Bipolar Support Forums To Share and Support One Another

How many meds have you tried until finding the right one?

Talk about meds, side effects, and the 'med-go-round'.

by loreleiG » Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:50 am

Hello!

I just went to the Pdoc today and learned I’ll have to change meds yet again. This is my 4th medication in less than 6 months (in addition to sertraline which has stayed consistent for a year). Lamictal, abilify, latuda and I’m about to start ziprasidone (geodon). The perfectionist in me just wants to get it right, feeling like a failure every time I go to the Pdoc and he has to prescribe me something yet again.

For those who’ve been through the medicine go-round, how long did it take or how many meds until finding the one that works for you? How did you know it was the right med? Are there any adverse side effects you had to choose to live with because it’s as close as you thought you could get to the “perfect medication”?

Currently trying to figure out what “normal” will feel like, cost-benefit analysis of each of my medications, and probably going to start keeping track of my moods/sleep/alcohol intake in an effort to help my PDoc understand how the meds affect me.

Any advice you can offer is much appreciated!!

-“Lorelei”
loreleiG
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Jul 10, 2017 1:32 pm

by AvantGarde » Tue Dec 19, 2017 8:09 am

Everyone is different, so for some it might take a short time while for others it takes a long process.
As for knowing, you just feel okay, stable. Or you can feel mild symptoms.

There's no clear answer.
Genetically evolved chicken at your service

My therapist says I don't have crazy eyes

Never surrender your freedom of being to the veridict of those who are strangers to your inner workings
User avatar
AvantGarde
Moderator
 
Posts: 6576
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2016 7:01 am

by Spm24 » Tue Dec 19, 2017 8:24 am

As AG said we are all different I am more or less stable I have went through seven meds here and there different dosages different combos. It will probably take tweaking the rest of your life to stay stable.

Keeping a journal to keep a record of things is a good things to do. It is another tool that you can use to work in conjunction with your pdoc. To help see what differences meds make.
Snowflakes gently floating from the sky just dusting the ground. Then it picks up bigger fatter flakes cascading from space at a faster rate. From a dusting to a trace. Then the deluge comes. Oh what joy. Watching everything slow to a crawl, then a stop. Step outside and even with things moving it is quiet. It is a giant muffler the earth is wearing. Causing everything to be muted.To be calm.
User avatar
Spm24
Moderator
 
Posts: 3452
Joined: Wed Aug 17, 2016 10:18 am
Location: Ohio

by Steponme » Tue Dec 19, 2017 10:19 am

I don't know how many meds I went through, but it took about a year for me to get the right one.

I get nauseous every time I eat breakfast, but that's about the only side effect. As for feeling 'normal', I just feel like myself. I can for sure say that I am not manic and not depressed.
Don't let your rubber ducky convince you that the world is an illusion after spilling pickle juice in you car while speeding down the highway trying to catch up to a pack of cows.
User avatar
Steponme
 
Posts: 121
Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2016 11:43 pm
Location: Utah, U.S.

by hal » Tue Dec 19, 2017 5:14 pm

I highly recommend a mood journal.

My pdoc just today was saying he was coming to think frequent changes of meds might not be a good idea. I think he was making a generalization and not just talking about me. Of course, this would be an opinion only. But the idea would be, give them a chance to work instead of changing them too often. But that means the patient meanwhile is suffering... hard to bear for both patient and doctor, I know.

You sound very conscientious, Lorelei. :)
. . . all times I have enjoyed
Greatly, have suffered greatly, both with those
That loved me, and alone.
-- Tennyson
User avatar
hal
Moderator
 
Posts: 2009
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2014 1:54 pm
Location: Iowa

by Jemane » Tue Dec 19, 2017 5:18 pm

I feel like been on almost every possible drug available at one point or another. I think we are getting close to getting it right but it’s been quite a process.
It’s very frustrating isn’t it. Meds are such an individual thing and you can’t really predict what will work until you try it.
You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.
User avatar
Jemane
 
Posts: 1241
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2016 2:25 am

by hal » Tue Dec 19, 2017 5:44 pm

I don't know if BP is the worst disease imaginable (my brother has advanced diabetes and Parkinson's, and it's horrifying), but BP (and other psychiatric disorders) might be the most complex, because they are brain diseases, and the brain, it has been said, is the most complicated thing in the universe. It seems to me that the brain diseases with only physical symptoms are more straightforward.
. . . all times I have enjoyed
Greatly, have suffered greatly, both with those
That loved me, and alone.
-- Tennyson
User avatar
hal
Moderator
 
Posts: 2009
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2014 1:54 pm
Location: Iowa

by Pancake » Tue Dec 19, 2017 8:09 pm

For those who’ve been through the medicine go-round, how long did it take or how many meds until finding the one that works for you?

20 years of misdiagnosis :roll:

I'd argue that what I have now isn't *perfect*, but it is good enough. Still ups and downs, but the rollercoaster is far less extreme. Low dose, limited side effects.

Just to raise a point on something - Sertraline is an SSRI (antidepressant some of us don't tolerate very well). Perhaps it is worth discussing with your doc its benefits, and whether it is helping or not?

SSRIs didn't send me manic (SNRIs did) - but they never helped and I had some persistent side effects. We are all different though, that is just how I found them. You might be completely different (:

feeling like a failure every time I go to the Pdoc and he has to prescribe me something yet again.

That's his job. It's absolutely not something you should be feeling responsible for. Sometimes it's a bit hit and miss with crazybrain chemistry :?
Totally sane mermaid-siren of Vegemiteland
User avatar
Pancake
Moderator
 
Posts: 3241
Joined: Thu Nov 19, 2015 2:45 pm
Location: Terror Australis

by AvantGarde » Tue Dec 19, 2017 10:10 pm

hal wrote:I highly recommend a mood journal.


So do I!

hal wrote:My pdoc just today was saying he was coming to think frequent changes of meds might not be a good idea. I think he was making a generalization and not just talking about me. Of course, this would be an opinion only. But the idea would be, give them a chance to work instead of changing them too often. But that means the patient meanwhile is suffering... hard to bear for both patient and doctor, I know.


Mine has the same opinion, as well as not raising the dosages too high and avoid polypharmacy whenever possible. She was reluctant when I first met her and asked for the mood stabilizer.
And from what I saw on other boards, I think (hence, my opinion, no need to follow my lead) changes in meds are justifiable when they either do nothing or do too much - too many side effects for instances. Otherwise, given enough time, they will work. We are usually used to immediate rewards from things, have little patience, sometimes the body needs to adjust.
I stayed psychotic and unstable for a long time before the meds made any difference, more than a year. That's why I say there isn't a clear answer, we all react differently.
Genetically evolved chicken at your service

My therapist says I don't have crazy eyes

Never surrender your freedom of being to the veridict of those who are strangers to your inner workings
User avatar
AvantGarde
Moderator
 
Posts: 6576
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2016 7:01 am

by CuppCake0529 » Fri Dec 22, 2017 8:45 am

I think I've found finally foundthe right cocktail. I've been on 8 different ones in about 4 years...
CuppCake0529
 
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri Dec 22, 2017 7:57 am

by CuppCake0529 » Fri Dec 22, 2017 12:23 pm

It took me 8 medications and dozens of doses to find the right one. But my hard limit is seroquel. I've been on multiple doses of it and I told me p doc no more because I can't function on it... Then I go off my meds because of that reason... I never counted it out before... 8 freaking medicine
CuppCake0529
 
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri Dec 22, 2017 7:57 am

by Mihaichuk » Fri Jan 05, 2018 6:38 am

I was diagnosed over a year ago, and my initial Meds (Lithium/ Abilify/ Bupropion) seem to be the right mix. I guess I lucked out.
_________________________

“Bipolar disorder can be a great teacher. It’s a challenge, but it can set you up to be able to do almost anything else in your life.” ~ Carrie Fisher
User avatar
Mihaichuk
 
Posts: 10
Joined: Thu Dec 21, 2017 11:48 am
Location: Mississauga, Ontario, CANADA


Return to Medications