Posts Tagged ‘modecate’

I’m not Dead Yet…

April 27, 2012 4 comments

I’m feeling better.

I’ve been using up all my creativity at work and coming home, walking the dogs, and watching TV episodes on my computer, and going to bed at 8pm. I haven’t had much to say lately.

I am up to 50mg of Lamotrigine and I think the only side-effects are are runny nose. I’m extremely lucky.

I have had such bad tremors that I can barely operate a mouse, but my pdoc thinks that is the Modecate and is cutting me back to 12mg every three weeks. We’ll see how that goes.

I could really use some hypomania right now.


Health Insurance Scams

March 24, 2012 1 comment

In Ontario our doctors are paid through our taxes, but not our drugs, dentists, eyeglasses, hearing aids, etc. I don’t have to pay directly to see my psychiatrist, or for my lithium level blood tests, but I do have to pay directly for the lithium itself. I don’t know how drugs work in the rest of the world, but in Canada when a drug has lost its patent we get access to much cheaper generic versions of it.

Before I got back on a health plan I paid $19.31 for 150 capsules of lithium carbonate; I paid $81.80 for 120 tablets of generic Divalproex; and I paid $45.94 for 1mL of generic Modecate. This is basically a month’s supply of meds (3 weeks for the Modecate). That’s $147.05, which is half of what my husband and I spend on food, but I think the cost is affordable for something so important.

My pharmacist does a lot to make me feel welcome. Everyone there calls me by my first name, and many of the staff know what I need before I even ask, without even looking in the computer. The pharmacist even signed my passport application back when there was a requirement to get someone in a position of trust to do that.

I was very disappointed recently when I got my first big prescription filled with my new health insurance. The pharmacist told me there was no generic Divalproex to be had anywhere in the city, so he had to give me the name brand version Depakote/Epival for $165.41. Most of that was covered by my insurance, thankfully. I don’t buy his story of the generic suddenly being out of stock everywhere in the city, however. That was just insulting. Of course the pharmacist is gouging my insurance plan. Thankfully he never gouged me when I had no insurance, but the incident has changed my perception of how much I can trust him. Our relationship is more profit motivated than I thought, I guess. Live and learn.

Read more…

A Quiet Time May Be Coming (And Other Side Effects)

February 29, 2012 1 comment

Well, my brain is back to normal (???) from my Modecate (anti-psychotic) injection two weeks ago. I’m posting several posts a day again, but without any sense of special importance.

Now I get my next injection next Monday, and I’ll probably be quiet again. We’ll see. Just based on comments that nurses have let slip, I think I’m taking the heavy duty meds they give to scary people who they can’t trust to take their meds. The thing is, I’m taking Modecate mainly because it is lactose free. Although having said that, I am taking the standard dosage instead of a lighter one because I kept having psychotic episodes on my other anti-psychotics.

The good thing about side-effects is that, for the most part, they go away. I have every reason to believe that this quiet/uncommunicative side effect will go away in time, too. It will be interesting to observe (I try to keep a positive attitude).

One side effect that is not going away is the tardive dyskinesia (involuntary movements of the lips and tongue). It is getting worse to the point where it will be noticeable to anyone soon. From what I read about it, it can be irreversible. Considering that my other career is basically public speaking, this could be disastrous. I have had many temporary physical disabilities, however, and I have always persevered. If this is permanent, I will deal with this too. So far it’s okay.

Luckily I now have a drug plan through my employer (in Ontario we have free doctors but not free drugs) so I can afford the more modern meds again. Next month my doctor and I will have to see what modern lactose-free anti-psychotics I can take. I can get off of these older drugs before the tardive dyskinesia becomes worse, or permanent. As I said above, I will accept the tardive dyskinesia, but it would be nice if I didn’t have to.

Status Report

February 21, 2012 Leave a comment

I think when I get my injections of Modecate I’m going to be quiet for a few days, but after that I’ll get back to normal (minus the hallucinations and weird thinking, hopefully). I’m really glad the stiff-muscles side-effect has passed.

Despite the insomnia, I feel pretty normal today. I actually did about 24 hours of work over this past long weekend, which pretty much means I’m not depressed. I did sleep a lot during the days, so I’m kind of dreading being overly tired at work today. We’ll see what happens.

I’m sorry this post is so mundane. I’ll try to write something insightful (or at least pretentious :-)) this week. The thing is, the more mundane the posts, the more I’m winning.

Nothing Profound to Say…

February 17, 2012 1 comment

One of the symptoms of being “up” that I have is the feeling that I have profound things to say that I must share with the world. Without meds (or if they’re not working), I might feel that I am a great religious figure or a philosopher. Even with working meds, I think I have that same feeling, but on a much lower scale. I still think I have superior insights and I rationalize it by thinking I have experience and reason to back them up. I think this attitude manifests itself differently than normal blogging in that I feel that everything I write has to be profound in some way. If I look at my past posts I wrote a majority of them (but not all) under the impression that I was sharing something special.

For example, a few weeks ago I started writing what could be considered the founding document of an atheist philosophical system. In the back of my mind I knew that I could get other people to buy into it. It’s not so bad: years ago I would have been a prophet, a Buddha, or even a second Jesus, with a new religion burning in my mind waiting to be written down and shared. The reality in all cases, it goes without saying, is that I am no better or worse than anyone else.

Of course, I knew about the extreme forms of this symptom, but I never noticed that I was still subject to the lesser form until recently. My doctor substantially increased my dose of Modecate (an anti-psychotic) on Monday and now suddenly I have so much less to say.┬áMy feeling of having a special insight and my need to share it are gone. It could be that the Modecate had turned off something good, but I think it has just made me normal. The fact that I am writing this post shows I am not totally uncommunicative, but my attitude as I am writing is different. This is simply a personal observation, not a special insight. It’s probably a healthier activity.

There is an online forum I visit, and usually I post dozens of posts per week on various topics (politics, religion, etc), again all under the impression that I am sharing some special insight. This week I have been almost silent there.

It will be interesting to see how this issue plays out. I’ll have to see what is the new normal. I don’t want to have unusually many opinions, but I don’t want to have unusually few either.