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Coming Off Lamictal


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#1 Jackie Dolphy

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Posted 11 August 2007 - 09:25 PM

Me and Lamictal eventually had to part company, which is a bit sad. I instigated the Lamictal therapy by researching it and mentioning it to my psychiatrist. He was open to trying out Lamictal, given that I get a lot of the depressive end of the spectrum and dysphoric hypomania. Even on the odd occasion I do get a full-blown over-the-top mania the mania has significant dysphoric elements to it. So I added the Lamictal to my pre-existing lithium.

In general, although I experienced anti-depressant qualities around 50mg, I found it very destabilising until I hit 150 mgs. At that point though I felt like a zombie: detached, depersonalised. I was "happy" in an numb, automaton kind of way. Everything was bled of meaning, music, feeling and context -it felt kind of sinister; and different to the kind of numbness antidepressants can give you. I also lost all sexual function, so I really did feel like I was a ghost on someone else's film set. I've occasionally felt depersonalised as a prelude to a depression but nothing like this.

I titrated up to 200 mgs. Got worse. Except my hands were uncontrollably shaking. The muscle weakness which had aways dogged me on this drug got worse: I was dropping cups, smashing things by accident; because my coordination and strength was erratic and impaired I couldn't properly calculate weight, grip-strength etc.

Also the skin peeling, which had resolved itself at lower dosages came back. And came back with a vengence.

Over about three and half weeks I tapered down, experienced dizziness, decimated concentration, mood swings. It has now been nearly a week since I have had no Lamictal in my system, yet I get nausea still, occasionally. And a strange kind of flu-like sickness with irritability and poor concentration. It's not depression - I'm well-versed in that, and its various personal flavours. It's more like the feeling I've had quitting cigarettes in the past: the feeling of being out-of-phase with myself and my surroundings. Combined with a hang-over type feeling. I haven't been hungover for years, but it feels like the "morning-after" every day at the moment.

Has anyone else experienced post-anticonvulsant weirdness? Just wondering how much of this I would chalk up to my own personal neurobiological idiosyncracies and how much is actually not that uncommon when someone comes off an antiiconvulsant.

Edited by Jackie Dolphy, 12 August 2007 - 01:45 AM.



#2 Jackie Dolphy

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Posted 17 August 2007 - 11:44 PM

BUMP

#3 Velvet Elvis

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Posted 18 August 2007 - 08:40 AM

Was the skin peeling in the places you experienced muscle weakness? I lost use of two finger on my left hand for a while due to compression of my ulnar nerve. Around the same time the muscles started to atrophy the skin started peeling really bad. It was like it came off in rolls every time I washed my hands.

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#4 Jackie Dolphy

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Posted 18 August 2007 - 09:48 PM

Was the skin peeling in the places you experienced muscle weakness? I lost use of two finger on my left hand for a while due to compression of my ulnar nerve. Around the same time the muscles started to atrophy the skin started peeling really bad. It was like it came off in rolls every time I washed my hands.


The skin-peeling has been primarily on my hands. I had facial dryness and dry scratchy eyes too, but that resolved itself easily once I started tapering. My hands, however, are still very dry and patchy but are healing slowly. The muscle weakness I experienced was my body generally, but was especially noticeable in my face (embouchure) and hands.

Just as I got muscle aches titrating up on Lamictal, now that I'm off it I'm experiencing strange muscle aches and pains. Probably because the muscle changes and weakness while on Lamictal were not evenly distributed and now I'm adjusting to using my muscles again the way I used to. My concentration and emotional/aesthetic responsiveness has improved but I have recently felt very emotionally raw and sometimes depressed - although it has been hard to be certain what's going on with body/brain/mind readjusting. At least it has felt real, which is a change from the wired and detached feeling I got on Lamictal.

Because I haven't come off an anticonvulsant before, I haven't been sure what has been my body readjusting, or what has been a return/change of symptoms. The Lamictal felt like a frozen dream and now I'm thawing out.

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Posted 28 September 2007 - 12:37 AM

Me and Lamictal eventually had to part company, which is a bit sad. I instigated the Lamictal therapy by researching it and mentioning it to my psychiatrist. He was open to trying out Lamictal, given that I get a lot of the depressive end of the spectrum and dysphoric hypomania. Even on the odd occasion I do get a full-blown over-the-top mania the mania has significant dysphoric elements to it. So I added the Lamictal to my pre-existing lithium.

In general, although I experienced anti-depressant qualities around 50mg, I found it very destabilising until I hit 150 mgs. At that point though I felt like a zombie: detached, depersonalised. I was "happy" in an numb, automaton kind of way. Everything was bled of meaning, music, feeling and context -it felt kind of sinister; and different to the kind of numbness antidepressants can give you. I also lost all sexual function, so I really did feel like I was a ghost on someone else's film set. I've occasionally felt depersonalised as a prelude to a depression but nothing like this.

I titrated up to 200 mgs. Got worse. Except my hands were uncontrollably shaking. The muscle weakness which had aways dogged me on this drug got worse: I was dropping cups, smashing things by accident; because my coordination and strength was erratic and impaired I couldn't properly calculate weight, grip-strength etc.

Also the skin peeling, which had resolved itself at lower dosages came back. And came back with a vengence.

Over about three and half weeks I tapered down, experienced dizziness, decimated concentration, mood swings. It has now been nearly a week since I have had no Lamictal in my system, yet I get nausea still, occasionally. And a strange kind of flu-like sickness with irritability and poor concentration. It's not depression - I'm well-versed in that, and its various personal flavours. It's more like the feeling I've had quitting cigarettes in the past: the feeling of being out-of-phase with myself and my surroundings. Combined with a hang-over type feeling. I haven't been hungover for years, but it feels like the "morning-after" every day at the moment.

Has anyone else experienced post-anticonvulsant weirdness? Just wondering how much of this I would chalk up to my own personal neurobiological idiosyncracies and how much is actually not that uncommon when someone comes off an antiiconvulsant.



#6 Loon-A-TiK

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Posted 28 September 2007 - 12:11 PM

i'm sorry you couldn't do lamictal. it's been my salvation. i hope i never have to come off of it.

i felt really sick when i came off of topamax. it took about a month to wash out of my system. during that time i had all the same side effects but none of the benefits! there were a few benefits, but for me, i had to quit because it put me into a bad dysphoric mania.

my best guess is to just hang in there and let it wash itself out. too bad it didn't work. lamictal and lithium are a very, very strong combo and kick butt together. i can't take lithium, or i'd be taking both together. when i was taking both, i knew there wasn't anything that was going to rock my stability.
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Posted 01 October 2007 - 09:42 PM

Me and Lamictal eventually had to part company, which is a bit sad. I instigated the Lamictal therapy by researching it and mentioning it to my psychiatrist. He was open to trying out Lamictal, given that I get a lot of the depressive end of the spectrum and dysphoric hypomania. Even on the odd occasion I do get a full-blown over-the-top mania the mania has significant dysphoric elements to it. So I added the Lamictal to my pre-existing lithium.

In general, although I experienced anti-depressant qualities around 50mg, I found it very destabilising until I hit 150 mgs. At that point though I felt like a zombie: detached, depersonalised. I was "happy" in an numb, automaton kind of way. Everything was bled of meaning, music, feeling and context -it felt kind of sinister; and different to the kind of numbness antidepressants can give you. I also lost all sexual function, so I really did feel like I was a ghost on someone else's film set. I've occasionally felt depersonalised as a prelude to a depression but nothing like this.

I titrated up to 200 mgs. Got worse. Except my hands were uncontrollably shaking. The muscle weakness which had aways dogged me on this drug got worse: I was dropping cups, smashing things by accident; because my coordination and strength was erratic and impaired I couldn't properly calculate weight, grip-strength etc.

Also the skin peeling, which had resolved itself at lower dosages came back. And came back with a vengence.

Over about three and half weeks I tapered down, experienced dizziness, decimated concentration, mood swings. It has now been nearly a week since I have had no Lamictal in my system, yet I get nausea still, occasionally. And a strange kind of flu-like sickness with irritability and poor concentration. It's not depression - I'm well-versed in that, and its various personal flavours. It's more like the feeling I've had quitting cigarettes in the past: the feeling of being out-of-phase with myself and my surroundings. Combined with a hang-over type feeling. I haven't been hungover for years, but it feels like the "morning-after" every day at the moment.

Has anyone else experienced post-anticonvulsant weirdness? Just wondering how much of this I would chalk up to my own personal neurobiological idiosyncracies and how much is actually not that uncommon when someone comes off an antiiconvulsant.



#8 mel1

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Posted 01 November 2007 - 01:11 PM

How long were you on lamictal and at what dose and how long and at what tapering schedule did you do?????
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current rx: seroqel- 100 mg-50 am and 50 at bedtime; Lamictal-100-am, 200-pm; Klonopin-.5-TID

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 04:04 AM

anyone out there with melanoma? and taking lamictal and (zonegran) There is a connection to skin disorders and this cancer is quite unusual in its presentation which leads me to believe it was the medication!!!

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Posted 10 January 2011 - 03:46 AM

anyone out there with melanoma? and taking lamictal and (zonegran) There is a connection to skin disorders and this cancer is quite unusual in its presentation which leads me to believe it was the medication!!!



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Posted 10 January 2011 - 03:52 AM

Hi Karen,
I regret I only just seen this because I too am of the opinion that either lamictal and zonegran or both are responsible for my friend who also has melanoma. He was taking both when a lump appeared on his back and initially this was misdiagnosed as a lipoma. It certainly is unusual it its presentation and I too have made the connection to this medication. I am collating as much info as possible and I would appreciate anyone else who has also been diagnosed after this medication was used to contact me. My email address is karenclaus73@hotmail.com

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 09:54 PM

A few years ago I was on 400mg of Lamictal. I was hospitalized for a manic episode and I stopped the Lamictal cold turkey because I was treated with Seroquil and Depakote and wasn't provided the Lamictal by the pdoc. I dont know why they didn't titerate it, but I didn't have any adverse reactions, but that's me. Everyone is different You need to talk to your pdoc about coming off of Lamictal due to seizure risks.





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