Psycho-Babble Medication Thread 1005781

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Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin.

Posted by SLS on May 3, 2012, at 7:30:34

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin., posted by SLS on April 24, 2012, at 18:51:05

> Best day yet!
>
> Woohoo!

Not the best day yet.

Woohoo?

:-(


- Scott

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin. SLS

Posted by Phillipa on May 3, 2012, at 20:38:01

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin., posted by SLS on May 3, 2012, at 7:30:34

I don't like the sad face? What's going on? Phillipa

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin. SLS

Posted by SLS on May 11, 2012, at 16:31:46

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin., posted by SLS on May 3, 2012, at 7:30:34

> > Best day yet!
> >
> > Woohoo!

> Not the best day yet.
>
> Woohoo?
>
> :-(


Better days are here.

:-)

I reduced my dosage of prazosin from 12 mg to 8 mg. I found that the higher dosage produced some lethargy, fatigue, and tremulousness. I thought the tremulousness would abate, but it hasn't. The lethargy and fatigue have disappeared. I now take prazosin 4 mg b.i.d. This seems to be adequate so far. I don't think once-a-day dosing would work. The half-life of prazosin is just a few hours.

I am gaining more confidence in my treatment regime. The periodic dips in mood are disconcerting, but not at all hellish. They can last from a few minutes to a few days. There is no obvious cycle.

I am still hopeful that I will eventually achieve remission. It won't happen overnight, though. It will probably take another year. I can be patient if I am convinced that the process continues in a positive direction. My goal is to go to work and meet people. I won't have to wait another year to do these things, though.


- Scott

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin. SLS

Posted by Phillipa on May 11, 2012, at 20:40:44

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin. SLS, posted by SLS on May 11, 2012, at 16:31:46

Why a year? Don't feel could be sooner? Phillipa

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin. Phillipa

Posted by SLS on May 12, 2012, at 0:54:49

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin. SLS, posted by Phillipa on May 11, 2012, at 20:40:44

> Why a year? Don't feel could be sooner? Phillipa

Things seem to move very slowly for me. Whenever I experience an acute, robust antidepressant response to treatment, it never lasts. I'm lucky to be responding at all. I'll take what I can get, even if that means my CNS takes a few years to find a functional equilibrium. It can take an athlete a year or more to recover from a major injury. MDD and BD represent major assaults on the brain.


- Scott

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin. SLS

Posted by Phillipa on May 12, 2012, at 19:44:52

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin. Phillipa, posted by SLS on May 12, 2012, at 0:54:49

True. Have you thought of testing yourself with an online course of some interest to you? Phillipa

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax

Posted by SLS on June 21, 2012, at 15:52:33

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin. SLS, posted by SLS on May 11, 2012, at 16:31:46

> I am still hopeful that I will eventually achieve remission. It won't happen overnight, though. It will probably take another year. I can be patient if I am convinced that the process continues in a positive direction.

I added Topamax in an effort to accelerate my response to treatment. It would be nice to achieve remission within a month or two rather than within a year or two. I am following the titration schedule recommended for the treatment of migraine to minimize cognitive side effects. I am planning on taking 100 mg/day.


- Scott

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax

Posted by uncouth on June 21, 2012, at 16:06:17

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax, posted by SLS on June 21, 2012, at 15:52:33

what is logic behind topamax?

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax

Posted by Tomatheus on June 21, 2012, at 16:57:30

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax, posted by SLS on June 21, 2012, at 15:52:33

Good luck, Scott, and feel free to keep us updated on how you've been doing.

Tomatheus

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax uncouth

Posted by SLS on June 21, 2012, at 19:16:23

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax, posted by uncouth on June 21, 2012, at 16:06:17

> what is logic behind topamax?

For now, I am going along with my doctor's hunch that my illness is, in part, being driven by "developmental PTSD". This is why prazosin was chosen. More recently, Topamax has been reported to be helpful in PTSD. I tried Topamax without prazosin several years ago. Much to my surprise, I felt somewhat better on it. However, my response to it was deemed inadequate and it was discontinued. I agreed with my doctor that Topamax was worth another look, now that I am taking a different combination of drugs. If Topamax does not accelerate my rate of recovery, I am considering memantine, ketamine, and rTMS as treatment adjuncts.

I once saw Topamax 100 mg/day successfully treat a nasty case of mixed-state hypomania. I think Topamax might be overlooked for the treatment of certain cases of bipolar disorder.


- Scott

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax Tomatheus

Posted by SLS on June 21, 2012, at 19:17:37

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax, posted by Tomatheus on June 21, 2012, at 16:57:30

> Good luck, Scott, and feel free to keep us updated on how you've been doing.
>
> Tomatheus


Thanks. Your support is important to me.


- Scott

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax

Posted by creepy on June 25, 2012, at 8:30:37

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax uncouth, posted by SLS on June 21, 2012, at 19:16:23

I rapid cycled on 50mg topamax.. might be a little rough titrating up to 100.
I was a hyper-responder when I took it though. at 50mg I had some really intense side effects most dont get until higher doses. Maybe something else I was taking at the time raised my levels? Dunno.
Its supposedly good at taming angry outbursts in PTSD. But whether thats due to calming a mixed state or something else like slowing the amygdala I have no idea. I get the feeling the docs dont either! =(
Zoloft has been good on my PTSD, but my body seems to respond by 'somatizing' the depression so now I have pain and fatigue.
What symptoms make your doc think you have PTSD?
Andrenergic drugs will of course make you jumpy and hyperaroused.

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax creepy

Posted by SLS on June 25, 2012, at 16:44:53

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax, posted by creepy on June 25, 2012, at 8:30:37

Hi Creepy.

> I rapid cycled on 50mg topamax.. might be a little rough titrating up to 100.

Were you steadily depressed prior to beginning Topamax?

> I was a hyper-responder when I took it though. at 50mg I had some really intense side effects most dont get until higher doses. Maybe something else I was taking at the time raised my levels? Dunno.

What sorts of effects did you experience?

> Its supposedly good at taming angry outbursts in PTSD.

I didn't know that. I have seen it do this for bipolar disorder, mixed-state.

> But whether thats due to calming a mixed state or something else like slowing the amygdala I have no idea.

That's an interesting thought.

> I get the feeling the docs dont either! =(

I know.

> Zoloft has been good on my PTSD, but my body seems to respond by 'somatizing' the depression so now I have pain and fatigue.

Experiencing the somatic symptoms of depression or drug side effects is not the same thing as "somatization".

> What symptoms make your doc think you have PTSD?

Childhood history of physical abuse and neglect.

He thinks that I might have "developmental PTSD", and that this, in part, is driving the depression and creating a biological substrate for my presentation of rapid relapse upon response to antidepressant treatment.

http://www.positivehumandevelopment.com/developmental-ptsd.html


- Scott

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax

Posted by SLS on July 4, 2012, at 5:39:00

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax creepy, posted by SLS on June 25, 2012, at 16:44:53

So far, so good.

I raised the dosage of Topamax to 75 mg yesterday (25 mg t.i.d.). I will remain there for a week before increasing to the target dosage of 100 mg. It doesn't appear that I am having any cognitive or memory impairments that are in addition to those that are integral to the depression itself. I cannot be sure that the Topamax is helping, though. Of course, it is early. Unless there is true magic in these pills, I will not continue taking them.

I remain partially improved since adding the prazosin. However, I would like to accelerate my rate of recovery and help to attain full remission. If Topamax is not effective in filling this role, I am thinking about trying either ketamine or rTMS.

Currently:

Parnate 80 mg
nortriptyline 150 mg
Lamictal 200 mg
Abilify 10 mg
lithium 300 mg
prazosin 6 mg
Topamax 75 mg


- Scott

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax

Posted by uncouth on July 4, 2012, at 9:48:35

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax, posted by SLS on July 4, 2012, at 5:39:00

Scott you ever try VERY high dose memantine...it woudl take a while to escalate, but im on 50-60mg...changing my life. BP2

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax SLS

Posted by Tomatheus on July 4, 2012, at 13:09:28

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax, posted by SLS on July 4, 2012, at 5:39:00

Thanks for the update, Scott. I am continuing to hope that you notice some benefits from the Topamax, and I think it's good that you have some ideas on how to proceed if the Topamax doesn't work out.

I hope you're having a good holiday,

Tomatheus

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax uncouth

Posted by SLS on July 4, 2012, at 19:38:25

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax, posted by uncouth on July 4, 2012, at 9:48:35

> Scott you ever try VERY high dose memantine...it woudl take a while to escalate, but im on 50-60mg...changing my life. BP2

Wow! That's quite a bit.

I haven't tried it, but I will certainly put it back on my list of things to try next.

Thanks.


- Scott

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax

Posted by SLS on July 9, 2012, at 19:37:12

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax uncouth, posted by SLS on July 4, 2012, at 19:38:25

I increased my dosage of Topamax to 100 mg today. I have nothing significant to report.


- Scott

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax

Posted by SLS on July 12, 2012, at 18:56:54

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax, posted by SLS on July 9, 2012, at 19:37:12

> I increased my dosage of Topamax to 100 mg today. I have nothing significant to report.

After two days at 100 mg, I must sadly report that I am a dunce (more so than usual). Since there is no hint of any additional improvement resulting from the addition of Topamax at this point, I am going to discontinue it. I might rechallenge after the weekend just to make sure that the cognitive blunting I experienced was due to the Topamax and not a temporary worsening of my depression.


- Scott

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax SLS

Posted by Tomatheus on July 13, 2012, at 0:13:09

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax, posted by SLS on July 12, 2012, at 18:56:54

> After two days at 100 mg, I must sadly report that I am a dunce (more so than usual). Since there is no hint of any additional improvement resulting from the addition of Topamax at this point, I am going to discontinue it. I might rechallenge after the weekend just to make sure that the cognitive blunting I experienced was due to the Topamax and not a temporary worsening of my depression.

I'm sorry to hear this, Scott. Assuming that rechallenging your system with Topamax yields results that suggest that at least some of your cognitive blunting may be due to the medication, will this mean that either ketamine or rTMS will be next for you? And if you don't mind me asking, to what extent would you say your symptoms are improved now (on your current regimen) over the way you felt when your symptoms were at their worst? Or in other words, about how far would you say you still have to go before you reach your goal of remission?

Tomatheus

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax Tomatheus

Posted by SLS on July 13, 2012, at 5:36:29

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax SLS, posted by Tomatheus on July 13, 2012, at 0:13:09

> > After two days at 100 mg, I must sadly report that I am a dunce (more so than usual). Since there is no hint of any additional improvement resulting from the addition of Topamax at this point, I am going to discontinue it. I might rechallenge after the weekend just to make sure that the cognitive blunting I experienced was due to the Topamax and not a temporary worsening of my depression.

> I'm sorry to hear this, Scott.

Thanks.

My case history, like so many of ours, has been a litany of one disappointment after another.

> Assuming that rechallenging your system with Topamax yields results that suggest that at least some of your cognitive blunting may be due to the medication, will this mean that either ketamine or rTMS will be next for you?

I will need to find out who is working with ketamine and what treatment protocol they are using. Some use one large dose. Others use a series of smaller doses. Cost is an issue. Cost is also an issue with rTMS, but I might be able to appeal to Medicare for having it done. I understand that some people have managed to get their insurance companies to pay for it.

> And if you don't mind me asking, to what extent would you say your symptoms are improved now (on your current regimen) over the way you felt when your symptoms were at their worst?

On my better days, I would say that I am 35% improved. In the past, I assigned this value to a smaller degree of improvement. I tend to overrate myself. It wasn't until I began to feel significantly better on prazosin that I realized how sick I really was. My "old" 35% was probably closer to being 20%. These are not insignificant numbers. 20% = 1/5; 35% = 1/3. Being one third of the way there feels pretty good compared to baseline, but I want it all. One thing that frustrates the hell out of me is that I still cannot read fast enough to keep up with the lyrics on the monitor when singing karaoke. I make quite a few mistakes while singing, but the crowd is very forgiving. Right now, singing karaoke is my only recreational social activity. I need a lot of coaxing to take the microphone. At first, I refused to sing unless I could do it while sitting in my seat. I still get enough stage fright to see the microphone shake in my hand. The real question is, why do I do this to myself? :-) I'm not quite sure, but I'll just have some fun with it while I can. I sang in choirs while in public school, and had rock-star fantasies like so many others did.

I am currently looking at using doxazosin instead of prazosin. Prazosin has a half-life of only 3 hours. Doxazosin has a half-life of 22 hours. The two drugs are brothers, and the latter is now being studied for PTSD. I would prefer to have a steady blood level throughout the day. I often have days in which I cycle up and down. I don't know if the short half-life of prazosin is responsible for this, but I would like to run the idea by my doctor.

http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_hb4345/is_4_37/ai_n31616383/


- Scott

 

Trying rTMS

Posted by Twinleaf on July 13, 2012, at 10:16:16

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax Tomatheus, posted by SLS on July 13, 2012, at 5:36:29

If you are a "new" patient who has never had it before, it is worth trying to use Medicare; occasionally, it does get covered. Itis also possible to ask your pdoc to write to Neurostar asking for compassionate use; they occasionally grant that.

I do hope you will try it, as it is aimed at hypoactive frontal lobes, and I think I remember quite a lot of blue on your scan. According to my pdoc, under- active frontal lobes are most effectively treated with rTMS and ketamine.

 

Re: Trying rTMS

Posted by SLS on July 13, 2012, at 11:55:45

In reply to Trying rTMS, posted by Twinleaf on July 13, 2012, at 10:16:16

Thanks, Twinleaf!


- Scott


> If you are a "new" patient who has never had it before, it is worth trying to use Medicare; occasionally, it does get covered. Itis also possible to ask your pdoc to write to Neurostar asking for compassionate use; they occasionally grant that.
>
> I do hope you will try it, as it is aimed at hypoactive frontal lobes, and I think I remember quite a lot of blue on your scan. According to my pdoc, under- active frontal lobes are most effectively treated with rTMS and ketamine.

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax SLS

Posted by Tomatheus on July 13, 2012, at 14:26:37

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax Tomatheus, posted by SLS on July 13, 2012, at 5:36:29

Scott,

Thank you very much for your responses. It certainly is my hope that you will get some results from either ketamine or rTMS and that whichever treatment you opt for doesn't end up costing you too much. I'd also like to wish you luck with doxazosin if you do end up trying that medication instead of prazosin. It sounds like doxazosin would be worth trying, based on what you wrote and on the link that you provided.

I like how you included an example of how your condition affects your functioning in addition to giving a figure that represents the degree to which you find your symptoms to be improved. I also think it's a good sign that you've been having some fun with karaoke, despite the amount of stage fright that you've been experiencing and the fact that you have difficulty keeping up with the lyrics on the monitor. Again, I can only hope that treatment with either ketamine or rTMS will bring you closer -- or better yet, all the way -- to your goal of remission. I think that your contributions to this board show how much you have to offer others, and as corny as this may sound, I think that this world would be a better place with you feeling 100 percent or close to it.

Perhaps your assessment of your case history is accurate. I have no reason to think that it wouldn't be, and I would probably assess my own case history in much the same way. But what I find to be admirable about you is your commitment to try every available treatment option, even after so many have failed. Thirty-five percent remission may not be where you want to be, but as you said, it is not an insignificant degree of improvement. And from the posts of yours that I've read, it sounds like you've made it to the point that you're at by enduring and persisting through much adversity. Although I, at times, have had some glimpses into my own future, I don't really know what the future holds. Nobody really does, even if they do get glimpses into possible futures. My point is that it would be hard to predict what kind of responses you might get from the treatments that you're considering. I think that Twinleaf posted some information to indicate that ketamine or rTMS might produce a favorable outcome for you, but of course, it is time that will tell how well you will ultimately respond to treatment. Considering how relentlessly you've persisted through your trials with various treatments, I can only hope that you get the kind of favorable outcome from treatment that you're hoping for and deserving of (in my opinion).

Well, this post turned out being quite a bit longer than I thought it would be, so I'll finish this up now. Good luck, and be well.

Tomatheus

 

Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax Tomatheus

Posted by SLS on July 13, 2012, at 14:49:03

In reply to Re: Adding Parnate and prazosin + Topamax SLS, posted by Tomatheus on July 13, 2012, at 14:26:37

Dear Tomatheus,

You have always been a great source of support for me, and I very much appreciate it. Your post really helped boost my self-esteem today.

Take care and be well.

Sincerely,
Scott


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