Tuesday, February 21, 2006

P-Doc Follow Up

Back from the Pdoc. On my last visit he gave me a mood chart. It was a ratty, faded, off kilter thing due to being copied dozens of times. I couldn't stand to look at it, let alone use it. So I created a new one, using Excel. Excel "excels" at making business forms, you can lay things out with great precision. Even with that, I only got about 3 weeks charted. He asked me to be more diligent about using it, and I know I should. I burned him off a copy of the new form on CD, and he said I was "the man". Of course, not enough to get a discount on my session... If there's any interest in that form, let me know and I'll post it for download.

We went over the usual things, alcohol use, which was minimal. Drug use - I don't understand why he thinks I'm going to start using drugs, maybe I'm high risk for that. I told him my main concern was irritability and anxiety. I asked if maybe I was on too low a dose of Lamictal, I'm at a minimal therapeutic level of 100 mg. He said Lamictal was more for depression, and since it seemed to be doing an acceptable job of controlling that, we should keep the level where it is. I don't mind that, although I think awareness of my moods is doing more to keep depression away than the Lamictal. But I have to admit it is working. I read Bipolar Guy's blog on psych visits, and how much of a red flag an elevated mood is. It made sense, and I wanted to avoid that if possible. But the doc said the best way to control the irritation and anxiety would be with a small dose of Depakote. Of course, from the first time I walked into his office I knew he'd be prescribing that. I'm concerned that it might bring down the highs, and I don't want to lose those. We'll see what happens. He started me on 250 mg for 2 weeks, then 500 mg after that, to be taken just before bed.

I told him the spikes I experience during a full moon, and he said that is not uncommon among his patients. While it doesn't happen to everyone, he said some parents regularly see it in their kids. This is pretty obviously an indication that there is something there, as if I needed to be convinced of it.

Not much else was covered, and no significant insites gained. Just a "touch base how are you doing" visit.

I'll be writing about the effects of the Depakote in upcoming posts.


The Queen said...

I go to the pdoc in a couple of hours and will also be updating. I am not sure what she is going to do. She seems to pretty conservative with the meds, so I am not sure if she will add anything or not.

I hope that the Depakote works for you:)

gen said...

i had a pdoc appointment today as well! actually, i had to begin seeing a different pdoc because my original one.. well, let's just say that she willingly allowed me to run out of my medication and never addressed my concerns. so i switched.

since i ran out of medication and was off of it for a week, i now have to transition back onto depakote. i was previously on 750mg per day taken throughout the day. now i'm on 500mg per day for a week and then 1000mg per day for the remainder of the month. 1000mg? *laughing*

being on the dosage i was on.. it never took away my highs. it most definitely helped with my irritability, helped a bit with my anxiety and also stopped my racing thoughts which was fantastic.

your tummy might be upset for the first few days. my suggestion - take it with a little snack when you go to bed. ;)

Jon said...

Gen - Have you researched Borderline Personality Disorder? If the Depakote isn't handling bipolar symptoms like highs, it makes you wonder.

Queen - let us know how it goes, or blog about it and I'll be by to check it out.

Jacqui said...

I'm interested to see how the Depakote works for you.

I have a pdoc appt today. I ran out of Lamictal - finishing the orange pack on Sunday. I've been worried & fighting lows & irritability knowing I was seeing my pdoc today & going a few days without my med. My appt is at 1pm.

I didn't realize how almost dependant I was on my pills but they really helped keep me stable & even slightly high. I'm hoping I don't have to start all over again!

jane said...

I think Ariadnek recommended this site:

When I was about 19, I worked at a senior apt. complex. There was this old lady, so sweet, yet never spoke a word. One full moon as I was working graveyard, she came into the dining area, sat down & starting speaking to me. It was a well known fact this woman could NOT speak, yet she did that night.

Maggs said...

i don't think i could maintain the chart, but i probably should be

Anonymous said...

Hehe, i love it, good to hear these experiences.

for me it's
Full Moon = Engergize!

That's when my hypomania bloomed.

But I'm on my first week of 'mictal, we'll see.