5 or 6 things, I was a mess and felt scared all the time.  Recently, my regular dr. had me stop all but my lithium and my restless leg syndrome med.  I feel better than I have for a LONG time!  Thanks again, I really appreciate your help.  And thanks for listening! :-)

hi-lo cheerio
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 8/29/2010 3:28 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks!  Sometimes i wonder if everyone were didagnosed, they would be bipolar, schizopjr., depressed, etc.  So,.......do I really need all this meds.  But I listen to my dr. and go on.  I do it for my family,.....Mostly the 5 kids and 5 grandchlldren. :-)

ladynimue
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2010
Total Posts : 31
   Posted 8/29/2010 10:14 PM (GMT -7)   
 
   Hi!
   I think it's great to find a place where people with the same problems can share their stories.
   It can make you feel like you are not alone.
 
   I've been taking Lithium for over 20 years and I've never experienced weight gain.
   Maybe I just got lucky for a change. Did you mentioned what dosage you are taking?
   I take 600 mg a day and I take it in the morning. My doctor has told me to also drink
   lots of water during the day.
 
   I think Lithium is a good and inexpensive medication but it doesn't work for everyone.
   Bi-polar disorder is a real illness and it needs and can be treated.
   I hope things work out for you.

hi-lo cheerio
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 8/30/2010 9:27 AM (GMT -7)   
I have been told that I need to drink more water and I don't always do that. Thanks for the reminder!! I take 300 milig. in the morning and 2 capsules (600 milig. at night). I think I may talk to my psych. about going back to 1 in the morning and 1 at night, which is what I was taking before. I also think Lithium is good as far as managing my moods and yes, it is very inexpensive. I'm hoping with some adjustment, and some more consistent exercising and healthier diet, things will work out. I, too, hope, that things contiinue to go well for you. Nice chatting with you. I also think it is WONDERFUL that we can share here.

hi-lo cheerio
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 8/30/2010 9:28 AM (GMT -7)   
I have been told that I need to drink more water and I don't always do that. Thanks for the reminder!! I take 300 milig. in the morning and 2 capsules (600 milig. at night). I think I may talk to my psych. about going back to 1 in the morning and 1 at night, which is what I was taking before. I also think Lithium is good as far as managing my moods and yes, it is very inexpensive. I'm hoping with some adjustment, and some more consistent exercising and healthier diet, things will work out. I, too, hope, that things contiinue to go well for you. Nice chatting with you. I also think it is WONDERFUL that we can share here.

happy bill
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 1132
   Posted 8/30/2010 10:05 AM (GMT -7)   

 

  Hi and welcome. This is how i think about the weight gain problem. If the price of being "normal", where i dont engage in risky behavior, hurt the ones i love, be out of control is that i have to put on 5, 10, 15 lbs then you know what? In my mind thats a fair trade and i will make it any day of the week.

   So i try real hard to eat right, and ride my bicycle as much as i can. That helps keep the weight gain from getting out of control. As for hair loss, which i also have from the meds, i have gone the total bald route. What the hey, bald is cool? Right? LOL LOL LOL

    Bill

  


"If Life Gives You Lemons, Make Lemonade"



"It isn't my fault that i am BiPolar, It is my responsibility how i treat it so that i don't hurt others or myself." Happy Bill



Meds. Respirdal 0.5 a day, more if needed.

Anne_S
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 39
   Posted 8/30/2010 3:48 PM (GMT -7)   
Topamax.... mood stabilizer. Great adjunctive treatment....Can be used as monotherapy. So far, I find it helpful alone. Do believe I will need to add to it to prevent SAD with autumn around the corner........Generic is called topiramate. Helpful info on medication at www.crazymeds.us --- do let us know how things go.

Post Edited (Anne_S) : 8/30/2010 4:54:49 PM (GMT-6)


puppett
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 8/31/2010 10:24 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi there! I too have gained weight due to medicine. Although to be honest I have been eating allot of sweets before bedtime. I have resolved to loose some of the weight to make me healthier and to make my husband fine me more attractive. I know it will be hard, but I will do what I have to to accomplish. Maybe you can ask you Dr. to give you an idea for the weight loss due to the medication. I am going to ask at my next appointment.
Hope all goes well!

hi-lo cheerio
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 8/31/2010 7:11 PM (GMT -7)   
I also know what I need to do. Get my diet in check, do some walking,.......Hey I wouldn't mind a little weight gain either,.....but now I am at a total of 60 lbs! I used to weigh around 155-157,....when I went up a little I cout back on things, walked everyday usually. This is not normal for me. And I have watched it on the scale,....5 lbs here then 5 more in a couple of wks., then on and on to where I am now. Its not only the way I look, but the way I feel. Winded, and harder to sit down and get back up and stuff like that. I am also going to try and drink more at the advise of one of you. I love you guys!! Let's all try and be as positive as we can be for each other.

ladynimue
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2010
Total Posts : 31
   Posted 8/31/2010 8:09 PM (GMT -7)   
hi-lo cheerio said...
I also know what I need to do. Get my diet in check, do some walking,.......Hey I wouldn't mind a little weight gain either,.....but now I am at a total of 60 lbs! I used to weigh around 155-157,....when I went up a little I cout back on things, walked everyday usually. This is not normal for me. And I have watched it on the scale,....5 lbs here then 5 more in a couple of wks., then on and on to where I am now. Its not only the way I look, but the way I feel. Winded, and harder to sit down and get back up and stuff like that. I am also going to try and drink more at the advise of one of you. I love you guys!! Let's all try and be as positive as we can be for each other.
 
My, that is a good bit of weight gain. I am 20 pounds overweight and I hate it. But I didn't gain it from Lithium, I gained it after I had surgery. I would say that after you try diet and excerise and you don't see a difference, you might want to talk to your doctor.
It's a dirty trick for a medication that is suppose to make you feel better would make you gain weight and end up feeling bad about that.
Hang in there. :-)

hi-lo cheerio
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 9/1/2010 4:30 PM (GMT -7)   
Yes, it does feel like a dirty trick. I have always cared about the way I look, before my diagnosis of BiPolar and after. And I still do care. And to me, to give someone a drug that has the capability of causing such weight gain, however small or large the chances, is not really a very nice thing to do . Then, after this occurs, and the patient wants to change the medication and is desperate to get off the Lithium, the doctor repeatedly says that there really is no other drug she thinks I can tolerate or I would still have to stay on the liithium for another year even if I did change to something else. You know it reminds me of times that I was hospitalized and I would be given medication that would make me where I couldn't even stay awake or literally fall asleep in my food. And I would be horrified because I learned from one of the techs that if I voiced my opinons to change meds then the doctor would want to keep me there for a couple more weeks to see how I reacted just when I was all scheduled to go home, after working very hard to get to that point. These drugs and their side effects can sometimes be harder to deal with than the mental health issues, it seems. I feel there may be another drug that could work for me just as good as the lithium but maybe my dr. knows my financial limitations. I mean, one drug that they sent me home from the hospital once was 250.00 for a 28 day supply. Another was a little over 300.00 for the same. I'll just have to keep a positive attitude and the next appt. I have in Oct. is going to be some serious talking.
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