I really need some help right now.....with related question about both Zyprexa and anxiety

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CassandraLee
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Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 844
   Posted 4/23/2008 6:24 PM (GMT -7)   
Hello Everyone:  I have been on a mood stabilizer for about 1 1/2 years now.  It has been Lamictal to help with my mood swings.  As I cannot afford my prescriptions (I do not have health insurance) my therapist who is also my prescribing A.P.R.N. has been providing me with samples that she receives from the company sales rep. that supplies it.  This representative was unexpectedly let go from her job about 2 months ago and my therapist no longer receives samples.  She gave me samples instead for Zyprexa (w/a dosage of 5mg) but I have been afraid to use it.  I had looked over the pamphlet of possible effects that came with it and also looked at our message boards here to see how people felt about this drug.  All in all it scared me.
 
Therefore, for the past 2 months I have been scrounging to pay for the Lamictal on my own.  The problem right now is I am out of money to pay for this - I need to still take care of my 2 daughters.  I ran out of my prescription and I have not taken this (or my Cymbalta) for several days now.
 
My mood swings have been really bad today.  I have been proud of myself the past 6 months or so for being able to keep it together and stay calm during challenging moments.  Right now I am embarrassed because on two important calls today I could not.
 
Okay...so my question is: Should I just give in and take the Zyprexa? To me it seems like this is now the only choice I have because my therapist had only that or Seroquel (which I already tried and makes me fuzzy and starving all the time.)  Last, I am down to my last 4 days of my semester in class and I am so behind and I'm scared something new could make me fuzzy and/or sick? 
 
I'm sorry..I seem to have lost my ability to stay calm and reason.  I do see my therapist at 3:00 tomorrow.  But right now I'm trying to make the most of the time I have left to stay calm and sane for homework.  Do I stay the way I am now and try to make the best of it? (And if so how do I deal with these mood swings and anxiety?) Or does anyone have anything good or encouraging to say about Zyprexa??
 
Thanks ahead,
Cass
 
(PS: I also posted this to the depression board as well)

Post Edited (CassandraLee) : 4/23/2008 7:30:45 PM (GMT-6)


percycat
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 4/23/2008 6:36 PM (GMT -7)   
Cass,

I can't offer any advice about the meds as I don't take any of those. Your therapist will probably have better ideas.

However, regarding your class work, you may want to talk to your professors about the situation -- if you feel comfortable doing that -- and see what arrangements can be made if you do find yourself completely out of commission here at the very end. Sometimes it's possible to request an extension on final assignments or an incomplete grade in a course you've otherwise been doing well in. If you do follow either of those options, be sure to finish everything as quickly and diligently as possible once you're back on your feet! That gives your professors a much better impression of you and of their decision to help you out, and it's better for you because you haven't had time to forget too much knowledge. I hope your meds will get you back to feeling more stable, but do keep these options in mind -- that may allow you to worry a little less about the coursework and focus more on taking care of your medication situation and, of course, your girls.

Good luck!

percycat

nervymeg
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Date Joined Jul 2006
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   Posted 4/23/2008 6:43 PM (GMT -7)   

Cass, I can't make the decision for you here about taking the zyprexa, but if it was prescribed for you by a medical professional it is most likely safe. You may suffer some side effects initially, but if it helps then that would be worth it all IMHO.

It sounds like you are in a really stressful place right now..I know what it's like to be anxious and have studies looming..no fun at all.  I'm sorry that you are being bounced around on meds..but please hold onto how well you have been doing in the recent past..you are obviously strong and working hard to achieve a happy balanced life.  I hope your appt with your therapsit helps you make a desicion, and know that we are here to listen and help.  please keep us updated and know that we care about you. my best wishes to you.


Co-moderator Anxiety/Panic
Panic Attack Survivor
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Aussieangel
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Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 510
   Posted 4/24/2008 3:57 AM (GMT -7)   
I'm actually weaning off my day dose of zyprexa I was on 5mgs morning and night. The main side effects are weight gain and increased blood sugars oh and if taken at day it makes me sleepy.

It does work really well for me as a mood stabliser but my blood sugars are bad so I need to try off it. It stops the racing and bad thoughts and calms your mind down.

Howlyncat
Elite Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 4/24/2008 5:34 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi there
Many ppl have been able to contact the makers ( pharmacuetical companies) when they cannot afford a med and they may just be able to help you out

I would give it a shot in this case

I dont have anything to say about the zyprexna never been on it

I wish you all the best

Keep us posted it sounds like you need a good support system as well and this is it for sure

LYN
  DX With Crohns,Pyoderma Gangrenosum,Anxiety/Panic,Fibro & Other DD
 
Moderator @ Anxiety Panic..Alzheimer's..Co mod @ Crohns
                               FIGHT the FIGHT with all YOU HAVE
 
   
 
                   
 


olivia of course
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Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1523
   Posted 4/24/2008 9:51 AM (GMT -7)   
CL,

As other people have already said, we can't make the decision whether you should take Zyprexa or not. In in end it is really up to you. You should talk to your therapist about it, maybe she can give you some hekpful info. I also wanted to let you know that even though Zyprexa is cheaper than Lamictal, it is still pricey.

I have taken Zyprexa before, and it made me really drowsy even though I took it at night. But I was taking the whole 10mg all at once. It also made me sleep a lot.

As Aussie said, it has a tendency to make you gain weight more than other drugs in its class. It can raise your blood sugar, but it can also take years before it starts affecting you. But not everyone reacts the same way to meds. It is scary to start new meds, but you should talk to a professional about before deciding wether to take it or not. If you are not able to talk to your talk to your pdoc about it, you can talk to someone at your local pharmacy.

As Lyn said, a lot of drug companies do have programs fro those who cannot afford their meds. Here is a link that might be helpful, I found it on the Glaxo-Smith site.

http://www.gskforyou.com/12_programs.htm


Olivia
Olivia
Co-Moderator, Bipolar
 
Only by seeking challenges can we hope to find the best in ourselves.
~Robert Rodriguez


stkitt
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Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 4/24/2008 11:57 AM (GMT -7)   

Wow, you got a lot of good advice and I know exactly how you feel.   We are just opposite,  I was just started on Lamacitil, took 12.5 mg yesterday and became very dizzy by evening and was walking into walls,  did you have trouble getting onto the med?

The side effects of Lamacitil scare the heck out of me especially the rash that some people develop.

Zyprexa seems like a good alternative for you but if you can let go of the fear and get through the day, tomorrow you can meet with your therapist and talk through any other options.

Olivia gave you good info.  The med companies will look at helping out when people cannot afford the meds.  Please check into that option. 

I am here for you as are all the other wonderful members.  Please keep posting. Try  breaking  your study periods into one hour at a time and then take time out.

Hugs
Kitt

 


 
Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety ~ Panic 
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
 


CassandraLee
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 844
   Posted 4/24/2008 5:16 PM (GMT -7)   

Thank you to everyone who took the time to read and respond to my post.  I spent a lot of the night and early morning thinking about your suggestions and they truly helped.

I did make it through the night last night --and I did not take the Zyprexa.  I met with my therapist (who is my prescribing A.P.R.N.) this afternoon and we had a long talk about it. I told her that I was really afraid of taking it after reading the enclosed pamphlet and hearing negative comments from others. She basically restated some of what she told me last time we briefly talked about it.  In regards to my two concerns about weight gain and issues such as developing diabetes, she told me that the dose that she is prescribing for me (i.e. 5 mg / I need to cut the tablet in half) is so low that she does not feel that I should be concerned about it. She indicated that these warnings would become issues in those taking higher dosages.  She reinforced that she thinks I need to be on it at this time and until the stress in my life (i.e. school, my children always getting sick and my family) begins to lessen. And that I should keep a positive attitude that when I graduate (and she is sure that I will graduate) things will get better. So, to wrap it up, I guess I just need to trust her on this and take the Zyprexa.  ..I must admit that I am still scared of it but I trust her so I will.  I'll take my first dose before I go to bed later tonight.  And she has promised that as long as she keeps receiving samples of Zyprexa and Cymbalta (which I also take) from the sales reps she will keep providing them to me so that I don't have to worry about having to pay for them at this point.

In the meanwhile, she has instructed me to stay focused.  I did not get any of my school work done last night and at 8:00 pm I am restarting now.  It is all due late Saturday evening when my class ends.  Based on forum remarks from the last few assignments, I am 97% positive that my professor has written me off; because out of 8 weeks, I have only handed work in from week 5.  Thus, I need to get about 7 assignments done by noon tomorrow before I call her and see if I can convince her to accept it and possibly grant me an extension to Tuesday morning to finish it up.  I'm afraid if I call her now before I hand work in she will pull the plug on me and I don't want to fail another class.

The thing is...I always get A's on the assignments that I hand in.  I love analyzing and writing so I always do well.  For me the whole problem is staying focused and not letting my depression and anxiety and financial issues get the best of me.  Because when this happens I freeze and then fail and I cannot afford to fail this class again too.

Last..thank you Kitt for also responding back to me today.  I was scared of Lamictal too because of the rash.  But I was told that you need to start off at a low dosage and very slowly increase the dosage until you are where you need to be.  Rashes have only been observed in the beginning stages and only when someone starts off with a high dose or increases very quickly.  I get extremely dizzy when I take the Lamictal and it also makes me very drowsy.  That's why I always took it at night.

I am so sorry that I wrote so much here.  And if any of you are good about saying prayers...could you find a few seconds to ask for some inspiration and strength for me to get through the next few days??

Thanks,

Cass

 


percycat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 4/24/2008 5:34 PM (GMT -7)   
Cass,

Wow! You have really come to some good conclusions about your situation. Bravo to you for being so focussed on doing what you need to for yourself, really!

I agree that if you want to talk with your professor about your work, waiting until after you've impressed her with its high quality again is a really smart idea. I'm also very glad that you talked with your therapist so thoroughly about your concerns. Being able to trust your doctors, even when you're afraid and worried, is so important. That trust won't make you stop worrying -- it took me a long time to figure that out -- but taking care of yourself isn't about avoiding worry. It's about tackling it when it does occur. You sound like you have such a very good straegy for that now.

Hang in there, and give yourself some poker chips for being so smart about dealing with your anxiety!

percycat

CassandraLee
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 844
   Posted 4/24/2008 5:56 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you, Percycat.  I appreciate the poker chips and I will definately take them for motivation and perhaps a boost in confidence.  But, my therapist has the ability to work wonders with me and being with her today really helped me a lot.  Over the past few years she has truly helped me not only to change the direction of my life but to regain some control over it.
 
I like what you said about worrying.  If I understood your correctly, I think you meant that it is okay to worry and to follow up about it.  And it is important to trust others despite our worry -- because it is important to take care of ourselves and put that worry temporarily aside while we do it.....Did I get this right?  
 
Thank you again for such positive feedback.
Cass

percycat
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 4/25/2008 4:41 AM (GMT -7)   
Yes, that's what I meant. I've spent so much energy trying to stop from feeling my anxiety in the first place, when what I've newly discovered is that it's more helpful to accept that I feel that way and to move or work through it anyway. I've had some especially bad health anixety the past few months, and just couldn't get into a functioning space, because I couldn't believe that there wasn't something wrong that would kill me. Now I'm able to accept that even though I'm scared and mistrustful, my doctors are not, and if they say I'm okay, or that the new meds they prescribed are good for me, then I'll trust that enough to act on it, even though I can't quite trust myself yet. It doesn't make me less frightened, but it does at least get me moving toward a more positive place in life.

Good luck with the end of your semester! I'm praying for you!

percycat

quietpain
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 112
   Posted 4/28/2008 11:06 AM (GMT -7)   
I have pent years on zyprexa. In the depression world All drugs standardized agaist prozac and in the anti-psychotic drug world they test against haldol(1st gen.) and zyprexa (atypicals.) Zyprexa was a lifesaver for me. It helped across the board: the anxiety, depression, and the ppsychosis. I gained alot of weight. I started at 125 and ended at 200. I still take 10mg. as needed when I am suicidal or the holdol isn't enough of an anti-psychic. Ten is low dose, at least in my mind, for all those years I was on 80mg. A lot of people like seroquel for help in sleeping,this does the same. Seroquel is good too, but why not take the best atypical-antipychotic?

zyprexa, risperdal, seroquel, & geodon (w/clozipine however , it hard to mange, it is in this good choice list.Afer a while it won't knock you ou so much. I was taking 400 in the morning and 400 at noon. At night I took 1200. It does slow you but the side efect wears off.

quietpain

percycat
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 4/28/2008 4:59 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi, Cass!

I'm just wondering how things have turned out for you with your class. And how are you doing with the Zyprexa? Please post when you get a chance and let us know.

percycat

CassandraLee
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 844
   Posted 4/30/2008 7:20 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi Percycat:

Thanks for thinking of me and posting again.  I was planning on posting soon but I've been feeling really down the last few days.  I did not pass my class and this was my third unsuccessful attempt.  My professor stated quite firmly that it was not fair to the rest of the class that worked so hard and in a timely manner to have my work accepted on the last day of or day after the end of the class. She continued on by explaining that we all make choices in life and my communication was quite poor or nonexistent - and she felt bad about it, but that was that.  ..Talk about embarassing and feeling so entirely low.  I mean, she was right.  And that speech was something that I could see myself using on a class of ten year olds; but it was rightfully being directed at me. Thus, I have gone all out on a huge pity party for one!......  All in all, despite these many failures and my major depression which is not giving me any break at all, I am in the process of trying to pick myself up, brush off all the dirt, mud and embarrassment from myself and am heading back in.  I have 2 classes left (this being one of them) before I can student teach for 4 months - which will bring me to a graduation date of the end of this coming December.

In regards to the Zyprexa, I did start taking it the other night like I said I would.  It has not done anything terrible to me thus far like I was really afraid of.  But I do feel funny/wierd in a lot of different ways.  First, I am just wiped out.  I am also on Cymbalta and Trazadone.  I can't function with the Trazadone and Zyprexa together.  So, I cut my Trazadone dosage by 3/4.  Otherwise, I just can't get out of bed. My prescribing therapist is away on a conference this week but I'll touch base with her next week when I see her. Also, I feel a little Zombie like brain-wise, and a tiny bit shaky and I also feel like my body is going into superdrive.  (brain is saying, I'm just too tired - go away and body is saying nope - get moving).  ...Okay, maybe I do need a straight jacket here.

So that's that.  I am in a tired, self-pitying, weeping mood right now.  I promise to give the violin players a tip and send them home soon before I drag you down with me..      

I really appreciate your caring and asking.  It has been a very long time since someone has done that.  ..I also feel guilty too as I know you must also have a lot going on in your own life that you would like to talk about. .....I'd like to also be there and help you too.

Cass

 

 

 


nervymeg
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Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2721
   Posted 4/30/2008 8:08 PM (GMT -7)   

Cass, we all need those violin players sometimes..don't feel bad about it (in fact can I borrow them for a lil while??!)..I hope you are feeling better soon and that things work out with the zyprexa.

Give it some time, listen to your body and keep making your own decisions...

Is that a cello I hear??!


Co-moderator Anxiety/Panic
Panic Attack Survivor
Weekend Warrior Princess
 


percycat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 5/1/2008 7:08 PM (GMT -7)   
Cass,

I'm sorry your class ending on a bad note. I understand how low you must feel. You had a lot on your plate this semester, and being able to come out on top of it all just wasn't doable. That's ok, and it doesn't mean you're a weak or lazy person. It just means that you had to prioritize your life in a way that made the class come out toward the bottom, that's all, so that other things could be at the top where you needed them to be right now. Another time, you'll be able to tackle the class with more gusto, and you WILL get all set for that student teaching!

Sorry the adjustment to the new meds is making you feel zombie-like. Keep your doc informed about your side effects, and trust that they should go away soon.

I thought I heard an accordion, but maybe that's just from the sappy French romance on the TV downstairs.

percycat

CassandraLee
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 844
   Posted 5/7/2008 6:58 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi percycat: Thanks for the follow-up below.  I have now officially started the class over (once again) and tonight is the first deadline on my assignment.  In fact, I have about four hours left.  ..I have already started this earlier in the week, so I'm going to make some tea and get going. 

I am still feeling a little zombie-like from the Zyprexa, but the thing that worries me the most is I have an insatiable (sp?) hunger.  I'm ALWAYS STARVING!  I'm trying to stick to high protein things but I need to do better.  I'm scared about gaining more weight.

But all in all, things are getting back to a norm.  Thank you so much for listening all the way through and being there to help me.  My therapist told me today that I need to find a motivator to keep myself going (this may be the start of a new thread yeah ). 

Last, but not least in any way, is that I hope you are doing well yourself.  I'll have to take a moment and see if you have posted lately.

Cass

 


olivia of course
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Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1523
   Posted 5/8/2008 12:42 PM (GMT -7)   
Cassandra,

The hunger thing is a huge problem for everyone who takes, trust me you're not alone. I hope you are doing well.
Olivia. Bipolar Co-Moderator

Only by seeking challenges can we hope to find the best in ourselves. ~~ Robert Rodriguez

Never let your yesterday ruin your today.


stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 5/8/2008 2:03 PM (GMT -7)   

Cass,

Hurrah for you, don't give up on that class, just know you will get it done and try not to put a lot of pressure on yourself.  I am glad your meds are working out better for you and choosing high protiein foods is a good idea. 

Also watch your portion sizes when eating and try to do some form of exercise daily.  I know your tired but attempt to try and if you can't do not beat yourself up.

You are a wonderful person.

Kitt


 
Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety ~ Panic 
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
 


CassandraLee
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 844
   Posted 5/10/2008 5:34 PM (GMT -7)   

Olivia & Kitt:

Thanks Olivia for letting me know that I am not alone in always feeling like I am starving.  Last night, I literally had the shakes until I ate some Quaker hot cereal.  I am trying to do better food choices but this scares me.  I stepped on my scale yesterday and found a new time high of 180 pounds.  I have gone from below 116 pre-depression to this.  What have others done to deal with this? Any tips?

Kitt: You're right about the exercise.  I have known this for awhile now.  Starting Monday I am going to have to make myself do something.  This scares me.  Perhaps this is my anxiety talking, but I don't want to die of a heart attack or something.

Last, thank you for your encouragement and kind words.  The only person I get these from are my therapist.  I know she really does care but it meant a lot to hear it from you as well.

Cass


percycat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 1952
   Posted 5/10/2008 7:53 PM (GMT -7)   
Cass,

I had a good deal of weight gain from Paxil, so I understand your concerns. A couple of times, my doc and I have tried to wean me off to deal with that and other longterm (minor) side-effects, but every time, I end up deciding that I'd rather be heavy and not depressed/anxious than thin and freaked out all the time.

It is possible to lose the weight through committed exercise. I started walking daily in January and have lost a chunk of weight. I'd never been able to commit to anything daily in the past, so I'd lose some weight and then gain it all back with a vengeance. If Zyprexa is anything like Paxil in that regard, the weight loss may be slow going, and you'll have to stick with your plan for the long term, else it'll probably come right back on.

Good luck. Glad to hear that you're off to a solid, well-organized start for your class. You CAN do it!

perccat

getting by
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 40595
   Posted 5/11/2008 5:36 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Cassandra,

I do a lot of walking and that seems to keep my weight under control. I am not gaining at this point any way, knock on wood. Ouch that hurt my head, just kidding... I also carry a lot of muscle, so muscle weighs 4X that of body fat, so keep that in mind.

I try to stick to a protien diet, with lots of vegies. That also seems to help. Eat slowly and really chew your food good. It takes 20 minutes for your brain to know that your stomache is full.

But I find that the walking is the best for me, I have fibromyalgia so I have to be careful with lifting weights and such. Gentle stretching is for me. Though I have light weights that I use. But the walking seems to keep the pounds. I also avoid as much carbs as I can. And eat 4 to 6 times a day, small portions. If you starve yourself, your body goes into starvation mode and hangs on to every calorie that it can. So not eating isn't good.

I hope that this helps some.

Good luck and don't give up
hugs, Karen
  Moderator-Depression
 
fibromyalgia, Chronic fatigue, depression,allergies


stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 5/11/2008 10:19 AM (GMT -7)   

Hey Cass,

I am with you on knowing I should get out and move but I am just stuck and can't get the enthusiasm to do it.  I used to walk 5 days a week.  That was a long time ago.

Tell you what, you do it and so will I.  We will do it together and your heart will be ok if you go slow,  don't try to be a long distance walker in the beginning. You have a physician's clearance to exercise, correct?

Set up realistic goals, get the walking shoes on and go for a block or two until you feel you are safe to extend the distance.

I am with you on this one.  OK.  Starting day on Monday.  yeah yeah yeah
We can do this.

Hugs

Kitt


 
Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety ~ Panic 
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
 


getting by
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 40595
   Posted 5/11/2008 3:27 PM (GMT -7)   
Im in on this one too, we can give progress reports on our walks. I love to walk and go as often as I can. I have two dogs and take each one of them around the block so that gives me 30-40 min all together and try to do it every day, but don't beat myself up if I can't. Plus little things like parking farther away from where I am going (like to the store) so that I have to walk more. If I can walk somewhere instead of drive I do that. Little things can add up.

I will be checking on you guys.

luv and hugs, Karen
  Moderator-Depression
 
fibromyalgia, Chronic fatigue, depression,allergies


CassandraLee
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 844
   Posted 5/11/2008 6:49 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Kitt and Karen.
 
Wow! This is great.  I have two "walking" buddies now.  This is definately a motivator for me.
If the both of you can and will do it, then so will I.  I do not live in a neighborhood to walk in, but I have an up-hill 600 foot driveway and I do have walking work-out tapes that I can put in the vcr and do inside.  I'm definately in.
I'll touch base with both of you tomorrow night!  yeah yeah
 
Cass
 
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