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About dtac

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  1. I went from Lamictal to Depakote, had some mood stabilization effect, but gained almost 50lbs in 3 months. Switched from Depakote to Trileptal (oxcarbazepine) and I've been on it for the past year. It evidently can be sedating (as can Depakote) but neither cause me any sedation. Zero noticeable side-effects, and it does seem to help level out my mood. I love it, and I am surprised that more pdocs don't use it. Rexulti works extremely well for me. It's been a miracle drug. I had some sedation issues when I initially started it, but they went away. I've been on it for over a year now, and it works absolute wonders at stabilizing my mood. I had major insomnia with Abilify and couldn't get over 2mg. It wasn't very effective for my depression at that low of a dose either, but it was better than nothing. Rexulti has killed my depression (had one depressive episode in the past 5 months -- and I am a rapid cycler) and has greatly reduced my anxiety to where I only use 0.25mg of Xanax maybe 1-2x a week (unless an event comes up.) I have zero side effects from Rexulti, which is crazy. The only downside is the insane cost, but between the MFG discount card and my insurance, I've been able to afford it. I know some people dump on Rexulti as an Abilify knock-off, but it really is like Abilify with a tremendously better side-effect profile. Rexulti has the same 75h+ half-life as Abilify, so it takes a few days to notice any effect, and it took me about a month before it stabilized fully. It seems to be really sensitive to consistent dosing, despite the crazy long half-life.
  2. This is how my pdoc is. He's protective of his patients and their psych care. He also won't touch other meds being prescribed for non-psych issues, like whatever my neuro puts me on for migraines. No interactions, no problems. But don't touch the psych meds, LOL. I am lucky that my practitioners respect the med decisions made for me by others, so no one is telling me "your problem is caused by X med, you need to get off of it."
  3. My first attempt I was on it for over a year. It really didn't do much for me, but my pdoc at the time swore it was incredibly awesome and I must stay on it. I still had issues with depression and anhedonia at 400mg, along with some dizziness and vision blurring, but I lived with that. My next pdoc agreed to step me off of it, because I said it wasn't working, and we started trying other solutions. I know it's considered the gold standard for BP depression treatment, but I didn't find it that useful. My second trial I only got up to 75mg, which had some minor benefit, but not enough.
  4. I have found the best psychiatrists to be the ones that are dedicated to their patients, not academia/lectures/research/etc. I've also found there is generally a sweet spot in age/experience of a pdoc so that they have true experience in a clinical setting of which drugs work/don't work/how to use them but they're still keeping up with the latest research. Too young = too little experience, too old = behind the times and looking at retirement. I've never found cost to be a good determination of whether a pdoc is worth it or not. This is only applicable if you have any choice. Unfortunately, it is too often the case that people end up with practically zero choice and you gotta take what's available. I've been in that situation a couple of times, and it didn't work out well for me at least once. I am extremely fortunate to have my current pdoc.
  5. The insomnia was the primary reason I had to get off Abilify. I couldn't sleep at all if my dose was above 2mg, and that level didn't really do enough to kill my depression. There were no sedative drugs that could induce sleep for more than 45-60min. At 2mg, I could get maybe 5-6h of sleep a night, but it wasn't very deep sleep.
  6. I've been on Lamictal more than once, and it gave me horrible GI issues anytime the dose was changed (up or down.) I ended up rapidly titrating downward, as the GI upset lasted for 5-6 days every dose change. I went off 400mg in 100mg increments over the span of three weeks. It was miserable. I had a pdoc cold-turkey me off 400mg once, and nothing happened besides the GI symptoms, although going cold-turkey on ACs is definitely a bad idea.
  7. This happened to me almost a year ago. I told my tdoc, and she said she wasn't too concerned initially, but that it was probably stress-related (for me) and that I needed to find a way to de-stress soon. Went to my pdoc, ended up with Xanax PRN, and it hasn't happened since. Stress management has helped tremendously, and Xanax works for those breakthrough times.
  8. To me, PAs are like the nuclear option -- no one wins. It's more work for providers, the patient, and the insurance companies. The reality is that providers will just stop writing for those drugs if the volume of PAs gets too high. It's not even a cost-savings principle for the insurance carriers for stuff like benzos, they're already pretty cheap. The sleep center I am going to right now has a mandatory $20 fee for all PAs. I get that it's extra work for them to deal with the paperwork, but it sucks as a patient to get charged for the insurance companies imposed restrictions.
  9. Actually I do use sudafed fairly regularly, and it works pretty well, I just end up with rebound congestion if I use it more than 3-4 doses in a row. I used Flonase for years, and it recently lost its effectiveness, so I switched to Rhinocort. It seems to be working pretty well. My insurance won't cover any of the non-generic sprays, so I figure I'll just try the OTC stuff for now. I only noticeably stop breathing when I'm snoring (says my SO), but I guess it may still be happening anyway. PA said there is a threshold of apnea events that have to be met in order to be dx with OSA. I'm supposed to check in at the hospital registration on the day of the study, do all the paperwork, then go over to the sleep center. PA says it's like a hotel. We'll see, LOL.
  10. UPDATE: I had my consult this morning, and the PA is ordering a sleep study. She thinks I may have obstructive sleep apnea due to narrow airway. We discussed insomnia meds and for now she's leaving me on Lunesta, since it mostly works. They scheduled 2 nights in a row, so that if I do have OSA, they can fit me the second night with a CPAP. The PA wants me to get up at the same time every day, even when I'm off. That's hard to do when you're tired during the week and just want to get some extra sleep. I've done all the sleep hygiene stuff before, nothing has helped previously, but I'm going to be compliant and try again. It's the downside of going to doctors -- if you want help, you have to follow their directions, even if you don't wanna. No naps either. *sigh*
  11. This is great news! For once, the state government did something rational...
  12. Do you usually sleep not enough or too much? Typically not enough. If I have no alarm and nothing to do the next morning, I might sleep too much, but that's rare. How much sleep do you get on your average night? 4-6h. Generally not enough for me, but that's due to insomnia and meds barely working. What's the longest you've gone without sleep? 2 days. I usually pass out from exhaustion around the 36-40h mark. What's the longest you've slept in one sitting? 14-16h when I was depressed and taking Seroquel. It just fueled my sleepiness.
  13. http://www.al.com/news/index.ssf/2017/04/pharmacists_fight_effort_to_in.html So my state wants to be the first in the US to move Xanax from S4 to S2. Some highly intelligent doctors feel that this is necessary because Xanax is scary-bad-dangerous and people OD on it. Mind you, they don't want to move other benzos, just Xanax. I really don't see any benefit, other than street dealers are going to make a killing, because they're going to import it from neighboring states without the restriction. Those of us with legit prescriptions are just going to be inconvenienced and stigmatized with taking a S2 drug. I want to talk to my pdoc to get his opinion on this, because Xanax happens to be a drug that works extremely well for me, and I don't want to go through the annoying trial-and-error process again. I can see plenty of over-worked pdocs hanging up "NO XANAX" signs in their office because of the hassle it would cause them. This state already has a shortage of pdocs and other mental health professionals, and this is just going to make it harder for them and their patients. I don't see what the endgame is for this. Who wins?
  14. I couldn't get past 60mg on Geodon. The sedation was awful, and it was paradoxical for me (sleepy in AM, activating in PM.) Seroquel was sedating for me, and it lasted well into the next morning. Caused all sorts of problems with work (slept through multiple alarms, still falling asleep more than 12h after taking it.) Seroquel XR was a whole lot better in the hunger and sedation problems, but due to insurance problems, I was only able to take it for a month.
  15. Never taken Invega, but I've cold-turkey'd several AAPs, and never had any major side effects from them. Abilify would be the longest-acting one I've taken, and I had no effects after a month. I've also never been on very high doses either, so that could be part of the reason. Mood stabilizers -- those are a different story! Out of curiosity, if your dx is bipolar, why is your doctor taking off of psych meds? This doesn't sound like a good idea...