Bipolar with Anxiety???

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sjst1000
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 9/26/2006 4:29 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi all! I'm new to this board, and I'm looking for feeback from anyone who is bipolar and has problems with anxiety.
 
I'm having the WORST problems with anxiety, for the past few months it's been excruciating (I've actually developed an irregular heartbeat because of it - PVCs), and I'm trying to figure out what meds might work best for me as nothing I've tried in the past seems like it's been a good fit. I don't want to live the rest of my life on xanax, it seems like there's got to be something better, less addictive. In addition, I was diagnosed with "bipolar - mixed states" a couple of years ago (kind of by a "process of elimination" - I'd been on so many different anti-depressants that didn't work, and I was so agitated all the time, so they tried valproic acid which seemed a little better than anything previous to that but still not a "cure" by any means - so am I really "bipolar", who knows?).
 
I'm open to any and all suggestions. I'm not even taking anything right now for the bipolar. about six weeks ago, my psych took the minimal dosage of Lamictal that I was on and raised it, and added Seroquel to the mix. I was on that combo for about six days, and my heart palpitations just went crazy. I asked her if the meds could be the cause, she said no, continue on course. But after a few more days like that, and after doing research on it myself, I decided to stop the meds to see if the heart thing improved. Unfortunately, I'm still having the pvc's, but I do feel like those meds exascerbated the condition so I'm reluctant to go back on them.  I have an appt. with the psych tomorrow, and I kind of want an idea of what I'm thinking would be helpful.  I feel like I'm getting SO wary of side effects, I really don't want to be on ANYTHING - right now, the symptoms of depression and irritability have been manageable, but the anxiety needs to be tackled NOW, the cardiologist says that it's at the root of the heart problem.
 
Any suggestions/advice are GREATLY appreciated!
 
Thanks!
 
S.

wmnak
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1123
   Posted 9/26/2006 4:46 PM (GMT -7)   
s.
 
welcome to hw!  glad to see yoh here on the bp forum.
 
i have anxiety attacks from time to time, but not the magnatude that you have. 
 
i am on lithium and, generally, it does its job of preventing manic attacks, which could easily be what your anxiety attacks are.  i am also on welbutrin for depression.  you have to always remember that each person is unique and each drug acts uniquely with each person.
 
bp is an odd illness in many ways.  it often takes quite a while to find the right "cocktail" for you.
 
stick with it.  often side effects of drugs go away after a week or two.  going off meds completely could prove disasterous.
 
be careful and keep us posted.
 
warren

CapninHapnin
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 285
   Posted 9/26/2006 7:13 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi sj

Welcome!

I am sorry I do not have any advice for you about the meds. I have BP2 with rapid cycles, but do not have any experience with anxiety. I am on lithium, remeron (I can't remember the generic name), and lamictal. It took a while to get a mix that worked. I would tell my wife I was experimenting with drugs.

But I can say glad to have you aboard. I think you will like it here.

Take care

Cap
I want "I wish I had one more day to spend at the office" on my tombstone.


Djonma
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 285
   Posted 9/27/2006 1:14 AM (GMT -7)   
Hiya!
Who knows if I have BP! I think I do, my family think I do, but stupid things are happening to get it sorted out...

BUT! I have really bad anxiety, as does my Mum and she's BP.
I don't know what meds would work though - I've been put on diazepam short term for my anxiety and OMG! It's amazing!
But it's only allowed to be used short term, so when all this disaster is over and I have proper meds and care, I'll be put on something else.
You should talk to your psych doc about the anxiety. Explain to him that it's making you so bad and what the cardio said. If he can get your anxiety down to a normal level and you can get back on your bp meds that should clear everything up together!
Thoracic Outlet Syndrome from birth - Diagnosed 1999
Fibromyalgia from birth - Diagnosed 2005
(?) Ulcerative Colitis - waiting for tests
(?) BiPolar - currently on Diazepam whilst waiting for assessment.
Thrombocytacemia

No other medicines - doctors are useless!


CounterClockwise
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1529
   Posted 9/27/2006 5:43 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi SJST,

Nice to meet you and welcome to HW!

Yes, anxiety is a common thing with bipolar (as it is with unipolar depression). The key to tackling this really is in the meds, but some meds actually heighten anxiety in the initial stages of taking them. My advice you would be to tell your pdoc everything and come to an agreement with her that you are to phone her and get an emergency consultation if you have problems with any medication prescribed. It's really crucial if you are bp that you are on meds -- the *right* meds for you! -- and that you consult with your doc over any changes. With bp it can be pretty dangerous to come off meds cold because that can trigger manias and depressions (normally manias). So, as I say, the key here is having a good arrangement with your pdoc and making sure that she is listening to and helping you with your concerns -- whether that means going through the early side-effect symptoms with you and reassuring you or changing the med/dosage.

Really good luck with your appointment -- and let us know how it goes!

Rosie x
********************

People are not like fish: they do not work well battered.

When I'm not in my right mind, my left mind gets pretty crowded...

********************

 
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum


LDA
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 9/27/2006 3:57 PM (GMT -7)   
Hello i am new here too!!

I really enjoy this board... I to had an anxiety problem. I would have regular heartbeats, sweat uncontrollable, and well other stuff. I started taking Serquel and it helped both problems. Only thing is taking will most likely put you in a coma. So take it at night before you go to bed and believe me you won't move till it wear off!!!

yak
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 9/28/2006 6:56 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi, I am knew here as well and I love this! I wish something like this had beev available to me 14 years ago, when I was first diagnosed with depression and started a long battle with deppression and anxiety and many,many, many different drugs. I am finally diagnosed within the last two years with bipolar and anxiety. I am on Seroquel and xanax and will be on xanax probably for the rest of my life. I have no problems with my body getting physically "addicted" to xanax. I did in the beginning, but as my doctor has explained should a diabetic who is insulin dependent from birth who needs insulin for the rest of their lives (AS IS THE CASE WITH TYPE 1 DIABETES) cannot live without their insulin, I too must understand I have an illness that I must take xanax and seroquel for. I am finally happy and I do not have those horrible mood swings and go into rages and my family does not have to endure it anymore either. For me it is like a miracle! I hope you keep up and find the right meds. for you and do not give up!

CounterClockwise
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1529
   Posted 9/28/2006 12:00 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Yak,

Sounds like you really took in what your doc said and he/she is absolutely right -- as your case so wonderfully demonstrates! There should never be any stigma in taking meds for bp: ultimately controlling your bp through meds is the responsible thing to do (responsible to *yourself* more than anything else) -- and far better than having the bp control you. -- Same goes for anxiety really: I've had depression and anxiety/panic for years, but with meds I can really keep it under control -- and live a very normal life!

Rosie x
********************

People are not like fish: they do not work well battered.

When I'm not in my right mind, my left mind gets pretty crowded...

********************

 
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum


NiteScribe
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 27
   Posted 9/28/2006 9:18 PM (GMT -7)   
S.

Thank you for your sharing about the anxiety. I’m Bipolar and am now suffering from anxiety also. I know that the pain medication I’m taking (Ultram) is responsible for the anxiety – it is a side effect of that medication.
Some meds do cause anxiety. There is no other pain medication that I can take at this time, so it seems the yucky anxiety is something I must learn to live with
But, I really do hate the feeling and my heart goes out to you.

sjst1000
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 9/29/2006 7:01 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you all so much for your feedback...it really helps to hear that other people are going thru this, too. I had my appointment, and she wants to try lexapro with xanax as needed, so along with the beta blockers for the heart thing, I guess that's what I'll try. sometimes it does feel like the "med-go-round," doesn't it?
S.

CounterClockwise
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1529
   Posted 9/30/2006 4:04 AM (GMT -7)   
lol SJST -- med-go-round! I love it -- think that's a new one for the HW lingo collection!

Really hope the new meds help. -- Let us know, eh?

Rosie x
********************

People are not like fish: they do not work well battered.

When I'm not in my right mind, my left mind gets pretty crowded...

********************

 
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum


Djonma
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 285
   Posted 9/30/2006 2:30 PM (GMT -7)   
heh, Sj, don't worry about the med-go-round as you call it.
My parents could open a pharmacy with the amount of medication they're on!
It's always been like that in our house, and with 4 kids (me with stupid illnesses) it's been like living in a pharmacy!
And with 3 cats added to the mix... one of whom has to have a tablet every day for the rest of her life, and is currently on more medication and probably about to have surgery...

It's all a bit mad!
Thoracic Outlet Syndrome from birth - Diagnosed 1999
Fibromyalgia from birth - Diagnosed 2005
(?) Ulcerative Colitis - waiting for tests
(?) BiPolar - currently on Diazepam whilst waiting for assessment.
Thrombocytacemia

No other medicines - doctors are useless!

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