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Positive Experiences With Depot Injections

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I've heard a lot of negative experiences with depot injections (mainly invega sustenna, so I actually did shy away from that) and I was just put on Piportil l4, 50mg (1mL) which is used in Canada, the UK and Australia. I don't know the equivalent in the US, but it's in the phenothiazine class, as it's a typical antipsychotic. Atypical antipsychotics (oral) have never really helped and I tend to get side effects from higher doses of typical antipsychotics and I just maxed out Haldol at 20mg a day, finding I still had psychotic symptoms, so depot injections were discussed again.


EDIT: I'm adding this here, to say that I specify I'm not on a treatment order, not to brag or anything, but because most people assume injections are forced and used only on those on orders. This was a choice between my GP, pdoc and I. Treatment orders aren't often used in the area I live in. Injections can be really beneficial and actually, really convenient too.


I was on Piportil depot years ago after a major psychotic episode for a year, and it helped. So I thought I'd try it again. My dx was changed to schizoaffective, bipolar type, in case you're wondering. I had the first shot Friday, Jan 31st, and it wasn't painful, just a quick prick in the butt, and I was pretty tired about a half hour later, so I went to a friends and had a nap before we set out for the day. The sedation, I do know, goes away after a few shots. I go every other week. Needles don't bother me, so it's not a big deal for me. I know a lot of people are really bothered by the prospect of a shot.


The first thing I noticed was my thinking slowed down, my anxiety cleared, my mind was clearer and much quieter. The ruminating stopped, the unrealistic thoughts were going away, and I slept peacefully and woke up in a good mood. I ran errands (drove around the city, multiple stops) for about 4 hours, and went home, did computer stuff (programming, chatting, blogging) and updated all my mood tracking, and went to bed around my usual time. I had a really good nights sleep, around 9 hours (note: I was coming down from a psychotic hypo-almost full blown-manic episode and hadn't slept worth shit in a while) and I fell asleep pretty fast and I slept so well. I had been told to take Haldol, 5mg, for a couple of days until the shot fully kicked in, and I'm still taking it at 2.5mg, only at night, with Topamax, Artane and Clonazepam.


The next morning I woke up refreshed and a bit restless until I took my morning meds (Topamax, cipralex, clonazepam, ritalin) and it went away quickly. I got out of bed quickly, usually I lounge in bed going "I don't wanna get up" and started my morning routine pretty well, and in a good mood. I was in a good mood all day, and I wasn't as frightened in my apartment, usually when my roommates are walking around it makes me kinda paranoid, or if I hear a door slam I jump, or if there's arguing on the TV, it makes me paranoid, etc. Stuff like that. I also noticed my thoughts slowed down. 


The same thing for yesterday. I had a bit more trouble falling asleep and woke up to my phone (ugh, DO NOT CALL LIST, thank you very much) but I woke up the same way. 


I know it's pretty soon, but so far so good. I'm keeping a daily log for my GP, who administers the shots, and my pdoc, who writes the scripts. I really hope this continues. I should be completely off the Haldol in about a week, and I'm thinking, the clonazepam and cipralex doses can probably be lowered a tad too, but that's a discussion with my pdoc Thursday (Feb 6). It was almost an immediate change, and unexpected. I'll take it! I had no pain, I'm still taking the Artane as recommended (5mg daily, as needed) and I really hope this continues.


So that's my novel. Has anyone ever had any success with depot injections? I'm not on a treatment order, this was an agreement between my doctors (my pdoc and GP work together with me, they're both fantastic and I have a lot of respect for both of them) and I. I know we've heard all the negative stories, so try to keep those away. Thanks for reading my story, and I hope if anyone is considering a depot injection, this can help you out. I would like to hear stories too. They do sort of have a bad name. But really, my mind hasn't been this clear in ages, my thinking is more organized.

Edited by thesystemisdown
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Thanks Rosie, greatly appreciated. :)
A week later, I'm feeling stable, not drugged up at all, creative, no delusions, hallucinations, or paranoia. I can go out and be social and not worry so much! I'm actually being nicer to people because I'm not questioning their motives. I had no pain or swelling at the injection site at all. I have a tad bit of restlessness in the morning, so I'm going to ask for Artane to be split twice a day, rather than 5mg once a day, but that's about it. 


I've been reading, writing, doing normal things. I've had a good week, went riding, did my usual stuff. I've been pretty productive. I feel great.

Now why didn't I do this sooner? Not a needle phobia, for sure (needles don't bug me at all). Maybe fear that it was regression? Either way, forget the past. 


I'm still thinking clearly. I'm sleeping better at night. The only reason I got up early yesterday was because my damn phone kept ringing. So I turned the ringer off last night and slept so well. 

I'm amazed. Next shot is Valentines Day.. haha. Maybe I'll fall in love later that day with someone. My doc can play Cupid.


I see pdoc tomorrow. Excited to tell him how I've been doing this past week. 

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this thread confuses me because on the one hand i have said elsewhere that my current combination, which includes a depot injection, is my best combination ever when at the proper levels and when given with the proper expertise. it's *the thing* that makes me able to be here, online and in world at all...but...the impression i'm getting from this is that only voluntary experiences are wanted or could be good or ...i don't know. i've clicked away from this thread numerous times since it's been made because it seems like my positive experience isn't legimately positive somehow because it's not exclusively positive and since i am on treatment order--yes, it's been made quite clear that others on this thread aren't. it seems like it's trying to be completely separate from those of us WITH treatment orders and that's sucky to think that.


i get that there've been some threads disparaging this or that injection and largely made by people on treatment orders. but it's been REPEATEDLY pointed out that your injection is not on CTO...and so i'm happy to share my experience but since i am, i feel like i don't fit in the club or whatever. just for the record: i wouldn't want to be on CTO either and fucking don't want to be. but it is possible to not have an entirely negative experientce AND not have to be sure to distance self from others who are. you can have both. i do.


prolixin depot injections are the only thing enabling me to not be in long term care again--to be in it right now--indefinitely. but i am on CTO so please remove this post if that dampens the celebration, but if we're posting to enable those out there who might be thinking of depot injections or having them forced upon them, it's important to consider that just because not everything is voluntary doesn't mean an experience doesn't count as positive unless you purposely exclude it. and if anyone is feeling like a fuck because they're on CTO and don't willfully choose, but you can set the rights issue aside and it turns out it's still part of a good combination for you...you're not alone either.




EDIT: san, you've always been very kind and supportive of me and i messaged you but do want to say on this thread as well that i'm sorry if i come across as a bitch on this post because you've not been one to me and i do wish you well and i also realize what i perceive as insensitivity is me being more sensitive than usual likely because being on treatment order is humiliating but not a reflection of you. apologies x

Edited by mellifluous
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Thanks for the experience, syl.


No need to apologize meli. I can see a bit of anger, but not towards me. I say I'm not on CTO to say that yes, people actually go and choose injections over pills sometimes. 

I'm glad your injections enable you to not be on long term care, that's a big bonus. Anything that helps is a good thing. I'm sorry your injections are painful. 

I know some good people on ACT (which is what a CTO is called here) receiving injections and it really helps them. I'm not sure if any are on the same as mine, which is an oil based injection. (Sesame oil) I've heard its not used in the US over a patent lawsuit, but its used pretty much everywhere else worldwide.


I saw my pdoc today, and he is glad its helping. He's moving to a different city, so I won't see him for a few months. I'm glad I'm doing decently while he's moving. That's a relief.


I have nothing against anyone on or off a CTO. It doesn't matter to me. I think you have a LOT of excellent posts and have been helpful all over this site. I'll revert the rest to the PM you sent me, but thanks for the reply.

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prolixin is sesame oil based....hmm...haven't heard of the patent thing...i actually thought that's why mine hurts and yours doesn't. moving out of town? eep. super glad you're doing well since you'll not see him for a bit.


cheers for your gracious reply x


that IS the advantage of depot injections over pills for me...something you mentioned above. i have an incredibly hard time keeping track of them and i get really upset about having to take so many and i'll prolly have to increase again next friday, but when it is the right dosage, and the eps is under control, it reduces the number of pills i MUST take per day to only three (two propranolol and a zyprexa dissolvable...if i skip ativan). i was up to something absurd like...something like twenty at one point. and i have trouble keeping track even when i do want to take medication...it's realy hard to be constantly funneling so the injections help to reduce human error due to poor planning/memory as well for me.

Edited by mellifluous
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Thanks meli, thanks for your reply too.

Weird. Maybe talk to your healthcare provider. I don't think it should hurt that much. Is it the needle, or the actual prolixin being injected itself?

I'm really muscular, from riding, I don't know if that helps. 

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the medication


i'm not so muscular though

i'm lean but that's part of the problem prolly more than a solution. i'm underweight, is what i'm dancing around saying. which is a chronic problem for me to put on enough and i think it's that. i can feel it kinda popping like bubbles and ...that also doesn't help.


injections aren't usually bad for me overall though. i've had shit loads of them on emergency and i don't recall them being painful ...but then you prolly could inject me with bleach when i'm florid and i wouldn't find it painful, you know? 


it could just be as simple as me tensing up because i'm peeved...? i should talk to my psychiatrist about it. he's not the one who administers them regularly...i see a psych nurse who does them alternating weeks. i think they've always hurt so i just expect them to and accept they do. that, quite frankly, shocked the fuck outta me that you had no pain.


at any rate...yeah, i think i'll take your advice and have a conversation about it. cheers x

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