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Everything posted by in_media_res

  1. At this point, I'm probably just piling on to what others have already said, but I'd strongly encourage you to see an endocrinologist. In my experience, GP's don't do well in treating hypothyroidism (tending to be too conservative), and psychiatrists just don't bother to consider the problem in the first place. Other's experience may, of course, vary. Finding one could be difficult. I'd normally suggest asking your GP for a recommendation, but their treatment of you as a person doesn't inspire confidence. Perhaps start there, ask for multiple recommendations, then contact the specialists directly. (Understand not liking the phone -- perhaps you can start with websites and get a sense for the person that way.) You may or may not need a referral. My insurance, for example, doesn't require one, however my current endocrinologist insisted on one from my GP before he'd see me. (He's the second one I've seen -- the first was quite skilled medically, but ran his practice poorly...you might have to keep looking until you find the right one for you.) While lab results will be crucial in assessing your condition, expect to be examined physically. They should be palpating your thyroid (or perhaps performing an ultrasound) to examine it in search of goiters or tumors (after all, if your thyroid isn't working properly, there's a reason -- finding that reason can be critical). It's also been my experience that a specialist will rely a great deal on the lab results, but they'll also consider your symptoms as a guide in treatment. That is to say, they'll adjust the meds until you not only have good lab results, but also feel well. Don't consider it as doctor shopping. It's entirely reasonable and normal to seek out a specialist, especially for a challenging condition like this one. Again, in my experience, it's well worth the effort. Seeing a specialist has made a significant difference in the effectiveness of my treatment. Good luck.
  2. Get a new therapist and psychiatrist. With a notable exception, my providers have been willing to consult with one another and viewed it as completely appropriate. Given there is a difference of opinion in diagnosis -- and the treatment might vary considerably between the two -- you'd think (or at least hope) a couple of professionals could be bothered to chat on the phone for a few minutes. Their unwillingness to do so speaks poorly of them as professionals. Have they offered an explanation for their reticence?
  3. File a complaint with the state licensing board. Seriously. This is cruel, and the asshat should have their license lifted.
  4. I tried it for three months, fairly recently. I started in conjunction with Topamax, which I quit, so I ended up taking it alone for a short period. I couldn't tell that it made any difference at all. Which isn't that surprising -- I generally end up doing worse on meds than off. I haven't bothered to refill the script. Don't recall the exact cost -- it wasn't anything for which my insurance paid. I'm thinking around $180 for a three month supply.
  5. Dr. Google and PubMed suggest it can be an issue. If it's helping, and you're concerned, I'd suggest getting a consult with an endocronologist. There are some blood tests that can give an indication of problems, although I believe the definitive test is a specialized xray. If insurance covers it and you expect to be on depakote for an extended period, you might try to get the xray to get a baseline reading so you can check for problems over time.
  6. I understand. I hope you find a way. It's really hard to open up after you've been betrayed.
  7. Can't help with the Latuda, but given the discussion of topamax... I've been titrating up on topamax for around a month. At 100 mg. It's not much of a mood stabilizer for me...my symptoms (depression, paranoia, anger, etc.) are worse. I've become quite lethargic and apathetic a lot of the times. So not much of a mood stabilizer. The cognitive issues are mostly around word recall -- I lose words (I'm primarily a writer. It's a problem) and I forget peoples names (including individuals I've worked with for years). I'm not a fan, but I haven't met a med yet that's worth a damn, so not especially surprising. Oh...I've gained about 4-5 pounds, which I'm sure makes me about the only person in the world whose gained weight on topamax. As always, your mileage may vary. Hopefully.
  8. I'm sorry. I realize you're trying to be helpful. But I hate it when people say "it's the depression talking." It's not a thing. It's not alive. It's can't f'ing "talk." It is what it is. It's an illness. A state of mind. Meds might help. More likely they won't. Maybe therapy would be a better step to explore why the poster feels this way. It's bad enough as it is, I don't see how it helps to anthropomorphize an illness, some characterstic of yourself.
  9. Angry. Betrayed. Paranoid. Afraid. Back and forth. Up and down. It. Never. Ends.
  10. Nope. I took both at the same time for an extended period (around about two years at or above the general top end dose for each). Both list tinnitus among the other effects section in the prescribing information, so it could have been either or both. I also have moderate to severe mid to high frequency hearing loss, which developed about the same time. I don't have any other risk factors (other than being middle-aged)...so odds are its the meds. For the benefit of the OP, it's a pretty rare side effect. I'm not sure how much I'd worry about it, unless you have other risk factors or otherwise compromised hearing.
  11. I took Lexapro combined with Welbutrin for a couple of years. Did nothing for depression -- didn't help, didn't hurt. Gained a lot of weight and developed a case of tinnitus that I was never able to get rid of, and which seems to worsen a bit each time I try another medication. I tend to have extremely poor results from medication. You might be luckier.
  12. Not sure I took my topamax this morning. I have it set aside from my regular meds, and I woke up early. I feel more normal, so I'm assuming I didn't. Will skip it for today. Mildly worried about missing the dose, concerned that I feel better without it, wondering if I'm imaging it all because I really did take it after all. It's all bullshit.
  13. Up to 50 mg for a couple of days. Side effects so far are random and short lived. Some cognitive dulling. Terrible diarrhea for a day. Bad hand tremors. Things seem to come and go. Low level nausea is more or less constant. Mood is much, much, much worse. Anger is worse. Suicidal ideation more frequent. Was like this on lamictal. Great stuff so far.
  14. I've written about it in my blog. Particularly here: http://www.crazyboards.org/forums/index.php?/blogs/entry/59372-another-open-letter-to-my-ex-therapist/ Yesterday was 1,358 days since she rejected me. I think about it every day. My pdoc says I'm obsessed. I say I'm traumatized. In the end, it doesn't make a difference. It's killing me. I spent three years with another therapist trying to get over it. He retired after acquiring a fatal illness. He was kind about it, and gave me six months. But I can't help feeling abandoned by him as well. That's completely unfair to him and I feel like a complete shit of a human being for feeling that way -- but he was completely there for me, and then he was gone, like he had never existed. I'll die before I trust another therapist or mental health professional again.
  15. Titration up on topamax. Up to 50 mg. feel spaced. Not really changing mood. Another waste of time v
  16. Simple. Because the pharmaceutical industry has told them that low serotonin is what causes depression. Facts proving otherwise be dammed.
  17. Just warm tap water. Although I do have a heating pad that has a thin foam insert you can soak in water for a nice moist heat. I use that if it's bad, and for my gout flare-ups. My bite splint would be pretty hard to swallow. It's large, and it's molded to my upper teeth so once it's on, it's not going anywhere. Of course, if you're not big on the dentist, you might not enjoy the casting process to create the mold. I've used the over the counter ones a few times -- I've had several of the custom ones wear out, and I use those to tide me over until I can get to the dentist and have a new one made. They're ok...they're not as comfortable, and generally don't work as well. But much better than nothing.
  18. Have you talked to a dentist? They can create a bite guard to wear while you sleep which eases the clenching of your jaws, and eliminates the pain. I've used one for probably over 25 years. (Stress seems to be a long-standing issue for me...) When I was originally diagnosed, I'd reached a point where my jaws would spasm and I'd be unable to open my mouth in the morning for about an hour while I massaged the muscles and got them to release. The cost can be significant, but dental insurance frequently covers at least part of the cost. In the interim, I'd suggest warm compresses and some kind of NSAID. If Tylenol isn't cutting it, perhaps ibuprofen or naprosyn. Good luck.
  19. Thanks for the responses. I started yesterday at 25 mg and hated it -- felt very emotionally disconnected and flat, and had a difficult time following a line of thought. Somewhat similar to my experiences on lamotrigine. Also had some slight dizziness and nausea, noticeable but not bad. I took the dose around 4 am and it seemed to wear off by about noon, when I started to feel more normal. I took another dose this morning, but fell back asleep. Doesn't seem to be having as much of an emotional impact, good or bad. Still have the dizziness and nausea. I have a long history of gout and woke up this morning with pain in a joint that's been a problem in the past. I found some data that indicates topamax can increase uric acid (which is also causes the kidney stones for which topamax is known for...). It's possible it's a coincidence, but the gout has been very well controlled so I'm suspicious. I wouldn't mind the side effect roulette if these things actually helped. But they never do.
  20. For what it's worth, I took another anticonvulsant - lamotragine - a variety of odd side effects, but it didn't touch any of my symptoms. Actually tended to make the anger worse. Bouts of pure rage. I don't know. I realize it's a bit over the top, but when I call it poison and fear the risk of damage it's from personal experience. I took welbutrin and lexapro and that caused tinnitus that I still struggle with. Ziprasadone screwed up my sleep so badly I had a breakdown. Luvox made me dangerously paranoid and manic. Rage from lamotragine. Gained 35 pounds from seroquel that I can't seem to lose. None of them helped. I can't trust therapists. I'm deathly afraid of meds. It just seems completely, totally, hopeless.
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