It appears you have not yet Signed Up with our community. To Sign Up for free, please click here....



Bipolar Disorder Message Board
Post New Thread   Closed Thread
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 03-11-2009, 08:53 PM   #1
Senior Veteran
(male)
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Canada
Posts: 778
light the world HB User
Lithium

My psychiatrist is thinking about putting me on lithium, what is lithium used for?

 
Old 03-11-2009, 09:10 PM   #2
Inactive
(female)
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 5,070
katlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB User
Re: Lithium

Lithium is a mood stabilizer/anti-psychotic used to treat BiPolar. It's one of the oldest meds used for BP treatment. Most people have pretty good outcome with it, but you do have to be incredibly med compliant, Lithium requires a great amount of monitoring and weekly blood tests to make sure your kidneys are processing the drug properly, etc.

kat

 
Sponsors Lightbulb
   
Old 03-11-2009, 10:14 PM   #3
Senior Veteran
(male)
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Canada
Posts: 778
light the world HB User
Re: Lithium

Urghhh I don't want to go on it if it requires blood tests and stuff.

 
Old 03-11-2009, 10:39 PM   #4
Inactive
(female)
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 5,070
katlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB User
Re: Lithium

The blood test are mainly in the beginning as that's how pdocs measure what your therapeutic dose will be tolerated by your liver, and they watch for toxicity levels. It has to be done for the first few weeks to make sure your system can handle it.

The other thing to think about, I have no idea your insurance/financial situation but Lithium is way cheaper than the newer drugs. It's actually on the 4 or 9 dollar list at WalMart. Lamictal, Abilify, Seroquel and the newer mood stabilizers are very expensive. My abilify without insurance is 600.00, the Lamictal w/out ins. is 507.00, if I didn't have insurance my meds would be $2,000.00 a month. If I didn't have insurance I'd never be able to afford to take meds. Lithium is only around 75.00 or so if your not near a walmart.

Heck I'd love to go back on Lithium but I'm not manic or hypomanic my specialty is severe suicidal depression, and it's not really made for that.

kat

Last edited by katlin09; 03-11-2009 at 10:45 PM. Reason: to add something

 
Old 03-12-2009, 03:47 AM   #5
Newbie
(female)
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Glen Park, NY USA
Posts: 1
BLFIELD HB User
Re: Lithium

I am new here. My 17 year old daughter is on Lithium and Abilify and Welbutrin. This has seemed to help her.

 
Old 03-12-2009, 06:52 AM   #6
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: WI
Posts: 4,189
dreams in neon HB Userdreams in neon HB User
Re: Lithium

$600 for Abilify??? And I thought $513 for Risperdal was expensive!
__________________
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 03-12-2009, 01:32 PM   #7
Inactive
(female)
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 5,070
katlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB User
Re: Lithium

Yeah it's ridiculous, even with my insurance the copay is still $100, which is high. Most of my copays are between 10 and 40 dollars. Lamictal is a 135 dollar copay for the generic....the two of them are ridicuously expensive.

When I was doing my research and trying to decide whether to cobra my insurance or not, and getting prices, ins vs. no ins. I couldn't believe it. I just don't see how people without Insurance afford their treatment and meds.

kat

 
Old 03-12-2009, 02:18 PM   #8
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: WI
Posts: 4,189
dreams in neon HB Userdreams in neon HB User
Re: Lithium

Quote:
Originally Posted by katlin09 View Post
Yeah it's ridiculous, even with my insurance the copay is still $100, which is high. Most of my copays are between 10 and 40 dollars. Lamictal is a 135 dollar copay for the generic....the two of them are ridicuously expensive.

When I was doing my research and trying to decide whether to cobra my insurance or not, and getting prices, ins vs. no ins. I couldn't believe it. I just don't see how people without Insurance afford their treatment and meds.

kat
I think prices for meds are ridiculous. I thank God that I'm on Medicaid because if I weren't, there's no way I'd be able to afford over $1,000/month in meds. I guess I shouldn't complain about having to pay $42 for Clonazepam.

As far as co-pays are concerned, the most mine amount to is $10. I hope I never have to make the choice of which med I can afford.

If I had to pick, I'd probably continue with Geodon and Clonazepam and sacrifice the others since Geodon controls my auditory hallucinations, delusions and paranoia -- and Clonazepam controls my rapid cycling.

Being manic and depressed is no fun nor is having a migraine or year round allergies, but I'd rather deal with all of those things instead of hearing voices, having delusions and suffering through 7 different types of paranoia. I pray that I will never have to make that decision.
__________________
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

Last edited by dreams in neon; 03-12-2009 at 02:21 PM.

 
Old 03-12-2009, 07:00 PM   #9
Senior Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Washington
Posts: 216
zhope HB User
Re: Lithium

I get deep, dark depression based on triggers of a trauma I had in infancy (I was adopted and was in a foster home that burned down when I was a few months old). Anyway, moving or breaking up relationships triggers me and I go into a deep depression. Lithium is the ONLY drug that kicks me out of it. The blood tests are a small but annoying price to pay for this wonder drug. But I won't stay on Lithium long-term because it causes weight gain. I know, talk about depressing!! I by rights should stay on it probably, but can't deal with the weight. It's a great drug, though.

Last edited by zhope; 03-12-2009 at 07:01 PM.

 
Old 03-12-2009, 07:16 PM   #10
Inactive
(female)
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 5,070
katlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB User
Re: Lithium

zhope,

It doesn't really matter, they all seem to cause weight gain...Cymbalta is about the only one that doesn't but it doesn't work too well with BiPolar Depression, I just tried it, and stopped it after only 2 months, it was a nightmare.

kat

 
Old 03-12-2009, 07:31 PM   #11
Junior Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Bathurst, NSW, Australia
Posts: 19
ridersam HB User
Re: Lithium

Quote:
Originally Posted by under View Post
My psychiatrist is thinking about putting me on lithium, what is lithium used for?
Hi, I've been on Lithium for about 3yrs. Side effects initially but went away. Lithium does need blood tests about every 3 months. It works very well for many and is known as the Gold Standard of treatment. I make no mistake, it is a dangerous drug, but safe if you know the rules of taking it.

[url]http://www.fortunecity.com/campus/psychology/781/lithium.htm[/url]

hope that helps
Sam
__________________
Bipolar Affective Disorder
Complex PTSD
Ride a Scott Contessa Speedster '09

 
Old 03-12-2009, 08:16 PM   #12
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: WI
Posts: 4,189
dreams in neon HB Userdreams in neon HB User
Re: Lithium

Wellbutrin doesn't cause weight gain, so if you're looking for an anti-depressant, you may want to ask your pdoc about it.

As far as Lithium is concerned, it's a mood stabilizer used to treat depression, mania and hypomania. It has been around for years and enjoys a reputation of being one of the oldest and best mood stabilizers.
__________________
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 03-12-2009, 08:20 PM   #13
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: WI
Posts: 4,189
dreams in neon HB Userdreams in neon HB User
Re: Lithium

Quote:
Originally Posted by ridersam View Post
Hi, I've been on Lithium for about 3yrs. Side effects initially but went away. Lithium does need blood tests about every 3 months. It works very well for many and is known as the Gold Standard of treatment. I make no mistake, it is a dangerous drug, but safe if you know the rules of taking it.

[url]http://www.fortunecity.com/campus/psychology/781/lithium.htm[/url]

hope that helps
Sam
Sam,

I noticed in your signature that you have complex PTSD. What is that? I have PTSD myself, but have never heard of complex PTSD. My tdoc described my PTSD as being chronic. Is that what it refers to?

I just answered my own question by doing an Internet search. I guess I have complex PTSD as well since I was sexually, physically and emotionally abused by my parents as a child as well as having my life threatened by a stranger at age 9.
__________________
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

Last edited by dreams in neon; 03-12-2009 at 08:21 PM.

 
Old 03-12-2009, 08:23 PM   #14
Inactive
(female)
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 5,070
katlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB User
Re: Lithium

so we have complex PTSD as opposed to normal PTSD????

kat

 
Old 03-12-2009, 08:26 PM   #15
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: WI
Posts: 4,189
dreams in neon HB Userdreams in neon HB User
Re: Lithium

Kat,

I guess so. From what I read on the Internet, people who have experienced long-term traumas like sexual abuse as a child are diagnosed with complex PTSD. I never knew that because when my tdoc told me I had PTSD, he didn't mention anything about it being complex even though I was sexually abused as a child. One article I read indicated complex PTSD as being abbreviated as C-PTSD.

Having said that, I don't think it makes a difference one way or the other since in my view, PTSD is PTSD just like bipolar is bipolar. Trauma is trauma no matter how much, how little or prolonged it is.
__________________
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

Last edited by dreams in neon; 03-12-2009 at 08:28 PM.

 
Closed Thread

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Board Replies Last Post
Starting Lithium Today- questions about it Data Bob Bipolar Disorder 11 01-26-2009 06:46 PM
first bad day on lithium Elf_Ears Bipolar Disorder 2 10-16-2007 08:09 AM
Lithium builds gray matter in bipolar brains TV in RV Bipolar Disorder 15 04-25-2007 11:20 AM
Will Lithium help me? sdstevenf Bipolar Disorder 5 08-01-2006 05:10 AM
Experiences with Lithium Anxious_Scouser Bipolar Disorder 12 06-07-2006 11:40 PM




Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Join Our Newsletter

Stay healthy through tips curated by our health experts.

Whoops,

There was a problem adding your email Try again

Thank You

Your email has been added




Top 10 Drugs Discussed on this Board.
(Go to DrugTalk.com for complete list)
Abilify
Depakote
Lamictal
Lexapro
Lithium
  Prozac
Seroquel
Wellbutrin
Zoloft
Zyprexa




TOP THANKED CONTRIBUTORS



reesie (68), katlin09 (59), Administrator (24), TinoRock (14), bprapcyc (10), thatgirl141 (7), lynnlee (6), annii456 (4), ghelpmelivelife (4), goody2shuz (3)

Site Wide Totals

teteri66 (1180), MSJayhawk (1013), Apollo123 (909), Titchou (857), janewhite1 (823), Gabriel (763), ladybud (755), midwest1 (671), sammy64 (668), BlueSkies14 (607)



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:35 AM.



Site owned and operated by HealthBoards.comô
Terms of Use © 1998-2014 HealthBoards.comô All rights reserved.
Do not copy or redistribute in any form!