Discussion in 'On Topic' started by opS)n., Nov 4, 2006.
anyone taking, or have previously taken lithium or lamictal for bipolar disorder?
Well there was a lot of information on that last website. But in general most people here visit clinics or go on the more familiar and popular anti-depression medications,like zoloft, Lexapro ,wellbutrin etc etc. Rarely have i heard that people with depression would take lithium although it seems to be a known treatment for quite a while , also i did find some people's experiences with lithium for bi-polar on the web here
Lithium and Lamictal are used for bipolar disorder as mood stabilizers. They're not meant for garden variety clinical depression.
I took lamictal and it didn't make a difference at all.
Lithium does work but requires a lot of patiences with blood tests and shit, but the side effects also suck bigtime.
hence me asking in regards to bipolar disorder
how did it affect your mood?
I took lithium for a couple of years for what doctors thought was bipolar disorder at the time.
I had to drink a lot of water (seeing as how lithium is a salt) and get blood tests every few months. (which was quite annoying)
On lithium you can only take Tylenol as a pain reliever because other things such as Ibuprofen and Aspirin can mess up your lithium levels.
I was having mood problems at the time... they were practically all over the place. I would be feeling fine one second, and the next, I was extremely sad for no reason.
I think that the lithium did help, but I had the absolute worst days of my life while trying to get off it.
I was in an inpatient program at the time, and the doctors there decided that I wasn't bipolar and that I had been on this medication for so long and had not needed it.
The doctor's slowly tapered me off of it, but I still felt horrible effects from it. Lots of random outburts of sobbing; horrible, horrible sadness that wouldn't go away, suicidal thoughts, etc.
That all might have just been because I wasn't bipolar, or possibly because I was on such a high dose for a long time.
After about a week or two of feeling incredibly miserable, everything leveled out and my body was able to adjust to not having lithium any longer.
Lamictal and Depakote are usually prescribed nowadays before lithium because they don't have the side effects that lithium does. Most doctors use lithium as a last resort medication.
That's not to say it isn't widely used.
thing about lithium over lamictal is that it's really proven to work in nearly all cases.
Lamictal has a 50-50 sorta of effect. sometimes it works, othertimes it does not. It works great for seizures but not so much for bipolar.
Lithium is still probably the most prescribed BP mood stabilizer on earth. Not only is it really effective with some patience (ie blood tests) but it's cheap, and works well.
These two, btw, are the only ones approved for the depression side of bp... there's a shitload of them (zyprexa, abilify etc) which are best for the mania side of bp.
depakote's side effects suck bigtime too.
Where are you getting your info that lithium and Lamictal are the only drugs approved for controlling the depression side of bipolar? If anything, it's the other way around. Depakote/Epival is also used as a mood stabilizer even though it is an anti-seizure drug. Same with Topamax... it's a relatively new anti-seizure drug but they have found it works as a mood stabilizer in a few cases.
Lamictal is also a drug used for schizophrenia. Geodon is another schizophrenic drug used in the treatment of bipolar disorder, albeit rarely.
Depatkote/Epival (divalproex) works really well but its main side effect is weight gain. I was orignally put on Epival when the doctors thought I was severely bipolar and I put on 70 pounds in 6 months. It was horrible. The doctors told me they were going to use lithium as a last resort. They switched me to Topamax which doesn't have that great a success rate as a mood stabilizer but now seeing as they realized I'm very mild Type II and only need to control the manic phases (which Topamax does for me, not to mention help the migraines). Not to mention Topamax got rid of the weight and I'm now a svelte 130.
My problem is PTSD, not the mild bipolar. I have severe anxiety issues and none of the classic antidepressents work. Typically doctors will try Wellbutrin for anxiety but it made me suicidal and we won't even talk about what SSRIs did to me.
I control the PTSD/anxiety with Serepax and Klonopin. I don't really have a choice. It's something I'm going to have to deal with for the rest of my life.
Have you seen my post on EMDR therapy and PTSD ?
I have a professor who has been on Lithium for the past 20 years. She says it saved her life countless times. I've seen it work for several people, though everyone is different.
Here's a great read- check out An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness by Kay Redfield Jamison.
1. lamictal isn't approved for schitzophrenia. I don't think it would have any impact on schitzo. Look that up.
3. big complaint about depakote is indesgestion and stomach problems, lot of people can't handle food easily.
My bad on Lamictal. However, there is no "t" in "schizophrenia".
However, Depakote is divalproex sodium which is the same class as Epival. One of the biggest complaints of Epival is severe weight gain. I know of a lot of people who have had the same issues with Depakote and seeing as that they're the same class of drug.....