bi-polar / schizophrenia(?) questions on meds

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
[ << Previous Thread | Next Thread >> ]

slimordium
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 10/6/2005 8:58 PM (GMT -7)   
I have been recently diagnosed as bi-polar / ?? after suffering from it for 10 or so years and wondering what was wrong. Now my pdoc has me taking 900mg Lithium, 100mg of Seroquel, 50mg of Lamictal and .5 mg of Clonazepam as needed. I am new to this - and have only been taking these for 14days. I do know that I am finally able to return to work after having a 4 week leave of absence as I was having episodes at work and was un-able to concentrate. Three weeks into the 4 weeks I checked myself into a mental hospital after being wide awake for 2 days. On day two I started a very rapid mood/mania cycle. During a brief clear point in my cycle I begged my wife to take me in. Is there anyone else taking this combination of things, and does it work in the long run?

Ellie 1
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 1291
   Posted 10/6/2005 9:26 PM (GMT -7)   
The drugs you are taking are commonly used in Bp. The meds work differently for different people, what works for one doesn't necessarily work for someone else. Sometimes it takes a little fine tuning to get it right, but it sounds like you're already feeling better.
I know how scary that first episode can be. With my first true manic episode I ended up in the hospital 3 times in as many months.
Wishing you the best
Ellie

psychnurse
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 807
   Posted 10/7/2005 12:16 AM (GMT -7)   

IMO you are on a very good first cocktail.  Lithium cant be beat for stabilizing mania/depression, Lamictal is excellent for BP depression and stabilization of that, Seroquel is an antipsychotic and helps to calm and sleep (desperately needed in us!) and Klonopin is the drug of choice for as needed anxiety.  The Lamictal you have to go up on very slowly to avoid a possible, but rare, serious rash called Steven-Johnsons syndrome, 200 mg is the target; anythng over that and really makes no difference.  While you go up, is a waiting game.  Lamictal is a wonderful drug, I also take it and Seroquel, couldn't live without them!  Also take Abilify, Trileptal and Wellbutrin.   Meds take time to work, you should probably be working toward 200 mg Lamictal for optimal effect, ask you doc about that.

FYI whatever you do; GET REGULAR SLEEP!   If we dont sleep, we go into hypo/manic or mixed episodes and/or psychosis.   Very dangerous.   How's you're sleep hygeine?   (YOur nightly routine before sleeping).

What happened at work?   How did your coworkers react?  I lost many jobs due to mania, verbally abusing bosses, lol.

I'm glad you're feeling better, I have also been suffering BP my entire life; horrible symptoms as a kid, worse in teens, diagnosed at 25, decided to finally medicate at 39.   Typical, huh.  But like you , I always knew there was soemthign wrong with me, I just didn't like taking the meds.  Now I wouldn't trade anything for them, you just have to keep working at getting the right ones, and adjusting those dosages until you get it right; it takes tons of contact with your pdoc to get it; it takes time, be patient.

I'm glad you found this place, and I hope you're feeling much better.

Shannon :-)


Variety is the spice of life, BP is the key


bdr1
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 121
   Posted 10/7/2005 3:19 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey Shannon,
 
Just wondering how your combination therapy of Abilify + Seroquel was working out for you.  I'm very interesting in the combination of the 2 atypicals.  Have you titrated up on Seroquel in the past?  As I've mentioned before, in BP-Mania (as per the indication) - I titrate patients up quickly to usually 400-600mg QHS. Usually the psych's keep them up there that I refer to (or go even higher). 
 
Looking forward to hearing back from you.
 
Best,
ckgMD

psychnurse
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 807
   Posted 10/7/2005 7:11 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi, ckgMD!

How nice of you to ask - since starting the Abilify and titrating up to 15mg, my mood is great!   Really good without being hypomanic, just a calm contentment, except that my pdoc really DOESN'T want me on both atypicals; she actually told me to reduce the Seroquel to 50mg from 250 when I started the Abilify.   She is worried about the increased risk of tardive dyskinesia with the combination of the two.  Unfortunately, I cannot sleep with 50mg.   I am also on 1200mg Trileptal, 200mg Lamictal and 200mg wellbutrin.  The Trileptal as you know is a mood stabilizer that is very sedating and should be taken at night, well, it's still not enough to sleep even with 50mg Seroquel.  Have I lost you yet??

As a result the lack of sleep is causing me to cycle a bit so we are adding Klonopin as of today and increasing the Seroquel to 100mg.   I've taken Klonopin before, it works, but since it's a benzo,  there is the tolerance factor........

I dont want to stop the Abilify, it has leveled out my rapid cycling like nothing ever has, and I've been on everything except Dopamax, lol.  But it's a catch-22 with no sleep!   I'm hoping she'll leave me on the Seroquel anyway, I love it; it's the only med I have ever taken that lets me sleep most of the night without waking up.

Do you use it as monotherapy?   The pdocs I've been around most often use it in combination with a mood stabilizer for maintenence at a lower dose if possible.  Once stable, patients don't usually require a maitenence of a high dose, but if they start an episode, they can always take the higher dose immediately to break it (as long as they talk to their doctor), that's another part of the beauty of it.  Plus a lower risk of tardive and Abilify is also very low risk. 

Well, I rambled as usual!

Thanks for asking, I look forward to talking again. :-)

Shannon


Variety is the spice of life, BP is the key

Post Edited (psychnurse) : 10/8/2005 5:24:56 AM (GMT-6)


psychnurse
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 807
   Posted 10/8/2005 4:43 AM (GMT -7)   

Oh, and how could I forget added to the aforementioned combination of Seroquel and mood stabilizer, almost always an antidepressant.  Wellbutrin is drug of choice because it doesn't alter seratonin, which is likely to induce mania, it balances dopamine and norepinephrine which are thought to be the chemical culprits along with perhaps the neurotransmitters.  I just found recently that it did get approval from the FDA for the treatment of BP depression.   But even many pdocs continue to write SSRIs.  Go figure. 

Also loved by pdocs is Lamictal, because since it is a mood stabilizer (anticonvulsant) which you more than likely already know, not only slightly stabilizes mania, it stabilizes depression.  It can keep BPs from getting too low.   Not usually used as a mood stabilizer by itself, in fact very rarely it can induce mania.   But use with caution due to the extremely rare risk of Steven-Johnson syndrome.   Titration is very slow and in small increments, about 25mg; therapeutic dose is 200mg.   Any more than that seems to make no difference in symptoms. 

I don't recall if I already told you all this, I apologize if you already knew, I feel rather strange trying to "educate" an MD, lol.

Its just very sad that BPs don't do well in general on monotherapy, as it is so complex and has so many features that change constantly.  The perfect cocktail usually isn't so perfect after a while.  Sad,  but true. 

So there it is, the cold hard truth.   That's why (definitely no offense to you at all) I always tell BPs they should be seeing a pdoc, and I will admit, there are many bad one out there.  I commend you for caring enough to research and actually ask the bipolar people themselves about it, so you can treat it safely and effectively, that is truly amazing.    The ones I have worked with have all been very cutting edge, educated constantly on the very latest treatments and definitely the no no drugs that are NOT indicated.    There does seem to be a high burnout factor, due to the nature of it, though.   No physical tests to measure the progress of, just a subjective opinion. 

Thanks again for asking, have a great day!

Sincerely,

Shannon


Variety is the spice of life, BP is the key


hockeyboy
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 10/8/2005 7:53 AM (GMT -7)   
I am new to this fourm. I have been taking meds for bipolor since I was 3 1/2 years old. You name it and I have probably tried it. I am now 33 years old and I am suffering teribly. I take Lith, buspar, & trazadone. I was recently taken off abilify, by myself, because I gained 30 pounds in 2 months to an already slight overweight man. I was first hospitalized at age 4 and was even in hospital for 3 years when I was a teen at probably one of the best hospitals in the country sheppard pratt. Nothing has ever worked. No amount of drugs therapy or inpatient stays has made me feel any better. SSRI's make me manic. My favorite drug, Zyprexa, they took me off of because of the side effects. I have only seen a doctor for the last three years once a month for 15 mins because going in for therapy didn't work. I have to much education and abilities to really adhere to a regular therapy schedule. I always tell them what they want to hear. No one has yet to be smart enough to figure out that I don't wash the dishes at 7-11 for a living. I have had over 40 jobs in the last ten years and some I made money but I always just walk away.

Who ever wrote the top post you are in luck. In todays medication and therapy for BP you have quite an opportunity to help yourself. Stick with it. Do not stop meds or therapy. You will probably have to take them the rest of your life and I hope you have an understanding husband or wife and children if you have any, because they are your support group you need to be with. Chats and forums help even talk with some close friends because there are many people who love you and want and need you to get better.

As for me, I am reaching out today because I am at the end of this train ride. I go to see a new pdoc on the 19th of this month and I am choosing to try this therapy for the last time and I will give him or her 6 months to come up with a plan before I go to the er and check in and this time I don't think I want to check out. Untreated bp can cause you to lose everything. I lost my wife two kids my car my house (twice) most of my friends are gone and I can't talk to anyone and that is most important. Talking with someone. I will leave you with this.

If you can't trust anyone to say what you really think and feel you have to somehow love yourself enough to say it anyway. If you feel like ending it, tell someone, they might put you in hospital or more therapy but the only way you can get better with therapy is to believe in yourself to talk. They have to know everything to be able to help you. Isn't that why you started getting help?

Good Luck

Ellie 1
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 1291
   Posted 10/8/2005 9:27 AM (GMT -7)   
Welcome to HealingWell hockeyboy.
You've come to a great place for support.
I'm sorry you've had such a rough time of it. Perhaps this new pdoc can really be of alot of help. This may be the one that gets the drug cocktail right. They say it takes some time to get it fine tuned but thirty years is certainly a long time to wait.
It's a shame the abilify didn't work out for you. It was very effective for me and for a couple of the other people that post here as well. I actually lost weight on the drug. It just shows how these meds. affect each person differently.
Good luck with the new doc.
Take care
Ellie
New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
Forum Information
Currently it is Friday, December 02, 2016 12:58 PM (GMT -7)
There are a total of 2,731,732 posts in 300,955 threads.
View Active Threads


Who's Online
This forum has 151128 registered members. Please welcome our newest member, Diane82256.
369 Guest(s), 15 Registered Member(s) are currently online.  Details
Summersun, tickbite666, HangInThere, tennisplayer, Michael In NY, Mrs. Brady, jdcd57, Lynnwood, Diane82256, dbwilco, Old Mike, Tall Allen, fransherrell, Naomi, Oranged


Follow HealingWell.com on Facebook  Follow HealingWell.com on Twitter  Follow HealingWell.com on Pinterest
Advertisement
Advertisement

©1996-2016 HealingWell.com LLC  All rights reserved.

Advertise | Privacy Policy & Disclaimer