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Posted by RWJ on April 20, 2000 at 03:53:44:

In Reply to: Re: Blood tests. posted by Linda H on January 04, 2000 at 11:55:36:

: :I would ask, what are they looking for with the
blood tests? Has your weight changed drastically
in the six months time? What would the change be,
that they need to watch? When my daughter first
began with depakote we had to do tests for liver
function, but that was at the very start. Now,the
Dr. periodically asks for a blood test to check
her theraputic level, but I am cautious and I
think that if she isn't having seizures, her level
must be ok (duh). Then when she has a siezure, I
guess we need to think about upping the dose. I go
with the sz control not the blood level. Of course
this might not apply to you, I don't know about
dilantin, and my daughter is still growing so the
dose would logically change from time to time.
Good luck!
: I began taking Dilantin in 1967 and a few years
later my doctor added phenobarbitol. After about
ten years, lung cancer killed my first doctor. My
second doctor continued witht the same medications
and dosages. I was having an average of 1 seizure
every 3 years and was told that was very good
control. Neither my first or second doctors EVER
said I needed blood tests. Then my second doctor
retired. The third doctor insisted I have a test,
even though I told him I just didn't have the
money. Still he insisted. Everything was just
fine. Two years later he insisted I have another
test. Then it went to 18 months, then every year.
Then he retired. The first time I saw the fourth
doctor, I was told I'd need a test every 6 months,
even though every test I had taken in the past was
ok. I put up somewhat of an arguement and got the
new doctor to go from 6 months to once a year. I
have a battle with the bill collectors trying to
collect for the tests. I would like to know how
often others get tested. Do the makers of Dilantin
and phenobarb suggest anything about testing?
Thanks for the replys. It's 4-10-2000 and I forgot all about posting the question. As I said, for the first 20 years of so, 2 of my doctors never asked for testing. Then about 13 years ago, after the 2nd doctor retired, my 3rd doc wanted the tests to check serum levels. Since then I've had tests on an average of every 1 1/2 years. Each time, the tests have come back just about as perfect as they could be, as my doctor put it, around 18 - 20 whatever. I have a book of several hundred pages published by the maker of Dilantin and it says tests often are done until it's clear what the working does should be. In my case that was known years ago and I've been 100% seizure free since 1987.

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