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My medication story (netsavy006; Andy)
I've probably mentioned all this in bits and peices in other posts, but I'm hoping to have the full story in one post to make things easier to follow. So heere it is:
Before phychotropic drugs:
When I was 15 years old, in period 3 science class, I had my frist panic attack. It felt very horrible. I had difficulty breathing, fast heartrate, sweaty, shaking, felt like I was dying. I asked my teacher if I could go to the nurse and she gave me a hall pass to the nurse and I called mom and she came to pic me up. That day we went to the ER, and they found nothing wrong. During the course of 2 years, I was in the ER multiple times, with no diagnosis. I would go to classes, having several panic attacks a day not knowing what they were. I had a heart monitor for 24 hours which showed nothing. I had an EEG done. It was normal. It got increasing frustrating not knowing what was going on. When I turned 17, things got worse. At the start of 12th grade, I was having 10 - 12 panic attacks a day, and I started becoming more and more anxious and depressed. I would go to the bathroom crying because I couldn't take the panic attacks any longer. I would think about killing myself on almost a daily basis and I would cry myself to sleep. I wished it could all end, but at the same time, when I was having a panic attack, fearing my death, I wanted to not. They were so bad, I couldn't even enjoy my most favorite activity, playing computer games.
February 17, 2005:
I went to see Dr. Kent, a psychitrist I was refered to by the school. I went with my mom to see him, and he spoke to me alone, mom alone, and both of us together. After through evaluation, Dr. Kent diagnosed me with Asperger's Disorder, Panic Disorder, and Clinical Depression.
Because Dr. Kent was referred to by the school, he couldn't treat me, but I had mentioned to him about how I like the zoloft "rock" and would like to try zoloft first (it was around the same time the adverts were going around for this medicine). So, I was able to make an appt. with the counsling center where I lived and I was seen by an internest and then by a psychiatrist. After seeing the psychistrst, he prescribed zoloft. This was 'round March/April 2005. He gave me & mom the starter pack and said for the first 3 pills (25mg), split them in half for 12.5mg dosage. Then take the other four 25mg tablets, and then move on to the remaining pills (blue; 50mg). This was around college application time, and because of my disability Hofstra's disability program wanted a WAIS-III test. On the day of my last green pill (25mg), the school psychologist and I agreed I'd do the WAIS during my lunch period. But I was not happy with that, because I wanted to be done sooner, and didn't feel it would get done in time just takinig it during my lunch period. I made a plan that night to stay in the office until they complied to give me the WAIS when I wanted them to do it. That morning as per the doctors instructions, I took my first blue pill (50mg), and I did as I had planned the night before and stayed in the office and over 1/2 hr, they tried to get me to leave but I wouldn't and I told them to call my mother thinking she would be on my side and tell them to just give me the test, but instread, she was coming to get me, and I started crying realising I had made a mistake asking for mom. When Mom came, she told me that I could've been taken away by police and that I should never do that again. That afternoon was my appt with the doctor and the school psychologist asked mom to speak with the psychitrist about my actions that occured that day. He gave a prescription for Risperdal .5mg to be taken at night. That night, I took it but trying to sleep was difficult, because I felt effects related to the heart. So after that, I didn't take it any longer. Also, around that time, I was to stop taking Ativan as per the doctors instructions. Atavan was prescribed to me to prevent further worsoning of my panic attacks during the first few weeks before the Zoloft "kicked in". So as I was suppose to I stopped the Ativan, and I started to get tics. Very severe motor tics as seen in Tourrettes, which was something that never happened before I started mind altering medication. That day I saw the psychitrist and was prescribed Tenex. It didn't work but instead gave me a rash so he switched to clonidine. It worked but it made me very drowsy even at a 0.025 dosage. (1/4 of the lowest dose pill).
So in September 2006, I start college and found out though a google search addforums.com. I was reading stuff on the site and thought maybe I have ADD as well. So I spoke with the doctor about my inability to sit still and to fidget (in part I believe now from the zoloft) and he gave me a 'script for Ritalin LA. Did nothing except side effects, like tics, anxiety increased, and a paridoxal worsoning of the symptoms. Then we tried Metadate CD, which did the same as Ritalin LA. Then against his recommendation, I wanted to try strattera seeing it as a non-stimulant, might affect me differently. Oh boy did it ever. My agitation and irritablity became very bad, I was yelling and screaming at my mom and brother for no particular reason. So within 2 weeks, we all agreed I had to stop Strattera. For a period of a year, I stayed on Zoloft 50mg solely and didn't try any more adhd medications. After about a year, (summer 2006), I started having problems sleeping. Mom said it was probably because of it being summer and my not doing anything during the day (inactivity; not using energy), but I went to the doctor and got a prescription for Lunesta. At the time, a drug rep for lunesta was there and was able to explain to me and my mom about the medication and I was prescribed 2mg at bedtime. Lunesta was an excellent drug that helped me get to sleep with only dry mouth as a side effect. I took it for about six months, which during this time I was swithed to another psychiatrist, because my current doctor was changing fields.
When I saw my new psychitrist she took my weight count and told me that my Zoloft dose was too low, and not realisinig what I was doing she prescribed 100mg of zoloft. Within 2 days of starting zoloft 100mg I started having nausa. It was horrable but did subside within a week of taking it. I was still taking lunesta at the time and as the 100mg dose kicked in, the lunesta 2mg became inneffective, so the doctor increased my dosage to 3mg and it helped. Because of these increases, my agitation and irritability became worse, and I mentioned to the doctor these compaints, and I told her (though not true) that I took risperdal in the past and it had helped me. So I started risperdal again 0.5mg once a day at night, and while my mood inside felt different, I got tics after about 6 weeks on the medicine. Mom told the doctor she saw no difference with me on risperdal and the doctor wanted to increase the dosage to 1mg but mom wanted me to get off it so that is what happened. A period of 3 months went by, I had to stop taking Lunesta because the insurance no longer covered it, I tried Ambien CR 12.5mg, but I got leg pains from it so I couldn't take that, so all at once I had stopped cold turkey Lunesta, Ambien CR (at seperate times), and Risperdal. For the first couple of days I got panicy and felt like I needed the risperdal again. But it subsided and I was stable but not really so during the next 3 months.
2Q + 3Q 2007:
I was still taking 100mg of Zoloft at the time and I again started Clonidine .05mg because of the tics from the risperdal. My agitation and irritabilty got bad over a period of one week druing a part of the summer, so I went to see the doctor. She was not in and I saw another doctor that was there. He asked me what If I took: depakote, abilify, zyprexa, geodon, or risperdal. I said I never took depakote, abilify, zyprexa, geodon, but I did take risperdal. I told him about the tics I got from risperdal. After careful thinking, he told me that even though he doesn't recommend this treatment choice, he was going to prescribe Invega. He told me that it was the "pure" form of Risperdal and may not cause the side effects I got from Risperdal. So now I was taking 100mg zoloft, 0.5mg clonidine, and 3mg of Invega from the starter pack. I took it for about 8 days. Right from the beginning I got tics and tried to wait it out in hope that it would go away but it didn't and I told Mom that I could no longer take the Invega for that reason. Also right before school this year, I developed a very bad cough. We tried robutussin dm, then the physician gave me a 'script for Singular 10mg. It didn't do anything and so I want back and the prescribed allegra 180mg and Rhinocort Aqua nasal spray. I still have the scripts for Allegra and Rhinocort in the house as I didn't agree with being prescribed these meds when the doctors that were seeing me weren't even sure what it was. But I'm still taking the singulair in the hopes of using it as a preventative mesure in the future. Mom told me "well we tried DM, how about CF." The CF helped and now I'm doing ok so far on Zoloft 50mg (I went down just this month); and Singulair 10mg.
Today I am taking Zoloft 50mg and Singular 10mg. However I feel I will need to go back to Zoloft 100mg because 50mg is not providing full relief as it once did. At around 2-3pm I get severely anxious like I'm going into a panic. Also nowadays on 50mg of Zoloft it doesn't fully relieve my sympoms the way it did in the past. If I'm in the middle of the street I panic if I can't further cross the street. I feel like I'm gonna faint or die in the middle of the road, but once I get the other side I am fine. My next appt with the doctor is 9/19. I'm still fidgetty, unable to conecentrate, my inattention is horrable, can't sit or even be still (always moving my legs around; even in my chair), and still don't feel "well" or "right" or "like I use to be". I hope this helps many and provides an opertunity to see into the world that I've been in for the last 5 - 6 years.
Thanks for reading,
Dx: Asperger's + Schizoaffective Disorder - Bipolar Type + Panic Disorder w/o Agoraphobia
Rx: Lithium 900mg + Xanax 0.5mg TID + Celexa 10mg + Clozaril 325mg + Centrum + Fish Oil
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