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  1. This is such an important topic that I've literally made myself so paralyzed with anxiety and panic that I came out of my CB retirement just to get y'alls valued opinions: i was in a real bad place a month ago and did a couple of things I promised my family and my pdoc I would never do again. I think we all know what those things might be. I Made it in to see my pdoc the next day and felt full of shame and remorse. I asked my pdoc to please not admit me to the phospital because hospitals (and Foley catheters) are no 1 on my paralyzing fear list and he agreed. So then he wanted to see me back in a week and since he's never did that in 7 years I knew he was worried about me. So then I was flyin high manic a week later and said something that embarrassed me bad. So then he said he wanted to see me in two weeks, the Friday before Christmas. So i wanted to give him a little gift. I do coloring books and wanted to give him a framed coloring book page. But because my crazy has been really bad I can't figure out if im being needy and clingy or is this, like my patient hubby says, a perfectly innocent gift?? Thx for your advice!
  2. I have had two consultative pdoc visits from ssa. One for my initial app, and one for my CDR. I didn't think either of them went particularly well. The first one acted like he couldn't believe I had such memory lapses on the cognitive test, and the second barely asked me anything about my BP symptoms, diagnosis, or meds. But they take your medical records more seriously than the CE. So if you have good documentation (and it sounds like you do) then you should be fine. Have you thought about giving the SSA a letter from your pdoc outlining your treatment and why they believe you cannot work? That seems to go far with the SSA. Good luck and keep us posted!
  3. When I first applied, I wasn't working. That was in 2008, and I was approved on my first try. During my continuing disability review three years later, I was attending college part-time. It took the SSA 14 months to render an approval on my CDR, and I believe college had a lot to do with that. From what a lawyer I consulted with told me, the ssa looks at how many hours a week you would spend in school and doing homework. If its equal to a full time job in the number of hours, then you might run into some problems because then you might be considered functioning at a high enough level to work. I had my pdoc write a letter in my CDR packet that specifically stated that I could handle the small social contacts of school, but in no way was I ready for the workforce due to the extreme anxiety and paranoia I get when I'm put into stressful work situations.
  4. Well, after 18 months of numbness in my fingers and almost a year of progressively worsening back pain, I finally got a cervical and thoracic MRI this week. The results showed a bulging disc at C5-C6. So now we know what the problem has been. I go see the ortho for a follow up appt. next week, and I'm a bit discouraged by my treatment options. I want PT, but I can't afford to go three times a week like my cousin the doctor in PT told me last night is what is usually done. I've tried Celebrex and lyrica, and neither worked. My primary care dr. prescribed me 7.5/325 lortab, and two will work on my pain, but I'm only prescribed one at a time. I know some people say a steroid shot can help, but I don't know if I can handle the shot with my BP. Sure, I'm on tons of meds, but I just got over a two month long manic episode that required a lot of med tweaking/adding to fix. I'm starting school back up in three weeks, and I don't need that. So what is the worst case scenario with a steroid injection? If it sets off a mood episode, how long does the cortisone stay in your body? Can I successfully counteract the side effects with adjusting my mental meds? On a side note, I've had cortisone shots in my knees like 20 years ago. I don't remember them making me crazy, but I was undiagnosed at the time and never thought about the crazy shot I did all the time. I've successfully taken 5-10 day course of prednisone in the past without anything memorable happening. The last time was two months ago to stop a 19 day long migraine. I will likely find a way to work out payment for the PT, because I believe it can help (and I really need it). But I'm just not sure about the shot. Plus, I'm still having full-blown incontinence issues (though less frequently than when I was taking the lyrica) and my cousin said I need to request a lumbar MRI to rule out pinched nerves there as well. So what is your experience with steroid injections? Thanks!
  5. Hi crtclms! I've been thinking of you and wondering how your head has been treating you. Have you moved yet?
  6. I don't carry a kit per say, because I don't leave the house much. But I can't take triptans (they make my head feel like it's going to explode), so I get the following: botox shots every three months, fioricet, and stadol nasal spray. I use the fioricet first, and if it doesn't work after two doses one hour apart, I take the stadol. The stadol is extremely effective in stopping my migraines, but it renders me unable to open my eyes (it's a pretty potent opiod) and goofs me up almost worst than morphine. but since I've been prescribed it about 6 months ago, I haven't had to go to urgent care for a migraine once. That's a huge relief off me to be able to successfully treat the migraines at home.
  7. But not for forever! But over the past three months, I've felt a distinct difference in my real life and when I tried to connect on CB. I don't know any of the new members or their stories, I feel mentally disconnected from the site, and I just don't feel like my responses were timely or helpful anymore. There is one other thing that is motivating me to take a step back: I have found that I have less mood episodes when I'm not immersed in thinking about mental health issues all day. It's not just CB, I've cancelled the MI-related newsletters I get as well. I'm not completely stable, and I still occasionally do stupid stuff with my meds. But I've been able to handle the pressures of college, my daughter sexting, and going through three surgical procedures in three months without becoming completely unstable every time. I did break down and lose it a month ago, but a couple of weeks of zyprexa fixed that. I'm starting DBT individual and group therapy this week and think that this is a good place to sever my online support in trade for in-person support. I need to get back into the swing of talking with people, rather than just listening. I need instant interaction. I need to develop friendships that I can use at any time. I will miss all of you old-timers who have treated me with openness and honesty since early 2005. I look at the person I was back then and know I'm a much better person today. CB had a lot to do with that. Thanks everyone.
  8. How do you remove someone from your newsfeed? I desperately want to do that with someone in the family I can't unfriend, but I can't figure out how to do it!
  9. How do you remove someone from your newsfeed? I desperately want to do that with someone in the family I can't unfriend, but I can't figure out how to do it!
  10. Until I was dx'd and started meds, I read 2-3 books a week and hardly watched tv. Then as my brain deteriorated it became harder and harder to read, so I turned to TV as a substitute. Now that I take vyvanse, I have periods in which I can focus and read, but I spend those periods on my college textbooks. When I'm not doing that, I watch tv. I have my own DVR that is currently 97% filled with shows I record that I need to watch.
  11. I have a MIL that "worries" excessively over everything. Hubby and I have to edit what we tell her. It sucks sometimes. That being said, I think it's actually a good thing she feels comfortable in sharing her concerns with you directly rather than gossiping the information to others instead. That's what happens to me, and I wish I could tell her to just say it to me, not SIL! Also, sometimes worriers don't know how to best talk to you about something they genuinely like to help you with. Maybe that's the case here. As the mother of a 15 yo that sees the dermatologist every month for acne treatment, I can tell you that one visit doesn't hurt, and you might be surprised at how effective cheap meds are. And I know that when I was a teen clear skin made a difference to me and I know that controlling my sons acne means a lot of him. So maybe even a modest improvement would help your daughter? But the decision is yours as a parent.
  12. After one office visit and two failed medications, my rheumatologist says that he can't help me any more. I was having some pain relief on the lyrica (about 50% at night) but I was full-fledged, emptying my bladder 1-3 times per week on it on all the doses I took (75 mg 1x, 2x, and 150 2x daily). I couldn't control it and had no warning when it would happen. I put up with it happening in school, at home, and at the grocery store, but when it ruined my very special dinner out, I contacted the dr. He only relayed messages through the nurse, and declined when I made the appointment. He first told me to decrease my dose. When I told him that it happened on the lower dose, he simply told me to stop taking (and wasn't he nice and forgot to tell me to d/c it slowly?). I asked for what I should do next, because my pain was going to return full force when the lyrica wears off, and he said, "you are dealing with neurological pain and I don't treat that. You need to see your primary care doctor for a referral to another specialist. So I called my dr. Turns out she's on maternity leave. So I see the fill-in dr. She starts talking to me, and the way she's saying the stuff gets my crazy antennae buzzing. So I ask if there's anything she can so to help, and she said she could take an X-ray of my hips, that maybe I have arthritis in my hips. I then ask what about the pain. She says that with the psychiatric drugs I take, she doesn't feel comfortable in prescribing me any meds. Okayyyyy, so what else could it be besides arthritis? She says that it could be muscle tightness. I ask about ways to deal with that. Again, she says she doesn't feel comfortable in prescribing me anything. So I finally say, "is it because I have bipolar disorder and you've never met me before?" And after a moment she says yes. I start to gather my things to leave and she asks me a couple of questions about what pain meds I had for my gallbladder surgery. I told her lortab 7.5 mg, and she writes me a script for 30 of them and told me to come back when my regular dr. returns. Great. So I called my neurologist office and got an appointment on Monday. I hope he wants to help me. But I don't know what to do if he can't help me. I'm pretty anxious and feeling desperate for this appointment. Any ideas/suggestions?
  13. I'm BP, but I have almost enough personality traits to put me in the BPD group as well. Today I went to my therapist, and saw they were starting a biweekly DBT group up on May 1st. I have to meet with the coordinator on the 30th to see if I'd be a good fit for the program. I'm excited and nervous. I've read lots of positive things about DBT and how it can help people like me who try to do something stupid when they are upset. And I've read positive studies on using DBT with BP patients to great success. The one bad problem is the copays. It's $15 per session after insurance, and there are two sessions a week. I don't have that much money available in my budget for that. So I filled out a financial assistance packet for the office and will fax it in tomorrow. I hope they can give me free or sliding scale fees based on the info I provided them. But what should I expect from a DBT group? My therapist said that if I get into the group, she will transfer my individual sessions to the DBT therapist. Any information would be great. Thanks!
  14. I once tried to get through to my pdoc. I told the receptionist that I needed to talk to him urgently because I felt like doing something dangerous to myself and I did NOT want to. Next thing I know, two police cars with their lights flashing pull up at the elementary school where I am picking up my daughter and they escort me to the police car, handcuff me, and call for an ambulance. All in front of about 600 kids, parents, and teachers. My daughter was scared and crying and didn't know what to. They loaded me in the ambulance and thankfully one of the EMTs let me use a phone to call my hubby to come and pick up my daughter from clear across town. I'll never forget the look on the principals face when I drove away, cop cars in tow, to the hospital without my daughter. I was taken to a local ER and put in the hallway right by the nurses station so everyone could see what I was doing until the dr came to evaluate me for an involuntary hold. Thankfully, she understood I was try to run to help rather than away from it. And I was able to go home a couple of hours later. But I was completely humiliated and degraded and for the next three years, hated going into that school for any reason.
  15. I think the best thing to do is have an honest conversation with your dr. about what you are looking for. Only your doctor knows your symptoms in enough detail to figure out what and if a low cost medication will work for you. Going in with a preset list is a bad idea, because you are not a psychiatrist, and you can't insert your Internet browsing and user-story documentation in place of medicine school. If you are in the US, almost every drug manufactured (the brand name ones, anyway) have patient assistance programs. I go to pparx.org to see what plans cover the meds I take. Application is simple, usually a simple form, a space your dr fills out or attaches a script, and some sort of proof of financial need like tax returns. Approval is fast (less than 2-4 weeks). I was on zyprexa, one of the most expensive oral psychotropic drugs, for a year on patient assistance and didn't pay a dime.
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