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Lithium/getting your routine blood tests


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I just started Lithium, and my doc told me when I get my routine blood test, that I should get the test 12 hours after taking a dose of Lithium. But I'm not taking it at night, I'm taking it in the morning because it's easier for me that way not to miss a dose. What do I do?

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I, too, have been told 12 hours. And I take it 3 times a day.

BUT...basically, my pdoc told me at some point it doesn't matter if I take it all at pm, am, or split it. (I split to ease tummy troubles) So, maybe, try to get the test early am and take yours right after.

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I agree with CNS - I was also told that it makes absolutely no difference when you take it. I currently do lunchtime and bedtime. At one stage I was taking part of the dose in the morning, and my pdoc said just to take the pill/s as soon as I'd had blood drawn.

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I apologise; I should have read your post more carefully.

My best suggestion is that you split the dose you take the day before the test - 1/2 morning, 1/2 lunch or evening, have your blood test, and then go back to taking the full dose at once. It saves you from the 12 hour window period, and one day of doing it that way won't mess with you, because it genuinely doesn't matter whether you split your dose or take it all at once.

so-

day before test --- usual dose taken in two stages

day of test --- back to full dose after blood has been drawn

I'm sure this will be okay, but doublecheck with your pdoc (or the pathologists who will be drawing the blood) if it'd make you feel safer.

best wishes,

Mia

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OK. I think I have this all clear. let's put that communication training last week to the test...

A lith test needs to be taken at least 12 hours after your last dose. It can be taken more than 12 hours later. What I do, is move one dose forweard the night before, and my morning dose comes after the test. If you take it all in one dose, you could either split that dose or take it later in the day, and then drop it all after the test and resume normal schedule.

It is not a big deal; a slight and temporary deviation from the normal dosing schedule had never, to my knowledge, killed anybody. So, take your dose in the morning, have your test the next day, and take that day's dose after the test. Nice and easy.

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They are looking for the trough level anyway, so if you are taking lithium once a day your trough level would be at 24 hours. Since I take mine twice a day my trough level is at 12 hours.

If they want peak levels the sample would need to be taken 2 - 4 hours after taking the lithium. I've had that done as well when I was having a short period of the shakes every day - turned out I was peaking way too high.

I used to take my lithium all at once way back when I started taking it but I discovered that if I kept a more stable dosing schedule (every 12 hours) it was more effective for me.

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