Treatments or Disease???

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New Member

Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 9/24/2006 10:43 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi everyone...I am new to this board. I'm Bipolar 2 and have been since I was 15 yr old (I am 29 now). I suffered for years with doctors that treated me for depression with anixety then I gave up and almost total destoryed my life. When I was 25 my dad who is a doctor finally saw what was really happening. He had left to my mental health drs before because he felt he was to close to the issues. At 25 I was put on Zyprexa... It treated my symptoms wonderfully. But I went from 105 lbs to 145 lbs - This weight jump was causing me to become diabetic. It also caused me to develop Polycystic Ovary Syndrome. Which now even off the drug I suffer from what it did to me. I can't have children naturally - I will have to take fertility treatments, etc. and maybe even then I won't be able to do it. I have lost some of the weight but I still hold it around my middle. Skinny everywhere but my belly and chest area, I grow hair where women shouldn't face, nipples, etc. I don't have a period at all. I have high cholesterol... I was then put on lamictal - it did nothing...I cycled very fast and was almost to the point of endin git all when I called my dad for help. Now I am Serquel. It helps but when I take it I don't go to sleep I pass out. I still wiegh more than I should even thu I exercise. The Serquel also upsets my stomach and gives me a GERD like symptom. Not to mention the fact that it is impossible to wake up from and it makes your heart beat funny. I still get that diabetic low sugar feeling with it. I want to try something else something safer something that isn't going to kill me slowly with other illnesses. Could everyone tell me about what they are on and how it effect them?? Has anyone tried ABILIFY?? And if anyone is in the Central Kentucky area know of a good mental health doctor... Someone who can help me with my issues with meds (I love my dad but I just can't tell him somethings, ya know). I don't to go back to that person I was before treatment... My mother has already lost my younger brother to a car accident and I don't want her to live with me hurting myself. Please help me out with this - I should have to be afraid of my illness and the treatment.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1123
   Posted 9/24/2006 2:33 PM (GMT -7)   
welcome to our forum.  feel free to rage, vent, talk, give considered advice - whatever.  we've all been there, are there, or are heading there.
i am on lithium (900 mg/day) for bp and welbutrin for depression.  i have had few serious side effects from the lithium and have just started taking the welbutrin a few days ago.  no side effects from that as yet.
you must remember that every one's body is different and reacts differently to meds.  there is a thread here about the side effects of lithium.  you never know.
one thing that i've learned on this forum is that it's a caps shoot to find the right meds to deal with your unique bp with the least damaging side effects.
hope this helps.  stay with it and keep us posted.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1529
   Posted 9/24/2006 3:39 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi LDA --
Welcome to HW! I hope you'll find this forum really welcoming and helpful!! :)
Sounds like this is definitely the wrong med or the wrong dosage for you -- but the good thing is that there are a good few other anti-psychotics out there that I don't think you've tried. The problem with recommending, I guess, is that different meds work differently for different people (as you kow too well!), and also that different meds are used for different stages or types of bipolar.
A good bipolar info site is "McMan's Depression and Bipolar Web", and I've copied you some info below from the page on "Bipolar Meds - The Antipsychotics" (
"Zyprexa is approved by the FDA to treat both acute (initial phase) mania and maintenance (ongoing prevention) bipolar disorder. Risperdal, Seroquel, Geodon, and Abilify are approved to treat acute mania. Zyprexa is now on an equal footing with both lithium and the mood stabilizer Depakote as a first-choice treatment for acute mania in a practice guideline published by the APA in 2002 and enjoys similar status in the Texas Implementation of Medication Algorithms (TIMA) put out in 2001."
"Sedation: All the atypicals but Risperdal are horse tranquilizers, often merely in the initial phase of treatment before the body has a chance to adjust, but severe enough to be worrying, especially in these days of hit and run psychiatry where patients are sent out onto the streets disoriented and confused after maybe one or two nights in the hospital.  Psychiatrists see Seroquel's sedating effects as an asset, however, often prescribing it (sometimes on an "as needed" basis) for sleep."
"Weight gain: A 1999 study by Allison et al found that Clozaril resulted in a mean weight gain of 9.8 pounds in ten weeks, 9.1 for Zyprexa, 6.4 for Risperdal, and negligible for Geodon. Seroquel wasn’t evaluated and Abilify was unavailable at the time. A 1997 study by Nemeroff found patients on Zyprexa gained 27 pounds over one year. Other one-year studies found weight gain leveled off in the single figures for Risperdal and Seroquel and was negligible for Geodon and Abilify. Product labeling shows nearly 30 percent of Zyprexa users added seven percent or more weight. Twenty percent of Seroquel users, more than 15 percent of Risperdal users, around 10 percent of Geodon users, and less than 10 percent of Abilify users crossed this "clinically significant" threshold."
There's also some info on Zyprexa and diabetes -- worth reading the whole article.
I'm in the U.K., so I don't know any psychs in the States, let alone Kentucky, I'm afraid. But I do agree that your dad is probably not the best person to treat you, as you should be able to be completely honest with your pdoc. (And I say that even knowing that he's halped you massively by diagnosing you when others were getting it wrong). Why don't you explain how you feel to your dad and ask him to help you track down a pdoc with you? Sounds like your dad's great and really wants to help. Even if he's hurt at first (which he may not be) I'm sure on some level at least he'd understand, and involving him in finding a new psych would help show him how much you value his input.
Keep posting -- we'll help you work through this.
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

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 285
   Posted 9/25/2006 7:17 AM (GMT -7)   

I'm not going to be much help in the med department. I have no experience any of the meds you mentioned.

Your Dad is tremendous help for you, you are lucky to have him.

And, welcome to our little club!

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

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