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Old 12-06-2008, 05:39 AM   #1
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weight gain and sleepiness with Depakote

Hello all. I am writing to see if anyone is or has been on the medicine, Depakote, for Bipolar Disorder. If so, have you experienced tremendous weight gain and tiredness because of it?
Today, I am having an early-morning day, but usually, I go to bed early and don't get up until late, then I sleep a great portion of the day. This inactivity with sleeping causes me to gain a lot of weight. I am so tired of it. Is coming off Depakote, with my doctor's consent of course, the only solution? I feel so tired and weak and lethargic on Depakote. Do any of you have any suggestions for or experience with a medicine for mood stabilizer/Bipolar that doesn't make me so tired? Thank you! Sarah

 
Old 12-07-2008, 03:57 PM   #2
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Re: weight gain and sleepiness with Depakote

Hi Sarah,
welcome to the boards. Lamictal is a great mood stabilizer that does not cause drowziness. Actually its just the opposite, it can cause activation depending on the dosage. Seroquel is also good depending on which side of the fence your on, it works well on Depression. Seroquel causes drowsiness but usually if you take it at night, you're fine, it doesn't carry over into the daytime. But Lamictal would probably be your best bet if you want no drowsiness.

Kat

 
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Old 12-07-2008, 07:17 PM   #3
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Wink Re: weight gain and sleepiness with Depakote

Hi Sarah,
I am also on Depakote and I have only been on it for a few months but I also have definetly gained weight from it. (I gained more than 20 lbs. the first 2 months I was on it) Although it doesn't make me tired at night which is bad for me because I wish I could fall asleep. (Even combined with the klonopin and risperdal I take with it) I was on another med that made me feel like you do and I talked to my doctor about it and they changed it immediately so my advice to you would be just to talk him/her and tell them that it's making you to where you can't function properly. I hope everything works out for you!

 
Old 12-07-2008, 07:35 PM   #4
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dreams in neon HB Userdreams in neon HB User
Re: weight gain and sleepiness with Depakote

Hi Sarah,

Welcome to the boards.

I used to take Depakote for the past 2 years. I initially started at 500mg 2x/day and then was increased to 500mg 3x/day.

When I started taking Depakote, I experienced problems with sleepiness, but this disappeared within a week.

Unfortuantely, Depakote recently "pooped out" on me, so now I'm taking 100mg Lamictal and it's working great for my depression. I didn't have any sleepiness or other side effects either.

I agree with Kat that you might want to give Lamictal a try if you're looking for a mood stabilizer that does not cause drowsiness.
__________________
Atypical Bipolar I Disorder with Rapid Cycling
Meds:
Depakote 1500mg
Prozac 40mg
Risperdal 1mg titrating to 6mg/day
Klonopin .5mg (2x/day)
Trazodone 100mg or 200mg PRN

 
Old 12-13-2008, 09:03 AM   #5
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Re: weight gain and sleepiness with Depakote

Hi Sarah,

I'm also on Depakote - for at least 11 yrs now, plus Zyprexa; however, how much any of us takes of any medication is entirely personal. We all experience our condition slightly differently, plus respond to meds slightly differently.
What i can say though is that on initial doses weight gain is not usual - only slight; which it is with most mood stabilisers. drowsiness in the first few months, anything from 2 - 8 in my experience is pretty normal too. Essentially the med has got to 'bring you down'; give your emotional self (brain) a chance to heal. It can't do that if it's going full pelt still! I'm beginning to see after years of dealing with this condition that the condition itself causes lethargy AND the meds especially when they're increased because you've experienced a 'cycle'.
My last full on break down I put on 25lbs. People who knew me didn't recognise me. Photo's of me show my 'dead fish eyes' which is the only way i can describe them. I was OUT OF IT. My pdoc wouldn't change the dosage though - and still won't. however that's 2.5 yrs ago now. I'm not tired anymore (although having a bit of a depression right now) and I've dropped at least 18lbs. To be honest i actually look better with the extra bit of weight i've retained!!!
My advice is to definitely discuss the side effects with your doc; but give it a chance. Weight gain, lethargy, in my opinion are better than the alternative.
I'm sure if you read all the messages on here that are constantly changing their cocktail of meds reveal a very sorry story. It's even more destabilising - when that's all any of us really wants - stability. Good luck with it. xx Juliet

 
Old 01-03-2009, 03:46 AM   #6
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Question Re: weight gain and sleepiness with Depakote

hey~ newbie to the site here. After 9 of the 12 yrs diagnosed w/bp with aggressive meds treatment...my insur stopped covering my bestest pdoc. then i relocated back to hometown with less avail docs & ideology to treatment. Tho i never have in 12+ yrs been stable with longterm meds...i recall spurts of simple & good.
I have taken every possible med out there, and in various combos.
Now i am on 900mg depakote + 30mg abilify @bed plus tegretol,neuronton and klonopin for daytime. I am groggy,foggy but CANT GET TO SLEEP!!
I am just sloshy the next day cuz i coudnt use my manic to work myself tired or get sleep. But my doc insists on not chngng. We have been having it his way for 2yrs and I am so frustrated i could pull my hair out.
I wanna throw in the towel but i cant...i have family that depends on me.
And now that yall mention considerable weight gain--i dont need anything Else to make me depressed on my appearance.
I will read periodically and reply to see if anything changes with the depakote. Good luck to you too.

 
Old 01-03-2009, 03:50 AM   #7
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bp warrior HB User
Question Re: weight gain and sleepiness with Depakote

hey~ newbie to the site here. After 9 of the 12 yrs diagnosed w/bp with aggressive meds treatment...my insur stopped covering my bestest pdoc. then i relocated back to hometown with less avail docs & ideology to treatment. Tho i never have in 12+ yrs been stable with longterm meds...i recall spurts of simple & good.
I have taken every possible med out there, and in various combos.
Now i am on 1500mg depakote + 30mg abilify @bed plus tegretol,neuronton and klonopin for daytime. I am groggy,foggy but CANT GET TO SLEEP!!
I am just sloshy the next day cuz i coudnt use my manic to work myself tired or get sleep. But my doc insists on not chngng. We have been having it his way on diffrnt(repeating from my past) meds for 2yrs and I am so frustrated i could pull my hair out.
I wanna throw in the towel but i cant...i have family that depends on me.
And now that yall mention considerable weight gain--i dont need anything Else to make me depressed on my appearance, so i am gonna watch that.thanks for the heads up. And i have taken lamictyl & neuronton for ano illness that didnt affect my moods...so i am still searching for the golden "pill".
I will read periodically and reply to see if anything changes with the depakote. Good luck to you too.

 
Old 01-05-2009, 01:35 PM   #8
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Re: weight gain and sleepiness with Depakote

In the beginning,when I took the Depakote,I definately felt tired and that I could sleep for a long time.My pdoc put me on Prozac to level me out for the depression,because with Mixed Bp Manic,comes depression as well.You usually do a medication cocktail for Bp and start with a mood stabalizer in the beginning so you don't have to suffer with those terrible manic episodes.There are many different types of SSRIs and Mood Stabalizers,depends on the person really,everyone is different.Go on ***** too see what else is out there,I love that site,I use it for alot of usefull information!

 
Old 01-06-2009, 05:44 AM   #9
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Re: weight gain and sleepiness with Depakote

bp warrior,

I also have trouble sleeping, but in my case, it's due to mania. My pdoc recently recommended Trazodone at a higher dosage when I'm manic and a lower dosage when I'm feeling level.

Have you ever thought about giving Trazodone a try? For some, it can be a very effective sleep med.
__________________
Atypical Bipolar I Disorder with Rapid Cycling
Meds:
Depakote 1500mg
Prozac 40mg
Risperdal 1mg titrating to 6mg/day
Klonopin .5mg (2x/day)
Trazodone 100mg or 200mg PRN

 
Old 01-06-2009, 05:36 PM   #10
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KarenESP HB User
Re: weight gain and sleepiness with Depakote

Dear BP Warrior... try getting into an excercize program. this will start out by having to force yourself at first. See if that affects your ability to sleep in a positive way. Sincerely, KarenESP

 
Old 01-12-2009, 12:39 PM   #11
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Re: weight gain and sleepiness with Depakote

I have noticed some weight gain but luckily it hasnt been too bad, my sleeping comes and goes mainly i just cant sleep straight through the night and im up and down. Im on Depakote, wellbutrin, 1haldol not really sure any of it is helpin me right now though

 
Old 01-18-2009, 09:14 AM   #12
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Re: weight gain and sleepiness with Depakote

I am not on Depakote, but I am on Serequel and it has the same effects.
It was making me very tired, unmotivated and I was gaining a tremendous amount of weight quickly after I was put on it.

Two things have helped me. My doctor put me on a medication called Axid. It is often prescribed when other medications are known to slow the metabolism and cause weight gain. You take it at the same time as your medications. It has been said that while both are in your stomach, the axid somehow blocks the eliments of your medication that cause weight gain before they hit your blood stream.

Maybe you should ask your doctor about this.

This may not apply to you. But what has really stopped my weight gain and has actually slowly brought me down to a healthy weight and stayed there, was being started on treatment for my ADHD symptoms.

 
Old 02-18-2009, 07:42 PM   #13
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Re: weight gain and sleepiness with Depakote

My doctor just switched me this morning to the depakote. I was on Lamictal before, loved it, but had four break through seizures and felt something needed to be done. I'm particularly worried about the weight gain. Is it because of the meds alone, or does it just increases appetite? I'm so worried about it, I know this sounds ridiculous, that I don't even want start the dosage. Please help. My seizures started around age 15. I was put on Tegretol and I immediately blew up like a balloon. We're talking about 50lbs. I can't go through that again. Maybe I can convince him to switch me to something else instead if thats the case.

Last edited by chops13207; 02-18-2009 at 07:43 PM. Reason: edit

 
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