Jump to content
CrazyBoards.org

I inherited her brain...


Recommended Posts

There's a grand history of depression on my mother's side of the family, affecting my grandmother, my mom, and her 3 sisters.  I have had the same presentation as my mom - mostly depression manifested as physical pain, causing us to drive our doctors crazy with mysterious complaints that have no apparent cause.  Hers was mostly an achy body pain thing, mine is a stomach thing - I've had three upper GI scopes, a barium swallow study, a radioactive digestion study, and an esophageal manometry, all coming up normal.  So either my intense heartburn is a voodoo curse or it's our best buddy, Mr. Depression.

My mom is on lithium (not sure of her dose) and Wellbutrin XL 400 mg a day and she has been doing well on that combo for years.  I am on Wellbutrin SR 300 mg a day and Zoloft 100 mg a day.  I recently decided, along with my therapist, that my combo is clearly not working as evidenced by my insane mood swings, random horrible moods, lack of motivation (I so hear you guys on the shower thing, it's just so much damn work!), and irritability.

I'm thinking of other things to try, like Cymbalta or Lexapro or Effexor, but I have this sneaking suspicion that lithium + WB will be my savior.  I'm a little hesitant about that though, given the blood level/dosage hike hassle that goes along with lithium.  So:

First of all, what on earth is going on with me that my WB and Zoloft may as well be placebos?

Second, do you have any experience with familial depression and do you take the same meds as your family?

Third, is being on lithium really scary?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi sweetie,

I have bipolar very strongly in my family all on my mother's side. I tend to believe that the same meds often work best on members of the same family. My mom took lithium (she's deceased from cancer) and I am on lithium now. Lithium does not scare me nearly as bad as Depakote, because I got toxic on it and it damaged my liver. However I know people who have gotten toxic on Lithium, as well.

Some docs do not watch the blood levels carefully enough, so you have to keep an eye on THEM if they seem to do that. Also, they seem to forget that your metabolism CAN change rapidly. So some people need more frequent med changes than others. Some doctors just aren't very understanding about this, like mine, so I'm changing docs ASAP.

I have a teenage daughter and she's got depression, anxiety, and a bit of OCD so far.  If she ever gets bipolar, I will recommend that she try the same meds that have worked for me, first. I would recommend lithium for her.

I am doubtful that WB and Zoloft work like placebos, but I am taking Wellbutrin and sometimes I really wonder that, too!! You can always find out by going off it and see what happens. But keep someone to watch over you while you do that, and have some pills to go right back on if you decide they aren't like placebos.

Good luck. See you around here honey.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Unfortunately, things do change over time -- and that may be why the Wellbutrin and Zoloft are no longer being so helpful to you. It's a pain, but it happens. So sometimes you do need to go take a little tour of psych meds to find a new one(s) that work.

Lithium is not that scary. Once you've got steady at a dose and blood level, you don't need constant blood work unless you change something or start to feel unusual. It does have some definate side effects, but I found them quite livable.

I don't know if there is any evidence in terms of what worked for your mom working for you. It's certainly possible, since you probably have somewhat similar body chemistry. I do know that my sister's general doc started her on Paxil first because it was something that had worked for me, so at least it had something going for it.

Fiona

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hubby is on lamictal, zyprexa and seroquel. His sister is on Wellbutrin and Depakote. Hubby tends more towards mania, she tends more toward depression with very little mania. They will not put hubby on Wellbutrin and Depakote because it would most likely make him a manic mess. While they are both bipolar, they have totally different "flavors".

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My dad was treated successfully by lithium in the 70s and it is probably my next horsie if depakote and I don't get along.  It was between the two for this try and I decided against lithium because I'm on daily NSAID therapy and they don't always play well together.  Plus I'm not ready to commit to all the BW that would monitor that interaction.  Still working on med compliance....

That being said, I loved trileptal.  At 900 mg it worked PERFECTLY for me.  I had side effects and I definitely couldn't drink alcohol, but it worked!!!  I had to quit it because it didn't play well with my hydrocodone.  I hope it works for you too.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah it was on Trileptal.  It's a really slow titration that only gets me up to 600 mg in 30 days, but I'll take anything at this point.  The thing I'm most scared of is that Trileptal can interfere with birth control pills.  I am SO not having a baby any time soon.

I have never read this before so I thought I'd share: my PA said that taking Ultram (tramadol) can decrease the effectiveness of some SSRI's! I had no clue.  I'm going to miss my pain-free jaw ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...